Consider These Architectural Home Designs in Pekin, Illinois to Brighten Up Your Next Home

LOCAL RECORDS OFFICE – While you may be either building a completely new home or searching for your next home, it is one of the most exciting times and is important to start looking for your ideal home design. As we are growing out of modern architecture, you may be wondering if building a ‘fad’ for your newer structure really worth it? Tiny houses have been the big craze for many families looking to downsize and still be able to access an adequate amount of surrounding land, but will it still be a popular choice for potential homeowners in 20 to 30 years?

Either way, looking into styles of homes that fits both you and your family needs and wants is your main objective. And here are the few ideal architectural home designs that are both popular and offer significant features with each having its own unique style. This can be overwhelming, as there are many different housing designs, so I put this list in alphabetical order, in case you already know what design you are looking for.

Acadian

These house plans share the ideal Country French architecture and are found in Louisiana and across the American southeast, maritime Canadian areas, and exhibit the Louisiana and Cajun influences. Rooms are arranged on either side of a central hallway and the kitchen is in the back. And these stylized homes typically feature a steep, sloping roof with gables that shed snow and moisture effectively.

Adobe

Is a regional architectural style that draws inspiration from the Pueblo and Spanish Missions located in New Mexico, and typically are made with stucco and have a flat roof with rounded edges. These decorative features often found in this style home include wooden beams projecting from the roof line, hand-hewn lintels inset above deep window openings and walls that slope inward.

A-Frames

The popular style A-Frames have come back into style and are great for that cozy, ‘cabin look’ and most offer acres of land surrounding rivers, a lake or a body of water. And they are well-underpriced for what they have to offer. The A-frame is shaped like an equilateral triangle and its distinctive peak is formed by rafters or trusses that are held together at the top and bolted to the floor joists or plates down below. And the cross-piece of the A is created with horizontal collar beams to stabilize the structure and typically supports a sleeping loft.

A-frames meet the earth on the rubble of cinderblock walls, concrete or even wood columns, but their essential nature is for them to float slightly above their natural environment, with a viewing platform for an expanse of nature.

Beach

These houses are often raised houses suitable for shoreline sites and are adaptable for vacation homes near water or mountain areas. The Tidewater house is typical and features the wide porches, and are constructed of wood with the main living are raised one level.

Bungalow

These house plans are common to Craftsman, Rustic and Cottage home designs. These typical home designs have a great porch for your rocker and are typically one-level with over-hanging eaves as some of the most classic features.

Cape Cod

This small, symmetrical style is typically 1 ½ stories, and typically people will add on additions behind or on the sides to increase the square footage. These first Cape Cod homes were also built in the 1600s and were inspired by Britain’s thatched cottages, but with steeper roofs and larger chimneys to withstand the cold Northeastern winters. New builds in this style are rare, says Rob Brennan, principal at the Brennan + Company Architects in Ellicott City, Maryland.

Carriage

Get their name from the outbuildings of large manors whereas owners store their carriages. Today, the carriage house generally is in reference to the detached garage with living space above them.

Colonial Revival

Has a symmetrical look and floor plan and has been a popular style throughout 19th and 20th centuries. These are typically two to three story house plans with symmetrical façade and gable roofs and often are expressed in temple-like entrances with porticos topped with pediments. Multi-pane, double-hung windows with shutters, dormers, and paneled doors with sidelights, topped with rectangular transoms or fanlights, and include entry-hall floor plans, fireplaces and simple, classical detailing.

Contemporary

Offers today’s building appearances, and can vary in design. The most common characteristic is clean lines, large windows devoid a decorative trim, and with the focus towards function. It is comparable to connecting the indoors with the outdoors by emphasizing energy efficiency, sustainable materials, with large, floor-to-ceiling windows offering lots of natural light and uses recyclable non-toxic materials. The exterior is a mixture of siding, stucco, stone, brick, and wood. The roof is either flat or shallow pitched, and often with great overhangs.

Cottage

This smaller design is a storybook charm that will fit near a lake or in a mountain setting. These are sometimes also referred to as bungalows.

Country

As are one of the most popular styles, these styled house plans embrace the wraparound porch and have a gabled roof. And they are offered most commonly in either one or two stories high.

The French County style is rooted in the rural French countryside and includes the modest farmhouse designs and estate-like chateaus. This style exudes warmth and comfortable design elements such as curved arches, soft lines, and stonework. The inside has wooden beams, plaster walls and stone floors as the most common thematic features.

The Low Country house plans are suited for coastal areas and the coastal plains of the Carolinas and Georgia. Typically, they are elevated and have welcoming porches to enjoy the outdoors in the shade.

Craftsman

The Craftsman displays honesty and simplicity of a truly American house. These homes emphasize natural materials –wood, brick, and stone with wide porches and low-pitched, gabled roofs (often hipped) with exposed rafters. The porches are either full or partial width, with tapered columns, and or pedestals that extend to the ground level. The interior’s open floor plan features built-in furniture, big fireplaces, and exposed beams.

Dutch Colonial

A Dutch Colonial is similar to Colonial-style and it most recognized for its gambrel roof and has a shallower pitch with must steeper sides –a look most commonly used on barns. Dormers are where second-story windows pop out of the façade and are also a more common feature of Dutch colonial homes.

European

These houses have typically steep roofs, subtly flared curves at the eaves and faced with either stucco or stone. The roof comes down to the windows and the second floor is often the roof, or as we know it, the attic.

Farmhouse

Reflects the American simpler era when families gathered in an open kitchen and a living room. This version of a country home style usually has bedrooms clustered together and features the friendly porches. The lines are simple and often faced with wood siding.

Federal

The Federal-style became popular during America’s first decades as a nation in the late 18th century and 19th centuries. These homes tend to be symmetrical with tall windows. The Federal homes were originally built in a similar box shape, and it is common to see in additions to the side or expanded depth.

Florida

A Florida house plan embraces elements of several styles that allow comfort during the heat of the day. This Mediterranean house with its shallow, sloping tile roof and verandas is faced with wood and has one or more porches, verandas, and windows to allow a breeze to flow freely throughout.

Georgian

These home plans characterize with proportion and balance and typically have square symmetrical shapes with paneled doors centered on the front façade. The paired chimneys are a common feature of added symmetry. The common building materials use stone with red, tan or white being the most frequently used colors.

Hill Country

This Texas Hill Country style is a regional historical style with roots in European immigrants that settled the area, with available white limestone and later brown sandstone that were used with the local cedar to construct these well-crafted and attractive homes. During the settlers’ movement and due to these lean times, the result of these homes is simple and has an authentic style with modern elegance.

