Tag Archives: finance

Home Buying Basics: The Section 32 Statement

For Sale sign outside houseAmong the most disregarded, but immensely crucial parts​ of purchasing a house is the “Section 32 Statement”. Some homeowners might or might not have heard of it, or perhaps even bought a home before without even glancing or truly understanding what was in Section 32.

If you’re a first-time homebuyer, you need to know and understand what a Section 32 Statement is to help make sure that you don’t run into any issues later on.

What Exactly is a Section 32 Statement?

Before signing a contract of sale, the lawyer of a vendor or seller would give their agent a Section 32 Statement so that the agent could, in turn, pass it on to prospective buyers. According to a top conveyancing lawyer in Townsville, in general, a Section 32 Statement would typically include the following details:

  • Title Details: This is an immensely crucial component of the statement that you should pay close attention to. Don’t forget to check the property’s measurements as stated in the property title, most particularly if what you’re planning to buy is a subdivided property. Put simply, make sure that the measurements are accurate.
  • Details about Building Permits if the Property has been Renovated Recently: If the statement includes permits and renovations, but lacks insurance information, you should ask the seller why.
  • Zoning Details: Make certain that you’re aware whether what you’re planning to purchase is a residential or commercial zone, and if it’s residential, what zone type.
  • Notices of Upcoming Orders or Works that Authorities Issued: This is very vital if there are changes to the property’s area that might impact you.
  • Outgoings: These usually include rates as well as strata or corporate body fees.
  • Easements: Easements are specific areas of the property that could be used by specific individuals or entity for a particular purpose, regardless if they’re the owner of the land or not. Easements are most commonly applied to drainage and road access. That said, easements could potentially compromise or affect any renovations that you’re planning to do.

Crucial Points to Remember

A Section 32 Statement is an important document that contains relevant details that could impact a buyer’s decision to go ahead with the purchase or not. With this in mind, once you receive this statement, it’s important that you go over it with your conveyancer or lawyer. He or she could likewise check its accuracy and determine if everything’s in order.

Selling Your House Effectively This Spring

For Sale sign outside houseSpring is officially here. For the real estate industry, it’s the most wonderful time of year.

The spring housing market is generally recognized as a goldmine, the best time to sell houses. As the winter frost melts away and warmth returns to the world, most buyers choose this time to search for potential homes, flooding the market between March to May and giving sellers a prime opportunity to make a killing.

Of course, a golden opportunity like this has to be used wisely. Here are a few tips to make the most out of your spring sale:

Start a little earlier

While spring is the best season to sell, there are advantages to starting as soon as winter ends. Since most have their eyes on spring, there’s less competition in the winter. And according to Angie’s List founder Angie Hicks, people looking to buy in winter are usually more motivated to make an actual purchase and aren’t just window shopping.

Find a good agent

Having a good agent by your side is paramount. They have real-time data about the market situation at their fingertips, which is key to determining the value of your home. Agencies like rcsothebysrealty.com, for example, provide personalized neighborhood updates to help monitor other factors, like crime rates or new policies, that can affect market value.

Think like a buyer

If you want to sell, you have to know what your buyers are looking for. Think about what you saw in your house when you bought it, and plan accordingly to make a good impression. This also involves fixing up the place. Box up your winter clutter, spruce up your yard, and make the interiors as presentable as possible.

Spring is a good time for sellers, but success isn’t always guaranteed. Your mileage may vary, and taking steps to enhance your position goes a long way in giving you the most out of your sale. Look for a good agent, do a little spring cleaning, and prepare ahead.

an fha loan form

Interested In An FHA Loan? Here’s All You Need To Know

an fha loan formFHA loans are one of the most popular loan products today. They are very attractive to home loan borrowers, especially those who will be buying a house for the first time because the requirements are much lower compared to private lenders.

In case the borrower defaults, the FHA loan lender like Primary Residential Mortgage, Inc. can get back the money from the Federal Housing Administration. Before rushing to get an FHA loan, keep these facts in mind when applying for one.

