Posts tagged ‘tips for homebuyers’

October 28, 2013

Appliances – What is the Life Expectancy?

Not ready to face the expense of replacing your stove, dishwasher, or even your vacuum??  Read on to discover some preventative measures you can take to keep many of your household appliances from reaching an early demise.  Also, discover when it might be to consider finding a replacement…

appliances

Appliance

How to care for it

When to replace it

Stand Mixer Never overload the mixer, causing it to work harder and put extra strain on the motor.  When cleaning, make sure ALL parts are cleaned including the attachment socket! If the mixer won’t turn on at all, you probably have a dead motor.
Microwave Always use proper microwave-safe plates and bowls.  Keep the interior clean and the turntable rotating smoothly. Takes too long to heat food or it won’t turn on.  Beyond replacing a fuse, the cost to repair could exceed the cost to replace.
Drip Coffeemaker Rinse pot and grind basket after each use.  Once monthly, run 1 part vinegar/2 parts water solution through it to clean, followed by 2 brew cycles of plain water to rinse. If your coffee isn’t really hot after brewing.  The heating element has probably died.
Vacuum Cleaner After every few uses, clean the filters, the opening to bag or canister, hoses, etc.  Keep all air flow and parts moving properly. If the motor dies.  The cost to repair typically costs as much as a replacement.
Hair Dryer Clean lint and dust from the rear filter regularly. Replace if blowing cold air or has a burning smell!
Range Wipe up spills and messes right away, keeping burners clean and preventing fires.  The same applies to spills in the oven which can smoke or ignite! Time to replace when the buttons or knobs no longer work the burners, gas burners won’t light, or the oven doesn’t heat up.
Dishwasher Check the filter located in the bottom of the machine for clogs and debris.  Use a cleaner made for dishwashers regularly. If the machine is cracked, rusted, leaking from the bottom, and if the motor or pump stop working.
Washing Machine Keep machine level, never use more detergent than instructed, and always remove objects from pockets to avoid damage to the machine. If the washer sounds like a freight train during the spin cycle!  This indicates a bad support bearing and a very pricey repair!
Clothes Dryer Clean lint screen after each cycle.  Hire a professional to clean vent duct and interior of dryer once a year. Time to replace if you need to repair more than one part at a time, like a motor and timer.
Refrigerator Once a year, use a vacuum to clean the coils located in the bottom or rear of the fridge.  Also test the doors seals periodically to keep cold air from escaping. Replace if it no longer keeps food cold or frozen.  Almost every other part is repairable or replaceable except for the cooling system.

With a little extra time and TLC you may be able to squeeze a few more days, months or years out of these frequently-used home appliances!

Homeowner Tips | Tips for Buyers | Tips for Sellers | Home Buyer Resources | Home Seller Resources

September 27, 2013

Down Payment Tips

downpaymentMany people dream of owning a home but don’t think it’s possible because they lack the resources for a down payment and closing costs. Here are tips for securing that down payment.

1) Borrow from your retirement account: Many people have been investing in a 401(k) plan or traditional IRA for years and first-time homebuyers may borrow up to $10,000 for their down payment without incurring a penalty. For those self-employed or if your employer allows it, you also can borrow up to $50,000 from your current 401(k) and pay yourself back over five years at a low interest rate.

2) Ask family: Sure, you may be too proud to ask for money, but if relatives can help you and your family move into that dream home, isn’t it worth it? If you do get help from a family member, the lender will ask you to sign a gift-letter form, attesting to the relationship. The lender may also require your relatives to explain where they got the money and prove that they are financially able to make such a gift.

3) Look for down payment assistance grants: Down payment assistance and community redevelopment programs offer affordable housing opportunities to first-time homebuyers, low-income and moderate-income individuals and families who wish to own a home.

4) Come to a lease/purchase agreement: Homeowners who can’t sell their homes in this market may consider a lease/purchase agreement, where you rent the home you want to buy and a percentage of your rent is applied toward the down payment. If you go this route, make sure you get a contract outlining all the details so both parties are protected.

