Video Blogs to help you get

"Real Estate Smart"

Here at The Miller Realty Group, we like to provide current and future homeowners the information they need to help them make the right decisions when they are buying, selling or investing in real estate. This is why we continue to share our expertise via Video Blogs on our website for everyone to see. We firmly believe that in the real estate market that "Knowledge is Power!"  Let our expertise empower you with your real estate needs.

Always feel free to Contact Us if you need our help!

July 26, 2019

What are the important timelines within a contract?

                 

Today David is addressing the important timelines you must understand and stay on top of once you go under contract! He stresses that time is of essence once the contract is effective! What is an effective date you ask? An effective date is the date the contract is effective or up and running. It is the last time the last seller or buyer initials off on the last change. It is important to note that there are things that need to be taken care of before the close date and contingencies on the seller side as well as the buyer side that need to be met.

There are two main timelines that are important to understand including: inspection contingencies and financial contingencies.

Inspection contingencies in the current contract states about 15 days. If you are in a sellers market like we are now it usually gets cut down to 7-10 days. The time you start counting is the day after the effective date. It is set up based on calendar days not business days. If it ends on a Saturday/Sunday or a holiday it automatically gets pushed back to the next business day. This is something to keep in mind as the buyer because it gives you the opportunity to have more than 7 days. For example: if it ends on a Saturday then you can automatically push it to end on a Monday buying you more time. 

There are no repair limits for sellers; however, buyers have the right to inspect and can cancel for any reason within the inspection period. It is important when you into contract to know what the drop dead date is because if you back out afterwards you will lose your escrow money (deposit money).

Financial contingencies is the period of time that a buyer has to get a commitment letter from the bank stating they are willing to lend them the money. If the buyer cannot get the funds or commitment letter within 30 days they can back out and get their escrow back. As a buyer it is important to know what that date is.

 

Make sure you know what the timelines and milestones are when you go under contract so you can stay on top of it!

 

 

For more information on this or if you need trusted realtors to represent you, feel free to Contact Us, and we would be more than happy to assist you. "Get Real Estate Smart" with The Millers!

The Miller Realty Group is a successful real estate team who provides real estate solutions for residential homeowners in the metro Orlando real estate market, including Lake Mary, Longwood, Heathrow, Sanford, Winter Park, Winter Springs, Altamonte Springs, Maitland, and surrounding cities. Founded in 2006, The Miller Realty Group has transformed itself into one of the top real estate teams in Central Florida.

Posted in Buyer Video Blogs
June 13, 2019

Should you sell your house vacant or staged?

                 

Today David is addressing one of the most common questions when it comes to selling your house! Is it better to leave a house vacant or furnished when you go to sell your house? David's response is always the same: It is better to sell your house staged, with furniture! Why is that? Studies show that vacant houses sell for less money and take longer to sell. Vacant houses often feel cold, stale and less attractive. When you go to sell your home you want the buyer purchasing your home to "fall in love" with it. Furniture makes the home feel warmer and allows the buyer to envision the space better. 

In the event that you must move out immediately and leave the house vacant to show, there are 3 options you can implement to sell your house for a better price and in a shorter time frame!

1. Lightly stage it: This means adding pops of color and small items such as, towels in the bathroom or plants in the corner of the living room to make it feel less empty.

2. Hire a staging company: There are lots of companies available that bring their own furniture and will stage the house in an appealing manner. You do not need to stage the whole house! You can pick the most important rooms such as: master bedroom, family room, and dining room, and have them furnished to give the buyers a better feel for the space and the house!

3. Virtual staging: There are companies that can make rooms look like they have real furniture. These pictures are used for online purposes. Since most buyers look at the pictures online prior to seeing the property in person, they would already have a good idea of how the space can be used before seeing it vacant in person. 

Properly staging your house rather than leaving it vacant will allow your house to consistently sell for more money and in a shorter period of time!!

