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Monitor the Market and Strike While the Iron’s Hot!

A first time home buyer should be like a hawk—surveying the local and regional real estate market. By knowing how the market behaves, a first time home buyer can monitor the selling prices of comparable homes in their area, which thereby allows them to be a bit more knowledgeable when going to look at homes. Web sites such as Zillow can give a first time home buyer a general idea of what’s out there. Real estate listings are also abundant on the Internet, through sites like the National Association of Realtors®. It’s a good idea to create a few Google Alerts for when...
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Know Your Homebuyer’s Rights and Don’t Get Left Out!

It doesn’t take much to feel out of your depth when it comes to buying a home. Slick realtors and TV show tycoons are just itching to trick you and stick you with the bill—preferably with a hefty fee tacked on for them! But all of this can be avoided if you know your homebuyer’s rights! You have the RIGHT to shop for the best loan for you and compare the charges of different mortgage brokers and lenders. Look all around town, do your research: Liberty Lending has the best deals in town! You have the RIGHT to be informed...
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Conventional Loans Versus FHA Loans

This blog is a comparison between conventional loans, also called fixed-rate mortgages, and Federal Housing Authority Loans (FHA Loans). The other loan types–VA loans (for veterans) and USDA Loans (for rural development, or farms)–are a bit more straightforward in their intended audiences and qualifications.  Most people have an idea of what a conventional loan entails, but are less aware of the pros and cons of FHA loans. Since conventional loans are a good basis for comparison for any any other loan types, they’re a good way to understand exactly why one would opt for an FHA loan, if such an option presents itself. Definitions A conventional loan...
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What Do I Need to Refinance?

To some, the word “refinance” has a stigma attached to it similar to bankruptcy; the idea of it brings about concern over the desperate state of the homeowner using their house as a means to get out financial trouble.  This is inaccurate, of course. For many, refinancing is simply a smart move, either to take advantage of home equity, to lower monthly payments, and/or to shorten or extend the length of their original home loan. Whatever the reason, it’s a common practice among homeowners, so you needn’t feel overwhelmed at the prospect of refinancing.  That said, refinancing isn’t a light...
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Meet Me in St. Louis

This month we move away from the general information and common sense tips provided in previous blogs to answer a more specific line of inquiry: why should I move to St. Louis? After all, the city is as much a part of the decision to move as the home itself, and one cannot claim to have performed due diligence without looking into its pros and cons.  This list is a refresher to buyers who have already lived near the arch and are trying to decide their next move, as well as out-of-towners who contemplate making St. Louis their permanent home....
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How to Save UP for a DOWN Payment

We all want the safety, security, and convenience of a good mortgage on a new home. You’ve done your homework. You know you can afford the monthly rate because you’ve budgeted your expenses carefully. But what about the down payment? This up-front lump sum expense, typically between 3 and 5% of the purchase price, can easily be thousands of dollars out of your pocket. This is a non-trivial expense for most people and can cut significantly into your savings. How can you best save up and afford it? The most simple solution is to have the money already. When you...
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Woah-HOA! Homeowner’s Associations?

Most first-time home buyers approach the prospect of moving into their dream space with warranted enthusiasm; this is generally a good thing as enthusiasm often leads to diligence in performing necessary tasks. However, it can also lead to overlooking considerations that go beyond the front porch. Specifically, some fail to vet the neighborhood and weigh its potential to affect their family plans.  In this blog, we take a look at the homeowner’s association, a recurring part of every neighborhood of which every first-timer should be aware. What is a Homeowner’s Association? Put simply, a homeowner’s association, or HOA, is the...
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4 Tips for Buying a Home With Poor Credit

For first-time home buyers, a low credit score can place a lot of obstacles in front of what’s already a life-altering purchase. An ideal scenario would see buyers taking their time and making smart fiscal decisions over the years to build up the type of credit score that sellers go for, but life isn’t always ideal. Sometimes the buyer’s market comes around, and you know that dream home in the perfect location isn’t going to stay available for long. For these moments, we provide four low-credit tips for your homebuying checklist: Pay off any debts you can. Before you start...
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