Thomas Murphy - Pine Shores Real Estate



Posted by Thomas Murphy on 10/15/2017

Applying for a mortgage is one of the biggest decision that an individual can make in his or her lifetime. As such, it is important for a first-time homebuyer to dedicate the necessary time and resources to employ the best mortgage lender Ė without exception.

So what does it take to hire the ideal mortgage lender? Here are three tips to help a first-time homebuyer quickly and effortlessly choose the right mortgage lender.

1. Consider a Variety of Lenders

There is no shortage of top-notch lenders in cities and towns across the United States. Thus, a first-time homebuyer can meet with a variety of credit unions and banks to explore all of the mortgage options at his or her disposal.

Spend some time learning about lenders in your area. Look at each lender's experience and reputation, and you may be better equipped than other homebuyers to select the ideal lender based on your individual needs.

Furthermore, conduct face-to-face meetings with lenders. These meetings will allow you to learn about a wide range of mortgage options and will make it easy for you to make an informed decision.

2. Ask Plenty of Questions

When it comes to getting a mortgage for the first time, there is no need to leave anything to chance. Instead, ask plenty of questions as you consult with assorted lenders, and you can gain the insights you need to pick a lender that matches or exceeds your expectations.

Remember, there is no such thing as a "bad" question, particularly when it comes to mortgages. If you meet with various lenders, you can get all of your mortgage concerns and queries addressed without delay.

A first-time homebuyer who asks lots of questions may be able to avoid potential financial pitfalls down the line too. In fact, this homebuyer should have no trouble selecting a great lender who can fulfill his or her mortgage needs for years to come.

3. Consult with a Real Estate Agent

Let's face it Ė selecting a lender may prove to be exceedingly difficult. Fortunately, a real estate agent is happy to provide honest, unbiased advice to help you find the right lender in no time at all.

A real estate agent understands the challenges of obtaining a terrific mortgage, and as a result, will do everything possible to help a homebuyer discover a lender that can provide outstanding support day after day. Plus, a real estate agent can even help a homebuyer alleviate stress as he or she searches for the right lender.

Let's not forget about the support that a real estate agent can provide throughout the entire homebuying journey, either. Typically, a real estate agent can keep a homebuyer informed about new residences as they become available, set up home showings, negotiate with a home seller on buyer's behalf and much more.

Get the right mortgage any time you choose Ė use the aforementioned tips, and a first-time homebuyer can streamline the process of selecting the ideal lender.




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Posted by Thomas Murphy on 10/8/2017

When youíre searching for a home to buy, youíll probably attend many different open houses. The open house is meant to help you get a feel for different properties. While you canít get to know all the ins and outs of a home in a short time, you can get an understanding of some of the best things (and not so great things) about a property. Below, youíll find some of the biggest warning signs that a property may not be all that it appears to be. 


Thereís A Lot Of Odor Masking Elements In Place


When you walk into an open house, you may get the smell of freshly baked cookies or a lovely candle. While these are great marketing techniques, they also can be a tactic to hide things. Perhaps there are some offensive odors in the house from mold, leaks, smoke, or mildew. You may not be prepared to deal with these kinds of problems once you move into a home. 


You Notice Glaring Issues


While the home inspection will reveal many problems that may be invisible to the casual observer, you should still be on the lookout for issues on the surface of the home during the open house. These issues can include cracks in the ceiling or walls, cracks in the floor, or even squeaky floor boards. If you happen to see patchy walls in the home, that could indicate that repairs have been made several times. Be alert for these potential problems.


Does The Home Look Well-Kept?


When you pull up in front of the home is the lawn trim? Does the home appear clean? While everyone would hope that a homeowner would clean up their property before an open house, small and big things like this can indicate a bigger problem. If the home is not cared for on the surface, how many other underlying maintenance issues are there in the home? Neglected regular maintenance can cause larger problems of all kinds in a home.


