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Monday, March 27, 2017

What To Know About Homeowner’s Associations

What to Know About Homeowner's Associations

When looking at homes for sale in St. Louis and St. Charles County, Missouri you may notice “association fees” in the listing details. So what are these association fees? They are monthly or yearly dues to the homeowner’s association for the community where the home is located.

What is a homeowner’s association?

A homeowner’s association (HOA) is an organization within a planned community that creates and enforces rules for homeowners within the community. They are usually setup as 501(c)(4)organizations that collect dues to be distributed to maintain the community. If you purchase a home in the community, you automatically will be responsible for paying the association dues.
Homeowners Association Amenities

What does a homeowner’s association do?

Homeowner’s associations oversee and enforce a community’s covenants as well as assist in maintaining the quality of the community. This can include but is not limited to: maintaining common areas, sidewalks, streets, community clubhouse, community pool and playground equipment. They hire and distribute funds to the contractors that do the work. Also the association has to purchase and maintain insurance for community amenities covered by the HOA.

HOA ResponsibilitiesAre homeowner’s associations common?

According to the Foundation for Community Association Research, “the number of Americans living in HOAs is on the rise, growing from a mere 1% in 1970 to 1 in 4 today.” So they have become quite common as a way for communities to be maintained and keep home values at a premium.

How are homeowner’s association fees determined?

The board of directors of a homeowner’s association determines the amount of the fees. They do this by determining the projected annual expenses of the association and dividing by the number of homes.  Board members are usually homeowners from the community that volunteer and do not profit from HOA fees. In fact, they too will have to pay the HOA fees sometimes called assessments or maintenance fees.

How do I find out what a homeowner’s association covers for a community?

Homeowner's Association Rules 
Each association has its own unique rules and policies. If you are planning to buy a home in a community that has a homeowner’s association, it’s important that you read the community’s covenants, conditions and restrictions (CC&Rs) and bylaws. If the listing agent doesn’t provide these with the listing documentation, be sure to request them so that you know before you buy.

Generally homeowner’s associations offer a benefit to those living in the community. Combined funds keep the community maintained, home values up and offer the option to have a swimming pool, tennis court or other benefits that an individual homeowner may not be able to afford and maintain on their own. The Boehmer Team has helped many homebuyers who found the home of their dreams in a community with a homeowner’s association. In addition we’ve helped many sellers living in HOA communities sell their homes. We know the in’s and out’s of HOA’s and are ready to help you with your real estate needs even if they involve a homeowner’s association.

Additional references: 

Thursday, March 9, 2017

How Mortgage Rates Affect Home Buying

How Mortgage Rates Affect Home Buying

Why should St. Louis and St. Charles County, Missouri area real estate agents, investors and buyers be concerned about mortgage interest rates? Because mortgage rates can largely impact what a home buyer can purchase.

While rising home prices can limit how much house a home buyer can purchase, mortgage rates also add to the total cost of a home purchase. Lenders add these rates when figuring the total amount they will let you borrow for a mortgage loan.  Higher costs of borrowing money means less of that money can be used toward the actual property.
Saving for a down payment

A swift rise in mortgage rates may require current homebuyers to readjust their purchase plans. They may decide to save for a larger down payment, look for a less expensive home, choose an adjustable-rate mortgage with a lower starting interest rate or they may choose to exit the housing market until another time.

For those who aren’t already homeowners, mortgage rates could affect the tipping point at which renting or buying a home is more affordable. However in the St. Louis and St. Charles County areas of Missouri, purchasing a home can still be more affordable than renting when it comes to monthly mortgage payments versus monthly rent payments.

Rising Mortgage RatesMortgage rates are based on rates set by the Federal Reserve.  The Fed’s strategy to assist the nation post-recession was to keep rates very low. But this means the rates have nowhere to go but up. Economists expect an improving economy over the next several years, meaning rates are expected to steadily raise.

“With rising rates it might be best not to buy a home that is a financial stretch,” says Kelly Boehmer. “Now is the time to consider a home that is at or under budget.”Saint Louis Real Estate Market

Despite rising mortgage rates, new home sales contracts went up by 3.7% in January. While existing home sales rose by 3.3% in January – the fastest pace since February 2007.

According to Linda Boehmer, "Ultimately it is other factors, like a strong economy, that have a bigger impact on house prices than changes in mortgage rates."

