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A most Important Number It’s not your social security number, your phone number, or your birth date. While most of us don’t know this number, it is essentially dictates your finances. This number is your credit score..A credit score is a number that lenders use to help decide ‘if I give this person a loan or credit card, how likely it is that I’ll be paid back on time”?

Also called a risk score, this number is a statistical measure of the risk that you’ll be able to repay the debt as agreed.If you’re planning on making a major purchase, taking out a loan, or applying for a credit card, you’re going to need a good credit score.

If you’ve come to the realization that your rating isn’t as positive as you had hoped, it’s time to start improving it, and here’s your guide to getting started

Find out where you stand.

The first step towards developing a better credit score is to determine where it currently stands. Start by checking with the three major credit reporting agencies (CRAs) listed below. You’re entitled to one free report per agency, per year, and you have the right to dispute any mistakes, so request that each CRA send you a copy of your report.

Equifax                www.equifax.com

TransUnion       www.transunion.com

Experian             www.experian.com

Figure out the Facts.

Credit reports in hand,  take a good hard look at the data in front of you. Credit reports are rarely as spotless as you think – that one late payment on your Visa can stay on your report for up to seven years (long after you’ve forgotten about it). In addition, in October 2004, CBS News reported that nearly 80% of credit reports contain at least one error, proving how vital it is to make sure that everything is accurate.

After identifying and discrepancies, you need to eliminate them. A dispute form usually is sent along with your credit report – or you can request one from the CRA’s website – so fill out the form and send it back to the CRA as registered mail. Make sure you document each step that you take in clearing up your report in case you need backup later on. Fortunately, the law is on your side, stating that any item that is not verified as accurate must be removed from your report.

Call in the clean-up crew..

You’ve cleared up any errors, but there are still a few legitimate dark spots on your report. What’s a person to do?

Clean up.

Identify any debts that are still pending, and set up a plan for eliminating them. Clearing up debt can take time, which makes it even more important to get started immediately. Remember that you have the right to add remarks to your report, such as highlighting a loan that you paid on schedule.

Fix, rinse and repeat.

Time is your best ally when it come to your credit report – consistent payment (no matter how small, so long as they meet the minimum) prove that you are responsible enough to repay loans as promised, over time they will outweigh the negative points on your credit report.

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Your monthly payment covers principal and interest on the loan, and may also include your mortgage insurance, property taxes and hazard insurance, depending on the terms of your loan.

Time to buy contact me at dccondoguy@gmail.com  or call 301/452-2278

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Should a seller order a home inspection prior to putting the property on the market? There are advantages.

For sellers, conducting a home inspection (or pre-inspection) before listing their homes puts the control back into their hands.

When the buyer inspection finds problems, it can impede negotiations and cost the seller more in repairs. By having a pre-inspection, the seller can help eliminate any surprise findings after an offer has been made. The seller can make repairs before placing the home on the market and possibly even increase the value of the home.

A pre-inspection can also serve as a great marketing tool. Sellers are required by law to disclose any known defects in the home. Having a pre-inspection report available for buyers tells them that the seller has nothing to hide. It also gives them a clearer picture of the condition of the home.

If there are major problems found during the pre-inspection, it gives the seller an opportunity to disclose the condition up-front, making it less likely for the buyer to pull out of the deal or try to renegotiate the price.

Knowing the true condition of a home can bring peace of mind to buyers and sellers; and be one less hurdle in the home buying and selling process.

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If William Shakespeare financed a home today he’d probably ask on the subject of mortgage points: “To pay or not to pay? That is the question.”

Homebuyers direct the same question to their real estate agents. Here are some perspectives:

In its simplest definition, a point is an additional loan fee that is paid to the lender in exchange for a lower interest rate. It’s called “buying down,” and it allows you to reduce your rate for the life of the loan.

Let’s say you secured a mortgage loan for $500,000 without points, at 4.6% on a 30-year mortgage, your payment would be approximately $2,560 a month. If you paid two points ($10,000), the interest rate in this example would go down to 4.1% and the monthly payment would decrease to around $2,415, a savings of $145 a month.

In this scenario, it would take you about eight years to recoup the money you paid up front, so if you are planning on staying in your home a while, this will save you money in the long-run.

Home buyers must answer some key questions to determine if paying points is a wise decision. Specifically:

How long will you keep the home?

Do you have extra money to pay points?

Could that money be better used for something else?

Money managers may suggest that a smarter option is to invest that $10,000 because you could do much better than your $140 savings, but you have to weigh the variables.

“Paying points depends on your career, your interests and all the things that predict your future,” said financial advisor Thomas Watkins of Total Mortgage Services in Milford, Conn. “Points are paid up front while your savings will be spread out into the future. Therefore, you get more benefit if you own your home longer, or if you don’t refinance for a long time.”

The rule of thumb when it comes to points is simple: If you plan to stay in the house for less than three years, do not pay points. If you plan to stay in the house for more than five years, pay 1 to 2 points. If you’ll be in the house for three to five years, paying points doesn’t make a significant difference.

Another important aspect to consider: Since points are interest-payment related, they are fully deductible on your taxes in the year that you close. See your tax advisor for details.

Mortgage points can add up to valuable savings over the course of your loan, but the future isn’t always predictable. Even if you “plan” on staying in your home for 20 years, changes in your career or family life could alter the plan.

The top 10 metros with the greatest BLS-projected job growth through 2020 (among the 100 largest U.S. metros) are:

1. Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, D.C.-Va.-Md.-W.Va.    2. Bethesda-Rockville-Frederick, Md. 3. Colorado Springs, Colo. 4. New York-White Plains-Wayne, N.Y.-N.J. 5. El Paso, Texas 6. Springfield, Mass. 7. Baton Rouge, La. 8. Tacoma, Wash. 9. Baltimore-Towson, Md. 10. San Antonio-New Braunfels, Texas

InmanNews.com  Source

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