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December
10

 

Moving to a new home is nerve-wracking for many homebuyers, regardless of whether it is their first time or one of many homes they have purchased. Location is key for many buyers, with good reason. A decent location with access to quality schools, easy transportation to work, and local, family-friendly activities gets people excited about the possibilities of being in a neighborhood that functions well and will be a home for years to come. A home that is near a busy highway or roads can be a worthwhile investment, so long as the family knows all the pitfalls of being too close to traffic. Learn more about roads and highways and just how much they impact home value.

 

Mapping the Roads

Traffic volume, location of major roads, and proximity to homes are all key elements of understanding the way roads and highways affect home value. If a road is marked as a 'motorway,' this usually indicates high traffic. Anything marked 'residential road' usually has low traffic volume. It is important to talk with the realtor and find out more about the neighborhood if there are concerns about traffic or noise pollution. Even suburban areas with residential neighborhoods can have higher levels of traffic, depending on pending developments or other issues at hand. 

 

Adjusting Values for Roads

It helps when looking at home values to understand why we need to adjust them based on roads. It is difficult to know which road is responsible for a home selling for more or less than its value. By reviewing maps and local home values, it can inform some of the reasons why this happens. In most cases, a home may be affected by a busy road only by distance to the nearest busy road. The distance and cutoff approach does not work well where there are fewer homes. If a home is near a big highway but another one is between that home and the highway, it is still reasonable to consider a busy road adjustment for the first home. Homes not so near that highway will not have the same adjustment, even if they are still nearby. A group of homes or subdivisions located near a highway might have higher home values if it is a commuter situation where people in that area are likely to live there because they can compute costs associated with people desiring a location near arteries that take them into a major city. People likely will pay more to live in those areas than rural ones further from desirable ones. 

 

Road Geometry

Home values are calculated by looking at road geometry. This means reviewing home coordinates and putting them into a set of points for a given market. This generates a diagram from the set of all points. This Voronoi diagram looks at all home points to compute where the region touches a road point. If a home region touches a road region, that home is adjacent to that road. The region of space is closer to that road than anything else. Data may seem unimportant but it is the bigger picture of how home values are determined. New roads are built all the time so it is important to keep it updated for buyers and sellers, as well as real estate agents. Looking at this data gives people an idea where the best places are to build with the best opportunity to sell their units and make a profit. When people have information, they are more empowered to move forward with their purchases and sales, informing the process all the way through. 



Finding that top-notch property is tough work. There is a lot to consider. When you make the decision to work with Choice Properties, we have done all the leg work. All you have to do is find the house of your dreams and we are ready to help you make it a reality. We specialize in meeting your home buying and selling needs all the way to close. Call us to find out how we can help you today.   

September
26

Benefits of Working With Our Award Winning Ohio Real Estate Agents

The Choice Properties tagline, "Your Choice for Better Service" is something we proudly stand by as Ohio real estate agents. We are committed to serving Logan County and the surrounding areas with the buyer or seller in mind, helping individuals accomplish goals they never imagined. Our staff of expert realtors provide top-notch customer service with a friendly, yet professional approach. The Choice Properties team holds unbeatable knowledge of the area as we continue to be active within the community, immersing ourselves into the market.

Locally owned, Choice Properties is a full service Real Estate agency with offices located in Russells Point at scenic Indian Lake and in Bellefontaine, Ohio. We offer a range of services from residential to commercial, agricultural to waterfront, and first-time buyers to retirees. No matter the status, our agents are ready to assist your next journey in life.

Why Choose Choice?

Our expert agents are trained to handle every mishap that may occur during the buying or selling process. This means having the understanding of completing contracts, forms, and disclosure statements, having knowledge of competitive prices in surrounding areas, the ability to handle criticism, and negotiating to overcome objections. It's important to hire a real estate agent who is familiar with counterarguing and feels confident in getting you the home you deserve. We have experience in pre-qualifying buyers, ensuring they never go out of their price range when making a bid on a home they cannot afford.

At Choice Properties, we don't sell homes. We listen to what you are seeking and help make that happen. We believe in helping buyers with decisions rather than assuming, leaving us as a partner and team.

Contact us for your real estate needs at Indian Lake and in Bellefontaine, Belle Center, DeGraff, East Liberty, Huntsville, Jackson Center, Lakeview, Lewistown, Middleburg, New Hampshire, Quincy, Ridgeway, Roundhead, Rushsylvania, Russells Point, Urbana, West Liberty, West Mansfield, or Zanesfield. It is our commitment to go beyond the expected and we thank you for choosing Choice Properties to help with your real estate needs.