Strange Cosmetic Fixes


A freshly painted wall could be suspect of a big problem. Under the paint could be mold, cracks, or other issues. Some homeowners do put fresh paint on their walls before selling in order to give the home a neutral feel. However, you should be on the lookout for other signs of problems in the home.          


Channel Your Inner Detective


While you donít need to dig as deep into a home as a home inspector does, you should be on the lookout as you scan a home for the potential livability for you. Things like glaring cracks in the ceiling, or a strong odor of cigarette smoke could be signs of future problems living in the home. The open house is your time to find a home that fits you and your life, so make the most of the opportunity.  




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Posted by Thomas Murphy on 10/1/2017

Itís as if your entire life shuts off when you lose power at home. Television, landline telephones, kitchen appliances and music arenít the only technologies that you lose during power outages. When the power goes out at your house, you canít get on the Internet or cook.

Cut back on home power outage inconveniences

Let power outages happen at night and you wonít be able to see good in the dark. The longer power stays out at your house, the worse conditions get. After a while,the battery on your cell phone will run down, leaving you without the chance to connect to family and friends without venturing outdoors.

Although you might feel helpless when the power goes out at your house, there are a few things that you can do to prevent power outages. There are also steps that you can take to respond to power outages, so the experience doesnít halt your day too much. To prevent home power outages, you could:

  • Reduce the chances that electricity will damage your home Ė Contact your utility company to repair electrical wiring. Specific instances when you will want to do this include when wires hang so close to your house that they actually brush your house during high winds and when apiece of a wire breaks.
  • Cut away low hanging tree limbs Ė Power lines donít only cause damage when they hit your home. They can knock out power if they get caught in tree limbs. When youíre outside performing general maintenance on the exterior of your home, look for and cut away low hanging tree limbs.
  • Check electrical boxes Ė Check with your utility company to see if electrical boxes need to be moved or reinforced. A bad transformer can cause power outages throughout your neighborhood.
  • Remove termites Ė Although termites are famously known for causing wood damage, they can also cause power outages.
  • Turn off unused appliances Ė By turning off appliances when they are not in use, especially during harsh weather storms,you reduce the amount of power that your house demands, which could help you to avoid a power outage.

Despite your best efforts, power outages occur. Keeping candles and batteries nearby are not the only things that you can do to respond to power outages at home. Additional steps that you could take include:

You have to deal with enough unexpected events at your house. Regular power outages shouldnít be among those events. If you take proactive steps, you could reduce the number of times that the power goes out at your house. You could also keep your home safer during hard weather storms.




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Posted by Thomas Murphy on 9/24/2017

New England is known for its beautiful homes, food and history. Men and women who played a role in the early development of the United States are celebrated by residents and visitors to New England. Some led the way to social, political, academic, business,arts or literary advancements.

However, the regions early founders are not the only women and men who made an impact on Americaís history whether that history be made during the countryís formative or more recently. Check out this list of famous people who were either born or lived in New England.

New England Homeowners and Residents Make Huge Advancements for America

As one of Americaís founders, Benjamin Franklin was born in Boston, Massachusetts on January 17, 1706. Throughout his career,he served in various capacities including as President of Philadelphia and postmaster general. He may be more widely known for his scientific discoveries with meteorology and electricity.

Born in Framingham, Massachusetts in 1723, Crispus Attucks is widely recognized as the first American casualty of the American Revolution,also referred to the as the Boston Massacre. Discussions that center on the American Revolution often lead to Crispus Attucks and the role that he played in America's early history.

Calvin Coolidge served as the 30th President of the United States. Prior to becoming President, this Vermont native worked as an attorney. He attended Amherst College and spent his early adult years in Northampton, Massachusetts. New England remains an area that has a significant impact on America's political landscape, particularly when it comes to presidential elections.

