Monday, 10 23rd

Last updateMon, 30 Jan 2017 4pm

PRE-QUALIFY YOUR SELF

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If you’re so afraid you won’t qualify for a mortgage that you’re afraid to apply for one, relax! Lenders say that 85% of all mortgage applicants are approved, so you are more than likely to be one of the fortunate ones. After all, banks are in the business of lending money. Unless the country is sailing through some very troubled economic waters, making mortgage money available is their job.

If you

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IMPROVEMENTS CAN BE COSTLY

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You can make a million mistakes trying to sell your own home. One of them is making the wrong improvements. Many times, an expensive addition or repair can be the kind of thing that can cost you far more than you get back.

True, the house should present a favorable appearance – mowed lawn, trimmed shrubs, and no obvious indication of neglect, but it’s rare when a large financial undertaking will bring mor

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CONDOMINIUM BENEFITS

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If owning and maintaining a home and yard is becoming less desirable now that your children have flown the nest, you may want to consider buying a condominium. In some ways, owning a condominium is like owning a home, and it can prove an equally good investment. It involves fewer maintenance responsibilities and yet can give you all the living space you’ll need.
When you buy a condominium you acquire

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AN OFFER SELLER CAN’T REFUSE

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Most people assume that the highest bidder will always get the nod from a home seller, but in many situations this is not the case. The highest bidder does not always win. A smarter seller will often accept a lower offer from someone who is certain to qualify for a mortgage rather than worry about a financially shaky buyer who might not even qualify for a loan to consummate the sale.
If the market

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DO OFFERS HAVE PRECEDENCE?

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Good news! A written offer has come in on your property. Because offers must be presented immediately, you might even be notified while out of town. This is a good reason to keep your agent apprised of your whereabouts. Leave your cell or vacation number w/your agent.
Most homeowners react by immediately asking how much the buyers are prepared to pay. However, if there are several minor provisions

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ABSENT BEFORE SETTLEMENT

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It is not unusual for a home to be vacated some time after it is sold, but before papers are passed.

In many cases, the owner relocates to a distant city and leaves the closing details in the hands of a realtor or attorney. In such a case, certain arrangements should be made before you leave. Power of attorney must be granted to the attorney who will be signing the contract for the seller.

Be sure

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HOUSE HUNT WITH ENERGY EYE

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When house hunting today, it makes sense to check into the house’s energy efficiency. Here are some items to look for:
Is the attic floor insulated with at least six inches of fiberglass or other material if it is not used space? Attic insulation of only six inches will save 14% on any annual fuel bill.
Are all windows and doors in the house weather-stripped and caulked? This simple measure can save

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REPAIRS VS IMPROVEMENTS

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What’s the difference between a repair and an improvement to your home? Actually, who cares? You should!
The tax law draws a line between repairs, which are considered non-deductible personal expenses, and improvements, which, though non-deductible, are added to the cost basis. It’s an important difference because expenditures that qualify as improvements cut the taxable gain when you sell the house. U

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