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Home Buyers Don't Hesitate in West Michigan

by Mark Brace

Just wanted to post some thoughts. I've had several clients of the last 2 weeks that have missed getting homes because the market is starting to get crazy. A couple reasons for not getting these homes.

1. Hesitating on whether they want to write an offer or not.

2. Not writing a strong enough offer, I have been in at least a dozen multiple offer situation in the last 2 weeks. Just write your best offer and buy the home.

Side note to this: The federal tax credit is ending Dec. 1, 2009 and everyone is panicing to get a home before the deadline. This is particularly affecting homes in the under 120K range.

3. Not getting the offer in on time.

Side note to this: Is not having your pre-approval letter ready at the time you wanted to make an offer.

I guess the moral of my blog would be, be prepared to write a good offer, or the home you like may be gone.

City of Wyoming Residents Aug 17, 2009 Meeting

by Mark Brace

Wyoming City Council to Meet and Discuss Future of City

Next Monday, August 17th at 5:30 PM, the Wyoming City Council will meet to discuss the future of Wyoming. Facing a near certain bankruptcy in 2 years if the budget is not adjusted, city council members must make difficult decisions.

If you are from Wyoming we need you to attend this meeting and bring your friends and neighbors. It is important that people who understand the nature of taxes and government to be present. Stand up and speak up for the taxpayers and rational government services.

For instance, we need people to question the city council's support of the bus line that extracts $2.5 million each year from Wyoming. What would happen if the city council chose not to continue with the bus line in 2010? Could those funds be used to cover the impending deficit? Will the addition of an income tax really help the city or hurt it?

Please show up to this very important meeting and make a public comment to present 'our view' of sensible government.

Dos and Don'ts During the Loan Process

by Mark Brace

Dos and Don'ts During the Loan Process

When you fill out a credit application, Lenders run a credit report for the underwriter. Each lender and each loan program has different guidelines they must follow. You should not do anything that will have an adverse effect on your credit score while your loan is in process. I know it's tempting...If you're moving into a new home, you might be thinking about purchasing new appliances or furniture, but this is really not the right time to go shopping with your credit cards. You'll want to remain in a stable position until the loan closes and give your lender the opportunity to help you lock in the best interest rate they can possibly get for you. Here is a handy list of dos and don'ts that you should adhere to after your loan application has been submitted to the lender.

DON'T APPLY FOR NEW CREDIT OF ANY KIND

If you receive invitations to apply for new lines of credit, don't respond. If you do, that company will pull your credit report and this will have an adverse effect on your credit score. Likewise, don't establish new lines of credit for furniture, appliances, computers, etc.

DON'T PAY OFF COLLECTIONS OR CHARGE-OFFS

Once your loan application has been submitted, don't pay off collections unless the lender specifically asks you to in order to secure the loan and we recommend that you do everything possible to negotiate deletion in exchange for payment. Generally, paying off old collections causes a drop in the credit score. The lender is only looking at the last two years of activity.

DON'T CLOSE CREDIT CARD ACCOUNTS

If you close a credit card account, it can affect your ratio of debt to available credit which has a 30% impact on your credit score, and also your length of credit history which has a 15% impact on your credit score. If you really want to close an account, do it after you close your mortgage loan.

DON'T MAX OUT OR OVER CHARGE EXISTING CREDIT CARDS

Running up your credit cards is the fastest way to bring your score down, and it could drop up to 100 points overnight. Once you are engaged in the loan process, try to keep your credit card balances below 30% of the available credit limit.

DON'T CONSOLIDATE DEBT TO ONE OR TWO CARDS

Once again, we don't want you to change your ratio of debt to available credit. Likewise, you want to keep beneficial credit history on the books.

DON'T RAISE RED FLAGS TO THE UNDERWRITER

Don't co-sign on another person's loan, or change your name and address. The less activity that occurs while your loan is in process, the better it is for you.

DO JOIN A CREDIT WATCH PROGRAM

Your bank, credit union or credit card company may be able to provide you with a free credit watch program that can alert you to any changes in your credit report. This can be a safeguard to help you intervene before the underwriter sees a problem.

DO STAY CURRENT ON EXISTING ACCOUNTS

Late payments on your existing mortgage, car payment, or anything else that can be reported to a CRA can cost you dearly. One 30-day late payment can cost anywhere from 50 to 80+ points on your credit score.

DO CONTINUE TO USE YOUR CREDIT AS YOU NORMALLY WOULD

Red flags are easily raised within the scoring system. If it appears you are diverting from your normal spending patterns, it could cause your score to go down. For example, if you've had a monthly service for Internet access billed to the same credit card for the past three years, there's really no reason to drop it now. Again, make your changes after the loan funds>

DO CALL YOUR LOAN CONSULTANT

If you receive notification from a collection agency or creditor that could potentially have an adverse effect on your credit score, call us so we can try to direct you to the right resources and prevent any derogatory reporting to credit bureaus.

* SOURCE: Based on The Top 10 Credit Do's and Don'ts During the Loan Process, provided by Credit Resource Corp. http://www.creditresourcecorp.com

 

Live Foreclosure and Short Sale Updates

by Mark Brace

Interested in a Grand Rapids area Grand Rapids Foreclosures or short-sale home? Now you can get instant, live updates from MarkBrace.com!

Available to you with just a two clicks of the mouse is a complete listing of all homes in Allendale, Belding, Byron Center, Caledonia, Cedar Springs, Comstock Park, East Grand Rapids, Forest Hills, Godfrey-Lee, Godwin Heights, Grand Rapids, Grandville, Greenville, Hudsonville, Jenison, Kelloggsville, Kenowa Hills, Kent City, Kentwood, Lowell, Northview, Rockford, Sparta, Tri-County Area, Wayland, and Wyoming school districts that are shortsales or foreclosures.

To access this information, simply go to the homepage and scroll down. You'll see two lists, one for foreclosures and one of short sales. Click on the school districts you'd like to see the home listings in and you'll be taken directly to the 24 hour, live list.

You may also move your mouse to the navigation bar that appears at the top of any pages within MarkBrace.com (scroll above, underneath the cityscape photo) and use the drop down menu underneath "Featured Homes" to see the option of choosing to see foreclosures or short sales.

Hopefully this easily accessible navigation will make your home searching effortless. Please contact us if you have any questions- we're here to help with all your real estate needs!

Displaying blog entries 1-4 of 4

Contact Information

Mark Brace, Realtor, ABR, GRI, CRS, SRES, e-PRO, A
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Michigan Real Estate
3000 East Beltline NE
Grand Rapids MI 49525
Direct: (616) 447-7025
Cell: (616) 540-7705
Fax: (616) 447-7025

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices - Michigan Real Estate is a full service, locally operated real estate brokerage company backed by the strength of a solid national and global brand. Our full service businesses include Residential, Commercial, Relocation, Mortgage, Insurance, Home Services and New Homes & Land. Our core values, service philosophy, cutting edge technology, and most importantly our people are what make us the leading real estate company in Michigan. We are committed to providing the highest quality real estate services possible and making each customer's experience one that surpasses their expectations.