Monday Morning Coffee

Inspirational thought for the week brought to you by The MARK Z. Home Selling Team.

There are currently 16 blog entries related to this category.

home purchase expensesBuying a home can be expensive, but the sticker price often doesn’t even begin to cover the other expenses.  Most people don’t know the full range of the expenses you need to have to reasonably cover a full home purchase.  Here are the 8 most common expenses to expect when you purchase a home:

Down Payment

The first expense you will incur for your home is the down payment.  You’ll want to put down 20% of the home’s purchase price for the best interest rate, but you can put down as low as 3.5% with an FHA Loan.

Mortgage Payments

After you put forth the down payment, you will have a monthly expense known as a mortgage payment.  A mortgage payment is getting you closer and closer to having full ownership over your home each month.


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whats in a credit score

Lenders use credit scores to assess borrower responsibility. That’s not all that goes into a mortgage application, but it’s a heavy determinant of the possibility of borrower default.

The common credit score is the FICO score. This is calculated using an algorithm developed by the Fair Isaac Corporation, hence the name. FICO scoring measures risk based on use of credit cards and past payment history.

Credit Reporting

So who makes use of the FICO algorithm? The three major credit bureaus, Experian, Equifax and TransUion use FICO scoring in order to create that special number that often makes or breaks your ability to qualify for any loan.  TransUnion scores, for example, range between 300 and 850 and is comprised of:

  • Payment history –
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Mortgage Market Update

 After a solid week of slipping, mortgage interest rates have come back up today:

mortgage market trends

  • 30 year fixed-rates jumped to 4.53% (+0.03).
  • 15 year fixed-rates jumped 3.53% (+0.03).
  • FHA 30 year fixed rates stayed at 4.25%.
  • Jumbo 30 Year Fixed rates jumped to 4.40% (+0.02)
  • 5/1 Year (ARM) rates stayed at 3.25%.

Fed tapering (discussed in our last post: Why are mortgage interest rates on the rise?) was on market-watcher’s lips after the recent jobs report showed data far below projections. However, the FOMC branch of the Fed indicated that one weak report will mean little in the long run and tapering will not relent unless further data in the coming weeks suggests more serious economic downturn.

Yesterday’s MBA

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Top Tips for Refinancing Your Mortgage

refinance tipsImprove your credit score

The ideal scores are 720 or greater. Definitely take a look at your credit reports from Equifax, TransUnion and Experian to negate any errors before submitting your loan application. A credit specialist can work with you, if necessary. You want a good, low refi rate!

 Find the right lender

We can never stress this enough: you do NOT need to pursue a refinance with the lender who financed the home purchase. In fact, if for whatever reason you did not like your experience with your lender, a refi is your chance to build a relationship with someone new. Get recommendations from friends, family, internet reviews – do not rely on searching for the lowest possible refi rates.

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"There is a law in psychology that if you form a picture in your mind of what you would like to be, and you keep and hold that picture there long enough, you will soon become exactly as you have been thinking."  -William James

You're The Photographer

Most people, when they have their camera in hand, take snapshots of other people or things. The focus is on anything and everything outside themselves. What many don't realize is that they also have a super high-resolution camera in their minds.

The words of William James are not new. They've been said before in many forms, i.e. "As a man thinketh, so is he," or "You are what you think about all day long," or "A man is what his thoughts make of him."

By simply framing a

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"People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it!"  - Anonymous

Which One Are You?

Some of the best minds suggest that when you have a dream, you should keep it to yourself. You should set about quietly achieving your dream, but without sharing it with others. Their reasoning is that when you share your lofty goal, you open yourself up to the ridicule and criticism of those who say, "It cannot be done." This is distracting, and can negate your efforts.

Avoid the crowd who says, "It cannot be done." Instead, spend time alone giving your dream a form. Imagine what it will feel like when your dream has been achieved. Picture it happening. Decide what actions you must take to set your dream in

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"Until one is committed there is hesitancy,
a chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness.
Concerning all acts of initiative and creation,
there is one elementary truth,
the ignorance of which kills
countless dreams and splendid plans.
That the moment one definitely commits oneself,
then Providence moves too." 
- Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe

The Rich Get Richer

In "Rich Dad's Guide to Investing," the author talks about taking risks. As an example, "Rich Dad" says, "There is risk driving a car. But driving the car with your hands off the steering wheel is really risky." With regard to driving a car, his point is easily understood.

His real message, however, goes a little deeper. He's really speaking of the risks people

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"A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle."

- Father James Keller (1900-1977)

Got A Light?

We all love a compliment. Your manager says to you, "I noticed that your last sale was handled very smoothly. Thanks for offering your customer such excellent service!" Your wife or husband tells you, "I'm so proud of the way you encourage our children!" Your grown child returns home for a visit and says, "Thanks for making it possible for me to get my degree!" Those are "feel good" times, aren't they?

If you live a more or less normal day-to-day sort of life, compliments are always welcome, but aren't absolutely critical to your sense of well-being. You don't have to get them to make it through the day. If you are

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"The optimist proclaims that we live in the best of all possible worlds; and the pessimist fears this is true."
-James B. Cabell


"The glass is half-full." "The glass is half-empty." "Looks like a beautiful day!" "I think it's going to rain." "I'm happy." "I'm depressed." "I'm an optimist!" "How can you be an optimist with things the way they are?"

OK, we all know the difference between an optimist and a pessimist - right? In some of Steven Covey's material, he states that "no one knows enough to be a pessimist." Pessimism, more often than not, is generated by inner fears, most likely fears "of the unknown." Hence, "No one knows enough to be a pessimist."

Consider the child about to learn the art

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"Whoever gossips to you will gossip of you."
- Spanish Proverb


You know the type - there's a gossip in everyone's life. It may be a friend, an acquaintance, or a total stranger. Regardless, it is the person who shares with you any amount of information about another, either about what they have accomplished, or more often, what they have not.

Why does a gossip perform his or her service so readily? Self-aggrandizement is often the culprit. Knowing such valuable information about another as to be able to share it, reasons the gossip, reflects favorably on the provider of such knowledge. In fact, however, gossiping is nothing more than the act of judging others.

When a friend passes judgment on another, might it

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