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Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 48

Keep your Home Safe While on Vacation

by Fontaine Family
Are you planning a vacation this summer? 

You have probably been dreaming about the location, searching for hotels and flights and making plans for all the things you want to see and do....but have you given any thought to keeping your home safe while you are gone?

Your home is one of the biggest purchases of your life, so you definitely want to put some thought into how you are going to keep it safe while you are away. 

Here are a few suggestions to get you started!

1.  Lights - leave a couple of lights on inside your home, or better yet, put a few lights on a timer so they turn on and off giving the illusion that someone home.  On the exterior, make sure the entry to your house is well lit, or consider installing motion lights.  

2.  Mail & Newspapers - a pile of newspapers on the front lawn or in the box is a sure sign that homeowners are away.  Make plans with a neighbor to pick up your mail and newspapers while you are gone, or call the post office and newspaper to make arrangements to have delivery halted while you are away.

3.  Car in the Driveway - leaving a car in the driveway or asking a neighbor to park in your driveway while you are gone, give the illusion that someone is home.

4.  Lock it Up - Make sure all the doors and windows to your home are locked.  Make sure you check that basement door or 2nd floor window that rarely get used. 

5.  Spare Key - make sure you remove any hidden key you may have outside of your home.  You may think it is well hidden, but why take the chance that someone will find it.

6.  Lawn - One of the great things about vacation is that you don't have to mow the lawn...but tall grass is a sure sign that nobody is home.  Make arrangements to have someone take care of the lawn while you are away.

7.  Social Media - You may want to avoid making comments about your vacation or uploading vacation photos to your Facebook account or other social media until you are home.  Advertising that you are away for a week is an open invitation to burglars. 

8.  Police Drive by - some local police departments will drive by and check on homes while the owner is away.  You may want to consider contacting your local police department to see if they provide this service in your community.  If not, consider having a trusted neighbor check on the house.

The more you can make your home look like someone is still coming and going, the safer it should be!  Plan ahead to protect your home and then relax and enjoy your vacation!

Are you ready to find your dream home? 
Call us today at (207)784-3800 in Auburn or (207)289-3830 in Scarborough.

2015 Year End Video...A Little Late!

by Fontaine Family

Wow...2016 has been very busy so far! 
So busy, we just finished putting together our 2015 Year-End Video. 

It may be a little late,
but we hope you enjoy sharing our memories of a great 2015! 

Androscoggin County Real Estate Market

by Fontaine Family

Androscoggin County Real Estate Market   2015 vs 2014 Statistics

We hear all kinds of statistics on the news about the real estate market, but real estate varies greatly from region to region.  Check out our infographic comparing the real estate market in Androscoggin County in 2015 vs. 2014.  Check back next week to see the statistics for Cumberland County!

 

Merry Christmas!

by Fontaine Family

12 Days of Holiday Safety

by Fontaine Family

12 Days of Holiday Safety

Every year you hear about fires and other accidents
during the holiday season. 
Stay safe this holiday season
by following these simple safety tips. 

12 Days of Safety
Provided by the National Safety Council

Have a safe and happy holiday season!

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year
from the Fontaine Family Team to your family!

Why You Should List During The Holidays

by Fontaine Family

10 Reasons to List Your Home During the Holidays

1.  People who look for a home during the holidays are more serious buyers.

2.  Serious buyers have fewer houses to choose from during the holidays so you have less competition.

3.  Houses show better when decorated for the holidays.

4.  Buyers are more emotional during the holidays.

5.  Buyers have more time to look for a home during the holidays.

6.  Many people want to buy before the end of the year for tax reasons.

7.  January is traditionally the month for transfers.  Transferees can't wait until spring to buy.  You must be on the market to capture the market.

8.  You may still restrict showings during your personal family events.

9.  You can sell now, but specify a delayed closing or extended occupancy until early next year if you so desire.

10.  By selling now, you have an opportunity to buy during the spring, when many houses are on the market.

Bottom Line 
By listing now, you may have fewer actual showings, but more qualified and motivated buyers.

The Reason 
You have less competition, resulting in a quicker sale and better price for you.

Are you ready to get started today?  Call us at (207)784-3800!

Are Mortgage Rates Headed Up?

by Fontaine Family

Where Are Mortgage Rates Headed?  
This Winter?  Next Year?

The interest rate you pay on your home mortgage has a direct impact on your monthly payment. The higher the rate the greater the payment will be. That is why it is important to look at where rates are headed when deciding to buy now or wait until next year.

Below is a chart created using Freddie Mac’s October 2015 U.S. Economic & Housing Marketing Outlook. As you can see interest rates are projected to increase steadily over the course of the next 12 months.

 

Where Are Mortgage Rates Headed? This Winter? Next Year? | Simplifying The Market

How Will This Impact Your Mortgage Payment?

