Mary Foley Real Estate Inc.
Mary Foley Real Estate Inc.


Posted by Mary Foley Real Estate Inc. on 3/24/2020

For those who want to simplify the homebuying process, crafting a budget is ideal. Because if you tailor your house search to your finances, you can eliminate the risk of spending beyond your means to acquire your dream residence.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you budget for the homebuying journey.

1. Analyze Your Financial Situation

Request a copy of your credit report Ė you'll be glad you did. You are eligible to receive a free copy of your credit report annually from each of the three credit reporting bureaus (Equifax, Experian and TransUnion). Once you have your credit report, you can assess your credit score and take steps to improve it as needed.

Getting your credit report can help you identify outstanding debt and other financial issues that may make it tough to acquire a house. If you can correct these issues today, you can eliminate the risk that they could impact your ability to buy your dream residence in the near future.

2. Consider Your Homebuying Expenses

The price of a home is one of many financial considerations that a buyer will need to evaluate during the property buying journey. Fortunately, if you map out your homebuying expenses, you can ensure that you'll have the finances available to cover these costs as you pursue your dream home.

For example, a property inspection may be used to assess a house's condition before you finalize a home purchase. This inspection will require you to hire a professional home inspector, so you will need to make sure you have the money available to cover the cost of this homebuying expense.

You should consider home closing costs as well. And if you start saving for home closing fees and other homebuying expenses, you won't have to worry about scrambling to get the money to cover these costs as you navigate the property buying journey.

3. Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage

Pre-approval for a mortgage is a must, regardless of your homebuying goals. If you meet with a variety of banks and credit unions, you can analyze your home financing options and select a mortgage that suits you perfectly.

Banks and credit unions are happy to teach you about different types of mortgages and how each type of mortgage works. Plus, if you have any mortgage questions, banks and credit unions are ready to respond to your queries right away.

As you prepare to pursue your dream house, you also may want to hire a real estate agent. In addition to helping you streamline your search for your ideal residence, a real estate agent can put you in touch with the top mortgage professionals in your area, help you plan ahead for various homebuying expenses and much more.

If you want to conduct a successful home search, it may be a good idea to prepare a homebuying budget. Thanks to the aforementioned tips, you can craft a homebuying budget so you can accelerate the process of acquiring your dream house.




Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by Mary Foley Real Estate Inc. on 3/17/2020

Whether youíre bringing home a new puppy or adopting an adult dog, your new 4-legged friend is sure to be a part of the family. Just as you would when bringing home a new baby, youíll want to make preparations to your space for both you and your dogís safety.  You donít want to overlook anything and then have you or your pet get hurt. As a rule of thumb: Anything that you would protect a baby from you should protect a dog from. These dangers include:


  • Chemicals
  • Prescription medications
  • Small parts that can be ingested
  • Cleaning supplies
  • Hazardous houseplants
  • Chocolate/candy
  • Steep stairways


Keep your furry friend healthy and save yourself from costly vet bills by taking precautions. Simple measures can make a big difference. Safety items that you can use to help protect both you and your pet are:


  • Gates
  • Power strip covers
  • Locks for cabinets
  • Keep pills, candy, and chemicals on high shelves that canít be reached
  • Cord wranglers


These little devices can prevent your dog from chewing or getting into hazardous things. Itís also a good idea to protect dogs from steep falls on stairways and decks by blocking certain areas off. Since many dogs donít know what to keep out of their snouts, you want to think like a dog and know that if they can chew it, they will!  


Keep Your Dog Out Of The Trash


Dogs tend to like to see what they can find in the trash. If you get a trashcan that canít be accessed by dogs, you wonít need to worry. A hidden trashcan in a cabinet or island can help to alleviate this problem. You can also get a can with a lid that canít be easily popped off.


Keep The Dogís Access To A Minimum


If your dog is home alone all day while youíre at work you may want to close doors or put up gates in order to restrict the dog to a certain area of the house. This way, the dog will know his place and wonít be able to cause any kind of damage.     

 

Keep Clutter To A Minimum


Clutter is dangerous to both humans and dogs alike. If you know a dog is bound to chew things, put it away! Keeping floors and pathways clean also protects both you and your pet from tripping. Staying organized is also a positive for everyone in the house.  


If you always think with safety in mind when you have a dog, youíll keep both you and your pet safe in your home the whole year through.   

     




Tags: pets   Dog safety  
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Posted by Mary Foley Real Estate Inc. on 3/10/2020

If youíve been considering taking the next step toward homeownership, youíve likely heard about FHA loans. Offered by the Federal Housing Administration (hence, ďFHAĒ), these loans are great for a number of people hoping to purchase a home but who donít have a large down payment saved.

There are many misconceptions about FHA loans since theyíre often advertised by large, private mortgage lenders but are technically a government program. In order to clear up some of the confusion, weíve provided answers to some frequently asked questions regarding FHA loans.

Read on to learn about FHA loans and how they might help you purchase a home.

Who issues an FHA loan?

FHA loans arenít issued by the government. Rather, theyíre issued by private lenders but insured, or ďguaranteed,Ē by the government.

Since lenders want to make sure theyíll see a positive return from lending to you, they typically want you to have a high credit score and a large down payment (typically 20%). However, not everyone is able to meet those requirements. In this situation, the FHA is able to help you acquire a loan by giving your lender a guarantee.

