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Home Affordability

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Can You Get a Mortgage or Refinance a Loan Without a Job?

The employment scene looks much different today than it did a few years ago. Between ongoing pandemic-related disruptions, the Great Resignation and the rise of gig work, more people than ever are wondering if they can get a mortgage or refinance their home loan without a full-time job. Yes, getting a mortgage or refinancing your...

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A MoneyTips Guide To Home Loans For People With Disabilities

Buying a home is often the most significant purchase you’ll make and one of the tenets of the American Dream. Though some people might assume that a disability can make it difficult or impossible to get a home loan, individuals with disabilities have plenty of options for getting a mortgage.  Even if your sole source...

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Dry Closing: What It Is and How It Differs From Wet Funding

When a deal is signed in real estate, it usually means everything has been agreed to and completed. That’s the rule – but every rule has its exception. In the case of closing on a home, the exception is a dry closing. A dry closing happens when the seller and buyer agree to complete a...

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Silent Second Mortgage: What To Know

For most first-time home buyers, coming up with the money for a down payment is a major hurdle to homeownership. Sometimes you need to get creative while you’re trying to figure out how to cobble together enough cash for a down payment that’s 10% or 20% of a home’s purchase price.  There are lots of...

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What Is a Mortgage Teaser Rate?

You’ve probably seen advertisements promoting 0% APR (annual percentage rate) credit cards or adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) with interest rates well below the going rates. These are two examples of teaser rates.  A teaser rate (or introductory rate) is a low, temporary credit card or loan interest rate companies use to market their financial products to...

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What Is Mortgage Delinquency?

Mortgage delinquency is a term used to describe the state of a mortgage when the borrower falls behind on their payments. This can happen for a variety of reasons, and it can lead to plenty of consequences and stress. Left unaddressed, mortgage delinquency can lead to foreclosure proceedings. If you’ve begun to fall behind on...

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What Are Lender Credits and Are They Worth It?

Imagine this: Your search for a home is over, and you’re ready to embark on your home buying adventure. You’re preapproved (or approved) for a mortgage loan, and you’ve got a purchase agreement in your eager hands. You put the contract down long enough to calculate the final cost of buying the home – and...

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What Is PITI for Your Mortgage?

You’ve saved the money, and you’ve found a house. And now it’s finally happening for you. As part of the exciting process of buying your first home, you apply to the bank for mortgage preapproval. In evaluating your request, the lender tells you they need to figure out if you can afford the monthly costs...

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What Is a Mortgage Credit Certificate?

The federal government is a big fan of homeownership. And there’s a federal tax credit out there that makes owning a home more affordable. It’s called the mortgage credit certificate (MCC).  MCC is a home buyer assistance program that gives qualifying first-time home buyers with low-to-moderate incomes a dollar-for-dollar tax credit that covers up to...

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The Average Homeowners Insurance Cost in the U.S. for 2022

Homeowners insurance is an invaluable safety net for homeowners. While the monthly cost of homeowners insurance is not something most people want to deal with, making your payments every month can help protect you from financial disaster. Homeowners insurance (aka hazard insurance or home insurance) is not mandated by federal or state law, but most...

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First-Time Home Buyer Tax Credit, Explained

If you’re in the market to buy a house, you’ll want to know everything there is to know about first-time home buyer tax credits and grant programs – including a bill awaiting congressional approval – the First-Time Homebuyer Act of 2021. The First-Time Homebuyer Act of 2021 promises qualifying home buyers a $15,000 tax credit...

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3 Things To Know About Homeowners Associations (HOAs): Types, Rules and Refusals

Buying your first home naturally comes with a lot of firsts. For the first time, you’ll be a regular presence at a nonstop stream of open houses, taking out a mortgage, closing on a home, owning a home and making repairs and decisions without a landlord’s help or rules. While they don’t have a landlord,...

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What Is Due Diligence and Earnest Money When Buying a Home?

You’re ready to buy a home. You’ve put in an offer and the seller has accepted it. Congrats! Now, you’ll be expected to pay a small sum of money upfront to: Show the seller that you’re serious about buying their home Make it worthwhile for the seller to take their home off the market  Provide...

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How To Get Down Payment Assistance Grants

Buying a home can seem easy enough, right? You find the home you want, you make an offer, get a mortgage. And voilà! The house is yours.  If only it were that simple.  There are way more steps involved in the home buying process – and some of those steps can feel challenging.  Once you...

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5 Home Loan Options if You Have Bad Credit

A home purchase is a big investment, and it’s an investment many people are eager to make. That’s probably because they’re aware of the many benefits that come with homeownership, like building equity, tax advantages and improving their credit history.  However, for some of us, a good credit score is the thing that’s holding many...

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6 Tips for Getting a Mortgage With a New Job

But when it comes to getting a conventional mortgage, new isn’t always better. That is, when it comes to starting a new job during the process.  In fact, it can potentially complicate the process.  When you apply for a mortgage, the lender wants to see your recent job history because it lets them assess your...

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Can I Get a Mortgage With No Closing Costs?

Let’s be real, past generations of home buyers had an easier time coming up with down payments and closing costs. And that was great for them, but times have changed.  For most home buyers today – especially people trying to buy their first home – student loan debt, credit card debt and TWO recessions are...

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Can I Back Out of Buying a House: A Complete Guide

Whether it’s a bad first date, an awkward family dinner or a client meeting that goes on forever, life is full of situations that may require a smart exit strategy. The best exit strategies are as drama-free as possible and can reduce or eliminate any hard feelings. Home buying can be a lot like that,...

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First-Time Buyer Costs to Include in Your Budget

Buying your first house can be like buying a new motorcycle. Yeah, it costs a significant amount, but you’re pretty sure the payments will be just within your budget, so you get a loan. Before you know it, you’re paying for motorcycle lessons, insurance, a carbon fiber helmet, a synthetic leather motorcycle jacket, constant repairs...

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How Much House Can I Afford?

Are you asking yourself, “How much house can I afford?” The answer will depend on your current debt-to-income (DTI) ratio, down payment and other factors. Choosing a home is only one part of the homeownership journey. You also need to be sure that you can afford the monthly mortgage when it comes knocking on your...

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a hook with keys on reflecting concept of buying a house with no money

How To Buy a House With No Money Down

You’ve got buying a home on your mind. Maybe: Everyone you know is becoming a homeowner. Your family is outgrowing your current home. You want your kids to have access to a better school district. You’ve earned a promotion and are ready to say goodbye to your roommates or parents. You’re tired of paying money...

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Property Taxes Make Qualifying Difficult For Some Borrowers

Most homebuyers assume their monthly mortgage payment will include only the principal and the interest. Learn what other expenses they must consider.

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4 Mortgage Deals That Help Homeowners Save

Learn about programs from employers and the government that help homeowners with their monthly mortgage payments.

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3 Mortgage Myths Homebuyers Should Not Believe

Potential homeowners are often given advice by those who have purchased homes before. Learn which advice may be based on myths rather than facts.

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