Recent Questions / Latest mortgage and renting questions

What is transfer value?

Transfer value refers to a property’s purchase price the last time it was sold. It’s a term often used in foreclosed properties or those in pre-foreclosure. For foreclosed properties owned ...
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Buying a short sale home

Purchasing a short sale home isn’t the same as buying a foreclosed property, since the owner is actually selling the home to avoid foreclosure. It takes longer than a conventional ...
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What to do if my mortgage application was denied?

While a denial of your mortgage application is disappointing, it’s not the end of the world. Find out why the application was denied and fix those issues. The lender must ...
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First-Time Home Buyer / Information that first-time home buyers need to know

How much of my gross income should go to my mortgage payment?

Banks generally like to see no more than 28% of your gross income going toward your mortgage payment. This includes not just the mortgage payment, but also the interest on ...
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What is the difference between a coop and condo?

Co-ops and condos might look the same, but there are differences. When you buy a condo, you own everything included within the walls of the unit, and a homeowners association ...
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Do I have to buy appliances for my new home?

With a newly constructed home sold by a developer, appliances are included as part of the purchase price. If you are buying a resale home, any built-in appliances, such as ...
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Buying Process / Process of buying a house and mortgage terms
Photo - Two people talking about private mortgage insurance

What is Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI)?

©Jacob Lund/Fotolia Private mortgage insurance, also called PMI, is a type of insurance that private lenders require you to pay. You can avoid paying PMI by making a down payment ...
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What to do if my mortgage application was denied?

While a denial of your mortgage application is disappointing, it’s not the end of the world. Find out why the application was denied and fix those issues. The lender must ...
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What is a conventional mortgage loan?

A conventional mortgage is a loan that is not backed by the government, as an FHA loan is. Conventional loans usually offer better interest rates than FHA loans do because ...
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Selling / Related to selling your home

Can I sell my home if I owe HOA fees?

If you owe Homeowner’s Association fees, the HOA can put a lien on your home, making it more difficult to sell. Any liens on the home must be cleared before ...
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How much would I have to pay in taxes if I sell my home for a profit?

If you’ve lived in the house as your primary residence for at least two of the past five years, you won’t owe taxes on the sale. The federal government allows ...
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Do I have to inform the mortgage lender if I want to sell my home?

You don’t have to tell your mortgage provider that you plan to sell, but you do have to settle your outstanding loan when the home is sold. You might want ...
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Renting / Roommates, managing rentals, and understand rental terms

How to handle tenants who pay rent late?

If your tenant does not pay the rent on time, there’s a legal process you must follow. This process varies from state to state. Do not allow the rent to ...
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What are some things I need to consider before I rent out my house?

Before renting out your house, research the rental rates in your area to make sure renting your house is worth the effort. You’ll need to purchase rental insurance, and require ...
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Why should I buy instead of rent? Who really stays in a house for 30+ years?

As long as you want to stay put for at least 5 years, it might make better sense for you to buy instead of rent. Having a 30-year mortgage doesn't ...
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Refinancing / Related to refinancing a mortgage

What are the top 3 things I need to consider before refinancing?

All important issues concerning refinancing revolve around whether it makes financial sense. The number one issue involves addressing any fees or penalties you have to pay when refinancing. Crunch the ...
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What is a reverse mortgage?

Instead of paying the bank a mortgage payment each month, with a reverse mortgage, the bank pays you. But there are some strings attached. You must be 62 or older ...
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What is a second mortgage?

A second mortgage is just that – another mortgage taken out on a property which already has a mortgage. With a second mortgage, you are borrowing on the equity in ...
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Why should I buy instead of rent? Who really stays in a house for 30+ years?

As long as you want to stay put for at least 5 years, it might make better sense for you to buy instead of rent. Having a 30-year mortgage doesn't ...
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What is the minimum for a FHA loan?

The FHA doesn’t have a minimum loan amount, but it is a mortgage insurer, not a mortgage lender. It insures loans made by lenders against borrower default. A lender may ...
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Photo - Women researching buying a home.

Can a Home Be a Bad Financial Decision?

© william87/Fotolia For a long time, no one even questioned whether a home was good financial decision. It was a known fact that it was. But then the mortgage crisis ...
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