Skip down to page content.

Knox County Ohio Blog

Sam Miller

Knox County Ohio Blog

Sam Miller

Blog

Displaying blog entries 211-220 of 223

Happy Thanksgiving, Knox County!

by Sam Miller

May your Thanksgiving be blessed with the bounty of the season and the love of family and friends!
 

We’ll be back next week with more of the latest Knox County OH real estate news and information!  In the meantime, please feel free to contact me at 740-397-7800 or visit SamMiller.net.

How to Add Light to Your Knox County OH Home

by Sam Miller

We’ve all rolled our clocks back an hour and are beginning to adjust to the earlier onset of evening.  In the winter months our homes can seem darker than usual, but there are ways to use the natural light that is available in your home to brighten things up.  Money Magazine has published a list of “Do’s” and “Don’ts” for adding light to any home – among the topics covered are:

 

  • Skylights (pick ones that open and choose carefully where to put them)
  • Big windows (install them to showcase your best views, but don’t forget to add small windows above or below them that open)
  • Window height (put windows high on the wall, but not tight to the ceiling)
  • Window grouping (group several windows together, but don’t separate them with fat supports)
  • Window shades (install shades in windows that face east, west, and south; avoid using UV-inhibiting coating)

Following these tips for adding light to your home will help to increase your home’s value.  To receive a complimentary comparative home value analysis, click here.  For more information about Knox County OH real estate, please visit SamMiller.net or call me at 740-397-7800. 

Home Fire Safety in Knox County OH

by Sam Miller

With the recent news coverage of the devastating fires in California, home fire safety is a most timely topic.  Although we may not be at great risk for wildfires here in Ohio, an important part of responsible homeownership is being prepared to both prevent a fire in your home and to rescue yourself and your family should there be a fire in your home.

 

This printable Fire Safety Checklist, provided by FireSafety.gov, is a great resource for determining what fire hazards may lurk in your home, how to make them less hazardous, and what to do in the event of a fire.  The Today Show also provided some useful tips to ensure you would know what to do if you had to evacuate your home in the event of fire.  These tips include:

 

Make copies of your documents.  Either put them in a waterproof and fire-proof safe, or give the copies to a trusted friend or relative.  Make electronic copies, as well.  Remember that valuables left in a safe deposit box at a bank could also be destroyed in the case of a widespread natural disaster.

Get your insurance information in order.  If disaster strikes, make your claim right away, and be sure to take pictures of the damage.

Prepare an emergency kit.  Don’t wait until it’s too late.  Gather essential items such as a battery operated radio, bottled water, food, medication, blanket, first-aid kit, etc.

Come up with a family plan.  Again, do it now!  Make sure everyone knows where the important documents are, and agree on a meeting place in case you become separated.

 

Many of these items are tips we hear over and over again, but they never really seem useful until a disaster strikes close to home.  By the time that happens, of course, it is generally too late to put the tips to use.  Preparedness now can save time and, possibly, lives later.

 

If you are thinking of becoming a homeowner in Knox County OH, please call me today at 740-397-7800 or visit SamMiller.net.  You may also begin searching Knox County OH real estate here!

Separating Homeownership Fact From Fiction

by Sam Miller

Many potential first-time homebuyers put off the purchase of their first home because they simply think they won’t be able to qualify for a loan.  However, applying for a mortgage is very different than it was 10 or 20 years ago – thanks to all sorts of creative financing offers that are available today, many people who are still giving their money to a landlord could be purchasing their own home.  FreddieMac.com has put together a great list of “myths” about becoming a homeowner, and it shows just how feasible homeownership can be for most people.  Here are just a few of the Many Myths About Homeownership:

Myth: You need great credit to become a homeowner.
Fact: You may still be able to buy a home with less-than-perfect credit. And remember, you can improve your credit over time.

Myth: You need to put 20% down to buy a home.
Fact: There are many types of mortgage products and programs that allow low and no down payments. But remember to factor in other costs such as closing costs, property taxes, moving

Myth: Lenders share your personal financial information with other companies.
Fact: By law, banks and other financial institutions are restricted in their uses and disclosures of information about you. In some situations, you may choose to restrict the disclosure of your information if you don't want it to be shared.

