Archive for March, 2009

Troy Michigan Real Estate Buyers Can Get A $8,000 Boost From The Stimulus

Posted in Troy Michigan Real Estate by Michigan Real Estate Expert on March 30th, 2009

The new stimulus bill gives first-time home buyers a tax credit of $8,000! Whether the Troy Michigan real estate you purchase is new or a re-sale there are always things you can do to make improvements. Here are a few ideas on how you can use the tax break for your new home.

  1. Put in all new modern appliances. $8,000 will buy a nice set of kitchen and laundry appliances, and enough groceries to fill up that new refrigerator for several months on top of it.
  2. Furnish a room. Many times a new home means old furniture just won’t fit in or fill it up. $8,000 goes a long way to decorating a new room or two.
  3. Add on a porch or deck.  The stimulus money can be used to add value to your Troy Michigan real estate by making additions like a patio, deck or porch. It will make your new home even more enjoyable too. Construction jobs not only help the economy, but they create jobs in the community—a double bonus that you are making happen!
  4. Buy a car. Okay, maybe your new home is perfect as it is. That’s lovely. Use your stimulus tax incentive to put a big down payment on a new car. The huge down payment will keep your monthly payments low and affordable while helping out the other big industry failing in the current economy.

The key to the President’s stimulus plan is to spur the economy and give people money to spend—so go ahead and spend it. Buy those items you’d have trouble buying for your Troy Michigan real estate without the extra help.  And, feel good about it because you’re stimulating your local Michigan economy. 

Are you ready to purchase a new home?  Have questions about how the stimulus helps first-time buyers get Troy Michigan real estate? I’ll be happy to assist you in finding the right home for you at the best price.   Email me at or call 248-514-2640 now for more information.

Lee Morof
RE/MAX Showcase Homes
Birmingham, Michigan
Call:  248-514-2640


How the Stimulus Bill Can Help You Buy Troy Michigan Real Estate

Posted in Troy Michigan Real Estate by Michigan Real Estate Expert on March 26th, 2009

There are several indications that the new stimulus bill passed by Congress will have a positive influence on the struggling housing market. If you are considering buying your first home and would like to purchase Troy Michigan real estate, the stimulus plan may help make that happen.

How the Stimulus Bill Stimulates the Bottom Line

The biggest effect the stimulus plan will have on new home buyers is a tax incentive. We all want to get more money back on our tax returns and the stimulus bill has an $8,000 tax credit for first-time home buyers purchasing Troy Michigan real estate in Oakland County.

How You Qualify

In order to qualify for the stimulus tax incentive you must:

  • Not have owned a home in the past three years.
  • Use the new home as your primary residence.  
  • Have an income of less than $75,000 per person or $150,000 per couple.

No action is necessary other than reporting the purchase on your income tax filings.  You must keep your home for at least 36 months in order to not have to pay back the incentive in the following tax year. If, however, you keep your new home for 36 months or longer you never have to repay the incentive.

There is no cap on return for this incentive either. Even if you would not normally be entitled to the full amount according to your taxable income level, you will still receive the entire $8,000 amount in return.

Purchase Troy Michigan Real Estate and Stimulate Interest

The stimulus bill also gives first-time home buyers a chance to get into those big ticket houses. Houses with market values over $417,000 will be eligible for lower interest rates to make them more affordable. The luxury home industry has stagnated in the failing real estate market and this should give it a vital boost.

President Obama’s stimulus plan is serious about improving the housing market. The bill gives people looking to buy Troy Michigan real estate reason to hope. 

Interested in more information on how the stimulus plan can help you purchase a home?  Call me at 248-514-2640 or email  I’ll never share your contact information with anyone for any reason.

Lee Morof
RE/MAX Showcase Homes
Birmingham, Michigan
Call:  248-514-2640


Prepare For Your Bloomfield Hills Real Estate Home Inspection

Posted in Bloomfield Hills Real Estate by Michigan Real Estate Expert on March 23rd, 2009

Few things can derail your plans to sell your Bloomfield Hills real estate like failing a home inspection.  Most states require that a home inspection be completed and turned over to the buyer before the contract is finalized.

To prepare for your Bloomfield Hills real estate inspection, you’ll want to thoroughly clean your home.  It’s also a good idea to examine all the appliances to make sure they’re in good working condition.

What Will the Inspector Do?

