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- “Hidden” Costs of Homeownership
Category Archives: b-Tips
I have held the same Job for 25 years, but I have some negative payment history. Can I still purchase a home in the South Bay.
Employment status or employment history has nothing to do with your credit score, but some lenders may review it to determine if you are stable enough to repay a loan.
Your income has nothing to do with credit scores. Your savings has nothing to do with your FICO’s credit scoring equation. However, some lenders may consider these factors to determine the likelihood that you will default on a loan.
I cannot get a loan due to poor credit. This is not true. There are many lenders who give loans for bad credit but charge high interest rates.
Bad Credit never goes away. With sound debt-management practices, the negative marks will eventually vanish. Late payments, bankruptcies, foreclosures and collections typically remain on your credit report for seven years. (The exceptions are Chapter 7 bankruptcies and tax liens, which remain for 10 years and indefinitely, respectively.)
All Credit scores are created equal. Each of the three major credit bureaus produces a FICO score based on the information it has about your credit history. Continue reading
Ask these questions:
Why am I remodeling?
How much do I want to spend?
Is the remodeling for my pleasure or to upgrade for reselling?
Make out a budget following these guidelines:
On a $400,000 Home, You will want to cap at $60,000 for remodeling using the following percentages.
Finished attic account for 10-15%
½ bath= 5%, bathrooms,
Full bath: 5-10%
Kitchen 10-15% of the property value.
Photo courtesy of DIY Network
Photo courtesy of DIY Network
Once you have devised a budget, interview General contractors, asking for copies of their licenses and insurances, including workman’s comp. Make your choice, sign the contract and you are on your way to a beautiful like new Torrance home. Continue reading
I am a first time buyer and am confused about many aspects of the buying process in California. Just how many different agencies are involved when you purchase a home in this state? There are 5 different Companies you will be dealing with, each having a very important part in the transfer of property. Your Realtor-what is referred to as a buyer’s agent Appraiser- An appraiser is licensed under the state real estate commission who evaluates the house and property that is to be purchased for the Lender. The appraised value of the house is what the lender will go by for the mortgage loan. Home inspector- An inspector is usually a building contractor or specialist. This inspector should be hired by you, the purchaser, to “inspect” the structure, plumbing, electrical and roofing to insure that the house being purchased is in good working and safe condition. Mortgage Lender- this is either a bank or a other lending institution who will carry the loan(Trust deed) on the property. Escrow officer-A third party who holds any money transfers in a trust account until closing and gathers all pertinent documents concerning the property. Traditionally, the Escrow Company is where you will sign all the documents and close the deal. Title company- does a search of the property for any liens or other encumbrances. They insure that the property’s title is “Clear” Continue reading
If your credit report is not good, you will not be able to get a loan or your interest rate and fees will be high. Continue reading
Good news for the South Bay Real Estate Market. Well Fargo has lowered its FICO score standards from 640 to 600. This means that more people can qualify for mortgage loans that do not have perfect credit. You can be pretty sure that other lending institutions will follow the lead of Wells Fargo.
“The goal is to increase access to credit, especially for low- and moderate- income borrowers and first-time home buyers,” said Tom Goyda, a bank spokesman. “These are fully underwritten, fully documented loans, consistent with FHA program guidelines and responsible lending principles.” Continue reading
I know that it seems like all you are doing is putting out money and you do to even own the home yet. But this is a must do expense. I do prefer that clients use their own inspector so they are totally comfortable with the results. The best thing to do is ask friends and acquaintance for recommendations. Be sure you get references from the Inspector and check them out. You want a licensed and certified master inspector.
This cost you a few hundred dollars, but is well worth the money. You could negotiate with seller to see if they will pay for the inspection. After all it is their property they are trying to sell to you as your dream home. Lets make sure it is not a money pit. Below are the area of the home inspection.
Roofing and Exterior Inspection
HVAC, Plumbing and Electrical Inspection
Insulation and Ventilation Inspection
Insist the property is inspected for dangerous molds.
Be sure a get a copy of the report and keep it for your records.
According to the the California Association of Realtors Los Angeles presently has a very tight real estate market. Stating that it is even tighter that the San Francisco market. An example of this is that in March, there was a 2.7-month supply of available houses in Los Angeles County and houses were only on the market for an average of 31.5 days. Statewide, inventory was down 36 percent from last year and the availability of homes priced below $300k plunged more than 50 percent from the previous year.” Continue reading
If you are thinking of selling your home and wanting to repaint to attract buyers, then you’ll want to know what colors to avoid. Check out these great tips from Realtor Magazine The Worst Colors to Use in a Home On … Continue reading
The New York Times published this … If you are considering a loan modification or a short sale, you will need to proved a HARDSHIP LETTER. Writing the “hardship letter” Homeowners having trouble paying their mortgage are often required to … Continue reading
Whenever I mix 5-gallon buckets of paint with a drill and paddle attachment, I put the paddle’s shaft through a hole in a large cardboard square before attaching the shaft to the drill. Then I lay the cardboard directly on the container before turning on the drill. No splatters!
Tidy Patio Joint Filler
Here’s an easy way to fill joints between pavers or patio flagstones: Simply take an empty screw-top wine bottle and punch a hole in the top of the cap near its edge. Fill the bottle with sand, mortar mix, or polymeric sand; screw on the cap; and pour the contents into the joints rather than on the pavers. There’s no waste and no cleanup.
Photographic Memory Aid
When I’m taking apart something that I need to put back together, I take pictures at each step of the disassembly. Then I arrange the photos in reverse order to see step-by-step how to reassemble it.
Here’s a quick way to inflate any small pneumatic tire after it’s gone flat. Tie a rope tightly around the circumference of the tire, then use plumber’s putty to seal the edge where the rubber meets the wheel rim. Now you can pump up the tire and untie the rope. Simple as that. Continue reading