Barker And Hedges Real Estate Blog

Mortgage Loans for Doctors

Special Loan Program for Doctors

There is a new mortgage loan program available for medical physicians (MDs) and even residents and interns!  While most traditional mortgage loan programs require 20% down payment if you want to avoid paying mortgage insurance, this new loan program for qualifying Doctors offers down payments as low as 5% with no mortgage insurance.  In addition, this program offers loan amounts up to $1,000,000 and even as high as $1,500,000 with a 10% down payment.

This is a great new program and here is where you can find more information about the Preferred Doctor Program.

...

Twin Cities Market Update Week Ending February1, 2014

As we emerge from the seemingly never ending polar vortex, the real estate market is beginning to show signs of life.  The most recent market stats continue to favor home sellers with lower inventory and higher median sale prices.  Here is a breakdown of the year over year stats for a few key categories:

  • New Listings: DOWN 16.9% over last year.
  • Homes for Sale (inventory): DOWN 9.1% over last year.
  • Median Sale Price: UP 12.4% over last year.

To give a little more context to this information, there are just under 12,000 homes for sale in the Twin Cities right now and last year at this time there were just over 13,000 home listings and those following the real estate industry were noting at that time that the overall listing inventory was exceptionally low...and now it is even lower.  The lack of available homes is causing median and average sale prices to increase.  If you would like more information about the market stats in your area, please visit our Twin Cities Market Statistics page for additional information that is updated daily.

...

How Setting the Right Price Can Help Sell a Home

Setting the asking price correctly can help you with a swift and successful sale. The first few weeks a home is for sale on the market is the best chance for selling a home at a good price, in a reasonable amount of time,

right_pricing_home_for_sale_282Because of the low inventory in markets across the United States, home buyers are searching the MLS listings every day, waiting for the right home to go on the market. If your home is priced right from the beginning, you will be in the best position to attract home buyer attention and sell the house for a good price within a time frame you can live with. If your price is set too low, you might get a lot of attention and some lowball offers, but you stand a chance of losing out on thousands of dollars.  If your price is set too low, less people will come to look and offers to pay your impractical price will be few and far between. You could reduce your price, but by that time you will have likely missed out on home buyers who might have been interested.

How Are Prices Set?

Determining what an initial asking price should be involves research on the real estate market and judgment that comes from experience. The basic steps include, but are not limited to:

  • Assessing the homes against similar home in the neighborhood that have sold recently or are presently for sale.
  • Defining what features of the house make the home special among others currently up for sale in the area.
  • Deciding how much to invest in improvements that could increase the marketability of the home to earn the best sale price.

A good sale price will be close to the market value of the house, which is continuously shifting. Setting the right price from the beginning...

What $225,000 Buys in Burnsville

13601_james_avenue_south_mls_hid817083_roommainexterior_2304


Here is MLS #4405982. This remodeled home is set up on a huge double lot, .76 acres, and is surrounded by a what you could desribe as a park setting. This move in ready home is beautiful inside, starting with the newly remodeled kitchen complete with stainless steel applicances and granite countertops.This home is located at 13601 James Avenue South, Burnsville, MN.

13601_james_avenue_south_mls_hid817083_roomkitchendiningroom_400


The upstairs have impeccable hardwood floors to match the wood cabinets in the kitchen. The home features a lot of open space giving potential homeowners endless possibilites of what to do with the large rooms. 

13601_james_avenue_south_mls_hid817083_roomentrywaylivingroom_400

 

The downstairs is carpeted, and offers plenty more open space and storage possibilities.

13601_james_avenue_south_mls_hid817083_roomofficemainlevel_400...

What $469,000 Buys in Eagan, Minnesota

891_oak_court_mls_hid817087_roommainexterior_400


Here is MLS #4409097. This absolutely gorgeous, 3514 square foot home is located in one of Eagan's most sought after neighborhoods. This home is filled with plenty of amenities like stainless steel kitchen appliances, granite countertops, newly re-finished wood floors, and a huge back patio surrounded by a private fenched in yard. It is located at 891 Oak Court, Eagan MN, in a cul-de-sac, a prime location for families with young children.

This home feautures four large upper level bedrooms, five in total, four bathrooms, and as you can see in the image above, a three car garage. 

891_oak_court_mls_hid817087_roommasterbedroom3_400

 
The foyer has plenty of sunlight coming in from the windows to light up the space to accentuate the beauty in the wood.

 

891_oak_court_mls_hid817087_roomfoyerlivingroom1_400

 
The kitchen not only has the look of a quality space, but has the right features to make any home cook fall in love instantly. 

891_oak_court_mls_hid817087_roomkitchen_400...

What $229,000 Buys in Eagan, Minnesota

3708_denmark_ct_mls_hid820608_roomexteriorfront1_2304

 

Here is MLS #4411448. This beautiful, 1724 square foot, 3 bedroom walkout rambler is updated with plenty of modern features all tucked away on a private cul-de-sac. It's located at 3708 Denmark Court Eagan, MN 55123.

3708_denmark_ct_mls_hid820608_roomcasualdiningkitchen_400

The home built in 1976, has been updated all over, including the kitchen which features silestone countertops with ceramic backsplash and hardwood floors. The kitchen is also connected to a dining room, both of which overlook the wooded area surrounding the house. 

3708_denmark_ct_mls_hid820608_roomfamilyroomlowerlevel3_2304_01

 
The basement features an office, a family room, and an entertainment room.

