Real Estate & Finance News http://rismedia.com/?p=138809 http://rismedia.com/2018/01/18/ask-expert-what-can-sellers-do-prepare-home-inspection/ Advice Buying/Selling For Your Clients House Canary Latest News Home Inspection Home Maintenance Home Repair Home Sellers Home-Selling HomeTeam Inspection Pre-Listing Inspection real estate news Ask the Expert: What Can Sellers Do to Prepare for a Home Inspection? <p>Today&#8217;s Ask the Expert column features Buddy Stark, director of Operations for HomeTeam Inspection Service. Q: What can sellers do to prepare for a home inspection? A: Completing these quick and easy tasks before beginning the selling process will help reduce stress and save your clients valuable time during the home-selling process. Clean the House [&#8230;]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com/2018/01/18/ask-expert-what-can-sellers-do-prepare-home-inspection/">Ask the Expert: What Can Sellers Do to Prepare for a Home Inspection?</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com">RISMedia</a>.</p> Thu, 18 Jan 2018 21:28:35 Z http://rismedia.com/2018/01/18/ask-expert-what-can-sellers-do-prepare-home-inspection/#respond Susanne Dwyer <p><em><a href="http://rismedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/Stark_Buddy.jpg" rel="attachment wp-att-138811"><img class="alignright size-full wp-image-138811" src="http://rismedia.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/Stark_Buddy.jpg" alt="Stark_Buddy" width="132" height="198" /></a>Today&#8217;s Ask the Expert column features Buddy Stark, director of Operations for </em><a href="http://www.hometeam.com" target="_blank"><em>HomeTeam Inspection Service</em></a><em>.</em></p> <p><strong>Q: What can sellers do to prepare for a home inspection?<br /> </strong></p> <p><strong>A:</strong> Completing these quick and easy tasks before beginning the selling process will help reduce stress and save your clients valuable time during the home-selling process.</p> <p><strong>Clean the House</strong><br /> An important part of selling a home is keeping it clean in anticipation of a showing. Cleaning the home will convey that it&#8217;s been well cared for and that the house is less susceptible to any issues caused by neglect.</p> <p><strong>Check All Windows</strong><br /> Have your client take a quick inventory of the windows to make sure they&#8217;re in good working order. Replace windows that are cracked or broken before the inspection to save time during the selling process.</p> <p><strong>Finish the Honey-Do List</strong><br /> Some areas of the home, although not typically thought of as areas that would affect a home&#8217;s appeal, may be displayed as safety concerns on a home inspection report. Your client can help themselves by replacing burnt-out lightbulbs, testing smoke detectors, replacing air filters and unclogging drains. These little things are easy to forget in day-to-day life, but taking care of them is a relatively easy task that will help potential buyers focus on the important systems of the home.</p> <p><strong>Check All Outlets</strong><br /> A sampling of electrical outlets will be tested as part of the home inspection to make sure they&#8217;re in good working order. Encourage your clients to take note of which outlets are not functioning in the home and replace them. Or, they may want to consider hiring an electrician to make sure both outlets and the electrical box are updated and in proper working condition.</p> <p><strong>Clear Areas for Easy Access</strong><br /> Home inspectors will be looking at the major parts of the home, including the foundation, HVAC systems, electrical systems, plumbing and even the water heater. Making sure home inspectors can easily access these areas, including the basement and attic, will save time during the inspection process.</p> <p><strong>Consider a Pre-Listing Inspection</strong><br /> Hiring experienced and professional home inspectors can save a lot of headaches during the selling process. They will thoroughly go through the home and notify clients of any potential issues ahead of listing the property.<em><br /> </em></p> <p><em>For more information, please visit </em><a href="http://www.hometeam.com" target="_blank"><em>www.hometeam.com</em></a><em>.<br /> </em></p> <p><em>For the latest </em><a href="http://www.rismedia.com"><em>real estate news and trends</em></a><em>, bookmark RISMedia.com.</em></p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com/2018/01/18/ask-expert-what-can-sellers-do-prepare-home-inspection/">Ask the Expert: What Can Sellers Do to Prepare for a Home Inspection?</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com">RISMedia</a>.</p> http://rismedia.com/2018/01/18/ask-expert-what-can-sellers-do-prepare-home-inspection/feed/ 0 2018-01-18 21:28 +00:00 2018-01-18 14:28 -07:00 http://money.cnn.com/2018/01/10/real_estate/tax-reform-home-prices/index.html?section=money_realestate http://rss.cnn.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~3/PhPvJHWgr78/index.html 3 ways tax reform will hit home values The freshly-passed tax code could be a drag on home values.<img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~4/PhPvJHWgr78" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Wed, 10 Jan 2018 12:49:28 -0500 http://money.cnn.com/2018/01/10/real_estate/tax-reform-home-prices/index.html?section=money_realestate 2018-01-10 12:49 -05:00 2018-01-10 10:49 -07:00 http://rismedia.com/?p=124650 http://rismedia.com/2018/01/03/making-sense-valuation-alphabet-soup-cma-bpo-avm-appraisal/ Advice Agent Best Practices Broker Buying/Selling For Your Clients Latest News Teams AVM BPO Center for REALTOR® Development CMA Home Appraisal PSA Certification Making Sense of Valuation’s Alphabet Soup: CMAs, BPOs, AVMs and Appraisals <p>The following information is provided by the Center for REALTOR® Development (CRD). This article explains the four most common valuation methods used for real property transactions and how and when they are used. It&#8217;s important to note that the methods below are not necessarily mutually exclusive. Lenders, servicers, investors, and other professionals use one or [&#8230;]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com/2018/01/03/making-sense-valuation-alphabet-soup-cma-bpo-avm-appraisal/">Making Sense of Valuation&#8217;s Alphabet Soup: CMAs, BPOs, AVMs and Appraisals</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com">RISMedia</a>.</p> Wed, 03 Jan 2018 21:46:57 Z http://rismedia.com/2018/01/03/making-sense-valuation-alphabet-soup-cma-bpo-avm-appraisal/#respond Susanne Dwyer <p><em>The following information is provided by the <a href="http://learninglibrary.com/RIS/A/HOME" target="_blank">Center for REALTOR® Development (CRD)</a>.</em></p> <p>This article explains the four most common valuation methods used for real property transactions and how and when they are used. It&#8217;s important to note that the methods below are not necessarily mutually exclusive. Lenders, servicers, investors, and other professionals use one or more of these valuation methods, depending on circumstances and the type of transaction. Often, one valuation method is used to confirm or quality-check the results of another.</p> <p><strong>Comparative Market Analysis (CMA)</strong>: A CMA is prepared by a licensed real estate professional and is most commonly used to help determine a home&#8217;s listing price. The CMA should not be the only factor in determining listing price; rather, it is a guide for the agent and owner to evaluate the active and sold competition, and to serve as a tool in the price-setting process. A CMA can also be used—depending on variations in state laws—for a variety of other purposes, including loan modifications, short sales and foreclosure/REO purchases, value trend analysis, mediation and negotiation. It should <em>not</em> serve as the sole method of valuing collateral in a real estate transaction where a mortgage is being originated.