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Should I Buy a New Home Now or Later?

If you’re like many people, you may be asking yourself should I buy a new home now or later? While there are many things to consider when asking this question, here are a few things to get you started:

  • Are you in a good place financially?
  • Are you ready to be your own landlord?
  • Are you committed to staying in one place?

If you answered yes to these questions then you may be ready to buy a home. The next question you may ask yourself is should I buy now or later? With interest rates still at all time lows, that may sway your opinion. Maybe, knowing that Freddie Mac predicts that by January 2017 interest rates will rise to 4.5% or that CoreLogic predicts that home prices will increase by 5.5% over the next year may help make your decision to begin the home search now. If you wait until next year, that $250,000 budget you have would need to increase by $13,750 to get the same home.

Should I Buy a New Home Now or Later

If you have questions about the home buying process or what McKee Homes has to offer, contact us today and we would be happy to answer your questions.

Additional Source: Forbes.com

 

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McKee Homes Featured in Builder and Developer Magazine

McKee Homes is featured in Homebuilders Prosper with Epcon Franchising, a recent Builder and Developer Magazine article about Epcon Franchise Builders.

According to the Builder and Developer article Another Franchise Builder, Pat McKee, owner of McKee Homes has seen success with Epcon Franchising as well. Since 2007, McKee has been a developer and homebuilder in the Fayetteville, N.C. market.

Most recently he is responsible for developing and building one of Fayetteville’s most successful communities, The Cottages at North Ramsey. He attributes part of its success to being an EpconFranchise Builder. McKee sold close to 100 homes last year and 150 this year, becoming a large regional builder in [the] Fayetteville area.

Epcon is a home building company offering franchises to other builders dedicated to serving the luxury, low-maintenance, ranch-style home niche for consumers looking to downsize from their existing home. Epcon is the 38th largest homebuilder in the nation and is the 19th largest privately-owned homebuilder. Franchise Builders have sold more than 28,000 homes since 1986.

In addition to the Builder and Developer article, McKee Homes has been featured in Epcon articles about their Franchisees and Epcon’s Pathways of Hope Foundation.

How Epcon Franchises Enables Home Builders to Quickly Grow from Niche to Regional Markets features Pat McKee, owner and President of McKee Homes. This article is largely an interview with Pat McKee (see video below) about the advantages of being an Epcon Franchisee. According to the Epcon article Traditional single-family home builder Pat McKee was able to quickly become a large regional builder with assistance from the Epcon homebuilding franchise system.

“Our depth of knowledge is difficult to achieve. Large regional builders often partner with Epcon to develop specific sections within their developments because they recognize that Epcon is the best way to satisfy a particular market niche,” says Rob Krohn, Epcon’s Franchise Marketing Manager.

On the move and moving up: Epcon Communities Franchisee Pat McKee gives back to NC residents by Nanette Overly covers McKee Homes’ commitment to giving back to the community, especially as it relates to their work with the Alzheimer’s Association® through the Joe McKee Memorial Alzheimer’s Fund and sponsorship of the Fayetteville Walk to End Alzheimer’s. From 2011 to 2016, McKee Homes has donated approximately $135,000 to the Alzheimer’s Association® through the Joe McKee Memorial Alzheimer’s Fund.

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McKee Homes Epcon Communities

McKee Homes is currently developing over 20 communities in Eastern North Carolina, three of which are Epcon communities.

What’s an Epcon community? Epcon is a home building company offering franchises to other builders dedicated to serving the luxury, low-maintenance, ranch-style home niche for consumers looking to downsize from their existing home. The homes are specially designed with high-end features and options and built with 36″ wide doorways inside the house and easy access with no stairs between the inside and outside areas. With an Epcon home, homebuyers know they can live in the home into retirement without having to make any modifications to their home.

The Salerno floor plan

McKee Homes offers Epcon homes in The Cottages at North Ramsey in Fayetteville with all exterior home and yard maintenance taken care of by the HOA. It’s an ideal situation for busy professionals, military families and retirees who don’t want spend their free time maintaining their home’s exterior and yard.

