Closing costs are usually an unavoidable part of buying a home. While there are ways to reduce some closing costs and fees, they are an expense you will likely have to consider when it comes time to save for a home.
On average, buyers can expect to pay between 2 and 5 percent of the purchase price in closing costs and fees.
In this article, weíre going to break down those costs and talk about some ways to plan for, or limit, the fees associated with closing on a home.
Most closing costs in a real estate transaction are paid for by the buyer. When getting approved for a mortgage, your lender is required to provide you with an estimate of the closing costs. This is called a ďClosing Disclosure statementĒ which overviews the details of your loan.
Different lenders will charge varying amounts in fees. Some are even willing to waive certain fees. But, weíll discuss that later.
For now, letís focus on the closing costs buyers typically have to pay:
Attorney fees - a flat-fee or hourly rate depending on the attorney
Origination fees - an upfront fee charged by the lender for processing your mortgage application
Prepaid interest or discount points - a payment for the interest that will accrue on your mortgage from the time you close until your first mortgage payment is due
Home inspection fee - the fee that a professional home inspector charges to inspect a home
Escrow deposits - Usually split with the seller, this is the fee charged by an escrow agent
Recording fees - fees for legally recording the new deed and mortgage
Underwriting fees - fees paid to the lender for researching your mortgage case and determining whether or not to approve your application
These are just some of the many fees that can be due upon closing on a home. Depending on where you live, which lender you choose, and the type of mortgage you secure, your closing costs will vary, so itís a good idea to shop around for a lender and mortgage type with reasonable closing costs.
Some lenders offer no-cost, or low-cost mortgages. However, these savings often come with a higher interest rate which, over the lifespan of your loan, can cost you more in the long run.
You should also be aware of the different loan types that you may be eligible for. FHA loans, USDA loans, and VA loans are all designed for buyers hoping to make lower down payments on their home.
Each loan type provides different amounts due at closing. Fortunately, your mortgage lender will be able to give you an estimate of costs for each loan type.
Want to get an estimate of the closing costs youíll have to pay when you buy a home? You can use this online calculator to see an average.
You likely aspire to sell your house as quickly as possible. However, you may not need to set a deadline for selling your residence to achieve your desired result. In fact, there are lots of things you can do to speed up the home selling journey, including:
1. Boost Your House's Curb Appeal
A home that boasts amazing curb appeal may draw buyers' attention as soon as it becomes available. Lucky for you, it may be easy to bolster your house's curb appeal in no time at all.
To improve your home's curb appeal, you may want to complete assorted home exterior upgrades. Mowing the grass and eliminating weeds, for example, could make your front lawn stand out to buyers. Or, if you have cracked or damaged home siding, you can always devote time and energy to repair it.
Of course, if you need help with home exterior enhancements, you can reach out to home improvement professionals. If you have home improvement pros at your side, you can accelerate the process of upgrading your house's curb appeal.
2. Establish a Competitive Initial Asking Price
The initial asking price of your home should account for the age and condition of your residence, along with the current state of the real estate market. That way, you can set a price for your home that falls in line with buyers' expectations.
Generally, it helps to conduct an appraisal before you list your residence. An appraisal report is based on a wide range of factors, including the prices of comparable homes in your city or town. Therefore, if you perform an appraisal, you could receive a property valuation that helps you determine how to price your home competitively.
3. Work with a Real Estate Agent
As a home seller, it never hurts to receive expert support as you navigate the property selling journey. Fortunately, real estate agents are available nationwide, and these housing market professionals can offer great insights into what it takes to quickly sell a house.
A real estate agent first will learn about you and what you hope to accomplish. Next, a real estate agent will develop a plan designed to help you achieve your home selling goals. You and your real estate agent then will put this plan into action and adjust it as needed. Perhaps best of all, if you receive an offer to purchase your home, a real estate agent can help you decide whether to accept, reject or counter this proposal.
Furthermore, a real estate agent can help you bolster your home's curb appeal, establish the optimal initial asking price for your home and much more. And if you have any concerns during the house selling journey, a real estate agent is ready to respond to them right away.
