Build Wealth with a Less Expensive Home

Here’s a case for buying a less expensive home than you secretly want. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average American spends approximately 37% of his or her income on housing. Notably, the top 20 percentile earners spend only 29.9% of their income, while the bottom 20% pay 39.9%. So what do high […]

Four Things To Do Before You Move In

You’re almost done! All that’s left to do is to pack up and move in to your first real home. Here are a few tips that will make your moving day as a new homeowner easier. Sort your belongings. Moving can be more expensive when you cart along items you don’t really want or need. […]

Is It Time To Buy a Vacation Home?

You may be feeling fairly flush these days, with a bigger salary, job security, appreciating homestead and other wise investments. Now might be the right time for you to buy a vacation home. According to the 2019 U.S. Vacation Home Counties Report compiled by the National Association of REALTORS, the median price of vacation homes […]

“Flaneur” the Way To Your Next Home

Have you ever taken the time to stroll the marketplace in your neighborhood or the city simply for the pleasure of observation? Then you might be what the French call a “flaneur.”  The flaneur was first described in the writings of 19th century poet Charles Baudelair as one who casually wanders, watches and chronicles the […]

The Fairytale Tudor

Great Britain’s Tudor reign spanned 1485 and 1603 and was unprecedented in terms of prosperity. International trade led to a great expansion in free-thinking and in – home design concepts, including new ideas like the decorative indoor fireplace with a mantle, hand-made rugs from the Orient as table coverings, and built-in cabinets and seating. Tudor […]

Loving the Ranch Style Home

All housing reflects the culture and the economics of their day, and the ranch-style home of the ‘50s, ‘60s and ‘70s is a symbol of post-World War II prosperity and an icon of the space age. The mid-century saw the first real sprawl in communities away from town centers, made accessible by the increasingly affordable […]

Good Reasons to Buy During the Holidays

Did you know that the holidays are among the best times of the year to buy a home? Put a giftwrapped set of housekeys under your Christmas tree and ring in the new year with a new abode you’ll love. Here are a few reasons why now is the time. Home prices aren’t going down. […]

Super Sleuth Your Next Home

You’re ready to make an offer on a home. You’ve got the seller’s disclosure of material (physical and environmental) defects, but is that all the information you need to move forward? Before you sign your purchase offer, do a little quick research. Get a loss history report. The Insurance Information Institute advises homebuyers to obtain a loss history […]

Buying a Condo Just Got Easier

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development recently revised its condominium loan policies to allow consumers greater access to mortgage loans that are federally guaranteed through the Federal Housing Administration(FHA). After Oct. 15, 2019, as many as 60,000 additional condo units will meet FHA-certification, making them eligible for buyers to purchase with an FHA loan. The new guidelines […]

Buying a Historically Significant Home

From the historic homes of North Carolina, to the Victorian-Edwardian “Painted Ladies” of San Francisco, CA, to the Gilded Age homes of Swiss Avenue in Dallas, TX, historically designated homes are beautiful and charming, but you should consider a few things before you buy one. Historically designated homes are overseen by city preservation associations and/or homeowner’s […]

Fun Math Rules for Homeownership

There are some easy ways to remember how to handle your money so that you can become a homeowner, prosper as a homeowner, and ultimately, sell your home at a profit. The 50/20/30 rule. Your spending can be divided into three categories – Needs, Wants, and Savings. Allocate 50% of your after-tax income for needs […]

Appraisals Can Protect Buyers & Sellers

Seeing something with one’s own eyes is the best way to make an evaluation. That’s the purpose of bank appraisals, which are designed to protect banks from over lending, homebuyers from overborrowing, and home sellers from overpricing their homes. Once the purchase offer is accepted by the seller, the homebuyer’s lender orders an appraisal of […]

Recourse & Nonrecourse Mortgage Loans

Recourse or non-recourse loans are a topic that may never come up while you’re applying for your mortgage, but it’s nonetheless important to know what they are. They’re not a type of loan like fixed rate or adjustable rate, nor are they conventional or government-guaranteed loans like FHA and VA loans. Whether a mortgage loan […]

Running a Business From Your Home

As a homebuyer who intends to work from home, you want to find the perfect place to start or expand your at-home business. But there’s a lot more to consider besides finding the right space to do your work, including how your at-home business may affect your neighbors. While telecommuting is unlikely to bother anyone, […]

Three Ways to Get Your Finances in Shape

You want to buy a home, but first you need to get your finances squared away. You’ll need money for a down payment, for moving and for other costs. How can you get more money in just a few months? Here are three ways that work together as nicely as compound interest. 1. Slow down […]

Quarterly Market Update

Watch our Q4 2018 market update for a recap of national and regional trends. See how median home prices, home sale and inventory serve as indicators for our housing market in 2019. As always, feel free to contact one of our real estate professionals for local market data. Thank you for reading our Smoky Mountains Of […]

Fall in Love With the Right Home

You’re ready to fall in love with your first home. As you write your wish list, you may find that it grows longer than you’d imagined. You want more living space, a place to do your art and crafts, enough bedrooms to expand your family or accommodate relatives and friends, a separate master suite, and […]

When to Fire Your Real Estate Agent

by Eugene Strickland, Broker/Owner GRI, MBA Management, Marketing & Finance Luxury Collection Specialist What I’ve written here is a simplistic view of a possibly complex, but certainly provocative topic. It is one that needs to be addressed. Over the last 20 years or so I’ve seen numerous articles written with titles like, “How to Pick […]

The Credit Scores You Need to Buy a Home

Mortgage lenders check your credit history before approving a home-buying loan. Your credit scores are crucial to getting the amount you want to borrow at a good interest rate. Your income vs. your debt, your payment history, the length of time you’ve had credit, new credit you’ve opened, and the types of credit you owe […]

Your Rights As a Borrower

When you shop for a mortgage loan, you have certain rights that are guaranteed by the federal government’s Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Knowing your rights will help you get the best loan possible. You have the right to: Receive equal treatment by the lender, so that a credit decision isn’t based on your race, color, […]