Category Archives: How to Buy Foreclosed Home

How to buy foreclosed home has articles on government foreclosures, bank foreclosures, pre foreclosures, court house step foreclosures, and more. You will learn how to invest in foreclosures using various real estate investment methods. There is in depth information on where to find foreclosure listings. You will learn how one type of foreclosure differs from another, and which one is best for your situation.  Where to find money to invest is also covered, as is how to find a good lender, and how to find a good real estate agent. Short sales are explained in detail. How to sell your foreclosure after you buy it is spelled out for you. There is also techniques on how to buy privately owned homes too.  The best foreclosure websites are revealed to you. How to find deals where no down payment is needed, and where closing costs can be paid for you.  Every aspect of the foreclosure process is spelled out for you.

Tips to Sell House Quickly

As a former Realtor, I know why houses sell quickly, and why they don’t.  I will provide you my best tips to sell house quickly. There are certain reasons why some houses sell quickly, and why others don’t sell quickly.

I will explain to you the steps you should take, and what you should avoid doing.
I will also let you know how to realize as much money as possible from your quick house sale.

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The Number One Reason Why Houses Don’t Sell

Tips to sell house quickly
The number one reason a house won’t sell is that it is priced too high.

The number one reason why houses don’t sell is, the asking price is too high, and the seller won’t drop the price enough to make it appealing.

This may seem obvious, but many sellers have a set idea of how much their home is worth, and they won’t let the market dictate the correct selling price.

The reason for this is two-fold. Sellers have a very strong emotional attachment to their home, and the idea of parting with it for anything less than their pre-conceived idea of what it’s worth is unacceptable to them.

The other reason is plain old greed. Some folks want to get rich off the sale of their home, and they believe someone will come along that will blindly offer them their unreasonable asking price.

Sometimes the real estate market may not be as healthy as when they bought the home, and their expectations are unrealistic.

Many Realtors are afraid that if they tell their potential sellers that their idea of price is too high, it will upset them, and they will risk losing the listing.

So they go along with the seller and list the home for over market value, only to have to struggle with them later to lower the price, so it will have a chance of selling.

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The Number One Reason Why Houses Sell

Tips to sell house quickly
The number one reason a house sells is that it is priced fairly or below market value.

The number one reason why houses sell is simply that they are priced fairly or priced under market value.

Again, this may seem obvious, but it is not always obvious to sellers that have other ideas.

Buyers almost across the board want to feel like they are ‘getting a deal’.  Just like sellers want to sell their homes for the most money possible, buyers want to buy their home for the least money possible.

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Tips to Sell House Quickly

Follow these tips to sell your house quickly.

1. Hire a good Real Estate Agent.   Don’t skip this step and attempt to sell your house yourself. If you do attempt a FSBO, or for sale by owner, you will miss out on at least 90% of the market.

A good seller’s agent will put your home on the MLS, multiple listing service, which is where all real estate agents go to find homes for their buyers.

In addition, the seller’s agent will tell all of the agents in his or her office, and will put the word out to their entire network of real estate related business people, and friends.

They will also advertise your home for you, have open houses, and place signs in your yard, and neighborhood.

You will have to pay the commissions but in most cases, you will realize a higher selling price, sell your home more quickly, have less liability, maximize your time, and have all legal paperwork taken care of properly for you.

2. Do Cosmetic Repairs  You won’t necessarily have to do a lot to prepare your home for sale. But in order for you to sell your home fast, and for the most money, there are a few things that you really should do.

The good news is, these things don’t cost much money, or take a lot of time, but they will go a long way to improve your chances of selling quickly.

Make minor repairs. Fix what needs to be fixed. The idea is to make your home livable. Take care of things to make your house safe, and sanitary. If a step is loose, secure it.

If a room is in obvious need of paint, paint it. If the siding needs to be power washed, power wash it.  Clean your home thoroughly. Declutter tables, counter tops, walls, and other surfaces.

Curb appeal is important. The first impression a buyer has is the outside of the house as they drive or walk up. Spruce up the yard, and the front of the house. Keep the lawn cut, the bushes trimmed, the leaves raked,

Tips to sell house quickly
If your home needs updating, start with the kitchen. Kitchens sell houses.

3. Do updates if needed  If your home is badly in need of updates, or upgrades, and if you can afford it, and have the time, I suggest you start with upgrading the kitchen. You may have heard the saying, kitchens sell houses. This is absolutely true!

If your kitchen needs to be updated, it will be money well spent to update it. Whatever you put into upgrading your kitchen, you should easily be able to get back out again when you sell, and possibly more. A nice kitchen will also help you sell your home faster.

After the kitchen, you should upgrade the master bathroom, or main bathroom if there is no master, and then the lower level or basement to be finished, or partially finished.

4. Price your home slightly under market value.  Your real estate agent will perform a recent sales comp for you, based on what comparable homes in your area have sold for, and come up with a price that you can expect your home to sell for.

There are other factors to consider when finding a selling price such as time of year, the spring is better than the winter, the state of the real estate market, and if your home has additional negatives to consider that other comparable homes don’t, such as a large hill to drive up that could present problems during the winter months.

5. Tell everyone you know that your house is for sale.  Don’t rely entirely solely on the efforts of your Realtor. Chances are you have a large network of relatives, friends, and acquaintances. Tell everyone you know that you are selling your house. Call your family and friends.

Tell your coworkers. Use social media like Facebook, and Linkedin. These are all free methods to get the word out. Even if the people you contact aren’t looking to buy a house, they may know of someone who is, and your house may be just what they are looking for.

6. Don’t put limits on your Listing Agent  Make sure that you allow your house to be shown whenever a potential buyer wants to see it. If your agent wants to do an open house on Sunday, let them. And don’t insist on being there when your house is being shown.

Would be buyers and their agents can’t relax when the owner is home during showings. Be prepared to leave your house for a few hours on short notice to allow for an unimpeded viewing. This can make a difference between receiving an offer, and not.

You Can Sell Your House Quickly

Tips to sell house quickly
You can sell your house quickly if you follow a few simple steps.

The number one reason a house won’t sell is that it is priced too high. Sellers get emotionally attached to their homes. They also let greed, and unrealistic expectations of what the home is worth stop them from receiving a fair offer.

The number one reason a home will sell is that they are priced fairly or under market value. Buyers want a good deal as much as they want a nice home.

Tips to sell house quickly are:

1. Hire a good real estate agent.

2. Do cosmetic repairs.

3. Do updates if needed.

4. Price your home slightly under market value.

5. Tell everyone you know that your house is for sale.

6. Don’t put limits on your Listing Agent.

If you follow these tips, you should have little trouble selling your house quickly.

Do you have a tip to help a house sell faster? Feel free to leave your comments, questions, or tips below.  I will respond to you right away. Thanks for reading.

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How to Pay Off a Mortgage Early

How to pay off your mortgage early
Want to know how to pay off a mortgage early? There are at least several ways to do it.

Want to know how to pay off a mortgage early? You are smart to learn how to do so, as your mortgage is likely the biggest financial burden you will ever have.

There are legitimate, legal ways to pay off your mortgage early that almost anyone can accomplish. In the process, you will learn how to save yourself time, and money.

I will explain to you what a mortgage is, how lenders make their profits from your mortgage, and some techniques to pay off a mortgage early.

You can benefit from this information if you currently have a mortgage or if you are shopping for a mortgage. (Scroll down for how to pay off a mortgage early)

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What is a Mortgage?

How to pay off a mortgage early
A mortgage is a loan from a lender to provide financing for a home purchase.

A mortgage is a loan from a lending institution, or a bank to provide financing for the purchase of a home, or other property type.

The mortgage allows the lending institution or the bank to use your home as collateral for the loan.

This means if you don’t pay back the loan according to the terms set forth on the mortgage, also known as defaulting, the bank or lending institution can foreclose on the home, and take ownership.

There are several types of mortgages.

The most common mortgage is the fixed rate mortgage. A fixed rate mortgage means that the interest rate is fixed or stays the same throughout the entire length or term of the mortgage.

The interest rate is the agreed upon percentage that the bank or lending institution charges for the priviledge of borrowing their money.

Other available mortgages are the ARM or adjustable rate mortgage. An ARM has a changing or floating rate of interest depending on various economic factors.

The ARM is considered more risky than a fixed rate mortgage due to the fact that the interest rate can rise causing higher monthly mortgage payments.

Two-step mortgages will have the initial period of time at a certain fixed rate percentage, and the second period of time at a different fixed rate percentage.

Combination mortgages or combo mortgages combine a certain period of time at a fixed rate percentage, and an additional period of time with an adjustable rate.  The percentage rates, and time periods can vary depending on the lender.

Balloon mortgages normally have a fixed interest rate for a particular period of time, usually with lower monthly payments, and a loan balance, and with a considerable amount or balloon amount due at the termination of a preset loan period.

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 How Lenders or Mortgage Institutions Profit from your Mortgage

How to pay off a mortgage early
Lenders and mortgage institutions profit from your mortgage in different ways.

 

Banks and mortgage lenders profit from your mortgage in different ways, and perhaps more than you realize. Profits are realized by mortgage lenders by the many fees they charge.

These  fees are called origination fees, which is what is charged for the processing of the loan.

The origination fee normally is figured at about 1% of the amount of the loan. These processing fees may cover notary fees, document prep work,  and the lender’s attorney costs.

Underwriting fees are charged for the analyzation of the mortgage application, which determines the riskiness of approving the loan.

There are other fees such as escrow fees that are normally charged at closing. There are also appraisal fees that are charged by the lender.

PMI or Private Mortgage Insurance is another fee or charge you will incur if you are putting less than 20% down on your home purchase.

This is insurance provided by a private insurer that protects the bank, should you default on your loan, yet you the borrower have to pay for it.

Pretty sweet deal for the lender to have you buy insurance to protect them from loss. You can also purchase additional insurance called an owner’s policy to protect yourself against default.

Lenders also make money from your mortgage based on the difference in the interest rate you agree to pay, and the amount of interest they were charged when they secured the loan.

