Area Real Estate News & Market Trends

You’ll find our blog to be a wealth of information, covering everything from local market statistics and home values to community happenings. That’s because we care about the community and want to help you find your place in it. Please reach out if you have any questions at all. We’d love to talk with you!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Disclaimer: this post does not constitute the giving of legal advice, and your reading this post does not create an attorney/client relationship This post is not intended to be exhaustive or substitute for legal advice. You are encouraged to consult a lawyer should you have questions about how this information may be applicable to your particular situation.

Feb. 15, 2018

GECU+Down+Payment+Assistance+Program

Get complete details about GECU Down Payment Assistance Program and First Time Home Buyer programs  as well as down payment assistance programs available in El Paso, Texas and participating mortgage lenders list. 

First Time Buyer Programs in El Paso

Find out if you are eligible for this program by contacting us at 915-873-8646.

Additional Resources:

 

Tu Primera Casa (Spanish pdf)

My First Texas Home (English pdf)

First Time Buyer Education classes in Spanish and English

Money Management Workshops

Affordable Rental homes

 

Government Programs

USDA Zero Down Programs -home must be on the USDA map to be eligible as well as a minimum credit score.

FHA Loan - Lowest down payment required and minimum credit score.

DPA programs - borrower may be eligible for up to $6000 for down payment cost

VA Loan - 100% financing loan with no down payment required. Eligibility certificate required (we help with that)

Grant Programs -Texas has what is called the Texas State Affordable Housing Corp (TSAHC

Good Neighbor Next DoorThese homes are HUD foreclosures set aside for Teachers, Firefighters, EMT, Law Enforcement, and Police at a 50% discount.

 

SEARCH FOR YOUR HOME

Feb. 13, 2018

GNND for Teachers, Police, Firefighters, EMT Buyers Q and A

 

1. Question: What Is the Good Neighbor Next Door (GNND)) Sales Program? Answer: HUD wants to strengthen America’s communities. The Good Neighbor Next Door Program offers HUD owned single family (one?unit) homes to eligible participants at a 50% discount.

2. Question: Am I Eligible for the GNND Sales Program? Answer: Law enforcement officers, teachers and firefighters/emergency medical technicians and who meet all other requirements of the program are eligible to purchase an available home.

3. Question: What Kind of Mortgage Financing Do I Need? Answer: You may use FHA, VA, or conventional mortgages, or cash. HUD requires you to sign a Second Mortgage and Note on the discounted amount also called “silent second”

GNND for Teachers, Police, Firefighters, EMS Buyers Q & A

hud store
4. Question: What is the Occupancy Period? You must live in the home as your sole residence for a full 36 months. The purpose of the program is to strengthen communities by encouraging employed, professional law enforcement officers, teachers and firefighters/emergency medical technicians to live in the community. HUD views the occupancy obligation seriously and vigorously pursues violators to the fullest extent of the law.
5. Question: Can I Sell the GNND Home after 3?years and Keep the Profit? Answer: Yes. After you live in the GNND home 3 years, you can sell the home and keep any equity and/or appreciation.
6. Question: Do I Have to Use a Real Estate Broker or Agent to Buy a GNND Home? Answer: Yes.

 

 

Feb. 11, 2018

Many+Cheap+Homes+-Low-No+Down+Payment+Assistance+Programs

Get complete details about the First Time Home Buyer programs  as well as down payment assistance programs available in El Paso, Texas and participating mortgage lenders list. 

First Time Buyer Programs in El Paso

Find out if you are eligible for this program by contacting us at 915-873-8646.

Additional Resources:

 

Tu Primera Casa (Spanish pdf)

My First Texas Home (English pdf)

First Time Buyer Education classes in Spanish and English

Money Management Workshops

Affordable Rental homes

 

Government Programs

USDA Zero Down Programs -home must be on the USDA map to be eligible as well as a minimum credit score.

FHA Loan - Lowest down payment required and minimum credit score.