5) Add it to the wedding registry: Several mortgage companies allow those getting married to set up a down payment registry. This is a great way to celebrate the joining of two people in matrimony.

6) Cut back and save: If none of the other ways will work for you, there’s always the old fashioned “saving for a rainy day.” Try putting aside 10% of each paycheck and make your meals instead of going out for them. If you’re married, save the money you would spend on birthday, anniversary and Christmas presents and put it toward your house. You also may need to forget that vacation this year.

These sacrifices may seem significant but they will be worth it once you’re inside your own home.

DId you enjoy this article? Find more tips for home buyers at the link below.

http://askhomesale.com/category/for-buyers/

September 13, 2012

Tips to Help You Save Money NOW!

Saving money can be a constant challenge, so having the right impression is important. keep in mind that a budget is not a form of punishment, but a key step in helping you improve your financial well-being. When you are ready to make a large purchase such as a new home, you’ll have the financial resources at your very own finger tips. Follow these simple tips and before you know it you will be well on your way to saving money for the things that are important to you!

Don’t know how much money you need to save in order to buy a new home? Try our mortgage calculator to help you find out how much you will need to purchase a new home. Have you already saved up enough money for a new home? Search homes for sale on our real estate website today. Prudential Homesale helps home buyers and sellers through Maryland & Pennsylvania find the new home of their dreams!

August 1, 2012

Your Dream Home Checklist

When searching for a new home it is helpful to prioritize features and elements by needs and wants. This will help you sort through properties on the market quickly and keep you focused on homes that are worth setting up a showing. You may have to make some compromises, having your list separated will make it easier to stay in your price range and eliminate other homes on your list. See the checklist below and consider these 6 things; Price, Property Type, Property Condition, Needs, Wants, and location of the home.

 
 
Prudential Homesale Services Group offers real estate services in both Maryland and Pennsylvania for home buyers and those looking to sell their home. Contact a real estate professional with any questions you may have or visit us on the web at http://www.prudentialhomesale.com. Don’t forget to try out our real estate search engine to search properties all over Maryland and Pennsylvania.
 
 
December 15, 2011

How Much House Can You Afford?

The typical homebuyer has been browsing through properties online and driving around looking for yard signs.  This is a great start since it is important to get an idea of what you are looking for, however, it is even more important to know how much you can afford to spend.  Follow these steps to get a basic idea of what monthly mortgage payment will work for you: 

  1. Allowable Monthly Debt Payments

Although it varies, many lenders typically prefer that your monthly debt and housing costs are less than 28% of your gross monthly income.  Even if your debts are higher than 28% of your income, that doesn’t mean you can’t get a mortgage, there are financing programs that help make
homeownership a reality for people from various financial backgrounds.

            $5,500    Gross Monthly Income*
        x        .28    Debt-to-income ratio
       =   $1,540   Allowable Monthly Debt Payment 

*You and your spouse’s total income before taxes and other expenses 

  1. Total Monthly Debt Expenses

Add together your regular monthly debt payments: car payments, student loans, required minimum credit card payment, and any others. 

            $300   Monthly Car Payment
       +   $150   Monthly Tuition Payments
       +   $90    Other Monthly Debt Payments
       =  $540   Total Monthly Debt Expenses 

  1. Maximum Mortgage Payment

Subtract your monthly debt expenses from your allowable monthly debt payment in order to find your maximum mortgage payment.

            $1,540    Allowable Monthly Debt Payment
         –   $540      Total Monthly Debt Expenses
        =   $1,000    Maximum Mortgage Payment 

Keep in mind that your maximum mortgage payment should include mortgage insurance, homeowner’s insurance, and property taxes. 

If you have questions or need help obtaining a mortgage, please don’t hesitate to contact one of our loan officers at Homesale Lending

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