South Florida Real Estate Blog by Shari Orland, Realtor

8 Tips for Selling Delray Beach Homes Despite a “Size Issue”

When you decide to sell your home for the maximum return, it’s important that you recognize all of its selling points: both the positive and negative. I can help with that, but as a starting point, if your Delray Beach house is a bit on the smallish side, you probably already know it. There is a good chance it’s one reason you’ve decided to move on.

The good news is that once you recognize that your Delray Beach home’s other fine points might be overpowered by the relative lack of spaciousness, there are measures you can take to downplay that drawback. The most important actions are those recommended for every Delray Beach home for sale, large or tiny:

  • Do away with excess furniture  
  • Add light everywhere you can

To minimize any “cramped” feeling:

  • Ditch the drapes (especially the heavy ones)
  •  Do away with the tchotchkes
  • Go with solids instead of prints in everything from wallpaper to artwork. In fact—
  • Lose the artwork
  • Consider removing interior doors where they chop up the home’s “flow”
  • Minimize your color palette—experts even suggest a single color everywhere!

Selling your slightly undersized Delray Beach home for the best price will involve putting its outstanding features front-and-center—but that will only be possible if the...

Boynton Beach Homeowners Needn’t Fear the Sound of a “Pop!”

There is one persuasive reason why Boynton Beach homeowners (and prospective homeowners) don’t hear much about the likelihood that a new “housing bubble” could be in the making.

For any Boynton Beach homeowner who’s had the comfort of watching their property’s value grow steadily for years, a mere mention of the words “housing bubble” can squelch the enthusiasm. Even though real estate is “real” in a way few investments can equal, there was the last decade’s property value nosedive. Momentarily, at least, it rained on residential real estate nearly everywhere.

“Housing bubble” was the derisive term that described the previous run-up in prices that subsequently “popped” when sellers could no longer find buyers. A large part of the chaos was due to the home loan industry’s inability to finance mortgages at the previous valuations. In fact, for a while, even well-heeled buyers could scarcely find financing at any valuation.

 In 2008, the bubble metaphor seemed especially apt because the “pop” came so abruptly. When things go south suddenly, it’s particularly unnerving. But today Boynton Beach homeowners can take comfort in at least one reason why today’s circumstances bear little resemblance to what happened ten years ago.

  The Mortgage Bankers’ Association charts something called the “MCAI.” It’s a reliable measure of the availability of home loans, measured on a scale from 1 to 1,000. The higher the number, the easier it is for applicants to obtain home loans. A chart shows how, in the...

For Boca Raton Homeowners, Clarifying PMI-MPI Confusion

Checking out an online piece dealing with some technical adjustments having to do with mortgage insurance the other day, I came across an indisputable statement:


“Many homeowners are confused about the difference between PMI (private mortgage insurance) and mortgage protection insurance (MPI).”

 

That, if anything, is a considerable understatement—especially because Boca Raton homeowners can sometimes find “mortgage protection insurance” abbreviated as well. If your professional duties include distinguishing the finer points of Boca Raton mortgages for your clients, you are unlikely to confuse “PMI” with “MPI.” But for the rest of humanity, that’s not necessarily the case. Since the difference is substantive, here’s a 30-second primer:

PMI is Private Mortgage Insurance. It’s designed to protect the lender rather than the homeowner. If Boca Raton homeowners run into trouble—for instance, if they were to lose their job—the PMI coverage will reimburse the lender for any shortfalls. PMI coverage is usually required when Boca Raton homeowners pay less than 20% of a property’s sale price as the down payment. When the loan-to-value of the mortgage reaches 78%, these policies can usually be canceled (sometimes that’s done automatically).

MPI is Mortgage Protection Insurance—a very different animal. This protects the Boca Raton homeowners, covering missed mortgage payments for designated periods of time under specific circumstances. Unlike PMI, this insurance is strictly voluntary on...

For Delray Beach Real Estate, Friday’s Quadrupled-Barreled News

Last week ended with a quadruple-barreled blast of good news that bolstered prospects for Delray Beach real estate—an effect magnified by how unexpected all had been.

When times are good, Delray Beach real estate can’t help but benefit. That may seem to be so obvious that it doesn’t even need to be said, but a close cousin is arguably even more important: When people feel times are good, Delray Beach real estate benefits.

Friday’s positives were magnified by the contrast with what had been reported in earlier days. Although the holiday-shortened week had seen evidence of strong holiday sales, that was dampened by a grab-bag of alarming developments: government shutdown; China trade standoff; Apple sales losses... This meant that Friday’s raft of unexpected good news made for commentators who were, by day’s end, all but giddy.

First came reports of shockingly good U.S. economic performance. Wages in December “surged” (the Wall Street Journal). The annual wage gain of 3.2% “matched the fastest pace since 2009” (Bloomberg)—a trend that was accelerating (3.5% in December).

That wasn’t all. Not only were wages rising—jobs were, too. Employers had “shattered forecasts” (MarketWatch) by adding 140,000 more jobs than had been predicted. It “underlined that the American economy remains strong despite market turbulence” (CNN Business). Even an incremental rise in the jobless rate was greeted as welcome news—it meant that more workers were actively seeking work. Discouraged by bleak prospects, they’d been sitting on the sidelines for years.

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