Choice Properties understands your needs and desires when it comes to the home search. We are here to help you define what you want, seek the best property and move forward feeling educated and able to make good decisions throughout the process. You can trust us to help you navigate it with the best real estate agents working for you. Call us to get started on your dream home search today.

December
20

Indian Lake Ohio real estate agent

Questions to Ask Your Indian Lake Ohio Real Estate Agent

You have a great home in Indian Lake that you're looking to sell. Your logical first step if you want to be successful is to speak with an Indian Lake Ohio real estate agent. What do you ask them? Most sellers don't go beyond asking how much will they get for the property, and what the commission will be. That should only be the first of many questions you should be asking any real estate agent, before you choose to list your property with them. Here are some questions to get you started.

Experience

This may seem like an obvious initial question, but surprisingly a lot of sellers don't ask agents about their experience in the market. When you first start talking to an Indian Lake Ohio real estate agent, go ahead and ask them how long they've been in the business, how many listings they typically handle. Selling your home in Indian Lake is an important and expensive transaction, so you should find an agent with enough sales under their belt to comfortably handle your needs. Choice Properties real estate agents are award-winning pros that have been in the Indian Lake market for years.

Marketing

Any agent you pick should come up with a marketing plan for your listing. Homes don't sell themselves, they need to be marketed. Ask your agent what their philosophy is for selling, and what steps will they take once they've accepted your listing. Don't be shy to ask about their previous marketing campaigns. Do they work with a professional photographer to take quality photos? How about a virtual tour? These things are increasingly important when buyers shop around.

Both Sides Of The Transaction

Some agents work with both the buyer and the seller, and others will rep either the buyer or the seller but not both. You can find out what the agent prefers, and what would happen if they repped both sides of the transaction. It's not always a conflict of interest, but clients can end up feeling like they don't know whose interest the agent is really looking out for.  Ask questions and be honest so that you develop a trustworthy relationship with your real estate agent.

Home Loans

Does your Indian Lake Ohio real estate agent have a good grasp of home financing issues? A buyer will likely need a loan and any issues that arise from the process of seeking financing can make or break a transaction. A good agent might be able to salvage the deal if issues pop up at the last minute.

 

At the end of the day, most sellers hire an agent on their gut feeling. And of course it's important for you to feel comfortable with your Indian Lake Ohio real estate agent. Taking the approach of treating your first meeting with them as an initial interview and asking all of these questions will help you reach the right decision on who to pick.

For more information about our award winning real estate agents at Choice Properties, give us a call!

August
25

 

 

Buyers and sellers in the housing market have many fees to consider when purchasing and selling a home. One of the costs, closing fees, can be confusing to understand who pays for the fee. Learn more about closing costs when buying or selling a property.

 

Buyer Costs

Closing fees can be present for both buyers and sellers. Typically, the buyer is faced with more line-item expenses than the seller (who typically pay more). Most buyers are getting loans to make the purchase of a home and many charges stem from the loan itself. A buyer should receive something called a loan estimate form early on in the sale process. The document spells out all approximate costs a buyer will face when making the purchase of a home so there are no surprises at closing. Some buyers may use the information on the loan estimate to shop for different lenders, interest rates and costs.

 

Buyers getting a loan will see some of the following costs:

  • Appraisal fee

  • Origination fee

  • Prepaid interest

  • Prepaid insurance

  • Flood certification fee

  • Tax servicing fee

  • Credit report fee

  • Bank processing fee

  • Recording fee

  • Notary fee

  • Title insurance

 

It is prudent to go through all listed fees line by line with the mortgage professional to understand what the fees include and how they apply to the loan. Aside from expenses of getting a loan or buying a home, some expenses (such as property taxes or HOA fees) are pro-rated and paid at the time of closing. If an individual is buying a home and closes toward the end of the property tax period, it is likely the person will need to pay the balance of taxes upfront. This also includes prepaid loan interest. If a person closes toward the end of the month, the lender may ask for first month's payment up front.

 

Negotiate Sharing Costs

Part of the negotiation on a home sale can include asking the seller to pick up some of the closing costs as part of the negotiation. Credit for $5,000 reduction in purchase price can save a fair bit of money in the closing costs up front, even if it only saves a little bit monthly over the life of the loan.

 

Sellers Commission

The seller will usually bear the biggest brunt of fees: the real estate commission. Commission is based on a percentage of total sale price. In addition to real estate commission, sellers may have to pay the balance of property taxes, if it has not already been done, as well as any prorated homeowners association dues.

