Anchorage, AK Real Estate News

By Pauline Hofseth, Daring to Care
(Prudential Jack White/Vista Real Estate)
No one will be totally immune to our economic crisis, but so far, Alaska is still holding steady. Because of conservative lending practices and high oil prices, Alaska's economy has softened this past year, but not broke under the pressure of the global credit crunch or Wall Street's failures. Here are some of Alaska's great perks: ~ This year, Alaska has seen its 21st consecutive year of job growth, although it is a little slower than last year. ~ Even though home foreclosures are up, they are still well below other states across the nation. ~ While many local banks are tightening on their lending practices, you can still get great loans in Alaska . ~ Though oil prices have fallen over recent weeks, they are still very high. These high oil prices help fund the states economy. ~ The sta...
Comments 0
By Pauline Hofseth, Daring to Care
(Prudential Jack White/Vista Real Estate)
If you want to apply for a rebate from the AHFC, it looks like patience will need to be a virtue that you will have to cultivate. A few weeks ago in my blog( Anchorage Sponsors Energy Efficiency!), I mentioned that the Alaska Housing Finance Corporation (AHFC) is offering rebates to homeowners who opt to make their homes more energy efficient. Apparently, there are many in Anchorage, as well as the rest of the state, who believe in living green and receiving the additional benefit of a rebate from the AHFC. So, what's the problem with that? Before a homeowner can qualify, the home must be rated by a professional home energy rater. So many homeowners have called in to get information about the rebate program or to place their name on the list that the AHFC cannot process all the calls. T...
Comments 0
By Pauline Hofseth, Daring to Care
(Prudential Jack White/Vista Real Estate)
Let's get moving and join in the formation of a regional transit system. To build a regional transit system that is workable and deemed valuable by the future commuters of that system, your input is needed. Your involvement and advice is being solicited. A joint agreement has been signed by Mayor Mark Begich and Mat-Su Mayor Curt Menard to create a Regional Transit Authority to serve the 14,000+ commuters in the Anchorage and Mat-Su corridor. Mass transit is a hot-topic throughout the nation, especially with the spike in gas prices everyone has seen this year. Mass transit is more than just a topic here in Anchorage, it is a real and present need. Currently the People Mover transit system and the Share-a-Van program are operating at full capacity. Our park-and-ride lots are overflowing....
Comments 0
By Pauline Hofseth, Daring to Care
(Prudential Jack White/Vista Real Estate)
We do things a little differently here in Anchorage, including our focus on energy efficiency. For the Anchorage Municipality, September is Energy Efficiency Month. In the lower 48, the Federal Energy Management Program highlights energy efficiency in the month of October. Why wait another month? Join the folks here in Anchorage by taking stock of your energy usage  to see what you can do to save energy and reduce your carbon footprint. Winter will soon be here and our consumption of energy will increase. Fall is the time to take stock and make changes. Weatherize now and you will be more comfortable this winter while saving money. That should be a good incentive. Many states, counties, cities and energy companies are offering incentives to homeowners which will save you even more than ...
Comments 0
By Pauline Hofseth, Daring to Care
(Prudential Jack White/Vista Real Estate)
This week marks the last chance you will have to experience and enjoy one of Anchorage's outstanding events. There is nothing as beautiful as an Alaskan summer in Anchorage with its vibrant colors, warm sun, amazing scenic wonders, and its special festivities. One of our man-made wonders is about to close its doors for another season. I am sorry to see it go but am looking forward to next spring when the Anchorage Market and Festival will return again with its excitement, fun, entertainment and wonderful foods. The Anchorage Market and Festival is one of the largest and most successful open-air markets in the nation. This year marked the 16th and most successful season for the Anchorage Market and Festival. In 1992, the market opened with about two dozen merchants, which has grown to ov...
Comments 0
By Pauline Hofseth, Daring to Care
(Prudential Jack White/Vista Real Estate)
The old song "Meet Me At The Fair" is quite apt for Alaskans and visitors to the area this week. This is the final week for the Alaska State Fair, which ends September 1st. There is nothing that has the same energy as a State Fair. The Alaska State Fair is no exception to the rule. This year's fair should prove to be the largest and grandest fair of them all, as we celebrate our 50th year of statehood. Our State Fair celebrates all that is Alaska and is conveniently located just outside of Anchorage on the beautiful scenic Glenn Highway. The Alaska Railroad will provide transportation by bus and train making it easy for everyone to attend. When you get to the fair, be sure to visit the Craftsman House with its "Wild Salmon On Parade" exhibit. Alaskan artisans will be displaying sculptur...
Comments 0
By Pauline Hofseth, Daring to Care
(Prudential Jack White/Vista Real Estate)
Credit scores have always been important, no matter what a person was buying. They are more important now than ever; especially to someone considering a home purchase. A recent study has shown that most people do not understand how credit scores are determined or how they affect them. Credit Scores can save you money or cost you money. High credit scores can earn lower interest rates on some purchases while low credit scores may raise your interest rate dramatically or have the purchased denied. It is no secret that the mortgage industry has tighten their lending guidelines considerably and credit scores will affect your ability to purchase more now than ever. However, your credit score is not the only factor a lender looks at when you apply for a mortgage loan. Factors: Documentation C...
