Your Tax Refund and Stimulus Savings May Help You Achieve Homeownership This Year

Your Tax Refund and Stimulus Savings May Help You Achieve Homeownership This Year | MyKCM

If you’re planning to buy a home this year, saving for a down payment is one of the most important steps in the process. One of the best ways to jumpstart your savings is by starting with the help of your tax refund.

Your Tax Refund and Stimulus Savings May Help You Achieve Homeownership This Year | MyKCM

Using data from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), it’s estimated that Americans can expect an average refund of $2,925 when filing their taxes this year. The map below shows the average anticipated tax refund by state:Thanks to programs from the Federal Housing Authority, Freddie Mac, and Fannie Mae, many first-time buyers can purchase a home with as little as 3% down. In addition, Veterans Affairs Loans allow many veterans to put 0% down. You may have heard the common myth that you need to put 20% down when you buy a home, but thankfully for most homebuyers, a 20% down payment isn’t actually required. It’s important to work with your real estate professional and your lender to understand all of your options.

How can your tax refund help?

If you’re a first-time buyer, your tax refund may cover more of a down payment than you realize.

Your Tax Refund and Stimulus Savings May Help You Achieve Homeownership This Year | MyKCM

If you take into account the median home sale price by state, the map below shows the percentage of a 3% down payment that’s covered by the average anticipated tax refund:The darker the blue, the closer your tax refund gets you to homeownership when you qualify for one of the low down payment programs. Maybe this is the year to plan ahead and put your tax refund toward the down payment on a home.

Not enough money from your tax return? 

A recent paper from the National Bureau of Economic Research found that, of the households that received a stimulus check last year, “One third report that they primarily saved the stimulus money.” If you had the opportunity to save your Economic Impact Payments, you may consider putting that money toward your down payment or closing costs as well. Your trusted real estate professional can also advise you on the down payment assistance programs available in your area.

Bottom Line

Saving for a down payment can seem like a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. This year, your tax refund and your stimulus savings could add up big when it comes to reaching your homeownership goals.

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Serving Up Simply the Best

Spring is in the air! At BST Realty LLC, we are here to serve up simply the best service to our clients. We help first-time home Buyers who are wondering how to make the first steps. And, we are there for sellers who may have owned a few homes and want to make the most out of the equity they have built up. Within the last year, it has been a bit of a doozy. However, at BST Realty LLC we have been thriving. Our sales have nearly doubled within the last couple of years. We have learned to adapt and change with the times, and that means we are also helping our clients flourish. It means a lot to us to help our clients get to where they want to be. With spring in full swing, there are many possibilities in the air this springtime!

Let’s explore all the potential of your home dreams together!

We love helping Buyers get the home they have been dreaming about with their family. We have experienced agents that are ready to educate and support you every step of the journey. Whether it be not knowing how to find a lender or what day to make sure your earnest money is in, we are here to champion you throughout the process. The same goes for Sellers. Our seasoned agents will help you get what you want. We have skilled negotiators on our team to help at each part of the journey.

If you’re finding yourself getting the itch to make the move, let’s talk. With springtime getting ready to be in full swing, it’s the perfect time to explore. It’s also a great time to plan out a strategy that will get you and your family what you truly want in a home. At BST Realty LLC, we are here to listen and support you, so let’s begin this journey together! Let’s figure out the best home path for you!

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Fun Activities Nearby

The warmer days mean more fun in the sun! In the Willamette Valley, we have so many wonderful outdoor activities to choose from. It could be experiencing the old-growth forest at Silver Falls State Park or a park for your kiddos to play. Keizer has some great play areas for families to join. One playground that’s a bit off the beaten path near Keizer Rapids is called Spong’s Landing County Park. There, you’ll find some nice picnic areas as well as a nature-themed play structure for the kids. Finding fun activities nearby is just one part of the home search puzzle. And, at BST Realty LLC, we have offices in Keizer and Silverton to better serve you.

Fun Activities Nearby
Spong’s Landing County Park in Keizer!

Gems of the Willamette Valley

In the Willamette Valley, there are so many hidden gems. Our agents are here to help you find the gem you and your family are dreaming about! While you’re searching for a home, it’s also good to get the lay of the land. This means, exploring what’s nearby. Luckily, there are so many things to choose from. There are watersports for when it gets even sunnier out and you’d like to take the family out on a boat. Or, how about visiting a lovely vineyard like Cristom Vineyards that is known for being #1 when it comes to an Oregon pinot noir many years in a row. Whether you are into the outdoors or tasting a fine wine, the Willamette Valley has so many fun activities nearby.