</p> <p><strong>Broker Price Opinion (BPO)</strong>: A BPO is prepared by a licensed real estate professional and is an estimate of the probable <em>future</em> selling price of a property. Like CMAs, BPOs may be used—depending on variations in state laws—for a variety of purposes, including loan modifications, short sales and foreclosure/REO purchases, value trend analysis, mediation and negotiation. They normally should not be used as the sole way to value collateral in a real estate transaction where a mortgage is being originated, even though in some states both BPOs and CMAs are technically permitted for purchase money transactions when the transaction is less than $250,000 (though allowed, CMAs are rarely used for this purpose).</p> <p><strong>Automated Valuation Model (AVM)</strong>: An AVM is a service or software that provides property valuations, often based on mathematical modeling. AVMs are most commonly developed or used by lenders, servicer appraisal staff, and investors. While AVMs are most often used by lenders or secondary markets to confirm valuations provided in appraisal reports, they should not be used as the sole method to value collateral in a real estate transaction where a mortgage is being originated. They may, however, be used as the sole valuation option for other types of transactions, such as refinances.</p> <p><strong>Appraisal</strong>: An appraisal is prepared by a licensed or certified appraiser and is an opinion of a property’s value. Appraisals are most often used to value collateral in a real estate transaction and are required for most federally-regulated transactions above $250,000. Exceptions include transactions where no new money is involved. In practice, appraisals are used for the vast majority of purchase money transactions involving a loan. For the most part, lenders or servicers determine the use of appraisal or another acceptable methodology for transactions that are not purchase money.</p> <p><em>Source: <a href="http://www.nar.realtor/appraisal/valuation-services-matrix" target="_blank">www.nar.realtor/appraisal/valuation-services-matrix</a></em></p> <p><em>For more education about valuation and pricing, check out this month&#8217;s featured online certification course at the Center for REALTOR® Development, <a href="https://www.onlinelearning.realtor/A/Product/Details/3263/?affiliateId=10781" target="_blank">Pricing Strategies: Mastering the CMA</a>, which is the educational requirement for <a href="https://www.onlinelearning.realtor/A/Category/Index/1012/?affiliateId=10781" target="_blank">NAR&#8217;s Pricing Strategy Advisor (PSA) certification</a>, and is on sale this entire month of January at 25% off its regular price. This certification aims to help real estate professionals enhance skills in pricing properties, creating CMAs, working with appraisers, and guiding their clients through the anxieties and misperceptions related to real estate valuation.</em></p> <p><em>For more information, please visit RISMedia&#8217;s <a href="http://learninglibrary.com/ris/a/" target="_blank">online learning portal</a> from NAR&#8217;s Center for REALTOR® Development (CRD) and the Learning Library. Here, real estate professionals can sign up for online professional development courses, industry designations, certifications, CE credits, Code of Ethics programs and more. NAR&#8217;s CRD also offers monthly specials and important education updates. New users will need to register for an account.</em></p> <p><em>For the latest <a href="http://www.rismedia.com/" target="_blank">real estate news and trends</a>, bookmark RISMedia.com.</em></p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com/2018/01/03/making-sense-valuation-alphabet-soup-cma-bpo-avm-appraisal/">Making Sense of Valuation&#8217;s Alphabet Soup: CMAs, BPOs, AVMs and Appraisals</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com">RISMedia</a>.</p> http://rismedia.com/2018/01/03/making-sense-valuation-alphabet-soup-cma-bpo-avm-appraisal/feed/ 0 2018-01-03 21:46 +00:00 2018-01-03 14:46 -07:00 http://rismedia.com/?p=138094 http://rismedia.com/2017/12/25/ask-expert-how-can-i-guide-clients-home-inspection-process/ Advice Agent Best Practices Buying/Selling House Canary How-To Latest News Home Inspection Home-Buying HomeTeam Inspection Real Estate Agent Best Practices real estate news Ask the Expert: How Can I Guide Clients Through the Home Inspection Process? <p>Today&#8217;s Ask the Expert column features Adam Long, president of HomeTeam Inspection Service. Q: What can be done to guide clients through the home inspection process? A: After being in business for 25 years and performing over a million inspections, HomeTeam Inspection Service has identified the top ways to ensure a smoother home inspection, contributing [&#8230;]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com/2017/12/25/ask-expert-how-can-i-guide-clients-home-inspection-process/">Ask the Expert: How Can I Guide Clients Through the Home Inspection Process?</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com">RISMedia</a>.</p> Mon, 25 Dec 2017 21:01:40 Z http://rismedia.com/2017/12/25/ask-expert-how-can-i-guide-clients-home-inspection-process/#respond Susanne Dwyer <p><em>Today&#8217;s Ask the Expert column features Adam Long, president of </em><a href="http://www.hometeam.com" target="_blank"><em>HomeTeam Inspection Service.</em></a></p> <p><strong>Q: What can be done to guide clients through the home inspection process?<br /> </strong></p> <p><strong>A:</strong> After being in business for 25 years and performing over a million inspections, HomeTeam Inspection Service has identified the top ways to ensure a smoother home inspection, contributing to happier clients and a better outcome.</p> <p><strong>Make It Convenient</strong><br /> The home inspection process—from scheduling to report delivery—should be convenient for everyone involved. Online scheduling, text messaging and electronic delivery of reports make convenience possible when it comes to the home inspection. If a home inspection company isn&#8217;t providing this, clients are missing out on the best possible experience.</p> <p><strong>Don&#8217;t Keep Them Waiting</strong><br /> Ten years ago, it was commonplace to wait five days or more for a home inspection, but today, consumers want it now. Plus, consumers are busier than ever today. They not only want a home inspection that can be performed soon, but also one that can be performed in half the time of the traditional three- to -four-hour inspection. That&#8217;s a large part of what makes HomeTeam successful. Our team approach allows for a faster inspection and more appointment slots each day.</p> <p><strong>Give Them Options</strong><br /> Clients only want to pay for services they need. While most home inspection companies offer a wide range of services, client needs vary, and the leading home inspection companies allow clients to schedule individual services like pest, mold and radon.</p> <p><strong>Ensure It&#8217;s Educational</strong><br /> A home inspector will not give a pass/fail grade on a home, but will give an objective assessment on the condition of the home during the inspection. Educating the client on their new home and how to maintain it is a sign of a professional inspector. Communicating information in a non-alarming manner is critical to helping clients absorb information and make prudent decisions. An inspector that&#8217;s accessible to answer questions onsite and after the inspection instills peace of mind in clients and makes them more confident in their purchase decision.</p> <p><strong>Deliver Accurate Reporting</strong><br /> In addition to a verbal report that the client receives onsite, the most professional inspection companies will furnish a narrative, electronic report that&#8217;s emailed to the client and agent. A narrative-style report is more detailed than a checklist-style report, putting forth a clearer picture of the home with less room for interpretation. Including photos and a summary helps the client easily identify any safety concerns or areas that warrant attention.<em><br /> </em></p> <p><em>For more information, please visit </em><a href="http://www.hometeam.com" target="_blank"><em>www.hometeam.com</em></a><em>.