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Best Ways to Leverage Your Home Equity

Home equity is clearly a good thing to have; it’s one of the perks of home ownership.  Steady appreciation of real estate values for eighty years has made home equity a powerful contributor to the economy, either after selling the house or via home equity loans.  This article presents six smart strategies for using home equity, including the risks of each strategy.

Using Home Equity to Pay For College

Home equity loans sometimes have lower interest rates than student loans, so using home equity for college makes sense in that regard.  Paying off your student loan with home equity may save money in the long run; however, it is still a loan that must be paid back, and if you don’t follow the terms of payback, you could lose your house.  On the other hand, student loans backed by the federal government contain many options for slow payment tolerance: forbearance, deferment, and repayment based on income; therefore, they are easier to handle when times are rough.

Using Home Equity For Home Improvements

Making home improvements is a popular way to both make the home more enjoyable and to increase its value.  For example, replacing an old garage door can improve convenience and security, while increasing the home’s value.  New roof shingles, on the other hand, may stop leaks, but may not affect much the home’s value. Improving curb appeal by installing stone veneer, new siding, or adding a beautiful paint job will likely raise the market value of the house when it comes time to sell.  If you have $30,000 in home equity, and you use all of it for the most expensive flooring, you most likely will not recoup the $30,000 at selling. Doing the work yourself is an intelligent way for using home equity, provided you know what you’re doing and don’t cause more problems.

Using Home Equity To Consolidate Credit Card Debts

Convenience and impulse buying have made the credit card companies rich from the interest and fees charged.  Over the years, credit card users often pay two or three times more than the purchases prices of card uses. And with an average interest rate of 15%, using home equity loan at 5% APR to pay off your unsecured debts makes sense with a few caveats of caution.  If you don’t get rid of your credit cards or change spending habits, you’ll run up the debts again and be worse off than before. It takes commitment to stop using credit cards and borrowing unsecured money, so formulate a plan for sticking to the payment of only the consolidation loan and not adding new payments with their strangling interest.  Another drawback to using home equity to pay off credit card debts is that it typically lengthens the time in debt. It will take longer to pay off, though at a lower interest rate.

Using Home Equity to Pay Off Medical Expenses

Medical bills are a fact of life, even with good health insurance.  They can eventually be reported to credit bureaus, lowering your credit score.  So, paying off medical bills with home equity can be a good thing; however, remember that you’re transferring a debt with no collateral to one with your home as collateral. This means that if you default on the home equity loan, you could lose your house.

Using Home Equity to Improve Retirement

Retirees can smartly use home equity to benefit their retirement years.  One way is to open a “heloc” (home equity line of credit) for quality of life expenses or home improvements.  Another strategy is to downsize the home. Using equity to buy a less expensive home will either reduce the house payment or eliminate it completely.  This increases discretionary income for improving lifestyle. Some retirees enjoy enhancing their lifestyle with a reverse mortgage, and if they borrow less than what is owed, then less obligation is passed on to heirs at the owner’s passing.

Best Ways to Leverage Your Home Equity

Article By: Clear Content Marketing


How To Budget For Home Ownership

How to budget for home ownership has dramatic effects on your lifestyle, relationships and financial fitness over time.  You’ve heard the horror stories of people divorcing and the mortgage going into foreclosure: sad days, indeed. With good planning, you can avoid these problems.  You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to succeed on this one, but you do need to follow some guidelines if you want less headache in the long run.

Make a Budget/ Outline

First, calculate your total monthly income in take-home pay.  If you and your spouse bring home $4,500, per month combined, then let’s start with that.  Next, add up all of your monthly expenses. The example, below, will illustrate:

Charitable Donations: $450.

Rent: $1,250.

Savings: $750.

Utilities & Phone: $375.

Food: $325.

Transportation: $350.

Medical: $500.

Personal: $200.

Clothing: $100.

Recreation: $100.