Log Home

Log Homes originally were small cabins in the 1600s and were built as one room using no nails, sort of like the same concept of when we were kids building our own homes with the logs. Now, they are built as functional and large luxurious getaways. These log homes are ideally found in a rural setting. The climate of the surrounding area will dictate the type of wood you should use to build the home. And can be handcrafted or milled (built of manufactured wood).

Mediterranean

This is usually a one-story home design with shallow roofs that slope, with a wide overhang to provide shade in warmer climates. The courtyards and open arches allow for breezes to flow through freely the house and verandas. There are typically open, big windows throughout and the verandas can be found on the 2nd floor. The exterior is stucco and the roofs made with tile, making these great vacation homes in southern latitudes.

Modern

Features glass, steel, and concrete. The open floor plans are a signature characteristic and from the street, they are dramatic to behold. And even though there is some overlap to the contemporary house plans, they are two different looks.

Mountain

Mountain home designs commonly feature huge windows and large decks with rugged exteriors and exposed wood beams. These prow-shaped great rooms are quite common. There is some crossover to vacation home plans.

Neoclassical

From Greek and Roman architecture for inspiration, the Neoclassical design embraces large columns and smooth surfaces. Some of the well-known homes in the U.S with the Neoclassical design, include the White House and Thomas Jefferson’s home, Monticello.

Northwest

Designed by architects from the Northwest, this home is simple in design, devoid the excessive exterior details and it is mostly made of wood. The roof usually is medium to low-pitched with deep overhangs. Windows being large can bring light into the interiors.

Plantation

The plantation home plans are typically boasted with white pillars, a symmetrical shape and sprawling porches mostly associated with the South, though, found all over the country. The grand scale features are spacious and suggest the charm and genteel lifestyle of the South.

Prairie

The prairie style home plans came around the turn of the 20th century and are often associated with one of the giants in design. With seeping horizontal lines and wide open floor plans, the common features of this style include overhanging eaves, rows of small windows and one-story projection, and in many cases, a central chimney.

Ranch

Is also known as “rambler” for the way the rooms spread out over only one level, but it also becomes a raised ranch or a split level with room for expansion. These styles became popular in the 1950s and had inspiration from Frank Lloyd Wright’s Prairie style, says Brennan. The asymmetrical shapes are common with the low-pitched roofs and a built-in garage. And the exterior is faced with either wood or bricks or has a combination of both.

Shingle Style

Shingle style house plans were born in England and popular throughout the West Coast, they are informal and highly imaginative –a summer style “cottage” often built for the wealthier clients. This architecture of an American summer is known for their casual style with their ability to blend into their surroundings, with wooden shakes in natural colors. The wide porches are fairly common and are an invitation to spend more time outdoors in the sun.

Spanish Colonial Revival

These Spanish styles are easily recognizable by the terracotta tiles roof that is perfect for warmer climates, and stucco or adobe walls, and arched windows and doors that complete the look.

Split level

Its variation of the ranch but has more of an up and down feel as you walk through. Essentially is a ranch house with a garage stuck underneath it. The short staircases lead up and down to different levels and to rooms throughout.

Traditional

This being one of the most common styles in the U.S. is a mix of classic, simple designs that commonly features little ornamentation, simple rooflines, and symmetrically spaced windows. The building materials are in either wood or brick.

Tudor Revival

The Tudor Revival homes only use timber cosmetically and are easily recognized by its steep-pitched roof and a framing of typically half brick or half-timber with stucco. Often, is misrepresented as the Tudor which refers to the English architectural style in the 16th century.

Tuscan

These house plans combine modern elements with a classic Italian design and resulting in an attractive Old World European charm. Though similar to Mediterranean house plans, the Tuscan designs typically feature stucco exteriors and stone accents, terracotta roof tiles, narrow, tall windows with shutters and enclosed courtyards. Additionally, this style often features decorative ceilings and wooden beams.

Vacation

Vacation home plans have central, open living spaces and with few or many bedrooms to suit a couple or a family with lots of friends.

Victorian

Is best marked with its steep roof, asymmetrical facade and elaborately crafted trim on overhangs and roof lines, giving it a ‘gingerbread house’ look. San Francisco’s Painted Ladies are a prime example of the Victorian and Edwardian architecture in the U.S.

 

 

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Basic Real Estate Statistics Explained for Beginners – Local Records Office

LOS ANGELES, CA – Local Records Office is going to define some of the basic real estate statistics that get thrown around on a regular basis. To do that, we will use one real estate market, located in Los Angeles County. Even more granular, we will use the single-family numbers for homes in Long Beach, CA, a medium size city of approximately 500,000 residents, which has seen substantial real estate growth in the past 12 months. It is important when reviewing real estate statistics to use a group of numbers large enough for consistency, but granular enough to tell your story.

 

Real Estate Statistics for Newbies

 

Local Records Office says, “The statistics that we will be referencing are true and accurate for the year discussed but are being used to define the real estate statistic itself.”

 

We have chosen Long Beach, CA as our example because the growth of the local real estate market that make the statics stand out.

 

Anytime you are evaluating statistics, especially in real estate, the source of the numbers are extremely important. In most instances, the MLS (Multiple Listing Service) provides the most accurate numbers when referring to real estate says, Local Records Office. This is because they have all listings by all local real estate broker in their database. For the sake of explanation of the data, we will be looking at the numbers for home sales in Long Beach, CA, directly from the MLS. These numbers are meant to give an example of how to read the statistics themselves. Anytime you evaluate real estate numbers, its important to pay close attention to how the numbers are gathered. In this instance, we will be using ONLY single-family properties in the city of Long Beach, California.

 

These Are Basic Real Estate Statistics

 

Number of Sales – This one is pretty self-explanatory. It is simply the number of single-family homes sold in a particular month. In January of 2015, they had 51 single-family homes sold. One thing to pay attention to when looking at this statistic is are they using the Under Contract date or the day the property actually went to closing says, Local Records Office. These two dates are usually between 30 and 60 days apart, so its critical that you know which one is being referenced. In addition, many of the homes that get calculated, if you are using the “under contract” number may not actually close! In our example, we are using the number of homes that actually closed. In January of 2016 they had an increase of over 49%, which brought the total to 77 from 51. Growth of that level is very seldom ever seen.

