To help your move go smoothly, we offer these 10 common pitfalls we hope you can avoid.

  1. Failing to research your mover:  If you hire a moving company thoroughly research them by checking Better Business Bureau and ensure they are licensed by your States Department of Transportation.
  2. Avoid spending too much on packing: Boxes and newspaper are easy to come by, and often free of charge. Spend a little extra time prepping to save money on packaging. Ask friends and relatives for storage bins they are not using and return them when done. 
  3. Packing heavy items in big boxes:  Heavy items should be treated like large items and be packaged by themselves, your back will thank you later.
  4. Forgetting to take measurements:  Know ahead of time if there will be any problems getting an item through the front door.
  5. Packing flammable, explosive or corrosive materials: You’ll be in violation of the law and put yourself and your movers in danger.
  6. Losing your Bill of Laden:  Bill of Laden is a contract between you and your movers, this is essential if any problems arise so keep with care.
  7. Leaving boxes blank:  Some people are uncomfortable writing items contained with in the box so they don’t record anything on them instead try numbering your boxes or bins and create a list that tells you what is inside each numbered box.
  8. Taking taxes too lightly:  There are specific guidelines as to which move-related items are tax-deductible and which aren’t. Make sure to check out the IRS website in advance of your move, and keep all relevant receipts.
  9. Disrespect movers: Make sure to introduce yourself to everyone on your moving crew and have refreshments at the ready. Making a good impression could protect your belongings over the long haul. 
  10. Forgetting to Change Address: Very important and in most cases be handled ahead of time, let your bills, company you work for,  drivers license, voter ID, &  post office know of your new address.

Down Payments on Rise with Tight Inventory

Average down payments for Conventional 30 year fixed rate mortgages have risen in the 3rd quarter of this year. The average down payment amount is pushing 18 % up fro 17 % in the prior quarter and form 16.79 % from year to year.  The average down payment in real dollars is 48925, an increase of 4000 dollars from the prior quarter. The average down payment for all mortgages is now close to 50000. This down payment increase is the result of a very competitive market and the buyer wants to eliminate any chance of a turndown by a lender. The increase in down payment also makes the monthly obligation lower and the chance to build equity increases rapidly.  The saving of a down payment is not easy but it makes the skin in the investment a better deal. For any question regarding down payments or housing needs please contact us.

Buying the Most Expensive House can be a Drag

Buying the most expensive house in the neighborhood is not always the best strategy. Buyers may have bragging rights but challenges during resale. When owning the nicest home on the block if you perform upgrades you may doing a larger mismatch between your home and surrounding homes.  If you are looking at a home for investment it make sense to look at a home with room for improvements as a way to build equity and even pay it off when it does sell. Experts say and recommend that buying the worst house in the neighborhood is the best strategy because you can add value on your own. Recurring maintenance, refreshing paint and making minor repairs the previous owner ignored adds instant value. The rule now is if choosing between an awful house in a good neighborhood or a nice house in a fair neighborhood, choose the former. If you put in the sweat equity you can have an investment.

Another Government Program Rewarding People Who Are Not Worthy.

Families in Milwaukee living in Public Housing are exceeding the income limits established by the government in regard to remaining residents of Public Housing. The reason is people have to meet the income requirement when they sign up. Once they sign up and get approved for the program their stay is indefinite if the resident or residents do not disclose their new income status. When audited, one family was making more than $100000 with both the husband and wife working. We all thought the goal of public housing is to provide decent, safe and sanitary housing to low income families. A report form the HUDS office of the inspector general found there are 25000 families exceeding income limits with 2000 of that number exceeding income of $100000.  There are flaws and there is incompetence, here we we see incompetence.

Better Rules for Mortgage Shoppers and Seekers.

Home shoppers no longer need to tremble all the way to the lenders office or have nightmares over being denied a home loan. A new report confirms its getting easier to get a mortgage and as a bonus borrower costs are still low.  The federal government and enterprises have taken several steps to to open up the credit box and and the efforts may be finally paying off. Credit scores on closed loans declined to their lowest level since Ellie Mae started collecting data in the early 2011. The Fico score average is down to 721 form 733. Closing rates remain high as well with more than 66% of all applications closing for the 3rd consecutive month. Closing rates on on purchase mortgage loans rose to 71%.  The other great news is a 30 year mortgage is below 4% and a 15 year mortgage is 2.98%. Great time to buy.

4 Mortgage Do Not Do,s That Will Kill A Deal For Homeowners

4 Deal Killers


1 Never move in the property early. A buyer purchased a home and since the seller know the buyer he allowed him to habitate early. The property was appraised and the lender noticed this situation and promptly denied the loan. The buyer was forced to obtain a non conforming loan with more money down, This was an additional 30000 down and a higher payment of 300 dollars. Do not move in until you close.

2 Know your credit history. A buyer entered into a contract and agreed to close within 30 days. When underwriting started working his file there were numerous slow pays. This could have been prevented with a pre approval. The buyer had to clean his credit and could not close within 30 days. The seller with numerous offers increased the purchase price by 40000 dollars. Do not agree to close without a preapproval in your hands. Very costly.

3 Know your DTI. When you apply for a morgtage detail your income. If your income is based upon bonus or commissions disclose the makeup. What happens is many borrowers fill out applications on line and fill out wages in totality. Once underwriters are alerted of bonus and commission income they deem the income not sustainable and turn down the mortgage. Usually this results in a loss of deposit and wasted fees. Know your DTI and disclose your source of income.

4 Closing the deal within 30 days. This is no longer an acceptable time frame to close a mortgage. With the new disclosures and paperwork now required it is an impossibility. Do not fall for the seller rushing you to close in 30 days. This is not possible any more and insist on 6 weeks.

These are a few examples which kill deals, get ahead and stay ahead.