We also offer Epcon homes in The Cottages at Carriage Creek and Carriage Glen in Anderson Creek Club where landscaping and yard maintenance is taken care of by the neighborhood association. With all the luxury amenities of a golf club community available there, it’s a real benefit to homeowners not to have to spend their weekends maintaining their yards.

Epcon Communities Franchising Inc. (Epcon) celebrates two important milestones in 2016: 20 years of franchising anchored on a rock-solid foundation of 30 years of homebuilding experience.

“Over the past 30 years, we’ve mastered the concept of low-maintenance, lifestyle housing down to a science,” says Tim Rini, Vice President of Franchising, “Population demographics indicate that we’re just now at the tip of the iceberg in terms of demand. As we celebrate these important milestones in Epcon’s history, we’re ready to meet this underserved market with fast-to-market, winning home solutions for our Franchise Builders.”

Read more about Epcon

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Housing Outlook Very Strong For 2016

The housing outlook for 2016 looks very strong. For the first time in three years it seems even the most conservative economic experts are in agreement. This year will be the best since the housing recession of past years.

The indicators that these experts rely on are all looking better for the coming years, starting with this year. Household formations will top 1.25 million in 2016…this is a large driver of new home sales. The rental market is very tight causing rents to increase significantly. Combined with low mortgage interest rates, buying a home looks even more affordable. The “Home Purchase Sentiment Index” from Fannie Mae has two compelling improvements for December of 2015. First consumer sentiment improved with regard to income, job security, and economic outlook. Secondly, more consumers now believe that it is a good time to sell a home.

What does all this mean for McKee Homes? First time buyers are coming into the market and we are well positioned to appeal to them. Great plans at very affordable prices…and we include features that are optional elsewhere. With special financing available many buyers will not need a down payment…usually a barrier to purchasing.

Why is being confidant about selling a home good for McKee? Because most move up buyers need the equity from their current home…and do not want to sell in a “down market”. Selling their current home gives them the opportunity to purchase a new home with the features they want.

With an improving economic forecast and the government raising interest rates, most of these experts are predicting mortgage interest rates to be 4.75%-5% by the end of the year. This may not seem like much…but here is what it means.

For the average buyer of a McKee home, the principal and interest payment will be $134 higher by the end of 2016…over thirty years this amounts to $48,240!!!

Or put another way, a buyer could add $28,000 in options today for that same $134 per month additional payment.

The other compelling factor for purchasing sooner rather than waiting is the increasing price of homes. Even Robert Schiller, the foremost housing expert, is anticipating prices rising 4-5%. Based on our average sales price that means prices will go up by almost $12,000 this year.

All this bodes well for McKee homes in 2016. Let’s make it happen together!

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McKee Homes Building in Anderson Creek Crossing

McKee Homes is now building in Anderson Creek Crossing just outside the main gates of Anderson Creek Club in Harnett County, NC just north of Fort Bragg between Spring Lake and Lillington. We are building our Craftsman elevation floor plans in this new community designed for individuals and families that want beautiful new homes, luxury amenities and 24/7 security without the high cost.

Our Craftsman elevation floor plans include all the great interior features of our Classic floor plans with the addition of custom exterior details that give the homes distinctive elegance and refinement. A blend of stone, siding and specially styled roof lines and supports give our Craftsman floor plans a custom upscale look.

Anderson Creek Crossing will be an amenity-rich new home community with easy access to new schools, daycare, Fort Bragg, and the Championship Anderson Creek Golf Course.

