Why You Should Decline Mortgage Life Insurance

Many times when you purchase a home and put down less than 20 percent for a down payment, you’ll be required to purchase a mortgage life insurance product. If it is a requirement, there’s little you can do to get around it. It isn’t the end of the world since it does pay off the home mortgage note if you die before payoff. If you have a choice in whether to purchase the product or not, you should decline. In most cases it ends up being an unnecessary expense that decreases in value over the years.

Don’t get mortgage life insurance confused with private mortgage insurance because they are different.  Mortgage life insurance will cover the remainder of your mortgage incase of death before you are paid in full.

Most Policies are Expensive

Mortgage life insurance is expensive. The reason is because you typically get it at the start of your loan. The insurance company is taking a gamble as to whether you will die within the first few years, which leaves them having to pay a large amount of money to clear the note. They also typically cover anyone, regardless of health conditions. In other words, everyone bears the weight of covering those with bad health. Regular life insurance policies can be much more selective on who they cover and the rates they charge each individual.

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Should You Pay Off Your Mortgage Early?

If you have been an experience homeowner for many years and have reached a point that your monthly mortgage is paying off principle in large chunks, building equity to the point that reaching the end of the mortgage is a goal within your horizon, and you have disposable means to pay off your mortgage early, you may be tempted by the prospect to pay off your mortgage early.

It is a temptation much like eating a chocolate chip cookie.  You prepared the ingredients carefully, laid down spoonfuls of dough on the cookie sheet and popped them into the oven.  Twelve minutes later, you pulled perfect cookies from the oven, filling the air with their sweet aroma and you began to eat, bite by bite, savoring chocolate in one of its best preparations.  Each bite is a monthly mortgage payment, but a bigger bite than the obliged mortgage payment will ultimately pay off your mortgage early.

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Tips for Hosting a Wedding at Home

There are those who skip the church or halls in favor of having a more intimate wedding at home. It can typically be easier and more convenient, but a home wedding can cost the same amount if not  more than a location wedding. Don’t underestimate the amount of work it’s going to take, especially if you’re taking it on without the help of a wedding planner. However, with effort and organization, it can still be one of the best experiences of your life. So how do you go about properly hosting a wedding at home?

Find the space

Chances are if you’re hosting a wedding at home, you’re going to have it in the backyard. However, that doesn’t mean you can accommodate hundreds of people. Consider the space, take the measurements, and estimate about how many people you can fit comfortably, especially while they’re seated in chairs for the ceremony as well as for the reception.

Consult with a landscaper

If you’re having the wedding outdoors, a landscaper is going to be one of your biggest assets in helping you plan out all the greenery. You may need to plant flowers ahead of time and figure out what flowers would work best in the space for the type and theme of wedding you want to have. Should your ground be a bit uneven, landscapers can either even out the yard or help you figure out the seating so the chairs won’t be lopsided making it uncomfortable for your guests.

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How to Get a Mortgage With Bad Credit

Obtaining a mortgage with bad credit takes a little bit of planning and work, but the results are getting the home you’ve been waiting and working for. Many people feel like giving up when they get turned down for credit reasons. The fixes aren’t always difficult, but they might take some effort and time. If you want to get a mortgage, it’s worth going the extra mile to get the job done.

Make Credit Repairs

One of the first things you need to do when you have poor credit is to get your credit score up by repairing what you can. You won’t start to see immediate results, but you need to just dive in and start getting it done. First you need to have a copy of your credit report. There are three different reporting agencies. Check through all of the listed creditors and make sure that they are debts that you actually owe. You can dispute any that aren’t valid. Next you’ll need to contact the creditors you can afford to pay off right away. Make payment arrangements with as many as you can to clear off your credit report. It will begin to bring your credit score up and make it easier to get a mortgage.

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Are You Ready for Home Ownership?

Home ownership is the high water mark of the American Dream and usually represents the single deepest investment in its realization.  Are you ready for home ownership?  Unless you have prepared adequately, learning to swim in the deep waters that await might be tricky.  The plunge may satisfy in the short term, but swimming the waters of home ownership is more than staying alive in the water; it is about staying afloat while your swimming strokes are confident and skilled.

As the mortgage crisis of 2008 demonstrated, too many people who were lured to the waters of home ownership by terms of no down payment and low, but variable interest rates, and who, therefore, plunged into deeper waters than they were prepared to handle.  They had no stamina.  They were unprepared.  They were not ready for home ownership.  When the interest rates started to rise, when the terms of low interest rate matured, they could no longer afford the payment.  They faltered, had no support of a shallow bottom of the pool to rest on, and began to drown.  Many did.

