Our Real Estate Blog
23 Aunt Lizzies Lane, Marshfield, MA 02050
Believe it or not, getting pre-approved for a mortgage can be quick and simple, even for a first-time homebuyer. In fact, here are three tips to help a first-time homebuyer streamline the process of receiving pre-approval for a mortgage:
1. Meet with Several Lenders
Many mortgage lenders are available in cities and towns nationwide. Meanwhile, these mortgage experts are happy to teach first-time homebuyers about assorted mortgage options and help them get pre-approved for a mortgage.
Set up face-to-face meetings with various lenders in your area. That way, a first-time homebuyer can gain unparalleled insights into a wide range of mortgage options.
In addition, don't hesitate to ask questions during meetings with banks and credit unions. Mortgage lenders possess comprehensive mortgage expertise, and as such, a first-time homebuyer can rely on these mortgage professionals to receive the support that he or she needs to make an informed decision.
2. Understand Your Credit Score
Do you know your credit score? Ultimately, a first-time homebuyer's credit score may dictate his or her ability to obtain the ideal mortgage.
An individual can request a free copy of his or her credit report from each of the three major credit reporting agencies (Equifax, Experian and TransUnion) once a year. This report may prove to be exceedingly valuable, as it can help a homebuyer identify opportunities to improve his or her credit score before a mortgage application is submitted.
Also, if you identify errors in your credit report, it is paramount to contact the agency that provided the report immediately. This will allow you to correct any potential errors quickly and ensure that they won't affect your ability to get the best possible mortgage.
3. Consider Your Homebuying Budget
A first-time homebuyer may have lofty expectations prior to entering the real estate market. However, this individual should consider his or her finances before submitting a mortgage application.
With a budget in hand, a homebuyer can establish realistic expectations as he or she tries to get pre-approved for a mortgage. Plus, this homebuyer may be better equipped than others to obtain pre-approval for a mortgage and accelerate his or her search for the perfect residence.
Lastly, it may be worthwhile for a first-time homebuyer to meet with a real estate agent to learn more about assorted mortgage options.
A real estate agent understands the challenges associated with purchasing a house for the first time. As a result, this housing market professional can teach a homebuyer about all aspects of the property buying journey and help this buyer plan accordingly.
Perhaps best of all, a real estate agent can set up home showings, keep a homebuyer up to date about new residences as they become available and negotiate with a home seller on a buyer's behalf. This housing market professional will even provide honest, unbiased homebuying recommendations to make it easy for a property buyer to acquire a top-notch residence at a budget-friendly price.
Move one step closer to purchasing your dream house – use the aforementioned tips, and a first-time homebuyer can speed up the process of getting pre-approved for a mortgage.
Many homes, new and old, do not have a ton of storage. More modern open floor plan spaces leave a great blank canvas for you to work with, but require you to bring in your own shelving, hutch, dressers, etc. If you're looking for additional storage options in your home and are either working with a smaller space, or desire to keep your area open and free of heavy furniture, consider what vertical storage solutions might work for your home.
Take a look at your space and think about what shelving additions might help you. Installing a shelf up high around the ceiling of a room might give you great space for displaying home décor and knick-knacks without cluttering up coffee tables and nightstands. A narrow floor-to-ceiling bookshelf creates a ton of space in an office or living room without taking away your floor space.
Built-in Furniture Storage
When purchasing new furniture pieces for your home look for opportunities to use these pieces as storage solutions. A bed with drawers underneath or built-in headboard shelving and coffee tables with shelves, drawers or hidden compartments are easy to find in different styles and prices. Hollow ottomans are wonderful for housing blankets and other linens. Try office solutions with desks that mount on the wall and have built-in drawers and shelving.
Hooks are affordable, easy to install and can be used in a variety of places throughout your home to create storage. If you are dealing with a small closet or don't have a coat closet in your entryway, you can install hooks on the back of your closet or bedroom door. Try installing hooks or a combination shelf with hooks piece in your entryway or your bedroom for coats and purses. Small hooks placed on a wall or attached to a decorative board can replace the need for a vanity or large jewelry armoire. Use a combination of hooks and nails to hang all your tools and reduce space (and cost) used by a large toolbox.
