RE/MAX Executive Realty



Posted by RE/MAX Executive Realty on 7/15/2018

Applying for a mortgage can be a lengthy and difficult process. Lenders want to know that they are going to get a return on their investment.

To ensure that they’ll see that positive return they will take a number of things into consideration, such as your income, credit score, employment history, and financial capital.

First-time homeowners often struggle when it comes to these prerequisites since they have fewer years of numbers for lenders to consider. If you’re one of those people, don’t worry--you can still purchase a home.

First-time homeowner loans, which are guaranteed by the U.S. government, and a number of private loans enable people to borrow money for a home without paying a huge down payment or having a vast credit history.

One downfall of said loans is private mortgage insurance, or “PMI.”

In this article, we’re going to talk about what private mortgage insurance is, how to avoid it, and how to get rid of it. 

What is PMI?

If you make a down payment on a mortgage that is less than 20% of the loan amount, you will most likely have to pay private mortgage insurance.

PMI exists as a way for lenders to help guarantee they won’t lose money off of your loan. If you make a down payment of 20% or more, then lenders are typically satisfied that they won’t lose money from doing business with you.

PMI is not to be confused with home insurance, which protects you against damage and theft. Rather, it is an additional fee you’ll pay to your lender each month that is added to your mortgage payment.

PMI is calculated based on a few considerations. Lenders will take into account your down payment amount, the value of the mortgage, and your credit score.

In terms of costs, PMI typically costs between .5 and 1% of the total mortgage amount each year.

Avoiding PMI

Naturally, it’s best to avoid paying private mortgage insurance altogether. Private mortgage insurance has no future value for you and your family since it doesn’t count towards building equity and doesn’t protect you from any potential financial harm (your lender is the sole beneficiary of PMI).

Saving for a down payment can take time, and sometimes you’ll need to rent or cut costs while you save. However, if you do take on a loan with PMI, you can still cancel it at a later point.

Canceling your private mortgage insurance

The first thing you should know about canceling PMI is that it usually isn’t easy. You’ll need pay off at least 20% of the home, write a letter to your lender, and wait for an appraisal of the home. Once you’ve done this, you still have to wait while your lender considers your request. In all, this process could take months--months that you’re still required to pay PMI.

Once common way to get out of PMI is to refinance. If the value of your home has increased since the time of you taking on the loan, the new lender likely won’t require PMI. However, you’ll want to make sure that refinancing will get you a lower interest rate and cover the costs of refinancing. 




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Posted by RE/MAX Executive Realty on 7/15/2018

If you are preparing to sell your house, you need to be honest with yourself and others. That way, you can increase the likelihood of a fast, profitable home selling experience.

Ultimately, it pays to be an honest home seller for a number of reasons, including:

1. You can establish a competitive price for your house.

It is important to understand that what your house is worth today is unlikely to match what you paid for it, regardless of when you bought your home. Fortunately, an honest home seller is realistic about his or her house's value and can plan accordingly.

Generally, an honest home seller will allocate the necessary time and resources to conduct a home appraisal. Because with an appraisal report in hand, this home seller can establish a competitive price for his or her house based on actionable data.

2. You can identify home problems before a buyer does.

If a home seller tries to hide home problems from a buyer, the consequences could be significant. In fact, a seller may put a potential home sale in jeopardy if he or she fails to be forthright and honest with buyers from the get-go.

For example, consider what might happen if a buyer submits an offer on a house and discovers myriad home problems during an inspection. In this scenario, a buyer may ask the seller to perform various home repairs or request a price reduction. Or, a buyer may choose to walk away from a home sale altogether.

As a home seller, it helps to take an honest approach to inform potential buyers about the condition of a house. If a residence requires assorted repairs, a seller may want to complete these repairs before listing his or her residence.

Comparatively, a seller can always include information about a home's condition in a house listing. If a seller does so, he or she can help buyers make an informed decision about a possible home purchase.

3. You can avoid rash decisions throughout the home selling journey.

An honest home seller usually is calm, cool and collected throughout the home selling journey. This seller understands the pros and cons of his or her house, and as such, can take an informed, logical approach to make the best-possible decisions.

Perhaps most important, an honest home seller is unafraid to receive negative feedback about his or her house. As a result, this seller may be better equipped than others to avoid rash decisions during the home selling journey.

There are many great reasons why a home seller should strive to be honest at each stage of the home selling cycle. Of course, if you need extra help as you sell your house, you may want to hire a real estate agent as well.

Typically, a real estate agent will provide honest, unbiased home selling recommendations and suggestions. He or she will even help you get your house ready for the real estate market. And with this housing market professional's support, a home seller can move closer to achieving his or her desired results.




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Posted by RE/MAX Executive Realty on 7/8/2018

As a home seller, it is essential to dedicate the necessary time and resources to enhance your house's interior. By doing so, you'll be able to help your residence stand out from other properties that are available.

Unfortunately, your home's basement may be an eyesore, especially if you have failed to keep it clean consistently. But with the right approach to cleaning your basement, you should have no trouble improving your basement's appearance.

What can you do to revamp your house's basement? Here are three basement cleaning tips that every home seller needs to know.

1. Scrub the Walls and Floors with a Cleaning Solution

If your basement features a concrete or concrete-block surface, a combination of detergent, ammonia and warm water may prove to be ideal. In fact, this mix produces a wonderful cleaning solution that will deliver immediate and long-lasting results.

Don't forget to use a stiff nylon brush to remove dirt and grime from concrete walls and floors. Plus, if you need to eliminate excess water from the basement, be sure to use a shop vacuum to remove this water immediately.

2. Eliminate Rust Stains

Basement rust stains won't do you any favors as you try to help your home stand out from the competition. Lucky for you, rust stains can be easily removed from your basement walls with a little bit of dry cement and flagstone.

