Maria Salzillo - Mrs Realtor Agent, SRES, ABR, CNS, ASP, Cartus Relo


Image by Nattanan Kanchanaprat from Pixabay

Owning a home can be an amazing experience. But interest from your mortgage accumulates over time, leaving you to seemingly pay an arm and a leg to finance your home. But while you may think that paying off your mortgage early is a great idea, that isn’t always the case.

You May Have Other Debt

Paying off your mortgage early can save you on interest costs, but you more than likely have other debt to deal with. If you have other debts — like car loans, student loans or credit card debt — then these should be paid off first. Try to focus on your debts with higher interest rates; these tend to be associated with credit cards. After you’ve paid those debts off, then moving on to pay off your mortgage could be a good choice.

You Don’t Want to Go Broke

Paying off your mortgage may sound great and all, but you must consider all of your expenses, including possible emergencies. Saving on interest is very tempting, but it shouldn’t come at the expense of your emergency fund. You never know when something serious will happen, so do your best to set aside some cash. If you have hefty savings and all of your expenses are accounted for every month, then you can move on to paying off your mortgage early.

Consider Your Future

Many people try to pay as much as they can towards their mortgage, only to find out that they used up all of their money. While they have some big expenses and big life changes that cost money, now they have to save up in order to cover those costs. That being said, it’s best to think about your future before paying more towards your mortgage. Are you planning on having kids? Thinking of going back to school? With how frequent life changes, you never know when you could use money down the road. While it might seem like a great plan to throw money at your mortgage payment, think about your life goals and how your finances fit in that equation.

It Can Be Beneficial

Although we’ve made some points above that suggest that you shouldn’t pay off your mortgage early, it can still be very beneficial to do so. Let’s say your household is doing very well with finances and money is pouring in quickly. If your other debts and finances are taken care of, then paying off your mortgage early can help you save on interest; the larger amount you pay, the more you’ll save on interest. However, this can be a tough choice. Be sure to consider the points mentioned above before paying this loan off early.


If you’re hoping to buy a house in the near future, you’ll want to focus on saving for a down payment.

Down payments are a way to let a lender know that you are a low-risk investment, and a way to save money on interest over the term of your loan.

If you have your other finances in order--a good credit score and stable income--there’s a good chance that making a 20% or more down payment will land you a low interest rate that can save you thousands while you pay off your loan.

How large should my down payment be?

The larger the down payment you can afford, the more money you’ll likely save in the long run. While there are ways to get a loan with no or very small down payments, these aren’t always ideal.

First, if you put less than 20% down on your home loan, you’ll be required to pay private mortgage insurance, or PMI. These are monthly payments that you make in addition to the interest that is accrued on your loan.

So, if you don’t put any money down on your home, you’ll accrue more interest over your term length and you’ll pay PMI on top of that.

What affects your minimum down payment amount?

Lenders take a number of factors into consideration when determining your risk. If you’re eligible for a first-time home owners loan, a veteran’s loan, or a USDA loan, your loan can be guaranteed by the government. This means you can likely pay a lower down payment while still receiving a reasonable interest rate.

When applying for a mortgage, be sure to reach out to multiple lenders and shop around for the rates that work for you. Many lenders use slightly different criteria to determine your eligibility to pay a lower down payment.

Other things that affect your minimum down payment include:

  • Credit score

  • Location of the home you want to buy

  • Value of the mortgage

Saving for a down payment

You’ll get the most value out of your mortgage if you put more money down. However, if you’re currently living in a high-rent area, it could mean that it’s in your best interest to get out of your apartment and start building equity in the form of homeownership.

If you want to buy a home within the next year or two, there are a few ways you can help increase your savings.

First, determine how much you need to save. Depending on your housing needs and the current market, everyone will have different requirements. Do some home shopping in your area online and look for homes that are within your spending limits. Remember that you shouldn’t spend more than 30% of your monthly income on housing (mortgage, property taxes, etc.)

Next, find out what a 20% down payment on that home would be, adjusting for inflation.

Once you have the amount you need to save, remember to leave yourself enough of an emergency fund in your savings account to last you a month or two.


Photo by Peter Boccia on Unsplash

Tired of the same old hardwood floors and vinyl siding? So are the designers of America's building materials. New, improved materials are becoming readily available every day. They're more sustainable and they last longer than materials of old. Not surprisingly, they look nice, too. Three of the best we've found so far include roofing made from porcelain tiles, cork flooring that comes on a roll, and a new style of brick that looks anything but. 

Perennial Roofing

What's resistant to frost and fire and withstands wind gusts of up to 110 mph? If you choose wisely, it could be your new roof. One of the newest building materials on the market is Perennial Porcelain Roofing by Daltile, made from the same type of porcelain that's been protecting kitchen floors for decades.  Perennial roofing has a lot going for it, including:

  • It's manufactured in the USA.
  • It's impervious to water.
  • It's surprisingly lightweight.
  • It features high resistance to breakage.
  • It can last up to 75 years. 
  • When you opt for a porcelain-tile roof, it may very well be the last one you ever need. 