 

Sales Volume – Sales Volume is simply the total amount of dollars spent on single family housing within that month. Once again, when reviewing this statistic, it’s important to keep the property types consistent. If you are comparing two areas to see which one has grown more and you include vacant land in the number for one area, you must include it in the other too says, Local Records Office. As previously mentioned, our examples only include single-family properties. With Number of Sales looking at the units, you would expect the Sales Volume to go up appropriately, but in this instance, it went up even more than the units (by percentage). The total Sales Volume of single family homes in Long Beach in January of 2016 was $15,191,500 as opposed to the January of 2015 number of $9,281,915. That is an increase of over 63%. Because the Sales Volume went up at a larger rate than the number of units, this reflects the average home sale being much larger in 2016 than 2015.

 

Months of Inventory – Local Records Office says, “This is a commonly referred to statistic when examining a real estate market.” This statistic refers to at the current rate of sales, how long will it take to sell through the existing level of inventory. This reflects the supply and demand for the market. In our example, in January of 2015 the level of inventory was 9 months and in January of 2016 it had dropped to 6 months. That is a 33% drop in available inventory! This means if you are looking to buy a home in Long Beach, CA, it will be a little tougher in 2016 as there are fewer inventories available to buy.

 

Median Days To Sell – This stat simply refers to how long it takes for single-family properties to be put under contract. Don’t let the “to sell” confuse you. To accurately show the demand for active homes, you really want to track how long it takes to go “under contract”. The process of acquiring final lender approval, insurance and getting to a closing can vary on a variety of factors. In January of 2015, the Median Days to sell was 88 says, Local Records Office. That number dropped by over 30% to 61. Once again, this tells you if you are looking for homes in Long Beach, CA, you better get your offers in quickly as the most desirable homes are going fast!

 

Average Price – This statistic can be derived in a variety of ways. We are going to use it in its most raw form and simply be the Average Price of Homes Sold within that month. Be careful when looking at this statistic printed anywhere as how the user defines the date sold can vary. Needless to say, Average Price can be used for active homes for sale or for the homes that sold. The Average Price of ACTIVE homes for sale is generally a pretty useless number as you can list a home for any price, without any possibility of it ever selling. Many homes listed for sale are at unrealistic prices thus the Average Price of Active homes for sale can fluctuate dramatically and give little insight into the market says, Local Records Office. You will want to look at the Average Price of SOLD homes. In January of 2015, the Average Home Sale was $181,998 and it jumped to $199,888 in the same month in 2016. This is an increase of almost 10%. This is not a number that truly tells the increase in home values across the board, but simply of the homes sold in that month, what the average was. Check out videos here.

 

Median Price – The Average Home Sales Price can be skewed by a variety of factors says, Local Records Office. All it takes is one 5 million dollar home sale to throw those numbers off. To get a better view of the overall increase in value, it can be better to look at the Median Sales Price. Median Sales Price takes the number that is perfectly in the middle. For instance, if you have 11 homes that you are using in your statistic, you would take the sales price of the 6th one. This leaves 5 homes sold higher and 5 homes sold lower. In this instance, they are pretty close as the Median Sales Price increase from January 2015 to 2016 was 9.69%. This shows that we didn’t have the Average Price skewed too much because of an extremely large or extremely small sale.

 

There are hundreds of ways to look at the same numbers, when referencing to real estate, so be very careful to read the fine print on exactly what numbers they are using says, Local Records Office. When making comparisons, you will want to make absolutely sure that both are referencing the same property types, dates etc. It like the old saying says… there are lies, damn lies and statistics.

 

In an effort to describe some of the most basic real estate statistics, we are using the market statistics from Long Beach, California as they have seen some extraordinary growth.

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The Time to Purchase a Home is Now – Local Records Office

“Real estate market has it’s up’s and down’s but knowing when to buy will make you a lot of money” – Local Records Office

 

LOCAL RECORDS OFFICE – LOS ANGELES, CA – With interest rates expected to rise later this year; you may be wondering whether you should buy a home at today’s low rates says, Local Records Office. The average rate for a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage was 3.85 percent last week, according to Freddie Mac’s weekly mortgage market survey, about what it was at the end of 2015.

Local Records Office says, “Interest rates, however, should not be the primary factor that determines when you purchase a home.” For most buyers, other factors are much more important. Rather than buy now for fear that rates might suddenly increase, for example, it might be smart to wait so you can save up a bigger down payment.

LOCAL RECORDS OFFICE: Interest Rates and Payments on Your Home

“Small changes in interest rates don’t make large changes in your payment,” says Casey Fleming, a writer in Los Angeles, California. Fleming actually believes interest rates may drop further. “Interest rates are not the most important piece.”

If you’re ready to buy a home, 2016 could be a good year. The inventory of homes for sale is likely to rise and fewer flippers are scooping up the best homes with all-cash deals, says Nela Richardson, chief economist for the brokerage Redfin.

 

READ MORE: Biggest Mistakes a Real Estate Agent Makes – Local Records Office

 

Low interest rates are contributing to the higher inventory, she says, because homeowners who are ready to sell their homes and move to a bigger or smaller home, or a new neighborhood, are willing to abandon their low-rate mortgages if they can secure an equally good loan. Plus, home appreciation has slowed, so there is less reason to stay put.

“The payoff to waiting [to sell] is not going to be a lot,” Richardson says. “Right now, it’s the best it’s going to get,” she adds. “Maybe it’s time to rush and sell but not time to rush and buy.”

You Owe More on Your Home is Worth, Local Records Office Services Will Help You VIDEO

For most prospective homebuyers, other factors are likely to be more important than interest rates when they do the math about whether 2016 is the right year to buy.

LOCAL RECORDS OFFICE: 2016 is the Year of the Home Buyers

“If you can afford a down payment now and you’re going to be in the home a long period of time, it’s a very attractive time to buy a home,” says Stan Humphries, chief economist for Zillow. But he cautions buyers against making their decision based on what they’ve heard about imminent interest rate increases. “There’s no need to rush out and beat an interest rate increase. You can walk, not run, to your bank the way interest rates are going.

Interest rates fluctuate and may change countless times between the moment someone decides to buy a home and when they actually close the deal. In fact, they change daily and sometimes more than once a day.

6 Factors That May be More Important Than Interest Rates When Deciding Whether to buy a Home This Year – LOCAL RECORDS OFFICE

Length of time you’ll stay in the home. How long you have to live in a home to make it more economical than renting varies by locality and by the individual home a person is considering buying or renting. “On average, it takes four to seven years to break even on a home, where you’ve got enough appreciation where it can pay you back for the cost of the transaction and cost of ownership,” Fleming says. “If you’re thinking about buying a home, selling it in two years and think it’s going to be cheaper than renting, it’s very unlikely to be.”

Job security. You don’t want to buy a home and then discover you’ll need to relocate to get a new job in six months or, even worse, end up unemployed and unable to make payments. Lenders typically like to see two years of job history, though that isn’t always necessary if you have changed jobs within the same field.