Myth: You can't get a mortgage if you've changed jobs several times in the last few years.
Fact: Not true. You can change jobs several times and still get a loan to buy a home. Lenders understand that people change jobs. The important thing is to show that you've had a stable income.

If you are ready to get on the path to homeownership in Knox County OH , please call me today at 740-397-7800 or visit SamMiller.net.  You may also begin searching Knox County OH real estate here!

Visit a Knox County OH Pumpkin Patch!

by Sam Miller

The temperature is dropping, the leaves are beginning to change, and autumn is officially in full swing in Ohio.  Halloween is just around the corner, and if you haven’t done so already, this weekend will be the perfect time to pick up your family’s Jack-o-Lantern!

 

A great way to spruce up your home’s curbside appeal during this season is to decorate with a few locally-grown pumpkins – maybe even add some hay and a scarecrow to really get festive!  Visiting a local pumpkin patch is also a fantastic way to enjoy the fall weather with your family and get some of those always-cute snapshots of the kids picking out their pumpkins.  Why not start a new tradition this year and visit one of these local pumpkin patches?

 

To learn more about living here and Knox County OH real estate, please visit SamMiller.net or call me at 740-397-7800.  You can begin searching for Knox County OH homes here!

Retiring in Knox County OH with a Mortgage

by Sam Miller

It's an increasingly common dilemma.  You want to retire — but you haven't yet retired your mortgage.

According to the Federal Reserve, among households headed by someone age 65 to 74, over 32% had a mortgage on their primary residence in 2004, up from less than 19% in 1992.

Are you heading into retirement and still carrying a mortgage?  Here are some tips on how to do it:

-  If you have a heap of savings and a modest mortgage, go for the loan payoff.  You might consider trading down to a smaller home or, work part-time until you're rid of the mortgage.

-  If you have cash sitting in, for example, a money-market fund held in a regular taxable account, also consider using these savings to reduce your loan balance.  Sure, your mortgage may be costing you just 6% and the interest might be tax-deductible. But your money-market fund is likely yielding only 5% — and you have to pay tax on that income.

If your mortgage is so large that paying it off will seriously impact your retirement, you might as well get the mortgage payment down as low as possible.

Better still, trade down.  After paying a 5% or 6% real-estate commission and paying off your current mortgage, in most cases, you could put down cash on your new home, leaving you with a smaller mortgage.  If you financed that over 30 years at 6.5%, your monthly payment would be lower.

You might even consider refinancing later in retirement, further shrinking your monthly payment by again extending the loan over 30 years.  Even in today's tight credit environment, you shouldn't have a problem qualifying for a new loan, as long as you have a reasonable amount of retirement income.

Thinking of retiring to Knox County OH?  Visit KnoxCountyMLS.com to receive automated emails of listings that meet your criteria.  Or, for more personalized service, please call me at 740-397-7800 or visit SamMiller.net to learn more about Knox County OH real estate.

Buyers Beware When Investing in Foreclosures in Knox County OH

by Sam Miller

We’ve been covering the unprecedented rise in foreclosures across America a lot lately, because it is such a hot topic in the real estate world.

 

On the opposite side of homeowners who are struggling to meet their mortgage payments are those who are eager to capitalize on the trend by investing in foreclosures and – they hope – selling them for a hefty profit.

 

While this seems like an easy enough idea on the surface, potential investors should take care to investigate what they are getting into before heading to an auction or purchasing any property sight-unseen.

 

As this article on RealEstateJournal.com details, there are caveats to investing in foreclosures.  If you are investing in a property with the hopes of flipping it for a quick re-sale, you should consult an experienced Realtor first to get a clear picture of the current real estate market in your area.  If homes are not moving off the market quickly, you could end up with a property that won’t sell simply because there aren’t enough buyers in your area.  Also, some homes may come with major structural damage, hidden liens, or utility bills that need to be paid.  Since these properties generally cannot be inspected prior to purchase, it is important to weigh out how much you are willing to invest in improvements over and above the actual price of the property.