So, if the lender charges you 5% interest rate, and they paid 4%, they would profit  the1% difference.

In addition, lenders often package, or bundle their mortgage loans and sell them to other lenders, and investors in the secondary market. The lender’s normally make an extra 1%-3% by selling these bundled loans.

Keep in mind that for the first time period of your loan, you are paying back mostly interest, and very little principal when you make your monthly mortgage payment.

In other words, because you are not paying down much principle in the first 10-15 years of your loan, assuming you are in a 30 year fixed rate loan, you will not have a lot of equity built up until the later part of the loan term, unless of course you had a large down payment.

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Early Mortgage Payoff Techniques

How to pay off a mortgage early
The early bird does get the worm when paying off a mortgage.

1. Shorter Loan Term Mortgage

The easiest, and cleanest way to pay off your mortgage early is instead of taking out a 30 year fixed rate mortgage or longer duration mortgage, take out a 15 year mortgage or 20 year mortgage.

Chances are, if you qualify for a 30 year mortgage, you can also qualify for a shorter term mortgage such as the 15 year or 20 year.

In many cases, the monthly mortgage payment does not go up commensurate to the drop in loan duration, in effect giving you a discount on the monthly payback amount. You may be surprised at the affordability of utilizing a shorter term loan.

So, if you can qualify for a shorter term loan, and you can afford the higher monthly mortgage payment without strapping yourself in, this may be the way for you to go.

If you already have a mortgage you may want to consider refinancing your loan at a lower interest rate for a shorter time duration or term.

You have to be careful with the refinance though as you may be charged additional fees, and you may be forced to roll back to paying off more interest than principle with your new mortgage payments.

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2. Bi-Weekly 

The bi-weekly is a payment structure where instead of making a mortgage payment once a month you are making a half mortgage payment every 2 weeks.

This allows you to make an extra full mortgage payment per year as there are roughly 4.3 weeks in an average month. The extra payment goes toward the principle of the loan.

Thousands of dollars can be saved by implementing a bi-weekly payment structure, and you can pay off your mortgage close to 8 years early on a 30 year fixed rate loan with this technique.

As a result of this simple method, you are reducing the amount of interest charged over the span of the loan.

In order for this technique to work correctly, the lender must credit the payment to the loan’s principle right away instead of waiting until the end of the month to do so, or until two payments are received in order to do so, or until the end of the year to do so.

There will be fees charged. Be sure that these fees are reasonable and you understand how they are charged.  Always ask questions, and read the fine print before signing on the dotted line.

How to pay off a mortgage early.
Making an extra principal payment is an excellent way to pay off your mortgage early.

3. Make an Extra Principal Payment

You can make an extra payment every month over and above your regular monthly mortgage payment that will be put toward paying down your principal. This amount can vary and be for pretty much any amount you would like to add.

Doing so can cut years off the term of your loan, and save you many thousands of dollars of interest. Obviously, the more often, and the larger the amount of the extra principal payment, the sooner your loan will be paid off, and the more money you will save on interest.

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4. Home Equity Line of Credit or HELOC

Based on the amount of equity you have in your home, equity is determined by the amount of appraised value of your home minus the amount that is still owed on the mortgage, you can utilize a home equity line of credit.

The idea is, you can use the amount of the home equity line of credit to pay down the principal of your mortgage.
Normally the interest rate you will pay on the HELOC is slightly more than what your mortgage interest rate is.

By paying back the HELOC amount in a year, you can then use the same strategy again, and continue to do so every year until the mortgage loan is fully paid off.  It is possible to pay off your mortgage loan in under 6 years using this strategy.

By doing so, you can drastically shorten the number of years that you will have to pay on your mortgage, and not only save many mortgage payments, but also save many thousands of dollars in interest.

There are some risks using this strategy as the HELOC is a variable interest rate ‘loan’, so the rate can rise. Also, some HELOCs may have a balloon component, which can force the entire amount of the loan to be paid back in full instead of over time.

Best to check with a financial advisor, and do your research and due diligence before employing any of these strategies.

Know how to pay off a mortgage early

A mortgage is a loan from a lender to provide financing for a home purchase.  Types of mortgages are fixed-rate, adjustable rate, , two step, combination, and balloon.

Lenders or mortgage companies profit from your loan from fees, points, interest, and bundling your loan with others and selling them.

Early mortgage payoff techniques are, a shorter term mortgage(less than a typical 30 year note), bi-weekly, making an extra principle payment, and the HELOC, or home equity line of credit strategy.

What is your favorite how to pay off a mortgage early strategy? Do you have another early payoff strategy that you like or use? If so, I would like to learn about it.

Feel free to leave a comment, or question below.

Thank you for reading.

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Foreclosure Homes Sale

If you are thinking of buying a foreclosed home, you are to be commended. Foreclosure homes sale offer bargains that privately owned homes seldom do.

And, it is a myth that foreclosed homes are more complicated, and difficult to buy than a regular home purchase. It is also a myth that only certain people can buy foreclosures.

Almost anyone can buy any type of foreclosure if you follow the rules, and of course, if you can qualify financially, either by obtaining a home loan, or if you have enough cash.

In fact, in many instances, buying a foreclosure is less complicated, and less time consuming than buying any other type of home.

You may from time to time come across a foreclosure that is difficult to buy, but more times than not, you will find the process of buying a foreclosure uncomplicated, and straight forward.

I will explain to you why you should buy a foreclosure, the different types of foreclosures, where to find foreclosures, and the best foreclosures to buy.

Why You Should Buy a Foreclosure

Foreclosure homes sale
Buying a foreclosure has many advantages.

One of the biggest advantages to buying a foreclosure compared with buying a privately owned home is lack of emotion. If you have ever purchased a home from mom and pop homeseller, you know that there is usually emotion involved.

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These sellers have invested years of their lives, and often their children’s lives in their home, and have developed a strong emotional connection with their home.

As a result, these folks often have an unrealistic idea of what their home is worth, and what it should sell for.  They can be inflexible in negotiations, and unwilling to make concessions for would be buyers.

If you think back to the homes that you have lived in both as a child, and as an adult, you will likely have many memories that will tug at your heart strings, and bring about an emotional reaction, either good, bad, or both.

Another advantage of buying a foreclosure over a privately owned home is less competition. This is not always the case, but more times than not you will encounter less competition, and a smoother road to having your offer accepted with a foreclosure. This is assuming of course that your offer is at least somewhat reasonable.

Another reason you should buy a foreclosure is you have a much better chance of finding a bargain than with a privately owned home. You have to do your due diligence of course, but many foreclosures are purchased every day at well under market value.

And don’t feel bad about buying a foreclosure.  Some people have told me that they feel a little sad that they are buying a home that someone lost due to foreclosure.  I do empathize with the foreclosed homeowner, but look at all of the good you are doing.

By buying a foreclosure you are helping many people involved in the process. You are helping a neighborhood, the tax base and the local schools, real estate agents, utility companies, banks or lenders, title companies, inspectors, and the list goes on.

And at the same time you are likely starting out with some equity that can help you financially now, and down the road.

Types of Foreclosures

Foreclosure homes sale
Government foreclosures are one of two main types of foreclosures.

There are 2 basic types of foreclosures. Government foreclosures, and bank foreclosures, or bank owned foreclosures, also know as REO’s or real estate owned.

Government foreclosure types are: HUD, or Housing and Urban Development, FNMA, or Federal National Mortgage Association, also know as Fannie Mae.  FHLMC, or Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation, VA or Veterans Administration, or Department of Veterans Affairs, USDA, United States Department of Agriculture, FDIC, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Department of the Treasury/IRS, Internal Revenue Service, and GNMA, or Government National Mortgage Association, also know as Ginnie Mae.

Bank foreclosures are also know as bank owned foreclosures, and REO’s or Real estate owned foreclosures.

Other types of foreclosures include Pre Foreclosures, which are technically not foreclosures because the foreclosure process has either not been started or will start soon with these properties.

Courthouse step foreclosures, which are technically bank foreclosures that are offered on the courthouse steps initially to cash buyers.

Short sales are often thought of as foreclosures, but they utilize a unique set of circumstances and processes distinctly different than those of foreclosures.

The buying processes for these foreclosures are all different, and can be somewhat daunting and risky for the uninformed, and inexperienced.  I highly recommend a good buyer’s agent that is educated and experienced with foreclosures.

Remember, the real estate agent commissions are paid by the seller, so hiring a good buyer’s agent is free to you. Why not take advantage of it?

Where to Find Foreclosures

Foreclosure homes sale
Foreclosures can be found on the MLS, and on various real estate websites.

The best place to find foreclosures is on the MLS, or multiple listing service.

In order to have access to this information, you need to find a real estate agent, or a real estate broker.

Although all agents and brokers have access to this information, it is ideal to find an agent or broker who specializes in these properties.

You can still get the foreclosure lists from any agent or broker, but in order to effect the purchase, if your agent or broker doesn’t understand the ins and outs of the various foreclosure processes, your deal may not happen.

In addition to the MLS, Government foreclosures have specific websites where their foreclosures can be found such as:
HUD – hudhomestore.com
Fannie Mae – homepath.com
Freddie Mac – homesteps.com
VA – va.gov or homesales.gov
USDA – usda.gov or resales.usda.gov
FDIC – fdicrealestatelistings.com
Treasury/IRS – treasury.gov/auctions/irs
Ginnie Mae – ginniemae.gov

Bank foreclosures, in addition to on the MLS, can often be found on the particular bank’s website, or the bank will sometimes provide contact information as to the real estate agent or agents that handle foreclosure listings for them.

Courthouse steps foreclosures are normally listed in the newspaper and/or on certain websites such as the county website, or the bank website.

Foreclosures can also be found on various other real estate websites including Realtor, Trulia, Zillow, listsource, and others. These sites however, are seldom up to date, and their focus is primarily on privately owned homes, and less on foreclosures.

Foreclosure.com is another source of foreclosure listings.

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Best Foreclosures

Foreclosure homes sale
HUD foreclosures are the best foreclosures.

It is very possible to find a great bargain with any type of foreclosure.

