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The Pros and Cons of Installing an Energy-efficient Tankless Water Heater

Wednesday, May 3rd, 2017

1 tankless waterheaters

There are so many ways in which you can green up your home and make it more sustainable these days that many people are considering tankless water heaters. While this can certainly be the right option depending on the space you have and the type of water you use, here are some things to consider before you decide to invest in the switch.

Maximizing Your Space
One of the biggest issues with a traditional water heater is the amount of space it takes up, whether it’s a side closet or a closed-off area in the basement. Fortunately, one of the benefits of tankless water heaters is that they can be wall-mounted almost anywhere in your house so they won’t need their own separate space. The traditional water heater may be bulky and require an area of its own, but your tankless water heater will not have to work around the needs of the rest of the house!

Heating What’s Needed
While a traditional water heater stores water and will be able to supply hot water at a quicker rate, a tankless water heater works more slowly. Because it is heating the water as it’s being used, it’s only using the energy it needs to provide the water required. While this will have a positive impact on your energy costs over time, it can also mean waiting on hot water a little longer than expected. To go tankless, you’ll require a minimum water flow amount.

Do You Have Hard Water?
A tankless water heater can be more efficient when it comes to space and energy, but if you have an issue with hard water, the tankless option may not be the way to go. Because a tankless heater essentially warms water within the tank, it is vulnerable to scale build up, which can cut into its overall efficiency. While a traditional water heater does not experience this issue, a tankless water heater working with hard water may end up being less useful due to this build up.

There are several benefits associated with a tankless water heater, but it’s important to determine if this option will be truly energy efficient for you before you decide to invest. If you’re currently working on home renovations and are getting prepared to put your home on the market, you may want to contact the Santa Fe Team’s real estate professionals for more information.

1For more helpful tips please contact me at 505.780.0310, or email me at moo@moothorpe.com and I will be happy to assist you.

Whether you are selling your home, or buying a home, I can help you with your endeavor

 

 

Mortgage Missteps That You’ll Want to Avoid when Buying a Home

Saturday, April 22nd, 2017

1MORTGAGE MISSTEPS
Buying a home is one of the biggest financial investments you’ll make in your life, and it’s important to make sure that you’re doing what will be right for you down the road. If you’re trying to avoid buyer’s remorse and are wondering what major missteps to avoid when diving into the market, here are a few things you may want to watch out for.

Buying Too Much Home
It’s often the case that a homebuyer will get so excited about a home they see that they need to have it, but putting all your money into one investment can be difficult to sustain over time. Instead of deciding to budget and buckle down on your expenditures, ensure that your monthly budget still leaves room in the event of other expenses or financial setbacks. This will ensure that your home stays as something you can enjoy that won’t become a burden.

Not Saving Up Enough
Many people want to invest in the market right away and get into a home, but it can often be worth the wait to save up so that you have at least 20% for a down payment. Putting 20% down on a house means that you won’t have to pay the added costs for Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI). Not only can this lead to smaller mortgage payments monthly, it also means that you’ll be able to pay off your mortgage loan that much more quickly.

Forgetting All the Associated Costs
It’s easy to be wooed by the cost of the monthly payment and think that it’s less expensive than you thought, but it’s important not to forget about all the other costs that go into owning a home. In addition to the closing costs of home ownership, there will also be property taxes, homeowner’s insurance and the maintenance fees required for home upkeep. If the monthly mortgage payment is already pushing it, costs like these can make your overall cost  unmanageable.

There are many mistakes that can be made when it comes to purchasing a home, but by being aware of all the costs of home ownership and taking the time to save up, you’ll be well on your way to owning a home that’s affordable and sustainable. If you’re getting prepared to delve into the real estate market, you may want to contact the Santa Fe Team’s real estate professionals for more information.

1For more helpful tips please contact me at 505.780.0310, or email me at moo@moothorpe.com and I will be happy to assist you.

Whether you are selling your home, or buying a home, I can help you with your endeavor

 

Why You May Want to Keep Trying after Being Denied for a Mortgage

Thursday, December 1st, 2016

mortgage-denied1

If you’re in the market for a new home, you’ll most likely need a mortgage to afford it. But for some home buyers, getting a mortgage isn’t easy. Banks and other lenders are often hesitant to lend money to certain consumers, often for good reason.