Emily Dickinsonís writings were discovered nearly by accident. A graduate of Amherst College, Emily Dickinson preferred to keep to herself. She wrote well over 1,600 poems, but only published a few of them on her own. It was her sister who took the steps to get Emilyís many poems in print. Today, you'd be hard pressed to find a serious American poet who hasn't heard of Emily Dickinson.

Similar to Emily Dickinson, Sylvia Plath is a poet who hails from New England. Birthplace for Sylvia Plath is Boston,Massachusetts. She grew up in the same area that the St. Thomas Aquinas Church is located in. In addition to influencing poetry, Sylvia Plath has served as a voice for people struggling to fit in the world.

Frederick Douglass was born in February 1818. He is among Americaís most impactful abolitionist. Although Frederick Douglass was born in Maryland, he spent a portion of his adult years in New Bedford, Massachusetts. He taught himself to read and write and was a key to the success of the Underground Railroad.

George W.Bush, Barbara Walters, Adam Sandler, Donna Summer, Katharine Hepburn, Ralph Nader and Stephen King are among New Englandís modern day residents. Their influence spans across media, comedy, politics and the arts.

People from New England have left an indelible mark on Americaís landscape. Many of them lived in the area at a time when historic Georgian, Cape Cod and Victorian homes were in vogue. Some homes like the Sarah Orne Jewett House and the Quincy House are national treasures, reflecting interior and exterior home designs that continue to inspire great appreciation.





Posted by Thomas Murphy on 9/17/2017

Since home values are continually on the rise, it makes more sense for many Americans to tap into their home equity for financial security. The home equity line of credit is a great resource that has come back with many benefits. You can finance so many things from home improvement projects to the vacation you have always wanted with a reverse mortgage. There are consequences if you donít turn to home equity with careful thought. You could end up owing more than your home is even worth at a certain point. Thatís not giving you any value. 

Smart Financial Moves

Tapping into a home equity line of credit could be a smart financial move. If you use little to none of the money it can be wise to have extra cash on hand for emergencies, considering rates are so low for home loans. It can help you to be prepared for unexpected financial setbacks. The key is to not use the money unless itís absolutely necessary.

Good Ideas For Home Equity

  • Emergency fund
  • Home renovations
  • Education funds (if youíll be able to pay it back in a timely manner)

Bad Ideas For Home Equity

  • Vacations
  • Car purchase
  • Random spending


If youíre expecting an increase in income and need some extra cash on hand for a purpose, using a home equity line of credit can be a good resource. Also, if youíre selling your home soon, tapping into home equity for improvement projects can help to give you a better return on the sale. 


Home Equity Is Not An Unlimited Source Of Funds


Home values can change drastically with the market and the amount of demand. The amount of equity you may have can change as well, and your repayment amounts can vary drastically based on the state of the housing market. While tapping into home equity will most likely put you in the positive, you could end up in the negative if youíre not carefully prepared.


The Ways To Draw On Your Home Equity


There are 3 main ways to draw on your homeís equity. In any of these cases, you cannot borrow more than 80% of your homeís value from any lender. 


Cash-out Refinance

This loan is exactly as it sounds; you take a set mount of cash out from your home and refinance it at the same time. 

 

Home Equity Loan

This is a loan that is sometimes referred to a second mortgage. This usually has a fixed rate. 


Home Equity Line Of Credit

This loan is like using a credit card. Thereís a maximum that you can borrow, and you use money as you need it. After a certain amount of time, you can no longer draw on the money.  


Refinancing your home will extend the life of your mortgage. Youíll have higher costs but end up with lower rates most often.


Questions To Consider When Thinking Of A Home Equity Line Of Credit

  • Does your home need renovations?
  • Is the loan rate lower than other types of loans like car loans?
  • Do you need to consolidate your debt?
  • Are you facing large bills like medical bills or college tuition? 
  • Are you starting a business?

Used in smart ways, home equity can be a great financial resource for you. Consider your options and plan your finances wisely. Your home is in fact your biggest asset!