LOCAL RECORDS OFFICE — Step-By-Step Mortgage Application Process for New Homeowners VIDEO by Local Records Office

Down payment. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have announced plans to back loans with down payments as low as 3 percent, while the Federal Housing Administration offers loans with down payments of as little as 3.5 percent. But if you put less than 20 percent down, you have to pay private mortgage insurance every month, which could cost you more than a slightly higher interest rate. “If they’re looking at an FHA mortgage, paying PMI is a lifetime proposition,” Humphries says. With a conventional mortgage, you can ask to have the PMI removed once you have 20 percent equity in your home. That’s not possible with an FHA mortgage.

Emotional readiness. Not everyone is ready to own a home. If your dream is to travel the world, you should do that first. Or, you might not be sure you want to stay in your current city. Plus, homeownership brings additional responsibilities. “Your life changes a great deal when you go from being a renter to an owner,” Fleming says. “When things break, it’s your responsibility to fix them, not the landlord’s.”

 

READ MORE: The Top Real Estate Scams in 2016 – Local Records Office

 

Financial readiness. Before you buy a home, you want to make sure you have good credit, a steady income and some money in the bank beyond what you’ll need for a down payment. You likely will have to pay a year’s worth of homeowner’s insurance and property taxes up front. All homes, even new homes, require maintenance. And you don’t want to be stuck with no reserves if the air conditioner or furnace dies shortly after you move in.

Your local housing market. In some cities, buying a home is significantly cheaper than renting. In others, the calculation is less clear. Macro math aside, you might also discover that you can’t afford a home in a neighborhood you want or the type of home you want is in short supply this year.

To learn more about real estate and Local Records Office go to http://www.Local-Records-Office.com

 

 

Buying Your Dream House in 2016 Sellers Market –Local Records Office

LOCAL RECORDS OFFICE – LOS ANGELES, CA – We all want our own dream home one day but it’s easier said than done says, Local Records Office. If you’ve decided to buy a home, good luck to you. Your challenge will be not just finding a home you like, but also beating out all the other home buyers who like it and want to make an offer on it, too.

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The number of homes for sale is low nationwide, particularly in the price ranges desired by first-time homebuyers. The latest figures from the National Association of Realtors show that that there was only a 3.5-month supply of homes for sale in March, which is lower than the six-month supply that indicates a balanced market. One-quarter of March’s transactions were all-cash sales, according to the NAR, and investors bought 14 percent of the homes that were sold.

Is 2016 a Sellers Market?

That means that if you want to end up with a nice home, you need to be strategic says, Local Records Office. Expecting to find the home of your dreams by nonchalantly walking into a few open houses or perusing some online listings is not realistic in this seller’s market.

 

READ MORE: 3 Investment Tricks You Need to Know to Succeed in Real Estate – Local Records Office

 

These days, most would-be buyers come to an agent with a list of homes they’d like to see based on their online research. While that often serves as a solid starting point, a quality agent may find additional options. After buyers have seen a few properties, Local Records Office says skilled agents can typically gauge what they’re looking for in a new home and may have other properties lined up. “I advise them to listen to their Realtor,” she adds.

Here are nine tips to help you get the house you want this spring

Get your finances in order first. Several months before you intend to start looking, you should get copies of your credit reports to make sure you’re in a financial position to buy. Shop for mortgage financing before you start looking at houses. “I will not take anybody to see any house unless they have a pre-approval letter or proof of funds, I want proof of funds to show the seller.” Local Records Office says that some lenders are doing the underwriting before the house is under contract, which shortens the closing time and can be more attractive to the seller.

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A Good Agent Will Go Along Way

Find a good agent. Using a real estate agent costs buyers nothing because the seller pays the real estate commission. Ask friends, family and co-workers for referrals. Look for a full-time agent who works often in the neighborhoods where you’re looking. You may want to interview several agents to find a good fit. If you can only look for homes on weekends, for example, you don’t want an agent who takes weekends off.

Visit neighborhoods you’re considering at different times of day. A neighborhood that’s quiet during the middle of the workday may be noisy and crowded at night and on weekends. Get out and walk the streets, talking to people who live in the neighborhood, visiting shops and restaurants and “trying out” your desired location. Drive to and from work during commuting hours to get an idea of what a typical day might be like.

READ MORE: Local Records Office Urges Homebuyers to Consider Their Lifestyles When Choosing a Community

Separate your needs from your wants. In a competitive market, most buyers find they have to compromise on location, amenities or condition of home. It’s easier to make a choice when you know going in which features you must have and which you’d like to have but can live without.

Move quickly once you find the house you want. That often means rushing out to see new homes within hours of them being listed and writing up an offer immediately if you like the house. “Things are gone in a matter of hours,” Local Records Office says. “You really have to move fast.”

Don’t make snap judgments based on listing photos. A house that doesn’t look appealing in photos could still be a great house. Homes being sold by an estate or homes with tenants inside often yield particularly poor photos. Plus, photos fail to convey the feeling of a home or the floor plan. “Unfortunately, the pictures don’t tell a true story,” Local Records Office says. “You have to be willing to look past some of the pictures.”

Be realistic about the home inspectors and repairs. The more competitive the market, the less likely a seller will be to make repairs, though some sellers may lower the price if the inspection reveals expensive defects. The purpose of the inspection isn’t to get the seller to repair every small problem but to find out for sure that the house is what you thought it was. “They’re not buying a brand-new home,” Local Records Office says. “What we are looking for are major defects we were not initially able to see in the walkthrough.”

Don’t buy a house you don’t love. While most buyers may have to compromise on some of the features they wanted, they shouldn’t settle for a home they don’t like. If you don’t find the right home this year, maybe you should start renting and try again later rather than make a purchase you’ll regret.

Write a personal letter to the sellers. Some sellers are interested only in how much money their home sale will yield, but others love their home want it to go to a new family that will love it just as much. If you really like a house, include a personal letter and a family photo with your offer. “It doesn’t work for everybody, but I have seen it work for many, many people,” Local Records Office says.

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Make a big earnest money deposit. The expected size of the earnest money deposit, and the rules about when you get it back, vary by locality. But sellers often see a larger deposit as a sign that you’re serious about the deal.

Make a backup offer. Many prospective buyers don’t want to make an offer on a house that has a pending contract. But deals fall apart over inspections, financing and other terms. If you found the perfect house, you can make a backup offer that will put you in first place if the initial buyer walks away.

