Financing

Found 26 blog entries about Financing.

for rent sign

Source: HomeOwnershipMatters.realtor

Fast Fact: First and last month’s rent, plus deposit, is a significant chunk of cash. Scammers know it, and have mastered the art of stealing it.

It’s tough enough to find an affordable rental in today’s tight market, so when you see that oh-it-looks-perfect place for an even more perfect price, take a closer look. It could be a scam. To avoid being a victim, ask yourself these 5 questions.

  • Does the landlord or agent say they’re unable to meet you at the property?
    Scammers often say they’re out of the country, on a mission, etc. Instead they’ll send pictures and offer to send keys if you send payment. The keys won’t let you in.
  • Are they rushing you?
    Scammers try to rush you into sending them
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Image of cyber hacker with laptop

Phishing, hacking, wire fraud  these are all ways people attempt to steal from others online. As real estate searches and transactions move more and more online, the chances of being caught up in a cyber scam have become even greater.

“By now most people have heard of the Nigerian prince scams or phishing emails asking for social security or banking information, but many people don’t know that they need to watch out for possible scams when buying or selling their home,” said Jon Schnoor, 2016 President of the Greater Albuquerque Association of Realtors®. “Cybercrimes have become increasingly sophisticated over the years and the people perpetrating them focus on situations where a lot of money is changing hands, making real estate transactions an

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 Reviewing a contract

By Eva Medcroft, Editor for NewMexicoHomeSearch.com

In 2010, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau was created under the Dodd-Frank Act. The purpose was to create a 21st century agency that helps consumer finance markets work by making rules more effective, by consistently and fairly enforcing those rules, and by empowering consumers to take more control over their economic lives.

When financing a home, CFPB’s goal is to ensure home buyers are engaged, prepared and knowledgeable so they are more likely to achieve successful, sustained homeownership.

To empower home-buying consumers with the information they need to make informed mortgage choices, the CFPB has implemented of the TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure rule, which is often

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Couple looking at tablet with their realtor

By: G. M. Filisko
Source: Houselogic

By knowing how much mortgage you can handle, you can ensure that homeownership will fit in your budget.

Homeownership should make you feel safe and secure, and that includes financially. Be sure you can afford your home by calculating how much of a mortgage you can safely fit into your budget.

Why not just take out the biggest mortgage a lender says you can have? Because your lender bases that number on a formula that doesn’t consider your current and future financial and personal goals.

Think ahead to major life events and consider how those might influence your budget. Do you want to return to school for an advanced degree? Will a new child add day care to your monthly expenses? Does a relative plan to

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Pile of money

By: Donna Fuscaldo
Source: HouseLogic

Energy tax credits on select improvements available through the end of tax year 2016.

If you upgraded one or more of the following systems last year, you may be eligible to take a tax credit -- up to $500 -- on your return.

  • Biomass stoves
  • Heating, ventilation, air conditioning
  • Insulation 
  • Roofs (metal and asphalt)
  • Water heaters (non-solar)
  • Windows, doors, and skylights

The energy tax credits are small, but at least a credit is better than a deduction:

  • Deductions just reduce your taxable income.
  • With a credit, you get a dollar-for-dollar reduction in your tax liability: If you get the $500 credit, you pay $500 less in taxes.

Limits on IRS energy tax credits besides

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Trading money for a key

Be prepared and know who's responsible for the variety of fees and expenses at the closing table.

  Buyer Cost Seller Cost Other
Down Payment      
Loan origination      
Points paid to receive a lower interest rate      
Home inspection      
Appraisal      
Credit report      
Mortgage insurance premium      
Escrow for homeowner's insurance
(if paid as part of the mortgage*)
     
Property tax escrow
(if paid as part of the mortgage*)
     
Deed recording      
Title insurance policy premiums      
Land survey      
Notary Fees  
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Couple standing in front of house

The tax deductions you’re eligible to take for mortgage interest* and property taxes greatly increase the financial benefits of home ownership. Let’s work through a hypothetical situation to see how it works.

If we assume the following:

$9,877 Mortgage interest paid (a loan of $150,000 for 30 years, at 7 percent, using year-five interest)
+$2,700  Property taxes (at 1.5 percent on $180,000 assessed value)
=$12,577 Total deduction

Then, multiply your total deduction by your tax rate.**

For example, at a 28 percent tax rate: $12,577 x 0.28 = $3,521.56

$3,521.56 = Amount by which you have lowered your federal income tax

*Mortgage interest may not be deductible on loans over $1.1 million. In addition, deductions are decreased when total

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Property tax folders

It’s natural for the sale price of a home to loom large in your mind. But don’t forget to look at what your property tax bill might be.

What is the assessed value of the property?

Assessed value is generally less than market value. A recent copy of the seller’s tax bill will help you determine this information.

How often are properties reassessed in this area?

In general, this will happen annually, but properties in areas of slower growth may be reassessed less often.

When was the last reassessment done on this property?

Most significant tax increases on an individual property can be linked to when that property was last reassessed.

Will the sale of the property trigger a tax increase?

Depending upon where you live, the

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Woman reviewing financial documents

Develop a budget: Use receipts and your banking transaction history to create a budget that reflects your actual habits over the last several months. This approach will better factor in unexpected expenses alongside more predictable costs such as utility bills and groceries. You’ll probably spot ways to save, whether it’s cutting out a Starbucks run or eating dinner at home more often.

Reduce debt: Lenders generally look for a debt load of no more than 36 percent of income. This figure includes your mortgage, which typically ranges between 25 and 28 percent of your net household income. So you need to get monthly payments on the rest of your installment debt—car loans, student loans, and revolving balances on credit cards — down to between 8 and 10

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Man holding credit score card

Credit scores play a big role in determining whether you’ll qualify for a loan and what your loan terms will be. So, keep your credit score high by doing the following:

Check for errors in your credit report.

Thanks to an act of Congress, you can download one free credit report each year at annualcreditreport.com. If you find any errors, correct them immediately.

Pay down credit card bills.

If possible, pay off the entire balance every month. Transferring credit card debt from one card to another could lower your score.

Don’t charge your credit cards to the max.

Pay down as much as you can every month.

Wait 12 months after credit difficulties to apply for a mortgage.

You’re penalized less severely for problems after a year.

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