A Deeper Examination of Schools Near Your Next Minnesota Home

We highly value the feedback we get on how we can improve your home search tool, the Home Scouting Report®.  Over time, your recommendations have led to many additions (all available by clicking on our ugly mugs after you’ve logged in).  Now, we’ve added another interactive research tool; The Minnesota Report Card from the Minnesota Department of Education. While you’ve always been able to get basic school information via the Map View of your Home Scouting Report® but with this new tool, you’ll have access to these additional resources: My School – Demographics, trend data, graduation rates, contact information and …

Long Term Mortgage Rate Forecast Going Into Winter Market

As the winter weather hits or threatens to hit, many people who have actively or passively been searching for a home ask, “Should I just postpone the idea until spring?”  There are many reasons to either wait or hasten the purchase of a home.  If you happened to be considering mortgage rates as one variable in your decision, we thought that we’d share the one reliable forecasting model that we follow for long term mortgage rate forecasts: Mortgage Rate Forecast for 30 Year Conventional Loan 30 Year Conventional Mortgage Rate. Percent Per Year Average of Month. Month Date Forecast Value …

Different Mortgage Types and What They Mean to Buyers and Sellers in a Competitive Market

This podcast outlines the differences between Minnesota mortgage pre-approvals and how they affect purchase transactions.  Homebuyers and home sellers can learn the risks and benefits of each different type and how they relate to their transaction.  This is essential information for understanding the implications of your choice on loan type for your purchase in a seller’s market.  If you’re a seller, it’s essential for understanding the risks and advantages of accepting an offer that comes with one type of mortgage financing vs. another. Charles Dailey – Branch Manager, Loan Officer, Certified Military Housing Specialist – CA DOC, MN DOC & …

Homebuyers: Thinking About A Lowball Offer? Think Again.

 If you are under the impression that the Minnesota real estate market is still a buyer’s market, it may be time to put away the bell bottom hip huggers and burn the flower power polyester pullover.  Okay, that may be dating back a bit too far but you get my point.  Let’s time warp to 2013. Long gone are the days of putting in a lowball offer and hope it sticks.  It won’t and it doesn’t anymore.  I know, I know…your friends, family and colleagues who purchased homes just a few years ago still boast that they got their home …

Buy a Home Now vs. Wait – Who Needs a Forecast for that?

Charles Dailey – Branch Manager, Loan Officer, Certified Military Housing Specialist – CA DOC, MN DOC & WI DFI The Home Buyers Scouting Report® is provided directly to the buyer by HBM II, a licensed national real estate brokerage service company, not to or through a lender. The FREE home finding service is provided directly to prospective homebuyers by HBM II and its real estate brokers, as part of their ordinary real estate brokerage services. HBM II, Inc. works cooperatively with other real estate agents across the United States in attempting to find ready, willing and able buyers for homes …

Gaining an Edge With the Best Homebuyer Education

This episode of the Twin Cities Real Estate Radio Show covers comprehensive homebuyer education and wraps it up in a bow called DoorSteps. Charles Dailey – Branch Manager, Loan Officer, Certified Military Housing Specialist – CA DOC, MN DOC & WI DFI The Home Buyers Scouting Report® is provided directly to the buyer by HBM II, a licensed national real estate brokerage service company, not to or through a lender. The FREE home finding service is provided directly to prospective homebuyers by HBM II and its real estate brokers, as part of their ordinary real estate brokerage services. HBM II, …

5 Things I Wish All Homebuyers Knew Before Getting Their Mortgage

A good mortgage loan officer is like a financial psychiatrist for residential housing.  Years of training and experience are packed into our minds for the purpose of reacting correctly to buyers’ financial profiles, stories and desires.  The moral of the story?  All those years of training and experience are an empty value unless you put your entire buyer profile, story and set of desires before your loan officer.  Not doing this is like buying a 600 dollar phone and only using ten percent of its features. A good mortgage loan officer is not a peddler of a financial commodity (I …

The MN Mortgage Financing Contingency – What it is and what it isn’t

The “Written Statement” of Lender Commitment is a misunderstood, under-utilized, and yet incredibly significant component of the Minnesota Association of Realtors’ (MAR) Residential Purchase Agreement. Despite the almost universal acceptance of the MAR forms in MN purchase transactions, the “Written Statement” or Lender Commitment Letter component is seldom explained to a buyer or seller. The Financing Contingency (Conventional, FHA or DVA) which functions to describe the financing that a buyer is attempting to obtain, contains the clause referring to the Lender Commitment Letter (referred to as a “Written Statement”.)  The Financing Contingency requires an option to be chosen at the …

Low Appraisal Challenges in a Newly Inclining Real Estate Market

After half a decade of falling home values, the real estate industry has become well versed in the language of declining markets. Buyers have learned to be skeptical, buyers’ agents have sharpened their teeth advocating for lower purchase prices and appraisers have become increasingly conservative in order to meet the demands of an equally conservative lending industry. Enter: 2012 Twin Cities Real Estate Market. New to the scene and largely forgotten by all arrives a balanced market which quickly reveals itself as an inclining market. This new market was initially greeted with skepticism and disbelief by much of the real …

How to Choose a Mortgage Lender When Buying Your Home

This episode of the Twin Cities Real Estate Radio Show covers different considerations when choosing a mortgage lender for a home purchase. Charles Dailey – Branch Manager, Loan Officer, Certified Military Housing Specialist – CA DOC, MN DOC & WI DFI The Home Buyers Scouting Report® is provided directly to the buyer by HBM II, a licensed national real estate brokerage service company, not to or through a lender. The FREE home finding service is provided directly to prospective homebuyers by HBM II and its real estate brokers, as part of their ordinary real estate brokerage services. HBM II, Inc. …

The Home Buyers Scouting Report® Mobile App is Here!

