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The Hollinden Team Louisville KY Real Estate Blog

10602 Elder Ln, Prospect, KY 40059

Welcome to 10602 Elder Lane! This five bedroom and three-and-a-half -bathroom home is located in the desirable Prospect golf community, GlenOaks. GlenOaks is accessible by taking Brownsboro Road to Worthington Lane.

10602 Elder Ln Front

As you approach this home, you will first notice the curb appeal. The landscaping is nicely maintained and the front of the home is inviting. There are a few rose bushes in the landscaping and a lovely water fountain. On the front of the home, there is a covered porch large enough to put a table or a swing. The stunning glass entry door adds to the curb appeal.

10602 Elder Ln Foyer

The foyer boasts a neutral paint color, hardwood floors, trey ceilings, and updated cage pendant lighting. To the left of the foyer is the dining room. The dining room features neutral paint color, wainscoting, an updated rubbed bronze light fixture, hardwood floors, large windows, and arched entryways with columns.

10602 Elder Ln Master Bedroom

The owner’s suite is straight off of the hallway. The owner’s suite is quite spacious and includes the following: double trey ceilings, windows with views of the rear of the home, a neutral paint color, and carpet. The owner’s bathroom includes dual vanities, ample cabinetry, rubbed bronze hardware on doors, heart shaped whirlpool tub, separate marble corner shower, and a toilet room. The walk-in closet is also accessible from the owner’s bathroom. The walk-in closet features plenty of shelves and racks for clothing and storage.

10602 Elder Ln Kitchen

Take a right out of the owner’s suite and you will enter the great room. The great room includes a corner gas fireplace with marble hearth, updated ceiling fan, hardwood floors, a neutral paint color, crown molding, arched entryway with columns, and plenty of windows to let in natural light. The eat-in kitchen is parallel to the great room. The kitchen boasts custom cabinets with lighting underneath, granite countertop, ceramic tile backsplash, hardwood floors, new stainless steel appliances (all appliances remain), breakfast bar, and center island. There is plenty of counter space in the kitchen, allowing a lot of room for meal preparation or serving food to guests. The eating area includes bay windows and an updated light fixture. The dining room, great room, and kitchen flow into each other nicely, making a perfect space for entertaining. In addition, there is also a half bathroom and laundry room on the first floor. The laundry room has wainscoting and shelves for storage.

10602 Elder Ln Loft

Walking to the second floor, you will notice the gorgeous banister with iron spindles. Once you have approached the top of the steps, you will see the loft area first. The loft area has vaulted ceilings, skylights, carpet, and a ceiling fan. The loft could be used various ways such as an office, playroom, or another great room. There are three large bedrooms on the second floor that include ceiling fans, walk-in closets, and carpet. There are also two bathrooms on the second floor that include ceramic tile, marble vanities, and linen closets. One of the two bathrooms is an en-suite bathroom.

10602 Elder Ln Basement

Moving to the lower level walkout basement, you are greeted by the spacious family room. The family room features a corner gas fireplace with a ceramic tile hearth, carpet, and a neutral paint color. Also in the basement is the home office/fifth bedroom. This room includes hand scraped hardwood floors, egress windows, and walk-in closet. This room also provides access to a small paver patio. There are 2 - 15 light French doors that separate the office/fifth bedroom from the family room. The lower level is also roughed in for a full bath.  In addition, there are two unfinished areas in the basement. There is an unfinished room with egress windows that could be used as a sixth bedroom. Also, there is another unfinished area that is currently being used as a storage/workshop area.

10602 Elder Ln Patio

On the back of the home, you’ll find a large covered deck with ceiling fan. The professionally landscaped backyard is very private and is lined by mature trees. The 3.5 car garage offers plenty of space for storage.

For a private tour of this gorgeous home located at 10602 Elder Lane, known as Louisville MLS 1459080, give the Hollinden Team a call at 502-429-3866. If you want to see other homes for sale in GlenOaks, The Hollinden Team can help you with that as well.

 

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Low Ball Offers on Homes: Real Estate Offer Strategy

Low Ball Offers on Homes: 5 Real Estate Offer Strategies

Low Ball Offers on Homes

I think we can all agree that we would love to find a good deal on a home. However, low ball offers aren’t always realistic, especially in our current market conditions.

Even though we are moving into the fall season, homes are still selling at a rapid pace. Currently, we are still in a seller’s market in Louisville. It is very common to see a home that is in good condition sell within a day and sometimes within a few hours. We anticipate seeing this trend continue on until November. 

We are commonly asked by home buyers what is the lowest offer suggested to put in on a home. Typically, any offer that is $10,000 or more below the listing price is considered a low ball offer on a house.