 

For more information on this or if you need trusted realtors to represent you, feel free to Contact Us, and we would be more than happy to assist you. "Get Real Estate Smart" with The Millers!

The Miller Realty Group is a successful real estate team who provides real estate solutions for residential homeowners in the metro Orlando real estate market, including Lake Mary, Longwood, Heathrow, Sanford, Winter Park, Winter Springs, Altamonte Springs, Maitland, and surrounding cities. Founded in 2006, The Miller Realty Group has transformed itself into one of the top real estate teams in Central Florida.

Posted in Seller Video Blogs
Feb. 19, 2019

Mistakes seller make when considering using Opendoor or Offerpad

Today David is talking about mistakes sellers make when considering using services from iBuyer companies like Opendoor and Offerpad.  An iBuyer company is a company that will offer to pay cash for a  property and will paint a pretty picture of an easy stressfree transaction.  They advertise that the seller does not have to do anything to get their home ready to sell, they do not have to have showings and they can pick their closing date.  While all of these things sound great, there are some details about these transactions that a seller has to be aware of. Below are 3 things a seller needs to look for when considering working with an iBuyer. 

1. These companies ask a seller to put in information about their home and then within 24-48 hours, they will receive a price for their home. Sellers assume the price they are provided is the true market value of the property. In most cases, this price is not at market value.  The iBuyer companies are in business to make money and the upfront pricing will be below market value.  Always make sure as a seller you contact a real estate professional to obtain a market analysis so you are able to compare the 2 prices to see if as a seller you are getting the right price for your property. 

2. When deciding to go with an iBuyer sellers do not know to look for extra fees that are charged to them for the purchase of the property. These companies could be offering a great price for the seller's home but the extra fees also have to be considered.  Opendoor, for example, can charge anywhere from 6% - 12% commission.  That is a lot of money that is coming off of the price that is given to the seller and this comes off the seller's bottom line.  Another example is Offerpad charges a convenience fee of 2.5% on top of the commission.  A seller also has to look at the fine print to see how much of the title fees the iBuyer is going to pay. For some of them, it is up to $2000 and that may not be enough to cover all of the title fees.  A seller looking to use an iBuyer also has to consider repair costs.  Once the home goes under contract, the iBuyer will send out an army of inspectors and go back to the seller with a list of items to be repaired or they will ask for a price reduction.  If the seller was working with a real estate professional, they would handle the repair negotiation for the seller and could save the seller money by possibly not needing to make the repairs depending on the type of contract.   

3. Sellers at times do not look at their bottom line number. Most sellers have a goal to net the most money possible.  They need to make sure that at the end of the day they look at their net number.  This is not the purchase price, this is the amount they will receive when they go to the closing table.  

David strongly suggests consulting with a real estate professional.  We have listing specialists that can help a seller review the quotes from the iBuyers and then work to find the best solution for the seller's needs.  A listing specialist will be looking out for the seller to get them the most money for their property, and isn't that what all sellers are looking for?

For more information on this or if you need trusted realtors to represent you, feel free to Contact Us, and we would be more than happy to assist you. "Get Real Estate Smart" with The Millers!

The Miller Realty Group is a successful real estate team who provides real estate solutions for residential homeowners in the metro Orlando real estate market, including Lake Mary, Longwood, Heathrow, Sanford, Winter Park, Winter Springs, Altamonte Springs, Maitland, and surrounding cities. Founded in 2006, The Miller Realty Group has transformed itself into one of the top real estate teams in Central Florida.

Posted in Seller Video Blogs
Jan. 22, 2019

Why should the seller let the buyer handle repairs?

