Friday, February 27, 2015

Whatcha Waiting for????

Renters, What are you waiting for???

Rent prices have risen 5.6% in the Phoenix metro area over the last 12 months. And are expected to continue to rise over the next year .

With the average rent in the Phoenix metro area at $1,225 a month, do you know that you could most likely be paying less and owning a home???

You will be paying for a house, either for you or for someone else. And there are tax benefits for owning!!

There are different programs out there to help with down payments, and some sellers are willing to help with closing cost.

Interest rates are still great but who knows how long they will continue to stay there.

Don’t stay on that fence and miss out…. You can do this !!  --and I would love to have the opportunity to help you find your new home

Friday, January 30, 2015

Not So Good News for Renters

Renters info

I can only speak for the Phoenix area, as that’s where I live..

But from what I’m hearing Rents are going up.  One source that I read said that they already went up at least 5% since last year.   And rentals are hard to find, in some areas they go faster than others…. 

With valley home prices down 2% for the year, the demand for rentals is still strong in the Phoenix area.   With fewer people buying, because of down payment, or credit,-- renting is their best option. 

Renters being the most Financially fragile as they tend to live life closer to the edge.  Is there a way to help them see the value in Home Ownership??
There’s a lot of info out there to educate ones self about general economics and how a mortgage works, without the understanding, you can make bad investment choices, incur fees, and take costly risks.

Granted there are some out there right now renting --- not because of their choice, but because of having to overcome a short sale or foreclosure.  With these folks I think they were just dealt some unexpected cards, and are ready now to jump in the game of homeownership again.

I work with some great lenders who just might be able to help with the credit issues.  The interest rate is the lowest it has been in a very long time. 

There are several programs out to help with down payments assistance, and the FHA has just dropped the mortgage insurance premium rate, which will help with over all payment, Maybe it’s time to think about the benefits of owning vs renting.

If you want to find out just what you could buy, call me and we'll see what can happen--- if not now, working for the goal of ownership

Joanne McGuire  
Premier Service Certified
Rea l Living  Property for You 
Direct  623-640-0488
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Friday, January 9, 2015

Do You Really Need a Home Warranty??

You may not know what a #Home Warranty is or what it does, so I'll try to give you the high points.
It is NOT like a homeowners insurance policy that covers for fire, theft, water-damage or hail damage etc....
A home warranty offers protection against the cost (some times high cost) of repair or replacement of the high end major components in the home--- air condition/heating, water heater, garbage disposal, stove-oven, etc.  And of course you can buy extra coverage for your refrig, or washer and dryer etc

With an upfront purchase of the plan and a service fee most feel they come out ahead, especially when a month into their new home the water heater isn’t heating, or their AC isn’t cold.

 Usually when buying a home the #REALTOR® will advise to get a home warranty-- although they can be put on existing homes.  When buying a home the home inspector will tell you what is good and bad about the house, but even then things can stop working a week after you’ve signed the papers, through no-ones fault.

There are several, several different companies to choose from. You can Google them then Go to their websites and read the reviews.  Find out which companies have to best coverage for wear and tear on your appliances and plumbing

It’s like having an insurance plan for your home’s comfort items--- granted we all hate to pay, but it’s sooo nice to have when something isn’t working!!

I could tell you about the time my seller had done thousands of dollars of upgrades on his house,-everything looked great and  had pasted with the inspection with everything in good working order; yet two weeks after close of escrow the AC quit, -just quit!  The buyer was extremely happy that he didn’t have to come up with another $5,000 for a new one!  All for the price of, at the time a $350 home warranty. 

Well, that’s all I have for today.

Have a good week,


Thursday, January 1, 2015

Living with Pest--- errr Pets

Living with Pets

Or better said—pets letting you live with them.
Ever notice that once you get a pet they can take over your world??
Cats are independent little fur balls, that can be very demanding…. Yes, when they are kittens they are adorable.  Always playful, and full of energy, then all too quickly morph into these critters that only want love when they decide (usually in the middle of the night, during your favorite show or while you’re in the ‘library’). They eye the sandwich you are eating with great intensity, and cover you with their fur…. Bless their little hearts.

