HUNT Mortgage 2nd Look Program For Homebuyers

If you are looking to purchase a home, your first stop should be to speak with a lender. Getting your finances in order BEFORE you begin shopping is imperative for a few reason.

  1. You will be able to get advice on what your credit report looks like and how you can make it better, possibly opening up access to different loan types or better rates.
  2. It will help you to set a shopping budget for your home purchase.
  3. Sellers and agents are expecting any buyers who request showings have already been pre-qualified with a lender.

There are many loan types out there and lots of lenders to choose from. Product type and rates may differ from lender to lender. Buyers should speak with a few mortgage consultants to compare products and services, kind of like when you consider purchasing a car from a dealership and they each have their own financing products to help with your purchase.

I always suggest my clients speak with Bob Tuttle and Pat O’Connor at HUNT Mortgage; not because there is some incentive for me to do so, but because I have worked with them on several occasions and they have gone above and beyond to ensure my clients’ purchases went smoothly. I have also seen them secure mortgage commitments and clear to close status in record time. They do a great job and are excellent resources for buyers, especially first-time homebuyers who have never gone through this process before.

One of the benefits of HUNT Mortgage is their 2nd Look Program. If you have been pre-qualified with a lender and would like to compare that financing with what HUNT Mortgage can provide, you should speak with Bob or Pat. They will review rate terms to see if they can do better. Fun story: Over the summer I was working with a client who ran into a snag with his financing through another lender. I directed him to speak with Pat and after doing so my client ended up with a better rate and a better loan type. He also got his mortgage commitment in 10 days!!!

Also, by having one of the HUNT Mortgage experienced consultants review your financing you will receive a $50 Gift Card! The best part – if HUNT Mortgage can’t beat the rate from the other lender you still get to keep the gift card!

So what do you have to lose? Have Bob Tuttle or Pat O’Connor at HUNT Mortgage take a look at your financing. It means $50 more in your pocket today and possibly huge savings down the road!

Bob Tuttle –
Direct: (518) 416-4431
Email: robert.tuttle@huntmortgage.com

Pat O’Connor –
Direct: (518) 312-0181
Email: patrick.oconnor@huntmortgage.com

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NOTE: HUNT Mortgage is an affiliate company of HUNT Real Estate ERA. You are not required or obligated to utilize HUNT Mortgage services in order to work with a HUNT Real Estate ERA Licensed Salesperson. You may opt to use any financing or lender for your home purchase. This blog is intended only to inform you of the services provided by HUNT Mortgage. Bob Tuttle and Pat O’Connor are both New York State licensed mortgage consultants servicing the Capital Region.

Erin Miller is a Licensed Real Estate Salesperson with HUNT Real Estate ERA in Clifton Park, NY. Whether you are listing your home, buying a home or both, Erin would love to speak with you about the services that she and HUNT Real Estate ERA provide to support you with your real estate adventure. Visit her website and find her on Zillow.

 

 

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Being a Buyer in a Seller’s Market

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Looking for a house is an exciting time, it can also be a stressful time. If you are shopping for a home in a seller’s market, listings can be scarce and competition can be fierce. It doesn’t matter if you are a first-time homebuyer or shopping for your 4th home, shopping in a seller’s market can be a frustrating and disappointing experience. The good news is, there are things that you can do as a buyer that will prepare to be the strongest buyer you can be.

Having a strong, competitive offer is only one part of being a successful buyer in a competitive market. Below are some tips that will help you conquer the unforgiving landscape of a seller’s market.

  1. Save, save, save – Cash is your greatest asset when buying a home. Even if you choose to use financing that requires nothing down or a low-down payment amount, your savings will come in handy in off-setting concessions for closing costs. Your offer can be made stronger if you can cover your own closing costs. It also makes the offer more attractive as a concession can raise a purchase price and that can mean trouble when it comes time for the mortgage appraisal. Cash is king! The more you save the more you will be able to play in a competitive real estate market.
  2. Get financing in order before shopping – Speaking with a loan officer can help sort out finances and identify the right financing for you. It’s also expected that you are pre-qualified before beginning your home search and going on showings (open houses are the exception to this, they are open to everyone). Having a pre-qualification means your finances have been reviewed and you are ready to roll as soon as you find a home. It also helps set your budget; it stinks when you find the perfect house, only to find out that you can’t get a mortgage to purchase that home. Knowing your financial limits will help you narrow down your options in the market.

