Maple Grove, MN Real Estate News

By David Kosmecki
(American Pacific Mortgage)
Interest rates fluctuate frequently, often depending on the news. If you are considering refinancing your home, your loan officer may suggest locking in the interest rate on your loan. There are some valid reasons why this is a good idea including: Saving Money For The Long-term: Over the life of a loan, an increase of as little as one-quarter of a percent can cost thousands of extra dollars. Spending a small amount of money now to lock in a rate can save money over the life of the loan. Your loan officer will explain the difference in rate increases initially, over a year and over the life of the loan. You May Not Qualify At Higher Rates: Whether you are considering refinancing your property or you are buying a new home, you may discover your rate just qualified for your loan to meet t...
Comments 0
By David Kosmecki
(American Pacific Mortgage)
Have you ever considered paying off the mortgage on your home in two biweekly payments rather than one monthly payment? It might seem like this wouldn't make a difference, but the truth is that biweekly payments really do add up more quickly. Since there are 52 weeks in a year you will end up making 26 payments in total – which is equal to 13 months rather than 12. This means that your mortgage will be paid off more quickly and you will save money on interest payments in the long run. This arrangement might be the best for you when it comes to paying off your mortgage quickly and saving money, but it's important to consider the possible disadvantages before you make the decision. Cons Of A Biweekly Mortgage Payment: Often lenders do not offer biweekly services free of charge. You will b...
Comments 0
By David Kosmecki
(American Pacific Mortgage)
When preparing for a closing on your refinance or home purchase, one of the documents you will be provided with a few days before closing is a HUD-1 Form. This form provides you with valuable information about your loan. While at first, this three page document may seem intimidating, if you understand what you see in each section, it is not as confusing as you might think. Let's break down the various parts of the HUD-1 and talk about what they mean. Loan Information: On the first page of your HUD1, you will see your loan information at the top. This includes the type of mortgage, property location, loan amount and the date of closing. This information is very basic but also is very important to review for accuracy. Buyer And Seller Costs: If you are refinancing your home, you will only...
Comments 0
By David Kosmecki
(American Pacific Mortgage)
When it's cold outside, there's nothing quite as cozy as curling up on the sofa with a good book in front of a roaring fire. A fireplace evokes the idea of a warm and pleasant atmosphere. However, if it isn't properly maintained, your living room could be filled with a cloud of soot, or worse, fire. A fireplace not only creates a snug setting, but most are actually functional and can help heat your home. Harness their heat and generate the ambiance of a softly lit living space by following the tips below to ensure yours is properly maintained and working efficiently before the first cold spell hits. Clean It Regularly: Have your chimney cleaned out twice a year. The recommended number varies depending on how often you use your hearth. However, you should have it cleaned every fall to en...
Comments 0
Yesterday you may have read the blog post on questions to ask yourself before applying for a mortgage. Here are 5 additional that you may want to think about before you go into your meeting with your loan officer. Here are questions 6-10 that you may need to get answers to before completing your application: 6. How Long Until We Can Close Our Loan? Loan closing times are based on a number of factors. Closing dates may be delayed if there are missing documents or other underwriting delays. Speak with the loan officer to get an estimate on the time from application to closing. 7. What Possible Delays May I Face In Closing? There are a number of delays that often cannot be avoided. However, some can be avoided by making sure you provide your loan officer with all the documents they request...
Comments 0
If you are considering applying for a refinance, it is important to understand the mechanics of your mortgage loan. Before you sit down to speak with your loan officer, you should consider preparing a list of questions you feel may need to be answered. Typically, your loan officer will be available to assist through the entire mortgage process. Here are some questions that you may need to get answers to before completing your application: 1. What Type Of Loan Is Best For Me? Your loan officer can discuss the various loan programs available to help you refinance. Some borrowers will benefit greatly from adjustable rate mortgages while others prefer fixed rate. However, other borrowers may find a fixed rate is the best option. Discuss various loan terms such as 30-year or 20-year mortgage...
Comments 0
By David Kosmecki
(American Pacific Mortgage)
According to the S&P Case-Shiller 10-and 20-City Housing Market Indices for September, home prices grew at an average of 13.30 percent year-over-year and achieved the highest growth rate for home prices since February 2006. On a month-to month basis, home prices are slowing in most areas with 19 cities included in the S&P 20-City Housing Market Index showing lower rates of growth in home prices. September's average month-to-month growth rate was 1.0 percent for the 20-City HMI as compared to 0.90 percent in August, and 1.90 percent posted earlier in 2013. Home prices increased by 0.70 percent in September for the combined 20-City and 10-City Housing Market Indices tracked by Case-Shiller. Rapidly Rising Home Prices In The West: Another Housing Bubble On Tap? Home prices continued rising...
