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December 2013

Found 10 blog entries for December 2013.

401K Down Payment for First Time Buyers


401K down payment first time home buyerAs a first time homebuyer, it is very challenging to come up with the cash flow for a down payment in addition to closing costs and furnishing your new home. Saving is very time consuming, so many home buyers have turned to using their 401K retirement savings as a means of funding. As it is your money, you may borrow or withdrawal from your account. However, it is essential you learn the details to avoid extensive taxes or penalties.


401K Loan

Homebuyers are allowed to borrow from themselves specifically for a down payment. The rules applied will require repayment within 10 years, unlike the typical 5 year requirement. The loan will incur interest payments over the 10 years as well.


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Mortgage Game Changers: What Home Buyers Need to Know

This January is going to mark the first month of the new mortgage regime under Dodd-Frank. Much of the regulation ensures that approval standards are tightened up. However, with tighter standards comes tougher qualification for borrowers. Make sure you get your facts in order before you apply for a home loan!

  1. FHA loan limit will decrease to $625K. If more money is needed for a home purchase, application will need to pursue jumbo loans.
  2. Ability to repay rule requires borrowers have a debt-to-income ratio of 43% or lower.
  3. Borrowers will have to pay extra fees that lenders once paid for them.
  4. Mortgage servicers will be required to give borrowers monthly summaries of interest
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Tax Benefits of Homeownership Growing equity in a home of your own is a significant benefit, but it doesn’t stop there. Homeownership provides a variety of deductions from your income tax filings. These write-offs can decrease your taxable annual income visible to the IRS.


Mortgage Interest Deduction

Most loan program options will require paying the interest before the principal. This is a benefit to your tax deduction because it may include the majority of monthly mortgage payments.

 Loan Points Deduction

Paying fees to your lender for processing your loan, known as points, may be deducted from your taxable income. This is a benefit for new homebuyers in their first year.

Home Improvement Deduction

The government is supporting the movement for homeowners to

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sledding-in-michigan-mark-zShiawassee Park

Farmington, MI 48336
A 300 to 400 foot hill located near Farmington Public Schools and Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic Church. Large crowds have been reported so if it’s too busy check out one of the other places like Cass Benton Park in Northville

Middlebelt Hill

Westland, MI 48185
(734) 261-1990

Listed as one of the 99 things to do in Wayne county is “sled down Middlebelt Hill.” There’s a pavilion nearby and stairs to help you get back up the hill. It’s also a very picturesque location so bring your camera!

Cass Benton Park

Edward Hines Dr.
Northville, MI
(734) 261-1990

Another local favorite is at Cass Benton Park between Six and Seven Mile on Hines drive. Grab your goggles, bundle up, wax your sled

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Maximum Mortgage Amounts Lowered


  FHA has lowered the maximum mortgage/loan amount allowed for all FHA case numbers order on or after January  1st,  2014. The maximum mortgage amount allowed by FHA for all counties in Michigan will be $271,050.  

  Based on your typical required 3.5% down payment on an FHA purchase, this would have you at a purchase price of  $280,882. If the purchase price exceeds this amount, the buyer would need to increase their down payment so that  the loan amount doesn't exceed $271,050.  

  If you're currently in negotiation to purchase a home or are waiting for short sale acceptance, its important to ensure  that the FHA case number is ordered prior to January 1st.  

  Please do not hesitate to call us with any

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art-van-mansion-mark-z-home-selling-teamFurniture mogul Art VanElslander is inviting you inside his multi-million dollar mansion.

art-van-mansion-mark-z-real-estateThe ArtVan Furniture founder's mansion is on the market for a cool $15.9 million. Located on the lakefront in Grosse Pointe Shores, the 28,000 sq. ft. home features six bedrooms, 12 baths, eight fireplaces, and an outdoor playground that includes a pool, tennis and basketball courts, a putting green and more.

PHOTO GALLERY: Inside the Grosse Pointe Shores Art VanElslander mansion

The mansion sits on 3.75 acres and has been listed for nearly two months. The home was built in 1991.

This magnificent 28,000 sq. ft. manor home strikes the perfect balance of warmth and intimacy while exuding elegance and grandeur. This completely custom chateau style home is

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Buyer and Seller Closing Costs

 Both the buyer and seller split the costs of closing. However, the answer is entirely dependent upon the  individual closing fee. Specific loans may cause the buyer and seller closing costsresponsibility of the cost to vary. There are costs that  will be split evenly and other monthly costs that will be prorated based on the date of sale. Most closing  costs will be assigned to either the buyer or seller, but the questions remains, who pays what?

 Buyer Closing Fees

  • Down payment
  • Property inspection and appraisal
  • Origination fees
  • Discount Points on FHA and Conventional loans
  • Credit report
  • Following month’s PITI payment and prepaid interest                           
  • PMI premium, VA funding fee and FHA MIP
  • Tax impounds and
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considerations to buying a home

1. Can I afford monthly mortgage payments?

 Evaluate your current financial circumstance by creating a budget of your income, debt and available  cash flow. You may use a mortgage payment calculator as a mock example to get an idea of the  anticipated payments. Depending on your credit, your interest rate will vary and this can be the  difference of hundreds each month. Beyond the mortgage payment, you will likely pay mortgage  insurance each month to compensate for not having a 20% down payment. Will you have sufficient funds  to pay your bills and live comfortably. 

stork-credit-mark-z-guarantee2.  Is my credit score satisfactory?

In order to acquire a home loan, a borrower must gain the trust of a lender. The underwriting process of the application period will inquire

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