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Buying your first home is an exciting yet daunting task. There are many steps throughout the homebuying process, and several important decisions need to be made by the buyer. Continue reading and discover three decisions you will need need to make before you can purchase your first home.

What is your budget?

This arguably the most important consideration when a person goes to purchase a home. Because your budget is going to dictate several aspects of your home purchase, you need to set a clear budget before you dive into your home search. Many financial experts believe that your entire mortgage payment should not exceed more than a quarter of your gross income. 

How long to do you plan to stay?

Most people do not stay in their first home for the rest of their lives. While it can be challenging to predict the future, you want to have some idea of how long you intend to stay in the home. Many financial experts recommend staying in your first home for at least three years before you move again. This is because it usually takes homeowners a few years before they can pay off a chunk of their mortgage. 

Do you have the right real estate agent working for you? 

If you want the home buying process to go as smooth as possible, take the time to choose the right agent. They can make a considerable difference in the amount of time it takes to pair you with the right home. Be sure that the agent understands the local market and appreciates what you are looking for in a home. Don’t be afraid to speak with multiple agents before you decide which one is right for you.

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There are several advantages to owning your own home. While buying instead of renting is not for everyone based on your current circumstance, there are far more benefits to homeownership over the long haul. Continue reading and discover three significant reasons why you should buy and not rent.

Cost stability and savings

One of the biggest issues people have with renting is that a tenant does not have control of whether the price goes up over time. Many renters are under the misconception that once they agree to move into a place they are locked into a set price for years to come. Once your lease ends, your property can choose to increase the price of your rent, which may be out of your budget. With homeownership, you are in more control than renting because you can calculate and set your mortgage payment. Homeowners have peace of mind that their mortgage will stay the same until it is paid in full. Also, in many cases, homeowners pay less in mortgage payments than renters do in rent. The reason for this is because rental properties are in business to make money and will need to increase their prices for their business to be profitable. 

Homeownership is an investment

One of the major benefits of homeownership is that it is a financial investment. A mortgage allowers a homeowner to pay off their home over time, but it also allows them to build equity in the property, and the price of the value of the property may go up over time as well. With this, homeownership is a significantly better long term investment than renting. 

Ability to customize

When you rent an apartment, house, or condo, you are typically limited in what you can do with the living space. Some property owners have restrictions on your ability to paint, put in new carpets and new appliances, or even hang items on the walls. When you are a homeowner, these restrictions do not exist. You can customize your home to your exact liking to make it your own.

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Are you looking to purchase real estate in 2020? There are several aspects a buyer should take into consideration when they browse a home listing online or in-person. With this, continue reading and discover a few important considerations when purchasing real estate today. 

Signs of water damage 

Homebuyers need to appreciate the dangers that water damage presents to a home. Signs of weathering and mold can mean insufficient ventilation, leaks in the plumbing system, or even past flooding. This is just one reason why buyers do not want to ever skip the home inspection. A thorough inspection by a trained professional can shed light on hidden signs of water damage within a home. 

Energy efficiency 

Lack of insulation can dramatically affect your utility costs. You will end up paying a lot of money in the long run if you purchase a home that is not appropriately insulated. If a home listing is several decades old, you should closely consider the condition of the insulation because it will come into play down the line. 

The condition of the roof 

Traditional shingle roofs do not last forever. Did you know that it can cost upwards of $10,000 to replace a roof? With this, you want to pay close attention to the condition of the roof on each home listing that appeals to you. You do not want to put yourself in a position where you were unaware that the home you just bought needs an entirely new roof. Be sure that you consider the condition of the roof because it may end up being a deal-breaker on a home that interests you.

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Home prep and staging your home are essential steps in the home selling process. The ultimate goal is to make your home more favorable to buyers. First impressions go a long way in the real estate industry, and a poorly staged property will turn away many homebuyers. The same is true for a home that is need of significant repairs. If you are preparing your home for sale, here are three crucial steps of the home prep process. 

Don’t overspend on staging

Staging is an investment. In most cases, a home seller will need to spend some money to stage their home. However, as stated before, you don’t want to go overboard when prepping your home for sale. While staging is important, you do not want to obsess over minutia details that going to cost you to lose money. 

Only make unnecessary repairs

There is no reason to break the bank on unnecessary repairs. This is where many home sellers go wrong. They think they will recoup all investments made on repairs; however, this is not always the case. A good rule to follow is to repair any known mechanical or structural issues with the home. This will make the home significantly more favorable to buyers and should help your home sell faster. 

Declutter every room of the house

One of the first steps home sellers should be to remove clutter inside of the home. Clutter not only will make your home look messy, but it makes rooms appear smaller in pictures. When it comes to home staging, it is in your best interest to limit the amount of clutter and stick to the essentials. For example, a bedroom should feature a few pieces of furniture (bed, nightstand, bureau) and only a few decorative pieces, like a vase of flowers or a picture or two.

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Search engine optimization (SEO) has increased importance in the real estate industry today. By optimizing your website with SEO best practices, you are helping to improve its organic rankings on search engines like Google. If you haven’t already, it is time to invest time and resources to optimize your real estate website with SEO. With this, continue reading and discover a few helpful tips on how to harness the benefits of SEO.

Be patient 

The benefits of SEO do not happen overnight. It takes time before your website appears higher on organic rankings. In many cases, it can take several months. With this, do not become discouraged if you do not see results right away. Over time, the usage of SEO practices will produce results. 

Research keywords

Have you invested time and resources into keyword research? It is crucial to know what people are searching for, so you know which keywords to include on your website. There are tools available today that can help you with this. 

Post new content regularly 

Search engines will find your website more favorable if you are constantly putting out new articles on a regular basis. This is because every time you post new content, you include more keywords on your website.

Ensure your website is userfriendly

Your real estate website must be easy for visitors to navigate. A person of any web experience should be able to click through your website to access all of your content. If your site is challenging to use, visitors will not spend a lot of time on it, which will decrease the likelihood of them coming back to it.

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Salt Lake City is the most populous municipality city in Utah. It was ranked 24th on U.S News & World Report’s 2019 list of best places to live in America. Through our research findings, we have concluded that home values have been on the rise for the past several years. This ongoing trend is expected to continue through the end of 2020. 

Zillow.com has posted median home value in Salt Lake City at $407,370. The leading American online real estate database reported that home values have increased by 5.9% over the past year, and it is expected to continue to climb another 2.1% by the end of the year. 

Through Zillow search results, we have found that there are currently 78 foreclosure listings in Salt Lake City. Also, the homes from the cities on this list typically stay on Zillow for anywhere from 50 to 60 days. While there are not a ton of foreclosures listed for sale in Salt Lake City, it is in large part due to the fact they don’t stay on the market for very long. 

Salt Lake (Northeast and Northwest)

Two major cities in the northern region of Salt Lake County include Midvale and Magna. There has been a spike in home values in both of these cities (Midvale 5.6% increase and Magna 6.6 increase). There are currently three foreclosure listings on USAHUD.com in Salt Lake Northeast and Northwest regions combined.

Salt Lake (Southeast and Southwest)

A few examples of cities in the southeast and southwest region of the Salt Lake region include Draper, Sandy, Riverton, South Jordan, West Jordan, and Herriman. The home values in these cities have increased from anywhere from approximately 4% to 6% in just the last year alone. There are currently 2 foreclosure listings on USAHUD.com in Salt Lake Southeast and Northwest regions combined.


At USAHUD.com we strive to bring you the best homes in your area. No longer do you need to search through properties you don't want. 

Search for your next home here.

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