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11 Things You Need to Know When You’re About to… Buy a House | Bedford Corners Homes

Buying a home can be a stressful, complicated process—even if it’s not your first time. To help you take stock and get ready to find your way into a new home, here are some key things you need to know:

1. Know your goals.

This should go without saying, but house-hunting can make even the most practical of people lose sight of what’s really important.  Homeowners may dream of settling in, customizing and forgetting about yearly rent increases. Even so, there are trade-offs: decreased mobility, increased debt and more responsibility (there’s no super to call when the toilet springs a leak). Doing a quick pro and con of rent v. buy helps you make sense of your decision, given your lifestyle goals.

2. Have a five (or seven) year plan.

Staying put for five to seven years is a good rule of thumb for homebuyers but factors such as closing costs, market fluctuations and expenses like maintenance fees could mean it’ll take even longer to break even.

3. Bring 20 percent (or more) to the table.

Some lenders offer low- or no-down payment options for cash-strapped buyers but the terms are typically less attractive than for those with 20 percent. A 20 percent down payment also means avoiding Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI), which can cost an annual 0.3 to 1.15 percent of the original loan balance.

4. Make your own budget.

A mortgage lender may qualify you for more than you actually want to pay each month. Do your own budget analysis to figure out how much you’re comfortable shelling out for housing each and every month. And don’t forget extras like real estate taxes.

5. Check the score.

Higher credit score can add up to tens of thousands of dollars in savings over the life of a mortgage. Get a free copy of your credit report (available once per year) and look for ways to improve your score.

6. Find a real estate agent who fits your profile.

Typically, you start with recommendations from friends or financial professionals, like your CPA. But don’t stop there. Interview three or four agents with a keen eye for one with aspecific knowledge of your desired neighborhood, price range and property type. Then figure out if your personalities will work together—or against each other. We heard that realtor palm springs – Harcourt Desert Homes is a top rated real estate company that can help you buy your dream home.

7. Don’t forget the emergency fund.

A house is the most expensive thing most people will ever buy. But costs go well beyond the purchase price. Routine maintenance, landscaping or pool care fees and unexpected repair bills can catch a new homeowner off guard. Upfront budgeting for these annual costs can save a lot of frustration when the HVAC unit needs to be serviced, get the best deals from this ac installation in Oahu company.

8. Location, location, location.

It’s hard to predict the future, but long-term neighborhood changes can have a dramatic effect on property costs. Homes within desirable school districts tend to be more expensive up front, but they’re also more likely to maintain property value.

9. Don’t scrimp on insurance.

A typical homeowners insurance policy will cover many different types of damage to your home—but be sure that it covers the full cost to rebuild the home. Your coverage should include replacing the structure and your personal possessions, the cost of living expenses if you have to live elsewhere while your house is repaired, plus your liability to others—otherwise, in the event of a loss, you may discover gaps in your coverage.

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Old Riverdale Home Yearns for the Countryside | Bedford Corners Real Estate

Although it was constructed in 1901 as a carriage house, this Riverdale building now acts as a 5BR, 3.5BA modern-day Bronx estate. Okay, “estate” might be too strong of a descriptor, but the home at 5450 Palisades Avenue sits on a half-acre lot and has a rather bucolic past; that is, well before it was picked up by a former Deputy Commissioner of Counter-Terrorism of the NYPD in 2006 for $2.3 million. Now asking $2.43 million, the home still shows traces of its former life as a carriage house through its high, beamed ceilings and three street-facing garage doors.

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Buying in December | Bedford Corners Real Estate

In the market for a new home? Here are four reasons to add real estate shopping to your December to-do list.

Bargain prices

Did you know that, historically, home prices are lower in December than in any other month?

As for the overall housing picture, if you’re not yet in the market, you’ll like this news: While home prices are continuing to rise, it’s happening at a much slower pace.

According to a recent report from Zillow, U.S. home values are currently up 6.4 percent year-over-year and have been slowing for nearly two years. Next year home values are expected to grow at 3 percent — roughly half their current pace.  These changing dynamics, and a shift toward healthy stabilization, put more power in the hands of buyers.

Low mortgage rates    

What’s driving affordability? Low mortgage rates. Currently hovering in the 4 percent range, rates are projected to edge up to 5 percent by the end of 2015, according to Zillow Chief Economist, Stan Humphries.

To put this in perspective, did you know that if rates go up by just one percentage point, your purchasing power is reduced by a whopping 11 percent? Find out how much waiting to buy could cost you.