TV & Internet: $100.

In this example, the total monthly expenses are $4,500, matching the income of $4,500.  If your income is greater than your outgo, then increase savings for future needs. In this case, saving $750 per month will add up fast to be significant, especially over time, even if you saved for only one year.  For example, saving $750 per month for one year would add up to $9,000. Let’s say you invested the $9,000 in a good mutual fund that has earned on average 10% interest for many years. Using the Rule of 72, you can expect your money to double every 7.2 years.  Without touching the $9,000 or even adding to it for 36 years, the $9,000 will have grown to $288,800! That’s quite a “chunk of change” for one year of savings that you forgot about!

Keep Your House Payment Low

Now, back to how to budget for home ownership.   A good rule of thumb is to keep your house payment under 25% of your monthly take-home pay.  So, in this example of a total monthly income of $4,500, your house payment should not be greater than $1,125.  That’s enough for a nice house in most American cities.

Typically, an FHA loan will want at least 3% down payment, and conventional loans ask for 20% down; so if you’re buying a house that costs $175,000 and making a down payment of $35,000 (20%), you will finance the balance of $140,000.  The interest rates in 2018 are between 3% and 4%. At 3%, your total monthly payment would be $1301, if you get a 15-year loan because you want to pay it off faster and save a lot of money on interest charges. If you go with the 30-year loan, your payment is only $984.   Lower monthly payment, but pay much more over the life of the mortgage.

Consider Interest

In budgeting for home ownership, consider the fees added to principal and interest.  Some loans require mortgage insurance, which can raise your monthly payment unless you have the cash to pay the insurance at the beginning.  At some point during the pay-off, your loan becomes eligible to drop the mortgage insurance premium, which will lower your monthly house payment.  You should ask your mortgagor and title company about that, so you’ll have a goal to achieve in reducing your house payment. Be sure also to look at the differences between 15-, 20-, and 30-year mortgages, and choose wisely according to your budget and long-term plans.

Hopefully, you’ve considered the positives and negatives of living in a neighborhood that requires membership in the HOA (Home Owners Association).  It costs extra to have an HOA. They’re usually pretty good at protecting values and enforcing the upkeep of a neighborhood, but they can be restrictive to your personal life and hobbies.

Manage Your Budget

Once you’re in the house, there are many ways to manage the budget and even increase the amount you save each month.  Talk to neighbors about TV, internet, and trash pick-up services. There are many companies, competing for those monthly fees, so here’s a chance to be frugal.   Keep in mind the expenses of maintenance or improvements to your property. If you bought a fixer-upper, you need to include some costs for that. If it’s already to your liking, you still need to budget an amount for furniture, home décor, and yard beautification.  Over time, be aware of fluctuations in mortgage interest rates, and consult an accountant for the right time to refinance. Refinancing can free up money, but it can also end up costing you in the end. I hope I’ve given you some helpful tips on how to budget for home ownership.

How To Budget For Home Ownership

St. George Home Ownership

Article By: Clear Content Marketing


The Top Four Reasons To Move To Utah

After recent reports that some Utah cities are not only among the fastest growing in the USA, but also are ranking among the best overall places to live, there are some compelling motives for moving to Utah.  This article discusses the top four reasons to move to Utah.


Utah’s financial health is quite solid, as evidenced by strong business growth, low unemployment, a skilled and abundant workforce, and legislative investments in Utah’s future.

Truth in Accounting, a company based in Chicago, analyzes financial reporting in the 50 United States.  It stated that Utah has the fourth strongest financial position. Utah has $10.5 billion in assets to pay $6.6 billion in bills, which means a surplus of taxpayer money to the tune of $4,600 per taxpayer.  The only states with higher taxpayer surpluses are Alaska, North Dakota, and Wyoming. The study also pointed out that 41 states lack enough money to pay their bills.