DPA programs - borrower may be eligible for up to $6000 for down payment cost

VA Loan - 100% financing loan with no down payment required. Eligibility certificate required (we help with that)

Grant Programs -Texas has what is called the Texas State Affordable Housing Corp (TSAHC

Good Neighbor Next Door - These homes are HUD foreclosures set aside for Teachers, Firefighters, EMT, Law Enforcement, and Police at a 50% discount.

 

SEARCH FOR YOUR HOME

Feb. 9, 2018

Tired of Being a Landlord

Landlord Tips
Did you know that many of today's  landlording laws come from 100s of years of property law. Today's Texas property code consists of numerous acts and case law and is quite complex for most homeowners. Additionally the federal Fair Housing Act has additional legal responsibilities for landlords. The US Department of Housing and Urban Development was founded in 1965 during the height of racial tensions in the USA and further protects individuals from housing discrimination. 

Being a landlord carries these and other responsibility and is probably the most common reason that homeowners tend to hire a property manager to handle the management of their investment property. As a property manager and licensed real estate professional below are the areas I advise landlords to handle carefully and with all diligence:

1. Screen your potential tenant thoroughly 

2. Understand your lease and explain it completely to your tenant.

3. Document, Document, Document. From the screening to the move-out. 

4. Understand the eviction process now before there is a problem.

5. As a former paralegal of 20 years, I strongly recommend having an attorney familiar with real estate law available for consulting.

 

 RESOURCES:

Landlord resources

Feb. 7, 2018

Whats My Casa Worth

Whats My Casa Worth

Get the most for your home. The El Paso Market is hot. Use our home value tool.

Feb. 6, 2018

VA Loan Eligibility Certificate

VA Loan Application
Did you know you should request, or have your lender request, a COE as a part of your home buying process. The Certificate of Eligibility can be requested online at VA eBenefit link.

A VA lender uses your COE to establish your right to obtain a VA Loan. You will need to supply the lender with your DD 214 if applying as a veteran.

Active serviceman must supply A current statement of service: signed by (or by the direction of): the adjutant, personnel office, or commander of the unit or higher headquarters showing: Your full name Social Security Number Date of birth Entry date on active duty The duration of any lost time The name of the command providing the information And a surviving spouse must supply a VA form 21-534.

Since a COE doesn't expire you could use an existing certificate now but may need to update information by reaching out to a VA approved lender. Occasionally, your lender will as for additional information with can be obtained from the government's archives records. 

 

 

 

 

 

Feb. 6, 2018

Low Credit Score Mortgage Options

Low Credit Score Options 

 

FICO credit scores can be as low as 300 and higher than 850. The average credit score in El Paso, TX is 640 and nationally the average FICO score is 699. Local El Paso lenders will approve a mortgage loan as low as 620 and some Hard Money lenders will work with a score as low as 590. USDA lenders want your score to be above 660.  GECU in El Paso has impressive mortgage loan programs including Down Payment Assistance Programs.

 Minimum Credit Score in El Paso

Feb. 2, 2018

Tired of your Landlord?

Has your landlord made promises  but not delivered. Here are a few statements I've heard from tenants:

1. My landlord said I could rent-to-own;

2. My landlord said I would be able to eventually buy the house I'm in;

3. My landlord promises to help me qualify to buy the house I'm renting; or

4. I gave my landlord $10,000 as a down payment on the house I'm renting.

What's wrong with these statements? I can think of several violations under current Consumer Protection law, Landlord Tenant Act,  Truth and lending laws as well as Texas Property Code Title 8?  Landlord's responsibilities are numerous and are listed in the tenant's lease (a copy of which the landlord would have given the tenant). The landlord, even though he has been managing the home you are renting for many years and he/she may have promised many things, ultimately represents the home owner and not you and should have provided you with an Information about brokerage services. The first question your ask yourself as a tenant when the landlord is making promising on behalf of the seller is, has he/she disclosed his/her representation?