Motivated sellers

If sellers are listing their home for sale this time of year, this likely means they’re serious about shedding the weight of their residences.

Regardless of why that is – perhaps they’ve recently gotten divorced, have to relocate for a new job opportunity, or are under some other personal pressure – this puts you, the buyer, in a much better position to negotiate and ultimately cut a deal, particularly since competition is minimal this time of year.

Tax savings

At the end of the year, everyone is looking for ways to lower their tax bill. And closing on your new home before Dec. 31st is one way to get some breaks.

After all, you can deduct home purchase costs, including mortgage interest, property taxes and points — while you build equity and save yourself a significant amount of money.


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Share of freshman home buyers at three decade low | Bedford Corners Real Estate


home buyers and sellers; the series dates back to 1981. Results are representative of owner-occupants and do not include investors or vacation homes.

The long-term average in this survey, dating back to 1981, shows that four out of 10 purchases are from first-time home buyers. In this year’s survey, the share of first-time buyers dropped 5%age points from a year ago to 33%, representing the lowest share since 1987 (30%).

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says there are many obstacles young adults are enduring on their path to homeownership.

“Rising rents and repaying student loan debt makes saving for a down payment more difficult, especially for young adults who’ve experienced limited job prospects and flat wage growth since entering the workforce,” he said. “Adding more bumps in the road, is that those finally in a position to buy have had to overcome low inventory levels in their price range, competition from investors, tight credit conditions and high mortgage insurance premiums.”

Yun said that he sees some problems being alleviated going forward.

“Stronger job growth should eventually support higher wages, but nearly half (47%) of first-time buyers in this year’s survey (43% in 2013) said the mortgage application and approval process was much more or somewhat more difficult than expected. Less stringent credit standards and mortgage insurance premiums commensurate with current buyer risk profiles are needed to boost first-time buyer participation, especially with interest rates likely rising in upcoming years.”

The household composition of buyers responding to the survey was mostly unchanged from a year ago. Sixty-five% of buyers were married couples, 16% single women, 9% single men and 8% unmarried couples.

In 2009, 60% of buyers were married, 21% were single women, 10% single men and 8% unmarried couples. Thirteen% of survey respondents were multi-generational households, including adult children, parents and/or grandparents.


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Eliot Spitzer in talks for 2.8-acre Kedem Winery site in Williamsburg | Bedford Corners Real Estate


Eliot Spitzer, who last year made his most aggressive move since returning to the family firm with the purchase of a pricey West Side development site, is close to inking a deal to buy a large, stalled residential project on the Brooklyn waterfront, according to sources.

Spizter Enterprises is in negotiations to buy the 2.8-acre Kedem Winery site in Williamsburg, where developer the Rector Hylan Corp. has for several years  tried unsuccessfully to build a pair of mixed-use towers two blocks south from Two Trees Management’s Domino Sugar Factory development.

Spitzer Enterprises declined to comment and the current owner could not be reached. Several sources said Spitzer is in advanced negotiations to buy the site, though another prospective buyer may be in the mix as well.

The Rector Hylan development firm bought the six lots that make up the property between Broadway and South 9th Street for $11.3 million in 2003, and three years later received a pair of special permits from the City Planning Commission allowing for larger, denser buildings than the area’s zoning would have allowed.

The company had planned to build a 24-story tower with 309 residential units on the southern end of the site and an 18-story tower on the northern side with 104 units. All told, the buildings would have an envelope greater than 600,000 square feet, including 26,400 square feet of retail along Kent Avenue. The developer agreed to set aside 20 percent of the buildings’ units as affordable housing.

But Rector Hylan struggled to secure financing for the project as the market turned downward and ultimately failed to get shovels in the ground. When the permits lapsed last summer the company filed for and was granted a three-year extension. The renewal will take them to mid-June 2016.

– See more at: http://therealdeal.com/blog/2014/08/25/eliot-spitzer-in-talks-for-2-8-acre-kedem-winery-site-in-williamsburg-sources/#sthash.WoIPaOkQ.dpuf

Dr. Dre Selling View Mansion, Moving to Brentwood | Bedford Corners Real Estate



Now that hip-hop star and headphone honcho Dr. Dre has bought Tom Brady and Gisele Bundchen’s mega-estate in Brentwood, he’s listed his home in the Hollywood Hills.

