Helpful Info & Hints for First-Time Homeowners Filing 2012 Taxes


Helpful Info & Hints for 
First-Time Homeowners Filing 2012 Taxes


     By now, you should have received the end-of-year information you need to file your 2012 taxes.  If you were a new First-Time Home Buyer during 2012, this year will be your first opportunity to claim any tax savings available to you through your homeownership.

First-Time Home Buyers
     
     Homeowners can deduct expenses they sustain throughout the year for owning their home.  But which ones?  

     
     Below is a list of some of those deductions your can itemize when you file  Form 1040Schedule A  for taxes:

     *  Real Estate Taxes:  The homeowner must have paid the taxes at the time of Settlement/Closing (the share you, the homeowner paid as opposed to the Seller) ... or to the taxing body during the year.  This includes any payment made from an escrow account.

     *  Home Mortgage Interest Payments  (Main or 2nd Home, 1st or Second Mortgage)

     *  Points paid on your home loan.  Note:  Points, as a general rule, cannot be deducted in their full amount within the year paid.  Your must deduct them over the term of your mortgage.   (Points are defined as:  Charges paid, or treated as paid, by a Borrower to obtain a home mortgage.  Points may also be described as Loan Origination Fees, maximum loan charges, loan discount, or discount points.)  There is a particularly tricky definition attached to the payment of Points ... so please, contact your tax professional for guidance referring to this topic.


     *  Mortgage Insurance Premiums.  Deductible in certain cases, as of 2012.  (Qualified mortgage insurance is mortgage insurance provided by the VA, FHA, Rural Housing Administration, or private mortgage insurance (as defined in Section 2 of the Homeowners Protection Act of 1998 as in effect on Dec. 20, 2006)

Chicagoland Mortgage Lender
     *  Home Energy Efficiency Improvements:  The tax break (typically 10%) for this deduction is up to $500 for making certain improvements that increase a home's energy efficiency.  The dollar amount of this credit is subtracted from the amount due to the IRS.  Some of the tax breaks (varying rates depending on product) are available on a taxpayer's main home only.  Others are available on second homes, as well.  Properties must be located within the United States.

     Energy efficient product costs eligible for this tax break (at varying rates) include:    

     *  Energy-efficient windows and doors 
     *  Water heaters (non-solar) 
     *  HVAC (AC, ventilation, and furnaces)  
     *  Residential small wind turbines  
     *  Fuel cells  
     *  Geo-thermal heat pumps  
     *  Insulation itself 
     *   Biomass Stoves  
     *  Both metal and asphalt roofs   
     *  Solar energy systems 

    
     Helpful Info & Hints for First-Time Homeowners Filing 2012 Taxes.  The above represent some methods and products that will help new homeowners discover cost savings through their home ownership at the time they pay their taxes.  

     Because itemization is involved ... and because many of the above carry detailed rules and stipulations for being able to claim them, I recommend that you speak with a qualified tax professional,  contact me  for a referral, or seek out FREE help in filing your tax return through IRS-certified volunteers.  This FREE IRS service can be found through its website, IRS.gov ... or by calling 1.800.906.9887  - or - 1.800.829.1040.  


Mortgage Info

     *  Hoping to join the rank of  Home owner ... or discover the benefits of owning your own home?  Contact me today!  We'll work together to get you on the best and most speedy path to home ownership possible.
     I can be conveniently found at the following:
Direct:  815.524.2280
Cell/Text:  708.921.6331
eFax:  815.524.2281    Skype:  630.219.1316
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You're Getting Married! Congratulations! Establish a Lifetime of Good and Sound Financial Habits Together


You're Getting Married!  Congratulations!
Establish a Lifetime of Good and Sound
Financial Habits Together




     This Sunday, February 24th, 2013, I will be participating in the  Bridal Show and Expo  being held at The Renaissance Center214 No. Ottawa Street, in Joliet, IL.  The hours of this year's event are 12 Noon to 4:00 pm

     I was asked to participate in the Bridal Show and Expo by one of my favorite referral partners,  Heather Jelic, of  RE/MAX Action  located in Lisle, IL.  Heather and I are looking forward to meeting all the young couples attending this event.  Their happiness and enthusiasm is infectious and it certainly makes it fun to be in their presence both at the Expo and working with them in the future.

     I obviously wanted to have valuable information on hand for those young couples dreaming of buying a home at some point in their future.  So I put together a list of handy budgeting and financial suggestions that, when followed, will help the newlyweds turn their dream of owning a home together ... into a reality.

     My suggestion to newlywed couples is ... let the excitement of your wedding day die down a bit.  Take some time to relax and just bond.  Then have a few serious talks together.  Ones where you each take the opportunity to communicate your future financial goals and dreams to the other.   

