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Posted by Paul W. Cutler on 11/12/2017

You may have heard of an FHA loan, and you probably weren’t sure if you were eligible for one. FHA loans are insured by the Federal Housing Administration which is a part of the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development.  

 If you have an FHA loan, it includes special mortgage insurance which helps to protect lenders from a loss should the loan be defaulted on.  

Why An FHA Loan?


Due to the extra insurance lenders can offer these loans at an lower interest rates. These loans are also easier to qualify for. This makes affordable housing more accessible. 


Things To Know About FHA Loans


The minimum credit score depends upon the type of loan that you need.

If you have a credit score of 580 or higher, you can provide a down payment as little as 3.5% with an FHA loan. 

If your credit score is lower than 580, you are required to make a down payment of at least 10%. 

If your score is lower than 500, you may be ineligible for an FHA loan all together. 


FHA loans require a low down payment, which is why it is so enticing to buyers. While these types of loans may have limited availability, it’s good to do your research and see if you’re eligible. 


Securing The Down Payment


Generally, buyers use their own savings to make a down payment on a home. Some states have government assistance programs that provide grants to be used for a down payment on a home.  


Incentives With FHA Loans


The Federal Housing Administration has special provisions to allow sellers, builders and lenders to pay for some of the other costs incurred while buying a home including the closing costs, appraisal, credit report, or title expenses. This allows builders and sellers to provide incentives to entice buyers. This could have an effect on the interest rates associated with the loan if the lender agrees to pay these costs. Buyers can compare rates with different lenders for these purposes.            


Mortgage Insurance And FHA Approved Lenders


The Federal Housing Administration is a provider of insurance and not a lender. You must be sure that you go with an FHA approved lender in order to get your loan in check. This is where it’s important to shop around for benefits, loan standards and rates.  


The re are 2 required insurance premiums for FHA loans. The upfront premium is about 1.75% of the loan amount. This is paid at the time the loan is secured and can be financed as part of the loan amount. The second premium is the annual premium which is paid monthly and varies based on factors such as the length of the loan.  


As you can see there’s many benefits for home buyers who need additional mortgage insurance and assistance in buying a home. Talk to your lender about how you can secure an FHA loan today and make buying a home a reality. 









Tags: FHA loans   home loans   Financing  
Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by Paul W. Cutler on 11/5/2017

Is a two-car garage a luxury or an essential feature of a home? While it may not always be a top priority for first-time buyers, many seasoned homeowners consider it a "must have" item. In a lot of cases, it all boils down to expectations and what people have grown accustomed to.

Climate also plays a key role in how important a two-car garage is to you and your family. However, even if your winters are mild and your snowfall amounts are slim to nil, there are other weather conditions that a garage can shield you (and your cars) from.

Being able to park your vehicles in a protected, enclosed area is especially welcome when you have an armful of groceries, inclement weather outside, small children in tow, or an elderly parent to care for. Once you start adding up the advantages of having a two-car garage, it makes you wonder how you ever got along without one!

  • Crime deterrent: No matter where you live, if your cars are parked in your driveway or on the street overnight, they're going to be much more vulnerable to vandalism, car theft, and break-ins. From a personal safety standpoint, it can also be safer to drive into your garage, close the automatic door behind you, and go directly into your house. Even if you live in a low-crime neighborhood, safety habits are a good thing to cultivate, especially if you sometimes arrive home late at night.
  • Valuable storage space: As you acquire more possessions and your family grows, storage space becomes more of a precious commodity. In addition to protecting your vehicles from the elements, spacious garages are also great for housing lawn mowers, bicycles, barbecue grills, golf clubs, yard maintenance equipment, spare tires, gardening supplies, firewood, tools, and lawn chairs. If you don't have a backyard shed, then garage storage space is indispensable.
  • Protection From The Elements: Besides wind and rain and dark of night, other elements your cars don't need to be subjected to include the hot, baking sun, bird droppings, and air pollution. And speaking of the hot, baking sun: Keeping your cars in a cool, shady place during the hot summer months can help spare you the discomfort of having to sit down in a sweltering vehicle! For those who live in chillier climates, garages can make your morning commute just a little less bone chilling!
  • Privacy: There are a lot of benefits to being sociable with your neighbors, but it's also nice to be able to pick and choose when those social interactions takes place! Parking in your garage can provide you with an extra measure of privacy when you don't have the time (or inclination) to stop and chat.
Whether or not a 2-car garage is a "must-have" for your next home depends on your climate, your neighborhood, and what you've grown accustomed to. For some people, a one-car garage may suit their needs just fine -- especially if they only own one vehicle and have all their yard maintenance taken care of by an HOA.





Posted by Paul W. Cutler on 10/29/2017

As a home seller, you'll want to ensure all areas of your house look great. By doing so, you may be able to generate substantial interest in your house and boost your chances of a quick home sale.

Unfortunately, some home areas are tougher to clean than others. And when it comes to cleaning your attic, it may prove to be a time-consuming process to transform this space from a liability into an asset.

So what does it take to fully clean an attic? Here are three tips to help a home seller revamp an attic in no time at all.

1. Look Out for Dust and Mold.

Dust and mold can be problematic, but these issues may arise if you rarely enter your home's attic. Fortunately, a home seller who spends some time cleaning the attic can minimize dust and mold with ease.

Repair or replace any loose, broken or missing shingles in your attic. Also, check attic windows for missing caulk or cracked panes. Resolving these issues may help you prevent mold from forming.

If you encounter mold, contact a certified indoor air quality professional immediately. This professional can evaluate your attic and offer recommendations to correct the problem.

In addition, dust your attic thoroughly. This will enable you to minimize the risk that dust mites and other irritants could enter other areas of your home.

