Collins & Demac Real Estate



Posted by Collins & Demac Real Estate on 2/15/2018

As the workforce changes and a growing number of companies seek out contractors and freelancers, many Americans find themselves in a gray area when it comes to their income. They may put in full-time hours, but on their taxes they work for themselves.

Mortgage lenders are cautious about who they lend to. They want to make sure you are a low-risk investment who has reliable, predictable income to ensure that they’ll earn money off of your loan.

This can sometimes make it difficult for freelancers, contract workers, or the self-employed. Not only might your taxes be unconventional, but your income could vary depending on the time of the year and the amount of business you receive.

It’s easy to see why many people would be anxious about applying for a mortgage under these circumstances. However, if you’re self-employed, there’s no need to worry. You can still get approved for a mortgage at a fair interest rate--you just need to do a bit of work to provide the right documents to your lender.

In this article, we’ll show you what documents and proof of income you’ll likely need and how to present it to a lender to make the process run as smoothly as possible to get you approved for your mortgage. Here’s what you need to do.

Organize your records

Before applying for a mortgage, it’s a good idea to take a look at your record-keeping process. As a self-employed worker, you’re probably already used to tracking your own income. However, this will help the lender analyze your income easier and move the process along more quickly.

Having a master spreadsheet of your dated invoices, paid amounts, and the names of your clients is a good place to start. You’ll also want detailed, easy to read information for your previous employers, landlords, references, and any other information you think will be pertinent.

Next, gather your tax documents for the last three to five years. As a self-employed worker, you likely file a Schedule C (Form 1040) and a Schedule SE. Make sure you have copies of these forms.

Dealing with deductions

Many self-employed workers write off business expenses in their tax returns. Travel expenses, internet, and other costs associated with doing business are all ways to save by reducing your taxable income. Doing so can save you money, but it can also reduce your net income which is what lenders will see when you provide them with your information.

If you’re hoping to get approved for a bigger loan, one solution is to plan your taxes in the year prior to applying for a mortgage. Make fewer deductions than you normally would to increase your net income.

Be ready to clarify

When a mortgage lender is reviewing your information, make sure you are open and available to provide any information that can be helpful to them in considering your application. Being prompt and accurate with your responses will signal to your lender that you are willing to work with them.





Posted by Collins & Demac Real Estate on 11/30/2017

Purchasing a deluxe home at an affordable price may seem impossible, particularly for property buyers who are searching for a residence in a seller's market.

Lucky for you, we're here to help take the guesswork out of buying a terrific residence at a budget-friendly price, regardless of the current housing market conditions.

Now, let's take a look at three factors that homebuyers need to consider before they enter a seller's market.

1. Your Timeline

What is your homebuying timeline? Ultimately, you'll want to consider how quickly you need to relocate to a new residence. This will enable you to map out a homebuying journey that boosts your chances of getting the best results possible.

For example, if you have several months to plan ahead, you may be able to wait out a seller's market. You can pursue a wide range of residences over an extended period of time. And if you find a residence that you like, you can submit an offer on it.

On the other hand, if you need to move right away, you'll likely need to speed up the homebuying journey. In this scenario, you'll want to make the most of the time and resources at your disposal. If you can optimize the time and resources that are available, you may be better equipped than other homebuyers to discover a great home in a seller's market.

2. Your Budget

How much can you afford to spend on a home? A seller's market favors property sellers, so you'll want to do everything possible to budget appropriately and avoid the temptation to overspend to acquire a residence.

Getting pre-approved for a mortgage usually is an excellent idea. If you meet with banks and credit unions, you can learn about your mortgage options and choose a mortgage that matches your finances perfectly.

With a mortgage in hand, you can enter the housing market with realistic property buying expectations. You also may be able to narrow your home search, and as such, speed up the process of purchasing your ideal house.

3. Your Homebuying Expertise

What do you know about the housing market? In most cases, homebuyers lack real estate expertise. However, working with a real estate agent ensures you can receive comprehensive support as you navigate a seller's market.

A real estate agent is a friendly, knowledgeable housing market professional, one who will go above and beyond the call of duty to assist you during the homebuying journey.

Typically, a real estate agent will set up home showings, keep you informed about new properties as they become available and negotiate with home sellers on your behalf. He or she will even provide honest, unbiased recommendations, guaranteeing you can get the expert insights you need to make informed homebuying decisions.

When it comes to exploring houses in a seller's market, why should you be forced to leave anything to chance? Consider the aforementioned factors closely, and you can improve your chances of acquiring a stellar home without having to break your budget.




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Posted by Collins & Demac Real Estate on 10/12/2017

