Real Estate in Belmar
Gary Mawson Jr.

Archive for the ‘Belmar NJ’ Category

I found a home….NOW WHAT!

October 18th, 2014 by Gary Mawson Jr.

This is the process of buying a home here in NJ.  Having a great agent to help navigate all of this is going to make your life easier and this is what an agent is getting paid to do.  Real estate agents dont just simply find a home for a buyer there is so much more!


Pre Approval

  • This is when you call a mortgage banker to find out how much you can afford to borrow from the bank in order to purchase a home
  • what you will need to get started – Last 2 years of w2’s, last 2 months of bank statements, and 1 month of paystubs.  This is the basic stuff to get started, you may be asked for more information and if you are self employed there will be more to get started)


  • The initial offer is the beginning of negotiations and can either be countered, accepted or rejected by the seller
  • Upon acceptance of an offer which must be signed by both buyer and seller the contract is submitted to your attorney and the sellers attorney. (Known as attorney review period)
  • Your initial deposit will be due to the attorney’s trust account

Attorney Review

  • Your contract is not legally binding until the attorney review process is concluded.  It typically takes three business days in order to conclude the attorney review process, but can take longer if things are not agreed upon.
  • During attorney review the home can still legally be shown, and another offer can be negotiated and accepted during this process.  (Some agents will not show during this period)
  • Upon conclusion of attorney review the home cannot be shown anymore, and your second deposit will be due


  • Contract typically states that you have fourteen days in order to complete the home inspection.  (this can change during the attorney review period based on the attorneys, but will be outlined before the attorney review process is over)
  • A termite inspection will also be done at this point to make sure that there is no termite damage in the home too.
  • Once completed you can either submit for things to be repaired or negotiate a lesser price for the home based on the findings of the home inspector.
  • All of these negotiations will take place through the attorneys and will be signed off by you and the seller once an acceptable outcome is reached.


  • The appraisal is ordered through the bank and this is typically why you have to pay for an application fee when your loan goes into process
  • The appraisals are usually appraised for the value of the purchase price.  The home may be worth a bit more at the time of closing based on the other comps, but a home is ultimately worth what someone is willing to pay for.
  • Once completed this will be turned back into the bank so that the loan can be approved.  At this point you are almost done, but you are not completely out of the woods.


  • Once the appraisal is turned in they should issue a commitment or loan approval for the buyer of the property.  There are typically some items that they still need but it is usually in reference to title and closing documents.  They may ask for some items from you, if there are any unusual findings but is unlikely.


  • Title is ordered through the attorney once all of this has been completed.
  • Title makes sure that there are no liens on the property and can tell us if there are any easements on the property as well.


  • Closing will typically happen within ten days of the agreed upon closing date as stated in the contract.
  • Upon closing you will need certified check for the remaining deposit on the loan.

Real Estate Terms

  • Loan to Value – how much money you are financing compared to the value or purchase price of the home.
  • debt to income ratios – how much monthly debt you are obligated to pay each month as compared to your monthly income.
  • Pre-Foreclosure – The bank has filed foreclosure papers to begin taking back the note on the home.
  • REO or Bank Owned Homes homes that have already gone through the foreclosure process.
  • Short Sale – Home that is currently on the market and is in pre-foreclosure where the owner owes more than what is owed to the bank.
  • HUD homes – this is the same as a bank owned, but it was a financed through a government program (FHA or VA) so it is government owned instead.

On the go mortgage payments

February 4th, 2014 by Gary Mawson Jr.

When I started writing mortgages all of the mortgage loan officers had an HP mortgage calculator.  I was not fortunate enough to have one, so I had to go with an alternative way of calculating what the payment was.  So I turned to the computer to help me out.  When I started all of the interest rates were above 6%, so when I was looking at a price per $1000 chart I quickly realized that 6%=$6.00/$1000.  So simply put if you have a home that you were going to mortgage 100K, you would have a principal and interest payment of $600.  Pretty easy right?

So how do I calculate the rest of the interest rates?  This is very easy too but may require some quick notes in the beginning.  For each 1/8(.125) of a point it equates to .08 cents in payment per $1000.  So an example is if the rate was 5.875% for the same 100K mortgage than the payment would be based $592 per month.  ($5.92 x100K).  So from there you can simply take that and apply .08 for each number and figure it out.  Since the mortgage rates go in one eigth increments, it is easy to figure out.  See chart below as example all are per $1000 mortgaged.

6% – $6.00

5.875% – $5.92

5.75% – $5.84

5.625% – $5.76

You got the trend now?

So what if my interest rate is 5%?

simple…. you know that there are 8 parts, so you simply multiply 8 by .08 cents which .64 cents.  Than subtract that from $6.00 to come to $5.36/$1000.

This is how you can quickly figure out mortgage calculations on the go with a simple calculator.  I kept round numbers, but you can figure out all of the results simply by following this diagram and just memorizing that 6% =$6.00, and that each 1/8=$.08!

Please note:  This is not an exact science to coming up with the mortgage calculations, but it will get you within a couple dollars every time.

Let me know if you have any questions or feel free to comment.


Good vs. Bad Rental Agents!

October 24th, 2013 by Gary Mawson Jr.

