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Mike Horton - Real Estate and Interests

In my blog, you will see information on real estate in Surprise Az and Phoenix west valley. Buying selling homes, mortgages, short sales and foreclosures. I will have opnions on topics of interest about the city and area. I welcome your comments. Welcome to my blog.
2 Story For Sale in Roseview

• 2,231 sq. ft., 3 bath, 3 bdrm 2 story - MLS $197,000 - Distressed Pricing

 -  Fixer upper. Distressed sell, Short Sale property. Needs interior and exterior paint and flooring. Large pool in back. Home has a great layout with 3 bedrooms up and 2 full baths. Down stairs den can be easily converted to 4th bedroom and there is a full size bath downstairs. Master bedroom with double sinks and walk-in closet. Wall Fan controls throughout living areas. Inside laundry and covered back porch. Nice size yard. Close to Surprise shopping centers and HWY. Short Sale sold as-is. Investor monetary analysis available.

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Golf Course Home on 14280 W KIOWA TRL in Sun Village

Sun Village, Surprise  -  Announcing the beautiful home  on 14280 W KIOWA TRL, a 2,505 sq. ft., 3 bath, 3 bdrm single story. Now MLS $319,500 - Move-In Ready.

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Single Story For Sale in Mountain Vista Ranch

• 2,166 sq. ft., 3 bath, 3 bdrm single story - MLS $215,000 - Positive Cash Flow

 -  Investor alert. Great 3 bedroom home with an loft area that could easily make a 4th bedroom. It has a jack and jill bathroom connecting the loft to the 3rd bedroom. There is a pool with spa for summer fun. There is a great room for easy family living and kitchen with great cabinet space. This home will be easy to rent located just south of Bell Rd in Surprise. There is a current tenant with a 1 year contract in place. Mountain Vista Ranch subdivision is located in the Dysart School district which has an A performance rating. The home is close to HWY 303 for easy north south access and shopping centers. Plus its located just minutes from pro-baseball park and the Surprise City Center, a great draw for families. This home can generate positive cash flow and a positive ROI.

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14112 N 158TH LN in Tash is Sold!


Tash, Surprise  -  The single story at 14112 N 158TH LN has been sold.

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160 S 197th Ave in Blue Horizons is Sold!


Blue Horizons, Buckeye  -  The single story at 160 S 197th Ave has been sold.

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24050 N 164th AVE in Asante is Sold!


Asante, Surprise  -  The single story at 24050 N 164th AVE has been sold. This home sold in under 75 days. Home owner was very happy with end result and purchased a new home with my help.

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What! No keys After Closing?

Sometimes it just seems that the closing on a new home is hard. It can be some unrelated problem for the seller (a car accident the week before closing happened to one of my clients) that keeps them in the house beyond the close of escrow. I have also had buyers who could not get their lender satisfied in time for the closing and the seller could not move until they were sure the loan would go through (loan documents at escrow). In any case, there is still a potential breach of contract if the closing is completed and the seller has not delivered the keys to the buyer. The following was taken from the Arizona Association Realtors contract information to help explain how the purchase contract covers this issue between buyers and sellers


The transaction closed and recorded on Friday. The buyer intended to move over the weekend but the seller did not release the keys to the buyer until Monday. Now, the buyer has to wait until the following weekend to move and will incur additional expenses as a result.


Does the buyer have any recourse against the seller?


Under the purchase contract, the buyer is entitled to possession of the home at the time of closing, which is defined in the contract as the recording of the deed. Therefore, if the transaction closed and recorded on Friday, the buyer technically was entitled to possession of the property when the deed recorded. If the buyer sustained damages as a result of the seller’s failure to release the keys to the buyer on Friday, then the seller could be liable for those damages.

You as the buyer and your real estate agent will want to look for the keys at your final walk through and make sure you know where the mail box is located. Some sellers want to keep the mail box key until the last minute. Sellers often leave keys (house, mail box, gate) and garage door openers in a kitchen drawer, so look for them during your final walk through. You would want to contact legal counsel to determine if you could receive damages when the keys are not available. Often the best course of action to work out an amiable solution between both parties. 

The Previous Owner’s Furniture Is Still on the Property!

You just closed on your new home and there is still furniture and personal stuff everywhere!  This scenario has happened to many new buyers, especially when purchasing a home that was a short sale or with an out-of-state seller who was using the property as a rental. While it is really frustrating and your first thought might be to just throw all the stuff in the street, Don’t Do It.

If you purchased your new home using a standard AAR purchase contract, it provides you rights to the property at closing and full use of your new property on that day. When the unexpected happens, this is what the Arizona Association of Realtors says about the situation.


The buyer moves into the home after close of escrow. The buyer discovers that the seller has left in the home a significant amount of personal property, including valuable furniture. Is the buyer entitled to ownership of the personal property?


Probably not. Unless the contract provides that the personal property was transferred to the buyer after close of escrow, the seller was still the owner of the personal property after close of escrow. However, under the contract, line 168, the seller was required to remove “all personal property not included in the sale….” The buyer should deliver a three-day cure period notice to the seller requiring the removal of the personal property. If the seller does not remove the personal property within three days, the buyer should be entitled to damages from the seller for the cost of removal and storage of the personal property. At the time of the removal of the personal property, the buyer should take photographs of the personal property and should take an inventory of the personal property approved by two disinterested witnesses.


Remember, one way to anticipate this problem is to do a final walk-through before closing. Your agent can help by working with the seller’s agent or the seller (for sale by owner) to reduce the element of surprise at closing. When the unexpected happens on closing day, your agent can provide you with the cure notice to give to the seller the next day. 

