Getting Pre-Approved for a Real Estate Loan

What does it Mean?

There is a difference between getting pre-qualified and pre-approved to buy one of the condos for sale downtown. The difference is a pre-qualification means you may be able to get the loan based on skimming of your income and other information. This is why you may get pre-qualified credit card loan offers from time to time. The information usually comes from a list.

When you are pre-approved for a real estate loan, it means you are able to get that money. You can use it to buy one of the condos for sale downtown that you are in love with. This process involves you actually applying for a loan, providing all of your documents, and completing everything the lenders needs to get you approved.

They will tell you the amount of money you can borrow and the interest rate. The offer is going to be good for a set period of time. Typically, it is going to be up to 90 days after you have been approved. Armed with this information, you can start looking around. Once you find the place you wish to make an offer on, they can help you to proceed.

Know what you can Afford

It doesn’t make sense to look for condos for sale downtown that are outside of your price range. With the pre-approval process, you are able to shop within your market price. You can use filters online to find those at or below your approved amount. You can talk with a real estate agent and they can refer you to real estate on the market that fits that amount too.

If you can find one of the condos for sale downtown that you want to make an offer on that is less than you were approved for, that is exciting! Not only does it mean you can buy it, but it also means you can reduce your monthly payments below what you know you can pay. That means more money for savings or you can use it to pay off the mortgage early.

Make an Offer

You have bargaining power with the pre-qualification for a mortgage loan. When you make an offer on one of those condos for sale downtown, the seller is going to see you are already approved. It can be enticing to them to accept the amount you offer rather than to hold out for another offer to come along.

Since you are already approved, you aren’t going to be on pins and needles after the offer, hoping you can get the money. It is very upsetting to some consumers who find the perfect place but then they can’t get approved for the loan. The closing can be done in less time too if you already have your loan approval completed.

Sometimes, there are credit report issues that prevent someone from getting the loan. Finding out about them early on before you look at property can be helpful. It gives you time to evaluate the situation and to work to clear it up. Then you can move forward with buying a place and not have unexpected surprises crash your dream.

Should Long Term Real Estate Investors Focus On Cash Flow or Growth?

There are really two sides or two strategies to this debate. I lean one way for sure and will explain why but, I am also open about this and understand that other people have goals and strategies that differ from my own. In this article I want to briefly talk about both strategies and then give you some ideas to expand what you are trying to accomplish.

I want to define a long term investor as someone who is purchasing real estate with the strategy to hold onto it for at least 5 years but in most cases much longer. This is a great way to grow wealth and although it can be slow, it will guarantee financial freedom if the strategy is done correctly.

When we discuss lending the staple in the industry is the 30 year fixed rate loan. The advantage to this loan is that your principal and interest payment will remain constant for 30 years even though rents should increase. This loan also comes with the lowest payment in the market helping you to maximize cash flow. I put 30 year loans on my properties whenever possible. (This becomes more difficult as you get more properties which might be a topic for a different article). I like the cash flow because it gives me control and I can choose where to invest it.

The disadvantage to a 30 year loan is that it takes 30 years to pay off the house, assuming you make the minimum payment. If you are a believer in paying off your rentals then a shorter term loan might be a better strategy and will give you the discipline to actually do it. Because interest rates are important to a lot of investors it is important to know you will get a much better rate with a shorter term loan.

My personal belief is that if you are leveraged on your properties you can buy more properties and more properties create more cash flow and more growth. It is the best of both worlds. This is true only IF you are buying quality deals and have reserves and plans in place for the unexpected. As many of you know when I started investing with my wife we would leverage as much as we could and we purchased as many houses as we could. Needless to say that back fired and we lost almost everything. I share this because I want you to know that I understand that leverage creates additional risk. However, if you are purchasing properties that cash flow AFTER vacancies and maintenance there really is not much of a down side.

As you can see I am not a fan of paying off your real estate when you are in your growth strategy period. I believe this strongly for several reasons and have been quoted in major publications sharing my view. I do, however, think you should start paying them off as you get closer to retirement or when you are in a position that income becomes more important than growth. I also understand that many people have a different risk tolerance than me.

There is one thing I want to caution you about. I would not recommend purchasing property on speculation. Again, we learned this the hard way. If you purchase for cash flow, whether you choose to pay off the property or not, you won’t get hurt. If you cash flow and the house decreases in value, you keep it and enjoy the cash flow. If it goes up in value… well, you either keep it to enjoy the cash flow or you can sell it and take the cash. Don’t get caught up on any of the hype. In Denver the big thing right now is the light rail expanding North, West, and Northwest. Several new lines going in could of course increase the value of real estate, but that is speculation and if the market turns or the lines get delayed you could suffer.