Comments 0
By David Kosmecki
(American Pacific Mortgage)
The calendar has turned and with that we receive less sunlight, colder temperatures, and shorter days ahead, it's an opportune time to cross those last-minute maintenance items off your homeowner to-do list. Practicing preventive care - both inside and outside your home - can save thousands of dollars in repairs come later this winter. What follows is a brief checklist to get you started. For Outside The Home: Inspect exterior lights and outlets. Be sure that none of the outlets are cracked or broken, or have exposed wires. Clean gutters and clear all blockages. If leaves are falling, redo after leaves are off all trees. Inspect and test outdoor railings and stairs. Have problem trees trimmed, including those that may damage your home in a storm. Protect outdoor water faucets from freez...
Comments 0
By David Kosmecki
(American Pacific Mortgage)
"There's always something to be thankful for. If you can't pay your bills, you can be thankful you're not one of your creditors" – Author Unknown With Thanksgiving being tomorrow, I find myself thinking about everything I have to be thankful for. For instance, I've been a real estate agent for some time, which is a position that I enjoy and love.  What Am I Grateful For? I'm also grateful to be able to share the knowledge that I've learned throughout the years with my clients and those of you who read my blog. It's a wonderful and rare thing to do something that you love for a living. Most of us are so busy reaching our goals, making plans for the future, pushing and struggling to rise to wherever we feel our position in life should be, that we very rarely take the time to look back at ...
Comments 1
By David Kosmecki
(American Pacific Mortgage)
The National Association of REALTORS reported Monday that pending home sales dropped by -0.60 percent in October after falling at a revised rate of -4.60 percent in September. According to Lawrence Yun, chief economist for NAR, 17 percent of real estate agents reported delays in loan closings due to the government shutdown in early October. Lenders were unable to verify borrower income through the IRS, which was closed during the shutdown. October was the fifth consecutive month with fewer pending home sales reported. Homeowners who owe more on their mortgages than their homes are waiting to sell, and recent spikes in mortgage rates were cited as factors contributing to fewer pending sales. Pending home sales are defined as homes for which signed purchase offers have been received and a...
Comments 0
By David Kosmecki
(American Pacific Mortgage)
Thanksgiving is right around the corner, and if you're opening your home for the family get together, that usually means you'll be decorating.  If you've racked your mind for ideas and none sound just right, here are a few decorating ideas that might help you along your way. Fall Leaves: Decorations don't have to be expensive, just look outside the door of your home. Brightly colored fall leaves, either randomly placed on the table or bunched in small arrangements, can really brighten up a table. Turkey Napkins: Folded turkey napkins is a simple way to spruce up your Thanksgiving table. Use linen napkins for a classy touch. Thanksgiving Centerpiece:  A cornucopia is a great idea for the centerpiece. Filled with leaves, small pumpkins and other fall foliage or fruits, cornucopias remind ...
Comments 0
By David Kosmecki
(American Pacific Mortgage)
The minutes of the Federal Reserve's Federal Open Market Committee meeting held October 29 and 30 were released Wednesday. The meeting began with a report from the Manager of the System Open Market Account and included updates on developments within domestic and foreign financial markets. According to the report, no intervention by the Federal Reserve was required on foreign currencies during the period between the last and current FOMC meetings. FOMC: Key Data Delayed by Shutdown The FOMC noted moderate economic growth in the period since its last meeting, but also noted that several federal agencies delayed release of key statistics due to the government shutdown in early October. The FOMC minutes included updates on several economic sectors including: Labor: Private non-farm payrolls...
Comments 1
By David Kosmecki
(American Pacific Mortgage)
In order to save up a huge amount of cash for the down payment on your first mortgage, you need a solid savings plan! When you take out a mortgage on your new home as a first time homebuyer, the more you can pay as a down payment the better. The down payment on a mortgage reduces the principle of the loan and means that you will be paying tens of thousands less in interest payments over the life of the loan. Most financial experts recommend that you should save up at least 20% of the value of the home as a down payment. Depending on the value of the home that you want to buy, this can be a serious chunk of money. The conventional saving tricks of skipping your morning latte and eating dinner at home just aren't going to cut it when saving up this much money! You will need some strategie...
