Jenn Pfeiffer
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first time homebuyers - The Jenn Pfeiffer Team
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first time homebuyers Tag

Think Your Property Taxes Are High? See How Much Homeowners Pay in the Cheapest and Most Expensive States

By Clare Trapasso | Realtor.com Homebuyers looking to avoid high property taxes probably shouldn’t move to New Jersey. The Garden State continued to have the dubious honor of having the nation’s highest property taxes, according to a recent report from personal finance website WalletHub. New Jersey homeowners paid a median of $9,345 in 2022, according to the report. That’s compared with the typical homeowner who paid just $2,869 in property taxes a year, according to U.S. Census Bureau data cited in the report. “Americans who are considering moving and want to maximize the amount of money they take home should take into account property tax rates, in addition to other financial factors like the...

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Don’t Let the Latest Home Price Headlines Confuse You

From our friends KCM Based on what you’re hearing in the news about home prices, you may be worried they’re falling. But here’s the thing. The headlines aren’t giving you the full picture. If you look at the national data for 2023, home prices actually showed positive growth for the year. While this varies by market, and while there were some months with slight declines nationally, those were the exception, not the rule. The overarching story is that prices went up last year, not down. Let’s dive into the data to set the record straight.  2023 Was the Return to More Normal Home Price Growth If anything, last year marked a return to more normal home price...

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Why So Many People Fall in Love with Homeownership

From our friends in KCM Chances are at some point in your life you’ve heard the phrase, home is where the heart is. There’s a reason that’s said so often. Becoming a homeowner is emotional. So, if you’re trying to decide if you want to keep on renting or if you’re ready to buy a home this year, here’s why it’s so easy to fall in love with homeownership. Customizing to Your Heart’s Desire Your house should be a space that’s uniquely you. And, if you’re a renter, that can be hard to achieve. When you rent, the paint colors are usually the standard shade of white, you don’t have much control over the upgrades, and you’ve...

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Houses Are Still Selling Fast

From our friends in KCM Have you been thinking about selling your house? If so, here’s some good news. While the housing market isn’t as frenzied as it was during the ‘unicorn’ years when houses were selling quicker than ever, they’re still selling faster than normal. The graph below uses data from Realtor.com to tell the story of median days on the market for every January from 2017 all the way through the latest numbers available. For Realtor.com, days on the market means from the time a house is listed for sale until its closing date or the date it’s taken off the market. This metric can help give you an idea of just how quickly homes...

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6 Reasons Why It Makes Sense To Sell a Home Right Now—Before the Spring Rush

By Jillian Pretzel | Realtor.com Thinking about selling your house in 2024? While many home sellers wait until spring to put their property on the market, there are some distinct advantages to getting ahead of the curve this year and listing sooner rather than later. Generally, the cold weather season causes home sales to be sluggish, but this winter is a bit different. High interest rates kept much of America’s real estate market in a deep freeze for most of 2023. But now that rates have subsided a bit in the new year, there is a whole lot of pent-up demand (and supply) that could burst onto the market at any...

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What Are HOA Fees—and What Do They Actually Pay For?

Curious about homeowners association fees? Here’s how HOA fees are collected and used. By Kristine Gill | Better Homes There are two major components to a homeowners association (HOA). The first is that the organization oversees a set of rules particular to the residential community. The second component is the associated fee required for living in the community and how the HOA fees benefit the homeowners. “An HOA fee is typically structured per community to enforce rules and regulations so it can set the covenants, conditions, and restrictions,” says Donna Soda, Realtor and global real estate advisor. “The idea is to maintain the community in a beautiful manner.” DEFINITION: What is a homeowners association? A homeowners...

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3 Key Factors Affecting Home Affordability

From our friends in KCM Over the past year, a lot of people have been talking about housing affordability and how tight it’s gotten. But just recently, there’s been a little bit of relief on that front. Mortgage rates have gone down since their most recent peak in October. But there’s more to being able to afford a home than just mortgage rates. To really understand home affordability, you need to look at the combination of three important factors: mortgage rates, home prices, and wages. Let’s dive into the latest data on each one to see why affordability is improving. 1. Mortgage Rates Mortgage rates have come down in recent months. And looking forward, most experts expect...

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Are More Homeowners Selling as Mortgage Rates Come Down?

By our friends in KCM If you’re looking to buy a home, the recent downward trend in mortgage rates is good news because it helps with affordability. But there’s another way this benefits you – it may inspire more homeowners to put their houses up for sale. The Mortgage Rate Lock-In Effect Over the past year, one factor that’s really limited the options for your move is how few homes were on the market. That’s because many homeowners chose to delay their plans to sell once mortgage rates went up. An article from Freddie Mac explains: “The lack of housing supply was partly driven by the rate lock-in effect. . . . With higher rates, the...

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2 Reasons Why Today’s Mortgage Rate Trend Is Good for Sellers

From our friends in KCM If you’ve been holding off on selling your house to make a move because you felt mortgage rates were too high, their recent downward trend is exciting news for you. Mortgage rates have descended since last October when they hit 7.79%. In fact, they’ve been below 7% for over a month now (see graph below): And while they’re not going back to the 3% we saw during the ‘unicorn’ years, they are expected to continue to go down from where they are now in the near future. As Dean Baker, Senior Economist at the Center for Economic Research, explains: “It also appears that mortgage rates are now falling again. They will almost certainly not...

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What to Look for in a Multigenerational Home

By Kristine Gill | Better Homes & Gardens More and more people are living in multigenerational homes. Here are some features to look for in a home for everyone, according to experts. More and more, Americans are finding themselves living in multigenerational households. Some do it for financial reasons, while others are looking to care for aging relatives more easily. As more and more people seek to bring multiple generations of the family together under one roof, you might find yourself on the market for a home that can accommodate this type of living arrangement. “The demand for multigenerational homes has exploded over the past few years, especially since the...

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