However, my favorite foreclosures are HUD foreclosures. HUD stands for Housing and Urban Development, also known as the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Contrary to what some believe, buying HUD foreclosures is normally a relatively easy process. HUD lists the foreclosures that come about when mortgage holders of FHA loans default.

These foreclosures are available throughout the United States. HUD lists their available foreclosed homes on their website, hudhomestore.com

Anyone can buy a HUD foreclosure. You only have to qualify for a loan as you would for any other property, or show that you have sufficient cash to cover the costs. HUD does an appraisal, and an inspection on all of their foreclosures before they list them for sale.

This is a huge benefit, as the inspection gives you at least a general idea of the condition of the home’s main systems such as plumbing, HVAC, electrical, roof, etc.

This also makes you aware of any other significant issues with the property. Knowing this information can help you decide if you want to pursue the HUD home or not before taking the time and trouble to see it in person.

It is also possible to buy HUD foreclosures for little, if any closing costs. HUD also runs specials from time to time where it is possible to buy for a foreclosure for only $100 down. During this $100 down special, it is possible to buy a HUD home for very little out of pocket money.

HUD also has the best selection of available foreclosures. In addition, HUD discounts it’s properties if a minimum bid hasn’t been reached within a certain amount of time. This time period is normally between 30-60 days.

I have personally seen many HUD foreclosures homes sold for well under market value.

Foreclosures Rock

Foreclosure homes sale
Foreclosures rock!

Foreclosures offer deals that privately owned homes seldom do.  Anyone can buy a foreclosed home as long as you can qualify financially by becoming preapproved for a loan, or showing that you have enough ready cash to cover the costs.

Foreclosures are often easier to purchase than a privately owned home.  With a foreclosure you are not dealing with an emotional owner, and since there are set rules and time frames involved it is normally less complicated, and closes as fast or faster than with a privately owned home.

No reason to feel badly about buying a foreclosure. Although it is unfortunate that the previous home owner lost their home due to foreclosure, your buying the foreclosure not only benefits you, but many other people involved in the process. It also benefits the neighborhood schools, and the economy.

The many types of foreclosures include government foreclosures, bank owned foreclosures or REO’s, courthouse steps foreclosures, and pre foreclosures. Short sales although sometimes considered foreclosures. are dictated by a different set of circumstances and rules.

Foreclosure homes sale can be found on the MLS, or multiple listing service, and online on various real estate websites.

The best available foreclosures in my humble opinion are HUD foreclosures. HUD’s offer the best selection, the best information on each property, the best programs and specials, the best discounts, and the easiest processes for purchase.

So do some online research, get preapproved for a home loan, find a good buyer’s real estate agent that specializes in foreclosures, and see what foreclosure bargains are available in your area.

Best Countries Retire Americans

Best countries retire Americans
Where do you see yourself during your retirement years?

Best Countries Retire Americans

 

If you are nearing retirement age, plan to retire early, or if you just like to think ahead, you may want to consider the best countries retire Americans.

There are many appealing countries to live in, and some countries you may want to avoid altogether.

Everyone has different ideas about what would make a perfect retirement destination, but there is some criteria that most of us would agree is important.

This list of top countries to retire to is based on various criteria. These are cost of living, favorable climate, quality and access of health care, access to a major airport or airports, and infrastructure.

In addition they feature low crime rate/safety, expat population, availability of technology such as internet access, cell phone coverage, proximity to shopping, restaurants, entertainment, stable economy, stable political situation, and ability to find work or start a business if necessary.

Proximity is another important consideration. I live in the U.S. so as a result, I give more points to destinations that are reasonably close to the States.

You may know how difficult, expensive, and time consuming it can be to find a convenient flight home from half way around the world, especially on short notice.

Something else to keep in mind with my list of best countries retire Americans is that within these countries are cities/areas that don’t fit the criteria I have put forth.

For instance, some cities, and areas have a higher cost of living, higher crime rates, etc., yet when the country is taken as a whole it still ranks as an appealing place to live/retire in.

Of course, you should do your due diligence once you have narrowed down your choices of where you might like to retire. I highly recommend that you schedule a visit so that you can see first hand how your location measures up.

Find and talk to expats that live in the area, and inquire with the locals regarding things that are important to you.

Since English is now spoken in most parts of the world, it is no longer a major concern if a different language is spoken in a foreign country.

Of course, it may be a good idea to learn the native language of your new country to make your transistion that much easier, and to help you bond with the native folks.

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Ecuador

Best countries retire Americans
Ecuador features a mild climate, lush jungles, and sun splashed beaches.

Ecuador is relatively small country in south America. It is in the northwest part of the continent.

It borders Colombia to the north, and Peru to the east, and south.

Quito is the capital. It has recently become a somewhat popular retirement destination for Americans, and Canadians.

The Ecuadorian city with the most expats is Cuenca.  The largest city by population in Ecuador is Guayaquil.

Another appealing retirement city in Ecuador is Vilcabamba. This city has somewhat warmer temperatures than both Quito, and Cuenca.

Ecuador features the Galapagos Islands, sun splashed beaches, snow peaked volcanos, and the Amazon Jungle. The climate is spring like for most of the year.

The cost of living is affordable compared to the U.S.  Expect to pay 30%-35% less for housing, either to rent or to buy than comparable U.S. offerings. Their healthcare system is high quality, and low cost.

The food is healthy and low cost with plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, seafood, and other local dishes. There are many outdoor activities to enjoy thanks to the mild climate.

The larger cities offer cultural events, sporting events, and theatre. The pace of life is slower, and the people are friendly.  There is also a good, cheap public transportation system.

There are no taxes charged on your income if it comes in to you from another country. You will only be charged an income tax in Ecuador if you work in the country.

It is also easy and reasonable to apply for, and become an Ecuadorian resident.

Belize

Best countries retire Americans.
Belize is known for it’s diving, and other water sports.

Belize is a small country in Central America. It borders the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico to the north, and Guatemala to the west and south.

To the east is the Caribbean Sea. Formerly British Honduras.

The largest city in Belize is Belize City. The capitol Belmopan is the third largest city.

Belize has a rich diversity of cultures that make up the country. The official language is English, but many other languages are spoken throughout the country.

With it’s lush jungles, sun soaked beaches, many islands and cays, the great Blue Hole, and fabulous reef system, it’s not hard to see why Belize is one of the most beloved destinations in the Caribbean.

There is also lazy running rivers, fertile farmland, rolling hills, and tropical rain forests. There are hundreds of small islands all along the coast.

With it’s Mayan ruins, and 150 mile long barrier reef, the second largest in the world, Belize offers many unique attractions. It offers some of the best diving in the world, and is know for it’s water sports offerings, sailing, fishing, wind surfing, as well as world class diving.

Just like the people of Belize, the food/cuisine is a mixture. It stems from European, North America, and Caribbean menus.

There are many fine restaurants in the mainland, and on the cays and islands. The local produce is very inexpensive.

Belize’s tourism industry is very successful. Belize is a relatively safe country, based on interviews with expats. These diverse cultures include Germans, Chinese, Lebanese, Mayan, Mestozo, American, and Spanish cultures.

The cost of living is less than many other countries. There are some real estate bargains to be found. The northern beaches offer low prices for beachfront property, as well as other items.

Buying property in Belize is less risk than many other countries primarily due to the fact that it is an English speaking country.

All the paperwork is in English, and the process to buy property is very similar to that of the United States.

Healthcare is inexpensive, and all legal residents are entitled to receive free services from the state healthcare facilities. There are long waiting lines for the public services however.

Private care is available but for a higher cost, of course depending on your insurance company.

Checking out Belize to see if you would like to live there is relatively easy. A visa is not required for up to a month.

Extensions are available for only $25.  This can be done for up to 6 months. It is also easy and inexpensive to become a resident.

Click here for delicious organic wine without the hangover

Columbia

Best countries retire Americans.
Columbia features ancient cultures such as these Mayan ruins.

Despite it’s former reputation as a hotbed for drug smuggling, and drug dealers, and crime rates, Columbia has recently become a popular retirement destination.

A strong U.S. dollar, outdoor excursions, and cultural activities, a surprisingly safe environment all make for an appealing retirement life.

If you enjoy nature, Columbia boasts over 50 national parks. It’s temperate climate close to the equator is ideal for outdoor activities all year round. Each day has 12 hours of daylight and 12 hours of darkness.

It has high quality, low cost healthcare and dental care with state of the art equipment, and facilities. With trained doctors, and modern hospitals it resembles the best of the U.S. and Canada.

Columbia boasts many colonial cities and towns on the Caribbean with beautiful beaches such as in Cartageena. The Andes mountain range is in the western part of the country.

Bogota is the capital city, but the most popular retirement city is Medellin.

The infrastructure includes good roads, safe public transportation, and up to date internet service technology and equipment.

The cost of living in Columbia is surprising low and affordable. There are many discounts for seniors on most products and services.

With low rent, affordable food costs, and very low utilities due to the climate where heat or air conditioning is not needed in most parts of the country. You can live quite well for $1000 – $1500 per month including rent.

There are no restrictions on foreign buyers for real estate, regardless if you are a resident or not. Buying real estate is roughly one third of what you would pay for comparable property in the United States.

The Columbia retirement visa is affordable, and easy to get. You also have to show proof of financial stability by showing an income of approximately $700 per month or more. All financial information needed can be sent via the internet.

 

Planning for Retirement is a Journey, not just a Destination

Best countries retire Americans
Planning for retirement is a journey that should be started as soon as possible.

No matter your age, planning for retirement is just a smart thing to do.

The sooner you begin to plan financially, the better your retirement years can be.

There are many great retirement destinations, and havens, and it is fun to look at and evaluate countries that would make for a great retirement home.

Ecuador, Belize, and Columbia are 3 very tempting countries to retire in due to their many outstanding qualities. All 3 feature a low cost of living, comfortable climate, beaches, friendly natives, scenic landscapes, outdoor activities, cultural activities and events, and an expat population.

They also all have affordable and extensive food and restaurants, affordable and uncomplicated residency requirements, high quality and affordable health care, up to date technology, good infrastructure, international airports, and reasonable proximity to the United States.

