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Text-only newsletter stories for Issue 9 Vl. 9


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What You Need to Know About Refinancing Your Mortgage

Refinancing your mortgage can have many financial benefits when done at the right time in the right way. Here’s what you need to know about this type of transaction.

What is refinancing your mortgage?

When you refinance your loan, you essentially pay off your remaining mortgage with funds from a new one. The process is fairly simple and similar to when you applied for your initial mortgage. You’ll gather quotes from multiple lenders, file an application, gather and provide financial documentation, like paystubs, bank statements, etc., then close like you did when you first purchased.

Why should you refinance?

Refinancing your home loan is an option available to most homeowners. This decision can allow a homeowner to reduce their monthly mortgage payments, negotiate a shorter payment term, switch to a different type of loan, cash out on home equity, and consolidate debt.

When should you refinance?

Timing is key when it comes to refinancing your home. The best time to take this step is when interest rates drop lower than the rate you closed at. Another good time to consider refinancing is if your current credit score could allow you to qualify for better interest rates than your time of purchase.

What are the costs to refinance?

Unfortunately, refinancing isn’t free. Your refinanced mortgage will come with similar fees to your original, such as appraisal, title insurance, closing costs, and more. Because of this, when deciding to refinance, make sure the money saved outweighs the fees your will incur.

Top Tips for Disinfecting Your Home

In the current world we live in, it’s incredibly important to put a focus on finding strategies to keep ourselves and our families safe and healthy. Although our homes should be our safe place, germs and bacteria can be carried in daily. Here are a few tips to rid your home of those contaminants.

  • Clean regularly touched surfaces. Although washing your hands regularly is a great habit, there is still a chance germs can be transferred to surfaces. Disinfect areas that are touched regularly, like handles, light switches, tables, and countertops, with a microfiber cloth dipped in hot water and all-purpose cleaner.
  • Wash dishes the right way. If you use a dishwasher, make sure the water temperature is set to 140 degrees Fahrenheit and use detergent that lists chlorine bleach as an ingredient.
  • Disinfect soft surfaces in the living room. Although disinfecting tables, light switches, and lamps is a great starting place, be sure to focus on pillows, couches, and chairs too. Purchase a disinfecting spray that is meant for fabrics to kill lingering bacteria and read and follow the instructions carefully to ensure it is effective.
  • Don’t forget your devices. Sanitizing TV remotes, video game controllers, computer keyboards and mice, and cellphones is crucial. Use disinfecting wipes to carefully sanitize all surfaces and buttons or, if you don’t have wipes, spray disinfectant on a paper towel then wipe the device.
  • Properly sanitize your laundry. One of the easiest ways bacteria travels into the home is on clothing. Set your washing machine either to the sanitize setting, or if not applicable, the warmest water temperature and use a laundry sanitizer.

Take 5: What Do First-Time Homeowners Want?

As a first-time homebuyer, it’s understandable that you would be very selective about the home you purchase. This is likely the largest financial investment you’ve made in your life so far so you want to ensure you’re going to get exactly what you want. That’s why, as a seller, it’s important to be aware of the most desirable features for buyers in today’s market. Check out five below.

  • Location. This one should come as no surprise. Location has always been key. Buyers are looking for low crime rates and nearby stores. Families with young children are looking for great schools and parks nearby. Young professionals are looking for easy access to work, restaurants, and nightlife.
  • Extra storage. A garage with floor space and shelves. An extra bedroom that can be converted. A backyard shed. Or a closet under the stairs. Adequate storage space is highly sought after. Updated kitchen and bathroom. Many buyers are in the market for high-end, modern appliances, finishes, countertops, and more in their kitchens and bathrooms.
  • Large patio or backyard. This feature may make or break a first homeowner’s decision to purchase. Many times, these buyers are coming from smaller living spaces like apartments and are looking for a place to entertain guests, enjoy the fresh air, and play with kids or pets.
  • Smart appliances. These have been on the rise for years and aren’t going away anytime soon. Homeowners are looking for these devices to help them save money on energy, connect with friends and family, secure their home, and add convenience.

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