Posts tagged: mortgages

Knowing Your Retirement Options: Ways to Get a Little Extra Cash

retirement cashGenerally speaking, the kind of people who focus on retirement tend to be those who are fast approaching retirement age. But this doesn’t have to be the case! In fact, more people really should start thinking about their retirement sooner rather than later. You’re not going to be able to work forever, and when the day comes that you deserve to kick back and relax, breaking ties with the nine to five working world, you’re going to want to be able to live as comfortable a lifestyle as possible. This can only be made possible by having sufficient finances. Now, a retirement plan will be able to put all of this in place for you. But it’s always good to have a few ideas stored away and a few tricks up your sleeve just in case you find yourself in need of a little extra cash when retirement does come around. Here are just a few to keep tucked away in your mind.

Reverse Mortgages

By the time you’re looking at retirement, you may think that mortgages are a thing of the past. Hopefully, you will have already paid yours off. However, it’s always good to be aware that if you are looking for extra cash to make your retirement more comfortable, you can always take some equity back out of your property without having to sell up. This is where a reverse mortgage can come into play. In order to know exactly how much you can gain from a reverse mortgage, you will have to have a fair amount of personal information. This may include your property’s value, it’s age, and any repairs that it may need to be carried out. Your own age at the time of taking out the reverse mortgage would also be taken into account. However, for a more general idea of the money you could hope for, you can always use reverse mortgage calculator aarp.

Savings Accounts

We’ve all been taught since we were little that we should save a little cash for a rainy day. Well, believe it or not, there are likely to be more and more rainy days the longer you’ve been out of work. Many people find themselves becoming increasingly bored and wanting to treat themselves to something a little special to put a smile back on their faces. Savings accounts can provide these little extra boosts for occasional pick me ups. So open an account as soon as possible. Deposit money in it regularly. This can be a relatively small amount. Something that you won’t notice missing. The cash that you’d usually fritter away on bits and bobs that you really don’t need. However, these small amounts really will mount up over time, and way down the line, when you finally dip into the cash, you’ll really thank yourself for it.

These are just a couple of ways that you can make yourself a little comfier and more content in retirement when the time does roll around. While retirement may not be top of your priorities right now, it could take up a large part of your life, so keep it in the back of your mind at all times.

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Don’t Let Your Home Be The Cause Of Financial Problems

home money issueWhile home ownership is the goal that many people share in life, very few homeowners actually consider the negatives of home ownership. That is until they are a problem for them. Although for the most part, home ownership is a fantastic financial choice, there are also times when owning a home can have a detrimental impact on your financial health. However, this is usually when you don’t take the necessary steps to protect yourself and your home from financial issues. To learn more about protecting yourself from financial problems that could be caused by your home, read on.

Protect your property from the unexpected

There are times in life when we choose to skip paying certain bills because we see them as being necessary. Whatever you do, don’t make property insurance ones of them. The fact is that anything could happen at any time, which is why taking out homeowners insurance from a reputable company like Trusted Choice is so important. Whether a storm hits and destroys your home, a house fire ruins your property, or a break-in leaves your home in tatters, it is vital that you have adequate protection in place. Every home needs insurance, because the fact is, you never know what might happen, and it is always best to be protected.

Make maintenance a priority

A common mistake that far too many homeowners make, which turns their properties into money pits, is not taking maintenance seriously. If you take the time look after your home and deal with any issues that occur as and when they do, your home should remain in better shape. However, if you leave these issues to worsen over time and don’t deal with them, then you may end up with a home that is falling apart and will cost a lot of money to put back together again. If you aren’t big on household DIY, don’t let that put you off of keeping up with your home’s maintenance, call out a contractor instead. Never put off with household problems as they will only end up costing you more to fix.

Invest for the future

If you want to ensure that should you want to sell your home in the future, you are able to do so easily, and for a good price, it is important to keep your property up to date. This means being willing to invest in new technologies as and when they are available, such as solar power, for instance. These kinds of investments will come at a cost, but the fact is that by choosing to invest in them, you can give yourself and your future the financial security needed. The more up to date a property is, the more easily it should sell.

There you have it, a guide to everything that you should know about ensuring that your home is not the cause of financial problems. Take note of the tips above, and you can make sure that home ownership does not leave you in a financial hole.

