How to Come Up with a Down Payment and Still Pay Your Bills
Saving enough money for that 20% down payment on a home can seem impossible when faced with paying off college, establishing a new career, and starting a family. However, local assistance programs do exist that can help you reach your goal of homeownership. Some employers offer aid. Often a budget makeover can go a long way toward amassing the necessary funds.
Consider these options for raising the money to buy a new home.
Take Advantage of Where You Live.
The nationwide programs that allowed for zero down payment loans are gone, along with the federal home buyer tax credit and the use of tax credit funds toward a down payment and closing costs. What once was driven by the federal government has moved down to the local level. Options abound for people with varying levels of income, particularly...
5 Benefits of Buying Instead of Renting
Should you buy a home or continue to rent? Interest rates are increasing and homes are selling for record numbers. Buying a home is expensive. At the same time, rent just keeps skyrocketing, and many people are paying more to rent than they would to own their own home. Is renting just throwing away money you could be putting toward an asset? If you’re thinking about buying a home, here are some of the benefits.
Boost Energy Efficiency
If you’re living in an aging home or apartment complex, the money you’re paying to heat and cool it may be literally going right out the window. If you pay your utility bills, your landlord doesn’t care what it costs you to keep things comfortable inside. They’re not likely to replace windows or install more energy-efficient insulation.
If you buy your home, you can look for one that already has energy-efficient upgrades. Higher SEER air conditioning units...
How Do Rising Interest Rates Affect the Housing Market?
When interest rates fall, property values often increase. When they go up, it costs more to borrow, so buyers have less to spend on their monthly payment. The Federal Reserve recently raised interest rates by a quarter of a point and says there are more hikes in the future. Some experts think it will have a negative effect on the housing market. Others think it may improve home sales. Here are the views from both sides to help you make your own decision.
Higher Rates Could Drive Sales and Increase New Loans
Many economists feel higher interest rates are good for real estate and will boost sales over the next year. Here are some of the reasons why.
Rate change affects consumer psychology. People who have been thinking about buying a home, but hesitant to commit, have another reason to get off the fence. Many of them will scramble to find a home before rates go up again.
Rate hikes change...
How to Find a Fixer-Upper That Actually Saves You Money
Sometimes if a home needs work, handy buyers can pick it up at a reduced price. The trick is knowing when doing the work will save you money and when it will cost more to fix problems than to buy one that’s already in good shape. Just because a house has good bones doesn’t mean you should snatch it up. Follow these steps to calculate if that fixer-upper is right for you.
Realistically Evaluate What You Can Do
It looks so easy on HGTV. Contractors knock out walls, replace whole kitchens and landscape acres in 30 minutes of show time. YouTube videos show you how to do anything you might think of trying and Pinterest shows DIY in steps that look foolproof.
There’s a lot you don’t see. Very rarely does a project go exactly as planned. Often there’s no way to know what you’re getting into until you’re already committed. Only plan on repairs with which you have previous...