Holiday Shopping Safety Tips - 2018




Holiday Shopping Safety Tips - 2018


Today's brisk cool wind reminds me, another summer with its warm sunny days is in our rearview mirror ...

Brrrrrrr!  It also reminded me that the Holidays are just around the corner!  


Of course, that means holiday commercials will soon be running on our TVs 24/7 ... and Holiday shopping will once again be on our minds.  

Experience tells me that one thing is inevitable during those upcoming holiday shopping trips.  You'll be asked if you want to apply for a new credit card while checking-out at store registers.    

Because of that, each year I've written posts warning of the credit and financial "dangers" that lurk while Holiday Shopping.  Each year I've urged ... just say "NO" to new credit offers unless one of the following applies: 

  • Your Credit/Credit Score can withstand a new credit inquiry
  • You can handle the new debt caused by the new card
  • You can make monthly payments on time, consistently, and faithfully
  • You will NOT be making application for a mortgage
  • You are NOT already in the mortgage process
  • You are NOT hoping to buy a home in the near future
  • You are NOT maxed-out on present credit cards
  • You have NOT already applied for other stores/credit cards
  • You know ALL the terms of the new credit account associated with the offer
  • You know what other credit obligations you have and the total of ALL your debt
  • The "enticement" offer is so valuable it offsets the negatives of taking on more debt
  • You have NO credit history and are trying to establish one for a future home purchase

As a Mortgage Originator, this year I remind you once again ... stay alert and strong regarding your finances and credit standing as you do your holiday shopping.  This is especially important if you're presently in the home buying/mortgage process ... or if you're planning on doing so within the next year.

But this year I'm adding an additional timely warning to my annual message:  This warning addresses the need for heightened awareness for your physical safety during holiday shopping trips.

It's sad to say, but women are especially vulnerable to the dangers that exist during holiday shopping excursions.  One reason is that they typically carry purses while shopping.  (Purses are quick easy marks for thieves.)  And many times, they have children with them causing distractions and making them more vulnerable.

After reading a recent article describing the many dangers that exist during the holiday shopping period, I decided to do a bit more research on the topic.  That research resulted in my list of shopping safety tips offered below.  

Please share these safety tips with family and friends.  That way they too can have a safe secure happy holiday season.

Holiday Shopping Safety Tips

Tips Specifically for Women:
  • Consider using a travel pouch instead of a purse while shopping 
  • If using a purse, keep it zipped/closed while shopping
  • If using a shopping cart, lace the cart's child safety straps through your purse straps
  • If no straps exist on the shopping cart, use a carabiner clip to attach your purse straps to the cart
  • Carry purses close to your body in cross-body fashion
  • Do not leave your purse unattended anywhere ... in a shopping cart, on the top of a car, on a trunk top, etc.
  • Get your keys out of your purse prior to leaving the store.  (The keys can act as a weapon if need be and the panic button can act as an alert)
  • Carry your purse on your side opposite of the traffic portion of an aisle
  • Walk with confidence at all times
  • Park your car in a well-lit portion of the parking lot
  • Lock your car door immediately upon entering it
  • Don't linger in your car while in the parking lot  
  • If possible, shop with a friend(s). There is safety in numbers
  • Leave flashy expensive jewelry at home
  • Wear casual - "walking" shoes, as they make a flight from danger easier
  • Carry pepper spray or another personal safety deterrent
  • Trust your "gut".  
  • Don't hesitate to seek the assistance of a security guard if alarmed in any way
Holiday Shopping Safety Tips for all ...
  • Carry only what you need when you go out shopping.  Example:  Driver's License, Debit/Credit Cards you'll use, phone, car keys.  
  • Carry no/limited cash
  • If you carry cash, carry it in a front pocket
  • Always keep one hand free
  • Don't overload with packages
  • Lock packages in your trunk
  • Be and stay aware of those around you
  • Walk with purpose and confidence
  • Park in well-lit areas 
  • Avoid parking garages, if possible
  • Keep your car locked at all times
  • Shop during daylight hours, if and when possible
  • Trust your instincts
  • Remain aware of your surroundings and those around you
  • Locate, then carry your keys with you as you return to your parked car
  • Use the "panic" button on your car keys when alarmed
  • Don't linger in the parking lot
  • Save cell phone conversations until you return home
  • Try to avoid shopping alone.  There's safety in numbers
  • If you lose a debit or credit card, report it to the credit card company immediately
Awareness is always your best defense.  Stress, time constraints and pressures, crowds, and distractions allow for dangerous situations to develop.

Plan and prepare for your holiday shopping excursions ahead of time.  When you do so, you'll remain safe and secure ... physically, financially and credit-wise.