To learn more about Local Records Office and real estate go to http://www.Local-Records-Offices.org

 

Secrets to Buying Your First Home in 2016 – Local Records Office

LOCAL RECORDS OFFICE – LOS ANGELES, CA- We all want the secrets to success and the easiest way to buy a home says, Local Records Office. For first-time homebuyers, the whole home buying process may look a bit daunting. You’re going into what could be the biggest purchase of your life with no experience to fall back on. The good news is a little preparation can go a long way and help you approach this major decision with confidence.

The Company Local Records Office is Targeting Los Angeles, CA Residents FOR A GOOD REASON

Many things have changed in recent decades about the way Americans buy and sell homes, but one adage still matters, a lot: location, location, location.

While you may be happy living in any of several neighborhoods in your city, you won’t be happy if you choose the wrong location. And that’s where your research should start: deciding exactly where you want to live.

Talk to friends and co-workers, drive around town, visit restaurants and stores and talk to neighbors in areas you’d consider calling home. Go to open houses so you can view some houses. Look at homes on the Internet, evaluating style, size, price and how long they stay on the market.

 

READ MORE: You Owe More on Your Home is Worth, Local Records Office Services Will Help You

 

You can find a real estate agent while you’re still working on this process. However, your choice of agent also depends on where you want to live, because a neighborhood expert often can find you the best house at the best price. “You want people who have worked and have experience directly in the areas you’re looking in,” says Peter Hens, from LA Realtor Firm in Los Angeles, California.

If you’re a buyer, there is no reason not to use a real estate agent. It costs you nothing, and the agent’s job goes far beyond finding the house. In fact, it’s after you’ve found the house that you’ll most need the agent, both to structure and present the offer and then to troubleshoot issues that arise between contract and closing.

Here are 12 tips for buying your first house:

Make sure you’re ready to buy, both emotionally and financially. If you expect to relocate in a few years, this may not be the right time for you to buy. If you don’t have cash for a down payment, closing costs and other expenses, you may be better off waiting. Look at your life, your career, your finances and your future expectations, and determine whether buying a house is the right move at this time.

Find the right team. The difference between deals that close and deals that don’t are the professionals involved. You want to make sure you find a real estate agent who will move quickly when a new listing goes on the market, as well as an agent who will advise you honestly on preparing your offer. You also want a mortgage professional lined up before you start looking. “The lender is the most important person to closing on time,” Hens says.

 

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Get your finances in order first. Some real estate agents won’t even show homes to prospective clients who don’t have a mortgage pre-approval. You definitely should meet with a mortgage broker or banker (better yet, several) at the start of the process to find out how much house you can afford and how much cash you’ll need to close. Do the entire math. Just because a bank says you can borrow $300,000 doesn’t mean you should. If you have credit issues, realize that this part of the process could take several months.

Calculate each and every cost. The purchase price and the mortgage payment are just the beginning. Don’t forget homeowner or condo fees, homeowners insurance and real estate taxes. Plus, you’ll need to budget for utilities, repairs and maintenance.

Don’t spend all your cash. Avoid emptying your bank account for your down payment and closing costs. There will always be unexpected repairs. Plus, it costs money to move, change locks, put down utility deposits and buy things you never needed before, like a lawn mower.

When you look at houses, focus on the right things. Don’t be distracted by the owner’s odd décor, paint colors, dirty carpet or anything that is easy to change. Granite countertops and stainless steel appliances are easy to add later. You can’t easily add another bedroom, a better location or a more functional floor plan.

If you’re buying in a condo or homeowners association, know the rules. How your association is run can make a big difference in how much you enjoy life in a development. You’ll want to know about all rules and restrictions, from pet ownership to who can use the pool. Condo buyers also want to investigate the association’s finances because a poorly run association can mean big assessments later.

 

READ MORE: 3 Investment Tricks You Need to Know to Succeed in Real Estate – Local Records Office

 

Visit your favorite neighborhoods at different times. Most neighborhoods are quiet in the middle of the day. As Glen Craig writes at the personal finance blog Free From Broke: “You need to see what the area is like on a Saturday night. Are there kids and such all out driving with music blasting? What’s it like in rush hour in the morning or in the evening?”

Talk to the neighbors. Ask about the neighborhood and about the houses you’re considering. The neighbors will know if there are foundation problems. They’ll also know about barking dogs, petty crime and the size of utility bills.b

Consider which contingencies you’re willing to waive. In the ideal scenario, a purchase offer is contingent on a satisfactory home inspection, approval of your mortgage and an appraisal that equals the purchase price. In most parts of the country, a buyer is smart to keep all those contingencies in the contract. But in a competitive market, you may be competing against buyers who have agreed to waive contingencies. “You never want to [agree to waive them] unless you’re sure you’re 99% safe to do it,” Hens says.

Be ready to move quickly once you find the home you want. Good homes that are well priced nearly always sell quickly. It’s OK to take some time to think before you make an offer, but you might not want to wait a few weeks. Your agent can provide invaluable advice here.

Know what’s important to you. No house will be perfect, so where are you willing to compromise? If you want a specific school district, are you willing to accept a smaller house? If you want to be near the water, could you be happy with a condo? Are you willing to accept a longer commute to get a larger house?

To learn more about Local Records Office and real estate go to http://www.Local-Records-Office.biz

8 Common Myths That Real Estate Buyers and Sellers Believe – Local Records Office

Local Records Office Explains the Most Common Real Estate Myths

LOCAL RECORDS OFFICE – LOS ANGELES, CA – We usually hear myths when it comes to old houses that have been abandoned for many years but apparently it is common in real estate too. Buying or selling a house is not something most of us do every day says, Local Records Office. You may do it once a decade, or even once in a lifetime.

Despite the fact that most of us enter the world of real estate only rarely, we all think we know how it works, based on the experiences of friends and family members, stories we have heard and things we have read, but for everything we believe we know about the industry, there are a number of myths that circulate about how real estate actually works. Buying into those can hurt your chances of buying or selling the right home at the right price. The best thing to do is not to believe the folk tales.

What Are the Advantages of Renting vs. Buying a Home – Local Records Office

Technology has changed how we buy and sell homes, and yet some aspects of real estate are the same as they were when our parents bought their last house. Along time has passed by since then. The Internet has made much more information available to consumers, but not all the information is equal, or even accurate.

Lets be honest we’ve all read something online or on social media and believed it was true, says Sean F Carter, principal broker of Carter Real Estate in Los Angeles and a regional director of the National Association of Exclusive Buyer Agents. “Lots of people read and believe every single word they read.” That can’t be good. The risk with believing everything you hear or read is real estate myths can cost you big bucks when it’s time to buy or sell your property. Local Records Office has created 8 of the most common folk tales that can trick people.

