National Rescue Dog Day, May 20

May 20th is National Rescue Dog Day! Many of us have a four legged friend we love. How many of you have a Rescue Dog?

I lost the one I referred to as my rescue Dog shortly after we moved into the home we owned in Smyrna, TN during the summer of 2015. She is now in doggie heaven, but Polly was a sweet dog.

In 2009, I went to bring her home. I had been facing some rough times and the company of a fur baby was just what the doctor ordered. She was not a rescue, but “rehomed” and about eighteen months old. It was shortly after arriving at the meeting location that I and the young friend who accompanied me realized this may be more than rehoming. While I didn’t bring her home with us from a shelter or a rescue organization, I feel our family may have rescued her.

She was so pathetic looking. The back half of her was grossly shaved down, the front half long, unkempt and matted; hair hanging in her eyes, wet from being sick in the car, and covered in fleas. I asked if she was potty trained. The reply I received was, “Welllll, when we get home we take her out. If she goes potty she gets a treat and if she doesn’t she gets put back in her kennel.”

On the way home, she laid on me and just looked at me as if to say thank you. I’ll never forget the look in her eyes. Once home, the one I loved bathed her and gave her a haircut, so lovingly. She was looking more loved and cared for right away.

The weeks that followed brought even more trying days in my life and Polly was always right there. One day I will never forget—She came up to me and sat in my lap, licked my cheek as tears were falling and didn’t leave my side for several hours. She was the first pet I allowed to sleep at the foot of my bed. [Okay, so she slept on top of the covers at the bend of my knees!]

I may have kind of rescued this sweet girl based on her condition, skiddish/scared ways and a few things I had been told, but Polly….Polly rescued ME. 💗 And I will never forget her.

Rescue pups need us. They need love and someone to give them another chance.

The National Day Calendar website tells us, “National Rescue Dog Day recognizes all the benefits of allowing a four-legged canine to adopt you into their immeasurably lovable life.

According to the ASPCA, approximately 3.3 million dogs enter shelters every year. When these abandoned and abused animals find their way to a shelter, each one needs a forever home and their potential is limitless.”

If you rescue a Dog today and are within an hour of Bell Buckle, TN, let me know! I have some photography experience and I’d love to treat you to a family photo with your new fur child before the end of June!

And if you have already added a rescue dog to your family, please share your photos on my Facebook page. I’ll share a link to this blog and would love to see your photos in the comment section.

You never know, your rescue pup story may just inspire someone else to bring a rescue home also!

Just a few places you may be able to adopt in Middle TN:

Renters Paying Substantially More While Owning Costs Less


Renters Paying Substantially More While Owning Costs Less | MyKCM

In a recent Insights BlogCoreLogic reported that rent prices have skyrocketed since 2005. Meanwhile, the typical mortgage payment has actually decreased.

“CoreLogic’s national rent index was up 36% in December 2018 compared with December 2005, while the typical mortgage payment was down 4% over that period.”

Renters Paying Substantially More While Owning Costs Less | MyKCM

Why the difference between the costs of renting versus owning?

It makes sense that rents have risen. However, how did mortgage payments decrease? CoreLogic explained:

“It’s mainly because mortgage rates back in December 2005 were significantly higher, averaging 6.3% for a fixed-rate 30-year loan, compared with 4.6% in December 2018. 

The national median sale price in December 2005 – $190,000 – was lower than the $220,305 median in December 2018, but because of higher mortgage rates in 2005 the typical monthly mortgage payment was slightly higher back then – $941 – compared with $904 in December 2018.”

Additionally, a recent report by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) showed that purchasing a home requires less of your monthly paycheck.

According to the Economists’ Outlook Blog, NAR’s February 2019 Housing Affordability Index showed that the “percentage of income needed” to pay the typical mortgage has decreased the last three months.

  • November – 17.3%
  • December – 16.9%
  • January – 16.2%
  • February – 15.9%

Bottom Line

What does this all mean to the current housing market? We think First American said it best in a post last week:

“The mortgage rate-driven affordability surge has arrived just in time… Rising affordability has already benefited home buyers and, if the lower rate environment persists, we’re in for a great spring home-buying season.”

Selling Your House: Here’s Why You Need A Pro In Your Corner!


Selling Your House: Here’s Why You Need A Pro In Your Corner! | MyKCM

With home prices on the rise and buyer demand still strong, some sellers may be tempted to try to sell their homes on their own rather than using the services of a real estate professional.

Real estate agents are trained and experienced in negotiation while, in most cases, the seller is not. Sellers must realize that their ability to negotiate will determine whether or not they get the best deal for themselves and their families.

