Do You Need a Jumbo Loan?

For 2021, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) which oversees Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac raised the maximum conforming loan limit for a single-family property from $510,400 in 2020 to $548,250. In high-cost areas, including parts of California, New York, Washington D.C. and others, the limit for conforming mortgage loan limits is 150% of that limit, or […]

Buying a Home with Bitcoin

In April 2021, Bitcoin hit an all-time high in the price of its coins, virtual trader Coinbase went public with a valuation of $86 billion, and Venmo, owned by PayPal, announced it’s adding support for cryptocurrencies. All of these give access to customers who can now easily buy, sell and pay for items with cryptocurrencies […]

Is It Cheaper to Rent or Buy?

Home prices are going up, but in some areas of the country, it may be cheaper for you to save money for your own home by renting another year. According to Move.com, renters can save thousands on a lease in the nation’s largest tech hubs, compared to pre-pandemic prices. In February 2021, the U.S. median rent, […]

Characteristics of Millennial Homebuyers

According to a new survey from the National Association of REALTORS, millennials (born between 1981 and 1996, Pew Research) and also known as Gen Y and Echo Boomers, are the largest homebuying segment at thirty-seven percent. While millennials have been the largest share of homebuyers since 2014, the survey also found that they are most likely […]

Will Home Prices Keep Rising?

Homebuyers are getting a lot of mixed messages this year. Interest rates are near record lows, but housing prices are still rising. So should you continue to rent or go ahead and take the plunge to buy? That depends a lot on both your needs and where you live. You may be wanting more space […]

What If There’s No Supply?

By the end of 2020, the number of homes listed for sale in the U.S. reached an all-time low. Supply sank below 700,000 homes nationwide, according to realtor.com®‘s Monthly Housing Trends Report, and that was before the availability of COVID-19 vaccines. With consumers euphoric, it’s possible the spring homebuying season could have even less inventory available. If you […]

Packing for Your Move

Deciding what to pack when you’re moving isn’t easy. However, if you follow these simple suggestions, packing to move and unpacking to move into your new home will be much easier. Declutter: Decluttering serves two purposes. It makes it less expensive for you to move because you’re not paying freight to move things you no longer […]

Student Loans and Homebuying

According to StudentLoanHero.com, you can get a mortgage loan, even with high student loan debt. It’s all in how you manage the three most important factors in getting loan approval: Down Payment: Twenty percent of the purchase price of the home is the benchmark down payment, but it’s possible to get a loan with a down payment […]

Home Ownership Hedges Against Inflation

Great financial reasons to own real estate, advises Biggerpockets.com, are building equity, tax advantages that don’t exist for other asset classes, not having to pay rent, passive income from rental properties, among many others. One of the greatest advantages is that buying a home is a terrific hedge against inflation. Since 1913, the annual inflation rate […]

Get Ready for Competitive Spring Homebuying

Pent-up housing demand is likely to increase exponentially now that a COVID-19 vaccine is on the horizon. Homebuyers should prepare for what could possibly be the most competitive spring homebuying season in years. Here are a few suggestions that will put you ahead of other homebuyers. Have a family meeting. When your household is together, tell […]

The Meanings Behind Red Front Doors

Why are so many front doors painted red across the world? For fun, we’ve gathered some of the most interesting reasons why this is an important choice for many homeowners. Many cultures use red front doors to communicate something about their beliefs or status. Since the first Passover the red door has symbolized God’s protection, […]

Are Listings Growing in Your Area?

Home sellers may be wondering whether to put their homes on the market now during the winter months or wait for spring 2021. There are arguments for both sides, but the National Association of REALTORS® predicts that this “will be one of the best winter sales years ever.” NAR economists say we have a perfect storm […]

Sous Vide Cooking

How do professional chefs consistently recreate great food with such confidence? They use an industry art perfected in the finest restaurants called sous vide, and you can easily try it in your kitchen. Sous vide simply means “cooking under vacuum” in French. How it works is that the food to be prepared is vacuum-sealed in a […]

Down Payment Assistance and Resources

It’s a great time to buy a home, so now is the time to start lining up resources to help you make a down payment. There’s plenty of assistance available if both you and the home you want to buy meet eligibility requirements. While most programs are designed for first-time and/or low-income homebuyers, some are […]

Choosing a Housemate

To make your mortgage more affordable, consider temporarily renting out an extra bedroom or garage apartment to a tenant. Having a housemate can be a wonderful experience or a frustrating one, depending on how well you vet candidates, communicate your expectations and protect yourself with a written legal leasing agreement. Begin your search for a […]

What’s the Difference Between Modern and Contemporary?

Two words widely used in interior design are modern and contemporary, which sound like interchangeable synonyms, but really have different meanings. What’s confusing is that they have some traits in common along with others that set them apart. Thespruce.com defines modern design as representing an era that’s passed, while contemporary design is all about the present and the future. Both […]

What Post-Covid Buyers Seek

Do homebuyers want the same things in their next home as they did before the COVID pandemic? In some ways, yes, and in others, no. According to the latest summer Realtor.com survey, post-COVID homebuyers are willing to spend more money on a home, have saved more money toward a down payment as they sheltered in place, and […]

How Fast Does Equity Build During Homeownership?

Building equity in your home is like a savings account – the more you put toward it, the better. Your home’s equity grows with each mortgage payment you make and with time. According to BankofAmerica.com, you can calculate your equity based on current appraised value less any mortgages tied to your home. If your home is […]

The Renewed Appeal of Suburbia

It’s typical for single-family home sales to surge in the spring and summer, but this year, there are some differences due to Covid-19. The pandemic is causing more urbanites to move out of the city say The New York Times, Forbes.com, NPR.org and other news services. Many of the attractions that make city living attractive, such as theater, shopping […]

Mortgage Guidance for the Self-Employed

In June 2020, average mortgage interest rates fell below three percent for the 30-year-fixed-rate mortgage – the lowest level in modern recorded history, according to Mortgage News Daily. What caused such a dip? A stock market sell-off sent investors to the relative safety of the bond market, wrote housing journalist Diana Olick. Mortgage rates loosely follow the […]