Low Credit Score and Down Payment Requirement

A typical private lender will first check your credit rating. It’s also the same with FHA loans, but you only need a minimum credit score of 580 to qualify. Also, you need to make 3.5 percent down payment. Those with credit scores below 580 but not lower than 500 can still be eligible, but this time, the down payment requirement is 10 percent. There are cases, however, where an applicant with a credit score of below 500 can get an FHA loan.

FHA is the Insurer, Not the Lender

Some people have the misconception that the FHA itself is the lender. The government agency only guarantees that it will pay the loan in case of default. This is why you need to make sure that the lender you are dealing with is FHA approved. The rates offered by these FHA-approved lenders are also not the same.

Pay Two Mortgage Insurance

On all FHA loans you pay, not one, but two mortgage insurance premiums. The first premium is equivalent to 1.75 percent of the loan. Pay this premium once you get the loan. If it’s possible, you can include this premium to the FHA loan.

The other one is the annual premium, but you pay for it monthly. The rate will depend on the size of the loan, the length of the loan, and the initial loan-to-value ratio.

FHA Loan For Home Repairs

Homeowners in need of cash for repairs can apply for a special loan known as 203(k). The loan amount you can get is not based on your home’s current appraised value. Instead, it’s based on the expected value after you have made the repairs.

Financial Relief Option

FHA loan borrowers who are undergoing financial hardships can apply for relief. If approved, lenders then can offer to lower the interest rate or extending the payback period. They may even allow deferring part of the loan without interest.

Possible Coverage of Closing Costs

Borrowers can include the closing costs in their loan application. The lender charges typically a higher interest rate if you choose this option. There are instances though that a home seller or builder will shoulder the closing costs to finalize the deal.

How to Grow and Make Your Business Successful

Man pointing at a dollar currencyYou have a great business idea and a source of funding for your star-up. You take the plunge, and before you know it, your enterprise is flowing smoothly. Clients begin coming in, and orders are placed in droves.

And then, it begins to plateau. Then it trickles. The initial success is now waning. And you are afraid one day it would just stop. What do you do?

One of the most difficult parts of business is keeping it alive and well. The key is to strategize and know the tricks of the trade. That way, you can grow your enterprise into something that is long-term as it is profitable.

Here are a few key aspects you would want to do to reach your business goals.

Do marketing

Marketing is a crucial part of making any business successful, so make sure you have a plan in place. It covers a lot of things that can get your business rolling, such as marketing online, in radio and TV. It has but one purpose: you need your prospective buyers to know what you are selling.

If done properly, you can say hello to higher sales and a better business reputation. If you are unsure of what marketing strategy to employ, you can contact marketing firms such as conceptmrk.com who can help you figure out what you need.

Keep costs down

One of the most important mottos in the business industry is “keep costs down and profits high.” Find the best way to cut on extra expenditures without compromising the quality of your products. For example, paying your vendors right away can keep you from paying interest.

Avoid paying retail prices as well, always but wholesale. Soon these vendors will become loyal to you and might even start giving you good deals. That way, you get to minimize costs and not skimp on the items you get.

Doing these things, and more, can keep your business thriving for a very long and profitable time. Make sure to invest wisely.

Mortgage Application: Don’t Forget Fees and Penalties

Loan on the monitor of a macbookWhen applying for a loan, most borrowers tend to focus more on their down payment, interest rates, and monthly payments. Many fail to evaluate hidden fees like closing costs and prepayment penalties. If you’re applying for a mortgage and don’t think about them, you may set up yourself for extra expenses before you can finally own your home.

Avoid Surprises Related to Closing Fees

Whether you’re purchasing a home or refinancing a loan, you will need to pay closing costs. A lender or mortgage company should give a Good Faith Estimate (GFE), which lists all related closing costs. Altius Mortgage Group and other mortgage companies in Utah note that these differ based on the type of property, its location, and your loan type. In most cases, buyers pay about 2% to 5% of home’s value in closing fees.

It’s good to know that some fees in the closing costs are unnecessary and negotiable. You can ask your lender to have some of those fees removed or ask them to explain why they are necessary. There is also the no-closing cost mortgage, which may cost you more in the long run. This is because the lender may charge you with a higher rate or include the closing fees into the total loan amount.

