Posted by Liberty Real Estate on 10/17/2018

If budgeting isnít your thing, youíll be glad to discover that itís quite simple. Thereís a way to categorize your spending and save money easily. If you learn the rule, it will become so automatic that you wonít even think about it. If youíre saving money for a home, this practice will be essential. Break your budget down into three categories: 


  • Living expenses
  • Financial goals
  • Personal spending


Half of your budget should go towards living expenses. This number includes all of the essentials like rent or mortgage, utilities, groceries, commute costs, and insurances. 


20 percent of your income should go towards other financial goals like savings, investments, or paying down debt. Credit card bills, student loans, and other bills would fall under this category. This category is also where youíd save for your down payment, closing costs, and other expenses. This percentage can be adjustable depending on how much debt you have or how much you need to save for retirement. 


The remaining 30 percent of your income can go towards personal spending. This category includes everything that you use your money for but isnít a necessity. This percentage is also flexible. If your lifestyle doesnít require you to use all 30 percent each month, you can indeed save more money.


A Clear Plan 


These categories simplify your budget. Even if you make some adjustments to the numbers, the outline truly makes budgeting easy even for the most scatterbrained among us. It allows you to see where your money goes clearly. It also works no matter what kind of living situation you have.


The great thing about this budgeting plan is that you have some future needs built into it. Many times, when we budget, we think of our immediate needs and our shorter term goals. Saving for any occasion can never happen too early. You are able to not only focus on your current goals and the future.   



Steps


First, determine your monthly income. This number is how much money you take home after taxes. From here, youíll be able to split your money into categories by percentages. If your income fluctuates frequently, youíll need to take an average of your monthly income to determine your numbers. 


Next, you should take a look at your spending habits. These include everything from your morning latte to your monthly rent payment. From here you can make adjustments. Perhaps you need to look for a less expensive apartment. Maybe you need to cut down your weekly pizza to a bi-monthly purchase. Whatever you see in your finances, a simple percentage rule gives you the tools you need to become a saver and be well on your way to the purchase of your first home.     





Tags: budgeting   saving money  
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Posted by Liberty Real Estate on 10/10/2018

There is no need to struggle as you pursue your dream home. In fact, there are many things you can do to ensure the homebuying journey is quick and easy.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you enjoy a seamless property buying experience.

1. Know Where You Want to Reside

It often helps to narrow a home search to a small group of cities and towns. That way, you can focus exclusively on residences in a set area and speed up your house search.

As you consider where you want to live, it generally is a good idea to review your short- and long-term plans. For example, if you intend to return to school soon, you may want to search for houses near some of the nation's top colleges and universities. On the other hand, if you want to start a family, you may want to focus on homes close to parks and other family-friendly attractions.

2. Establish a Homebuying Budget

Most homebuyers will need to get a mortgage so they can acquire their dream residence. Fortunately, banks and credit unions are happy to teach you about home financing and help you make an informed mortgage selection.

Typically, banks and credit unions employ courteous, knowledgeable mortgage specialists who can educate you about all aspects of home financing. These specialists are ready to respond to your home financing concerns and questions and help you find a mortgage that suits you perfectly.

There is no such thing as a "bad" question to ask mortgage specialists, either. If you work with mortgage specialists to assess all of your home financing options, you can select a mortgage that will serve you well for the foreseeable future.

3. Hire a Real Estate Agent

When it comes to searching for a home, you don't have to work alone. Thankfully, real estate agents are available throughout the country, and these housing market professionals can make it simple for you to acquire a great home at a budget-friendly price.

A real estate agent goes above and beyond the call of duty to make the property buying journey fast and easy. First, he or she will learn about you and your homebuying goals. This housing market professional next will craft a personalized homebuying strategy for you and put this plan into action. Then, after you discover your ideal residence, a real estate agent will do everything possible to help you acquire this home.

In addition, a real estate agent will work with you to finalize a home purchase. As a home closing date approaches, a real estate agent will help you plan accordingly. By doing so, he or she can help you purchase your dream residence without delay.

For those who want to enjoy a quick, easy homebuying journey, it helps to plan ahead. With the aforementioned tips, you can prepare for the homebuying journey and limit the risk of encountering various problems as you search for your ideal house.




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Posted by Liberty Real Estate on 10/3/2018

When you stop and think about all the preparations involved in putting your house on the market and avoiding mistakes, it can feel overwhelming! The good news is that you don't have to go it alone.

An experienced real estate agent can provide you with invaluable guidance on everything from effectively staging your home to complying with seller disclosure requirements.

One aspect of selling your house in the shortest amount of time (and for the highest price) is doing everything you can to make a great first impression on prospective buyers. You've probably heard the old expression "Presentation is everything." While that might be a slight overstatement when it comes to selling your house, it is a concept that is well worth keeping in mind. The overall impression prospective buyers take away with them after they've viewed your property will have a powerful impact on whether they decide to include it on their "short list."

Let There Be Light!

Sometimes the simplest changes can produce the biggest results. One example is lighting. If a room is inadequately lit, then you're not going to be showing it to its best advantage. Spaces that are too dimly lit can come across as dreary, shadowy, and uninviting. If you have bedrooms or other living spaces that don't have a ceiling light, for example, it might be worth the expense of having an electrician come in and correct that. Otherwise, homebuyers may find it frustrating and off-putting when they flip a wall switch, and it only turns on a ceiling fan, a floor lamp, or nothing!

