Buyin' or Sellin'....Call Bonnie Helen! (Fagoh)(813) 390-7606
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Is Now The Time To Buy? Given the terrorist attacks in September, massive layoffs, and declining corporate profits it's not unreasonable for would-be purchasers to ask if now is the time to buy real estate. The answer is this: If you're looking for that first house or if you've thought of moving up, now is as good a time as any to get into the marketplace, and perhaps a better time than seen in recent years. But how can this be? Let's look at several key issues. Interest Rates Are Down: If rates for 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages are at 8 percent -- about where they were a year ago according to HSH Associates, a
Mortgage RatesU.S. averages as of October 25, 2001:
30 yr. fixed: 6.64%15 yr. fixed: 6.13%1 yr. adj: 5.25%30 yr. jumbo: 6.98%-->
Get today's rates
leading financial publisher -- your monthly payment for a principal and interest on a $200,000 mortgage would be $1,467.53. Add in, say, $350 for taxes and insurance and the total monthly payment
Wondering What Your Home Is Worth?Let me show you.
A Dozen Ways To Make Your Home Show Better We all have had the experience of someone important coming to the house, and whether the visitor is an in-law, old friend, or business associate you know the drill: Have the house in "show" condition. For home sellers the situation is much the same: First impressions count and while you may not be able to tell a book by its cover, you'll likely pay more for a book if the cover is inviting, alluring and attractive. If your home is for sale or soon to be for sale, in addition to a general cleaning there are 12 steps you can take to benefit from that all-important first look:
Start with the outside. Mow the lawn, prune bushes, remove dead branches and get rid of outdoor furniture you don't intend to move.
Paint the front door and lintels, or at least clean them up.
Check for leaks. A drip may not seem
How To Profitably Refinance For homeowners who thought the federal tax refund checks were a nice surprise, you may be a candidate to save a lot more than a few hundred dollars. Interest rates have dropped to levels not seen in quite a while so it may pay to pull out your mortgage note and do a bit of comparing. But before you jump on the refinance bandwagon, here are a few "dos and don'ts" that should help in your search for the best re-fi option.
Refresh yourself with the exact terms of your current mortgage. Know your rate, mortgage balance, monthly principal and interest payment, possible pre-payment penalty, and the remaining term. A loan officer will have trouble giving you the best advice if he or she doesn't know your current situation.
When you get a new mortgage each monthly payment is divided between interest costs and principal reductions. At first, most of the payment goes to interest, but over time more and more of the loan is devoted to principal. Refinancing starts the process from scratch, which again means most of the monthly payment goes toward interest. This is not necessarily a bad thing if refinancing means lower monthly payments. As well, in the usual case
Has Your Credit Changed? It's a combination car, pick-up truck, and SUV. You really want it. The features are great, the style is the latest, and it's affordable -- after the downpayment the cost is only $300 a month. "Would you buy this car today if I can include the genuine wood grain, rubberized, side moldings?" asks the salesman. Before emitting a strong "yes" stop and consider what's about to happen. You will be increasing your debt load and monthly payments, things which make mortgage lenders edgy. If you want to buy a home in the coming months, you need to carefully consider your financial choices. The issue here is not cars. If you need a car for safe travel, then safety comes first. But if you merely want a new car -- or super-duper music system, an antique guitar, a trip abroad, or anything else that increases your monthly costs and is not absolutely and unquestionably necessary, then you should think about mortgages, debt, and ratios.
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