Evelyn Doane - William Raveis Real Estate - Cape Cod



Posted by Evelyn Doane on 10/20/2019

Do you dream of buying a home? If your answer is yes, then VA home loan can make it a reality. A VA home loan differs from the traditional mortgage home loan. It is essential to know if you are eligible to apply for a VA home loan and how it can help you purchase your own home.

What is VA Home Loan?  

A VA home loan is a loan for which veterans, active-duty service members, and some surviving spouses are eligible. Generally, VA loans feature better terms than a traditional mortgage, and it is easy to qualify. For many military borrowers, the flexibility and no-down payment nature of VA Home loan have made it the most reliable lending plan in the market. You may find it interesting that from 1944 until today, VA home loans have made over 20 million service members homeowners.

VA Home Loan- Eligibility requirements

To be eligible for a VA Home Loan, a person must meet one or more of the following criteria:

- You must have served 90 straight days of active service at the time of war.

- You must have served 181 days of active service. 

- You have accumulated six or more years of service in the Reserves or National Guards.

- Your spouse, who is a service member, becomes disabled or dies during service.

How Does VA Home Loan Work?

The first step to homeownership through VA home loan is to get pre-qualified. You will need to meet up with a VA lender to help you get an estimate of the price of the home you can afford based on your credit, income, and other financial factors.

After getting pre-qualified, the next thing to do is to pre-approve your loan. This will give you the power to take action when you see a home you love. When the preapproval process is complete, you will need to hire a knowledgeable VA agent to help you place an offer and negotiate with the seller.

If you and the seller have agreed concerning the price for the house, your lender will order a VA appraisal of the home. Also, underwriters will analyze your income, finance, and related documents. Next, get ready to sign several kinds of legal documents at your loan closing. After this, you will get the keys to your new home.

Here are some of the most important things to know about a VA home loan;

- It is reusable as long as you pay off the loan every time.

- You can only use it for specific homes.

- You can use it for a primary residence.

- It does not require mortgage insurance.

- It comes with a VA funding fee.

Even if you qualify for a VA home loan, take your time to think if owning a home is right for you. Consider the maintenance, property taxes, and Home upkeep. Renting may seem cheap. Before you go for a VA home loan, consult a home loan specialist.





Categories: Real estate   mortgage   VA home loans  


Posted by Evelyn Doane on 10/13/2019

If you receive a "lowball" offer to purchase your house, your first reaction may be to respond with an immediate "No." However, it is important to evaluate any offer to purchase your house closely. Because if you weigh the pros and cons of rejecting an offer to purchase your home, you'll be better equipped than ever before to make an informed decision about any homebuying proposal you receive.

Now, let's take a look at three factors to consider before you reject an offer to purchase your residence.

1. Your Home's Price

What you may consider to be a lowball offer to purchase your home may actually be a competitive homebuying proposal Ė it all depends on the current state of the housing market. Thus, if you analyze the housing market, you can find out how your home's price stacks up against the prices of comparable houses and review an offer to purchase accordingly.

If you find your home's price falls in line with similar houses in your city or town, you likely have a competitive initial asking price in place. And if a buyer's offer to purchase your home falls short of your house's initial asking price, you may want to decline the proposal.

On the other hand, if your home is priced much higher than comparable residences in your area, you may want to adjust your home selling expectations. In this instance, you may find a lowball offer to purchase turns out to be a competitive homebuying proposal. As a result, you may be more inclined to accept the proposal based on the current housing market's conditions.

2. Your Home's Condition

Oftentimes, buyers will account for potential home repairs or upgrades they will need to complete if they acquire a house. This means a buyer may submit an offer to purchase below a seller's initial asking price due to the fact that a house may require assorted repairs or upgrades in the near future.

Take a look at the condition of your home Ė you'll be glad you did. If you find your home is in need of significant repairs or upgrades, you may want to consider these projects before you reject a buyer's offer to purchase your house.

