• Are you having a baby? Here’s a handy, downloadable PDF with a list of 50 essential items you’ll need for your new baby. Whether you’re sorting through your baby shower gifts or drafting your shopping list, these tips may help you figure out what you need most.

    + -
  • Although vacationing during the cold winter months is exciting, it’s important to take care of all the mundane details before leaving your home for a significant amount of time. Nobody wants to worry about the safety of their home while vacationing, and you won’t have to if you take these steps.

    + -
  • Characterized by bright colors, woven fabrics and handcrafted pieces, southwestern-style decorating takes influences from Native American, Spanish and Mexican art. Whether you live out west and want your home to reflect your surroundings, or you simply want to incorporate colorful or handmade items into your existing decor, here are some tips to help you...

    + -

Housing Data Released This Week – Market Update

Housing Data Released This Week – Market Update

Treasuries opened higher this morning on speculation that Greece will be unable to avoid a debt default. Later this morning, the National Association of Home Builders will be releasing their April housing market index which is expected to be unchanged. S&P just revised the U.S. long-term outlook from a stable rating to negative…mortgage-backed bonds initially sold off approximately a quarter point from this morning’s open.

Continue Reading
Top 10 Cities for Veterans

Top 10 Cities for Veterans

This week was Military Families Week! In observance of the hard work that our military and their families do, we wanted to share some helpful information about great places to live and work after the military. There was an article published this week on AOL’s Jobs section talking about 10 great cities for veterans. It looks at features such as the job market, accessibility to military support and services, cost of living, education, and local tax laws, among other things. Advantages of a VA Loan For military families who are thinking about purchasing a home, there are also great programs and tax benefits available. According to IRS website, members of the miliary have until April 30th to claim the Homebuyer Tax Credit, which is an $8,000 tax credit or 10% of the home purchase price – whichever is smaller. Repeat buyers are eligible for a $6,500 credit or 10% of the purchase price. In addition, VA Loans have other advantages such as no down payment options and a streamlined process. Here is the summarized list of the best cities for veterans. Please check out the full article on AOL Jobs. The Top 10 Cities for Veterans: Austin, Texas Fayetteville, North Carolina Jacksonville, North Carolina Waco, Texas Oklahoma City, Oklahoma College Station-Bryan, Texas Harrisburg- Carlisle, Pennsylvania San Angelo, Texas Madison, Wisconsin Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania You can read the full article here – http://jobs.aol.com/articles/2011/04/12/top-10-cities-to-find-a-job-after-the-military/?icid=maing-grid7|main5|dl11|sec1_lnk2|55881 Please leave us a message with your thoughts!

Continue Reading
Six Ways to Spring Clean Your Personal Finances

Six Ways to Spring Clean Your Personal Finances

With spring comes blooming flowers, warmer weather, birds chirping, tax refunds and the need for spring-cleaning for both your home and your finances. If you’re looking for ways to simplify your personal finances, look no further.   Here are 6 ways to spring-clean your personal finances: Check your credit report and fix any errors By law, consumers have the right to a free annual credit report. Take advantage of this and check out its accuracy. Many times, there are errors or may contain outdated information, which could affect your score negatively. If you do find a mistake, make sure you contact the corresponding credit bureau in order to dispute the errors. Review your budget It’s helpful to make time to sit down and check your monthly budget. If you are saving to buy a house, for example, periodically reviewing your budget will help you get rid of unnecessary expenses allowing you to save more. A great tool to help you with your budget is Quizzle. Quizzle is a free personal finance site that helps you get a better understanding of your credit and is an easy way to manage your home, money and credit in one spot. Review your monthly withholdings There is no reason for you to give an interest-free loan to Uncle Sam! By reviewing your monthly withholdings you may be able to put more money in your pocket or savings account every month. Of course, consult with your tax advisor before making any changes to your withholdings…

Continue Reading
Credit Report Changes During the Mortgage Loan Process

Credit Report Changes During the Mortgage Loan Process

Credit Report Changes Could Affect Your Mortgage Loan Application   If you are in the process of buying a home, you probably have received a checklist of things you need to do or information you need to provide to your lender in order to move forward with your loan application. One step of the mortgage process is determining the client’s credit worthiness. Even if your mortgage lender has already checked your credit and accepted your application, any change in your credit score could hurt your loan eligibility and your chances of getting a loan. Events that could affect your credit score   Credit scores change constantly. Events that may influence your credit are: Late or missing payments Changing jobs Moving Applying for a credit card Applying for a loan Requesting a credit increase on a credit card Having high credit card balances Closing a credit card Mistakes on your credit report There is no exact science as to how credit bureaus calculate scores. However, it is wise to play it safe and avoid making any change to your financial status in order to avoid putting your loan eligibility in jeopardy. If you ever have a question regarding any change that could affect your credit score and mortgage qualification, check with your mortgage banker first to help you avoid headaches in the future.

Continue Reading