6 ways to win against other competing buyers

The real estate market has greatly improved in several parts of the country, so this means there will likely be competing buyers bidding against the home you desire to live in.  To help you effectively succeed in a situation involving multiple offers, here are some tips you can try to get into the house of your dreams today!

Get a great agent

Your best bet, in a circumstance concerning other buyers after the home you are looking to purchase, is to hire a great real estate agent who is familiar with the surrounding area.  A good agent will understand all the necessary steps to take to give you the best chance at getting you in the house.  They will also likely have grown relationships with appraisers, brokers, or contractors, which can prove to be helpful for you.  There have been several instances where a seller willingly chooses to work with a buyer with a lower offer only because they have an experienced agent who is close by, and knows the in and outs of the process.


No procrastinating

Procrastinating can cost you the house you have been waiting for, it isn’t uncommon for a property to be sold before an open house is ever given.  This means you should act as soon as you see a house you like on the market.  Showing interest by taking action as soon as a house is available will show that you are very interested, and will help the rest of the deal go by more efficiently. Have your agent start looking into any place as soon as possible if you think you could see yourself there.


Have your funds prepared ahead of time

Before you will be taken seriously from any seller, you will need to get pre approved for a loan ahead of time, and keep communication with your lender for any updates or changes.  If you have been house hunting for days, weeks, or even months, and finally find something you know will be perfect, you need to be prepared to jump on it right away so you don’t miss out.  This will be impossible to do if you are unsure how much you can pay for the new property, and the seller will likely look elsewhere.


Make a good first impression

Be sure to give your offer in the most professional manner you can think of.  This is another place a veteran agent will come in handy because they will know just how to handle such situations.  If at all possible, your bid should be discussed face to face with the seller and or their agent representing them.  Come prepared to this meeting with a typed contract, proof of your pre approval of funds from your bank, any signed disclosures, and a cover letter. You want to give the impression to the seller that you want, and are capable, of moving in as soon as they are ready for you to do so.


Try to stay flexible

Once again, the potential buyer with the highest offer will not always be the one who gets the house.  Price is obviously very significant, but there may be other provisions the seller may be interested in as well.  If the seller has a certain reason for needing to close at a later time, or quickly, agree to these things as best of you ability because they may make or break the decision.


Be direct and truthful

Often times it will be the simple things you say and do that will make you stand out from the other potential buyers.  Always try to be very honest about your intentions, your desire for the house, and how much you are willing to pay for it.  If you give a sturdy offer that is clear and straight forward, you will give yourself the best chance at getting into the house.


If you are looking to get into a new home, hopefully this post gave you some good advice to help you come out on top over the competition, and get into the home you always imagined living in. If you would like any further advice or help buying a home, contact Key Realty Group at 1-816-561-0622.

For this and other blogs, check out our website at keyrealtygroupkc.com.  Key Realty Group is a locally owned, full-service real estate brokerage headquartered in the heart of Kansas City. We specialize in Property Management, Maintenance & Preservation, REO Valuation & Marketing, and Investor Acquisition Services.


Secrets to (eventually) selling your home easily

Most homeowners, or future homeowners, want to live in a place that fits their lifestyle, and expresses their individuality at the same time.  For example, if you have a large family, you will need more bedrooms, bathrooms, and space in general.  If you have a small family, or are empty nesters, you will want to use any extra space for living and entertaining purposes. On top of that, there is probably a whole list of features you want in your home to make it fit your family more personally. So the question is, how do you find a house that fits you, without being tied down to it for the rest of your life? Here is some advice, which may help you answer this difficult question.


Go with what you want

If you want a distinctive and attention-grabbing home, chances are, down the road others will too.  The point is, when you are looking for a home, concentrate on what you really want instead of what will sell later. Focus on what works for you, not what works for the real estate market.  When you design your home so that it fits your individual family, it will probably be a great fit for similar families in the future.  So feel free to add the character to your home you desire, it might just end up paying off in the end when you want to sell, and your home stands out far above the rest in your neighborhood.


Change your source of inspiration

If you have been looking to house plan websites and home improvement store plan books for new home or remodeling suggestions, you may want to start finding your inspiration elsewhere.  The problem with these sources is they are mostly repeating themselves, which means you’re not getting anything new.  A better source of inspiration for you will be to start small.  Concentrate on finding pieces of design here and there, and then adding them together to make your own unique creation.  Be sure to remain open minded while searching, and don’t stress about getting every detail just the way you see it in a magazine or model home.


A win-win situation

When you start looking in the right places for design inspiration, you will find an excess of exceptional home and design ideas.  Also, you will probably figure out unique homes tend to be more valuable than other homes with a common theme.  If you follow your desires and create a house that looks different and does things others don’t, when it comes time for your family to move on, you might find that you sell your home much quicker than anyone else.