Utah’s unemployment rate has hovered around 3% for several years now, compared to an average rate of 4% in the rest of the USA.  Utah ranks 11th best in unemployment among the 50 states, and Hawaii is best at about 2%.  Utah’s job creation rate is three times faster than the national average. The job situation is certainly one of the top reasons to move to Utah.


Utah’s public schools are among the country’s best; sure they don’t stack up well to schools in Finland, but Utah gets more bang for its buck than any other state.  Besides the fine public schools, many private and charter schools offer alternatives (and uniforms) to parents and their youngsters.


The quality of life in Utah is excellent, beginning with public transportation, another of the top four reasons to move to Utah.  The UTA (Utah Transit Authority) has won awards for its ability to safely, and conveniently transport residents along the picturesque Wasatch front from home to work and back.  Prices are cheap to free, depending on the occupation of the bus or train riders.

Because of the emphasis placed on education within the historically predominant religion of Utah’s residents, several fine state institutions of higher education exist.  Utah turns out more college graduates per capita than any other state. The University of Utah is the state’s flagship state-funded university, and Brigham Young University, sponsored by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is one of the largest and most prestigious private institutions in the world.  The six state universities and five state junior colleges attract ambitious young people to Utah, and many of them stay there to work and raise their families.

Beautiful Sights

Utah features a dynamic geography and geology to delight people of many persuasions.  From some of world’s best ski mountains to the beautiful red rock desert of Southern Utah, the states diverse topography has it all, in terms of outdoor recreation.  Hunting, camping, fishing, boating, hiking, you name it. And climate varies with the state’s regions. If you don’t like cold winters, go to Utah’s Dixie (Southern Utah), where winter temperatures average about 60 degrees during the day and 45 at night.  Scenic beauty is everywhere. One of this writer’s favorite views is of the vibrant colors of autumn leaves, near Utah’s mountains and canyons in October. Humidity is not a problem in Utah, whether you’re along the populated Wasatch Front of the Rockies or down south in the desert; dry air is the norm.  Your choice of weather is certainly one of the top reasons to move to Utah.

Utah has five spectacular national parks which attract millions of tourists every year.  Zion National Park, near Saint George, is the third most visited national park in the country.

It’s hard to argue that newcomers to Utah won’t encounter an abundance of good, friendly people, willing to lend a helping hand. Granted, most of them (about 65%) are Mormons, members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, but objectively and relatively speaking, that’s a plus and becomes another one of the top reasons to move to Utah.

The Top Four Reasons To Move To Utah

Southern Utah Real Estate

Article By: Clear Content Marketing


Real Estate Markets of Saint George, Orem, Riverton, and Murray Utah

The real estate markets of Saint George, Orem, Riverton, and Murray vary slightly because of climate, room for urban and suburban sprawl, and factors of economy.

Having recovered from the burst real estate bubble of 2008, Utah housing is strong again, especially in areas of rapid population growth.  For example, the formerly quiet, little town of Saint George, Utah is now widely considered the nation’s fastest growing metropolitan area in the USA.  The roughly 100,000 residents will likely burgeon toward 200,000 in the next several years, especially during the winters when mild temperatures beckon to the snowbirds and visitors.

Saint George

Washington County’s rustic beauty and warm winter climate continue to attract people from all states and Mexico.  The St. George Municipal Airport, opened in 2012, has improved access to business travelers, and companies are building in Washington County, partly because of the abundance of good, young workers.  Dixie State University adds culture, people, and education to this desert oasis, as well as plenty of ambitious and good-natured young people for companies to employ. St. George’s surrounding acreage of frontier provides plenty of space for developers to build new housing communities and industrial parks.

Beginning with the real estate trends of Saint George, there was little change in house prices from June to July of 2018.  The median list price is just under $400,000, and the price per square foot is about $171, which is a small increase from the previous two months.  The inventory of homes for sale stands at 135. The ratio of foreclosures and short sales to the total real estate market in St. George did not change.