You must know how to swim in the deep water of home ownership.  Here are some key, preparative measures allow yourself to be ready for home ownership:

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Ways to Reduce Household Waste

 Reduce Household Waste

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Estimates from the National Resources Defense Council state that an astounding 40 percent of food in the United State goes to waste. This translates to a jaw dropping $165 billion a year worth of resources which are simply thrown away. Even a 15 percent reduction in this waste would mean 25 million more Americans could be fed.

There is waste all around.  Look at your own households behaviors.  How many times do you fix too much food for dinner and then days later you are throwing it out of the refrigerator because it went uneaten?  It happens to my family all of the time.

Clearly, it does not take a huge effort to begin applying waste reduction tactics. There are small steps which on their own can go a long way to reduce household waste.

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Understanding a Short Sale vs Foreclosure

The latest San Francisco real estate trends and statistics indicate that the total amount of foreclosures and short sales in the city have remained fairly constant over the past year. That doesn’t mean there are not a lot of home owners out there who are underwater and simply cannot make up their mind about what to do. Should I opt for a foreclosure on my property? Or would I be better off going with a short sale?

This article helps clear the air on both these choices so that you can make the most informed decision possible.

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Should I Wait for Home Prices to Fall?

Ever since the real estate bubble burst a few years ago, the market has been on shaky ground. Buyers have been wary to place any offers and sellers are finding it hard to get the price they want. However, this year has proven to be different as it appears as though the market is headed for a recovery. We are starting to see home prices on the rise while the average days on the market have decreased. It shows that buyers are willing to pay the list price of the home if they find it worth their while.

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Buying a Home – What is Right For You?

Buying a home is a life-changing decision and possibly the biggest money transaction you make in your life. The least you can do is be mentally present when the deal is being made rather than imagining yourself in every room you walk through. There are a number of considerations you have to make when deciding whether a home is the right one for you. Just because it has a terrace or is airy does not make it the best option.

You have to avoid the pitfalls of making a financial decision when feeling overly emotional; and for that, you need to evaluate the homes you inspect thoroughly. Make a checklist that consists of everything you are looking for in a house.  Then you can go over each house you visit from top to bottom making sure it meets your needs.


Can you afford to buy the home you like? The cost of a house isn’t limited to just the price you have to pay for it, but also extends to items like closing costs and any maintenance. In all likelihood, it could take years to pay off the debt you incur when buying a home. You need to be absolutely certain you can bear the extra financial burden. As a general rule of thumb you should not be spending more than a third of your income towards servicing your loan. Only if you can afford it should you even consider negotiating with the seller.


Regardless of how impressive the interior design and architecture of a home are, its location should be just as important. Avoid neighborhoods that are known to be high crime areas. Research the location before you check out the home. This way, you’ll be less disappointed in the future.


The ideal home size for you depends on how many people are going to live there. For a single person, a condo or a studio apartment will suffice. Larger condos can accommodate a family of three or four quite easily. However, if you have more than four people, you are better off searching for townhouses or single-family homes. Along with the number of rooms, also check if there are enough bathrooms.  You would hate to have to share a single bathroom with 4 other members of your family.  Finally, make sure there is enough storage space.


Does the home require any renovation or repairs? The costs you bear when buying a home can increase quickly if you have to pay for damage restoration as soon as you move in. Before ever closing on a house you should have a thorough inspection completed. From the electrical wiring and plumbing to the foundation and roof, you need to get each and every thing checked. A home in poor condition is likely to demand constant repairs and maintenance, putting a further dent on your pocket.


On average, people change homes every seven years. Yet, you could have to relocate earlier than that for any number of reasons. If that is ever the case, will you be able to find a buyer who is willing to pay the asking price for your home? It all depends on how saleable your home is. The real estate market is slowly improving however it’s still not in the best shape. It could be a few weeks (or months) before you finally find a buyer.  The ‘right’ home for you might not be the ‘right’ choice for others.

Final Thoughts

Assess any home you are interested in against these factors. They will help you decide whether or not that home is the right one for you. Putting in a little effort can save you a lot of trouble and money in the long run. Plus, it makes your investment worthwhile.

9 Tips to Help Women Home Buyers Get Mortgage Approval

Single women make up 21 percent of all home buyers. Don’t let anyone tell you just because you’re a single woman that you should hold off on having a house until you have a partner at your side. If you’re ready to take the next major step in your life and buy your first home there’s no reason you shouldn’t take the leap and go for it even with a few hurdles to get over. Before you start the process, here are nine tips to help women home buyers with the mortgage approval process.

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