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December 5, 2016 By Jared Leichliter
Last week's economic news was plentiful with releases on Case-Shiller Home Price Indices and pending home sales. Readings on government and private sector jobs created, the national unemployment rate and weekly readings on new jobless claims and Freddie Mac's mortgage rates survey were also released. Case-Shiller: Western Cities Dominate Home Price Growth Case-Shiller's 20-City Home Price Index reported that Seattle Washington topped year-over-year home price growth with an increase of 11.00 percent. Portland, Oregon followed closely with a reading of 10.90 percent, and Denver Colorado held third place with year-over-year home price gains of 8.70 percent. San Francisco, California, which had … [Read More...]
December 2, 2016 By Jared Leichliter
Most homeowners look at their monthly mortgage payment as their largest cost per month, and something they must do to maintain a good credit history. However, you may have heard of bi-weekly mortgage payments and their ability to lower your debt load and help you pay off your mortgage more quickly. If you're wondering if bi-weekly payments are too good to be true, here's some information worth consideration. What Difference Does Bi-Weekly Make? Making a bi-weekly mortgage payment may seem to mean that your interest will be automatically reduced, but because the lender is not necessarily receiving that payment until the end of the month, this is not necessarily the case. However, while a … [Read More...]
December 1, 2016 By Jared Leichliter
September's 20-City Housing Market Index from Case-Shiller showed signs that rapidly rising home prices in some metro areas may be losing momentum. San Francisco, California, posted a month-to-month reading of -0.40 percent and a year-over-year reading of 5.70 percent. Home prices stayed flat in Seattle Washington from August to September, but posted the highest home price gain of 11.00 percent year-over-year. Slowing home price growth in high-demand areas suggest that affordability concerns are impacting rapid gains in home prices seen in recent years.
Case-Shiller's National Home Price Index achieved its highest gain with a reading of 5.50 percent as compared to August's reading of 5.10 … [Read More...]
November 30, 2016 By Jared Leichliter
Are you on the hunt for home renovations that will boost usability and value? Look no further than that unfinished basement. In this article, we'll show you how to turn that dusty cave into an amazing new living space.
Note: finishing a basement isn't the easiest job. For most basements, it's a lot more than a weekend do-it-yourself project. If you're not comfortable with construction be sure to enlist the help of a professional.
Step 1: Plan Everything Out
The first step is to plan out how you're going to use the space. Are you going to make an office? A full suite? Is there any plumbing or wiring involved? Will you need to create full walls? Map out how you plan to use the available … [Read More...]
November 29, 2016 By Jared Leichliter
Last week's economic reports included new and pre-owned home sales, new jobless claims and Freddie Mac's weekly mortgage rates survey. Home Sales Mixed in October According to the National Association of Realtors®, sales of previously owned homes reached a seasonally adjusted annual level of 5.60 million sales, which exceeded expectations and October's reading of 5.49 million sales. Analysts had expected a rate of 5.44 million sales. October sales of preowned homes rose 2 percent over September's reading and were 5.90 percent higher year-over-year. This was the highest reading for sales of pre-owned homes since February 2007. High demand for homes is driving housing markets in spite of … [Read More...]
November 28, 2016 By Jared Leichliter
If you're currently buying a home and are stressing about the kind of home to choose and which lender to go with, it can help to clear up some of the confusion surrounding the mortgage process. While mortgage applications are assessed on a case-by-case basis, here are some factors you'll want to avoid so the timeline of your approval isn't negatively impacted. Your Employment Status It goes without saying that the amount you bring in each month is a huge factor towards how much house you can afford, so having a part-time job, being self employed or even being unemployed can adversely impact your application. Instead of leaving this factor up to chance, make sure you have a job that will more … [Read More...]