Louisville Home Buyers

New Year, New You, New Home

Work on your credit to qualify for homebuying

by MIKE HALL, Owner/Agent/Broker

Credit Card

Every year, millions of people make a New Year’s resolution. Some want to lose weight. Some want to kick a bad habit. Others want to find a better job. Is yours to buy a home?

Home buying relies on getting approved for a mortgage using your credit score or FICOâ score. Your FICOâ score determines how much you can borrow, and if you would be approved at all. What can you do to make sure you have a high FICOâ score?

The first step to improve your credit score is to get a copy of your credit report from the three reporting companies – Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion. For information on requesting a free copy of your credit reports, go to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Check for outstanding debt, payment history, debt in collections, and any inaccuracies.

What information is in your credit report?

  • Personal information; including name, birthdate, social security number, address, and phone number
  • Employment history
  • Consumer statements,...

Is Bigger Always Better?

For those who think so, Louisville ranks top 5 for largest yards.

by MIKE HALL, Owner/Agent/Broker

Do you watch those HGTV shows where they makeover someone’s backyard into a beautiful oasis? Do you want a big yard for entertaining or kids to play or space for a garden? Well, living in Louisville gives you more of an opportunity to have those wishes come true.

According to StorageCafe, Louisville is one of the top 3 cities with large lot sizes among the 50 largest cities in the U.S.; Nashville, Tenn., topping the list.[1] With a median lot size over 10,000 sq. ft., Louisville is among the top five cities with the largest yards.

So what are the pros and cons of having a large yard?

The pros:

You have the space to create an entertainment area, whether that’s creating an outdoor kitchen and living space or setting up safe place for kids to play. A large backyard can provide your dog ample running and playing room, or you can nurture your green thumb skills with a garden. The great outdoors also provides some health benefits, such as stress reduction. Having a backyard also adds value to your home, especially when it’s a functional space and landscaped.

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Should I Buy a Home in Louisville?

Avoid these common mistakes when purchasing your home

by MIKE HALL, Owner/Agent/Broker

wooden house and change

In late August, mortgage rates hit a 22-year high with a 30-year fixed rate home loan averaging 7.23%.[1] With these rates, lower inventory, and inflated prices, some may delay purchasing a home.

But if you are in the market, don’t let your anxiety and fear keep you from buying. Avoid these common mistakes when purchasing your home.[2]

  1. Trying to time the market. Just like stocks, the housing market ebbs and flows. Don’t try to figure out the perfect time to buy because conditions will always change.
  2. Worrying only about mortgage payments. The mortgage is just one part of purchasing a home. Buyers need to include homeowners’ insurance, PMI, taxes, and maintenance costs into their budget.
  3. Neglecting your credit score. While a credit score is not indicative of your ability to pay a mortgage, it does impact your ability to get a loan and the rate of the loan. Work on paying down other debt to increase your score.
  4. Buying a home too fast. Take the time to shop around and look...

Real Estate a Safe Bet in Louisville

The market may be wilder on the coasts, but the Midwest expected to remain steady

by MIKE HALL

Midwest Nature

The Midwest has its charm. We’re known to be friendly, the weather hits all the seasons and nature is on full display. Did I mention we’re friendly? Kind neighbors really are priceless.

Louisville certainly has a southern feel but is also considered to be Midwest, a real boon for the current real estate market. While the Sunbelt is expected to be decline in home values, cities like Louisville will likely retain their value throughout 2023.

If you want to play it even safer, consider purchasing a home at or below Louisville’s median-priced home - $225,000.  No matter the economy, people will always want an affordable option.

Red Edge would love to help you navigate the home selling and home buying process. We have experienced agents who have walked through 2008 and are here to walk with clients through this time as well. Reach out today!

Source: https://www.foxbusiness.com/real-estate/real-estate-2023-best-worst-locations-move-new-year

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Things You Should Never Do Before Closing

Stay away from these life changes before you sign on a new home.

by MIKE HALL

BOAT

Making a major purchase – like a buying a boat – is a no-no if you want smooth sailing at closing.

There’s a little rhyme you can memorize to save yourself from the hassle of underwriter scrutiny when buying a home: If you’re headed to the closing table, it’s best to keep things stable.

Over the years, I’ve made lots of friends in the mortgage industry, from loan officers and other agents to the infamous underwriter. While underwriters may get a bad rap for their detailed way, they’re really trying to make sure they’ve got accurate information to get your loan to close.