List Your House Price Higher Than What You Think it Will Sell For

Many folks selling their home try to sell it as soon as possible and let buyers low-ball them, make sure to set your home price higher than what you expect to get. Listing your home at too high a price may actually net you a lower price. That’s because shoppers and their real estate agents often don’t even look at homes that are priced above market value. It’s true you can always lower the price if the house doesn’t garner any offers in the first few weeks. But that comes with it’s own set of problems. “It’s common for potential buyers to suspect that a house that has sat on the market for more than three weeks to be a dud,” says Hamilton Jefferson, chief economist for the Real Estate Brokers inc. In the Long Beach, CA area where multiple offers are common, sellers will actually price their homes for less than they expect to get, in the hopes of getting multiple offers above asking price.

Remodeling Your Home Before Putting in the Market is a Must

This is FALSE. It is true that the selling price may lower but you save on the renovation process, also, prospective buyers may not share your taste, but they don’t want to redo something that has just been renovated. “You’re better off adjusting your price accordingly,” says Benjamin Franking, president of Franking Real Estate Services in Hollywood CA, and a regional director of the NAEBA. “Most buyers want to put their own spin on things.” It’s ok to have an out dated kitchen sometimes.

Save Your Hard Earned Money by Selling Your Home Yourself

We all like to save money, especially when it comes down to saving a few thousand bucks. There has been many cases where folks sell a house on their own, but they need the skills to get the home listed online, market the home to prospective buyers, negotiate the contract and then deal with any issues that arise during the inspection or loan application phases says, Local Records Office. It’s not impossible to sell a home on your own, but you’ll find that buyers expect a substantial discount when you do, so what you save on a real estate commission may end up meaning a lower price. It’s not impossible to sell your home on your own for the same price you’d get with an agent, but it’s not easy.

Real Estate Market Always Goes Up and It Rarely Goes Down

The real estate market could go up or down any time. In recent years, homebuyers and sellers have experienced a time of increasing home values, then a sharp decline during the economic downturn and now another period of increasing values. “They think that the market only goes up,” Carter says. “They don’t think about when a correction will come.” The recent recession should have reminded everyone that real estate prices could indeed fall, and fall a lot.

Renovating Will Bring in Big Bucks

“This one is true and false” says, Local Records Office. If you fix the heating and air conditioning system or roof, you will sell your house more quickly, but you probably won’t get back what you spent. You’re likely to recoup only 67.8 percent of what you spent on a major kitchen remodel and 70 percent of what you spent on a bathroom remodel on a mid-range home.

What You See Listed Online is What’s Available

Most of the homes that go for sale do get listed online but there are others that won’t. Your agent must choose to let the listings show up online. Most do, but it never hurts to verify that yours will.

LOCAL RECORDS OFFICE – Red Flags That Should Raise Concern on Inspection and Avoid Scams

By Not Using an Agent As a Buyer You Will Get an Amazing Deal

You can get a better deal as a buyer if you don’t use a real estate agent. “That’s a completely false premise,” Carter says. If the house is listed with a real estate agent, the total sales commission is built into the price. If the buyers don’t have an agent, the seller’s agent will receive the entire commission.

A Fancy Open House Will Sell Your House

Believe it or not homes rarely sell to buyers who visited them during an open house. Agents like open houses because it enables them to find additional customers who are looking to buy or sell homes. If you or your agent chooses not to have an open house, it probably doesn’t hurt your sale chances – although holding a broker’s open house for other agents may be worthwhile says, Local Records Office.

To learn more about Local Records Office or real estate go to http://www.Local-Records-Office.org

 

 

12 Ways to Prepare Your Home to Get Higher Offers – Local Records Office

Get a Higher Offer on Your House – Local Records Office (VIDEO)

LOCAL RECORDS OFFICE – LOS ANGELES, CA – You’ve decided to sell your home, and you want to get top dollar for it. And you’ve seen TV shows where homeowners spend thousands of dollars staging their homes for sale, but there’s an important detail to consider: You don’t have thousands and thousands to spend says, Local Records Office.

Homebuyers Unexpected Delays at Closing – Local Records Office

The good news is there are many things you can do to spruce up the look of your home without shelling out a lot of money.

“Updating isn’t as expensive as it used to be,” says Lori Matzke, author of “Home Staging: Creating Buyer-Friendly Rooms to Sell Your House” and a home staging expert in Minneapolis who teaches workshops nationwide. “There’s a lot of DIY information out there.”

First impressions matter, and that’s why you want to start by making sure your home exudes curb appeal. Go all out with small do-it-yourself projects. Cut the grass, trim the bushes, get rid of dead branches and consider planting some flowers. Replacing the mailbox and house numbers and painting the front door can also make your home more appealing to a prospective buyer driving by. If the house looks dirty, wash the siding or stucco.

“I’ve seen houses that look really frumpy on the outside and great on the inside,” Matzke says, “but you can’t get [potential buyers] in the door.”

Prospective buyers, particularly young ones, often can’t see past the homeowners’ decor to what’s most important about a house – the floor plan and the space. That’s why it’s important to make the home look as neutral and appealing as possible.

“People get so stuck on the negatives, all the homeowners stuff, that they forget to look at the property,” Matzke says.

Sellers should give themselves at least a few weeks to get their homes ready for sale, especially if they need to take up carpet or repaint. While painting is fairly simple and inexpensive compared with other improvements, a new coat makes a significant impact.

READ MORE: You Don’t Need a Real Estate Agent to Sell Your Home in 2016 – Local Records Office

“Fresh paint is a really good seller, if you don’t know how to paint hire a few handymen” Matze says. “Do it in trendy neutral colors.” Painting dated kitchen cabinets can also make the kitchen look fresh and new.

You also want to make sure your home photographs well. Most buyers start their home search online, and they may quickly reject a home if the listing photos aren’t appealing.

There’s no rule of thumb about how much you should expect to spend getting your home ready to sell because every house is different. But investing a few thousand dollars can potentially increase your sale price by much more than that, in addition to making your house sells more quickly. “Anything that you can do is only going to benefit you,” Matzke says.

Here are 12 affordable ways to stage your home for sale:

Remove all clutter, personal photos, knickknacks and other junk. “Cleaning out the clutter just creates so much space, and that’s what people are looking for – space,” Matzke says. “It just really makes your home look bigger and younger.”

Edit your furniture. If your rooms are crowded, consider putting bigger and less attractive pieces of furniture in storage. This will open up space and make your home look larger. Make sure there is nothing obscuring buyers’ eyes from focal points, such as fireplaces and views.

