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You Don't Need Luck to Find Your Dream Home

by Lorna Calder

You don't need luck to find your Dream Home! Let The Lorna Calder Team guide you through the process step by step!

Step One:

Give us a call today! 281-361-2280

Step Two:

Our team of professionals can help you with the first steps of getting pre-approved with a reputable mortgage lender.

Step Three:

We can then start the search for your dream home in Kingwood, Humble, Atascocita and and Houston area.

Step Four:

We will handle all the paperwork and use our proven negotiation techniques to help get you the best deal for the perfect home.

Step Five:

You get to move in! Its that easy. We simplify the process so you don't have to sweat the small stuff.

Read our past clients' reviews and see what they had to say about us here.
 

Want to maintain that Good Credit?

by Lorna Calder

You can make sure that when you get your credit in good shape that it STAYS THERE!

Here are a few ways to do just that!

Maintain low balances on your credit cards and revolving lines of credit.

Once you’ve paid them down, keep the balances low by using them only for emergencies.  If the balance is currently high on one or more cards or credit lines, begin paying them down, starting with the card or credit line with the highest interest rate first.

 

Set up automatic bill pay.

Many creditors and utility companies make it easy to pay your bills on time by sending reminders before the payment is due. Additionally, setting up an automatic payment will ensure the bill is paid on time.

 

Keep rate shopping within a 30-day window of time. 

If you’re thinking of taking out a loan to buy a car or a home, limit your rate search to a small timeframe so the inquiries will likely be treated as a single one. The more inquiries into your credit, the more likely they’ll count against your score.

 

Reconsider closing accounts.

Even if you don’t use a line of credit anymore, it may not be a good idea to close it. Closing several accounts at once may raise red flags and impact your credit. Instead, leave the balance at zero and try not to use it. 

 

Be responsible.

It takes time to build great credit; it also takes time to rebuild your credit once it’s damaged. Once you’ve earned a great credit score, continue good financial habits to maintain it.

 

The difference between "Good Credit" and "Excellent Credit"

 

What is a "Good" credit score?

Its usually lenders who decide what they would consider as good credit, the credit tier generally breaks down as follows:

 

What is the dividing factor between people with "Good" credit and people with "excellent" credit?

Although people with excellent credit have more open revolving credit accounts, they don’t actively use them  and the debt they do carry makes up a lower percentage  of their overall available credit. 

 

 

© 2017 Buffini & Company. All Rights Reserved. Used by Permission. RMMK AUGUST EREPORT S

 

 

 

 

 

It's Time to File for Your Homestead Exemption!

by Lorna Calder

Good morning to all, I have some great news for those of you who purchased a home in 2015! You are now eligible for a Homestead Exemption.

 

Basically a Homestead Exemption helps you save on taxes on your home. An exemption removes part of the value of your property from taxation and lowers your taxes. For example, if your home is valued at $100,000 and you qualify for a $20,000 exemption, you pay taxes on your home as if it was worth only $80,000.

 

Harris County – Residential Homestead Exemption Form

Harris County – Disabled Veteran or Survivor Exemption Form

Montgomery County - Residential Homestead Exemption Form

Montgomery County - Disabled Veteran or Survivor Exemption Form

 

What Kinds of Homestead Exemptions Are Available for Harris County?

 

§  School taxes — all homeowners.  If you qualify for the homestead exemption, you will receive at least a $15,000 homestead exemption on the value of your home for school district taxes.

 

§  County taxes — all homeowners.  Harris County currently provides a 20% optional homestead exemption to all homeowners. This means, for example, that if your home is valued at $100,000, the exemption will reduce its taxable value for Harris County taxes by $20,000 to $80,000.

 

§  Optional exemptions — all homeowners.  Any taxing unit, including a school district, city, county or special district, may offer an exemption for up to 20% of your home’s value. The amount of an optional exemption can’t be less than $5,000, no matter what the percentage is. For example, if your home is valued at $20,000 and your city offers a 20% optional exemption, your exemption is $5,000, even though 20% of $20,000 is just $4,000.The governing body of each taxing unit decides whether it will offer the exemption and at what percentage. This percentage exemption is added to any other homestead exemption for which the applicant qualifies.

 

Application Deadlines for HARRIS COUNTY

 

You should file your regular residential homestead exemption application between January 1 and April 30. Early applications will not be accepted. If your application is postmarked by April 30, this will allow the district time to process it before your tax statement comes out in the fall. If you miss the April 30th deadline you can still apply:

For a general exemption: up to one year after the date taxes became delinquent for the year (usually February 1 of the year following the tax year).

