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Four reasons to refinance before summer
As noted above, the mortgage rates continue to drop to record lows. If you’ve thought about refinancing your home based on this news, doing so before the summer may be in your best interested, according to Yahoo Homes. The first reason that Yahoo provides is that your home value is likely to decrease in the summer. There are more homes on the market in the summer, and as a result, home prices usually drop. If this happens, refinancing may actually hurt instead of help because a decrease in value means you’ll have less equity in your home when you go to refinance, which can affect the interest rate. Next up on the list is the fact that the government may stop influencing rates and backing rooms. To continue reading about refinancing, read the Yahoo Homes article click here.
Mortgage rate hits record low
A year ago, the 15-year fixed rate mortgage was 3.07. As of this month, the rate fell to 2.56%, which is a record low, according to a CNNMoney article. In addition, the 30-year, more popular mortgage, dropped a 0.05 percentage point to 3.35%, which is only 0.04% above its record low set the week of November 21, 2012. Freddie Mac’s chief economist Frank Nothaft told CNN that “"Residential fixed investment added to overall economic growth over the past eight consecutive quarters and contributed more than 0.3 percentage points in growth over the first three months of this year," he said. "[N]ear record low mortgage rates should further drive the housing market recovery over the near term." Read more about mortgage rates in the CNNMoney article by clicking here.
Appraisals no longer derailing sales
As home prices climb and the housing market as a whole continues to improve, appraisers are valuing homes at or above their selling prices. As a result, more sales can be processed, explains CNNMoney. For example, if a home costs $500,000 and required a 20% down payment of $100,000, the buyer would need to finance $400,000, but if the appraiser valued the house at $450,000, the buyer would only be eligible for a $360,000, which would make the home a bit too costly. Michael Ackerman, a Seattle-based real estate agent, told CNNMoney about a recent deal in Wallingford, Wash. he thought would fall through because the buyer agreed to pay $755,000, well above the average $690,000 other homes in the area sold for. After the appraiser saw it and came in at the full selling price, “everybody’s jaws dropped.” Read the full CNNMoney article by clicking here.
Home Checklist for Summertime Preparation
Keeping with the theme of nice, summertime weather is a slideshow checklist from MyHomeIdeas that provides 20 reminders and tips for preparing your home for the seasonal transition. First on the list is remembering to let in fresh air to help keep the airflow fresh and moving. In addition, the article suggests placing a houseplant, such as a snake plant, a spider plant or an English ivy plant, next to the bathroom to help clean the air. Next up, remember to keep your refrigerators running to keep cold drinks on hand. But before that, unplug the fridge and remove the base plate or top grate and clean it out to remove dirt or lint. Keep reading the 20-item list from MyHomeIdeas by clicking here.
16 Boston Area Listings with Decks
Spring in the Greater Boston area has been a bit weird this year. It seemed for a while that we wouldn’t actually have much of a spring, and instead go right from winter to summer. But as of late, the warmer weather has started to creep in a bit; they aren’t consistent just yet, but backyard barbecues and entertaining should be here soon enough. With that in mind, Boston.com has put together a slideshow list of 16 homes ranging from a $1.9 million penthouse in the Back Bay to a $269,900 condo in Quincy, all of which have decks to enjoy the summer. Check out a 10-bedroom colonial in Marlborough, a two-bedroom condo in Boston, a one-bedroom condo in Charlestown and much more, by clicking here.
Caroline Kennedy lists Martha’s Vineyard Land for $45M
Two separate plots of land—both of which are part of the original 366-acre parcel that Jackie Onassis purchased in 1978— have recently been listed by Caroline Kennedy. “6 Red Gate Farm” is nearly 40 acres of waterfront property in Aquinnah while “8 Red Gate Farm” has more than 50 acres of beachfront property. The home that Jackie O had built when she initially purchased the home is still owned by the family while the remaining land has been subdivided, so whoever buys these properties could potentially be neighbors with a Kennedy. Both lots come with beautiful views of the Squibnocket Pond and the Atlantic Ocean. In addition, the properties have more than 1,000 feet of frontage on the pond and on a stream that connects to Menemsha Pond. To view these properties, click here To read the Business Insider article, click here.
Monaco Tower Penthouse Could Cost a Quarter Billion
If you have ever found yourself contemplating where the most expensive properties in the world might be, or what they might cost, well this one might pique your interest. The Odeon Tower in Monaco---a 49-story double skyscraper that is currently being built in the priciest real estate market on Earth—will have 70 luxury apartments, two “sky duplexes,” and a five-floor, 35,000 square-foot “sky penthouse,” which will have its own pool. The Odeon Tower project could end up costing more than a quarter-billion dollars, according to the Yahoo Homes article, which says that sales are averaging about $7,700 per square foot. If this projection keeps pace, the penthouse would cost more than $273 million. Take a video tour of the of the Odeon Tower on Yahoo by clicking here.
Three Reasons the Housing Recovery May Not Last
Over the past few issues, and really the past year or so, we’ve provided you with links to the latest developments in the housing market. In this time frame, the market has made a comeback and home prices have jumped about 8%, yet still, some industry experts wonder if it may come crashing back down to Earth. CNNMoney provides three reasons that the recovery may not last. At number one is the fact that the recovery is being led by investors who are taking advantage of low interest rates and home prices, and when those rates rise, they could potentially pull back. “An investor-driven boom is likely to end badly, says Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. Read the other two reasons from CNNMoney by clicking here.