If you plan to buy a home in Alaska this year, good credit will be important. Fortunately, the 3 major credit bureaus - Experian, Equifax and TransUnion - have made it easy to obtain your credit report. From now through April 2021, the bureaus are offering a free credit report, every week, for every American.
Please note, not every lender reports to every bureau. This leads to confusion, because your car loan may show up on one report, and your credit card, another. Lenders are aware of this, so they consider your credit behavior across the board. (Your overall credit score, or FICO score, is typically an average from all 3 bureaus.)
Your credit report is a history of your credit accounts, balances and payment habits. It includes a record of the addresses you've held and other personal info. The report isn't always error-free,...
While Alaskans "hunker down" and observe social distancing, the real estate market is going to slow. With business disruptions having a domino effect on incomes and the economy, a number of buyers and sellers will likely wait things out.
For Alaskan home buyers moving forward with their plans, there are 3 emerging trends to be aware of:
1. Mortgage lenders are beefing up credit quality. Higher credit scores, larger down payments and low debt-to-income ratios are being sought. Jumbo mortgages are seeing higher cash reserve requirements.
2. If sellers postpone their sales plans, home inventory could become very limited. As of early March 2020, the Anchorage area had just under 2 months of supply in price ranges under $350,000.
3. On the upside, mortgage interest rates should remain very low for a while.
Maybe you own an Alaskan home that's on the smaller side or you are getting a jump on your spring cleaning and organizing everything in sight, maybe you simply desire more storage options to hide your belongings— regardless of the reason, every homeowner could use a little more storage to keep things feeling neat and tidy.
With spring just around the corner and a little more time at home in our future, we've rounded up the following easy tips to add storage to your home in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North Pole, and the surrounding areas. These are the perfect way to spring forward into the new season ahead and feel like you have a fresh start!
The bedroom is the place where most homeowners desire storage....
The idea of cutting your monthly mortgage payment down by refinancing your loan may sound intriguing to you as an Alaskan homeowner, but there is much more to consider before diving in. In fact, there are cases in which refinancing does not truly pay off for the homeowner. But don't worry! As your local real estate experts, you can count on Madden Real Estate to help you make the best decision for your situation.
Below are four factors to consider before making the decision to refinance your mortgage:
Refinancing is not free
Just as you likely paid some closing costs when you purchased your home in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North Pole, and the surrounding areas, you will...
Since it's winter in Alaska, we're all staying indoors a little more and perhaps you're even watching a few real estate reality TV shows— we've all seen a few by now! As these shows grow in popularity, it's important to keep in mind that not everything you see on your screen is actually reality.
Much of what takes place is staged and filmed in a much shorter timeline and as your local real estate experts in Fairbanks, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North Pole, and beyond, we've included a much needed reality check for you below!
Myth: Buyers only choose from 3 homes
In nearly every reality TV show based on homebuyers, there are typically three homes toured before the buyer makes a decision and chooses one. While there may be a small percentage of buyers that truly buy one of the first few homes they see in Alaska, remember that the average...
Homebuyers will soon be out in droves as the busy spring real estate season gets underway in Alaska. If you've already taken the steps to list your property in Fairbanks, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North Pole, or beyond or are planning to sell soon, the next step involves highlighting your home's key features that buyers will love.
The following elements of your home may seem like nothing to you, but to buyers, they could be just what they are looking for— Don't be afraid to point them out!
You've heard the phrase "location, location, location" before and it never holds more true than when assessing your home's value. Is your home located near restaurants, shopping and entertainment? Do you have an excellent commute time from your neighborhood? Buyers will...
When it comes to buying a home in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North Pole, and the surrounding communities, many do not know what is actually involved. From how much of a down payment you need to your credit score, numerous would-be Alaska homebuyers hold off as they do not think they will qualify.
But that shouldn't stop you this year as Madden Real Estate will walk you through everything you need, including the factors mentioned above, and these 5 documents that will be necessary to move forward with your Alaskan home purchase:
When determining your ability to take on a mortgage, your Alaska mortgage lender will want to see proof of income. In most cases, your last two pay stubs will do the trick! In others, they may want as...
While we are only days away from the new year (and still much more winter ahead!), the upcoming spring season is always a stand-out period for first-time buyers to enter the real estate market.
Why? Mortgage rates are still low, home prices are rising in addition to rents, and first-timers are ready to invest into something of their very own in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North Pole, and beyond.
But when you are new to purchasing a home, you can overlook the many ways you can potentially save money in the process. Keep the following in mind as you house hunt this spring and as always, do not hesitate to reach out with any questions!
Look past cosmetic issues
Many first-time buyers in Alaska tour a home only to write it off because they didn't like the paint colors....
With the majority of buyers today starting their Alaskan home search online, it is important to wow them during this initial look. If Fairbanks or Anchorage area buyers see something they don't like just from flipping through listing photos, they are less likely to ever make it to the front door for a showing or visit an open house.
So how do you pique the interest of buyers in Alaska without turning them off? Below are five things you will want to avoid as a home seller in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North Pole and the surrounding areas:
Do not convert your garage
Keep in mind that a large number of buyers who will begin house hunting this spring are first-timers who are tired of renting, with others simply in the market for more...
Temperatures may be dropping as we get closer to the official start of winter, but buyer activity is still picking up! The number of Alaska residents planning to buy a new home does not halt and go into hibernation during the winter, in fact buyers now look for homes all year long!
So with homebuyers in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, and North Pole flocking to local markets, how can you stand out? Grab a pen and paper and make yourself a checklist to ensure you're on the right track to buy a home in Alaska.
