November 9, 2012 8:20 pm
A: A lender decides to foreclose on, or repossess, a property when the owner fails to pay the mortgage. Unfortunately, thousands of homes end up in foreclosure every year.
Many people lose their homes due to job loss, credit problems, divorce, unexpected expenses, and during periods of economic instability.
Failure to pay property taxes may also cause a homeowner to lose his home. Trouble can also arise when owners neglect to pay local water bills and home insurance premiums.
November 9, 2012 8:20 pm
Balloon loan. Mortgage loan in which a larger final payment becomes due because the loan amount was not fully amortized.
November 9, 2012 8:20 pm
(BPT) - Did you know it's almost the year that Michael J. Fox went 'back to the future?' While we don't have hover boards or flying cars, our innovations have changed drastically since 1985, especially when it comes to technology in the home. Now there are many affordable innovations that are simple to use and can add unique benefits and enjoyment to routine activities.
High-fashion, high-function faucets
Kitchen faucets continue to increase in functionality and style - but imagine the convenience of having a faucet that can sense what you're trying to accomplish, and with a simple wave of your hand, immediately responds to your needs. New MotionSense technology from Moen offers you three ways to operate the faucet. In addition to the traditional handle, you can activate the kitchen faucet by using the Wave Sensor - by waving your hand over the faucet to turn on and off - or the Ready Sensor - by placing your hands or an object under the spout.
Available at home improvement retailers, MotionSense is featured on the Haysfield pulldown kitchen faucet, which offers a soft modern design, and the Delaney pulldown kitchen faucet. Both are featured in a Spot Resist Stainless finish, which does just what it says - resists fingerprints and water spots.
Continue your hand-free experience in the kitchen by adding an Innovia Automatic Paper Towel Dispenser. This unique product provides the exact amount of paper towel that you choose - without a single touch. A simple wave of the hand delivers one towel; or for bigger jobs, simply hold your hand in front of the sensor until you've achieved the desired amount. Unlike others on the market, it retracts unused sheets back into the clean and dry compartment.
Replacing towels can be done with any brand or size within seconds. Available in a variety of colors for an innovative and attractive addition to any kitchen, this product its under most cabinetry.
Water-saving washers and dynamic dryers
Previously, a washer and dryer did exactly what their names say - wash and dry. But for homeowners looking for the new era of high-tech cleaning machines, there is a wealth of options. Most washers today are high-efficient, meaning they use 20 to 66 percent less water than traditional agitator washers - an appealing benefit for the environmentally conscious, or for those just hoping to save on their water and electric bills. Plus, most are available with large-capacity tubs to accommodate bigger loads. And, with less water being used and high-speed spin cycles to remove more water, clothes feel dryer when they come out - saving time and energy on the drying cycle.
Today's dryers offer a variety of features, such as steam functions to remove wrinkles and odors, or sensors that detect when there is a lack of moisture and automatically turn off when items are dry. And, once you've found the set that includes the most high-tech features you desire, these once-commodity products are available in a variety of curvy, stylish looks and multiple colors. Consumer Reports is an excellent source to find the best set to meet your budget, style and feature needs.
We've all left the air conditioning blasting on a hot day (when no one is even home); or, left for vacation without altering the thermostat. These worries can be a thing of the past with the new learning thermostat, The Nest. The new product, which WiredMagazine calls the 'the iPod of thermostats,' offers artificial intelligence that figures out when to turn down the heat and when to turn up the air conditioning, so that you don't waste money and energy. Plus, you can communicate with The Nest from your smartphone, tablet or any computer. Created by the designer for iPod hardware, Tony Fadell, The Nest ($249) will likely pay for itself within a year or two of use, and ultimately save up to 30 percent of your utility bill, according to Nest Labs research.
While your neighbors may think they're high-tech with Wi-Fi, smartphones and laptops, be the first to embrace these unique, new technologies into your home and also become the envy of the neighborhood. Soon, you can simply and affordably add enjoyment, ease and even energy savings into your lifestyle.
November 9, 2012 4:46 pm
A: Like any investment, it can be risky. Location and current market conditions are extremely important when deciding whether to buy.
Other things to consider:
• Will you be able to afford repairs, maintenance, insurance and utilities?
• What about fees to pay agents who rent the property for you?
• If you live several miles away from your vacation home, who will clean up between tenants and take an inventory of household items once the tenants leave?
• What if you are unable to rent your second home? Can your pocketbook withstand the strain of paying the mortgage?
November 9, 2012 4:46 pm
These days, it seems easy for credit scores to be damaged and difficult to improve your scores even when you’ve done nothing wrong. Because scores can be so important to your buying power and even job fitness, and because every little factor counts in determining your scores, Forbes Magazine finance writer Erik Carter offers seven credit myths that could be hurting your scores and costing you money:
I’ve done nothing wrong–Some 70 percent of credit reports contain errors. So even if you think you’ve done everything right, you could be paying higher interest rates because a reporting error has not been corrected.
Checking my scores will hurt me – Checking your own scores once each year will not impact your credit rating.
Okay, I’ve checked – Remember, there are three credit reporting companies; Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion. You need to check all three to be sure there are no errors.
The source doesn’t matter – Yes, it does. Some inquiry sites only give you access to one report. Others, like freecreditreport.com, ironically are not free. They charge a fee to see your report and then charge you a monthly fee unless you cancel. Go to annualcreditreport.com, which allows free access to each of your credit reports once every 12 months.
I’ve paid it off, so I’ll close it – Closing an account when you’ve paid it off can actually hurt your credit score. If it’s a card you’ve had for a while, closing it can reduce your credit history, which is about 15 percent of your score. Also, if you have any debt, closing a card can increase your debt utilization or the ratio of debt to credit available. Instead, you can always cut up the card and not use it.
Bankruptcy is the end of the world – It’s painful and can take seven to 10 years to be removed from your credit report, but many credit scores are practically recovered in far less time. If you can’t pay your debts, think of bankruptcy as a second chance that’s better than allowing the debt to continue hurting your score.
Maintaining a balance will increase my credit score – Opening and using a credit card can increase your score, especially if you’re starting to build or rebuild your credit. But keeping a balance will only increase your interest payments. Remember that having a lot of debt can hurt your score.
November 9, 2012 2:42 pm
Binder. Short purchase contract used in some areas to secure a real estate transaction until a more formal contract can be signed at a later date; usually accompanied by an earnest money deposit.