Commonly Overlooked Spring Cleaning Hiding Places

Don’t we wish spring cleaning were as simple as Snow White wielding a broom and whistling while she works? It seems no matter how thorough a housekeeper you are, there are a number of spots that tend to get bypassed during your spring-cleaning tirade, only to grow in grime if ignored.

What? You’re one of those people who supposedly leaves no stone unturned as you move through your spring cleaning tasks like a whirling dervish? Realtor.com suggested these areas of your home we can bet you’ll forget to clean this spring as well as what to do about it.

Tile floors and/or countertops have grout that can harbor germs and mold, and a mere swipe of a nubby-sided sponge or a thorough mop job may not cut it. The grout will eventually start to stain, meaning an even bigger cleaning job down the road. Cleaning experts advise wiping the grout with vinegar, then scrubbing it with baking soda and a brush. Yes. On your hands and knees, if need be. Also effective are borax or olive oil-based Castile soap. For in-your-face moldy grout, spray on 3% hydrogen peroxide diluted by half in water and let it steep for 45 minutes, then rinse.

We’re not trying to go existentialist on you, but just because you can’t see dirt doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. Picture yourself as a tiny drone buzzing close to the ceiling, photographing anything above your sightline, and you’ll be able to picture where a primo dust collection is taking place. We’re talking door and trim tops, upper kitchen cabinets not attached to the ceiling, stately bookcases as well (as the tops of each book), and on and on. And just think about how anything that started out as dust in your kitchen is now mixed with sticky kitchen grease. It’s the stuff about which obsessive types have nightmares.  How to head off those nightmares? Use a damp cloth to wipe door frames and bookshelves. For greasy gunk, try rubbing dish detergent on, leaving it for a moment, then wiping it off. If that doesn’t cut it, level up to Goo Gone Kitchen Degreaser. And don’t forget light fixtures and ceiling fans that trap bugs and attract dust bunnies.

“Look down” is not just a musical phrase out of a song in Les Mis. Try casting your eyes down into your garbage disposal using a small flashlight to aid your view. But first, prepare your stomach for it. Beside general disgust, you’ll take note of the serious grease buildup that has the potential to seriously back up your sink drains. Attack this by running hot water, turning on the disposal, pouring a tablespoon of dish soap down there, and letting the water run for 15 to 30 seconds. Then turn off the disposal and let the water run until this orifice is bubble-less. Use an angled brush (if you can find one) to scrub the underside of the drain flaps with hot water and dish soap.

Okay, toilets are just naturally disgusting merely by the nature of and reason for their existence, and your toilet brush and holder can make their own horror movies. We know thousands of fastidious people simply give up on the idea of cleaning these things in favor of buying new ones and, of course, that is an option as long as you budget for it. But you can also prevent some germ build-up on your existing implements by spraying down the brush with disinfectant after each use. Use your toilet seat to clamp it down and let it dry awhile, dripping over the bowl. Oh, and spraying warm water mixed with a few capfuls of bleach is also a good remedy. Just be very careful with the bleach.

Drapery is a passive collector of dust, pet hair, odors, and other air gunk. Start with vacuuming them, then determine if they are washable. You can rent a steamer for the really heavy stuff, but the very idea of cleaning a house full of drapery may have you running to a professional.

Oh, and don’t forget the electronics — phones, keyboards, computers, entertainment electronics, etc. All fall into the category of things your grimy fingers touch every day and some heat up, making them dust magnets. Keyboards collect food crumbs (you know how this happens, so don’t pretend you don’t). After carefully flopping your keyboard over to dislodge the crumbs, use a toothpick or Q-tip to dislodge anything stuck in the crevices and swipe the rest with a cotton ball soaked (but not dripping from) in a tiny bit of rubbing alcohol.

Did you know that research shows that cell phones are dirtier than toilet seats? For your phone, grab a dewy-soft microfiber cleaning cloth and spray it with a 50/50 combination of distilled water and vinegar or distilled water and isopropyl alcohol. Wipe down your phone thoroughly without getting it too wet.

Chimneys are serious business and chimney fires are more common than most would think. Don’t want to get up on your own roof risking life and limb to sweep your own chimney? Then call a handy professional for the task, because doing it wrong can have serious consequences. Experts recommend once a year for this at a minimum for optimum fireplace safety.