In Orem, Utah, the median price for a house is $449,000, which dropped about 5% from June 2018.  The number of houses for resale in Orem is 163. This is slightly higher than in June. Per square foot, the price of a home in Orem is the same in June and July:  $131. The percentage of distressed properties to total houses for sale stayed the same in June and July. The real estate market of Orem, Utah has been quite stable in the last several years.


Riverton saw a small increase in list prices of homes from June to July 2018 by 4% to about $510,000.  The inventory for home resale in Riverton is 59, and $140 is the median price per square foot, which was the same in June.


The number of homes for sale in Murray, Utah in July 2018 is 71, and their median list price is just under $350,000.  The list price per square foot is $172, down from the June price of $166.

Utah is known for its fiscal responsibility and low unemployment rate, which is commonly the lowest of the 50 states.  If Utah’s government continues to apply sound legislation to support economic growth, public education, and conservation of natural resources, the real estate markets of cities like Saint George, Orem, Riverton, and Murray, Utah should see only minor fluctuations in market statistics to enjoy some stability and modest appreciation in house values.

Utah in general is seeing some of the fastest population growth in the country, though some areas like Uintah County are shrinking.  Pam Perlich, director of demographics at the University of Utah’s Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute said that some of the population of the declining rural counties of Utah is probably moving into the urban core that is doing quite well.  She added, “Growth is uneven across the state, and that the St. George area attracts many retirees and “snowbirds,” and that immigration exceeds the “natural growth” of more births than deaths. Real estate markets of Saint George, Orem, Riverton, and Murray should continue an upward swing.

Real Estate Markets of Saint George, Orem, Riverton, and Murray Utah

Utah Real Estate

Article By: Clear Content Marketing


Important Steps in Buying a Home

“Stressful and exciting at the same time,” said one home buyer.  “Like going through a pregnancy,” said another. Though buying a house has long been considered an integral part of the American Dream, it can be frustrating, fatiguing, scary, and wonderfully exciting at the same time.  This article presents some important steps in buying a home. Hopefully, it will prepare you a little and make the process of buying your house a bit easier.

Step One:

Decide if you really want to buy a house and why.  If you’re married or in a long-term, committed relationship, be sure your partner agrees that home ownership will meet your goals better than renting.  If your spouse believes long-term renting is better, ask for the reasons. This conversation may be eye-opening to your spouse’s real plans and desires.

Your partner may not be aware of the benefits of home ownership: building equity, tax savings, raising credit score, making the place your own to suit your fancy, your hobbies, family gatherings, etc.  When you own a home, you can make it a refuge from the distractions and stresses of the world. You can turn it into a soft place to fall for your children. Granted, an atmosphere of love and acceptance is more important than how comfortable your couches and chairs are.

Certainly, there are times when renting is advisable over purchasing, such as during an unstable real estate market, unsure job situation, where you want to grow roots, money savings, interest rates, and level of commitments to the relationship.  So, if you like your job, want to put down some roots, have some money saved, and are committed to your partner no matter what, then set the goal to buy a house together.

Step Two:

Once you’ve decided that buying a house is right for you, determine your price range, and start looking.  Look in areas where you want your kids to go to school and play with neighbors. Check the distance and safety of the commute to work.  Does it bother you to drive 40 minutes through lots of intersections? Is it important for your health that your commute can be a walk or bicycle ride?   Can you take public transit to and from work? Buses and trains remove the stress of driving and many of the risks, too. Expenses? Yeah, public transportation will save you money.

Step Three:

 After setting your price range and areas where you’d like to live, choose a real estate agent, or use online resources to look for Fisbos.  “For Sale By Owner” houses may save you the commission fees, but they transfer more of the headache of negotiation and paperwork to you. Not everyone is up to that, so asking a real estate agent to help you is recommended.  Talk to a few agents, and ask them how long they’ve been in the profession. Ask what type of houses they have sold. If they’ve sold only million-dollar homes, and you want one that costs $100,000, you’re better off with another agent.  You want someone who considers your business important and worth their time. Ask what their commission rates are and how they look for houses for you.

