Going it Alone Is a Tough Task for Home Sellers | Wilmington NC real estate

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Selling  your Wilmington NC real estate sounds simple. As a “For Sale By Owner,” all you have to do is put a sign in the yard, an ad in the paper, and stand back while the buyers come running to bid.

If you’re tempted to market your home without the aid and advice of a real estate professional, take a moment to ponder these questions: For Sale By Owner

  • Can you set a price on your home realistically and accurately?


      If you price your home too high, you’ll get few shoppers and help your neighbors sell their houses. Price it too low, and you’ll lose money. Local real estate markets change quickly, street by street, and unless you have the same information that real estate professionals receive daily, chances are you’ll set your price over or under current market value.
  • Are you prepared to spend possibly many days glued to your home?


      Shoppers come looking every day of the week and every hour of the day. Remaining ready for them to show unannounced can make you a permanent home sitter.
  • Are you able to reach a wide range of possible buyers?


      Experience shows more than 60% of home sales are made by matching a seller with a buyer from an extensive network of contacts. These contacts don’t come from ads but from a career of building relationships and the multiple listing service. Without that pool of qualified buyers to show your house to, self-sellers are reduced to expensive hit-or-miss advertising.
  • Can you be sure that the people entering your home are genuinely interested in buying, not in taking advantage of your “open house” and unprotected presence?


      Real estate professionals both screen house hunters and accompany them as they go through your rooms.
  • Are you experienced at negotiating and creating legal contracts?


      Buyers of homes sold by the owner typically offer much less than the asking price and may expect sellers without agents to share the “savings” on the brokerage commission.
  • Can you size up a potential buyer’s ability to finance the purchase of your home?


    Many weeks can be wasted waiting for mortgage approval that lenders can’t give to unqualified loan applicants. Real estate professionals routinely pre-qualify house hunters and show them only property they can afford. Real estate professionals don’t like to waste time either.

As trained real estate specialists, we’d like to help you sell your home. Not just because it’s our livelihood, but also because we’ve seen the many difficulties that have beset would-be “Sale By Owners” who came for help after their efforts failed. We’d like to do the same for you, saving you the hassle of trying to go it alone. The market has been strong, call us to talk about the possibility of selling your home or visit www.cbbaker.com for advice.

Categories: coldwell banker sea coast advantage, wilmington nc real estate, wilmington nc relocation, wilmington nc weekly events, Wrightsville Beach makes Top 20 Surf Towns, Wrightsville Beach NC

TAX MOVES: Seven Smart Strategies For Today’s Tax Game | Wilmington NC real estate

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Major tax law changes enacted In 1997 can mean huge tax savings if you play the game right. Here are seven smart ways you can use to take advantage of Uncle Sam’s latest tax breaks for homeowners:

1. Sell Your Current Home

Own and live in your home at least two of the last five years — then sell it. You’ll owe absolutely no tax on the profit (capital gains) for gains up to $500,000 (if married filing jointly) or $250,000 (if filing singly). There’s no longer a need to wait until you’re age 55 to sell or at any age to “roll over” your profit by buying a home that costs at least as much as the home you sold.

2. Retire On A Budget

Now when you move, you can replace your old home with one that fits your needs and your budget. Perhaps you want less house because your children have left the nest, or you’ve retired or there’s been a divorce. Under the new tax rules, you can quit worrying about paying a hefty capital gains tax when you scale back.

3. Relocate Without Renting

Before, people who moved to lower-cost-of-living areas had three choices: (1) convert the old home to a rental unit until moving back; (2) sell the old home and buy a “mansion” in the new town to defer paying capital gains tax; or (3) sell the old home, buy a similar-size home in the new town or rent a home and pay capital gains tax. Now, those who transfer can sell a home as often as once every two years and still claim the capital gains exemption on the profits. There is even a special exception to the two-year rule if you must sell your home due to a change in place of employment. This helps families that have frequent job-related moves to different parts of the country.

4. Take Your Freedom Overseas

If your family follows a job to a foreign land, you can sell your home here before you leave without rushing to purchase a new home immediately. Then, when you return, you can find a home at your convenience that fits your current needs, rather than trying to squeeze back into your old home before you can sell. If you have already been away, but lived in your old home for two of the last five years, you can still benefit from the tax law change if you sell now.

5. Selling Serially

Young families and those inclined toward fixing up can buy a home, improve it, and sell it again two years later at a profit without paying taxes on the gains. Repeating the cycle is now a good way for new homeowners to build equity toward the dream home they want. Also, investors can buy a property, rent it out, then convert it to their principal residence; live there for two years and then sell it, keeping the profit. However, depreciation allowed on the rental after May 6, 1997 will be taxed at 25%.