Here are a few tips to give you that homebuyer edge over the others during this time of year— and even into spring:
Clean Your Finances
After you deck the halls this holiday season, turn your attention to your finances. A seller doesn't know your...
There's no doubt, the weather is frightful out there with temperatures steadily dropping. If you're stuck at home or freezing as you head outside each morning, you may be wondering if there are steps you can take to protect your home in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North Pole and the surrounding areas this winter, especially from the harsh cold temperatures.
And of course, there are! Whether you've just purchased this home as a first-time homebuyer or you're a long-time homeowner in Alaska, the following steps can help you protect your home before the winter taks a toll on the property.
Keep Your Pipes Warm
Winter weather can cause homes in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North...
With home sales prices rising, many residents in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North Pole, and beyond have begun the process of listing their properties to take advantage of this time in the market. But one common disconnect between homeowners and their agents is the price at which they believe they should list the property.
The price homeowners have in mind is oftentimes not realistic for the local market and takes into account a variety of factors including their emotional ties to the home. Finding a comfortable price for you can be a major obstacle when selling your home and you may need to compromise— just take a look at these common reasons homeowners overprice their homes in Alaska:
You think your decor is the best
As you may have heard by now, the real estate market's supply of homes for sale is trending lower than it has been in past years. But does that mean you should shy away from listing your home in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North Pole, or the surrounding areas this fall? Absolutely not!
The real estate market could use your home and if you've been thinking about selling, below are the top tips for a successful sale during this time of year:
Clean up the yard
This time of year, the leaves have started to change and fall and may be cluttering up your yard. Take the time to rake all of the debris currently in your yard to make a nice impression on potential buyers who...
Fall can still be a busy homebuying season for those in Alaska and with more sellers confident in listing their Alaskan homes, it's important to keep the real estate rules of the road in mind. Below are just a few real estate rules to remember, like using an experienced real estate agent, that should help you in your home search or sale this fall:
Don't Make an Offer Without Pre-Approval
Know what you can afford. This all starts with a pre-approval, meaning a lender has vetted your credit and financials and is willing to continue with the mortgage process. A pre-approval letter will tell the real estate agent and home seller how much you can afford in a home and the confidence that you are able to follow through on the purchase....
With mortgage rates still hovering around historically low rates and home values rising, many Alaska homeowners are currently contemplating a move. Now is indeed the time to purchase a home with more storage space, more bedrooms, more overall square footage or even a home in a better neighborhood!
As your real estate experts in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North Pole, and beyond, Madden Real Estate is happy to help you find your bigger, better dream home, but there are just a few factors to consider in your decision to move up.
The right mortgage
When moving up in Alaska, the type of mortgage you obtain is crucial. An adjustable-rate mortgage may be for you if you're not planning on being in the home for an extended amount of time. Adjustable-rate mortgages...
It is a major step to sell your home in Alaska and one that brings many important decisions along with it. Homeowners in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North Pole and beyond will need to tackle choosing when to list, staging and of course, pricing.
Pricing your home is a delicate process and it should be done right from the beginning. With our decades of real estate experience at Madden Real Estate, you can be assured we will arrive at the best price for your property and the area, but as a home seller, it is always wise to do the extra homework.
As you think over the pricing aspect of selling your Alaskan home, here are a few things to keep in mind:
The listing price is key
When you ...
For homebuyers in Alaska this summer, saving for the down payment is one of the biggest hurdles in front of the finish line. In the past, we've shared how to start saving for the down payment, but you might be wondering where to keep the money.
Below are four options for risk-free accounts in which you can keep your down payment. You may sacrifice return, but you can be assured the money will be there when you need it to purchase your home in Anchorage, Fairbanks, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, or the surrounding areas!
Online savings account
Compare online rates to determine which online savings account is best, but this may be the easiest option for moving around funds. You can track the money easily via online banking and set up transfers in a snap. You also don't need to worry about the bank not being open when you need to pull your down payment.
CD or Certificate...
Buying a home in Alaska is a process that ultimately ends with your closing. However, there can be some bumps along the way that cause the closing date to be pushed back.
Closing delays can be caused by both the Fairbanks or Anchorage area home seller and the homebuyer— but, don't be dismayed! There are steps you can take to ensure the process moves smoothly this summer:
Have your agent help
Once your property is under contract in the Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Wasilla, Palmer, or North Pole area, your real estate agent can check in with all of the parties involved once (or more!) per week. An expert real estate agent can notice surprises or changes in the transaction and work ahead to prevent any delays.
Keep in touch with your lender
When it comes to buying a home in Alaska, you would be surprised by the number of potential buyers that sit back because they do not think they will qualify for a mortgage. However, the reality is that qualifying for a mortgage is simpler than you think and as a result, you are missing out on the many benefits of homeownership!
If you're sick of renting, given the increasing costs each year, and are ready to settle into a place of your own, now is the time! Don't allow yourself to put off homeownership any longer, just research the facts. Consider the following your checklist of what it takes to qualify for a mortgage:
1. A Down Payment
Did you know nearly half of all homebuyers...
While we are only days into the new season, this spring is already projected as a stand-out period for first-time buyers to enter the real estate market. Mortgage rates are still historically low, home prices are rising in addition to rents and first-timers are ready to invest into something of their very own in Alaska.
But when you are new to purchasing a home, you can overlook the many ways you can potentially save money in the process. Keep the following in mind as you house hunt this spring and as always, do not hesitate to reach out to our experts at Madden Real Estate with any questions!
Look past cosmetic issues
Many first-time buyers in Anchorage, Eagle River,...