Posted by Marie Presti on 12/16/2018

The factor that has the most impact on your home search is your finances. Youíll need to save a significant amount of money. Itís not easy to save when you have continuous monthly bills and responsibilities. Read on for tips on how to get your finances under control in order to save the amount of money it takes to buy a home.  


Do A Budget  



Once you have decided to buy a home, the first thing you should do is take a good look at your finances. A budget is critical when you buy a house because it tells you how much youíll have to spend on your mortgage. Doing this ahead of time will allow you to maximize your income and make adjustments ahead of time as needed. Donít forget that even though youíre buying a home, you still need some savings in addition to all of your other monthly expenses. Your budget should be outlined as follows:


  • Necessities
  • Monthly utility spending 
  • Insurance bills
  • Entertainment expenses
  • Grocery spending


Basically, you want to write down how much money is coming in and where all of the money is going. Thatís a budget in a nutshell. See where you can cut back. What youíre left with is the amount you can save each month. You may want to do this on a percentage basis rather than a flat dollar amount. 


Get A Separate Account


The most straightforward things to do when you start saving for a home is to put all of your money for your house fund into a separate account. This way you can automatically transfer money in, and youíll be less likely to spend any of the money if you donít see it.


Sacrifice The Small Things


Can you take some hand me downs for your kids? Maybe you can start packing a lunch for work instead of buying lunch. Can you cut the cord on cable? It may be hard to sacrifice small luxuries, but these expenses can add up. If you cut these out of your budget, youíll have a little more wiggle room to save for a home purchase. Youíll be surprised how much money you can save just by doing little things. Your morning latte is probably around $5. You could save at least $25 per week by merely making coffee at home! Thatís a saving of over 1,200 per year!   


While saving for a home can seem overwhelming, if you take it in small chunks, youíll be see the results of your efforts rather quickly. 





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Posted by Marie Presti on 12/9/2018

Believe it or not, selling a home may prove to be expensive if you are not careful. However, if you understand the costs associated with selling a house, you can budget accordingly.

Now, let's take a look at three expenses that home sellers commonly encounter.

1. Home Repairs

Cracked siding, floor damage and other home issues are worrisome, particularly for an individual who wants to sell his or her residence as quickly as possible. Fortunately, if you budget for home repairs, you can address these issues before you list your residence.

Oftentimes, it helps to conduct a home inspection prior to embarking on the house selling journey. A home inspection enables a property owner to gain expert insights into any underlying problems with his or her house. Then, the property owner can prioritize assorted home repairs and complete house improvements as needed.

2. Home Cleaning

A messy home is unlikely to garner buyers' attention. On the other hand, an individual who hires a professional cleaning company to improve his or her residence's appearance may be better equipped than ever before to enjoy a successful house selling experience.

Hiring a professional cleaning company may be costly. Yet if you shop around for home cleaning companies in your city or town, you can find a cleaning business that matches your budget.

Don't forget that you can clean your house on your own, too. If you purchase cleaning supplies and enlist family members and friends to help you clean your residence, you could enhance your residence's appearance without breaking your budget.

3. Home Staging

The cost of staging a house varies based on the size of a residence, the extent of the staging and other factors. But if you allocate time and resources to declutter your residence, you may be able to avoid the costs associated with house staging altogether.

To declutter your residence, you should try to remove any unwanted items from your home. You can list these items online or host a yard sale to eliminate clutter and earn extra cash. Or, you can donate your unwanted items to a local charity or give them to family members or friends.

As you get set to sell your house, you may want to hire a real estate agent as well. With a real estate agent at your side, you can cut down on your house selling expenses and get the help you need to achieve your desired results.

A real estate agent understands that each house is different, and he or she crafts a custom strategy for each home seller. Next, a real estate agent and a home seller work together to put this plan into action. And if a seller ever has concerns or questions during the house selling journey, a real estate agent is happy to respond to them.

Plan ahead for home selling costs Ė you will be glad you did. Because if you budget properly, you can put yourself in a great position to streamline the home selling journey.




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Posted by Marie Presti on 12/2/2018

Applying for a mortgage may seem like a long, stressful process at first. Fortunately, we're here to help you take the guesswork out of submitting a mortgage application.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you streamline the mortgage application process.

1. Ask Questions

A bank or credit union likely will ask you to provide a wide range of information as part of the mortgage application cycle. And as you complete a mortgage application, you may have questions along the way too.

Remember, a lender is happy to help you in any way possible. If you ever have concerns or questions as you complete a mortgage application, you should reach out to a lender for expert support. That way, you can reduce the risk of potential problems down the line that otherwise could slow down the mortgage application process.

Even a single mistake on a mortgage application may prevent you from getting a mortgage. Perhaps even worse, a delayed mortgage application may force you to miss out on an opportunity to acquire your dream house. But if you reach out to a lender as you complete your mortgage application, you can gain the insights you need to quickly and effortlessly finalize the necessary documentation to obtain a mortgage.

2. Be Thorough

A mortgage application may require you to look back at your financial and employment histories and provide information that a lender will use to determine whether to approve or deny your submission. Meanwhile, you should be ready to provide a lender with any requested information to ensure a seamless application process.

As a homebuyer, it is your responsibility to include accurate information on your mortgage application. In fact, failure to do so may cause a lender to reject your mortgage application. If you allocate the necessary time and resources to dot every I and cross every T on your mortgage application, you can boost the likelihood of a fast approval.

