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February 2017 Home News

 

FEBRUARY 2017

 

Whether you are looking to buy or sell, I can offer the highest levels in real estate expertise and professionalism. Don’t hesitate to contact me and allow me to help guide you through that process!

YOLANDA HOVERSTEN
BROKER / REALTOR®
YolandaHoversten@gmail.com   |   618-407-9195
http://www.YolandaHoversten.com

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MORTGAGE ADVICE

Should You Pay Discount Points?

The low mortgage interest rates that you find online or in the newspaper aren’t necessarily what you’ll pay when you apply for a loan. Why? Because banks will charge you “discount” points to get the best rate, which adds to the cost of the loan.

Points, or discount points, are expressed as a percentage of the loan amount. The point "discounts" the interest rate, that's why it's referred to as a discount point. If your mortgage is $300,000, then one "point" is $3,000. For each point you pay, your interest rate should be reduced by about ¼ percent.

On a 30-year mortgage loan at $300,000 and 5.00%, the monthly payment works to $1,610 without any points.Paying one point ($3,000) would reduce the rate to 4.75%, making your discounted payment $1,564 per month.

That's a reduction of $46.00 per month. Now weigh the cost of $3,000. To get that, divide $46 into $3000. The result is 65. It will take you 65 payments to break even, nearly 5 ½ years. It’s worth it if you’re planning to stay in your home for 5 to 10 years or longer. If not, you’re far better off using the $3,000 to pay down your loan principal or buying furniture for your home.

There’s another way to get the best mortgage interest rate – that’s to have the best credit scores possible. Those with near or perfect credit are considered low risk by banks. As always, consult your financial adviser for more information about home loans.

HOME BUYERS’ ADVICE

Three New Year’s Home Buyer Resolutions

This is the year you become a homeowner! To make the most of this most important step in your life, make these three New Year’s home buying resolutions now.

The three credit reporting bureaus, Experian, Transunion and Equifax, don’t share data, nor do they correct errors without evidence. Order a full credit report from all three bureaus here. If you find an error, contact the appropriate bureau and mail copies of your payment, release of lien or other proof.

Pre-approval also means a lot to sellers. It show’s that you’re serious about buying a home and that the closing process will be quicker and smoother because you already have a lender.

  1. I will check and repair my credit. Before you start shopping for homes, make sure you have no errors or unresolved credit issues that could prevent you from getting a good loan.
  2. I will get pre-approved for a mortgage loan. Take two to four months of bank statements, pay stubs, and an account of your monthly debts and expenses to your lender. The lender calculates how much money you can safely borrow and at what interest rate.
  3. I will buy within my means. It’s sensible to buy the most home you can afford, and your lender will help you get there, but it’s not wise to get a risky adjustable rate mortgage so you can buy more house. Being “house poor” means having no money available for other things in life, so stick to conforming loan guidelines to be safer financially.

BONUS: HOME SELLERS’ ADVICE

 

Clutter-free Countertops

Today's kitchens are filled with all kinds of gastronomical gadgets, but if you want to show your kitchen to its fullest advantage, here are five ways to keep clutter down:

  1. Store unused equipment. Which appliances do you use the most? Chances are they’re not vegetable curlers or pasta makers. Store those appliances somewhere else, such as a butler’s pantry, food pantry or the garage.
  2. Build an appliance garage. Many cabinetmakers offer an appliance garage that can be closed when not in use. You can also customize an appliance garage to extend the length of the counter.
  3. Update appliances. If you need a microwave, get one that’s also a convection oven. Commercial-grade mixers have attachments that can make pasta and knead bread. The newest coffee machines can make tea, hot chocolate and all kinds of coffee shop specialty brews.
  4. Mount what you can. Under cabinet mounting is easy to install. Paper towel racks, electric can openers, and task lighting can all be mounted under the cabinets to free up counter space. Throw out smelly dishrags and sponges, and store fresh cleaning aids in caddies under the sink.
  5. Invest in organizers. Corner cabinets can be better utilized with swing out organizers. Drawers on rollers allow better access to all your storage. One charging station should serve multiple devices. Try installing one in the hall or utility room.