I’ve learned a few things from them along the way. Here are a few of the things my underwriter friends would tell any buyer to avoid:

  1. Don’t make any major purchases. Don’t buy a boat, RV, or a car at least 30 days prior to closing on your loan. I know it’s tempting to make home furnishing purchases in anticipation of your new home – like furniture or appliances – to get everything in place to move, but it’s best to wait. If you pay cash, an underwriter will want...

Renting? Simple Formula Reveals If You Actually Should Buy

Yes, the interest rates are rising, but that doesn’t mean your best bet is to continue renting that home.

 By MIKE HALL

Straightforward formula helps make the decision to rent or buy your Louisville home less emotional and more strategic.

If you’re currently renting a home in Louisville, you may want to reconsider your situation. There’s a formula called the 5% rule that helps you figure out if you’re better off – financially – continuing to rent or saving to buy.

Get out your calculators!

Look at your home value of the home you’re renting in Louisville. Once you have that number multiple it by 5%. Then divide it by 12 to get your break-even number.

If your monthly rent is lower than your breakeven number, continue renting

If your monthly rent is higher than your breakeven number, save to buy.

Not into math? Or just need help deciding if buying a house is really an option for you. Reach out to...

What can you afford?

Higher interest rates and buying a home

by MIKE HALL

Buying a home

Don't let high interest rates scare you from the making the best decision. Let a knowledgeable agent guide you.

Your home search criteria may need to change thanks to rising interest rates. Considering your monthly payment, what you used to get for $300,000 may have be more in the $260,000 range now.

But don’t let that deter you. It’s always a good time to invest in real estate if you plan on being in the same location for a couple years. Plus, renting isn’t getting any cheaper - and there’s no return on investment for that.

It’s important to work with someone you trust to help you navigate purchasing a home that leaves you with enough money to live and enjoy life and love the home you’re in, too. At Red Edge, we talk to each potential home buyer and make sure you’re comfortable with the search parameters set. You’ll get exactly what you need in your inbox. Contact a Red Edge agent today to get started.

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I Love Louisville!

Louisville Makes Real Estate Fun

by Mike Hall

I can't say it better than this. If you'd like to love the city where you love and work as much as we do, talk to a Red Edge agent today and make the Louisville area your home!

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Higher Interest Rates May Be Good News for Buyers

There’s more to buying a house in Louisville than locking in a low interest rate.

by Mike Hall

Soaring upwarding

Homebuyers: Rates may be on the upward swing but there are plenty of opportunities for you!

During a frenzied market, buyers often found themselves in bidding wars, skipping home inspections, or spending big bucks on pre-offer home inspections.

All those situations could and did lead to an expensive process for home buyers and possibly a little burnout too. What many people forget – there’s more to buying a home than the interest rate.

Higher rates can balance out the market and somewhat level the playing field for buyers. There should be less competition, a slower increase in the price of homes, and possibly more inventory. Also, sellers will be more willing to accept non-traditional loans and more contingencies.

If you are in the market to buy a home, whether you’re facing increasing rent, needing a larger home, or other household changes, there are ways to navigate a higher interest rate:

  1. Be open to another location
  2. Tweak your monthly budget
  3. Search a wider circle
  4. Revisit properties that linger on the market
  5. Look for new construction
...

To Rent or Buy in 2022?

With rates on the rise, first time home buyers are asking themselves this question. Luckily, a little math can solve it for you.

By Mike Hall, Broker/Agent/Owner

two doors

Question: Did you feel pressured to buy a home when the rates were historically low? Don’t worry! You didn’t miss out!

“Just because interest rates are low doesn't mean it is a good time to buy and higher interest rates doesn't mean it is a bad time to buy a home,” explains Jay Abolofia, a certified financial planner with Lyon Financial.

Instead, consider these three questions to help you decide … to rent or buy?

1.     Where do you want to live in Louisville?

Rent can vary widely depending on the area of Louisville and the number of bedrooms. Try to compare the cost of renting versus the monthly payment on a starter home in that same area. 

2.     Are you financially fit?

What does your savings look like after a down payment is taken out? What is your credit score? Do you qualify for a mortgage? Can you make the monthly payments? Also keep in mind your debt-to-income ratio. Try to keep your mortgage payment less than 40% of your...

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