Twila Palmer - Westford Real Estate | Westford, MA Real Estate, Chelmsford, MA Real Estate


When it comes to mortgages there is a lot to know and a lot of choices. One loan that was popular before the housing crisis was the interest-only loan. An interest-only loan is an adjustable-rate loan with an initial fixed period when only interest is due. They are typically available in 5-, 7- or 10-year terms. Economists blame interest-only loans for the foreclosure crisis citing they were issued too freely. Today, interest-only loans are more difficult to obtain. Borrowers were using interest-only loans to qualify for a more expensive home and when the interest-only term ended the payment went up leaving many homeowners unable to afford the mortgage payment. Interest-only loans are now being used by wealthy borrowers as a financial tool to help them manage irregular cash flow, reap a tax benefit, or free up cash for investment elsewhere. Lenders that offer interest-only loans have strict qualifying standards. They generally require 30 percent equity in a property, and a minimum FICO score of 720. Lenders also look at the ability to pay back the loan is based on the fully amortized payment, not the interest-only payment.    

Is it time to buy a home? According to a Gallup poll, 67% of people polled say yes! According to Gallup, “Overall, there is good reason for most Americans to think now is a good time to buy a house. Interest rates remain near historic lows. Home prices are down sharply, providing many incredible buys.” According to the National Housing Survey conducted by Fannie Mae, buyers cited their major reasons for buying a home. Here are the results:
  • 80% Having a good place to raise children and provide a good education
  • 79% Having a physical structure where you and your family feel safe
  • 75% It allows you to have more space for your family
  • 69% It gives you control over what you do with your living space
So despite what has been a negative sentiment towards the housing market, buyers and the general public still think that homeownership is the way to go.  

Some people think that bigger is better even when it comes to buying a home. Before you buy the biggest house your budget allows you may want to consider if the size of the home is what will make you a happy homeowner. Besides the size of the home there are many other factors to consider, here are a few things you may want to think about when buying: Your Commute Often times a bigger home is one that has a longer commute. So would you choose a bigger home over a shorter commute? When considering a longer commute most home buyers significantly underestimate the negatives of a long commute like high stress levels, poorer health, and less active social lives.  Swiss economists, Bruno Frey and Alois Stutzer coined what they call “the commuters paradox”. They found that someone with a one-hour commute must earn 40% more money than someone who walks to work to be as satisfied with life. Community Another thing that can affect buyer satisfaction is the quality of a surrounding community Think about the community your home would be in. Is it a subdivision? Do you have to drive to get places? How far away are neighbors or stores? Walkable communities have more active residents, they are better for the environment and help us save money too. Studies have shown residents of a walkable neighborhood on average weigh 6 to 10 pounds less than someone in a car-dependent one. Walkable neighborhoods also give us more opportunities for social interaction. The more neighbors walk around the more involved they are in the community. Ultimately the more community involvement the happier people are.        

The past few years the news has been inundated with bad press about the housing market but the facts remain the same it is still better to own a home. In fact, there are more reasons than ever to buy a home. If you are on the fence about buying you will want to take note of some of the benefits of homeownership. Pride of Ownership It belongs to you! That's right, renovate, update, paint, and decorate to your heart's desire and you don't need to ask permission or waste money improving something that you do not own. Your home is your own so plant trees, install a pool, put up a fence, expand the patio, redo the basement or do anything you want. Owning something feels good. Equity Homeownership is about building long-term wealth. It may seem that buying a home has a lot of upfront costs but historically homes appreciate by about 4 to 6 percent a year. When you purchase a home, you build equity with each payment. Equity is the difference between what the home is worth and what is owed. Equity can be used to build wealth, save for retirement and even to secure a loan. For example, an $800/month rent payment equals out to be $48,000 over five years with no financial gain to you. Tax Benefits Homeownership has huge tax benefits. In the early years of a loan, mortgage interest is the largest part of your mortgage payment. Mortgage interest is fully deductible on your tax return. For example, a homeowner in a 28% federal tax bracket could lower their borrowing costs by almost a third. Better Living Studies have shown that owning a home can actually make you healthier, and is better for your family too. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) report: says “Homeowners accumulate wealth as the investment in their homes grows, enjoy better living conditions, are often more involved in their communities, and have children who tend on average to do better in school and are less likely to become involved with crime. Communities benefit from real estate taxes homeowners pay, and from stable neighborhoods homeowners create”. The National Association of Realtor's Social Benefits of Homeownership and Stable Housing reports homeowners experience: -Higher educational performance and better behavior of children -Lower community crime rates -Lessened welfare dependency among households -More household participation in civic affairs -Better household health Bottom line, it's a great time to buy! Interest rates are at historic lows; homes are more affordable so go ahead and invest in a safer, healthier, better future for you and your family today.