Comments 0
By David Kosmecki
(American Pacific Mortgage)
The National Association of Home Builders released its Housing Market Index  for November on Monday. This month's HMI reading was 54 against expectations of a reading of 55. October's reading was also 54 after being downwardly revised. Readings over 50 generally indicate that a majority of builders surveyed are confident in current housing market conditions, but the current pause came after two months of decline in home builder confidence. While the short term index readings are lower than in past months, the HMI is currently 20 percent higher than last year. David Crowe, chief economist for NAHB said that "the fact that builder confidence remains above 50 is an encouraging sign." Mr. Crowe also cited federal debt and budget issues as factors that keep builders and consumers from buildi...
Comments 0
By David Kosmecki
(American Pacific Mortgage)
An open house gives you a great opportunity to look more closely at real estate you might be interested in buying. It also affords you the chance to chat with the owner or real estate agent so you can bring up any issues or hesitations you have with the home. Knowing what to ask can be difficult, so below are examples of questions to ask at the next open house you attend. Why Has The Seller Decided To Sell Now? If you ask why the seller is moving, you could learn valuable information to help determine your offer or possibly whether or not you want to buy the home. Knowing whether the owners are about to go into foreclosure, have experienced trouble in the neighborhood, or if they've retired and completely paid off the home can help you understand how urgently they need to sell their pro...
Comments 1
By David Kosmecki
(American Pacific Mortgage)
Summer has been over and Fall is really here, temperatures are beginning to drop, and you’re dreading having to turn the heat on for the first time. Firing up the furnace can burn a hole in your pocket, but there’s something you can do about it. Consider these tips to help lower your heating bill. Replace Your Air Filters: Get new air filters for your central heating and cooling. The filters get clogged and it takes more and more energy to keep your house warm. Be sure to clear out any dust bunnies or cobwebs from behind the filter. Use a vacuum if necessary. Does Your Attic Need Insulation? Heat rises, and if your attic is not adequately insulated, then your central heating system will be stuck sending all your hot air (and your heating bill) straight through the roof. There are three ...
Comments 0
By David Kosmecki
(American Pacific Mortgage)
Refinancing a mortgage is a golden opportunity to lock in today's low interest rate for the next 15 or 30 years. While interest rates now are still low, there's a good chance they will be heading up in the coming months. The Fed won't maintain the current bond purchasing level forever, and just as rates spiked in September when the Fed hinted the bond purchasing would change, rates will spike even more when purchasing levels actually do change. As interest rates remain very low for 30-year and 15-year mortgages, homeowners can benefit greatly from a refinance. Several types of people in particular should consider refinancing. Carrying A High Rate: Anyone with an interest rate well above today's level should think about a refinance. Unless the homeowner is planning to sell within the nex...
Comments 0
By David Kosmecki
(American Pacific Mortgage)
FHA loans are becoming increasingly popular these days as potential homeowners are not able to qualify for mortgages from traditional lenders. The FHA insures these high-risk loans, in turn allowing borrowers with low down payments and less than perfect credit to purchase homes and bolster the housing market. However, getting through the loan process with the FHA is more difficult than with a traditional lender, and you may need to cope with some of these common loan hang-ups. Property Condition: You can't buy just any property with a FHA loan. The appraiser must deem it to be livable, without any conditions that could jeopardize health or safety. If the home has chipping paint, a leaky roof, or a wobbly banister, the financing could fall through. Sometimes you can get the seller to mak...
Comments 1
By David Kosmecki
(American Pacific Mortgage)
Private Money financing refers to loans collateralized by real estate, where the source of the funds used to close Real Estate transactions come from private investors. The decision by the investors to make a loan is based primarily upon plenty of equity in the real property securing the loan thus reducing the risk of loss. The ability to repay, and the borrower's character is also considered along with how the borrower will pay the investor back in time. Private Money loans are needed when a borrower or a property falls outside the standard underwriting rules of conventional lending sources like banks or other lending institutions. The Primary Decision For Private Money Is Typically Based On The Simple Three-Four C's Of Private Money Lending: Capacity to repay the loan back Credit/Char...
Comments 0
By David Kosmecki
(American Pacific Mortgage)
Every week the trash truck comes to pick up our garbage and unwanted items, which are promptly taken to landfills. Instead of filling landfills and just buying new items to stuff our homes, we can help the earth and recycle everyday household items. Below are a few fun and creative ideas for recycling things around your home that you might be ready to trash. Coffee Table Into Bench: If you just purchased a new coffee table, don't give away the old one — repurpose it. Find a space in your home where you could use some additional seating, like at the end of your bed or in the entryway. Push it up against the wall so that any drawers and shelves are facing out. Then add some cushions and pillow. Tada; a bench! Copper Piping Into Bathroom Hardware: Whether you're going for a modern industri...
Comments 0