<br /> </em></p> <p><em>For the latest </em><a href="http://www.rismedia.com"><em>real estate news and trends</em></a><em>, bookmark RISMedia.com.</em></p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com/2017/12/25/ask-expert-how-can-i-guide-clients-home-inspection-process/">Ask the Expert: How Can I Guide Clients Through the Home Inspection Process?</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com">RISMedia</a>.</p> http://rismedia.com/2017/12/25/ask-expert-how-can-i-guide-clients-home-inspection-process/feed/ 0 2017-12-25 21:01 +00:00 2017-12-25 14:01 -07:00 http://money.cnn.com/2017/12/17/real_estate/tax-bill-mortgage-property-tax-deductions/index.html?section=money_realestate http://rss.cnn.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~3/PmBrXAhvZ_Q/index.html Homeowners: Here's what's in the tax bill for you Homeowners would be able to deduct interest on the first $750,000 of a new mortgage under the final tax bill -- down from the current $1 million threshold.<img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~4/PmBrXAhvZ_Q" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Sun, 17 Dec 2017 12:17:23 -0500 http://money.cnn.com/2017/12/17/real_estate/tax-bill-mortgage-property-tax-deductions/index.html?section=money_realestate 2017-12-17 12:17 -05:00 2017-12-17 10:17 -07:00 http://money.cnn.com/2017/12/14/real_estate/rent-costs-too-high-cost-burdened/index.html?section=money_realestate http://rss.cnn.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~3/omkMd8gwgmQ/index.html For many, the rent is still too damn high Rental affordability has improved, but for many renters it's still a struggle to make ends meet.<img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~4/omkMd8gwgmQ" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Thu, 14 Dec 2017 12:05:04 -0500 http://money.cnn.com/2017/12/14/real_estate/rent-costs-too-high-cost-burdened/index.html?section=money_realestate 2017-12-14 12:05 -05:00 2017-12-14 10:05 -07:00 http://rismedia.com/?p=137454 http://rismedia.com/2017/12/04/ask-expert-how-can-staging-pave-way-better-sell/ Advice Agent Best Practices Buying/Selling For Your Clients House Canary Latest News Marketing Holiday Home Staging Home Staging Homes.com NAR Real Estate Agent Best Practices real estate news Seasonal Home Staging Ask the Expert: How Can Staging Pave the Way for a Better Sell? <p>Today&#8217;s Ask the Expert column features Patty McNease, director of Marketing for Homes.com. Q: How can staging pave the way for a better sell? A: Staging allows your clients to show off the unique features of their home that buyers can come to love. During the holiday season, staging can make a home stand out [&#8230;]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com/2017/12/04/ask-expert-how-can-staging-pave-way-better-sell/">Ask the Expert: How Can Staging Pave the Way for a Better Sell?</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com">RISMedia</a>.</p> Mon, 04 Dec 2017 21:19:02 Z http://rismedia.com/2017/12/04/ask-expert-how-can-staging-pave-way-better-sell/#respond Susanne Dwyer <p><em>Today&#8217;s Ask the Expert column features Patty McNease, director of Marketing for </em><a href="http://www.homes.com" target="_blank"><em>Homes.com</em></a><em>.</em></p> <p><strong>Q: How can staging pave the way for a better sell?<br /> </strong></p> <p><strong>A:</strong> Staging allows your clients to show off the unique features of their home that buyers can come to love. During the holiday season, staging can make a home stand out even more. The following staging tips will help buyers fall in love with their future home just in time for the holidays.<strong><br /> </strong></p> <p><strong>Is staging really necessary?</strong><br /> Many homeowners are concerned about the overall cost to sell their homes. One place they may look to cut expenses is staging. While some think it&#8217;s unnecessary, proper staging is crucial to selling a home since it allows buyers to imagine what living there could look like. In fact, according to a recent National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) <a href="http://rismedia.com/2017/07/09/realtors-home-staging-cuts-time-market/">survey</a>, 77 percent of buyers&#8217; agents said staging a home made it easier for a buyer to visualize the property as their future home, which decreased the amount of time it was on the market.</p> <p><strong>Which rooms are the most important to stage?</strong><br /> According to the same NAR survey, the living room, master bedroom and kitchen are most critical. This is likely because these are the spaces where future owners will be spending most of their time. When planning these rooms, space and functionality are important. Rooms that are cluttered or difficult to navigate will not appeal to potential buyers.</p> <p><strong>How should I stage a home around the holidays?</strong><br /> Keep in mind that buying a home is an emotional experience for both the buyer and the seller. Often, the buyer&#8217;s emotional connection to the home is what really solidifies the sale. The holidays are a sentimental time for many, as they bring back warm memories and allow younger buyers to imagine future celebrations. Enhance these emotional connections to draw buyers to make an emotional investment in the home.</p> <p>That being said, it&#8217;s important not to go overboard. Since different types of potential buyers will be coming to visit, avoid including overly religious décor. Instead, opt for simple and classic. Also, consider burning a pine- or cranberry-scented candle for those buyers who come over for a tour.</p> <p><strong>My client is hesitant. How can I convince them to stage their home?</strong><br /> If your client is against staging, remind them that 86 percent of buyers believe viewing a property online is the most useful part of their home search. With so many different options, it&#8217;s important to capture their attention in this initial stage of viewing so that they want to see the home in person. If you&#8217;re still struggling, show your client a before and after photo from another property you&#8217;ve staged, and ask them which home they would rather see.<em><br /> </em></p> <p><em>For more information, please visit </em><a href="http://www.homes.com" target="_blank"><em>www.homes.com</em></a><em>.</em></p> <p><em>For the latest </em><a href="http://www.rismedia.com"><em>real estate news and trends</em></a><em>, bookmark RISMedia.com.</em></p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com/2017/12/04/ask-expert-how-can-staging-pave-way-better-sell/">Ask the Expert: How Can Staging Pave the Way for a Better Sell?</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com">RISMedia</a>.</p> http://rismedia.com/2017/12/04/ask-expert-how-can-staging-pave-way-better-sell/feed/ 0 2017-12-04 21:19 +00:00 2017-12-04 14:19 -07:00 http://rismedia.com/?p=137256 http://rismedia.com/2017/11/27/how-much-do-you-know-your-credit-score/ Advice Buying/Selling Home Spun Wisdom Latest News Credit Federation of America Credit History Credit Report Credit Score Home Loan Mortgage real estate news How Much Do You Know About Your Credit Score? <p>While your credit score affects everything from your ability to buy a car or a home to how much interest you will pay on the loan, many people don&#8217;t know how these scores are calculated or what impacts them positively or negatively. Moreover, says the Credit Federation of America (CFA), more than 25 percent of [&#8230;]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com/2017/11/27/how-much-do-you-know-your-credit-score/">How Much Do You Know About Your Credit Score?</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com">RISMedia</a>.</p> Mon, 27 Nov 2017 21:00:31 Z http://rismedia.com/2017/11/27/how-much-do-you-know-your-credit-score/#respond Susanne Dwyer <p>While your credit score affects everything from your ability to buy a car or a home to how much interest you will pay on the loan, many people don&#8217;t know how these scores are calculated or what impacts them positively or negatively.