Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Reverse Mortgages: Advantages & Disadvantages

The benefits of owning your own home go far beyond just having a place to stay - your home will likely be your greatest financial asset. The equity you build in your home will give you a huge advantage down the road. One way to take advantage of the equity in your home is to sell it and apply the equity towards your new home or towards your retirement. Another way is to take out a reverse mortgage. This week, the team at Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate is here to help you get a better understanding of reverse mortgages and the advantages and disadvantages they offer.

What is a Reverse Mortgage?
A reverse mortgage is a type of home loan that lets you convert a portion of your home equity into cash. Essentially, the equity that you built up over years of making mortgage payments can be paid to you. Generally, you don't have to pay back the money for as long as you live in your home. However, when you die, sell your home, or move out, you, your spouse or your estate would have to repay the loan.


Types of Reverse Mortgages  
There are 3 types of reverse mortgages:

  • Single Purpose Reverse Mortgages - These loans are the least expensive option when considering a reverse mortgage. They are offered by some state and local government agencies, as well as non-profit organizations. However, they're not available everywhere. These loans may be used for one purpose only, as specified by the lender. Most homeowners with low or moderate income can qualify for these loans. 
  • Proprietary Reverse Mortgages - These are private loans that are backed by the companies that develop them. If you own a higher-valued home, you may get a bigger loan advance from a proprietary reverse mortgage. Even if you have a small mortgage, you might qualify for more funds if your home has a higher appraised value. 
  • Federally-Insured Reverse Mortgages - These loans are backed by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). These may be more expensive than traditional home loans, but can be used for any purpose. While the amount you can borrow varies based on several factors, in general, the older you are, the more equity you have in your home and the more money you can get. 

Advantages of a Reverse Mortgage 
There are several advantages to using your home as collateral to get cash in your pocket:
  • Reverse mortgages are considered loan advances to you, not income you earned. Thus, the payments you receive are not taxable. 
  • Reverse mortgages typically do not affect your Social Security or Medicare benefits. 
  • No credit check or income verification is required. 
  • The loan doesn't have to be paid back until the home is no longer your primary residence. 
  • The borrower never pays back more than the value of the home at the time of sale, even if the loan balance is more. 
  • You retain full ownership of your home, and control what happens to it. 



Disadvantages of a Reverse Mortgage 
Just as there are several advantages, there are also several drawbacks to getting a reverse mortgage: 
  • As part of the process, you'll have to pay loan origination fees, appraisal fees and a hefty upfront mortgage insurance fee of 2% of the value of your home. This can make reverse mortgage an expensive proposition. 
  • Your debt (plus interest) is constantly rising. 
  • While you get to keep the title to your home, the bank owns a little more of it everyday. 
  • You are still responsible for taxes, homeowner's insurance and upkeep. If you can't make those payments, you'll default and the entire loan balance would become due. If you can't pay that balance, you'd be at risk for losing your home. 
  • Think about what you want to leave behind for your heirs. Depending on the amount you borrow with a reverse mortgage, there may not be anything left when you're gone and the loan is repaid. 


Is A Reverse Mortgage Right For You?
Because of their advantages and disadvantages, reverse mortgages are fantastic options for some homeowners and not for others. Your mortgage lender will be able to work with you to determine whether or not a reverse mortgage makes sense for your unique situation.

Of course, in order to be able to take out a reverse mortgage, you have to have a home in the first place! If you're thinking about relocating to the Lake of the Ozarks or if you're looking for homes for sale in Osage Beach, MO, give us a call. Our team of experienced real estate agents would be happy to help you in any way we can.

Stay connected with Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate, LLC!


2011 REALTOR Salesperson of the Year
Missouri Association of Realtors

Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate, LLC
752 Bagnell Dam Blvd., Suite A
Lake Ozark, MO 65049

Office | 573.365.1555
Fax | 573.365.1766

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Happy National Golf Month!