So, do your research, plan a trip, talk to expats and other locals, travel within the country, experience the culture, sample the local fare, look at some property, make a pro/con list, and enjoy the process of picking your perfect retirement country.

Do you have a favorite retirement country or destination? I would enjoy knowing about other great places to retire. I still have a few years left before I am ready to retire so my mind is not completely made up.

Feel free to leave your comments, feedback, and questions below.

Note: AFFILIATE DISCLOSURE.  You may see links to various products or services in pages or posts on this website.  These links are affiliate links and I may receive a small commission if you purchase through them.  There is no additional cost to you.

Five Best Towns in US to Live

 

Click here for delicious organic wine without the hangover

 

 

 

HUD Gov Homes Sale

HUD gov homes sale
HUD foreclosures can be single family homes or duplexes, threeplexes, or fourplexes.

HUD Gov Homes Sale

 

HUD is the acronym for Housing and Urban Development, or U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to be exact. HUD gov homes sale happens every day. One of the main functions for this government department is to provide HUD foreclosures to the public for resale.

A HUD home is a residential property that is 1 to 4 units. In other words, HUDs are single family homes, duplexes, three plexes, and four plexes.

Anyone can buy a HUD home if they can qualify for a loan, or if they have cash. And yes you can find some great deals with HUD homes.

I will tell you where HUD foreclosures come from, how HUD sells their foreclosures, what an FHA loan is, and why it is so popular, and how to buy HUD homes.

Click here for your FREE credit score

Where do HUD foreclosures come from?

HUD gov homes sale
HUD foreclosures are created by defaulted FHA loans.

How does HUD come upon these foreclosures to be able to offer them for sale to the public?

The loan guaranteeing arm of HUD is the FHA, Federal Housing Administration.

The role of the FHA is to insure loans with FHA approved lenders or mortgage companies in order to make it easier for home buyers to afford the costs of purchasing real estate, as well as make it easier for lenders or mortgage companies to make loans.

When a mortgage holder defaults on an FHA mortgage, the lender or mortgage company can call in the insurance with the FHA and recoup their costs of writing the loan.

The FHA, in turn, takes ownership of the property, and turns it over to HUD to handle the marketing and selling of the foreclosed property.  HUD then offers the property to the public in order to recoup their costs from the foreclosure claim.

How does HUD sell their foreclosure properties?

HUD gov homes sale
HUD has an appraisal, and an inspection done on their foreclosures.

Once HUD takes possession of a home through an FHA foreclosure, it enlists the help of various entities.  HUD has an appraisal, and an inspection done on their homes.

The appraisal, and inspection results are made available to the public. HUD has a designated Field Service Manager to prepare, and maintain the property and house for sale.

HUD also uses a designated HUD approved Listing Broker hired by the Asset Manager to list the home, and help market it to the public for sale. HUD also has an Asset Manager as the contractor responsible for the sale of the property.

The Asset Manager handles the paperwork/contracts and facilitates the deal and moves it to the closing date.

Once the HUD property is ready to be put on the market, the listing is placed in the MLS, multiple listing service by the Listing Broker, and is also listed on the HUD Home Store website.

Why are FHA loans so popular?

HUD gov homes sale
It is easier to qualify for an FHA loan than a conventional loan.

FHA loans normally have less strict requirements in order to qualify than a typical or conventional loan from a bank or mortgage company.

For instance, most lenders want to see a credit score of 640 in order to consider a home buyer for a loan.

FHA, on the other hand, will consider you with a credit score of 580 or above.

Conventional loans usually require a minimum of 5%, and often times as much as 10% down payment toward the purchase of a home. FHA loans only need 3.5% of the purchase price of a home for the down payment.

It is also possible to have up to 3% of the purchase price of the home put toward closing costs with an FHA loan. This is money paid for you, and not by you.

As many people are short on cash when in the market for a home, these incentives help keep the out of pocket costs of home ownership low, and affordable for many people.

In addition, HUD also provides extra incentives like $100 down on selected properties from time to time. This makes buying a HUD home even easier and more affordable.

How to Buy HUD Homes

HUD Gov homes sale
Your first step in buying a HUD home is to become pre-approved for a home loan.

Buying HUD homes is a lot like buying any other homes, at least from a buyer’s perspective. And like buying any home, the first thing a serious buyer should do is:

1. Get preapproved for a home loan. You can do this through a bank, or a mortgage company. Be sure that your new lender offers FHA loans as FHA works best with HUD homes.

2. Find a HUD approved broker. Only HUD approved real estate brokers can sell HUD properties. This is normally not diffficult to find, as many real estate brokers are HUD approved.

 

3. Go to Hudhomestore.com  This website lists the available HUD homes by city, state, number of bedrooms, number of bths, price, and other criteria.

You can find what HUD homes are available in the areas that you want to live easily on Hudhomestore.com  Your HUD approved Broker/Realtor can also email you a list of HUD homes based on your specific criteria, if you prefer.

HUD Gov Homes Sale
HUD works on a sealed bid process.

The HUD Bid Process

Once you have found a HUD home you like, it’s time to place your bid for this property.

HUD works on a sealed bid process. This means that no one but HUD knows what you or anyone else has bid for a given HUD property.

When a HUD property is first listed HUD allows bids for 15 calendar days for owner/occupants only. This means you must live in the home and it must be your principal residence. The first 15 days are called the exclusive listing period.

For HUD Properties marketed as ‘insured’ or ‘insured with escrow,’ the exclusive listing time period is 15 calendar days.
For HUD Properties marketed as ‘uninsured,’ the exclusive listing time period is 5 calendar days.

All bids are treated as if they have been received at the same time. No preference is given to a bid that arrives sooner than another.

If an acceptable bid has not been received during the initial 10 calendar day period, new bids will be considered each business day thereafter until an acceptable bid has been received.

If an acceptable bid has not been received during the 15 day exclusive listing time period, HUD will then accept all bids, including those from investors. This is called the extended listing period.

To present a bid to HUD, you will need to provide your name, address, phone number, social security number, marital status, and the amount you want to bid for your chosen property. Your HUD approved broker/realtor will present your bid online for you.

If you submit the winning bid, HUD will need a pre approval letter, or a proof of funds if you are paying cash for the property, and an earnest money deposit of either $500 or $1000, depending on the price of the property, to be submitted along with signed HUD paperwork/contracts within 48 hours.

Once all of this is received, and approved by HUD, you can then begin the process of closing on your purchase.  If this process seems a bit daunting or confusing have no fear. Your HUD approved Broker/Realtor will guide through everything.

Click here for your FREE credit score

Are HUDs Right For You?

HUD Gov Homes Sale
Anyone can buy a HUD property.

HUD stands for Housing and Urban Development, a government agency whose functions include providing foreclosures to the public.  Anyone can buy a HUD home, and yes, you can find some great deals with HUD foreclosures.

HUD foreclosures are generated when FHA mortgage holders default on their loans, and the insured lender sells the property back to FHA/HUD.  HUD sells their properties with the assistance of Asset Managers, Listing Brokers, and Field Service Managers all designated by HUD.

FHA, the Federal Housing Administration works hand in hand with HUD. FHA loans are so popular because they have less stringent requirements to qualify, and additional benefits for home buyers.

To buy a HUD gov homes sale home you should first be preapproved for a home loan by a lender that is FHA approved, find a HUD approved Broker/Realtor, and go to the HUD website, HUDhomestore.com to see what HUD homes are available in your area.

HUD works on a sealed bid process, and initially allows bids for owner/occupants only. Within 15 days if an acceptable bid has not been submitted, HUD opens the bidding to all bidders, including investors.

HUD Broker/Realtors are experts at navigating the HUD foreclosure bidding rules and regulations. They will guide you through the process, and make owning a HUD foreclosure property an enjoyable, and rewarding experience.

 

 

Write Online Earn Money

Write online earn money
Story tellers can make excellent writers.

Yes, you can write online earn money. Do you like to tell stories? Do you like to write?

Are your grammar, and spelling skills average or better?

Even if they are below average, with sites to help you like Grammarly, and the spell checks available on most online writing platforms, you will have no problem writing online.

Did you know that you can write online earn money?

It’s true, you can be an online writer, and earn money. There are many people today that work where they want, and earn good money by writing online both part-time and full time.

With the upsurge in the number of websites that are now online, there is an enormous demand for content writers, ad writers, sales letter writers, e book writers, blog writers, article writers, lyrics writers, and the list goes on.

And, if you think your writing skills may be a bit lacking, or if they need some brushing up, there are excellent online writing courses that you can take advantage of.

Plus, with the help of spell checkers, and grammar checkers, you can likely ‘fake it til you make it’, if need be.

So don’t worry if you think your writing may be a bit sub par. There are many ways to improve your writing online as well. The best way is to start writing.

There is nothing like practice and some experience to bring your writing to a new level. And don’t worry if you think your offline writing experience may not transfer to online writing opportunities. It most definitely will.

People that own online businesses or offline businesses or both have to have websites to maximize their potential exposure to their specific markets.

Since almost everyone is online today, and most people shop online, if you don’t have a website, you are likely costing yourself money, and hurting the growth of your business and brand.

One of the great benefits of becoming an online writer, is that you can work wherever you want, as long as you have your laptop with you and access to an internet connection.

I will tell you about online writing courses. I will also tell you about the different online writing opportunities that pay real money that you can take advantage of today.

I will give you the online writing companies/websites that offer these writing jobs. And, I will also give you my number one online writing opportunity recommendation.

 

Online Writing Courses

Write online earn money
There are many online writing courses available to you.

If you are someone that likes the idea of making money writing online but have a limited writing background, or have limited related education, the place to start is with online writing courses.

Even if you have a writing background, and related education, a good online writing course can sharpen your skills and further your writing education.

Taking an online writing course can enhance your resume, and separate you from competing writers that have not taken online writing courses.

Your skills will be in more demand, and you will likely be able to command higher fees and rates than many other writers as a result.

Some online writing courses are free, some charge fees. Some are specialized, and some are more general in what they offer.

