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Rent vs Own

Should I Rent or Buy a Home in 2024?

Rent vs. Buy

Understanding Rent vs. Own in Today's Market

Deciding whether to rent or buy a home in 2024 is a significant decision that impacts your financial freedom and lifestyle. With the ever-evolving real estate market, it's crucial to weigh the pros and cons based on current trends and personal circumstances.

Renting vs. Buying: A 2024 Perspective

Renting Advantages:

  • Flexibility: Ideal for those anticipating moves within two to three years, renting avoids the long-term commitment of homeownership.
  • Low Maintenance: Repairs and upkeep are the landlord's responsibility, freeing you from the cost and hassle.
  • Quick Move-In & Lower Initial Costs: Renting often allows for faster relocation with minimal upfront expenses compared to the down payment and closing costs of buying.

Buying Advantages:

  • Equity and Ownership: Every mortgage payment increases your home's equity, turning your monthly expense into an investment.
  • Tax Benefits: Homeowners can still enjoy significant tax deductions on mortgage interest and property taxes in 2024.
  • Inflation Hedge: Fixed-rate mortgages lock in your principal and interest payments, protecting you from rental inflation.
  • Personalization: Owning a home means the freedom to customize your living space without restrictions.

When to Buy a House in 2024

The best time to buy is when you're financially and emotionally ready. Consider these factors:

  • Financial Stability: Ensure you can afford the...

Buying homes in St. Paul MN

Is St. Paul, MN a Good Place to Buy a Home?

Is St. Paul, MN a Good Place to Buy a Home?

When considering the purchase of a home, St. Paul, Minnesota, stands out as a compelling option for many reasons. As the capital city of Minnesota, St. Paul is not only rich in history and culture but also boasts a unique blend of old-world charm and modern conveniences, making it an attractive place for homeowners.

Unique Blend of History and Modernity

St. Paul is known for its beautiful gardens, parks, historic buildings, and quaint cobbled streets, reminiscent of an East Coast city due to its early development style. This gives the city a unique character that blends seamlessly with modern amenities, offering residents the best of both worlds.

Historic Districts with Character

The city is home to several designated historic districts, offering a variety of architectural styles and a sense of community that is hard to find elsewhere.

  • Dayton’s Bluff
  • Historic Hill District
  • Irvine Park
  • Lowertown
  • Summit Avenue West
  • University-Raymond Commercial District

Small Town Feel in a Big City

Despite its status as a capital city, St. Paul offers a small-town vibe, with compact, residential streets and easy access to local amenities. This makes St. Paul an ideal place for those looking for a sense of community within a larger urban setting.

Affordability and Convenience

Housing in St. Paul tends to be more affordable compared to its twin city, Minneapolis. The cost of living, including rent and home prices, is generally lower, offering a more accessible entry point into homeownership for many.

Community and Safety

St. Paul is divided into 17 distinct neighborhoods, each with its district council that works closely with the city...

Twin Cities Housing Market Predictions

Twin Cities Housing Market Outlook for 2024

Cityscape with a futuristic globe

As we navigate through 2024, the Twin Cities Metro area continues to showcase resilience and progress in the real estate sector. Following a trajectory of recovery, the market remains dynamic, characterized by a blend of low-interest rates, moderated home prices, and a buoyant economic landscape underscored by strong employment growth and economic vitality.

Twin Cities Real Estate Outlook

The forecast for the Twin Cities Housing Market in 2024 remains positive, anticipating a steady yet more sustainable growth compared to the rapid surges of the past. Home values in the Minneapolis-St. Paul Metro are expected to see a healthy increase, potentially ranging between 4-6% over the year. Interest rates, while experiencing slight fluctuations, are predicted to stay attractively low, hovering around 1-2%. The decline in foreclosure rates is set to persist, contributing to the overall stability and sustainability of home values in Minnesota, with foreclosure inventory remaining significantly low. As we advance into the year, signs of a stable housing market become increasingly evident, promising a balanced season for both buyers and sellers as we approach the spring season. The anticipated trends suggest a vibrant market scenario unfolding.

Positive Developments for Sellers

  • The early months of 2024 are witnessing a low inventory of homes for sale, which is driving up home values.
  • Rising home prices are expected to lift more homeowners out of "underwater status," encouraging them to list their properties.
  • The supply of existing homes on the market is likely to stay constrained, benefiting sellers.
  • Individuals who have previously...

Top Realtor Not Making New Year Resolutions

New Year Minnesota Property Group

Top Realtor Not Making New Year Resolutions.

Another New Year celebration is over. As our planet begins another journey around the sun, so we start our quest for perfection vis a vis New Year’s Resolutions! While most of us are on board with improving our personal and professional life, resolutions may not be the best way to achieve our goals.

Studies show that only 9.2 percent of us complete new year resolutions. What’s even worse is that 80% fail by February. Why are failure rates so stunningly high, and what can we do to improve our chances for success?

Why do our resolutions fail?

There are several reasons why so many of us crash and burn regarding the promises we make in the final days of the outgoing year. We are swept up in those moments when we feel buoyant and inspired about all the glorious opportunities we anticipate in the upcoming twelve thirtyish day blocks of time on the calendar. We feel invincible and as if there is nothing we can’t accomplish. We see traits of Mario Batali, Mary Barra, and Marie Kondo in ourselves. And so we launch another year with too many expectations and unrealistic goals, setting ourselves up for another epic fail.

Typically it may look like this: after-work rush to the gym, hurry...

Do Your New Year’s Resolutions Need a Reboot?

Do Your New Year’s Resolutions Need a Reboot?

Are you among those people who started the New Year with some well-intentioned resolutions only to find that your resolve has dwindled? Perhaps those goals that have slipped below the horizon of your consciousness during the day come back to haunt you at night like an insect buzzing around your head as you try to fall asleep.  