 

It can pay big dividends to pay attention to closing costs so as not to get charged fees which can be negotiated or lowered. Any real estate agent will be happy to work with individuals and families on home closing paperwork to provide the most for overall satisfaction.

 

 


 

Feeling lost in the home buying or home selling process?

Let our certified, award-winning Real Estate Agents help you get the best deal!

August
2

Whether a first-time buyer or one with experience, inventory is slim but lots of competition exists which can lead to a frustrating seller's market. Quick, easy sales are best for buyers. Sellers and buyers can benefit from some of the following tips for maximizing home selling and buying and the current competitive market.

 

Sellers and Buyers

The following tips will help any person selling a home or purchasing know what to look for when stepping into the current market.

 

Seller: Prepare, inspect, disclose and plan ahead. The market is less forgiving if a person makes a mistake. A home which goes 'back on the market' may mean less money in an eventual sale. Holding onto the first buyer is critical. Put issues out front for potential buyer. Be prepared to disclose any issues such as a leaking roof or other defects that may kill the deal before it is sealed.

 

Buyer: Be ready to move. Buyers are aggressive, motivated and ready to go. To compete with the market, be serious about becoming a homeowner. When a desirable listing pops up, make time to go see the property as it may not be available for long. With a seriously motivated seller, the buyer make work with the seller and take it off the market which leads to disappointment for other potential buyers who missed the boat.

 

Seller: Have a strategy. Don't move too quickly on an offer if others may come in. Work with a reputable agent who knows going in what to expect from the market (and prospective buyers). It may work to wait a week to 10 days, have more showings then review offers. It may also work to act on the offers that come in. The wrong approach may result in missing a better offer to come or lose momentum of the current (motivated) buyer.

 

Buyer: Win some, lose some. A few houses will go by the wayside before the right one comes along. Go with the flow to avoid frustration. Missing out can be a motivating factor to up the ante next time.

 

Seller: Know the competition. A smart seller will hit open houses well before homes hit the market. Pricing is key in a competitive market, especially with today's herd mentality. When someone wants a home, it must be desirable and have value to other people. Well-priced homes that show well grab immediate attention of buyers and sell faster (often for more money).

Preparation

Real estate is not a cheap investment and the process can be stressful. Sellers and buyers need to be on top of the game to find success. Sellers have the advantage to plan in advance of going on the market. Buyers must be reactive and prepared to move on a dime. It may feel like a wild ride, but the home of one's dreams is worth fighting for in a hot market.

 

Get more advice on the tips to this year's seller's market.

Contact one of our agents today.

 

July
11

Moving houses can be one of the most stressful endeavors any person experiences. Problems may occur at any stage in the process, particularly when relocating personal items. Find out what some of the common moving problems can be and how to avoid being a victim.

 

Bad Movers

Many horror stories surround poor companies or personal movers who promise but do not deliver. Some of the common problems include:

  • Late movers or no-shows. Once an agreed-upon time comes and goes with no sign of a moving van, this can signal trouble. Stress and wasted time can make the process more difficult.

  • Careless or inexperienced movers. When movers arrive late, with a smaller than requested moving truck or lack proper knowledge and equipment for the job, relocation can quickly turn into a nightmare. Amateur movers may ruin property in the moving process.

  • Scam artists. Worst case scenario, an individual falls victim to a moving scam whereby movers request money for extra services and hold items hostage until the fee is paid. Some may steal expensive belongings and discard the rest.

 

Careful research and a thoughtful hiring process can make sure people deal with licensed, experienced professionals who can be trusted. Insurance for belongings can bring peace of mind to the process and save aggravation down the road.

 

Traffic

Traffic and road accidents can make a move more difficult. For instance:

  • Traffic jams: a moving truck is delayed, postponing the relocation goals until the next day or some days down the road.

  • Traffic accidents: a moving truck has to wait until damaged vehicles are removed and normal traffic is restored prior to moving on after a road accident. All possessions may be lost or in bad condition if something happens to the truck.

  • Breakdown: a moving truck may need to wait for help if the truck breaks down on the way to pick up belongings. In another scenario, items are damaged in transit.

 

Not much can be done to prevent accidents or breakdowns but selecting a moving company with experienced drivers with a positive reputation is a good place to start.

 

Get Organized

Many problems can be avoided when moving house if relocation plans are meticulous and done in advance. Some of the following ordeals may ensue, otherwise:

  • Packing more than movers agreed to relocate including items which won't fit in the truck, mislabeled boxes or not being ready when movers arrive.

  • Large furniture which does not fit in the doors may force items to be left behind or request additional services to move.