For an over-65 or disabled person: if you turn 65, become totally disabled, or acquire a property during the year, you can apply and have the over-65 or disability exemption activated for that year. The deadline to apply for an over-65 or disabled person’s exemption for the year in which you qualify is the first anniversary of the date you qualify. In other words, you have one year from the date you qualify to apply. For example:

 

1.      If you are already qualified and you purchase a different home, you have one year from the date you occupy the new home to apply.

2.     If you turn 65 during the year, you have until your 66th birthday to apply for the year in which you turn 65.

3.     If you become disabled during the year, you have one year from the date you became disabled to apply.

 

Otherwise, the deadline for applying for the over-65 or disability exemption is the same as the deadline given above.

 

For more information regarding Harris County Homestead Exemptions – Visit HCAD

 

 

If you have purchased in Montgomery County, please visit click this link to MCAD, for further information on available Exemptions and Deadlines

 

You can also call our Christina Terry at our office, 281-348-3081, for more information!

 

All information has been pulled from the following sources;

http://www.hcad.org/Resources/Exemptions/Homeowners.asp

http://www.mcad-tx.org/html/homestead.html

March 2014 Houston and National Housing Newsletter

by Lorna Calder

This month’s featured video discusses the importance of using a Realtor for all of your home buying needs. Realtor's have a great deal of knowledge in the real estate market can provide all of the information you need for the property you are interested in. A Realtor can also help you determine how much home you can comfortably afford and refer you to helpful lenders.

A Realtor will always negotiate on your behalf to get you the best price for your new home and help take care of all of the closing paperwork, and closing procedures. 

There is a lot to know about owning a home.  A Realtor is always your best source of information for all your real estate needs...

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If you have not reviewed my monthly Housing Trends Newsletter - you could be missing out. Everywhere I go, people are asking me about the housing market conditions - it's on everyone's mind. Staying abreast of local and national market conditions and factors that can affect the future sale or purchase of your home can make the decision process less daunting. I always tell my clients that in order to make the best decision they need to have all the information they can upfront. My Housing Trends Newsletter is just one of the tools in my arsenal to make sure you keep informed.

The March 2014 Local and National Housing Trends has just been released. This month's newsletter is packed full of local and national housing market statistics and news you need to know to stay current with today's changing housing market.

This month's housing trends issue features:

Existing-Home Sales Drop in January While Prices Continue to Grow

December Pending Home Sales Fall

Boost Your Credit Score to Buy a Home

Odd Moving Tips that Really Work

How Much Mortgage Can I Afford

Experts Predict 2014 Housing Market

2014 Remodeling Tips

You can view the newsletter here.

If you wish to receive FREE Housing Trends eNewsletter e-mailed to you monthly, click here to Subscribe.

If you are considering selling your house or buying a home and need more information, I am never too busy to help, please contact me for more information.

Tips for Home Buying in a Competitive Market

by Lorna Calder

Buying a home in today's competitive market can be tricky.

Low housing inventory in Houston, Kingwood, The Woodlands, Humble and Atascocita areas have created challenges for buyers trying to find the right house.  Buyers are facing multiple offers and losing out on houses to other buyers with better offers and terms that sellers find more advantageous. So with these challenges in place, how can a buyer get ahead of other buyers?

Home Buying in a Competitive Market

Remember the saying you only have one chance to make a good impression, never in the housing market has this been more true. When formulating your offer, remember to think like a seller, what terms would appeal to you? What would put you off a buyer? Buyers must consider all these factors when submitting their offer.

Lorna Calder is a top rated Broker Associate at RE/MAX Associates Northeast in Kingwood Texas. Currently ranked #7 at RE/MAX in Kingwood, Lorna continues to exceed her clients expectations.

June 2013 Houston and National Housing Market Trends

by Lorna Calder

This month’s feature video will discusses the importance of having a property inspected prior to purchase. A home inspection is an objective visual examination of the physical structure and systems of a home from the roof to the foundation. The standard home inspectors report will include an evaluation of the condition of the homes heating system, central air conditioning system, interior pluming and electrical systems, the roof, attic and visible insulation, walls, ceilings, floors, windows and doors, the foundation, basement and visible structure. Why do you need a home inspection? The purchase of a home is probably the largest single investment you will ever make. You should learn as much as you can about the condition of the property and the need for any major repairs before you buy so you can minimize unpleasant surprises and difficulties afterwards.

 How much does a home inspections cost? The inspection fee varies geographically. The fee may also vary depending on the size of the house, its age and possible additional services, such as septic, well, and radon testing.The knowledge gained from the inspection is well worth the cost and the lowest priced inspector is not necessarily a bargain.  Though it may be natural to wonder if you can do it yourself even the most experienced homeowner lacks the knowledge and expertise of a professional home inspector. An inspector is familiar with all the elements of home construction, their proper installation and maintenance. More information about licensed professional inspectors can be found at www.trec.state.tx.us/inspector/levelsandpaths.asp .