The amenities in Anderson Creek Crossing will be developed over time as the new homes are being built. The master plan for this community includes:

  • Gated Entrance with Guard House for 24/7 Security
  • Expansive, Luxurious Lodge-style Clubhouse
  • Full Fitness Center Complete with Locker Rooms and Showers
  • Pool with Outdoor Snack Bar
  • Community Pavilion and Event Center
  • Tennis Courts
  • Basketball Court
  • Huge Playground
  • Restaurant and Bar
  • New Schools and Daycare Nearby
  • Less Than 15 Minutes to The Gates Of Ft. Bragg
  • 100Mbps High Speed Internet
  • Quick Access to 4.5-Star Championship Anderson Creek Golf Course

Anderson Creek Crossing will develop into a robust bustling community growing to a total of 1,000 homes. Anderson Creek Commons Commercial Center– the latest addition to the Anderson Creek Club Developments, is less than a mile down the road and includes convenient store, gas station, full service restaurants, bakery and church.

If you’ve been looking for an affordable new home community with country club amenities close to shopping and schools, contact McKee Homes to get more information on the community and our new Craftsman elevation floor plans.

Best Budget Hotels in Wilmington, NC

Planning a trip to the largest historic city in North Carolina but are not sure where to stay? Whether you are visiting on vacation or are in town for a business trip, you just may find yourself wanting to stay! While you begin dreaming about new homes in Wilmington, NC, here are several suggestions for your upcoming short-term stay.

Types of Lodging
In addition to the numerous hotels and motels around town, there are many different types of lodging available. There are condos for rental, quaint guest rooms available by the night, and suites with full kitchens for those who want to eat in occasionally. Some hotels are located on the beach while others are conveniently placed in the historic downtown. Here are four budget-friendly hotels worth considering:

Ramada Inn Conference Center
This hotel offers standard rooms in a convenient location, with affordable and competitive rates. The room includes free breakfast, with an on-site restaurant if you want to stay in for lunch or dinner.

TownePlace Suites by Marriott
The TownePlace Suites by Marriott prides itself on being friendly and welcoming, the perfect base for your Cape Fear getaway. It offers competitive rates, even over holiday weekends, and each suite includes a full kitchen with a stovetop and refrigerator. The hotel is close to downtown and includes a 24-hour on-site business center.

Beach House Inn and Suites
Although located about twenty minutes from the city, the Beach House Inn and Suites might be worth considering! The property includes a variety of suites and oceanfront rooms, with easy access to sites and events in the area.

Riverview Suites at Water Street Center
Depending on when you are traveling, you may be able to get a decent rate at the Riverview’s affiliate, the Hilton Riverside. However, staying at the Riverview might be worth it thanks to its all-suites design, complete with full kitchens so you can prepare some of your own meals. Guests at either hotel can enjoy the fitness center, heated outdoor pool, and more.

A Word to the Wise
If you are traveling for vacation, you may want to consider staying at a bed and breakfast or in a vacation rental. However, these may be more costly than a hotel for a short-term stay. Do you have flexible travel dates? If you are looking for a place to stay on a budget, consider traveling during off-peak times. Hotel rates tend to rise during the summer tourist season, so try coming a few weeks before or after. With some competitive shopping, you should be able to find the perfect place to stay within your budget.

If you decide that coastal living is for you, contact McKee Homes for more information on new construction in Wilmington, NC. Our energy-efficient homes are expertly crafted and built in the area’s most attractive, up-and-coming neighborhoods. Let us help you find your dream home.

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Craftsman Collection Floor Plans in Knightdale Station

McKee Homes began building our Craftsman Collection floor plans at Knightdale Station in the town of Knightdale, only 15 miles from downtown Raleigh, during the summer months of 2015. With our model home now open, and many new homes almost completed, it’s time to unveil the Craftsman elevation floor plans by McKee Homes.

If you’ve been searching for Raleigh new homes, and want a family-friendly neighborhood conveniently located to good schools, new amenities and parks, our new Craftsman elevation floor plans in Knightdale Station may be exactly what you’re looking for.

The Craftsman Collection Floor Plans

The Craftsman Collection floor plans include all the great features of our Classic floor plans with custom exterior details that give the homes distinctive elegance and refinement. A blend of stone, siding and specially styled roof lines and supports give our Craftsman floor plans a custom upscale look.

