4 Upgrades that can help you lower your homeowner’s insurance cost

reduce your insurance premium

Homeowners’ insurance premiums continue to rise each year. Here are some simple ways to not only lower your insurance premium, but they can also increase your property value.

  1. Do you have a bad roof that’s been leaking, has rotting wood, and is as old as you are? Did you know that insurers offer discounts for roof upgrades? Talk to your insurance agent and see what discounts are available with a new roof.
  2. Storm-Safe Windows and Doors can increase the value of your home, but it can also help you reduce your insurance premiums. Talk with your insurance agent to see what discounts are available to you.
  3. Install a Home Security System. This is an upgrade that’s relatively cheap and can reduce your insurance premium. Talk to your insurance agent.
  4. A Water shutoff device is another easy device that you can install which can help reduce your insurance premium. This device will alert you of moisture or leaks in places that shouldn’t have water. Talk with your insurance agent to see what discounts are available.

These are just a few of the things that can help you lower your insurance premiums. Don’t forget to contact your insurance agent when you get these upgrades to update your policy.

Why is the Appraisal so critical to your real estate transaction?

Arona McGinley Realtor in Tampa florida

Did you know that the appraisal can make or break your real estate sale? The appraiser works for the bank, not the seller or the buyer.

In real estate transactions, we have 3 significant players – the buyer, the seller, and the lender. The Appraiser is the eyes of the lender in the field. An Appraiser plays a vital role in every real estate transaction.

For example, we have a real estate transaction of a sale price of $300,000. The buyer is putting 10% down which is $30,000. He is getting a loan in the amount of $270,000. Everyone so far thinks this home is worth $300,000, obviously, the buyer thinks this because he made an offer for the sale price of $300,000.

The lender now sends the Appraiser out to the home to get an appraisal of what the home is worth. Here is where it can become pretty tricky. When the appraiser goes out here are a few things that can happen:

  1. The appraiser determines that the value of the home is higher than the sales price, maybe its $305,000 instead of $300,000. This is great news because we can go ahead with our transaction.
  2. The appraiser, appraisers the value of the home at $300,000 which is the sales price. Excellent! We move ahead with the transaction.
  3. The appraiser values that home lower than the sales price for example $290,000. This becomes a problem for all parties involved. A couple of things can happen here which is not so great for the parties involved.
  • The Lender can still lend the buyer the money to purchase the home but only for $290,000, not the $300,000 sale price.
  • The seller can either eat the $10,000 and sell the home for $290,000 instead of $300,000. This can sometimes happen, where the seller comes down to the new appraisal price.
  • The buyer can buy the home at $300,000 but would have to bring additional money to the table. You can see this happening in a seller’s market. The loan is now $290,000 with a down payment of $29,0000, the loan amount would be $261,000. The buyer has to bring an extra $10,000 to purchase the home at $300,000.
  • The last thing that can happen is that the whole transaction blows up because neither party is willing to negotiate.

You can see how the Appraiser is vital to a real estate transaction. It does not matter what the buyer or the seller thinks the home is worth. It matters what the Appraiser thinks…that’s what counts!

What is a 4 Point Inspection?

4 POINT INSPECTION

Your offer has been accepted to purchase your dream home, and now you have to set up an inspection to make sure the home is in good condition.

When buying a home, you will have to get a home inspection if you’re getting a mortgage and even if you are purchasing with cash. You want to have a home inspection done no matter what the situation. By having a 4-point inspection done, it lets the bank or the homeowners know the quality of the home that they are purchasing.

A 4-point home inspection includes

  • Foundation
  • Roof
  • Electrical
  • Plumbing
  • HVAC systems
  • Damages caused by termites, flood, fire, and mold.

Any of the above can impact the value of your home. If a home inspection is not done, and later you find out that the foundation is cracked or the roof is rotted, this can be a costly fix for the buyer.

Once something is revealed in the home inspection you can negotiate with the seller for a lower asking price.

Who can do a 4-Point Home Inspection?

  • A Florida licensed general contractor
  • Architect
  • Building Inspector
  • Engineer
  • ASHI Home Inspectors
  • FABI Building Inspectors
  • NACHI Certified Home Inspectors

**A Home Owner cannot do a Home Inspection

Home Purchasing Costs & Fees

Here are some of the costs that you will have when purchasing a home in Florida.