2. Get Rid of Unwanted Items.

From holiday decorations to family photo albums, your attic may be filled with a broad assortment of items. And if you remove clutter from your attic today, you may be able to save time after you sell your residence.

Go through your attic belongings and separate the essential items from the non-essential ones. That way, as moving day approaches, you won't have to rush to get rid of non-essential items.

Furthermore, wear rubber gloves, eye protection and a dust mask any time you clean or organize your attic. This will enable you to stay safe as you work.

3. Collaborate with Your Real Estate Agent.

Does your attic require a complete overhaul? If so, you may need professional cleaning support, and your real estate agent can put you in touch with the right cleaning company instantly.

Your real estate agent will do what it takes to help your home stand out in the eyes of homebuyers. He or she can offer attic cleaning recommendations and general cleaning tips, guaranteeing you should have no trouble creating a dazzling home interior.

When it comes to selling your home, it is easy to ignore your attic. However, a home seller who performs extensive attic cleaning may be able to differentiate his or her residence from others – something that is exceedingly important in a highly competitive real estate market.

Take advantage of the aforementioned attic cleaning tips – you'll be happy you did! If you revamp your attic, you could improve your chances of maximizing the value of your residence and accelerating the home selling process.




Tags: attic   cleaning tips  
Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by Paul W. Cutler on 10/22/2017

If you're selling a home, hiring a real estate agent who acts as a comprehensive marketer is essential – and perhaps it is easy to understand why.

For home sellers, an ineffective marketer may struggle to promote your residence to the right groups of homebuyers. This may cause you to miss out on opportunities to highlight your house to potential property buyers, resulting in a prolonged home selling cycle.

Ultimately, there are many signs that a real estate agent understands what it takes to market your residence effectively, including:

1. A real estate agent is ready to host home showings and open houses.

Home showings and open houses enable property buyers to get an up-close look at your residence. That way, property buyers can envision what life would be like if they purchase your house.

Typically, a real estate agent will want to host as many home showings and open houses as possible This housing market professional will be available to set up home showings at property buyers' convenience. Meanwhile, he or she also will promote open houses via social media and other channels to stir up plenty of interest from potential property buyers.

2. A real estate agent knows how to showcase your residence online.

A real estate agent may insist on hiring a professional photographer to take pictures of your home's interior or exterior. This ensures you can provide homebuyers with crisp, clear images via myriad online channels to show the true beauty of your house.

Moreover, a real estate agent may use Facebook, Twitter and other social networks to promote your residence. Social media enables this housing market professional to reach thousands of potential property buyers and may help you generate significant interest in your home quickly.

3. A real estate agent allocates the necessary time and resources to track his or her marketing efforts.

What good is a marketing campaign if a marketer is unable to define its success? A real estate agent who is a great marketer understands the importance of metrics and will measure his or her marketing successes and failures.

A real estate agent should be able to keep you informed at each stage of the home selling cycle. He or she can provide updates about whether homebuyers are interested in checking out your home and any feedback from homebuyers as well.

In addition, a real estate agent is unafraid to adjust the way that he or she promotes your home. With the right metrics in place, this housing market professional will be able to find out whether homebuyers are interested in your property and modify his or her marketing efforts accordingly.

When it comes to selling your home, working with a real estate agent who knows the importance of effective marketing can make a world of difference. With a successful marketer at your disposal, you can boost your chances of speeding up the home selling process and getting the best price for your house.





Posted by Paul W. Cutler on 10/15/2017

Closet space is a finite resource that there never seems to be quite enough of. If you're like me and live in a small house, your closet might double as a storage space as well. That doesn't leave much room for unnecessary clothes. You may have heard of the recent trend dubbed "capsule wardrobes." A capsule wardrobe is, at its core, a way of simplifying your wardrobe while still enjoying the selection of clothing you have. Since it went viral on the internet, however, many people have taken this minimalistic idea and overcomplicated it. Let's face it, none of us are about to throw away most of our clothes to try out a method that we might hate. So, let's take smaller steps toward creating more space in the closet without feeling like you're throwing out things you love.

Step 1: What do you wear?

Before you throw away anything, set aside the articles of clothing you wear the most. That includes your work clothes, night clothes, and your favorite outfits to go out in. There's a good chance that you'll be left with a lot of clothes, shoes, and accessories that don't match your other clothes or you have outfits for special occasions that hardly ever get worn.

Step 2: Asking the hard questions

It's time to get real. With the clothes that you don't wear on a weekly basis in front of you, ask yourself these questions:
  • Does it fit?
  • Is it still my style?
  • Do I have something similar that I like better?
  • If I saw this in a store right now would I buy it again?
If you have clothes that don't meet those criteria, there's a good chance they won't be missed.

Step 3: Versatile clothing

There are certain colors and fabrics that are just more versatile than others--neutral colors that match just about anything, khakis that can be worn casually or business-casual, and so on. Choose the clothes you have that you can make the most outfits with. Try them on and find out which combinations you like. You might find that some articles of clothing, while they look great on their own, just don't really have much potential for creating outfits.

Step 4: Plan outfits you get excited about

To really feel confident moving forward you're going to need to be excited about your selection. Spread out your outfit combinations on the floor and take some photos. This will help you remember which combinations of clothing you love so you don't get cold feet when it comes time to part ways with your old clothing.

Step 5: Don't be wasteful

You'll feel much better about getting rid of that pile of old clothes and shoes if you feel like it's for a good purpose. Sure, you have the benefit of more closet space, but in addition you can sometimes get even more out of the deal. If you have a consignment shop or second-hand clothing store in your area, you could get money or a tax write-off in exchange for your items. Or, you could always donate your clothes to a thrift store that uses their profits for a good cause.




Tags: closet   space   save space   wardrobe   clothes   clothing  
Categories: Uncategorized  




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