Extra Payments and Penalties

Some loans carry prepayment penalties when you may extra mortgage payments. Note that not all loans have this, so it means that you may have agreed on this when you close the purchase. If you’re not sure, it’s best to check with your lender. The penalties could apply if you pay the entire balance (by selling or refinancing) or pay a large amount all at once.

If you, for instance, received an inheritance or get a promotion, making extra payments can reduce financial burden in the long. This also reduces your total payment and helps build equity faster. Before agreeing to a loan, you may want to ask your lender to have this removed if possible. Note that paying extra can also lower the number of interests paid.

Buying a house is a financial decision, so you shouldn’t overlook other fees that can affect your payment in the future. Talk to a reliable lender to learn more about your mortgage options and all other associated fees.

Avoid Committing Major Car Buying Mistakes in 4 Steps

man checking out a car with car salesman behindThe process of buying a car — be it new or used — can be extremely overwhelming. It involves many things including the price, the type of service you want, and the maintenance cost. This is practically the reason many people commit mistakes as they go through the process.

If you’re thinking of purchasing a vehicle, here’s what you need to know to avoid the possible blunders of this transaction:

Do Your Own Research

This is the most basic and essential step for every consumer. Whether it’d be a car or a small item, doing proper research could take you a long way. You can’t simply enter a dealership or a car shop without knowing what you need and want. If you do this, you’ll be more confused and scammers may likely take advantage of you. At least show them that you’ve done your homework and you’re knowledgeable in the field so they can’t push you over.

Test Drive the Car

Whether it’s new or pre-owned, test driving the vehicle would allow you to check the overall performance of it. Get behind the wheel and be sure you put the car into a test. Don’t simply drive in a straight, boring route.

Instead, go the same route that you often travel. This would provide you with accurate insight on the car itself. In fact, most used car dealers in Jacksonville give their customers 100% freedom in testing the car for their customers’ own satisfaction.

Don’t Focus on the Price

Money might be everything, but your search must not simply revolve around it. Although car buying is considered as a major investment, looking into the price of the car will never get you anywhere.

Instead of solely concentrating on the tag, you need to pay more attention to checking the functionality and condition of the car. This is especially true if you’re planning to buy a secondhand vehicle. This way, you’re 100% sure that you’re choosing a ride that would match with your lifestyle and would meet what you need.

Look at Financing Terms

Another major mistake you must avoid is failing to review the repayment terms. Don’t get easily swayed by the big and eye-catching tags, which say 0% interest or big discounts. Chances are they are hidden costs, which lie beneath them. Be sure you look into them thoroughly to avoid surprises. Don’t be afraid to ask questions whenever you want to clarify and know something.

Never skip any of these steps to ensure you’re making a smart choice for your ride. If you think you help, don’t hesitate to consult an expert or an auto mechanic you truly trust to assist you throughout the process. After all, this is all about your own money, comfort, and safety.

Save More: How You Can Save Yourself from Hitting Rockbottom

Saving MoneyEveryone needs money; it’s simply not possible for most — if not all — people to live without it. In today’s economy, you can’t have too much of it. If it’s not you, at least you know someone who’s currently struggling to make ends meet.

Whether it’s you, a friend, a member of your family, or someone you know at the office, anyone can benefit from these ideas on how to stay away from hitting rock bottom.

Pay Your Bills Ahead of Time

Whenever you receive your paycheck, set aside the total amount you need to pay your monthly bills. These bills are always present, so you should always be prepared for them. People who make excuses, saying they can’t handle their bills, are probably not thinking about paying their bills in the first place. How can you miss something so regular?

Avoid using the money to buy a new pair of shoes and justifying the purchase by saying you can skip just one payment on a bill. That skip means penalties or an interruption of service, which means you’ll be paying more and dealing with a hassle you don’t need.