     During your talks, tackle the following tips and suggestions one by one and then build a financial plan for yourselves.  A plan that will serve as a solid foundation and starting point from which to build a healthy financial future and also reap you the good credit and finances to buy or build a home together.

     Achieve your dreams and goals by:

     1.  Establishing your priorities and goals.  (Make sure to write them down)
     2.  Developing a Budget
     3.  Reviewing your present credit, debts, and credit scores
     4.  Deciding which of your standing debt(s)
can be eliminated or reduced
     5.  Deciding how to eliminate or reduce that debt
     6.  Discussing bank/savings accounts, both separate and joint accounts
     7.  Planning/Establishing an Emergency Fund
     8.  Designing a method in which you can both TRACK your new Budget and see your progress
     9.  Taking care of the documentation that comes with getting married.  If there was a name change involved, see to getting a  new Social Security Card,  a Driver's License, other forms of identification, and changing accounts reflecting that name change
    10.  Deciding who will be responsible for the actual payment of bills  
    11.  Implementing a tracking and filing system for your bills and financial documents.  (This will make  Pre-Qualification for a Mortgage  much easier and more smooth in the future)
   12.  Saving for Retirement
   13.  Changing any beneficiaries on accounts and policies, should you wish your spouse to become owner of them in the future.  Should you not have a Will, consider making one
   14.  Talking over all insurance coverages, both those already in existence and those you hope to purchase
   15.  Establishing ground rules for expenditures
   16.  Talking to an experienced Mortgage Originator well in advance of your home purchase ... as much as one year or more.  They will help place you in the best position to qualify for your Mortgage Financing when you decide to buy your home.

     Always remember:  Communicate in detail with each other regarding financial matters and do the things mentioned above.  You will start your marriage together off on the right step.  You're getting married!  Congratulations!  Establish a lifetime of good and sound financial habits together.   

     

     *  Hoping to buy a home in Joliet, Will County, or elsewhere in the Chicagoland region?  Contact me today!  I'll put my 40+ years of mortgage experience and expertise hard to work on your behalf.
     I can be easily found at:

Gene Mundt

Mortgage Originator  -  NMLS #216987  -  IL Lic. #031.0006220  -  WI Licensed
American Portfolio Mortgage Corp.
NMLS #175656


Direct:  815.524.2280
Cell/Text:  708.921.6331
www.genemundt.com
    eFax:  815.524.2281  
  

  
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Gene Mundt, Mortgage Originator, an Originator with 40+ years of mortgage experience, will offer you exemplary mortgage service and advice when seeking: Conventional, FHA, VA, Jumbo, USDA, and Portfolio Loans in Chicago and the greater Chicagoland region, including: The Lincoln-Way Area, Will County, (New Lenox, Frankfort, Mokena, Manhattan, Joliet, Shorewood, Crest Hill, Plainfield, Bolingbrook, Romeoville, Naperville, etc.), DuPage County, the City of Chicago, Cook County, and elsewhere within IL & WI. 

  Referrals are Welcomed!      
           

      




         

The Questions You Should Ask Your Will County Mortgage Lender in Order to Receive the Best Mortgage Financing for Your Needs


The Questions You Should Ask Your Will County Mortgage Lender in Order to Receive the 
Best Mortgage Financing for Your Needs


     In earlier posts, I have addressed some of the more major issues surrounding mortgages, mortgage processing, and mortgage closings.   


     In my post, "WHY Home Buying Transactions Must Begin With Home Buyers Getting Pre-Qualified!", I spoke of the great importance of being  pre-qualified  for your mortgage financing prior to viewing homes.  

     In  "Your Preparation and Planning for Buying a Home Needs to Start Well in Advance of Your Viewing of Homes", I addressed the time-frame you should follow as you begin the home buying and mortgage process.  

     I've even provided helpful information as to  HOW to find your Mortgage LenderBut once you have found and decided upon your Mortgage Lender, what then?  What questions regarding mortgages and mortgage processing should you ask?  What needs regarding your financing should you see to fulfilling?