Sprinkle a small amount of dry cement on a rust stain. Then, use flagstone to scrub the affected area and remove the stain instantly. This will allow you to remove rust stains and ensure they won't come back any time soon.

3. Revamp Your Basement Floors

For those who want to transform an ordinary basement into a stellar one, now may be a great time to redo the basement floors. Thankfully, you won't have to break your budget to revamp your basement floors if you use a waterproof stain.

A waterproof stain is simple to apply and can give your basement floors a clean, streamlined appearance.

Before you apply a waterproof stain, you'll want to scrub the basement floors thoroughly. After the floor is dry, use a short-nap paint roller to apply the stain in small sections. Let the stain dry for about 24 hours, and you'll be able to enjoy beautiful basement floors that are sure to grab homebuyers' attention.

When it comes to cleaning your basement, it is important to remember that you don't necessarily have to do the work alone. Instead, you can always hire a professional cleaning company to assist you.

A professional cleaning company will be able to simplify the process of cleaning your home's basement, along with other rooms throughout your property. That way, you can leave home cleaning tasks to the professionals and focus on what's important – finding the best ways to generate substantial interest in your residence.

Perhaps best of all, working with a real estate agent can make it easy to sell your house. This real estate agent can provide honest, unbiased home selling recommendations, set up home showings and open houses and much more. As a result, a real estate agent will ensure you can optimize the value of your residence.




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Posted by RE/MAX Executive Realty on 7/8/2018

For parents who need to move a family from Point A to Point B, keeping kids busy can be difficult. Lucky for you, we're here to help you entertain your kids throughout the moving cycle.

Now, let's take a look at three activities that you can use to keep your kids busy on moving day.

1. Packing Last-Minute Items

Last-minute items like clothing and toys will need to get packed up before you can leave your current address. Fortunately, you can rely on your kids for extra help with packing these belongings.

Including your kids in the packing process is a great way to bond with your children. In fact, you and your kids can work together to pack up last-minute belongings and ensure these items quickly and safely reach your new address.

2. Creating a Moving Day Journal

Let's face it – moving can be stressful, particularly for kids. However, if you encourage your kids to create a moving day journal, you may be able to help your children alleviate stress.

A moving journal offers a great opportunity for a child to express his or her thoughts about an upcoming move.

Furthermore, a child can use a moving journal to envision what life might be like at his or her new house. This journal can even include drawings that illustrate how a child might decorate his or her new bedroom, lists of ideas about things to do near a new house and much more.

3. Playing Board Games and Car Games

Pack a bag of board games to help your kids pass the time in the car – you'll be glad you did. These games are easy to play and will help your children stay entertained for hours.

Memorization games are great for kids and parents alike too. Of course, don't forget about the classic "I spy" game that you can play with your children while you drive to your new address.

Lastly, if you need extra help as you prep for your move, you should not hesitate to reach out to a real estate agent.

A real estate agent is a moving expert who can take the guesswork out of relocating to a new residence. He or she can help you get in touch with local moving companies, offer packing tips and provide fun suggestions so that you can keep your kids busy while traveling.

Perhaps most important, a real estate agent can offer comprehensive assistance as you buy or sell a house. If you need help finding a residence or selling one as quickly as possible, a real estate agent will work with you so that you can achieve your goals. Also, a real estate agent is happy to respond to your homebuying or home selling concerns at any time.

Want to get the most out of moving day with your children? Take advantage of the aforementioned moving day activities, and you and your kids can enjoy an unforgettable moving day experience.




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Posted by RE/MAX Executive Realty on 7/1/2018

Looking to sell your home? If so, it often pays to learn about the real estate market.

A knowledgeable home seller understands how to operate in any housing market conditions. As such, this individual can plan a successful home selling journey from day one until the final closing date.

Ultimately, there are many best practices for selling a house, and these include:

1. Clean Your House Both Inside and Out

A homebuyer's first impression of your house likely will impact his or her decision to submit an offer on it. Thus, if your home has a pristine exterior and interior, you can increase the likelihood of generating plenty of interest in your residence.

To boost your house's curb appeal, you should mow the front lawn, trim the hedges and perform myriad home exterior maintenance. Also, if there is chipped or cracked siding or other home exterior issues, you should complete assorted home exterior repairs as soon as possible.

When it comes to your home's interior, you should allocate significant time and resources to clean and declutter. Mop the floors, wipe down countertops and clean each room of your house. In addition, remove excess items from your home to show off the full size of your living space.

2. Conduct a Home Appraisal

What your home is worth today is unlikely to match what you initially paid for your house. Fortunately, a home appraisal can provide you with a good idea of the current value of your house based on its age, condition and other factors.

During a home appraisal, a property appraiser will evaluate your residence. Then, the appraiser will provide a property valuation.

With a property valuation in hand, you'll be able to establish a competitive price for your residence. And as a result, you can boost your chances of a quick home sale.

3. Collaborate with a Real Estate Agent

Selling a home may seem like a long, arduous process. However, if you collaborate with a real estate agent, you can take the guesswork out of selling a residence.

A real estate agent will learn about your home selling goals and help you plan accordingly. Therefore, if you need to sell your house quickly, a real estate agent is happy to assist you. Or, if you prefer to take a wait-and-see approach to the housing market, a real estate agent can help you do just that.

Furthermore, a real estate agent is a home selling expert who can provide recommendations and suggestions. If you have questions about how to upgrade your house's exterior, a real estate agent can put you in touch with local landscapers and contractors. Comparatively, if you're unsure about how to price your house, a real estate agent can provide you with housing market data to help you make an informed decision.

When it comes to selling a house, working with a real estate agent is ideal. Reach out to a local real estate agent today, and you can seamlessly navigate the home selling journey.




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