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Happy Home

I thought you might be interested in this discussion of how your home can be a powerful influence on your emotions and if it such a force, how do we create an environment that makes you happier?

Take a tour of your home. Grab a pen and a piece of paper.

Start from outside the front door and notice your mood. Are you feeling tense or relaxed? Are you happy - or anxious, angry, or depressed?

As you walk in, do you feel relief, excitement, anxiety, dread, joy, or despair? Briefly write down your feelings.

Continue to pay attention to your emotional reactions as you walk through your entire home even those places that make us feel uncomfortable. As you enter each room note how your mood changes. Perhaps the soft light and scented soap in your bathroom make you feel relaxed, but you tense up when you near the disorganized pile of unpaid bills in your home office. Maybe you love the thought of snuggling into the soft cushions on your living-room couch, but you feel gloomy as you approach the darkness of your bedroom closet.

Give each area of your home a number representing how you feel in that space.

Don't forget to take into account the smells and sounds of a room!

If your breakfast nook fills you with bliss, give it a score of +10. If an area is disgusting, it gets a -10. If you feel nothing at all about a room, it gets a score of 0. If a room is okay but not great, it may get a +4, and so on. Pinpoint the problems. Go to the lowest number on your list. Imagine standing in the designated space, and scan it slowly with your mind's eye. Observe how your mood reacts to different elements of the room.

Sensory elements are everything you experience physically. Start with the visuals. How do the room's colors, lighting, and patterns make you feel?

Touch things, are your modern chairs are hard and cold, you'll never be able to fully relax in them.

Utility: Is it convenient to do whatever you need to do there?

Organization is about order and chaos. Is your space too tidy, or too cluttered? Either merits change.

The Fix!

Once you've identified your least favorite part of your least favorite area of your home, write out a list three adjectives that describe your less than delighted assessment of it. For example, your kitchen might be "disorganized," "cluttered," and "crowded." Perhaps a corner of your family room is "stark," "unremarkable," and "boring." Then list an antonym for each one. For instance, an obvious antonym for disorganized is organized. For boring, you might use exciting. Now think of objects would suit the space and would cure your antonym. Kitchen items that fit the word organized might be drawer dividers and ceiling-hung cookware racks might come to mind. If the antonym for a stark family room is comforting, you might want to add big pillows and homey wallpaper. Focus your attention on the objects, colors, and lighting you could use to transform the room.

Bring in one thing that makes you happy, and you'll think of ways you can complement that object. Transforming one area of your home from an emotional downer to a source of uplift has a double benefit: It cheers you up, and it reminds you of your capacity to create places that shelter you emotionally as well as physically. By recognizing that you have the power to change one small space, you can move on to make sure that your whole home brings you happiness and satisfaction.

450 ideaa to sell your home faster, selling a home in Las Cruces

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Traditionally spring and summer were the best seasons to buy a home, but now with mobile instant access to the internet, it's now more convenient for buyers to find a home. Take advantage of this new season and technology to compete with less competition from people who are still using traditional methods. There are several steps you can take in order to make sure your real estate purchase is as stress free as possible. By doing a little homework and a little legwork you will know what to expect and that will help alleviate any stress you are having about buying your new home.

Get Your Finances in Order

Getting all your ducks in a row ahead of time will save you the most stress! The seller wants to be reassured that if they accept your offer that the deal is going to go through, barring any last minute title or inspection issues. Just note that getting pre-approval WITHIN the past 30 days is ideal. A pre-approval from six months ago is unacceptable in the current real estate climate.

Understand Your Big Picture

Are you a short-term buy or a long-term buyer? A short-term buy might consider a home that will be a good investment and that will attract buyers when you decide to sell it. Long-term buyers will want to look at more than just the house. Do you love the neighbor hood and school district?

Know Your Market

Have your real-estate agent help you understand your local market. Compare what properties have sold for during the previous six months. This will help you figure out what you can afford and what you should expect price-wise.

Search and Buy Within Your Means

Starting your search with honest and realistic expectations is the key to finding a home that meets your needs without breaking the bank.

Don’t Wait for Prices to Drop

The real-estate market is always unpredictable but the current belief is that housing prices will not be going down anytime soon. If you decide to wait for prices to drop you could be watching prices actually increase. Now is really the time to buy!

