Do You Know The Current Mortgage Rates For Whatcom County?

Thinking of buying, selling, or refinancing?  The mortgage rates are a must know! Interest rates are the rates at which money can be borrowed for a set period of time. The higher the rate, the more money a borrower must pay in the form of interest on the loan. When mortgage rates are lower, this makes the purchasing of a home more affordable. Although the cost of mortgages is closely tied to the interest rate, the price at which homes are sold does not always appear in direct correlation.

MortgageRates2-8-19

Thank you Sidney Stonecypher at People’s Bank Home Loan Center for the rates. If you have any mortgage questions you can reach her at 360-650-5365!

The Snow is Falling! Do You Need Anything? If So, We Are Here for You!

Flakes are starting to fall outside!

With the cold conditions and more snow and wind in the forecast,we just wanted to check in on you and see if you need anything?
Forecast

If you or any of your neighbors are in need during this winter weather, don’t hesitate to reach out via email or phone. We have a large list of local resources to assist you with frozen pipes, wind storm clean up and more!
Here are a couple tips to make sure your pipes don’t freeze in this weekend’s storm:
  • Make sure your crawl space vents are closed.
  • If you know your pipes are prone to freezing cover with foam insulation or consult an expert about heat tape installation.
  • Leave a small hot drip on your faucets, especially if they are on a outside wall.
  • Turn up your heat in the house. Maintain this heat the same throughout the day and night.
  • Plumbers recommend a home temperature of 65 degrees, for weather 35 and above, and then one degree more for every 5 degrees it drops outside.

Example: 35 degree temperature outside, 65 degrees inside your home

30 degree temperature outside, 66 degrees inside your home

10 degree temperate outside, 70 degrees inside your home

Stay safe and warm friends! Remember, we are here if you need ANYTHING!  
Call us today at (360) 303-2734 or email us at Info@JohnsonTeamRealEstate.com

The KonMari Method: Helping You Prep Your House For Sale

The KonMari Method: Helping You Prep Your House For Sale | MyKCM

One of the biggest challenges sellers face when listing their house is decluttering. Cleaning out some of the more personal decorating choices allows buyers to imagine themselves living in the house.

Those planning to sell soon are in luck! Marie Kondo, the inventor of the KonMari Method of Tidying Up, has gained popularity with her new Netflix series. She gives some great tips for sorting through years of accumulated possessions that we all collect in our homes.

“The KonMari Method™ encourages tidying by category – not by location – beginning with clothes, then moving on to books, papers, komono (miscellaneous items), and, finally, sentimental items. Keep only those things that speak to the heart, and discard items that no longer spark joy. Thank them for their service – then let them go.”

When you subjectively look at all of your belongings, you can sort through the ones that mean the most to you. Not only will you increase space for more joy-bringing items in your new home, but you will also have a much easier time packing remaining belongings!

“Remember, tidying up isn’t about getting rid of stuff. It is about creating an environment that sparks joy and improves your quality of life.”

When selling your house, first impressions matter! Before you or your agent schedule a photographer to take photos for your listing, make sure to tour your home with fresh eyes. Look for any imperfections that a buyer might notice.

When you sort through your more sentimental items, consider packing them away to ensure that you know where they all are. That way, they are safe during open houses and showing appointments. This will also cut down on the amount of packing you need to do right before you move!

Bottom Line

Whether you are selling your house to move up to a larger one, downsizing, or moving in with family, only bring the items that truly spark joy for you. This will not only help cut down on the items you move, but also ensures that you’re off to a great start in your new home!

One More Time… You Do Not Need 20% Down to Buy a Home

One More Time... You Do Not Need 20% Down to Buy a Home | MyKCM

The largest obstacle renters face when planning to buy a home is saving for a down payment. This challenge is amplified by rising rents, which has eaten into the amount of money renters have leftover for savings each month after paying expenses.

In combination with higher rents, survey after survey has shown that non-homeowners (renters and those living rent-free with family or friends) believe they need to save upwards of 20% for their down payment!

According to the “Barriers to Accessing Homeownership” study commissioned in partnership between the Urban Institute, Down Payment Resource, and Freddie Mac, 39% of non-homeowners and 30% of those who already own a home believe they need more than a 20% down payment.

The percentage of those who are aware of low down payment programs (those under 5%) is surprisingly low at 12% for non-homeowners and 13% for homeowners.

In a recent Convergys Analytics report, they found that 49% of renters believe they need at least a 20% down payment.

The median down payment on loans approved in 2018 was only 5%! Those waiting until they have over 20% may already have enough saved to buy now!

There are over 45 million millennials (33%) who are mortgage ready right now, meaning their income, debt, and credit scores would all allow them to qualify for a mortgage today!

