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Real estate affects everyone’s life

Posted July 31, 2013 in Advice Column, Perry

Real estate is something that affects everyone’s lives. It’s not uncommon when walking down the street, in the grocery store, attending one of my kid’s sporting events or anywhere else to have someone stop and ask questions.

Whether buying, selling or renting, there are lots of questions, and I enjoy answering them. Here are a few:

How’s the market?
The market keeps getting better, but price is still the driving factor for sales.

What are the interest rates going to do?
Nobody knows for sure, but we are seeing them edge up a bit. Rates are still outstanding, but if you are considering buying, now is a good time.

Do you think I should rent or buy?
That depends how long you intend to remain in the property. If your time frame is less than two years — rent. There are costs when buying and selling, and I don’t want to see you get backwards on a resale.

How do you know you have clean title in a home?
In Iowa, we are an abstract state. An abstract is a history of your property since it was first surveyed. A lawyer will read this prior to closing. He will provide a title opinion that will assure clean title.

What is the best thing I can do to get my house to sell?
Clean, clean, clean. A fresh coat of paint and either clean or replace the carpet.

What’s the best time of the year to sell?
We have more activity in the summer, but we do sell homes all year long.

I have been thinking about buying rentals. What do you think?
I own rental properties, but it’s not for everyone. The return on investment can be very good; but things break and need fixed. You are not always able to collect the rent.

I haven’t saved money. Can I still buy a house.
Yes, there is 100 percent financing out there if you have a credit score that will qualify. I would recommend a conventional loan with 20 percent down, but most people don’t have that, so there are  other options.

I found a house I really like, but found it had termites. Should I still buy it?
Termites are common in Perry and can do a lot of damage if not treated. Most times a seller will have the home treated. If you have more concerns, have a contractor look at it.

Information provided by Larry Saemisch, RE/MAX Pros on Main,1207 Second, Perry, 515-465-5000,

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