One popular way to do this is to set up a biweekly mortgage payment schedule. Instead of paying your mortgage payment once a month, you pay half your payment every 2 weeks. By doing so, you end up making 26 half payments or 13 full payments a year instead of 12, which is what you would make normally. Read More
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Consider taxes: Renters pay much more in taxes than homeowners. Homeowners can deduct mortgage interest (which is going to be most of your monthly mortgage payment initially), as well as real estate taxes. This means most of your monthly shelter costs are going to be tax deductible. Read More
You can include any contingencies you want in your offer to purchase a home. But don’t load up your offer so much that the seller will walk away. You should consult a lawyer to help you draft your offer, and discuss with him or her which contingencies to include.
Here are the most important ones:
How much you should offer for a home will depend on several factors, including the asking price, recent sale prices for comparable properties in the same neighborhood, how long the property has been on the market, the current market conditions and what you know about the seller and his/her motives for selling. You also need to factor in your own motivations and how much you want a particular property.
In a strong real estate market, buyers often engage in bidding wars for a property, sometimes even paying above the asking price. In that kind of market, you need to make your best offer, or close to it, right off the bat.
If you are planning to sell your home in the near future, you will probably want to enlist the services of a professional real estate agent to market the home for you. To find an agent, compile a list of at least 3 individuals or real estate firms from either referrals or other places, such as ads or online, to interview. Ask each about their experience, how long they’ve worked in the area, recent sales they have brokered, and how they intend to market your property — open houses (how many?), where they plan to advertise your home, Internet and social media platforms they plan to use, personal mailings, etc. Who do they think is the market for your home and how do they plan to reach this market? Ask each for suggestions about your property and different cosmetics, furniture rearranging, other improvements they recommend that might make your home more attractive and saleable. Read More
Before you start home shopping, you may want to get pre-approved for a mortgage. Getting pre-approved for a mortgage is not the same as getting pre-qualified, although the terms are often used interchangeably. They are actually very different with implications for both buyers and sellers.
‘Pre-qualified’ means that a prospective borrower has spoken to a lender (often just over the telephone, or via an online application form), and that based on information supplied by the borrower, the lender says that the borrower would probably be approved for a specific loan amount –- provided, of course, that the borrower’s information all checks out. Read More