April 3rd, 2013 by Amy Tortorella

Multiple offers…In this market?

If you have been following Raleigh real estate lately, you have noticed how fast some houses seem to be selling. It’s true; several areas are experiencing 2-3 days on the market and many times receiving multiple offers! But what about this “terrible” real estate market that we all have been reading about for the past several years? Well, like most things in life, it just depends on circumstance. While Raleigh did see a dip in real estate prices, we did not experience the extreme highs and lows that many parts of the country have been feeling over the past few years. As the national market is starting to pick back up, we are already in a place of good standing above the rest. Read the rest of this entry »

July 3rd, 2012 by Amy Tortorella

4th of July Freedom and Liberty

July 4th is a time to reflect on how lucky we are to have certain freedoms and liberties not afforded to some other nations across the world. We also know this is a time many people cook out with family and friends, watch fireworks or maybe take a trip to the beach.

Something you may not have known was that there has been some discrepancy to our actual date of independence? The Declaration of Independence was announced on July 4th but wasn’t signed until August 2nd!

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June 12th, 2012 by Amy Tortorella

The Pros and Cons of Purchasing Raleigh Foreclosures

Many people call me to discuss the possibility of purchasing a foreclosed home in Raleigh. They have heard that there are tons of homes in the area that have been foreclosed on and they can get a great deal. While this is sometimes true, it is not a guarantee.

During my 9 years of selling real estate, I have sold several foreclosed homes. Some of these were in terrible condition, others were pristine. There is no set rule for what to expect while searching for foreclosures! More times that not, bank-owned properties (or foreclosures) are “as-is” sales. This means the bank will perform no repairs on the home. You do, however, have a set amount of time after the bank accepts your offer to conduct your own home inspection. If there are items that are beyond your scope of comfortability, you may receive any Earnest Money you may have already given the bank back and walk away from the deal. You will not be reimbursed for the cost of the home inspection. There are some incidents where the bank will agree to do repairs they deem to be necessary but this is the exception, not the rule. Read the rest of this entry »

January 9th, 2012 by Amy Tortorella

New Year, New Raleigh Home?

The New Year is upon us and it has many people in the Raleigh area considering a change. If purchasing a new Raleigh home is on the horizon for 2012, there are several things you need to consider.

First, interest rates are still extraordinarily low and banks are lending money. At the minimum, most loans are going to require 3.5% down, although there are still some 100% financing loan programs available. Speaking with an experienced Raleigh lender will help you navigate through the options to find the best solution for your lending needs. As your Realtor, I am always happy to recommend my favorite mortgage broker to you. Read the rest of this entry »

August 11th, 2011 by Amy Tortorella

Why Location Matters When Buying Your Next Home

We’ve all heard it said, “Location, Location, Location.” But really, how important is location when buying a home? It’s the most important factor you should consider before making what could possibly be the largest investment of your life.

Have you ever looked through a real estate magazine to see homes that look too good to be true based on price, square footage and acreage? Many times these homes are on the outskirts of town and could significantly impact your ability to sell the home in the future for a few different reasons. These homes can be very tempting to a buyer but what many people don’t think about is the additional land nearby. This excess land means developers can purchase it cheaply and the builder can build it for less. It won’t be too long before the same developer buys more of this inexpensive land and builds a very similar home using the same floor plans. When you are ready to sell, you’ll be competing with the same style of home, except your competition is newer and may have a competitive advantage. Unfortunately in these same areas, schools can also rank lower, there may be poor highway accessibility causing longer commutes and general day-to-day errands can take more time. Read the rest of this entry »

June 21st, 2011 by Amy Tortorella

Smart Real Estate Investing in Raleigh

Real estate is the largest purchase most people with make in their life so it is crucial to think about a long term investment strategy when doing so. The old adage “location, location, location” is the key to smart real estate investing. Purchasing a Raleigh home for sale in sought-after areas is an easy to way to ensure you are making a smart investment. These areas tend to have low crime, great schools and accessibility to highways, which leads to more demand than supply. Keep in mind that just because a home appears to be a “deal” doesn’t mean it is necessarily a good investment. You still want to take in consideration the location, the neighborhood and other surrounding factors before making a final decision. I like to remind my clients that the actual house is secondary to these other external factors that you cannot change and have no control over. Read the rest of this entry »

June 3rd, 2011 by Amy Tortorella

Benefits of Having Your Own Realtor When Buying New Construction Homes

As a licensed Realtor in Raleigh, I’ve worked with many clients that have purchased newly constructed homes in new neighborhoods. Buying new construction can be a wise choice for some people. There is little to worry about in terms of immediate maintenance and you get all of the newest and most modern features and design plans.

Most new neighborhoods have an on-site office where you can walk in and receive more information about the neighborhood and also about specific homes. The person answering those questions for you is most likely an “on-site agent”. Read the rest of this entry »

March 8th, 2011 by Amy Tortorella

Spring Cleaning for a Quicker Closing Date

Whether you are in the Raleigh Real Estate market to sell your home or not, this is the perfect time of year to spruce things up with some spring cleaning!

As the weather warms up, more emphasis will be placed on how the exterior of your home looks. Begin with the simple act of removing any leaves, branches or other debris that may have been littering your front and back yards over the past few months. Prune back any trees, shrubs or hedges that died over the winter and clean the gutters. Now it’s time to bring in the color. Potted plants with pops of spring color can really add a vibrant feel to the outside of your home. Make sure these plants stay healthy though as dead plants will not attract buyers to your home. Also touch up any exterior paint Read the rest of this entry »

January 21st, 2011 by Amy Tortorella

Rookie Homebuyer Mistakes to Avoid

Being a first time homebuyer is full of challenges and possible pitfalls that could be around every corner, but it doesn’t have to be that way! There are several things you can do to avoid common mistakes made by rookie homebuyers.

The first step is knowing your credit score and being realistic about your finances. Many people have no idea what their credit score is, what kind of score they need to purchase a home or Read the rest of this entry »

January 14th, 2011 by Amy Tortorella

First Time Home Buyer Tips

The prospect of buying your first home can be an exciting and scary venture. With an experienced Raleigh Realtor, you can make an informed decision and have an advocate on your side throughout the process.

The initial and most important step in buying your first home is hiring a Raleigh Buyer’s Agent. A Buyer’s Agent is a licensed real estate agent that you hire, at no cost to yourself, to represent your best interest in a real estate transaction. They help you with all of the crucial steps in buying your first home such as recommending a lender, researching property histories, negotiating Read the rest of this entry »

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