Renting homes for owner comes along with the real estate industry, but there are a lot of agents that just don’t have a clue what they are actually doing.  A lot of agents just automatically think that because they have a salesperson license that they can effectively market your rental listing.  There are a lot of ins and outs to a rental property, and an experienced rental agent can help guide you in the right direction, so that you can make sure that you are getting a quality tenant.

Some things that you should know before you list.

  1. Has your agent  done rental listings in the past?
  2. What are they looking for in a good tenant?
  3. Do they know how to read credit or are they relying on you (the owner) to decipher.
  4. What information are they expecting to receive from perspective tenants. At a minimum you should be getting a credit report, application, and pay stubs to start. You can get a good snapshot of who the tenant is with this information and than you can ask for more information as needed.
  5. Does your agent own any rental properties?
  6. Do they know the Certificate of Occupancy (C of O or CO) guidelines in the town? They don’t necessarily need to know all of the ins and outs, because each town has its quirks, but the main things are always the same.  Fire extinguisher within 10 ft of the kitchen and smoke detectors on every level.  Carbon monoxide detectors if gas is present in the home (electric homes do not require).

These questions should help you weed out most of the bad agents right away.  Make sure that the agent puts photos in the listing within the first couple of days.  It is important to have good photos for your property.  It will become more attractive and more prospective tenants will come to see it.   This is an investment for you so finding the right agent for the job will help you maximize your income by finding you the right tenant for the property.

When is the rent bubble going to burst?

October 1st, 2013 by Gary Mawson Jr.

Have you noticed the the price of rents have gone up steadily in NJ?  How much longer can the market sustain the constant increase in rent?  What will happen to my rental when the rental bubble does finally burst?  All of these questions come to mind when thinking about the rental market.  So when is the bubble going to burst?

My opinion is it will be in the next couple of years!  The market has continually increased and the rents have gone up, but everything else around has stayed the same.  The job market has not gotten any better.  Median income has dropped, and the people who are hanging on to jobs are getting very minimal raises.  So with all of this in mind what is the next step?

I think that these people should begin to buy again.  Prices are still relatively low, and interest rates are very low as well.  The buying power is tremendous right now and you can begin to build equity in a home rather than paying someones mortgage for them.  There are a lot of homes on the market and as we enter the winter months the buyer pool shrinks and homes tend to sit a little longer.  This may allow some buyers to get a better deal on a home than if they would have bought in the summer months when the market was on fire and everything was selling.

This rental market is always going to be strong in Monmouth County because of the proximity to the city, but let be realistic here, the market is going to come down a bit and we will see some of the undesirable areas become desirable rental markets in the future.  There is only so much people can afford before they hit the breaking point.

Belmar Boardwalk Making Progress!

April 4th, 2013 by Gary Mawson Jr.

Belmar NJ Beach

Belmar under construction



I like the new color of the boardwalk. It really looks a lot nicer than the old grey color!

A good photo can make all the difference!

April 1st, 2013 by Gary Mawson Jr.


Before you list your home for sale ask your agent to see some examples of listings that they have taken in the past.  A great photo can really go a long way.  Sometimes they may be a little deceiving but the goal is to get people through the door so that you can sell your home quicker.  The more people that come to view your home the more chances that you have of getting an offer to purchase.

Obviously a picture is not going to sell the home, but it will play a big part.  A home buyer is looking on the internet first before they even begin to go and look at any homes.  We love to look at photos and this is evident with things such as facebook and instagram.  Millions of people go onto these sites each day to look at friends, family, and strangers photos each day.

Here is a great example of a home that really could benefit from someone taking better photos of the home.

We're sorry, but we couldn't find MLS # 21307642 in our database. This property may be a new listing or possibly taken off the market. Please check back again.

Not all homes are going to have a ton of great photos to take, but you are also not going to be able to simply walk into a home and take some pictures.  It takes some staging, moving things around to take a better shot, camera angles, etc….  A good camera is a must.  It is alright to take some temporary pictures when the home is first put up for sale, but it is imperative to put your best foot forward.  The old adage of “a picture is worth a thousand words,” is so true even when taking photos of a home.  You want someone to feel like they can move in and call this place home.

So it is worth taking the time to not only interview the best agents but also to see what they are going to do to properly market your home for sale.


Call today…. for EVERYTHING Real Estate

Belmar is Rebuilding! Dont forget to buy a home!

March 29th, 2013 by Gary Mawson Jr.

Belmar has been quick to get everything back up and running.  They have the boardwalk nearly half complete.  The bridge between Avon by the Sea and Belmar is now open and cars are allowed on Ocean Ave up to Silver Lake between 5th and 6th Avenues.  Although you are not allowed on the boardwalk or the beach yet.  The boardwalk will be open for the summer rush of Memorial Day weekend.  It is really great to see things begin to get back to normal and the real estate is no different.

With the exception of some of the waterfront homes that people are just waiting to see what is going to happen with FEMA and their new flood maps (date TBD) homes that are currently on the market are selling like crazy.  Its not official yet, but we are moving into a sellers market!   It is really a great time for sellers, because with interests rates still very low home buyers are out there in full swing looking for homes to buy.  The buyers are not singled out to the first time home buyers though.  There are investors snatching up any good deal that they can get their hands on and also people that are looking to move up into bigger homes and also the people downsizing.

Dont miss out on the hot real estate market.  If you have thought about selling or buying another home call us first for a FREE market analysis of what your homes value is today!  It will only cost you about 30 minutes of your time.

Call TODAY…for everything real estate!