We hope these tips will help you find, and eventually sell, your home, and make it fit your needs instead of catering to outside opinions. If you ever need any more help or advice on selling or buying, feel free to call us at 1-816-561-0622.

Key Realty Group is a locally owned, full-service real estate brokerage headquartered in the heart of Kansas City. We specialize in Property Management, Maintenance & Preservation, REO Valuation & Marketing, and Investor Acquisition Services.

How to avoid real estate scams

Unfortunately, because of the growing real estate system, there are many ways to get scammed that can fool even the smartest of people. These scams are becoming more prevalent, and can have a grievous affect on your hard earned savings.  If you are in the market to buy or sell real estate, here are some ways you can avoid the misfortune of getting conned.


Be careful who you trust

Sadly, the person you think has your best interests in mind could be the one who fools you the most.  When you put your trust in someone, you tend to let your guard down.  Try to keep on your toes and be aware that some may try to take advantage.  Always seek advice from several outside sources who are informed and trustworthy before making any major decisions.  Doing a little research on all people involved in any transaction to make sure they all have proper licenses in check with regulations made by your state is always a good precaution to take.


Get it in writing

From the very start of your real estate endeavor, get everything in writing that you can.  Any resistance to this idea could definitely be considered a sign that someone is attempting to scam you.  Equally important is to make sure you understand everything that you are signing.  There might be an overwhelming amount of fine print to read so bringing in a professional could be very helpful for you.


If it seems too good to be true, it probably is

One of the go to tricks of scammers is to falsely offer a deal that, on the surface, appears to be an incredible opportunity coming around once in a lifetime.  Chances are there is a hidden catch, or the offer is a creative attempt to get something of value from you without giving anything in return.  It’s a good idea to exercise great caution when one of these deals comes your way. Try to avoid paying for anything without receiving the goods or services you are paying for first if possible.


Use common sense

It is likely that if you find a reputable real estate agent, you will never feel like something is off. For example, a good agent will never tell you that they are out of the country and cant show you the property yet, but ask for rental applications and credit check fees.  The offender could also steal information from actual real estate agents and try passing it off as their own.  These fake ads can be very convincing and are a popular trick that has fooled many.


We hope this post will help keep you safe in your future real estate decisions. If you are looking to move in the Kansas City area, please give us a call at 1-816-561-0622. We would love to help find your next dream home!

Key Realty Group is a locally owned, full-service real estate brokerage headquartered in the heart of Kansas City. We specialize in Property Management, Maintenance & Preservation, REO Valuation & Marketing, and Investor Acquisition Services.

For this and other blogs, check out our website at keyrealtygroupkc.com. Key Realty Group is a locally owned, full-service real estate brokerage headquartered in the heart of Kansas City. We specialize in Property Management, Maintenance & Preservation, REO Valuation & Marketing, and Investor Acquisition Services.

Easy ways to decrease mortgage costs

These days everyone is looking for ways to save money, especially with an expense as large as your mortgage costs.  With such a high price to pay for your house each month, it’s hard to have enough left over to continue doing some of the other activities you love.   If you fall into this category, here are some easy ways you can make your mortgage payments less expensive, and start freeing up some cash.

Look for the lowest APR

Taking some time to investigate different mortgage banks can greatly benefit you because, often, different banks will offer different APR’s. Although shopping around may be more time consuming than going with the first mortgage bank that comes to mind, once you find a better APR, you will be glad you did.  Mortgage costs are a long term commitment, so make sure to take special care to get all the best options you can find.


Go the extra mile

If you’re a great saver, or find yourself coming into some extra cash one month, consider making an extra payment to your mortgage.  This may sound counterintuitive, but this additional payment will go directly to you principal, instead of the interest.  You can decrease your remaining balance on your loan, and cut your mortgage cost by making just one extra payment a year.


Refinance correctly

When you refinance, you pay off your present mortgage with a new one. The goal in mind here is getting a lower interest rate and thus paying less money over the long run.  The catch, however, is not everyone should choose to refinance.  A good way to decide whether refinancing is right for you is to figure the entire cost of refinancing, and divide it by the sum of money you will be saving each month.  If you think you are going to remain in your house for a shorter period than it will take to pay off the refinancing costs, then refinancing is likely not for you.


Reevaluate your home value

Property taxes are a large piece of your homes expense.  These taxes are based on the amount your home is valued at, therefore, if you reevaluate your home value, you may be able to lower your property taxes.  You can accomplish this by petitioning our assessor and combating your assessment, which will potentially lower your tax assessment and yearly tax costs.