Some are short, and take little time, while others are quite in depth, and may take much longer to complete.

Some of these courses are taught by academics with a structured school feel, while others are taught by people that have experience in their particular writing genre, and provide real world knowledge, and direction.

A good free resource for online writing courses is YouTube. There is a myriad of writing advice, instruction, and education available there.

For instance, the famous writer Stephen King has a YouTube video where he liberally doles out writing advice. It doesn’t get much better than that.

Some of the best online writing courses are:

  • Writers Digest University
  • Gotham Writers
  • The Writers Workshop
  • Story Genius
  • Bloggers Guide to Effective Writing
  • Skillshare
  • Creative Writing 101
  • Write Fiction Like a Pro

Types of Paid Writing Jobs/Opportunities

Write online earn money
There are more online writing jobs available than there are online writers.

When you feel like you are ready to take on paid writing jobs and opportunities you can begin by becoming a freelancer.

Freelance Writing

A freelance writer is someone that primarily works for themselves. Freelancing is by far the most popular, and common way for writers to make money online.

They use different means to gather paying clients. Freelance writing gigs are writing jobs that you bid for yourself.

Some websites like Fiverr, and Upwork allow you to access jobs on their websites. Your experience and skill level will dictate which writing jobs and what fee amounts you will qualify for, and have a chance at landing.

The key to making good money as a freelance writer is experience. The more you write, the better you will become.

You want to be able to show that you have writing experience by providing samples of actual online writing that you have accomplished. It is a good idea to start your own website dedicated to your professional writing business.

You will want to provide your writing areas of expertise, jobs you have done for money, any writing education and acumen, some personal information, and what your writing style and philosophy may be.

So, how do you get experience as a freelance writer if you have no experience? You will have to start by taking the writing jobs and assignments that pay less money, and work your way up.

You may have to take some tests that showcase your abilities, and prove your skills. Once you have a small portfolio of completed jobs, and happy clients, you will be able to move up into some higher paying opportunities.

Freelancers can get paid by writing stories, articles, reviews, copy writing, e books, sales letters, advertising, social media posts, lyrics, and speeches.

Here are some of the best freelance writing sites that provide jobs for writers. These sites provide hourly work, per project work, and have different expertise levels. They have short term work, and long term work.

There are some variances though from one site to another. Some of these sites provide writing freelance opportunities as well as other types of freelance jobs.

 

  • Upwork (formerly Odesk)
  • iWriter
  • Textbroker
  • Freelancer
  • Demand Media
  • Freelance Writing Gigs
  • Project4Hire
  • iFreelance
  • Rent a Coder
  • BlogMutt
  • Guru
  • Fiverr
  • Barefoot Writer (also provide training)
  • Writers Work (also provide training)

 

Write online earn money
Starting a blog is a great way to generate income as an online writer.

Start a Blog/Content Writing

Another way to write online earn money is to start your own blog website, fill it with content, and monetize that content with affiliate links, or other advertising such as Google Adsense.

The beauty of this type of writing is you can write about whatever you choose. Ideally you will want to find a niche area that you are knowledgeable and hopefully passionate about.

The great thing about the internet is that almost any topic will have many people that are interested, and can be sold related products and services to.

Starting your own blog allows you to create content that can help educate, and solve problems for people in your niche. By creating this value, you can ultimately find like-minded people that will provide traffic to your website.

Your objective with your own niche site is to generate traffic, click throughs, and conversions on your website. You will need to learn keyword research, and how to write for your specific keywords.

You are trying to rank in the search engines like Google, Bing, and others which can bring free organic traffic if done properly. This is called SEO, or search engine optimization.

This type of online writing however does take some time to create traction. So, if you are looking to get paid right away, this may not be your best online writing option.

You can also, of course pay for traffic, such as PPC or pay per click, which is a much quicker way to bring targeted ‘eyeballs’, and hopefully conversions to your site.

Starting a blog website, and content writing is best looked at as building a foundational business that can pay off well down the road.

It is possible to create an income with this type of online writing that can last many years, and may even have an autopilot feature once your website content ranks high in the search engines.

 

My Number 1 Recommendation

Write online earn money
Wealthy Affiliate is my number one online writing recommendation.

My top recommendation for writing online and earning money is Wealthy Affiliate.

WA fits in the blog/content writing category. It shows you how to build an online business for the long term starting from scratch.

Wealthy Affiliate was founded in 2005. This online company teaches you how to start your own website or websites by using WordPress.

They provide in depth training covering all aspects of starting your website. They also provide website hosting, and domain names.

This training includes finding a niche, optimizing your content for keywords, how to generate organic traffic, and how to convert that traffic once it is on your website.

The training also covers how to write your own posts, and how to add pictures, and videos to your website.

In addition, the Wealthy Affiliate training covers how to use paid traffic, social media, video marketing, local marketing, and email marketing to promote your websites.

There is a community area full of helpful members that are ready to help other members with any questions, concerns, or issues that may arise. The support is legendary.

What I really like about being a Wealthy Affiliate member is I can set up websites, and write about what I am passionate and knowledgeable about, and not what someone else wants me to write about.

What are you passionate about? Pets? Football? Travel? Nutrition? Real Estate? Whatever you are into, you can write about it, and learn to make money at Wealthy Affiliate.

Wealthy Affiliate lets you start absolutely free, and even gives you 2 websites plus training as a free member. You can really kick the tires, take a test drive, and find out if it is for you without spending a dime.

Click here for your FREE Wealthy Affiliate Membership!

Write On

write online earn money
Online writing allows you to work from home.

So, if writing is your thing, or you would like it to be your thing, you have many opportunities available to you as an online writer. You can start by taking writing courses.

This will improve your writing skills, and supercharge your ability to land some well paying writing jobs.

Some writing courses are free, and some charge a fee. Some good, free writing advice and instruction is available on YouTube.

By far the most common type of writing job available is that of a freelancer. A freelancer works for him or herself. There are many online websites that cater to freelance writers. You will have to apply, and bid for the available jobs.

Some offer hourly work, and others offer per job work. Your skill level, and experience will dictate which jobs you will qualify for, and how much money you can earn. There is part-time work, and full time work available.

Another way to write online and earn money is by starting your own website and filling it with content. This type of online writing can take some time to get set up and to learn the ropes.

However, many people are making a good living by becoming a website owner and content producer.

My number 1 recommendation as the best opportunity for an online writer is with Wealthy Affiliate.

Online writing offers an excellent way to work online from anywhere that has an internet connection.

Click here for your FREE Wealthy Affiliate Membership!

 

 

 

Apply Mortgage Online – Best Online Lenders

Apply mortgage online
Most realtors won’t take you on until you are preapproved for a home loan.

Apply Mortgage Online – Best Online Lenders

 

If you are in the market for a new home, before you call your real estate agent to begin the home search process you want to be pre-approved for a mortgage loan.  It is a good idea to apply mortgage online, which is easy, convenient, and will also save you time, and money.

Most real estate agents will want to know right up front if you are preapproved for a mortgage loan. If you are not preapproved, a good real estate agent will advise you to start that process immediately.

Perhaps you have already been advised by a Realtor to find a good mortgage company.

As a former Realtor, I can tell you that I would not begin to send properties to clients, or show them homes until I knew that they were preapproved and ready to go, and for what amount were they preapproved for.

This not only benefits the real estate agent, but it also benefits you, the buyer.

There is nothing more frustrating than finding a home that you love, and want to buy, only to find out later that you can’t qualify for it.  Not to mention the wasted time, and the lost opportunities of homes that you would qualify for.

Of course the Realtor does not want to waste his or her time and money showing properties to clients that can’t get preapproved, or that won’t be preapproved for a high enough amount.

He or she also does not want to lose the chance to work with a buyer that is preapproved by spending time showing homes to someone that is not, and may not be able to be preapproved.

I will explain to you what the lenders or mortgage companies look for in order to preapprove you. I will explain the different types of mortgage loans.

I will also tell you why it is smart to find a mortgage company or lender online, and the best way to search for your mortgage company or lender online.

What Mortgage Companies or Lenders Want to See

Have you ever wondered what mortgage companies or lenders look at, and want to see in order to preapprove someone for mortgage loans?

Apply mortgage online
Lenders look at 5 different things in order to preapprove a client for a home loan.

There are certain things that these folks want to see from you the borrower in order to feel reasonably assured that you will be able to pay your mortgage on time every month.

1. Credit Score

Mortgage companies and lenders want to see a credit score of at least 620. They look at your credit score from the 3 main credit reporting bureaus, Trans Union, Experian, and Equifax. They take the middle score from these 3 credit reporting agencies.

For instance if your scores are 600 from Trans Union, 700 from Equifax, and 650 from Experian, they will use the middle score of 650 from Experian to count as your credit score.

Obviously, the higher your credit score, the better. As you go higher you will qualify for the best loans with the best terms, and the lowest fees, assuming of course, that the rest of your application checks out.

Click here for your FREE credit score

2. Time on Job/Income

Lenders and mortgage companies want to see at least 2 years of continuous work experience, and ideally on the same job. And, of course, you need to be employed currently.

You can have more than 1 job, but it needs to be in the same industry, and there can’t be large gaps between jobs.

They also obviously look at how much money you make, and how you make it. A salaried job is given some preference over a variable income such as a commission, or hourly job.

If you are self employed you have to be in business for at least 2 consecutive years. Your proof will be your tax returns.

3. Debt

Lenders and Mortgage companies look at certain debt you have called mandatory debt. This is the amount of money you may owe for monthly credit card payments, monthly car loan payments, lines of credit, child support, alimony, other mortgages, and property taxes as a percentage of how much money you make.

It is acceptable to have no or little debt, but often times having no debt can hurt your credit score.

4. Down Payment

The more down payment that you can put toward your home mortgage, the better. This lessens the amount you will be borrowing, and will make it easier for you to pay the loan back.

You will have to show some proof of this down payment amount whether it be a bank statement, a gift letter, or proof of sale of an asset like a home, car, boat, etc. in an amount large enough to cover the down payment.