The housing market presents many opportunities for homebuyers. And after the right amount of research, you're sure to find plenty of exceptional houses that suit you well. But how do you know when you're ready to submit an offer on a residence? Determining the "perfect" offer for a house is key, and if you feel comfortable with your proposal, you may be better equipped to receive a resounding "Yes" from a home seller. Improve your chances of submitting the perfect offer on a residence – here are three tips that you can use to submit the right offer on a home: 1. Consider the Home Seller's Perspective. Of course, when you submit an offer, you likely want to make a proposal that fits your needs and budget. On the other hand, you must consider the home seller and ensure your offer represents a fair deal for both sides. If you submit a "lowball" proposal, there's a strong chance that a home seller will reject it immediately. Conversely, if you submit an above-average proposal, you may wind up paying a price that exceeds your budget. To make the right offer, evaluate the home seller's price as well as the price of similar homes in an area. By doing so, you'll be better equipped to make an offer that corresponds to the current housing market. Also, don't be afraid to discuss your proposal options with your real estate agent, as this professional may be able to offer insights that you can use to boost your chances of getting a "Yes" from a home seller. 2. Prepare for Plan B. Even if you consider your offer to be fair for both you and a home seller, there are no guarantees that a home seller will feel the same way. Thus, you need to be prepared to act quickly in the event that a home seller declines your offer. If a home seller says "No" to your proposal, you can always submit another offer. Or, you may want to consider moving on and evaluating other homes that are available. 3. Be Realistic. It is essential to feel comfortable with an offer you submit on a house. And the moment things start to make you feel anxious, you may want to reconsider your options. For example, a home seller may counter your initial proposal, but you might lack the finances to meet this seller's expectations. In this scenario, you should be unafraid to walk away. That way, you can avoid the dangers associated with over-extending your budget, which could put you in a tough financial position down the line. Remember, the perfect offer on a residence is one that fulfills the needs of both a homebuyer and home seller. If you feel uncomfortable with a home seller's counter offer, you need to understand the situation and act accordingly. Submitting the perfect offer can be tricky, especially if you're dealing with a home seller who sets the bar high for his or her residence. Fortunately, your real estate agent can help you alleviate the stress commonly associated with making an offer and ensure you are fully supported throughout the homebuying process. Work toward submitting the perfect offer on a home, and you can bolster your chances of a home seller accepting your proposal.





Posted by Collins & Demac Real Estate on 9/28/2017

Ready to submit a home loan application? Ultimately, there are many factors to consider before you finalize your submission, and these include:

1. Your Outstanding Debt

If you have outstanding student loan, car or other debt, you should try to pay it off as quickly as possible. By doing so, you can boost your chances of securing a home loan that matches or exceeds your expectations.

Take a look at your outstanding debt and make a plan to pay down your bills. With a plan in place, you may be able to reduce or eliminate outstanding debt before you complete your home loan application.

2. Your Credit Score

A strong credit score will help a homebuyer get a terrific home loan. Conversely, an inferior credit score is unlikely to do you any favors after you submit a home loan application.

Learn about your credit score before you finalize your home loan application. Then, you can allocate the necessary time and resources to boost your credit score or correct any errors on your credit report.

You are eligible for one free copy of your credit report from each of the three major credit reporting bureaus (Equifax, Experian and TransUnion). Request a copy of your credit report, and you can understand where your credit score currently stands.

Also, if you find any errors on your credit report, contact the credit reporting bureau that provided the report immediately. This will allow you to correct any credit report mistakes and reduce the risk that these errors could impact your ability to secure a home loan.

3. Your Savings

It never hurts to save money, especially if you'd like to purchase a home in the near future. If you start saving today, you may be better equipped than other homebuyers to have the necessary finances in place for a down payment on a house.

In most instances, lenders will require you to have at least a small portion of the purchase price of a home available for a down payment. If you have thousands of dollars available for a down payment, you may be able to boost your chances of getting a "Yes" from a lender after you submit your home loan application.

Getting a home loan may seem like a long, arduous process. Fortunately, many lenders are available to help you secure a great home loan.

Meet with several lenders as you explore all of your home loan options. That way, you can learn about a broad array of home loan options and choose a home loan that matches your finances perfectly.

After you secure a home loan, you'll be able to move one step closer to securing your dream residence. Of course, if you need assistance during the homebuying journey, it never hurts to reach out to a real estate agent as well.

A real estate agent will do everything possible to help you acquire a top-notch residence at an affordable price. Thus, if you employ a real estate agent, you may be able to enjoy a fast, seamless homebuying experience.




Tags: Buying a home   loans  
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Posted by Collins & Demac Real Estate on 9/21/2017

Let's face it – buying a home can be difficult, particularly for those who are exploring the real estate market for the first time.

As a homebuyer, it is your responsibility to learn about the ins and outs of the housing market. By doing so, you can understand what differentiates a high-quality house from a subpar residence and proceed accordingly.

Furthermore, an informed homebuyer will know how to evaluate a home's exterior properly.

What does it take to conduct an in-depth assessment of a house's exterior? Here are three questions that every homebuyer should consider as he or she examines a home's exterior.

1. How do I feel about a home's exterior?

For many homebuyers, finding a house with an awe-inspiring exterior is a top priority. However, it is important to consider how you feel when you see a home's exterior for the first time.

A home's exterior should impress. At the same time, you need to evaluate a house's exterior in conjunction with other home features.

For example, a home may boast a massive kitchen and other dazzling interior features. On the other hand, a home's exterior may leave much to be desired.

Consider the pros and cons of a home's interior and exterior as you determine whether to submit an offer on a house. And if you need extra help along the way, be sure to consult with a real estate agent.

2. Will home exterior repairs be needed in the near future?

Examine a house's driveway, walkways and lawn as you conduct a home exterior evaluation. This will allow you to review the condition of these home exterior areas and determine whether repairs may be needed sooner rather than later.

Home exterior renovations sometimes can be costly and time-intensive. Thus, if you notice home siding that is cracked or other exterior issues, you will want to consider the time and expenses that may be required to fix such problems.

3. How much time will I need to commit to home exterior maintenance projects?

A home may have a beautiful exterior. In order to keep a house's exterior looking great, you'll need to conduct regular maintenance.

Consider what you will need to do to maintain a house's dazzling exterior as you explore all of the options at your disposal.

Will you need to hire a landscaping company to mow the lawn and trim the hedges? Or, are you willing to commit the time and resources necessary to perform assorted home exterior maintenance tasks on your own? These are just a few of the home exterior maintenance questions to consider as you review a property.

Of course, if you need guidance during the homebuying process, real estate agents are available to provide expert assistance.

A real estate agent possesses comprehensive housing market knowledge and can offer real estate insights that you may struggle to obtain elsewhere. With a real estate agent at your side, you should have no trouble examining a house – both inside and out – and making an informed homebuying decision.




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