  • If utilities aren't transferred, electricity, gas and water will not be ready move-in day. License and registration needs to be updated or fines accrue. Documents can cause wasted time and money.

  • Booking movers last minute will surely cost more than booking in advance. Set a realistic moving budget, pack items after sorting and stick to the plan.

  • Avoid injuries and accidents by practicing safety first.

 

Get more advice on how to make sure you avoid these moving nightmares.

Contact one of our agents today.

April
7

Ohio is currently seeing a boon in the real estate market for luxury lakefront homes. More people are interested in buying property than at any point since 2005. With this busy real estate market, it is a great time to consider the options when searching for luxury lakefront homes which suit the needs of the entire family.

 

Hot Market

Nationwide sales have been going steadily up since February, 2007. The spring buying season is approaching when homes go up on the market in time for summer and fall sales. Realtors are anticipating a stronger than ever buying season this year. Homebuyers are looking for more properties and, with many available on the current market, the demand is higher than ever. Steady job growth combined with an improving economy means more households are saving up for that perfect lakefront property.

 

Trends

The past several years have seen a downturn in the real estate market due to fluctuations in the job market and overall economy. When these two are weaker, people are less likely to look to make big purchases or moves. A recent look at trends in home purchases by the Ohio Association of Realtors demonstrates a swifter than average pace of families seeking their perfect home at an increase of around 14% over the year before. In the Ohio house market, strong sales and steady growth are leading to great deals on homes.

 

Buy Now

As with any market trends, when there are an influx of buyers for available properties, prices can rise. Now is the best time to consider buying lakefront property on the market, whether new or existing, before prices go up. Due to high demand, lakefront luxury homes don't generally last long as they are in higher demand than other properties in the area. It is currently a buyers market in that there are more buyers than sellers after years of a sluggish market. Mortgage rates are low with rises expected so now is a great time to get started on the search and begin putting together criteria for purchasing a home.


Luxury lakefront homes are in demand and the market is open for all buyers with fewer properties at low prices. Ohio is a hot market right now with a growing economy and improving employment statistics which make homebuyers more confident than ever that, without a doubt, buying a home right now is the right decision.

 

Get more advice on how to get the process started to get you that luxury dream home.

Contact one of our agents today.

 

March
30

Finding the perfect home can take some time but the market is growing and sale prices are still low. Doing research is key prior to  finding Indian Lake Ohio homes for sale which suit the family's needs. Follow these tips to find a home that's a good fit.

 

Take the Long View

Search for a home that will be in the family at least five to seven years (ideally). Time, effort and expense are considerations when moving including closing costs. Staying in a home longer helps avoid added expense and stress. The extra time put into the home, as well as any work completed within the home, can help add value long term and avoid any downturns in the real estate market.

 

Growth

Family's needs change over time whether it's additions (babies, returning older children). Seek out properties with potential for growth and provide room for expansion. Houses for sale in Indian Lake, Ohio are a perfect example of properties which offer lots of room to grow at an affordable price.

 

Flexibility

Homes with lots of options usually suit a family's needs better than ones which are less flexible. A home that is functional for years to come with an open floor plan style can be adapted to changes while a kitchen with a view of a living area is great for keeping an eye on young kids as well as entertaining family and friends.

 

Find a Suitable Type

To find the perfect home requires knowing what best suits one's personal style. Homes are not one size fits all. There are many styles including condos, houses, townhomes. A person who does not want the responsibility of upkeep for a home may want a townhome versus a single family residential house. Likewise, a family who would like a vacation style home in a resort community with amenities may prefer to search for houses for sale in Indian Lake, Ohio which has many great features of a small community with access to waterfront dining, activities year round and plenty of suitable properties for families of shapes and sizes.

 

Location

A home's location is one of the most important aspects of buying real estate. Families who desire a quiet neighborhood in which to raise kids may not be looking for homes near a busy street or in the middle of an urban city environment. While that may suit a single person or couple, once children arrive, many families seek the peace, tranquility and safety of a suburban neighborhood which offers community, friendly neighbors and access to great schools while still being near to an entertainment district and work. A home's location with a spectacular view also attracts friends and family to come visit which is many families choose houses for sale on a lake or by water.


Choice Properties has agents ready to help you find the perfect home by the lake.                                                                  Contact us today at 937-842-2244 to set up an appointment!

 

Get more advice on finding the perfect Indian Lake home for your budget.

Contact one of our agents today.