</p> <p>Moreover, says the Credit Federation of America (CFA), more than 25 percent of respondents in a recent survey did not know that a low credit score could increase the cost of a car loan by $5,000. More than half didn&#8217;t realize that utility companies, cellphone companies, and even insurers sometimes check credit scores before issuing services—or that multiple inquiries in a short time, as when you are shopping for a loan, are treated as one inquiry in order to minimize the impact on your score.</p> <p>The CFA provides more about credit scores that every consumer should know:</p> <p><strong>All your credit scores are not the same. </strong>Most people assume their credit score is a single three-digit number, but each of the three major credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion) scores you differently, since they don&#8217;t necessarily have the exact same data in their files.</p> <p><strong>Closing old accounts will not necessarily boost your scores. </strong>Closing old or inactive accounts may inadvertently lower your credit score because now your credit history appears shorter. If you want to simplify, close newer credit accounts first, or put the cards away so you don&#8217;t use them, but your credit history stays intact.</p> <p><strong>Paying off a bad debt will not erase it from your score. </strong>Once a debt goes to collection, or you&#8217;ve established a history of late payments, you will deal with the consequences even if you pay off what you owe. It will show as paid, but it is not erased. Also, while your score will get a boost if you pay off an old debt, it may not be by as much as you think. The best way to increase your scores and keep them high is to make payments on time every month over the long haul.</p> <p><strong>Co-signing for a loan impacts your scores.</strong> When you co-sign for someone else&#8217;s loan, you are responsible for the debt—and if the person your co-signed for does not pay, your credit score will be impacted.</p> <p><em>For the latest </em><a href="http://www.rismedia.com"><em>real estate news and trends</em></a><em>, bookmark RISMedia.com.</em></p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com/2017/11/27/how-much-do-you-know-your-credit-score/">How Much Do You Know About Your Credit Score?</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com">RISMedia</a>.</p> http://rismedia.com/2017/11/27/how-much-do-you-know-your-credit-score/feed/ 0 2017-11-27 21:00 +00:00 2017-11-27 14:00 -07:00 http://money.cnn.com/2017/11/27/real_estate/how-long-sell-a-home-days-on-market/index.html?section=money_realestate http://rss.cnn.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~3/CDz2votScFQ/index.html This is how long it takes to sell a house It's a sellers market, which means wanna-be homeowners have to be move fast when a home hits the market.<img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~4/CDz2votScFQ" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Mon, 27 Nov 2017 13:13:04 -0500 http://money.cnn.com/2017/11/27/real_estate/how-long-sell-a-home-days-on-market/index.html?section=money_realestate 2017-11-27 13:13 -05:00 2017-11-27 11:13 -07:00 http://rismedia.com/?p=137202 http://rismedia.com/2017/11/26/ways-pay-your-mortgage-early/ Advice Buying/Selling For Your Clients Home Spun Wisdom Latest News Bankrate Home Loan Mortgage Interest Mortgage Payments Mortgage Savings Tips real estate news 4 Ways to Pay Off Your Mortgage Early <p>(TNS)—If you can afford it, it might be simple to pay off your mortgage earlier. But should you? That&#8217;s a complicated question. Homeowners with low mortgage rates may be better off putting extra money in a Roth IRA or 401(k), both of which might offer a higher return than paying off the mortgage. Then there&#8217;s [&#8230;]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com/2017/11/26/ways-pay-your-mortgage-early/">4 Ways to Pay Off Your Mortgage Early</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com">RISMedia</a>.</p> Sun, 26 Nov 2017 18:02:38 Z http://rismedia.com/2017/11/26/ways-pay-your-mortgage-early/#respond Susanne Dwyer <p>(TNS)—If you can afford it, it might be simple to pay off your mortgage earlier. But should you? That&#8217;s a complicated question.</p> <p>Homeowners with low mortgage rates may be better off putting extra money in a Roth IRA or 401(k), both of which might offer a higher return than paying off the mortgage.</p> <p>Then there&#8217;s the college aid factor. If you&#8217;re applying for need-based aid for your kids, that home equity could count against you with some colleges because some institutions view equity as money in the bank.</p> <p>If, after those caveats, you want to pay off your mortgage early, here are four ways to make it happen.</p> <ol> <li><strong> Refinance with a shorter-term mortgage.<br /> </strong>You can pay off the mortgage in another 15 years by refinancing into a 15-year mortgage.</li> </ol> <p>Let&#8217;s say you got a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage for $200,000 at 4.5 percent. Then, five years later, you can refinance into a 15-year loan at 4 percent. Doing so pays off the mortgage 10 years earlier and saves more than $60,000 (if you exclude closing costs on the refi).</p> <p>Those shorter-term mortgages often carry interest rates a quarter of a percentage point to three-quarters of a percentage point lower than their 30-year counterparts.</p> <p>Refinancing isn&#8217;t quick or free. It requires filling out the application, providing documentation and having an appraiser visit. There are closing costs.</p> <p>And even with a lower interest rate, that quicker payoff means higher monthly payments. And this method is a lot less flexible. If you decide that you don&#8217;t have the extra money one month to put toward the mortgage, you&#8217;re locked in anyway.</p> <p>Unless the new interest rate is lower than the old rate, there&#8217;s no point in refinancing. Without a lower rate, you&#8217;ll get all the same benefits (and none of the extra costs) by just increasing your payment a sufficient amount.</p> <ol start="2"> <li><strong> Pay a little more each month.<br /> </strong>Divide your monthly principal and interest by 12 and add that amount to your monthly payment for a year. Result: You make the equivalent of 13 payments in 12 months.</li> </ol> <p>Let&#8217;s say you got a $200,000 mortgage at 4.5 percent. After five years of making the minimum payments, you add an extra 1/12 of a month&#8217;s principal and interest to each monthly payment. Doing so pays off the mortgage three years and three months earlier and saves more than $18,000 interest.</p> <p>Before you make anything beyond the regular payment, call your mortgage servicer and find out exactly what you need to do so that your extra payments will be correctly applied to your loan.</p> <p>Let them know you want to pay &#8220;more aggressively&#8221; and ask the best ways to do that.</p> <p>Some servicers may require a note with the extra money or directions on the notation line of the check.</p> <p>In any event, if you&#8217;re putting extra money toward your loan, always check the next statement to make sure it&#8217;s been properly applied.</p> <ol start="3"> <li><strong> Make an extra mortgage payment every year.<br /> </strong>Instead of paying a little more each month, make one extra monthly payment each year. One way to do this is to save 1/12 of a payment every month, and then make an extra payment after every 12 months. This gives you the flexibility to use the extra savings for something else if a more pressing expense arises.</li> </ol> <p>Let&#8217;s say you do this starting the first month after getting a 30-year mortgage for $200,000 at 4.5 percent. That would save more than $27,000 interest, and you would pay off the mortgage four years and three months earlier.</p> <ol start="4"> <li><strong> Throw &#8216;found&#8217; money at the mortgage.