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Could Property Investment Work For You?

property businessEveryone will choose to make their investments in different ways. Some will prefer to see their money in the bank; others will like to know that it’s working away in stocks and bonds. But sometimes, you don’t always want to put your money into financial plans at all. Because banking products aren’t the only things that can create a profit for you. Investing in property is just one way that you can put your money into something and often change your financial situation for the better. But how do you know that property investment is the right avenue for you? If you are interested in making your money work for you with a lot of potential in terms of the return, then here’s how to see the best successes.

Consider Your Budget

The first thing you’re always going to want to do when you try to work out if property is for you, is to consider your budget. Because to invest in property, you need a substantial budget. The down payment required to make a purchase in the first place can be extensive. If you already own your own home and you’re looking at this investment as being your second property purchase, you may even need a hefty chunk. So your first determining factor will be whether you have 20% of a property value to put down as a minimum.

Get To Know The Market

But you should also know a little bit about the property market too. You don’t have to be an industry expert, but don’t think you can just dive on in and buy blind either. If you want to ensure that your investment is going to pay off and be worthwhile, you need to know the market. Understand the market conditions and how well properties are doing; it will help you to determine if you feel comfortable buying at this time or not.

See What’s Available

If you are happy with the current market conditions, then you should take a look at what properties are currently on offer. Whether you find a realtor to discuss solid options or just browse from a far, you’ll want to see what you can get for your budget. Because you may decide to bide your time – especially if there’s nothing currently on the market that would be a viable investment for you.

Understand The Return

Whether you do find a property that you’re happy with or not, you’re going to want to ensure that you understand the return you’re likely to get. By this, you need to understand how inflation will affect your investment and consider the cost of maintenance over time to work out whether property is a viable option for you.

Start Off Small

If at this point you do decide that property is where you want to invest, then you need to start off small. Don’t dive in too deep and bite off more than you can chew. Because there are a lot of hidden costs with properties, and you need to make sure your money will work hard and not get zapped up with an expensive purchase.

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What to do With Inherited Real Estate

real estate investmentsAs awful as it is to think about our loved ones passing away, unfortunately, death is the only thing guaranteed about life, aside from perhaps taxes as the saying goes. Most of us dream of having something to leave our children when we go, property, money or a family business being the ultimate goals. Some of us are even lucky enough to be able to pass things on before we die. Giving us the chance to see the people that we love benefit from our life’s work. Your parents and family are no different. Leaving you a property is something that will have pleased them, so it’s certainly nothing to feel guilty about.

When you inherit property, there can be a period of adjustment. Whether your loss has been expected or come as a complete surprise, it can be a lot to take in. In these situations, it’s best to let yourself grieve and take your time to adjust before rushing into a decision on what to do with your new property. An instinctive reaction can be to either move straight in or not want it at all and offer your inheritance to someone else. Both of these things could prove to be a mistake. So, take your time and give these options some consideration.

Rent it Out

Renting the house out is an interesting option, with both pros and cons. If you choose to rent your house to someone else, you get a steady monthly income from it. Sometimes, there’ll be very little you’ll need to do for this money. Then, other months absolutely everything will go wrong, and you’ll need to work ridiculously hard as a landlord. You will also be subject to landlord’s insurance and taxes as well as having to ensure that your property meets all health and safety standards and completely adheres to the law.

But, it does keep your options open. When your tenants move out, you can rethink, sell, move in or search for a new tenant.

Finding tenants is much easier than it used to be now so much business is done online, and properties rarely sit empty for long. Keeping your property in good condition and appealing to tenants is also easier than ever. You don’t even need to do any of the work. Learn more about these options before making your decision.

Live in it

Whether or not you chose to live in the house can depend on a variety of circumstances. You need to consider your current housing situation. If you already own your own home and feel happy and comfortable where you are, you may not want to move. It will also depend on your past experiences in the house and with its previous owners. If it’s the happy home of your childhood, you could either love going back or feel a bit odd, like you’ve been out and made your own life only to find yourself taking a step backwards.

If you don’t own a home, work locally and still have relationships with people in the area, moving into your new property could be the perfect answer. You won’t have to worry about selling, finding tenants or the pressures of being a landlord.

The value of the home should be another consideration. Is it worth selling? Or could you make more in the long term by renting it out? If you already own a house, could selling or renting that out instead be more cost-effective?

