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The Mortgage Blog of Chris Schaller

Holiday Decorating Safety Tips

The holidays are right around the corner, and many people are preparing to decorate their homes, some elaborately so. While this can be fun for the whole family, it’s important to keep everyone safe. A few precautionary measures to take this holiday season are: Make sure your tree is not close to fireplaces or any other devices that create heat. When using artificial snow be sure to keep your distance, as the spray, if inhaled, can be bothersome to your lungs. Test all lights and make sure they work efficiently and safely. Also, when possible you should reduce the use of extension cords to avoid electrical danger. More here

Mortgage Application Activity Picks Up

According to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey, mortgage applications rose 4.9%, on a seasonally adjusted basis, from the previous week. The jump in mortgage applications this week ended the three-week decline in application activity. Additionally, the FHA share of mortgage applications also rose .3% from the previous week, and the seasonally adjusted Purchase Index jumped 12% reaching the highest level seen in approximately four months. More here

Frozen Pipe Prevention And Thawing Tips

Dealing with frozen pipes can be an unpleasant and expensive job. You can reduce the chances of your pipes freezing by taking some precautionary measures before extreme temperatures hit. Here are a few tips to help you avoid potential catastrophe: Insulate any exterior wall pipes; open cabinet doors to allow heat from your home to reach sink pipes; trickle water from faucets- moving water is less likely to freeze. When traveling away from home, do not set your thermostat any lower than 55 degrees. If your pipes do freeze, you should open the faucet letting water pass through, even if only a trickle- this will help the pipes to warm faster. More here

Housing Market Continues Steady Trajectory

Recent reports confirm the housing market remains headed in a positive direction. Lindsey Piegza, the chief economist at Sterne Agree said, “both from an investment standpoint and on a relative basis compared to the rental market, consumers continue to endeavor toward home-ownership. Improving demand for housing is additionally fueling a modest improvement in supply.” Piegza also suggests that the speed of recovery will depend on factors such as unemployment rates, hiring rates, and population growth. More here

Boomer Housing Myths Debunked

Many Baby Boomers are indeed downsizing, but according to recent data, 46% plan to upsize. Not as many Boomers plan to relocate either, as analysts frequently report; 63% intend to stay in their current homes. Of those planning to relocate, 51% have no plans to move to a retirement community in a sunny locale; 67% will stay within their home State, with 51% planning to stay within 30 miles of their current address. Additionally, many of the survey participants plan on making large upgrades to their current homes. More here

Mortgage Applications Increase

Applications for new home purchases jumped approximately 8% according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Builder Application Survey for October. Conventional loans made up 68.2% of all loan applications; FHA loans made up 16.2%, RHS/USDA loans made up 1.5% and VA loans made up 14.2%. The MBA’s chief economist, Mike Fratantoni said, “applications for new home purchases picked up in October, particularly for higher-priced homes. The continued improvement in the job market and still low mortgage rates are supporting the upper levels of the purchase market while the tight credit environment continues to constrain sales at the entry level.” Additionally, the average loan amount on new homes rose nearly $2,000 from September to October 2014. More here

Sought After Enhancements For High-End Homes

Many high-end homeowners are insisting on a new set of amenities to improve their quality of life. A few of the more popular extravagances are: A subterranean garage; a garage that moves your car to its desired location below ground automatically, at the touch of a button. Also, dining areas located within wine cellars are gaining in popularity. In addition, indoor sport and activity rooms continue to be sought after, along with elaborate air-purification systems. More here

How to: Cleaning Out Home Gutters

While cleaning out gutters is a dreaded task for many homeowners, it must be addressed in order to keep potential structural disasters at bay. Blocked gutters can cause damage to the trim and siding of your home, interior walls, and can even cause leakage in your basement. Listed here are a few tips that may help you when cleaning out your gutters: By rule of thumb, you should clean out your gutters once in the fall, and once each spring. More maintenance may be required, depending on the number of trees in close proximity to your home. You will need a ladder in most cases, and you should use gloves. Remove all debris, and then flush the gutters out with a hose to remove anything that may be left over. If you find any leaks or damaged spots, you can quickly caulk them with gutter sealant. You may want to consider investing in gutter guards, which will make upkeep easier. More here

Consumer Confidence In Housing Shows Impressive Increase

Consumer confidence in housing is on the rise, reaching an all-time-high. According to Fannie Mae’s National Housing Survey for October 2014, 45% of survey participants believe that they will be more financially secure within the next year. Many of the participants also expect the economy to improve, and 44% expect housing prices to jump and believe now is prime time to sell. The chief economist at Fannie Mae, Doug Duncan said, “consumers are growing more optimistic about the housing market in the face of broader improvement in economic sentiment.” More here

Housing Market Continues Slow Recovery

The National Association of Home Builders/First American Leading Markets Index (LMI) reports the housing market continues to make successful strides toward recovery. The U.S. housing market reached 90% of its normal economic housing activity last quarter, up 1% from the second quarter of 2014. Positive recovery is expected to maintain gradual growth. Kevin Kelly,  the NAHB Chairman said, “continued job creation, economic growth and increasing consumer confidence should help spur pent-up demand for housing.” More here

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About Me:

Chris Schaller is a certified mortgage planner/loan officer with Diamond Residential Mortgage in Springfield, IL. Chris is the only lender in central Illinois that is also a military veteran. He's consistently been in the top one percent of all lenders nationally in closed units and hosts the weekly “Let's Talk Mortgage” radio show on WMAY 970 AM and at www.wmay.com. Chris is the top FHA, VA, and Rural Development lender in central Illinois and the preferred lender for first-time buyers from local Realtors.
Diamond Residential Mortgage saves their clients an average of $3,000 on their home purchase. Text me at 217-341-6850 to find out why we are different.

Listen to “Let’s Talk Mortgage” every Saturday at 1:00 pm on WMAY 970 AM or at www.wmay.com.

Contact:

Chris Schaller
Certified Mortgage Planner / Loan Officer
NMLS# 233271
Diamond Residential Mortgage
2040 W. Iles St., Suite A
Springfield, IL 62704
Phone: 217-726-6864, x1501
Cell: 217-341-6850
Fax: 866-560-9667

Email:

 

chris.schaller@thedrmc.com

Website:

www.ILmortgageman.com

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