<br /> </strong>Get a bonus? A tax refund? An unexpected windfall? However it ends up in your hands, you can funnel some or all of your newfound money toward your mortgage.</li> </ol> <p>Let&#8217;s say you got a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage for $200,000 at 4.5 percent. Then, five years later, you can make an extra $10,000 lump-sum payment. Doing so pays off the mortgage two years and four months earlier, and saves more than $19,000 in interest.</p> <p>The upside: You&#8217;re paying extra only when you&#8217;re flush. And those additional payments toward the principal will cut the total interest on your loan.</p> <p>The downside: It&#8217;s irregular, so it&#8217;s hard to predict the mortgage payoff date. If you throw too much at the mortgage, you won&#8217;t have money for other needs.</p> <p><em>©2017 Bankrate.com</em></p> <p><em>Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC</em></p> <p><em>This article is intended for informational purposes only and should not be construed as professional advice. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the position of RISMedia.</em></p> <p><em>For the latest </em><a href="http://www.rismedia.com"><em>real estate news and trends</em></a><em>, bookmark RISMedia.com.</em></p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com/2017/11/26/ways-pay-your-mortgage-early/">4 Ways to Pay Off Your Mortgage Early</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com">RISMedia</a>.</p> http://rismedia.com/2017/11/26/ways-pay-your-mortgage-early/feed/ 0 2017-11-26 18:02 +00:00 2017-11-26 11:02 -07:00 http://rismedia.com/?p=137044 http://rismedia.com/2017/11/18/steps-regain-some-savings-self-control/ Advice Buying/Selling Home Spun Wisdom How-To Latest News Lifestyle Bankrate Money Management MoneyLion Personal Finance real estate news Saving Apps Savings Account Savings Tips 4 Steps to Regain Some Savings Self-Control <p>(TNS)—Opening a savings account is easy, but committing to savings? Now that can be hard. From struggling to find places where you can reduce spending to falling into the temptation of instant retail gratification, saving money can be really challenging. &#8220;You really have to know yourself and discipline yourself if you&#8217;re going to be an [&#8230;]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com/2017/11/18/steps-regain-some-savings-self-control/">4 Steps to Regain Some Savings Self-Control</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com">RISMedia</a>.</p> Sat, 18 Nov 2017 05:00:40 Z http://rismedia.com/2017/11/18/steps-regain-some-savings-self-control/#respond Susanne Dwyer <p>(TNS)—Opening a savings account is easy, but committing to savings? Now that can be hard.</p> <p>From struggling to find places where you can reduce spending to falling into the temptation of instant retail gratification, saving money can be really challenging.</p> <p>&#8220;You really have to know yourself and discipline yourself if you&#8217;re going to be an effective saver,&#8221; says Greg McBride, CFA, Bankrate&#8217;s chief financial analyst.</p> <p>Learning to live on less may feel difficult initially, but it will pay off in the future.</p> <p>Here are four steps to start exercising savings self-control today.<strong><br /> </strong></p> <p><strong>Pay your account out of your paycheck.</strong><br /> Automate your savings by having money moved to your savings account regularly, either through elections with your direct deposit if you receive a regular paycheck or by setting up a recurring transfer to your savings account.</p> <p>Moving money directly to your savings account is a crucial first step in building a nest egg, McBride says.</p> <p>&#8220;Paying yourself first clears the biggest hurdle for saving, which is simply not being in the habit of saving,&#8221; McBride says. &#8220;It takes care of saving money before you have a chance to spend it.&#8221;</p> <p>Similar to putting money in your 401(k), the idea is that if it never touches your hand, you won&#8217;t miss it.</p> <p><strong>Avoid the temptation of transfers.</strong><br /> Moving money into your savings does you little good if you constantly raid the account.</p> <p>To effectively grow a savings account, you have to restrict yourself from the temptation to transfer those funds to your checking account.</p> <p>&#8220;If you&#8217;re going to build your savings, your deposits have to outnumber your withdrawals, not just in number but also in magnitude,&#8221; McBride says.</p> <p>Do what it takes to control yourself. Perhaps the solution is as easy as naming that account based on a goal—&#8221;house down payment&#8221; or &#8220;Christmas money&#8221;—to make the connection of immediate gratification robbing your ultimate goal.</p> <p>If that isn&#8217;t enough to stop you, put some distance between your checking and your savings. While there are often advantages of having your money at one institution, opening up a savings account a different bank might be what you need to stop you from spending money that is supposed to be away.</p> <p>Once you&#8217;ve hit your emergency fund savings goal, you ought to consider a CD or even a CD ladder to pick up some yield and keep you from spending your money.</p> <p><strong>Put banking technology to work.</strong><br /> Banks and financial technology companies are obsessed right now with helping you save money, and each product seems to have its own bent.</p> <p>There are ones that let you set rules, like adding $10 to your savings every time you buy a latte. Finn, the new mobile-only account Chase Bank is piloting in St. Louis for iOS users, is offering such features. The bank says it expects to launch it in additional cities and for Android users next year.</p> <p>Others, like Simple and Moven, help you save for a specific goal or multiple goals at a time.</p> <p>There are also some, like Digit, Chime and Acorns, that focus on moving small amounts of money into an account for you. This is similar to Bank of America&#8217;s popular Keep The Change Savings program, which puts the difference between your purchases and the nearest dollar in a savings account—$10.75 for lunch, 25 cents for savings, for example.</p> <p>MoneyLion, another FinTech app, launched a virtual reality feature on the augmented reality platform of Apple&#8217;s iOS 11 release. MoneyLion customers with iPhones 6S and newer can now visualize their money as stacks on the phone. The rationale is that if you can see your money pile increasing, you&#8217;re less likely to spend it.</p> <p>Suffice to say, there are a lot of savings options out there right now and you ought to do your research before committing to one. Ultimately, their effectiveness is dependent on your ability to not frivolously spend the money you&#8217;ve worked hard to save.<strong><br /> </strong></p> <p><strong>Save for the long term.</strong><br /> While you may want to enjoy the here and now, short-term spending can cost big time down the road.</p> <p>&#8220;If you&#8217;re going to be a saver, it&#8217;s going to require some tough decisions,&#8221; McBride says. &#8220;It means passing up consumption today so that you can instead save for consumption in the future.&#8221;</p> <p>McBride highlights that saving is not simply geared toward building up money to use in the event of emergencies.</p> <p>&#8220;Americans are woefully under-saved for retirement,&#8221; McBride says.</p> <p>McBride points to the increasing number of seniors who are unable to retire and the overwhelming amount of outstanding student debt as a reminder that consumers must save for long-term goals.</p> <p>&#8220;You can build an emergency savings fund while building a retirement fund or a college fund at the same time,&#8221; McBride says. &#8220;You have to attack both at the same time in the same way by automating your contributions.&#8221;</p> <p><em>©2017 Bankrate.com</em></p> <p><em>Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC</em></p> <p><em>For the latest </em><a href="http://www.rismedia.com"><em>real estate news and trends</em></a><em>, bookmark RISMedia.com.