Evansville, IN Real Estate News

By Kathy Jackson, Big or small, I sell them ALL!!
(RE/MAX Mainstream)
Did you know that March and April are the peak months for home search activity in Kentucky and Indiana? While it’s tempting to wait until spring to buy your new home, you could be in the best market position of the year right now! Here are six reasons why! 1. Home prices are affordable, but there are fewer homes coming to market.  We have been used to seeing plenty of home inventory, but there are fewer foreclosures in the pipeline now than at any point in recent years. At the same time, some homeowners cannot sell because they have not yet recovered enough equity. As the supply of homes for sale shrinks, home prices will go up! 2. Rising Rates. The Mortgage Bankers Association predicts that rates will trend higher throughout 2013, and possibly increase by a full percentage point by thi...
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By Kathy Jackson, Big or small, I sell them ALL!!
(RE/MAX Mainstream)
 Did you know that this time of year is the worst for credit card fraud? That’s because credit cards are used heavily during the holidays, and consumers aren’t as anxious to examine their statements in January and February! The Better Business Bureau has tips to help you protect yourself, and I’ve added my own thoughts as well! 1. Always get receipts and keep them. Make sure you have a printout of your online order confirmation. Keep all physical receipts from brick-and-mortar locations. If a clerk asks if you want your receipt, say yes!  Be sure to read your billing statements every month and reconcile your transactions against your receipts. It may sound old-fashioned but the easier shopping gets, the easier fraud gets! 2. Make sure your personal data is protected online. When shoppin...
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By Kathy Jackson, Big or small, I sell them ALL!!
(RE/MAX Mainstream)
As your Certified Distressed Property Expert in Evansville, IN and Henderson, KY, I am happy to say that the Mortgage Debt Relief Act of 2007 has been extended! This provision protects short sellers from IRS impacts that could otherwise happen as a result of forgiven mortgage debt. Had the IRS been allowed to treat forgiven mortgage debt as income, it would have created enormous headaches for distressed home sellers around the country. The Mortgage Debt Relief Act has been extended through 2013. There is no telling if the law will be given further extensions in the future. If you are a struggling homeowner in Indiana or Kentucky, the time to act is now! There have been improvements in the way banks handle short sales, but the process can still be longer than a traditional home sale. Yes...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
Building a new home exactly the way you’ve always wanted it may not be as unattainable as it might seem. To take the first step toward making any dream home real, you have to see if it’s practical: map out how much building it today would cost. Start by nailing down your size requirement. Think of an existing home that feels right for your needs, and ask the owner for its square footage. Decide if you prefer a single or two-story structure, remembering that the smaller roof and foundation size makes a two-story new home less expensive to build. Add-ons will add up. Make a list of any special features you consider important. While the difference between a standard tub and a $3,500 Jacuzzi tub for the master bathroom may seem unimportant, if you’re dealing with a 2,000 sq ft house, that k...
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By Kathy Jackson, Big or small, I sell them ALL!!
(RE/MAX Mainstream)
Want to own a home in 2013? For some first-time home buyers, the barrier to home ownership isn't a lack of income or a poor credit score - it's the lack of a down payment. It can seem impossible to pay rent and save money at the same time! And when rent goes up, it never gets easier. This is why having a monthly household budget is one of the most important steps you can take towards home ownership. Not only will it help you save money and control spending, it will help you get in good financial habits that will benefit you as a homeowner! Now, before you resist the idea of a budget, think about the fact that the most successful companies in the world all have budgets. Even cash-rich corporations like Apple have budgets for research and development, marketing, employee payroll and so on...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
One of the effects of the steady national rise in home prices is a shift in attitude by previously cautious consumers. It’s only natural to find more people focused on buying homes in Evansville while it is still relatively inexpensive to do so. Homeowners who are listing their own local properties this winter are well advised to be mindful of those and other considerations bound to be motivating prospective customers. Buying homes – especially homes in a faraway locale – gives rise to many concerns. Positioning the way a home is marketed to anticipate those concerns can mean a sale to an out-of-town buyer on a local home-hunting trip. Some of the questions out-of-towners are likely to be thinking about: What are the neighborhoods like? Why not do a little research into how potentially ...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
