Your At Home Team Blog

What to Know About Private Mortgage InsuranceAs a homeowner, you probably are all too aware of the amount of that monthly payment. You might not, however, be aware of that breakdown of that lump sum payment until you review the year-end statement from you lender. If you've noticed it at all, you probably simply note an amount that is designated PMI.

What is it? What is it for? Why am I paying this? If you have ever asked those questions, you may also realize that PMI is a required part of most conventional mortgage payments.

What is PMI?

Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) is an insurance paid by the borrower to protect the lender against default. If you have a conventional or FHA loan and paid less than 20 percent on the down payment, it's likely that you pay a premium each month to

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Should You Buy or Rent Your Next Home?Like so many other questions that pertain to investing large sums of money, deciding between purchasing a home or renting one is a highly-personal choice. To help figure out which one is right for a particular stage in life, individuals should consider the following criteria.

Buying Might be Best If:

Staying in the home for five years won't be a hardship

Purchasing a home entails much more than simply making a mortgage payment each month, and there are other expenses involved in buying a home. Taxes and interest are also added to the regular costs that are incurred when buying a home, and home repairs are another important factor. While property almost always appreciates—which means that a homeowner will often get their investment back—it

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What to Know About 203k Renovation Home LoansIt can be expensive paying for home improvements. Homeowners and nonprofits interested in finding cost-effective ways to finance a home improvement or renovation are looking into an FHA 203k. There are projects both big and small that are covered with an FHA 203k home loan. Do you need to repair a roof, replace a deck or get new appliances? Then this loan is a solution for homeowners looking to make such upgrades or repairs.

Prospective buyers or homeowners looking to rehab a distressed property can take advantage of a 203k home loan whether they live in a Lorton Home or across the country. Understand more about the 203k loan, borrower eligibility requirements, and what repairs or renovations can be paid for with a 203k loan.

How 203k Loans

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How to Pack to Move Into a New HomePacking for a move involves more than just throwing things in boxes. Large, fragile and awkwardly shaped items all need special attention. Organization in packing will also encourage a smooth reassembling of the household. Before the packing even starts, approach with a plan to streamline the process and protect belongings.

Get Rid of Extraneous Possessions

Moving is a great excuse to clean out things no longer being used. Valuable items can be sold at garage sales or on websites like Craigslist and eBay. Just about anything can be donated to thrift stores such as Goodwill, so long as they are in “gently used” condition, which can be written off taxes as charitable donations.

Every discarded item is an item which does not need to be packed

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What to Know About USDA Rural Home LoansUnless you live on a farm or a small farming community, you may never have heard of a little-known government-sponsored home-funding opportunity. However, the USDA Home Loan program, which offers zero down payment mortgages to qualifying rural and suburban borrowers, might just be a way to buy your dream home.

History of the USDA Home Loan

In 2014, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, set aside nearly $20 billion to help "improve the economy and quality of life in rural America." Nearly 140,000 families benefited. Today, there are three separate USDA loan programs that offer assistance:

  1. Guaranteed mortgage loans available with no money down and low-interest rates through local lenders;
  2. Direct subsidized loans with interest rates as
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How to Sell and Move at the Same TimeSelling your home presents many challenges. Selling your home and trying to pack up for a move into a new house at the same time becomes even more challenging and complicated. It's a common scenario. In the midst of advertising, staging, updating, and otherwise preparing a home for sale, a home seller who is simultaneously buying a home as well needs to search for a new home, order inspections, negotiate contracts, and more, all while packing and keeping their own home ready for potential buyers. How do you juggle everything and still maintain your sanity?

Begin Packing Immediately

Begin preparation immediately as soon as you know you're moving. This doesn't mean pack up the dinner dishes the minute the move is decided. It does mean that even

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Fort Belvoir's 2st Annual Oktoberfest

Grab your favorite stein, put on the lederhosen ... it's time for Oktoberfest.

September 28 - October 1, 2017

Your At Home Team is honored to be the 2017 Title Sponsor. Come enjoy the clear skies and cooler temps, and get warmed up for this year's Oktoberfest!  As a proud sponsor for the tenth year, we look forward to having you join us for some fun-filled days during Fort Belvoir's 21th Annual Oktoberfest at Fremont Field!  Don't miss our 'Spin for your Morning Joe'.

Oktoberfest is an exciting four (4) days filled with authentic German food, beverages, music, and dancing to your favorite polka.  Just in time to greet the early days of Fall with fun, friends, and family.

You can't miss the carnival, but other events include the Volksmarch…
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Energy Efficient Features That Can Help Sell a HomeNow more than ever, home buyers are seeking out homes with green features because they’re not only environmentally friendly, but because they also have lower utility costs. Adding green home improvements to a home can be a great way to draw buyers in. Here are five energy-efficient improvements to consider to draw in buyers. 

1. Double-Paned Windows

When thinking about replacing the windows of a home, consider getting double-paned windows instead of the traditional single-paned windows. Double-paned windows consist of two sheets of glass with a gap between them that creates a layer of insulation from the heat and cold, making them far more energy efficient than single-paned windows. In fact, they can be up to 50 percent more efficient than

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How Boomers are Making Ends Meet by Renting Out HomesAs the generation of Baby Boomers age, it's natural they are beginning to look to retirement. With the last decade of economic uncertainty, many of them may be a little short on the funds it takes to live comfortably after they exit the rat race.

The resourceful Boomers are creating various ways to survive and thrive financially in their later years. Downsizing their homes, reverse mortgages and part-time jobs are popular tools they are using. Another key way they are increasing their monthly income is by renting out their homes.

Choosing to rent out their homes offers two key benefits for Baby Boomers.

It Allows Them to Stay In Their Homes

A goal for many aging Americans is to remain in their homes as long as possible. Sometimes,

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How to DownsizeMany people move into smaller, more easy-to-manage homes when they reach retirement. Knowing what to look for can help buyers get the right property for their needs. Smaller homes, smaller yards, fewer stairs and age-in-place amenities can help these homeowners manage the challenges of maintaining a home, be it in Alexandria, or elsewhere.

Going Small

As time goes by, cleaning a large home becomes burdensome, so downsizing is important for most retirees. While some may find it tempting to look for a home with only one bedroom, two bedroom properties may prove to be more ideal for others. This extra room does not need to be large, and can be used as a work room or multipurpose room when it's not in use as a bedroom.

The Ideal Yard

Small

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