March
15

Retirement is a time to kick back, relax and enjoy life. What better way to enjoy this time of life than to retire on the water. Many people choose to retire near water for the serenity, peace and quiet of a lifestyle which moves at a slower pace and is more low key. The natural beauty of water is that it affords many opportunities to do activities like boating, skiing, fishing, beaches and more.

Paradise

There are fewer things more enjoyable than sitting on a deck listening to the water as it gently rolls into shore. Water is not only pleasing to the ear but the eyes as well. Birds and other wildlife flock to water for its natural resources which also provide hours of beauty in nature to enjoy. Taking advantage of opportunities to be in nature is one of the great features which compel people to retire on the water.

 

View

People who look to retire on the water do so for the amazing views of the water. Whether it is an ocean or a lake, waterfront homes provide an endless array of beautiful scenery to take in from the comfort of one's own home. There are also opportunities to walk on the beach, through a nearby park or take a stroll and find new vistas which can't be seen from one's own porch. A great water view is also relaxing which is a great reason to retire on the water.

 

Family

Nothing is better than being able to entertain family and loved ones in a home by the water. Some people prefer the company of only a handful of people when retired or, because they are quite busy in retirement, enjoy lots of people coming in and out of a home and sharing the beautiful views. When searching for waterfront retirement homes, notice what type of home, what size and location speak to you. Seek out properties which allow for space to do activities with loved ones but also provide a respite from the busyness of life.

 

Amenities

A person who looks to retire on the water has many options from which to choose. Living in an area where it is quiet can be peaceful but having access to entertainment, waterfront dining, boating and additional opportunities can also be exciting. Some want to live in the midst of the action and others choose a home on a quieter plot of land away from people. Fishing, kayaking, sailing and swimming are just some of the activities available to people who own property by the water.

It is easy to work with Choice Properties real estate agents to find the perfect retirement home on the water.                                 Call us today at 937-842-2244 for more information and to get started on your home search.

 

Get more advice on finding that perfect home for your retirement.

Contact one of our agents today.

February
9

So You're Looking for Cheap Waterfront Property

Waterfront investment properties require special consideration to ensure the property will suit the lifestyle and provide activities everyone can enjoy. Start with these tips when looking to purchase cheap waterfront property.

 

Determine Your Needs

When potential homeowners research waterfront investment properties, the first step is to discern how the property will be used. From this point, a realtor can help figure out which area best suits these needs and desires to focus in on specific properties. Some strategies to get started include:

 

  • Learn about real estate. Get books, take a class or two and do research. Ask lots of questions, talk to friends, family and other relatives to learn as much as possible about investing in waterfront property.

  • Commit to the process. It takes time to research, find and purchase that perfect property. Some will fall through or not be a good match but know what to look for and what needs exist to know the right property when it comes available.

  • Have a strategy. Focus on achievable goals and know what the property is intended for. If it will be a rental for part of the year and vacation home for the rest, this may determine which property is ultimately selected.

 

Frequency of Use

When searching for cheap waterfront property, it is important to look at the activities available, nearby hospitals for any medical needs which should arise, proximity to an airport if frequent travel is important and finding the best property to suit the family's needs and budget. Knowing how often the property will be used can determine suitable options.

 

The Search

Location is key when searching for waterfront investment properties. After determining best fit for needs in a waterfront home, visiting the area to find a good fit is important. The surrounding community is an important factor when making a decision. Look over the property as well as the house as the real value of the home will be the property in a waterfront location. Look for five key points when searching for that perfect property:

  • Sandy beach. Proximity and quality is important for both younger and older family members.

  • View. As people age and do less on the water activities, the view becomes more important.

  • Level lot. The flatter the lot, the better for easier water access

  • Proximity to water. Homes closer to the water allow a closeness to nature and keeping an eye on any young kids by the water.

  • Privacy. Some lakefront properties have as little as 50 feet of frontage, which offer very little privacy. Ideally, a property will offer 150-200 feet to give privacy from neighbors.

 

Choice Properties has real estate agents who specialize in waterfront investment properties in the Indian Lakes area to assist with your needs and sort through complex issues to get everyone on the right track to finding that perfect location.

 

Get more advice on finding and owning an affordable waterfont property.

Contact one of our agents today.

January
27

Find Incredible Properties All Over the Indian Lake Ohio Map

Indian Lake boasts 5,800 acres of lakes and 800 acres of parks featuring year-round recreation. Camping, boating, swimming, fishing, hiking and more are on offer including many unique restaurants and dining opportunities. Antique stores, marinas, golf courses and other amenities make this area the jewel of Ohio. Whatever a person is looking for, incredible properties exist all over the Indian Lake Ohio map.