Change your present loan

Unlike refinancing, changing the loan you already have involves switching up the terms of your mortgage to make it more affordable, instead of obtaining a new loan altogether.  Similar to refinancing however, this choice will not work for everyone.  On most occasions, the homeowner will have to prove that some form of adversity has struck, like losing employment.  For the individuals who do qualify for loan modification, the loan term can be adjusted or interest rates can be lowered.


We hope these suggestions will help you make your new, or existing, mortgage more affordable. Just remember to try and treat your home, not only as the place you live, but like a financial benefit as well. Also, if you ever need any advice on selling or buying, feel free to call us at 1-816-561-0622. Key Realty Group is a locally owned, full-service real estate brokerage headquartered in the heart of Kansas City. We specialize in Property Management, Maintenance & Preservation, REO Valuation & Marketing, and Investor Acquisition Services.

For this and other blogs, check out our website at keyrealtygroupkc.com. Key Realty Group is a locally owned, full-service real estate brokerage headquartered in the heart of Kansas City. We specialize in Property Management, Maintenance & Preservation, REO Valuation & Marketing, and Investor Acquisition Services.

First time home buyers- What to expect

If you’re looking to buy, now may be a great time to purchase some real estate.  Prices for homes are low, and rents have grown in many cities.  Homes for sale haven’t been this affordable for the last 40 years, and mortgage rates are still very low.  Most first time home buyers have several inquiries about what to expect, so to help you on your way to a new home, here are some answers to frequently asked questions.


Will I be able to meet the requirements for a mortgage?

When lenders are checking to see if you qualify for a mortgage, they will review several things in the process.  First, they will analyze your credit history, which will include your credit score and a record of repaying any debts.  Next, they will look at your income, how much savings you have collected, and any investments you have made.  Finally, your collateral will be reviewed, including the value of the property you are hoping to buy, and the amount of your down payment. The value of your property will be determined by an appraisal.

The lenders will look to see that you have been employed for the past two years, and make sure your job seems stable so you can continue to have income.  Try to be as strong as you can in all of these categories for the best results, and also, if your spouse fits any of these criteria, that will be helpful as well.  If you find yourself to be weak in any of these areas, you may need to have a larger down payment, wait until your credit score improves, or find a different job with a more steady income.


What can I get on my budget?

What you will be able to afford will be contingent upon the monthly mortgage payment you are given.  When you visit your lender, they will use a ratio that takes into account your income and payments, and then you will be given a general amount from there. As a general rule, your monthly payments for your mortgage should never be more than 28% of the gross income you bring in monthly.  Also remember, lenders do not take into consideration the amount of money it will take to maintain the property, so make sure to stay on a detailed budget.


How much will the interest rate be?

To get the best interest rate possible, you will want to have a high credit score, high down payment, and be at the lowest possible risk for default.  If you put 15-20% down, and have at least a 740 credit score, lenders will add a quarter point to their best rate.  However, if you have a 740 credit score, and put less than 15%, an extra quarter point will be added to your rate.  As your credit score gets lower, in certain increments, you will have to add more points.


We hope these tips will help any of you first time home buyers get into the home of your dreams!  We want you to feel as prepared for this important step in your life as possible.  If you ever need any more help or advice on selling or buying, feel free to call Key Realty Group at 1-816-561-0622

For this and other blogs, check out our website at keyrealtygroupkc.com. Key Realty Group is a locally owned, full-service real estate brokerage headquartered in the heart of Kansas City. We specialize in Property Management, Maintenance & Preservation, REO Valuation & Marketing, and Investor Acquisition Services.

FAQ for Owners

How do I get started?

Schedule a call with us by filling out the contact us form to the right. After scheduling a time to talk, we will discuss your unique situation, and then complete an analysis of the property by visiting first hand and also complete a market analysis along with the property management agreement for the owner to complete.

When do I receive my income distribution?

We start our monthly close out around the 10th of the month. Income distributions are made between the 13th – 15th. Funds can be directly deposited into our client’s accounts through an electronic ACH transfer or we can mail a check if you prefer.

My property is vacant; do I still get charged a management fee?

No, We do  not charge a minimum monthly management fee on vacant properties. We feel that this motivates us to keep our vacancy rates low and customers happy. While your property is vacant, we will be working very hard by advertising and working to secure a qualified tenant, and we continue to take care of all maintenance and repairs as needed.

Who Do I Contact at Key Realty Group?

Key Realty Group provides each owner with a dedicated property manager that serves as the initial point of contact. This personalized feature will improve the quality of service for both owners and tenants. The property manager assigned to your property will be backed by a team of property management professionals who specialize in leasing, accounting, and maintenance.