Check with your lender if you are concerned about how higher mortgage rates might affect you. Chances are the difference may only be $40-$75 month. If you need a referral for an experienced and trustworthy mortgage lender, contact The Boehmer Team for contact information on several reputable area lenders.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

How to Get the Best Mortgage Rate

How To Get The Best Mortgage Rate

When shopping for a mortgage loan for purchasing real estate in St. Louis or St. Charles County area of Missouri, there are several things you need to do to ensure you get the best mortgage rate possible.

1) Know and Improve Your Credit Score

Get a copy of your credit report and know your FICO score.  You can order a free credit report from credit reporting agencies,, or that will provide your FICO score. Once you know your number you can calculate your loan savings based on your credit score using the loan savings calculator here.

Know and Improve Your Credit ScoreWhen reviewing your credit report check for any discrepancies or anything unusual that needs attention. Look for mistakes such as accounts that are not yours. A study issued in 2012 by the FTC found that 1 in 5 people have errors on their credit report. When you find errors, contact the creditors by phone or mail to correct the error.

2) Compare Lenders

An online search can help you find and compare mortgage rates for different lenders. You’ll also want to check and compare the amounts of their closing costs. Ask friends and family what lenders they have worked with and their feelings about that lender. Or contact TheBoehmer Team for contact information on reputable area lenders that have successfully assisted clients in obtaining great mortgage loan products.

3) Compare Loan Types

Compare Mortgage Loan TypesChoose the right mortgage product based on your needs. Do you plan to stay in the home for many years? Or do you plan to sell or refinance in a few years? The answers to these questions will help you determine what is right for you. Loan types include: fixed-rate loans, adjustable-rate loans (ARMs), Federal Housing Administration loans (FHA), Veterans Administration loans (VA) and other low or no down payment loan products. For more in-depth information on choosing the right type of loan visit our page detailing the loan process.

4) Build Your Down Payment

The size of your down payment can affect the interest rate you pay, the type of loan products available for you and how much if any mortgage insurance you will need. In general, a larger down payment helps get you better mortgage rates and less expensive loan products. 
Build Your Down PaymentWhile putting twenty percent down on a home will allow you the greatest choice of loan products, there are currently mortgage loan programs in place that allow you to put as little as 3 percent down or even less. A conversation with your mortgage lender will help you determine how much you need to save to get the loan product that is best for you.

The Boehmer Team Helps Homebuyers Get Homes

The Boehmer Team has years of experience helping homebuyers find and purchase the home of their dreams. If you have questions, contact The Boehmer Team any time for expert advice. They can direct you to reputable local area lenders and loan officers or share more ways their clients have found the best lender to meet their mortgage needs. 

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

St. Louis Luxury Real Estate

This beautiful home is located off of Clayton Road in St. Louis.
The St. Louis metropolitan area has numerous luxury homes to choose from including both new and pre-owned luxury homes. Luxury homes are often defined by a price that is over $400,000. However, luxury homes are more than just a price tag.

This lovely home in O'Fallon, Mo includes inlaid wood floors and coffered ceilings.
Luxury homes usually include great architecture, high-end appliances and finishings, and beautiful interior design with designer paint colors. In addition to all these great features, luxury homes are often defined by a great location in sought after communities.  

You can have this view at your future home built by Fischer and Frichtel in Weldon Spring.
For most home builders luxury homes usually feature at least 3,000 square feet of living space. In addition to building quality homes with the newest standards, new home builders pay special attention to all finishings, from windows to doors, to faucets and cabinet pulls. Building a luxury home can be a truly exciting design experience.

This high-end kitchen is featured in a home by Bridgewater Communities.
[Did you know that The Boehmer Team has over 35+ years of combined experience helping families and individuals purchase brand new homes? Meet The Boehmer Team HERE.] 
For those looking for luxury real estate in the St. Louis area, or those who just want to dream about their future luxury home, we’ve created a webpage that features only currently-listed luxury real estate. This page features luxurious homes in St. Louis City, St. Louis County, St. Charles County, Jefferson County and Lincoln County in Missouri. 

This luxury custom home is in Eureka, MO.
Whether buying or selling luxury real estate, The Boehmer Team provides the best luxury home sales service in the area. Our team has over 55+ years of combined experience working with homebuyers and sellers including luxury homeowners. Is moving on your mind? Contact The Boehmer Team for assistance with your luxury real estate needs. 

Sunday, January 29, 2017

6 Ways a Buyer’s Agent Helps Your Home Search

In today’s competitive home buying market, a dedicated buyer’s agent is more important than ever in finding and securing the home you want. Most real estate agents in the St. Louis and St. Charles County areas of Missouri perform dozens of tasks for both buyers and sellers. But a dedicated buyer’s agent is focused on helping homebuyers. This provides a better experience for homebuyers. Here are some ways a buyer’s agent helps in your home search.

