Archive for March, 2010

Save Time Buying a Home in Orange County

Posted on March 29, 2010. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Making Life Easier, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , |

Time-Saving Tips Guaranteed to Make Home Buying Easier

When buying a home, most of us are so focused on saving big bucks that we often forget there’s another important element well worth saving – time. The sad fact is, far too many house hunters waste hours and hours in their well-intentioned searches for the ideal residence. No, they don’t have too many spare minutes on their hands. Rather, they simply aren’t aware there’s a better and more efficient way to go about it. The better way consists of 5 simple steps guaranteed to dramatically reduce time-waste and make home hunting a much more delightful experience. Please keep in mind that the steps work best when taken in the following order:

  1. Talk to your friendly lender to see what you’re pre-qualified for. Unless you’d rather squander tons of time looking at properties that will get you a big NO from the bank.
  2. Save precious gas and hours by conducting online searches in your chosen cities and price range. To bolster this process, make certain you get daily email updates of new properties hitting the market.
  3. Once you narrow your prospects to a chosen few properties, motor over to the community with your agent and make sure the locale is to your liking.
  4. Choose your top 2 communities. Time goes a lot further when you narrow your focus to a few select locales. Wandering indecisively is a major time gobbler.
  5. Purchase the property that comes up next in your preferred community. There’s no need to wait any longer, is there? Never let a great opportunity slip away.

Follow these five steps when buying a home in Orange County, and you’re sure to minimize your search time considerably. If you’d like to learn more, I’m ready to help. Just contact me at 949.338.7408 or angie@askangie.com. Or follow me @AngieWeeks or @WeeksTeam.

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Califorinians to Benefit From Home Buyer Tax Credit

Posted on March 27, 2010. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Making Life Easier, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , |

Home Buyer Tax Credit is Gift for Golden State

The California government has done it. And thousands stand to benefit. No, they’re not giving away money. But they’re doing something close to it. On 3/25/10 Governor Schwarzenegger signed the Home Buyer Tax Credit into law. That means, fellow Californians, if you’re a resident of the golden state, you could be eligible for hefty tax savings when you step up to buy a home.

So How Much Are We Getting? 

The legistlation, officially known as AB 183, has earmarked $200 million for home buyer tax credits. $100 million is available for qualified first-time buyers of existing homes. The other $100 million has been allocated for people purchasing new or previously unoccupied homes.

Who Can Take the Credit?

Any eligible taxpayer who buys a qualified personal residence between May and December of 2010 or a qualified principal residence between Dec. 31, 2010 and August 1, 2011. The credit is equal to the lesser of 5% of the purchase price or $10,000, and is to be taken in equal installments over three consecutive years. The law further stipulates that buyers must reside in the home for a minimum of two years. Otherwise they have give up the credit, most likely in the form of repayment to the government. Basically, if you don’t stay, neither does the money. So plan on hanging around for awhile.

Seize the Opportunity

No doubt about it. This newly-enacted home buyer tax credit is a golden opportunity for residents of the Golden State. Not only does the legistlation spell major savings, it also eliminates the need to rush headlong into a home purchase before April 30, 2010 – the day the federal tax credit expires.

If you’d like to learn more about the home buyer tax credit, I’m ready to help. Just contact me at 949.338.7408 or angie@askangie.com. Or follow me @AngieWeeks or @WeeksTeam.

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How to Choose the Right Realtor

Posted on March 20, 2010. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Making Life Easier, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , , |

The Importance of Choosing the Right Realtor

It hurt a bit. But I had to do it. I gave away a cash buyer this past week. Really had no choice. The woman simply was a better fit for another Realtor. You see, I work primarily with email. And she lacked this mode of communication. A rarity, of course. But in this case, a reality. All of which has inspired me to dig deep into my reservoir of knowledge and share some thoughts on the importance of choosing the right Realtor.   

Obviously, you’ll want the chosen one to demonstrate plenty of market smarts, as well as the willingness to help you feel comfortable. But once these basic requirements have been fulfilled, there are other things to consider.

First, you’ll want to make sure your modes of communication are compatible. Do you want a techie? A phone talker? Someone who tweets or chats it up on Skype? Provides digital contracts? Remember, it’s all about what YOU want in an agent. So make sure yours is on the same communications wavelength.

