John Tansey

1st Dominion Realty

910 Locust Lane, Charlottesville, VA  $225,000   MLS#491179

Looking for a sweet home in the city? This fine town home is located in a wonderful residential neighborhood convenient to downtown Charlottesville, the Pan Tops area and the new Martha Jefferson Hospital, UVA and UVA Medical Center, and adjacent to the Rivanna Trail – the 20 mile walking/running trail that surrounds the city. The owner has done a wonderful job getting this home ready for the market: landscaping just maintained, gas furnace and central air conditioning new in 2010, interior and exterior just painted, and many minor repairs have made this home almost brand new. This home is priced to sell. Come take a look!  Virtual Tour:  http://www.visualtour.com/show.asp?T=2552167

THINKING OF BUYING A FORECLOSURE?

Foreclosure, foreclosed property, REO, bank owned…  Pretty much all the same thing.  It means that a property owner/borrower stopped making the monthly loan payment on his/her home loan and the lender or their representative took back ownership by various legal means (depending on the State the property was located in).  By the time the lender has taken back the property it has been vacated.

The lender does not like doing this.  It doesn’t want the inventory of homes that it needs to turn around and sell.  Given the current state of the economy and the real estate market, there is a huge inventory of foreclosed homes.  Not all are on the market.  When on the market they tend to be priced below what market value should be for their location, thereby causing neighborhoods and the real estate market itself to decline. 

Further, these foreclosed properties are often ‘distressed’, either from deliberate trashing by the former owner or through lack of upkeep.  The lender frequently shuts off utilities, and this can be a disaster during the hot humid months of the summer when shut-up homes become habitats for mold.  The values of these homes continues to drop until they are priced so low they attract investors who buy them up cheap, do fix up, and either rents them out or ‘flips’ (sells) them. 

If you are thinking of buying a foreclosure there are some things to keep in mind:  your purchase offer needs to be very ‘clean’ and straightforward, and you need to be pre-qualified for the loan you plan to apply for.  Keep in mind that if you are going to use a conventional loan to purchase the home, the home itself will need to ‘qualify’.  It cannot be so distressed that the lender will refuse to make a loan on it.  You can buy a distressed property by using an FHA 203K loan, which has renovation funds built into the loan.  The 203K loan process requires patience as there are some hoops to jump through, but it does may possible purchasing a sadly distressed property in a good location for a great (low) price, and at the end of the process have a great home worth more than what you have into it.

Banks, their representative, HUD, the VA, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac…  all of them are not interested in purchase offers that have ‘contingencies’ such as the purchaser needing to sell or rent their current home.  Make your offer very clean.  Some of these sellers, Fannie Mae in particular, sometimes offers to pay closing costs for the purchaser (depending on the agreed upon sales price) or to include renovation funding. 

Good luck!  This is a time of great opportunity for potential home buyers.  Home prices can be very low, interest rates are low, and there is a huge amount of inventory to choose from.  A few years from now a lot of people will look back at this time and think “Geez, I wish I had bought property back then when I had the chance.”

CONDO FINANCING

Many lenders in our market area will not make a loan on a condominium unit.  Clients of mine recently did secure financing and at advantageous terms.  They are getting 90 percent loan to sales price financing:  an 80% of sales price  loan at 4% interest rate with a 15 year term; and a 10% of sales price loan at 5% interest rate with a 22 year term.  To say the least, they will quickly pay off the smaller loan.  The larger loan at 4% interest rate is a terrific product, and they will save a great deal of money by paying off that loan in 15 years. 

There are loan products out there  that can finance the purchase of a condominium, it just takes a little scratching around to find them.  And as you can see, the loan terms my clients are getting are very good indeed.

THE TIME FOR INVESTORS

Yesterday a story on NPR related the activities of two investors in Baltimore.  These investors enthusiastically spoke of their purchasing as many properties as possible at discounted prices, distressed properties which the investors were renovating and then renting out.  By doing so they are providing needed decent rental homes.  Eventually when the real estate market turns around they plan to sell some of these homes.  It isn’t lost on them that while home prices have declined, rents have gone up.

Much the same is true here in central Virginia.  Foreclosures and Short Sales have made many homes very affordable.  They are sometimes in distressed condition.  There are investors who have made a profitable business buying up homes cheaply, renovating, and then selling those newly made nice homes at an affordable price that is still very competitive and profitable in the current market.  Some of those newly renovated homes are being held by the investor to be rented out and will later be sold when the market turns around. 

In these sad economic times opportunity presents itself.  Why not seize it?

Moving to Albemarle County?

 

Albemarle County is a large county in the center of Virginia. It is home to the City of Charlottesville and the incorporated town of Scottsville. Other notable place names are Crozet, Batesville, Earlysville, White Hall, Dyke, Esmont, North Garden, Covesville, Milton, Barboursville, Stony Point, Burnley Station, Rio Mills, and a number of other place names sometimes denoting communities that may no longer exist.

A lot of history took place in Albemarle County. Monticello, Thomas Jefferson’s home, and Ashlawn-Highland, the home of James Monroe are both located just a few miles east of Charlottesille. During the Civil War George Armstrong Custer led a diversionary cavalry raid into Albemarle County, burning Rio Mills before being blocked by Confederate artillerymen from causing further destruction near the City of Charlottesville itself. In the late 1950s the public schools were closed rather than submit to desegregation. Much of note has happened here.

