Thursday, April 30, 2009

Where is real estate prices headed for?

There seems to be a lot of confusion regarding real estate market whether real estate prices are still very high or have stabilized or still there is a chance for the prices to fall down.

We need to realize that the real estate market is all about value. At any given point of time the value of the real estate is not determined by the asking price but by the amount
the buyer is wiling to pay. Today the situation is such that there is a dearth of buyers in the market and in case the seller is unwilling to negotiate buyers are ready to walk out of the deal.

Even easy mortgages are hard to come by and financial institutions are not willing to part away with loans without complete documentation.

With economic insecurity on the rise people are very much ready to part with their properties as it is becoming increasingly difficult to get the high mortgage interest off their back.

There may not be any kind of free fall in the real estate market at the moment but you can’t even talk about any kind of stability also.

Still nothing can be said about the topsy turvy real estate market but one thing is for sure that gone are the days when you could put any big price on the property and still manage to get a good number of offers on it.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Clearing myths regarding credit scores and credit reports

I answer several mails a day trying to clear myths of people regarding credit scores. Today I will make an effort to clear some of your myths regarding credit scores and credit report.

Check out some of the myths regarding credit scores and the truth behind it:

Checking your credit report damages credit

This is not true as your credit information does not affect your credit score

If you are not in default, there is no need to check your credit report

You should check your credit report at least once a year to ensure there is no error in it.

Married couples share a credit score

Only in case you have a joint account the credit sores will be similar but every individual maintains a distinctive credit score.

A credit score is a credit report

No, credit report lists your payment and debts whereas credit score is a number assigned between 300 and 850 which is assigned to the record depending on the complex formula.

Shopping for a loan destroys credit

It has a small negative impact on the credit and does not ‘destroy’ credit as claimed by many.

To boost credit fast, just pay off bills

Things don’t change overnight as credit scores will reflect performance over time.

To improve a score, close unused accounts

Not true as closure of unused cards leads to removal of available balances and can actually lower your score.

For a fee, vendors can fix a bad score

Stay away from companies making such claims because when information is verified it would return to the credit report.

I hope I have been able to clear some of the myths associated with credit reports and credit scores

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Types of College Financial Aids for Students Joining Colleges

With college expenses touching the roof we all tend to look for ways in which we can unburden our pockets and college financial aid is one of the ways to ensure that you don’t end up with several loans by the time you pass out of college.

College grants or financial aids are either given by universities or state or federal governments. Check out some of the ways to get college financial aid:

Pell Grants

This is offered to low income graduates and in 2010 the grant available under Pell is $5,500.


There are a range of scholarships available for students depending on areas such as academics or sports besides several other reasons. There are several websites where one can search for range of scholarships available. One could even contact companies for scholarships or even businesses with strong community ties.


Federal government offers low interest educational loans at subsidized rates. The good thing is you don’t need to pay them back until you have graduated. The federal government has been backing Parent PLUS loans, Stafford Loans and Perkins loans and you can even avail these loans in case your parents can’t qualify for it.

Hope this information helps you a lot towards furthering your career.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

What is Mortgage Insurance?

Have you ever opted for mortgage insurance? If you haven’t then you should as it can really create a huge difference in the financial stability of a family and offer you a peace of mind.

Mortgage insurance is also known by other names such as mortgage insurance protection, mortgage life insurance, mortgage protection life insurance and mortgage protection insurance.

The benefit of mortgage insurance is that it comes to the rescue of families in need and in event of death the benefit is passed on to the beneficiary rather than the lender giving them total control over how the amount can be put to best use. The excess proceeds could be used towards auto loans, credit card debts, funeral/burial expenses, nursing home costs and income replacement. While choosing the mortgage amount ensures that your family is covered in the worst possible scenario.