Are you Financially Prepared To Buy Your Home?

are you financially prepared to buy your home

You’ve made the decision to purchase your home but are you financially prepared to buy your home.

Here are a list of things that you need to know now.

  • Evaluate your current Income versus your Expenses
  • Do you know your Credit Score?
  • Figure out what you can afford for your monthly payments
  • Do you have Savings?
  • Do you know your Debt to Income Ratio?

Are You Ready To Buy Your Home?

Your guide to buying your first home -

Buying a home can be the most exciting time for you and your family. But don’t lose out on the home of your dreams by doing this alone. This is one of the biggest financial transactions of your life, and I want to help you by making this experience less stressful.

As you go through the process you may have questions on –

  1. Downpayment – How much is required as a downpayment of a home?
  2. How do I get a Mortgage for this home?
  3. How do I complete the Mortgage application?
  4. Do I have enough money saved up to buy this home?
  5. Do I have a good credit score?
  6. How do I write up an offer on my dream home?
  7. How do I negotiate to get the best price?
  8. How do I submit an offer on my dream home?
  9. What do I do when the Seller accepts my offer?
  10. How do I get the home inspected?
  11. How do I negotiate repairs?
  12. How do I get a title search?
  13. How do I get a survey?
  14. What are my closing costs?

There are so many things to think about when buying your home. Don’t go through this alone. Call/Text 727-422-9340 I can help you buy the dream home for you and your family.

5 Must-do Home Improvement Projects to sell your home in 2020

5 home improvement projects to sell your home in 2020

You’re ready to sell your home, and although you’ve always kept your home in great condition you still need to do some extra maintenance. When selling your home your property has to be in tiptop shape if you’re going to get top dollar when you sell. If you’re selling your home you still want to have your home looking good on the inside as well as the outside. Even if your home is on the market for 3 months or more, you have to keep giving that home your love, even if you have already vacated the home. When your home looks like its well cared for, you get more people interested in looking at it and even get top dollar. Here are some tips that you may already be doing or neglecting.

  1. Landscaping – your lawn should be mowed, trees and shrubs trimmed, flower beds should look lush. Your driveway and walkways should be well lit without weeds and leaves on it.
  2. Gutters – people tend to forget that you get all sorts of debris in your gutters. Make sure that your gutters are cleaned out. By not doing this you can have all sorts of issues with your roof, walls of home and drainage issues. You don’t want to deal with overflowing drains if it rains, or damage walls or foundation issues or drainage issues when selling your home.
  3. Fix Broken things – Buyers tend to check to make sure the doorbell works. It’s one of the things that people tend to forget when getting their home ready for the sale. Lots of times it doesn’t work. This may be something small to you, but to buyers, this can be a big deal. Fix leaky faucets and running toilets.
  4. Critters – go around your home and make sure you don’t have squirrels or other critters living in your attic or other areas of your home.
  5. Clean Windows and Doors – If your home is on the market for more than a month you will have to get those windows and doors cleaned up. Get rid of cobwebs or spiderwebs that may have built up around them. Not doing this will make the home look neglected.

Get your punch list made up, and make sure you’ve got all of these little things taken care of. By doing these small things you can get more return on your investment.


What Home Inspectors Look For?

florida home inspection

Why should you get a home inspection done on the property you are purchasing?

You should always hire a professional home inspector. Buying a home is one of the biggest financial investment you will have. Your house may look beautiful, in the most desirable location and exactly what you are looking for, but you have no clue as to the structural elements of the home. Like the saying goes, “don’t judge a book by it’s cover”.

So let talk about home inspection. You as a home owner want to know what would need to be repaired now, or in the near future. By having this information it allows you to make an informed decision when purchasing and negotiating with the seller.

Your professional home inspector will look at the structural elements such as foundation, roof, grounds, exterior surfaces, plumbing, attic, electrical system, appliances, heating and cooling system, and garage space. Once the inspector checks everything he will then put together a report. This can be as much as 30 pages long or more. This report will tell you exactly what was found.

This is where you decide if you are willing to do home projects which may be in your future. If not, then your may want to negotiate with the seller for credit where you can fix the things that need fixing after closing or have the seller do the fixing before the closing. Either way, the ball is in your court. Need more information on home inspections CONTACT US.