Our experienced agents have got you covered. At BST Realty LLC, we listen to our clients and find the best way of getting to where they want to be. Whether you’re a first-time home buyer or a seller, we are here to provide the best service. We believe in being a resource for our clients and are here to help you at every point in the journey. So, give us a call, and let’s begin exploring what possibilities are out there for you and your family!

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Home Dreams Blossom

At BST Realty LLC, we love serving our clients. We are here to support you at every point in the journey. With our talented agents, we can help serve you in many ways. This includes whether you’re considering a home out in the country with some acreage, commercial property, or perhaps you’re a first-time Homebuyer that wants to make an offer on a cute bungalow. We are here to help your dreams blossom!

home dreams
Let’s spring into all the possibilities!

If you’re a Buyer, is a great time to start looking for the home you and your family have been thinking about. Getting all your ducks in a row as it were is a good first step. That means, securing your financing so you if you find the home of your dreams, you’re able to make the strongest offer you can to help ensure your best chance of getting it. At BST Realty LLC, we have skilled agents that are expert negotiators. Especially, in a climate like today. With some homes being sold above asking price, you have got to figure out the best way to make your offer shine. And, we are here to help put your best offer forward.

If you’re a Seller, it is also a great time for you. At BST Realty LLC, we have agents that will help you navigate the process. This means, making your home shine as much as possible. That way, people who tour it may truly experience how great of a home it is. Our agents are also great at not only presenting offers but helping to figure out ways to get what you want out of selling your home.

At BST Realty LLC, we are ready to serve you. Whether you are interested in buying or selling a home, we are here to help you through the entire process. So, give us a call, and let’s begin this journey together to make your dreams blossom! Let’s get spring into action with your home!

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What Credit Score Do You Need for a Mortgage?

Navigating Your Credit Score

According to data from the most recent Origination Insight Report by Ellie Mae, the average FICO® score on closed loans reached 753 in February. As lending standards have tightened recently, many are concerned over whether or not their credit score is strong enough to qualify for a mortgage. While stricter lending standards could be a challenge for some, many buyers may be surprised by the options that are still available for borrowers with lower credit scores.

What Credit Score Do You Need for a Mortgage? | MyKCM

The fact that the average American has seen their credit score go up in recent years is a great sign of financial health. As someone’s score rises, they’re building toward a stronger financial future. As more Americans with strong credit enter the housing market, we see a natural increase in the FICO® score distribution of closed loans, as shown in the graph below:If your credit score is below 750, it’s easy to see this data and fear that you may not be able to qualify for a mortgage. However, that’s not always the case. While the majority of borrowers right now do have a score above 750, there’s more to qualifying for a mortgage than just the credit score, and there are still options that allow people with lower credit scores to buy their dream home. Here’s what Experian, a global leader in consumer and business credit reporting, says:

  • Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loans: “With a 3.5% down payment, homebuyers may be able to get an FHA loan with a 580 credit score or higher. If you can manage a 10% down payment, though, that minimum goes as low as 500.”
  • Conventional loans: “The most popular loan type typically comes with a 620 minimum credit score.”
  • S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) loans: “In general, lenders require a minimum credit score of 640 for a USDA loan, though some may go as low as 580.”
  • S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) loans: VA loans don’t technically have a minimum credit score, but lenders will typically require between 580 and 620.”

There’s no doubt a higher credit score will give you more options and better terms when applying for a mortgage, especially when lending is tight like it is right now. When planning to buy a home, speaking to an expert about steps you can take to improve your credit score is essential so you’re in the best position possible. However, don’t rule yourself out if your score is less than perfect – today’s market is still full of opportunity.

Bottom Line

Don’t let assumptions about whether your credit score is strong enough put a premature end to your homeownership goals. Let’s connect today to discuss the options that are best for you.

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Real Estate and our Economic Well Being

What Is the Strongest Tailwind to Today’s Recovering Economy?

What Is the Strongest Tailwind to Today’s Recovering Economy? | MyKCM
Real estate is the foundation of wealth

Real Estate and our Economic Well Being. Last year started off with a bang. Unemployment was under 4%, forecasters were giddy with their projections for the economy, and the residential housing market had the strongest January and February activity in over a decade.

