31 03, 2022

Tips for a Budget Smart Home

2022-06-01T13:55:26+00:00March 31st, 2022|Tips & Advice|

A new generation of household devices have been designed to make your life easier through your home’s internet connection. This “internet of things” as the trend is called can transform your house into a smart hub that saves you valuable time and money with minimal effort. Though many of these new technological wonders carry a hefty price tag, filling your house with voice-enabled, wi-fi-ready gadgets doesn’t have to break the bank. Here are five simple ways to create the smart home of your dreams on a budget.

Choose a Platform

Your smart home plan begins with choosing which brand of technology to base your system around. Most of the major players in today’s tech market produce their own brand of smart assistant, which can serve as the hub for the rest of your connected devices. Be sure to research the various brands and the technologies found within their ecosystems ahead of time to be sure you’re getting the ideal setup for you. For instance, if installing a smart lock on your door is a priority for your home, be sure that the technology is available on your chosen platform before committing to any purchase.

Install Wi-Fi Boosters

All the smart-enabled tech in the world won’t do you any good if it can’t connect to your home’s Wi-Fi. Make sure every corner of your home is bathed in a strong wireless internet signal by installing Wi-Fi boosters throughout your rooms according to the manufacturer’s recommendation. Like all the technology you select, try to purchase boosters that share a common brand with your other components to make connectivity a breeze.

Replace Traditional Bulbs with Smart Bulbs

Now that you’ve got the basic infrastructure in place, a good first step in setting up your smart home is the installation of smart bulbs. […]

17 03, 2022

Special Mortgage Rates for First Responders

2022-11-30T20:59:45+00:00March 17th, 2022|Buying a home|

Our communities depend on the brave men and women who answer the call when others are in need. First responders come in many forms, but they’re always there when trouble strikes. We can never offer enough thanks to the selfless individuals who work day in and day out responding to emergencies. That’s why a special program exists offering reduced mortgage rates to our valued first responders.

If you’re a first responder, member of the US armed services, a teacher, or work in public service in another form, you could qualify for a special rate on your home loan. The Ohio Housing Finance Agency’s (OHFA) Ohio Heroes program rewards Ohio residents who serve the public with a discounted mortgage interest rate.

To qualify for a discounted rate through this program, potential borrowers must meet the following criteria:

  • Must meet income and purchase price limits.
  • Must meet debt to income ratios for your loan type.
  • Must meet credit score requirements.
    • Conventional, USDA, VA and FHA 203(k) Loans: 640 credit score or higher
    • FHA Loans (Non-203(k)): 660 credit score or higher
  • Must work in one of the following careers:
    • Veterans, active-duty military members or members of reserve components (including surviving spouses)
    • Police officers, firefighters, volunteer firefighters, EMTs and paramedics
    • Physicians, nurse practitioners, nurses (RN and LPN) and STNAs
    • Teachers (pre-K through grade 12), administrators and counselors

Homebuyers who choose an Ohio Heroes loan can also qualify for down payment assistance through the program. This assistance is forgiven after seven years of homeownership. Should the purchaser sell or refinance the home within seven years, the full amount of the assistance must be repaid.

Of lenders in the state who take part in this program, First Ohio ranks number two for mortgages issued! If you believe you could qualify or […]