Shop smart and enjoy your Holiday Shopping!


* Hoping to Buy or Refinance a Home or Investment Property in New Lenox, Will County, or elsewhere in the Chicago - Chicagoland area, IL or WI?

Contact me!

I'll put my 40+ years of Mortgage experience and expertise hard to work on your behalf.
I'm easily found at:



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

American Portfolio Mortgage Corp.
NMLS #175656



Direct: 815.524.2280
Cell or 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   
   Gene's Chicagoland Blog/Gene Mundt, Mortgage Lender   

    


Gene Mundt, Mortgage Originator, a Mortgage Originator with 40+ years of #mortgage experience, that 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, #Wilmington, #Peotone, etc.), #DuPage County, the City of #Chicago, #Cook County, and elsewhere within IL and Wisconsin.

Your Referrals & Testimonials are Always Greatly Appreciated!




Growing Investment Trend: Rental Income


  

 Growing Investment Trend: 
Rental Income



Over the recent months, I've seen a growing trend in my local real estate markets ...

The number of Investors inquiring about the purchase of condos, apartments, townhomes, and even traditional owner-occupied single-family homes to be utilized as rental units - is growing.  

Rental income produced by these types of purchases bring a "workable" monthly cash flow to local Investment Buyers.  More people are currently finding that of real interest to them and their financial goals. 


Why?

In math terms, when buying an Investment Rental Property you:



Collect Monthly $ Rent 
Minus: All Associated Monthly Expenses 
Equal: Income (Monthly Cash Flow)

These Rental Property Investment Buyers intend to rent the purchased properties and make some money growing equity in them at the same time ...

But many of these Investors see these purchases as a way of diversifying themselves too.  While many still maintain their other investments (such as stocks, bonds, and other investment funds), they're also choosing to broaden their investment portfolio via the addition of rental properties.  

Perhaps it's the recent gains being seen in many housing markets from rising equity and stock prices that have driven this still-developing trend.  Or maybe it's the "still low, but steadily rising" mortgage interest rates available.

But it's also true that:  In many markets, it's possible to produce monthly cash flow after eliminating mortgage payments, utilities, HOA Assessments, or management costs in place for a relatively large number of properties.  

And currently, it's still possible to buy an Investment Property with:
  •  As little as 15% Down Payment (yes, less than 20% Down)
  • 85% Loan-to-Value allowed with most Private Mortgage Insurance providers *  

* Many Investors still put 20-25% down and finance the difference so they can maintain positive monthly cash flow.

Positive news for those wishing to buy an Investment Rental Property ...  

As I mentioned above, the purchase of Investment  Properties is a popular and growing trend in my area, (Chicagoland - Will County) especially amongst those approaching their retirement years and looking for a viable semi-passive income stream.  

Condos and Townhomes where HOA (Homeowners Association) are in play have proven particularly popular as the HOA takes care of much of the maintenance on the property for Rental Property Investors.  That specific feature is very attractive for those Investors that do not have the time, skills, or inclination to be an on-site "contractor" or handyman. 

So I ask ...


  • Do your financial goals include the purchase of an Investment Rental Property?  
  • Is this type of investment right for you? 

There's much to know and many options for you to consider prior to making your final decision regarding an Investment Rental Property purchase.  That education and information are even more critical should you need financing for the property purchase. 


If considering or thinking you might want to join the Rental Property investment trend:  Do your homework.  Make sure to get all the information and answers you need to make an informed investment and purchase decision.  

To accomplish that, in New Lenox - Will County - Chicagoland - I/WI ... reach out to me today.  We'll discover what options exist for you now ... and in the future. 




* Hoping to Buy or Refinance a Home or Investment Property in New Lenox, Will County, or elsewhere in the Chicago - Chicagoland area, IL or WI?


Contact me!

I'll put my 40+ years of Mortgage experience and expertise hard to work on your behalf.
I'm easily found at:


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

American Portfolio Mortgage Corp.
NMLS #175656



Direct: 815.524.2280
Cell or 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   
   Gene's Chicagoland Blog/Gene Mundt, Mortgage Lender   

    


Gene Mundt, Mortgage Originator, a Mortgage Originator with 40+ years of #mortgage experience, that 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, #Wilmington, #Peotone, etc.), #DuPage County, the City of #Chicago, #Cook County, and elsewhere within IL and Wisconsin.

Your Referrals & Testimonials are Always Greatly Appreciated!





   







2018 Will County Fall Festivals, Pumpkin Farms, Corn Mazes, Hayrides


2018 Will County Fall Festivals, 
Pumpkin Farms, Corn Mazes, Hayrides 


Fall has arrived in Will County ...  