Then came the announcement on March 11, 2020, from the World Health Organization declaring COVID-19 a worldwide pandemic. Two days later, the White House declared it a national emergency. Businesses and schools were forced to close, shelter-in-place mandates were enacted, and the economy came to a screeching halt. As a result, unemployment in this country skyrocketed to 14.9%.

A year later, the economy is recovering, and the U.S. has regained more than half of the jobs that were originally lost. However, some businesses are still closed, and many schools are still struggling to reopen. Despite the past and current challenges, there is one industry that’s proven to be a tailwind helping to counter all of these headwinds to our economy. That industry is housing. Remarkably, the residential real estate market (including existing homes and new construction) has flourished over the last twelve months. Sales are up, prices are appreciating, and more new homes are being built. The housing market has been a pillar of strength in an otherwise slowly recovering economy.

How does the real estate market help the economy?

At the beginning of the pandemic, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) released a report that explained:

“Real estate has been, and remains, the foundation of wealth building for the middle class and a critical link in the flow of goods, services, and income for millions of Americans. Accounting for nearly 18% of the GDP, real estate is clearly a major driver of the U.S. economy.”

The report calculated the total economic impact of real estate-related industries on the economy as well as the expenditures that resulted from a single home sale. At a national level, their research revealed that a single newly constructed home had an economic impact of $88,416.

What Is the Strongest Tailwind to Today’s Recovering Economy? | MyKCM
Here’s how it breaks down:The map below shows the impact by state:The impact of an existing home sale is approximately $40,000.
What Is the Strongest Tailwind to Today’s Recovering Economy? | MyKCM

Real estate has done more for our economic well being than virtually any other industry over the last year. It’s been a beacon of light during a very challenging time in our nation’s history.

Need more information? Contact one of our Agents.

Bottom Line

Whether you’re buying a newly constructed home or one that already exists, you’re making a positive economic impact in your local community – and it’s a step toward your homeownership goals as well. We are ready to assist you in making your dreams a reality. Let’s get started today. Contact us

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Simply the Best Property Management

At BST Realty LLC, we love providing the best service for our clients. Did you know that we also provide property management services? If you’re a landlord or an investor, BST Realty LLC can help figure out a plan that best fits you. The property management side is led by Uriel Santana and Jenna Robles.  Uriel does the legwork and works with clients while Jenna does more of the behind-the-scenes work utilizing her tech-savviness. They make the perfect team serve you and your property management needs. And, of course, BST Realty LLC is also always here to serve you with your real estate needs and dreams, too!

Meet Uriel Santana!

Property Management at its Best

Uriel is one of our brilliant agents and loves working with buyers and sellers. However, when Uriel proposed the idea of beginning a property management side to BST Realty LLC to Lisa Santana, his wife, now the sole owner of the brokerage, it sounded like a great thing to add to an already flourishing real estate business. Uriel brought his over 30 years of management experience working at a local grocery chain, so it just made sense that his management skills would translate easily into this field. BST Realty LLC champions the community, so this would also be another way to work with the community more. Uriel and Jenna now manage multiple HOA communities as well as independent residences. During the strange time of COVID when there have been renter moratoriums, Uriel has managed to not only make the landlords happy but also figure out ways tenants can make payments that are sustainable to their current situation. It’s wonderful when all parties are beyond satisfied with how they are being treated.

Uriel on the job wherever he may be!

“I take care of the property as if it were my own,” says Uriel. That means, that BST Realty LLC treats landlords’ property with the utmost respect and care. And, that’s only half of the equation. Uriel also makes sure that tenants are taken care of, and pays close attention to details like maintenance. Uriel and Jenna are also members of the Salem Rental Housing Association (SRHA), which means they are keeping up to date with property management laws and legislation, so that way their clients are also in the know and can make the most informed decisions.

At the heart of it, Uriel enjoys helping people. And, that’s what BST Realty LLC is all about. We want to support our community because we love it so. We are proud to have Uriel and Jenna leading property management as well as cultivating it. If you’re thinking about buying, selling, or renting…give us a call. We are here to help serve you, whether it be managing property or real estate!