3708_denmark_ct_mls_hid820608_roombackyard2_2304


The backyard is huge and has plenty of room for a family...

What $200,000 Buys in New Hope, Minnesota

Here is MLS # 4380631. This attractive split-level home for sale is located at 2744 Ensign Ave N in New Hope, Minnesota.

home_for_sale_in_new_hope_mn_640

It has 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, and 1,887-square-feet of space. The house is in a fantastic location in a high-demand area.

new_hope_mn_home_for_sale_kitchen_635

Built in 1972, this beautifully updated home features a large master bedroom and an addition that creates an open main level.

3_season_porch_home_for_sale_in_new_hope_mn_640

Enjoy the summer nights in the 3 season porch overlooking the private back yard! This home is a must see! It can be yours for $200,000.

Browse more New Hope MN real estate
Browse other Twin Cities Homes for Sale

...

Phasing Out Fannie and Freddie?

If you’ve been paying attention to the news coming out of Washington lately, you may have heard that Congress plans to shut down Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The plans would phase out the government-controlled mortgage guarantee giants over the course of five years.

fannie_mae_freddie_mac_485.

The push to dismantle Fannie and Freddie is a result of the housing crisis the country has experienced. Freddie and Fannie teetered under a crush of massive losses on risky mortgages before being bailed out to the tune of $187 billion, about 2/3 of which has already been paid back to the government.

The House Republican bill would practically entirely privatize the mortgage market, andd limit the Federal Housing Administration to insuring loans only for first time home buyers and lower-income borrowers. The Senate's bipartisan plan includes a new agency that has a continued, but more limited, government role in insuring a wider range of mortgage securities.  The idea behind both of these plans is to shift more mortgage financing risk from to the private sector to prevent taxpayers paying for future bailouts.

But there's a price homebuyers would likely pay for having private investors shoulder more risk to protect taxpayers.

"It will mean higher mortgage rates," said Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's Analytics. "The question is how much higher."

Typical borrowers could pay about $75 per month in extra interest payments, about half a percentage point, on an average mortgage under the Senate proposal, Zandi estimated, and about $135 more under the House plan. That's on a conforming...

Home Building Activity Ticks Up in the Twin Cities

As consumer confidence and incomes rise, home building activity in the Twin Cities metro area continues to rebound. According to the Builders Association of the Twin Cities (BATC), housing construction so far this year is up 23 percent from the same period in 2012, putting builders on a track for their best year since 2007.

homes in blaine mnDuring June alone, 496 permits were issued to build 912 units. Minneapolis led the top five cities permitting 380 units. Brooklyn Park and Woodbury were in the second position with 31 units, followed by Ramsey with 29. Construction of new homes in Blaine MN, Chanhassen MN and Lakeville MN tied for fifth place with 23 units permitted each.

So far this year, builders were issued 2,379 permits to build 4,204 units, a dramatic change from this time four years ago when there were only 1,633 units.

In the south metro, Lakeville continues as the busiest homebuilding market in Dakota County and one of the metro area’s most active. The city has recorded 172 permits since the beginning of the year through the end of June, up from 107 for the same period a year ago.

In the north metro, Blaine is closing in on Coon Rapids for the title of largest city in Anoka County. It was the ...

Minneapolis and the Twin Cities Rank No. 1 for Parks

The Trust for Public Land declared Minneapolis and the Twin Cities the nation’s best big city for public parks, followed by New York, Boston and Sacramento, Calif.

Minneapolis parks

Jayne Miller, superintendent for the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board, said the work the board has done over the years earned the award.

“The city was built around the park system, not the other way around,” she said. “We are unique from the standpoint that the park system was built as an economic driver for the city.”

Recent Minneapolis parks projects include the East Phillips Park Cultural and Community Center and new synthetic turf fields; a new beach, boardwalk playground and picnic area at Theodore Wirth Park; and the Phillips Community Center renovation.

“This is an honor not for the Park Board but for the citizens of Minneapolis because they’re the ones 130 years ago who established an independent park board,” said John Erwin, president of the Park and Recreation Board. “Because they valued parks and understood they greatly enhance lives.”

Minneapolis, the 48th largest city, wasn’t ranked when the last list was created in 2012, but it was included this year when the index was expanded to the 50 most populous cities in America. Although St. Paul, the 66th largest city, was not rated by ParkScore, the Trust for Public Land analysts determined that if the two cities had been evaluated as a single municipality, it still would have ranked at the top of the list. Minneapolis parks and St. Paul parks also made appearances in a similar 2008 ranking of parks. 

Minneapolis parks ranked high in several categories, including...

From our Blog

RSS Feed

Home

Posts By Category

Architecture & Construction (27) Being Green (47) Buying a Home (33) Community Events (79) Community Information (66) Featured Listings (22) Foreclosures & Short Sales (15) Home Improvement & Remodeling (6) Home Staging & Curb Appeal (36) Just For Fun (32) Real Estate News (77) Real Estate Technology (21) Selling a Home (15) Strange But True (18) Twin Cities Community News (25) Unique Homes & Real Estate (3)

Posts By Month

NEW LISTING EMAIL ALERTS

Be the first to know when new listings hit the market.

Sign Up Now
Twin Cities Market Stats

Pricing trends, average days on market, and more, updated every day.

View All Stats
What's My Home's Value?

Our professional analysis includes data on recent sales and current market trends.

Find Out Now