Qualify for a Mortgage? What Do You Really Need!

by leoalbanes 3. September 2015 08:20

According to the report, 36% think a 20% down payment is always required. In actuality, 

  Qualify for a Mortgage

there are many loans written with a down payment of 3% or less.  Read More...

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Home Prices Rising!

by leoalbanes 2. September 2015 06:10

Quicken Loans, each month, releases their national Home Price Perception Index(HPPI).

This month’s report revealed that the difference in appraiser home value opinions as compared to homeowner estimates is continuing to increase. Chief Economist Bob Walters explains: Read More...

Home Prices Rising!

by leoalbanes 2. September 2015 06:10

Quicken Loans, each month, releases their national Home Price Perception Index(HPPI).







This month’s report revealed that the difference in appraiser home value opinions as compared to homeowner estimates is continuing to increase. Chief Economist Bob Walters explains: Read More...

4 great benefits of buying now as opposed to waiting for a better opportunity down the road:

by leoalbanes 22. June 2015 11:25

1. Home Ownership is now more affordable then renting.

According to a recent articles, rents are up nationally 3.7% over last year with some markets seeing an increase of 5.3%. If you continue to rent, your rent will increase annually. If you obtain a fixed rate mortgage, you will be paying the same monthly payment for a period of 15-30 years.

2. Home Ownership means the creation of wealth.

A good portion of someone’s wealth comes from the property they own, including the one that they live in. According to a recent Home Price Expectation Survey, each year over the next five years, home values are expected to increase on an average of between 3 and 4 percent. This means that if you purchase a $250,000 home this summer, your wealth would increase almost $50K before 2020.

3. Interest rates are still at record lows.

The all-time high for interest rates was in 1981, when rates went as high as 18%. Currently rates are still low, but Freddie Mac projects that will increase approximately 1% before the end of the year. A one-point increase in interest means that you will spend more on interest. As a result, you will be able to afford less.

4. Home prices are increasing.

The market is on the move. More buyers and sellers are coming into the market and there is an increased demand for homes as more people recover from the Recession. In fact, the S&P/Case -Shiller Home Price Index recorded a 4.1% annual gain in March 2015 with a 0.8% increase for the month. Combined with the fact that interest rates are also increasing, it becomes much more important to make your next home purchase as soon as possible.

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General | News | Real Estate Industry

Median Days on the Market by State Infographic

by leoalbanes 15. April 2015 17:02


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General | News

Homeownership Creates Family Wealth

by qleoa 15. April 2015 16:56

Matthew Rognlie, from the Department of Economics at MIT, recently released a paper: Deciphering the Fall and Rise in the Net Capital Share. One of the major findings of the report is that homeownership is and has been for the last fifty years a major component to family wealth. An article on the study in The Economist notes one of the findings of the study:

“The return on non-housing wealth, in fact, has been remarkably stable since 1970. Instead, surging house prices are almost entirely responsible for growing returns on capital.”

This came as no surprise to us as the Federal Reserve previously reported that the net worth of families that own their own home is 36 times greater than that of families that rent.

Bottom Line

HousingWire’s Senior Financial Reporter, Trey Garrison, summed it up well in his reporting on Rognlie’s study:

“Homeownership has consistently created generational wealth more reliably, and more ‘democratically’, than any other asset class. And it does so in a manner entirely ancillary to its primary purpose of giving you a place to lay your head and keep your stuff.”


When Is The Best Time To Sell Your Home?

by leoalbanes 6. January 2014 09:01

Every homeowner who is ready to sell their home wants to put themselves in a position to sell quickly, and at the best price. Many homes sit on the market for years, waiting for the right buyer, and this lengthy process keeps the seller in uncomfortable limbo. There are important factors to consider, and some crucial points to be aware of, when it comes to selling your home in a timely manner. The smoother and quicker the process, the easier it becomes for the seller to move forward into their new homes.