3. Shop Around

For homebuyers, it is crucial to check out all of the mortgage options that are available. If you meet with a variety of banks and credit unions, you can review myriad mortgage options and select a mortgage that complements your finances.

Banks and credit unions generally provide a broad array of fixed- and adjustable-rate mortgages. If you learn about all of the mortgage options at your disposal, you can find one that enables you to purchase your dream house without breaking your budget.

Of course, once you are approved for a mortgage and are ready to launch your house search, you may want to hire a real estate agent as well. A real estate agent will offer plenty of guidance at each stage of the homebuying journey. In addition, a real estate agent can make it easy for you to find a top-notch residence at a budget-friendly price in any housing market, at any time.

Start the mortgage application process today, and you can move one step closer to acquiring your dream residence.




Tags: mortgage   buying a home  
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Posted by Marie Presti on 11/25/2018

Going through the process of applying for a mortgage only for your application to get denied can be a frustrating and confusing time. If youíre hoping to buy your own home in the near future, itís vital to secure financing or you risk missing out on a home that you may have been depending on getting.

In todayís post, weíre going to talk about what happens when your mortgage application is denied and what you can do to fix the problem as quickly as possible.

Determine the Cause of Denial

If your application is denied, priority number one needs to be to understand what happened. Since lenders are required to provide denied applicants with a letter explaining why they were denied, this just means reading the letter and making sure you understand all of the reasons listed.

There are a few common reasons that an application may be denied. Some of them are simple fixes, while others might require time and effort on your part that may delay your house hunt for a while.

One issue that many mortgage applicants have to handle is when their employer wonít provide proof of income to a mortgage lender. Since income verification is vital to the mortgage application process, itís important to make sure you can provide all of your income details from the last 2 years to the lender.

Sometimes there are issues with contacting employers, such as when your former place of employment goes out of business. Or, you may be a freelance or contract worker with atypical forms of income verification. Regardless, make sure you are clear with your loan officer regarding your employment history.

Other common causes for denial of an application include problems with your down payment (such as not meeting the required down payment amount) and credit history issues, such as having a lower score than you thought.

Credit score lower than expected

Itís not uncommon for a lender to run a credit check and come up with a score that is lower than you anticipated. Since scores change on a monthly basis, and since there are differences between the scores provided by the three major credit bureaus, you might find that your lender found a score slightly lower than what thought.

If the score is drastically different, however, this could be a sign of two things. First, make sure that you havenít recently made multiple credit inquiries (such as applying to several lenders who perform credit checks) or by opening new credit cards or loans. These inquiries temporarily lower your credit score.

If you havenít recently made any inquiries (other than applying for a mortgage with your lender of choice), then itís a good idea to get a detailed credit report and scrutinize it for errors. Inaccuracies on your credit report can be disputed and resolved and can give your score the boost you need to be competitive on your mortgage application.  

Choosing a different lender

While most lenders use similar criteria in determining your borrowing eligibility, there are some differences between lenders.

For example, some lenders might take on more risk by lending to someone with a lower credit score. However, they will also likely require a higher interest rate in exchange for the added risk theyíve acquired.


Now that you know your options for what to do when an application is denied, youíre well-equipped to start tackling the issue and getting back on track to becoming a homeowner.





Posted by Marie Presti on 11/18/2018

As a home seller, it is crucial to do whatever you can to optimize your house sale earnings. Lucky for you, we are here to help you promote your residence to the right groups of prospective buyers so you can increase the likelihood of a profitable home selling experience.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you maximize your home sale earnings.

1. Boost Your Home's Curb Appeal

You won't have to break your budget to upgrade your residence's curb appeal. In fact, completing simple home maintenance tasks like mowing the lawn and clearing dust and debris from exterior walkways may make it easy for buyers to fall in love with your residence.

Spend some time upgrading your residence's curb appeal Ė you'll be glad you did. Because if your home makes a positive first impression on buyers, there may be no shortage of interest in your house. As a result, buyers may compete for your home Ė something that could help you get the best price for your residence.

2. Remove Clutter

Clutter may make your home appear smaller than its true size. As such, you should do everything possible to eliminate clutter before you add your home to the real estate market.

Oftentimes, it helps to host a yard sale or list excess items online. In other instances, you may want to donate various items you no longer need to charity or give them to family members and friends.

For home sellers, it is essential to remove as much clutter as you can. Remember, if you eliminate clutter, you can showcase the true beauty of your residence's interior. This may help buyers see the full potential of your home, and ultimately, could lead to offers to purchase that match or exceed your expectations.

3. Hire a Real Estate Agent

If you are unsure about how to navigate different parts of the house selling process, there is no need to stress. By hiring a real estate agent, you can get the help you need to achieve the optimal home selling results.

A real estate agent is a house selling expert who will be able to provide you with personalized recommendations and suggestions. First, he or she will meet with you and learn about you and your home. A real estate agent next will craft a custom home selling strategy. And once a real estate agent puts your home selling plan into action, he or she will ensure you can enjoy a seamless home selling experience.

Furthermore, a real estate agent is available to assist you in any way possible. If you are unsure about how to price your residence, whether to accept an offer to purchase or have other home selling concerns, a real estate agent will help you address them immediately.

Ready to maximize your home sale earnings? Use the aforementioned tips, and you can bolster your chances of enjoying a success house selling experience.




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