In this market, if you just want to put in a low offer because you want to get a good deal, you will likely not get the house. However, if there is a good reason behind putting in a low offer, you may have a chance at getting the home. In this blog, I will discuss what you should do to increase the chances of your low ball offer being accepted.

Here are a few pointers for putting in a low ball offer on a home:

1.)   Research Market Conditions- Since the real estate market is very hot right now, you have to take that into consideration when submitting an offer on a home. Sellers may not consider a low ball offer just because homes are selling so quickly right now. We see changes in the market all the time. If we move into a buyer’s market, you may have a better chance at buying a home for a lower price. Bottom line, you have to thoroughly understand your market.

2.)    Do Your Homework- How long has the home been on the market? How much do homes in the same neighborhood sell for? What condition is the home in? How well do homes in the neighborhood appreciate? These are all questions you need answers to before you put in an offer.

3.)    Respect the Sellers- Low ball offers can offend sellers. It is best to be as respectful as possible when submitting your offer. I would suggest asking your REALTOR to write an email along with the offer or make a phone call to the listing agent that explains your rationale behind your offer. The homework you have done on the home will come in handy when explaining your rationale. Were you unable to find comps in the neighborhood that reflected the listing price? Did the condition and time on market justify a lower offer? Whatever the reason is, explaining yourself sometimes lessens the blow.

4.)    Have Your Finances in Order- If you are going to put in a lowball offer, make sure you can present a preapproval letter right away. If your offer is low, you need to make sure that everything else looks attractive when the offer is presented. Sellers like to see that you are preapproved regardless of the price of the offer. However, it could help your case a little bit if you are submitting a lower priced offer. If you are submitting a cash offer, your proof of funds should be submitted along with the offer.

5.)    Submit a Clean Offer- If you are going to put in a low offer, make sure your offer is as clean as possible. In section 25 of the sales contract, you can list other provisions. Examples of other provisions would be the swing set to remain; seller to have the oven professionally cleaned; seller to have a ghost inspection; closing to be 90-120 days from now; sale contingent on getting another job; etc. If you are putting in a low offer on a home, you really don’t want to ask for much from the seller. It is best to keep your offer as simple and clean as possible.

Hopefully, this advice will leverage you to get your low offer accepted. I will reiterate that lower offers can be very difficult to get accepted. This advice won’t guarantee to get your offer accepted; however, it could increase your chances.

What are your thoughts on low offers on a home? Do you have any questions or comments regarding the topic? Leave your comments and questions below. As always, feel free to contact the Hollinden Team regarding the real estate market: 502-429-3866.

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3223 S Winchester Acres Rd, Louisville, KY 40223

3223 S Winchester Acres Road is now under contract.  Stay tuned for future opportunities or call The Hollinden Team at 502-429-3866 for more information homes in Winchester Acres. Welcome to 3223 S Winchester Acres Road! Built in 2003, this custom built brick home is located in the Winchester Acres subdivision off of Old La Grange Road. Drive up to this lovely home and you are greeted by mature trees and a well-maintained landscaping. This home is located on a secluded cul-de-sac, providing privacy for the owners. Walk up to the front of the home and you will see an elegant partially glass front door. The landing to the front door is large, allowing for plenty of room for potted plants or decorations.

3223 S Winchester Acres Rd Front

Enter the home and you will see the spacious and bright two-story foyer. The foyer has neutral paint, hardwood floors, and vaulted ceilings with a modern chandelier.  To the left of the foyer is the dining room. The dining room features crown molding, a modern chandelier, and vaulted ceilings. The half bathroom is located in the hallway between the foyer and the kitchen. In the half bathroom, you will find hardwood floors, updated wood vanity, neutral paint color, and oil rubbed bronze faucet.

3223 S Winchester Acres Rd Foyer

Walking straight down the hall from the foyer, you will enter the great room. The great room boasts neutral paint color, vaulted panel ceilings, new crown molding, and a fireplace. From the great room, you can access the eating area, allowing for a nice flow when entertaining. The eating area has plenty of space for a large kitchen table.  The eat-in kitchen is spacious, making it the perfect space to entertain. The kitchen boasts black granite countertops, hardwood floors, new crown molding, and an updated backsplash.

3223 S Winchester Acres Rd Kitchen

Also on the first floor, you will find the owner’s suite. The owner’s suite has neutral colored walls, updated ceiling fan, and windows facing the backyard. Enter the owner’s bathroom through the lovely French doors. The owner’s bathroom includes dual vanities, ceramic tile floors, Jacuzzi bathtub with a separate shower, and toilet room. The walk-in closet is accessible from the owner’s bathroom. The walk-in closet features numerous shelves and racks, offering a multitude of storage options.

3223 S Winchester Acres Rd Bedroom

On the second floor, there is a catwalk with views of the foyer and great room. There are three bedrooms and one bathroom on the second floor. Each bedroom has a closet and ceiling fan.