5. The Home or Property 

Although the home or property that you want to buy is normally not known when the preapproval process is started, it will become a factor before the bank actually fully approves the loan.

The mortgage company or lender will want to be sure that the property you want to buy is worth what you are paying for it. They will normally order an appraisal to be absolutely certain.

If your home choice does not ‘appraise out’ according to the lender’s appraisal, the loan may not be granted.

Quick and Easy Credit Repair – Click Here!

Types of Mortgage Loans

Apply mortgage online
The most popular type of mortgage is the fixed rate.

Fixed Rate Mortgage: A fixed rate mortgage loan is by far the most common loan that is provided by lenders nationwide.

A fixed rate loan keeps the same interest rate throughout the loan. This means your monthly payments are steady and consistent.

The 30 Year is the most popular fixed rate mortgage loan. Loan durations of 15 year, 20 year, 40 year, and even 50 year fixed rate loans are also available with some lenders.

An  ARM or Adjustable Rate Mortgage, has floating or changing rate of interest.  An ARM, can fluctuate, unlike a fixed rate mortgage depending on various economic factors. The ARM is considered more risky than most other loans.

Two-step Mortgages:   A two step mortgage loan will have the initial period of time at a fixed interest rate percentage, and the second period of time at a different fixed interest rate percentage.

Such as, the initial 10 year term of the loan could have a fixed interest rate at 5%, and the next 10 year term could have a fixed interest rate at 6%.

Combination Mortgages:  These are mortgages that combine a fixed interest rate loan for a certain time period, and an ARM loan or another time period.

The interest rates, and time periods can very depending on the particular lender.

Balloon Mortgage:  A balloon mortgage usually has a fixed interest rate for a certain time period, normally with low monthly payments, and a balance, commonly a considerable amount or balloon amount due at the end of a certain loan period.

Click here for your one stop mortgage shop

Finding Your Lender or Mortgage Company Online

Apply mortgage online
Almost anything you can imagine is purchased online every day.

It makes a lot of sense to shop for a mortgage online. Ten or fifteen years ago, it may not have been advisable to shop for a mortgage online.

Today, however, almost anything and everything imaginable can be and is purchased online every day of the week.

All of the top companies in the world do business online, and the assurances and safeguards are in place.

It is easy to do your due dligence on any company easily through Google, and many other websites.

By shopping for a mortgage online, you can cover a great deal more ground much more quickly than if you set appointments, and physically drive to banks, mortgage companies, and other lenders in person.

You may have seen the television ad where the Muppet character tells his human friend that instead of putting on a suit and going to the bank, you can apply online with a few clicks, and the banks come running to me.

This is true. You can find information about loans such as interest rates, and fees, and apply to several of these lenders at one time.

This increases your chances of being approved. They will let you know very quickly in most cases, if you are preapproved or not.

You never have to leave the comfort of your own home, or office. You will save a considerable amount of time both while applying, and waiting to hear if you are approved, you won’t have to fight traffic, and even save a few dollars in the process.

 

The Best Way to Find Your Mortgage Online

The best way to find your mortgage online is to find a website that provides you the opportunity to fill out your information one time, and in so doing submitting to at least 4 or 5 different lenders at once.

You will need to know the type of loan you want, most people go for the fixed rate loan, and how long of a loan duration you would like, most people like the 30 year loan.

You also want to hear back as quickly as possible what you may qualify for, and from what company. In many cases, you can hear back within minutes.

At this point, it is a decision that you will need to make as to which mortgage company you want to go with.

This is when you will need to weigh loan offers based on reputation of the mortgage company, duration of loan, interest rate, fees, and points.

The online source that I recommend is Lending Tree. They will provide you multiple, reputable offers at the same time.

They also provide a handy mortgage calculator to calculate what your payment will be, so you will know what you can afford.  Click on the picture below.

 

 

 

 

 

Applying for a Mortgage Online is Fast and Easy

It’s a good idea to apply for a mortgage online. It is fast, convenient, easy, and can save you time and money.

Most real estate agents won’t show homes to clients that aren’t preapproved for a home loan.  You want to be preapproved so you know how much home you qualify for. This will keep you from being disappointed, and wasting your time.

Lenders want to see a minimum credit score of 620 in most cases. The 3 main credit bureaus are Trans Union, Equifax, and Experian.

Lenders take the middle score to arrive at your credit worthiness number.   They also want to see that you have a minimum of 2 consecutive years on the job.

Salaried jobs are preferred over hourly, self employed, and commission type jobs.

Having debt is acceptable, but too much debt in relation to how much you make can be problematic.

The more down payment you can put toward your home the better from a lender’s perspective.

You want to pick a home that is worth what you are offering to buy it for, or the bank may nix the deal with their appraisal.

The most common type of loan is the fixed rate loan. The most common fixed rate loan duration is for 30 years.

Other types of loans are the ARM, adjustable rate mortgage, the two step mortgage, the combination loan, and the balloon mortgage.

Almost anything you can  imagine is purchased online today. A home loan/mortgage is no exception. Make sure you choose a reputable lender.

Applying online is a breeze compared to the old way of dressing up and going from bank to bank or lender to lender to apply for a home loan.  Apply mortgage online.

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What is the Best Handgun Safe

What is the best handgun safe
Securing your firearms is commendable.

What is the best handgun safe?

You are to be commended for realizing the danger of keeping a loaded handgun in the house unprotected.  It is important to ask the question, what is the best handgun safe?

A handgun safe will provide protection for your children, your spouse, and even yourself from your handguns. A handgun safe will also provide protection from theft of your handgun or handguns.

And the right handgun safe will also provide you quick access to your protected handgun should you need it in a crisis situation, or any situation for that matter.

My name is Tom. I have been in the safe business for going on 20 years. I know what makes a great handgun safe, and what doesn’t.

I will explain the dangers of not having a handgun safe to secure your handguns, pistols, or sidearms.

I will also explain to you what makes a great handgun safe, and why. I will also tell you the what is the best handgun safe I recommend, and the best place online to buy it, should you be so inclined.

Why You Must Secure Your Handguns

What is the best handgun safe
Children playing with loaded handguns can end in tragedy.

On average, 10% of households that own guns that have children younger than 18 years old, keep a loaded and unlocked firearm.

Sadly, every day in the United States alone, 8 children are shot by unsecured firearms in the home.

Ironically, most people keep their loaded guns in a drawer or unlocked closet for easy and quick access in order to protect their children and spouses, yet it can cause tragic consequences.

Had these folks just taken the next step to simply secure their firearms in a gun cabinet or a gun safe, these accidents could have been avoided.

In addition, many burglaries, and other home invasions result in unsecured handguns, and other firearms being stolen.

After all, we don’t want our lethal firearms to go from legal gun owners hands to illegal, criminal gun owners hands.

Not to mention the added expense and hassle you will face of having to buy more guns to replace those that were stolen.

A good handgun safe will provide you safety, security, and quick access in your home, your car, your boat, and your RV.

Click here for great handgun safes

What Makes a Great Handgun Safe

What is the best handgun safe
A great handgun safe has 3 important features.

There are 3 components to a great handgun safe.

1. Quick Access  Your ability to access your handgun quickly in a crisis situation is vitally important. If someone breaks into your home in the middle of the night while you and your family are in bed, you must be able to get to your firearm quickly.

It is also very important that you don’t bring attention to yourself by using lights or making noise by stumbling around or jangling keys trying to get into your safe or lock box.

You want your handgun access to be within arms length on the floor or in a drawer or nightstand. This will allow you to gain entry to your handgun safe within seconds, and in a quiet and covert manner.

2. Dependable Access Because you never know when you might need your gun quickly, you must be able to depend on your ability to get to your handguns quickly without fail every time.

The biometric, and fingerprint locks which allow you to open your handgun safe by simply inserting your finger or hand are great for quick access. These locks also eliminate any chance for others to get into your safe through conventional means.

These biometric/fingerprint locks do have some negative features however. The fact that they are electronic, and need a power source to operate means that it is possible for these locks to fail at that critical moment when you need it to work most.

Even with an A/C power source, and a battery back up, it is still possible for it to fail during crunch time, if you will allow me a sports terminology.

Although unusual, the complex biometrics can also fail which also detracts for the locks overall dependability.

If you work with your hands, and cut or scrape your fingers, your biometric lock may not recognize your fingerprints, and can, and often do fail, as a result.

Some biometric locks may also include buttons to press prior to allowing access. These locks can make beeping noises, and draw attention to yourself, which you would not want in the middle of the night in a silent house that has an unwanted visitor creeping about.

Due to these shortcomings, I can not recommend a biometric lock as the best lock for a great handgun safe. The best, most dependable lock is a good simplex pushbutton mechanical lock.

You can depend on this lock to work for you without fail when you need it most. It’s simple mechanical push button design has fewer parts to go bad, and needs no power source at all to operate.

No worries about changing a battery or plugging in an A/C power source like with the biometric lock.

You may lose a few seconds in access time compared with the biometric lock, but the simplex pushbutton lock’s dependability trumps that of it’s competitors.

3. Secure Construction  You want a solid steel gun box with at least one bolt hole for secure bolt down to a floor or to the inside of a nightstand, or a cabinet.

These pre drilled bolt holes will also allow you to secure your handgun safe inside of a larger gun safe, if you so choose. You also want your handgun safe to be very difficult to be pryed or hammered open.

A well made, sturdy steel, pry resistant, bolted down handgun safe will keep your handguns in place, away from unwanted visitors, and give you many years of dependable service.

This will greatly decrease the chances of your safe, and handguns from being opened and accessed by others

Best Handgun Safe

The one handgun safe that checks all the boxes, and in my opinion is the very best handgun safe on the market is:

What is the Best Handgun Safe
The Fort Knox PB-1 Handgun Safe checks all the boxes.