When you plan on getting a mortgage in Evansville anytime this winter, you’re fairly certain to run into something known as the GFE. It’s the acronym for ‘Good Faith Estimate’-- and despite the reassuring name, the federal government decided they had better make it mandatory (to me, the opposite of having much faith at all). The GFE has a new format dictated by the federal Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act which requires lenders to provide an estimate of the charges and fees due at closing. Lenders have three days to make it available. The GFE looks like a bill. It features a list of fees and charges denoted by three-digit codes. It is grouped into sections to make it more readable, and although at first glance the resulting grid looks overly complicated, after you scan through it o...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
It may be a little early to start putting the champagne on ice, but looking over last week’s releases of housing reports gives us a fairly good idea of how our local housing picture for the year 2012 is likely to end up. “The housing recovery that started earlier in 2012 continues to gain momentum,” according to CoreLogic’s Chief Economist. The monthly data report covered final national numbers for October (a year-over-year rise of 6.3%) as well as a probable 7.1% increase for the month just ended. CoreLogic was also “seeing an ongoing strengthening of the residential housing market” as well as “improving buyer demand.” If CoreLogic’s take was not quite definitive enough to trigger an early break for the bubbly, there was additional news from the financial soothsayers. Seekingalpha.com ...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
With the rancorous elections finally behind us and localproperty prices on the rise, public sentiment is markedly improving. Last week, Neilson released its Consumer Confidence Survey, now showing the strongest level in more than four and a half years.   My guess is that 2012 will likely mark the year that holiday tipping makes a comeback, too. “People are more generous this year because when the economy gets better, people do better.” is what international etiquette expert Jacqueline Whitmore had to say. The founder of the Protocol School of Palm Beach added, “They tend to be happier around the holiday time.”   That’s true outside of Palm Beach, too: many Evansville homeowners who felt forced to become latter day Scrooges during the previous few years may be feeling slightly less anxi...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
According to a recent survey, nine out of ten REALTORS® believe that clients who make improvements before selling a house are more likely to secure a successful sale. Why, you may wonder, would anyone take the trouble to run a survey to discover anything that obvious? Possibly because of a follow-up question Realty Times came up with: 65.9% of real estate agents – virtually two out of three – agree that a common mistake among homeowners is not making "the right" home improvements for the local market. Uh-oh! Remodeling in the wrong direction can cost you twice! If it’s such a common mistake, it’s safe to say it might be best to consult an agent before rolling up your sleeves (or opening your checkbook). Active local agents are constantly noting what features are popular with prospective...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
Market Watch     As I mentioned last month I will recap Lawrence Yun’s economic/real estate forecast for 2013. Lawrence Yun PhD is the chief economist for the National Association of Realtors. He graduated from Purdue University and received his doctorate in economics from The University of Maryland. He serves on Harvard University’s Industrial Economic Council and has been recognized as one of the top ten economic forecasters in the country. Dr. Yun is more optimistic about real estate than the economy as a whole. He anticipates sales of existing homes to reach 5 million units next year with the median price up 5% and median prices up almost 15% over a three year period. He also anticipates new construction to increase next year by 25%. Although a 25% increase is a huge increase it is ...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
  According to the non-profit Demand Institute, this year nearly 35% of housing in the United States is now categorized as rental property. In our area as elsewhere, some of these properties belong to “accidental” landlords -- folks who had to relocate for professional or other reasons, but didn’t (or couldn’t) sell. Many others decided to buy investment properties when the prices of homes dropped so dramatically. One way or another, this fall a good many of our neighbors find themselves in the position of owning rental property for the first time.   What all new and long-time landlords have in common is the simple need to secure a trouble-free tenancy – which in many cases means securing professional property management. If you have a rental property yet are on the fence about the cost...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
Things I am thankful for this year: health, of course -- for friends, family, myself -- and for the many things we all take for granted until something as devastating as Hurricane Sandy comes along to remind us of our good fortune. And especially on Thanksgiving, I’m grateful for…my kitchen! Kitchens have become the center of activity in today’s home, whether during a casual weeknight family meal or a grand Thanksgiving feast for twelve. More and more of ourreal estate listings reflect just that: focused interest on the kitchen. Here are some relevant details that can draw interest to real estate listings in Evansville: Floorplan – Is the kitchen open? Walled-off? Great yard view? Photos should be selected to highlight attractive layouts for effective real estate listings. Appliances –...
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By Kathy Jackson, Big or small, I sell them ALL!!
