Buying Home

Bank-Owned Homes – A Smart Deal or a Dangerous One

Whether you’re thinking about buying your first home or you’re thinking about buying your vacation home, you definitely have a lot of things to think about. One of the biggest things that you will need to think about is whether or not you want to purchase a bank-owned property, or if you want to purchase from a traditional individual. Unfortunately, a lot of agents will tell you that there’s really no difference between bank-owned properties and regular ones, but that’s not the case at all. In fact, there are some important differences that you need to know about in order to really seize the deal and work things out on your terms.

First and foremost, you don’t get the seller disclosures that you might be used to. In other words, you’re on your own if there are serious problems with the house — it’s buyer beware, and you have to weigh that in against the potential for a good deal. The house might have problems that the bank has no interest in revealing to you. This means that the bank will be selling you the house “as is” — there really won’t e too many request for repair notices honored by a bank that wants to dump the property as soon as they can.

There’s also no real hurry to sell you the home — so if you’re thinking about a quick move in, you might have to think again — it can take up to two weeks to get a response from the bank. meanwhile, that’s an extra two weeks that you and your family have to stay where you’re at in order to get things done.

The extra costs could even sneak up on you — a lot of contracts do favor the bank over you, which makes sense. You have to make sure that you have your rights represented properly by hiring a real estate lawyer. If you thought that you didn’t ever need a lawyer, you might want to think about this in further detail — yes, you really do need a real estate lawyer!

It’s important to ensure that you have someone looking over the deal with a fine toothed comb. Bank owned properties can actually be a good deal, but there are some serious pitfalls that you want to think about before you just dive in!

VA Loans – A Perfect Option For Veterans Looking to Purchase a Home

You’ve joined the service. You’ve served your country. You left the service. Now what? It’s time to buy a home and start the next chapter of your life, and there are resources out there to help you do that. VA loans are available to veterans looking to buy a home for the first time, and they’re definitely a great thing to look into.

As you can imagine, it’s worth your while to look into VA loans because they have a lot of benefits than other types of loans just don’t have.

What is interesting about a VA loan is that it’s actually something that allows you to get a home under the assumption that if you were to default, the VA would repay a loan of the loan they guaranteed for you. Having such a powerful organization as Veteran Affairs behind you means that you’re going to get some pretty nice rates. 100 percent financing is also another benefit that veterans receive from the VA. You don’t have to put down a single cent, which means that you can get a home a lot easier than someone that has to put down 20% to avoid PMI. There is no PMI with VA loans, another benefit that servicemembers get to enjoy.

If you’re worried that you’re not going to qualify, don’t. The truth of the matter is that VA loans actually are easier to get than traditional conventional loans. The requirements are a lot easier, which means that you actually have an advocate in your corner that’s going to work with you.

What happens if you come into a lot of money and you want to pay down your mortgage? You won’t have to face pre-payment penalties the way some conventional loan homeowners have to, and you can have a higher debt-to-income ratio than other loans as well.

Refinancing is also easier — everything is already streamlined.

So why don’t people take advantage of VA loans? Fear, mostly. They worry that the limits of the VA loan will not let them get a home in a higher cost of living area. The truth is that VA loan limits have been increased a great deal in a short amount of time, as the department realizes that the costs of homeownership have also gone up.

Since you have so much backing behind you with a VA loan, sellers will do a lot to get your business. This might mean paying 6 percent of the closing costs and other concessions, because they know that your loan is a lot less risky than someone else’s.

Is it right for you? You’ll still need to find a mortgage broker that handles VA loans, but this is pretty easy to find. In fact, if you already live in a military community, most of the real estate outfits will be able to refer you to the right people will no problem.

We thank you for your service and encourage you to seek out VA loans today — it could be the best decision you’ve ever made!

Shopping for a Home in the UK in 2012 – You Need To Read This First

A lot of guides online over seem to cover buying a house in the US, as if that’s the only place in the world where people dream about owning their own home. The truth is that many people in the UK really want to own their own home, and it’s just a matter of making sure that you start looking at all of your options in a way that gives you the most chance possible to own the home that you really want.

