You Should Be Building Your Own Wealth… Not Your Landlord’s

There’s no doubt about it: buying a home is a daunting task. In fact, many potential buyers are nervous about the commitment and obligation that comes with buying a home.

If you’re more comfortable renting because you think you can’t afford buying a home, we should talk. The truth is, even when you’re a tenant, you’re still paying a mortgage. Unless you live completely rent-free with a relative, you’re helping someone build their equity and pay off their mortgage with your rent money every month.

You’re paying your landlord’s mortgage, and giving them a little extra for themselves each month. Wouldn’t you rather be building your own wealth?

If You’re Serious About Your Finances, You Should Buy a Home

Stacks of coins growing consecutively in size until they reach a large pot.Buying a home is one of the most surefire ways to build wealth for the long-term. Additionally, it gives you significant benefits to your credit score, as well as a sense of security.

When you own your home, you’re not at the mercy of your landlord—who may raise your rent whenever they see fit. Plus, owning your home means you can decorate and renovate it to match your unique tastes! You have complete freedom over what goes in and what comes out.

In Fact, It’s a Great Time to Buy in Raleigh

A white kitchen countertop with red flowers and a candle.The spring home-buying season is shaping up to be a good one. Interest rates are still historically low, while inventory only continues to grow. That means this spring will be a wonderful time to buy a home in Raleigh.

Get a head of the competition by beginning your home search today! Do some research and come up with an idea of what kind of home you’d like to buy.

If you need any help locating potential homes for sale in the area, please don’t hesitate to give us a call. At Linda Craft & Team REALTORS®, we have the inside scoop on the area’s best new listings.

Join the Home-Buying Ranks

It’s never too late (or too early!) to buy a home in Raleigh. Trust us, if you can afford to pay rent every month, you can afford to buy a home.

Plus, there are plenty of mortgage options out there that require little to no down payment! There’s no excuse not to take advantage of excellent market conditions and become a homeowner.

How Going “FSBO” Costs You More Money in the Long Run

If you’re selling your Raleigh home, chances are you’re trying to maximize your profits. It’s normal for homeowners to look for ways to sell their home for the most amount of money possible, while limiting all of their costs.

However, time and time again, I see new sellers opting to list their home as “FSBO” in order to save a few dollars. Listing your home as “FSBO” means going “For Sale By Owner,” or choosing to sell your home without hiring a real estate agent.

While listing as “FSBO” means not having to pay an agent’s commission, it has a lot of hidden costs and pitfalls and will actually cost you more money in the long run!

An Agent is a Professional in the Real Estate Industry

A professional reviewing graphs.Did you know that a home sold with an agent typically nets 6% more than one sold as “FSBO”?

That’s because an agent knows the real estate market really well—it’s their job after all! They’re an expert in their field, which means they know all the tips and tricks for selling homes.

In addition, it’s their job to stay on top of market trends, housing inventory, and sales prices. An agent knows how to price your home for the market you’re selling in.

Sure, you could rely on an automatic home value estimator to price your home, but those services are famous for being highly inaccurate.

All the “Hidden Work” Agents Do

If you’re choosing to sell your home without an agent, be prepared for a lot of work. After all, when you work with an agent to sell your home, you have them by your side to negotiate on your behalf.

As you sell your home, you’ll probably have to negotiate with:

  • The Buyer
  • The Buyer’s Agent
  • The Buyer’s Bank
  • The Appraiser
  • The Inspection Company
  • The Title Company

And an agent’s work doesn’t stop there! Your real estate agent is your guide to the world of real estate. They’ll be able to provide you with home-selling resources, advice on how to stage your home, an effective marketing strategy, and emotional support during a busy time.

Agents Know How to Reach Buyers

Two people sitting side by side on a couch, one is one a computer and the other is on a tablet.More than 50% of buyers find their home on the Internet. As such, if you’re going to sell your home you need to have a thorough online presence for your home.

A professional real estate agent is more likely to have a comprehensive Internet marketing strategy, as well as a top-tier website where buyers can search for homes.

Selling Your Raleigh Home? Let’s Talk

Here at Linda Craft & Team REALTORS®, we want you to make the most amount of money possible when you sell your home. That’s why we offer an array of complimentary home-selling resources, and a specialized marketing plan designed to give your property maximum exposure.

Don’t just take our word for it! Check out our home-selling track record, and see what our clients have to say. There’s a reason we’re the Triangle’s #1 real estate team: we sell homes quickly and for more money, and we’ll help you achieve all of your real estate goals.

Interested in learning more? Give us a call today to get started.