</em></p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com/2017/11/18/steps-regain-some-savings-self-control/">4 Steps to Regain Some Savings Self-Control</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com">RISMedia</a>.</p> http://rismedia.com/2017/11/18/steps-regain-some-savings-self-control/feed/ 0 2017-11-18 05:00 +00:00 2017-11-17 22:00 -07:00 http://rismedia.com/?p=136864 http://rismedia.com/2017/11/13/mortgage-points-should-you-pay-them/ Advice Buying/Selling For Your Clients Home Spun Wisdom Latest News Bankrate Discount Points Home Loan Mortgage Loan Mortgage Points Mortgage Rate Origination Points real estate news What Are Mortgage Points? Should You Pay Them? <p>(TNS)—When people want to find out how much their mortgages cost, lenders often give them quotes that include loan rates and points. What Is a Mortgage Point? A mortgage point is a fee equal to 1 percent of the loan amount. A 30-year, $150,000 mortgage might have a rate of 7 percent but come with [&#8230;]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com/2017/11/13/mortgage-points-should-you-pay-them/">What Are Mortgage Points? Should You Pay Them?</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com">RISMedia</a>.</p> Mon, 13 Nov 2017 20:47:32 Z http://rismedia.com/2017/11/13/mortgage-points-should-you-pay-them/#respond Susanne Dwyer <p>(TNS)—When people want to find out how much their mortgages cost, lenders often give them quotes that include loan rates and points.</p> <p><strong>What Is a Mortgage Point?</strong><br /> A mortgage point is a fee equal to 1 percent of the loan amount. A 30-year, $150,000 mortgage might have a rate of 7 percent but come with a charge of one mortgage point, or $1,500.</p> <p>A lender can charge one, two or more mortgage points. There are two kinds of points:</p> <ol> <li>Discount points</li> <li>Origination points</li> </ol> <p><strong>Discount Points</strong><br /> These are actually prepaid interest on the mortgage loan. The more points you pay, the lower the interest rate on the loan and vice versa. Borrowers typically can pay anywhere from zero to three or four points, depending on how much they want to lower their rates. This kind of point is tax-deductible.</p> <p><strong>Origination Points</strong><br /> This is charged by the lender to cover the costs of making the loan. The origination fee is tax-deductible if it was used to obtain the mortgage and not to pay other closing costs. The IRS specifically states that if the fee is for items that would normally be itemized on a settlement statement, such as notary fees, preparation costs and inspection fees, it is not deductible.</p> <p>How do you decide whether to pay mortgage points, and how many? That depends on a number of factors, such as:</p> <ul> <li>How much money you have available to put down at closing</li> <li>How long you plan on staying in your house</li> </ul> <p>Points as prepaid interest reduce the interest rate—an advantage if you plan to stay in your home for a while—but if you need the lowest possible closing costs, choose the zero-point option on your loan program.</p> <p><strong>By the Numbers…</strong><br /> A lender might offer you a 30-year fixed mortgage of $165,000 at 6 percent interest with no points. The monthly mortgage principal and interest payment would be $989. If you pay two points at closing (that&#8217;s $3,300) you might be able to drop the interest rate down to 5.5 percent, with a monthly payment of $937. The savings difference would be $52 per month, but it would take 64 months to earn back the $3,300 spent upfront via lower payments. If you&#8217;re sure you will own the house for more than five years, you save money by paying the points.<em><br /> </em></p> <p><em>©2017 Bankrate.com</em></p> <p>Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC</p> <p><em>This article is intended for informational purposes only and should not be construed as professional advice. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the position of RISMedia.</em></p> <p><em>For the latest </em><a href="http://www.rismedia.com"><em>real estate news and trends</em></a><em>, bookmark RISMedia.com.</em></p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com/2017/11/13/mortgage-points-should-you-pay-them/">What Are Mortgage Points? Should You Pay Them?</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com">RISMedia</a>.</p> http://rismedia.com/2017/11/13/mortgage-points-should-you-pay-them/feed/ 0 2017-11-13 20:47 +00:00 2017-11-13 13:47 -07:00 http://money.cnn.com/2017/11/10/news/economy/hurricane-foreclosures/index.html?section=money_realestate http://rss.cnn.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~3/BeFMe03Eemg/index.html Hurricanes could bring another disaster: Foreclosures Read full story for latest details.<img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~4/BeFMe03Eemg" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Fri, 10 Nov 2017 11:02:40 -0500 http://money.cnn.com/2017/11/10/news/economy/hurricane-foreclosures/index.html?section=money_realestate 2017-11-10 11:02 -05:00 2017-11-10 09:02 -07:00 http://money.cnn.com/2017/11/03/real_estate/mortgage-interest-deduction-cap-tax-bill/index.html?section=money_realestate http://rss.cnn.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~3/JamIfcTvw44/index.html Who's affected by the mortgage changes in the House tax bill The Republican tax bill proposes capping the mortgage interest deduction at $500,000. That's bad news for these home buyers.<img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~4/JamIfcTvw44" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Fri, 03 Nov 2017 16:24:26 -0400 http://money.cnn.com/2017/11/03/real_estate/mortgage-interest-deduction-cap-tax-bill/index.html?section=money_realestate 2017-11-03 16:24 -04:00 2017-11-03 13:24 -07:00 http://rismedia.com/?p=136477 http://rismedia.com/2017/11/02/ways-save-down-payment/ Advice Buying/Selling For Your Clients Home Spun Wisdom Latest News Bankrate Credit Cards Down Payment Home-Buying IRAs Ladder CDs real estate news 9 Ways to Save for a Down Payment <p>(TNS)—You&#8217;ve found the perfect house. Interest rates are still low. There&#8217;s just one thing standing between you and your dream home: a down payment. Don&#8217;t abandon your homeownership dreams just yet. Here are nine ways to come up with the cash for your new home. Pay Off Your Credit Cards Paying bills will help in [&#8230;]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com/2017/11/02/ways-save-down-payment/">9 Ways to Save for a Down Payment</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com">RISMedia</a>.</p> Thu, 02 Nov 2017 20:05:32 Z http://rismedia.com/2017/11/02/ways-save-down-payment/#respond Susanne Dwyer <p>(TNS)—You&#8217;ve found the perfect house. Interest rates are still low. There&#8217;s just one thing standing between you and your dream home: a down payment.</p> <p>Don&#8217;t abandon your homeownership dreams just yet. Here are nine ways to come up with the cash for your new home.</p> <p><strong>Pay Off Your Credit Cards</strong><br /> Paying bills will help in your hunt for down payment money. When you carry a credit card balance, the ever-accumulating interest charges mean more of your money goes to the card company each month. Keep that cash for yourself by cutting your debt load.</p> <p>With the &#8220;avalanche&#8221; method, you prioritize your debts and pay the most on the one with the highest interest rate. Once that&#8217;s paid, shift your focus to the next highest rate and so on. You&#8217;ll get the most money-sucking credit card bills out of the way more quickly, freeing up more of your income to go toward building your savings.</p> <p><strong>Ladder CDs to Boost Savings</strong><br /> Once you have a few extra bucks, put it to work making more money for you. Certificates of deposit are low-risk and relatively accessible. But when interest rates are low, the return isn&#8217;t always what a saver hopes. You can maximize the earning power of CDs by opening different certificates at varying maturity dates.