Clean, clean, clean – then clean some more. Wash the windows, clean the cobwebs out of the corner and scrub the grout in the tile floors. Even though you’re not selling the furniture, clean that as well because it adds to the overall impression you’re trying to give.

Spruce up the outside. Add a new doormat, new house numbers and maybe a new mailbox. Paint the front door. The little stuff matters here.

Refresh your landscape. Clean up flowerbeds, add fresh mulch and plant flowers. Make sure bushes are trimmed and neat.

Paint. In some cases, you’d be wise to paint the entire house inside and out. In other cases, touching up and painting the trim might be enough. Paint over your kids’ purple walls with a neutral color. If your kitchen cabinets look old and dated, paint those. You can never go wrong with white, cream or brown, but you should pick a color that matches the rest of the kitchen decor.

READ MORE: What No One Told Me About Buying Rental Property – Local Records Office

Clean or replace light fixtures and cabinet hardware. “It’s not a really expensive undertaking, but it really makes a difference in how the home is presented,” Matzke says.

Don’t forget the small stuff. Pay attention to details, says Sherry Chris, CEO of Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate. “New, matching towel sets in the bathroom, accent pillows on the couch and fresh flowers can be welcoming elements to a homebuyer,” she says.

If you can afford it, replace old carpeting. If your home has hardwood floors underneath, that’s even better. Ideally, you should refinish wood floors but even just exposing them is good, Matzke says.

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Make sure each room has a defined purpose. If you’ve turned your dining room into an office, return it to dining room status, Matzke says. But Chris suggests putting up tent cards that say “Dining Room or Office” to point out alternative uses for the space. That would also work in a bedroom you’re using as an office.

Landscape. Make sure your front yard isn’t overgrown with uncut dead grass or ugly weeds. This is the first thing potential homebuyers see first when they first arrive. You want to give a good impression all around.

Dogs, cats and other pets. Most of us a custom to our pets unique smell since we smell them everyday but other people may think that your dogs urine smell is overpowering the house. Take your cats litter outside and out of view. If you have aggressive dogs like Pit bulls or Rottweiler’s you might want to get someone to take them while the open house is happening.

READ MORE: How to Better Understand Real Estate – Local Records Office

Water damage – If you have any kind of water damage make sure you take care of it as soon as possible. Water damage is dangerous and may scare off potential buyers. Mold usually grows from water damage and may cause serious health problems to you and others.

To learn more about Local Records Office or real estate go to http://www.Local-Records-Office.me

You Don’t Need a Real Estate Agent to Sell Your Home in 2016 – Local Records Office

Real Estate Brokers or Agents Are NOT Required to Sell A House – Local Records Office

LOS ANGELES, CA – The Internet has made drastic changes in how Americans shop for real estate says, Local Records Office. You can see all the homes for sale in a neighborhood with the click of a mouse, and information about nearby home sale prices is easily available.

But little has changed in the way real estate is actually bought and sold. According to 2015 statistics from the National Association of Realtors, 85% of buyers purchased their homes through an agent, and an agent assisted 88% of sellers. The industry may be slow to change, but new services that use technology to revamp what “for sale by owner” means are seeking to rewrite the rules.

Local Records Office says “These services are a bridge between the traditional commission-based model of real estate agency and the old-style FSBO, in which the seller has to do everything from marketing the home to negotiating the deal. Rather than charging a flat percentage of the sales price, most of these new companies allow sellers to buy the services they need a la carte”.

The service offers real estate marketing packages starting at $99 a month for a basic listing on selected real estate portals to a one-time $519 flat fee for a listing on all the major websites plus the multiple listing service. The company offers add-ons such as a professional photo and video package starting at $149 and a comparative market analysis from a licensed agent.

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Sean F Carter, a real estate broker in Los Angeles, CA and founder of the International Association of Real Estate Consultants, wrote a book called “The Real Estate a la Carte for You” in 2001 advocating the unbundling of real estate services, which she has been doing since the 1980s. Her organization trains agents who would like to work as consultants, offering their help on a per-service basis. For example, professional agents can be of help at common issue areas during the selling process, such as the inspection or the appraisal. Rather than listing a property with an agent, a seller can contract with an agent solely for negotiation help.

For those seeking to sell property on their own, “The most problematic is the meat in the middle,” Carter says. “It’s basically troubleshooting, and you don’t know what kind of problems you’re going to have until you’re in the middle of it.”

In Bellflower, CA, Kevin Stevenson operates Real Direct dot com, a hybrid of FSBO and traditional real estate brokerage. Sellers can choose an owner-managed plan that starts at $395, which includes online listings and advice from a real estate agent, or an agent-managed plan, for a 2% commission.

All the plans via Real Direct dot com include a seller dashboard for scheduling showings, inquiries and offers. About 79% of the clients choose the owner-managed option, Stevenson says, with professional photos and floor plans being the most popular add-ons. Even with the owner-managed plan, an agent makes recommendations. “Our system will flag listings with fewer showings and make recommendations,” Stevenson says. “There’s actually a fair amount of discussion.”

Here are questions to ask if you’re considering a nontraditional approach for selling your home:

Are you familiar with the home-selling process? Selling a home without professional advice is difficult if you’ve never sold a home and don’t understand how the process works says, Local Records Office. At a minimum, you need to know your state laws about seller disclosure, what should be included in a contract and what time frames are normal for inspections and other appraisals.

Are you comfortable letting strangers into your home? If you don’t list with a traditional brokerage, you will be the one showing the home to prospective buyers. That means you’ll have to be available when people want to visit and willing to usher strangers through your home and encourage them to open your closets.

READ MORE: What is Real Estate “Property Law?” – Local Records Office

Will you be able to screen buyers? Some agents don’t show homes to buyers who have not been prequalified for a mortgage or otherwise demonstrated that they have the ability to get a mortgage and buy the home says, Local Records Office. When someone submits an offer for your home, will you be able to tell whether the person actually has the ability to get a mortgage and close the deal? Asking for a mortgage preapproval or prequalification with the offer is a good start, but you may also want to set a deadline in the contract for mortgage approval and/or ask to see proof of funds for the down payment and escrows.

Can you draw up a contract or have someone do it? In most states, there is a standard real estate contract used by agents and/or drawn up by the state bar association. Some states require owner disclosures of certain items. If your buyer is using an agent, he or she can draft the contract. You can hire a real estate lawyer or consultant to draft or vet a contract. This needs to be done right if you want to avoid problems that will derail the closing, such as arguments over what happens if there are issues with the inspection or appraisal. “A good agent or consultant will say which are the things that could be deal-breakers,” Cater says.