Not all solutions are beautiful and fit seamlessly with your décor, but if you're in a pinch, there are some quick and affordable things you can do. Hang a plastic shoe-rack on your closet or bedroom door. Hang towel and bath-robe hooks on the back of your bathroom door. Install basic wire racks and drawers in your laundry room, above your machines, to use the vertical space instead of using floor bins and baskets. Whatever your space there is an upright storage solution for you, from pre-fab pieces you can buy to DIY solutions you can put together next weekend.
If you're starting your home search and built-in storage is a feature you'd like, speak with your real estate professional before you start house hunting. Work together to find a home with the features you desire, or to find a space that allows for seemingly built-in storage solutions to add before you move in.
47 Chauncy, Weymouth, MA 02190
Everyone loves barbecue, whether you are from the South (famous for barbecue) or New York City. There is nothing like a grilled steak. As city and state laws have changed, though, how you can barbecue has changed too. Years ago, an everyday barbecue cooked on charcoal briquettes was the norm. Today, although you can still buy charcoal and an inexpensive grill, laws have changed limiting the use of starter fluids, for example. Compounding this is that the available time to barbecue is shorter (getting home later), so many homes have transitioned to the gas grill.
Propane or LP gas grills are quick and easy. You turn them on and instantaneously you’re ready to put the meat on the grill. There’s nothing wrong with that kind of barbecue; it works for a lot of people. But if you like the smoked wood flavor of the charcoal flame, you’re not completely satisfied.
Or maybe you have turned on the TV and seen those fantastic cooking shows where they are showing smoked brisket or fall-off-the-bone ribs done with wood flames, and you wish you could do that. But, since you have neither the time nor the skill set to make that happen, you settle for getting your “smoked barbecue” out or when you travel to the South.
Welcome to the new world of barbecuing! It is several years in the making, but maybe you have not seen them or even heard about them. Introducing the “chip” barbecue—a new revolution in barbecue grills. Now, you can get the smoky flavor of oak or apple or mesquite woods without having to chop wood or figure out how to get it started. Now in just about as quick as it takes to get a gas grill started, you can have your own wood-fired barbecue.
These barbecue smoker-grills come with a hopper that holds wood pellets (we’ll talk about them next). There is an auger that delivers the pellets to the center of the grill into a hotspot that causes them to catch fire and burn just like a chunk of wood, without the starting hassle. The grill, controlled by a thermostat on, uses a fan to circulates the air-smoke inside the grill. The thermostat also turns on the heat to the firebox and then turns on the auger that begins to feed the pellets into the firebox. Most of these grills have temperature settings from 0 to 450 degrees Fahrenheit, as the grill reaches the temperature chosen is haunts the augur from feeding pellets once the temperature starts to degrees is starts back up.
Now you can grill like a professional
You can set the temperature to 95-105 degrees—the perfect “smoking” setting, and you can slow smoke your meat as long as you want to. Or, you can set it at the highest temperature. When it reaches that setting you can throw the steaks on and grill them just like you did when you had a fresh hot bed of charcoal.
There are a plethora of ways you can use this grill other than grilling or smoking meat. You can make wood-fired pizza, bake bread and desserts, cook vegetable skewers or place the veggies directly on the rack. You name it; someone has a recipe for it. All this is possible because you have control of the temperature and the flame created by burning wood.
Not all wood pellets are created equal.
Look for pellets that are bored out of wood, and not compressed wood. Bored pellets give a hotter flame and have very little dust. Those that are compressed are mostly dust, and so they fall apart very easily, and they can clog up the augur. Having to take the auger apart to clean it is not fun. So, a word to the wise.Finally, while summer is the regular barbecuing time, now that has changed as well. You can buy heat blankets that fit your grill so that it can be snowing outside or -10°F and you can still smoke or grill as much as you want. The blanket keeps that heat inside so you have the same temperature control.
Happy smoking/grilling year ’round!
If grilling is what makes you do your happy dance, make sure your real estate professional knows to find you a home where you can grill to your heart’s content.