Ask Questions

If you don’t understand something ask questions. Ask lots of questions. The more answers you have the more at ease you will be. Prepare some questions ahead of time and write them down so you don’t forget to ask. Even if you question seems silly: ASK!


Buyer Agent Services - Evelyn Bruder's Real Estate Dream Team

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What A Seller Should Never Say!

What A Sellers Says Can And Will Sabotage a Sale!

Wherever possible a seller should not even be home or be the one to show their home to a potential buyer and their agent. However, situations do arise in which it is necessary for the seller to show their home. But, one of those reasons should not be a seller who just wants to be involved in showing off their home. The seller should leave when the buyer and their agent arrive. It is the incidental comments to, or answers to questions from, the buyer or their agent on the way out that can kill the sale.

Things a Home Seller Should Never Discuss

A buyer's agent will try to get every advantage in negotiating a sale for their client by pulling personal information out of a seller when the seller is willing to provide it.

All too often, sellers answer questions put to them by other agents because they don't see it as a mistake to provide what they feel is "just information". But what they can say to an agent or the buyer can have big implications.
Here are some things a seller should never talk about with a buyer, regardless of how innocent the topic might seem:

1.The present sales price.
2.The length of time the home has been for sale.
3.Why the seller has decided to sell.
4.The comparable sales prices of other homes.
5.Any price reduction considerations.
6.Things that might be wrong with the home
7.How many offers the seller has received.
8.How quickly the seller would like to close.

It is "Miranda" all over again: anything a seller says can and will be used against the seller when the buyer enters negotiations to buy that home. If a seller, for example, mentions that she hopes the home sells soon because she's under contract to buy another home, the buyer knows this is an opportunity to squeeze every concession they can out of the seller.

The best thing a seller can say to respond to any of those questions is:
You will have to ask my agent that question.

•Buuuutt, I just wanna know if you've had any offers yet.
Answer: You will have to ask my agent that question.

•Can't you tell me if your home has been on the market for 7 days or 7 months?
Come on, this is not a hard question!
Answer: You will have to ask my agent that question.

•If we wrote an offer today, would you be willing to reduce the price by $10,000?
Answer: You will have to ask my agent that question.

This is the reason you hire a real estate agent to sell your home. A listing agent is the buffer between the seller and the buyer, including the buyer's agent. Your agent earns their commission by protecting you and your investment.



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First time home buyers usually have the same first question. Should I wait until I find the perfect home or settle in a timely manner? This question has a surprisingly easy answer. For your first home, buy a home that fits your needs at a price that you can handle.Family in Front of House - Rent to Own

Your first step should make a list of everything you NEED in a house. It’s going to be really hard for your first home but you’ll want to REALLY differentiate yours wants from your needs. Now have your real-estate agent conduct a search based on your list of criteria. Narrow the search results down to your favorites. Some things you’ll need to think about when deciding if it meets your needs are:

Number of bedrooms, number of bathrooms, garage space, type of lawn, traffic, noise level, noise level, school reputations, and distance to stores.

We have prepared a checklist to fill out for each of the houses you have your eye on. Click Here for the checklist!

As with any negotiations, it’s not wise for you to try and outbid your competition on EVERY home you see. Bid reasonably and eventually you will win.

The upshot of this blog is: buy the house you need at the price you can afford!

Still hungry for more information? Fortunately, we have just the thing for you. Check out our website dedicated to giving first time home buyers like you all the information you need to make buying your first home a smart, well-informed, and pleasant experience. You can also follow us on facebook and twitter.

First Time Home Buyers - Your First Home in Las Cruces

First Time Home Buyers

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6  Mortgage Mistakes You Can Make

Getting an affordable property at a great rate can make you feel as if life couldn't be any sweeter. But ask anyone who bought a house with a mortgage they didn't understand and couldn't afford, and they will likely tell you their house has brought them nothing but frustration and tears. Here are the top 6 mistakes buyers make when purchasing a home.

