How much more fun can it get? Buying and selling real estate is a kick. You get to see inside a lot of homes and can pick up decorating ideas even if you decide not to buy a particular house. You get to go out to lunch with your favorite realtor, who will tell you all the latest news about companies moving into the county. She may even tell you where the bodies are buried.
Meanwhile she’ll come up with ideas about shopping everything from toys to loans.
If Maria Sebastian were your real estate agent, here are some tips she would give you. Still not sure who Maria Sebastian is? Find out more here
- Don’t necessarily go along with what a lender tells you about your ability to pay a certain amount, according to their formulas. Always aim for less than they tell you because they fail to mention a lot of hidden fees.
- Always pay at least 20 percent down on a house. It’s not too much to lose if the market goes bad, and it’ll save you about 3% over the life of the loan in Purchase Money Insurance (PMI) and the extra interest (up to 1%) higher loan amount.
- Always pay double your equity amount on your loan every month. So if the equity is $50 and the interest is $1,200, just pay another $50 and you’ll have your loan paid off in 15 years instead of 30. And never take out an interest-only loan. It’s too easy to never pay anything on the principle. One day you’ll have to pay the piper, so to speak.
- Stay away from slick loans -- the ARMS, the revisionary loans, reverse mortgages, and anything that the banks think up other than simple mortgage loans. Also, never believe that you can get into a house for nothing down. Nothing down doesn’t mean the same thing to the lenders as it does to the buyer. There are always fees they don’t count as nothing down.
- Please note that Morgan Stanley currently has “settled” for 30 billion dollars with the government for making false loans. Of course the people who lost their homes will never get them back and I don’t think any of us will ever see any of that 30 billion. But the stock market knew when they made the loans that it was a huge ruse and would destroy the economy. But since they would get a bunch of money before the economy was destroyed they hid behind a non-discriminatory loan clause put out by the Federal Government that said loans had to be made to people who could not afford them--or the lender could be sued. And that’s what happened to our economy over ten years ago.
- When you get ready to sell your house, go down to Home Depot and purchase about three hundred dollars’ worth of plants and put them all over your house. You may only have to show it three times before you have an offer.
- If you have a dog in the house you want to sell, take him somewhere else. The house will smell like a dog lives there, even if you don’t notice it. Same thing with smokers. You cannot get smoke out of a house because it gets into the paint.
Melody D. Scott |www.melodyscott.com