Your credit score impacts a lot in your life, from buying a car to buying a house and even, sometimes, to getting a job. (Believe it or not, some employers check your credit report.) You owe it to yourself to know exactly what your credit score is, and how you can go about making it better. Here’s a quick rundown of the big things you need to know. Read more
Did you know that plants not only boost curb appeal, but they can also keep pests in check? Below are a few species that naturally repel pests while attracting beneficial insects, like butterflies and ladybugs. Plant these winners to keep pests at bay while beautifying your home.
Make sure downsizing is right for you before you take the leap.
Let’s face it: the word downsizing often conjures up images of loss or failure. But what if the definition of downsizing in retirement really means a step up: freedom from hassles and overhead with the flexibility to do and be more of what you want in this next stage of your life?
Here are five things to consider before you put up the “for sale” sign: Read more
Private College Loans Can Be Cheaper Than Federal Loans
Many students and families have substantial college debt by the time of graduation. For many of those families, private college loans are much cheaper than federal student loans now—a reversal from as recently as one year ago. While the federal government has increased interest rates on its loans for the 2014-15 academic year, most private lenders have kept their rates steady for parents with high credit scores.
Interest rates on new federal Plus loans—which are often taken out by parents—have recently risen. Every borrower gets the same rate regardless of his or her credit score. Read more
In order to obtain a home loan, you will need an appraisal on the property you wish to buy. Your lender will set up the appraisal and the results will help determine how much money the lender will be willing to lend on the property.
The purpose of a real estate appraisal is to determine the estimated market value of a house, condominium, commercial property, vacant land, etc. It is used to assist someone in making a decision. They may be considering purchasing, selling, insuring, or lending money on a house, condo, commercial property, or vacant lot. Appraisals are also used for tax purposes to estimate how much money a property owner has to pay in taxes.
Know how an appraiser determines the value of your home.
Banks and mortgage lenders need appraisals to assist them in figuring out how much money to lend someone for a home loan. There are many different aspects of a loan application that the banker has to consider, but mortgage lenders always require an appraisal since the real estate will be the collateral for the mortgage loan.
A visit from an appraiser is an inevitable part of selling your home. Even if your buyer is happy to pay what you ask and loves the place, the lender will still require that an objective third party – in the form of a professional appraiser – come through the home to determine its value. . It is certainly worthwhile to know what an appraiser will look for. The questions that many home owners ask me is “how does the appraiser determine the value of my home”? Read more
Los Angeles may be known for its beach living and celebrity-infused backdrop, but it was once a farm town. The hillsides were covered in citrus orchards and dairy farms, and agriculture was a major industry. These days, although L.A. is urbanized, the city’s overall landscape has re-embraced a local, sustainable, and seasonal philosophy at many levels. Read more
Having the right insurance policies in place can soften the blows from unexpected events that would otherwise mean financial catastrophe for you and your family. But if you’re like many people, you may not fully understand all the policies you have, let alone whether they’re adequate to meet your needs.
Here are some tips to help you assess your current coverage and decide whether you need to make any changes. Read more