Spring Fever

Spring fever—everyone gets their dose of it. But in the real estate industry, this term can take on a whole new meaning. The spring is a perfect time to prepare a home for sale, and tax returns put more money into the pockets of potential buyers. Agents become energized this time of year, knowing that potential buyers are more likely to want to settle into a new home by summer. The summertime is often the best time for families to move. Everyone can get settled and adjusted into their new neighborhood before the fall school season.

Remember, however, that the market will also be more saturated during the spring. When it comes down to it, the final price of a home is dictated by the market, which brings us to our next factor to consider.


State of the Market

Are you entering a buyer’s or seller’s market? What are interest rates like, and are they on their way up or down? Is the economy stable? Are there tax incentives available for those who buy or sell at a given time? These are all questions that should be asked and researched to know whether now is the time to put a home up for sale. If you know the answers, you’ll be in a better position to negotiate and better able to predict the types of offers you’ll ultimately receive.



That’s right, Thursday. Just in time to show your house over the weekend and hopefully attract a full price offer before it’s been on the market for too long. Also, try to list when the weather over the coming weekend will be especially pleasant.


Seek Professional Advice

Since all homeowners have different situations, it is best to consult an experienced, hardworking real estate agent like Leo Albanes for further considerations in putting your home on the market. He knows the Charlotte County, FL area, and he knows the ins and outs of what your home is worth and how to get the most for it.


Think now is a good time to sell your home? Why not try a few of our tips for increasing its value? In the meantime, visit LeoAlbanes.com for information on selling (or buying) a home in the Punta Gorda, Florida area.

4 Easy Weekend Projects to Boost Your Home’s Market Value

by leoalbanes 2. December 2013 11:26

Achieving fair-market value for your home is possible, and surprisingly, it can be a series of budget-friendly projects. Busy schedules don't allow for much renovation or upkeep, and that's okay. Fortunately, you can execute several weekend tasks over the month prior to placing your house on the market.


A Weekend of Organization

For the first weekend, remove clutter and purge anything you don't need or love. If it has no purpose and no sentimental value, it goes. Many people become accustomed to clutter and items they've accumulated over time, but a person might not understand the extent of his or her junk collection. Keeping things you have no use for is a common problem, so you’re not alone. The first step is to purge; it will make the moving process easier. In doing so, you'll also make the following weekends much smoother as well. This is your shot at a stress-free move; don't procrastinate, take it.

A Weekend of Cabinets

The kitchen is the heart of your home. Many real estate professionals believe that a kitchen is what makes or breaks a sale, and many interior designers believe that cabinets make or break a kitchen.

You don't have to go cabinet crazy. Simply sand and repaint your cabinets so they look new. Neutral colors work great on kitchens. If you have a large, well-lit kitchen, you could go for dark cabinets, like chocolate or dark cherry wood. The hardware is another key part of your kitchen. Hardware for your cabinets should be modern, and they must work in synergy with the other hardware throughout your kitchen.

A Weekend of Patching and Painting

Check all of your rooms for any damaged walls or baseboards. Patch where necessary and give each room a fresh paint job. A fresh coat of paint on an old ceiling or wall will give brand new life to a once dull room. Painting is an inexpensive and fairly easy way to revamp a room to look brand new. Neutral colors that blend well work the best for creating the ideal home.

A Weekend of Decorating

Remove changeable additions to your home like shower curtains and curtains unless you absolutely cannot part ways with them. Then, start fresh and give your house a nice, unified "wardrobe" that accentuates its personality and makes it more attractive to a potential buyer. Homes can be dressed up just like people, and their appeal can be boosted by what they're wearing on the surface.


If you're looking to get into the market to sell your home in the Charlotte County area, visit LeoAlbanes.com for valuable information on what you can do to get the most for it.

How to Increase Your Home’s Value For Cheap

by leoalbanes 19. November 2013 06:59

Immediately after deciding to sell your home, you’ll find yourself bombarded with decisions to make regarding how to make it more appealing to potential buyers. While roof repairs and stove replacements will certainly add value to your home, not everyone has the money to invest in a home, especially when you’re looking to buy a new one. Here are some basic ways to make your home look better on the cheap.


