Why do I Need Title Insurance in Fredericksburg, VA?

Title InsuranceWhy do I need Title Insurance in Fredericksburg, Va when I purchase a house? Is it really necessary? Buying a home can be complicated and there are dangers that can occur without it.

Your Title Co does a Title search at the County Courthouse to assure you have clear Title but sometimes things aren’t always found. There may be a forged signature or an unknown heir, or mistakes in the County records.

Title insurance is purchased one time at Settlement and it ensures the Title to your new home is clear of liens (unpaid taxes, child support, contractor or mechanics liens).  The policy protects you as long as you own the property against any hidden Title hazards. If there every are any claims to your home, the insurance company pays for legal fees, provide Clear Title, or pay valid claims. This is why you need Title Insurance in Fredericksburg, Va.

Title insurance is regulated by State Insurance Departments..

Ginny Vickers REALTOR SFR ABR 540-842-9819

gvickers5@msn.com

ginnysellsfredericksburg.com

1st Choice Better Homes and Land, LC

1302 Bragg Rd. Fredericksburg, VA 22407

The Highest Compliment I can receive are your Referrals from Friends, Family, and Business Associates! (references provided)

Licensed in the Commonwealth of Virginia

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It’s Restaurant Week in Downtown Fredericksburg Again!

Fredericksburg Restaurant WeekIt’s time for the annual Restaurant Week in Downtown Fredericksburg starting Friday 1/17/14 and ending 1/27/2014! This is a great time to enjoy our Downtown area Restaurants. If you aren’t familiar with Fredericksburg’s dining, be sure to take advantage of these great eateries we have here.

Those participating in Restaurant Week in Downtown Fredericksburg will be offering 2 course lunches for $10.14 and 3 course dinners for $20.14. (matches current year).

Here are the Fredericksburg Restaurants that are participating……. 30 Expresso, Bavarian Chef, Sunken Well, Tea Tyme and What Nots, Vivify, Poppy Hill, Renantos, Orion, La Petite, Kybecca, Jake and Mikes, Eileens, Fizzlebottoms, Bistro Bethem, Brocks, Colonial Tavern, Castiglias, Capital Ale, Foode, Happy Clam, J. Brians, and more. We try to go to as many as possible during Restaurant Week but always seem to be drawn to Brocks. (our fav). We have also tried and loved Foode, J. Brians, Capital Ale, Eileens, Bistro Bethem, La Petite. There are a few ones that we need to try this year. We are so looking forward to it!!

For menus you can go to www.visitfred.com/restaurant week.

Don’t miss your chance!!!

Ginny Vickers REALTOR SFR ABR 540-842-9819

gvickers5@msn.com

ginnysellsfredericksburg.com

1st Choice Better Homes and Land, LC

1302 Bragg Rd. Fredericksburg, VA 22407

The Highest Compliment I can receive are your Referrals from Friends, Family, and Business Associates! (references provided)

Licensed in the Commonwealth of Virginia

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New Mortgage Regulations 2014- Dodd/ Frank

 

 

 

Dodd Frank Act adding more regulations

Dodd Frank Act adding more regulations

The New Mortgage Regulations for 2014 went into effect 1/10/14. The purpose is to protect consumers against risky lending practices……10 years too late.  Stricter regulations have been added for all lending practices. There will now be what’s known as “Qualified Mortgages (QM)”. Currently about 92% of  mortgages meet QM requirements. Lenders are now required to make a reasonable determination that buyers can repay the loan. It will mostly likely mean having to give the lender even more information during the loan process. If the lender provides a non qualified mortgage, it provides the buyer a defense to Foreclosure. The Bank may not be able to foreclose and could  owe the buyer money. That one part of the New Mortgage Regulations 2014 will no doubt make it harder for mortgages to get approved and get approved in time for Settlement dates. It will be more difficult for those people self employed to get mortgages.

A Qualified Mortgage includes those loans that are No Interest Only, No Balloon Mortgages, No Negative Amoritzation, No Loans > 30 Years, Meets Ability to Repay, Points and Fees cannot be> 3% of the loan.

