6 things a first-time homeowner in Liberty Hills should do

Buying a home for the first time is one of the most exciting and memorable experiences in life. However, you will have to face a lot of challenges. You should consult with your real estate agent during the entire process of buying home. They can be very helpful. For example, if you live in Liberty Hills, then the Liberty Hills Estates can help you in getting a mortgage and buying a house according to your need and preference.  They will arrange the papers for you as well. As a first-time homebuyer, there are several important things you should do.

1. Compare the selling prices of homes in your area

You should do research on the multiple listing service or MLS to see the listings in your area from a number of different websites. This will give you an idea about the type of house available and their costs. You can also check out CondoMania: Austin Based Realtors youtube channel for more information

2. Calculate the mortgage rate

You should use Bankrate’s mortgage calculator to know what your monthly mortgage payments will be if you buy the house today. You should learn about the downpayment. You should compare the mortgage rates of several lenders before choosing one.

3. Find out your total monthly housing cost

Mortgage is a huge burden. You have to carry it for many years. Your financial condition may not be same always. You should know the total monthly housing cost, including the home insurance and taxes so that you can find out how much you can afford to pay. For getting information regarding insurance and taxes, you can ask your lender or the real estate agent. You can also get information on various websites.

4. Check your credit report

You should check your credit report also to know your financial standing. If there are any issues, you should try to solve them like we talk about here before taking the mortgage. You should remember that a good credit score can get you a good mortgage rate.

5. Know how much you need to pay in closing costs

Many first-time home buyers don’t realize that there is a closing cost involved in buying a house and it takes up a significant portion of the total house cost. The closing costs include origination fees, title association fees, taxes, homeowner’s insurance, etc.

6. Get an idea about the real estate climate in your region

You should talk to the real estate agent to get an idea about the housing climate of the region from which you are going to buy a house. You should look at the trend of the past few years. People buy a home not only to live. It is considered to be a good investment as well. They later sell the house at a higher price. That’s why you should know about the market condition.

Buying house is an effective way to build wealth. However, maintaining your house can be very critical. You should always try to keep your house in good condition so that you can get a good value if you decide to sell your home. Maintaining your home can also give you a comfortable living experience.

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Hello World: A Contractor’s Eye-Opening Advice for Home Improvement Jobs

Home improvement projects can increase the value of your home if done correctly. However, there are things that can cause chaos and big problems. A contractor who has been in the business for a long time shares his advice for home improvement. He says that there are certain things that you absolutely should not do. It is always a good idea to get a professional opinion before doing a big home improvement project. Let’s see what he says.

Decision Making

Make all decisions before you start. Even the small things like paint color, types of fittings and faucet design, tiles, etc. should be set. When any of these things are not decided or if a delivery is late, it will cause a delay in the whole process. Certain things need to happen before others can. It becomes a break in the chain and causes a lot of frustration.

Be careful with changes

You will probably at some point change your mind. This is fine as long it is not every few hours. A whole plan needs to be adjusted. A change usually has extra costs involved and may also cause delays.

Make sure improvement is the best option

Some houses can be improved by simple things. Others might be better off knocked down and rebuilt. If your house has a sagging roof, new cabinets or floors will not help. Rather spend the money to fix the roof.

Have backup funds

It hardly ever happens that a project budget is absolutely accurate. Most of the time, the costs are more than expected. If you made all your decisions ahead of time and planned properly the extra costs should be minimal. Be prepared for the inevitable.

Pets and kids

If someone is coming to do the improvements for you, keep the pets and the kids out of the way. The contractor and workers will accommodate them, but it is dangerous. Kids and pets should steer clear of the construction area as they can get injured or cause accidents.

Stay somewhere else

If you are remodeling your whole house or a large part of it, try to live somewhere else for the duration of construction. This could be expensive and an inconvenience, but it helps. If friends or family can take you in, live with them for a few days or weeks. It will keep you sane. The noise and mess going on during construction will drive anyone crazy.

Work with a plan

Whether you are doing the job or hiring a contractor, there needs to be a plan. Some projects require the input of an architect, interior designer, electrician, or builder. A floor plan that shows power outlets, plumbing, etc. is necessary before work starts. You need to be sure that what you want will work. A plan helps to direct the work and give a picture of what needs to happen.

A lot of this advice is relevant to when someone does the work for you. These are good things to remember. It will make the process go faster and save you from frustration.

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7 Important Tips for Improving Your Bad Credit Score Before Applying to Buy a New House

Before buying a house, it is good to have a good credit score. This will help with interest rates and what the bank is willing to give you. Your credit score consists of different things. These things include income, how long you have been at your job, your payment history, amounts owed, new credit, the length of your credit history, and your credit mix (credit cards, accounts, and loans). Based on all these factors your credit score is determined.

Here are some ways to improve your credit score before applying for that home loan so you can have a good credit score again. You will have to start these steps some months before you plan to apply as it takes time to improve a credit score.

1.  Keep balances low – keep your debt low. Try to keep the balances on your credit cards below 50%.

2.  Fix your mistakes – fix errors on your credit reports. Request a copy of your credit reports and look for any mistakes. Get them fixed.

3.  Pay your debt – pay off what you owe. Costs for transferring money from card to card build up. Rather just pay it off.

4.  Pay more – make payments that are more than your minimum. This looks good on your record and you will save money on interest.

5.  Plan ahead – the process of increasing your credit score takes time. Start the process well ahead of the time you plan on applying for a loan. Get your debt paid off and make sure your spending behavior is spotless. Only when everything is in place should you apply for a home loan.

6.  Don’t buy a car – it is a bad idea to buy a car in the few months before applying for a home loan. Rather leave it for the future.

7.  Pay bills on time – this may seem simple, but it is important. Keep paying your bills on time. Missing payments hurts your credit score.

There you have it. Start planning and taking action to improve your credit score. This will place you in a much better position when you apply for a home loan.

Estate Agent Versus Private Sale: 3 Things To Consider Before Deciding To Sell Your House Privately

Most of us will move house at least once or twice in our lifetimes. This can be quite an undertaking if you don’t know where to begin. Many homeowners have opted for selling their homes privately. The benefit of that is that you save on the commission fees that real estate agents charge. On the other hand, selling a house is a big deal. Real estate agents sell houses for a living every day. They have a lot experience and know how to negotiate. There are pros and cons to both ways. Here are a few things to consider before you decide to sell privately.

Price

Real estate agents can negotiate better prices. They can sell a property based on knowledge of the area, by selling a lifestyle that the house will bring, and other marketing tools. They have the talent to sell a house through pictures and the possibilities that it holds.

Reaching Qualified Buyers

Estate agents have a process they follow with potential buyers. They request financial documents and can verify where the money for buying is coming from. They know people and have good instincts about buyers. They will know who isn’t serious.

Save Time

Selling your house privately will require you to be available for appraisers to come to your house. You will have to place advertisements and contact people. You will have to answer calls and emails and sift through offers. You will need to be home to show the property to potential buyers. Some people don’t have the time for this. Between work and family, it is often not possible. This is where a real estate agent makes things easier and saves you time. This is what they do and they do it well.

In the end, you need to decide whether you are willing to pay the commission fee or not. If not, you will need to make time for this process. All the information you need about appraisals and advertising your house can be found online.