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Birmingham USDA Loans To Continue

USDA still available

Despite earlier reports to the contrary, USDA’s no-down-payment financing for people looking to buy a home in the Birmingham area will remain in effect after September 30th, 2013.

USDA no-down-payment financing for people looking to buy homes in the Birmingham area will continue to be available after September 30th, despite earlier reports from the Agency that the popular loan program would wind down permanently at the end of the month.

How long will USDA financing remain in effect?  Not even the government—which administers the program—is saying.

The loan program will “continue for some period,” according to Rich Davis, acting Administrator for USDA’s Rural Housing Service.

Many Buyers were concerned that loss of the program would reduce their chances of being able to buy a home in places in Shelby Co. including Chelsea and Calera, areas the government considers rural, and therefore eligible for USDA financing.

In the meantime, a new 100% conventional loan program has been introduced, and which would be a back-up for some Buyers who had wanted to purchase with USDA financing.

If you’re thinking of buying a home, figuring out what loan is best for your particular situation—whether it’s USDA or something else—can get confusing.

Your best bet is to contact a Lender knowledgeable in the many loan programs that are available in the Birmingham and Shelby Co. area before you buy.

Birmingham Area USDA Financing Ends

If you’re thinking of buying a home in several areas near Birmingham using 100% loan financing through the U.S. Department of Agriculture, you’ll have to go a different route.

Effective October 1st, homes in Chelsea, Calera, Moody and Pleasant Grove—areas that have been eligible for USDA’s no-down-payment funding—will no longer qualify.

Current loans that are already in USDA’s processing system as of October 1st will be honored.

The removal of these areas comes as a result of a decision that these communities are no longer considered rural.

USDA’s loan program has been very popular…Colleen and I have helped many first time Buyers over the years with purchasing a home using this financing.

This does not necessarily mean that you’re out of options if you’re trying to get a 100% financed loan for a home in these areas.

USDA Financing

USDA’s no-down-payment financing for Calera, Chelsea, Moody and Pleasant Grove is winding down as of Oct 1st.

A new 100% conventional loan program has just been announced that may be a suitable alternative.

Offered by several area Lenders, the new loan program is currently available at a fixed rate of 4.75% to Buyers who qualify, and has reduced mortgage insurance.  And, unlike USDA loans, this new loan is not restricted by area.

Here are a few Lenders in the area you can contact for more information:

KC Haririan
Aliant Bank
205-999-1386

Gloria Jackson
First Federal Mortgage
205-965-2167

Woody Woodfin
Home Mortgage of America, Inc.
205-229-2877

Chefs Will Love 214 Lake Forest Way

214 Lake Forest Way

This is a beautifully maintained 5BR home on one level over finished basement, offering a totally new Kitchen and loads of space, including three bedrooms on the main level plus a 3 car garage…

If you’re looking for a home for sale in the Birmingham area with loads of space and some beautiful upgrades, check out 214 Lake Forest Way.

This is a 5BR home on one level over a finished basement.  The owners have just completed a major upgrade of their Kitchen, and it’s enough to make any Chef envious!

This home is located on a cul-de-sac street in Lake Forest, one of the more desired neighborhoods in the Birmingham area.  Zoned for the new Alabaster city school system.

Featuring lots of open space with high ceilings and attractive neutral colors, this home needs nothing.

To give you an idea of how much this great home has to offer, take four minutes and check out the video we’ve produced in high definition.  Click the player just below…

Kitchen Talk: Flood Plain Blues

flood plain bluesColleen discusses what has been a complete surprise to a number of home owners and Buyers in the Birmingham area…

Birmingham Area Sales Update

Here’s a look at how many homes are for sale in some of the Birmingham area’s more desired neighborhoods, followed by lowest to highest asking price (data is provided by the Greater Alabama MLS, Inc.):

DSC_0163

Shelby County, just south of the Birmingham metro area, is popular with many Buyers who realize how much home they can get for their money…

Birmingham:
Shoal Creek … 13 ($579,9K – $13,900,000)
Mt. Laurel … 14 ($240K – $699,9K)

Hoover:
Greystone … 112 ($149,9K – $6,900,000)
Greystone Ridge … 2 ($149,9K – $189K)
Greystone Legacy … 34 ($404,9K – $1,699,000)
Greystone Village … 1 ($259,9K)
Greystone Cove … 5 ($449K – $1,140,000)
Highland Lakes … 52 ($287,9K – $1,097,900)
Eagle Point … 11 ($184,9K – $675K)
Trace Crossings … 43 ($239,9K – $899K)
Lake Crest … 6 ($327,9K – $499,9)

Pelham:
Ballantrae … 46 ($179,9K – $899,9K)
High Hampton … 1 ($325K)
Mallard Pointe … 3 ($198,5K – $209,9K)

Helena:
Riverwoods … 8 ($229K – $400K)
Hillsboro … 4 ($193,9K – $264,9K)

Inventory is down in many areas around the greater Birmingham area...