The New Mortgage Regulations reduces the chances of the new buyer to pay their  PMI upfront because it will most likely be > 3% allowed. I’ve had several buyers who choose this. Now most will have to pay it in their monthly payments which will now be more money.

Several checks will need to be done during the loan process and Settlement delays will occur. We may see interest rates increase thanks to the Dodd Frank Act because lenders are forced to follow these regulations and with the 3% limit, one way to make up for their loss would be to offer buyers a higher interest rate. Time will tell.

This Dodd Frank Act- New Mortgage Regulations are here 10 years too late. In 2003, both Chris Dodd and  Barney Frank  blocked all attempts for stricter regulatory control when the Administration at the time discovered Fannie and Freddie overstating their earnings and dispensing big bonuses to the higher ups. Barney Frank stated There was no problem and that “these entities were sound”.  Ironically they are the ones behind this Act 11 years later……

Please discuss these new regulations with your Lender. Ask about QM changes and remember to get pre approved with a trusted lender when getting ready to purchase your next home.

Ginny Vickers REALTOR SFR ABR 540-842-9819

gvickers5@msn.com

ginnysellsfredericksburg.com

1st Choice Better Homes and Land, LC

1302 Bragg Rd. Fredericksburg, VA 22407

The Highest Compliment I can receive are your Referrals from Friends, Family, and Business Associates! (references provided)

Licensed in the Commonwealth of Virginia

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Problems with Mineral Rights and Builders in Fredericksburg, Va

 

 

 

 

Retain Your Mineral Rights

Retain Your Mineral Rights

We are seeing problems with Mineral Rights and Builders in Fredericksburg, VA. Buyer Beware! More Builders are retaining Mineral Rights to homes they build and sell. What does that mean to homebuyers?? Homeowners own these homes BUT the Builder has Rights to what is beneath your new home ( oil, natural gas, water, etc.)

Many new homeowners are unaware of the problems with Mineral Rights and Builders in Fredericksburg, Va. Builders are not going out of their way to inform Buyers. Buyers need to ask and review ALL forms closely.

Some of the  Builders retaining Mineral Rights on new homes are DR Horton, Ryland, Pulte, and Beazer. In doing so, they can potentially make money down the road with “fracking” (horizontal drilling for energy) or other drilling. So how is this a negative for the homeowner?…….

1. It may be a problem if/when the homeowner goes to refinance or sell their home.

2. Some mortgage companies declare the homeowner in Default if any part of the property is being used to extract minerals, gas, or oil.

3. Insurance Co. may deny coverage where drilling is occuring.

4. Homes have less value without mineral rights although the owner is still paying the same tax assessments as those with mineral rights.

Energy Companies CAN and HAVE locked up entire neighborhoods with just a single lease with the Developer. Read your Sales Contract or have your Realtor or Attorney read it. We are seeing problems with Mineral Rights and Builders in our Fredericksburg area. Buyers need to be informed. You don’t want to be one of those buyers that don’t learn of this issue until Settlement.

If you have any questions, please contact me. I’d be happy to help you!

 

Ginny Vickers REALTOR SFR ABR 540-842-9819

gvickers5@msn.com

ginnysellsfredericksburg.com

1st Choice Better Homes and Land, LC

1302 Bragg Rd. Fredericksburg, VA 22407

The Highest Compliment I can receive are your Referrals from Friends, Family, and Business Associates! (references provided)

Licensed in the Commonwealth of Virginia

 

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Smoking Can Affect a Home’s Resale Value in Fredericksburg, Va

Avoid smoking in home

Avoid smoking in home

Smoking can affect a home’s resale value in Fredericksburg, Va by an average of 20%. This could be more if buyers are nonsmokers or have young children or are extremely sensitive.

Many Realtors say it’s harder to sell a home where the homeowners were smokers. We are seeing more and more landlords not allowing smoking in their homes. Smoke can settle on floors, carpets, walls, ceilings, window treatments, etc. Many buyers are concerned about health issues. I have had a good amount of buyers actually walk out of homes before even  getting past the foyer.

Smoking can affect a home’s resale value in Fredericksburg, Va. If you must smoke, smoking outside is preferred to get those buyers to stay and look at your home for sale.