3. Your Home Selling Goals

It generally is a good idea to start the home selling journey with goals in hand. That way, if an offer to purchase your house allows you to achieve your home selling goals, you can accept the proposal. Or, if an offer to purchase your house moves you further away from accomplishing your home selling goals, you can reject the proposal.

As you get set to complete the home selling journey, you may want to hire a real estate agent too. This housing market professional can help you assess any offers to purchase your house, at any time. By doing so, a real estate agent can help you determine how to proceed with an offer to purchase and ensure you can make the best-possible decision.





Posted by Evelyn Doane on 10/6/2019

In a competitive selling market, itís vital to make sure you take advantage of any way to give your home an edge over the competition.

Many sellers make expensive home improvements in the hopes of attracting buyers. But, even if youíre on a budget, there are ways to boost curb appeal and increase the value of your home to make your home competitive in todayís sellerís market.

In todayís post, Iím going to cover eight low-cost upgrades you can make to your home today. We tried to keep all of the upgrades under $100 so that you can stick to your budget while still making a big difference in your home.

1. Paint the front door ($30)

One of the first things a potential buyer will notice about your home is the front door. Putting on a fresh coat of paint, especially one that pops and contrasts with the color of your home, will help to make it stand out on the block.

2. Paint your interior trim and baseboards ($75 - $100)

Baseboards often get dirty or scuffed up over the years. Putting a fresh coat of paint will make the entire room look like new. Stick with white for most rooms--it will brighten them up and make them feel clean.

3. Replace your outlet and light switch plates ($20)

They get dirty, they crack, and they get covered in messy paint every time you repaint your walls. Outlet and switch plates see a lot of wear and tear, and a dirty one can be off-putting for potential buyers.

For just a few dollars each or less, replace them all to give the rooms of your home a facelift.

4. Replace fixtures ($50 - $100)

Whether itís the knobs of your kitchen cabinets or faucet fixtures, there are a number of small items in the kitchen and bathrooms that can be upgraded.

Stainless steel is now out of style, with homeowners choosing brushed nickel and bronze over the traditional stainless.

5. Choose a new shower head ($30 - $50)

Installing a shower head is a lot easier than it looks. Plus, luxurious looking shower heads can be purchased for less than $50 on Amazon, making them a great choice to add a touch of indulgence to the shower.

6. Add new bright, energy efficient lighting ($30 - $50)

Bright LEDs can make a room feel more spacious and modern, and it can save you a few dollars on the electric bill. Installing new lights throughout the home is a good way to show off what lies within.

7. Paint or replace your mailbox ($20 - $80)

Mailboxes can easily get dirty and dented over the years and most of us pay little mind to them. But prospective buyers likely will be on the lookout for any signs of neglect when they view your home. Having a freshly painted mailbox will leave a good first impression.

8. Rent a pressure washer for a day ($50 - $100)

Pressure washing the exterior of your home can make a huge difference when it comes to upgrading curb appeal. Vinyl siding gets dirty quickly and isnít all that easy to clean.

You can rent a pressure washer from The Home Depot or your local hardware store for typically less than $100 a day.





Posted by Evelyn Doane on 9/29/2019

Have you ever wondered how to locate the best place to eat? Whether you are new to an area or just looking for more choices to refresh your repertoire a time of culinary exploration may be the answer to your search. 

New to an area

Being new to an area comes with many of its own challenges and changes and food can be an excellent way to experiment and shape your experience into your own. Trying new dishes can create new traditions for you and your family for years into the future or simply help you to find your new favorite place to go out.

Or been here forever

Likewise, if you have lived in an area for most of your life, someone may ask you where the best place for a certain food is and if you find yourself in the uncomfortable position of not knowing this is a great way to expand your horizons- or at least your answers.

What cuisine are you starting with

Pick a culinary type to start. It can be a local favorite like New York pizza or Memphis BBQ, whatever is in your area. Or, it can be a personal favorite. But you might want to see if there are more great options out there for you.