What is the best way to communicate with Key?
We offer our owners online access to information on their accounts 24 hours a day. The information comes from our database. If the information you need is not available on our website, your property manager will gladly assist you. We love talking on the telephone, but suggest emailing your property manager with any questions you might have.

Will you pay my monthly bills for me?

Yes, we can easily pay your monthly bills, including mortgage, utilities, and HOA dues. We do require minimum account balances in excess of the estimated monthly payments in order to take advantage of this service.

Must I maintain a balance in my property’s Reserve Account?

We do require a $500 minimum balance to be maintained in your property’s Reserve Account in an effort to ensure there are enough funds available to properly manage your property if an emergency arises.

How does Key Realty Group screen prospective residents?

We perform a credit check, national and local criminal background check, eviction check, employment verification, and rental/ mortgage verification on every prospective adult resident.

What if my tenant does not pay?

If rent is not received on or before the 5th of the month, we call the tenant personally and mail a late fee notice letter notifying the tenant that payment must be made promptly. If no response is received within approximately five days, we personally visit the property and post a 3 day notice to quit or pay. If we have not recieved payment after three days then we send the file to our attorney to file for an eviction. After filed the county clerk will set a court date, usually within 15 to 21 days. For a uncontested eviction, the process from beginning to end will usually take about 30 days. The  costs of an eviction, will cost around $400, which includes court costs, special process service and attorney fees.  The court costs are paid initially by the owner and then we charge the tenant for the costs. Prime Realty Group does not charge any fees for their eviction services. You pay only court costs and attorney fees.

What is done after a tenant moves out?

We first secure and then perform a move out inspection of the property. During the inspection, we identify items that should be charged to the former tenant and document the condition of your property with digital pictures. We then provide make ready bids for the necessary repairs to get the property ready to lease. Once the property is ready for marketing, we allow prospective residents to view your property.

What happens to the security deposit from my tenant?

We account for the security deposit from your tenant on your owner’s statement. When the tenant moves out, we deduct all costs that are considered “beyond normal wear and tear” from their security deposit. The tenant’s security deposit less deductions is refunded to the tenant and any funds deducted from their deposit are then retained by the owner as income.

FAQ for Renters

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I preview properties?

It’s very easy only takes a few minutes and its free. One of our licensed agents will contact you to schedule showings, don’t forget to reference the property address when filling out the

Now that I have seen the property and am ready to move forward what is the next step?

You will need complete a credit and background check, the cost is $20 per person. We will need copies of your most recent form of income (pay-stubs, SSN, Housing Assistance, etc.) Copy of current ID, last 2 landlords contact info and terms of lease.

Now that I have the owners approval and have passed a credit check, When can I move in?

You can take possession as soon as you sign a lease for at least 1 year and have put down the full deposit and firsts month rent. You will also be required to have the utilities turned on in your name before you can move in.

When are rent payments due?

Rent payments are due on the 1st of every month. There is a 5 day grace period. If payments are not postmarked by the 5th of the month, the late fee that is stated on your lease will apply and is to be paid immediately.

How is rent paid?

All tenants are required to have payment in the form of money order or cashiers checks payable to Key Realty Group, LLC. Please note at the bottom of the check, the address of the house you are renting, and the month for which the rent is paid. You can pay the rent by mailing your payment, or drop off between 9-4 Monday – Friday at:

Key Realty Group, LLC
4128 Roanoke Rd.
Suite #310
Kansas City, MO 64111

Many students/parents like to pay rent for six months, the entire year or a few months at a time. For this option you can still mail your payment to the address above and you will receive credit for your payment in full. Please indicate on the check, or an enclosed note,
the number of months that are being paid and the name of the renter.

Should I invest in Renters Insurance?

We highly recommend that our renters invest in Renters Insurance. Your property’s insurance policy does not cover accidents that you are liable for or any of your personal belongings in the event of an emergency. Monthly rates range from only $4-$14. For more information, please call us today to get you a quote from 1 to 3 agents at 816-561-0622

How are the properties maintained?

We have a team of maintenance workers that we entrust with the care of the houses and other properties. You may request service by clicking on the “Repairs/Service Requests” tab above or contact us at any time at our 24hr line 816-561-0622. Please also reference if it is an emergency item or not and leave all your contact info and description of the issue and phone # to contact you at. Water leaks are considered VERY SERIOUS- please call our office line for immediate service.

How are utilities paid for?

You are responsible for contacting the utility companies to have the utilities transferred into your name or the name of one of your house mates. You will save time and money if you contact the utility companies in advance. In order to do this you will need to set up your account FIRST with the utility companies at least 3 days before you move in. Please note: we will turn off all utilities no more than 3 days after your lease start-up date. To set up your accounts call:

Kansas City Power & Light
Missouri Gas & Energy
Kansas City Water Dept.