     Below you will find a list of questions, I think are important to ask regarding your Mortgage and financing itself.  Receive the answers to the following questions and you'll be fairly certain that you're receiving the best Mortgage option and service possible for your financial scenario and needs:

     1.  How long is the Mortgage process?
          (If there are no problems or issues that arise, most mortgages are processed within a 30 to 45 day time period) 
     2.  What Mortgage program is best for me?
     3.  What costs will be involved in my financing?
           (Your Mortgage Lender should provide you with an estimate of your Closings Costs, called a  Good Faith Estimate.  Example provided)
     4.  What Interest Rates are available to me?
     5.  Is "paying down" (utilizing Discount Points) the Interest Rate an option ... and is it wise for me to do?
     6.  When will you  "Lock In"  my Interest Rate?
     7.  What is the  Annual Percentage Rate  of my loan?
     8.  Is it possible for me to improve my credit quickly so I can receive a better Interest Rate?
     9.  What Mortgage term suits my financial situation best?
   10.  What is the minimum/maximum  Down Payment  I will be asked to make?
   11.  Will my loan be "sold" after my Closing?
  12.   What are the Down Payment requirements for:   
           A.  FHA?
           B.  Conventional Loans?
           C.  VA Loans?
   13.  Is Mortgage Insurance necessary on all loans with less than 20% down?    
   14.  Does the cost of Mortgage Insurance vary with the percentage of Down Payment?
   15.  Can I finance Closing Costs?
   16.  Can someone help me finance with a monetary gift?
   17.  When and How am I able to pay my taxes?
   18.  Is an  Escrow Account  mandatory? 

     The Questions You Should Ask Your Mortgage Lender in Order to Receive the Best Mortgage Financing for Your Needs ... 

     Yes, there are many questions to ask during your initial conversations with your Mortgage Lender.  But making the effort and taking the time to ask them is very important. 

     It's also the only way that you will come to completely understand the mortgage options you have to choose from ... and receive the peace of mind of knowing that you have chosen the best mortgage program for yourself and your financial future. 

http://www.genemundt.com/ContactUs.aspx


     *  Have mortgage questions that need answers?  Contact me today!  Let's talk and give you the opportunity to get the information and answers you need before starting the mortgage process.  We'll work together and give you the peace of mind that comes with being fully-educated regarding home buying and mortgage financing.
     I can be conveniently found at:
Direct:  815.524.2280
Cell/Text:  708.921.6331
Click Here for your FREE
Mortgage Quote & Consultation  
 
eFax:  815.524.2281    




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Gene Mundt, Mortgage Lender, a Lender with 37 years of mortgage experience, will offer you exemplary mortgage service and advice when seeking:  
Conventional, FHA, VA, Jumbo, USDA, and Portfolio Loans in Chicago and the greater Chicagoland region, including:  
The Lincoln-Way Area, Will County, (New Lenox, Frankfort, Mokena, Manhattan, Joliet, Shorewood, Crest Hill, Plainfield, Bolingbrook, Romeoville, Naperville, etc.), DuPage County, the City of Chicago, Cook County, and elsewhere within IL


 
     
    



       

     

    
  

Considering Helping Your Child Buy a Home in Will County or Chicagoland? What Parents and/or Co-Signors Need to Know



Considering Helping Your Child Buy a Home in 
Will County or Chicagoland?

What Parents and/or Co-Signors Need to Know

   

 Contact Gene Mundt, Mortgage Originator today!   Within the current housing market, there is great opportunity to be found, especially for First-Time Home Buyers.  The cost of borrowing, in regards to Interest Rates, has remained fairly steady.  

    With all the positive opportunities that exist, many Home Buyers, along with their families, are looking to take advantage of the current positives by buying properties with the assistance of Co-Buyers/Co-Signors.  Most considering this path to home ownership are parents and/or relatives.

     As a Mortgage Originator, it's not uncommon for me to receive  questions regarding this method of Home Buying.  "Co-Signing" is happening more and more frequently, especially with young First-Time Home Buyers.  In Mortgage terms, this method of buying/borrowing is called being a "Co-Mortgagor" ... a fancy term for "another borrower".

    This practice is typically utilized when the "non-occupying" Co-Borrower (let's just say a parent) is the stronger applicant on a Mortgage ... and his/her income, Credit, and assets make for an "approvable" loan when the "main borrower/buyer" is not able to qualify for a Mortgage on their own.  

     Put another way, the child in this scenario is buying their first home, often has adequate Credit, but lacks the job history or income to qualify on their own. 

    Considering the (child's) parent's income, Credit, and debt makes the loan approvable because the parents' "vitals" help the numbers.  That means the debt-to-income ratios needed to reach the approval level are available.   

    With FHA, the down payment requirement is only 3.5%, and the Borrower (who MUST occupy the purchase residence) gets as good of Interest Rate as if they had borrowed on the mortgage alone.

    Obviously, this is great for the son/daughter, but what about the "Co-Signor, Co-Mortgagor, Parent" involved?  

    Fact is:  The Co-Signor will share the same debt and note responsibility as the main applicant.  That debt and responsibility will appear on their Credit Report as their mortgage obligation.  

    If the child misses a payment, the parents (Co-Signors/Co-Mortgagors) Credit Report will show as having a late payment.  A very valid reason for all parties involved to give this great consideration prior to agreeing to start the mortgage process.
    