Make a list

Once you have picked a cuisine look for listings of top rated local places. Start online or with apps for finding restaurants, but don't forget to check with people around you who have tried local restaurantsóneighbors, local newspapers, groups that you are a part of all can be a rich resource of information. Make a list of the places that you want to try; this may consist of locations that everyone mentions or that has great stars, atmosphere or prices. Donít forget to include some hole in the wall places on your list as these can have some of the best food around. Start with your top 10 and one by one, maybe once a week, try them out. 

Try it all- if you can

When you get to each place, make sure to try several things if you can. A great way to do this is to go with friends, and each person orders something different for the table to taste. Ideas of things to order can be the special of the day/chef's special, your favorite dish, something that a reviewer suggested that got the restaurant on your list in the first place, etc.

Get started, have fun, and donít stop

Go on a culinary adventure through town and discover your area and yourself like never before while having fun in the process. Start by talking with your local real estate agent for tips on where to start or to get your list going. Donít stop at just one cuisine, figure out your next one, keep going and have fun!




Tags: food   date night   entertaining  
Categories: entertainment   date night   eating out  


Posted by Evelyn Doane on 9/22/2019

Ginnie, Freddie, and Fannie are friends of the real estate mortgage and housing industry. You hear about them whenever you read very deeply about how mortgages work. But who are they? And what do they have to do with you?

Whatís in a name?

These three entities are nicknames for mortgage agencies established by the United States Government. Freddie and Fannie are siblings, while Ginnie is more of a cousin.

- Fannie Mae is the nickname for FNMA-the Federal National Mortgage Association.

- Freddie Mac is the nickname for FHLMC-the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation.

- Ginnie Mae is the nickname for GNMA-the Government National Mortgage Association.

A little family historyBoth Fannie and Freddie are what is commonly known as a GSE, or government-sponsored entity. That means that while federal law established Fannie in 1938 to provide home loans backed by the US government, it later sold Fannie in 1968 to investors, making it privately owned. Freddie, established in 1970, formed to create competition for Fannie in the mortgage market. Fannie and Freddie don't lend money. Instead, they undergird the home loan market by purchasing loans made by banks. They repackage the loans into securities to sell to investors. They make various guarantees to investors in the event that homeowners default on their mortgages. This market is called the secondary mortgage market, while primary means the loans to homeowners directly. 

Both Freddie and Fannie trade in the public market with investors owning shares of each of the mortgages rather than shares of the company. In the market, this is called mortgage-backed securities (bonds). If a homeowner defaults on their mortgage, it affects the value of those securities.

Cousin Ginnie, formed in 1968, is a government agency, but performs similar functions to the siblings, except only with government-insured mortgages, like FHA and VA loansóthose backed by the Federal Housing Administration. While she does not supply initial funding, she does insure the loans. So, if a borrower with an FHA loan defaults, both the Federal Housing Agency and Ginnie Mae continue to pay out monies due to the investors that bought Ginnie Mae-backed securities.

During the subprime lending crisis in 2008, both Freddie and Fannie lost tremendous value. People that invested in Freddie or Fannie bonds lost tons of money. At that time, in an effort to stabilize the housing industry, the federal government took over as conservator of both Freddie and Fannie, providing money to bail out much of the debt and pay investors. Conservancy means that the government controls the operations of both entities, although it does not own them.

Why does it matter?

Mostly, what happened to Freddie, Fannie and Ginnie matters more to investors than to borrowers. But the healthier Freddie and Fannie are, the greater the variety of loan types available to borrowers. The less Ginnie has to pay out to cover defaulted mortgages, the more money available to loan to first-time borrowers. 

If youíre wondering which loan-type is best for you, contact a qualified mortgage broker to discuss your options.




Tags: Real estate   Terms   mortgage  
Categories: Real estate   mortgage   terms