Tips & real world advice to avoid disaster 

If a buyer or seller defaults of a real estate contract, can you sue? The answer is of course, it depends. The typical Georgia purchase and sale agreement has a number of standard contingencies; buyer financing and inspection the more obvious. There are also any number of specific contingencies that might be written into an agreement. But what happens if after everything is completed, the buyer or seller just doesn't want to close? In Georgia options are very limited, other states may be different but here the reflex answer of "we'll sue" doesn't broadly apply. buyer defaults on real estate contract

If a Buyer Defaults on a Real Estate Contract

There are many possible reasons that a buyer might not close, contracts can contain different clauses and stipulations. Properly written…

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Here's a link the Atlanta Area Housing Market Report for the 4th Qtr 2020. Data is included for over 30 markets in and around Atlanta; from Blue Ridge to South Atlanta. We examine both attached and detached homes and look at homes under and over one million dollars. A quick, visually pleasing way to know what's going on.

Remember, we have appraisal assets and access to much more and much better data than agents do. We also aren't hesitant to couch the the data; every client sees and understands the data exactly as we do. Good or bad, the data is what it is and decisions are based on it.

Hit the image below to see the latest report. If that image doesn't work, CLICK HERE FOR THE LATEST ATLANTA AREA HOUSING REPORT.

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Here's how to file for the homestead tax exemption in GA. An easy way to reduce property taxes in Georgia is to file for the homestead exemption. Georgia homeowners are eligible for this exemption on their primary residence if the home was purchased last year and occupied on January 1st. The exemption is not eligible on investment or vacation homes. This is not automatic, the homestead exemption must be filed in the property owner's county, it's easy and there's no reason not to save this money.

Click the image below, that will open a page with multiple links to county sites. Each of the sites will provide details on what's needed and how to file for the homestead exemption in Georgia.


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Some home buyers find themselves facing an interesting quandary; is a new home better than an existing home? Lately, many buyers just want to move into a home and live; they're either not interested in or able to update. It's hard to beat new for this segment. Others will consider homes in need of updates; existing homes tend to be more flexible on price and easier to negotiate. For those buyers, opportunity may be found. Many variables impact the final decision; however there are clearly identifiable differences that home buyers should consider. Both new and existing homes have advantages and disadvantages, the best educated buyers will examine both options.

new home or old home

New Homes are Better Than Existing Homes

What’s not to like with a new home? Most…

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As housing density increases, so does the impact of traffic and daily activity. Most people wrestle with the desire for a quiet home but one within close proximity to service and support facilities. Urban residents are well acquainted with the sounds of city life, the rural markets attract residents happy to drive for residential solitude. The suburban residents often ask about the impact of busy roads when buying a home; the answer (of course) is that it depends. Variables include buyer requirements, types of roads, amount of traffic and characteristics of comparable areas. So to, does the proximity to commercial uses like shopping centers and strip malls.atlanta-noise-pollution

Traffic and Influences not Thought About...

Everything is relative so not all things…

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Consider the lowly and unappreciated driveway, a bland slab of concrete void of character and charm...but used all day, every day. It's typically one of the first things we see with the home, part of the critical first impression. Everything and everyone in and out of the home traverses this hard slab; the ultimate role player like an offensive line for an MVP running back or quarterback. All is good, unless something shines a light on a shortcoming. Sometimes, there hints but the scope of the problem may not be fully understood until regular use.

Driveways must be functional and compliment the home. Ideally, they will be ample in width, level to generally level and wide enough to allow easy ingress and egress to the home. They will have easy curves…

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Home buyers constantly balance emotion and data; heart vs head. During times of low housing inventory, the heart can be rather convincing and the result might be a disaster. Over the last decade, public home sites and social media changed the “traditional” ways to find a home. Pocket listings – homes marketed outside of the MLS – milton pocket listinghave become much more popular and some sellers find success just informally tossing their home out there. Buyers, eager to secure a home, find them and dive right in. This is the time for the head to keep the heart in check. This is the time for an experienced buyer's agent to refocus the buyer.


Why Consider a Pocket Listing?

In most cases, buyers chasing an off market home are either enamored with it for a certain reason…

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Everything is important when looking for a home to live in, but one thing trumps all. How well does the home fits the requirements of the buyer? This is known as "value in use"; if the home fails to meet your requirements then why purchase it? With real estate, “value in use” is different than the generic term of “value”. Terms surrounding what a home is "worth" are jumbled; price and value are often used interchangeably and may be best described as what a well informed buyer is willing to pay for a particular property that is offered for sale. This is assumed “arm’s length”; a transaction completely above board. Text books dive deeper but no need for that here.value-in-use-real-estate

Value in Use

Value in use is buyer specific; how does that property fit the buyer's…

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In a strong market, sellers may not formally list their home but take a position of “here’s my price, make me move”. These are typically called “quiet, whisper or pocket listings” and while this can be a successful play, there are things for sellers to consider. Usually there is an agreement between a seller and real estate broker that allows the broker to market the property outside of the MLS. Agent networking, social media, open houses and other ways are used to expose the home. Sometimes there is no formal agreement, just a “hey agent, if you know someone that is looking….”. That informality can be problematic, there are legal and contractual aspects to be considered. Many owners talk about a move "if they get their price", but several things need to…

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There is a serious lack of skilled labor among home builders in the Atlanta area. Quality and issues exponentially increased over the prior few years, then a pandemic came to town and flipped the tables. A voracious appetite for housing met drastic labor shortages, limited inventory, rising prices and Covid-19 delays. Builders are racing to get homes built and sold; their site agents busy working getting buyers under contract for them. Who is representing the best interests of those buyers? Not the site agentpoor new construction

Who is Building Your New Home?

"ABC Homes" is not building your home; your new home is being built by subcontractors that bid for the work. A lack of  skilled labor is arguably the biggest problem with new construction. Many experienced…

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