Once your kitchen is better organized, you’ll find it easier to prepare for showings and buyers will have an easier time seeing the kitchen’s best features.

 
 
 
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1941 Frank Scott Pkwy., Ste. C O'Fallon, IL 62269
©2017 BHH Affiliates, LLC. Real Estate Brokerage Services are offered through the network member franchisees of BHH Affiliates, LLC. Most franchisees are independently owned and operated. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices and the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices symbol are registered service marks of HomeServices of America, Inc.® Information not verified or guaranteed. If your property is currently listed with a Broker, this is not intended as a solicitation. Equal Housing Opportunity. 

January 2017 Home News

 

JANUARY 2017

 

Whether you are looking to buy or sell, I can offer the highest levels in real estate expertise and professionalism. Don’t hesitate to contact me and allow me to help guide you through that process!

YOLANDA HOVERSTEN
BROKER / REALTOR®
YolandaHoversten@gmail.com   |   618-407-9195
http://www.YolandaHoversten.com

Visit me on FacebookVisit me on TwitterVisit me on LinkedInVisit me on YouTube
 
 

HOMESELLERS’ ADVICE

Winter Showing Tips

You may think that wintertime isn’t the best time to show your home, but you’d be surprised. Yes, winter days offer fewer hours of daylight for buyers to see your home. Sleet and snow make it harder for buyers to house-hunt. Even warm regions have challenges – the weather may be gray or rainy.

But winter has a unique appeal - gathering with friends and loved ones by a crackling fire, winter sports played in the backyard, walks on the beach without all the summertime tourists. So play up what’s great about your home.

Make sure the drive-up appeal is strong. Keep driveways and walkways clear of snow and slush. Put a nice, new welcome mat out for buyers and their agents to wipe their feet.

Leave all the lights on for showings and open the drapes to let in more light. Closed homes tend to hold odors, so open the windows for an occasional airing, and run the fans after cooking meals. Bake some cookies or bread. Boil some cinnamon and spices for a natural, wintry fragrance.

If you have a fireplace, turn it on, but low. Stage the scene with a comfy, holiday-themed throw blanket. Put some big fluffy pillows on the floor.

Don’t hesitate to contact me for more winter-selling tips!

DECORATING ADVICE

Creating Focal Points

Now that you’re buying your own home, it’s important to know how to put your personal stamp on the décor. How do you start? Whether you’re decorating a living room, bedroom or bath, start with a focal point to enhance the room’s ambiance and underscore the room’s purpose.

Focal points can be created by highlighting a room’s unique architecture, such as a magnificent fireplace or a glittering bay window with a garden, mountain or water view. But what if some rooms don’t have an outstanding architectural feature to build upon? You may have to create one yourself. Here are some tricks of the trade you can use - size, color, light, and curiosity.

Size: Large items attract interest. Start by putting the largest piece of furniture against the largest wall to help traffic flow. Rugs also command attention and anchor the décor.

Color: Paint a contrasting wall color behind your sofa or bed. Pop the color on small items like pillows and placemats. Vivid color helps direct the eye to seating areas and pairs well with neutrals.

Light: Your eye travels to where it can see the best. Put directional light on a piece of fine art. Dim or brighten lighting when you want to change the room’s atmosphere.

Curiosity: A collection under glass, a great piece of art, or an unusual piece of furniture invite conversation and draw attention.

By establishing your focal point, you’ll have an easier time putting the rest of the room together.

 
 
 
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1941 Frank Scott Pkwy., Ste. C O Fallon, IL 62269
©2017 BHH Affiliates, LLC. Real Estate Brokerage Services are offered through the network member franchisees of BHH Affiliates, LLC. Most franchisees are independently owned and operated. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices and the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices symbol are registered service marks of HomeServices of America, Inc.® Information not verified or guaranteed. If your property is currently listed with a Broker, this is not intended as a solicitation. Equal Housing Opportunity. 

Rudyard Kipling's Home in Vermont

Happy to share this story which brought back wonderful memories of many a nights reading The Jungle Book to our daughter when she was a little girl. Enjoy this article which delves into Kipling building his home in Vermont and penning the classic children's book.

See the Vermont House Where Rudyard Kipling Wrote ‘The Jungle Book’

 

When you're ready to create your own memories in your first home, moving up or scaling down, just call. I'd be happy to help!

Yolanda Hoversten, Broker
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Elite Properties
O'Fallon, IL Real Estate in the Metro East
(618) 407-9195

Never Say Never to A Home Withdrawn from the Market

Never Say Never to a Home Withdrawn from the Market

OFallon IL Homes for Sale - YolandaHoversten.com
(Image is just a representation of the property to protect the home owners' privacy.)

Each transaction in real estate, whether buying or selling, is a unique event. Licensed agents will tell you that every client is different and every home is unique. There is always a teachable moment and one can learn from it and smile about it when it closes and goes smoothly.

Recently a couple asked me to show a home in O'Fallon, Illinois that was recently listed. They wanted to see the property for either investment or residential purpose. As I did my preliminary search, I found out that the home was withdrawn from the market a day after it was listed. Being very curious, I called the listing agent to make an appointment, but was told that the seller decided to withdraw the listing from the Multiple Listing Services (MLS). Of course my clients were disappointed, but we decided to see if the seller would sell it to us anyway.

After several attempts, the listing agent finally told me that the investor had decided to sell the property to another investor. We then thought that the new property owner might want to flip it to us without doing any work on the property. After a protracted back and forth, the new owner decided to sell it to my clients and a purchase contract was executed. 

Happily, this O'Fallon, Illinois home closed and all parties are happy with the result.

We sell houses in all shapes and sizes, and whether it's listed or not. Call today.

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Just Sold | 1105 Hightower Place | O'Fallon, Illinois

Thought I'd share this exciting news!
Just sold this beautiful home to a wonderful family.
1105 Hightower Place, O'Fallon, IL 62269

1105 Hightower Pl, OFallon IL - YolandaHoversten.com

Beautiful custom home nestled in wooded and tranquil setting in upscale Windsor Creek Subdivision North of O'Fallon, Illinois. Conveniently located near O'Fallon Township High School Milburn Campus, and the new Community Sports Park for family sports and activities. You'll find shopping at the Green Mount Shopping Center and St. Clair Square Mall, dining and entertaining are only a few minutes away, and I-64 will take you places to explore. Experience living in a community with small town feel, but with big city amenities.

Call us today to be a part of this community, and about other homes for sale in surrounding areas. If you're just starting your search, we can schedule a no-obligation consultation to answer questions and help you determine the right budget for your new home. I can also provide a complimentary Comparative Market Analysis, (CMA) if you're considering selling your property. Just call or text, E-mail, or send me smoke signals today!

Finding Homes & Building Dreams in Southwestern Illinois

We sell houses in all shapes & sizes!

O'Fallon IL Homes & Real Estate

Under Contract | 116 Pierce Blvd., O'Fallon, IL 62269

116 Pierce Boulevard, O'Fallon, IL 62269
Under Contract!
 

116 Pierce Blvd OFallon IL Real Estate - YolandaHoversten.com

One story ranch with three bedrooms and three bathrooms, complete with a beautiful in-ground pool ready for summer and the new home owners! Open floor plan suited for entertaining inside and out. It's under contract, and we'll be happy to get your property in contract, too! Just call us today, 618-407-9195 or visit YolandaHoversten.com.

~ Finding Homes & Building Dreams in Southwestern Illinois ~

agent photo
Yolanda Hoversten - Broker
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices
Elite Properties

1941 Frank Scott Parkway, Suite C
O'Fallon, IL 62269
Phone: 618-407-9195
Voice: 618-589-2349
Email: YolandaHoversten@gmail.com
Web: YolandaRealtor.com

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©2017 BHH Affiliates, LLC. An independently owned and operated franchisee of BHH Affiliates, LLC. Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices and the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices symbol are registered service marks of HomeServices of America, Inc.® Equal Housing Opportunity.

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Elite Properties
O'Fallon, IL Real Estate and Homes for Sale