Have you decided that no amount of spring cleaning is going to make you happy with the house you are currently in?  Maybe now is the time to sell!  Spring is an excellent time to get a home on the market, however, before you do that, Contact Us. We can help you get pre-approved for a mortgage and determine how much house you can buy this next time around.  Rainbow Mortgage, Inc. is a broker so we have access to many different lenders and their loan programs which translates into more options for you!

Source: TBWS

Rainbow Mortgage Inc March Madness

This is Mortgage Madness!

It’s March Madness on and off the court! Rainbow Mortgage Inc. is currently offering so many different unique home loan programs that it’s pure mortgage madness!

1% Down

The buzzer is ticking down and it’ll soon be game over for our 1% down home loan program! This program is perfect for first time home buyers or those who are strapped for cash but have great credit. You, the home buyer puts 1% down, the lender gives you an additional 2%, which gives you 3% equity in your home!

FREE Appraisals

What’s better than seeing your team make it through to the Final Four- getting a FREE appraisal on your home! If you’re looking to purchase a home in either Hennepin or Ramsey County, it qualifies for a free appraisal! No matter what your income is, or if this is your first or 5th home, you’ll save over $500! (other counties may also be eligible, call for details).

High Balance Loans

When it’s tournament time, these teams go big or go home, with our high balance home loans you’re able to go big and go home! Rainbow Mortgage Inc. is offering low-rate conventional loans for homes up to $850,000 with a loan amount as high as of $679, 650. This is big news since these conventional loans allow for lower rates, easier guidelines, and fewer documents than a jumbo loan.

Pre-Qualified

With the fast-moving housing market, it may feel like you’re watching the Selection Show while waiting to hear back if your offer has been accepted. Before the intensity builds, get a letter of pre-qualification. This not only proves to the sellers that you’re a serious contender for the big dance, it gives you an idea of what you can afford. Our pre-qualification process is simple, give us a call today to get it started!

Are you ready for mortgage madness?

Working with Rainbow Mortgage Inc. is always a slam dunk! We’ve been in business for over 19 years and have created systems to produce faster closing loans that require less paperwork. Now is the perfect opportunity to take advantage of our March Mortgage Madness. Call us today, and our team of mortgage experts will start planning your full court press.

Mortgage Loan

Save up to $525 with a FREE Home Appraisal!

If you’re buying a home, you may have noticed that it can be difficult to save money. As a Twin Cities mortgage broker, Rainbow Mortgage Inc. is ready to help you save money by shopping the rates and loan programs of many lenders. We’re one of the only Twin Cities mortgage companies that currently offer a FREE appraisal on homes in Hennepin and Ramsey Counties!

The $525 savings is offered on any Hennepin or Ramsey County home with a conventional loan and a minimum of a 3% down payment. Unlike other banks that may offer free appraisals, this program has no income limit for the homebuyers! Whether you’re a first-time home buyer or this is your 3rd home, this program will save you over $500 on top of Rainbow Mortgage Inc.’s exceptional loan pricing. Throughout the entire process, you’ll receive the highest level of customer service and dedication from our expert mortgage brokers.

Interested in saving money, but don’t have enough for a 3% down payment? Ask about our 1% down payment program! We’re proud to offer many other home mortgage programs that can save you money upfront and throughout the life of your loan.

Ready to Get Started?

Contact our team today at 952-405-2090 to learn more about these home loan programs and how we can help you save money!

2018 Financial Resolutions

It’s not too late to start your 2018 Resolutions!

More than 25% of people who make a New Year’s Resolution include a financial goal on their list.  Here are the four most common finance-related New Year’s Resolutions, and how you can easily follow them throughout the entire year!

 

1) Monitor Your Credit Score

Don’t put yourself in a situation where you apply for a loan and have to hope your credit score is good enough. Monitoring your credit score is easy to do and should be done every few months. Keeping an eye on your credit is not only beneficial when applying for a home mortgage loan or credit card, but you’ll also be able to see if there are any fraudulent accounts opened in your name. Federal law allows you to get a FREE copy of your credit report every 12 months from each credit reporting company to determine if the information on your credit report is accurate and up to date. You can check your credit for free at www.annualcreditreport.com.

