Finding the Right School When House Hunting

For homebuyers with children, the school district a home resides in is almost as important as the price of the home itself. Parents want to ensure their kids get the best education possible and might even move just to get their kids into a better school district. With such a high premium put on schools, here are a few tips homebuyers can use to find the right school district.

Report Cards

Sites like School Grades offer parents insight into how well a school performs. It will show basic testing scores and may even show SAT and ACT success rates. Having these objective numbers is a great way to know how well a school will prepare a child for the real world.

Think Long Term

When parents are checking out schools they need to look at all the schools their child may attend while living in this home. If the elementary school is great, but the high school is terrible, this location may not be as good as it seems. Parents need to think long-term when assessing school quality.

Get a First-Hand Look

Looking at test scores and other numbers is great, but sometimes you need to see for yourself. Thankfully, most school board and PTA meetings are open to the public so you can pop in and see what the school is really like. This is also a great opportunity to talk with real parents about their experience with the school.

Finding the right school is an important part of finding a new home. After all, kids will spend very formative years in the schools they go to. If you’re looking for a new construction home in top-notch school districts, call Perry Hood Properties. We have a wide selection of home sizes and options in some of the best school districts in the area.

 

 

 Red Flags Mortgage Lenders Look For

red flag

Before the bank will foot the bill for a house, buyers will have to get past one very important person – the loan officer. This person is in charge of ensuring only financially stable people get a loan. To make this determination, they look at financial data like money for a down payment and closing costs, and whether or not buyers are able to regularly make their monthly payments. A lot of this work is done by reviewing bank statements, which is why it’s so important to get financial records in order before submitting a loan application.

Unexplained Large Deposits

Loan officers will check to see if there are any large deposits to your bank account that may seem irregular. While they won’t hold a sudden windfall of cash against a buyer, having multiple and sporadic large deposits can raise some red flags because it can suggest the money is coming from less than legitimate sources. If for some reason a buyer’s financial history has a lot of sudden spikes, it’s a good idea to have a good explanation ready.

Overdraft Charges

Buyers will normally have to submit two months of bank statements with their application. If those statements are riddled with overdraft charges, lenders won’t be happy. This can be a sign a buyer doesn’t know how to manage their money well.

Non-Disclosed Loans

Another red flag that may get raised is personal loans from family or friends. If loan officers see the same amount of money going to the same person every month it can be interpreted as a non-disclosed loan. A common example is a home buyer getting a loan from their parents to buy a car or help pay for school.

If any of these red flags apply to you, don’t worry too much. In most cases, these issues won’t constitute an automatic rejection, but you might have to produce more financial records to appease the loan officer.

Important Questions to Ask When Buying a New Construction Home


new construction homes

Asking the right question can make all the difference. This is especially true when shopping for a big ticket item like a car, or house. We want all our home buyers to be completely satisfied with their purchase, and that means no surprises after the papers are signed. To keep customers happy and surprises to a minimum, here’s a list of important questions home buyers should ask when buying a new construction home.

What are the plans for the neighborhood?

If the development is in the initial phases, it’s a good idea to find out what the builder plans to do with the rest of the property. Are they going to keep it a small community with just a few homes, or are they planning another 75 homes in the next year? The answer to this question can have an impact on your property value.

What are the homeowners association rules?

If your community has an HOA, make sure you know their rules and regulations and how much dues will be. Most HOAs are pretty harmless, but some have very strict rules on sheds, color of tarps, landscaping, and fences.

What options for finishes do you offer?

Finishes will make all the difference in a home. This can include the flooring, cabinets, light fixtures, countertops, and lots of other things. The finishes in the house will have a huge impact on the quality and price. Make sure you know all your options for finishes as well as the associated costs.

What is your warranty policy?

Every quality new home builder should offer some sort of new construction home warranty. These policies typically cover any workmanship defects for one year and structural problems for 10 years. Every builder will define workmanship defects and structural problems differently so it’s important to know up front what’s covered and what’s not.

3 Things to Know About Buying a New Construction Home

new construction

Buying a new construction home is a little different than buying a used home, and buyers should educate themselves on these differences if they’re considering a new construction home. Thankfully, these differences aren’t too difficult to navigate once you know what you’re dealing with. If you’re thinking about buying your first new construction home in Tulsa, here are three things you should know.

Buying Before Building

One of the most unique things about buying a new construction home is you can buy the home before it’s even built. It might sound scary to buy a home you’ve never seen before, but this is why we build model homes. The purpose of a model home is to give home buyers a chance to walk through the floorplan they’re interested in and check out all the available features. While this won’t be the actual home they buy, it will give them a chance to try before they buy. The biggest advantage of buying before the home is built is you get to pick out different features and customize the home to your liking.

