Answer: After you make the decision to buy a home, you’ll want to plan a budget and contact a real estate professional to guide you through the entire process. You’ll also need to research and compare available lenders to finance your home beyond your down payment. Your real estate professional will likely be able to suggest prospective lenders if you need assistance in choosing one. A lender will pre-qualify you for a loan in the amount it determines you to be able to afford, so that sellers will consider you a serious and capable buyer. Once you’re pre-qualified, your real estate professional will begin showing you possible homes. When you decide on a particular home, your real estate
Answer: Title insurance is an insurance policy that protects you against loss that could result from defects in the title of the property you are buying. The premium is paid only once and is good until the property’s ownership changes. Unlike most types of insurance which protect policyholders from future events, title insurance protects you against defects that could already exist.
Answer: A §1031 exchange refers to legislation that allows an investor to sell a property, reinvest the proceeds in a new property and as such defer all capital gain taxes. Asset Preservation Incorporated (API) is recognized as one of the leading Qualified Intermediaries in the nation, meaning that they have a proven track record guiding investors through the exchange process.
Answer: Homebuyers and sellers will find ImageAtlas, powered by GlobeXplorer™, a valuable resource for accessing high-resolution aerial imagery from the Web. Using ImageAtlas, your real estate professional, builder or lender will be able to provide you detailed information and images extracted from searches by address, point-and-click navigation and pan-and-zoom views. Likewise, PropertyInfo™ from REIData provides extensive demographic information as it relates to specific properties, neighborhoods, school districts and counties.
Answer: A single-family home refers to a free-standing property that does not share walls with other nearby homes or structures, and that is built from the ground up at the site of its foundation, on its own piece of land. The pros for owning a single-family home include the fact that the owner owns everything — the home itself as well as the land it is on, and as such is able to landscape, remodel or rebuild the home to the extent desired. Possible disadvantages to owning a single-family home may include the fact that the owner is responsible for all repairs and maintenance, as well as any remodeling done to both the interior and exterior. He or she will also likely have fewer amenities than high-density living structures which often provide swimming pools, tennis courts and more as part of homeowners’ association fees charged.
A townhouse is a home that is attached to one or more other houses, located on a specific property that the townhouse owner also owns. Townhouses can range drastically in size and architecture, including multi-unit structures such as duplexes or triplexes. Advantages to owning a townhouse can include less financial responsibility for exterior maintenance and repair costs, heightened security afforded by a more high-density community and amenities for which the homeowner is not directly responsible (pool, tennis courts, etc.). Disadvantages often include less privacy than with a single-family home, less freedom to alter the home’s exterior and a monthly or yearly homeowners’ association fee.
A condominium, or condo, is very similar to an apartment in terms of structure and multi-unit design. Often, apartments are converted to condos as the result of changes in complex ownership and management. Condominium owners own only the interior of their dwelling — from the walls inward — and, just like with an apartment, their home is attached to their neighbors’. All condominium owners who live in a particular complex share the financial responsibility for maintenance and repairs to the overall property and building exteriors, through payment of a monthly homeowners’ association fee and, if necessary, a special assessment requiring a one-time payment of a predetermined amount. Possible advantages to owning a condo include less individual financial obligation for exterior home repairs and a lower purchase price than a single-family home or townhouse. Disadvantages may include greater difficulty when selling a condo, as compared to single-family dwellings and townhouses, monthly homeowners’ dues, less privacy than with other types of housing and usually a complete lack of freedom to alter the exterior of the home in any way.
A manufactured home, once typically referred to as a mobile home, is a single-family home that is built at a location other than the land on which it sits. Most manufactured homes are modular in structure, and final assembly occurs on the home site after separate “pieces” are transported from the manufacturing plant to the homeowner’s property. Advantages to owning a manufactured home may include the fact that it is often a less-expensive means of acquiring a single-family residence, and in the event the owner moves to another property or sells the home, it may be easily transported to another location. Disadvantages include an obvious limitation in architectural options (since the homes are built off-site and then moved) and, often, reduced longevity in the durability of the home.
Answer: The steps involved in the home selling process are very similar to those involved in the home buying process. Once you have made the decision to sell your home, you will need to establish an asking price for it. While some sellers successfully sell their homes on their own, a for-sale-by-owner arrangement can be complicated and will require a great deal more of your personal time throughout the process. For this reason, most people consider the commission paid to a real estate professional well worth the investment, for the convenience, time savings and overall guidance provided. Real estate professionals will also be able to tell you if your asking price is appropriate for your property or home. In
Answer: Simply put, flood zone determinations define geographic areas, or zones, according to their flood history using a classification system that assesses the potential for rainfall to be converted to storm water runoff. This information is very important to a buyer because it will likely affect insurance availability and cost. Likewise, it is important to a seller to know how the flood zone determination for his or her home may affect the sale of the home. Stewart Mortgage Information produces the highest resolution flood hazard analysis in the industry quickly and accurately. Ask your real estate professional or homeowners’ insurance provider about a flood zone determination from Stewart Mortgage Information.
Answer: Stewart Multicultural Markets is committed to increasing the homeownership rate of traditionally underserved consumer segments by working with title agent offices, real estate professionals, lenders and consumers, and through our partnership with national trade organizations serving those particular homebuyer populations. Visit www.stewartmulticultural.com for more information.
Stewart Title Guaranty Company
Charles Jones/Data Trace
Action Title Research
Old Republic Title Insurance Company
Searches are ordered the same day your application is received.
Confirmation of your order is emailed or faxed same day.
Searches back to MST within 2 to 3 days.
Commitment is prepared.
Completed commitment reviewed.
Commitment is sent to Lender/Attorney/Broker via e-mail/FedEx or by courier.