Naturally, the more confidence you have in your Realtor, the better. So be certain a Realtor’s license is displayed on his or her website. It’s your assurance of a certain level of professionalism.

Another thing to make sure of is that the person you’ve chosen is a Realtor, and not just an agent. What’s the difference? In order to qualify as a Realtor, an agent must be a member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR). That puts Realtors one gigantic step above ordinary agents. Among other things, membership in NAR carries with it a whole set of ethical guidelines as presented in the organization’s Code of Ethics and Standards of Practices. We at Weeks Team are proud to say we are full-fledged Realtors!

‘Nuff said. Follow these few steps, and you’ll soon be well on your way to connecting with the right Realtor. Happy Hunting!

If you’d like to learn more about connecting with the right Orange County Realtor or about Orange County Real Estate, I’m ready to help. Just contact me at 949.338.7408 or angie@askangie.com. Or follow me @AngieWeeks or @WeeksTeam.

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Sharing the Orange County First Time Buyer Experience

Posted on March 12, 2010. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Making Life Easier, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , |

First Time Buyer Brett Olson

Recently, I bought a home in Orange County – my first. Like most first-timers, I really didn’t know what to expect. But it wasn’t long before my uncertainties began to vanish. That’s because I had a super Realtor there with me every step of the way. Angie Weeks really knew the ins and outs of the Orange County Real Estate marketplace. And she was there all the time with lots of advice and support. I always felt I had somebody on my side. Angie definitely went above and beyond what I had ever expected. I have a lot to be thankful for.

The first thing I would tell any first-time buyer is this – make sure you have plenty of patience. That’s the key. Eventually you’ll find a good deal. Believe me, they’re out there. Just don’t be in a rush. You’ll get the house you want.

The other thing that’s really important is to go into the market with an open mind. That’s the best way to figure out exactly what you want. Sure, it’s pretty typical to be unsure when you first enter the marketplace. But once you embark on your house hunt, you’ll gradually become familiar with all the possibilities. Suddenly, things you never thought of prior to the search might become major issues. On the other hand, things you considered a big deal may not seem so important after you’ve looked around a while. It’s all a question of taking the time to figure out what you want.

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Simplifying the Search for Mission Viejo Homes

Posted on March 9, 2010. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Making Life Easier, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , |

Mission Viejo Homes Offer Ultimate Appeal

Great people, great schools, great environment – there’s plenty to luv about the sunny city of Mission Viejo. And if you’re searching for one of the many ideally-located Mission Viejo homes, you now can register with an Orange County Real Estate resource that will make your house hunt a whole lot easier, effective, and enjoyable. We’re talking full coverage that targets exactly the kind of place your heart desires.

This resource even allows you to extend your search beyond the confines of daytime hours. Don’t worry. You won’t lose any sleep. It’s all done for you online with a Nightly Neighborhood Search. You could literally find the home of your dreams while you dream.

Of course, needs vary. Fortunately, Mission Viejo offers buyers a diversity of choices. A great example is the La Paz tract. Rating sky high on the desirability scale, La Paz is noted for its generously large lots – sometimes stretching out to acres of upscale family living. For the recreation-minded, nearby Lake Mission Viejo offers plenty to do… or not do when you’re in chill-out mode.

If you’d like to learn more about the excellent selection of Mission Viejo homes currently available, I’m ready to help. Just contact me at 949.338.7408 or angie@askangie.com. Or follow me @AngieWeeks or @WeeksTeam.

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Time is Running Out For First Time Home Buyers

Posted on March 9, 2010. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Making Life Easier, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , |

Procrastinators Beware: You Could Be Losing Up to $8 Thousand

April 30 – that’s when it’s all over, people. You’ve gotta be in escrow by that date in order to qualify for the extended first time home buyer’s tax credit. It all boils down to this: get your home purchase contract in the pipeline by the deadline, or forefeit up to $8,000.00 in tax credits. Poof! Gone! Hasta la Vista, baby! And time won’t make an exception for you. It’s slippin’ away. You’ve got about seven weeks to get it in gear. On your mark, get set, go! 

