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...
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 ...
So, you think you want to buy a fixer upper home in Alaska? While your dreams of renovating a property may be driven by what you've seen on real estate or home improvement television shows, it's important to remember that the reality of updating a home from start to finish can be much more time-consuming, tedious, expensive, and drawn-out than you realize.
As your local real estate experts in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North Pole, and beyond, I am sharing below three things to do before you commit to buying fixer upper homes in Alaska this year:
Research the location
Not only should you research the location of a home before purchasing, but also look into the zoning. What you may not know is that every community has zoning districts and restrictions surrounding what can and cannot be done to homes within their...
Buying a home in Anchorage, Fairbanks, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, or North Pole can be an overwhelming decision, especially if it's your first time navigating the real estate market. And since this is likely the largest purchase you will ever make, it's important that you try to avoid the common mistakes that homebuyers have encountered before you. That's where Madden Real Estate comes in! We have included a list below of five things not to do when buying a home in Alaska, so you can enjoy a smooth process and settle into your new home with no worries!
Don't shop without an agent
Navigating the real estate market can be tricky, so why go it alone? Let Madden Real Estate be your guide to homes for sale in Alaska! You will want an agent...
If you're not fully prepared to navigate the Alaskan real estate market, it can be overwhelming— especially if you're a first-time homebuyer. It helps to know the facts from the beginning of your home search, as well as have a local real estate expert on your side, like our team at Madden Real Estate!
Below are four ways to start your home search in Fairbanks, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North Pole, or Anchorage:
This should always be your first step when shopping for homes in Alaska. Even if the market begins to slow down, you will be able to better understand your budget and whether or not your dream home is within your reach. Not to mention, this documentation tells sellers that you...
You likely already have a picture in your head of what you'd like your dream home in Alaska to look like. Maybe it's a new construction home in a family-friendly neighborhood or maybe it's a fixer upper that you can make your own. If the latter is more your style, you'll want to keep your eyes peeled for a certain set of features that will help you tell the difference between a property with potential and a money pit.
Below are four things to look for in Alaska fixer upper homes to avoid a homeowner headache down the road:
Sound Structural Elements
When you move into a new home in Alaska, it can be quite costly to need to replace major structural parts like the roof,...
You've found a buyer for your Alaska home, they've put in an offer, but now what? How can you be sure you won't receive a better offer than the one they submitted? Will you be able to accept a better deal if it comes along? As a home seller, you'll want to get to know the bump clause.
Bump clauses are getting a lot of air time in today's real estate market as they allow the seller to enter into a contract with a buyer while continuing to market their property. If they get a better offer, they can "bump" the original buyer.
Bump clauses are commonly used when a buyer has a contingency attached to their offer, meaning they need to sell their current home first or have placed the sale contingent upon factors like the inspection or appraisal. The bump clause will allow sellers to attempt to reach another buyer that may...
It is not uncommon for Alaskan homebuyers to sit on the fence, wondering if there will be a better time to purchase a home down the road. Will you be able to get a better deal on a property in a few months? Will the real estate market slow down? These are all valid questions, but it's also important to consider the flip side and what it could cost you if you choose to wait to buy a home.
In today's market, interest rates continue to rise and waiting as little as a few months could cost you more than you think in your monthly mortgage payment. According to real estate news outlet Keeping Current Matters, the cost of waiting to buy is defined as the additional funds it would take to buy a home if prices and interest rates were to increase over a period of time.
For instance, in today's real estate market with an interest rate of 4.4 percent...
Everyone loves a good deal— especially when it comes to real estate! However, in today's real estate market, actually purchasing a home for under asking price can be a rare occurrence. Real estate agents in Alaska—and all over the country, for that matter—typically advise against making lowball offers as you could risk offending the sellers and lose out on the home entirely.
But does that mean it can't be done? No! With the right expert on your side and under the right conditions, you can successfully make a lowball offer on a home in Anchorage, Fairbanks, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, or North Pole. Below are four scenarios that would call for making a low offer:
The home is outdated
Home sellers in Alaska can turn a...
Spring is officially here in Alaska and the real estate market is only beginning to heat up for the busy season ahead! And while it can be easy to get ahead of yourself when you first begin to search for Alaska homes for sale, it is important to first outline your priorities to streamline the process— and avoid falling in love with a property that's out of your budget!
Below are three important questions to ask yourself as you begin house-hunting in Eagle River, Anchorage, Palmer, Wasilla, Fairbanks, and North Pole:
How long do I plan to be in this home?
Before you can start searching for properties, ask yourself if this is a forever home. How long do you plan to stay?...