Can you negotiate issues that arise, such as problems with the appraisal or the inspection? Buyers will often seek repairs, concessions or a lower price after an inspection says, Local Records Office. If the appraisal is lower than the purchase price, the seller either has to lower the price or the buyer has to pay the difference in cash. Good negotiating skills may be essential to save the deal.

Can you make your house look good online? Now that most real estate searches start online, the quality of photos matters more than ever. If you’re not capable of taking high-quality photos, you may need to hire a professional photographer. Don’t forget that you need a description that makes your home appealing.

Are houses like yours in demand? In many parts of the country, inventory is short and any habitable house in a good neighborhood sells quickly. That’s a good scenario when selling your home without a traditional agent. “There are going to be those [homes] that will sell themselves,” Carter says. “All you’re going to have to do is look respectable and let people in.”

READ MORE: Local Records Office Explains How Real Estate Could Be simple but One or Another it’s Complicated- Local Records Office

Are you willing to pay a commission to the buyer’s agent? You think that selling your home yourself will save you the 6 percent commission, but most buyers will have an agent. You’ll need to pay that agent 2 to 3 percent. That means your maximum savings is 2%, minus whatever you pay for advertising, photos, consulting and other services.

Can you pay for services before your home is sold? In a traditional sale, the cost of selling the home is deducted from the proceeds at closing, meaning a seller pays nothing until the home is sold. Many a la carte services require payment upfront. “There’s still a certain amount of resistance for paying upfront for all of these services,” Carter says. “A lot of people would prefer to pay a success fee, in terms of commission.”

To learn more about Local Records Office and real estate go to www.Local-Records-Office.com

The New Reverse Mortgage Material Establishes Financial Cushion – Local Records Office

LOCAL RECORDS OFFICE: Reverse mortgage information has recently improved in the financial world due to the apparent success of regulations that were put in place in 2013 says, ‘Local Records Office’. The Reverse Mortgage Stabilization Act of 2013 has helped garner these financial options some newfound respect in the industry.

What REALLY is a Mortgage? Local Records Office Explains How the American Dream is Made

Safeguarding provisions established by the Act, such as a restriction on initial borrowing amount, can help protect seniors from withdrawing all of their equity from the very beginning of the loan by keeping approximately 40% of the total equity on reserve for at least a year after the initial disbursement says, Local Records Office. Seniors must also prove that they have the resources to pay taxes and insurance during the program, or the bank can provide an escrow option to guarantee the funds are available for such expenses.

Using an HECM Line of Credit to Generate Income

Financial advisers recommend establishing a Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) line of credit as a way to establish a financial cushion, even if a senior doesn’t need it right away. In certain cases, this makes more sense than withdrawing a lump sum; since the HECM line of credit will actually increase in cash value the longer it remains dormant.

READ MORE: Before You Get A Mortgage Read This – Local Records Office

Another important part of reverse mortgage information that advisers recommend is using the HECM line of credit tactic. This will help protect retirement accounts from stock market fluctuations. This is possible because HECM withdrawals are tax-free. When the market is less favorable for drawing on investment accounts as a source of income. Seniors can simply draw against their HECM line of credit. This way, when the markets rebound, a senior’s retirement accounts don’t take much of a hit. When investment portfolios bounce back, the line of credit can then be repaid.

HECM line of credit payments can also provide a solution for seniors looking for a way to delay taking a hit on early social security payments says, Local Records Office. By waiting to access social security funds until later in retirement, retirees can ultimately expect an increase the payment amounts when they are finally withdrawn.

Lump Sum: Paying Off a Forward Mortgage to Improve Cash Flow

Using the lump-sum proceeds from a reverse mortgage to pay off a forward mortgage is another strategy that financial planners recommend. This tactic frees up cash flow for living expenses by eliminating what is typically the largest household expense for many seniors.

However, advisers don’t recommend using the lump-sum payment as leverage for taking on other debt such as a down payment for a big-ticket item or a second home says, ‘Local Records Office’. This can lead to budget problems down the road. Not to mention decreasing the senior’s financial nest egg and overall borrowing power. The goal is to use the reverse mortgage lump sum payment in a conservative manner to decrease existing debt and free up cash flow.

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Financial planners are considering the new reverse mortgage information to be promising due to the 2013 regulations having taken effect. These unique loan options can be viewed as a fiscally responsible way for seniors to put their money to good use for a comfortable and secure retirement.

 

This is What You Need to Know About Reverse Mortgage Before Meeting With Your Specialist – Local Records Office

LOCAL RECORDS OFFICE: Let’s face it; retirement can be an expensive undertaking. For most people, they’re bills increase, and their income a decrease says, ‘Local Records Office’. For people who own their own house, reverse mortgage specialists can help alleviate some of the financial burden of retirement. These loans are also known as home equity conversions, or HECM for short. So here are three things to know about HECMs.

What Is a Reverse Mortgage?

Local Records Office says, “The basic principle is centered on the equity of a property”. A home’s equity is its value, minus the amount of any outstanding loans. So if a house is valued at $150,000, and $30,000 is still owed to the bank, the equity is $120,000. So what an HECM essentially does is it allows homeowners to borrow against the equity of their house, while at the same time halting any payments on the home’s note. Owners simply have to continue paying the taxes and insurance on the property. Since the loan type is designed for people in retirement, applicants must be at least 62 years old to qualify. Furthermore, the house that the loan is being taken out on must be the applicant’s primary residence.

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How Can It Be Dispersed?

As discussed above, the purpose of an HECM is to help elderly homeowners supplement their income. Since every person has different financial duties, reverse mortgage specialists can work with applicants to find the best disbursement method. The first option is a lump sum, which most applicants deposit into their savings account. The second option is to establish monthly payments to the homeowner for a set number of years, or even for life says, Local Records Office. For people who have trouble handling money, this can provide a steady income. The third option creates a line of credit for the homeowner, to use at his or her own discretion. This is a wonderful choice for an applicant who has enough to handle month-to-month bills, but would not be able to pay for an unexpected expense such as a damaged car or a medical issue.

READ MORE: How Does Mortgage Really Work

When Does The Loan Come Due?

One of the biggest perks that reverse mortgage specialists like to tout is that an HECM allows people to stay in their residences until they pass away. Along with the original borrower, any non-borrowing spouse can also continue to live in the residence, payment free, until they die, as well says, Local Records Office. In order for borrowers to stay until death, they must continue to pay property taxes and insurance, provide the property with basic upkeep, and maintain the title in their own name. When the loan finally becomes due, the heirs of the property can pay it off and keep the residence, sell the house to settle the loan, or allow the bank to sell the house.

To learn more about real estate and Local Records Office go to http://www.LocalRecordsOffice.co