Fort Knox PB-1 Original Pistol Safe (FTK-PB)

This sturdy handgun safe has:

  • 10 gauge steel body
  • 3/16″ steel wraparound, pry resistant door
  • 4 pre-drilled bolt holes in bottom of safe for anchoring
  • Simplex push button lock for quick access and dependability
  • Inner hydraulic arms ensure smooth opening and closing
  • No electronics to support or cause failures
  • Large interior capacity with 2 layers of foam for ample storage
  • Lifetime Fort Knox warranty

SPECIFICATIONS:

  • 4 1/4″H x 12 1/2″W x 10 3/8″D
  • 22 lbs.

Check out the video on the Fort Knox PB-1 below.

Click here to buy the Fort Knox PB-1

 

Best Place to Buy the Best Handgun Safe

The best place to buy the best handgun safe, the Fort Knox PB-1 Handgun Safe is gunsafes.com

Gunsafes.com offer low prices, free shipping, order tracking, online or phone orders, 100% secure website, 30 day return policy,  no sales tax except in Idaho, and Florida.

They are an English speaking American company, great customer service, wide selection of gun safes and accessories, sporting goods, and related items. A real person will answer the phone during business hours if and when you call.

Click here for more info on the Ft. Knox PB-1

Congratulations!

You are to be commended for your decision to protect your handguns, and in so doing, protect your family.

10% of households that own guns that have children under the age of 18, keep a loaded and unlocked firearm in the home.

Every day in the U.S.A, 8 children are shot by an unsecured firearm in the home.

These potentially tragic events can be avoided by utilizing a gun cabinet, or a gun safe.

A good handgun safe will allow you quick, dependable access, be constructed of heavy duty steel and provide pry resistance.

The best lock for your handgun safe is a Simplex push button lock which allows for quick, and very dependable access.

You also want your handgun safe to be pre drilled to allow for anchoring to a floor or other surface.

So, what is the best handgun safe? The best handgun safe that checks all the boxes is the Fort Know PB-1.  The Fort Knox PB-1 has a solid steel body, and door, and is designed to be pry resistant.

The door is controlled by a Simplex push button lock for quick, dependable access.  The bottom has 4 pre drilled anchor holes for ease of bolt down. It also has a large interior, and a lifetime warranty.

The best place to buy the best handgun safe, the Fort Knox PB-1 is at gunsafes.com

Gunsafes.com offers low prices, free shipping, and a wide selection of handgun safes, and accessories.

 

 

 

 

Gun Cabinets Sale

Gun cabinets sale
Gun cabinets provide two very valuable functions, safety, and quick access.

A gun cabinets sale should have a great selection of gun cabinets at great prices. It should describe exactly what a gun cabinet is, and what the various types of gun cabinets are.

It should tell you what the differences are between a gun cabinet and a gun safe.

What features should you have in a gun cabinet?  What locks are available with gun cabinets? Is one type of lock preferable over another?

Who are the best gun cabinet and gun safe manufacturers? Is there a good place to buy a gun cabinet or gun safe online?

Why you need a gun cabinet or gun safe

Tragically, 8 children are accidentally shot every day in the U.S. alone from unsecured firearms in the home. The irony is that most people have the guns in the home loaded, in a drawer or unlocked closet for quick and easy access in order to protect their families.

Sadly, if these folks would have just taken the next step to simply secure their firearms in a gun cabinet or a gun safe, these accidents could have been avoided.

Click here for best gun cabinets

What is a Gun Cabinet?

Gun cabinets sale
A gun cabinet is a locking cabinet to store your guns.

A gun cabinet is exactly what the title says. It is a locking cabinet to store your guns. It provides a safe yet accessible place to keep your guns so that they are safely away from the curious hands of children.

It also allows you to access your guns fairly quickly should a situation arise where it becomes necessary to arm yourself.

Gun cabinets can be made out of various types of wood, or steel. Some wooden gun cabinets have glass windows to reveal your guns, and also make for handsome furniture for your home.

The types of wood that gun cabinets are made from include cedar, cherry, pine, hickory, oak, and walnut.

The fine craftsmanship of gun cabinets also includes some with fine Amish woodworking skill.

A good gun cabinet will also provide some protection from the elements for your guns. These cabinets, depending on the size and type, can store your long guns, as well as handguns.

They may also give you the ability to store ammunition, and accessories, although they are primarily designed for storage and safe keeping of long guns.

The basic design of steel gun cabinets is not ideal for the long term maintenance and upkeep of expensive firearms. Steel gun cabinets are normally stored in a garage, a basement, or in an outbuilding.

Wooden gun cabinets, on the other hand, do provide a better environment for the longevity, and maintenance of your long guns.

These gun cabinets, because they are also considered furniture are usually kept in a bedroom, or a living room which is somewhat more protective of the elements.

Click here to buy now!

 

What is the difference between a gun cabinet and a gun safe?

gun cabinets sale
A good gun safe is heavy, has burglary and fire protection, and a custom interior.

A gun cabinet although effective in keeping guns away from children, normally offer little if any burglary protection, or fire protection.

Their interiors tend to also be ‘basic’, limiting their storage, and organizing capability, as well as providing limited protection for your guns from the elements, such as humidity.

As a result, in most cases you will pay a lower price for a gun cabinet as opposed to a gun safe.

As to whether it is better to own a gun safe or a gun cabinet will depend on a few factors. Number one is price.

Since you will likely pay more for a gun safe than a gun cabinet, you have to know how much money you have to spend. Number two is number or guns, and quality of guns you own.

Number three is how quickly do you want to be able to access your guns. With a gun safe you will have the option for a biometric lock to control the door.

Biometric locks allow for instant access. This can be critical in a crisis situation such as a home burglary.

If you just own a few inexpensive rifles or shot guns, and want to also store some ammo, you are probably good with a basic steel gun cabinet.

If, on the other hand, if you own several or more long guns, perhaps some handguns, some accessories, and you would like to also store some other valuables, then a gun safe would suit you better.

Gun safes provide burglary protection, as well as fire protection, protecting your contents from determined burglars, as well  as home fires. Gun safes usually offer special interiors, and may have dehumidifier options, and special lighting.

These special gun safe interiors allow you to organize your guns and valuables as you see fit.  Gun safes may also offer additional storage on the inside of the door for handguns, and accessories.

Guns safes are also heavier than gun cabinets, and often allow for the ability to bolt the safe to the floor for added security,  making them much more difficult to walk off with.

However, this additional weight may mean that you will have to have your safe installed by a professional, which will add to your cost.

Many steel gun cabinets can also be bolted to the floor, and due to their lighter weight, this is highly recommended.  The wooden gun cabinets normally do not allow for bolting down.

Gun Cabinet and Gun Safe Locks

gun cabinets sale
Electronic key pad locks are one of the lock options for gun safes

When it comes to gun cabinets, and gun safes one of the most important considerations is the type of lock that controls the exterior door.

Gun cabinets primarily offer the single key lock.  It is possible to buy a gun cabinet with a biometric lock, or a pushbutton lock, but most are made with the single key lock.

The advantage of a single key lock is that there are no electronics to fail, and no combinations to forget when you need to get into your gun cabinet immediately.

The disadvantages are that the key could fall into the wrong hands, and a single key lock offers little burglary protection.

Also, you have to find your key before you can use it. This could take precious time in a crisis situation, such as a home invasion in the middle of the night.

Gun safes, on the other hand, offer different locks than gun cabinets. Combination dials, electronic key pad locks, and biometric locks are available on gun safes.

Electronic key pad locks offer quick and easy access to the contents of your safe. They do need a power source in order to function, and this could be critical during a high stress situation. These electronic locks normally are powered by a 9 volt battery in the housing of the key pad.

A good way to minimize the chances of failure is to add an A/C power source as your primary, and then the battery becomes the back up power supply.

Another option on some gun safes is the push button lock. These locks have a series of buttons that need to be pressed in a predetermined sequence in order to open the safe. Push button locks provide quick access, and have no electronics to fail.

Biometric locks are programmed to utilize fingerprints or a single fingerprint, DNA, iris(eye) recognition, or face recognition technology for the safe to open.

These locks provide virtual instant access to the inside of the safe, and are the preferred locking mechanism for those that understand the value and importance of super fast access, as well as optimum security.

There is no key to find, or combination to remember. These locks also offer the ability to add others that you my want to have access to your safe.

The down side to these locks is that they are not 100% fool proof. If you have a cut or an abrasion on your finger, you may be denied access. It is also possible, although unlikely for an image to fool the print detection.

Biometric locks also require a power source which means they can fail at inopportune times. You can purchase these locks with a single key override mechanism in case of a failure of the biometrics or the power source.

Click here to buy now!

Best Gun Cabinet Manufacturers

Gun cabinets sale
Gallow Tech makes a very sturdy gun cabinet

Who makes the best gun cabinets?

Steel Gun Cabinets

For steel gun cabinets Gallow Tech, and Homak are hard to beat. Gallow Tech has a very sturdy, heavy duty line of gun cabinets that are used by law enforcement, and homeowners alike.

If you are in and out of your gun cabinet a lot, and need a dependable, very solid storage capapbility, and don’t mind paying a bit more to get it, Gallow Tech fits the bill.

If you are not as concerned with high quality, bells and whistles, and would like an affordable solution to store your guns that provides home security, and quick access, a Homak gun cabinet may be your best bet.

Solid Wood Gun Cabinets

These solid wood gun cabinets not only provide a solution to keep your long guns locked up, but also provide a handsome furniture addition to any home.

Scout

This company specializes in Pine Gun Cabinets, and Oak Gun Cabinets. These are well made, attractive pieces of furniture that will keep your guns away from the little ones, and keep you from breaking the bank at the same time.

gun cabinets sale
Amish craftsmen design and build beautiful solid wood gun cabinets

Amish Woodworking

Amish Woodworking Gun Cabinets are not just a dependable security and storage solution for your guns, but they are an investment for yourself and future generations.

These breathtaking works of art are made with the highest quality walnut, and allow you to show off your gun collection with beautiful style.

Best Gun Safe Companies

Although there are many fine makers of gun safes including Browning, and Fort Knox, for quality, value, and service support, my favorite is Amsec, American Security.

Amsec is an American company that uses high quality American parts and materials both for their safes and locks. You will find that Amsec’s prices are among the lowest in the industry, and they have a great selection of gun safes and locks.