Have you heard? August is National Golf Month! With approximately fifteen different golf courses, golf is one of the biggest attractions the Lake Area has to offer. In honor of this monthly observation, the team at Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate is here to help you celebrate with this fun golfing trivia and the inside track on some of the best golf courses at the Lake of the Ozarks.


Fun Facts about Golf
  • At 515 yards, Mike Austin holds the record for the longest pro golf drive.
  • Jason Zuback holds the record for the fastest golf drive: 204 mph!
  • On average, a man weighing 175 lbs burns approximately 460 calories during an hour of playing golf.
  • Women make up about 23% of professional golfers.
  • A regulation golf ball has 336 dimples.
  • The word "caddy" comes from the French word "cadet" (pronounced "cad-DAY"), which means cadet.
  • Golf balls typically travel greater distances in hot weather.

Golf Courses at the Lake of the Ozarks

There are about fifteen different courses at the Lake, but our Lake of the Ozarks real estate agents wanted to take this opportunity to highlight a few of our favorites. We hope you'll enjoy them as much as we do!

The Club at Porta Cima
133 Club House Drive, Sunrise Beach, MO 65079
573-207-8700

Old Kinderhook
20 Eagle Ridge Road, Camdenton, MO 65020
573-317-3500

Lodge of the Four Seasons - The Ridge Course & The Cove Course
315 Four Seasons Drive, Lake Ozark, MO 65049
1-800-THE-LAKE

Osage National
400 Osage Hills Road, Lake Ozark, MO 65049
866-365-1950

Tan-Tar-A Resort
494 Tan Tar A Estates Boulevard, Osage Beach, MO 65065
573-348-3131

Happy National Golf Month!

We hope you and your friends and family have a wonderful August! Celebrating National Golf Month is the perfect excuse to get out and stretch your legs on the golf course. If you enjoy the courses here at the Lake, why not consider buying a condo or a second home at the Lake of the Ozarks? There is no reason you shouldn't have easy access to your favorite courses any day of the week! Contact Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate to get started.

Stay connected with Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate, LLC!


2011 REALTOR Salesperson of the Year
Missouri Association of Realtors

Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate, LLC
752 Bagnell Dam Blvd., Suite A
Lake Ozark, MO 65049

Office | 573.365.1555
Fax | 573.365.1766

Thursday, August 13, 2015

9 Tricks To Make Your Home Seem Bigger

While they certainly can sell, small, cramped homes often have more difficulty attracting interested buyers than their larger, more spacious counterparts. Buyers are looking for homes with plenty of space to hold their families and their belongings, and tiny homes may not rank high on their lists. However, even small homes can be made to look more spacious! Staging and decorating tactics can go a long way when it comes to visually increasing the size of your home. If you are trying to sell your house at the Lake of the Ozarks (or give your current home a makeover), give these simple tricks a try.


1. Hang Mirrors
Mirrors are one of the quickest, easiest ways to add visual space to any room. If you want to seemingly double the size of your room, consider installing mirror glass on one entire wall. Even if you don't want to dedicate a whole wall to mirror space, hanging some decorative ones can still help you achieve the desired effect.

2. Use Stripes
Long, vertical stripes can trick your eyes into believing that floors are longer or that walls are taller than they actually are. Striped carpet, alternating wood floor panels, and striped window drapes are just a few examples of ways you can use stripes to make your room seem bigger.

3. Clean Out The Clutter
Allowing clutter to overrun your home is one of the quickest ways to watch it seemingly shrink by several hundred square feet. Organized homes, on the other hand, seem bigger and much more spacious. Cleaning out all of the clutter can be a great way to visually maximize your space.

4. Paint Your Walls A Lighter Color
Dark colors have a way of closing in around you. Light colors allow rooms to feel open, airy, and like you have room to stretch out and relax. If you have dark colors on your walls, consider repainting them a lighter color to make the room seem bigger.

5. Maximize Your Storage Space
If your belongings are overwhelming your space, it's time to get creative with your storage options. Hollow benches and footstools are a great way to kill two birds with one stone - they serve as attractive furniture pieces and secret storage compartments at the same time.