6. Vacation Villas

Capital gains taxes on summer homes, ski lodges and other second residences now can be avoided if you move in for two of the five years before the sale. First, claim tax-free profit when you sell your main home. Then move into your vacation home and make it your primary residence for at least two years. When you sell the vacation home, you can pocket those profits, too.

7. Try A Tax Deferred Exchange

Section 1031 of the Internal Revenue Code allows property owners to exchange one qualified property for another without owing any tax. Let’s say an investor has a property with several small rental units. The investor can exchange that multi-unit property for a large house, which should be rented out for at least a year. Then the investor can move into the house and convert it to a primary residence. That way, any gain from both the multi-unit property or the large house is tax free, except for rental depreciation after May 6, 1997. Note it is necessary for a qualified intermediary to handle a 1031 exchange transaction.

Here’s some helpful advice on record keeping: Even though most sellers can now buy up or buy down with little worry about tax implications, profits that exceed limits are taxable in the year of sale. And some states are continuing to tax capital gains from home sales. So don’t be tempted to throw away receipts you collected to help lower taxes on capital gains. Your old receipts can help serve as proof of capital repairs, pre-sale fix-ups and other expenditures that reduce your gains and lower your taxable profits.

We invite you to call us with any real estate questions.  If you would like to search all Wilmington NC real estate please visit www.cbbaker.com or on your mobile at http://mobile.cbbaker.com


Categories: tax advantages to buying real estate, waterfront wrightsville beach, wilmington nc real estate, wilmington nc weekly events, worlds largest christmas tree, Wrightsville Beach NC

Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage does it again! | Wilmington NC real estate

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Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage does it again!  The Wilmington office on 1001 Military Cutoff just won a listing contest that was sponsored by Coldwell Banker Corporate.  The combined effort of all of our agents help win this honor.  The market has picked up and homes are selling.  The interest rate is below 4% so the buyers are starting to realize that now is a great time to buy.  To search all Wilmington NC real estate and to get seller and buyer advice, please visit www.cbbaker.com or on your phone mobile.cbbaker.com.   

From Corporate:

Dear Tim:

 Coldwell Banker Real Estate recently completed a national listing contest in response to the trend of increased buyer demand and dropping inventories.  Led largely by your company’s efforts, the program helped generate more than 72,000 new listings from April 16 through June 15, 2012.

 As  you may recall, we segmented the contest by office size and Coldwell Banker region and I am very pleased to let you know that your Coldwell Banker Advantage/Sea Coast Realty Wilmington office won the contest for all Coldwell Banker Southern Region offices with over 100 agents!  Thanks again for your dedication to the Coldwell Banker brand and continued good luck in 2012.

 Budge Huskey

President and Chief Operating Officer| Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC

Categories: coldwell banker sea coast advantage

Peace of Mind | Buy a 2-10 Home Warranty | Wilmington NC real estate

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Whether you are buying or selling a home, it is a good idea to purchase a home warranty to give you peace of mind.  If you are selling, you can use the warranty as an incentive for the buyer.  I would highly recommend purchasing a warranty when you purchase Wilmington NC real estate, as this gives you 1 year to make sure things are working as they should.  Of course, a home inspection should be done before you purchase to let you see what exactly you are buying.  Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage Realty uses 2-10 Home Buyers Resale Warranty.  If a seller is purchasing a warranty, we can start the warranty at the time of actually listing the house.  The seller is covered during the listing agreement time, and for a extra fee the Seller’s AC/Heat Pump are covered as well.

Provided at the closing of your home or purchased directly from 2-10 HBW*, this warranty covers normal wear and tear to your home’s major systems (furnace, hot water heater, air conditioner, plumbing and electrical systems) and major appliances (refrigerator, oven, dishwasher, built-in microwave, disposal, trash compactor). Complementary to your homeowner’s insurance, your 2-10 HBW warranty covers the repair or replacement of the most frequent and likely home system and appliance breakdowns.

When a covered system breaks down, simply place a claim online or call their toll-free number, and we will immediately dispatch a contractor to make the repair. You pay the contractor a small service fee and we pay the rest for all covered items. You don’t have to hassle with finding a contractor or worry about negotiating the cost of the repair work. In the event that a covered system or appliance cannot be repaired, we will replace it with a system or appliance of comparable or better quality. It’s the perfect solution for today’s busy homeowner.  There are warranty plans for existing homeowners who are not planning on selling as well.