In my opinion, if you are trying to grow your money quickly and are less concerned with the income, you should purchase as many properties as you can, especially those of you in Minnesota. Inventory is not as tight as other parts of the county and it is still easy to buy rentals with no down payment. To purchase as many properties as you can you need to leverage as much as you can.

I want to close by sharing one last opinion. Although I am a strong believer in leverage and being smart about it, I understand that it is not always the best way to go. In Colorado specifically, there are not many deals. Travis, Justin and I talk about this frequently. We all want more deals in Denver but cannot find them. If there are limited deals in the areas you want to buy, you need other investment vehicles to put your money. For some that is investing outside your area, which is what I am doing and for some it is paying off your loans, which I am also doing. If you want to buy more but cannot find the deals, by all means focus on paying off the loans. That is much better than leaving your money in the bank doing nothing.

If you have any stories on the relating topic please feel free to share.

Rookie Mistakes To Avoid When Investing In An Apartment Building

An apartment building can still be a good investment today. Why? For starters, there are still a lot of people who are still looking for homes to rent. In addition, the units of an apartment building do not just have to be spaces for residence or homes for families and individuals. By getting the right permits, units in an apartment building can be rented out as commercial spaces.

First-time buyers of apartment buildings will certainly have high expectations regarding this particular investment. This is mainly because they will invest a significant amount of money for this venture. As such, if you want to make sure you will own the right apartment building that can help you find success in the field of property rentals, make sure you avoid these common (and costly) rookie mistakes:

Not looking into the history and reputation of the apartment building’s builder or developer.

As a first-time owner of an apartment building, the last thing you want to happen is to stumble upon some structural problems or system failures. As such, it is important to check the background, capability, and reputation of the company that constructed the whole property. Going online and asking companies or individuals that have worked with the property developer is a good way to get some ideas about their competency. If the property developer has a good reputation and has stellar reviews about the properties they built, chances are, it is quite safe to buy a building that they constructed.

Buying a property that is located in an unpopular area.

When purchasing an apartment building, keep in mind that aside from your budget, an important factor you have to consider is its location. Real estate experts say that it is a good idea to buy a property in an area that is improving since buying in a declining location will simply result in high vacancies and rent drops.

Not having sufficient cash flow and reserves.

As a newbie investor, if you are not confident with your reserved funds, you have to get into deals that will create a quick cash flow only. Avoid going into deals that won’t provide a cash flow from day one even if that transaction promises a huge potential profit since you may be put at risk of being unable to pay the bills.

In addition, make sure you have enough cash reserves. Failure to do so can get you involved in different complicated situations. As a property owner, keep in mind that a lot of unexpected issues can happen. As such, you need to have a reserve fund that is adequate to pay for these emergencies.

Before Buying Size Your Residential Real Estate Needs

The largest financings we establish in our lives are often the hardest to indemnity, that’s why it is really important to figure out what you need and then move on with your search. If we talk about the big-hearted investments, one thing that beings deplete their totality life’s hard-earned money is real estate. No trouble whether you are extremely rich or a common man saving every penny to buy a residence for their own families, you can’t afforded to make an spontaneous decision and return your time of rejoice into remorse by resolving down for something “youve never” missed. It is crucial to know about the options you have before taking a plunge into dwelling buying, for they say half of your search completes when you are sure about what kind of residence you are looking for. The directory of the options that any average dwelling seeker can look for in the real estate market includes 😛 TAGEND

Newly Constructed Home

What could be better that designing each and every detail of your illusion dwelling yourself? Projecting your mansion yourself give you the leveraging of picking every little thing from layout of such structures to the color of the cabinet, which constitutes one of the most dominant reasons set out above the culture of newly erected live is increasing day by day. The major handicap that comes along to purchase a brand new fabricated house is the schedule of unplanned expenditures that occur meanwhile the construction.

Condominiums

Condominiums are the individual swamps located in a multi-story build. The condominium construct generally has its own recreation centers, parks, browsing hubs and is governed by an association that determines the monthly cost and takes care of the maintenance and improvement of the building. The major drawback of living in a condominium was the absence of privacy and increased depreciation during a housing- market downturn.

Townhouses

Vertically joined in a row with other similar ogling rooms, townhouses are perfect for the people who are seeking for the privacy of a single category suite together with the exterior maintenance of a condo. Townhouses are generally located in the vicinity of schools and ballparks. They are bit cheaper compared to the condominiums and newly created houses but will not be the best choice if you are overly sensitive about racket coming from the neighboring shared wall.

