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The Cope Real Estate Team's Blog

The Cope Real Estate Team


Displaying blog entries 141-147 of 147

Avoid Foreclosure

by The Cope Real Estate Team

I recently ran across this blog post on another site about avoiding foreclosure. It is a long post but has some great information for people possibly facing foreclosure-



FHA To Make Some Changes

by The Cope Real Estate Team

Federal Housing Administration has announced some possible changes for 2008. A few of these should have significant impact on the local housing market if they do happen.

The biggest one is that they will be raising their loan limits to $417,000. It is currently $280,250 for the Kern County area. This means a borrower could potentially get 100% financing on a home up to $417,000 and have their closing costs paid! This could really help speed up the sales of homes in a little higher price range, by offering a 100% finance option without the PMI or 80/20 programs with the high interest rates that are available now. The trickle effect of that could be that once the sellers of these homes around $400,000 are able to sell, they will in turn go out and buy homes in the $500,000 range and so forth.

Another new loan type they will be considering is a 40 year option instead of just the traditional 30 year.

The last major change could be offering loans to people with credit scores as low as 500. Typically you have to have at-least a 580 to have a shot at an FHA loan.

None of these changes are in stone yet, but even if 1 or 2 of them go through it could be the much needed bailout the housing market has been waiting for. We'll keep you up to date as more information comes out, but please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions in the meantime.

Have a great week!


Mortgage Market Update

by The Cope Real Estate Team

Moving to head off further damage to the economy from the August credit squeeze, the Federal Reserve reduced its key lending rate a greater-than-forecast, half percentage point on September 18th….the first cut we have seen in four years.


“The tightening of credit conditions has the potential to intensify the housing correction, and to restrain economic growth more generally,” the Fed stated.  Policy makers said they were ready to ‘act as needed to foster’ growth and price stability.


Indications are that the Fed will once again cut the benchmark rate by a quarter percentage point at the October 31st policy meeting, and may reduce it even further in December.


The affect could mean further reduction to the rates consumers pay on their credit cards, auto loans, and home equity lines of credit. 


These are signs are better times to come for the housing market with the government trying to do what they can to help stabilize the market. There are still many loan programs available with historically low interest rates.


If you have any questions or would like to find out if you should consider a refinance to a more favorable loan, please don't hesitate to contact us today!


Anne Galvez

Buying Foreclosures

by The Cope Real Estate Team

This is something that has become a huge part of Bakersfield's real estate market. Unless you live in a cave you have probably read some statistic somewhere or talked to someone who "knows everything" about foreclosures in Bakersfield. I'd like to clarify a few things and point out a few of the pro's and con's when looking into purchasing a foreclosure. The first and most important thing is to clarify the difference between an actual bank owned (commonly called REO or real estate owned) home and a seller who still owns their home and is trying to sell it for less than what they owe to prevent a foreclosure (commonly called a short sale).

 SHORT SALES- A short sale happens when someone would like to sale their home but they owe more to the bank than what it is worth on the open market and they do not have the money to pay the difference to the bank. Most of the time they can no longer afford their monthly mortgage payment and they need a way out. Most bank's require the seller to already be in default of their monthly payment and to have some sort of hardship that has caused them to no longer be able to afford their home.

 Once these homes enter the market a lot of times they are priced very low to attract buyers as quickly as possible due to the fact that a foreclosure is in the near future. However once an offer is received it still must be approved by the bank no matter what the offer is. Sometimes this approval process can take in excess of several weeks. There is also no guarantee the bank will accept any offer at all short of the full amount owed.

 If you are looking to buy a home and are not in any hurry these can sometimes turn out to be good deals. It is important to ensure that both your REALTOR and the sellers are familiar with short sales and will be able to negotiate with the bank on the buyer and sellers behalf.

 REO (Bank Owned)- These are the actual true foreclosures. They are homes that the bank has foreclosed on and now owns. Once the bank owns the property they may try to sell it at auction and if it does not sell it comes on the market through the banks REALTOR. What makes these such a great deal is that the bank cannot and will not continue to own the property. They MUST sell! They will set their price based off of several REALTORS recommendations and continue to lower the price until it sells.