According to statistics, by February 42% of us who made resolutions have not maintained them. We share your pain. We know the feeling when our willpower is on life-support and the loudest voice we hear is shouting self-criticism and blame.

It’s not easy to feel like you set yourself up for failure back on January 1. Statistics also tell us that 42% of Americans fail to achieve their established goals on a regular basis with only 9% feeling they had a successful outcome.  However, and here is the good news to hang your hope on, people who start out the year with defined resolutions are ten times more likely to achieve their goals than those who do not make any.

Tips to Help You Restart Successfully

Take heart the game is still afoot! Every time the sun pops up out of the horizon and begins a new day offers us another opportunity to start over and to achieve our goals. Let’s begin with some general tips to help strengthen your resolve.

  • Forgive yourself. Change is not easy but it is attainable. Remember that successful people are...

Top Remax Real Estate Team in the Twin Cities

Twin Cities - Minneapolis

Twin Cities Real Estate Market Review by Top Remax Results Team

It’s that time again, the brand new year that marks the start of 365 days of new opportunities as well as new challenges. It is a psychological line of demarcation between what past and what will happen in the next 12 months. Some factors we can control and others we can’t but still, it is a fresh start. An opportunity to review and evaluate, amend and renew as we head into the new year. 

This is the time I look back and celebrate the accomplishments of the Minnesota Property Group of RE/MAX Results as a team, and mine personally as the team leader. While I celebrate the successful outcomes, the resolve to do better for my clients, my team, my community and my family is the cornerstone on which I will build my priorities for 2017.

Minnesota Property Group 2017

It Was A Great Year in Real Estate for The Twin Cities Top Realtors

The Minnesota Property Group, like the 2016 housing market, had a very successful year in local Real Estate.  As the team leader, it has been profoundly gratifying for me to oversee the professional...

The Minnesota Property Group Earned Ranking for 2015 Home Sales

Minnesota Property Group Among America's Best

Local RE/MAX Agents Named Among “America’s Best”

The Minnesota Property Group Earned Ranking for 2015 Home Sales


Plymouth, Minnesota July 26, 2016 – The Minnesota Property Group led by Joe Houghton with RE/MAX  is among the 2,691 RE/MAX agents and teams featured in the 2016 REAL Trends “America’s Best Real Estate Agents” survey. The agents included in the survey represent less than 1 percent of all real estate professionals in the United States.

On learning the news, team leader Joe Houghton said, “Our team focus is treating our clients like members of our own family to provide them with the best possible home selling or buying experience on the planet.  To have our team recognized alongside of so many hard working, dedicated real estate professionals is an accomplishment and we are honored to be named ‘America’s Best’. I’m so proud of my awesome team!

“America’s Best” is the industry’s largest ranking of agents based on homes sold in 2015. The survey is open to individual agents who closed at least 50 transaction sides or $20 million in sales volume and teams who had at least 75 sides or $30 million in volume.  The fourth annual ranking groups agents by state and metro area. Both...

Have You Got Attitude? 9 Ways to Inspire Yours

Thoughts for the Weekend

Our attitude is extremely important to our behavior yet how much time do we really spend thinking about the condition of our “attitude”?  For that matter, how often are we even aware of our attitude on a specific day, hour or minute.  Yet, we talk about attitude quite a lot and common phrases in our language revolve around attitude.  For instance, you have a bad attitude, you need an attitude adjustment, or you have too much attitude!

Our attitude affects how we think, act, relate to others, and how we approach and solve life’s problems. Witnessing a positive attitude at work is a beautiful thing! We are drawn to those who have mastered that discipline, hoping they will inspire us, offer us guidance and lead us into the light, because people with a positive attitude are generally happier and more successful.

Today’s fast paced and sophisticated world certainly presents us with constant challenges. Maintaining a positive attitude is not always easy, even for those who are naturally positive and upbeat.  Yes the dark side is always pulling at us, especially when life throws us a curve ball.

We cannot always control what happens to us, but we do have control of how we deal with a challenging situation.  I will be the first to admit it is not always easy. As much as I try, there are times my own attitude needs attention. Today I went looking for inspiration and found some in unexpected places. Here are the words of wisdom I uncovered.

  1. "The legendary lotus is rooted in the murky darkness, in the muck of


Good Neighbor Next Door Program

The Good Neighbor Next Door Program

Minnesota Hud Homes 

Certain professions can purchase Hud homes, Foreclosures, and the at a 50% discount for only $1,000 down before they are offered to the general public.  

The Good Neighbor Next Door Program

The Good Neighbor Next Door Program is a random lottery process. The buyer can’t increase or decrease her bid; everyone will have the same chance. You would be entering their name in the lottery on the HUD website. Full-time teachers, law enforcement, firefighters, and EMTs who work in the area where the home is located can receive a 50% discount at closing. To qualify for The Good Neighbor Next Door Program, participants can’t have owned a home in home in the last 12 months. These homes are located in revitalization areas, and those areas have a higher than average FHA foreclosure rate and a higher than average renter to homeowner ratio.

No Real Estate Commissions

It HUD doesn’t pay commission, but they allow buyers with FHA financing to add up to 5% of the pre-discounted price into their mortgage for the commission. HUD also doesn’t pay any of the buyer’s closing costs in the Good Next Next Door Program. The FHA buyer doesn’t have to pay for an additional appraisal unless they get an FHA 203K Renovation Loan. If they use FHA financing, they can add all their lender fees and escrows to their mortgage. For FHA buyers using The Good Neighbor Next Door program, the down payment is reduced to only $1,000. The earnest money is different than other HUD homes. It’s 1% of the list price with a minimum...