Step Four:

A very important step in buying a home is making an offer.  When you and spouse have agreed on a good house for you, ask your agent for input.  You don’t have to offer what the agent says; you can “low-ball” it if you want. If the seller replies with, “No way!” you can always come back with a stronger offer.  If the seller is motivated to sell, they’ll counter with a price they’re comfortable with. At this point, it’s a game of who wants it more. Do you want that house so badly that you’re willing to pay top dollar for it, or do you have two or three houses in mind that you’d be happy with? Does your seller want to sell the house so badly that they’ll discount it?   If you convey that you don’t want that house THAT BAD, you’ll get a lower price. Your agent will help you with negotiation.

Step Five:

Choose a reputable title company which has your interests in mind.  A title company protects you during the purchase transaction. A good company will insure the money transactions are correctly done, and they’ll make sure there are no outstanding liens on the property.  You don’t want to buy a house, only to find out later that someone else has a claim to part of its value. This is critical in the important steps in buying a home. Happy Hunting!

Important Steps in Buying a Home

St. George Real Estate

Article By: Clear Content Marketing


What Should You Expect When Working With a Title Company?

During a real estate transaction, the title company often gets the least amount of spotlight and recognition, even though their involvement is just as important as any other participating party. At Eagle Gate Title, we want our patrons to understand the important role that a Saint George title company plays in their closing process. You should choose your title company wisely, just as you would a real estate agent or an attorney. Here are some things that you should expect during the process of working with the title company you choose – things that we guarantee at Eagle Gate Title.

Both The Buyer and Seller Sign The Contract

Both the buyer and the seller need to sign the purchase contract at which point the real estate agent contacts the title company to have the earnest money and contract submitted.

Receipt From the Title Company

Each party member receives a copy of the check and contract from the Saint George title company. It will include the GF (guaranty file) number as well as the name and contact info of the closing agent.

Closer Performs Their Responsibilities

The closer plays an important role as they conduct the closing meeting, prepare settlement statements, gather documents, request tax statements, request surveys, and takes care of all the communication with all parties involved.

Title Insurance Commitment

A title search will be performed by the Saint George title company after which a commitment will be sent to both parties (for more information on the important details a title search can reveal, click here).

Closing Documents

All closing documents will be provided to both parties just before the closing is scheduled to take place.

Settlement Statement

Every transaction detail and all personal information should be 100% accurate on the settlement statement, including info tax allocation, deeds, and loan documents.

Don’t rush

During the closing meeting, one document at a time will be presented by the closing agent representing the Saint George title company. They will be able to answer any question that anyone present may have to provide clarity for all parties. They shouldn’t rush the process in any way.


Because the Saint George title company acts as an escrow agent and is not a representative of the seller or buyer, they hold the earnest money until the contact states it is time to disburse those funds. All regulations and stipulations will be adhered to during the disbursement of earnest money, whatever they may be.

Earnest Money Prior to Closing

The Saint George title company will regulate and determine if party members who request earnest money before closing are in fact entitled to it.

Dealing With Compromises

In some scenarios, both parties present evidence that they should receive escrow money. Hopefully, a compromise is reached between the two parties. The Saint George title company, however, will not involve themselves in earnest money disputes.

Read the Title Commitment Inside And Out

Be sure that that you know the details of your real estate transaction including what is and isn’t covered by title insurance issued by the Saint George title company,, for example. Neutral is the name of the game when it comes to title company. They’re more like mediators. The buyers and the sellers need to make sure that their own interests are looked after. They need to look the closing documents and title commitment over to make sure that everything is in order. If you would like more information about what you should realistically expect from a Saint George title company, as well as what makes Eagle Gate Title the best choice in Southern Utah, reach out to us. When you work with us, every expectation will be met and then some.