2) Track Your Expenses

The best way to manage your money is to know exactly where it is going. You can start tracking your expenses by writing down where you’re spending your money. You may be surprised to find out how much you’re actually spending, and how those Target runs and extra items at the grocery store really do add up. Once you see your spending habits, you’ll be able to find areas you can cut back and set a realistic budget.

3) Cash Diet

 After the holidays, you and your bank account may be feeling a little sluggish. If you’re like me, you’ve indulged in too many cookies and drinks and swiped your card too many times over the last few months. Consider helping your waistline and your budget by going on a cash diet by only paying with cash. When physically handing over cash, you’re seeing the money leaving your possession at that very moment. Unlike when you swipe your card, you generally won’t experience the same feeling until you check your bank statement to see all of the transactions at which point it’s too late.

4) Save

I am fairly sure that there isn’t a single person who hasn’t thought “I wish I would have saved more” at one time in their life. It is never too late to start saving, and it’s ok to start small. The easiest way to start is to set up automatic transfers from your checking account to your savings account every month. Setting a goal will also help you save. It’s great to say, “I’ll save more” but setting a specific goal will make it easier for you to see your progress and achieve your goal.

 

If your New Year’s Resolution is to save for your next home, ask our Twin Cities mortgage team about our low-down home mortgage payment options. You may only have to save 1% of the home’s value to be approved for a home loan! Rainbow Mortgage Inc. is one of the few independent home mortgage companies in Minnesota to offer this unique program. Learn more about our 1% Down Payment program and start your 2018 New Year’s Resolution today!       

Rainbow Mortgage Inc.

3300 Edinborough Way #550

Edina, MN 55435

 NMLS# 345827 || 952-405-2090|| www.rainbowmortgageinc.com|| dave@rainbowmortgageinc.com

Mortgage Myths

Mortgage Myths: Busted!

When you mention you are about to buy a house, there’s a chance that your friends and family will give you their advice on how to get a mortgage or tips they’ve heard before. While some of the advice may be helpful, you should most likely proceed with caution since rules, regulations, and programs change all the time in the mortgage loan world. Here are the top 5 mortgage myths that we hear from our clients.

1) You need excellent credit to qualify.

Typically, a credit score of 670 is “good” and higher scores will generally help keep your interest rates lower- saving you money! Each specific loan program has a different credit requirement; some FHA loans can be done with a 600 or even a 500 credit score. While your credit score is a key factor, lenders look at other items while reviewing your mortgage loan application too. Ask us what programs your score qualifies for, or how to improve it if you’re not satisfied with your current credit score.

2) If you get pre-qualified, you definitely get a loan.

It’s advised that you get a letter of prequalification before you start looking for a home, and you may think this means you’re guaranteed a loan, but that’s not the case. The mortgage pre-qualification process determines the amount of home you’ll be eligible to purchase, based off of your income, credit score and a few other factors. Your pre-qualification letter is not a binding agreement or a specific offer to lend, as you’ll have to provide further documentation once you’re ready to move forward with the loan process and have found a house!

3) You need a significant down payment to purchase a home.

It’s been programmed in our minds that a 20% down payment is needed to purchase a home. It is not a requirement, but is an ideal amount. There are many loan programs out there that work with significantly lower down payments for those who may be strapped for cash, some programs even accept 1% or 3.5% down. The government also offers a few programs that require no down payment. Both the USDA and VA Loans offer mortgage loans without down payments! Keep in mind that if you do not put 20% down, you may be required to pay mortgage insurance. Adding that additional insurance will be important to factor into your monthly mortgage payment.

4) A 30-year loan is the best option.

A loan with a 30 year term may be the best option if you are looking to keep your payments lower, however, lower interest rates are usually offered with lower term mortgages. A 15-year mortgage may be the best option because of the amount of interest you’ll save over the life of the loan, however, your payment will most likely be higher than the 30 year option because of the shorter term of the loan (must be paid off in 15 years versus 30). Another low payment, low interest rate option would be an ARM or an Adjustable Rate Mortgage, where the interest rate periodically changes to reflect the market conditions. The rate may go up, causing your payment to go up, or it may go down, causing your payment to decrease. Consider each of these options when deciding which loan option is best for you! As a local mortgage broker, we’re able to shop around and find the different loan options so you don’t have to.

5) Student debt will prevent you from buying a home.