You may be surprised to learn that the inspector will turn on the stove and test the dishwasher and garbage disposal.  They’ll make sure the furnace and air conditioning systems work.  You’ll want to clear out the area around the furnace and hot water heater because the inspector will need a few feet of space to work in.

If you plan to leave your home before selling it, be sure to leave the pilot lights lit for the inspection.  Most of the Bloomfield Hills real estate inspectors will not re-light pilot lights because of insurance regulations.  This can delay the completion of the inspection and cause the loan process to take longer.

The inspector will test the water pressure by flushing the toilets and turning on all the faucets.  This process can reveal leaks or clogs in the system.

It will be easier for the inspector if you aren’t in the house at the time.  Try to arrange to be out of the house for the inspection, and take your pets with you.  Pets can be an unnecessary distraction to the inspector.

What’s Next?

Hopefully your home passed inspection with no problem.  If you get a repair request from the inspector, don’t worry.  You aren’t obligated to make the repairs unless it’s stated in the contract.  However, you run the risk of the contract being canceled if you refuse to make reasonable repairs.

If you’d like ideas on how to stage and prepare your Bloomfield Hills real estate for sale, order the FREE book for sellers, “Staging Tips to Prepare Your Home for Market.”  There is absolutely no obligation or strings attached to this FREE offer. 

Ready to sell your Bloomfield Hills real estate in Southeast Michigan?  I’ll help you obtain the best price for your home.  Call me today at 248-514-2640 or email right now to get started.

Lee Morof
RE/MAX Showcase Homes
Birmingham, Michigan
Call:  248-514-2640


Finding Defects in Newly Constructed Troy Michigan Real Estate Homes

Posted in Troy Michigan Real Estate by Michigan Real Estate Expert on March 19th, 2009

According to the Better Business Bureau, contractor problems are one of the most common consumer complaints.  With those kinds of statistics, buying a newly constructed Troy Michigan real estate home calls for a knowledgeable individual.  Here are a few things you can do to make sure your contractor  doesn’t end up as your complaint:

Know What Your Warranties Cover

There are two types of warranties.  One is called an express warranty, and is given to you by the contractor.  Usually, this warranty lasts between one to ten years, with one year being the most common.  It covers everything from cosmetic flaws to serious defects.

The second type of warranty varies depending on the state you live in.  It’s an implied warranty that states the residence has to be habitable.  To have your defect covered by this warranty, you have to be able to prove that it’s a health or safety hazard. 

Have warranty questions?  I’m in a unique position as a licensed Troy Michigan real estate broker and lawyer, to assist you with all facets of purchasing your new home.  And, I’ll keep you from making a mistake that could cost you thousands.

Find Real Defects

If you spot a defect, you need to find out whether it’s an acceptable imperfection or a real defect.  For instance, small cracks in the interior of new Troy Michigan homes for sale are normal defects.  The only cracks that need to be repaired are those longer than 3/16 of an inch, according to the National Association of Home Builders’® performance guidelines.  In addition, hammer marks or nail pops only count if you can see them from more than six feet away.

Document Everything

Once you find a real defect, document everything.  Take photos and make detailed notes.  You may want to hire an independent inspector or structural engineer to give your house a full examination.

Buying new Troy Michigan real estate can be enjoyable when you work with a REALTOR® like me who has the knowledge and experience to guide you through the homebuying process.  Call me today at 248-514-2640 or email me at now.

Lee Morof
RE/MAX Showcase Homes
Birmingham, Michigan
Call:  248-514-2640


Buying Southeast Michigan Real Estate? Read This First!

Posted in Southeast Michigan Real Estate by Michigan Real Estate Expert on March 16th, 2009

Whether you are new to home buying or an experienced home buyer, you should take a minute to read this information before you set out to purchase Southeast Michigan real estate in Oakland County.

Look Before You Leap

Anyone who has bought a home in the past knows how good one can look when you walk through it. Even after you close on the sale and move in, all looks good, for a while. Then you begin to notice the little things. Things you should have known to look for when viewing. Be sure to have your home thoroughly inspected by a professional home inspector

Avoid Problems at Closing

Title company issues can put a damper on your closing and possibly cause you to be without a home.  How? Once your current home is sold and the new owners want to move in, you’ll be looking for a place to live until you can get the closing issues resolved.   Or, if you’re renting and your lease is up, you’ll need to get out or sign for another term.  Work with a professional Southeast Michigan real estate agent who can successfully guide you through the home buying and home closing process.  

