Tips on Credit Ratings

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It’s my pleasure to have the opportunity to work with you on your home loan. While looking through some information regarding credit ratings, I found some facts you might find interesting. Enjoy!

You probably know that your credit is very important when it comes to determining mortgage eligibility. Just about everyone has something in their past credit history that’s less than perfect. The best thing to do is to learn what’s on your report, determine what impact that information has on your credit score, and work on repairing any damage or correcting any errors that may exist.

There are three main credit bureaus to which most creditors (such as credit card companies, banks and leasing agencies) provide information. Each month, your credit holders report information to the credit bureaus regarding your current balance, minimum payment requirement and payment history. It’s best to make payments regularly and timely!

If you’d like more information about credit reports, please give me a call and we can discuss this topic in more detail. And, if there’s anything else I can do for you, it would be my pleasure to be of service. I’m here to help!

Tips on Principal Balance

Tips on the Loan Process

Tip: Principal Balance!

My clients often ask me if it’s a smart idea to make additional payments toward the principal balance on a mortgage. The truth is, every person has different short- and long-term goals, and it’s a very personal decision.

Owning a home outright can be a huge financial advantage that offers guaranteed security. And, you can save thousands of dollars in interest fees by paying your loan off early. But, you’ll want to make sure you will not be adversely affected by prepayment penalties.

Some people prefer to use the extra money to create an investment portfolio. Or, you can consider paying off credit card debt, building an emergency fund, or setting money aside for your children’s college education.

What’s the best solution for you? A qualified financial planner can help you weigh out these options and make recommendations as to what choices make the most sense for you and your family.

If you’re interested, please give me a call!

Refinancing to Save Money

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If you’re considering refinancing to lower your monthly mortgage payment, there are three important questions to ask yourself before deciding on a course of action:

1.    How much money will I save?
2.    How much will it cost me to refinance?
3.    Are the savings great enough to justify the cost?

Refinancing to save money is like making an investment; you need to weigh the initial cost against your long-term savings. For instance, zero-point and no-cost refinance programs are attractive, but they may come with a higher interest rate.

There’s no reason for you to wade through all the available loan programs to figure out the one that gives you the best return on your investment. That’s my job.

Please call me at (404) 436-0013 to get started. Once I have a better understanding of your unique goals, I can research loan options for you and provide you with a comprehensive analysis. From there, we’ll drill down to the program that best meets your needs.

Understanding Home Inspections

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What you don’t know can hurt you! Home inspections are an integral part of buying a home. Insist on a professional home inspection by including it in the sales agreement, and note that the deal is contingent upon your approval of the inspection.

This won’t surprise sellers who know their home will be put under a microscope by any potential buyers. The home inspection should include detailed information about the drainage, foundation, roof, interior and exterior paint, plumbing, wiring, heating, fireplace, tile, any hazards associated with the property, and a termite report.

During the final walk-through, you’ll have a chance to examine the home to see if it’s in the same condition as it was when you made your offer, or if any negotiated repairs have been made. Don’t skip this very important step!

Please let me know if you need a referral to a qualified home inspector. I’m also available to address any questions or concerns you have about mortgage financing.

Tips on Mortgage Insurance

Tips on the Loan Process

Tip# 5: Mortgage Insurance!

It’s my pleasure to have the opportunity to work with you on your home loan. I thought you might find this information on mortgage insurance to be interesting.

Do you know what mortgage insurance is? Many people confuse it with mortgage life insurance, mortgage disability insurance, or even homeowners insurance. These are all very different types of insurance; no wonder there is such confusion!

Top BorderMortgage insurance is typically required when the down payment on a home is less than 20%. This insurance is designed to protect the lender in the event of loan default. A lower down payment causes higher the risk to the lender, and this results in a higher monthly mortgage insurance premium. 

When to Refinance

Refinancing can be a great strategy to save money or reach other financial goals. It is equally important to make sure your home provides a “safe haven” for you and your family for many years to come.

With that in mind, here are some useful tips on fire prevention.

•    Install smoke detectors on every level, especially outside bedrooms. Test them regularly and change the batteries at least once a year.

•    Have an escape plan. Everyone should be aware of two ways to exit each room to avoid walking through smoke. If that’s your only option, crawl close to the floor, where the air is cooler and cleaner.

•    Establish an outside meeting place where everyone will go if evacuation is necessary.

•    Make sure your home address is clearly visible from the street, so emergency vehicles can locate you quickly.

•    Create a 30-foot safety zone around your house that’s free of flammable vegetation.

•    Keep fire extinguishers in the kitchen and garage, and be sure everyone knows how to use them.

•    Clear the roof and gutters of leaves, needles and dried twigs.

•    Store firewood away from the house.

I hope you find these tips useful and pass them along to your friends and family. And, if you know anyone in need of a mortgage advisor, feel free to relay my contact information. I’m here to help!

Shopping for a loan?

Is there a formula that determines whether it makes sense for you to refinance? Yes and no. The math isn’t the same for everyone, but it always revolves around the payback period, and shorter is always better.

To make your calculations, we must know:

1.    Your current loan amount and interest rate
2.    The interest rate of your new loan
3.    Can the lock-in period be extended?
4.    How long you plan to stay in your home

As a general rule of thumb, you should consider refinancing if you can recoup the finance charges within 14 months.

You may have heard it only makes sense to refinance if you can lower your interest rate by 1.5 to 2 points, but I find that’s not always the case. Every situation is different, and you deserve to know what your options are.

I’d be happy to meet with you to discuss whether refinancing now makes sense for you. Let’s crunch the numbers together.