3223 S Winchester Acres Rd Bedroom

The finished basement is a perfect space for entertaining. The layout is very open and spacious, allowing plenty of room for guests. There is an additional room in the basement that is being used as a playroom.

3223 S Winchester Acres Rd Basement

Moving to the back of the home, you will be impressed with the covered patio. The patio boasts wood paneled ceiling with can lighting, hot tub, and two tropical leaf ceiling fans. The patio is yet another great place to entertain guests at this house year around.

3223 S Winchester Acres Rd Back Porch

For a private tour of this gorgeous home located at 3223 Winchester Acres Road, known as Louisville MLS 1458592, give the Hollinden Team a call at 502-429-3866. If you want to see other homes for sale in Winchester Acres, The Hollinden Team can help you with that as well.

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11 Ways to Save for Your Down Payment

Saving for Your Down Payment

Saving for a downpayment on a home can be difficult, especially if it is your first home. I know that when I was saving for my first home, I have to develop a strategy in order to save money each month.

The first question most prospective home buyers ask is, “how much money do I need to put down?” It is most often suggested to have a 20% down payment when purchasing a home. Twenty percent down payment helps avoid Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI). PMI can cost homebuyers several hundreds of dollars a month. If you are unable to put 20% of the sales price down, there are loan options that allow you to put 3.5% down. Some loan programs even allow you to put just one percent down!

If you struggling to save for your down payment on your home, consider some of the following tips:

  1. Get Preapproved- The first step in saving for a down payment for a home is knowing how much you can afford. You can do this by setting up an appointment with a lender. The Hollinden Team has preferred lenders that we can recommend to you.
  2. Determine How Much You Want to Spend- When your lender preapproves you for a loan, he should be able to give you an idea of what your monthly mortgage payment will be based on sales price and interest rate. The lender will also be able to determine the down payment necessary based on the price of the home. After examining these numbers, you should begin to determine what you can afford. If you have not visited a lender yet, feel free to use our mortgage calculator. Keep in mind, interest rates sometimes fluctuate. Fluctuation will impact your projected monthly mortgage payment and your down payment. Keep in contact with your lender to stay up-to-date on the latest interest rates.
  3. Set a Timeframe- Your timeframe to move really depends on how much you need to save for a down payment. If you need to move quickly and don’t have much money saved up, you may want to consider purchasing a cheaper home.
  4. Create a Budget- Listing all of your expenses and where your money is going every month makes people more accountable and aware of how they spend their money. You may find that you are spending money on unnecessary items that can be cut out.
  5. Cut Out Unnecessary Spending- Do you really need that $5 Starbucks latte every morning? Could the beach vacation wait this year? There are probably many expenses you could cut out of your budget. If you are trying to aggressively save for a down payment, anything that is not a necessity should be cut out of your monthly budget.
  6. Create a Savings Account- Your checking account and savings account should never be bundled in one account. It is best to separate these accounts so that you know which money is off-limits.
  7. Treat Savings like a Bill- Just like your cable bill or water bill, saving money every month should be treated like a bill you have to pay. When you do this, you become more disciplined when saving your money. To ensure that you pay your monthly savings ‘bill’, consider setting up a monthly automatic deposit from your checking account to your savings account.
  8. Cash Reward Credit Cards- Cash reward credit cards are a great way to save money for your down payment. Chase Freedom Unlimited, Bank Americard Cash Rewards, Citi Double Cash Card, and Capital One QuickSilver are just some of the few credit cards that offer cash back options.
  9. Sell Unused Items- We all have items that we aren’t using. Consider selling the items on Craigslist, Facebook Yardsale, or Ebay.
  10. Avoid Car Payments- If your car is already paid off, consider keeping your vehicle rather than purchasing a new one. Not having a car payment can save a tremendous amount of money monthly.
  11. Downsize- If you live in an apartment, consider downsizing to a smaller apartment to save money. You could also look into other apartments in the area. You may be able to find an apartment cheaper than the one you are living in for the same size. Often, apartment communities offer promotions to new residents. This could be something you could take advantage to save money. Another option is moving in with family. This isn’t always realistic for some but if you are able to do this, you could save a lot of money.

 

Do you have any questions or comments regarding saving money for your down payment? Are there any other money saving tips that you’ve tried that we didn’t mention? Leave your questions and comment below. Feel free to call the Hollinden Team with your questions as well: 502-429-3866. 

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USDA Reduces Fees

USDA Reduces Fees

Excellent news! USDA recently made a major reduction in fees charged to borrowers. In this article, we will discuss which fees have been reduced and how you can use our mortgage calculator for USDA loans. First, let's discuss the basics regarding USDA loans: 

What is a USDA loan?

