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Buying A Home or Land in Austin

Home Buyers Information

Buying A Home or Land in Austin 

Whether you are a first time homebuyer and need to learn the ropes or an experienced, multi property buyer that simply wants to learn about the area as I locate properties- I can help you.  I have the patience and kindness to take the homebuying process down to “babysteps” for a beginner or first time homebuyers. I have the knowledge from years in Real Estate to explain and educate you to make an informed home purchase. Interest rates are the lowest they have been in 40 years! I remember the 1980’s when the 30 year fixed interest rate was 18%! Business Week just did an article entitled “If You Don’t Buy a House Now, You’re Stupid or Broke“. 

The NEW First Time Buyer Program

Credit of up to $8000.  This is a new program under the Housing and Recovery Act of 2009.  For this program’s purposes a First Time Buyer is anyone who has not owned a home in the last 3 years.  There is an income cap for eligibility. There is also a $6,500. tax credit for repeat buyers, homeowners who have owner occupied a home for a minimum of 5 out of the last 8 years. For these programs buyers must have a home under contract by April 30, 2010 and close by June 30, 2010. Income limits for single buyers are $125,000. and for a married couple $225,000. The IRS website has info. on this under First-Time Homebuyer Credit Information Center. If you have already filed your 2008 income taxes- you can amend your return and get this. Check the IRS website and with your CPA or tax preparer. Also check this Home Buyer Tax Credit website.

Interest Rates for Home Loans

Interest Rates for a mortgage to buy a home may never be this low in our lifetime! In the ’80’s, rates were double digit.

USDA Home Loans

USDA Loan Program offers 100% financing – great Zero Downpayment program for “rural” areas only. This includes many small town suburbs of Austin and the boundaries will change with the next census.

Want to know more about these programs?  Call me at (512) 785-5050     Contact Betty Saenz by e-mail

The new HVCC or Home Valuation Code of Conduct Legislation

I know your primary goal is to buy a home and not get involved in law changes affecting the industry.  However, this could affect you as home buyers.  The lender, the appraisor, the REALTOR- we are all a team- working for you.  We all work together toward one common goal- get you in the house YOU choose at the terms and conditions you want.  This law can cause problems for YOU the HOME BUYER by not allowing communication among members of your team and other factors that can cost you more money or not allow you to get in the home of your choice. The National Association of Mortgage Brokers in a conservative figure, estimated that homebuyers pay $711. more in appraisal & loan lock fees because of the HVCC. Here is a link if you want to read about the new HVCC or see a video on it and if you feel compelled, sign the petition.

FHA 203K Home Renovation Loan

This is a home loan for buying a home that needs a lot of repairs or at least $5,000. worth. Included in the loan is money both for purchasing and repairing the home. You must plan to live in the home after repairs are completed and the work must be completed in 6 months or less. In this program, a home may have burned down or been otherwise destroyed or neglected. You can build it back better than before with great insulation, building science and construction techniques.

Buying Land in Austin, Texas

Land alone is harder to finance than land with a home. Do you have cash or will you require financing? If financing- most mortgage companies will not do land loans. Interest rates are higher and you must go through owner financing, your bank or special companies like Farm Credit. I love chickens, horses, cows, etc. too but here’s the deal with livestock- some restricted places may allow horses, but less allow other livestock like cattle. If you search for unrestricted land it is more likely to allow you to put in a mobile or modular home and have any livestock you want or perhaps operate a business.

Home Floor Plans

A great floor plan for you may not be the same as a great floor plan for another person. Although most like the master bedroom down, some may prefer it upstairs in a two story home. Homes with great use of space in the floor plan may appear larger than homes with more square footage so don’t let an exact square footage be your guide. A floor plan just needs to fit you and the way you live and offer easy movement from room to room.

Generally, most popular “OPEN” Floor Plans began being built in the 1990’s. If you are looking at older homes, you may be lucky to find one opened up through a great remodel. 

When buying, here is some information on Relocation to Austin, TX Area and Schools in the Austin Metro Area to help you in your choice of homes.

Contact Betty Saenz REALTOR to buy a home, land, lot, ranch or build a home in the Austin, Texas area. (512) 785-5050 or contact Betty Saenz by e-mail

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