Thursday, February 26, 2009

Resource for Info On New FTHB $8,000 Tax Credit!

A lot of clients have questions about how they can take advantage of the New $8,000 Tax Credit for First-Time Homebuyers. While there is a lot to consider when answering this question, the biggest thing to consider is: What qualifies someone as a first-time buyer? An simple answer would be:
The law defines "first-time home buyer" as a buyer who has not owned a principal residence during the three-year period prior to the purchase. For married taxpayers, the law tests the homeownership history of both the home buyer and his/her spouse.
For example, if you have not owned a home in the past three years but your spouse has owned a principal residence, neither you nor your spouse qualifies for the first-time home buyer tax credit. However, unmarried joint purchasers may allocate the credit amount to any buyer who qualifies as a first-time buyer, such as may occur if a parent jointly purchases a home with a son or daughter.

There is more info on this definition and details on how to take advantage of the credit on this website:
Call anytime if you have questions...703-400-6757.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

First-Time Buyers Won't Have to Repay $8,000 Tax Credit!

The following is a breakdown of the new homebuyer stimulus according to Justin O'Donnell, Senior Loan Officer for First Heritage Mortgage. His email address is .

While the proposed $15,000 home-buyer tax credit died in negotiations between the House and the Senate, the $787 billion stimulus bill that President Barack Obama signed into law Tuesday includes a similar--albeit smaller--measure designed to help revive the real estate market. Here are six things you need to know about the freshly-enacted $8,000 first-time home buyer tax credit.
1. Eight grand, new buyers: The tax credit included in the economic stimulus legislation is much narrower than the $15,000 proposal. This credit is equivalent to 10 percent of the purchase price of the home--although it's capped at $8,000--and applies only to first-time home buyers and principal residences. But unlike an earlier $7,500 home buyer tax credit, this one does not have to be repaid.
2. First time buyers defined: For the purpose of this legislation, a "first-time home buyer" is someone who hasn't owned a principal residence for three years before buying a house. (The date of purchase is considered the day that the title is transferred.) That means if you've owned a vacation home--but not a principal residence--within the past three years, you would still qualify for the credit.
3. 2009 buyers only: Only those who purchase a home on or after January 1 and before December 1, 2009 are eligible for the credit. Anyone who bought a home last year won't be able to take advantage of it.
4. Income limits: The tax credit is subject to income limitations. Single buyers need a modified adjusted gross income of $75,000 or less to qualify for the full credit, that's $150,000 for married couples. Those earning more than these thresholds may be eligible for reduced credits.
5. Refundable: Because the tax credit is "refundable," qualified buyers can take advantage of it even if they don't have much tax liability.
6. Recapture: Buyers have to own the home for at least three years in order to capitalize on the credit. If they sell the home before then, they will have to return the credit to the government. (Exceptions will be made in certain cases, such as death or divorce.)

Thursday, February 12, 2009

2008 Rankings Are Out - Jennifer Young Team #8 in Washington Metro Area (VA/MD)

HAPPY NEW YEAR everyone! With the arrival of 2009, I find it’s time to take a look back at what my team and I have accomplished – while also looking forward to the great opportunities ahead, for buyers and sellers who are looking to get BACK IN BLACK in the new year…
First - a look back at an Awesome year. Thanks to the support of many, the Jennifer Young Homes team managed to earn a TOP Ranking for all of MLS – positioning Jennifer Young as the #1 Real Estate Agent (in volume sales) for Keller Williams Realty in the Washington DC Metro Area, including Maryland and Virginia. This was a huge feat! We sold over 276 homes, 116 of which, sold for original list price or within $5,000 of that price. These numbers also ranked me as #8 of ALL Realtors in DC Metro in terms of sales volume.
These are incredible stats, but rather than pat my own back, I’ve found the need to break down why my team and I were able to make 2008 so successful. And when you work for Keller Williams Realty, your success is determined by whether the deals you make are “Win-Win”. I believe our sales last year were exactly that. Sellers were able to get the asking price they were looking for, while facing a lower number of average Days on Market (DOM). And, buyers were able to find deals they wouldn’t normally have had the chance to grasp, thanks to a shift in availability of affordable homes and to unbelievable opportunities in funding sources.
First, let’s look at what sellers wanted vs. the bargains buyers were insisting upon each day the phone rang in 2008. Buyers wanted homes at low prices, and they would not settle for anything higher than their bottom line. That meant that initial pricing was paramount in order to reduce DOM for sellers and it still is as we look to the new year. With each listing I am extremely detailed in setting that Original List price. This brings a sale faster, while also keeping prices down on the concession side of the equation. Here’s what I mean. Average concessions (amount of $$ paid back to buyers at closing) in 2008 averaged 2.5% nationally. This percentage rises when a home is listed for more than 149 days. As a seller, regardless of what you plan on receiving for an offer on your home, if you price it right from day one, you pay less in concessions over the long haul.
Second, lower interest rates are proving to be beneficial concepts for seller and buyers. Sellers are taking advantage of increased buyer activity, while buyers are enjoying average rates as low as 5.42% according to a survey performed by on 12/17/08. Some lenders are even offering rates as low as 4.75% with good credit. That means, on a $200, 000 loan, with 10% down, a buyer’s principle interest payment would be only $938 per month. At a higher 7% rate, with 10% down, the principal interest payment on $180,000 would still only be $1,197. That monthly amount is almost always lower than what most of our callers who rent are paying their landlords each month.