What Should You Expect When Working With a Title Company?

St. George Title Company

Article By: Clear Content Marketing


Understanding Property Deeds

St George property deeds are legal instruments that transfer some property right in real estate. A deed contains three distinct pieces of information: a signature from the individual who is transferring property, the names of all parties involved, and a description of the property being transferred.

Deed Types

There are different types of St George property deeds, all of which are used in specific ways in certain circumstances. These include warranty deeds, grant deeds, and quitclaim deeds. Warranty deeds supply further promises in addition to transferring ownership (including the promise of a title with no liens). The party who transferred property is responsible for compensating the buyer if promises are unable to be kept for any reason. Grant deeds, in addition to transferring ownership, assure the buyer that the property being sold has not been handed over to another person. Quitclaim deeds transfers property ownership rights from the transferring party to someone else. This is the deed type most often used when ownership rights aren’t clear.

Joint Ownership

Even after describing the three main types of St George property deeds, one particular questions still comes up often. How does one purchase property jointly with another person?

Joint ownership of property can be accomplished in one of three ways. The way that one chooses to go about this is very important. The three ways are tenants in common, joint tenants, and tenants by the entirety. Tenants in common allows the parties involved to obtain unequal shares if they desire. It also makes clear the person(s) to which one’s share will fall to upon death of an ownership holder. Joint tenants is the option chosen when both parties desire equal shares of ownership. If one of the ownership holders passes away, their shares fall to the co-owner. The property right in the person’s will does not need to be disposed of under a joint tenant situation. Tenants by the entirety (sometimes called community property) involves spousal property in that both people have full ownership of the entire property and neither can transfer any ownership rights anywhere whatsoever without the other’s consent.

Property Deed Requirements

St George property deeds need to be witnessed, filed, and notarized. Step one is the transferring party visiting a notary so that the signature can be witnessed. Step two is then visiting local county recorder where the land records department is and recording the deed with them so it’s officially filed. The transferring party will keep the original deed and the office will retain a copy.

What Are Trust Deeds and Contracts For Deeds?

There are two more types of St George property deeds that we haven’t mentioned yet – trust deeds and a contract for deed – because they don’t actually transfer property, but it is still important to know about them.

A deed of trust (also called a trust deed) is a mortgage that transfers a property title to another person (the trustee) who holds the land as security for the loan. The title is returned to the borrower after the loan is paid off. A contract for deed is an actual contract that awards a party the property title only until the loans are paid off by the other party, at which point the original borrower receives the title back.

Additional Information

If you have more questions about property deeds, contact Eagle Gate Title and will provide you with all the information you’re looking for. Remember that the purchase of land and property usually represents the largest financial investment that a person will ever make. This shouldn’t be taken lightly. Be sure your are careful and meticulous about making certain that everything is in order when it comes to Saint George property deeds.

Understanding Property Deeds

St George Property Deeds

Article By: Clear Content Marketing


10 Best Kept Secrets for Buying a Home – Part 2

This article is a continuation of the Saint George home buyer article 10 Best Kept Secrets for Buying a Home – Part 1.

Let Instinct Influence Your Purchase – Not Emotion

You’re in for heartache if you let emotion be the driving factor to purchasing a home. As a Saint George home buyer, remember that “falling in love with a home” and simply going with it on those grounds alone often has consequences, mostly financial ones. Letting emotions choose your home for you typically ignores instinct and hinders your ability to understand value when it’s presented to you. A Saint George home buyer is an investor. That’s what a home purchase is, so be wise.

Homes Need Physical Examinations

You’d never purchase a used vehicle whiteout taking a look underneath the hood. Use the same mindset when you hit the housing market. Hire a home inspector and gain valuable information about the property. The average cost is around $200 for this service but can result in thousands of dollars of savings. It’s a fantastic way to obtain an opinion from a third party who is unbiased. If issues are found by the inspector, you then have some leverage for getting a lower price. How many stories have you heard of a Saint George home buyer purchasing a home they thought was in great shape but later learned that wasn’t the case? Avoid that with a home inspector.