Refinance Your Mortgage, if Possible

Still struggling to pay the bills? You can try checking out the mortgage refinance rates in Salt Lake City. Refinancing typically lets you pay a smaller monthly rate, which means you can adjust your budget to pay for more things every month.

Don’t Make Purchases You Don’t Need

Like that new pair of shoes or that new smartphone, there are things that only count as a luxury. If you want something, open a separate bank account for it. Saving for it means you can still keep up with your expenses; all you have to do is wait a little while longer to buy whatever you’re saving for.

Get a New or Additional Job

If you think you are not getting paid what you deserve, check the market for someone with your qualifications. There might be a company looking for someone like you and which can pay you more. You can likewise get an additional means of earning money like babysitting, dog walking, and freelance writing. Use what you earn from your side job to pay for your daily expenses. What you earn from your main job is what goes to the bank.

Live Within Your Means

Don’t buy expensive things you can’t truly afford, don’t dine in fancy restaurants because your friends do — in short, you must earn much more than what you spend.

Saving money is not a New Year’s resolution; it should be a part of your life. Save what you can today and enjoy what you want tomorrow.

To Borrow and Borrow is Such Sweet Sorrow

Loan ApplicationThose who suffer from financial problems often have one thing in common: they borrow money to borrow more.

For example: using a credit card to buy a new flat screen television. While there’s nothing wrong with buying a new entertainment system using your credit card, problems arise when you use the card and can’t pay it off in full each month because you have exceeded your credit limit.

There’s nothing wrong with borrowing money. In fact, smart borrowing can help you save loads on other finances. But if you overdo it, you’ll fall victim to the endless borrowing cycle.

Borrow to Borrow for Lifetime Experiences?

Getting a loan for depreciating assets like cars is not the wisest decision. Apart from increasing your risk for debt, you don’t get much in return for your personal finances. Since most assets depreciate eventually in the future, what about borrowing money for once-in-a-lifetime experiences?

Good experiences (e.g. luxury cruise) may appreciate over time. But if you borrow money, make sure that your good memories appreciate faster than your debt.

Never Borrow More

It doesn’t matter if you’re buying assets, luxury items or experiences on debt. If you can’t pay the down payment or following interest, then don’t borrow. It’s simple: if you can’t afford it, never risk it.

It’s tempting to buy things on credit because you think you can pay for it in the end. That’s not the case for everyone. Your bank account might fall short of the item that you want. Before you buy, think it over twice and ask yourself: can I afford this or not?

Also, if you’ve already borrowed money, don’t borrow more. It’s a financial trap that leads you to more debt.

Borrowing more is never the solution. If you don’t want to be on the receiving end of an unpleasant bill, it’s best to be a smart borrower now than regret later.

Different Types of Taxes Individuals Have to Pay

Paying Taxes in UtahPersonal income tax is one of the most known taxes, but there are many others that you have to pay. In any given financial year, there are different types of tax that you aren’t exempt from paying. Many people do not love paying taxes, but it is for their own benefit. Below is a list of the different taxes you have to pay:

Personal Income Tax

This is the percentage of tax you pay on the income you receive in a year. This is dependent on the gross income you receive, so those receiving higher gross income pay may have to pay more tax. You have to fill in a form every year to pay these taxes. You can ease the personal tax burden by making the most of the following tax credits: saver’s credit, child tax credit, and education credit. Tannerco.com says that hiring licensed accountants in Utah or anywhere in the U.S. can help you with this if you’re still confused.

Property Taxes

This tax is a computation on the value of your property. The tax collected is used to go to local projects and other related concerns, such as road maintenance and sewage treatment. The percentage paid differs from one state to the other, so make sure you know how much you have to pay.

Consumption Taxes

This is a tax that is pinned to the selling price of an item. For each item you buy, a percentage of the selling price is given to the government as tax. The more you buy, the more consumption tax you have to pay. There are some products that are exempted from tax, however, such as groceries and medications. The rate of tax is usually set by state governments. Tax on items is usually collected by the retailer who passes it on to the government.

It is wise to pay your taxes to avoid penalties, such as jail time. In the end, you will be the one benefiting from the taxes by enjoying better services.