Buying your first home or flat is something that takes some planning and determination, but it can come true for you if that’s what you want to do. When you go to think about owning you a home, you need to figure out where you want to buy your home. As they say in real estate, location truly is everything. Most of your home’s value isn’t going to be just determined about what amenities that your home has, but also what amenities are going to be available in the location that you really want to live. If you’re buying a house with your partner, you need to start thinking about making a list. Keep this list with you — you’ll need it when you start thinking about going around the area you desire. Having a printed list with you can make it a lot easier to rule out properties that just aren’t suitable at all. You will need to still make sure that you keep an eye on everything going on with your home, in order to really ensure that you get exactly what you want.

You also need to think about your budget — total up all of the money that you can use as a deposit. If you’re not going to move around too much, then buying a home makes even more sense. You will always have a home base to go back to, even if you wanted to travel for a while. There will be set-up costs that come into play when you’re talking about owning your own home.


Don’t forget that you’re going to want to also talk to a good mortgage broker or even a mortgage advisor for your mortgage advice. They can look at all of your financials and help you figure out how much money you can borrow to buy the house.

Keep that point in mind — you are borrowing money from someone else in order to make your dream of owning a home a reality. Don’t go into it thinking that you can automatically refinance. That’s only going to set you up for financial problems if you aren’t able to refinance the way you would expect. This means that you really have to look hard at the numbers. You might not want to borrow the maximum amount that the mortgage broker says for this reason.

Talking to real estate agents in the area will also give you more information on where you want to live. If it’s an up and coming area, then you should invest into it early before it gets too expensive to live there. This is also a great way to make sure that your house will appreciate in value the longer you live there.

Trying to find a property solicitor might be the hard part. It falls under the topic of conveyancing, which is something that can take up a lot of time. You will need to make sure that you start thinking about the agreements that need to go into place in order for you to own a home. Many young people in the UK want to buy a house with their friends, which is a great way to own something amazing for the rest of your life. However, you really do need the property solicitor to write up agreements that say exactly who owns what when it comes to the house. This is even more important if you are married and trying to buy a home. You really don’t want to leave any of this to chance — if it has to go before a judge, things can really get complicated and costly. It’s better to know where you stand now so that in the future if things don’t go your way, you can make a clean break rather than an unfortunate one.

So what happens when you really find the house that you want? You will need to make sure that you make an offer to buy the property, but make sure that it’s conditional. Unconditional offers might get you noticed faster by the seller, but they often lead to problems down the road. It’s a lot smarter to really make sure that you focus on the type of offer now. Even though it might take longer, a conditional offer means that you will have time to survey and inspect the property.

If the estate agent has the property on the market and your offer is accepted, you will want to have them take the property off the market immediately. That way no one else can try to put in a competing offer. Continue reading %s

The Self-Employed and a First Home Purchase – It Can Be Done!

If you think that being self-employed means that there’s no way that you can get a good home, it’s time to definitely think twice about this. You see, if that really were the case people would be without homes that would otherwise deserve them. Remember that a mortgage lender is looking for one thing above all others — your ability to repay the loan. If that means that your money is coming from stable investments and businesses, then so be it. However, you are going to have a work a little harder than someone that is employed by someone else.

This is because the past history of “liar’s loans” or stated income loans, is coming back to haunt the entire industry. Before the mortgage meltdown, a lot of people were able to basically just make up an income and be taken at their signature. Upon later research, the lenders found that people had grossly inflated their incomes in order to get into certain homes that had to be later repossessed by the lender — at a significant loss, of course.

So if you want to get home loans or personal loan, you’re going to have to make sure that you have all of the necessary paperwork.

First and foremost, you need to make sure that you’re looking at your budget clearly. You really, really, really want to make sure that you can afford a new home. This isn’t just the down payment or even the monthly payments on the house. You want to make sure that you have significant savings. It might not seem like the case at first, but the truth is that homeownership is expensive. There’s always something that needs to be repaired and guess what? There’s not going to be a landlord to take care of things for you. This means that you’re going to have to work hard to ensure that little repairs don’t turn into big problems. Yes, it’s hard work but it’s worth it when it comes to having your own home.