For those who want to speed up the home selling journey, it helps to prepare. Thanks to the aforementioned tips, you can list your home, ensure it generates significant interest from buyers and move quickly to finalize a house sale.
Youíve been thinking it for a while: ďI really should start putting some money aside for a down payment.Ē But, you just canít seem to find any wiggle room in your budget.
Youíre not alone. Saving for a down payment isnít easy. Especially if youíve got rent, car payments, student loans, and are trying to put money aside for retirement.
In todayís post, weíre going to talk about how to make a game plan for your down payment. This way, you can start saving immediately, bringing you closer to your goal of homeownership each day.
The first rule of budgeting is that you need to know where each dollar you earn ends up. From there, you can start re-allocating funds to the things you want to save for.
There are many apps and tools available to help you out with this process, including YNAB (You Need A Budget) and Mint. If apps arenít your thing, you can always use a simple spreadsheet.
First, account for all of your income. This could include your salary, rental income, or other forms of money that you have coming in.
Next, detail each of your weekly and monthly expenses. Everything from groceries to the internet bill and retirement contributions.
Now itís time to make some tough decisions. Are there ways you can cut down on your weekly or monthly expenses? Maybe you arenít using that Amazon Prime membership as much as you thought you would. Or, maybe youíve decided you donít really watch anything on cable but the news. There are a number of ways one might cut back on their monthly bills.
Get creative with family plans, bulk shopping for food, or cooking budget-friendly meals. All of these savings will add up quickly.
Letís face it, if you have thousands of dollars in student loans, you might not be able to aggressively pay them down by the time you want to move out of your apartment.
But, for small debts (under $1,000 credit card debt, for example), you could save more in the long run by paying them off and avoiding interest payments.
With the right savings account and credit card, you can earn money through savings interest and through cashback rewards on credit cards.
First, find a savings account with the highest possible interest rate. These can often be found from choosing an online bank who doesnít have the overhead of running branches.
Next, direct deposit a set amount of your paycheck each week into that savings account. This way, you can be sure that you wonít dip into your down payment savings.
To generate additional income, you can use cash back rewards from credit cards for things like groceries and gas. Choose a credit card that offers the best cash back rewards for things like groceries and gas purchases. The key here is to only use your credit card on necessities and to always pay off the card in full at the end of each month.
If you follow these four steps, you should be able to streamline your down payment savings process and start saving right now.
Building a fence on your property can be a great way to secure privacy, add curb appeal, or give your kids and dog a great way to play safely. There are a few things that you should know about building a fence before you take the project on. You need to be sure that everything is in place so that the project will go smoothly.
Know What You Want
If you know the purpose of the fence, youíll need to decide on the type of fence that will best serve what youíre looking to achieve. If you live in an area governed by an HOA for example, you may need to get clearance just to start the project. The Association may have rules and regulations as to what type of fence theyíll allow you to put up. Many variables should be answered before you leap into the project of building a fence.
Decide On The Materials The Fence Will Be Made From
Once you know the type of fence you need, youíll choose what that fence will be made of. If you get a wood fence, that may require a bit more maintenance than other types of fences. Materials you can choose from include:
There are many advantages and disadvantages to these materials so do your research and discover which one will be best for you. You can even mix and match fencing materials. You may be able to use one type of fencing material in the front of your home and another kind of fencing in the back. You can get as creative as you need to be.
Use Natural Borders
If fencing isnít your thing, you can create borders around your property using natural barriers like shrubs, bushes, or trees. Using natural barriers is a surefire way to add curb appeal and gain some privacy as well.
Research Fencing Types
As with anything in your home, a little research can go a long way. You want to take the time to see what the best kind of fence is for you to put up. Another thing to do before you put up a fence is to talk with your neighbors. You donít want to start a big project that will be right on their property line and get them upset with you. Depending on the nature of your neighborhood, you may even need a written agreement with your neighbors before you build a fence.