Dimmer switches are often an easy and inexpensive solution for rooms that seem either too bright or too dark. Prospective buyers like the feeling that they can adjust the lighting in any room to match their immediate needs and mood.

Letting in as much natural light from the outside is another way to create a bright, cheerful ambiance in your home. Using decorative curtain ties to pull back curtains as far as possible can add a nice finishing touch while allowing as much outside light to shine in as possible.

If you happen to notice that your curtains are wrinkled, faded, tattered, heavy looking, or noticeably dated, you might want to consider replacing them with newer, more cheerful versions. The appearance and age of your curtains can have a lasting effect on the impression house hunters get from your home.

While we're on the topic of windows, keeping them impeccably clean is a goal worth prioritizing. That can be a difficult thing to keep up with if you have young children and pets who are always leaving smudges on glass and mirrors, but the cleanliness of windows is a small but important detail that will be noticed by potential buyers.

Although there are dozens of things to keep in mind when trying to make a great impression on home buyers, your real estate agent will help you identify cost-effective strategies for putting your best foot forward.





Posted by Liberty Real Estate on 9/26/2018

Selling your home can be scary, particularly for those who are listing a residence for the first time. Fortunately, we're here to help you face your home selling fears so you can overcome them before you add your property to the real estate market.

Now, let's take a look at three common home selling fears, along with some of the ways that you can put these concerns to rest.

1. I won't be able to get the best price for my home.

Getting the best price for a house is the number one concern for most home sellers, and for good reason. Lucky for you, there are several quick, easy ways to ensure you can maximize the value of your residence.

First, check out the housing market and see how your house stacks up against similar residences that are available. This will enable you to collect valuable housing market data that can help you price your house accordingly.

Don't forget to complete a home appraisal too. A property appraiser will allocate the necessary time and resources to analyze your house's interior and exterior. Then, he or she will provide a report that outlines your home's strengths and weaknesses so you can better understand the true value of your residence.

2. My home will stay on the real estate market for years to come.

Let's face it Ė a home seller likely wants his or her residence to sell as soon as it hits the real estate market. Sometimes, a house can linger on the real estate market for an extended period of time. And when this happens, it is easy to question whether a homebuyer will ever submit an offer on a residence.

As a home seller, it is important to ensure your house makes a positive first impression on homebuyers.

Spend some time mowing the front lawn, clearing dirt and debris from walkways and performing assorted home exterior improvements. This will enable you to boost your house's curb appeal instantly.

Also, declutter your home's interior as much as possible. By doing so, you can make it simple for homebuyers to envision what life would be like if they decide to purchase your residence.

3. When the time comes, I won't be able to relocate to a new home.

After you sell your residence, you'll need to move to a new address. The relocation process often can be difficult, especially if you have lived in a particular house for many years.

A real estate agent can help you prepare for the relocation process. This housing market professional understands all aspects of the home selling cycle, and as such, will be happy to offer expert assistance at all times.

Although selling a home may seem challenging, an informed home seller will understand what it takes to get the best results possible. And if you address your home selling fears now, you should have no trouble optimizing the value of your house and accelerating the home selling process.




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Posted by Liberty Real Estate on 9/19/2018

Once you buy a home, you realize that every penny of your budget matters. The initial purchase of a house can be financially overwhelming. Youíll be withdrawing thousands of dollars from your account to secure the home. Once you close on the house, itís time to buckle down on your budget. Continue reading for some tips on how to do just that.


Food Spending


For most people, food spending is one of the biggest things that suck the life out of their budget. Whether youíre getting take out three times a week or spending massive amounts at the grocery store, itís time to take a serious look at your food spending.


Shop With A Plan


If you head to the grocery store with a plan in mind, your shopping trip will be more successful and less expensive. Many people are unsure of what they have in their cabinets and fridge, let alone what to make for dinner. Make a list of meals to have for the week. Then, see what you need to complete those recipes in your kitchen and pantry. Itís also a good idea to stock your pantry with essentials when sales are going on.        


Supermarket ads can also be incredibly useful. You might have to store hop on a weekly basis, but shopping with the sales can save you a lot of money in the long term. 


Look At Your Credit Card Statements


Are you being charged for a monthly gym membership that you donít ever make use of? You can do one of two things: Start going to the gym or cancel out your membership and begin a daily jogging routine. Look at your cable bill and any other monthly subscriptions that you have. See where you can cut back. Are premium movie channels a necessity? Itís easy to forget what weíre being charged for on a monthly basis if we donít look at our bank and card statements. 


Cut Luxuries


Maybe in your life before becoming a homeowner, you went for a weekly massage or had a monthly housecleaning service. You can still have these luxuries, but they may need to be less often or less extensive. For example, a significant portion of time during maid service is spent loading the dishwasher or cleaning pots and pans. You can clean up after yourself and your family each night following dinner and cut back on the amount of time a maid would need to spend in your home. The cleaning person also now will have more time to spend on other things in the house that need attention. 


You can keep your massage; it may just have to be bi-weekly or monthly. Get creative to still have the things you want in your budget without going overboard.    




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