They also have a 24 hour a day, 7 day a week, and 365 days a year service department that can be reached by an 800# should you ever have an issue with one of their safes or locks.

Amsec is also unique in that it makes, and supports it’s own locks. Most other safe manufacturers have to purchase their locks separately from lock makers.

This makes life more difficult for you the end user as you will have two separate warranties, and service departments, if they even have a service department.

Best Place to Buy Gun Cabinets

Gun cabinets sale
This Scout pine gun cabinet is one of many types available

The best place to buy gun cabinets either online or offline is at gunsafes.com

The selection of gun cabinets, gun safes, accessories, and related products is excellent, and the pricing is as good or better than any other place online or offline.

The support provided by gunsafes.com is also excellent. Check out the testimonials.

Congratulations

You are to be commended for making the decision to protect your firearms. You understand that your family’s safety is of paramount importance. By purchasing a gun cabinet or a gun safe you protect yourself and your family two ways.

You keep your guns safely away from the curious hands of children, and you have a very effective way to deter criminals that would attempt to do you and your family harm, and/or attempt to steal your hard earned property. Find a good gun cabinets sale, and receive peace of mind.

 

Click here to buy now!

 

 

 

 

Shower Faucet – Repair and Installation

Shower faucet - repair and installation
Does your shower faucet leak?

Does your shower faucet leak? Would you like to be able to fix it yourself without having to pay the high prices that plumbers charge?

Are you a real estate flipper or rehabber that would like to learn how to repair or replace a shower faucet yourself without having to hire someone to do it? Are you a handyman that would like to learn how to fix or replace a shower faucet to improve your value to your customers?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, you will gain some useful knowledge here.

Plumbing Supplies and Tools Needed

Shower faucet - repair and installation
No job can begin without the right tools.

Before you can attempt any shower faucet repair on installation plumbing job, you have to have the right supplies and tools to do the job correctly.

Screwdrivers – Have both a Pillips head and a Slotted head screwdriver on hand.

Shower Socket Set  – For removing valves from their bases inside the wall.

Handle Puller – For removing stubborn handles that won’t budge by hand.

Adjustable Wrench – Many possible uses for this veratile tool.

Adjustable Pliers – Another versatile, must have tool.

Allen Wrench or Hex Wrench Set – for removal and installation of Allen or Hex screws.

Plumbers Putty – Provides adherance, and a watertight seal for handles, escutcheons, etc.

Teflon Tape – Provides a watertight seal for threaded valves, shower arm, and other connections.

Plumbers Grease or Lube – Slippery surface for rubber orings to allow for reinsertion of valves.

Flashlight – Shower access doors are often hidden in closets and other out of the way spaces.

Clean Towels/Rags – Useful to keep from scratching chrome surfaces while removing handles, shower heads, etc.

O Ring Pick – For removal of o rings from valves.

Putty Knife – To remove dirt and old plumbers putty from behind handles, etc.

Shop Premium Brand Bath Faucets and Accessories at eFaucets.com!

Finding the Cause of the Issue

Shower faucet - repair and installation
Certain clues will lead you to the cause of the leak.

Once you have the needed tools at the ready, it’s time to diagnose the problem. Although many showers also have bathtub faucets, I will cover only shower faucets here.

Normally the problem will be a leak of some sort. Leaks in showers can come  from the handle, or from the shower head.

The good news is, the solution for either leak is usually the same for any single handle shower faucet or valve. The cartridge will need to be replaced.

If, however, you have a hand held shower,  the leak may be due to worn out washers in the flexible tubing ends, at the diverter(if you have one), or at the shower head.

If the leak is coming from the shower head section of the hand held shower unit, the cartridge is the most likely culprit.

I suggest attempting to repair or replace the hand held unit before replacing the cartridge in the wall if it appears that the leak is coming from the flexible tubing, or from the diverter.  This will be easier, and cheaper in most cases than replacing the cartridge.

Turn the Water Off

Shower faucet - repair and installation
Turn the water off before you get started.

The first order of business is to find the water shut offs, and turn the water off.  The shut off valves are usually directly behind the wall where your shower handles are.

There is usually an access door that is in a closet or on a wall. Find the access door, open it, and look for the shut off valves.

You may need a flashlight. Shut both the hot and the cold sides off. If, for some reason you can’t locate these shut off valves, you will need to find the main shut off valve for the house and close that off.

The main shut off is normally in the basement, and near where the main water lines (usually copper) come into the house.

After the water is shut off, turn the shower faucet on to bleed any water that is left in the lines. This will keep the residual water to a minimum, and save you from getting splashed while working.

 

Replacing the Cartridge

Shower faucet - repair and installation
The shower cartridge is usually the cause of the leak.

Before you start to take the handle apart, close off the drain with a towel to ensure no parts fall down into it.  The make of the shower faucet you have will determine exactly how to take it apart.

Some, like Moen will have a button that you need to pry off with a screwdriver, and a screw that needs to be taken out.

There will likely be a sleeve that will either unscrew or pull out.  There may also be a retaining clip that needs to come off to proved access to the cartridge.

Once you have clear access to the cartridge, you simply take a pair of pliers and gently pull the cartridge out. You may have to work it back and forth to loosen it up before it will come out.

Take the cartridge into your local plumbing supply house, and purchase a new one.

For other faucets like Delta, you may need an Allen or Hex wrench to remove the Allen set screw on the handle to remove it. You will then have to either unscrew or remove the sleeve or jacket that is protecting the area with the cartridge.

There will be some variance depending on the model that you have. Effectively, you need to remove whatever is attached surrounding the cartridge to access the cartridge.

Once you have all of the pieces on the outside of the cartridge removed, you can and you can access the cartridge, you can gently loosen it with pliers, and pull it out.

With the cartridge out, inspect the area that contained the cartridge. Try to clean out any corrosion or dirt that may have effected the proper operation of the cartridge before you put the new cartridge in.

Delta has a lifetime warranty on their shower faucets, so as long as you bought the product, you may be able to get a replacement cartridge sent to you free of charge.

Otherwise you can buy a new cartridge by taking the old cartridge into your local plumbing supply house to match it up.

When installing the new cartridge, be sure that you match it up according to the directions that will be with the new cartridge.

Otherwise your hot side could become the cold side and vice versa, or you may experience new leaks. If this happens of course, you will have to go through the process again.

Once you have everything put back into place and secured, you can turn the water back on, and test your handiwork. If there are no leaks anywhere, and you have good water pressure, you are good to go. Keep a close eye on your repair for the next few days just to be on the safe side.

If you have questions regarding your particular make and model of shower faucet/valve, you can visit the maufacturers website for more information. If you have any paperwork or a box with the make and model number on it, this will be helpful.

If you’re not sure which make of faucet you have, look on the chrome plating around the faucet. The name is often embossed at the bottom or top of the chrome beneath or above the faucet.

Shop Premium Brand Bath Faucets and Accessories at eFaucets.com!

 

Installing a New Shower Faucet

Installing a New Shower Faucet

If you would like to upgrade the look of your shower without having to replace the shower valves in the wall behind the shower, you can do so by buying a new trim kit(shower handle, shower head, shower arm, and face plate). You will have to match up your existing trim with the new trim.

I recommend buying your new trim first if you can. Be sure though that you new trim will work with your old shower faucet set up. Your best bet is to stay with the same manufacturer of your existing faucet.

There are some types of trim that can match up with other manufacturers trim, but you will need to either go online to the manufacturers website, or to your local kitchen & bath store, or plumbing supply to determine your options.

If you go to your local stores, be sure to bring the old trim with you or take pictures of it first. If you have any old paperwork or boxes for your old trim bring that with you also.

Start by turning off the water. Look behind the wall where your shower trim is located for shut off valves. There should be an access door in that area.

This could be in a closet or another space. If you are unable to locate these valves, or if there aren’t any shut off valves, you will need to turn the water off at the main water valve coming into the house. If you find the shut off valves be sure to shut both sides off.

Next turn on the water at the shower to allow any water in the line to evacuate.  This will ensure that you will be dry during the job.

Take a wrench or a pair of pliers along with a small towel and remove the shower arm and shower head. The shower arm will unscrew from the wall. Be sure to use the towel so that you don’t scratch the chrome surfaces.

Remove the chrome face plate surrounding the single handle valve. You may need a screwdriver, or a wrench to remove it, depending on the make of the faucet.

Next remove the handle using either a screwdriver, or an Allen wrench. It is a good idea to also replace the valve while you are replacing the trim.

Simply pull the valve from the wall using a pair of pliers. You may have to loosen it by gently first by turning it slightly back and forth.

You are now ready to install the new shower faucet trim. Be sure to tape any threads with teflon tape before screwing your new shower arm into the wall, and for the other end where your new shower head will be added.

Also be sure to use a towel between the chrome and your tools to keep from scratching the surfaces.

Make sure to line up the new valve correctly before you insert it into the wall. You may need to coat the exterior of the valve with a bit of plumbers grease first to get it slippery.

Hold on to the instructions in case you run into a problem, or have a question. In most cases, this is a simple install.

Now that you have everything in place, turn the water back on and test to be sure that there are no leaks, and the operation of the new set up is working properly.  Keep a close eye on it for a few days.

 

When to Call the Plumber

Shower faucet - repair and installation
For some jobs, plumbers are worth their weight in gold.

If you want to do a complete makeover of your shower faucet, you will need to remove the entire valve from behind the wall, and possibly some shut off valves, piping, and joints.

This will likely entail some specialized work, knowledge, and tools. I don’t recommend this job for a DIYer (do it yourselfer).

This is a job for a plumber or a general contractor that is licensed and experienced with this type of work. You may have to pay a lot, but some things are just worth the money.

You may however, be able to purchase the trim yourself, and save the plumber’s mark up, if you so desire.

Shower faucet repair and installation is not that difficult as long as you have the needed tools, some basic knowledge, some patience, and access to a good plumbing supply or kitchen and bath store either online or offline.

Feel free to leave any questions or comments you may have. Thanks for reading, and good luck with your shower repairs and replacements.