6. Brighten Up
Dimly lit rooms tend to seem smaller and more compact than bright ones do. You may find that swapping out your light bulbs for ones with a higher wattage (or adding a few floor/table lamps) can give you the appearance of that extra space you're craving.

7. Take Advantage Of Vertical Space
When you have so much cubic footage at your disposal, why should you limit yourself to using only floor space? Tall bookshelves and other furniture pieces (or shelves mounted directly on the wall) allow you to use vertical space in addition to just horizontal space, which can go a long way towards making your space seem bigger.

8. Pare Down Your Furniture Pieces
Rooms feel small when they can't comfortably hold all of the furniture you have crammed inside it. Don't try to fit more furniture than your room can comfortably hold! By eliminating some of your less desirable pieces, you can create the illusion of lots more space.

9. Add Some Windows
When it comes to increasing your visual space, windows work wonders! If your rooms feel a little confined, consider hiring a construction or home remodeling company to add a few windows. It could make a huge difference!

Happy Decorating!
We hope you find these suggestions help you! If you are looking for other ideas to help you sell your home quickly, contact Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate team. We would be happy to help you sell your Lake of the Ozarks home!
Stay connected with Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate, LLC!


2011 REALTOR Salesperson of the Year
Missouri Association of Realtors

Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate, LLC
752 Bagnell Dam Blvd., Suite A
Lake Ozark, MO 65049

Office | 573.365.1555
Fax | 573.365.1766

Monday, August 3, 2015

4 Unique Benefits of Living in the Midwest

We're convinced that the Midwest is one of the best places to live in the entire country. It's possible we might be biased - but we don't think so! The Midwest offers several different perks and benefits that can't be found anywhere else, and we're thrilled to be able to help new homeowners become a part of our fantastic community. Here's a sneak peek at some of our favorite things about living the Midwest.


1. Cost Of Living
The Midwestern states (Oklahoma, Kansas, Indiana, Iowa, etc) have been ranked consistently as the cheapest places to live in the U.S. The Lake of the Ozarks, specifically, has been ranked as having the eleventh lowest cost of living index in the country! There are plenty of great jobs available in the Midwest, and the prices of homes for sale at the Lake of the Ozarks is incredibly low compared to other cities and destination areas. Why pay $400,000 for 2,000-square-foot home somewhere else when you could get one at the Lake for only $150,000?

2. Ease Of Travel
The Midwest may be landlocked, but that doesn't mean that travel is a challenge! With several airports in Missouri alone, it's easy to get anywhere in the country or the world without too much difficulty. Kansas City and St. Louis provide instant access to countries all around the globe, and regional airports (Columbia and Springfield, for example) make it easy to fly without having to drive long hours to get an airport.

3. Natural Beauty
Snow-capped mountains and white, sandy beaches get a lot of hype for their incredible splendor, but the Ozarks holds a special beauty all its own. The rolling hills, the natural wildflowers, the lush forests, the sparkling Lake... the Lake of the Ozarks certainly has its fair share of natural beauty! It's easy to see why the Lake Area is a #1 vacation destination for people in several of the surrounding states.

4. Safety
The big cities on the east and west coasts are notorious for holding some of the highest crime rates in the country. In Neighborhood Scout's list of the top 100 most dangerous cities in the U.S., only three of Missouri's cities made the list: St. Louis (#14), Kansas City (#37), and Springfield (#48). Despite its increasing popularity, the Lake of the Ozarks is not anywhere on the list!

Gattermeir Davidson Can Help You Become A Lake Of The Ozarks Resident!
Why not choose to live in a place where you can enjoy peace of mind, affordable housing, and easy travel while all the while being surrounded by incredible beauty? It's easy to see why the Lake Area is such a fantastic place to live! If you are thinking about relocating to the Lake of the Ozarks, don't hesitate to reach out to the team at Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate. We would be happy to assist you on your journey!

Stay connected with Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate, LLC!