SIDE NOTE: There are many fantastic mortgage companies in the Capital Region with great products. I have worked with many of them and I have yet to come across one that I have had a bad experience with. However, I would be remiss if I didn’t take a moment to give a shout-out to 2 awesome loan officers at HUNT Mortgage – not just because it is a HUNT affiliate company* or because they are my office colleagues, but they both rock at their jobs. Bob Tuttle & Pat O’Connor are great guys who have helped several of my clients purchase their homes. They bring an enormous amount of experience to the table which has only benefitted my clients, and myself. They take time to educate buyers and are wonderful communicators, making the process smooth and keeping everyone in the loop. Additionally, HUNT Mortgage is now providing a Pre-Purchase Commitment that commits to loan approval for a buyer with the only condition being a home passes the bank appraisal. That means a buyer can offer on a home and show their financing is ready to commit as soon as an appraisal is approved. A pre-purchase commitment, along with an attractive monetary offer, shows a seller that you are a serious buyer and want to own their home. It can make your offer stand out in a multiple offer situation as well.

Moving on…

  1. Be realistic on what your budget will buy you – If you find yourself in a seller’s it may limit your buying power for something that meets your needs. Even in a buyer’s market you may have to reduce wants ex) you get 2,000 square feet, 4 beds and 2 baths, but you will have to put in some elbow grease to make that diamond shine. If you are looking for a steal in a seller’s market chances are your low-ball deal might fall flat. Consider reviewing your wishlist and defining what your needs versus your wants are. You might also want to investigate some other areas or neighborhoods that can provide you with the same conveniences or atmosphere you are looking for at a more wallet-friendly price. At least you are widening your inventory pool giving you more options to consider.
  2. Be ready to write an offer – A market with lots of buyers and few listings can be a nightmare if you are one of those buyers. New listings may not last long before going pending. Heck! I had one receive multiple offers in less than 24 hours back in October (2017)! The market is not going to wait for you to make up your mind and there is a lot of truth to the realtor.com®  “Not You” commercials – the you may nail down the house, but look at all those not yous that lost out. Don’t be a not you.
  3. Brace for disappointment – It sucks to lose out on a house. As an agent, I hate it when my clients get beat, I truly feel the blow. It’s easy to get discouraged, but it happens and it can happen more than once. This includes buyers with above average budgets too. Remember to breathe when things get overwhelming. When you can’t even get past the finding a home phase it can be frustrating. Be prepared to face a loss when buying in a seller’s market, hopefully, your offer is accepted without a hitch, but you will be ready for the news if it doesn’t.
  4. Learn from your mistakes –So, your first offer situation didn’t go according to plan – what now? Talk with your agent; ask questions about what went wrong and what you should do next time. They are there to help guide you, good communication with your agent will only lead to success. Every offer is different because every home and buyer are different. Learn from each failed offer to better your next one.

No matter who the market favors, buying a home is an adventure. If you find yourself shopping in a market that favors sellers, be the strongest buyer you can, be prepared to fail, and learn from your mistakes. Surround yourself with a team that can guide you on your journey – your agent, your loan officer, and your attorney should all have your back through your purchase. Be prepared, be competitive, and be confident; you will find yourself a winner in a high-stress market and nab that perfect home!

Erin Miller is a Licensed Real Estate Salesperson with HUNT Real Estate ERA in the Clifton Park, NY office. She is also a member of the National Association of REALTORS® . Erin enjoys working with buyers to find their perfect new home. If you are looking for an agent to help in your Capital Region home search, contact Erin, and check out her reviews on her website at www.homeswitherinmiller.com

 

*HUNT Mortgage is an affiliate company of HUNT Real Estate ERA. There is no obligation to utilize the services of HUNT Mortgage in order to work with a HUNT Real Estate ERA salesperson. The opinion on the services of HUNT Mortgage and the mentioned loan officers are those of the writer and in no way imply any client is required to work with this lender.

The Top 10 Reasons to List A Home During the Holidays!

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The holidays are upon us! I am sure most of you are thinking that the real estate market comes to a screeching halt during the holiday season. The truth is, it never really stops. In fact last year during the holidays the Capital Region saw 812 new listings, 2,621 showing appointments, and 618 closings. That is a lot for an already busy holiday season, but it also shows that the real estate market stays active and healthy during the early winter months. Buyers that are still out in the market during this time are usually serious and are trying to find the right house; will yours be the one?