All that aside,  I have several cats, and they are a joy most of the time….  I have 2 that are blind,  One that has been blind from almost birth, and the other grew blind with age (she’s going to be 18 soon)  In his younger day the one that has been blind all of his life, would play with another cat we had—he would hide behind a wall and jump out at the other--- he must have amazing hearing… he still thinks he’s the alpha male cat.   The other male cat I have who is younger and bigger, lets him.

I am “cat’  sitting right now and don’t think for one minute that he has not noticed that there is a new cat in the house.

Man or woman’s best friend….  Ever loving and ever forgiving… don’t you wish people could take a few lessons from them, me included.  Great protectors or maybe you have one that will show the crooks where the goodstuff is.  At the writing of this, I have 3,  a Australian shepherd who is moving very slow these days, and I don’t want to think about what the next month may hold for her, and 2 young  little dogs…. But they bark at every passer by on the street.  It’s been a while since I had puppies, yoie, what was I thinking!!??  They have finally stopped chewing up my wood furniture.  They are brother and sister and they play and play.  I wish I had their energy.

My granddaughter just got a pig for a school project.  I personally avoid pork, but I’m thinking she will have a hard time eating it after this,   I guess he likes to roll over to have his belly scratched and is developing a personality.   And they named it!!!!---- bad decision!!  Don’t ever name something you may eat someday. 

Pet’s-- some people think they are just an object to have or use.  Not even thinking for a minute that they have feelings, thoughts, and ability to think. 

One more short story to prove my point that they are smart critters. 

When I was young we had a dog, we were going on vacation in a few days, and mom had packed all but a few things…  Puffy knew something was up,  and she was mad when everybody left to run to the store --thinking she was left behind, she found my mom’s corset and hid it in her bed…. Mom had to wear a girdle the next few days to work—until we found it in the basket…..  (fyi a girdle is a very tight fitting undergarment. )  Puffy, was very  happy when she got to go on the vaction with us;  Mom was very happy she didn't have to wear the girdle.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Smile and they will think You are Smarter

Want People to Think You Are Smart?

Smile !

This is what I’ve learned from an article I read from Christopher Ingraham

People think they can tell how smart you are by looking at you….

Researchers had 40 men and 40 women take a standard intelligence test. They then photographed the subject’s faces telling them to use a neutral ‘non-smiling’ expression and not to wear cosmetics or jewelry.

Next they had 160 strangers review the photographs. Half of the reviews rated the photos according to how smart the subjects looked, and the other half according to their attractiveness.

The researchers found a strong relationship between how attractive the people were and the assumption of intelligence….. The more attractive the smarter they thought they were…. Especially with the females.

There was a significant difference in gender perceived intelligence and actual intelligence. They were pretty good at guessing the intelligence of the men, but were lost when guessing which were the smart women. Therefore judging on intelligence rather than attractiveness seems to be not as well practiced.

When researchers compared attractiveness of various subjects with their IQ scores they found no relationship at all. They said that it suggest there is absolutely no connection between brains and beauty,

So, what do you think? Even though there is no real connection between beauty and brains, opinions are formed… having real consequences.
All this to say that research did suggest one thing that everyone can do to boost other’s assessment of our intelligence—— Smile !

Because there also seems to be a correlation between the outward appearance of emotions such as joy or anger to the perceptions of high or low intelligence. Suggesting that High intelligence faces seem to smile more than low intelligent faces.
Not sure I'm buying that either.   Just smile--- it will raise your spirits --- and that ought to count for something!!  Make a smile and give it away, they can be contagious.



Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Home Prices Likely Continue to Rise

Most homeowners across this country have been enjoying an upswing in their home values, and home-sale prices.  And--- they are expected to continue rising for at least the next several months, according to CoreLogic’s latest Home Price Index Report.
home prices increaseCoreLogic  analyzed the  data through February, showing home prices—including distressed sales—were an average of 12.2% higher compared to the same time last year. Present home prices show the highest annual appreciation gains in these five states:
  • California – 19.8%
  • Nevada – 18.5%
  • Georgia – 14.2%
  • Oregon – 13.8%
  • Michigan – 13.5%
The CoreLogic's report predicted home prices, when including distressed properties-- would see a rise of 10.5% from March 2013 to March 2014.  Excluding distressed properties, the prices were expected to rise 9.3%.
Prices are expected to continue to rise over the next several months, leveling off by the end of the year.
Homes have increased  for the last 24 consecutive months, although by the end of February,  were still 16.9% below the peak levels reached in April 2006, according to CoreLogic.®’s National Housing Trend Report for February 2014 showed home sellers’ growing confidence in the market as the number of homes for sale increased,-- traditional sales out-numbering  short sales and REO's did not dominate the market.
“The number of properties for sale in February rose 10.1% above February 2013 levels, to 1,744,032 units,” the® report said. “The median list price at $199,000 increased 7.6% compared to the same month last year, and the median age of inventory increased 6.5% above year-ago figures, to 114 days.”
The top five areas showing the highest number of active listings in the® report were:
  • Chicago
  • Dallas
  • Detroit
  • Los Angeles-Long Beach
  • Atlanta
“Although prices should remain strong in the near term due to a short supply of homes on the market, price increases should moderate over the next year as home equity releases pent-up supply,” Mark Fleming, chief economist for CoreLogic, said in a statement.
Finally, homeowners who struggled to build equity in their homes during the recession may be able to breathe a sigh of relief  as the market continues to stabilize and buyers and sellers continue to gain confidence.
Homeowners looking to sell their homes have adequate time to prepare their home, find a REALTOR®, and start the selling process, based on based on CoreLogic’s report, which  expects month-to-month price growth nationwide until at least the end of the year.

As I am blogging this, there are just shy of 26,700 Active Listings in the Phoenix area, Normal for this area is about 30-33thousand...


Tuesday, April 1, 2014

St Joseph to the Resue!!!!??

St. Joseph Statue

Help From The Great Beyond

Saints alive, it’s true!

When the housing market slows down, sales of Saint Joseph statuettes go through the roof.

According to the Wall Street Journal, where analysts crunched data about slow housing sales and the rise in sales of statues of the patron saint of real estate, there is a correlation.

St. Joseph, in the Catholic tradition, is the patron saint of home and family, and has seen a boom to real estate sales. All you need to do is send out a little prayer as you bury a little statuette of the saint.

But this superstition has a few rules: Bury him upside down, and near the for-sale sign on the property you’re trying to sell.

If you need one of these St. Joe’s sale-booster statuettes, I've heard that  Amazon has a whole St. Joseph Home Selling Kit for less than $10. But the garden spade is not included.

It's said that the statue-burying tradition likely started with buyers, not sellers, Nuns during the Middle Ages buried St. Joseph medals on land they hoped to get for a  convent

But in these modern times, there’s still a call for them. In fact, despite the fact that real estate agents may be among some of the most practical groups of sales pros in the world, they’re more than willing to indulge sellers in whatever it takes.

Seattle area agent Ardell DellaLoggia of Sound Realty said she remembers seeing cases of the little statues under agents’ desks during downtimes in the market. As a Catholic, herself,  she’s even been known to bury them with or without the seller’s permission.

“Sometimes the seller asks me to do it, but they don’t participate because they don’t believe in it, and it’s bad juju,” she said. “It’s like a seance or something, like a Ouiji board, right?”

According to the Journal, between 2009 and 2010, when home prices were stagnant, the sales of St. Joseph figurines more than doubled at Catholic Supply of St. Louis, Inc. And then when prices rose, the sales decline

As the housing market recovers, more home-sellers are going it alone: in 2013, St. Joseph figurine statues sales fell 10.6 percent from the year prior.

But DellaLoggia thinks there is still a place for St. Joseph even in a hot market. She has a current client competing among multiple offers on a home in Seattle. It might give her client the edge if she pays the property a visit and tucks a St. Joseph statue under the grass in the front lawn, she said.

“I have a spot in mind,” she mused.
I've had a client of mine do this, go figure it sold in no time...

What do you think??? Good idea??