It’s Not Personal, It’s Business

When you buy a home from an owner who lived in the home and raised their family there, they will likely have some level of emotional attachment to the home. After all, they made so many memories there and it was a huge part of their life. This emotional attachment can sometimes lead to sellers inflating prices to cope with the emotions of selling their home. Buyers working with a custom home builder won’t have this problem. Since we never lived in the home, we have zero emotional attachment to the home. Our prices will only be influenced by cold hard numbers.

Experience Matters

If this is your first venture in the new construction arena, working with a home builder who’s been around the block a few times is vitally important. Perry Hood Properties has more than 20 years of experience building new homes in Tulsa and we can help guide you through the process. Our team will treat you with respect and ensure you know all your options to help you make informed decisions.

3 Phases of House Hunting

house hunting

Are you ready to get serious about house hunting? Once you’re past the stage of casually popping into open houses on your way home from the supermarket, it’s important to have a plan to keep you on track. No two home buying experiences will be exactly the same, but there are three general phases.

Just Dream a Little

When you’re starting out, it’s okay to picture your dream house. This can serve as a baseline for your ideal home that has everything you want. However, it’s important to remember that this dream may not come to life and you may have to compromise a little here and there. Once you have your dream home in mind, do a mental walkthrough and figure out what is a need and what is a want. Making this distinction will help you move to the next phase.

Get Realistic

With your list of needs and wants in hand, you can figure out how much you can afford. Getting pre-approved for a mortgage before you put an offer on a house will help your offer seem more legitimate, and hopefully speed up the closing process. You’ll need to get all your financials in order before you head to the bank, so make sure your credit score is looking good and you know how much of a monthly payment you can afford.

Open Season

Now that you know your needs from your wants and how much you can afford, it’s time to house hunt with confidence! If you’re looking for a used home, it’s best to get in contact with a local realtor. But if you’re looking for a new construction home that can be customized to your liking, call Perry Hood Properties. For almost 40 years, we’ve been turning dream homes into real homes. Give us a call to get the process started!

Easy Ways to Boost Curb Appeal


curb appeal

If you’re looking to upgrade your starter home to a new construction home, you’re probably on the hunt for easy ways to make your home sell fast. One of the easiest ways to boost your home’s value is by improving the curb appeal. Whether buyers are shopping online or showing up to an open house, the front elevation will likely be their first impression. So why not knock their socks off with some amazing curb appeal?

Here are some quick and easy ways to give your curb appeal a boost.

Give it a Wash

You’ve likely already thought to pick up sticks, limbs, and leaves from your flower beds and give the lawn a fresh mow, but spending an extra hour to wash the windows and spray down the exterior of the house will really be helpful. For the windows, a basic garden hose and some Windex will do the trick, but you may need a power washer to take care of dirt caked on to the brick or siding. If you go the power washer route, make sure to avoid washing away the caulking around windows and doors.

Do Up the Door

Your front door can be used to make a real statement that welcomes buyers and gets them excited about your home. Painting is always an option, but it isn’t the only option. Adding molding, house numbers, a decorative knocker, or even just a wreath can transform a boring door into the little nudge house hunters need to place an offer.

Shutter Up

Adding shutters to your windows will make the windows look bigger and helps break up an ordinary home exterior. Go with a color that really pops against the exterior wall to make the shutters stand out and draw the buyers in.

Keep it Simple

When it comes to front porch décor and furniture, it’s best to not overdo it. Keep things simple and avoid clutter. This lets buyers feel like there’s still room for them to put their own personal touch on it, while still showcasing the potential of the space.

Calculating Moving Costs

moving

While house hunting and building a new construction home can be a fun and exciting process, packing everything you own in boxes and loading up a moving truck isn’t that exciting. You have lots of options when it’s time to move, and the costs associated will depend on which options you go with. If you’re trying to crunch the numbers on how much a move will cost, here’s a list of typical moving costs.

Rental Truck- Flat rates start at $20 and go up from there depending on how big of a truck you need. There may also be charges for mileage driven.

Movers- There are two options here: loaders and full service. The first option will cover loading and unloading the truck, but you’ll have to pack everything in boxes. Rates for this service can range from $200-$2000 depending on how big your home is. Full service movers will do the packing and the loading for you, all you have to do is point where things go. Rates go for $25-$50 per hour per mover.