 

Logan County

Logan County is located in western Ohio. Rich with natural beauty, it is also steeped in history as American Indians called Logan County home. What started with small villages throughout the county, areas began to grow such as Bellefontaine which became the county seat. Campbell's Hill is the highest point in Ohio with the first concrete street in America, built in 1891. Several natural caves dot the landscape including two open to the public: Ohio Caverns and Zane Caverns. Two castles are open for tours, owned by the Piatt family located in the Mad River Valley near West Liberty, Ohio.

 

Neighborhoods

 

Russells Point

Russells Point is situated with an amazing view of Indian Lake. Waterfront views are an enticing feature of living in this neighborhood. Along with local restaurants, bars and other amenities, properties in the area include waterfront locations with a boat dock as well as spectacular water views of the Indian Lake area. Many available properties take advantage of the lake view with beautiful windows overlooking the water and decks for entertaining guests. The neighborhood is friendly, inviting and caters to a wide range of people who enjoy the water.

 

Lakeview

Lakeview is one of the most spectacular areas to live within the Indian Lake Ohio region. Many homes boast waterfront and lake views as well as personal boat docks. Great schools, neighbors and amenities surround this neighborhood. Fishing and other water activities can be enjoyed from the vicinity of home. Sprawling properties with acreage are available as well as smaller homes. It all depends on the individual's needs and desires.

 

Finding the right property in the Indian Lake Ohio map is a challenge with so many beautiful locations from which to choose. From newer developments to rustic, historic villages the area boasts many opportunities to select a home with features that best fit an individual's budget and desires. The region is historically significant but also hosts many tourists and visitors who enhance economic development and build on the tradition of Indian Lake as a destination for all people. When searching for property in the Indian Lake area, the options are truly endless. Enjoy the waterfront dining options, golf courses, camping, hiking and biking or take a day out on the lake. The choice is yours to make when you choose Indian Lake as the place to reside and call home.

 

Get more advice on finding the best property for you.

Contact one of our agents today.

November
27

Here are some tips for smooth lining the selling process when listing a property that you no longer live in, for whatever reason.

For a major tax break, be sure you've lived in the house as a primary residence at least two of the last five years. If you haven't, then you'll be looking at a tax gain on the sale of an investment property. If you have lived in the home, then the US federal government allows for single homeowners to sell their home without paying taxes on the first $250,000 in gain. For married couples, it's $500,000.

The next most important thing for you to do is to early on get a good, trustworthy agent on board. A local agent is a local resource for you, the seller. If you're renting, these agents can field renter's issues such as leaky faucets or broken garage doors. If you're selling, these agents are going to be priceless for knowing the local market and making sure the property is kept open house ready. Potential buyers are also more open to working with a real person as opposed to internet deals.

Even with a local real estate agent, it won't hurt you to stay on top of what the market is doing in the area where you're selling. Keeping yourself knowledgeable will let you react quickly when an offer to buy does come in. Knowing if what they're offering is high or low is good business. It's the sign of a smart homeowner.

So is taking care of your tenants if you are renting the property. If they've been loyal tenants, you may want to offer them the first opportunity to buy the property when you decide it's time to sell. At the very least you'll want to give them a good lead team to know they'll need to be moving if they aren't interested in purchasing. Keeping them happy should translate to them continuing to take care of your property while they reside there.

 If you're looking to sell a house long distance, contact the award-winning real estate agents at Choice Properties for advice on plannign the best possible sale.

 

 

Get more advice on listing and selling your home from long distance.

Contact one of our agents today.

November
17

Maybe you stumbled on 'the one' with the first property you looked at, but it's more likely you've been at it for months, critiquing every detail until at long last, you found it. Your dream home. Landscaping to die for surrounding a home just right for you and yours. It has all the neighborhood amenities you wanted. The location is perfect. This is it!

Now what?

 

Here are some tips to remember when making your first offer to buy. 

First, there is no absolute wrong or right way to do this. Be realistic with your offer, however. Working with a good real estate agent can go a long way toward helping you do this. You don't want to offend anyone by offering fifty grand for a home valued at half a million. On the flipside, you don't want to pay more for a property than it's worth either. Knowledge is power.

Compare and evaluate any notes you've taken while attending open houses or private viewings. Narrow down what you liked about the schools and neighborhoods, the amenities to each home, et cetera. Your agent can then pull up comparable listings based on the features that appealed to you. With these numbers, you can establish a ballpark offer price.