Ginny Vickers REALTOR SFR ABR 540-842-9819

gvickers5@msn.com

ginnysellsfredericksburg.com

1st Choice Better Homes and Land, LC

1302 Bragg Rd. Fredericksburg, VA 22407

The Highest Compliment I can receive are your Referrals from Friends, Family, and Business Associates! (references provided)

Licensed in the Commonwealth of Virginia

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Embrey Mill- Stafford’s Newest Planned Community

I had the pleasure of previewing Embrey Mill- Stafford’s Newest Planned Community this week. Embrey Mill is located just off I95 Exit 140 off Courthouse Rd. near Austin Ridge. This is such a great location……with easy access to I 95, shops, and YMCA (to be built). Embrey Mill reminds me of Idlewild in Fredericksburg but will have more amenities. This new community has so much to offer. Prices start in mid $300Ks for single family homes and prices will be lower for townhomes. There will be about 1800 new homes built and will take about 10 years to complete.

Embrey Mill’s builders include Atlantic, KHOV, Brookfield, Integrity, Miller and Smith, and Richmond America. This community will also offer a fitness center, restaurant, pool, sports courts, picnic areas, 10  miles of nature trails, playgrounds, play field, and a mini racetrack for trikes and scooters. (see pic)

Mini racetrack

I was impressed with the variety of homes, great floor plans, and design ideas at Embery Mill- Stafford’s Newest Planned Community. Atlantic Builders have a great Windsor model that features 2 master suites (one on main level). I loved the laundry room right off the main floor master.

There was also a cute kids play area with a fort in the basement of another model home. (see pic)

kid's fort

In another model, they featured a wallpaper ceiling. (see pic)

wallpaper ceiling

Another model had a great bed/ couch area with built ins in the basement that was very nicely done.

basement bed

Also at Embrey Mill in Stafford the builders showed a lot of different manufactured flooring. One of the builders used it like ceramic tile in the master bath. (see pic)

photo-8 copy 3

The builders at Embrey Mill in Stafford also showed office/ study areas in their homes. I think this community will do very well in our area!

Ginny Vickers REALTOR SFR ABR 540-842-9819

gvickers5@msn.com

ginnysellsfredericksburg.com

1st Choice Better Homes and Land, LC

1302 Bragg Rd. Fredericksburg, VA 22407

The Highest Compliment I can receive are your Referrals from Friends, Family, and Business Associates! (references provided)

Licensed in the Commonwealth of Virginia

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901 Eastern View Dr. 22405- Great Starter Home

 

 

 

901 Eastern View Dr901 Eastern View Dr. 901 Eastern View Dr. 22405 is a great Starter home in Stafford just north of downtown Fredericksburg. This cute Rambler has 3 bedrooms and a large eat in kitchen.  As you enter the home, you are greeted by a spacious Family Room.

901 Eastern View Dr. 22405 is a great Starter home because of all the updates that have been done on this home. Many people with their first home just don’t have the money to do repairs and put a lot of money into their first purchase. Here it’s done for you with Newer Windows (2008), New Hot Water Heater (2011), Newer HVAC (2006), New Sprawling Deck (20 X 20), Newer Roof (2001), New Bathtub Enclosure (2013), Newer Washer/ Dryer (2010), and Newer Carpets and Flooring (2009).

There is a Large 1 car Extended Garage (35 X 16) which can hold 2 vehicles! This comes with an automatic garage opener. It is only 1.2 miles from 901 Eastern View Dr. 22405 to the VRE. To me, that’s a quick jog to get to the train for work and get some exercise in also. If you didn’t want to clutter up the garage with lawn equipment, there is a shed that has Electric in the backyard. With the vinyl siding, other than some power washing every couple years, it’s maintenance free.

We are having our  first OPEN HOUSE this Saturday 9/28  1-4!  Look for the signs and the balloons. It’s right off Deacon Rd. Hope to see you there! Priced at $195,000!!!

Go to my website for more pictures!