The Top 10 Reasons to List A Home During the Holidays

  1. People who look for a home during the Holidays are serious buyers.
  2. Serious buyer have fewer houses to look at and choose from during the holidays. Less competition may mean more money for you.
  3. The supply of listings will dramatically increase in January. A higher supply of available homes in the market will mean there will be less demand for your particular home. This may impact your sale price.
  4. Houses show better when they are decorated for the holidays.
  5. Buyers are more emotional during the holiday season, so they are more likely to pay a higher price for a home.
  6. Buyers have more time to look for a home during the holidays than they do during a typical work week.
  7. Some people must buy before the end of the year for tax reasons.
  8. January is traditionally a month for employees relocating to the area to begin new jobs. Since transferees cannot wait until spring to buy, your home must be on the market now to capture those buyers.
  9. Your home can be on the market during the holiday season, yet, you have the option to restrict showings during inconvenient or undesirable times.
  10. You may sell your home now for more money and we can negotiate a delayed closing or extended occupancy until early next year.

Many homeowners may be hesitant to list around the holidays, but the list above and the general market conditions suggest that the holidays really don’t hinder buyers. The question is, are you ready to sell?

Erin Miller is a Licensed Real Estate Salesperson with HUNT Real Estate ERA in Clifton Park, NY. In the past Erin has worked in the field of marketing, focusing in social media and internet marketing. She also holds excellent customer service skills and enjoys working in the community. Erin is looking forward to blending real estate and her other skills to provide a great experience for future clients in the Capital Region. Visit her website and find her on Zillow.

New Listing – 705 Sacandaga Rd – Pending

**So this listing actually went under contract before I could get this blog post up! Thought I had the blog crafted I didn’t have a chance to publish it before my sellers received multiple offers on this adorable little home!

I am so excited to present my latest listing! A very cute bungalow, completely redone by the current owners. 2 bedrooms with one bath on the first floor. Comes with a walk up attic and an entire top floor just waiting to be converted into living space.

Beautiful granite countertops and stainless steel appliances in the kitchen. Warm wood feature wall and wood burning fireplace insert in the cozy living room. Open feel to this charming little home. Nice yard in a convenient location and it is USDA financing eligible!

Check out some images below and make sure to contact me for your showing appointment!

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Erin Miller is a Licensed Real Estate Salesperson with HUNT Real Estate ERA serving the Scotia, NY area. Whether you are listing your home, buying a home or both, Erin would love to speak with you about the services that she and HUNT Real Estate ERA provide to support you with your real estate adventure. Visit her website and find her on Zillow.

New Listing – 3313 Maryvale Dr – Sold

**Home sold as of 11/15/17, pending after only 12 days on market!

I am so excited to present this super cool home in the Woodlawn neighborhood of Schenectady. This home has a really neat split layout with a converted garage for more living space. Don’t worry, the home also has a 2 stall garage for your vehicles!

This is a 2 bed, 1 and a half bath home with an office/flex space and expanded living area into the attached garage space. All it needs is your personal touch!

Contact me today for your showing of this great home!

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Erin Miller is a Licensed Real Estate Salesperson with HUNT Real Estate ERA serving the Schenectady, NY area. Whether you are listing your home, buying a home or both, Erin would love to speak with you about the services that she and HUNT Real Estate ERA provide to support you with your real estate adventure. Visit her website and find her on Zillow.

Thinking About Listing Your House?

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Deciding to sell your home can be a daunting one. There are so many things to take into consideration.

  • Is now the right time to move?
  • How are the finances?
  • When is the best time to sell?
  • What should be done to ensure a home sells and sells quickly?

Truthfully there is no best time to list your home. We have fast and slow times in the real estate world. Winter and the dead of summer have stuck out in my experience. But there are still listings and buyers all the time. So what makes spring so popular? Well, spring is a renewal time and the weather breaks, making moving a simpler task.

The good news is we are entering the cusp of when our busiest season starts and buyers are out in full force. The bad news is the busy season can be very competitive. Not just for buyers, but also for sellers, who are all hoping the plethora of buyers are interested in their home. With more homes competing for traffic it can be easy for a listing to get lost in the shuffle. On the flipside, if your listing is eye catching and has the proper marketing, you home can sell quickly and at top dollar.

Bringing your home to market in the early spring gets you in front of buyers who have been looking at slow cycling inventory for many weeks. Presenting buyers with a new and attractive listing can bring you selling success. If you choose to list in later spring that is still a good time. You just don’t have the advantage of catching the season at the very beginning.

Creating a listing plan can really help layout whether you are ready, willing and able to make a move. If you decide you are ready for that change start with looking at your finances. What will you do after you move; buy or rent? Do you have to sell before you can buy? If after reviewing your situation you find it is not the right time, take the steps you need to until you get to where you need to be to comfortably make your transition.