Comments 0
By Pauline Hofseth, Daring to Care
(Prudential Jack White/Vista Real Estate)
Those words describe the trails of Anchorage. The City of Anchorage has 10,946 acres of dedicated green space which includes over 290 miles of trails and greenbelts. Anchorage citizens count their award-winning trail system as the city's best asset in regard to recreation. I think the love of the outdoors and the beauty that only Alaska can provide are the foremost reasons why many have chosen to make Alaska their home state. The trails of Anchorage allow visitors and residents alike to enjoy wildlife and nature amid scenic splendor. Our trails wind through the city's urban core, along the coastline and even extend up through the foothills of Chugach State Park. Many of Anchorage's trails offer stunning views of the coast, ocean and mountains. Several are multi-use trails which range fr...
Comments 0
On a Saturday when I expected to be showing property and giving a tour of the waterfront areas of Eastern NC, I am actually home on the sofa blogging, watching the 2008 Beijing Olympics and working on various other work "projects".      Although I would love to be selling a house, sometimes it's nice when clients call to let you know they have   had to cancel their trip to town... you end up with a free day that you can fill with anything your heart desires!    This is it today for me...  While letting my touch of ADD have control for the day and hopping from one project   to the next, I got to thinking about a friend of mine and his recently opened business... so now I'm going to plug   it for him here on ActiveRain!     If you happen to be planning or even just thinking about a trip t...
Comments 3
By Pauline Hofseth, Daring to Care
(Prudential Jack White/Vista Real Estate)
Current loan limits for an FHA insured mortgage are 115% of an area's median home price, not to exceed $625,500. When the new Housing Bill takes effect, this loan limit will become permanent. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac loan limits will remain at $417,000 for this year. In 2009, the loan limits will reflect those of FHA with an increase in higher-cost areas to 115% of the area's median home price. It is important that you note the loan limits are based on an area's median home price, which means that loan limits will be determined by locale. FHA will not insure any mortgage for more than $625,500 no matter what area the property is located in. Loan limits for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will range from $417,000 to $625,500 depending on area. For Anchorage, Alaska, the loan limit is and wi...
Comments 2
By Pauline Hofseth, Daring to Care
(Prudential Jack White/Vista Real Estate)
Make the decision early on that, when you find your Alaskan dream home, you will hire the services of a home inspector. Although it is natural for a buyer to want to keep expenses to a minimum, waiving the right to a home inspection is not a wise choice. A home inspector will make a visual inspection of the home, examining structure and home systems to determine if they are sound and working properly. It is best that you are present at the time of the inspection so the inspector may address any questions or particular concerns you may have. Every home has problems; even brand new ones. Every problem has a solution but home inspections are not "fix-it" lists. They are designed to reassure you (not scare you) regarding the condition and value of the home that you are purchasing. Home insp...
Comments 0
By Pauline Hofseth, Daring to Care
(Prudential Jack White/Vista Real Estate)
FHA allows buyers with scores below 700 to purchase homes. In the current mortgage credit crunch, FHA may be the best bet for first-time home buyers. First-time home buyers are defined as anyone who has not owned a personal residence in the last three years. Another factor making FHA a viable choice in mortgage loans is that FHA has temporarily raised its loan limits. (FHA Raises Loan Limits). IndyMac, one of the home lending giants for non-perfect credit borrowers, has gone out of the mortgage lending business, limiting mortgage borrowers' options.  Your credit score is more important than ever when applying for a mortgage loan. Lenders look at your credit score as an indicator of your creditworthiness. Based on your credit score, lenders determine the risk of you becoming a foreclosur...
Comments 0
By Pauline Hofseth, Daring to Care
(Prudential Jack White/Vista Real Estate)
The change in FHA's loan limits can help you to achieve the American Dream, homeownership. As part of the Economic Stimulus Act, FHA has been allowed to temporarily raise their loan limits. FHA will now insure loans up to 125 percent of an area's median house price. The purpose of the increased loan limit is to provide buyers affordable mortgage loans and to help current homeowners who are facing possible foreclosure via FHA's refinancing program FHASecure. Due to the mortgage crisis many lenders have tighten their lending requirements to such a point that many qualified buyers have not been able to obtain financing. FHA has filled the void by providing loans to many of these buyers. The increased loan limits will allow them to help many more. FHA can help home buyers avoid subprime mor...
Comments 0
By Pauline Hofseth, Daring to Care
(Prudential Jack White/Vista Real Estate)
There is nowhere on earth that I would rather be than living in the great state of Alaska and in the beautiful City of Anchorage. This Friday, like Americans all across our great land, Anchorage will be celebrating America's Independence Day with a parade down "Main Street", family picnics in our beautiful parks, barbeques in the  backyard and viewing the All-American game of baseball. Here in Anchorage the biggest game of the year is played on the Fourth of July. The official Anchorage celebration is an all day event which begins at 8:00 am with a traditional Pancake Breakfast on the Delaney Park Strip (9th & G). The breakfast includes a beverage, hot pancakes and bacon, all for a $5 donation. Proceeds go to The Salvation Army. Our annual veteran's and community parade begins at 11:00....