The customized version of the new Craftsman Collection floor plans at Knightdale Station are referred to as the Craftsman KS elevations and include a trellis over the garage doors.

Knightdale Station sitemap

Knightdale Station

With over 800 homes in the planning stages Knightdale Station will be the town’s largest master-planned community with homes starting from the $280’s.

At the center of Knightdale Station is Knightdale Station Park, a 76-acre park in Eastern Wake County. It includes two miles of paved trails, picnic shelters, the Ashley Wilder Dog Park, athletic fields, restrooms and a large playground.

With the addition of the new Aquatics Center, YMCA, and Thales Academy elementary school, Knightdale Station is becoming one of the most sought after neighborhoods in Eastern Wake County.

For more information about Knightdale Station and our Craftsman elevation floor plans, please contact McKee Homes or visit our Knightdale Station web page.

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5 Best Restaurants in Wilmington, NC

If you are considering contacting home builders in Wilmington, NC, then you must already know some of the benefits of living in this historic, arts-oriented city. However, did you know that the area is also known for its large number of high-quality, must-try restaurants? The best places are sprinkled throughout town, from the area around the university to practically anywhere along the waterfront. As the locals say, throw a rock and you will hit a good restaurant! Here are five of our top picks:

  1. Genki Sushi
    Genki Sushi is the place to go for fresh, authentic sushi. Everything on the menu is hand-prepared or homemade, including the sauces. The restaurant offers a true Japanese taste experience, with dishes like shrimp tempura and udon noodles. Plus, the owners are candid about the menu, using pi-water for drinking and cooking, with no chemicals or MSG in sight.
  2. Nikki’s Fresh Gourmet and Sushi
    Are you looking for a top-quality menu that includes sushi as well as vegetarian and organic dishes? Nikki’s Fresh Gourmet is highly rated by locals and tourists alike. You can visit its original location on Front Street as well as its locations in the mall and near the university. Another option is Nikki’s Hibachi Steak House, featuring hibachi dining along with the restaurant’s famous sushi.
  3. Cape Fear Seafood Company
    If you prefer your fish pan-seared, grilled, or otherwise prepared, stop by the Cape Fear Seafood Company. This locally owned restaurant prides itself on offering dishes with fresh ingredients in a relaxing atmosphere. Enjoy the extensive wine list, local art on the walls, and not-to-be-missed menu.
  4. Caprice Bistro
    For a taste of Europe with French and Belgian cuisine, plan a visit to the Caprice Bistro. Stop by the upstairs lounge for drinks and hors d’oeuvres, or enjoy a meal of fresh mussels, trout, or lamb downstairs. More favorites include the French onion soup, bistro steak, and fresh pasta.
  5. Paddy’s Hollow
    If you want comfort food in a great environment, look no further than Paddy’s Hollow, a pub located in a restored cotton warehouse. The restaurant has numerous beers on tap to complement entrees including grilled salmon, shrimp po boy, and shepherd’s pie. Locals cite it as a great place to stop for dinner before going out for the night, or anytime you want a meal in a great atmosphere.

Bonus: The Peppered Cupcake
No list of great restaurants would be complete without an option for dessert! This little shop offers gourmet cupcakes crafted with unique flavor combinations. Flavors include apple crisp, bourbon black cherry and vanilla cobbler, German chocolate, maple and bacon, and crème brûlée. Their everyday menu includes seven flavors, with other varieties depending on the day.

You may not be able to try dining at all of these restaurants unless you move to the area! Contact McKee Homes, expert home builders in Wilmington, NC, for more information on finding your perfect home.

Top 5 Budget Hotels in Raleigh, NC

Are you looking at new homes in Raleigh, NC and need a place to stay for a few days? Or maybe you’ve moved out of your home while home builders in Raleigh, NC are renovating your living space. The Raleigh area has some great budget-friendly hotels for a comfortable stay. Some are even pet-friendly. Here are the Top 5 Budget Hotels in Raleigh, NC.

