Fredericksburg Parent

June 2015

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www.FredParent.NET • • • • 21 • • • • • • • 21 • • 21 Sponsored Material Join us June 11 for the live conversation on Q: How large of a down payment should I save up to buy a home? There are down payment options of 0% down, 3.5% down, 5% down, 20% down and more. my advice is to sit down with a reputable loan officer and discuss all options so as to determine the best financing route for you. Please con- sult with two or three different loan officers and/or lend- ing institutions. There are a lot of different loan products offered and i want you to consider all options so you make an educated decision. it pays to shop around. Q: What is the difference between a short sale and a foreclosure? in my opinion, the number one difference is the amount of time it takes to get to the settlement table. Short sales are not short. remember, both short sales and foreclosures are being sold "as-is". But with a short sale, there is a very extensive checklist the seller must complete, like pro- viding updated pay stubs and a valid hardship letter to the bank. Foreclosures are more straightforward and faster to get to the settlement table because the property already belongs to the bank when it goes on the market. Q: What is your best advice for staging a home? remove all your clutter and make sure it smells nice! The goal of staging is to demonstrate to potential buyers how a space can be used. For example, you may stage a master bedroom with a king-sized bed in order to help the buyer see how their own bed would look in the room or you might set the table to mimic a nice dinner; this helps the purchaser see the potential of the space. Q: When I start looking for a home, what things should I keep in mind? Please keep in mind that the unfortunate wall color can be changed, the hideous 1980's wallpaper can be torn down and the dirty carpet can be replaced or shampooed. Please look at the location of the property, the lot and interior architectural layout. Will the hilly backyard work for your child's playground equipment? What are the average costs of utilities? What does the HOa fee cover? Ultimately, will this home work for your family? Have questions you want to ask Betty Westerlund? She will be hosting Ask The Expert live, on our Facebook Page, June 11 th, at 8 pm. Come join the conversation! You can reach Betty Westerlund at or 540-845-7247. a sk t h e e x p e rt ...the Fredericksburg real estate market is definitely headed in a positive direction... Q: If I wanted to update my home but only had funds to cover one area, what room would you suggest investing in? The kitchen — hands down. The kitchen is the heart of the home. The owner will be in the kitchen every single day; they may not enter the guest bedroom or guest bathroom for weeks at a time. The majority of buyers love the updated look of tile backsplash, undermount lighting, updated appliances, rollout cabinets and recessed or pendant lighting. Q: What are the advantages and dis- advantages to building a home vs. buying one already built? When you build a new home, most of the time the walls are hospital white, there may be no deck and it may have builder-grade features. That said, you can really make it your own; it is like a blank canvas. When purchasing a resale home, the walls are hypothetically painted (not always perhaps to your choosing) and the deck may already be installed. i find that brand new construc- tion is perfect for the pickiest of buyers; they have more control over location, layout, countertops, features and fixtures. Check out her website at; it is a free and direct link to the realtor mlS. you will have access to thousands of home list- ings ~ for free! you can also reach her directly at; her direct cell number is 540-845-7247. you are more than welcome to call or text at any time.

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