Sellers Fix It Now or Pay More Later

You have put your home for sale and its in pretty good condition, but you have a couple of sinks that leak, the air conditioning filter is dirty and your dog dug out a whole next to the foundation to keep cool during those hot summer days. So whats the big deal, its Real Estate and the buyer can fix those things when they buy it, right? Reality Check. They might but don't count on it. When selling your home there are very few times the buyer won't ask for the repairs after inspections and it's going to cost you money, and usually more money then if you had just fixed them when you put it on the market.

Lets take 1 example, the dirty air filter for the AC unit. Dirty filters can bring the performance of your AC unit down so it appears out of specification when measurements are made by inspectors. They write it up as a possible problem with the AC unit and the buyer puts it on their request for repairs. Now you call an AC repair company, they come out and test your system, change out the filter, test it and find its in spec. Then they hand you a bill for a whole lot more than if you had changed a $5 filter.

But that's not all, having warranted systems in your home working is part of your contract with the buyer. The standard AAR purchase contract calls for all warranted systems in be working even if the buyer does not put it on the inspection report. Why risk having the buyer use that as a negotiating lever to reduce the price or have you make more expensive repairs or replacement. It gives the buyer a great deal of negotiating power and that usually means you as the seller suffers financially.

If your preparing your home for sell, there is a saying that has been around a long time and it goes like this:

"If it Flushes or Flows, Switches or Glows, has moving parts or should open or close, it has to be working and make sure everyone knows."

Prepare your home for sale by fixing warranted items before you list it and save yourself some money.

17557 W Calavar Rd in Sierra Montana is Sold!


Sierra Montana, Surprise  -  The single story at 17557 W Calavar Rd has been sold.

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So You Want To Buy A House With A Septic System

On-Site Waster Water Systems, which are often Septic Systems, are pretty common in Arizona. There are a lot of different types of On-Site systems for treating waste and you as a buyer do not have to be afraid of buying a new home with one.  Arizona Realtors® have a form that forms and addendum to the purchase contract that helps you to find out the condition of the system and provides you with alternatives should the system have problems. The addendum specifies activities for both the buyer and seller and a time line to accomplish them. The state of Arizona has also published a great pamphlet called Septic 101 to help you understand and maintain your waste water system.

A typical purchase transaction would have the following activities:

1.       Within 5 days after contract acceptance, the seller needs to deliver to the buyer the documentation on the system.

2.       The buyer then has 5 days to review the information and decide if they want to continue the purchase based on the documentation or they can reject the home and cancel the epticcontract.

3.       The Seller must then provide a facility inspection report from a licensed company on the condition of the system. It cannot be more than 6 months old from the Close of escrow.

4.       If the inspection discovers problems that need repair, the Seller could pay up to 1% of the purchase price for the repairs as stated in the addendum. If the repairs exceed the 1% and if the seller is unwilling to pay for them, the buyer has options. First, the buyer may cancel the contract or they could pay for the excess over the 1%. Keep in mind your agent will help you work through all the possibilities and negotiate the best deal for you.

5.       The last activity is for the buyer to deliver a “notice of transfer” to the county. This is often done by the escrow company at closing.

As a buyer or seller, there a few steps to take to make sure when subject house is sold it has a smooth transfer from the buyer to the seller. If you would like to have brochure on septic’s, just down load the pdf file at my website www.surprisehomesales.com and navigate to Buyers Information and then On-line reports or type in this URL  http://www.surprisehomesales.com/Util/GetDocument.ashx?docId=1321592

You can also call or text to mobile 623-606-8861 with your email address and I will send you a copy. If you have any questions let me know at  info@mikehortonrealty.com.

Single Story For Sale in Asante

Front Elevation
Lots Of Upgrades

• 2,024 sq. ft., 2 bath, 3 bdrm single story - $215,000 - Priced Right!

 -  Be ready to purchase this new like home with many extras including a unique screened in porch in Asante, a north Surprise subdivision of Lennar homes. This home features 18in tile floors, 42in maple cabinets in the kitchen and plenty of storage space. You'll love all the Granite counter tops, kitchen desk and combination island and breakfast bar. From the entry you can view the openness of the great room, spacious den and array of windows providing plenty of light. The Large Master Bedroom is perfect for your king sized bedroom furniture. The Master Bath has a deep tub, large shower and double sinks. The den, 2 other bedrooms and 2nd bath are on the other side of the home providing you and your family/guests privacy. All bedrooms have walk-in closets so plenty of space.

The outside of home is as perfect as the interior with completely landscaped front and backyard using natural plants and rock for low maintenance. Those that want more color or even room for a garden, there are 4 raised plant beds along the block wall with a drip irrigation system. You'll find the fall to spring winter evenings just perfect for the screened in back porch. The screens are all sun filter screens and the end screen is on a roller system to take more advantage of cooler north breezes. This home is also equipped with a whole house water filtration system, gas water heater and gas central heat. This home is move-in ready, beautiful and waiting for your offer.

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14224 N 158TH LN in Greenway Parc is Sold!


Greenway Parc, Surprise  -  The single story at 14224 N 158TH LN has been sold.

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19813 N 47TH DR in Overland Hills is Sold!


Overland Hills, Glendale  -  The single story at 19813 N 47TH DR has been sold.

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Open House in Ashton Ranch on Saturday

July 2014

Ashton Ranch, Surprise  -  We invite everyone to visit our open house at 14935 W ACAPULCO LN on July 12 from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM.

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