Monday, September 27, 2010

Contractor / Remodel

DeZign Home Inc

We Specialize in custom homes but we also do a full line of contracting - additions, re-models, kitchens and baths. We also have a professional design and decorator service available with full complement of vendors and sub-contractors to handle all of your needs.

Jerry Wells
Office: 239-432-0690
Cell 239-247-2957

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Paying Off the House in 15 Years

Source: The Wall Street Journal online
AUGUST 29, 2010

A growing number of homeowners are choosing to pay down their mortgages at a faster rate--even if it means a substantial jump in their monthly payments.

Between January and June, 26% of homeowners who refinanced chose a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage, according to data from CoreLogic, a provider of financial, property and consumer information. During all of 2009, 18.5% of borrowers who refinanced opted for a 15-year term.

Andy Rash

What's prompting the shift to shorter loans? Historically low interest rates for fixed-rate mortgages.

Homeowners are doing the math and realizing that rates have fallen enough so the increase in payment between a new 15-year mortgage and their current loan is no longer unbearable for their budgets, says Bob Walters, chief economist at online lender Quicken Loans.

The average rate on a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage was 3.86% for the week ending Aug. 26, according to Freddie Mac's weekly survey of conforming mortgage rates.

A Change in Thinking
The financial situation of those capable of refinancing today is a factor in the shift, Mr. Walters says. These people typically are homeowners with the best credit and the most equity -- and, therefore, most suited for a shorter-term loan.

But there might be some other psychology at work. "We're seeing a different view on debt than maybe we've seen in the past," he says. Today, homeowners are saying, "I really want to pay this off. I'm going to bite the bullet and take the payment and work toward paying this down."

A 15-year mortgage also acts as somewhat of a forced savings account for homeowners, says Leif Thomsen, chief executive of Mortgage Master, a privately owned lender, given that the higher payments help a borrower pay down the principal at a quicker clip.

This is a huge shift in borrower thinking. "There was a drive a couple of years ago to take out the biggest mortgage that you could and use all of the money you would have otherwise had in the house and put it into stocks and bonds--to think of your house and mortgage as part of your entire investment portfolio," says Amy Crews Cutts, deputy chief economist for Freddie Mac.

"That worked for people who do investment finance for a living and are good at managing accounts," she says. "But for the average person, debt is a drag on their psyche as well as their overall budget." Many Americans have reverted to the goal of paying off their house and getting rid of their mortgage, Ms. Cutts adds.

Doing the Math
Refinancing into a shorter-term mortgage isn't a strategy for everyone, however.

Choosing a shorter term usually means you'll get a better rate--and you'll pay much less interest over the life of the loan--but a shorter time frame ramps up monthly mortgage payments.

For example, with a 4.5% interest rate on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage of $200,000, you would have a monthly payment of $1,015, including principal and interest, Ms. Cutts says. The monthly payment jumps to about $1,480 with a 4% interest rate on a 15-year fixed-rate loan.

Of course, if the refinancing borrower's current 30-year loan has a higher rate, the difference between the monthly payments could be lower. Still, you should count on some increase in monthly payments.

In general, Mr. Walters says, those who choose 15-year fixed-rate mortgages are older and have more equity and less debt than other folks. They also earn higher incomes and don't have some of the added expenses that younger homeowners typically do.

"People who are taking these loans are financially stable and can afford the payments, but at the same time are planning on staying in their home for an extended period of time," Mr. Thomsen says.

Mr. Walters says you shouldn't take on a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage unless you have substantial savings, including at least a year's worth of living expenses in liquid accounts.

Also, he recommends having a debt-to-income ratio below 35%. So if you have a gross salary of $5,700 per month, for instance, your monthly debt--including any mortgage payments, taxes, insurance, homeowners-association dues as well as auto and student loans and credit-card debt--would have to be a max of $1,995 to get a 35% ratio.

Make That Extra Payment
Borrowers who don't meet those standards, or are worried about future loss of income, might be better served taking a longer-term mortgage but making extra payments on the principal to pay off the loan faster, says Mr. Walters.

For instance, if you refinance a $200,000 mortgage into a 30-year loan with a 4.5% rate, and then apply $100 of the savings to the principal payment each month, you'd save $31,700 in interest over the life of the loan, Ms. Cutts says. And you would pay off the mortgage in 25 years, instead of 30, she adds.

What's more, you would have the flexibility of not paying that $100 in months when money gets tight. "Maybe today you're feeling flush with money. Maybe you're worried in the future that income might change," Ms. Cutts says. With a 30-year mortgage, you have more flexibility. "Shortening to 15 years is a pretty big bump in payment."

A Great Fishing Charter

Just wanted to tell you about a great fishing charter company out of Naples.. Captain Mike Bailey owns and operates Sport Fishing and Eco Tours from Port-O-Call Marina in south Naples. He took my son, Grant, and my dad out today for a fishing charter, for my son’s birthday. What a day!!! They first netted some live bait, then proceeded to a wreck just a few miles from the coast, and caught a whole cooler of fish to bring home for dinner! Not to mention, in addition to TWO HUGE Goliath Groupers – talk about excitement for a pre-teen!! The first one weighed about 70 lbs. and the second weighed about 40+ lbs. If you are considering a day of fishing, or just want to take in the beautiful Naples scenery, please contact Mike Bailey today – tell him Heather, the Realtor, sent you!! Mike Bailey – 239-825-4292, or

The American Home is Shrinking

NEW YORK ( -- The American home is shrinking. Toll the bell for the McMansion.