For more information please visit http://www.cbbaker.com/pages.php?page=152


Categories: 2-10 home warranty, Buying Wilmington NC real estate, Figure Eight Island, Landfall, Porters Neck Plantation, Wilmington NC Neighborhoods, wilmington nc real estate, worlds largest christmas tree, Wrightsville Beach NC

The Top Real Estate Search Engine Realtor.com says Wilmington NC #79 in searches

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Wilmington NC makes the news again.  This time for being the #79th  most searched real estate market on Realtor.com website for September.  This is good news.  The market has been slowly picking up and the buyers are starting to look again.  With the interest rates below 4%, now more than ever is a great time to buy.  Realtor. com was one of the first real estate websites that the public could search all over the United States.  We have been with them for over 17 years.  It is a great tool to have to expose your properties to the public.  In addition to the regular service Realtor.com provides, we also “Showcase” our listings so that we can add more information, virtual tours  and photos to each or our listings.  We also have “Featured Homes” on Realtor.com.  When someone types in Wilmington NC in the search term, our listings are featured at the top and bottom of the screen in a revolving sequence.  We do get more public hits on the Featured Homes and think that this helps increase exposure on each home.  Being progressive and proactive are vital in this real estate market, and Kay Baker and Associates have always tried to stay above of the trends.


Categories: wilmington nc real estate

Coldwell Banker “On Location” YouTube Award | Wilmington NC

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Coldwell Banker real estate continues to receive awards for their innovative marketing especially in the Wilmington NC real estate market.  The Latest award was for “On Location” YouTube Channel, for the Real estate Category.  Below is the letter from Corporate headquarters for Coldwell Banker Realty.

Coldwell Banker Sea Coast realty and Kay Baker and Associates continue to strive for new ideas and creative outlets for marketing of Wilmington NC real estate.  Visit http://www.cbbaker.com/


Brand’s ‘On Location’ YouTube Channel Honored in Real Estate Website Category

PARSIPPANY, N.J., (July 7, 2010) – The International Academy of the Visual Arts has named Coldwell Banker On Location, the brand’s YouTube channel, a recipient of this year’s Communicator Awards for Creative Excellence in the real estate website category. The category honors the best site for the sale or rental of residential or commercial property.

“We were the first national real estate brand to add streaming video to our website. Today, our agents across the globe have posted more than 15,000 videos to our On Location channel,” said Mike Fischer, chief marketing officer for Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. “The most exciting part of On Location is that we have only just begun – there’s a lot more to come.”

On Location has been rated among the top 10 most-viewed brand channels on YouTube. In April, just 11 months after launching On Location, Coldwell Banker announced it had received over 1 million views. The site was launched in May 2009 and was produced in collaboration with FD Kinesis.

“Home buyers would much rather see a home than only read about it,” Fischer said. “Our On Location videos empower them to get a feel for a home, a community or a real estate professional that they could not get from photos or a text description alone. Equally important are the home sellers who are now expecting video to be a part of marketing their property.”

With thousands of entries received from across the United States and around the world, the Communicator Awards is one of the largest and most competitive awards program honoring the creative excellence for communications professionals. The Communicator Awards are judged and overseen by the International Academy of the Visual Arts, an invitation-only body consisting of top-tier professionals from acclaimed media, advertising and marketing firms.

About Coldwell Banker®

Since 1906, the Coldwell Banker® organization has been a premier provider of full-service residential and commercial real estate. Coldwell Banker is the oldest national real estate brand in the United States and today has a network of more than 98,000 agents working in more than 3,600 offices in 50 countries and territories. The Coldwell Banker brand is known for creating innovative consumer services as recently seen by being the first national real estate brand to augment its web site www.coldwellbanker.com for smart phones, the first to create a iPhone application and the first to fully harness the power of video in real estate listings, news and information through its Coldwell Banker On LocationSM YouTube channel. The Coldwell Banker system is a leader in specialty markets such as resort, new homes and luxury properties through its Coldwell Banker Previews International® marketing program.

© 2010 Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. All Rights Reserved. Coldwell Banker® is a registered trademark licensed to Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC. An Equal Opportunity Company. Equal Housing Opportunity. Each Office Is Independently Owned And Operated Except Offices Owned And Operated By NRT Incorporated.

Categories: Buying Wilmington NC real estate, Coldwell Banker Buyer Bonus Program, Showcasing your home, Wilmington NC Neighborhoods

Tax Credit Deadline Extended for Wilmington NC Real Estate

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Good news for Wilmington NC real estate home buyers today. The Senate has extended the closing deadline for home buyers that signed contracts by the April 30th deadline. The closing date deadline is now Sept 30, 2010 instead of June 30th. That is good news for many home buyers that are having difficulty with loan completion by June 30th. Many lenders are backlogged with the volume of loan applications right now.