Foreclosure Property

Foreclosure owneds are known to be an inexpensive alternative for the person or persons looking for a previously owned residence that require minor reparations and modifications. A foreclosure property is also known as Real Estate Owned property and is often owned by the lender as the previous owner defaulted on paying back lend. Foreclosure belongings are usually up to 65% below world markets and believed to be good considers on the market.

Second Homes

The second home is a secret haven parties buy to get away from the standardization of life and spend a week or two into the woods away from the hustle and commotion of municipality. The second or vacation homes are difficult to maintain as there is no one to look after the restores and maintenance of the house when you are away.

Now that you have a brief feeling about some of the real estate options available for a residence customer, figure out what kind of room you miss and propose your search accordingly. Buying real estate is not a small pace but with lots of knowledge and right steering you can oblige “the worlds largest” out of your investment.

The Next Real Estate Collapse

As daily commutes go, I have nothing to complain about when I point my car toward Sovereign HQ each morning. The traffic congestion on Interstate 95, South Florida’s main artery, is horrendous. So I take the scenic route, the coastal beach road known as A1A.

The views of the Atlantic Ocean are nice. But more recently, I enjoy the drive for a different reason. It’s a ringside seat to the extravagance of the now-deflating luxury housing bubble I warned about three months ago. Recent data point more ominously to a serious problem in this sector.

Each day, my drive on A1A takes me past what is the single most expensive new home for sale in the United States: Le Palais Royal, under construction for the last five years.

Situated on 4.4 acres of beachfront, the “spec mansion” features the Atlantic Ocean as its backyard. The front yard is a nearly 500-foot deep-water expanse of the Intracoastal Waterway – perfect for even the largest private super yacht.

The mansion’s soaring front gates, accented in 22-karat gold leaf, make it sort of hard to miss as you drive by. Just beyond the gates is a 60,000 square foot home with 11 bedrooms, 17 bathrooms, an 18-seat IMAX home theater (with its 50-foot-wide screen), and a 30-car subterranean garage. The building plans call for a second phase on the vacant beachfront lot next door. That’s where the ice-skating rink, go-cart track, bowling alley and private nightclub are supposed to go.

And it can all be yours for just $159 million.

But the tide of money fueling the purchase of luxury homes, big or small, is receding as we speak.

Luxury Homes: The Next Real Estate Collapse?

Largely ignored in the holiday rush was the news that luxury home prices fell 2.2% during the third quarter – the first such decline in nearly four years.

According to the Redfin real estate brokerage, wealthy clients are stepping back out of fear from stock market volatility, and are worrying about tying up too much of their wealth in non-liquid assets, especially if another real estate collapse appears.

The decline is even more notable because luxury homes serve as something of a bellwether for the rest of the “non-lux” real estate market (which still rose just under 4% for the same period).

The original housing-bubble stocks of a decade ago might offer a clue on the timing. Shares of Toll Brothers (NYSE: TOL), the nation’s largest builder of luxury homes, peaked in July of 2005 before starting their precipitous decline. But the stock prices of builders focused on the low- and mid-priced ends of the market stayed strong – at least at first. For instance, the shares of Lennar Brothers (NYSE: LEN), one of the biggest homebuilders in the country, didn’t crack until April of 2006.

Interestingly, Toll Brothers’ shares today are down nearly 25% from their post-recovery highs (to the lowest price in 13 months), while Lennar shares are just starting to break down.

California Dreamin’?

Chinese buyers have been key players in the run-up of America’s luxury home prices. And their influence is felt most strongly in California and the San Francisco Bay area, the hottest of America’s real estate markets this go-round.

Not coincidentally, it appears Chinese buyers may now be pulling back there as well, possibly ushering in the next real estate collapse. Home sales in California fell 20.5% in November – more than twice the monthly average (it’s traditionally a weak month prior to the end of year holidays). October’s home sales also fell a little over 5%, while dropping 1.5% in September.

For now, the real estate community appears to be dismissing the collapse of sales as the result of changes in new loan disclosure rules by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and what is usually a softer seasonal period for home sales anyway.

I don’t blame them. As a media consultant once told me back in my reporting days, “Never let too many facts get in the way of a good story.”

But the “Chinese buyers” real estate gravy train is grinding to a halt fast. Last summer’s 40% decline in the Shanghai Composite Index should have been the first clue. The second was the relentlessly positive “it’s just temporary” narrative spun by so many brokers and property developers who don’t want the ride to end. The third clue may be upon us here at the start of 2016 as the Shanghai index lurches lower yet again.

So what’s it all mean to you?

As Jeff Opdyke has warned, don’t get comfortable with the Federal Reserve’s spin on things. As Chinese buyers retreat from American real estate, it kicks out yet another leg of support for the U.S. economy.