Hire an Inspector

While more of a precaution than anything else, having an inspection performed on your home before you put it on the market could save you and potential buyers from surprises in the future. Even a minor problem can affect the delicate nerves in an important transaction, and it might cost next to nothing to fix. Besides, if an inspector does uncover some catastrophic issue, you were going to have to address it at some point anyway.


Play To Your Market

It’s important to make your home look right for the people who are most likely to be interested in it. If you’re in a residential, family-oriented community, make sure the home looks comfortable and kid-friendly. At the same time, you’ll want to make sure your home looks generic enough that buyers will be able to imagine themselves living there. Maybe you enjoy having a pool table that takes up the whole living room, but to others it might make the room look small and uninviting.


Start With the Cheap Stuff

Just because you don’t have the funds to replace the kitchen appliances or countertops in your home, doesn’t mean that you can’t significantly improve the appearance of it. Start with cheap components like knobs, faucets, and light switches. Then, if it looks like it will really make a difference, take a plunge on a more expensive upgrade. It will make your house look newer, and more importantly, well cared for.



Changing the lighting in a home can give it a completely different feel. Look at the fixtures you have, and think about whether they’re in the best possible spot. Move things around, try different bulbs, and adjust for various times of day. You’ll find that you can draw focus to the strengths of your home and take it away from the weaknesses.


Focus on First Impressions

Did you remember to cut the grass? Is there a dead bush along the walkway? Imagine you are seeing your house for the first time. Many buyers decide early in a tour whether they’re really interested in the house they’re looking at. Refocus on flaws and imperfections you’ve come to ignore over time. The people looking at your home haven’t had the chance to get used to them, and they might stick out like a sore thumb.


To explore Real Estate in Charlotte County, FL, visit Leo’s state-of-the-art website at www.leoalbanes.com.



How the Internet Has Changed Real Estate

by leoalbanes 29. October 2013 09:58

Not too long ago, the majority of homebuyers started their search by driving around the neighborhood, writing down phone numbers on “For Sale” signs. It’s shocking how much has changed in the real estate industry over the last two decades. Here’s how the internet has empowered both buyers and sellers, and why real estate professionals are more important than ever before.


More Information than Ever Before

There’s more information available on any given home than ever before. Everything there is to know about a property, from crime statistics to what type of furnace is in the basement, is directly available and often just one mouse click away to a potential buyer. Gone are the days when buyers feared they could be misled or misinformed by a brief newspaper advertisement. Even social media plays a part in the search, allowing those in the market to bounce ideas and questions off each other with ease.


Shopping in Your Pajamas

Consumers can use this information to compare dozens of homes, side by side, from their home office or living room couch.  When removed from outside pressures and daily stress factors, choices can be mulled over more carefully. Touring homes have also become less necessary. While an online virtual tour of a home may not lead directly to an immediate offer, it could definitely be useful in generating interest or narrowing options.


Spread Around the Savings

The internet and technology in general can make every step of the buying and selling process more efficient. Buyers can find more sellers and sellers can find more buyers. Parties waste less time and money on tedious tasks like filling out the same form repeatedly or playing tag over landline phones. The process is streamlined from start to finish, which can save money and increase productivity for everyone involved.


Agents Adjust For the Better

The emergence of the internet led many to pronounce the real estate agent dead. Actually, in some respects, the increasing amount of information makes an agent even more useful than before, as they’re able to better collect, decipher, and organize information than others. Real estate agents continue to help buyers and sellers with negotiation tactics and complex processes like closing on a home. Most people are willing to pay for help with such a significant investment decision. Of course, the success of any real estate professional depends upon their willingness and ability to embrace the latest technologies.



To explore Real Estate in Charlotte County, FL, visit Leo’s state-of-the-art website at www.leoalbanes.com.


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