Bottom Line

If your five-year plan includes buying a home, let’s get together to determine what it will take to make that plan a reality. You may be closer to your dream than you realize!

PENDING in just hours! Single Level Home in Bellingham’s Edgemoor Neighborhood

JUST LISTED!.(1)

Wow!  112 Bayside is officially pending, that was fast!

This single-story home 3 bedroom, 1 3/4 bath home features an open bright floor plan.  The updated kitchen is open to the living area with vaulted ceilings and a cozy fireplace. It is a 3 bedroom but may be better served as a 2 bedroom and a large office. The master has a walk-in closet, laundry, en suite bath- plus a door out onto the deck. Outside there is a large fenced yard that is quite private and mature. Just a 7-minute walk to Fairhaven out the Cowgill Ave driveway.

Whether you are looking for a home like this or have a home to sell in the area, we would love to put our proven experience to work for you! Give us a call at (360) 303-2734 or email us at Info@JohnsonTeamRealEstate.com to learn more!

Check out Whatcom County’s Current Mortgage Rates!

Thinking of buying, selling, or refinancing?  The mortgage rates are a must know! Interest rates are the rates at which money can be borrowed for a set period of time. The higher the rate, the more money a borrower must pay in the form of interest on the loan. When mortgage rates are lower, this makes the purchasing of a home more affordable. Although the cost of mortgages is closely tied to the interest rate, the price at which homes are sold does not always appear in direct correlation.

mortgage rates 1-31

Thank you Sidney Stonecypher at People’s Bank Home Loan Center for the rates. If you have any mortgage questions you can reach her at 360-650-5365!

You’re Invited to Learn the Latest in Tax Changes and Deductions That Might Impact You!

Tax Seminar Social ImageAre you wanting to stay up to date on the latest changes in tax deductions  or rates?

Join us The Muljat Group on January 30th from 6pm to 7pm as we host local CPA and Tax Professional Vaughn Hagen.   Vaughn will be addressing the latest in tax changes and also be hosting a question and answer session.
If you have questions about:

-Changes in individual tax rates

-Changes in dependency exemptions

-Changes in standard or itemized deductions

-Changes in estate tax law

-Changes to meals & entertainment rules

-Changes to like kind exchanges

-Or you name it ?????????????????????????’s

Vaughn will be here to answer any & all of them.

Call Rich Johnson  today to  RSVP at 360.319.3267 or email him at Rich@JohnsonTeamRealEstate.com!

What is the Cost of Waiting Until Next Year to Buy?

What is the Cost of Waiting Until Next Year to Buy? [INFOGRAPHIC] | MyKCM

Some Highlights:

  • The cost of waiting to buy is defined as the additional funds it would take to buy a home if prices & interest rates were to increase over a period of time.
  • Freddie Mac predicts interest rates to rise to 5.1% by the end of 2019.
  • CoreLogic predicts home prices to appreciate by 4.8% over the next 12 months.
  • If you are ready and willing to buy your dream home, find out if you are able to!

Buying a Home this Year? Here Comes the Inventory!

The top reason homeowners cited for not listing their home for sale in 2018, was their belief that they would be unable to find a home to buy. After 3 years of declining inventory for sale, we’re finally starting to see more listings come to market! Let’s get together to chat about what this means for our market!

Last Chance! Homes are a Bargain Compared to Historic Norms

Last Chance! Homes are a Bargain Compared to Historic Norms | MyKCM

A loaf of bread used to be a nickel. A movie ticket was a dime.  Not anymore. Houses were also much less expensive than they are now. Inflation raised the price of all three of those items, along with the price of almost every other item we purchase.

The reason we can still afford to consume is that our wages have also risen over time. The better measure of whether an item is more expensive than it was before is what percentage of our income it takes to purchase that item today compared to earlier. Let’s look at purchasing a home.

The COST of a home is determined by three major components: price, mortgage interest rate, and wages. The big question? Are we paying a greater percentage of our income toward our monthly mortgage payment today than previous generations? Surprisingly, the answer is no.

Historically, Americans have paid just over 21% of their income toward their monthly mortgage payment.

Though home prices are higher than before, wages have risen as well. And, the most important component in the cost equation – the mortgage rate – is dramatically lower than it was in the 1970s, 1980s, 1990s, and 2000s.

Today, according to the latest Home Affordability Index just released by the National Association of Realtors, Americans are paying 17.4% of their income toward their mortgage payment. That is much lower than the 21% average previous generations have paid.

Last Chance! Homes are a Bargain Compared to Historic Norms | MyKCM

Bottom Line

The cost of purchasing a home today is a bargain compared to previous generations when we look at it from a percentage of income basis. However, with mortgage rates expected to increase and home prices continuing to appreciate, that will not always be the case. Whether you are buying your first home or looking to move-up to a more expensive home, purchasing sooner rather than later probably makes sense.