While it may be true that student loan debt may hinder your ability to purchase a home, new guideline changes have made it a bit easier. The debt-to-income ratio was increased to 50% since many of the first-time mortgage applicants looking to buy a home currently have student loan debt. Before this increase, borrowers had to fit all of their monthly debt obligations (including the presumed mortgage) within 45% of their pre-tax income. Even though the ratio has been increased, consider if it is right for your budget to have approximately 50% of your budget going towards debt.

These mortgage myths just break the surface on all of the free-floating mortgage advice. Have further questions on your situation, give us a call!

 

Rainbow Mortgage Inc.

3300 Edinborough Way #550

Edina, MN 55435

 NMLS# 345827 || 952-405-2090|| www.rainbowmortgageinc.com|| dave@rainbowmortgageinc.com

1% Down Payment

Get Into Your Home With A 1% Down Payment

The notion that you need a 20% down payment to purchase a home is gone! Rainbow Mortgage Inc. is excited to offer the conventional 1% down with equity boost loan program. It’s as easy as 1,2,3!

You provide 1% down.

The lender gives you an additional 2%.

Giving you a total of 3% down at closing!

What does 1% down look like? It could be the sum of your yearly gym dues. Maybe it’s one month’s rent, or a year’s worth of lattes.  It could be the cost of a vacation or even a designer handbag. Saving for your home’s down payment is no longer a daunting task! You may be thinking that there is a catch, either it’s an adjustable rate mortgage (ARM) or you must buy points for a lower rate. This program is a 30-year fixed rate loan, with great low rates- which means no additional points due at closing! The loans also close fast and are available without monthly Mortgage Insurance.

“The 1% down program we’re making available to clients is a new alternative to the 3% down program that already exists,” said Dave Jamison, VP of Rainbow Mortgage Inc. “It’s a conventional loan designed for borrowers with strong FICO scores who want to save money on their down payment and maximize their monthly discretionary income.”

This conventional program is available to homebuyers with a minimum FICO score of 720 and a maximum debt-to-income ratio of 43%. Rainbow Mortgage Inc. is one of the few independent mortgage companies in Minnesota and the U.S. to offer a 1% down payment option in the form of a conventional loan, as opposed to a government backed loan.

 

Interested in learning more about Rainbow Mortgage Inc.’s conventional 1% down with equity boost program- give us a call!

 

Rainbow Mortgage Inc.

3300 Edinborough Way #550

Edina, MN 55435

 NMLS# 345827 || 952-405-2090|| www.rainbowmortgageinc.com|| dave@rainbowmortgageinc.com

**Note: not all loans can close in 20 days or less. Other conditions may apply. Not everyone qualifies for the 3% down. Borrower contributes 1% down, lender contributes 2% of the loan amount up to $5000 for the down payment and the borrower is responsible for any difference to get the required 3% down. Call for terms and conditions.

U.S. Homes get Snapped up at the Fastest Pace in Three Decades

“Here’s more evidence that the defining characteristic of the U.S. housing market is a shortage of inventory for sale: Homes are sitting on the market for the shortest time in 30 years, according to an annual report on homebuyers and sellers published today by the National Association of Realtors.

The typical home spent just three weeks on the market, according to the report, which focused on about 8,000 homebuyers who purchased their home in the year ending in June. That was down from four weeks in the year ending June 2016 and 11 weeks in 2012, when the U.S. housing market was still reeling from the foreclosure crisis. It was the shortest time since the NAR report began including data on how long homes spend on the market, in 1987.

Buyers are snapping up homes quickly at a time when for-sale listings are in short supply, forcing them to compete. The number of available properties declined in September, according to NAR’s monthly report on existing home sales, marking the 28th consecutive month of year-on-year decline in inventory.

In addition to moving fast, buyers also had to pony up to close the deal. Forty-two percent of buyers paid at least the listing price, the highest share since the NAR survey started keeping track in 2007.

“With the lower end of the market seeing the worst of the supply crunch, house hunters faced mounting odds in finding their first home,” said Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, in a statement. “Multiple offers were a common occurrence, investors paying in cash had the upper hand, and prices kept climbing, which yanked homeownership out of reach for countless would-be buyers.””

As seen in MPA Mag. Read original article here.
Copyright Bloomberg 2017