2011 REALTOR Salesperson of the Year
Missouri Association of Realtors

Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate, LLC
752 Bagnell Dam Blvd., Suite A
Lake Ozark, MO 65049

Office | 573.365.1555
Fax | 573.365.1766

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Fantastic Waterfront Home For Sale In Gravois Mills!

It's time to treat yourself to the home you've been dreaming about!

Your friends at Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate want to be the first to tell you about this incredible waterfront home for sale at the Lake of the Ozarks. It's comfortable, it's spacious, and it's right here waiting for you! This home is located at 32082 Dunwandrin Road, Gravois Mills and is priced at only $349,900.

Waterfront Home For Sale In Gravois Mills, Missouri

With 130 feet of shoreline and a view that doesn't stop, this single-family home is perfect for anyone looking to relocate or purchase a second home at the Lake of the Ozarks. Tucked away on the 7 mile marker, this home is surrounded by incredible scenery and an amazing atmosphere that is sure to make you feel instantly at home.

This home strikes the perfect balance between spacious and cozy:
  • 2,143 Square Feet
  • 4 Bedrooms
  • 3 Bathrooms
You and your family will have plenty of room to spread out without feeling overwhelmed by the space. 

This home also offers great additional features, so you can enjoy some fantastic luxuries - without paying "luxury price!"

Wood-Burning Fireplace
Perfect for keeping you and your family cozy and warm on snowy winter evenings!


Swim Platform
Jump in to your own little section of the Lake of the Ozarks from your private swim platform.

Covered 2-Well Dock
Bring a boat - or two! This covered two-well dock will keep your boats safe and protected while giving you easy access to the Lake. There's also a locker already installed on the dock and ready for use.

Lower-Level Patio
Underneath the upper-level deck, this home has a lower-level cement patio overlooking the Lake. Ideal for entertaining!


Contact Us For A Showing!

With so many fantastic features, this property won't be on the market for long! Contact one of our Lake of the Ozarks Real Estate Agents to schedule a showing today.

Stay connected with Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate, LLC!

2011 REALTOR Salesperson of the Year
Missouri Association of Realtors

Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate, LLC
752 Bagnell Dam Blvd., Suite A
Lake Ozark, MO 65049

Office | 573.365.1555
Fax | 573.365.1766

Thursday, July 23, 2015

What Is Included In The Closing Costs?

If you've ever purchased a home before (or talked to someone who has), you are probably well aware that the price of the home is not the total cost you will be expected to cover. When you buy a house at the Lake of the Ozarks, you will also have to pay for the closing costs associated with the purchase of the home. Closing costs can often seem like an unknown factor for people who are buying property, but the team at Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate is here to explain the process.


What Are Closing Costs?

Buying a house is not a one- or two-person job; real estate transactions require the cooperation of several different professionals. The closing costs cover the fees for the professionals' various services. Typically, these closing costs can range anywhere from 2.5-5% of the home's total sale price. They very greatly from transaction to transaction and there is no way to predict in advance exactly what your closing costs will be; however, your mortgage lender is required to give you a Good Faith Estimate (GFE) that should provide a general estimate for your expected closing costs. Keep in mind that the closing costs are allowed to vary in either direction up to 10%, so the number shown on your GFE may be very different than the actual number on the HUD-1 settlement statement you receive the day before the closing.

What Is Included In The Closing Costs?

As we said, the closing costs cover all the other expenses associated with the process of buying real estate at the Lake of the Ozarks. While the exact fees and services will vary depending on the transaction details, here are a few of the services typically covered in the closing costs:
  • Title Insurance
  • Title Search Fees
  • Credit Check
  • Escrow Deposit
  • Appraisal Fee
  • Homeowner's Insurance
  • Processing Fee
  • Underwriting Fee
  • Property Tax
  • Homeowners Association Fees
There are several other services included in the closing costs, but this list provides a broad overview. Notice that the commissions for the Lake of the Ozarks real estate agents are not included in the closing costs - these are paid separately by the seller.