Understand How to Bid

When a Saint George home buyer places an initial bid on a property, there should be two things and two things only that influence the amount: your realistic opinion on what the property is worth and what you can afford. You don’t want to insult the seller by making an outrageously low bid, but at the same time you need to make sure you are getting a fair price. Low first-time bids tend to be commonplace in general, but this shouldn’t be considered a wise practice in every scenario. Calculating an approximate average price per square foot is a good idea and will help you understand what the market is doing in a particular area. If you can find out near-future intentions of neighbors, this will also provide a benefit to you as a Saint George home buyer. Such knowledge can often predict future decreases in property value. If you find out that a particular seller is behind on their property taxes, this is a wonderful negotiating tool. This information can be acquired by visiting the local county clerk’s office. Gathering all of these information tools puts you at an advantage as a Saint George home buyer because the seller will see that you’ve given their property careful thought which will make you stand out.

Canvas the Neighborhood

Don’t be creepy, but get to know the area. Visit the neighborhood and particular streets with homes of interest to you. Go often. Go during different times of the day and evening. A Saint George home buyer can find out a lot about a neighborhood pretty quickly by doing this. You may discover that the area is in fact not a place you see yourself living despite a home of interested being located there. In addition to getting a feel for the location, be sure to find out distances from the property in question to places you will frequently go like work, the supermarket, gas stations, schools, event centers, etc. Another thing to not overlook is the school district. Even if you don’t have kids, this is important information to know. A notoriously good or bad school district influences the housing market in a surprisingly substantial way. Be a studious Saint George home buyer to increase the quality fo your opportunities.

10 Best Kept Secrets for Buying a Home – Part 2

Saint George Home Buyer

Article By: Clear Content Marketing


10 Best Kept Secrets for Buying a Home – Part 1

Every St George home buyer needs to remember these 10 things before purchasing a house.

Don’t Move Your Money

There’s no need to take risks as a St George home buyer with your credit profile by prematurely moving your money around and making an enormous purchase. In order to get you the best loan they can, lenders want to see a thorough paper trail that shows you’re reliable. You’ll make it difficult to get a loan if you make a lot of giant purchases, accumulate loads of debt, and open new credit cards.

Home Loan Pre-Approval is Important

A St George home buyer would be smart to remember that a pre-approved mortgage is not the same thing as being pre-qualified. Pre-qualified loans are not exclusive and are available to virtually anyone. Being pre-approved, however, is much more substantial because it means that your financial information has been examined and assessed and that you know exactly how much they’re willing to lend you. The last thing you want is to waste time viewing homes you can’t afford. A St George home buyer who is pre-approved will avoid that in addition to having assistance in getting the best possible interest rate and overall deal. Be sure to learn about points, processing and junk fees, and any potential hidden costs associated with the loan.

Border Disputes Are No Fun

You must have a survey completed on the property you’re considering so that you are fully aware of property lines. A neighborly dispute over property lines is not a situation a St George home buyer ever wants to ever be in. Another reason why having a survey done is important is because the amount you will eventually pay on property tax once you’re the owner will depend the exact amount of property you have.

You Can’t Time The Market

Friends and family may instruct you on when they think you should buy according to their knowledge of the market. The sooner you accept the fact that you cannot anticipate the housing market, the better. All a St George home buyer needs to know is that if you find a home you can afford and you absolutely love it, than it’s time to buy. The real estate market is too unpredictable to be spending precious time trying to outsmart it. Just look for the home you truly want and when you find it (and it’s within your budget), don’t let what others are saying about the market prevent you from purchasing it.