Stephanie Puszkar
1. A buyer’s agent takes the time to discover your needs and what matters most to you.
Stephanie Puszkar, buyer’s agent for The Boehmer Team, says “by establishing a communicative relationship we assist homebuyers by providing knowledge through the process and they help us determine exactly what they need, want and will accept for a new home.”

2. A buyer’s agent gets access to data in real time.
Did you know that most national consumer home search engines do not provide real time data and information on homes for sale? This is why the best homes are often gone before you even have a chance to look at them.

“The Boehmer Team uses the newest data available from our local multiple listing service, a large company network, social media groups and additional industry related resources,” says Linda Boehmer. has advanced home search technology that lets you create a home search and sign up to receive immediate email notifications of new homes that match your search within minutes of hitting the market. Create a saved search yourself or contact The Boehmer Team to let us know your criteria and we’ll set it up for you.

3. A dedicated buyer’s agent has an inside advantage.
Linda and Kelly Boehmer
“We have several resources for coming soon listings via our connections and company network,” says Kelly Boehmer. “We also know of MLS-exempt homes the public is not aware of. Being a top producing team, we have our pulse on the market and recognize good opportunities when they are presented.”

4. A buyer’s agent knows new construction opportunities.
When looking at brand new homes, a buyer’s agent works to protect your interests and makes sure you are represented in the transaction. If you decide that a pre-owned home is not for you, The Boehmer Team can help. They have over 50 years combined experience in new construction sales. Sometimes the perfect home for you may be brand new.

5. An experienced buyer’s agent has contract negotiating expertise.
When it comes to reviewing and negotiating lengthy home contracts, experienced buyer’s agents like those on The Boehmer Team help achieve the best results for you. They know top techniques and options for the buyer when negotiating offers, including competitive offer situations.  Savvy buyer’s agents will think aggressively, within the buyers abilities, to present the buyers with options that may assist them in procuring a home.

6. A buyer’s agent sees the entire process through.
Shannon Lautenschlaeger
A full-time dedicated buyer’s agent can quickly show you property, promptly secure appointments, and obtain answers to your questions in a timely manner from the beginning to the end of the transaction.
“We attend inspections and walk-throughs, explain the inspection reports, and write repair requests,” says Shannon Lautenschlaeger, buyer’s agent for The Boehmer Team. “We make sure contractual deadlines are met, request invoices and warranties, schedule closing, and review the closing statement for accuracy.”

The best part? The sellers pay for buyer representation. So it is affordable to have an expert with you throughout the home buying process. If moving is on your mind, let the number one team in St. Charles County, Missouri go to work for you. The Boehmer Team has buyer’s agents that are ready to focus on your needs and results. Meet The Boehmer Team at and try the advanced online home search while you’re there.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

When is the Spring Home Selling Season Really?

spring home selling season missouri

In the Missouri area the beginning of the spring home selling season greatly depends on the weather.  In the case of normal weather where it is typical winter temperatures but not extremely cold, snowy or icy, homebuyers seem to come out in the first two weeks of February. There are always January buyers, although it is normal for it to take a few weeks for holiday celebrations to end, decorations to come down, college students to return to school and life to return to normal. 

In new home construction the selling season usually kicks off the first Sunday after the Super Bowl, unless it falls directly on Valentines Day. With new construction there are almost always inventory homes that are completely built and ready for sale throughout the winter months.
[See the current list of new construction inventory homes.]

beginning of spring home selling season
When snow, ice and freezing temperatures occur late into winter they deter the movement of homebuyers.  The positive news for home sellers is if there are homebuyers looking under those conditions, they are most likely serious buyers.  There is also a fair amount of relocation activity in the real estate market immediately after the first of the year due to large companies implementing changes for staff.

So how long does it take to prepare a home for sale on the spring market?
The rules for home preparation for the resale market are pretty much the same all year round.  One big difference is that you do not have the beautiful trees, landscaping, seasonal flowers and foliage to rely on to add exterior charm.  It is important that dead leaves are removed from landscape beds, lifeless plant foliage removed and residue from salts and ice melt products hosed off of the concrete surfaces.  Covered porches and patio areas also need to be staged as well as possible in the winter as they are much more appealing in the warmer months. 

