Monthly Archives: July 2017

//July
24 07, 2017

Refinancing Qualifications

July 24th, 2017|Blog|

If you are a homeowner or even make payments on your car loan then you have probably been approached about an option to refinance your loan. Refinancing is simply financing your home or automobile again at different loan terms, usually at a lower interest rate. For most homeowners, this is a good idea if rates drop significantly lower than what they current have. Refinancing can mean a savings of $100 or more per month depending on the loan terms and this is significant for anyone living within a strict budget. Refinancing, however, is not available to everyone. There are certain criteria that must be met in order to refinance.

  1. Do you hold at least 20% stake in your equity? – Your lender will likely want to see that you have a significant amount invested into your equity, usually 20% is ideal. To determine the amount of equity you have, divide the principal amount that you are trying to borrow by the value of your home. (Example: Your home is valued at $300,000 and you want to borrow $200,000, you have a loan-to-value ratio of .66 or 67%. This means that you have a 33% equity position in the home. If your mortgage is backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac you may be able to qualify for federal programs to help you refinance without having a 20% equity in the home.
  2. Do you have a good credit score? – Most lenders require a minimum score of 600 to 650 to approve refinancing applicants while some lenders (credit unions and banks) look for scores of 720 or above. It is important to remember that the breakdown of your credit score comes from five different factors, payment history (35% of your score), utilization (30%), length of credit history […]
12 07, 2017

The Phases of Home Ownership

July 12th, 2017|General|

Homeownership is an immensely exciting process and lifetime achievement. Whether you live in one or two houses during your life or bounce around to five or six, you are likely to experience the following stages of homeownership. We want to help our first-time buyers know what to experience in each phase.

Buying Your First Home

You have packed up your old place, the moving boxes are ready and the sold sign is in front of the house. It is time to start unpacking in your new home and really get to know the place. If you are moving into a new home, chances are you are upgrading from renting an apartment or condo. It may feel like you need to fill all the extra space right away, but it is helpful to really live in the space and get to know it before you rush out to buy new things. The same rule applies for making major renovations, obviously there will be things that need done pretty quickly after you move in. Wait until you have lived in the space for a little bit before knocking down walls or taking on major renovations.

A House Becomes a Home

The unpacking phase may take a couple months or years for some rooms but once you get all that done, start decorating and getting to know the neighborhood, your house starts to feel like a home. At this point, you know where everything goes, have your local hangouts and your favorite spots and you have created memories thus far. You have grown to know and love the unique features of your home.

Project Time

This is often when people take advantage of the equity you have gained as a homeowner. If you purchased an older home, […]

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