Can You Get Out Of Paying The Closing Costs?

There are several different ways to lower the amount of closing costs up front, but some of them are not necessarily the most frugal. Here a few common ways that people cut down on the closing costs:
  • Depending on the type of mortgage loan you are getting, you may be able to include some of the closing costs into the total amount of your loan. This lowers the amount that you will be required to pay up front, but it means you will have to pay interest on the remaining closing costs.
  • In some cases, the lender will lower the closing costs in exchange for a higher interest rate on the loan.
  • Sometimes, the buyers can negotiate with the sellers to cover part of the closing costs.
We hope that this overview helps you get a better understanding of the closing costs and helps to ease any concerns you may have! If you have other questions about the closing costs or would like to talk further about the process of buying a house at the Lake of the Ozarks, feel free to give us a call. We would be happy to meet with you!

Stay connected with Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate, LLC!

2011 REALTOR Salesperson of the Year
Missouri Association of Realtors

Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate, LLC
752 Bagnell Dam Blvd., Suite A
Lake Ozark, MO 65049

Office | 573.365.1555
Fax | 573.365.1766

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Turning Your Laundry Room Into A Selling Point: 7 Tips

When you're selling your house at the Lake of the Ozarks, every square inch counts. Your home should shine, glisten, and gleam like never before. Not only that, but your staging efforts should maximize every inch of space so your prospective buyers can fully understand everything your home has to offer. By paying attention to the little details now, you will most likely be able to sell your home much, much more quickly.

The laundry room is a great example of a room that most sellers tend not to put as much effort towards staging, but that can become a fantastic selling point if used strategically. These simple suggestions will get you started on the right track!


1. Light It Up
Almost without exception, brightly lit homes sell more quickly than their dimly lit counterparts. Since laundry room are typically small, interior spaces, adding a new light fixture and/or a bulb with higher wattage can make a big difference.

2. Install A Sink
If you have the space, adding a big (or even a small) sink to your laundry room can generate more buyer interest. This feature is a practical addition that can make your home stand out above the rest.

3. Add A Fresh Coat Of Paint
Putting a fresh coat of paint on the walls can lighten and brighten any room in the house, and the laundry room is no exception. New paint will make the room seem clean and inviting - a major attractant for buyers! If you want to go above and beyond, consider tiling the floors or walls. You'll be surprised what a difference it can make!

4. Put In Some Cabinets
Shelves are fairly common in laundry rooms, but they are not always the most attractive options. Because their contents are exposed, shelves frequently look cluttered and messy. Cabinets keep their contents behind closed doors, which can help you keep things looking spic and span.

5. Use Baskets Or Bins
If you have to stick with the shelves, using baskets or bins is your next best option. By placing your detergents, soaps, and any cleaning materials in the bins, you can create a picture of a clean, organized space.

6. Get Artsy
Don't be afraid to let your laundry room get a little artistic! If you have extra wall space, filling it with fun art pieces can be a great way to add interest and brighten up the space.

7. Hide YOUR Laundry
If done correctly, a staged laundry room can be a great selling point. However, while buyers will obviously understand the purpose of the laundry room, they don't want to see evidence of your laundry laying around. Put away all your clothes before showings (or at least tuck them out of sight) and make sure everything is spotless before buyers enter the house. This extra work now will pay off big-time in the long run!

Need A Seller's Agent? We Are Here For You!
By following these suggestions, you should be well on your way to creating a beautiful laundry room that will grab the attention of any buyer. If you are planing to sell your home soon, contact one of our Lake of the Ozarks real estate agents to represent you. We can help you market your home and negotiate with your prospective buyers to reach the optimum selling price. Let's get started!

Stay connected with Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate, LLC!

2011 REALTOR Salesperson of the Year
Missouri Association of Realtors

Gattermeir Davidson Real Estate, LLC
752 Bagnell Dam Blvd., Suite A
Lake Ozark, MO 65049

Office | 573.365.1555
Fax | 573.365.1766