7 Questions to Ask Your Lender Before Getting a Mortgage

Shopping around for a mortgage involves a lot more than just trying to snag the lowest interest rate. While this certainly is an important component to the mortgage shopping process, it’s only a part of the equation. Whether you’re a seasoned veteran in the world of mortgage applications or a first-timer, there are certain key questions that you should make sure to ask your lender before you agree to a deal. Here’s a look at 7 questions to ask your mortgage lender.

9 Kitchen Design Mistakes to Avoid

No matter how amazing and comfortable the rest of your home may be, there’s something about the kitchen that has everyone congregating to it. No doubt, your kitchen is the hardest working space your home, and should be designed to help make it as efficient as possible. And considering how much of an effect the kitchen has on the overall value of your property, you’d be well advised to make sure its design and style are carefully considered.

7 Features Homebuyers Will Dish Out Extra For

Everyone knows that location is a key factor in dictating how much a property can sell for in a given market. But while close proximity to employment, amenities, and green space are all important to boosting property values, the physical features of the homes themselves obviously also play important roles in how much buyers are willing to pay for them.

6 Tips to Building a Sustainable Greenhouse

Instead of heading to the supermarket for your daily dose of veggies and herbs, imagine being able to pluck them right from your own yard? And rather than buying plants and flowers to adorn your landscaping with, why not grow them yourself?

9 Mortgage Mistakes to Avoid

The mortgage process is a potentially complicated one. During the underwriting process, a number of obstacles can get in the way of your approval. And considering the huge commitment, it’s crucial that you make sure the mortgage you get into is one you can live comfortably with.

7 Curb Appeal Blunders That Can Curtail the Sale of Your Home Sale

Impressions speak volumes when it comes to impressing prospective home buyers. That’s why it’s absolutely crucial that you present your home in such a way that it attracts buyers, rather than repel them. And curb appeal is probably the first component you should address. After all, it’s the exterior lead-up to the home that buyers will first interact with.

INFOGRAPHIC: 8 Signs of a Competitive Housing Market

Sellers revel when buyers are competing for their properties, but buyers themselves can often get disgruntled when they’re snuffed out of offer after offer. Landing the right home isn’t impossible during a competitive real estate market, however, as long as you’re aware of the circumstances you’re dealing with and come to the table prepared.

Home Equity Loans 101: An Introductory Guide

Whether you need to pay for your child’s college education, a major home renovation, or an emergency medical expense, scraping the necessary funds together can be tough, but necessary. But if you currently own a home that you’ve been regularly putting money into via mortgage payments, you just might be able to tap into your home’s equity as a source to fund these major expenses.

INFOGRAPHIC: 10 Tips to Saving Up For a Down Payment

Even with a down payment as low as 3.5%, it can seem nearly impossible to scrape together thousands of dollars to put words a home purchase. It’s usually the down payment that stands in the way of many homebuyer-hopefuls’ dreams of being able to secure a mortgage. And when you factor in rent, credit card payments, student loans, and living expenses, saving up for a down payment can be even more of a challenge.

INFOGRAPHIC: 10 Things All First-Time Homebuyers Should Know

Buying your very first home is incredibly exciting, but it can also be pretty overwhelming, especially since the entire process is completely new. But despite your limited experience in the world of buying real estate, it’s critical that you make sure you are well-informed before making any decisions that could put you in a compromising position.

How Do Interest Rates Affect Home Sale Prices?

Homeowners across the country have been able to take advantage of super-low interest rates on their mortgages for the past few years, which has certainly helped to make home purchases more affordable.

9 Ways to Bring Feng Shui Into Your Home

This ancient Chinese art of existing in peace with your surrounding environment is based on the notion that your home reflects your life. Everything that surrounds you holds an energy called “chi,” which can be used to bring tranquility, energy, luck, and even wealth into your home. And at the same time, Feng Shui can also help add a sense of style

How Soon After Foreclosure Can You Buy Again?

After the financial crisis hit the nation back in 2008, hundreds of thousands of families lost their homes to foreclosure. In fact, foreclosure filings skyrocketed over 81% that year compared to the year before. Getting approved for a mortgage is tough enough these days for any borrower, but it can be a lot more challenging with a foreclosure on the record.

INFOGRAPHIC: 10 Ways to Slash Your Utility Bill

It doesn’t take much to notice your bank account whittling away just to keep your home in operation. Your HVAC system can be a real money-sucker when it comes time to pay off your utility bills - but it doesn’t have to be. According to the US Department of Energy, you can slash as much as 43 percent off your monthly bill, while still living comfortably.

Why Are Millennials Still on the Fence About Getting Into the Housing Market?

Millennials now make up the largest proportion of the population in the US at over 80 million. With so many of these 20- and 30-somethings, one could only assume that they’d simultaneously make up a large part of the real estate market. But that’s not necessarily the case. Millennials are taking their time testing the waters of the housing market, for a variety of reasons.

What Exactly Goes Into a Home Appraisal?

If you thought finding the perfect home was the hard part of the home buying process, what until you actually have to go from offer acceptance to closing. A bunch of steps need to be taken in proper succession order to take you through escrow, one of which is a home appraisal.

4 Things You Need to Know About Condo Insurance

The differences between condo ownership as opposed to single detached home ownership are obvious. For one, there are HOA fees that condo owners need to pay that aren’t applicable to most single detached properties. Part-ownership of common elements is another unique feature of owning a condo unit.

6 Things You Should Know About FHA Loans

After the financial crisis hit the US back in 2008, FHA loans suddenly became pretty popular among borrowers who found it tough to secure a conventional mortgage. Before that, FHA loans were typically an option reserved mainly for low-income homebuyers.

How to Sell Your Place While Your Tenants Are Still Living There

Whatever your reason for wanting to list your rental property for sale, having a tenant still living there while selling the place can definitely make the process a little more complex. But it’s not impossible, nor does it have to be a total nightmare if you play your cards right. While it might be a lot easier to wait until the lease expires and your tenants have vacated the premises, you might not necessarily have the luxury of time. Not everyone can necessarily afford to have the place vacant with zero income while the property is up for sale.

6 Things Burglars Don't Want Homeowners to Know

Every 15 seconds, a home is broken into and burglarized in the US. Thieves spend hours scoping out targets, and once they zero in on them, it takes less than 60 seconds to break in.

1.5 Million Boomerang Buyers to Re-Enter the Market Within the Next 3 Years

The financial crisis of 2008 wreaked havoc on homeowners across the US. Millions of Americans bailed on the housing market after the downturn when they simply couldn't keep up with their mortgages.