Category Archives: Buying A Home

Here is a Quick Tip, if you are ready to try to qualify for one of the many mortgage home loans available for first time home buyers but you are looking more into buying a condo vs. a home in the Santa Maria real estate market, because condo are usually cheaper.  The thing is sometimes buying a condo can be tricky for some first time home buyers, because getting financing is not always easy.  Some first time home buyers when they start to look  to buy something they start taking a more serious look at condos since they are usually a lot cheaper than a home, so the down payment is a lot easier to come up with.  Just don’t forget that with condos you will get to pay a homeowners Association fee that can be as little as $100.00 to as much $300.00 here in the Santa Maria area which is added on top of your mortgage payment.  For some this can be a real sticking point and when you factor in the over all payment it can be as much as owning a home although due to the price difference a down payment is usually a lot easier to come up with.   The HOA payment can also be something that will either qualify you for financing or not since it will be added to your over all debt ratio.

Does Your Condo Qualify for FHA financing?

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Because if it does not that means you may have to put down more money.  Usually at least 10% down payment  vs. 3.5 % down payment, for a FHA loan.  So rather than waste your time since you may not have that kind of money to put down just go to this website and find out if that condo complex is on the FHA website.    To give you an example on a 100k condo its a lot easier to put down $3,500.00 than it is $10k, and DO REMEMBER THAT THIS IS ONLY THE DOWN PAYMENT NOT THE CLOSING COSTS.   Using this example would mean $10,000.00 plus closing costs.

Here is the link to find out if your condo complex may or may not be approved just go to:  https://entp.hud.gov/idapp/html/condlook.cfm

 

Once you are at the website – The Condominiums page allows users to search for FHA-approved condominium projects by location, name, or status.  The search can be configured to find specific types of projects through the use of the pull-down menus and entry fields.  I would suggest in the STATUS menu (last one) that you click on the pull-down menu and choose ALL.  Projects can have their FHA approval withdrawn for various reasons and you will need to know that information.

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Achieving The American Dream

Achieving The American Dream

The American Dream. Having a loving family, attaining a stable job, and most importantly possessing your own home, even if it’s not in Santa Maria, California or somewhere near the Central Coast. All of these accomplishments can be challenging at times, especially taking the next step of  having your own home. With financial planning and legalities, it all starts with a bit of knowledge of the industry and some research.

Purchasing a Home in the United States

The United States Real Estate market is tremendous, especially the Santa Maria Real Estate area since it is continuing to grow. One thing to keep in mind is that each state has their own unique set of policies, set of laws, and not to mention taxes. So don’t be surprised when you notice different tax rates in various cities and states. Also Keep in mind that their are many incentives for individuals such as veterans who have served our country. Veterans qualify for loans known as VA Loans and many lenders out there offer these kinds of incentives that better help them achieve the home of their dreams.

Property Taxes

As mentioned above, taxes vary by state. So when you are asking yourself how much house can I afford, do not forget to include property taxes as the tend to add up. They are used to fund public projects such as schools, parks, and things such as law enforcement. Knowing ahead of time what kind of taxes you will be paying will give you a better picture of the cost of living in your new home, especially if you are planning on moving out of state; do some research.

Educate Yourself On the Real Estate Market

One should also know what exactly drives house prices in the market, especially in the Central Coast Real Estate area because it has gained popularity in past years. Instability in house prices vary from state to state and from region to region. For example, a home in the Arroyo Grande, California will not have the same price as a beach from property in the Pismo Beach, California area even though their proximity is not to far apart. Same applies to locations such as Los Angeles, California and New York (especially within the city). We at Greater Mortgage Solutions and Valley Hills Realty want to teach you about the macro and micro trends that influence the real estate market. That way you can make a better decision when making a mortgage deal that is being offered to you.

So when you, a family member, or a close friend of yours is ready to achieve The American Dream, consider allowing one of our team of experts at Greater Mortgage Solutions and Valley Hills Realty help you attain the precise mortgage and the home you have always wanted. We are filled with team members that are ready to help you every step of the way.

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What You Need To Know About Home Appraisals

1) Examination of the Property

The physical examination of a property is performed by an appraiser. These types of visits are usually brief if the house is in good condition. Other factors that contribute to the lengthiness of the appraisal are the Gross Living Area (GLA) and the design of the home. A home with a large living area will take longer than those examinations for smaller homes. Also homes that are designed a bit more complex will lead to longer examinations. A typical home appraisal takes about 30 minutes to complete and are required by the lender who is completing the loan.