(RE/MAX Mainstream)
As the holidays draw near, we have are a number of family events coming up in Henderson, KY and Evansville, IN! Best of all, you can have a good time while helping worthy causes in our area! Here are a few recommendations for you! Henderson, KY celebrates the annual Turkey Trot 5k Run on Thanksgiving Day, November 22! Registration begins at 8:00 a.m., race begins at 9:00 a.m.! All skill levels and walkers are welcome. Work up a healthy appetite while you run, walk or stroll to benefit the Brain Injury Adventure Camp. The recommended entry fee is $25, which includes a commemorative shirt. However, entry fees are on a "free will" basis and any amount is accepted and appreciated. The Turkey Trot 5k Run is hosted by the Presbyterian Church in Downtown Henderson at 100 S. Main Street. You ca...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
When you search through the latest listings of Evansville homes, you first find those that fit your top-line needs. Then you winnow down that list. Some of the candidates will seem more appealing than others; and some will seem to be over- or underpriced. Before making a final judgment on which homes bear a closer look, the most successful homebuyers also factor in qualities that may not be at the top of their own personal priorities list, yet which make a difference to the majority of homebuyers. In other words, they keep in mind the most important qualities that add value in market terms – that add investment value to homes that are principally your personal residential choice. Some of the more important ones: ·         Location has a huge impact on a property's long-term price. Are a...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
When anyone sets about readying a property for sale, some things are certain. By the time that home appears in the Evansville listings, its owner will have made sure that its overall appearance is neat, clean – generally well maintained. Drilling down further, two of the areas prospective homebuyers focus most on are the kitchen and bathrooms. That’s why everyone puts the dishes away, sets the fluffy white towels out – perhaps even lights a scented candle or two. After that, most sellers settle down to see what happens…what the ‘luck of the draw’ will bring…Hold it! Luck? Not really! The only luck that’s called for is the kind we make for ourselves -- the kind where preparation meets opportunity!  I take care of the opportunity: a good part of my job is creating it by executing a marke...
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By Kathy Jackson, Big or small, I sell them ALL!!
(RE/MAX Mainstream)
If you would like to become a homeowner in Evansville, IN or Henderson, KY, but your credit history is lean, having a good "Core Score" could help you. Unlike traditional credit reporting that relies on your record of credit card payments, car payments, and consumer loans, your Core Score takes other payment behaviors into account. Here's how it works! The Core Score does not replace the credit histories and scores compiled by Experian, TransUnion or Equifax. Instead, it supplements these reports by including data that is normally not a part of your credit profile. Depending on your situation, this could help, or hurt, your chances for a mortgage. For example, your Core Score may include: Rent payment history and eviction history Court judgments for child support  Legal judgments for ot...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
It’s a guiding principal among Realtors that superior landscaping adds value to any housing for sale. In Indiana, different studies arrive at differing answers for how great that incremental increase actually is, but most agree that it lies somewhere in a range between 5% and 14%. Needless to say, that is huge! Since there isn’t anything like a universal way to define ‘good,’ ‘bad,’ or even ‘average’ landscaping, you can’t pin down its precise value. Nevertheless, what is certain is that in offering any housing for sale, the result will be greatly influenced by the first impression the property makes – its ‘curb appeal’. Landscaping is a great part of that. The landscaping term covers a wide swath of meanings including just about every part of a property that isn’t physically part of th...
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By Rolando Trentini
(F.C.TuckerEmge Realtors, LLC)
Lately you may have noticed that it has become more of a pleasure to open the newspaper when you are checking up on real estate news. In addition to the Internet news feeds, I do still subscribe to some of the old-fashioned kind, too: the ones printed on actual paper (so you can tear interesting articles out and carry them around rather than just Ctrl+C and Ctrl+Ving them). Given the definite possibility that paper papers won’t be around much longer, I enjoy them while I still can. The Wall Street Journal is one. I opened it up on Saturdayto find a headline at the top of the second page that got my attention: “Home Sales Rise For 15th Month,” it fairly screamed. If you are a frequent visitor here, you know that I follow and comment on home sales and associated topics regularly -- but ev...
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By Kathy Jackson, Big or small, I sell them ALL!!
(RE/MAX Mainstream)
As your Certified Distressed Property Expert in Henderson, KY and Evansville, IN, I have seen firsthand how good homeowners can become overwhelmed by a personal hardship. In many cases, those who lost their homes to foreclosure did so due to no fault of their own. Sometimes a homeowner was able to prevent foreclosure by filing bankruptcy or doing a short sale, but even these solutions have their credit stigmas. Which leads to the question: can you buy a home again after experiencing a foreclosure, short sale or personal bankruptcy? I'm happy to report that yes, you can! But there are a number of conditions that apply, and it will take some time and effort. Here is a good summary put together by the Wall Street Journal: If you filed a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you may be eligible for a new ...
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