So after you look at your budget and make sure that you keep your debts low, you’re going to want to gather up the paperwork. Proof of income and self-employment is the name of the game. In order to be taken seriously, you really want to make sure that you incorporate your business. Yes, it’s technically not necessary to incorporate your business but the truth is that if you don’t incorporate, you’re going to face an uphill battle in being taken seriously. The lender will process your application and they might feel that if you didn’t take the time to register your business properly and treat it like a real business, then you might not take your home seriously, either. Yes, this is an assumption but the lend ahs the power to make those assumptions. Prove them wrong but filing with your state for incorporation. In most states this is actually very cheap and can make it easier to get funding for your company and even discounts from suppliers. It’s just a matter of making sure that you really look through all of your options. Continue reading %s

Buying Guidelines for First Time Home Buyers

Most people, if not all, want to acquire a home.  Purchasing a home is an exciting moment in one’s life, especially if it’s your first time.  However, the excitement will be converted into confusion once you get to know the processes that home buyers will go through when buying a home.  The processes are complex and extremely daunting.  But these inept feelings may be avoided if you are well aware of the different processes involved, and if you will consider the following guidelines.

1. When buying a home, know what your income can afford.  You have to understand that a down payment is required before you get hold of a property.  This means that you have to have enough money to finance the down payment.  It is also crucial that you anticipate your monthly mortgage repayments.  If you think that your monthly income can’t compensate all your future obligations, maybe this is not the right time for you to own a home.

First Time Home Buyers

2. You are not expected to perfectly follow the home buying processes, especially if you are new to them, but you still have to avoid committing mistakes at all cause because even just a minute mistake can ruin your entire dream.  Know all the factors that you need to consider when buying a home.  Know whether it’s the perfect time for you to purchase a home or iif t would be best to postpone your plan.

3. Purchase a home that is only ideal for you or for your family.  If you only have a small family, it is illogical and impractical to purchase a big home.  Instead of paying for the space that you do not need, why not just allocate the money to your other needs?  In these times of crises, you need to value your money and be practical.

4. Find it necessary to look for a mortgage with a low interest rate.  Availing a low interest rate mortgage obviously means lower monthly payments.  However, this is usually determined by your credit score.  You need to improve your credit score if you are aiming for a low rate of interest.

5. Get a mortgage only from trusted providers.  You have to really consider the reputation of a mortgage provider when buying a home.  A trusted provider can assure you of good service.

6. Choose a fixed rate mortgage (or FRM).  Fixed rate mortgages usually have lower interest rates than adjustable rate mortgages (ARM), and the rates remain the same until you get to pay off your entire loan.

Contact a real estate agent such as Triangle House Hunter to begin looking for your first home.

Looking For Flats in Glasgow – Crunch the Numbers First!

Going with flats in Glasgow for sale can be a good idea, but most real estate purchasing decisions aren’t going to be that simple. You really need to make sure that you are always thinking about the bigger picture and getting things taken care of. Can you honestly say that you have everything planned out right now to make a purchase if the right property came along? If the answer is no, then it’s definitely time to think about the road ahead in more specific terms.

Crunching the numbers using a mortgage calculator is a good idea. You will want to look up more than one mortgage quote of course, since you don’t want to just go with the first rate you see. One of the biggest reasons why you can’t just go with the first rate that you lay eyes on is because if you do, you’re only making it harder on yourself. What if that rate isn’t the best one? You have cost yourself money without even realizing it, and who really wants to do that? It’s all up to you to figure out where you go from here.


Glasgow is a lovely city that has a lot to offer. It means that you can either live there on your own, or make sure that you get someone to rent the flat from you. This is a great way to really make sure that everything is getting used to the fullest. You get to make a little side money while providing somewhere nice for someone else to live. How cool is that?

From here, you also get the pleasure of knowing that you have plenty of options. You will want to look at the specific areas of Glasgow that appeal to you. Not every location will have the same type of flats in your budget. You might have to go with an older neighborhood where you will have to make many repairs in order to keep up with everything else going on. However, that shouldn’t mean that you can’t get things done — you’re just going to have to do a bit more research than most.

There is nothing wrong with making sure that you have covered all of the bases. Yes, if you are trying to get a flat in Glasgow to rent you’re going to probably have the mortgage payment taken care of for you. However, why should you base your future on that? That just wouldn’t be wise at all!

