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April Journal 2021


Closing Cost Options

Closing costs can run buyers between 2% and 5% of a home's price. Some borrowers, though, aren't aware that they have a few options for this common mortgage cost. For example, lenders sometimes offer a lower rate to those who pay closing costs with cash at closing; they may also provide an option without closing cost but at a higher rate. Some borrowers choose to have the lower-rate option by including closing costs in their mortgage's original amount. One of our mortgage loan officers can help anyone considering these options.1



Get Preapproved First

A preapproval letter from a respected mortgage lender can make all the difference in securing a homebuyer's dream home, especially in the current housing market. Buyers should consider obtaining a letter even before they start their search. Preapproval enhances a buyer's appeal to a seller, especially when it enables a buyer to make offers without condition for the sale of their old home. Be sure to read our coverage below of credit scores if you are preparing for the preapproval process.2



Stimulus Benefits Parents, Seniors

Congress' $1.9 billion American Rescue Plan contains several new tax breaks, including generous support for older Americans and those with young children. Taxpayers of all ages will receive checks of up to $1,400 per person. But people over 65 will also become eligible for the Earned Income Tax Credit for the first time. And parents will see both an expanded Child Tax Credit and a new childcare tax credit to help with kids under 13.3



Almost 50% fewer homes are on the market now compared to this time last year, according to's latest housing report.4



Access Free Weekly Credit Reports

Federal law requires that the three largest bureaus provide a free annual credit report. Since the beginning of the pandemic, though, the bureaus have made reports more available for free -  through April 2022. Now is a great time to examine a credit score thoroughly - contact the reporting bureau to fix any errors - to prepare to apply for a loan. A credit issue may take four to six months to fix.5



More Families Buying Multigenerational Homes

About 15% of home buyers plan to live with multiple generations under one roof, a nine-year high. The pandemic may have caused the uptick, but experts say the trend is here to stay. Families are pooling their income to buy a bigger house and save on expenses. Another benefit: grandparents can help with childcare; grown children can help with eldercare.6


1; 2; 3; 4; 5; 6

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