Here is a list of just some of the people with whom the seller must be prepared to negotiate if they decide to For Sale by Owner (FSBO):

  • The buyer, who wants the best deal possible
  • The buyer’s agent, who solely represents the best interests of the buyer
  • The buyer’s attorney (in some parts of the country)
  • The home inspection companies, which work for the buyer and will almost always find some problems with the house
  • The termite company, if there are challenges
  • The buyer’s lender, if the structure of the mortgage requires the sellers’ participation
  • The appraiser, if there is a question of value
  • The title company, if there are challenges with certificates of occupancy (CO) or other permits
  • The town or municipality, if you need to get the CO permits mentioned above
  • The buyer’s buyer, in case there are challenges with the house your buyer is selling

Bottom Line

The percentage of sellers who have hired real estate agents to sell their homes has increased steadily over the last 20 years. Let’s get together to discuss all that we can do to make the process of selling your house easier for you.

How Quickly Can You Save Your Down Payment?


How Quickly Can You Save Your Down Payment? | MyKCM

Saving for a down payment is often the biggest hurdle for a first-time homebuyer. Depending on where you live, median income, median rents, and home prices all vary. So, we set out to find out how long it would take to save for a down payment in each state.

Using data from HUDCensus and Apartment List, we determined how long it would take, nationwide, for a first-time buyer to save enough money for a down payment on their dream home. There is a long-standing ‘rule’ that a household should not pay more than 28% of their income on their monthly housing expense.

By determining the percentage of income spent renting in each state, and the amount needed for a 10% down payment, we were able to establish how long (in years) it would take for an average resident to save enough money to buy a home of their own.

According to the data, residents in Kansas can save for a down payment the quickest, doing so in just over 1 year (1.12). Below is a map that was created using the data for each state:

How Quickly Can You Save Your Down Payment? | MyKCM

What if you only needed to save 3%?

What if you were able to take advantage of one of Freddie Mac’s or Fannie Mae’s 3%-down programs? Suddenly, saving for a down payment no longer takes 2 to 5 years, but becomes possible in less than a year in most states, as shown on the map below.

How Quickly Can You Save Your Down Payment? | MyKCM

Bottom Line

Whether you have just begun to save for a down payment or have been saving for years, you may be closer to your dream home than you think! Let’s get together to help you evaluate your ability to buy today.

What About Home Sales in Bell Buckle?

What About Real Estate in Bell Buckle, TN?

2018 Middle TN Real Estate Sales Stats for Bell Buckle, TN:  81 Residential homes sold during 2018.  The sale price variety greatly, with the minimal being $79,900 and the maximum being $800,000.  Of those 81 homes, 61 were under $300,000.

Many of the prospective buyer that called me in recent years inquiring on Bell Buckle have been folks looking to live in the quaint historic town of Bell Buckle, as they appreciate more open spaces — LAND.

So of the 81 homes that sold in 2018, what amount of land did buyers end up with?

41 of the 81 had more than 1 acre, 22 more than 5 acres and 10 of those home had at least 10 acres.  41 one out of 81 homes had one acre or more!  That is often a requested acreage amount, but more difficult to find as you travel close to Nashville.

Did you know?

  • There are currently 20 listings for acreage in Bell Buckle, TN.
  • List prices range from $64,900 to $2,499,000 (with up to 132 acres)!
  • We currently have 14 residential listings in Bell Buckle from $89,900 to $999,999.

Perhaps, the Webb School Craft Show held each October or the RC Cola, Moon Pie Festival held in June, a warm meal at the charming Bell Buckle Café or other local small town favorites will bring you for a visit and the quiet atmosphere will be what brings you back looking for YOUR next home.

If so, Maroney Real Estate would be honored to be YOUR real estate professional of choice to assist in your move!

If you travel down US Hwy 231 South, you may very well pass the Maroney Real Estate office … depending on which route you take!  We are approximately 3 miles North of Hwy 82 /Webb Road where many turn by the Shell station to travel the 5 miles into Bell Buckle.  Holler at us the next time you’re in the area and we’ll be happy to schedule some showings for you!  

 

Sweethearts and Changes in Middle TN

Happy Wednesday, Middle TN!

Or should I say Happy Wet Wednesday?   Here at Maroney Real Estate just South of Murfreesboro, it sure has been a rainy day.  A good day to catch up on some professional reading and writing.

www.MaroneyRealEstate.com
Buying or Selling, Call Maroney Real Estate!

A few news headlines today were talking about candy.  Perhaps because February 14th is right around the corner?!  From those headlines I read about the Spangler Candy Companpurchasing Sweethearts & NECCO Wafers in 2018, but the famous conversation hearts won’t be available this year for Valentine’s Day.