But if this time crunch isn’t enough to propel you into a mad dash worthy of an Olympian champ, consider this – the deal has to close within two months of the April 30 deadline. In calendar time, the whole thing has to be signed, sealed, and delivered by June 30. If not, say good-bye to your chance to put up to 8k in your pockets.

True, in a grand show of governmental largesse, Uncle Sam already has extended the tax credit one glorious time. But if you’re sitting on your big sofas waiting for this generous act to repeat itself, make sure your crystal ball is in full working order. Because if you don’t have one of these handy devices, there’s no telling what our friends in Washington will do. So unless you’re prepared to risk 8k on a hunch, it’s best to spring into buyer mode now.

If you’re a first time home buyer, the government is offering you a great way to save up $8 thousand. But the offer won’t be on the table much longer. If you’d like to learn more about benefiting from this generous first time home buyer tax credit before it vanishes, I’m ready to help. Just contact me at 949.338.7408 or angie@askangie.com. Or follow me @AngieWeeks or @WeeksTeam.

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More on Mission Viejo Real Estate Foreclosures

Posted on March 5, 2010. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Making Life Easier, Orange County CA Foreclosures, Orange County Real Estate | Tags: , |

Get a Leg Up on Mission Viejo Real Estate Foreclosures

No doubt about it. Real Estate Foreclosures are helping to heat up the marketplace throughout the country. And one of the most popular foreclosure hotspots is Mission Viejo. There are many reason for the undeniable appeal of this fair city. Among them are high quality of life, an acclaimed school system, abundant recreation, safety, stunning architecture, and plenty of good ‘ol sunshine. Now factor in the great price of a foreclosure property, and Mission Viejo becomes downright irresistible.

Alright, you want to grab one of these amazing Mission Viejo foreclosures. Great. But there are a couple of  things you should know to plunge into the market at full power.

Move at Lightspeed

There are plenty of foreclosure properties available. But they go fast, folks. One nanosecond late, and you could miss the deal of a lifetime. On an average, these properties are snapped up within 7 days of being listed. That’s no surprise, since these homes generally on the market at about 10% below market value. So don’t sit around waiting for one to fall into your lap. You’ve gotta get up and get out there if you want to grab those deals. We’re talking lightspeed.

Be Prepared

A  lending institution expects all relevant documents to be in order at the time you make your offer, NOT when your meticulously crafted offer is accepted. Your agent will know more about what to have and when to have it. Just make sure you’re ready. Because if you aren’t, the local bank can choose from plenty of other eager buyers who are.

Grab a Great Deal in a Great City

No doubt about it. Mission Viejo Real Estate foreclosures offer great deals in a great city. Act fast and go in prepared, and you tremendously improve your chances of snapping one up. If you’d like to learn more about these buying opportunities, I’m ready to help. Just contact me at 949.338.7408 or angie@askangie.com. Or follow me @AngieWeeks or @WeeksTeam.

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Southern California Home Buyer’s Fair 2010

Posted on March 1, 2010. Filed under: First Time Buyer help, Lenders & Loan info, Making Life Easier | Tags: |

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Buying a Home

It promises to be the home buying event to end all home buying events. Of course, I’m talking about the Southern California Home Buyer’s Fair, which unfolds on the weekend of March 13-1 at the L.A. Convention Center. Jointly sponsored by C.A.R. and the L.A. Times, this grand event is expected to draw thousands of very motivated potential home buyers.

Why You Want to Be There

Because you’ll learn everything you’ve ever wanted to know about buying a home, and then some. Highlighting the event are 50 seminars that will help home buyers cruise through the contemporary marketplace with new confidence. The seminars will be offered in both English and Spanish. Among the timely topics are understanding home prices, monitoring and fixing credit to facilitate mortgage application, and home inspections.

Don’t worry about admission costs. The event is absolutely free to the public. And if you’re one of the first 200 people to attend, you’ll get a free movie ticket.

Sounds like a super good deal to me. If you want more information about the Southern California Home Buyer’s Fair, I’m happy to help. Just contact Angie at 877-230-3211 or angie@askangie.com to get any of your questions answered.

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    Orange County, CA Real Estate for hip first-time buyers and investors. Plus, fun things to know and do in OC.

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