 

If you are thinking of investing in Knox County OH real estate, please visit SamMiller.net or call me at 740-397-7800.  You can also begin searching the MLS here. I would be happy to help you invest in your future in Knox County OH.

How to Avoid Foreclosure in Knox County OH

by Sam Miller

If you have a mortgage on your Knox County OH home, you have probably been paying close attention to the latest interest rates and are aware of the ongoing rise in the foreclosure rate across America. 

 

What would you do if you were actually faced with the prospect of foreclosure?  Would you have the information needed to make an informed decision on your financial future?  Many homeowners think it can or will not happen to them, so they do not take the time to learn what the options are on the best way to move forward in a stressful situation such as foreclosure.

 

This article from FreddieMac.com outlines the terms associated with foreclosure and gives a good starting point with steps to take if you think you may soon be unable to pay your mortgage.  Some of the topics covered in this helpful article:

  • What to do if you can not pay your mortgage
  • What if you can no longer afford to keep your home
  • Beware of scam artists

I would like to add to the list of steps to take when facing foreclosure – contact an experienced Realtor!  Along with a reputable lender, an experienced Realtor can help explain your options and guide you through the choice that is best for you.

 

For more information about Knox County OH real estate, please call me today at 740-397-7800 or visit SamMiller.net, I would be happy to help you.  You may also begin searching the MLS here!

Write Off Your Move to Knox County OH!

by Sam Miller

Did you know that many moving expenses, including house-hunting trips, are tax deductible?  This is why it is of the utmost importance to keep detailed records of all moving expenses if your move is job-related. 

 

If your move is 35 miles or more from your home, you can deduct your family’s travel expenses, including meals and lodging; the cost of transporting furniture, other household goods, and personal belongings; food and hotel bills for up to 30 days in the new city if you have to wait to move into your new home; and the costs associated with selling your old home or leasing your new home.

 

Please note that there is a ceiling on deductions which is outlined in detail in the IRS’s Publication 521, “Tax Information on Moving Expenses,” available free from the IRS offices.

 

Thinking about moving to Knox County OH?  Start by signing up to receive free automated listings by email; you may also visit SamMiller.net or call me at 800-282-9096 for all of your Knox County OH real estate needs!

Items Needed For A Loan Application in Knox County OH

by Sam Miller
You may feel like you are drowning in paperwork when you head to your lender’s office to apply for your next home loan. This is thanks in part to tightening credit standards that are causing lenders to require more proof than ever of borrowers’ income and expenses. To try to help with the process, I’ve put together a list of items you may be required to bring along when are ready begin the loan application process: (please note, all lenders are different and may require more or less paperwork!)
 
Employment/Income
-          Addresses of employers for two full years
-          Gross monthly income, proven by last two pay stubs
-          W-2’s, if available
-          Proof of pensions, retirement, disability, or Social Security
-          Proof of income from rentals, investments, etc.
-          Proof of child support or alimony paid/received
-          Self-employed: two years 1040 tax returns and current year profit and loss statement
 
Creditors
-          Each creditor’s name, type of account, and account numbers
-          Monthly payments and approximate balances
-          Amount of child care expenses and other fixed monthly expenses
 
Banking
-          Names of checking & savings institutions, along with account numbers and current balances
-          Last two months bank and savings statements
 
Miscellaneous
-          List of assets in stocks, bonds, land
-          Life insurance cash value
-          Social Security numbers for all parties
-          Veterans: Certificate of Eligibility & DD-214 or Statement of Service
-          Divorce Decree and/or Separation Agreement if applicable
-          Child support documentation if applicable
-          Bankruptcy papers if applicable
 
This may seem like a lot of personal information to have to provide just to apply for a home loan. But imagine if you were about to lend hundreds of thousands of dollars to somebody – you’d probably want a pretty good idea of that person’s ability to pay you back!
 
Please click here to get started searching for Knox County OH homes. You can also visit my website or email me to learn more about Knox County OH real estate. I’m here to help!

Displaying blog entries 211-220 of 223

Syndication

Categories

Archives

Contact Information

Photo of Sam Miller Real Estate
Sam Miller
RE/MAX Stars Realty
710 South Main Street
Mount Vernon OH 43050
740-397-7800
Fax: 740-399-3604