Depending on the amount of the loan that you secure, a half of a percent (.5%) increase in interest rate can increase your monthly mortgage payment significantly.  
According to CoreLogic’s latest Home Price Index, national home prices have appreciated 6.4% from this time last year and are predicted to be 4.7% higher next year.
  
If both the predictions of home price and interest rate increases become reality, families would wind up paying considerably more for their next home.

Bottom Line

Even a small increase in interest rate can impact your family’s wealth. Let's meet to evaluate your ability to purchase your dream home.

Welcome To The Team!

by Fontaine Family

We are excited to introduce you to 3 new team members...

Mathew Zimmerman 
joins our Scarborough office.  Mat grew up in Cape Elizabeth and currently lives in Portland with his wife, Liz and 4 year old, Lily.  Mat has 5 years experienced as a licensed agent and works with both buyers and sellers. Mat can be reached at (207)200-8780 or mathew@fontainteam.com.

Jacqueline Wing 
grew up in Gray and recently moved back to Gray after living in Yarmouth for 18 years.  She is the proud Mother of 3 sons and grandmother to 3 grandchildren.  Jackie joins the team with a wealth of business and customer relations experience.  She will be working out of out Scarborough office, using her experience to help both buyers and sellers.  Jackie can be reached at (207)846-6640 or jackie@fontaineteam.com.

]

Lilly Huang 
joins our Auburn office bringing her experience as a business owner to her real estate career.  Lilly has owned and run Wei Li Restaurant for 17 years and has spent 3 years as a certified instructor in food safety. She is fluent in 4 languages...English, Mandarin, Cantonese, & Taiwanese. Lilly lives in Auburn and has 2 daughters.  She looks forward to working with buyers including the Asian community.  Lilly can be reached at (207)393-0085 or lilly@fontaineteam.com.

Build Wealth Through Homeownership

by Fontaine Family

Homeownership Builds Wealth and Offers Stability


The most recent Housing Pulse Survey released by the National Association of Realtors revealed that the two major reasons Americans prefer owning their own home instead of renting are:

  1. They want the opportunity to build equity.
  2. They want a stable and safe environment.

Building Equity

In a recent article, John Taylor, CEO of the National Community Reinvestment Coalition, explained that those who lack the opportunity to become homeowners have a weakened ability to reinvest their wealth:

“We traditionally have been huge supporters of homeownership. We see it as a way to provide stability for households but also as an asset-building strategy. If you continue to be a renter, locked out of the homeownership arena, increasingly those things are further and further out of reach. They’re joined at the hip. They perpetuate each other.”

Family Stability

Does owning your home really create a more stable environment for your family?

A survey of property managers conducted by rent.com last month disclosed two reasons tenants should feel less stable with their housing situation:

  • 68% of property managers predict that rental rates will continue to rise in the next year by an average of 8%.
  • 53% of property managers said that they were more likely to bring in a new tenant at a higher rate than negotiate and renew a lease with a current tenant they already know.

We can see from these survey results that renting will provide anything but a stable environment in the near future.

Bottom Line

Homeowners enjoy a more stable environment and at the same time are  given the opportunity to build their family’s net worth.

Are you ready for the opportunity to build wealth and stablity through homeownership? 
Give us a call today to get started!

Auburn (207)784-3800  
Scarborough (207)289-3830

Should I Sell This Winter?

by Fontaine Family

Should I Sell my Home this Winter...
or should I wait until spring? 

This might be the most common question we hear this time of year.  Winter may not be the most convenient time to move, but there are advantages to selling in the winter.


1.  Less Competition 
In the spring, For Sale signs pop up like daffodils!  In the winter, there are less homes for sale, so there is less competition on the market increasing the chances that buyers will look at your home. If there are less homes for a potential buyer to choose from, the probability that your home will have showings...and offers...increases! 

2.  Serious Buyers Are Shopping 
Many sellers believe that there are not buyers looking in the winter.  The truth is, there are always buyers looking to buy.  Serious buyers usually don't stop their home search just because winter rolls around.  Serious buyers want to buy no matter what time of year it is! 

3.  Quicker Timeframes 
In the winter months, professionals typically involved in a real estate transaction such as appraisers, lenders, and inspectors, are often more available so your transaction may be able to happen more quickly. 

4.  Seasonal Staging 
Maine can be absolutely beautiful in the wintertime and decorating for the holidays can be easily turned into seasonal staging.  That festive, homey touch may be exactly what a buyer needs to see themselves living in your home...and that leads to offers! 

If you would like to discuss whether selling your home this winter is right for you...just fill out the form below, and one of our talented agents will contact you shortly!

Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 48

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Fontaine Family - The Real Estate Leader
336 Center St. Auburn, ME 04210
432 US Route 1 Scarborough ME 04074
(207)784-3800 Auburn
(207)289-3830 Scarborough
Fax: (207)786-2957

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