Now would be a good time to give your lender a head's up. If it's been more than thirty days since you've touched base, or if your financial status has changed in any way, they may need updated information. Having a pre-approved mortgage loan ready to go allows you to act fast and lets sellers know that you're serious.

If you or your agent take a little extra time to research the listing history on the property in which you're interested, you may discover information to give you some negotiating room. Have there been price reductions? How quickly does the seller want to close? Are there any active bids on the house?

Depending on the answers to these questions and any others regarding closing terms, and the ballpark price you determined based on the current market, you'll be able to make an offer which is advantageous to both you and the seller, hopefully making it a win-win situation for all parties.

 

For more information on making an offer on your dream home, contact Choice Properties Real Estate to speak with one of our award-winning agents today!

November
3

At some point in your career, you or somebody you know will likely be offered an employer relocation package to assist with a big move. It's been estimated that about seven million people in the USA relocate each year, many for work-related reasons. A growing number of companies are willing to invest in relocating talented professionals and may be able to offer you some reimbursement for moving expenses. It just depends on the company.

Whether it's to stay employed with the same company or because you're looking at greener pastures, you'll want to keep some things in mind before packing up the home and hitting the road.  

 

1. Make no assumptions.

You know what they say about those who assume. If a relocation package is paramount to your final decision on whether or not to accept the job and the potential new employer doesn't bring it up . . . then you should say something! Ask questions. Interviews are for the employee as much as the employer. It would be a good idea for you to have done your homework first, though. Check out current moving expenses and what the change in cost of living is going to be so that you have viable numbers to discuss.

2. Find out if there are "extras".

Your employer may be willing to cover a moving van, but nothing more. Or, you might be one of the lucky ones that gets a comprehensive package that covers a bit of everything, like transporting vehicles (if your relocation is overseas, this could be a huge expense), covering closing costs on a new home, and/or a guaranteed buyout of your existing home.

3. You can always do it yourself.

There are pros and cons to handling the entire move on your own and sometimes it's the only option. When packing up and moving your household goods on your own, you have few assurances of replacement if items get lost or damaged. That aside, a physical move is exhausting and can be taxing on your relationships with your family and any friends you've asked to help. It's important to remain appreciative rather than critical. Depending on how far you are going, you'll want to compare prices and estimate a budget to help you decide if you want to attempt to do it all with private vehicles, rent a moving van (which includes gas and company insurance), or take advantage of a portable storage container system.

4. Keep records of everything for tax purposes.

Moving costs, in addition to the traveling expense associated with the move, can be deductible if they meet IRS rules. You'll want to look into these as they involve factors such as the distance you're moving and how long you've been employed with the company. Also keep in mind that depending how the employer pays for your relocation, you may have to claim the money as income; i.e. it's taxable.

 

If you're considering a move to any of Central Ohio's beautiful hometowns, contact one of our agents for insder insights into the best properties available inLogan County and Indian Lake.

September
7

Making the decision to buy a home in Central Ohio doesn't have to be daunting or intimidating. With a little understanding of how the mortgage process works, you'll be a proud bellefontaine homeowner in no time.

A pre-check of your finances is highly suggested to give you a starting point. Knowing what you can realistically afford, even in the case of a financial emergency, can save you heartache down the road. You don't want to bite off a mortgage that is bigger than you can chew. Knowing your limits will also narrow your property searches down and help you stay on target. Online calculators are available to help you determine affordability:

 

Affordability Calculator

(estimates an affordable purchase price based on your income and available down payment)

 

Payment Calculator

(estimates monthly mortgage payment based on purchase price, insurance, and tax rates)

 

Now that you have an idea of what you can afford, it's time to start the mortgage process by speaking with a lender. Getting your home loan underway will result in you having qualifying documentation when you reach out to a realtor and start looking at actual homes—and should you find "the one," it'll be great to have no delays in closing the deal because of bank issues.

 

Information you will be asked to provide to the lender (with documentation):

 

  • Personal — Date of birth, marital status, number of children and their ages, and social security number (to pull your credit report).

  • Last Two Years (minimum) of Residential History — Rental or mortgage, insurance, and tax figures.

  • Proof of Employment and Income — Wages, bonuses, or commissions and employment history for at least two years back. Be prepared to show completed tax returns. Mortgage lenders will average variable and self-employed income over two years.

  • Assets — Even if your down payment comes from one account, ALL checking, savings, investments, and retirement accounts will have to be recorded and verified. Keep in mind that if you're fortunate enough to have funds being gifted to you, there are special rules which apply. Speak to your lender.

  • Debts — Full disclosure of payments and balances owed on all credit cards, student loans, auto loans, existing mortgages, and any alimony or child support requirements.

