• Retirement is something you try to prepare for as best you can, but with so much uncertainty in the market and your personal future in general, planning can be tricky. How do you know when it’s time? We’ll find out.

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  • Purchasing a home is a life-changing event. Suddenly you’re responsible for a number of things you may not have been responsible for in the past. However, you’re also eligible for a number of tax deductions, too. Take a look at our list to make sure you’re taking advantage of all that you can!

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  • Why is my little house such a heat miser? Is it because it’s actually a sauna? Is it because I have too much insulation? Turns out, the lack of proper ventilation in my attic is to blame. Come with me on a journey to learn more about why attic ventilation, although controversial, is important.

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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 Many times, there are errors or may contain outdated information, which could affect your score negatively.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…

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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.

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HOA Fees: What Do They Cover?

HOA Fees: What Do They Cover?

Consider HOA Fees When Purchasing a Home Purchasing a home requires you to make many decisions. Aside from which home to choose, you’ll have to consider the type of home, location and size as well. If you choose a condo vs. a single-family home, you will have to take HOA (Homeowner Association) fees into account as you plan your budget. Owning a condo has its advantages and disadvantages. For instance, condos give you the opportunity to enjoy your home without having to worry about mowing the lawn or snow removal, for example. However, these services are not free. HOA fees are the source of funds that are used to pay for these amenities. What Do HOA Fees Cover? Each association has different policies. This is why it’s wise to ask the seller for a list of the HOA rules and regulations. If the seller doesn’t have one available, you can ask for the name of the property management company who oversees the community in order to get more details. In general, these are some of the costs that can be covered by HOA fees: City Services- Including services such as trash removal, water and sewage. Insurance- This only includes insurance for damage of the outside of the building and the property around it. You still need an individual insurance policy to cover everything inside of the condo. Lawn Care- This includes snow removal, gardening and general lawn maintenance. Pest Control- Most HOAs schedule a monthly inspection from a pest control…

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