You Don’t Have to Wait Until Spring: Sell Your Raleigh Home for Top Dollar Now

There’s a common misconception that spring and summer are the only times to buy or sell a home. However, when it comes to selling your Raleigh home, that couldn’t be further from the truth!

The thing is, the price of any item is determined by the theory of “supply and demand.” If a lot of people are looking to buy an item, and the supply of that item is low, the price will increase.

Still not catching our drift? Let’s go more in depth.

The Raleigh Housing Inventory is Low

Luxurious dining room with lots of open space.Statistically, during the first few months of the year, the inventory of homes for sale in Raleigh is very low. That number picks up drastically come springtime—because sellers think that’s the most advantageous time to list their home!

However, if you’re looking to sell your Raleigh home, there’s no better time than the present. In fact, waiting until the spring may end up hurting you!

Now is the Time to List

A professional going over a brief on his computer.If you want to sell your home for top dollar, and within your timeframe, then it doesn’t make sense to wait. Buyers are highly motivated to buy a home right now, and there’s no way they’re going to wait until the spring.

Selling while the inventory is low, but the demand is high, is the most surefire way to make an incredible return on your investment in the Raleigh real estate market.

So, Are You Ready to Sell?

Allow our team to help make you the most amount of money possible in your home sale. There’s a reason Linda Craft & Team REALTORS® are the #1 ranked real estate team in the North Carolina Triangle. Our home-selling resources are endless and our success record is unmatched.

From pricing your home correctly to marketing it effectively and making sure closing day goes off without a hitch, Linda Craft & Team REALTORS® are here to help.

Want to start achieving all of your 2019 Raleigh real estate goals? Please reach out to us today.

 

Want to Build Your Wealth? It’s Time to Buy a Home in Raleigh

The most surefire way to begin building your wealth in the NC Triangle? Become a homeowner.

Buying a home essentially forces you to build wealth. To purchase a home, you have to apply for a mortgage loan to pay for it. Then, every month, you pay off a percentage of that mortgage. Each mortgage payment brings you a little bit closer to fully owning the home on your own, and makes your equity a little big bigger. To be honest, your home is really just one big savings account.

So, owning a home and paying your mortgage every month builds your wealth for the long run.

Owning a Home Leads to Financial Security

A white table with a checkbook and small stack of money.According to many housing experts in the real estate industry, buying a home before the age of 35 leads to being better prepared for retirement at age 60.

If you’re a millennial in the greater Raleigh area, you may believe that you can’t afford to buy a home because of the massive down payment or the high mortgage interest rates. However, that’s not actually true!

If you can afford to pay rent every month, you can afford to buy a home. Plus, with so many different mortgage options available, it’s not always necessary to pay a huge 20% down payment!

Navigate the Triangle Real Estate Market

Cute interior decor.It’s never too early to begin planning for your retirement. And, the sooner you begin saving, the better off you will be when it’s finally time to retire!

It’s no secret that housing wealth is the largest single source of wealth currently available. Plus, the emotional benefits that come from buying a home are on the same level as the financial benefits!

If you’re interested in building your wealth by buying a home in the greater Raleigh area, then it’s time to contact Linda Craft & Team REALTORS®.

You Deserve a Successful Real Estate Transaction

When you choose to work with Linda Craft & Team REALTORS®, you’re enlisting the help of an all-star team that will stop at nothing to make sure you achieve success in the Triangle real estate market.

As the Triangle’s #1 Ranked Real Estate Team, we know exactly how to help our clients find the perfect home. Give us a call today to explore your real estate options in the greater Raleigh area!

When’s the Best Time to List Your Home? NOW!

If selling your home is at the top of your New Years Resolutions, then it’s time to get started. Although the market is thought to “slow down” during the cold winter months, that doesn’t mean it’s not an advantageous time to sell your home.

In fact, now is the best time to sell your Raleigh home! Want to know why? Because homes are highly in demand, and inventory is at an all time low.

It’s a Seller’s Market

A luxurious outdoor pool with two red lounge charis.While the number of buyers has decreased over the past few months, inventory has been at an all-time low since November of 2018. Truthfully, there just isn’t enough inventory to satisfy what buyer demand there is.

For the last five months, the number of homes for sale has decreased substantially.

According to the National Association of Realtors, the number of homes for sale in the country decreased by about 190,000 from June to November of last year. While demand for homes has decreased slightly over the years, it still far exceeds the current inventory available.

What’s the Bottom Line?

Two professionals reaching across a table to shake each others hand.Now is the time to sell your home! Across the board, the best time to sell your home is when there’s less competition. In a market as competitive as the Triangle, where motivated buyers far outweigh current sellers, now is an incredible time to sell your home!