FEBRUARY 7th Home Auction – Buyers Walked Way With Great DEALS!

As if the foreclosure market wasn’t enough to keep up with, buyers are now playing their hand at taking a chance in the Auction market. This latest event on Saturday, February 7th was hosted by Hudson & Marshall at the Hilton – McLean Tysons Corner. Buyers looking to bid on a house were given two chances to view it at scheduled open houses the week before. On the day of the auction, buyers were told they would pay the following if participating:
1) $5,000 Cashier’s Check – used for Down Payment and
2) 5% Buyer’s Premium – to be added to their final bid amount to equal their actual Final Sale Price.

In addition, potential buyers needed to bring with them to the auction:
1) Short list of homes you want to bid on (with property numbers)
2) Your pre-qualified price range
3) Picture I.D.
4) Social Security Number
5) Your pre-registered Real Estate Agent (Commission paid for by seller)
6) For those taking title in a company name or trust – bring articles of incorporation, trust
documentation or other proof of signing authority.

Now, the key to doing this and feeling comfortable with the process, is to come totally prepared. If you have a real estate agent – call them up and ask them to go with you. Just make sure to give them plenty of notice (the next auction is March 14th). They can run comparables on the homes you like, so you know what your bidding cap should be. To represent you at the auction, they must register 48 hours ahead of time on-line as your representative. We work with many investors at these auctions and provide them with comparables, cash flow scenarios, estimated costs of fix ups, etc.. before the auction date so they can make the best decision. We would love to work with you on an auction property and can answer all of your questions about the process. Remember it doesn’t cost you anything to have representation - you pay the 5% buyer premium whether or not you have an agent. Go to for more answers to your questions or give us a call at 703-674-1777.

For those of you curious about how much these auction homes are selling for, I wrote a few of the sales prices down on Feb 7th and crunched them against the most recent list price and the amount they sold for in the height of the real estate market. It’s an interesting break down to check out:

Prince William County
2775 Marsala Ct #21C6, Woodbridge, VA 22192
TH – 2bd/2ba
Height of Market: $216,000 in 2006
Current List Price: $104,450
Final Sale Price: $52,500 (50% below list price)

16856 Miranda Ln, Woodbridge, VA 22191
TH – 4bd/3.5ba
Height of Market: $360,000 in 2006
Current List Price: $205,000
Final Sale Price: $140,000 (32% below list price)

16709 Capon Tree Ln, Woodbridge, VA 22191
TH – 3bd/2ba
Height of Market: $305,000 in 2005
Current List Price: $176,900
Final Sale Price: $112,000 (37% below list price)

12687 Greenhall Dr., Woodbridge, VA 22192
SFH – 3bd/1ba
Height of Market: $372,000 in 2005
Current List Price: $149,900
Final Sale Price: $92,000 (39% below list price)

14377 Shetland Ct., Woodbridge, VA 22193
SFH – 3bd/2.5ba
Height of Market: $392,000 in 2006
Current List Price: $139,000
Final Sale Price: $96,000 (31% below list price)

7915 Manassas Dr, Manassas, VA 20111
SFH – 3bd/1ba
Height of Sale: $232,887 in 2008
Current List Price: $105,900
Final Sale Price: $76,000 (28% below list price)

7521 Quail Run Ln., Manassas, VA 20109
TH – 3bd/1ba
Height of Market: $292,000 in 2005
Current List Price: $84,900
Final Sale Price: $68,000 (20% below list price)

18415 Woodland Dr, Triangle, VA 22172
SFH – 4bd/2ba
Height of Market: $280,000 in 2004
Current List Price: $110,500
Final Sale Price: $75,000 (32% below list price)

12916 Hunting Cove Place, Bristow, VA 20136
SFH – 4bd/ba
Height of Market: $558,000 in 2006
Current List Price: $331,900
Final Sale Price: $222,000 (33% below list price)

Fairfax County
1808 Old Meadow Rd #771, McLean, VA 22102
Condo – 1bd/1ba
Height of Market: $285,000 in 2005
Current List Price: $188,000
Final Sale Price: $175,000 (7% below list price)

7917 San Leandro Place #119D, Alexandria, VA 22309
TH – 2bd/1.5ba
Height of Market: $215,000 in 2005
Current List Price: $63,900
Final Sale Price: $48,000 (25% below list price)