Are there different types of FHA loans?

Yes. In fact, there are nine distinct types of loans guaranteed by the FHA. These include fixed rate mortgages, adjustable rate mortgages, refinance loans, reverse mortgages, VA loans, and more.

What do you need to qualify for an FHA loan?

Itís a common misconception that you need to be a first-time buyer to qualify for an FHA loan. However, if you have previously owned a home that was foreclosed on or if youíve filed for bankruptcy, the foreclosure and bankruptcy have to be at least three years old.

Youíll also need to demonstrate a stable employment history, usually including two years of employment with the same employer.

Finally, the FHA will ask you for your current and previous addresses, the last two years tax returns, and the W-2 forms from any of your recent jobs.

What is the most I can borrow with an FHA loan?

The FHA sets mortgage limits on loans depending on the state and county youíll be living in. For a single-family home, the limit ranges from $275,000 to $451,000. So be sure to check the limits for your state and county.

Can you refinance an FHA loan?

Refinancing a loan is a great way to receive a lower interest rate or to shorten the term of their mortgage to save in the total number of interest payments. In fact, the FHA typically only allows refinancing when it will result in lower interest payments on a loan.

What is the minimum credit score needed to qualify for an FHA loan?

While you donít need excellent credit to qualify for a loan, the FHA will require you to have a score of at least a 580. You can check your score for free online from a number of companies, such as Mint or Credit Karma. Be aware, however, that scores vary between credit bureaus. So, itís a good idea to check your FICO score once per year, which is the score used by mortgage lenders.




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Posted by Mary Foley Real Estate Inc. on 3/8/2020

SOUGHT AFTER LOCATION!! THREE BEDROOM COLONIAL SITED ON .52 ACRES BUILT IN 1995. HOME OFFERS THREE BEDROOMS UPSTAIRS WITH WALK-IN CLOSET IN MASTER. FIRST FLOOR HAS A SPACIOUS KITCHEN WITH BREAKFAST BAR, SEPARATE DINING ROOM, LARGE LIVING ROOM WITH FIREPLACE THAT LEADS OUT TO A PRIVATE DECK. FULL BASEMENT COULD EASILY BE FINISHED. HOME IS EQUIPPED WITH A SECURITY SYSTEM AND HAS A TWO CAR ATTACHED GARAGE.

More Info on this Property | New Listing Alerts





Posted by Mary Foley Real Estate Inc. on 3/3/2020

Image by Monster Ztudio from Shutterstock

It's time to find the perfect place of your own but becoming a property investor has one significant roadblock: a down payment. Itís something that can stop potential home buyers in their tracks.

While winning the lottery or inheriting a windfall would be fabulous, you donít need those luxuries before you can buy a home. What you do need is a budget that gives you a strategy for saving while still attending to daily expenses. The challenge is that once you create the budget, you must protect it from the temptation to stray from it while you work toward homeownership.

Here are some proven savings tips AND the budget-busters to avoid along the way:

Strategies for Saving

Detached account. While it seems obvious, many people lack even one savings account. If you already have an account, open a separate one specifically for your down payment. Make sure that it is detached from your other accounts. Having a savings account designated specifically for your down payment may get you to think before dipping into it whenever other expenses arise.

Different bank. You can open an account at the same institution where you have a checking account but doing so makes it easy to move money back into your spending account. Open an account at a credit union or savings bank to which you'd have to make a special trip to remove funds.

Direct deposit. Have the down payment part of your paycheck deposited directly to your savings account. You'll avoid having immediate access to it. If you don't see it in your checking account, you are less likely to spend it.

Establish a Budget

Now that you have established a place to save funds, you need to create a budget to handle your remaining income. Many online programs will help you to create a budget and keep track of your spending. They are often free or low fee to use, and some give you access to a financial planner at a small cost. Here are some to get you started:

Mint.

Budget Simple.

Every Dollar.

YNAB.

Budget Busters

Many people resist living by a budget because it feels too restrictive. The notion that your budget monitors your spending keeps many from reaching even first-level financial goals. Money is a tool to help you get what you truly desire. If you wish to own a home, eliminate these budget-busters that will keep you from getting there:

Overpriced drinks. If your caffeine habit racks up more than $10 every day, consider cutting that expense in half. If you saved five dollars each day, you could add $1825 to your down payment account by yearís end.

Eating out. Just like a daily coffee break, restaurants and fast food meals can easily break a budget. Studies show the average American spends over $250 each month eating out. If that sounds like you, eat out half as often and bank another $125 each month. Over 12 months, thatís $1500 more towards your down payment.

Clothes. Many offices allow casual dress so spending on clothes for work might not be necessary. If you work in an environment that requires professional attire, purchase a few high-quality pieces that you can style in different ways with lower-cost items.

Expensive vacations. The travel bug bites in every season. Even a cheap flight with a hotel and rental car can result in a fairly large expense. Instead, you may opt for a getaway that is within driving distance while youíre working through your savings plan.

These budget-busters could add up to $6000 or more annually. That could be enough to qualify for a down payment when using an FHA loan. Add to that a portion of any extra money you receive throughout the months for bonuses, birthdays, holidays, rebates, and tax refunds, and your down payment account can grow significantly in just one year.