USDA stands for United States Department of Agriculture. The USDA’s Rural Development (RD) loans are for homes in rural areas.  These are commonly referred to as RHS loans or Rural Housing Service loans.  Most of our clients use the guaranteed program as opposed to RHS direct. There are some requirements to obtain an RD loan, including the particular rural area the home is in. Not all rural areas qualify for a USDA loan. USDA will make the determination regarding which areas will qualify. In Kentucky, Jefferson County is not eligible for USDA loans. However, USDA loans are eligible in areas such as Bullitt County, Oldham County, Spencer County, Nelson County, and much more.

Although USDA loans are eligible in these areas, USDA will make the final determination where or not a home qualifies for a USDA loan. Also, there are some household income requirements in order to obtain an RHS loan.

Some of the questions asked by USDA regarding income eligibility are the number of people in the household, the number of residents under 18 years old, the number of disabled residents or full-time students, and loan applicants or co-applicants age 62 or older. USDA also requires that homebuyers occupy the home as their primary residence. For more information, visit the USDA eligibility section on the website. You can type in the address of the home that you have an interest in to see if is eligible.  

USDA Makes Major Reductions to Fees

USDA/RHS loans offer 100 percent financing, which means as a buyer you aren’t required to put down any money when you purchase the home. This is uncommon amongst loan programs unless you are a veteran and obtain a VA loan. If 100 percent financing wasn’t enough, USDA has also reduced some of their fees!

Currently, USDA mortgages charge the following fees: an upfront guarantee fee and an annual fee. Starting October 1, 2016, these fees will be reduced. As of right now, the current upfront fee is 2.75% and the current annual fee is 0.50%. The new upfront fee will be 1.00% and new annual fee 0.35%. The reduction of fees will last up until September 30, 2017. Another reduction is possible in 2017. Usually, USDA will examine financial information and make a decision whether or not more reductions should be made or raise fees again. USDA announced that the reason behind this reduction in fees is due the performance of current borrowers (Lane,2016).

Mortgage Calculator for USDA Loans

Our mortgage calculator is a great tool to use to determine mortgage payments on a house. If you would like to use our mortgage calculator to determine your monthly mortgage payment for a USDA loan, follow the instructions on the mortgage calculator page. Also, add the additional information below:

-Enter Down Payment : 0

- Enter Annual PMI: 0.35%

Do you have any questions or comments regarding USDA's fee reduction? Please leave your questions and comments below. If you would like to speak to a lender about obtaining a USDA loan, contact the Hollinden Team. We have preferred lenders that we can recommend to you.

References:

Eligibility. (n.d.). Retrieved September 19, 2016, from http://eligibility.sc.egov.usda.gov/eligibility/welcomeAction.do 
Lane, B. (2016, August 26). USDA slashing mortgage fees. Retrieved September 19, 2016, from http://www.housingwire.com/articles/37882-usda-slashing-mortgage-fees 
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5 Most Common Myths About Buying a Home

5 Most Common Real Estate Myths

Working in real estate, the Hollinden Team often hears many myths associated with purchasing a home. We decided to debunk some of the most popular myths that we hear often:

•    You Must Pay Your Buyer’s Agent’s Commission- When you are purchasing a home, you are not required to pay your buyer’s agent’s commission. The seller pays the listing agent’s commission.  The listing agent, in turn, shares their commission with the buyer’s agent.  There are some extremely rare cases where the buyer can pay some commission, but that is another whole article.

•    You Need to Have Perfect Credit- This myth is far from true. There are many loan programs available that lend to buyers with credit scores as low as 620; some loan programs lend to buyers with credit scores as low as 550! The loan process may take a little bit longer and the buyer may have to provide more paperwork than normal. However, lending to buyers will less than perfect credit is possible.  The advantage of owning versus renting greatly overshadows the amount of trouble to get this loan.

•    You Must Have 20 Percent Down Payment- Putting 20 percent down on a mortgage loan is ideal if you have the funds. Putting a 20 percent down payment helps homebuyers avoid paying Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI or MI). There are many loan programs available that allow as low as one percent down. VA loans actually allow you to put zero percent down on the home if you are a veteran.

•    Home Inspections Aren’t Necessary on New Construction- One of our most recent blogs about home inspections touched on this issue. There is a very interesting story on this blog about new construction home inspection that you will want to read! Bottom line, a home inspection is highly recommended for new construction homes. It is always good to have a second set of eyes looking at new construction homes once it is completed.

•    Prequalified and Preapproved Mean the Same Thing- When a lender prequalifies you for a loan, the lender will ask for basic information so that he/she can determine how much you can afford. Getting preapproved by a lender requires a lender to evaluate your financial information and credit score. You will also have to submit a mortgage application.

Can you think of any other common myths about buying a home? Feel free to comment below with any questions regarding this article. Feel free to give the Hollinden Team a call regarding all of your real estate questions: 502-429-3866.

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