</p> <p>For example, instead of buying one big CD, spread your money into three-month, six-month and one-year certificates. Known as laddering, this gives you flexibility to adjust your savings as rates change. Laddering allows you to lock in when rates are high and when rates are not so good. The process keeps you from being stuck for too long with low earnings.</p> <p><strong>Use Special Programs</strong><br /> There are many programs for homebuyers struggling to save for a down payment, especially for first-time homebuyers. Borrowers in a wide range of incomes, locales and professional groups may have access to aid from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the government-sponsored offices that buy mortgages and package them as investments. Various nonprofit and community groups also lend a hand to buyers struggling to put money down on a home. And don&#8217;t forget about assistance from state agencies.</p> <p><strong>Tap Your IRA</strong><br /> If you&#8217;re looking to buy your first home, let the IRS help. Tax laws allow you to use up to $10,000 in IRA funds as a down payment if you&#8217;ve never owned a house. If you&#8217;re married and you both are first-time buyers, you each can pull from your retirement accounts, meaning a potential $20,000 down payment.</p> <p>Even better is the IRS definition of &#8220;first-time homebuyer.&#8221; Technically, you don&#8217;t have to be purchasing your very first home. You qualify under the tax rules as long as you (or your spouse) did not own a principal residence at any time during the two years prior to the purchase of the new home. In these instances, Uncle Sam waives the penalty for early withdrawal, but you may owe tax on the money, depending on the type of IRA.</p> <p><strong>Get a Gift</strong><br /> Aunt Edna always liked you best. Take advantage of that favored family status and ask her to make a present of your down payment. Tax law allows gifts of several thousand dollars a year to be bestowed without tax consequences to either the giver or recipient. The gift-exclusion amount is $14,000 for 2017 and is adjusted annually for inflation.</p> <p>The gift exclusion isn&#8217;t limited to relatives. The monetary present can be from anyone, so track down a well-off friend now.</p> <p><strong>Ask for a Raise</strong><br /> No luck finding a benefactor? Then maybe it&#8217;s time to ask your boss for more money. Just make sure you do your homework beforehand and base your request for a salary increase on your accomplishments rather than your needs.</p> <p><strong>Get a Second Job</strong><br /> Boss turned down your request for a raise? Moonlighting could help you earn the extra money. This option makes the most sense for those who are young and not yet fully established in their professional lives.</p> <p><strong>Look for Lost Money</strong><br /> Do you have any money stashed somewhere? Around $23.5 billion worth of matured savings bonds remains unredeemed, according to the Treasury Department, ignored by owners and not earning a penny of interest. Make sure your bonds and other investments are still adding to your net worth.</p> <p>You could also have money languishing in an old bank account somewhere. You can file a claim with the Treasury to claim lost, stolen or destroyed savings bonds, or check the National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators to see if you have any missing money.</p> <p><strong>Sell Unwanted Items</strong><br /> You likely have some used furniture you no longer use or old clothes that are no longer in style. Sell it to make a few more bucks to use for your down payment.</p> <p>You can sell your items on sites like Craigslist, eBay, Facebook and Amazon to turn your trash into someone else&#8217;s treasure.<em><br /> </em></p> <p><em>©2017 Bankrate.com</em></p> <p><em>Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC</em></p> <p><em>For the latest </em><a href="http://www.rismedia.com"><em>real estate news and trends</em></a><em>, bookmark RISMedia.com.</em></p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com/2017/11/02/ways-save-down-payment/">9 Ways to Save for a Down Payment</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com">RISMedia</a>.</p> http://rismedia.com/2017/11/02/ways-save-down-payment/feed/ 0 2017-11-02 20:05 +00:00 2017-11-02 13:05 -07:00 http://rismedia.com/?p=136398 http://rismedia.com/2017/10/31/essential-home-buying-considerations/ Advice Buying/Selling For Your Clients Home Spun Wisdom Latest News Bankrate Credit Score Down Payment Home Price Home-Buying Tips Mortgage real estate news 5 Essential Home-Buying Considerations <p>(TNS)—Buying a house is a life-changing process that requires lots of upfront financial planning. When looking for a home, keep certain factors in mind, including your financial situation, types of available loans, your credit score, the price of the house and your down payment so you can navigate the process smoothly. Your Financial Situation Before [&#8230;]</p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com/2017/10/31/essential-home-buying-considerations/">5 Essential Home-Buying Considerations</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com">RISMedia</a>.</p> Tue, 31 Oct 2017 20:24:02 Z http://rismedia.com/2017/10/31/essential-home-buying-considerations/#respond Susanne Dwyer <p>(TNS)—Buying a house is a life-changing process that requires lots of upfront financial planning.</p> <p>When looking for a home, keep certain factors in mind, including your financial situation, types of available loans, your credit score, the price of the house and your down payment so you can navigate the process smoothly.</p> <p><strong>Your Financial Situation</strong><br /> Before you buy a house, make sure that your monthly budget can handle such a large expense. Unless you&#8217;re one of the few people who can pay cash for a home, you&#8217;ll likely be paying it off for 15 or 30 years, depending on the length of your loan.</p> <p>In addition to the mortgage payment, you&#8217;ll want to factor in expenses like property taxes, homeowners insurance and routine maintenance.</p> <p><strong>Types of Mortgages</strong><br /> When buying a home, you have a few options for the type of loan you want to use. Two of the most common mortgage types are fixed-rate and adjustable-rate mortgages.</p> <p>The interest rate on a fixed-rate mortgage stays the same over the life of the loan, with payments divided up into equal amounts that you pay on a monthly basis. The longer the loan term, the less you have to pay each month; however, you&#8217;ll likely pay more in interest than you would with a shorter-term loan.</p> <p>An adjustable-rate mortgage, or ARM, has a fixed interest rate for an initial period, followed by a period when the lender may periodically adjust the interest rate. For example, a 5/1 ARM has an introductory rate of five years. After that five-year period, the interest rate can change annually. With an ARM, you need to consider how much your monthly payment could increase and your ability to pay if it does go up.</p> <p><strong>Your Credit Score</strong><br /> You also need to review your credit score before buying a house. Your credit score helps creditors determine your creditworthiness. Borrowers with credit scores of 740 or higher generally qualify for the best mortgage deals.</p> <p>It&#8217;s still possible to buy a house if you have bad credit. You likely will have to accept a higher interest rate on your mortgage, which could cost you hundreds of dollars extra per month.</p> <p>If your credit score drops too low, though, you might not qualify for a mortgage at all. Consider improving your credit score first before trying to buy a house.</p> <p><strong>The Price of the Home</strong><br /> The higher the price of the house you want to buy, the more you can expect to pay on a monthly basis. When looking at houses, consider your budget and how much you can afford to spend.</p> <p>Remember to consider your needs, too. Do you have a new addition to the family and need the room? Have your kids moved out and you want a smaller home?