Remember that listing a home isn’t just about preparing yourself for a change, it’s also about getting your house prepared. Finish up and half-completed projects. Address any areas of major concern. Have an agent look at your home and offer advice on what can make your home sell quickly. Take your time preparing your home. A first impression is important and could be all it takes to sell your home.

Spring is coming, so if you are thinking of listing this year start preparing now. Make your plan, take care of business, and reach out to a licensed real estate professional. There will be lots of competition in the spring market and the assistance of an agent can mean more exposure for your listing. The more exposure your listing has, the more eyes will see it. The more eyes that see, the more likely it is the right eyes see it.

Stay warm & cozy! See you this spring!

Erin Miller is a Licensed Real Estate Salesperson with HUNT Real Estate ERA in Clifton Park, NY. In the past Erin has worked in the field of marketing, focusing in social media and internet marketing. She also holds excellent customer service skills and enjoys working in the community. Erin is looking forward to blending real estate and her other skills to provide a great experience for future clients in the Capital Region. Visit her website and find her on Zillow.

 

Saratoga Area Fun – Saratoga Balloon and Craft Festival

Hot Air Balloon Blog

There are many things that I love about being a real estate agent based in Saratoga County. The county is full of lifestyle choices from rural areas, suburban neighborhoods, villages, hamlets and cities. There is pretty much an area for everyone, I chose a rural area. Additionally, there is tons to do within the limits and summer events are very popular.

One of the area’s most popular events is coming up – one that myself and many of my friends enjoy. The Saratoga Balloon and Craft Festival is a wonderful family-friendly event held annually at the Saratoga County Fairgrounds in Ballston Spa. Each year the festival brings many beautiful and unique balloons.

Balloon launches occur daily, weather permitting of course for everyone’s safety. You can take a tethered balloon ride or experience a true hot air balloon ride. The Saratoga Balloon and Craft Festival also is host to the “best balloon glow in the U.S.”

In addition to all of the balloons, there are many amazing artisans that exhibit during the festival. From paintings to jewelry, home decor, specialty foods and many other one-of-a-kind items you can find all sorts of neat stuff that make great gifts for a friend or yourself. There will also be demonstrations by select exhibitors – see how they make their creations!

As mentioned it is a family-friendly event. There is tons for kids to do at the Stewart’s Shops Kid Zone. Check out the Walk-About Balloon, Petting Zoo, or have your face painted! There is live music and food vendors making this a great all-day activity.

So if you are looking for something to do in the Saratoga area this summer, this is one event you don’t want to miss. You can purchase tickets and learn more about the fair on the Saratoga Balloon and Craft Festival website. Even purchase a ticket for a hot air balloon ride! Keep your fingers crossed for good weather and I hope I see you there.

Erin Miller is a Licensed Real Estate Salesperson with HUNT Real Estate ERA in Saratoga Springs, NY. In the past Erin has worked in the field of marketing, focusing in social media and internet marketing. She also holds excellent customer service skills and enjoys working in the community. Erin is looking forward to blending real estate and her other skills to provide a great experience for future clients in the Capital Region. Visit her website http://www.homeswitherinmiller.com

 

Why Sell A Home In Spring?

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It’s spring! This time of year can be an excellent one to put your home on the market. If you have been thinking about selling now is the time to seriously consider making the move – in more ways than one.

Why?

Spring and summer are historically the most active time in real estate, our busy season if you will. There are many reasons for this but, as a human being living in New York I have to believe that many people do not want to move through the snow and slush winter brings. Seriously, who wants to move all of their worldly possessions during one of the most miserable seasons of the year. Clearly I am not a winter lover, but I have gotten off track. My point is buyers want to move when it is easier and warmer. Even the simple, and very fun, activity of house tours is less daunting in nice weather.

When spring comes buyers who have spent all winter long combing through real estate websites like Zillow, Trulia, Realtor.com, or even my agent website are actively perusing buying a home now. Houses in the Capital Region are in low inventory, meaning new listings are seeing a lot of action and offers, quickly. Houses are being scooped off the market and new listings, ones that are popping up daily, are seeing great attention.

Whatever your reasons may be for listing, if you an place your home for sale in the early hustle & bustle of the spring season your listing has an edge simply because it is new and fresh – just like the season. Make some small cosmetic changes to your home before listing (ie. declutter and stage, fresh paint, clean carpets) and you can easily grab a buyer’s attention quickly.

