How to Find your Dream Home without Feeling Overwhelmed by the Process!

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Finding the perfect home can be overwhelming even for the seasoned home buyer. From looking at online listings to visiting open houses to losing out on bidding wars – it can consume hours and hours of your life and drive you a bit crazy.

The secret to stopping the madness is getting organized and being realistic.  Here are some tips and tricks to get you there:

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Home Buying: Are Sellers Trying to Hide Hidden Issues?

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Whether you are a first-time buyer or a real estate mogul, there are still plenty of issues that can happen along the home buying process, including finding issues that weren’t disclosed by the buyer. Even though the homeowner is required to sign a disclosure document, it doesn’t always mean that it’s accurate – whether they know about the issues or not.

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“Kiddie Condos” – The Newest College Housing Trend

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“Kiddie Condos” are one of the newest buzz phrases and latest trend for parents of college students who are looking to treat room and board as more of an investment vs. an expense. The concept: Purchase a home, condo or  apartment in the town where your college student goes to school, purchase the home with them on the mortgage, and have them live there vs. campus housing or renting off campus. The idea behind the strategy is to put the money a family would generally spend on room and board, required meal plans, and out-of-state tuition into a property.

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Bankruptcy 101 – Pros and Cons

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Over the past decade, filing for bankruptcy has become far less taboo – good, bad or indifferent it’s become far more mainstream for both businesses and individuals. 

For individuals, there are 2 types of Bankruptcy – Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. With Chapter 7 you must have an insufficient income to allow you to pay at least a portion of your debts. Under Chapter 7, you either pay for or give up your property for secured debts. You surrender any nonexempt property in order to pay off as much of your other debt as possible. You keep all of your other exempt property and are forever released from any obligation to repay the remaining dischargeable debt.

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How to answer, “So why are you selling your home?” …and what NOT to say!

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When it comes to selling your home, most sellers vacate the premises during a showing or open house. But there may be instances where you, the seller, are present and are asked by a potential buyer “Why are you selling your house?”. It’s a pretty common question from home buyers, and although you might think your response is innocent, this is one of the diciest questions you can answer. Why? Because any response you give could be used against you and cause the buyer to question if they will have the same issue.

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College Savings or Retirement – Which Should you Save for First?

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Which should you save for first – your child’s future college tuition or your personal retirement?  As a parent, this is a very emotional question – saving for your children’s continuing education to help them incur less debt and get a good education or financially preparing yourself and securing your future.

Many parents have decided that college savings should come first and are not only forgoing putting money in a retirement account, but they are dipping into their retirement savings to cover the costs of tuition. Yes, saving for college is important, but it is actually a luxury. How much you save for your child’s tuition is not a direct correlation to how likely it is that they will graduate. And don’t worry, your child can find other ways to pay for school: scholarships, grants, financial aid, part time jobs, or even finding a more affordable school.

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What is a Home Warranty and How Does it Work?

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When it comes to buying a home, most people understand the importance of having homeowner’s insurance, but few people are actually familiar with a home warranty and how it works.

The simple answer is:  A home warranty is a yearly service contract that protects specific home systems and appliances.

Your home’s systems and appliances will inevitably break down over time. A home warranty provides you with some protection when those systems and appliances eventually stop working. Many first-time homebuyers find a home warranty to be an extra layer of protection when extra funds are in short supply during those first few years of homeownership.

How does a home warranty work?

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Surprising Expenses You Don’t Expect When Planning for Retirement

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When it comes to planning for retirement, the process seems pretty simple: contribute to your IRA or 401(k), put extra savings aside each month, and reduce your spending as much as possible as you get closer to retirement. Once you are ready to retire, you should be able to rely on a combination of your investments, Social Security, your savings and Medicare to cover your needs.

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Telemarketers: How to spot them and how they get your number

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With the invent of email, instant messaging, texting and video chat it’s become the social norm to ASK permission to call someone – especially in business.   So why does it seem like our phones are ringing more and more? Well, odds are it’s a telemarketer and their getting sneakier and sneakier – calling from “local” phone numbers to get you to answer. Telemarketing isn’t necessarily illegal, but it’s certainly annoying.  

Why is it happening and what can you do about it?

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