Category: Mortgage

19 May 2017

Do you wanna buy a house? Here’s step 2: How much can you afford?

We see you, potential homebuyer. Once you decided to stop renting and start looking for a place to call your own, you’ve been crusin’ through Pinterest’s home section like it’s your job. And good thing your dream home board has unlimited storage because you’re definitely saving every other pin, all the while adding to your ever-evolving can’t live without list. While compiling no less than 4,756 photos of updated, craftsman-style, open floor plan bungalows is certainly a fun step in the home buying process, a more important exercise in this stage of the game is figuring out just how much house you can afford.  Don’t worry, it’s not as scary as it sounds--here’s how to make sure your dream home doesn’t...
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3 Mar 2017

Tax deductions for homeowners

You’ve known this was coming; all the same, familiar signs have been haunting you for weeks.  And after driving around seeing folks dressed up in teal green robes waving frantically as you speed by, and receiving shiny flyers with Uncle Sam angrily pointing in your direction--you can’t ignore the facts anymore: It’s tax time, ready or not. But don’t sweat it too much, because as a homeowner you’ll likely be able to qualify for tax deductions related to owning a home. Not quite sure what deductions apply to you? For expert advice, I talked with Lisa Green, VP of Loan Origination with Allen Tate Mortgage to learn about the different deductions available to homeowners. Mortgage interest “The largest tax break available to homeowners...
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14 Feb 2017

5 tips for getting the right mortgage for you

Shopping for a home? Then you are likely shopping for a mortgage. But there’s no need to panic or even worry. I recently spoke to Chris Cope, President of Allen Tate Mortgage, and he gave me some tips to share on how you can make sure you get the right mortgage for your situation. 1) Start shopping by getting referrals. These referrals could be from a friend who had a good experience, or from professionals like your Realtor, your builder, or even from your attorney, accountant or financial adviser. “I would always look for a relationship-based referral with an emphasis on trust, relatability and experience. You want someone who will be there with you, application to closing, and every step in between,”...
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27 Jan 2017

#FBF Before closing, don’t do these 5 things

You’re approved! The contract is signed on the house, the closing date is set and you are ready to go! But hold on. Don’t go buying new appliances for the new house or a new car for the new commute just yet! Why? Because your credit is monitored right up to the day you sign the contract. Lenders will question any big transaction or change in financial status until you have the keys in hand. So be aware that not only is a credit check run when you apply for a mortgage, but another is run just before you close. So avoid these 5 things before closing on your home—or risk losing it before it’s even yours! Don't change your job status. Banks...
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28 Dec 2016

Real Estate resolutions for 2017

  What positive changes do you plan to make in 2017? If you are looking to lose weight, stop smoking or eat healthier, we wish you well, but we probably can’t help you. But here are a few “real estate resolutions” to consider that can save you time, money, frustration or all of the above in the New Year: I will only buy or sell a home with the assistance of a professional Realtor (ideally, an Allen Tate Realtor®). Unless you have previous experience in real estate (and even if you do), going the For Sale by Owner (FSBO) route is just a bad idea. Real estate can be complicated and even a simple mistake can be costly. You need a professional. ...
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28 Sep 2016

Some Closing Thoughts on Closings

A common question I often hear from homebuyers is this: How much closing costs will I need to pay? First of all, good question. A smart homebuyer asks questions to fully understand the process and their financial and legal obligations. But while many people have purchased a home - or multiple homes - few can actually detail what they paid in closing costs (without digging out paperwork.) Here are the basics. Every mortgage loan has closing costs. They can be paid by the borrower, the lender or a combination. Sometimes, the seller even agrees to pay a portion of the closing costs. If the mortgage lender pays the closing costs, the borrower will pay a higher interest rate. The rate will depend on...
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8 Aug 2016

Single in search of a dream home

If you’re single and looking to buy a home, you’re not alone. According to the National Association of Realtors® 2015 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, 18 percent of recent first-time homebuyers nationwide were single females and 11 percent were single males. That’s nearly one-third of the total buyer population. The average single female buyer was 32, with a household income of $49,400. The average single male buyer was 30, with an income of $58,100. No need to be part of a couple to buy a home today, assuming you have a steady income, good credit history and some money set aside for a down payment. But you might appreciate some advice before you go it alone. Is it the right time? The...
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18 Jul 2016

Conquer the Closing

Young couple with Key
Buying your first home? Here's step 6: Conquer the Closing After completing the inspection and appraisal, all that’s left to conquer is the closing. And we know what you’re thinking … you’ve already been through enough, and that you can’t possibly survive anything else. But you can. And you will--the end is in sight, future homeowner! In our final installment of this home buying series, we’ll walk you through how to survive the closing process. This isn’t our first rodeo--but it is yours--so stick around and we’ll give you the lowdown. Here’s a list of some of the costs/fees associated with the closing process: Loan Origination Fee This is the fee you pay to your lender to prepare your mortgage for closing. Underwriting Fee This fee is...
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18 Mar 2016

You Deserve a Second Opinion When It Comes to Mortgage Financing

How many big decisions have you made in your life that you wish you could have changed? Unlike golf, life seldom offers a mulligan, or do-over – at least without some kind of catch or consequences. But Allen Tate Mortgage believes you deserve better. Allen Tate Mortgage offers a Best Rate Guarantee* every day – a free, second opinion to make sure you are receiving the best total financing package on your mortgage. It’s easy – and here’s the best part: If Allen Tate cannot meet or beat your quote from another lender, we’ll pay you $500 after closing. For example, say you reached out to a bank or mortgage lender, maybe online, to get pre-qualified for a mortgage. You’ve found the right...
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26 Feb 2016

The Advantages of Homeownership in Tax Season

It’s tax season, and if this is your first one as a homeowner, you’ll need to do things a bit differently when you file with Uncle Sam. But here’s the good news. As a new homeowner, you now have the opportunity for tax deductions that you did not when you were renting. The most obvious deduction is your mortgage interest. This includes what you have paid in interest each month on your mortgage and any interim interest you paid at closing. You can find the interim interest figure on your Closing Disclosure or your HUD-1 (if you closed prior to the new Closing Disclosure that went into effect October 3, 2015). In addition, if you paid any points at closing to obtain a...
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