 A few things to consider with these properties are that most of the time the bank is selling them "as is" and do not want to make any repairs on top of what they have done to get the home ready to be on the market. This can mean that you will need to be prepared to get a home inspection and make any repairs that need to be done yourself after escrow closes. Most foreclosures need a little TLC if for no other reason than they have been vacant for a while.

 The bank is also going to want a 30 day escrow and is going to be very strict on time-frames and earnest money deposits. Your REALTOR and lender must be very diligent to ensure you meet all of the time-frames during escrow to ensure you don't lose your deposit. The bank will also often have a penalty of $100 or more a day for every day late the escrow closing is even if it is something out of your control, ie... your loan program changed, the appraiser took too long to get the appraisal to the lender, etc....

 Both of these examples can be a chance to get a nice home and one that is sometimes well under market value. It is important though that you understand the difference and what kind of home you are attempting to purchase before you put an offer together. There are many parts to both of these that are not explained here. My goal was to give a brief explanation of these two very different types of transactions. If you would like to discuss foreclosures in more detail, please do not hesitate to contact us and we can provide you with more in depth information based upon your particular needs.

 Have a great day and come back soon!



Things to consider when looking for a new home

by The Cope Real Estate Team
When it comes to buying a new home the process can be overwhelming. 
Begin with asking yourself these four questions: What?, Where?, When?, and Why?
What: What criteria is it that you want your new house to have? Or what is it that your current house does not have? Do you want more room? This could be in terms of square footage, more bedrooms, a bigger backyard, bigger garage, and so on. Once you come up with a list of criteria begin with what is most important to you and prioritize them in order. Ask yourself are there things on this list that I “have to” have and are there things that are not so important or that I can live without.
Where: Where do you want to live, what part of town? Where may be decided based on your job and its location. Or it may be based on schools for your children. A deciding factors may be your child care and where it’s located. This is a very important factor in deciding on your new home because it can not be changed! Remember you can always remodel but you can not pick up your home and take it elsewhere.
When: When will you be ready to move? Would you like to move in the summer when your children are out of school? Is your move immediate? Are you waiting to sell your current home? Are you waiting for a legal settlement? 
Why: Why have you decided to move from your current home? What are the features that you would like to improve? 
By keeping these things in mind and a little help from your REALTOR, you will be able to find a new home that fits your needs for years to come!
         Mandy Bradford

Buying Up in a Down Market

by The Cope Real Estate Team

Ok, its no secret that Bakersfield is in a DOWN real estate market. There are some positive things happening though that look like better times ahead. What I would like to talk about is how to capitalize on the down market.

First thing is if you are considering buying a home and do not have a home to sell, get out there and buy! Interest rates are still historically low & there are some great bargains out there. It may take a little time to sort through the 5,000+ homes on the market and find the great deals, but they are definitely there.

The problem is that a lot of people have a home they need to sell and are concerned about listing their home and not getting what they feel it is "worth". We have some very simple advice on that- If you are going to be buying up (a larger or more expensive home) now is the time to do it. You may not get as much for your existing home, but you will more than make up the difference on the new "buying up" home that you will purchase. For easy math lets say you would like to get $300,000 for your existing home and then buy a home around $400,000. If the market has came down 10% and you can only get $270,000 for your home you would also be able to get the new home for 10% less or $360,000. So you are ahead $10,000. The math is not always that simple but we would be more than happy to sit down with you and assess your current value and your future needs.

If you are looking to downsize on your next home or relocate to a new area, the same theory will work in reverse and it may be wise to hold out until things turn around a little. Please feel free to contact us anytime if you would like to discuss your homes value or receive a list of homes in your price range.

Have a great day!



by The Cope Real Estate Team

Thanks for stopping by our new blog site! Bookmark us and stop by often we will be keeping you up to date on all the current market conditions, loan programs, Bakersfield news, etc...  We would like to encourage you to post any comments or to contact us any time with any questions or ideas on what you would like to see here on our site.


Displaying blog entries 141-147 of 147

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Contact Information

The Cope Real Estate Team
Keller Williams Realty
5601 Truxtun Ave #150
Bakersfield CA 93309
Fax: 661-670-5210

Jared Cope DRE# 01506193 | The Cope Real Estate Team