Brach’s has their version of the same thing.  I remember buying the little pink box for my daughters most years when they were younger.  I guess I won’t buy them for the kids this year.  Though I did see some on Amazon!

And just like homes in California, I didn’t care for the sale price!  LOL

Reading this article and reminiscing on the past, it got me thinking how things can change and you never know when it will happen.  Like the housing market.  (Of course my brain went there!)  I wonder how it will change in 2019?

Contact MRE for specifics in YOUR area!
December Housing Snapshot per NAR

This housing snapshot from NAR (National Association of Realtors®) on Instagram shows the December housing snapshot of existing home sales is down and shows what we have been feeling this past year in Middle TN … that we do not have a full inventory.  It’s been a strong seller’s market in 2018 here in Middle TN.

What will the market look like during spring of 2019?

Buying OR Selling … Maroney Real Estate is here to help make YOUR 2019 dreams a reality.  We’ll help navigate the waters of buying or selling, no matter what the market.

Maroney Real Estate   Call the Office at: 931-389-4673

 

My Real Estate Heart

This is a casually written post.  Not a professional newsletter.  I’m not even going to run spell check.  (be shocked, by very shocked).  It’s just a female real estate broker, typing what’s on her mind at 11:00pm on a cold, rainy Friday.

I’m about to head out of the office for the day.  I submitted an offer at 10:00pm and this blog post was weighing heavily on my heart.  I had to write.  Casual as it may be.  Personal as it may be.  Yes, this is a business blog, but I’m sharing of my heart.

You see, I’m reflecting on what an awesome week it has been. Driving back from a second showing on a home late this evening, running on little sleep and the heart burn caused by yummy tasting pizza I shouldn’t have scarfed down before heading back into town for this appointment, I couldn’t help but feel joyful on this cold raining night.  AND  I have to share.  I guess partially because my heart just feels so full, partially because if anyone is considering a career in real estate……..well, this casually written blog post will share with you a little bit about WHY I love this career so much.

This career is something I am very passionate about and I so wish I could have started in my 20’s as I had dreamed of doing.  But I just love helping others and what better way to do so than follow in my Mom’s footsteps and help others buy /sell a home or assist others in getting started in this career.   The way the people we meet touch our hearts is just ONE of the perks of the job.

Here are a few of the reasons I’m smiling at 11pm on a Friday night, sleepy, but honestly smiling as I sit at the computer:

MRE has a few new agents starting soon… and we cannot wait to share that news!  (I guess I kind of did just now, but official announcements soon!)  All of the future “Maroney Real Estate Family Members” seem to have a good heart, a good business sense and each one brings something unique to the company that I feel will be beneficial to clients and our business as a whole.  We are thrilled to welcome them on! …

Through folks I met on the job, I had two totally unexpected opportunities to share something special this week…

But mostly, I’m thinking of the amazing families I have gotten to know during this career I love so much and how many ways they brighten my day.  I hope I can do the same in return, plus some!  I don’t want to get into all the details, but some of the ways are:

Seeing posts on social media from some of my clients and smiling or crying with them…

Mini “conversations” that arise from some of those posts!…

Sharing in general conversations and texts with current or past clients…

Missing a client (2 actually) that moved to TX and smiling when I see a FB post….

One seller’s three year old who tells me his bible verse he learned; be it when I see them in person or he tells me over the phone…

Helping a wonderful family navigate the waters of buying their first home in a crazy seller’s market.  Ask most real estate professionals and I believe they will say that helping first time buyers in a low – inventory, CRAZY strong seller’s market does come with its challenges, but the great folks I meet are again, what it’s all about!  Not to mention the victory we all feel when we find the home and are the “winner” in a multiple offer situation…

Then there is the Mom and 3 kids I met in 2012 who were moving back to TN & I was blessed to serve as her buyers agent.  We were at the office late on the night before Thanksgiving writing an offer on a home that would become a new beginning for her and the children.  I gained a friend in the process (four of them – those kiddos are precious to me). Then today, the oldest of the three children text me and asked me to come take prom photos tonight.  Based on a message from the mom, I don’t believe she originally knew I was going to be asked to do so, but stated she loved that her daughter did so.  Talk about a huge smile that brought to me…that the daughter asked me to take the photos on a special event.  What a joy to be able to do so and how beautiful she looked! Inside and out…she is a beautiful young lady.   If it weren’t for this career, I wouldn’t have had the blessing of doing so.  Besides, I had a chance to share in some laughter with the mom and two younger children! …