Storage- In a perfect world, you would close on your new house and sell your old home with no awkward in between time. However, there’s often some overlap and you may need to store some item temporarily.  Storage facility rates start around $50 per month for a small unit, and go up to $300 or $400 for larger units.

Moving Supplies- Finally, you’ll need to account for the cost of boxes, tape, and packing supplies. You can normally scavenge spare boxes from friends, liquor stores, and big discount stores, but you’ll likely end up buying some new boxes as well.

House Hunting Long Distance

Trying to find the perfect home in the city you’re currently living in is hard enough, but if you’re looking for a home in another town or even another state, the problem gets even harder. Although difficult, this task isn’t impossible if you know what you’re doing. Here are a few quick tips you can use if you’re doing some long-distance house hunting.

Don’t Just Research Homes

You’ll obviously spend a lot of time looking at home online, but that’s not the only thing you should look at. Once you find some homes you like, start checking out what’s around those neighborhoods. Are there stores, restaurants, and activities close by? What’s the crime rate like? Are the schools any good? These are all questions you’ll want to answer before you get the keys. Online research is helpful for this phase, but using a local realtor you can trust will be your best bet.

Budget for Travel

As the move gets closer, you’ll need to budget some money and time for travel. This gives you a chance to verify all your research and get a feel for your new city and house first hand. With some careful planning, you can line up several home tours in just a few days to really maximize your visit.

Know Your Needs from Wants

Getting together a list of needs and wants is helpful for any buying situation, but when you’re shopping long-distance this list will be invaluable to your realtor. With that in mind, it’s important to put a lot of thought into this list. Really consider what the essentials for your next home are and what’s just nice to have.

Buying a home when you’re shopping long distance can be stressful, but it doesn’t have to be. If you’re looking for a new construction home in the Tulsa area, call Perry Hood Properties.

 

 

Signs It’s Time to Downsize

Deciding to downsize isn’t always easy. For those who have lived in the same home for many years and raised a family there, leaving this source of comfort and familiarity can seem uncomfortable. However, at a certain point, a house meant for a family is just too big for two people. If you’re on the fence about whether you need to downsize, here are four signs it might be time.

Empty Rooms

Owning a 5 bedroom home with 3 and a half bathrooms makes sense when you’re raising a family, but two people may not need that much space. An empty nest like this means you’ll be paying for space you’re not using. Even if the house is paid off, you’ll still be paying more property tax, utilities, and maintenance than you would be in a smaller home.

Upkeep

Speaking of maintenance, the bigger the house, the more time (and money) you’ll spend on maintenance and upkeep. Yardwork, cleaning, and other repairs can wear you ragged if you’re not careful. For some, this kind of activity is how they prefer to spend their Saturdays, but this DIY passion can’t last forever. If upkeep is starting to seem like more of a hassle than a hobby, downsizing might be a good move for you.

Retirement

One of the most common catalysts for downsizing is retiring. If you’re transitioning from a steady paycheck to living off retirement savings, downsizing can be a great way to cut expenses. This extra cash can help pay for vacations or spoiling grandkids rotten.

How to Sell Your House in the Spring

spring

It’s no secret that Spring is typically the best time to sell a home. The holidays are finally over, so people actually have time to look, the weather is prime to make the lawn and landscaping look great, and the school year will be over soon, so parents can buy without uprooting their kids mid-school year.

Combine all those factors with the low interest rates we’re seeing right now, and it’s a great time to sell. However, selling a house is never a cake walk no matter how good the market is. We know anyone looking for a new construction home in Tulsa will have to sell their current home first, so we put together a quick list of how to sell your home in Spring.

Invest in Landscaping– This time of year makes landscaping a no brainer. Make sure the lawn is mowed, weeds are pulled, and fresh flowers are planted. If your thumb isn’t so green, it may be worth hiring a professional landscaper to do the dirty work for you.

First Impression– A home listing will never get more views in a single day than the first day it’s listed. With the steaks this high, you can’t afford to blow this first impression. Make sure the pictures are perfect and the price is right before your home goes live on the market.

Aim for Thursday– Speaking of listing your home, studies have shown that homes listed on Thursdays will sell faster. No one is exactly certain why this happens, but we’re guessing it’s because most buyers look on the weekends, so they start looking online on Thursdays. Regardless of the reason, it’s an easy step to take to increase the odds of a fast sale.

Be Realistic– Yes, it can be a seller’s market this time of year, but that doesn’t mean it’s okay to be unrealistic about price and timeframe. You still need to list your home at a fair price and be ready to wait it out.

If you’re in the market for a new construction home in the Tulsa area, call Perry Hood Properties.