Tuesday, November 26, 2013


Be sure to check out the home page of my website stephanmays.com to view seven new images portraying humble beginnings and life in the good ole days around Oregon.

Locations include Portland, Beaverton, Hillsboro, Salem, Eugene, Springfield and Gold Hill.

I will look to add more in the future but I feel this is a good start to it. I will post the images in an album on Facebook as well for your viewing and 'liking' pleasure.

- Stephan


Hello again folks!

Sorry for the lack recent blog updates. Please be sure to follow me on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook (links on the right --->) for more frequent, smaller updates, than here on the blog.

I have been keeping busy helping an old co-worker and his wife search for that perfect Portland home! I am very grateful for the opportunity and having tons of fun in our search.

As we all know Thanksgiving is coming up this week so I'm sure most folks are ramping up for that. I can't wait to relax with family and stuff my belly full of delicious foods! Assuming I come out of my food coma, I will be available on Friday for any of your real estate related needs and questions, so feel free to call, text, email, etc.

I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday and I'll report back sooner than later. Thanks as always!


Monday, November 18, 2013


It's Monday, but what is the best day of the week to list your home??

Survey says… (DING!)  -  FRIDAY!

According to studies a home initially listed on the MLS on a Friday will gain 4 times the exposure up front than a home listed on any other day of the week.

Makes sense, potential buyers are probably gearing up for that weekends home search.  Looking up properties, attending open houses or lining up viewings with their agents.

So word to the wise, post your listing on a Friday, which is exactly what I will do for you!  (unless otherwise requested of course!)

Have a great week!


Wednesday, November 13, 2013


If you're reading this you are most likely already aware of my personal Real Estate website stephanmays.com.

I have recently updated the final few pages that needed some work. The "BUY", "SELL", "CONTACT" and "ABOUT" pages have all been finished for your internet viewing pleasure. Please be sure to click around the site and read a little bit about where I come from and what I can do for you.

Thanks as always for your time!


Tuesday, November 5, 2013


We all know that a major component in purchasing a home is getting a loan. What you may not know is that there are a variety of ways to do so.

First off is the where. You can go through your existing banks mortgage department, use a credit union or a private mortgage company. Most offer the same basic services that 90% of customers utilize, such as Conventional, FHA and VA loans. The interest rates and auxiliary fees may vary, but for the most part there isn't a huge difference in price and availability. Where you may see a difference is the level of customer service and contact provided by your mortgage advisor.

Second is the how. Depending on your current financial and credit standing, or veteran status you may be eligible for a variety of loan options, listed below.


A few quick notes, typical of loan options: (may vary by personal situation)

Conventional Loan: minimum of 20% down payment (to avoid paying mortgage insurance) / 80% LTV (loan to value) ratio.
Meaning that whatever the appraiser sets the value of the house at (which is independent and may vary from the asking or sale price), the lender will only fund up to 80% of that appraised value. You would need to make up the difference to the total sale price via a cash down payment.
There are also 'jumbo loans' which are loans over certain governmentally preset limits. $417,000 in most of the US and currently $625,500 in 'high-cost areas'. These loans can have slightly different down payment and LTV ratios as determined by the lender.

You can of course obtain a conventional loan for under 20% down, but most all lenders will require you pay and additional fee for mortgage insurance, up until you have payed down the balance owed to less that 80%.

FHA Loan: minimum of 3.5% down payment / $418,750 maximum loan amount.
Limitation of certain closing costs / amounts of costs, total loan value as well as certain housing types.
Typically requires a better credit history and score.
Requires FHA (Federal Housing Administration) mortgage insurance - cost is included into monthly loan payment.

VA Loan: 0% down payment / Limits of eligibility and usage.
Must be a Qualifying veteran of the US Military.
Can only use a certain, predetermined amount of 'entitlement' toward VA guarantee of loan repayment.
VA loans may be 'assumed' from you by another qualifying veteran who agrees to substitute their entitlement for yours, allowing you to qualify for a new VA loan.


As you can see there are quite a few options out there and even more mortgage advisors looking to help you. Below is a short list a few experienced professionals who can assist you or answer any additional questions you may have.

Peter Wease - Alpine Mortgage

Brian Billups - Bay Equity Home Loans

Jami Alarja - Bay Equity Home Loans

One final note: Don't be afraid to give them a call just to find out where you stand. Many of us are not in the position to buy a home right this second, but without certain information and help you may never know how to get where you want to be. The sooner you find out at which step on the path you stand, the sooner you can take those further steps you want to take.

The best of luck!

Friday, November 1, 2013


Castle House
- click photo to view listing -

Saturday November 2nd  /  1 - 4 PM

4004 E. Main Street
Hillsboro, OR 97123

The "Castle House"
5 bed / 3 bath / 2550 sq ft

MLS# 13266342