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2) Selecting Comparables

This part of an appraisal is when the appraiser chooses a nearby house that closely resembles your home and has closed within the last 6 months. Most appraisals require at least 3 closed comparables, 2 of which have closed within 6 months and another that has closed within 12. No comparables will be taken into consideration if it has closed 12 or more months prior to the appraisal. Some lenders are now requiring comparables that are pending or still active to be included. The comparable is usually within a 1 mile radius of the location of your home but the proximity of the comparable differs between suburban and rural neighborhoods. Suburban homes tend to require a comparable that is no more than 1 mile away while homes located in a rural type of neighborhood can be as far apart as 5 miles. The appraiser will choose the most appropriate one and include it in the Appraisal Report.

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3) Completing the Appraisal Report

After the examination of the property and choosing the best comparable sales available, the appraiser can now begin to compile the Appraisal Report. The appraiser evaluates all information that is entered into the report so that they can determine an accurate Market Value of your home. This report is usually handed back to the client after seven to ten business days of the appraisal.

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These three main categories are what complete an appraisal report when trying to sell your home. Though they may vary somewhat throughout real estate, this is typically how an appraisal is performed. Next time you are looking to sell your home keep these topics in mind so that you are aware of what the appraiser is looking for.

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The Benefits Of Owning A Home

How does owning a home save you money? There are tax benefits, financial firmness, and in the long run owning a home is less expensive than renting a house. So if you are on the fence on whether or not to purchase your new home, take into consideration these 4 benefits of owning your own home.

1. Owning a Home Builds Wealth in the Long-run

Buying home that you can afford now can drastically increase your wealth in the future. It is something that we have been taught by family members in the past but do to the uncertainty of today’s market, many people have moved away from home ownership.

2. Build Equity Every Month

By owning a home, you will be making mortgage payments every month. By making those mortgage payments you are essentially reducing the amount that you owe on your home every month. It is that reduction of your mortgage that increases your equity.

3. A Mortgage Is Like a Obligatory Savings Plan

Paying off that mortgage payment every month and reducing the amount that you owe is like a forced savings plan because each month you are building up more valuable equity in your home

4. In The Long Term, Buying Is Cheaper than Renting

The first few years renting can seem cheaper, or more affordable when compared to buying a new home, but over the years as the interest portion of your mortgage decreases it will be lower than what your actual rent payment is now. So instead of throwing away all of your money every month by giving it to your landlord, invest it in your own home so that you build equity for the future.

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What Everyone Should Know About Credit Scores

For starters there are different classifications for what is considered a good credit score. They can also be described as poor, average, good, great, excellent, or even exceptional based on the credit score number that you have. Your credit score will fall within one of these categories, but keep in mind the names for these categories differ from industry to industry but to give you a general idea of how good, or bad your credit score is, we have provided you this article outlining what most lenders or banks, even credit card companies and car dealerships, use to determine the likeliness of providing you with a loan at a reasonable rate. Below there is a pie chart outlining what FICO classifies credit score ratings nationwide.

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A good credit score depends on many factors. A credit score when applying for a mortgage is different when applying for a credit card or a car loan at your local dealership.
Based on our experience most credit scores, or what seems to be the average among individuals, fall within 620 to 669. A score between 670 to 680 would be considered above average or generally good credit for most lenders. Anything between 680 and 720 will be measured as excellent or very good credit and will help you attain that interest rate that everyone wants. Now, generally anything above 750 will be seen as exceptional credit, which is what lenders like to see. The higher your score, the better credit decisions lenders will make because they will be more confident that you will repay any future debts.

Credit scores are used by lenders, including banks providing mortgage loans, credit card companies, and even car dealerships to make decisions about whether or not to offer you a reasonable loan and what the terms of the offer (such as the interest rate or down payment) will be. We have broken down the differences among these types of loans below.

Home Loans
Mortgages have two key credit score requirements. The first is the minimum score needed to qualify for the mortgage and the second is also a minimum score but this is for qualifying for a low interest rate. Keep in mind that when buying a home there are many types of loans that one can attain. There are conventional loans, FHA Loans, and VA Loans, all with different minimum credit score requirements.

Credit Cards
Credit card lenders do not reveal their requirements unlike mortgages, credit card issuers don’t disclose their standards. There is no data readily available to the public in regards to credit cards.

Car Loans
Also with car loans, there are no set standards, and credit score requirements vary from one lender to the next. Just like the rest of the type of loans (mortgages and credit cards) it is best to keep your credit score in the above average section of credit score rating. To get the best possible interest rate available as well as the type of loan you can be approved for.

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