The bonus – if you sell your home in spring/summer you also get to move in spring/summer! A win win! And if you need any help selling your home in the Capital Region I am always here to help.

Erin Miller is a Licensed Real Estate Salesperson with HUNT Real Estate ERA in Saratoga Springs, NY. In the past Erin has worked in the field of marketing, focusing in social media and internet marketing. She also holds excellent customer service skills and enjoys working in the community. Erin is looking forward to blending real estate and her other skills to provide a great experience for future clients in the Capital Region. Visit her website http://www.homeswitherinmiller.com

Latest Listing – 2613 Campbell Ave, Schenectady, NY – Pending Short Sale Approval

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2613 Campbell Avenue, Schenectady, NY

I recently got this amazing listing in Schenectady that I wanted to share with you readers. This beautiful older home is huge,classy and amazingly maintained.

2613 Campbell Ave is a short drive to 890, Rotterdam Square Mall, and Downtown Schenectady where you can catch a show at the historic Proctor’s Theater and dine at one of the many amazing restaurants.

This home has been tastefully updated. It is a wonderful blend of modern conveniences with the charm of yesteryear. The master suite his huge with a great amount of closet space. The master bath isn’t too shabby either. 3 additional bedrooms join the master on the second floor.

On the first floor is great living space. While not quite open concept, it has an excellent flow that brings the open concept illusion. A dual sided gas fireplace can be enjoyed in the living area or during a family dinner in the formal dining room. The kitchen is huge, lots of cabinet space and upgraded kitchen appliances.

Porches grace the front and back of the home. The back porch features a sunk in hot tub and covered sitting area for fun summer parties or a relaxed night at home. The backyard also plays host to the 2 stall garage which features a studio on the upper level, just in case you need more space.

Check out this home on my website and schedule your tour today! This isn’t one to be missed!

Erin Miller is a Licensed Real Estate Salesperson with HUNT Real Estate ERA in Saratoga Springs, NY. In the past Erin has worked in the field of marketing, focusing in social media and internet marketing. She also holds excellent customer service skills and enjoys working in the community. Erin is looking forward to blending real estate and her other skills to provide a great experience for future clients in the Capital Region. Visit her website http://www.homeswitherinmiller.com

 

 

Spring Home Maintenance 101

Home Maintenance Blog

Spring has sprung! Longer days are here, warmer weather and sunshine. Even after a mild winter, by Northeast standards, it’s time to start those spring home upkeep projects.

After any winter, no matter how mild or harsh, you should check over your home’s exterior and address any damages that may have occurred over the cold winter months. Spring is also a great time to update curb appeal and give your home a face lift.

Suggested maintenance to-do’s:

  • Inspect your roof – make sure all shingles are in place and in good condition. Check for damage left from ice dams and correct those issues as they can cause major leaking. Also address mold or bacteria growth in shady spots.
  • Clean out your gutters – remove debris from gutters and downspouts to encourage proper drainage. Also address where the water exits the downspout and guide it away from the home.
  • Check caulk on windows and reseal any imperfections. This will help with heating and cooling efficiency; especially during the hot summer months when air conditioning is running.
  • Trim trees, bushes and shrubs – not only will your lawn look fresh and cleaned up, removing branches and stems near your home’s exterior will decrease the risk of damage.
  • Up your curb appeal – add new landscaping or refresh existing gardens with new flowering plants. Adding color to green space can really make a yard pop!
  • Take care of your deck and porches – reseal or paint wooden decks and porches to help protect them from the elements.
  • Paint it pretty – maintain the home’s exterior woodwork with a new coat of paint. If you have a wooden clapboard or shingled home consider giving it a real face lift with a whole new color scheme! Spring is a great time to change up the exterior of your home, so if you have been considering vinyl siding now is a great time to look into it.

Spring home maintenance is a great way to get out of the gloom of winter. By working on these projects you are maintaining the integrity of your home, giving your body the exercise it has missed all winter, and take in some wonderful fresh air. Plus by paying regular attention to these items you can save yourself a lot of money by preventing big problems. Being proactive can really pay off when you are a home owner!

Erin Miller is a Licensed Real Estate Salesperson with HUNT Real Estate ERA in Saratoga Springs, NY. In the past Erin has worked in the field of marketing, focusing in social media and internet marketing. She also holds excellent customer service skills and enjoys working in the community. Erin is looking forward to blending real estate and her other skills to provide a great experience for future clients in the Capital Region. Visit her website http://www.homeswitherinmiller.com