3 House Buying Tips for the First Time Homeowner

My best friend and her husband are looking at purchasing their first home.  Their family relocated to another state after her husband accepted a new job in his field.  They’ve been house hunting for awhile to no avail.  After an unsuccessful offer, they are now back to square one.  They asked for my advice since we’ve been homeowners for quite some time and are decent with money.  She said that they may have to look for loans for bad credit since they’ve had some late payments on a few of their credit cards.  Here are some of the advice I gave them to make their house buying process quick and smooth.

Don’t max out your pre approved amount. Just because it looks good on paper doesn’t mean it will feel good once the payments start coming in.  Many mortgage companies approve applicants for a lot higher of a loan amount than the home buyer was anticipating.  I think it’s a good idea to keep the house payment around 30% of monthly pay.  This is a general recommendation and depends on the person’s financial goals and comfort level. I wish when we were approved for our mortgage that we would have had this advice.  There have been times over the years that I’ve felt strapped because as our income has fluctuated, our mortgage payment has not.  In lean times, it would have been extremely helpful to have less debt obligations especially in the form of a mortgage.

Don’t settle and think of the long term.  I know when we were looking at purchasing our first house, we almost purchased a home that was located on a busy street just because it was in a good neighborhood and we loved the property,  While I think it would have worked out okay, I know we wouldn’t be as happy as we are in our current house.  A lot of people purchase their first house as a starter home, but I wouldn’t assume that you won’t be there for many years.  We’ve been in our first house a lot longer than I ever thought we would!  There are things I wish we had (a two car garage and full basement) but overall I’m glad we purchased the house we did instead of settling on one we were lukewarm about.

Location, location, location.  While there are many things you can change about a house, location is definitely not one of them.  We never though we would be able to afford a house in our desired location, but with patience and a good realtor we made it happen!  If you buy a house in a good neighborhood, chances are you’ll be making a good investment as property values will increase over time. In a good location, you and your family will feel safe and happy.  I think that is such an important part of living in a good area!

What advice would you give first time homeowners?  Are there any tips you received that have been very helpful in your journey?



What to Expect from Steel Building Prices

These days, you have a lot of options when it comes to choosing the ideal construction material for your building project but framing typically offers one of two choices: steel or wood.  While wood is often viewed as the traditional choice, some people are migrating towards newer steel options.

If you choose to use steel framing options, this can easily decrease your project’s bottom line, from your initial outlay to labour costs, and you can also enjoy long-term savings thanks to low-maintenance durability.  Here, we’ll take a look at how choosing a steel frame structure can save you both time and money.

Construction Timetable

When it comes to labour costs, time is money.  In fact, labour is often one of the largest expenses in any building project, so the more labour hours you can cut, the better!  Wood-framed buildings often require skilled workers who will need to spend time cutting lumber to specific sizes and framing and drilling holes for wiring.

If you opt for a steel frame, this whole process can be done before the material even reaches the job site and the erection of the building can be completed using a set of clear instructions.  With this material, you won’t have to hire skilled labourers.  Also, steel studs weigh less than wood studs, so they are much easier to handle.

Design Flexibility

If you have a specific design in mind, you may have made the assumption that a wood-framed building offers more design flexibility.  You may be surprised to hear just how much choice you have when it comes to designing a steel building.  Companies like Armstrong Steel make it easy to design and price your metal building instantly using their handy online tool, which can be very useful when trying to design a building within a budget.

With steel, you can use prefabricated members and panels.  This makes it extremely easy to add on to your building structure in the future.  In fact, in most cases, you will be able to add a completely new wing or expansion in a matter of days!  Plus, new innovations make it possible to have a metal roof and side facades that replicate the look of traditional building materials like stone or wood.

Lifetime Maintenance Requirements

If you’re considering using wood to build your new structure, it’s worth remembering that this type of building will require a complete coat of paint every few years.  Plus, the roof on a wood-frame building will typically last about 15 years, as this material has a tendency to warp, crack, and rot.

In contrast, steel-framed buildings often come with roof and paneling warranties that will last up to 50 years.  There is also no need to worry about any potential splitting, cracking or warping, so the overall upkeep costs and lifetime maintenance are minimal.

While steel building prices may cost you more initially, it’s clear to see that the minimal lifetime maintenance requirements of these buildings will save you a huge amount of money in the long run.  Plus, as steel is such a durable and fire-resistant material, builds and owners can often enjoy substantial discounts on risk insurance.



Secrets to increasing your trading profit

Many new traders believe that trading makes you rich overnight. According to a senior financial analyst at Wilkins Finance, it takes years of experience and a seasoned trading eye to make profits worth talking about. Having said that, what are the secrets to increasing your trading profit?

Be consistent in the way you trade

Make it your personal mission to execute each trade with consistency in mind, and don’t centre yourself on the dollars. In the event that you execute a profitable trade that you’ve inquired about, tried and tested a few times, benefits will start coming your way soon. When you centre yourself on precise execution of a trade, you create consistency as you are doing precisely the same without fail. In the event that your trade brings profit to the table, consistency is critical.

One very big mistake that traders make is losing hope when their deals go south. Trading is about learning the tricks of the trade. As the trading industry keeps changing, tricks and secrets to success also change, but the most important ones stick. It is found that once the profit starts rolling in, one tends to get greedy and make trades without checking and double checking one’s facts first.

Investing time and money is best

When you make a trade, you need to have done enough research to know that it is the right decision. As no one can forever be right, you will lose one or two times before you can correct your trading plan. Many traders think that it is all about the money. Yes, the money factor is important but you need to take time into account as well. It is essential that you actively trade for a few hours every day but when you are done, you can’t just close your trading platform and call it a day. This is where investing your time comes in. You need to invest the rest of your free time in doing research, talking to fellow traders and working on improving your trading strategy.

Increase your trading profit by increasing secondary income

Have you ever heard of the term you need money to make money? Yes, in order to trade successfully, you need to have the cash flow to push into your investments. A great way of investing in a secondary trading income is that of dividend stocks. Dividend stocks enable you to have a steady monthly or quarterly income that you can use to build the profit margin of your trading venture. Remember not to cash out all your savings to trade but rather make an investment with money that grows.

If you feel that dividend stocks are not for you, you can start a part-time business to help fuel your trading venture. Freelancing is a great way of adding extra income to your trading and if done correctly, can benefit your trading profit substantially.

Adding the three secrets into one boiling pot
Once you have a handle on each of the above-mentioned secrets to increasing trading profit, put them all together in one boiling pot and keep stirring. You need to remember that in the trading industry, you first need to execute one step with precision before going onto the next one. Having said that, take the first secret to success, make sure you adhere to it in its full potential while trading and then move onto the next step. Once you have them all under your belt, you can use them together to form the perfect trading plan.

Seasoned traders will be the first to tell you to not follow the crowd unless you can see their profit burning a hole in their pockets. With the above-mentioned secrets to increasing your trading profit, you can be sure to not follow the crowd but rather lead the crowd. If you are passionate about trading and want to make a success, you should be prepared to rise above the rest and make an example of the trades you make, the way you make those trades and the secrets you use to get there.

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