Lifestyles Realty

Frequently Asked Questions!

Purchasing or selling a home -some of the most important decisions you will make. I have assembled a few commonly asked questions to help you but please let me know if you need the answer to something not covered on this page. Just Contact Us with any question you have! I am happy to assist you in any way I can.

Nothing can take the place of direct contact so please feel free to contact local Irvine Real Estate Broker either by phone or e-mail with any questions you have about the community of Irvine, Orange County Real Estate or to schedule an appointment to discuss your real estate plans.

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Distintive Homes to suit your LifeStyle!

Lifestyles Realty

Ca # 01256525
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Q.What is a Mello-Roos District? 
A. A Mello-Roos District is an area where a special tax is imposed on those real property owners within a Community Facilities District. This district has chosen to seek public financing through the sale of bonds for the purpose of financing certain public improvements and services. These services may include streets, water, sewage and drainage, electricity, infrastructure, schools, parks and police protection to newly developing areas. The tax you pay is used to make the  payments of principal and interest on the bonds.  Typically does not qualify for deduction on tax return. Always check with your accountant.

Q.What is a Short Sale?  
A. Simply stated-Home owners who find themselves in a distressed financial state due to a life event such as loss of income, illness, or in general any situation that can has caused a home owner to be unable to meet thier payments and possibly has defaulted on thier loan agreement. Usually some financial event has occured which prompts a home owner to request the bank/lender to allow a sale of the home for less than they owe to avoid a foreclosure. Can be complicated when there are two mortgages but many secondary lenders are now agreeing more readily to this arrangement. Secondary lenders rarely will benefit from foreclosure so they will usually negotiate a settlement.

Q.What is an REO? 
A. REO stands for Real Estate Owned-translates to lender owned, foreclosed property. Sometimes a home is sold at auction and resold but in that case the seller is not the original foreclosing party. Can be confusing but should not be identified as REO. Risks associated is the absence of an owner disclosure regarding any defects or known material facts about the property. Not required since the bank never lived in the home.

Q. What is the MLS?
A. The Multiple Listing Service or "MLS" is the collection (or database) of properties listed for sale by nearly every real estate broker in a particular market or region. Multiple Listing Services are usually separate entities jointly owned and controlled by local real estate associations

Q.Is No Cost Buyer representation available on a home purcahse? 
A.Yes,Thats right, the seller has already agreed to pay our service fees in the listing contract! No-Cost personal assistance is provided throughout the home buying process. However, if you are under contract with another real estate agent or real estate company in the state of California we will not be able to assist you.

Q. When should I get pre-qualifed for my home loan-before or after I find a home? 
A. Before you start looking for a home to purchase, you should find out what you qualify for. The price range of the homes you look at will depend on this. It is advised you speak to a lending professional who can guide you through the pre-qualification process, discuss your options and make you aware of any special loan programs you may be eligible for which exist in this area.

QWhat is the difference between pre-qualified and pre-approved?
A.After getting pre-qualified, the most important thing you can do is to go ahead with the loan process and get fully pre-approved before you decide or extend an offer on a home. This will give you advantages when you are in the negotiating process. You'll have the same advantage as a cash buyer, know how much you can afford, and be well on your way to the mortgage program that's right for you as soon as you make the offer!

Q. What is an Agency Relationship? 
A.. Clients of any real estate broker must sign an agency disclosure that explains the broker's/agent's responsibilities before an offer can be written, Priorto becoming a client of LifeStyles Realty, you must also signa Buyer Broker Agreement that further explains the scope of our duties and responsibilities to clients. Signing this agreement does not commit you to use our services. We are required to have these disclosures on file to comply with California law and the requirements of the, Multiple Listing Services' (MLS) licensing rules.

Q. What are points and who pays them?
A. This is a one-time fee that you can spend to bring your interest rate down over the life of the loan. Points can be paid by the buyer, seller or buyer and seller.

Q. Can I get more information on closing costs?
A. Closing Cost consist of reocurring and non reocurring cost. This means that some of these only occur one time and others are costs that are associated with re occuring costs that will be repeated monthly or yearly such as taxes or insurance. For a complete and thorough break down of these costs please visit my Home Buyers page.

Q. What is an offer to purchase contract?
A. A purchase agreement is exactly that: an agreement to purchase property. A purchase agreement specifies the terms under which all parties to a transaction will agree to close the deal. Agreements to purchase are only valid for real estate when they are in writing. After an agreement to purchase has been signed by all parties, it is cancelable or enforceable only if the terms within the agreement itself allow such actions. Be very careful to read this agreement fully and be sure and use an experienced realtor who can assist you to understand all terms of the agreement and any time limits to perform that may apply.

If you would like assistance in the purchase of a home (and you're not already under contract with a real estate agent or real estate company in the State of California that is representing or assisting you in the purchase of a home or property), please go to the Homefinder page of our site and fill out the "HomeFinder Search Criteria" form. After filling out and submitting this form, a representative from LifeStyles Realty will contact you as soon as possible for assistance.

Q. What is done with the information submitted on this site?
A. Any personal information that you provide to us will be used by us primarily to fulfill the stated objective for which the information was requested or collected (e.g. if information is provided as a result of your e-mail to me, I will use the information provided, such as e-mail address, phone number to respond to you. Iinformation you provide on this web site is private and  will not be sold or re-distributed! We do not  re-assign your personal information without your express permission. 

Q. What is a loan origination fee?
A.Brokers loan origination fee - this is a number that varies widely and is only mortgage related only! . In some state a common practice is for the broker to charge a 1% "origination fee".

Q. Why is Pricing my Home right so important?
A. Pricing your home is an art. Ask too little you will sell fast but feel that you may have been able to get more. Ask too much and your home may stay on the market for a longer time and eventually give buyers the imperssion that it is undesirable. Buyers may wonder why the home couldn't attract any interest, a possible sign that something is wrong with the house. Buyers today are very sophisticated and have more tools than ever to gather market information, including home listing web sites that allow them to research the marketplace at the click of the mouse! They almost know better than the brokers what the homes should be priced at! When your home is priced right you will be much more likely to attract interest from more than one buyer.However, if your home is overpriced or reduced, it may sit on the market for a longer time and may give the appearance of being undesirable. Much of the time these homes will eventually sell for less than their value!