Selling your home during a “seller’s market” typically guarantees you a better price for your home, fewer hassles in the transaction, and a stress-free selling experience.

Ready to Sell Your Raleigh Home?

Linda Craft & Team REALTORS® are ready to help. We offer a number of different home-selling programs, designed to meet your unique needs as a seller.

Want to receive an instant offer on your Raleigh home? We can help with that, too. You can also research the market, see what homes are selling for in your neighborhood, and get specific home staging tips to make your home sell even faster.

Market Update: Are Low Interest Rates Going to Stick Around?

If you’ve been eyeing the Triangle real estate market for a while, you’ve probably noticed interest rates rising in 2018. As we enter the first quarter of the new year, it’s important to stay on top of changing mortgage interest rates.

Right now, interest rates for mortgages in the United States are on a downward trend. As 2019 began, the interest rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage dropped to just 4.51%. In addition, the growth of home prices are expected to slow.

So, what does it all mean?

It’s a Great Time to Buy a Home in Raleigh

A couple receiving the keys to their new home.If interest rates remain low, now is a wonderful time to apply for a mortgage and buy a home in Raleigh! As interest rates increased in 2018, many homebuyers decided to pause their search for a new home.

But, if you’re in the Raleigh real estate market, now is the time to pick the search back up! As we continue through 2019, the inventory of homes for sale in Raleigh is expected to pick back up, while interest rates are expected to grow slowly from 4.77 to about 4.93 by the end of the year.

How Much Will Interest Rates Increase in 2019?

A man and a woman meeting with a bank lender.Organizations like the Mortgage Bankers Association, Fannie Mae, and the National Association of Realtors project that interest rates will increase in 2019. However, they will not increase as rapidly or dramatically as they did in 2018.

The bottom line: if you’ve been hesitating on buying a home in Raleigh, it’s time to dive into the real estate market. Low interest rates, a growing inventory, and the slow growth of home prices have created ideal conditions for home buyers in Raleigh!

Ready to Find the Perfect Home in Raleigh?

Linda Craft & Team REALTORS® are here to help. With a combined 30 years of real estate experience in the Triangle, our team possesses the unique expertise necessary for making a highly successful home purchase.

We’re the #1 Triangle Real Estate Team for a reason. We offer customized services, in-depth real estate resources, and extensive real estate expertise to our Raleigh homebuyers. If you’re ready to expand your home search in Raleigh, then it’s time to give Linda Craft & Team REALTORS® a call.

Still Renting Your Home? There Are Better Options Available!

2018 is quickly drawing to a close, which means it’s time to start planning for the new year. If you’re still renting a home in the Triangle, please know that you have better options available!

Have you been dreaming of becoming a Triangle homeowner? You’re not alone! This is a wonderful area to invest in, and an ideal time to buy a home. Home values in the Triangle are expected to increase over the coming years. This makes now the time to act!

Take a look at our complimentary home-buying tools to get an idea of your options in the Triangle. Oftentimes, it’s less expensive to pay a mortgage every month than it is to keep up with annual rent increases, and all the other fees associated with leasing!

What Do You Dislike About Renting?

Young couple thinking and looking at a laptop computerAccording to a 2018 Bank of America Homebuyer Insights Report, 75% of millennial renters plan on buying a home in the next 5 years, and 38% are planning to buy in the next 2 years!

Those surveyed were also asked what they disliked about renting. 52% said rising rental costs were their biggest reason. Other factors included “not building equity,” “feeling like I’m paying my landlord’s mortgage,” and “not being able to have pets.”

There’s plenty of merit to that concern, as the median asking rent has risen steadily every year since the 1980s.

Common Misconceptions About Buying a Home

Bright living room interior with huge windows.If you plan out your budget every month, you’ve probably heard of this rule “don’t spend more than 30% of your monthly income on housing expenses.” Did you know that almost half of all renters surveyed in the Bank of America Report spend much more than that on their monthly rent?

When asked what was stopping them from buying a home, many responded that they “weren’t able to save the 20% down payment.”

However, this is one of the biggest misconceptions about buying a home! It is possible to buy a home without putting 20% down.

Ready to Explore Your Triangle Home Buying Options?

Allow our team of experienced Triangle real estate agents to guide you through the process. For more information about what kind of homes are available in the Triangle, and what your options are as a buyer, please get in touch.

As the #1 Real Estate Team in the Triangle, Linda Craft & Team, REALTORS® are fully prepared to find you the home of your dreams and negotiate an excellent price on your behalf.

