Sunday, December 20, 2009

Military Personnel Have Special Benefits

According to the National Association of Realtors, there are additional benefits for military personnel in the latest extension of the home buyer tax credit.

  • Armed service, intelligence service, and foreign service personnel on active duty and out of the U.S. for 90 days during any part of 2009 get an additional year to buy their homes -- to May 1, 2011.
  • Members of the military also do not have to repay the tax credit even if they have to sell their homes before the three year time limit if they move because of official duty.

Members of the military may use their VA benefits to buy a home with no down payment. With the changes in the mortgage industry, a zero down payment loan is virtually a thing of the past.

For more details, call the Grove Team at 817-337-0000 or go to to ask questions. There are many homes available in Keller, North Richland Hills, Grapevine, Southlake, and HEB that would fit almost the criteria of any buyer who qualifies to take advantage of the first time home buyer or current home seller tax credit.

Friday, December 4, 2009

100 Transactions - CLOSED!

Congratulations are in order to the Grove Team...officially closing and funding 100 units so far in 2009!

Do you have questions about buying or selling - we can help!

The Grove Team
Keller Williams Realty

Direct (817) 337-0000

Web -

Federal Short Sale Guidance - Released

Short sale procedures for loan servicers are standardized in guidelines released earlier this week under the federal government's Making Home Affordable loan modification initiative for troubled home owners. The guidelines create a path for short-sale or deed-in-lieu of foreclosure for eligible borrows for whom loan modification isn't a viable option.

The guidelines provide $1,500 in federal funds to help borrows relocate, $1,000 to help servicers offset their processing costs, and up to $1,000 to investors secure release of subordinate liens. For each $3 an investor pays to secure the release of a lien, the investor receives $1 in assistance. The guidelines prohibit a reduction in agreed-upon commissions (if they're not more than 6%) and take effect April 5, 2010, but can be implemented by servicers at any time. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are expected to follow this release with their own rules based on these guidelines.

Do you have questions about selling or purchasing a short sale property? The Grove Team can help! With extensive experience both on the listing and purchases of short sale properties, our team can guide you step by step through the process.

Call us with any of your real estate needs...we are here for you! Specializing in Northeast Tarrant County.

The Grove Team
Keller Williams Realty

Direct (817) 337-0000

Blog source - / MetroTex Association of Realtors

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Time to give thanks...

It is with grateful hearts the Grove Team celebrates Thanksgiving this year!

The announcement of the homebuyer credit extension has continued our momentum into the holiday season. Recently announced, the Homebuyer's Credit has been extended now to April 30th.

In addition to the extension for first time homebuyers, existing homeowners can now take advantage of the market and the credit! In fact, that credit can help pay the commission on the sale of your home.

Would you like to know more? Contact us here at the Grove Team...

Direct (817) 337-0000

Friday, October 30, 2009

Extension possible in First Time Home Buyer Credit

Bloomberg Media ( posted this exciting news regarding the potential extension of the first time home buyer credit...

Congress could approve extensions of an $8,000 first-time home buyer credit as soon as November 3rd. The extension would be good through April 30th, 2010 and would also allow more people to qualify...including those who already own homes and those in higher income brackets.

Changes we may expect include, homebuyers that have lived in their home for at least five years could receive a credit of up to $6,500 in the new plan. Couples earning as much as $225,000 and individuals earning up to $125,000 would also qualify.

Stay tuned with The Grove Team for the most up to date information on the tax credit extension and changes.

For more information on buying or selling a home, visit us at

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Appraisal District Will Help with Square Footage Dispute

If you think that you have less square footage than the appraisal district is reporting, you can send in an appraisal or blueprints from your home when it was built. If you don't have either one of those, you can ask the district to schedule an appraiser to to come measure your home. According to appraisal staff, it may take awhile, but the service is provided at no charge.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

New Appraisal Rules Cause Problems and Delays

In July the National Association of Realtors (NAR) polled its members to ask about the results of implementation of the Home Valuation Code of Conduct (HVCC) on May 1, 2009. Apparently the Grove Team is experiencing in Keller, Southlake, Grapevine, North Fort Worth, NRH, and HEB the same problems that realtors are finding nationwide. We are finding that it takes longer to receive an appraisal in North Texas, and 76% of agents in the country are finding similar delays. At the same time, appraisers are indicating that they have less time to complete appraisals. The reason for this inconsistency is that lenders can no longer order appraisals directly; appraisals must be ordered from a third party appraisal management company.

Designed to reduce mortgage fraud, the rules eliminate contact between the lender and the appraiser. It's true that when abused, lender contact with the appraiser can lead to invalid appraisals. However, in the usual course of business, lender and appraiser contact can also lead to clarification and even more worthwhile appraisals.