There's a new crispness to the air, especially at night now. The hours of sunlight are fewer.  Leaves are turning in color and falling to the ground.

 Will County
Fall in Will County means many wonderful things ...  

Pumpkin farms have opened.  Fall festivals are being held in many of our communities.  
You see corn mazes decorating front porches, lamp posts, and mailbox posts.  

Scarecrows, ghosts, witches, and goblins of all shapes and sizes are revealed by car lights at night. Spooky creatures of all shapes and size decorate lawns and trees.  

Who doesn't LOVE Fall in Will County?  

We're lucky to have many wonderful venues offering spectacular opportunities to enjoy all Fall offers us here in Will County.  To help you plan your Fall visits and fun, I've compiled a list of names and info to many of Will County's pumpkin farms, pumpkin patches, corn mazes, hayrides, (and more). 

I hope you, your family, and friends have a chance to get out and enjoy the venues, entertainment, and fun being held all over our County this Fall ...  



2018 Will County 
Fall Festivals, 
Pumpkin Farms, 
Corn Mazes, and Hayrides

Butterprint Farm Pumpkin Patch

Puckerville Farms
Opens September 15th

Johansen Farms Petting Zoo
Open September 14th - October 31st

Konow's Corn Maze
Open Now!
Monday thru Friday: 9 am – 8 pm    
Saturday & Sunday: 10 am – 8 pm 

Siegel's Cottonwood/Pumpkin Farm
Open September 222nd thru October 31st
Hours: Daily 10 am – 6 pm
Admission:  Tickets

Mokena Park District 
Friday, October 12th, 4pm-8pm
Saturday, October 13th, 12pm-8pm  
Sunday, October 14th, 1pm-5pm
(Special Needs Time 11:30am-1pm)

Bengston's Pumpkin Fest
Open Now!   Hours/Calendar

Heap's Giant Pumpkin Farm
Info: (815) 475-7373   -  heapsgiantpumpkinfarm.com

Dollinger's Pumpkin Farm
Sept. 17th - Oct. 30th
Daily: 10 am - 6:30 pm
Info: 815.467.6766

Lockport Park District 
Hayride of Horror - Course of the Bayou
Dates: Fridays & Saturdays in October
Times: 7 - 10 pm 
Hayride of Horror: Tickets/Info/Website
Curse of the Bayou: Tickets/Info/Website
Info: 815.838.1183

Windmill Acres
Opening September 29th - October 31st
Monday-Saturday: 9 am - 6 pm
Sunday: 11 am - 5 pm 
Website: Windmill Acres
Phone: 708-278-2870 

Settlers Pond Pumpkin Patch
Open October 1st thru Halloween
Open 7 Days: 10 am - 5 pm
Phone: 708) 663-8103

Mott's Pumpkin Farm
Open daily:  10 am - 8 pm
Info 
Phone:  708.258.9985

Bronkberry Farms
Open Now through Halloween
Tuesday thru Sunday: 9 am - 6 pm
Website:  Bronkberry Farms
Phone:  (815) 436-6967 

Octoberfest - Village of New Lenox, IL
Date:  Saturday, October 6, 2018
Time:  Starts at 2 pm
Activities, Food, Beverages, Entertainment/Music
Petting Zoo, Pony Rides, Pumpkin Decorating, Face Painting, More
Admission: FREE  -  No Pets Please!
Info:  NewLenoxnet

Witches Night Out
Costumed Fundraiser for women who want to make a difference in another woman’s life
Food/Beverages, Raffles, More
Wednesday: October 17th - 4 to 9:30 pm
Thursday: October 18th - 4 to 9:30 pm
For Tickets: Click HERE


Remember to always verify dates, hours, and info prior to visiting any of the events, pumpkin farms, and other seasonal venues within Will County this Fall ... just in case of last minute changes or inclement weather ... 



* Hoping to buy or refinance a home in Will County or elsewhere in the Chicagoland - IL - WI area? 

Contact me today.  I'll put my 40+ years of mortgage experience hard to work on your behalf.  I'm easily found at:



Gene Mundt
Mortgage Lender - NMLS #216987 - IL Lic. #0006220 - WI Licensed

American Portfolio Mortgage Corp.
NMLS #175656


Direct: 815.524.2280
Cell/Text: 708.921.6331
eFax: 815.524.2281

 Get the Info You Need!
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. etc.), DuPage County, the City of Chicago, Cook County, and elsewhere within IL & WI. 

Your Referrals are Welcomed & Greatly Appreciated!

Holiday Shopping Safety Tips - 2018

Holiday Shopping Safety Tips - 2018 Today's brisk cool wind reminds me, another summer with its warm sunny days is in our rearvie...