 

Today David is talking about who should handle the repairs a buyer requests from a home inspection when purchasing a home. When a home goes under contract, a buyer will get a home inspection. The home inspector will most likely come back with something, whether it be big or small.  For example, a leak in a roof the seller was not aware of. Should the seller try to fix the leak before closing or should the seller provide a closing cost credit and have the buyer correct the issue after closing? In some cases, the type of loan the buyer is getting will dictate whether or not the repairs would have to be done before closing. If this is the case it would be a good idea to let the buyer choose who will be making the repairs.  If the lender does not require the repairs to be done, David recommends giving the buyer credit at closing and have them correct the issue themselves. In both circumstances letting the buyer handle the repairs will take the liability off of the seller if anything should come up after the completion of the repairs.  

For more information on this or if you need trusted realtors to represent you, feel free to Contact Us, and we would be more than happy to assist you. "Get Real Estate Smart" with The Millers!

The Miller Realty Group is a successful real estate team who provides real estate solutions for residential homeowners in the metro Orlando real estate market, including Lake Mary, Longwood, Heathrow, Sanford, Winter Park, Winter Springs, Altamonte Springs, Maitland, and surrounding cities. Founded in 2006, The Miller Realty Group has transformed itself into one of the top real estate teams in Central Florida.

Posted in Seller Video Blogs
Jan. 15, 2019

Does the partial government shutdown affect real estate?

 

Today David talks about the partial government shut down and how it affects real estate. There are three ways that real estate can be affected by the shutdown.

1. Verification of identity and income through the Social Security Administration and the IRS.  Lenders use these 2 agencies to verify a borrowers income and identity.  There is a lot of fraud in real estate which makes these agencies very important to lenders.  They are still moving forward with loans, but if they notice more fraud, the process will start to slow down.

2. FHA and VA loans make up 15%-30% of the home loans taken out today. FHA and VA loans are government-backed loans.  These loans are being processed by a skeleton crew, and it will take longer to process the loans than it did before. This could be a problem for buyers who are looking to close quickly.

3. The partial shutdown provides uncertainty in the market.  Anyone that was looking to buy a home and has a government job that has been affected by the shutdown will have to postpone their home buying until the shutdown is over.

The real estate market isn't being affected too much at this time, but the longer the shutdown lasts the more significant impact it will have.

For more information on this or if you need trusted realtors to represent you, feel free to Contact Us, and we would be more than happy to assist you. "Get Real Estate Smart" with The Millers!

The Miller Realty Group is a successful real estate team who provides real estate solutions for residential homeowners in the metro Orlando real estate market, including Lake Mary, Longwood, Heathrow, Sanford, Winter Park, Winter Springs, Altamonte Springs, Maitland, and surrounding cities. Founded in 2006, The Miller Realty Group has transformed itself into one of the top real estate teams in Central Florida.

Jan. 9, 2019

2019 Real Estate Market Predictions for Metro Orlando

 

Today, David talks about his predictions for the Metro-Orlando real estate market in 2019. Before jumping into 2019 predictions, let's take a look at the Metro-Orlando real estate market in 2018.   The first half of 2018 the market was very hot just like the past couple of years.  The inventory was meager, and if you were a buyer, you might have struggled to find a home under $200,000.  If you were a seller, it was a time of lots of buyers and multiple offers on your home if your home was priced right.  The 2nd half of 2018 the real estate market started to soften, interest rates began to go up affecting the demand, and the rate of appreciation slowed down.

Now let's look at David's 2019 predictions for the real estate market in Metro-Orlando.  David predicts that inventory will continue to increase steadily.  He thinks there will be more inventory for the price point of homes at $250,00 and above. He also predicts that pricing of homes will continue to appreciate, probably around 5-6% and interest rates will also increase, but not higher than 5.5% by the end of the year. 

What do these predictions mean to you as a buyer in 2019?  Now is the time to buy.  Waiting to a year to purchase a home can end up costing you more money.  With interest rates increasing and home prices increasing if you wait until next year to purchase you will end up paying more money for less of a house. 