AND THEN…there is the precious three year old who is all shy with you at first and by the second day of showings, is calling you Aunt Michel.   I had a client whose children called me Grandma Michel and I love them to pieces.  But this week, I had the Realtor-Aunt Hat on! {insert HUGE smile again}.  I met them at the final walk through and when I arrive, they are in the very back portion of their soon-to-be lot and it’s a decent sized piece of land.  I walk to the edge of the driveway, we wave and all of a sudden, this little man just takes off running to me!  It reminds me of when I pull up at my daughter’s home and the grand kids are playing outside and they run to see me.  But I’m their Mamaw, you’d kind of expect that to happen.  But this amazing little man who has stole my heart during this real estate transaction, runs his little heart out, hair flying in the breeze he’s creating from running so very fast and I’m in awe as I watch him.  He gets to me and says, “Aunt Michel, I picked you this flower!” 

  ***** Ya’ll there are no words!! *****

What a sweet boy he is and what a joy it is to get to know the clients I work with.  I always say it’s not about the sales, it’s about helping people!

If you thought real estate was just HGTV in real life or just about showing houses and putting up for sale signs…we need to talk.  The good, the bad, the indifferent of this career AND the amazing weeks like this.  Every day in the business world may not be sunshine, smiles and little, yellow wild flowers…but EVERY DAY IN THIS BUSINESS IS AN OPPORTUNITY TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE IN SOMEONE ELSE’S LIFE AND YOU MAY BE SURPRISED AT HOW IT TOUCHES YOUR LIFE TOO.

This Realtor® heart is full as she turns out the light of the office on a Friday night.

A Flower for “Aunt Michel”

Just ANOTHER example of “I HAVE THEE BEST CLIENTS!”

Why Rent If You Can Buy

A large portion of Americans are still renting properties, instead of enjoying a home of their own. Consumer reports believe this is an issue because of a buyer’s lack of trust in their ability to purchase. It is still a long standing notion that a buyer needs 20% towards the cost of the home in order to move forward, but this isn’t true.

With countless down payment assistant programs, and closing cost roll-ins, a home owner could move in with as little as a few hundred to a couple thousand dollars. Which is a huge difference in the time it takes to save up to make the move.

With interest rates at an all time low, home ownership in today’s market is a great investment. The money saved over a mortgage’s lifespan can result in tens of thousands of dollars, if not hundreds. That’s more money in your pocket today. Don’t wait to buy when interest rates soar again. With low interest rates, that means your monthly mortgage payments are at a significantly lower cost, as well. With such a heated housing marketing, rental prices are soaring, and statistics are constantly showing that home ownership can be equivalent to your rental rate each month, if not less. Why get stuck in a small 2 bedroom apartment, if you can move into a home a pay a monthly rate that is the same, and get a 3 bedroom house with a great backyard?

There is also a fear that a home can keep you “stuck” or “rooted” to one place, without an easy transition out if you decide to move. Although the future of the housing market isn’t easily predictable from location to location, you can always discuss with your agent about buying a home in an area that has a strong turn-over rate when a home hits the market. The equity build up when it comes time to selling is going to be far more beneficial, than if you put money into a rental and decided to move. The money from selling the property can be used to purchase a new home. With renting, there would be no additional funds to transition into a new place.

Now imagine if you were renting a home for $2000/month. If your landlord is renting to make a profit, think how much less you’d be paying on a monthly basis towards your mortgage, if the home was yours. Then you wouldn’t be paying a landlord to profit off of you, you’d be paying a reasonable rate, and get to call the property your own.

Discuss with your buying options with a Maroney Real Estate Professional and qualified lender what steps you need to take towards home ownership, you might be happily surprised about the type of home you can afford to move into.

Call us today at:  931-389-4673

Don’t Replace Your Agent With The Internet

With the influx of new technology and web based solutions, it isn’t a surprise that everything is moving fast into the era of the internet. From sites like Uber to Grubhub, we generally can pull up our phones or laptops to order what we want with ease. And with every industry being revolutionized by technology, the same methods are “attempting” to be applied to the real estate industry.

We could all agree that the simplification of the process through paperwork would be much appreciated by agents and buyers/sellers alike; but the attempt of replacing the agent by sites like Zillow and other third party resources, can lead to a snowball affect of disaster. Think about real estate being smack dab in the middle of fast food and a doctor. You can use your mobile device to quickly place your order for a $20 meal, but when it comes to getting a surgery, you’ll want to put that phone down and visit a professional. Now think of your real estate agent being in the middle of all of that. You can use your devices to look for a home, look at market data the way you look at WebMD, knowing not to take it too seriously because you need a real professional’s input, but it’s fun and gives you a general idea of what to expect. But there in lies the issue, the data online is an oversimplified version of what goes into the process of buying and selling. The same way it oversimplifies medical diseases and surgeries, you’d still expect to get a professional’s diagnosis.

Although a real estate agent isn’t quite like a doctor, the industry in it’s legalities, contracts, and processes is similar in the sense that it needs to be taken seriously. Looking for a house online and wanting to put an immediate offer on one can be exciting and fun, but the issues that require a professional’s guidance comes after the initial contract is written up and the hard work comes into place to actually make the home your own. Same for sellers, if you decide to put your home on the market and want a website that will give you an automatic offer, how do you know you’re not being taken advantage of in the price? But most importantly, how do you know you’re not being taken advantage of in other aspects of the contract? Because there is a lot more to the sale of the home then just agreeing on a number.

The next time you’re digging through public sites for homes for sale, and getting instant home valuation estimates, keep in mind that this is a simple process to give you an idea of your market. A very general idea. But after you’ve found the perfect house, or after you’ve decided that the numbers make some sense for you to sell, call your favorite real estate agent and make sure they give you a more detailed look into the market and assist you through the full process, not just the exciting first parts. Because it’s going to be in the middle of a contract when the lending is falling apart, or negotiations can’t be made on repairs and emotions are at an all time high, that you are going to wish you had put down your laptop and had an agent fighting for you by your side. Use the internet, have fun with it’s amazing resources, but don’t let it replace your agent.

We aren’t in an age, just yet, where technology can do everything a professional can.  Why not let Maroney Real Estate assist you?  Our website does require a username and password.  Logging in with a few simple questions will set you up to browse privately..saving favorites, one click to reach us for showings or questions on a listing…AND our website is powered by the local MLS, so all listings are current and up to date.

Log into MaroneyRealEstate.com today or contact us to get you set up.  It only takes your name, email address and a phone number for unlimited access.

3 Questions To Ask Before Buying Your 1st Home

The real estate market is constantly changing, so we encourage you to do your research! Unbiased advice from family and peers may be kind, but you are the only one who knows what your needs are when it comes to buying a home.

Also, many public websites may be interesting to browse, but please know they cannot take the place of a local professional who can provide you with up to date data and accurate information.  The “Z” site is not accurate and I fear clients following it’s data and feeling they learn the local market with estimates.   It is interesting, I have a profile and bio there you can check out here …and they have a lot of great resources and tools, but as for the estimates…I fear for buyers gathering their knowledge on an estimate rather than accurate data.  I want to help with that!

So…question for you…

WHAT MADE YOU CONSIDER OWNING A HOME?

Forget finances for a minute and focus on what made you consider even buying a home in the first place!

·      Is your family expanding?

·      Does your family feel safe?

·      Is there a STELLAR school system in the area so your children can get the education they deserve?

·      How about that unbearable landlord?  Or why would you want to pay his mortgage, helping him gain equity when you could be doing so for your self?  Paying into a landlord’s mortgage payment is like adding to someone else’s piggy bank instead of your own.

WHICH WAY IS THE REAL ESTATE MARKET GOING?

DON’T SLEEP ON YOUR DECISION TOO LONG! Home prices are on the rise! Prices have risen a good deal in the last few years.  Just ask recent sellers in Middle TN who sold …ask around, “How much equity did you have in your Rutherford County Home?”  You may be surprised.  I know many of my sellers have been…happily surprised.

According to Existing Homes Sales Report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the average price of homes in May 2017 went up 5.8% from last year.

If you wait until next year to buy, you might be scrapping for change in the cushions to say the least! Not only will it cost you more to buy, but you will also need to increase your down payment to account for the higher price of the home.

WHAT IS THE MORTGAGE FORECAST?

The initial process of purchasing your home may seem easy and quick, but THERE IS MORE TOO IT!  You need to speak to a highly qualified lending professional.  Maroney Real Estate can introduce you to a few great local lenders if you’d like to learn what it takes to get you mortgage ready.  We want to be YOUR real estate professional…to educate, to advise, to help and to be with you every step of the way!

I was recently informed Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA), and NAR have projected that mortgage interest rates will increase over the next twelve months. The smallest increase in mortgage rates can have a huge impact on a home owner.  Look into getting approved for a loan before rates go up and let us help you make the dream of homeownership a reality in 2018!

FINAL THOUGHTS

If you and your family feel it is the right time to buy a home then GO FOR IT! Consider these points when making the final decision.

Don’t forget, this move is FOR YOU!  We are here to help!

~MRE