Ginny Vickers REALTOR SFR ABR 540-842-9819

gvickers5@msn.com

ginnysellsfredericksburg.com

1st Choice Better Homes and Land, LC

1302 Bragg Rd. Fredericksburg, VA 22407

The Highest Compliment I can receive are your Referrals from Friends, Family, and Business Associates! (references provided)

Licensed in the Commonwealth of Virginia

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It’s a Good Idea to Have Renters Insurance in Fredericksburg, Va

Renters InsuranceRenters Insurance? Do you need it? Is it required? It’s a good idea to have renters insurance in Fredericksburg, Va. Some landlords do require it. Some don’t. It’s a relatively inexpensive insurance to carry and well worth the cost. It’s typically less than $200 for the year.

Over half of Renters do not have renters insurance. Think of the cost of replacing all the furniture, clothes, and personal items if there is a fire or a break in. The landlord has insurance on the building itself (townhouse or single family home) but not on the tenant’s personal property. It would cost 10X the amount for most people to have to replace their belongings and furniture.

Based on what the coverage provides and the low cost, it’s definitely a good idea to have renters insurance in Fredericksburg, Va.

Ginny Vickers REALTOR SFR ABR 540-842-9819

gvickers5@msn.com

ginnysellsfredericksburg.com

1st Choice Better Homes and Land, LC

1302 Bragg Rd. Fredericksburg, VA 22407

The Highest Compliment I can receive are your Referrals from Friends, Family, and Business Associates! (references provided)

Licensed in the Commonwealth of Virginia

Posted in Buying a home, Fredericksburg Community Information, Fredericksburg Real Estate, Home Improvements in fredericksburg, Selling a home | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Weed Prevention in Fredericksburg, VA

Prevent those WeedsWeed prevention in Fredericksburg, Va can be accomplished or at least minimized. The idea is to prevent those weeds from germinating in the first place.

I used to think weeds spread just by the wind carrying seeds. Did you know weed seeds actually sleep in the soil and just wait to start germinating? Once we disturb the soil and start planting, the seeds no longer sleep.

2-4″ of Mulching helps weed prevention in Fredericksburg, VA. Putting down landscaping paper under the mulch also helps.

When starting grass seeds, use straw, not hay. Hay contains weed seeds. Remember to keep your lawn and flower beds as thick as possible to prevent weeds also.

If you need to use a herbicide, the best time to use it would be before the weed seeds germinate. That would be 3 weeks before you see the first weeds of the season.

Ginny Vickers REALTOR SFR ABR 540-842-9819

gvickers5@msn.com

ginnysellsfredericksburg.com

1st Choice Better Homes and Land, LC

1302 Bragg Rd. Fredericksburg, VA 22407

The Highest Compliment I can receive are your Referrals from Friends, Family, and Business Associates! (references provided)

Licensed in the Commonwealth of Virginia

Posted in Activities in Fredericksburg, Buying a home, Family Activities and Events in Fredericksburg, Family Activities in Fredericksburg, Fredericksburg Community Information, Fredericksburg Real Estate, Home Improvements in fredericksburg | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Just Bought a House and I Don’t Know Anything About My HVAC!

HVACYou just bought a house and don’t know anything about your HVAC? First of all, congratulations on your home purchase. Second, did you have a home inspection? Your inspector should be able to answer any questions and should have reviewed your system with you.

I have my HVAC system monitored twice/ year by a professional. They make sure it’s running correctly, check the refrigerant, and can sometimes anticipate issues that are about to occur.

Let’s talk about some simple things you may want to do for preventative maintenance when you don’t know anything about your HVAC system. Replace the filters every 3 months at minimum and use a  good filter to better filter out dust/ dirt to help your HVAC run efficiently. Remove any leaves, twigs that land on your HVAC. Make sure they are on level ground or pad to make sure they are level.

Do you have a humidifier for those winter months? Remember to turn that off in the Spring. That is another thing an HVAC professional will do.

Closing vents can actually cause more strain on your HVAC. Don’t close too many in your home. Check with a professional for more advice on HVAC care!

Ginny Vickers REALTOR SFR ABR 540-842-9819

gvickers5@msn.com

ginnysellsfredericksburg.com

1st Choice Better Homes and Land, LC

1302 Bragg Rd. Fredericksburg, VA 22407

The Highest Compliment I can receive are your Referrals from Friends, Family, and Business Associates! (references provided)

Licensed in the Commonwealth of Virginia

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