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Keizer Station

Spring is knocking at our door, so some of you may be thinking about getting outdoors with the weather warming up. Keizer has many wonderful places for fun activities, and this includes Keizer Station that has so many shopping options. One of which includes REI for much of your outdoor needs. At BST Realty LLC, we have an office in Keizer to also best serve you. If you’re shopping around for simply the best in real estate, we’re your go-to local business. Please stop on by, so we can help you in the buying or selling of your home.

Keizer Station
REI welcomes you to all the possibilities of how you can enjoy the outdoors even more!

REI is just one of the many places to explore at Keizer Station. If you’re looking for a great pair of hiking shoes, the sweet paddleboard for summer, or just simply updating your tent gear in prep for some family vacations…REI is a great place to start. Keizer Station has a nice outdoor mall feel. It has a wide range of stores like Old Navy and Michael’s for crafting. That means you can also update your wardrobe while getting your knit on! And, if you are looking for some good eats, there are so many great restaurants to choose from. This includes Chipotle for a quick bite or Hops’n’Drops for enjoying a cold brew.

At BST Realty LLC, we are experts at knowing the area. This means, if our clients are looking for specific city amenities that are close by, then we’ll pay close attention to that and make sure they get all the boxes checked on their dream home. Whether you’re buying or selling, at BST Realty LLC, we listen. We make sure we take care of all the details so that the real estate process is not only smooth but as enjoyable as possible for our clients. Give us a call, and let’s get you to where you and your family want to be.

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We Love Our Community

We want to give a big thanks to all the people who wrote down their appreciation to our COVID heroes. We love our community. At BST Realty LLC, we believe in supporting community and love that so much gratitude and admiration were shared on the love notes to COVID heroes that we had posted on our office window. We are a proud affiliate of the Homes for Heroes program that supports our heroes as well. It means that people in our community like firefighters, nurses, teachers, and police officers may be able to save some money on the purchasing or selling of their homes. If you’re curious about this program, please don’t hesitate to reach out. We are always glad to listen to our clients’ needs and wants, so we may serve them.

we love our community
All the wonderful notes left from our community to our community.

Although Valentine’s Day has long passed, we want to continue with the sentiment of love and support for our community. We are stronger when we work together. We give many thanks to the firefighters who have been on the front lines to keep us safe from wildfire. To the medical care professionals who have worked so hard to keep us safe. To our teachers, we thank you so much for your adaptability in the classroom, whether it be online or in-person. And we thank our police officers for protecting us. All of our heroes are leaders in our community.

Our Silverton office window filled-up with loves notes to our COVID heroes.

What will you be doing with spring rolling in? How might you share your gratitude with someone who has helped keep you safe? Or, perhaps someone who is struggling? These stories of support also keep our community strong. At BST Realty LCC, we will continue to champion on community, because we believe in it. We are a local business that supports in many different ways. And, we are here to serve you and your family as well when it comes to making big decisions with buying and selling your home. Whether you’re a buyer or a seller, let’s talk. Let’s figure out the best way for you to continue to thrive in your community.

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Visit Keizer Rapids

Keizer is a wonderful city that has many parks to choose from. Especially with the days beginning to warm up with spring right around the corner. Keizer Rapids Park is a brilliant park to frequent with you and your family. There are trails, a fun playground, and even an arboretum with many different types of trees. There’s a good amount of space to roam and explore. This includes many other things Keizer has to offer like shopping at Keizer Station and being close to neighboring cities like Salem and Woodburn. At BST Realty LLC, we love helping our clients find the perfect fit for their families. And, we are more than happy to meet with them at our office in Keizer!

The Big Toy Playground!

Keizer Park Perks

Recreational activities are just one of the many perks in Oregon, and at Keizer Rapids you can choose your own adventure. During the summer the water opens up more for recreational activities like going out on the boat. If you’re looking for a place that’s a quiet walk, or a place to play with the kiddos, this Keizer Rapids is a great place to be. If you like walking your dogs, it’s a great place to take them, plus there’s a fun little dog park there as well…in case your dogs really like to roam free for a bit.

The arboretum where you may wander about learning about different trees.
The boat ramp where fun in the water begins!

At BST Realty LLC, we listen to our clients. We make sure that we are getting the most accurate picture, with the goal of getting all those boxes checked. This way, you can and your family can get a home that best works with you and your lifestyle. If you’re looking into buying or selling your home, let’s talk. There are so many possibilities to explore, and we like to make the journey smooth and enjoyable for you and your family.

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