It seems that the new rules have resulted in more expensive, less accurate, and slower appraisals. One more case of rules imposed on all of us that make life more difficult when only a relative few greedy individuals created abused the system.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Heard on the street . . .

"Heard on the street . . ." posts will be information heard in the real estate community from reliable resources. While we won't necessarily be able to cite the sources, this information could provide valuable insights into what's happening behind the scenes now and predict what will happen in the future.

Today we heard that agents in parts of the country that have been worst hit by the foreclosure crisis are seeing the pipeline of foreclosures preparing to hit the market to be slowing. Foreclosures in Las Vegas are actually selling at 10% to 15% over list because fewer properties are coming on the market.

These agents believe that new foreclosures are being held off the market for major investors who are planning to buy millions of dollars of foreclosed properties at wholesale and just hold them until the market improves. These investors are seeing that values are beginning to climb and think this is a prime time to buy.

Of course, North Texas has not been hit by the foreclosure crisis nearly so hard as other states, but members of the Grove Team believe that it is absolutely the right time to buy. Mortgage interest rates are low and property values are reasonable.

Let's see just how many foreclosures show up in Keller, Southlake, Grapevine, HEB, north Fort Worth, North Richland Hills, and other cities in our area in the coming months. It could only be good news if owner occupants don't have to compete with foreclosures in the resale market.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Results of Tax Appraisal Protests

Once again, the Grove Team assisted clients who thought that the appraised value of their real estate by the county appraisal districts was too high. Our clients report excellent success using the market information provided by us to them.

In describing their experiences, all of our clients told us that meeting informally with the staff of the appraisal district led to far more reasonable outcomes concrning real estate values than attending a formal hearing with the Appraisal Review Board (ARB). All of those who went before the ARB thought that the hearing process was one-sided toward accepting the preliminary accessed value.

Next year if you feel your assessed value is too high, contact the Grove Team at by the end of May.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

First Time Home Buyer Seminar

If you or someone you know is planning to buy a home for the first time in the next year, make plans to attend the First Time Homebuyer Seminar sponsored by the Grove Team of Keller Williams and Sara Thomas of MetLife Home Loans. The event will take place on Saturday, September 19, 2009, at Keller Pointe in Keller in the Bear Creek Room from 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM. We will provide in-depth information on the home buying process, the up to $8,000 tax credit for homes purchased before December 1, 2009, and the loan application and approval process. Realtors will also be on hand to conduct searches for individuals and couples according to their personal criteria. These searches will feature access to the MLS and the most current information on homes on the market in Keller, Southlake, Grapevine, HEB, and other cities in Northeast Tarrant County. Admission is free and refreshments will be served.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Local market statistics

Even though the national real estate numbers may be grim, our local market is holding its own. According to numbers compiled by the Texas A&M Real Estate Center, Grapevine, Hurst, Euless, and Bedford are all seller's markets with less than five months of inventory available for sale. Keller, Southlake, and Colleyville are buyer's markets with more than seven months of available inventory.

The Grove Team web site offers terrific tools to search the MLS. Go to

Monday, August 24, 2009

List Price - vs - Sold Price Analysis

The Grove Team has recently done an analysis comparing sales price to list price. The information was compiled using the Hurst, Euless, Bedford (HEB)& North Richland Hills (NRH)markets.

Of 36 HUD properties - 19 or 53% sold at 100% of list price or above
10 or 28% sold between 90% and 99% of list price
5 or 14% sold between 80% and 89% of list price
2 or 5% sold between 70% and 79% of list price

Of 192 foreclosures - 187 or 97% sold between 80% and 100%+ of list price
5 or 3% sold between 70% and 79% of list price
1 or less than 1% sold at 71% of list

Of 1046 properties sold in HEB and NRH since January -
1 or .000956 sold at 62% of list price

The Grove Team
Keller Williams
454 E. Keller Parkway
Keller, Texas 76248

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Introducing...the Closing Coordinators

Meet the ladies of the Closing Department
Once a contract has been worked and and agreed on, your file is transferred to Angie Vickerman and Angela Hanthorn. Together they oversee the closing process, establish communication with cooperating agents, follow up with lenders, and coordinate with the title company.

By anticipating obstacles before they occur, Angie and Angela ensure that transaction for buyers and sellers close as smoothly as possible and on schedule.

Angie Vickerman and Angela Hanthorn

As mentioned in a previous Blog, Angie Vickerman has been with the Grove Team since 2004. In addition to her work with the buyer specialist, Angie works directly with all Grove Team agents to ensure a smooth closing transaction.

Angela Hanthorn, our newest Grove Team member pulls from her experience in hotel and hospitality management to anticipate the next step in the transaction. Angela's ability to multi-task under strict deadlines makes her a valued member of the Grove Team.