Avoid First-Time Buyer Mistakes

Beyond the hidden problems of a home there are typical first time buyer mistakes to avoid when looking for Southeast Michigan real estate such as:

  • How to estimate the cost of fixing up an older home.
  • How to negotiate a better price and terms.
  • The burdens of a long commute and how to decide how far is too far.

Buying a new home is fun and exhilarating, if you do your homework first to avoid making costly mistakes.

Whether you just want a recommendation for a professional home inspector or are looking for a new Southeast Michigan home, I can help.  Call me at 248-514-2640 or email me at now.  You’ll be glad you did! 

Lee Morof
RE/MAX Showcase Homes
Birmingham, Michigan
Call:  248-514-2640


5 Tips When Looking for Bloomfield Hills Real Estate

Posted in Bloomfield Hills Real Estate by Michigan Real Estate Expert on March 12th, 2009

There are a lot of homes for sale now which makes it a great time to buy Bloomfield Hills real estate in Oakland County Michigan. Not only can you find a wide variety of beautiful homes at lower than normal prices but thanks to the new American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, if you’re a first-time home buyer, you can get a generous bonus at tax time.

Here are some tips for taking full advantage of the stimulus and to make shopping for a new home more pleasurable.

1.  Don’t Settle for the First Place You See

It isn’t a race and you don’t get extra points for being fast. Take your time to find just the right one for you.

2.  Weigh the Pros and Cons

Just about any home will need a few improvements.  Even newly constructed homes usually need improvements like landscaping. Home sellers are savvier now about how to make enhancements to catch a buyer’s eye, but look carefully. There will still be things you want to change. Weigh the difference between the cost of those repairs and the sale price. If you really want to purchase a home, even though it’s going to take a lot of work, place your bid accordingly.

3.  Start Looking Now

The new stimulus plan allows for more homeowners to remain in their homes where only a short time ago they needed to sell. The housing market will begin to stabilize and prices will get stronger. If you are thinking about buying a new home, don’t get left on the sidelines…now is the time to do it.

4.  Get Help

The sea of homes available can be mind-boggling. Find one of the best professional Bloomfield Hills real estate agents to wade through the homes for sale that meet your family and financial needs.

5.  Get Your Financing in Order

The stimulus plan will help make banks and mortgage companies stronger and loans will once again be available. They may not be as easy to get as they were in the past, however, so make sure you have all your information ready. Having financing done in advance makes your job of buying Bloomfield Hills real estate much easier.

If you’re looking for a professional Bloomfield Hills real estate agent to help you find your perfect home, I can help.  As a real estate broker and lawyer, I can keep you from making costly and time consuming mistakes.  I’ll even provide you with a FREE book for buyers, “How to Find Your New Home” with absolutely no strings attached.

Ready to take advantage of the stimulus plan and buy a home?  Call me today at 248-514-2640 or email for more information.

Lee Morof
RE/MAX Showcase Homes
Birmingham, Michigan
Call:  248-514-2640


Troy Michigan Real Estate Gets Hope From The Stimulus Plan

Posted in Troy Michigan Real Estate by Michigan Real Estate Expert on March 9th, 2009

The President’s stimulus plan has offered hope and a ray of sunshine to a gloomy Troy Michigan real estate market. Here are some ways the Southeast Michigan real estate market can benefit from the plan:

  • The mortgage industry will receive a financial boost which will help buyers with new housing loans.
  • First-time home buyers will receive a tax incentive that results in a huge tax break.
  • There will be 50 billion dollars targeted at bailing out failing mortgage institutions.  This will part of the stimulus plan will bring home buyers financial opportunities.

Besides the stimulus plan, Troy Michigan home sellers are looking at more creative ways to sell their real estate.  Sellers need to insure their properties have good curb appeal to attract buyers.  Insure your home is in great condition both inside and out.  Selling your Troy Michigan real estate will be faster with less headaches if your home is appealing to buyers…and that mean more profit to you.  

