Saving enough for a down payment on a home is as possible as you make it. It will take a great deal of penny pinching and determination, but with the steps listed below from CNNMoney, you can make it. Read more
A Caution to home buyers from CNNMoney:
Rising housing costs are putting a major squeeze on Americans.
Nearly 39 million households can’t afford their housing, according to the annual State of the Nation’s Housing Report from Harvard’s Joint Center for Housing Studies.
Experts generally advise budgeting about 30% of monthly income for rent or mortgage costs. But millions of Americans are far exceeding that guideline.
One-third of households in 2015 were ‘cost burdened,’ meaning they spend 30% or more of their incomes to cover housing costs. Of that group, nearly 19 million are paying more than 50% of their income to cover their housing needs.
When so much of your paycheck is going toward keeping a roof over your head, it forces sacrifices in other budget areas, including food, health care and transportation.
LDSAgents.com note—What this article does not say is that many people finance homes using income generated by both partners working. Not only does this put stress on a family, but if one wage earner suddenly cannot work for some reason, finances can get stretched very quickly. We advise our readers to consider the advice of LDS leaders and be watchful about taking on too much debt.
Here are some tips from tax advisers to help maximize home-related deductions. Be sure to consult a tax expert for specifics on your home and mortgage. Read more
If you find a house that seems like it has possibilities, do your own initial home inspection, inside and out, before making an offer. Your intention now is to be alert for obvious deficiencies. Assuming you’re not looking for a fixer-upper, too many of these may be a reason to eliminate this house from further consideration.
Note: This is not meant to replace a professional home inspection. Once you make an offer on a house, you’ll want a licensed home inspector to go over it with a magnifying glass.
Here are some things to look for in your initial inspection:
Cracks inside the walls and floors of your home can allow radioactive radon gas to creep inside and affect your air quality and health.
Radon – an odorless, colorless, naturally occurring radioactive gas – is inhaled into the lungs, where it can damage the DNA, potentially increasing cancer risk, says Douglas Arenberg, MD, associate professor of medicine in the pulmonary and critical care department at the University of Michigan Health System.
Exposure to radon gas, which can seep through cracks in the walls and floors of your home, increases the risk of developing lung cancer.
No one wants to think about being in a situation where their home is destroyed, but being prepared is important. Would you be able to give the insurance company a list of items you have in your home if something happened tomorrow? Chances are you would forget many items if you were listing them from memory.