Wilmington NC Real Estate

And, if you did not take advantage of the tax credit, there are still great deals to be had in the marketplace right now. Many sellers with Coldwell Banker Sea Coast are offering the $8000 buyer bonus. So, get out and take advantage of a once in a lifetime opportunity to buy a home. You can begin your search right on my website at www.cbbaker.com or email kaybaker@ec.rr.com for a complete list of Wilmington NC foreclosures and short sales.

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Wilmington NC Real Estate Homeowners May Qualify for $1500 Relocation Assistance

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1,500 towards relocationWilmington NC Real Estate Homeowners

Starting April 5, 2010 the Government will be paying homeowners in default, to relocate. The new program will demand lenders to honor short sales whereby the homeowner can sell the property for less than the mortgage payoff. The Obama administration is trying a different approach to assist more than 5 Million households who are behind on their mortgages. In turn, the homeowner will receive $1500 for relocation assistance and the lender $1000 for expediting the short sale process.  

This arrangement could prove very beneficial to the homeowner, as they will not suffer further credit damage and they will get reassurance from the lender that they will not be sued for the balance. And, under this arrangement, the number of potential  foreclosed homes on the market should drastically decrease which in turn, should improve the  overall housing market.

Finally, short sales will have their day! If you are facing a foreclosure, and need assistance, we are specialists in the Wilmington NC real estate short sale and foreclosure market. We are there for you every step of the way. Just give us a call or email kaybaker@ec.rr.com.

And, if you are looking to purchase a short sale or foreclosure, we have you covered there, as well.  We have a Certified Distressed Property broker on our team and will help you with your short sale or  purchase a short sale or foreclosure with complete knowledge of the process.  Read more here

Categories: Economy, Home Selling, Uncategorized, wilmington nc

Wilmington NC Real Estate Short Sales

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Many homeowners in the Wilmington NC real estate marketplace are finding themselves with a mortgage balance higher than they can even sell their home for. This puts the seller in a “short sale” situation. This means that the lender may agree to accept less than is actually owed on the property.  And, not all lenders will agree to accept less than what is actually owed, especially if you are not in default.  If you find yourself in this situation, you need a qualified real estate professional to guide you through this process. It is not an easy one, trust me. We will assist you in putting together a hardship package for the lender that may include a financial statement, hardship letter, bank statements, income statements, an appraisal on the property and even a listing agreement to prove that the property is on the market.

If you are in need of assistance, please do not hesitate to call or email kay@cbbaker.com. We are happy to answer any questions you may have concerning short sales and foreclosures in Wilmington, NC. And, if you are a buyer, we can send you a list of short sales and foreclosures, or you can search short sales and foreclosures.

Categories: Buying Wilmington NC real estate, Home Selling

Wilmington NC Real Estate Market Shows Improvement

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Wilmington NC Real Estate

The real estate market in Wilmington is definitely showing signs of improvement in the number of homes sold and the list price for Dec 09 over Dec 08. And, our average sales price has decreased 9.6% over 4th quarter 08, and increased 5.3% over 3rd qtr 09. There was a 12% decrease in median sales price over 4th quarter 08 and.03% decrease over 3rd quarter.

Sales price to list ratio was at 94.3% in the 4th qtr 2009 and the 4th qtr had an increase in number of homes sold by 34.5% from 4th quarter 08. As we know a lot of these sales were primarily driven by the tax credit that was set to expire Nov 30, 2009.

Hopefully last year will be the year that the market has bottomed out and started to stabilize. And, 2010 should be the very best year in a long time, for home buying opportunities. Remember, first time home buyers tax credit has been extended and expanded to include repeat, move up buyers, prices are down 10% from 2008, foreclosures and short sales are excellent buying opportunities,  mortgage rates are at historic lows, and  there is a large inventory of homes for sale to choose from.

So, start your real estate search today at www.cbbaker.com. You can search by price range, map, schools, neighborhoods and more.

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Kay Baker Associates | 1001 Military Cutoff | Ste 101 Wilmington, NC 28405 | kaybakerassociates@ec.rr.com | 910-202-3607 | Fax 910-338-2428

Copyright © 2017 Wilmington NC Real Estate Guide. All rights reserved. Disclaimer: All content on this blog is my own opinion and should not be treated as fact or relied upon when purchasing or selling real estate.