With the number of homes having fallen in many communities around Birmingham, it’s not nearly so much of a Buyer’s market as it used to be…

Alabaster:
Sterling Gate … 4 ($129,7K – $214,9K)
Cedar Grove … 3 ($134,9K – $279,9K)
Grande View … 11 ($152,9K – $304,4K)
Wynlake … 2 ($199,9K – $379,9K)
Lake Forest … 7 ($152,K – $294,9K)
Kentwood … 1 ($199,9K)
Weatherly … 10 ($109,9K – $204,9K)

Birmingham area homes for sale by general area…

Jefferson County:
Liberty Park/Vestavia … 342
Homewood … 216

Shelby County:
Bluff Park/Hoover/Riverchase … 108
No. Shelby/Hoover … 498
Chelsea … 259
Helena/Pelham … 323
Alabaster/Maylene/Saginaw … 179
Calera/Montevallo/Wilton … 264

In many communities around the greater Birmingham area, the number of homes for sale is down significantly, compared to previous years.  This is creating more pressure on people looking to buy a home than in the past, since there are fewer homes to choose from.

David

Lake Forest Summer ’13 Sales Update

If you’re looking to buy a home in the Birmingham, Alabama, area, Lake Forest—a lake and sidewalk neighborhood in Alabaster—is a popular choice for several reasons.

It’s attractive, offers a great quality of life, and is in a convenient location.  A number of people who work in Birmingham choose to live in Lake Forest because they enjoy it so much.

Alabaster is also home to the city’s newly formed school system, which has many excited for the future.

Here’s a video update showing homes selling and available in Lake Forest (you can watch this video in high definition if you like—simply click the ‘Full Screen’ icon in the lower right corner of the video window below).

Whether it’s Lake Forest or throughout the north Shelby Co. and south Jefferson Co. areas, we’re ready to help with your home buying or selling needs.

Let us know if we can answer any questions; we’re reachable at 205.356-5412 (voice or text).  

Start packing!

David

Alabaster’s CityFest: Fun For All

If you’re looking for a home for sale in the Birmingham area and are wondering what living in the community is like, here’s a taste.

Alabaster, one of Shelby county’s most popular cities, has just concluded another very successful CityFest, a family friendly day of food, arts, crafts, games, rides, entertainment and more, put together by the City of Alabaster with support from area businesses.

Check out our video of the festivities:

Germany Gains Two Cats From Alabama

You’re looking at what was almost a $2,500 cat.

Times two.Juergen & Helga Lauer

Colleen and I had a great time helping Juergen and Helga Lauer of Lake Forest in Alabaster sell their home.

The Lauers were moving to Germany.

Getting everything shipped overseas went pretty smoothly…until it came to the Lauer’s two cats.

The moving company said, ‘sure, we’ll ship them—for $2,500 each.’

We guess that was almost enough to put Juergen and Helga into a—pardon the pun—catatonic state.

Surely, the Lauers wondered, there must be a less expensive way to transport two cats from Alabama to Germany!

After some more research, the Lauers found their solution:  Delta.

$200 each, flown/done.

No word on what the cats thought of the trip…

Spring Sales Update For Lake Forest

Looking for a home for sale in the general Birmingham, Alabama area?

Here’s an update we’ve produced on market activity in Lake Forest, a popular Shelby Co. neighborhood that’s an easy drive into downtown Birmingham:

Let us know if we can help…

USDA Financing To Stick Around

Good news if you’ve been thinking of buying a home in the Birmingham general area…USDA no down payment financing

With two days left to spare, the government has decided not to allow a change to take effect that would have meant the removal of Calera as one of the communities eligible for no-down-payment home mortgage financing.

Congress has passed a resolution that preserves the areas where homes are eligible for USDA loans.  The bill must be signed by the President before becoming law, but that is expected to happen shortly.

USDA loans are popular with many Buyers because they can be an affordable way of purchasing a home.  The loans are available for properties in specific geographical areas designated by the government.

The decision by Congress means that the home we currently have listed in Calera will continue to be eligible for USDA’s no-down-payment financing: