Diane Horrigan - RE/MAX  Trinity



Posted by Diane Horrigan on 6/19/2019

You may have heard the term ďescrowĒ in your experience with real estate. You might know itís an account, but what exactly does it do for you as a buyer? An escrow account is what your lender uses to make payments on things like property taxes, insurance, and more. The lender collects your monthly mortgage payment, and part of that cash goes into an escrow account. 


This type of account is an excellent option for homeowners because your bills relating to being a homeowner will all be paid without you having to do anything. It makes budgeting a breeze because there arenít any complicated calculations involved. Every month, your lender collects 1/12 of the estimated tax bill and insurance cost for the home. The rest of your mortgage payment covers the principal and interest on the loan of the house.


Are Escrow Accounts Mandatory?


Youíll find that most lenders require you to have an escrow account. The purpose of the account is to keep the home safe as collateral for the loan. The bank has an interest in the proper insurance behind the property. The taxes also need to be paid on time in order to keep the property in good standing. If the taxes arenít paid, a tax lien will be placed against the house. 


Everything In One Place


Youíll receive an annual statement from your lender that will show you how much money was collected and placed in your escrow account. Escrow payments often change because insurance premiums and taxes tend to change quite frequently. The amount being put into escrow may change a few times throughout the year. The lender keeps track of all this for you, saving you some time. 


Bills That Need To Be Paid


Whether you have an escrow account or not the bills that are included must be paid one way or another. Itís a good idea to speak with your lender before you buy a home to find out that bankís procedures around these insurance and tax payments. Property tax and home insurance are items that youíll need to budget for regardless of how your lender does things. An escrow account can be much more convenient for many buyers. 


Escrow is just another one of the many essential terms that youíll come across as a homebuyer. Knowing the advantages and purpose of the account helps you to be informed as you dive into the home buying process. 





Tags: Mortgage   Buying a home  
Categories: finance   budgeting  


Posted by Diane Horrigan on 4/10/2019

A homebuyer must stay focused throughout the property buying journey. Otherwise, a buyer risks missing out on an opportunity to acquire the right house at the right price.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you stay on course during the homebuying journey.

1. Craft a Homebuying Strategy

Creating a homebuying strategy enables you to outline the steps that you'll need to take to make your homeownership dream come true. Plus, with a homebuying plan in place, you'll be better equipped than ever before to streamline your house search.

Think about where you want to live and what you want to find in your ideal residence. Then, you can make a checklist of home must-haves and wants. And once you develop this list, you can enter the housing market with a plan in hand.

2. Get Pre-Approved for Home Financing

Home financing plays an important role in a buyer's ability to acquire a residence. If you ignore home financing as you move along the homebuying journey, you may struggle to get the finances you need to purchase your dream house.

Oftentimes, it helps to get pre-approved for a mortgage so you won't have to worry about home financing as you move along the property buying journey. To get pre-approved for a mortgage, you should meet with a variety of banks and credit unions. That way, you can learn about all of your mortgage options and select a mortgage that matches your finances.

As you review your mortgage options, don't hesitate to ask questions. Banks and credit unions employ home financing specialists who can remove the guesswork commonly associated with getting a mortgage. These specialists are happy to respond to your mortgage concerns and questions and ensure that you can make an informed home financing decision.

3. Work with a Real Estate Agent

When it comes to staying focused during the homebuying journey, it generally is a good idea to hire a real estate agent. This housing market professional can offer plenty of assistance throughout the property buying journey. And by doing so, a real estate agent will ensure that you can seamlessly navigate the property buying journey and achieve your desired results faster than ever before.

A real estate agent understands the challenges that buyers frequently encounter when they pursue houses and can help you plan accordingly. Furthermore, a real estate agent will guide you along each stage of the homebuying journey and do everything possible to help you avoid potential pitfalls.

Also, a real estate agent provides comprehensive support as you get ready to finalize a house purchase. He or she will help you get ready for a home inspection, appraisal or closing and ensure that you can purchase your ideal house at a budget-friendly price.

Don't lose focus as you pursue your dream residence. Instead, use the aforementioned tips, and you can stay on course and accomplish your homebuying goals.




Categories: Buying a Home   buying tips  


Posted by Diane Horrigan on 4/3/2019

Finding a deal on a new home sometimes can be difficult. Fortunately, we're here to help you shop for your dream residence so you can discover a house that matches your budget perfectly.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to ensure you can pay the lowest-possible price for your dream residence.

1. Be Aggressive During Your Home Search

Much in the same way that the early bird catches the worm, a homebuyer who tracks the real estate market closely is better equipped than others to discover a deal. If a buyer monitors the housing market in his or her preferred cities and towns, this individual may be able to pounce at the opportunity to acquire a quality house at an affordable price.

Oftentimes, it helps to make a list of homebuying criteria. This list will help you narrow your home search and eliminate houses that fall outside your price range.

You also may want to get pre-approved for a mortgage. With a mortgage in hand, you'll know precisely how much you can spend on a home and may be able to navigate the homebuying journey more quickly than other buyers.

2. Evaluate a Home's Strengths and Weaknesses

Once you discover your dream house, you likely won't want to wait long to submit a competitive offer to purchase. Because the longer you wait, the more likely it becomes that a rival homebuyer could make a move to acquire this residence.

