Do You Really Want a "One Click" Mortgage?

I was talking with a mortgage broker friend the other day and remarking on the dramatic increase we're seeing in online banks offering "one click" mortgage approvals. While it may seem to be just another one of the many conveniences made available via technology, we both expressed concern about this trend. And I got a real jolt when I saw [...]

Tax benefits for homeowners? You bet!

If you are thinking about buying a home and running the numbers to ensure you maintain a workable budget, be sure to factor in the tax benefits of owning a home, which many people overlook. This article lists many of the eligible deductions, including the cost of mortgage interest (which can be as much as two-thirds of your mortgage payment in the beginning!), mortgage points paid at closing, property taxes and the cost of private mortgage insurance (often required if your down payment is less than 20% of the purchase price) -- which can provide significant savings.

In addition, there are tax credits offered for energy efficient home improvements. And perhaps best of all, when you're ready to sell, there's a capital gains exclusion on the profits of your sale of up to $500,000 (filing jointly), allowing you to keep more of your hard-earned return on your investment!

As with all financial and tax matters, these are some basic guidelines -- to get a specific picture of how these deductions can work to your advantage, be sure to speak with a tax professional. Once you do, if you'd like to start looking at some properties, please be in touch!

Real Estate Predictions for 2014

I hope everyone enjoyed the winter holiday season and welcome to 2014! As we launch into a new year, I enjoy reading the predictions of what's to come as I found in this article on Zillow.

Overall, they predict a 3% increase in home values, a continued gradual rise in mortgage rates, an easier time for borrowers to get mortgages and a drop [...]