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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Should you Rent or Buy?

Should you Rent or Buy?
Are you likely to be transferred to another city within the next two years? If you had to sell due to a job transfer, your property would need to appreciate at least 10% to cover the cost of selling; otherwise, you would lose money on the sale. When you buy a home, you should plan to stay put for a while.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Ready, Set, Buy your first home. Step 1.

The first step: figuring out whether you are ready to own a home. This does not only mean that you are financially capable of owning a home. It also includes emotional readiness, as buying a first home is a huge step for most people, as well as a huge commitment and responsibility.

One of the easiest and most valuable things you can do to prepare is obtaining a copy of your credit report and making sure that lenders will like what they see. The Web site,, offers this service for free, as do many other sites. If your credit report is less than stellar, it is probably a better idea to continue renting while you pay off debts and investigate questionable problems.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Home buyer Tip #3 How much home can I afford?

Aim for a home you can really afford.

The rule of thumb is that you can buy housing that runs about two-and-one-half times your annual salary. But you'll do better to use one of many calculators available online to get a better handle on how your income, debts, and expenses affect what you can afford. I have links on my web site at

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Don't buy if you can't stay put. First-time Homeowners advice.


Don't buy if you can't stay put.

If you can't commit to remaining in one place for at least a few years, then owning is probably not for you, at least not yet. With the transaction costs of buying and selling a home, you may end up losing money if you sell any sooner - even in a rising market. When prices are falling, it's an even worse proposition. Make sure you discuss your plans with your Realtor so he or she can give you sound advice on this your biggest life-time purchase.

Monday, May 10, 2010

What if you get a very low offer on your home?

Negotiate! Keep the conversation alive with the buyer for as long as you can. Do not settle right away. Always maintain open communication about your limitations with your agent; he or she is there to help you get the best price possible for your home. Remember, if the offer is too low, always counter; don't walk away. Sometimes buyers simply want to test the waters.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Did You know?

Did you know that I can show you any home, listed with any company, in any community in Wisconsin, any time? Put me to work for you or if you have a friend, I will do my very best to help them find their dream home

Changes in lending

The magic number for your credit score is 740. The lower the score, the higher the rate.
A score under 620 in not acceptable for conforming loans.
You can check your score at

Call me if I can be of service

Thank you,

Scott Larson

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Should You Buy a Home in Today's Market?

First, if you are thinking about delaying a purchase because you want to "time the market" to get the very best deal, that is almost impossible to do with precision. Even if you are in an area with declining market prices, the most knowledgeable experts cannot reliably anticipate the "bottom" of a real estate market.
Second, if you aren't an owner, you're a renter. Renting is just throwing money away. You don't get to reduce your income taxes by itemizing deductions like property taxes and mortgage interest. However, for many, renting can provide a better home in a better area than they could afford to buy and is cheaper than owning. And, the money saved during the renting period could be saved. The period of time spent renting and saving could also be used to repair and improve credit, so that when the time does come to buy a house, it will be possible to get a mortgage with more favorable terms, conditions and interest rates. As a renter, you are limited on what changes you can make to your living quarters. As an owner, you can paint your living room chartreuse if you want or put in an avocado green carpet. You can change light fixtures, garden and landscape. You can do whatever you want that makes your home a comfortable place for you and your family. It's your home, not a temporary place to sleep and eat until you do buy a home.
Third, interest rates are very low right now. If you wait, interest rates could be higher. That means your monthly payment could be higher, too. No one can predict rates that far in the future, of course, but rates are very low right now.
Plus, the easiest way to accumulate wealth is through home ownership. Three out of four people have more equity in their home than assets in retirement plans, stocks, mutual funds, and savings. Though no one can guarantee your property will appreciate, over time it generally does.
How do you minimize the possibility of lower appreciation for your home? Determine your price range. Then choose a neighborhood where your target price is in the lower tier of prices in that neighborhood. That way, your home has less vulnerability on the down side and the higher-priced homes will help pull you up during hot markets.
Finally, talk to me Scott Larson a real estate agent with Re/Max Towne Square Realty and ask for advice. Ask me what the market is like in your area.
Ph. 608 214-9844 or E-mail
On the web at,