</p> <p>Also, take a look at the price range of the houses available in the area where you want to buy. Compare the prices you find to your budget and determine what home you can afford.</p> <p><strong>The Down Payment</strong><br /> A large down payment represents one way to reduce the monthly cost of your mortgage. As a matter of fact, a down payment of 20 percent gives you access to better interest rates and prevents you from having to pay private mortgage insurance. So, in addition to lowering the amount you owe initially, a down payment also can get you a lower interest rate, making a house more affordable. There are also mortgages that require no down payment or a small one.</p> <p><em>©2017 Bankrate.com</em></p> <p><em>Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC<br /> </em></p> <p><em>For the latest </em><a href="http://www.rismedia.com"><em>real estate news and trends</em></a><em>, bookmark RISMedia.com.</em></p> <p>The post <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com/2017/10/31/essential-home-buying-considerations/">5 Essential Home-Buying Considerations</a> appeared first on <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rismedia.com">RISMedia</a>.</p> http://rismedia.com/2017/10/31/essential-home-buying-considerations/feed/ 0 2017-10-31 20:24 +00:00 2017-10-31 13:24 -07:00 http://money.cnn.com/2017/10/19/real_estate/aston-martin-miami-florida-apartments-condo-tower/index.html?section=money_realestate http://rss.cnn.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~3/8dhpf25s5BY/index.html Aston Martin is getting into... luxury real estate?! Aston Martin is getting into the real estate business with a new 66-story residential tower in Miami.<img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~4/8dhpf25s5BY" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Thu, 19 Oct 2017 12:28:48 -0400 http://money.cnn.com/2017/10/19/real_estate/aston-martin-miami-florida-apartments-condo-tower/index.html?section=money_realestate 2017-10-19 12:28 -04:00 2017-10-19 09:28 -07:00 http://money.cnn.com/2017/10/12/pf/buy-first-home/index.html?section=money_realestate http://rss.cnn.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~3/l0CeL0Qau4k/index.html How to buy your first home Buying a home is one of the most -- if not the most -- significant purchases of your adult life. 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London home prices fall for 1st time in 8 years Read full story for latest details.<img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~4/Jr42F3ExO0w" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Fri, 29 Sep 2017 09:55:09 -0400 http://money.cnn.com/2017/09/29/real_estate/london-real-estate-property-home-prices-fall/index.html?section=money_realestate 2017-09-29 09:55 -04:00 2017-09-29 06:55 -07:00 http://money.cnn.com/2017/09/28/real_estate/toronto-real-estate-property-housing/index.html?section=money_realestate http://rss.cnn.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~3/Nvgbw8aQXq8/index.html Toronto faces highest risk of a housing bubble Read full story for latest details.<img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~4/Nvgbw8aQXq8" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Thu, 28 Sep 2017 11:51:01 -0400 http://money.cnn.com/2017/09/28/real_estate/toronto-real-estate-property-housing/index.html?section=money_realestate 2017-09-28 11:51 -04:00 2017-09-28 08:51 -07:00 http://money.cnn.com/2017/08/22/investing/china-wanda-london-nine-elms-real-estate-deal/index.html?section=money_realestate http://rss.cnn.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~3/anbMgAeI5Ks/index.html Chinese billionaire dumps huge London real estate deal One of China's richest men drops plans to buy $600 million of London real estate as his overseas deal-making comes under scrutiny from the Chinese government.<img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~4/anbMgAeI5Ks" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Tue, 22 Aug 2017 08:09:03 -0400 http://money.cnn.com/2017/08/22/investing/china-wanda-london-nine-elms-real-estate-deal/index.html?section=money_realestate 2017-08-22 08:09 -04:00 2017-08-22 05:09 -07:00 http://money.cnn.com/2017/08/11/real_estate/save-down-payment/index.html?section=money_realestate http://rss.cnn.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~3/mXl9NUq3394/index.html How to save enough money for a down payment on a home Read full story for latest details.<img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~4/mXl9NUq3394" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Fri, 11 Aug 2017 10:09:28 -0400 http://money.cnn.com/2017/08/11/real_estate/save-down-payment/index.html?section=money_realestate 2017-08-11 10:09 -04:00 2017-08-11 07:09 -07:00 http://money.cnn.com/2017/07/24/real_estate/american-dream-homeownership/index.html?section=money_realestate http://rss.cnn.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~3/ab8oL9mVbqA/index.html Does the American Dream no longer include homeownership? 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Don't make it even harder (or more expensive) for yourself by making these common mistakes.<img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~4/pzh_QYJMw_E" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Wed, 28 Jun 2017 13:23:24 -0400 http://money.cnn.com/2017/06/28/real_estate/first-time-homebuyer-mistakes/index.html?section=money_realestate 2017-06-28 13:23 -04:00 2017-06-28 10:23 -07:00 http://money.cnn.com/2017/06/26/real_estate/home-buying-costs/index.html?section=money_realestate http://rss.cnn.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~3/_jK6TqA80LE/index.html 4 costs you haven't factored into your homebuying budget Out-of-pocket costs that crop up during the homebuying process, or even when you're moving in, can put an unexpected strain on your already-hurting bank account.<img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~4/_jK6TqA80LE" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Mon, 26 Jun 2017 10:32:35 -0400 http://money.cnn.com/2017/06/26/real_estate/home-buying-costs/index.html?section=money_realestate 2017-06-26 10:32 -04:00 2017-06-26 07:32 -07:00 http://money.cnn.com/2017/06/23/real_estate/mortgage-rates-home-prices/index.html?section=money_realestate http://rss.cnn.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~3/5lNcOwBkCOw/index.html Home prices are sky high, but mortgages are still cheap Home prices have reached another record high, and buyers are feeling the pressure. But there has been one saving grace for buyers: mortgage rates.<img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~4/5lNcOwBkCOw" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Fri, 23 Jun 2017 10:31:36 -0400 http://money.cnn.com/2017/06/23/real_estate/mortgage-rates-home-prices/index.html?section=money_realestate 2017-06-23 10:31 -04:00 2017-06-23 07:31 -07:00 http://money.cnn.com/calculator/real_estate/mortgage-payment/?section=money_realestate http://rss.cnn.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~3/tmQBiEFyXNk/ What will your monthly mortgage payment be? In the market for a new home? Or planning to refinance? Find out what your monthly payment will be.<img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~4/tmQBiEFyXNk" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Mon, 02 Feb 2015 10:53:13 -0500 http://money.cnn.com/calculator/real_estate/mortgage-payment/?section=money_realestate 2015-02-02 10:53 -05:00 2015-02-02 08:53 -07:00 http://money.cnn.com/calculator/pf/home-rate-of-return/?section=money_realestate http://rss.cnn.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~3/wK06F6O88wk/ Was my home a good investment? Calculate the return on your home and how it compares to returns on stocks, bonds and overall home prices.<img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/rss/money_realestate/~4/wK06F6O88wk" height="1" width="1" alt=""/> Tue, 05 Nov 2013 11:10:09 -0500 http://money.cnn.com/calculator/pf/home-rate-of-return/?section=money_realestate 2013-11-05 11:10 -05:00 2013-11-05 09:10 -07:00