After years of growth, the Census Bureau recently reported that median new home size fell to 2,135 square feet in 2009 after peaking at more than 2,300 earlier in the decade.

"Home buyers are asking for less, cutting back on options and reducing square footage," said Steven Pace of the North Carolina-based Pace Development Group, which builds both custom and tract houses ranging in price from below $250,000 to more than $2 million.

"They're saying, 'Maybe we don't need that 5,000 square footage;" he said. "'Maybe our bath doesn't need to be big enough for our whole family and all our neighbors to take a shower at the same time.'"

Kermit Baker, chief economist for the American Institute of Architects, pointed out that consumers don't ask for as much for spaces devoted to single purposes, such as media rooms for watching videos and game rooms for shooting pool. Instead, the requests are for rooms with shared uses.

"We continue to move away from the 'McMansion' chapter of residential design," he said.

QUIZ: Do you have an All-American house?

Now, the typical U.S. owner-occupied home has six rooms, with three of them being bedrooms, according to the Census Bureau's annual American Housing Survey. The most common number of baths is two or more.

For those who remember the days of long, hot summers. Those are over, too. Nearly 90% of all new homes now have central air conditioning. And 63% of all homes are now cooled.

These are a big increases from even 10 years ago, when only 52% of owner-occupied homes -- i.e. non-rental properties or second homes -- boasted central air.

Newbie homebuyers go small
More than three-quarters of all homeowners now load up dishwashers, up from 65% a decade ago. And garbage disposals can be found in nearly half of owner-occupied homes, up from 46%.

On a broader scope, the survey revealed that, despite the recent hoopla about the new urbanism and return to cities, most Americans still lead a "Leave it to Beaver" lifestyle.

Of the more than 76 million owner-occupied homes in 2009, 63 million were traditional detached, single-family residences. And city dwellers, you're outnumbered: Far more homeowners live in the suburbs than in cities.

Regionally, the South, held the largest number of owner-occupied units, followed by the Midwest, then the West and finally the Northeast

Friday, August 27, 2010

New Lisitng in Bonita Springs Florida

Listing #210028692

24950 Divot Dr
Bonita Springs, FL 34135


Tucked away on a quiet street in a gated community this gem is a must see. Pull up on the paver driveway and walk into the formal living/dining room with volume ceilings. The large kitchen has granite counters, tile backsplash, walkin pantry, an island with a sink and lots of cabinet space. The kitchen is open to the breakfast nook & family room. There are sliders all around for a great view of the pool/spa and to let in plenty of light. The master bedroom is large with a tray ceiling & 2 walk in closets. The master bath has duel sinks, a jetted tub and a separate tiled shower. The other 3 bedrooms are on the opposite side of the house. The 4th bedroom is large enough and could easily be converted into a den or office. There is a full size bathroom with a door to the pool. Step out onto the large screened lanai and enjoy the peace and quiet of the wooded area behind you. The home is done in all neutral colors and the tile is on the diagonal. This is a short sale.

To see this listing and other listing in the Fort Myers / Naples area please visit our
website at

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

John R Wood ranked 89th in Nation

NAPLES, FL, July 28 – REALTOR Magazine, in its annual
report of the nation’s top 100 companies, today announced that
John R. Wood Realtors ranked 14th in closed sales per agent.
Compiled for the year 2009, the report gave the company an
overall ranking of 89th in the nation with $942 million in sales,
regardless of company size, number of agents, or geographic

“And that number is only for closed sales,” noted Phil Wood,
president. “When we include those sales not yet closed at year
end, our 2009 total was $1.1 billion, just shy of a three percent
increase over last year.”
Wood cited their award-winning sales and administrative
staff for the firm’s “excellent performance in a tough market,”
but also credited the company’s ongoing enhancements to its
numerous websites and its presence on social media sites such
as Facebook and YouTube.

“Buyers need to be able to search all properties, see all open
houses, and set up automatic notifications when a hot property
comes on the market.”

Founded in 1958, John R. Wood Realtors is Southwest
Florida’s oldest real estate firm. The company represents over
2,000 clients annually through its 250 agents and its 100 staff
in eight offices, which allow them to serve the areas from
Marco Island to Sanibel/Captiva. In addition, the company’s
Research Department delivers current market statistics,
analysis and projections through its monthly statistical reports
to interested parties throughout the nation. Reports are public
and are available on request by Emailing customer service at

Visit to all of the areas current listings.

Monday, August 2, 2010

New listing in Bonita Springs

26711 Little John Ct #48
Bonita Springs FL 34135
Listing #210025710

Cute as a button, this 2nd floor end residence has 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, and covered parking. It has many windows so you have plenty of light. The terrace overlooks a preserve area for lots of privacy. The community has a screened pool and club area. Its a great location to the YMCA, Coconut Point and Bonita Beach. This is NOT a short sale or foreclosure.

To see this and all of the listing available in our area, visit our website