What do these predictions mean to you as a seller 2019?  It is very important to price your property right.  It will still be a seller's market but not as strong as it used to be. This means you will most likely not see the bidding wars that we have seen in the past. If you are thinking of selling, now is the time to get ahead of the competition.  As you see more and more homes go up for sale in your neighborhood the competition for the buyers' increases. 

For more information on this or if you need trusted realtors to represent you, feel free to Contact Us, and we would be more than happy to assist you. "Get Real Estate Smart" with The Millers!

The Miller Realty Group is a successful real estate team who provides real estate solutions for residential homeowners in the metro Orlando real estate market, including Lake Mary, Longwood, Heathrow, Sanford, Winter Park, Winter Springs, Altamonte Springs, Maitland, and surrounding cities. Founded in 2006, The Miller Realty Group has transformed itself into one of the top real estate teams in Central Florida.

Dec. 11, 2018

Should You Sell Your Home During the Holidays?

Today, the question is: Should you sell your home during the holidays or not? We say, YES!, for two reasons:

1) During the holidays, if you put your house on the market, there will be less competition. This is because a lot of people actually like to take their houses off the market because they don't want people coming through their homes during this season. That means if a buyer if looking to buy a home in your neighborhood and your house is the only one on the market, you have leverage over that negotiation. After the holidays, competition will rise again and you will lose your leverage.

2) Buyers are more motivated during the holidays. If they have to move, then they have to move -- and they'll be more motivated to settle a deal!

Because of these two reasons, we encourage you to put your home on the market during the holidays. Make sure you have an experienced REALTOR to help you through this process! We are always here to help.

As always, we are here to help you! Please feel free to Contact Us, and I hope that I have helped you get real estate smart.

The Miller Realty Group is a successful real estate team who provides real estate solutions for residential homeowners in the metro Orlando real estate market, including Lake Mary, Longwood, Heathrow, Sanford, Winter Park, Winter Springs, Altamonte Springs, Maitland, and surrounding cities. Founded in 2006, The Miller Realty Group has transformed itself into one of the top real estate teams in Central Florida.

Posted in Seller Video Blogs
Dec. 4, 2018

Should You Buy a Home Now or in a Year?

Today's topic is about the difference between an Orlando homebuyer deciding to purchase a home now as opposed to waiting until next year. Interest rates and property values are two factors to consider when comparing buying a home during any temporal scale. The interest rates have gone up a bit since last year, increasing to the low 5s. It has been announced that the rates should be staying steady at least for the next month but are expected to increase next year. The prices of homes are up as well -- not quite as much as last year, with next year's appreciation expected to be around 6%. 

So, what does all of this mean for the Florida buyer looking to purchase a home? What would be the difference in waiting until next year? 

While it may be easy to assume that history will repeat itself and the market will crash once more, think again. A buyer's market is not expected for another five years, so our advice is do not wait!

Let's take a look at a buyer that is considering purchasing a $350,000 home with a downpayment of $50,000 and the amount financed being $300,000. The interest rates for this example are 4.83% today, and the following year's rate is 5.83%. When comparing these rates, the difference between waiting a year and purchasing now does not seem that much, especially looking at the difference from a monthly payment perspective of only $187.

Now, if the buyer were to look at the annual difference, that would work out to be $2,244.00. That number seems to be a bit more, but is that really enough to decide to purchase now instead of waiting until next year? To get a full understanding of the cost of waiting a year, the buyer needs to consider how much they would be paying over the life of the loan.

By waiting until next year and paying the higher interest rate, the buyer would end up paying $67,160 more then if purchased today. The buyer also has to take into consideration the appreciation of the property at about 6%, making the cost of purchase that same property $371,000. Adding the appreciation difference to the difference in the interest rate, waiting until next year to purchase the home could end up costing the buyer around $88,000. 

Now is the time to buy a home and save money! Find a central Florida property that matches your needs now before interest rates and property values rise. Make sure you are working with a real estate agent who knows the area and can help you find the dream home you are looking for. 

As always, we are here to help you! Please feel free to Contact Us, and I hope that I have helped you get real estate smart.

The Miller Realty Group is a successful real estate team who provides real estate solutions for residential homeowners in the metro Orlando real estate market, including Lake Mary, Longwood, Heathrow, Sanford, Winter Park, Winter Springs, Altamonte Springs, Maitland, and surrounding cities. Founded in 2006, The Miller Realty Group has transformed itself into one of the top real estate teams in Central Florida.

Posted in Buyer Video Blogs
Nov. 7, 2018

Are International Buyers Buying Property in Central Florida?

Today's topic is international buyers, which have been exponentially increasing in activity in Florida real estate. In fact, international buyers spent $22.9 billion in Florida last year alone. This number is actually a little lower than last years because of decreasing inventory and higher competition between buyers. Additionally, the exchange rate for South America isn't as advantageous as it used to be, making it more expensive to buy a home in the US.

When you are selling your home, it's very beneficial to know information about international buyers in order to make your home more appealing. In the state of Florida, the aforementioned number represented about 52,000 sales in this state alone. 54% of these sales were made in South Florida, but Orlando is at #2 with 9%.

So what are they buying? On average, international buyers are leaning toward townhomes and condos, which represent 54% of what they tend to buy. An additional 42% are single-family homes. The average price they're spending in Florida $286,500. About 63% use this as a second home.

It also might be useful to know where these international buyers are from. 36% of them come from Latin America and the Caribbean, 22% come from Canada, and 19% come from Europe. It's important to know this information when you're selling your home so your REALTOR can market it effectively.

As always, we are here to help you! Please feel free to Contact Us, and I hope that I have helped you get real estate smart.

 

The Miller Realty Group is a successful real estate team who provides real estate solutions for residential homeowners in the metro Orlando real estate market, including Lake Mary, Longwood, Heathrow, Sanford, Winter Park, Winter Springs, Altamonte Springs, Maitland, and surrounding cities. Founded in 2006, The Miller Realty Group has transformed itself into one of the top real estate teams in Central Florida.

Posted in Seller Video Blogs
Oct. 16, 2018

Will the Agent with the Lowest Commission Net You More Money?

Deciding to sell your home is a big decision. However, the next big decision a seller makes is deciding which real estate agent to use to help them sell their home. Do they go with the real estate agent who will charge the lowest commission to net more money on the sale of their house?

Many people feel that if they are paying a lower commission that will mean more money in their pocket, but that's not always the case. There are many different commission formats, with the standard commission being 6%. Of that 6%, half will go to the listing agent and half will go to the buyer's agent. Every agent is different and will be able to sell a home at a different price point. 

When choosing an agent, the seller should look at the stats of the agent they are interviewing.

The Miller Realty Group, for example, has listed and sold over 38 homes so far this year, and their average sold to list price ratio is 100%. In comparison, the average sold to list price ratio in Orlando is 97%.  That means The Miller Realty Group is averaging 3% more for their sellers than the Orlando average.

If The Miller Realty Group charges 6% and another agent is charging 5%, it would appear the seller is saving 1% in commission. But in reality, according to the stats, the seller could actually net the 3% more by using The Miller Realty Group. According to the stats for Orlando, the same seller would lose 2% by going with another agent.

Most of the time, a seller will say that netting the most money is more important than the commission percentage. So it is important to partner with the right real estate agent who has the right systems in place to get their home sold for top dollar and net them the most money. 

As always, we are here to help you! Please feel free to Contact Us, and I hope that I have helped you get real estate smart.

The Miller Realty Group is a successful real estate team who provides real estate solutions for residential homeowners in the metro Orlando real estate market, including Lake Mary, Longwood, Heathrow, Sanford, Winter Park, Winter Springs, Altamonte Springs, Maitland, and surrounding cities. Founded in 2006, The Miller Realty Group has transformed itself into one of the top real estate teams in Central Florida.

Posted in Seller Video Blogs