First Time Home Buying Secrets Revealed. by Kenn Renner

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1 First Time Home Buying Secrets Revealed by Kenn Renner 1

2 Chapter 1 Kenn's First Home Buying Experience - Anchorage, Alaska 1983 Code: S/R = Secrets Revealed It was fall of 1980 when my father & I moved to the Great White North. I had spent most of my life growing up in Southern California and my dad had moved to Alaska to pursue his dream of becoming a real estate developer after a decades long career as a corporate real estate attorney. Ever since he first read The Call of the Wild by Jack London, his dream was to live the pioneering life in Alaska. During his years as an attorney with a large oil and gas company, he had made many business trips to Alaska for his company and he recognized the boom/bust nature of its oil-based 2

3 S/R Real estate markets are cyclical. economy. He researched the exodus of population after the completion of the Alaska pipeline and the subsequent drop in real estate values. There was a real estate market pattern that he predicted would continue. He was right. The Alaska economy started recovering. My dad gathered investors together and began buying bargain apartment buildings and renovated them. As the economy began to boom again, those apartments filled up and rents increased and things were looking good. I graduated from high school at East Anchorage High. After High School, I went to work at a grocery store. I remember the manager (who was in his mid 50s) saying to me that if I worked hard and continued on a grocery store career path I would be able to become a retail manager just like him. Fortunately, I did not share his same passion for shopping baskets and long hours at the cash register. 3

4 So I decided to go to work for a professional property management firm. I was 18 years old and glad to be out of the parking lot pushing grocery carts in subzero weather. The property management company managed condominium homeowner associations. I received my first experience in community management. Not a very glorious job, but it was a living and paid the bills as well as gave me a steady enough income to qualify for you guessed it a home mortgage loan! At the time, I also studied for and acquired my first real estate license and at 19 years old, I became the youngest person in the state to earn a real estate license. During Alaska s booming early 1980s economy, my sister was an on-site sales representative for one of the large tract homebuilders in Anchorage. She eyed a particularly nice lot at the end of a cul-desac. A very unique lot that she knew would be a winner. She approached me 4

5 S/R Buying your first home may seem like an enormous endeavor, but it s really not. S/R Credit glitches are common and can be overcome. and asked if I would like to buy a home with her. I thought long and hard for a few minutes and then agreed and said, Sure, let s buy a home. So we began the process. Needless to say, my youthful exuberance soon turned to fear when I considered the enormity of buying a home. The 30-year payment commitment "come on" 30 years? I was 19 and looking at being 49 before it would be paid off. That s a long time. What if I lost my job? What if I did not want to live in Alaska any more? What if? What if? It was a classic case of buyer s remorse. Still, I moved forward with the commitment and the home buying process, questioning myself and those involved suspicious of who was asking me for personal information. I met with the mortgage loan officer in a high-rise glass building where she took my personal information and had me sign what seemed like an endless stack of fine print documents. She was going to run my 5

6 S/R Even today, mortgages are easier to obtain than most people think. credit, which I knew would torpedo this whole process and send me back to my apartment, defeated and a failure. I knew she d find out about that gas card that, a few years earlier, I forgot to pay until they took it away. (Hey, it was either pay the bill or pay for pizza.) Needless to say, I knew I would be openly ridiculed by her discovery of my past gas card transgressions. Still haunted by the enormity of the 30-year mortgage, I signed the loan paperwork to get started and get my pre-approval so the builder could start building the home. Nervously, I signed everything off and threw my personal credit history and my modest income at the mercy of the mortgage company s court of opinion. The mortgage loan manager looked at me and saw my predetermined discouragement and assured me with a smile, everything is going to be ok you qualify for the loan, your sister is co-signing with you and a simple letter of explanation is all that will be required for that gas card slip-up a few years ago. 6

7 Really? I said. Whew, not so bad after all. Hey, thanks. And you work in a pretty nice office too. I d like to do what you do some day. As I walked out of the office, seeing busy loan processors an people hard at work on their paperwork and running to make copies, I thought, I really would like to do this kind of work some day. S/R Every home buyer will experience buyer s remorse at least once during the process and must push through it. Over the course of a few months, my little home off of Muldoon Road in North East Anchorage was built. I was able to pick the colors of the carpet and cabinets and it was neat to see the home come to life. As the home neared completion, the enormity of my home buying endeavor started to creep back into my psyche. I was revisiting buyers remorse. On a cold winter day, I was led to the title company to sign the final papers. I was paralyzed with the fear of commitment. I remember sitting at the closing table, not wanting to sign, then refusing to sign. My sister placed the pen in my hand (she knew it was a great deal) 7