But sometimes, lenders’ reasons for declining you aren’t entirely valid. That’s why, if you’ve been denied for a mortgage, you’ll want to keep trying to get mortgage funds. Here are three factors that can influence the likelihood of approval on the second try.

A Second Appraisal Might Change Your Circumstances
Sometimes, a mortgage lender will deny a loan because the property value of the home in question isn’t large enough to back the loan. If your mortgage lender declines you because of a poor loan-to-value ratio, getting a second appraisal could help. A lot of appraisal companies will give wildly different appraisals on the same property, with some brokers reporting valuation differences of up to $1.3 million.

Bear in mind that you cannot get two appraisals through the same lender, so if you choose to have the home appraised a second time, you’ll need to find a new lender.

Cleaning Up Your Credit Report Can Work Wonders
What’s on your credit report will have a large role in determining whether you get the mortgage you want. If you’ve been denied because of entries on your credit report, you’ll want to take every step possible to correct those report issues. If you’ve been more than 30 days late on a payment in the past, it will show on your credit report and affect your score – but by calling your creditor and asking them to remove the negative, you can bring your credit report back into good standing.mortgage-denied2

You’ll also want to pay off all past due balances as soon as possible. If you can’t pay what you owe in full, you’ll want to negotiate with your creditor to pay part of the amount. This will result in the debt showing on your credit report as “paid as agreed”, which will boost your credit score.

An Extra Down Payment May Be A Good Idea
Oftentimes, a lender will decline a borrower if the borrower is asking for too much money. If you’re pursuing a mortgage worth more than 95% of the property value, you’ll probably be declined. But if you make an extra down payment, you can lower your loan amount – which may incline your lender to approve your application.

If you’ve been declined for a mortgage, don’t give up. There are steps you can take to get approved. Call your mortgage professional for more advice on mortgage applications.

moo thorpe headshotFor more helpful tips please contact me at 505.780.0310, or email me at moo@moothorpe.com and I will be happy to assist you.

Whether you are selling your home, or buying a home, I can help you with your endeavor

 

Internet-Connected Home Upgrades That You Can Install in Your Home

Saturday, November 19th, 2016

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The future is now! You may know that there are already many smart (Internet-connected) appliances and items that you can use to update your home for the connected age. But for your reading pleasure, here are five of them already on the market.

Energy Efficiency: The Smart Thermostat
One of the first smart home upgrades to make it big on the market is the smart thermostat, specifically the Nest Learning Thermostat. Connected to your heating system, and to your phone through Wi-Fi, this device ‘learns’ your energy use habits so it can adjust to them. It saves you money by tailoring its output to your usage, which means it is kinder on the planet as well. Smart tech for the win-win.

Intelligent Alarms: Smart Smoke Detectors
In the same vein is the smart smoke and carbon monoxide detector technology. These alarm systems assess the danger and speak to you. They report on multiple details, including what kind of danger you’re facing (fire or carbon monoxide poisoning), where it is exactly in your home, and whether it constitutes an immediate risk to you.

Turn It On! Smart Light Bulb
A-ha! The intelligence continues. There are smart light bulbs now.  Like the Philips’ Hue Connected Bulb, which speak through your Wi-Fi. This light can be controlled remotely through your phone or computer, where you can change its color and adjust the brightness without ever touching the bulb itself.internet2

Baby Care: The Smart Onesie
You know those moments you need to yourself, when you step out of your baby’s room to let them sleep? Well, there’s now a device to help keep track of them even then. The Mimo Baby Shirt is a smart onesie. Its organic cotton is woven with sensors that monitor elements like your child’s temperature or sleep pattern and streams that info to your device through your home’s Wi-Fi. It can be fitted with a microphone, again linked to your phone, and its machine-washable!

The Next Mouthful: The Smart Fork
Finally, there’s the HAPIfork. This smart utensil monitors your eating habits, how fast you’re eating, the time between meals, and how many bites it takes to finish the meal. These tidbits can be uploaded to your laptop or phone, and can help you track and change how you eat.

