7 Sneaky Low-Rate Mortgage Tricks

If you've never bought a home before, when you first start shopping for a mortgage it might seem like the obvious way to choose a lender is to pick the one that offers the lowest mortgage rate. After all, the interest rate on your mortgage will affect both your short-term and long-term financial well-being because it will determine your monthly mortgage payment and the total amount you'll pay for your home. Little Things Make a Big Difference Consider this example: Take out Read more [...]

Fixed or Variable Rate Mortgage: Which Is Better Right Now?

As of Mar. 28, 2018, Bankrate.com's lender survey reported that mortgage rates were 4.30% for a 30-year fixed, 3.72% for a 15-year fixed, and 4.05% for the first five years on a 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM). These are national averages; mortgage rates vary by location and are highly dependent on your credit score. So the first step in deciding whether a fixed-rate mortgage or an ARM is the best choice in today's market is to talk to several lenders to find out what rate Read more [...]

Dodd-Frank Reform Could Make It Easier to Get a Mortgage

(TNS)—It should be easier for you to get a mortgage now that President Donald Trump has signed legislation that will lift lending restrictions on community banks. Congress on Tuesday voted in favor of rolling back Dodd-Frank banking rules, and Trump signed it Thursday. The reforms will ease some of the mortgage laws from the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010, a massive financial law enacted in response to the financial crisis. Thanks to the new law, more homebuyers are likely to get approval for a mortgage Read more [...]

Are Mortgage Rates Going Up? 3 Indicators to Watch

When the Federal Reserve raised the federal funds rate by 0.25% in December 2015, with the promise of more rate hikes in 2016, it was widely expected that long-term rates would follow, ending a five-year trend of flat or declining mortgage rates. The rate increases were planned based on the expectation that the economy would strengthen and inflation would resume its climb. The average 30-year fixed mortgage rate stood just below 4% before the December rate hike. And that is just Read more [...]

Avoid an Audit: 6 "Red Flags" You Should Know

If history is any indicator, fewer than 1% of Americans will be audited by the Internal Revenue Service in the coming year. And while some of the audits are totally random and unrelated to any actions by the individual taxpayer, many are triggered by actions taxpayers themselves have taken. Below is a list of "red flags" that can cause your return to be targeted by the IRS for review. Pay particular attention, as knowing what these triggers are can save you a lot of trouble and anxiety. 1.) Read more [...]

Will Your Home Remodeling Pay Off?

Remodeling certain areas of a single-family house is an excellent way for homeowners to add increased functionality and beauty to a property at someone else's expense. By choosing the right project to enhance your living space, a significant portion of the expense can be passed on to future owners in the form of increased property values. Read on to find out how you can do this. Think Before You Build The return on investment (ROI) of any given renovation project is a function of Read more [...]

Appreciation Linked to Population Rise

Appreciation and demand go hand in hand, and for investors, both are key to profit, according to a new report. Assessing the association between growing interest and mounting prices, analysts at HouseCanary found that appreciation is higher where inbound migration numbers are swelling. Boise, Idaho, for example, has had a high influx of new residents, and a corresponding increase in prices across all property types—from 2010 to 2017, Boise greeted more than 57,600 new residents, while apartments Read more [...]

Amazon Experience Centers Look to Transform Smart-Home Shopping

Amazon is making moves yet again. As a way to market its smart-home business segment without having to invest in conventional store locations, the online marketplace giant has partnered with Lennar Corporation to provide connectivity demos of Alexa-enabled products—everything from video doorbells and smart shades to lighting and scheduled deliveries—within the homebuilder’s model homes, calling these showrooms Amazon Experience Centers. “Amazon’s ability to bring a home to life with Read more [...]

Importance of home inspection contingency

Before you buy a home, one of the things you should do is to have it checked out by a professional home inspector. Yes, we can hear your objection: "Buying a home is expensive enough as it is! Why would I choose to fork over hundreds more if I'm not required to?" In this article, we'll delve into what a home inspection can reveal and whether it's worth the investment. See also: "10 Worst First-Time Homebuyer Mistakes" The Home Inspection Contingency Home inspections are used to Read more [...]

Do You Need A Home Warranty?

When you purchase a home, even a home that isn't new, there is a very good chance that you will be offered a home warranty. The seller may offer to purchase one on your behalf to provide peace of mind that any component of the home that fails can be fixed affordably. If not, you will likely receive numerous mail solicitations to purchase a home warranty once the sale closes. A home warranty may sound like a great form of financial protection against expensive, unforeseen home Read more [...]