8 encouraging me. Come on, you can do it little brother, she d say. I said, Ok, Ok. I ll sign my life away. S/R The day you own a home for the first time is exhilarating. After that, I went to my new home and went, Wooohoo! I own a house. This one s my baby! What a sense of accomplishment with the help of my family and some nice professionals along the way. I was the new owner of my own $75,000 piece of Alaska! Well things were going great until a few months later my family started to make plans to move back to the lower 48. I was thinking, great, I just bought a home and now everyone is going back to California without me. What was I going to do? Fortunately, my sister came to the rescue. She had sold the home across the street from me to a retired marine. His lifelong marine buddy was retiring also. They had served together in two wars and were the best of friends. Their dream was to live next door to each other in 8

9 retirement. But my house was the one he wanted (I had the nicest lot thanks to my sis). To him, this particular house was not about the cost, it was about living the rest of his years next to his best buddy. So he offered us $103,000 for the home I was living in (I had only owned it 6 months!) S/R Buying a first home can be a great investment. S/R A free and clear home can make retirement much easier. Yippy! Sold! My sister and I netted over $25,000 on my first home and I was free to head back to "the lower 48" with the rest of my family. All the fear, the trepidation, the mysterious process with signatures in high-rise buildings all came to an end with an enormous profit and a win-win for all involved. What a cool deal, now "this" is first time home buying. Even more interesting was that the exmarine was paying cash. He explained that he had grown up in the depression and paying cash was how he liked to do business. I thought to myself, Wow, a home with no home payment, that would be nice. What a comforting thought in his 9

10 retirement, to not have to worry about a big debt. S/R A free and clear 1 st home can be a great investment or vacation home. Looking back, I have to agree with him. The little home I had in Alaska would have only 4 years left on the mortgage and I would then own it free and clear paid for! I could rent it out and enjoy the income or have it as a second home where I could visit Alaska any time and have a place to stay or offer it to friends and family. I could even have used it as a retirement home paid for. This experience lead me to a career path that has enabled me to assist literally thousands of first time home buyers through the process of purchasing a home. I have taught seminars nationwide on the subject of homeownership and investment. I still get a huge thrill assisting first timers through the process. I also enjoy teaching them all the ins and outs, giving them money saving tips and 10

11 S/R First time home buying seminars are a great way to learn the process and meet real estate professionals. advice. I also love to uncover the secrets that I have learned over my 25 year career that can help them save time, effort, and money as well as keep them out of trouble and help prevent costly mistakes. I also encourage them to think about keeping their first home when they move on as an investment or retirement home. No one ever forgets their first time home buying experience and I want to encourage those who are thinking about it to get prepared with trusted professionals and move forward. I now have the pleasure of assisting second-generation first timers buy their homes. Clients who purchased their homes with me over the years are encouraging their children to call me to help them through the process. It has also been my pleasure to help my industry associates in real estate learn how to best assist first time home buyers through educational classes and forums. I 11

12 /R Connect with nowledgeable real state professionals ith experience and ho love what they do. S/R Insider knowledge is legal in real estate. thank you for taking the time to read this book. I guarantee it will answer many of your questions and save you time, effort, and money. Unlike other industries, insider knowledge is perfectly fine in real estate, and I am writing this book to share as much insider knowledge and expose unspoken industry secrets that will help put homebuyers - especially first time homebuyers - in an advantageous position when embarking on the journey of a lifetime. Buying a share of the Great American Dream for the first time. Secrets Revealed 1. Real estate markets are cyclical. 2. Buying your first home may seem like an enormous endeavor, but it s really not. 3. Credit glitches are common and can be overcome. 12

13 13 4. Even today, mortgages are easier to obtain than most people think. 5. Every home buyer will experience buyer s remorse at least once during the process and must push through it. 6. The day you own a home for the first time is exhilarating. 7. Buying a first home can be a great investment. 8. A free and clear home can make retirement much easier. 9. A free and clear 1 st home can be a great investment or vacation home. 10. First time home buying seminars are a great way to learn the process and meet real estate professionals. 11. Connect with knowledgeable real estate professionals with experience and who love what they do. 12. Insider knowledge is legal in real estate.

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