Think outside the box when its time to finance a home

Think Outside the Box When It’s Time
to Finance a Home

Are you ready to purchase a home? Have you
considered creative financing? Don’t worry — it’s not illegal! But there are
some terrific personal finance hacks for homebuyers.

the Process

Before you can reach full home-buying-hack
potential, you should understand the basic process. As Curbed explains, you should start by getting a
handle on your budget. Tally up what you normally spend
in a month
, calculate your income, and decide how much can go toward
a mortgage and homeownership. Remember to include things like utilities,
insurance, and homeowner association fees. You also need enough in your bank
account to cover the down payment and closing costs.

Once you have a general idea, it can help to
play with a pre-qualification calculator. This will help
determine what you can afford. Then, you should get pre-approval for your loan
with a lender.  Pre-approval will be
based on your ability to afford a home and will review documentation proving
income, employment, and identity. The lender will also consider your credit
history. Those pieces of information will help decide how much your loan will
be and for what interest rate. You can then make a serious offer on a property.

Finances Stable

One of the first things you should know about
buying a home is to leave your bank account alone. HGTV points out that you
should try to avoid any substantial expenditures within three to six
months of your home loan application. Not only will it help you to have that
cash handy for a down payment and closing costs, lenders like to see a
reliable, stable financial situation.


Another way to enhance the appearance of your
finances is to improve your credit score. This may sound complex, but it’s
actually pretty simple. Make sure you pay your bills in a timely fashion, pay
down your debts, and keep credit card balances low. Also, don’t apply for
credit unless you really need it. Opening unnecessary accounts generally won’t
help you.

Payment Information

The traditional down payment for a mortgage is
20 percent. However, you should research the market where you plan to buy and
know the average down payment in your target area, as well as the percentage of
homes that sell under their list price. It’s also incredibly important to
determine how much house you can afford before diving in. Even if you can
afford the down payment, you might not be able to afford the mortgage


If you don’t have the money sitting in your
bank account for your home purchase, you still have some options. You can get
down payment assistance, which typically comes through
programs operated by state or local housing authorities; for example, Redfin
explains that FHA loans, VA loans, and rural housing loans can help you purchase a home if you don’t have
enough to put down. Depending on your situation, this can mean coughing up
substantially less cash for your down payment, and for some home buyers, there
may be no down payment at all.

the Home Differently

Instead of looking for your dream home, some experts recommend looking for a property
that’s a good investment. Even if you don’t intend to “flip” a house, chances
are you will move on at some point. Instead of looking for the house that most
appeals to you, you can make the most of your purchase by buying a home that
will be desirable when it comes time to sell. Look for areas that hold their
value well (ask your Realtor). Also, don’t buy the biggest and nicest home in a neighborhood. You’re
actually better off buying the worst home in the neighborhood, as it’s most apt
to give you a good return on your money.

and Smart

Thinking outside the box can help with financing a home purchase. Get a firm idea of your numbers, improve what you can, get help if you need to, and reframe your ideas for the right home to buy. Your financially savvy choices will help you become a happy homeowner!

Article by Kelli Brewer

What First Time Home Buyers Need to Know

[Article by COURTNEY CRAIG – an Atlanta-based writer and editor]

When I bought my first house, my timing couldn’t have been better: The house closing was two weeks before the lease was up on my apartment. That meant I could take my time packing and moving, and I could get to know the new place before moving in.

I recruited family and friends to help me move (in exchange for a beer-and-pizza picnic on the floor) and, as a bonus, I got to pick their brains about what first-time homeowners should know.

Their help was one of the best housewarming presents I could have gotten. And thanks to their expertise and a little Googling, here’s what I learned about what to do before moving in.

Change the locks

You really don’t know who else has keys to your home, so change the locks. That ensures you’re the only person who has access. Install new deadbolts yourself for as little as $10 per lock, or call a locksmith — if you supply the new locks, they typically charge about $20 to $30 per lock for labor.

Real estate investors could benefit from reading this article as well.  You never know how many people have a key and could possibly get into a home you are working on and swipe tools or new appliances.  The section for checking for plumbing leaks could also save a lot of money and problem solving later. Whether you are fixing up the home to resell or are going to rent the home after repairs or updating, the new buyers or tenants will want to feel comfortable that there are no leaks or pests in the home.

Read more

Smart Advice for Real Estate Investors

Property Investors Puget Sound

From the fictional Lex Luthor to the very real Donald Bren, real estate has often been considered a ripe investment opportunity for successful entrepreneurs. But what differentiates a smart real estate investment from one that’s going to turn into a disaster? What tells the best real estate moguls when to buy and when to sell? Here’s some smart advice for real estate investors. 
If you’re planning on investing in real estate because you think you’ll get rich quick, you need to think again. There have been boom times in real estate history, but the current economy is not one of them. In the 1990s, it was fairly easy to buy a property, make very quick improvements, and then flip the property, making a quick and substantial profit. After the housing bubble burst and the recession of the early part of the decade left the economy running sluggishly, real estate has been one of the last areas to rebound. If you’re looking to invest in real estate, doing your research and moving slowly will be to your benefit.

How To Buy Multifamily Properties

Are you interested in real estate investing? Wondering how to buy multifamily properties?

Before you get started with a multifamily purchase, it is a good idea to do your homework…. You don’t want surprises. Research the location of the purchase to find out how much rent you will receive? Find out how hot the rental market is in the area you are considering. Will there be multiple buyers competing for the property? If so, think about your tolerance and strategize with your realtor. Ask your realtor for a market analysis of the property. This will help you determine the most you should pay. Always have an inspection of the property to be aware of any deficiencies. Read more