4417 Longworth Square, Alexandria, VA 22309
TH – 4bd/2.5ba
Height of Market: $410,000 in 2005
Current List Price: $265,000
Final Sale Price: $150,000 (43% below list price)

4133 Old Columbia Pike, Annandale, VA 22003
SFH – 5bd/2ba
Height of Market: $325,000 in 2004
Current List Price: $269,900
Final Sale Price: $210,000 (22% below list price)

5955 Joffa Place, Springfield, VA 22150
SFH – 3bd/2ba
Height of Market: $507,500 in 2006
Current List Price: $315,000
Final Sale Price: $234,000 (26% below list price)

7745 Matisse Way, Springfield, VA 22153
TH – 3bd/1ba
Height of Market: $339,900 in 2006
Current List Price: $140,000
Final Sale Price: $94,000 (33% below list price)

Washington D.C.
4242 Nash St. SE, Washington, DC 20020
TH – 2bd/1ba
Height of Market: $225,000 in 2005
Current List Price: $129,900
Final Sale Price: $69,000 (47% below list price)

1311 Florida Ave. NE, Washington, DC 20002
Semi Detached – 3bd/2ba
Height of Sale: $325,000 in 1999
Current List Price: $214,900
Final Sale Price: $117,500 (45% below list price)

Prince George County
5900 Suitland Rd, Suitland, MD 20746
SFH – 4bd/2ba
Height of Market: $345,000 in 2006
Current List Price: $199,000
Final Sale Price: $122,000 (39% below list price)

4512 Broad Blvd., Beltsville, MD 20705
SFH – 3bd/2ba
Height of Sale: $266,700 in 2007
Current List Price: $169,900
Final Sale Price: $96,000 (44% below list price)

6007 Toby Dr, Temple Hills, MD 20748
SFH – 4bd/2ba
Height of Market: $333,000 in 2005
Current List Price: $149,900
Final Sale Price: $80,000 (47% below list price)

There is another auction coming up on March 14th. Some of our properties will be featured - more info to follow in next blog!

Friday, February 06, 2009

Pending Housing Market Stimulus Gets LIFT!

Our Spring Newsletters were just sent out describing a proposal to make the $7,500 tax credit for First Time Homebuyers an actual Credit and not a loam that had to be paid back over time to the Federal Government....
Well, now a new step has been taken by the Senate to approve something even more beneficial to buyers...READ ON!

Senate Unanimously Approves Housing Market Stimulus Amendment
WASHINGTON - The U.S. Senate Thursday, February 5, 2009, unanimously approved an amendment to stimulate the nation's declining housing market by offering a $15,000 tax credit to individuals who purchase a home in the next year.
"It is time to fix America's problem, not throw money at the symptoms. It is time to fix housing first. It is rare that we have a road map to success in times of difficulty, but this country has once before realized a housing crisis every bit as bad as the one we have today and economic troubles every bit as dangerous," U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson, R-Ga., said. "We have a pervasive housing problem, and we have a historical precedent that works. I am proud this Senate has joined together, learned from history and repeated a method that worked by adopting this amendment." Specifically, the amendment to the pending economic stimulus bill would provide a direct tax credit to any homebuyer who purchases any home. The amount of the tax credit would be $15,000 or 10 percent of the purchase price, whichever is less. Purchases must be made within one year of the legislation's enactment, and the tax credit would not have to be repaid.
The amendment would allow taxpayers to claim the credit on their 2008 income tax return. It also seeks to prevent misuse by only allowing purchases of a principle residence and by recapturing the credit if the home is sold within two years of purchase. The amendment would sunset the current $7,500 housing tax credit on the date of enactment.
Isakson has pushed hard for a non-repayable tax credit for homebuyers because he knows that it will work. In the mid-1970s, America faced a similar housing crisis when a period of easy credit and loose underwriting flooded the market with new construction. Interest rates rose, the economy slowed and America was left with a three-year supply of vacant homes. Congress responded by passing a $2,000 tax credit for anyone purchasing a new home for their principal residence. Isakson believes the results were clear and swift as home values stabilized, housing inventory dropped and the market recovered.
Last year, Isakson introduced legislation to specifically target those homes that were causing the unprecedented increase in housing inventory by offering tax credits to individuals purchasing a foreclosed home or a home where foreclosure is pending. In April 2008, the Senate passed legislation to stimulate the nation's declining housing market that included Isakson's proposal. However, the final version of the legislation that was signed into law included only a $7,500 tax credit for first-time homebuyers that must be repaid over a 15-year period. The amendment that passed Thursday would sunset that $7,500 tax credit.

Our team at Jennifer Young Homes is continually watching for changes in the real estate market that affect all of our buyers and sellers. Visit our website anytime for information and updates on what's going on. Go to to check us out!