1: Not reviewing your credit first

Before you go to your first open house, you need to get a credit check. You can find free credit report services online, some of the major ones are Experian, Equifax and TransUnion. You're entitled to one free credit report from each agency each year, make use of these tools to be familiar with your credit background and score. You'll need your credit score to be in tiptop shape if you want the best rates. According to the Federal Trade Commissions' in 2013 they found 5 percent of consumers had errors on their report that could result in less favorable loan terms. If you're among that 5 percent, you want to the find the error and correct it before applying. If your credit score simply stinks, you can try these tips for raising it fast.

2: Failing to get pre-approved

The next mistake you can make when applying for a mortgage is failing to get pre-approved. Getting pre-approved by a bank is one way to avoid the heartbreak that comes from falling in love with a house you can never buy. It may also give you an edge if there are multiple offers for the same property. A seller may feel more confident selecting a bid from someone with a mortgage pre-approval rather than a person who hasn't even begun the process.
However, don't get carried away by whatever pre-approval amount you receive from the bank. Remember, what the bank thinks you can afford and what you can actually afford may be two different things. A lot of people lost their homes in the Great Recession because they were given loans they couldn't pay back. Don't make the same mistake.

3: Not shopping around for the best rate

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau states nearly half of mortgage borrowers don't shop around and that's a big mistake. Even seasoned comparison shoppers may search for the best deals on their soap, their furniture and their car, but then don't look for a better mortgage rate. It may be convenient to use your primary bank for a mortgage, but that could also be expensive if its rates aren't competitive. According to Bank of America, for every 0.25 percent you can reduce your loan on a $200,000 mortgage, you'll save $30.55 per month. Over a 30 year period that can add up to a lot of extra cash.

4: Ignoring mortgage fees

While you're investigating rates, check out the fees on available mortgages, too. Most mortgages come packed with fees of all kinds, and while some, such as your county recording fee, are likely fixed, others are completely negotiable.

Before your closing, you should be provided with a good faith estimate of the fees. Ask your lender to review what they are for and then see if you can negotiate a lower price. These are a few of the fees likely to have the most wiggle room:
    •Loan origination fee
    •Application fee
    •Broker fee
    •Underwriting fee

5: Not having cash for a down payment

Not having a down payment can be a mistake for two reasons. The first is that it can sink your prospects of getting a mortgage. After being bitten by the housing market crash, traditional lenders shy away from giving mortgages to those bringing nothing to the table. But even if you can find a program that will allow you to get a mortgage with little or no money down, you could still be making a mistake. Remember how the housing market crashed from 2007-2009? Property values plunged and suddenly homeowners found themselves owing more than their homes were worth. When those owners then lost their jobs or otherwise couldn't keep up on their payments, they often found themselves without a prayer of refinancing or selling their property As a result, many ended up on the receiving end of a foreclosure notice. While nothing is guaranteed, putting 10-20 percent down on your house can reduce your chance of ending up in the same position.

6: Not understanding your mortgage terms

Underwater mortgages weren't the only problem facing homeowners during the Great Recession. An untold number of people also lost their houses simply because they signed on the dotted line without understanding what the heck their mortgage entailed.For example, people thought they'd hit the jackpot with interest-only loans that let them buy houses beyond their wildest dreams. However, they apparently didn't understand or overlooked the fact that their monthly payment would hit the stratosphere five years later. What's more, those five years of payments wouldn't give them a bit of equity in their home.
Adjustable rate mortgages, known as ARMs, operate under a similar structure. Homeowners were fine for the first few years when their mortgage rate was fixed and low. Then it reset to the current market rate and that affordable monthly payment suddenly didn't seem so affordable anymore. A 2008 report from the Federal Reserve Board found more than 75 percent of the subprime loans issued from 2003-2007 were "short-term hybrids" that work like ARMs. By 2008, more than 21 percent of these subprime loans were seriously delinquent.
The moral of the story is to always understand what you're signing up for. It's not enough to know what your monthly payment is today. You also need to ask if the interest rate can change and if so, when and by how much will it increase. If you're not comfortable with the loan terms or don't understand them, it's better to walk away than make an expensive and potentially life-altering mistake.


Bonus: Choose a Realtor who can help you!

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Evelyn Bruder
Evelyn Bruder Las Cruces Real Estate Dream Team
(575) 650-7224

141 Roadrunner Parkway Suite 141
Las Cruces, NM 88011

Steinborn & Associates Real Estate (575) 522-3698

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