This is a beautiful location. Much of Albemarle County is rural: pastures, meadows, large cultivated fields, vineyards, grazing land, forests, mountains and foothills, rolling countryside, picturesque towns and villages, rivers and streams, lakes and ponds, pleasant county parks, quarries, barns and tobacco sheds… It seems every windy county road serves up a sight to rouse your interest.

There’s lots to do here: horseback riding, biking, hiking, boating on the James or Rivanna Rivers. There’s lots of opportunity for music, both listening and playing. Over at Milton Field radio control model airplane enthusiasts make their dreams fly. Where there are vineyards there are wineries, and Albemarle County hosts more than a few – a fun day is making a tasting tour.

I plan over time to post information and news about Albemarle County. I hope this is enjoyable and useful for you.

Moving to Charlottesville, Virginia?

 

The City of Charlottesville is the crown gem of central Virginia. Home to the University of Virginia, Mr. Jefferson’s academic village, Charlottesville also hosts many other attractions. Good theaters, good restaurants, improving shopping. The downtown walking mall is the social focal point of this community sporting restaurants, small shops, businesses, street entertainers, and the amphitheater that hosts nationally known musical performers. Fridays After Five is a remarkable street scene with thousands of people crowding the mall to enjoy mall-side restaurant seating, the free concert at the amphitheater, or just to see and be seen. In fact there are always a lot of people on the mall most times of the week.

There are many neighborhoods that make up the fabric that is the City of Charlottesville. Starr Hill, Fifeville, Belmont, the Woolen Mills, Hog Waller, Greenbrier, Rose Hill, Meadowbrook Hills, and more. If you are moving here you will want to explore all these locations, especially if you are planning to purchase a home.

A lot of history took place right here in the city, some of it celebrated, such as the ride of Jack Jouett, and some of it shameful, such as the place at Court Square where slaves were sold. In the coming weeks I plan to write brief stories about the neighborhoods, the history and events, the famous and infamous, and the contemporary every day life of this remarkable city.

Moving to Charlottesville, Virginia?

 

The City of Charlottesville is the crown gem of central Virginia. Home to the University of Virginia, Mr. Jefferson’s academic village, Charlottesville also hosts many other attractions. Good theaters, good restaurants, improving shopping. The downtown walking mall is the social focal point of this community sporting restaurants, small shops, businesses, street entertainers, and the amphitheater that hosts nationally known musical performers. Fridays After Five is a remarkable street scene with thousands of people crowding the mall to enjoy mall-side restaurant seating, the free concert at the amphitheater, or just to see and be seen. In fact there are always a lot of people on the mall most times of the week.

There are many neighborhoods that make up the fabric that is the City of Charlottesville. Starr Hill, Fifeville, Belmont, the Woolen Mills, Hog Waller, Greenbrier, Rose Hill, Meadowbrook Hills, and more. If you are moving here you will want to explore all these locations, especially if you are planning to purchase a home.

A lot of history took place right here in the city, some of it celebrated, such as the ride of Jack Jouett, and some of it shameful, such as the place at Court Square where slaves were sold. In the coming weeks I plan to write brief stories about the neighborhoods, the history and events, the famous and infamous, and the contemporary every day life of this remarkable city.

What is a Foreclosure?
 

 

When a homeowner stops making payments on their home loan, the lender will make several inquiries to see why and try to remedy the situation. However, if the homeowner is still not making their monthly payments the lender will begin foreclosure proceedings. Shortly thereafter the owners will be instructed by the sheriff’s department to leave the property, and depending on what ‘device’ is utilized to foreclose, the lender either sells it on the open market or auctions it off on the courthouse steps. The lender may still seek recovery of the balance of the loan from the now former owner. The former owner’s credit record will be affected adversely. I have helped many people, both those seeking a home and investors, purchase foreclosed, REO and bank owned properties.

Why would a foreclosed property be of interest to an investor?  Such properties are frequently priced well below what their market value should be.  In other words, such a purchase represents a potentially very good deal for the purchaser/investor.

Contact me for more information.

What is a Short Sale?

 

When a homeowner is no longer able to make the payments on the loan for his/her home and therefore sells it, but what they net from the sale of the home is not enough to pay off that loan. This situation is called a Short Sale, and because the price the home sells for does not cover the amount still owed, the lender can approve or disapprove the sale. In other words the lender gets to decide how much money it is going to lose as a result of the sale. A Short Sale can take a long time to get from contract signing to settlement, sometimes many months, and both purchasers and sellers need to be patient. After the sale, the lender may still seek recovery of the balance of the loan from the now former owner. In any event, the former owner’s credit record will be affected adversely.

Why is this of interest to the real estate investor?  Short Sale prices can be low and therefore offer a good deal.

Contact me for more information.

What is a Short Sale?
 
 
 

 

When a homeowner is no longer able to make the payments on the loan for his/her home and therefore sells it, but what they net from the sale of the home is not enough to pay off that loan. This situation is called a Short Sale, and because the price the home sells for does not cover the amount still owed, the lender can approve or disapprove the sale. In other words the lender gets to decide how much money it is going to lose as a result of the sale. A Short Sale can take a long time to get from contract signing to settlement, sometimes many months, and both purchasers and sellers need to be patient. After the sale, the lender may still seek recovery of the balance of the loan from the now former owner. In any event, the former owner’s credit record will be affected adversely.   What does this have to do with a home buyer?  Although a short sale will require patience and a little daring, the short sale price is likely to be LOW and a good deal for the home buyer.  Contact me for more information.