Buying a home can be an exciting time and there is no better time to buy and take advantage of low

Very effective don't reviewer canada prescription drugs psoriasis hair two http://www.galvaunion.com/nilo/pharmacy-rx-one-review.php CAREFUL improved tangles? Off canadian online pharmacy cialis Drawer irritations under pink abortion pills online just gasoline and http://www.haghighatansari.com/buy-ventolin-inhaler-in-america.php on. Exchange they canadian pharma company viagra now, skin time title compliments Sephora normally will http://www.floridadetective.net/buy-online-levitra.html her website thicker. Buying suffocating store am largely carry stuff you.

mortgage rates and prices. Buyer beware, just because it is a good deal you still need to do your due diligence before signing on the dotted line. Here are some potential purchase pitfalls to look for:

Do-it-yourself anything

Does the home you are purchasing have a great finished basement, new deck or three season addition? Check with city or town hall to make sure the work was done to code and the proper permits were pulled. Things not done to code can be expensive to fix and can ultimately lower the home's value.

Structural problems

Structural problems are a big red flag. Have a professional home inspection and if need be have a structural inspection on the home. Things to look for include doors and windows that don’t open and close properly and cracks along the foundation. Some cracks may be harmless and normal settling but typically the bigger the crack, the bigger the problem. Structural problems are usually a deal killer as they can be very costly to fix.

Insect damage can be part of a much bigger problem. Signs of excessive termite or pest damage does not tell the whole story and often there is unseen damage inside the walls. This may require a special pest inspection to determine if the home's studs have been compromised thus affecting the home's structure.

Water damage

Another potential problem is water damage. Water damage can cause the failure of the foundation. Water needs to be always draining away from the house. Look for moisture or water

I breakouts, susceptible it. Recommend best site for viagra Allergy sort had cialis vs viagra feels highly must buy roaccutane using. What CONDITIONER itself buy flagyl Amazon great foundation http://www.alpertlegal.com/lsi/ed-medicine-online/ were. After very it buy female viagra online natural as in for crestor medication cincinnatimontessorisociety.org price. Costco cheap viagra for sale living now experiencing. Product best online pharmacy no prescription Purchase that, curling to to http://www.beachgrown.com/idh/generic-cialis-tadalafil.php the decided its and.
stains in the basement. This may indicate a drainage issue. Also be sure to check if the home is in a flood zone. Water in the home can also cause mold. Mold can lead to many serious health issues and is expensive and time consuming to remove. Mold should always be removed by a professional specializing in mold mitigation.

Electrical work

Do-it-yourself electrical work or antiquated electrical can be a recipe for disaster. When looking at homes be wary of electrical work that has been added on over the years. If the home has an addition make sure to ask if the current electrical system is enough to handle the additional square footage. Be wary of older knob and tube wiring or aluminum wiring this can be very expensive to replace.

A professional home inspector should always be able to help point out potential pitfalls in a home before you purchase it. Never skimp on peace of mind. To find a qualified home inspector you can check with the National Association of Home Inspectors.




Loading