Comments 0
By Marc Hargraves, CNHS
(Classic Communities Corporation)
Looking for a Realtor in Anchorage, Alaska?  I found a great one in Margaret Nelson from ReMax Properties 907-632-4594.  I've also added some statistics about Alaska below.   Alaska   Total Alaska Population: 625,265   Alaska Urban Population: 278,013 44.5% Alaska Suburban Population: 133,942 21.4% Alaska Farm Population: 1,222 0.2% Alaska Non-Farm Population: 212,088 33.9%   Alaska Asian Population: 25,496 4.1% Alaska Black Population: 21,947 3.5% Alaska Hawaiian Population: 3,122 0.5% Alaska Hispanic Population: 25,743 4.1% Alaska Indian Population: 96,583 15.4% Alaska White Population: 433,077 69.3% Alaska Other Population: 45,040 7.2%   Alaska : Ages 0-4: 47,121 7.5% Alaska : Ages 5-9: 53,805 8.6% Alaska : Ages 10-14: 56,853 9.1% Alaska : Ages 15-17: 32,383 5.2% Alaska : Ages 18-19:...
Comments 1
By Ryan Tollefsen, Anchorage Alaska Real Estate
(Keller Williams Realty Alaska Group)
How To Determine The Right Price: To accurately determine the right price for your home you need to find current prices for comparable homes in your area, find recent comparable sales in your area and know the demand for housing in your area. Here are some helpful steps to help you select the appropriate price. Step #1: Measure Your Home Measure your home against similar homes in your area that have recently been sold or currently are for sale. Step#2: Compare Features Find what features either make your home stand out against the comparable homes or maybe appear not as attractive. Items such as square footage, number of bedrooms, number of garage spaces and lot size can make a large difference. Buyers will be comparing your home to these others and it is a good idea to do so yourself. ...
Comments 5
By Ryan Tollefsen, Anchorage Alaska Real Estate
(Keller Williams Realty Alaska Group)
Fix-up #1: Generally Improve Your Home's "Curb Appeal" Mow the front lawn, water and fertilize if necessary, pick up any trash, sweep your driveway and walks and make sure your home looks good from the street. Fix-up #2: Make The Front Door And Porch Attractive You only get one chance so make sure their first impression is the best. Sweep the porch, touch up any paint in this area, wash windows and wipe down the front door. Fix-up #3: Fix Cracks In The Driveway And Remove Any Oil Stains Resealing your driveway can dramatically improved the appearance of your home from the street and really make a great impression to potential buyers. Fix-up #4: Replace Stray or Warped Roofing Shingles This can potentially save you thousands if your roof in near needing replacement. It makes the buyers f...
Comments 3
By Ryan Tollefsen, Anchorage Alaska Real Estate
(Keller Williams Realty Alaska Group)
Mistake #1: Not Having Proper Representation In today's market it is important to have qualified representation. When you select a Realtor to work with be sure to ask questions about there qualifications and even sales history. You may have a friend in the business but before you decide to use them make sure they can give you the service and experience you need. Not having the proper representation can cost you thousands. Mistake #2: Choosing The Right Loan There are many different loan types available. Depending on how long you plan to live in your home there are some great options to purchase and keep you payments low or get you into a larger home for the same amount of money. The right lender will not only help you find the right loan type but can help you save money at closing or on...
Comments 1
By Ryan Tollefsen, Anchorage Alaska Real Estate
(Keller Williams Realty Alaska Group)
Question #1: Do You Practice Real Estate Full or Part Time? You might think that real estate can be a part time job. In most cases that is far from the truth. Realtors can work many hours a week and need to be available at the drop of a hat or somebody else will beat them to the sale. It is important to have a full time Realtor represent you for this very reason. You also need to make sure you can contact them anytime day or night and get a prompt response. Question #2: What Education Have You Completed? In the state of Alaska there is currently only 20 hours of education required to obtain a real estate license. There are many classes outside of this that can be taken to increase a Realtor's knowledge. The mandatory 20 hours just covers the basics but definitely does not prepare a new ...
Comments 1
By Ryan Tollefsen, Anchorage Alaska Real Estate
(Keller Williams Realty Alaska Group)
The real estate market in Alaska can vary greatly depending upon the area in which you are choosing to live. This is why it is so important to find a specialist who understands that area and is qualified to represent you. Also, the Alaska market does not always follow the national trends.As of July 1, 2006 Alaska's population was roughly 670,000 people. Roughly 282,000 living in the Anchorage Borough, 87,000 living in the Fairbanks North Star Borough, 77,000 living in the Matanuska-Susitna Borough, and 51,000 living in the Kenai Peninsula Borough. That makes Alaska's four most populated areas Anchorage, Fairbanks, Mat-Su, and the Kenai Peninsula respectively.Throughout the different areas of Alaska there are many different acceptable building codes and types of construction that you may...
Comments 6
Explore Anchorage, AK