Homebuying Success: A Simple Way to Build Your Wealth For the Future

Did you know that, unless you’re living somewhere rent-free, you’re paying for a mortgage. If you own a home, you’re paying your own mortgage and building wealth over the long run. However, if you’re renting, you’re paying your landlord’s mortgage.

If you’re currently renting a home, but want to build wealth for you and your family, then it’s time to invest in your future by buying a home. Buying a home is equivalent to forcing yourself to save money every month, and it will increase your wealth over the long run.

By paying off your mortgage every month, you’re paying off your debt and building your own wealth. Once that mortgage is paid off, you own your home and you’ll be surprised by the many invaluable benefits this will bring to your financial situation.

The Benefits to Homeownership

Luxurious bedroom with white curtains.Once your home is paid off, you own a tremendous asset worth hundreds of thousands of dollars: your home. In addition, paying your mortgage every month will increase your credit score and force you to save money (think of your home as your savings account). So, by paying off your mortgage you’re actually paying yourself.

Plus, when you buy a home in a market as competitive and ever-growing as the Triangle, your home’s value will increase over time. That means your wealth increases right along with it, even before you’ve finished paying off your home.

As you continue to pay off your home, you’re building something known as home equity. This is the percentage of your home that you actually own, and it grows every time you make a payment. Increased home equity means increased wealth… it’s just that simple.

The Market Continues to Improve

Happy couple looking at a computer screen and discussing their future.Now is a great time to become a homeowner, because housing prices are only continuing to increase across the country — but especially in the North Carolina Triangle. According to Pulsenomics, home values are expected to appreciate by an average of 3% every year.

You may be wondering “Linda, if home prices are going up, that means they’re getting more expensive. Isn’t it better to just continue renting?”

The answer is no! If you buy a home by the end of next month, you lock in your home for that price. While your monthly mortgage payments will reflect that price and that price alone, you’ll actually make money over the years as your home’s value appreciates. Here’s an example:

John and Mary buy a home in North Raleigh for $250,000 in January. Over the next 5 years, their home appreciates in value by 3% every year. At the end of that five-year period, John and Mary have built up nearly $40,000 in home equity. While they’re still paying for a $250,000 home, their home is actually worth almost $290,000!

That’s without any major repairs or renovations! They’ve made an additional $40,000 in forced savings by living in their home and paying their mortgage every month. If they ride out their entire mortgage period (let’s say, a 20-year term fixed interest mortgage), how much do you think their home will be worth when they’re done paying for it?

Build Your Wealth by Buying a Home in the Triangle

If you’re ready to expand your wealth by buying a Triangle home, then it’s time to contact Linda Craft & Team Realtors®. Our team has unsurpassed experience in the Triangle, ample home-buying resources, and a commitment to achieving your goals.

For a streamlined and successful home-buying experience, rely on Linda Craft & Team Realtors®.

LINDA CRAFT & TEAM REALTORS AND CRAFT COMMERCIAL INVITE YOU TO GIVE THE GIFT OF LIFE

Who Says There is No Such Thing as a FREE Lunch

American Red Cross

At Linda Craft & Team Realtors and Craft Commercial, we’re extremely passionate about supporting local communities through organizations like the American Red Cross. We are pleased to host our Second Annual Blood Drive at our office on June 26th from 11am – 3:30pm.

During the summer months there is a decline in donations causing a significant shortage of the overall blood supply in our local hospitals. Our local Red Cross urgently needs people to give blood to help save lives.

  • If you would like to donate blood to support our local hospitals, visit redcrossblood.org and enter sponsor code: Craft to schedule your life-saving appointment.
  • If you can’t attend, you can still help save lives by making a monetary donation, visit: redcross.org/lindacraft
  • THE DAY OF THE DRIVE you can save some time by doing your pre-reading and donation questions online at redcrossblood.org/RapidPass

EVERYONE WHO REGISTERS TO GIVE BLOOD WILL RECEIVE A FREE LUNCH FROM DADDY BOB’S BBQ FOOD TRUCK!!! (11:00am-2:30pm)

Daddy Bob's Food Truck

Please help us save lives by signing up today!

 

Linda Craft & Team REALTORS is a locally-owned, full-service Real Estate Company with over 30 years of experience and 2 billion dollars in home sales. Honors include: NC Women-owned Business Hall of Fame, Humanitarian Award, and the Carolina Hurricanes Corporate Real Estate partner since 2006. Our company mission and core values focus on Expert Market Knowledge coupled with Raving Fan Customer Service to ensure complete client satisfaction. For more information about Linda Craft & Team, Realtors, please call 919-235-0007 or visit www.lindacraft.com

 

When you work with Craft Commercial to buy, sell, or lease property in the Triangle, you benefit from the entire team rather than just one agent’s knowledge and skills. With a whole team of commercial real estate experts acting in your best interests, you can quickly and easily achieve your real estate goals. For more information or to schedule an appointment with Craft Commercial, please call 919-446-5000 or visit www.craftcommercial.com.