For more information or to talk with a member of the Grove Team, contact us below:

Office (817) 337-0000

Monday, July 27, 2009

Meet the Buyer Specialists

Thinking of buying a home? The idea can be overwhelming whether it is your first purchase or your tenth. The Grove Team is committed to a real estate practice that centers on our clients. The success of this philosophy shows in our client satisfaction and repeat customers. What does it mean to have a buyer's agent represent you in the purchase of your home?

With the Grove Team's buyer specialists on your side, it means that you are professionally represented throughout the entire process of buyer your home. The Grove Team will assist you in selecting a neighborhood that best suits your lifestyle and locate homes that meet your criteria. We will review the comparable sales in the neighborhood so you'll be informed on pricing. Most importantly, we will guide you through the entire process of making an offer and negotiate on your behalf.

FYI: The National Association of Realtors statistics show that clients who purchase through a buyer's agent pay less for properties than those who purchase through the listing agent.

Meet the buyer's team:

Left to right, Angie Vickerman, Lynn McClish-Will, and Diane Jones

Lynn McClish Will, ABR, Buyer Specialist, dedicates her inexhaustible energy to find the right home in the desired time frame for her clients. Her knowledge spans from the existing home market to builders and new construction. Lynn's expertise allows her to manage the total buying process and reduce stress for her clients.

Diane Jones, ABR, Buyer Specialist, brings over 25 years of real estate experience to the Grove Team. Her extensive knowledge of the Northeast Tarrant County market allows her to work with buyers to locate the best property and help them make informed decisions in the purchase of a new home.

Cathy Jo Hobbs, Buyer Specialist, is the Grove Team's new team member. Bringing her background in transaction management, Cathy Jo is skilled at organizing the purchasing process from start to finish. Cathy Jo's experience with corporate executives has provided her with unparalleled skills in contract negotiation.

Angie Vickerman, Inside Buyer Specialist, has worked with the Grove Team since 2004. Working directly with the buyer specialists, she provides valuable support to the development of long term relationships with out clients. Angie's experience with the Grove Team and in real estate allows her to focus on meeting the needs and expectations of our clients and the agents.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Meet the Listings Team

How does the Grove Team work for you when selling your home? In real estate, as in life, it is about the team work. As a seller, we work with you to price your home to sell in a time that meets your time frame. The listing team will provide advice on repairs, improvements, and staging techniques to maximize appeal to buyers. All of our showings are tracked, and we follow up with each agent for feedback about showings.

To learn more about the advantages of working with the Grove Team, give us a call! With more than 50 units closed this year, the Grove Team owes many thanks to the stellar listings team. Take just a moment to get to know each of them better:

Diane Grove and Pamela Rea, Listing Specialists, focus their efforts on obtaining the highest sales price possible for sellers while professionally negotiateting the details presented in every offer. While Diane emphasizes meeting clients outside the office, Pam's mission is to be available inside the office so that they can work jointly with sellers to competitively price and market their homes.

Diane Jones, ABR, Listing Specialist, brings over 25 years of real estate experience to the Grove Team. Her extensive knowledge of the Northeast Tarrant County market allows her to work directly with sellers to obtain the best price for their properties. Diane emphasizes meeting our clients' needs above all else.

Mahannah Pike, Listing and Marketing Coordinator, makes certain that our listings are professionally marketed. From staging the home's pictures to advertising the details on our various websites, Mahannah takes great pride in promoting the unique features of each home presented by the Grove Team. She also directs marketing communications including mail campaigns, client satisfaction, and appreciation promotions, and long-term strategies.
How can the Grove Team assist you? Contact the Grove Team directly at any of the following:
Office (817) 337-0000

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Meet the Grove Team with Keller Williams Realty

The Grove Team was established in 1995 to serve Northeast Tarrant County and surrounding areas. The success of the team's commitment has been recognized repeatedly. Among north Texas real estate teams, the Grove Team has ranked among the top five in GCI (Gross Commission Income) in the Southlake Market Center and in total units sold within the North Texas New Mexico Region.

All full time members of the Grove Team are licensed Realtors with more than 90-year combined experience. Diane Grove and Lynn McClish-Will have been ranked in the top 1% of all U.S. Realtors. Affiliated with the third largest brokerage in the country, Keller Williams Realty, the Grove Team supports our clients by guiding you through every aspect of home ownership. Whether you are selling your home, search for a new home, or simply providing you with homeowner tips and home service contractor referrals, the Grove Team is committed to providing you with a total real estate resource center.

How can the Grove Team assist you? Contact the Grove Team directly at any of the following:

Office (817) 337-0000