If there’s one thing we hear a lot at Bold City Real Estate, it’s that the real estate business can be complicated. We don’t want it to be that way though – it is our mission at BCRE to allow our clients to make educated and confident decisions about homeownership. We asked our followers on social media what burning questions they had about real estate, and did y’all deliver!

How common or uncommon is it in real estate for people to purchase homes with a contingency of their existing home selling? Or do people just sell their existing homes and then live in limbo until a home they like comes on the market?

Both scenarios are pretty common! When most people decide to make a move, they generally handle it one of two ways, and your financing may directly put you in one category versus the other.

The first scenario is buying your next home and closing on it, then listing your existing home after the fact. This means that you have the financial flexibility to carry both mortgages from the mortgage company’s standpoint AND that you are comfortable doing that until your home sells. That’s fairly low risk in a seller’s market when homes are selling quickly and shopping WITHOUT a sales contingency will give you more negotiating and purchase power.

Not everyone can be approved to carry both mortgages or is comfortable doing that, though, so that’s when a sales contingency comes into play. In this scenario, you’d line up your pre-qualification and list your current home for sale. Most professionals would then recommend waiting until you have your home under contract before you go on to put an offer on your next home. Accepting a sales contingency is riskier for a seller so this is significantly less ideal in a seller’s market, even though it’s common. Once you have a contract on your new home, it’s subject to the contract on your existing home getting to the closing.

This means a lot of moving parts, but it’s something we handle at Bold City Real Estate all the time. In most, cases, we can actually have both the sale and the purchase closed on the same day.

When is the best time to refinance? 

When current interest rates are lower than your current fixed rate, it could be worth talking to a mortgage company about refinancing into a better rate. It’s extremely important to have the full picture of the new mortgage and to pay close attention to the terms and fees to make sure that refinancing actually makes sense for you.

What kind of credit score do you need to buy a home?

Most traditional lenders are looking for a minimum score of 620, but there are products and exceptions to that rule and it’s sometimes possible to find a lender who can go as low as 580. Generally speaking, a higher score gets you a better rate and terms, though, so it’s always worth researching how you can get the score up to save money in the long run.

Who are your preferred lenders in the Jacksonville area?

Daniel Halvorsen with Bank of England, Andrew Cady with Fairway Mortgage, just to name a couple but it often comes down to a borrower’s specific situation. Lenders aren’t a one size fits all type of industry, in my opinion.

Do you have your own questions? Contact us directly!

Allison Rodrigues is the owner and broker of Bold City Real Estate. She is passionate about her hometown of Jacksonville, Florida but helps both buyers and sellers in most areas of Northeast Florida. Her background in real estate law made the transition to selling homes an easy one and she prides herself on being available, adaptable, and transparent with her clients. She can be reached at 904-210-8387 or by email at Allison@BoldCityLife.com.