As technology continues to progress, our homes are becoming smarter and smarter. Keep up with the tech by staying abreast of new developments, like starting with these five. Oh, and one last smart thing? Reaching out to your real estate agent for more information, recommendations or just to chat about the future.

moo thorpe headshotFor more helpful tips please contact me at 505.780.0310, or email me at moo@moothorpe.com and I will be happy to assist you.

Whether you are selling your home, or buying a home, I can help you with your endeavor

 

What to Expect on Closing Day when Financing Your Dream Home with a Mortgage

Friday, October 21st, 2016

closing-day1

There are so many details that lead up to the purchase of your dream home that it can be hard to realize it when the closing day is finally upon you. However, when closing day finally arrives, there will still be a few last minute details that need to be taken care of. If you’re getting ready to solidify your home purchase and are wondering about the remaining paperwork and any unknown details, here are some things you can expect when it comes to making your purchase complete.

One Last Walk Through
A home inspection is an important part of any home purchase, but buyers often have the option to go for one final walk through on closing day in order to determine if any additional damage has been done. This will help to ensure that if any additional issues have appeared, they can be discussed and taken care of by the seller. While it might seem like the home inspection should take care of things, a last walk through can be very important in ensuring you don’t get stuck with unwanted – and potentially expensive – repairs.

A Few Helping Hands
Most of the details will be taken care of by the time closing day comes, but that doesn’t mean it will be up to the lawyers to settle everything for you and the seller. Instead, you can expect a wide cast closing-day2of involved parties that can range from the seller’s agent to the title company representative to the closing agent, in addition to the homeowner and yourself. It’s just important to be aware that which parties are involved will be dependent upon where you live.

A Bevy of Documents
Purchasing a home is not without an abundance of paperwork, but there will be a few more documents to deal with during your closing meeting. In addition to documents that outline the agreement and the property transfer, there will be others like the deed of trust, the settlement statement and the mortgage note that verifies that the buyer will pay back the mortgage loan.

There are many stressors that come along with the purchase of your home, but by taking all the documents you need and being prepared to deal with all the engaged parties, the day can go a lot more smoothly. If you’re currently looking into a mortgage and are on the market for a home, you may want to contact a mortgage professional for more information.

moo thorpe headshotFor more helpful tips please contact me at 505.780.0310, or email me at moo@moothorpe.com and I will be happy to assist you.

Whether you are selling your home, or buying a home, I can help you with your endeavor

 

Mortgage Mistakes That Could Be Costing You Money

Friday, August 19th, 2016

MORTGAGE MISTAKES1

Purchasing a home can be one of the most exciting and stabilizing investments of your life, but because of the expense, there are many ways you may be spending more money than you should. If you’re wondering about the financial soundness of your home investment, here are some things to consider before putting anything down.

Investing in Too Much Home
Many homebuyers are so gung-ho about having their own home that they forget a mortgage takes many years to pay off and there’s a lot of living to do in the interim. While you may be looking at the monthly cost of your mortgage as something to get through, it’s more important to find a home that will provide you with a more flexible lifestyle. Instead of spending half your income on your home, it’s better to choose a more affordable option that won’t lead to buyer’s remorse.

Putting Less Than 20% Down
One of the greatest struggles for those who want to make the leap into home ownership is the down payment, and many buyers will put down a lot less than 20%. While this might seem like a better deal in the short term, putting 5 or 10% down means you’ll have to pay for mortgage insurance in case you default on your payments. It can be hard to come up with 20% for many buyers, but MORTGAGE MISTAKES2putting this amount down means you don’t have to pay for added insurance.

Not Researching Your Lender
When it comes to purchasing food or electronics, many people will shop around for the best deal in the hopes of saving money. However, few things will cost more than investing in a home, so you should be doing the same research when it comes to your lender. According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, approximately 50% of Americans consider only one lender prior to applying for a mortgage. Instead of being among them, take the time to research a lender that will help you save on fees and interest.

It can be overwhelming to buy a home with all of the information and energy that goes into finding the right place and the right price. However, by being realistic about what you can afford and searching for the best loan for you, you’re well on your way to a sound purchase. If you’re currently on the market for a mortgage, you may want to contact one of our mortgage specialists for more information.

moo thorpe headshotFor more helpful tips please contact me at 505.780.0310, or email me at moo@moothorpe.com and I will be happy to assist you.

Whether you are selling your home, or buying a home, I can help you with your endeavor.

 

 

Some Things to Consider Before Stepping Back into Homeownership

Friday, June 24th, 2016

home ownership1

Whether you’ve gone back to renting for the sake of money saving or recently downsized to a more compact space, the idea of owning a home can be a big responsibility that may require more than you’re willing to give. If you’re considering jumping back into the fold of home ownership, here are a few things to contemplate before re-entering the market.

Is It Affordable?
Many people avoid home ownership for a long time because of the high cost of a down payments and the associated property taxes and maintenance fees, but it can be easy to forget these extras if you’ve been out of the game. Instead of being blindsided, sit down and determine these additional costs before putting an offer down on anything.

Is It Really What You Want?
With all of the conversation around the market that says it’s best to buy now, it can seem like having a home is a necessity for a secure financial future. However, if home ownership is something youhome ownership2 feel pressure to do, it may not be worth such a sizable purchase. Instead of jumping in, ensure you’ve determined what such a significant investment means to you first.

Does Home Ownership Match Your Lifestyle?
It’s easy to be aware of the financial benefits of buying a home up front, but simply because it may suit your pocketbook doesn’t mean it serves the life you’re living now. You should first consider the things in your life that have changed, as a new home may not have all the nearby amenities you’re used to and there may also be a lot of maintenance and yard work you’ll have to take on.

Is It a Good Investment?home ownership3
If you’ve decided that delving into another home is really the right thing for you, you’ll want to make sure it’s the kind of purchase that’s really going to be fruitful down the road. It can be easy to buy in a popular neighborhood or by the beach, but instead of going for what’s right now, consider communities that will be popular in the future as this may maximize your investment potential.

Many people make a second foray into home ownership for a reason, but it’s worth being clear on what your expectations really are so you don’t end up with an investment you’re not interested in holding onto. If you’re currently considering your housing options, you may want to contact one of our mortgage professionals for more information.

moo thorpe headshotFor more helpful tips please contact me at 505.780.0310, or email me at moo@moothorpe.com and I will be happy to assist you.

Whether you are selling your home, or buying a home, I can help you with your endeavor.

 

A Few Things You Should Do After Inheriting a Home

Thursday, June 2nd, 2016

inheriting home

There can be a lot of excitement when it comes to the realization that you’ve inherited a home, but simply because it’s an inheritance doesn’t mean there aren’t a few strings attached. Whether you’re expecting to be gifted with a home in the future or you’re currently going through this process, here are a few things you may need to watch out for.

The State of the Mortgage
Once a home has been effectively handed over to you, it’s important to determine the status of the mortgage with the lender and if anything is still owed. While you have the option of taking over the mortgage in a lot of cases, in the event that there’s a reversible mortgage or you’re choosing to rent it out as a second property, you may not be able to transfer the mortgage. While this can often be a rather seamless process, if money is owed there can be other factors to consider.

Determine If You Want It
If you already have a first home and don’t want to take care of your second property as a rental unit, it’s important to realize that keeping the home may not be the best decision for you. While you have the option of organizing a short sale if you’d like to get it off of your hands, you can also contact a real estate agent who will be able to provide you with advice on how to proceed if you’re unwilling (or unable) to take control of the property.

Is It in Good Condition?
Whether you want to keep the home or not, there can be cases where it’s not even a question if it’s a home that you’re going to end up investing money into without much return. In a situation where a lot of money is owed on the house or there are serious issues with its general condition. You may want to release yourself from the inheritance and move on with your financial situation still intact.

There can be an instant feeling of acquired wealth in the event that you’ve inherited a home, but a home in bad condition or that you don’t want to take care of can end up being more of a headache than anything else. If you’re currently considering your options when it comes to a home inheritance, you may want to contact a real estate professional for more information.

moo thorpe headshotFor more helpful tips please contact me at 505.780.0310, or email me at moo@moothorpe.com and I will be happy to assist you.