Home Seller Tips

  • Get rid of the clutter in your home.  Donate or throw away things you don’t need. Most of us have way more in our Troy Michigan homes than we use. If you don’t want to throw items away, put them in storage for use in your new home or condo.  
  • Freshen it up. A new coat of paint and a good steam cleaning for the carpets will help make your home more appealing to potential buyers.
  • Create curb appeal. Don’t lose a buyer because your home exterior is unattractive and the yard is full of clutter.  Make sure your landscaping is top notch by mowing your lawn, trimming the bushes and trees away from the house.  Your front door and entrance should be clean and painted if necessary, to give a welcoming look.  Update your home’s exterior inexpensively with new hardware on the doors, add new house numbers, and light fixtures.  
  • Price your home right. Ask a professional Troy Michigan real estate agent for his opinion on what a good price would be for your home. In the current housing market you want to price your home to sell.  

Want to find a Troy Michigan real estate professional who can help sell your home or condo faster and for top dollar?  Call me today at 248-514-2640 or email

Lee Morof
RE/MAX Showcase Homes
Birmingham, Michigan
Call:  248-514-2640


Why the Stimulus Makes This a Great Time for First-Time Southeast Michigan Real Estate Buyers

Posted in Southeast Michigan Real Estate by Michigan Real Estate Expert on March 5th, 2009

There are great incentives for first-time Southeast Michigan real estate buyers. Big tax incentives and money put into the banking and financing industries to give buyers more availability to loans makes now the best time to move when looking for a home. This environment won’t last—exactly. Some of the elements put in place are geared toward a strong future for the housing market, but many of the advantages are only good for now.

Tax Relief

First-time Southeast Michigan real estate buyers, meaning those who have not owned a home or condo in the past three years, are eligible for a big tax break on income taxes. Next year at tax time all buyers have to do is report the new home purchase to get $8,000 dollars back. That’s a big incentive. The drawback is it’s only good for this year. It is retroactive to the beginning of 2009 so even if you have already bought that home you can still claim it, but if you drag your feet hoping for better mortgage financing, or just a better time for your family to get a new home, you will miss out after December 31, 2009.

Affordable Housing

Right now is the time to buy because of prices, too. Thanks to the failings of the housing market, there are tons of homes for sale at prices they would not normally be listed at. If the stimulus plan improves the economy the way it is hoped it will, that won’t last. That brings hope and great news for homeowners, but not great for those who wait to take advantage of the greatly reduced home prices.

Southeast Michigan real estate buyers need to take advantages of all that 2009 and the current real estate market have to offer. There are great deals that will never happen again—hopefully. 

If you haven’t owned a home in the past three years and would like to, as not only a licensed broker and an attorney, I am uniquely qualified to help you take advantage of the 2009 stimulus plan.  Call me at 248-514-2640 or send me an email at for more information.

Lee Morof
RE/MAX Showcase Homes
Birmingham, Michigan
Call:  248-514-2640


How the Stimulus Plan Might Affect Troy Michigan Real Estate Condo Buyers and Sellers

Posted in Troy Michigan Real Estate by Michigan Real Estate Expert on March 2nd, 2009

The stimulus, the stimulus—it is hard to go to a news site or blog now without seeing something about the stimulus plan, good or bad. The one thing that seems to be a common thought is everybody hopes it works whether they like the plan or not. There are many ways the stimulus plan might affect Troy Michigan real estate condo buyers and sellers.

Buyer Incentive

The biggest boon to both buyers and sellers is the proposed tax break for any first-time buyer purchasing a home (including condos) in 2009. That last part is the one down point in the plan. Homes must be purchased in the current year, retroactive to the beginning of 2009, and ending December 31st. That should, however provide a decent impetus to get things moving again. While it is short lived, it could boost the market long enough so that the forward motion continues past this year.

Mortgage Incentive

Not for the buyers and sellers in particular, the banking and finance industry is set to receive the biggest portion of the stimulus plan. That can only help both buyers and sellers of Troy Michigan real estate, as it will mean buyers will once again have the ability to get mortgage loans.

More expensive luxury homes and condos will also be given lower interest rates and affordable mortgage loans. There does seem to be some argument over whether the stimulus plan will raise or lower mortgage rates so that remains to be seen.

Are you thinking about buying or selling Troy Michigan real estate in Southeast Michigan? If you want to take advantage of the stimulus plan, I can help.  Call me at 248-514-2640 or email me at for more information.

Lee Morof
RE/MAX Showcase Homes
Birmingham, Michigan
Call:  248-514-2640