You know what to do — find a reasonable flat in Glasgow that you can afford and let everything else take care of itself!

Finding your perfect home

Buying a home is a big step in anyone’s life, but finding that perfect home isn’t quite as easy as it seems on paper and there are lots of steps involved in the process.

First of all, there’s the financial side of things. With the banks and lenders still feeling the effects of the recession, lending criteria is still strict, so you’ll need a deposit that is quite high. This will of course vary, depending on your circumstance and the value of the property you want to buy, but the chances are that you’ll be putting a large dent in your bank balance.

Then, of course, there are the additional costs of surveys and estate agents fees. If you decide not to buy a property, it’s not possible to reclaim these costs, so you could find yourself out of pocket, even without finding your perfect home. There’s no doubt about it; moving house can be a costly business, but that’s not the only hard part.

In reality, the hardest part is actually finding a house that is right for you. There are plenty of options out there but narrowing them down can be quite tricky. First of all you have to decide on the area, or areas, where you want to live and then decide on how many bedrooms you want, whether or not you want a garden plus all of the other extras. Once you know what you want, then you have the tricky part; tracking down the right property.

The internet has taken out a lot of the leg work, there’s no need to traipse around estate agents every Saturday morning, you can now find properties conveniently placed on one site. Comparison sites bring together houses and flats from various different estate agents, which makes everything a little bit easier to see and you can narrow down your choices using their search options.

So, rather than searching individual estate agents sites to try and find the right property, use the internet to your advantage and let property sites do all the hard work for you. You can even set up email alerts, so any new properties that meet your criteria are sent directly to your inbox.

Fees associated with buying a house

Many people, especially first-time buyers, underestimate the fees and charges associated with buying a house. If they’re buying a house with a mortgage loan, they’ll need to make a down payment, usually 10% of the purchase price, when they exchange contracts with the vendor. They’ll also need to pay a mortgage deposit, which is the difference between the purchase price and the mortgage loan they’ve secured, when they complete the sale.

Valuation and Survey Fees

All mortgage lenders require a basic valuation of a property to make sure that it’s worth the purchase price and to prevent fraud. The cost of a basic valuation varies according to the value of the property and from lender to lender; indeed, some lenders waive the valuation fee altogether as an incentive for borrowers to take out a mortgage with them. Typically, however, borrowers can expect to pay at least 100 for a basic valuation.

Borrowers should also consider a more detailed survey, such as the homebuyer’s report or a full structural survey, to uncover any structural defects. More detailed surveys can cost up to 1,000 plus VAT at 20%, but these offer borrowers the peace of mind that comes from knowing they should not have to pay for major structural repairs after they move in.


Conveyancing and Legal Fees

Conveyancing is the branch of the law that deals with the transfer of legal ownership. Property buyers need to secure the services of a solicitor or licensed conveyancer to handle the legal side of buying a house. Once again, conveyancing fees vary from solicitor to solicitor, with some charging a flat rate and others a percentage of the purchase price of the property (typically up to 0.5%). Legal complications, local authority searches and water authority searches can push conveyancing and legal fees up to 1,000 or more, depending on the value of the property.

Stamp Duty Land Tax

All properties valued at 125,000 or more 150,000 or more in areas designated as “disadvantaged” are liable for Stamp Duty Land Tax. There are three bands of liability: between 125,000 and 250,000, property buyers pay 1% of the purchase price; between 250,000 and 500,000, they pay 3%; and over 500,000 they pay 4%. So, for a typical UK property valued at 162,900, the buyer would pay 1,629 in Stamp Duty Land Tax.

Land Registry Fee

The Land Registry maintains the Land Register, which documents the evidence of ownership of land and property in England and Wales. The Land Registry imposes a fee on those who need to transfer the registration of ownership from one person to another.

Other Fees and Charges

Some mortgage lenders require borrowers whose loan-to-value ratio in other words, the percentage of a property that’s mortgaged is above 75%, 80% or 90% to pay mortgage indemnity insurance. Other fees and charges that may not be immediately apparent are removal fees, buildings and contents insurance, home insurance and charges for disconnecting and reconnecting services, such as electricity and gas, water and telephone.