  • Identify your preferred loan type and available down payment.

 

With this information your lender will be able to create a personal profile and recommend loans commensurate with your individual budget. Everyone is different and therefore multiple loan and rate tiers exist. Your lender will be like your personal guidance counselor as you go through this process. Your existence is at their disposal, on paper at least, and so they can use their expertise to suggest what will likely be the best path for you to follow. Whether it be a short term investment property with plans to turn around and sell, or settling in with a 30 year mortgage on a family home.

 

Our Choice Properites Real Estate agents are knowledgeable and willing to meet with you and your lender so that the fun part can start . . . home shopping! In the crazy days that will come in the whirlwind process of home buying you can expect the following to happen:

  1. Upon finding "the one," your agent will write up an offer of what you're willing to pay for the property and present it to the seller; if accepted, then your loan process will move to the final approval phase.

  2. Your lender will lock the interest rate on your loan (this can't be done without an acceptance as it is determinate upon buyer/seller price agreement).

  3. Depending how much time has elapsed since financials were initially gathered and verified, your lender may request updated documentation from you; your lender will also order an appraisal on the property and review the property title report at this stage.

 

When all I's are dotted and T's are crossed, the final loan documents will be drawn up and your closing will be scheduled. Once the papers are signed and the loan is funded, the keys will be placed in your hand.

 

Congratulations and enjoy your new Logan County home!

March
16

 

2014 was a relatively strong year for real estate across the farm belt and greater Midwest.  However, the National Association of Home Builders predicts 2015 will be even stronger for single-family homes, despite the continued rise of mortgage rates.  While the recovery seems to be delayed in many states, Ohio is noticing a resurgence of interest in homes and available land.  In the meantime, let's focus on the standard best practices that have kept us strong for decades.

 

It's the Little Things

The best possible presentation of a house is necessary to capture an eager buyer's eye.  Little things like trimming the bushes near the front door, changing out old welcome mats, and de-cluttering closets and shelves will add to an already well-prepared home. 

 

Take Notes

If you're a buyer looking at the home options available on the market, you're probably seeing several properties a day.  In this situation it's helpful to keep a notebook on you and make notes on the properties you visit.  Pros and Cons for each house will help you make a decision later on.

 

Sell for Spring

The winter months are over so it's time to start thinking springtime at your home.  Fresh flowers are always a nice touch for highlighting the rebirth of warm weather and add color and life to the rooms of your home.  Spring cleaning is important, especially to wash away the salt brine from the winter roads and the clutter that accumulates while we're hibernating. Take advantage of the smiles brought on by the sunshine.  

 

Transparency is Trust

A smart home buyer is going to hire an inspector or two to investigate the quality and possible problems with a property so it behooves sellers to be forthright with the state of the home.  Don't try to hide anything because buyers will assume you're hiding even more.  Try to get minor fixes out of the way like plumbing leaks and paint jobs.

 

We're all hopeful this year on both sides of the real estate market so let's keep the enthusiasm rolling and make this a great year for home buyers and sellers!

January
5

First time home buyers are some of our favorite clients to work with here at Choice Properties Real Estate.  There is so much excitement and possibility when choosing and settling into your very own home for the first time!   It can also be a bit scary and overwhelming so we always recommend you partner with a reliable sales agent to help you navigate the process and make the best decision. 

 

 

The wonders of the modern internet have opened a plethora of amazing tools to help prospective home buyers find local listings and compare neighborhoods, but real estate agents usually have access to industry information not available to the public.  This can include the confidential selling prices of comparable homes nearby, often called "comps."  A good agent will have plenty of insight into the neighborhood, the community, local property values, and the forecast for future growth and development. 

 

Our award-winning real estate agents work for both the seller and the buyer to make sure both parties are well served by the transaction.  This is our community too, after all, and our primary goal is to see growth and prosperity in the area for everyone. 

 

It's important to point out that you won't have to pay an agent up front to show you properties and help you through the buying process.  Agents take their commission from the seller at the end of the sale.  Your interests are always first in mind.

 

While you can certainly go it alone in the modern market, we don't recommend you negotiate your first home purchase on your own.  There are a great many details that we have encountered over years of experience in the real estate industry that novice home buyers just simply wouldn't know.  That's what we're here for.  Good real estate agents, like those on our friendly staff, are trained and well-versed in helping new couples and families find  a place to call home that meets your goals and dreams as well as your bank account.

 

Check out our listings online and call to speak with an agent today!

There's never been a better time to buy a home in Central Ohio.

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