The Home Buyers Scouting Report® is now mobile. From the browser on your mobile phone, if you type in www.homescouting.com, you’ll see that your scouting report is now mobile friendly. From an iPhone, Android or Blackberry you should bookmark the page and add a bookmark icon to one of your home screens. You can also get the apps from the Apple Store or Google Play: For tutorials on the mobile Home Scouting app, click here. If you need mortgage calculators on the go, pull up http://calculators.charlesdailey.com/ in your mobile browser and bookmark it .  Should you want rate quotes on …

How to Get Your Offer Accepted in Multiple Offer Situtuations

This radio show explains the difficulties of getting your offer accepted in multiple offer or competitive situations and how to overcome them. < Charles Dailey – Branch Manager, Loan Officer, Certified Military Housing Specialist – CA DOC, MN DOC & WI DFI The Home Buyers Scouting Report® is provided directly to the buyer by HBM II, a licensed national real estate brokerage service company, not to or through a lender. The FREE home finding service is provided directly to prospective homebuyers by HBM II and its real estate brokers, as part of their ordinary real estate brokerage services. HBM II, ...

The Cost of Waiting to Buy a Home in fall of 2013 vs. Now

With all of the recent strength in the Twin Cities housing market and Minnesota’s relatively low unemployment rate one might be confused about why we’re experiencing all-time lows (ours are even lower) in mortgage rates since typically the beginning of a recovery is followed by higher interest rates. But the truth is that the Minnesota story is not the national or global story. Events on the national and international stage have caused the Federal Reserve and global bond markets to drive US mortgage rates down. This too will end and will carry a cost to those contemplating a mortgage. First, …

Say Goodbye to the Lowest Minnesota Mortgage Rates in History

The market is at a turning point for the worse due to growing worries about inflation. While it is not a problem right now (although the consumer price index did just rise the most in 10 months), there are several strong economic factors emerging that typically lead to higher prices to the consumer and thus higher mortgage interest rates down the road. While the Federal Reserve said they wouldn’t raise rates until 2014, Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics and many more economists don’t believe that they’ll be able to stick to that promise. A stronger dollar, improving jobs …

Friends Don’t Let Friends Use Zillow, Trulia and Yahoo Real Estate to Find Homes for Sale

If you live in MN and you want to use one of these sites to find your next home, you should know that approximately 20% of the homes for sale are not being shown to you.  Because these sites are riddled with data inaccuracies, Edina Realty decided to pull their listings from these third party aggregators. This is a growing trend nationally on the part of real estate brokerages to ensure that their listings are handled in accordance with their code of ethics and respective state laws. Personally, I’m a big fan of this decision and hope that many more …

Fannie Mae Homepath Mortgage Loans…NO Appraisal, NO MI and NO Condo Certification!

Fannie Mae HomePath Mortgage Loans… NO Appraisal, NO MI and NO Condo Certification! Looking for a fix up property… with mortgage financing readily available? You believe you are either a handy person when it comes to home fix up projects or maybe you know someone who is handy. Shopping for foreclosed homes seems like a great idea for you, as foreclosed properties are the properties most likely to have some fix up projects that need to be completed. This is a great idea, right up until you are not able to get financing on that foreclosed property. You may qualify …

Why a Home Buyer Should Set Up 3 Search Criteria When Buying a Home

A prospective home buyer or investor might have a clear idea of what he or she wants in the property they’ll buy but the current market brings complexities that make setting up search criteria for this purchase a little more complicated. The difference between bank-owned, short sales and person-to-person transactions bring unique elements to this search process that cannot be dealt with by search criteria alone but that’s where preparation and planning should begin. There are different negotiating tactics, condition of properties and buyer timelines that must be taken into consideration with each of these types of transactions and they …

Twin Cities Off-Leash Dog Parks – My Dog Blog

If you’re a dog lover like we are, you don’t consider a move without contemplating neighborhood amenities for your dog. In considerations for a move recently, one of us had a bit of a time trying to locate most of the off-leash dog parks in the twin cities metro area.  After collecting some information we thought we’d share. Remember that some of these parks require passes, dog licensure and all have rules so be sure to do your research!  Most cities have some kind of requirements but here are Saint Paul and Minneapolis dog requirements: Minneapolis: Purchase Off-Leash Permit Online …

MN DNR Share Great Mobile Apps for Outdoor Enthusiasts

The MN Department of Natural resources has release some great new mobile apps for those of you who are fishing and fall enthusiasts. You can now track MN fall colors, find MN lake information and find public access to MN lakes from your iPhone or Android phone. Click Here for more information or to download the app. Charles Dailey – Branch Manager, Loan Officer, Certified Military Housing Specialist – CA DOC, MN DOC & WI DFI The Home Buyers Scouting Report® is provided directly to the buyer by HBM II, a licensed national real estate brokerage service company, not to …

How Often Do Seller’s Pay Closing Costs? . . . . . Never.

The role of closing costs in a purchase agreement can be confusing both for buyers and sellers.  In the present market, it is customary for there to be sales concessions.  A real estate sales concession can be many things including but not limited to price, repairs and yes, . . closing costs.  Asking the seller to pay for closing costs, pre-paids and discount points is common.  At the end of the day though, a buyer may have several value added considerations such as seller paid closing costs and repairs after an inspection contingency but the seller will (or at least should) always negotiate …