Linda Craft & Team – Check List for Spring Cleaning

Whether you bought your home from Linda Craft & Team last year or ten years ago, it may be time for a good spring cleaning. Set aside a Saturday (time) to get it done and solicit the whole family to help. To be as organized as possible, you’ll need a plan, a logical way to navigate the whole house.  Here is a handy floor to ceiling check list from Linda Craft & Team, REALTORS.  Let’s get started!

FOYER:

  • Wipe walls, ceiling and trim
  • Dust and wipe down all light fixtures
  • Wash doors, knobs, and switch plates
  • Empty out coat closet. Donate items that no one uses anymore
  • Clean or replace entry mat
  • Sweep and mop floors
  • Wipe doors with a Magic Eraser and wipe doors with disinfectant

 

BEDROOMS:

  • Open the windows and air out the room – as long as the pine dust is not falling
  • Dust furniture
  • Go through your dresser draw by draw; empty out content and wipe down the drawer. Donate items you no longer need or want. It’s best to bag them up and go ahead and place them in your car
  • Move the bed; sweep and vacuum under the bed.
  • You can freshen up your mattress by sprinkling a little baking soda on the bare surface, letting it sit for 15 minutes, and then vacuuming it up. You can also add essential oils like lavender, eucalyptus or peppermint to the baking soda to add your favorite scent
  • Wash all the bedding and curtains. Wash pillows and duvet in hot water
  • Dust lights and lamp shades with a lint roller
  • Wash windows and window sills
  • Clean mirrors and dust art
  • Wipe doors with a Magic Eraser and wipe doors with disinfectant
  • Sweep and mop floors or vacuum – consider professionally cleaning carpets

 

BATHROOMS:

  • Open windows if pine dust is not flying
  • Empty all cabinets and vanity. Wash inside and replace items neatly. Discard expired medications and cosmetics
  • Wash outside of cabinets and vanities
  • Clean tub and drain
  • Clean toilet inside and out. Be sure to clean around seat bolts and check tightness
  • Clean sink and drain
  • Shine faucets
  • Clean mirror and frame
  • Dust light fixtures – wash if glass
  • Wash windows and window sills
  • Wash switch plates
  • Wipe down walls and trim
  • Wash floor registers and other vent covers
  • Sweep and wash floors

 

KITCHEN:

  • Open windows
  • Remove and clean window coverings
  • For each cabinet or drawer. Remove items, wipe out drawers, and replace items back neatly. Donate unneeded items
  • Wash and sanitize cutting boards
  • Sharpen knives
  • Wash cabinet doors and knobs
  • Organize pantry
  • Clean oven
  • Clean stove top. Remove elements, clean, and put back
  • Check food expiration dates in freezer and discard any expired items
  • Clean under refrigerator and stove
  • Vacuum refrigerator coils
  • Clean microwave by heating a glass of water and vinegar and letting it sit and steam inside; then wipe down.
  • Clean crumbs out of toaster and toaster oven
  • Wipe down counters and back splash
  • Clean dishwasher
  • Dust light fixtures
  • Wash windows and window sills
  • Wipe walls and trim as needed
  • Wash doors and door knobs
  • Sweep and mop floor

 

LIVING ROOM / FAMILY ROOM / PLAYROOM:

  • Open windows if it is past pollen season
  • Wash windows and window sills
  • If window screens have been in all winter, take them out and wash them
  • Vacuum all furniture
  • Spot clean furniture where needed or professionally clean fabric
  • Wash all blankets and throw pillows
  • Dust shelves and tables
  • Clean TV screen and dust all electronics
  • Sort books and magazines
  • Wipe walls and trim as needed
  • Wash fireplace screen or clean ash for wood burning fireplaces
  • Sweep and mop floors

 

OUTSIDE:

  • Sweep porches and walkways
  • Wash thresholds
  • Wash exterior doors. Paint front door if needed
  • Clean or replace welcome mat
  • Have outside surfaces power washed if needed

 

Do you need assistance with any of these projects? At Linda Craft & Team we have an excellent list of talented professionals who provide home care services in the Triangle area. All of them have our stamp of approval from deep cleaning to plumbers! Call our Raleigh office today to get a copy – 919-235-0007. And by the way, when you tackle that home office, remember our Annual Shred Event to be held May 12th from 10am – 2pm at 7300 Six Forks Road. Securely dispose of all those sensitive documents you no longer need!