Keep these small things in mind and you would have a peaceful life after.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Student Loan Debt and Consolidation

Graduating college students with hefty student loan who are not able to get a good job at the end of graduation generally find it difficult to keep pace with their monthly payments and for these very college students loan consolidation could be a very good option. Opting for student loan consolidation can help you to opt for lower interest rate which would mean lesser monthly payments at the end of the day.

So in case you borrow money at the rate of 8% you could easily lock in at a lower interest rate of 5% which would definitely mean a reduction in your monthly loan payments. This means you could also increase you total loan amount which implies when your debt is rolled into a single package you could get longer repayment terms which would mean higher total loan payments.

In case you have multiple school loans then the best option would be to opt for loan consolidation. It would help in better management of your loans and a better credit score too at the end of the day.

But before you go for loan consolidation you will have to fulfill certain criteria such as the original loan should have been taken from a credible lender, secondly the amount should be over $10,000 and thirdly there should not be any kind of default in payment of loans. At the end of the day a better option would be to try and get your loan from non profit sector.

I hope these loan consolidation tips come to your rescue.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Chase this $20,000 scholarship to fulfill your education dream

In these tough times if you are a student then a scholarship can be your best friend. Students of San Rafael High School must not miss out on the chance to win $20,000 worth of college scholarship being offered by public finance company De La Rosa & Co.

One lucky student in each of the twenty schools across the state will be chosen for the scholarship and an essay competition would be used to choose the best. Let me tell you the topic of the essay which is based on one of the famous quotes of Albert Einstein –‘ The most important motive for work in school and in life is pleasure in work, pleasure in its result and the knowledge of the value of the result to the community’

So go ahead and chase your dreams even in these tough times!!!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Tips on how to stay away from illicit mortgage relief firms

• During recession you will come across companies proclaiming themselves as mortgage consultants or foreclosure services with the promise of saving your credit or pay up your closing costs. Just stay away from them!!
• Mails from your lender should not be ignored and please, please stay in touch with him or her even after foreclosure notice has been filed.
• In case you are facing problems then a better option would be to negotiate a new loan arrangement with your lender before seeking the help of experts.
• In whatever situation don’t transfer your property deed or title to a rescue firm.
• Never get into the trap which promises loan modification approval within a matter of week or two since as per the norm a minimum of thirty days are required for consideration of loan modification application.

Just keep these tips in mind and you would be safe!!

Monday, April 6, 2009

HGTV $250,000 Challenge: Pay off your mortgage in one shot

Caught in the recession trap and wondering how to arrange money for the next installment? If you are among the thousands of families caught in the trap of mortgage repayment owing to the current economic crisis then you have an easier way out of it – go ahead and participate in the HGTV competition series to be hosted by Drew Lachey which offers hefty mortgage payoff as prize money.

Dubbed as the HGTV's $250,000 Challenge, it will give five neighboring families an opportunity to grab the quarter million dollar prize money by competing in home improvement challenges.

Staring from May 31, this four part series show brings together families and construction and design experts who would be helping them with weekly contests which include kitchen and living room makeovers. The name of families and neighborhood location is still to be announced, so keep your fingers as you may be one of the lucky families to make to the show and get over their gigantic debts.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Believe it or not, Americans are still confused about personal finances!!

Americans are still confused about their personal finances, this is what the survey of Literacy Month and the Center for Economic and Entrepreneurial Literacy has to say as to how much an average American is confused regarding financial terms and concepts.

Feel this could not be possible, just check out the results of the survey to get assured about the facts:

• 53 percent of respondents did not know what the Dow Jones Industrial Average was.
• 52 percent could not describe the advantages of a Roth IRA.
• 43 percent could not identify a FICO score as the most important factor in receiving a loan.
• 76 percent did not know that when in need of short-term emergency cash, bouncing a check costs more than wire transfers and short-term payday loans.
• 71 percent of people severely underestimated the amount of time it would take to pay off a credit card balance making only the minimum payments.

P.S: I had to read it a couple of times in order to believe it!!