Prepare your home for the spring market
According to Kelly Boehmer, “if you want to take advantage of the spring selling season you can prepare by cleaning, removing clutter, organizing closets and pantries, minimizing and neutralizing décor, and getting rid of unneeded furniture. The hard work will pay off.  There are more homebuyers out in the spring than any other time of the year. Buyers have been in the house all winter and ready to make a move.  It is in your best interest to be ready for them.”

“To really make the most of your home sale define your true motivation as a seller,” says Linda Boehmer.  “Then have a quality agent make clear any terms and conditions that are required or favorable for you as a seller and include them in the agent remarks of your home listing.  This will help eliminate any confusion about your goals when you get a buyer for your home.”

You can meet The Boehmer Team at their team page. Or contact The Boehmer Team to schedule an in-person meeting to view the full details of their Maximum Exposure Marketing Plan for homes. The Boehmer Team’s experience and attention to detail when selling a home are just a few of the reasons why they are a top team in the St. Louis and St. Charles County area of Missouri.

Thursday, December 29, 2016

The Boehmer Team Combine Real Estate and Philanthropy

2016 brought an active real estate market to the St. Louis and St. Charles County, Missouri areas and signs point to a similar 2017. The busy market was both demanding and rewarding for The Boehmer Team, who was able to help hundreds of families and individuals buy or sell a home. 

With each home that The Boehmer Team lists, a donation is made to Sunshine Kids, a charity benefitting children with cancer. The Sunshine Kids listing donation program was created by their brokerage, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties and is available to all BHHS Select Properties agents. For the last 8 years, The Boehmer Team has been recognized as top contributors to the listing donation program.
The Boehmer Team help St. Louis Sunshine Kids
Local Sunshine Kid got to throw the first pitch
at a Cardinals Baseball Game.

In addition to the listing program, The Boehmer Team works events that raise funds for Sunshine Kids all year long. Sunshine Kids is a national organization that has benefitted St. Louis and St. Charles County area children through trips and events where they can interact with other children recovering from or in treatment for cancer.

“Our support of the Sunshine Kids has never wavered,” says Linda Boehmer. “We are one hundred percent committed to the children and families that face their challenge with a strength and passion that we cannot imagine.  They are the true heroes.”

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices continually works to generate support for Sunshine Kids among their 44,000 agents nationally. The Boehmer Team is committed to Sunshine Kids and has a variety of fundraisers throughout the year. This dedication has earned The Boehmer Team a spot as one of the top 10 contributors to Sunshine Kids in the Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices network nationwide.

The Boehmer Team fund raise for Sunshine Kids

Another organization that is near and dear to The Boehmer Team is Hunt For Justice. The Boehmer Team was fortunate to meet Chris and Jessie Hunt when they helped them purchase a home after relocating from out-of-state over ten years ago. 

“They are wonderful people with huge hearts and a desire to help others,” said Linda Boehmer. “Their dedication is contagious.”

The Boehmer Team support Hunt For Justice
The Boehmer Team’s support for Hunt For Justice includes: sponsoring trivia events, volunteering and sponsoring opportunities at the annual Hunt for Justice Golf Tournament, donating items for the annual garage sale fundraiser, operating a survivor football pool that donates proceeds to the organization and making a contribution for anyone who buys or sells a home that uses or learns of The Boehmer Team through the Hunt for Justice organization.

The Boehmer Team had the opportunity to help another local first responder that suffered an extreme hardship in 2016.  They were able to assist this family by making a donation that will allow them to make structural alterations needed to make their home suitable for their needs.

The Boehmer Team at St Charles Lions Club Tivia Night
Boehmer Team members and family at Lions Club Trivia Night.
In addition The Boehmer Team strongly support the St. Charles Lions Club by sponsoring trivia night, golf tournaments, raffles, and holiday support for the Missouri School for the Blind residents.

The entire Boehmer Team is willing to help when needed.  All members of the team share a genuine caring nature and desire to give back to the community in which they live and work. The team also support numerous local school events including sports, dance, theatrical, young business leaders and various other student activities and organizations.

The Boehmer Team Members
The Boehmer Team
“There is no better way to say thank you to our friends, family, valued clients, local organizations and schools that have continually supported our business than to give back to them in any way we can,” says Kelly Boehmer. “It can be in the form of time, monetary donations, or any type of support that is needed to be rewarding.  We are grateful for the opportunities to give back.”

If you would like to reach out to The Boehmer Team about how you can help get involved with supporting these organizations, email Or, list a house with The Boehmer Team to assist in supporting these great causes. Learn more about The Boehmer Team or find your future home at