Whether you are selling your home, or buying a home, I can help you with your endeavor.

 

 

Negotiating Tips for Home Sellers

Thursday, May 12th, 2016

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When you’ve already placed your home on the market, it can seem like the stress is over once you’ve received the offer, but the buck doesn’t stop there. Instead of being caught off guard when the time comes to negotiate, consider these tips that will assist in making the sale.

Rely On Your Agent
Once you’re at the point where you’ve received an offer and are unsure as to whether you should take it, it’s a good idea to sit down and discuss the options with your agent. Because a real estate professional will have plenty of experience with this part of the process, they’ll be able to guide you through what’s an acceptable offer and what you should pass on.

Sell Until It’s Signed
It’s very exciting to receive an offer on your home, but a verbal offer is not set in stone so don’t forget about other interested parties that are still in the mix. Since a buyer’s purchase of your home negotiating2won’t be official until they’ve signed a contract and put down a deposit, make sure you to keep in touch with other potential buyers that might have an offer if your best option backs out.

It’s Not Just About Money
It’s great to receive the asking price you’re looking for, but there are many things to consider with the sale of your home. In the event that your home inspection has come up with a few maintenance flaws, you may need to adjust the price for your buyer. As well, it’s possible your buyer may not be ready to move in when you’re ready to move out, so be sure to consider any issue that may impact the final sale.

Don’t Hold On to Your Pricenegotiating3
There are no set rules when it comes to price, but if you haven’t received any offers and your house has been on the market for more than 60 days, there’s a good chance it’s time to sit down with your agent. While it’s great to know all of the negotiation rules, if your price is set to high for the market, you’re not going to have the opportunity to get to the table.

There are plenty of negotiation strategies to consider when it comes to selling your home, but staying in the game and trusting your agent can go a long way towards a successful sale. If you’re planning on putting your home on the market, you may want to contact a real estate professional for more information.

moo thorpe headshotFor more helpful tips please contact me at 505.780.0310, or email me at moo@moothorpe.com and I will be happy to assist you.

Whether you are selling your home, or buying a home, I can help you with your endeavor.

 

What Home Buyers Can Learn from a Real Estate Investors Viewpoint

Friday, May 6th, 2016

investor viewpoint1There are plenty of things to consider when purchasing a home, from the size of place that you’re looking for to the amount of home you’re able to afford. While it’s certainly worth knowing what you want going in, here are a few factors that investors often think about before investing in a property.

Will The Location Last?
‘Location, location, location’ is a popular expression for a reason, and it’s among the first things that any person purchasing a property will consider when they think about long term-investment potential. It can be easy to think that a currently trendy community, or beachfront property will always be a great investment. The thing to remember trendy places go out of style, and sea levels can rise. An investor will want a location that’s ideal, but they’ll also consider what the area’s future might hold.

Are You in A Bubble?
If you’ve found the perfect home to live in and are considering making an offer, you may not be too worried about its selling potential a few years on. However, if you’re buying in a bubble, your price may be inflated, and this can cause problems if you want to make a profit in five years’ time. Real estate is on the up and up all over the world. So a true investor will consider if the market value will investor viewpoint2continue to rise, or if it’s primed for a considerable economic setback.

Will It Survive the Trends?
The market for condos is certainly booming right now with the rising price of real estate, but many people are also choosing to move away from urban centers to buy a little bigger and start a family. Whether it’s open concept, or a sizeable townhouse, it can be tempting to buy the type of home that is hot right now. Remember these trends may not be so popular in the coming years. Instead of going for flash, consider what will always be in style, or can at least be easily renovated.

The most important thing when purchasing a home is buying a place that you can feel good about, but real estate investors know that there are a number of important factors to consider. If you’re currently on the market for a new home and are weighing your options, you may want to contact a real estate professional for more information.

moo thorpe headshotFor more helpful tips please contact me at 505.780.0310, or email me at moo@moothorpe.com and I will be happy to assist you.

Whether you are selling your home, or buying a home, I can help you with your endeavor.

 

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