Everyone knows that credit cards come with a credit limit, the maximum amount of money you can charge on the card. However, what’s not as widely known, is that credit card issuers don’t intend for you to max out your credit card by charging up to the credit limit. As you come closer to your credit limit, it can start to have negative effects on your credit score. Love it or not, much depends on the almighty credit score – from buying a home to getting a good rate on insurance and even employment for some professions. Continue reading “Card limits and why you can’t spend all your money whenever you want to”
If you are like most people, you typically don’t think about your credit score until you are getting ready to apply for credit. But more and more places are using your credit background to determine if you are an ideal and responsible candidate. Employers, landlords, and even insurance companies are now using your credit score to qualify you. On many levels, you are defined by your credit score – like it or not! Continue reading “Your Credit Score – Why you should be checking it often before applying for credit”
Emergency fund, rainy day fund, whatever you call it, it’s important to know how much money you should have set aside in case something unexpected happens. While it may be somewhat of a moving target – the golden rule has always been to have at least 3 to 6 months’ worth of expenses saved up – 6 months especially if you have a family. Continue reading “Emergency funds and how much is enough for your family”
Learning how to make your finances work for you should be a priority for everyone. If you’re reading this you probably care about your finances. At Litchfield Bancorp, we feel so strongly about helping you make your money work for you, that we put together some key points to assist with creating your very own budget. Use your discretion and be honest with yourself about your spending habits as you read. Continue reading “How to Create a Personal Budget You Can Live With”
Anyone who owns a home understands that in addition to making your monthly mortgage payment on interest and principal, you will be required to maintain and pay for homeowner’s insurance and will need to pay any property taxes or other assessments required by local jurisdictions. If these payments are not made, then the property (which is also the collateral for your loan) will be at risk, liens may be levied, and/or the property will not be protected if damaged by fire, storm or other cause. Continue reading “What is Escrow and Why Do I Need it?”
If you are considering buying a house, especially if it is your first time, you will want to follow these basic guidelines to save yourself headaches, confusion, and perhaps a good deal of money:
- Know Your Credit Rating
How much money you can borrow and how much it will cost you will depend heavenly on your credit score. Contact one of the three major credit agencies, Experian, TransUnion or Equifax to get a complete credit report. A print out of this, especially if it is good, will be a useful document to have. If there are mistakes in your credit record each of these agencies have ways for you to dispute or amend that info. You may also use one of the many online services that provide your credit info to you, but often this is a simple score without much detail.
Purchasing a second home is often the first step toward fulfilling a dream. Maybe you’ve reached retirement age and hope to relocate to a sunny climate soon. Or maybe you want a second home for your growing family to gather on holidays and on the weekends.
Whether you are buying your second home as a family retreat, for a future primary residence or an investment, here are four ways to get you started.