With spring just around the corner and the Alaska real estate market preparing to pick up for the busy season ahead, there are numerous buyers on the fence wondering about their first step. Should I get pre-approved? Should we wait until we have a 20 percent down payment?
All of the questions running through your head are important to answer to get a better handle on the mortgage process, and as your local real estate experts, we're breaking down the steps you should avoid so you can embark on your homebuying journey with few hiccups along the way.
Do Not: Wait until you have a 20 percent down payment
Mortgage rates today are still hovering around historic lows— but not for...
Gone are the days where homebuyers only searched for properties in Alaska when the weather was warmer, they happened upon a listing in the newspaper, or drove by a For Sale sign. In today's Alaskan real estate market, buyers are always switched "on," constantly looking for properties on their smartphones and computers, even setting up search parameters so potential homes land in their email inbox.
It doesn't pay to wait as a homebuyer in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, or North Pole. Your dream home could be waiting for you—even in the winter months—so...
It's a brand new year in Alaska and if you've started to map out your goals for the upcoming months, you might find buying a house in Fairbanks among the top priorities— and rightfully so! 2018 will be one of the best years for homebuyers to make a purchase and below we've included four reasons why you won't want to delay:
Inventory is returning
For the majority of the last year, inventory in the local real estate market has been lower, thus making it challenging for some buyers to find the right home that checks all of their boxes. However, 2018 will spark a recovery in inventory, especially in the middle to upper price ranges. ...
The holiday hustle and bustle is just beginning in Alaska— from gatherings with friends and family to decking the halls, shopping, and even traveling. This time of year is undoubtedly one of the busiest and moving may be the last thing on your mind, but does that mean you should wait to buy a home in Alaska?
As your local real estate experts in Alaska, you can count on Madden Real Estate to help you find your dream home and identify the best opportunities to do so— one of which is right now! Below are three reasons to consider buying a home in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, or North Pole during the holidays:
There is less competition...
The process of buying a home in Alaska can be both exciting and overwhelming, especially if it's your first time conducting a home search. There are many details to get in order, from the number of bedrooms you need to the best location, and it is easy for a few to fall through the cracks. One in particular that is commonly overlooked is the amount you will owe in closing costs.
Many first-time homebuyers in Alaska are not aware of closing costs, but as your local experts in Anchorage, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North Pole and the surrounding communities, you can count on Madden Real Estate to ensure you know exactly what you're in for in today's real estate market.
What are closing costs?
Closing costs are made up of...
Searching for your dream home in Fairbanks AK or the surrounding areas is an exciting journey and one you may have been thinking about for quite some time. You'll tour dozens of homes before you find the best fit, carefully considering the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, square footage, and of course, location. However, you may also discover that a property doesn't check all of the boxes on your priority list. So, when should you compromise?
As your local real estate experts in Fairbanks, Anchorage, North Pole, Wasilla, Eagle River, Palmer and Chugiak, we have included below a few compromises that are worth making when house hunting in Alaska:
The size of the yard
Homebuyers in Alaska value...
One of the first steps you will take on your homebuying journey in Alaska is meeting with a lender to discuss your eligibility to take on a mortgage loan. You will likely be given a few quotes based on different loan products, each varying by terms, conditions, and interest rates. A 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is a common choice for homebuyers in Anchorage, Fairbanks, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North Pole and the surrounding areas, however, there are a few reasons why this mortgage may not be for you.
As you decide which mortgage may be right for you this year, consider the following reasons to choose a loan other than the 30-year fixed-rate option:...
Excitement runs high when you purchase a new home in Alaska— you start to envision where all of your belongings will go, where your family members will stay, the purposes for each room, you name it. But remember, there is only one person that knows the property better than you at the moment and that is the seller.
In order to avoid any surprises down the road, and to get to know certain quirks that the home may have (that won't be listed on the inspection report!), Alaskan homebuyers can ask the seller the following questions:
What quirks does the home have?
Does the window in the bedroom stick when it gets warmer? Does the refridgerator make noises from time to time? You'll want to gather all of the facts...
The summer season is upon us here in Alaska and with the market (and the weather!) beginning to heat up, many more buyers are out and about browsing available homes! But once you've found your dream home in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Wasilla, Palmer, or North Pole and you've moved on to applying for a mortgage, you may find that there is one factor that is stalling your loan approval— debt.
As we have mentioned in past blog posts, it's important to groom your credit score as much as possible before applying for a mortgage, but also to pay down high interest debt. There are a few common types of debt that will affect your mortgage approval and as your local real estate experts, we've listed them below!
Student loans—while considered unsecured debt—are not necessarily...