Gene Mundt, Mortgage Originator Website
     Consider this though ... 

     Co-Signors/Co-Mortgagors (in my most recent Co-Signor/Co-Mortgagor case) were considering buying a home on their child's behalf because they didn't think the child could qualify on their own.  

     These parents were fully-prepared to put forward a 20-25% down payment, purchase the home in their own names, and then move the child in as a tenant.  The ability to become Co-Signors/Co-Mortgagors changed the financial scenario they received significantly for them and their child.

     How did it change?  And what are the differences to be found between the two methods of home buying? 

     The biggest difference is how the bank perceived their upcoming ownership.  Parents that just buy a property outright and rent it to their child are considered investors by the bank lending money.  

     Investors pay higher interest rates to borrow money (typically a minimum of 3/4%) ... and/or their Closing Costs rise several thousand dollars.  

     Why?  Because the bank considers this type of loan a higher RISK because of the "occupancy" status of the property.

     Now you know a bit about the ins-and-outs of Co-Signing/Co-Mortgaging.  But if you're a parent, or someone considering Co-Signing/Co-Mortgaging, you're going to need to know ... 

  • Where to start the financing process
  • How to start the process  
  • What financial documentation will be expected from you 
  • What funds will be subject to verification


     Much of the process of mortgage financing will be the same for Co-Signors/Co-Mortgagors as for the actual resident(s) of the property. 

     A handy list of those financial documents needed for mortgage application can be found via my website, by clicking ...  "HERE".  

      What is probably the most common concern or question I hear from Co-Signors/Co-Mortgagors (parents), is ... "How has the mortgage process changed since I last participated in it"? 

      There's no denying the truth.   For a great many parents the mortgage process will be unrecognizable from their own prior financing experiences.  And admittedly, the requests for documentation and verification could seem a bit overwhelming. 

     But documentation and verification is what is required to move the modern Mortgage Process along to successful completion.  Underwriters and end-lenders will not be deterred from it.  

     Co-Signors/Co-Mortgagors must be prepared to have monies/accounts/down payments verified, along with their employment, credit/debt, and more, just as their child will. 

     Now more than ever, the mortgage process itself is specific to those borrowers taking part in it ... so individual and personalized instructions regarding your financial scenario will be provided by your Mortgage OriginatorListen.  Learn.  Comply.

    If you do so, those requests are completed in a timely fashion, and  the Originator's instructions are followed, Co-Signors/Co-Mortgagors can help their child successfully establish credit, obtain historically low Interest Rates, and buy a home at very friendly housing prices. 

     Should this be a financial step you are considering within your own family ... contact me, to obtain information specific to your needs. 

     Becoming a Co-Signor/Co-Mortgagor for your child could be the gift that sets them down the path to a healthy financial future ... 



 

     
*  For personalized Mortgage info and service regarding your family's Co-Signor/Co-Mortgagor options in New Lenox or elsewhere in the Chicagoland area, please contact me.  I'll put my 40+ years of Mortgage experience and expertise hard to work on your behalf.

     I can be easily found at:


Gene Mundt
Mortgage Originator  -  NMLS #216987  -  IL Lic. #031.0006220  -  WI Licensed

American Portfolio Mortgage Corp.
NMLS #175656


Direct:  815.524.2280     
Cell/Text:  708.921.6331



eFax:  815.524.2281   


 
 
  Twitter Account of Gene Mundt, Mortgage Lender   LinkedIn Account of Gene Mundt, Mortgage Lender   Facebook Acct. of Gene Mundt, Mortgage Lender   Pinterest Acct. of Gene Mundt, Mortgage Lender   
 Trulia Acct. of Gene Mundt, Mortgage Lender   Zillow Acct. of Gene Mundt, Mortgage Lender     Gene's Chicagoland Blog/Gene Mundt, Mortgage Lender 
Gene Mundt, Mortgage Originator, an Originator with 40+ years of mortgage experience, will offer you exemplary mortgage service and advice when seeking:  Conventional, FHA, VA, Jumbo, USDA, and Portfolio Loans in Chicago and the greater Chicagoland region, including:  The Lincoln-Way Area, Will County, (New Lenox, Frankfort, Mokena, Manhattan, Joliet, Shorewood, Crest Hill, Plainfield, Bolingbrook, Romeoville, Naperville, etc.), DuPage County, the City of Chicago, Cook County, and elsewhere within IL

Referrals are Greatly Appreciated!

Considering Buying a Home? You Need to Check-Out my Mortgage Wish List First

Considering Buying a Home? You Need to Check-Out my Mortgage Wish List First As a Grampa, I'm very aware of "Wish Lists&qu...