If you find a home that you may want to purchase, analyze its strengths and weaknesses. This will allow you to determine whether the residence is right for you. And if you believe this house is the ideal choice, you can weigh the residence's strengths and weaknesses as you craft an offer to purchase.

Furthermore, there is no need to submit a "lowball" offer to purchase your ideal residence. If you review a home's condition, the current state of the housing market and other real estate factors, you should no trouble submitting a "fair" offer to purchase.

3. Collaborate with a Real Estate Agent

A real estate agent is committed to helping a homebuyer discover a terrific home that corresponds to his or her budget. As such, a real estate agent will collaborate with a buyer and ensure this individual's homeownership dream can come true.

Typically, a real estate agent and a homebuyer will work together to develop a property buying strategy. When this plan is in place, a real estate agent and a buyer will explore the housing market and find a great home at a price that suits the buyer.

A real estate agent is ready to provide comprehensive guidance for homebuyers too. And if a buyer ever has questions during the property buying cycle, a real estate agent is ready to respond to these queries at any time.

Want to pay a low price for your dream house? Use the aforementioned tips, and you can seamlessly navigate the real estate market and find a top-notch and budget-friendly house.




Categories: Buying a Home   house price  


Posted by Diane Horrigan on 3/27/2019

The process of buying a home is anything but cut and dry. There will undoubtedly be some twists and turns along the way. First, you need to be pre-approved for a mortgage. Then, youíll need to find a home that fits both your needs and your budget. Finally, youíll put in an offer on a place and hope for the best throughout the rest of the process.


There are plenty of things that you can do as a buyer to make buying a home both easier and more streamlined. Below, youíll find some of the best tips that are specifically for those seeking to buy a home. 


Give Them An Offer They Canít Refuse


When there is a low quantity of homes and a high number of buyers, competition can get fierce. When the market is like this, youíre not guaranteed to get a property that you put an offer on. It may take making several offers on homes in order for you to finally get the keys to your dream house. 


You never want your offer to be too low. A low offer could be insulting to sellers and instead of being countered, could just be outright refused. Make an offer too high and you still have a problem. A high offer may be accepted, however, itís not going to be approved by your mortgage company for you to borrow that much for the purchase. If an offer is accepted and a home appraises for less, you may be left with thousands of dollars that you need to pay on the spot in order to secure the home. 


The best way to present an attractive offer is to work with an expert realtor who can do the appropriate research and let you know what a good offer on the home would be.           


Know Your Contingencies


After an offer on a home has been accepted, you need to get to work on the contingencies that youíre going to want on the home. Your realtor will also be a huge advocate in this area. Contingencies will include things like the right to do a home inspection, the appraisal contingency, and the contingency that youíll only be able to move forward with buying the home if you have appropriate financing. These protect you as a buyer so that if something falls through, youíll be able to back out of the deal without a penalty.


Donít Go Credit Happy


Once your offer is accepted and your financing is in place, donít head out to buy tons of new furniture and appliances for your new home. Your credit matters until you get the keys to the house. Opening new credit cards or adding significant debt can affect your credit score negatively, possibly putting a damper on your home purchase. Hold off on making purchases until after you move into the house.    





Tags: Buying a home  
Categories: Mortgage   Financing  


Posted by Diane Horrigan on 3/6/2019

A home showing represents a valuable opportunity for a property buyer. However, there may be instances in which a buyer is unsure about whether to attend a house showing. Lucky for you, we're here to help you weigh the pros and cons of scheduling a home showing.

Now, let's take a look at three questions to consider before you attend a house showing.

1. Is a home the right size for me?

Take a look at a home listing and find out the square footage and number of rooms in a house. That way, you'll be able to determine whether a house is the right size for you without setting foot inside the residence itself.

Of course, you should consider your immediate and long-term plans as you evaluate a home's size. If you plan to start a family soon, for example, you may want to search for a home that offers sufficient space for you, your spouse and your children. Or, if you intend to retire in the foreseeable future, you may want to pursue a small home that requires minimal maintenance.

2. Is a home located in one of my preferred cities and towns?

Think about where you want to reside. Oftentimes, it helps to make a list of preferred cities and towns and narrow your home search to these areas. And if you find a home you want to check out in one of these cities or towns, you then can schedule a property showing.

In addition, it is important to remember that a big city home may prove to be more expensive than a comparable residence in a small town. If you decide to pursue a house in a big city, you may face increased competition for city homes in comparison to small town residences too.

3. Could a home be my dream residence?

Ultimately, if there is even a small chance that a home could be your dream residence, it may be beneficial to set up a showing. If you attend a showing and find a residence is your ideal house, you can submit an offer to purchase this home. On the other hand, if you attend a showing and find a residence falls short of your expectations, you can simply continue your pursuit of your dream house.

As you conduct your search for your ideal residence, it generally is a good idea to hire a real estate agent. This housing market professional will set up home showings, keep you informed about new residences that become available in your preferred cities and towns and much more. Plus, if you ever have concerns or questions during the homebuying journey, a real estate agent is ready to respond to them.

Consider the aforementioned questions before you schedule a home showing Ė you will be glad you did. And if you decide to attend a house showing, you will be better equipped than ever before to determine whether a particular home is right for you.




Categories: Buying a Home   buying tips   showing