  1. Econo Lodge Inn and Suites
    Just a few minutes from the downtown area, off the I-440 and U.S. Highway 1, you will find the Econo Lodge. Convenient to the Convention and Conference Center, Alltel Pavilion and the North Carolina State Capitol Building, guests can enjoy free Internet access, coffee, deluxe continental breakfast and free local calls – perfect when you need to talk to your home builders in Raleigh, NC.
  2. Days Inn
    Great location, good value and free Wi-Fi are all on offer at Days Inn. Comfort and cost-savings are the key criteria here and the hotel boasts 135 pet-friendly rooms complete with all the usual amenities to make your stay feel like home-away-from-home. There are two restaurants adjacent to the property and a selection of museums nearby.
  3. America’s Best Value Inn-Crabtree/Raleigh
    Convenient location, attractive rooms and wallet-friendly prices attract guests to the three story hotel. There’s also a free deluxe continental breakfast, guest laundry and on-site fitness facilities. The hotel is situated close to the North Hills Mall and is the perfect base from which to explore Raleigh homes for sale.
  4. Super 8, Raleigh
    Free local calls, parking and free breakfast as well as pet-friendly rooms can be found at Super 8. All rooms have cable TVs, refrigerators, internet access, microwaves and work desks. Just 1 mile from the Crabtree Valley Mall, Super 8 is also close to the Exploris Museum, Convention Center and only 14 miles from Raleigh-Durham International Airport.
  5. Best Western
    If you want to stay somewhere a little more upscale without breaking the budget, try the Best Western. The hotel in North-Downtown sits in a prime location and offers guests free parking, breakfast and Wi-Fi. The three story hotel is pet-friendly and boasts premium cable, coin laundry and an outdoor pool to cool off in after a long day of looking for Raleigh homes for sale. The hotel is a quick 3 miles from many of the downtown attractions, including the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences and the North Carolina Museum of Art. It also sits a mere five miles away from the Time Warner Pavilion at Walnut Creek as well as Crabtree Valley Mall. It is 15 miles from the Raleigh-Durham International Airport.

Being close to the best Raleigh has to offer doesn’t have to cost a fortune.

Staying in a budget-friendly hotel is one of the best ways to spend more time discovering the Raleigh, NC area while looking for new construction in Raleigh, NC.

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USDA Loan Fee Increase Scheduled for October 1

By John Rives

How much is the cost of a USDA loan going up? If you are shopping for a new home and are considering getting a USDA loan, you should hurry, as there is a USDA loan fee increase scheduled for October 1. USDA loans are one of the few loans that offer home buyers in rural areas a no-money-down option for their mortgage. The current loan guarantee fee for USDA loans of 2% is going up to 2.75% on October 1, 2015.

According to Bloomberg, an e-mail from USDA spokesman David Sandretti, states the move will enable the $24 billion program “to continue to sustain itself without a congressional appropriation to offset credit-related costs.”

The current guarantee fee of 2% for an $180,000 USDA loan is $3,600. This cost is usually included in the loan increasing the total loan amount to $183,600. When the guarantee fee goes up to 2.75% in October, the new fee for an $180,000 loan will be $4,950. That’s an increase of $1,350, increasing the total loan amount to $184,950.

While the guarantee fee which is a one-time fee charged by all government mortgage programs including USDA, FHA, and VA is increasing, the annual fee (monthly PMI) for USDA loans will remain the same at 0.50 percent.

The USDA has invested more than $117 billion to support rural home ownership but the home loan program was temporarily halted in 2010 when the USDA ran out of money. Last year, over $19.9 billion was invested by USDA which helped approximately 140,000 families purchase homes in rural areas.

If you are considering buying a home with a USDA loan, you can save money by purchasing the home before October 1 of this year. For more information on which McKee Homes neighborhoods qualify for USDA loans and details about the loans, contact us at 910-672-7296.