If a landlord is the agent of the seller and now want to act in a dual capacity to facilitate a sale of the rental to the tenant, he/she must obtain written consent from the seller and tenant/buyer to act as an intermediary and explain to both parties that they are giving up their right to undivided loyalty according to Texas Real Estate Commission. 

As we are discussing buying the home your are renting, a landlord has a duty to notify you, in writing, that the home has or will be sold and often your lease gives you the "right of first refusal" which you can exercise if another potential purchaser submits an offer.  A pitfall for potential renters/buyers that are not represented by their own separate real estate agent is when a landlord/owner offers to sell you the rental home when it's lender is in the process of foreclosing or the city is getting ready to foreclose for non payment of taxes. It is critical for tenants/buyers to beware of pending litigation or liens against the rental property so as not to be victimized by unethical real estate property managers and property owners. Have your agent read your lease for a "lease termination due to sale" clause. It will instruct the tenant how notice is to be delivered to the tenant and how much time the tenant has to move out. If you chose not to make an offer to purchase the rental home you are entitled to return of your security deposit subject to needed repairs and cleaning. Make sure to do a walk-through and take photos of the property before you return the keys. This will go a long way in proving what condition you left the home. 

 Additionally,  landlord can't lock you out of your rental home even if you are behind in your rent, he /she can't shut off utilities, seize your property if you haven't abandoned it, and he/she can't retaliate against you if you are exercising your rights under the law.   

 

 

 

 Yvonne Russell, REALTOR® contributed to this post.

 

 

 Disclaimer: this post does not constitute the giving of legal advice, and your reading this post does not create an attorney/client relationship This post is not intended to be exhaustive or substitute for legal advice. You are encouraged to consult a lawyer should you have questions about how this information may be applicable to your particular situation.
Jan. 16, 2018

Freeze Warning Advisory

 

Freeze Warning

 

Many first time home owners do not realize the precautions necessary when El Paso weather changes 

from our usual warm climate to freezing below zero temperatures.  Here are a few things you should

consider doing:

  1. Insulate outdoor facets with foam pipe coverings sold a Home Depot or other hardware stores;
  2. Drain any shut off valves leading outdoors;
  3. Disconnect all outdoor hoses and allow water to drain from the spicket;
  4. Keep your home at least 69 degrees so as to allow warm air through your bathroom and kitchen plumbing;
  5. To help relieve pressure to faucets and prevent ice blockage to faucets along the exterior walls of your home, plumbers recommend allowing a slow drip on nights when the temperature drops below freezing and open sink cabinet doors; and
  6. Know where the shut off value is to your main water supply is. Most new construction have a value in the garage. For older homes you will need to shut the water off at the street main in front of your house. If a pip bursts, stop the water supply and call a plumber

 

 

Jan. 15, 2018

First Time Home Buyer Program

Get complete details about the First Time Home Buyer programs available in El Paso, Texas and participating mortgage lenders list. 

First Time Buyer Programs in El Paso

Find out if you are eligible for this program by contacting us at 915-873-8646.

Additional Resources:

 

Tu Primera Casa (Spanish pdf)

My First Texas Home (English pdf)

First Time Buyer Education classes in Spanish and English

Money Management Workshops

Affordable Rental homes

 

Government Programs

USDA Zero Down Programs -home must be on the USDA map to be eligible as well as a minimum credit score.

FHA Loan - Lowest down payment required and minimum credit score.

DPA programs - borrower may be eligible for up to $6000 for down payment cost

VA Loan - 100% financing loan with no down payment required. Eligibility certificate required (we help with that)

Grant Programs -Texas has what is called the Texas State Affordable Housing Corp (TSAHC

Good Neighbor Next Door - These homes are HUD foreclosures set aside for Teachers, Firefighters, EMT, Law Enforcement, and Police at a 50% discount.

 

SEARCH FOR YOUR HOME