Using the FHA 203k Home Renovation Loan, this buyer in North Jackson, Ohio was able to completely renovate the kitchen and other rooms in the home, as well as immediately build over $30,000 in home equity.

 

 

*Not intended as real estate, accounting or investment advice. Contact your financial representative for more information.

You’ve been looking at homes for months…cape cods, ranches, two stories, bi-levels, so many options. You’ve managed to find something in each house that you just haven’t likes, but you’re also quickly learning what things you do like. At this point, you almost wish you could just build your dream home yourself. There’s so much land for sale in your area. In fact, one of the plots even happens to be within walking distance of your favorite park. I know Sparky would enjoy that.

So you think to yourselves, “But is building a home really for us?” “It seems like a lot of work.” “Can we afford it?” “How do we feel about having two monthly payments? One for the land and the other for the house?” “It all just seems a little out of our league.”

But then you stumble upon the USDA New Construction Loan on the AmeriFirst website and everything becomes a lot more simplistic. A one-time close loan with a down payment as low as 0% Convert to a 30-year traditional mortgage once the work is complete? Check and check.

“Ok we’re sold.” “But what’s the next step?” After you have a pre-approval strategy meeting and you have the land picked out, it’s time to work with a builder and start designing your dream home. With this loan, there is only one closing meeting, so you are able to close on the land and the construction in the same loan, at the same time. This eliminates worries of another loan qualification and eliminates concerns over a new appraisal or dual fees associated with a second loan.

Construction can begin as soon as the loan closes. You have 9 months to finish construction of your home, and then a lifetime to enjoy it! Sound too good to be true? Learn about building your family’s dream home today with the USDA New Construction Loan and AmeriFirst Home Mortgage! Ask us how!

*Not intended as real estate, accounting or investment advice. Contact your financial representative for more information.

Most people see fixer-upper homes as money pits. And most people, and lenders for that matter, do not fully understand how to manage the fixer upper process. Yet, when looking at the real estate market as a whole, there are exponentially more homes that need work than homes that don’t. And in reality, many of these homes can be blank canvases for you to build and/or renovate your dream house. And renovation loans like the FHA 203k loan, allow you to build the cost of renovation into the loan. Next to the mortgage payment by itself, a homes carrying costs (also know as maintenance and utilities), is the second largest financial component of homeownership. Learn how to manage the fixer upper process more efficiently… Ask us how

*Not intended as real estate, accounting or investment advice. Contact your financial representative for more information.

Interfamily transfers permit some unique rules to be considered when buying a home. We encourage mortgage planning to implement these strategies. A gift of equity can be used a few ways…and when done right, can drastically limit the use of actual money needed to buy a home. An interfamily transfer – also known as a non-armslength transaction – can be used three ways in any combination:

First, for down payment; Second, to cover closing costs for the loan; Third, to actually pay off debt. In many cases, these are great when estate planning is used in combination when transferring real estate. Imagine buying Grandma’s house, paying off your consumer debt, renovating the home, and doing so with almost no money out of pocket. It is certainly a technical transaction…and yet it’s done quite often. Do you qualify for a gift of equity? Maybe so…ask us how

*Not intended as real estate, accounting or investment advice. Contact your financial representative for more information.

Many loan programs require property taxes and home insurance to be paid as part of the mortgage payment… referred to as an escrow account. In some cases, folks would rather keep that money in their own accounts and earn interest on it. And yet the amount of money, relatively speaking, is so small that considering that thought is financially insignificant. However, with certain loan options, contributing with a 20% down payment gives you the option to not have an escrow account. See if this is an option that makes sense… Ask us how!

*Not intended as real estate, accounting or investment advice. Contact your financial representative for more information.

As long as the source of the funds is documented, most mortgage loans allow monetary gifts to be used toward cash to close. In fact, according to a housing trends report in 2017, 20% of buyers used a gift or loan from family or friends. Certainly not an uncommon thing to do. There are also other sources that can offer financial aid. Non-profits, company-sponsored home buying programs, just to name a few. Buying a home the right way requires some forethought… what’s referred to as mortgage planning. Plan for the future… We can help…show you the money!…to buy a house.

*Not intended as real estate, accounting or investment advice. Contact your financial representative for more information.

Some people prefer to rent a property as a means to avoid certain costs like property taxes. Usually these expenses are realized when owning real estate. In a sense, this is true. You will not pay directly for property taxes, nor are you personally obligated to do so. However, your landlord (the owner of the property) is obligated to do so. And more often than not, the cost is built into your monthly rent payment. Rent payments are not usually itemized… Regardless, renting something costs money. And in most cases, the rental income is sufficient to subsidize owning the property. This is why the cost to rent versus the cost to buy is more similar than people realize. And if you want to buy the property, you can rent to own it as well… Housing, and real estate in general, is diverse. Learn about your options…we can help. Ask us how.

*Not intended as real estate, accounting or investment advice. Contact your financial representative for more information.

Applying for a mortgage and buying a house are major financial decisions that affect your bottom line for years to come. It’s important to understand how much “HOUSE” you can afford. And the mortgage payment by itself is just one factor to consider. This is where a lender helps make sure you’re able to pay back your home loan in full along with additional details. It’s up to you to determine your monthly payment and how it will impact your financial goals, such as saving for your child’s college education or even your own retirement. However, insurance needs, maintenance costs and utilities are all factors you need to consider and acknowledge when determining how a monthly payment fits into your finances. Being honest about your finances and financial outlook for calculating the monthly payment you can comfortably afford helps you save you money and stress in the long run. Affording loan payments is one thing…buying a house the right way is another. We’re here to help. Ask us how.

*Not intended as real estate, accounting or investment advice. Contact your financial representative for more information.

Matt HeikkinenHave you heard the news? AmeriFirst Home Mortgage has welcomed a new member to the team! Matt Heikkinen, a proud Mahoning Valley native, is the new Business Development Manager for AmeriFirst’s Poland, Ohio branch. His portfolio is well diversified and includes being a realtor, entrepreneur and real estate instructor. Now, he’s ready to embrace a new challenge. So, what is he all about? Here are five things you need to know about Matt Heikkinen: Continue reading

It is true, getting pre-approved for a home loan is an important achievement that brings you a step closer to landing your dream home. But, you still have some work to do before getting the keys. Between pre-approval and closing, it’s vital to make few to no changes in your financial situation. And as life happens, share details with your mortgage professional. Yes, believe it or not, changing jobs and buying a boat could affect your loan approval. Please remember, buying a home (or refinancing your current home for that matter) is a process. And final loan approval comes just days in advance of your target closing date. So… like with any “PROCESS,” changing things along the way will likely have some impact on when you close. Making smart decisions promotes efficiency during the mortgage loan process. Get educated about the home buying process. We can help… Ask us how.

*Not all borrowers will qualify.