Of course, if you do decide to live in it, for now, you’ll still be able to sell at any point in the future should you change your mind. However, it is worth bearing capital gains tax in mind. If you inherit a house and choose to sell, you get a bit of a tax break. Say the house was bought for $150000 and is now worth $300000, only the difference will be subject to capital gains tax. Once you’ve lived in the house for two years, this tax break starts to decrease.

Sell it On

Selling the property on is a popular choice. If you need money quickly, because your current financial situation isn’t great, then this can be the best option. You save money on capital gains tax; you don’t have the constant responsibility of being a landlord or the hassle of moving to a new house yourself and you get a large cash injection. If you currently rent but have significant debts, selling to enable you to pay things off could be a good idea too, as it will allow you to improve your credit score before you get on the property ladder. You could even have plenty left for a good deposit.

However, selling has associated costs of its own. You’ll need to make sure the house is in sellable condition, pay to get it valued and pay estate agents fees. If it’s on the market for a long time, these fees increase, and you have to wait for your payout.

It’s also the only option on this list that’s final. Once the house is sold, that’s it. There’s no changing your mind once the sale has been made.

Use it as a Business Premises

Another option is to use the property in another way. If it’s in a great location, you could convert it into a business. Perhaps a shop or restaurant. If you work from home and need some more space, it could give you an ideal solution. These options very much depend on location and how much the conversion would cost.

Another alternative use is hiring it out as a holiday property. If it’s in a great location that would attract tourists or people on business trips, list in on Airbnb and make some money off it. Then, there’s nothing to stop you keeping it as a second home when you need a break yourself.

When deciding what to do with your inherited property, there is a lot to consider. Your own living situation, your income, cash flow and debt levels, your long-term plans and the home’s condition and location for a start. So, wait if you can, let yourself grieve and then take you time to reach the right decision.

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Are House Prices Likely To Go Down?

balance house pricesWhenever you hear people talk about the housing market it’s all doom and gloom. Prices have been rising consistently for years and there’s a serious fear that a whole generation of young people isn’t ever going to be able to afford a house. Last year was set to be a positive one for housing and an increase in house building was predicted, but the reality is, that didn’t happen. Things did improve a little but not as much as we hoped they would. So, it doesn’t look good at the moment and it feels like it’s never going to get better, but is that really true? Nobody knows for sure but these are some of the major predictions from experts.

Prices Will Rise, But Not As Much

This is good news and bad news. Prices rose by a significant amount every month last year, especially in the latter half of the year. Some people predict that trend will continue, but the increases will slow right down. There are a couple of reasons for this prediction. Firstly, unemployment is going down and people are able to afford houses more easily. Demand is stronger and there will be a slight increase in the number of people that are actually buying houses.

Another factor to consider is the number of people opting for alternative housing situations. More people are opting for prefabricated mobile homes, sometimes called mobile homes. These are far cheaper because the components are made separately, shipped over, and constructed on site. The impact of this is minimal but people choosing to go for alternative housing is going to alleviate some of the strain in terms of housing shortage. It also means that houses can be built far more quickly.

On the other hand, real estate as an investment is on the rise so if all of the houses are being bought up by investors, prices could carry on increasing.

This prediction is good news overall because what they’re essentially saying is that, while there won’t be an immediate turnaround in house prices, we’re coming toward the top of the peak and will soon start to see a downturn in prices.

Affordability Will Go Down

Wages are forecasted to grow in some of the larger cities in America which you would think is good news for buying houses, unfortunately it’s not. The amount of homes that are affordable to somebody on a medium income isn’t growing. That means they are unable to access the cities where wages are growing in the first place, so they can’t get the higher wages they need to buy a house. This disparity is one of the biggest problems in the housing market at the moment. Even if house building does increase this year, they aren’t likely to build the affordable housing that is needed to redress that imbalance.

Credit Availability Could Improve

After the crash of 2008, the availability of credit was regulated more strictly in order to avoid the same thing again. However, the new Trump administration has floated plans to roll back a lot of that regulation so banks will be more free to lend money again. It could go one of two ways; either they’ll start lending more freely and people might be able to afford to buy a house, or they may carry on operating the way that they are at the moment.

There’s no telling exactly what will happen with the housing market but these are three of the best theories so far.

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