    Corkoleum

    Is it cork? Is it linoleum? When you install new Corkoleum flooring, you'll get the best of both materials. Corkoleum comes on a roll, just like linoleum, but it looks like cork. Various textures are available, and you can have your Corkoleum flooring dyed to fit any decor. Corkoleum has great advantages over other forms of flooring, such as:

  • Corkoleum is soft to walk on and superior at muffling noise. 
  • It's highly sustainable, making it an ecological choice for green construction. 
  • It's easily installed and maintained. 
  • When coated with a waterproof finish, Corkoleum becomes just as durable as linoleum. 
  • If you're looking for something new and comfortable in residential or commercial flooring, consider the many advantages of Corkoleum. 

    Old Brick House 

    Old Brick House is a new style of brick that's been specially manufactured and tumbled to look like the hand-hewn bricks our ancestors once used. Created by Pine Hall Brick, Old Brick House features “intentional imperfections” and color variations to give every home a unique, artisan appeal. There are currently four styles of Old Brick House and each is named after -- you guessed it -- an old brick house:

  • Kennon House
  • Barker House
  • Tufts House
  • Weeks House
  • Each house is a real, colonial structure that still stands in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Connecticut and Virginia today. And now your new home can mimic that same, heirloom appeal when you build it using a style of Old Brick House. 

    If you're in the market for a new construction that you can design from the floor joists up, you're going to love all the modern options in innovative building materials available. Tomorrow's building materials are out there right now, just waiting to change the way you think about home design. 


    This Condo in Peabody, MA recently sold for $365,000. This Garden,Mid-Rise style home was sold by Maria Salzillo - J. Barrett & Company.


    8 Crowninshield St, Peabody, MA 01960

    Condo

    $354,900
    Price
    $365,000
    Sale Price

    4
    Rooms
    2
    Beds
    2
    Baths
    Meticulously Maintained, Penthouse Unit at Peabody Crossing! Freshly painted spacious 2 bedroom 2 bath unit offers hardwood flooring throughout! Open concept living at its finest featuring a gracious living room w/gas fireplace offering lots of natural sunlight through the large windows; a lar dining area, a gourmet granite kitchen w/ stainless steel appliances & a large breakfast bar area; a spectacular master suite w/an extra large bedroom, walk in closet & a spa like bathroom w/double vanity sink, oversized jacuzzi tub & walk in shower; a generous sized 2nd bedroom w/large closet; another full bath; in unit laundry & entry closet complete the unit. Crown molding and closets have California closet interiors. Heated garage parking, storage, community rooms, exercise rooms, beautifully maintained grounds, BBQ area & picnic tables, large pond w/fountain, large grass area in rear of bldg 10. Close to all major routes, malls and Historic Downtown Peabody-The Perfect Place to Call Home!

    Similar Properties



    Have you heard a lot about HUD homes, but aren’t sure if you should buy one or what the process entails?  HUD stands for The Department Of Housing And Urban Development. The FHA (Federal Housing Administration) is a part of HUD. The FHA is where federal mortgage insurance comes from. If a home is foreclosed on and insured by the FHA, the lender has a right to file a claim for the balance due on the mortgage. The FHA will pay this claim, and then transfer the ownership of the property to the HUD who will sell the home.


    Will A HUD Home Provide A Price Break? 


    The answer to this question is not necessarily. A HUD home is appraised just like any other home for sale. The price is based on the fair market value of the home. The prices may be adjusted according to any repairs that need to be made to the home. It’s a good idea to have your realtor look into comparable prices for HUD homes, as these properties aren’t guaranteed to be a deal.


    Know that HUD homes are sold as-is. There isn’t much negotiating like that of a typical home purchase. As the new owner, you’ll be responsible for all of the repairs. It’s a good idea to invest in a home inspection before you buy a HUD home for this reason. You’ll have a better understanding of what you’re getting into with this type of home purchase. 


    How Do You Begin The Search For A HUD Home?


    Housing and Urban Development homes are listed by state on the department’s website. This is a good place to start your search. The site also lists brokers who are approved by the HUD. You can then contact local brokers to show you the HUD properties that you’re interested in.


    The Process Of Making An Offer


    Buying a HUD property can be very different than buying any other type of home in that the offer process is a bit different. These properties are sold through bids. You must hire a licensed real estate agent to assist you in this process, you can’t just put a bid in on your own. You’ll need to be sure that your offer is placed during the designated offer period. Either the highest bid is accepted or the bid that came in first in order will be taken. Generally, the HUD wants to take the offer that will get them the most profit.


    Careful With Financing


    The HUD does not finance homes. You’ll need to apply for a mortgage just as you would in buying any other home. Before you can even make an offer on a home you must have approved financing. If for some reason you get through the process of having your offer accepted on the home and the financing falls through, there’s a chance that you could lose your earnest money deposit.     

         





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