Bigger Doesn’t Always Mean Better

You may covet the nicest, biggest home on the street. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that it is “better” than the other homes. One fact to remember is that those who own the nicest, biggest home on the street have a very small demographic to sell to when it comes time. Remember that the value of your house goes up only in accordance with the surrounding houses. For example, if your neighbors are paying $300,000 to $350,000 for their homes but you pay over $500,000, the potential for appreciation is extremely limited. If a St George home buyer purchases the worst home on the street, they will likely be able to trade their home for a higher amount per square foot than the big, nice one.

Stay Away From Sleeper Costs

One of the big differences between owning a home and renting one involves sleeper costs. You will be a wise St George home buyer if you remember the reality of additional home owning expenses such as HOA dues, utilities, and property taxes. Many people only think about the mortgage payment when buying a home but fail to consider the likelihood of property tax increases, maintenance, repairs, and the other expenses the come with being a St George home buyer.

This article will continue with the St George home buyer article 10 Best Kept Secrets for Buying a Home – Part 2.

10 Best Kept Secrets for Buying a Home – Part 1

St. George Home Buyer

Article By: Clear Content Marketing


6 Home Buying Tips For The Current Market

Have realistic expectations about finding hidden gems

In most areas, all of the properties that are currently for sale have been canvased and crawled before you found out about them, particularly in the rising St George home market. Make sure that your expectations are realistic. If you keep looking and looking for that one amazing bargain while overlooking ideal options in the process, chances are you will find yourself exhausted, discouraged, and frustrated. Focusing on hidden gems is usually a time waster.

Be The First to Make an Offer

The St George home market is booming and you want to do your best to always be ready to pounce with an offer on a new listing that you find appealing. Affordable houses are often hard to come by because they get taken so quickly. If you want to get a head of the competition and give yourself an advantage, visit property listing sites online and sign up for alerts. You customize your own criteria so you’ll know the moment and ideal home becomes available. Another thing you can do is get yourself a realtor who is proactive, knows the St George home market, and will help you make first offers. Try and find one who is part of a good firm because they often get preferential treatment from fellow realtors who also work in similar renown firms.

Don’t Count Out Multi-Family Homes

There is a very good reason why exploring multi-family homes is a really good option, even if it’s not what you were originally looking for, particularly for first-time home owners. When you own a multi- family home, it is often as affordable as renting. Purchasing a home with multiple units allows you to live in one and rent out the others, driving down your personal mortgage cost as you’ll have money being provided by tenants.

Pay Attention During The Off-Peak Seasons

Buyer’s markets begin to emerge during the winter months as the market slows down. This means that, generally, sellers in the St George home market tend to be more open to negotiation during this time. Being active as a buyer during off-peak seasons also helps you to bypass the hectic spring St George home market which is usually accompanied by stress as well as aggressive bidding wars.

Look Off The Beaten Path

Be sure to consider homes for sale in nearby cities and not only major metropolitan areas. Searching in non-brand name towns (as they are sometimes called) almost always have lower housing costs. This is due to the fact that these areas have a much lower public profile and don’t get as much real estate attention as the bigger areas in the St George home market. If you’re looking for a the best deal you can find, you’re more likely to find it in these areas.

Being Aggressive is a Must

Being aggressive means that you are alert at all times, that your dedication to finding the right property for you in the St George home market is resulting in first offers. Setting up alerts and notifications as mentioned above is part of being aggressive, as is talking with people often, discovering and digging for information. Ask everyone you know if they are aware of properties for sale. Facebook and other social media sites have real estate-related groups you can join. Do everything you can and don’t give up. Even if you feel like you don’t have a large enough income to become a homeowner, it can still happen with proper patience and time. Check your credit and get pre-approved for a loan and start searching.

And, as usual, contact a representative from Eagle Gate Title for answers to questions about the St George home market and we’ll help you in any way that we can.

6 Home Buying Tips For The Current Market

St. George Home Market

Article By: Clear Content Marketing



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