Source: IMDb

Source: IMDb

The gated home at 9161 Oriole Way, Los Angeles, CA has a magnificent view and almost 10,000 square feet on one of the coveted “bird streets” above the Sunset Strip, where many celebrities tuck mansions into the hillside. Dr. Dre bought the mansion in 2011 for $15.4 million and has listed it for $35 million — just $5 million less than he reportedly paid for Tom and Gisele’s super-estate.

It’s listed by Kurt Rappaport of Westside Estate Agency, who handled both sides of the Brentwood sale, as well. His listing describes Dr. Dre’s house as having “the best view estate in the city” and doesn’t offer any photos of the home’s interior.

Here’s what it does say: the home has 6 bedrooms, 9 baths, a library and media room, a guest house and wine cellar, as well as a pool and patio that offer a glimmering view of LA.

Want to buy Dr. Dre’s home? Calculating costs, here’s what your monthly mortgage payment looks based on a 30-year fixed mortgage, with 20 percent ($7 million) down: $134,549 a month.



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Look at the Lost Landmarks of This 1934 Map of the Village | Bedford Corners NY Homes




Tony Sarg, a German American puppet master from the 1920s and ’30s, is known primarily for two things: popularizing old-world marionette techniques in the United States (he has been called “the father of modern puppetry in North America”) and inventing the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade floats. But in addition to all that, Sarg was a well-known illustrator, and one of his works, a whimsical map of Greenwich Village from 1934, appears in a new book from the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation. Of course, out of the places on this map there isn’t much left to preserve, but it’s still plenty fun to look at. And you could compare it to another historic map of the Village from 1961, to see just how quickly things changed back then. You could also compare it to a less-fun-but-probably-more-accurate 1926 map from printer Lew Ney (pointed out by an Ephemeral New York commenter).


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House price confidence ‘inflating bubble’ | Bedford Corners Real Estate

Britons have taken a one-way bet on house prices that could be creating bubbles in some parts of the country, research suggests.

Rapid growth in house prices is expected to continue over the next two years, according to a survey by Genworth Financial, the mortgage insurance group. It said that 72pc of respondents expected prices to keep rising until the end of 2016.

People living in London and the South of England were much more likely to believe that prices in their area would increase. The survey showed 80pc of residents in the capital thought prices would rise, compared with just 62pc of people in the North.

Rapidly increasing house prices have also made it harder for first-time buyers to get on the housing ladder.

More than four-fifths of the 1,000 people surveyed said saving for a deposit remained the key obstacle to owning a home. Genworth said 79pc of adults needed help from their parents to obtain a mortgage. “With most households anticipating that house prices are going to continue to rise, while wage levels will not, the difficulties they face in saving for a deposit are not going to go away,” said Simon Crone, the vice president of Genworth.



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Cuomo Presents State Budget To Westchester County Association | Bedford Corners Homes


Gov. Andrew Cuomo presented his 2014 state budget to the Westchester County Association Wednesday at the Marriott Hotel calling it the “Grand Slam” for being a fourth consecutive on-time budget.

An upbeat Cuomo used a Powerpoint Presentation to tout his administration’s three-year run of tax reduction, spending cuts and political and private sector coalitions that he said were key in getting the state back its fiscal credibility.

“The state budget is much more than a planning device, it basically answers the questions who are you going to tax, how much, and where are you going to spend the money, down to the finest detail,” Cuomo said. “Government gridlock happens when we do the budget because this is here the money is.”

More than 300 people filled the Marriott Hotel meeting room to listen to Cuomo as he explained how the state’s history of high property, income and corporate taxes had crippled the economy and burdened taxpayers.

Cuomo said the fiscal health of the state has improved over the last three years with implementation of a 2 percent tax increase limit.

“When we look back just a few years ago, the State of New York was in peril, with scandals, indictments and basic dysfunction and that our vest days were behind us,” Cuomo said. “We were the highest tax state in the nation that had to change.”

The Governor attributed his administration’s collaborations in political and private sectors, decreased spending and lower income, corporate and manufacturer taxes as reasons for getting the state’s fiscal house in order and its economy back on track and growing.

But Cuomo also stressed that New York’s real estate taxes — the highest in the nation in Westchester County — must be brought under control. The governor attributed the problem to the cost of running 10,500 local governments and their services.

“We have made it easier and offered incentives for local governments to consolidate and merge costs and services and just two have done so,” Cuomo said. “And when local governments’ costs increase, they just raise taxes. That can not continue.”