You may wonder if a house can fail an inspection, the answer is no.  A professional home inspection is an examination of the current condition of your prospective home. A home inspector will not pass or fail a house but rather describes it’s physical condition and indicates what may need repair or replacement.  

So now you have learned why it is so important to always have a property inspected as part of the purchase process. There is a lot to know about owning a home. A realtor is always your best source of information for all your real estate needs.

If you have not reviewed my monthly Housing Trends Newsletter - you could be missing out. Everywhere I go, people are asking me about the housing market conditions - it's on everyone's mind. Staying abreast of local and national market conditions and factors that can affect the future sale or purchase of your home can make the decision process less daunting. I always tell my clients that in order to make the best decision they need to have all the information they can upfront. My Housing Trends Newsletter is just one of the tools in my arsenal to make sure you keep informed.

The June 2013 Local and National Housing Trends has just been released. This month's newsletter is packed full of local and national housing market statistics and news you need to know to stay current with today's changing housing market.

This month's housing trends issue features:

What Homeowners' Insurance Discounts Are You Missing?

What Goes With You When You Sell Your Home?

Punch Up Your Porch for Under $100

How to Sell Your Home & Buy Another at the Same Time 

Celebrity Rentals

You can view the newsletter here.

If you wish to receive FREE Housing Trends eNewsletter e-mailed to you monthly, click here to Subscribe.

If you are considering selling your house or buying a home and need more information, I am never too busy to help, please contact me for more information.

August 2012 Houston and National Housing Market Trends

by Lorna Calder

This month's video from HAR discusses Short Sales. Short Sales occur when a home owner needs to get out of a home without the nasty side effects of a foreclosure.  In a Short Sale the bank, the home owner, and the buyer all work together to sell the house in a manner which is mutually beneficial to all parties involved.  Please watch the video below to find out more.  If you would like to know more about Short Sales and/or have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me.

If you have not reviewed my monthly Housing Trends Newsletter - you could be missing out. Everywhere I go, people are asking me about the housing market conditions - it's on everyone's mind. Staying abreast of local and national market conditions and factors that can affect the future sale or purchase of your home can make the decision process less daunting. I always tell my clients that in order to make the best decision they need to have all the information they can upfront. My Housing Trends Newsletter is just one of the tools in my arsenal to make sure you keep informed.

The August 2012 Local and National Housing Trends Newsletter has just been released. This month's newsletter is packed full of local and national housing market statistics and news you need to know to stay current with today's changing housing market.

This month's housing trends issue features:

Tips for Preventing Hurricane Damage to Your Roof

Celebrity Homes with Star Quality Amenities

Home Maintenance 101:  7 Things Every Home Owner Should Know

10 Tips for Saving Energy in the Kitchen

Low-Maintenance Lawn Alternatives:  Ground Cover

You can view the newsletter here.

If you wish to receive FREE Housing Trends eNewsletter e-mailed to you monthly, click here to Subscribe.

If you are considering selling your house or buying a home and need more information, I am never too busy to help, please contact me for more information.

Still on the Fence?

by Lorna Calder

There has never been a better time to buy a home.

First the selection of homes available to purchase in all price ranges is tremendous and with more homes on the market buyers naturally have a better selection. Many markets have experienced values above that are above prices. This translates to an increased supply resulting in prices that are below values in some areas.

One of the most compelling reasons to buy a home now is interest rates. They are the talk of the town and for good reason. We are experiencing generationally low interest rates that will not stick around as the economy recovers.

It is important for buyers to talk with their real estate consultant and mortgage lender about the cost savings of even a quarter point over the life of a mortgage loan.

Finally the tax advantage of homeownership with respect to the mortgage interest and property tax deductions should be considered compelling reasons to buy a home.

The Opportunity to Buy a Home May Never Be Better

by Lorna Calder

There may never be a better time to buy a home!

There May NEVER Be a Better Time to BUY A HOME!

This may be the best time in a lifetime to buy a home. There are plenty of homes available in most markets at affordable prices and interest rates still remain generationally low. Some markets are seeing that the value of homes are sometimes over the prices right now.

And to sweeten the pot, the $8,000 tax credit for qualified first time homebuyers and up to $6,500 for most other homebuyers that qualify, is still on the table until April 30th. This money does NOT have to be repaid provided you live in the home for at least 3 years.

REALTORS® are encouraging buyers to get off the fence now to avoid the rush closer to April 30th. As that date approaches mortgage lenders and title companies are going to be dealing with a larger number of files and processing delays can and most likely will occur. As it stands now most mortgage lenders are asking for at least a 45 day window to close a loan. That combined with issues that could arise from inspections and appraisals that require time to be resolved may also exclude some buyers that waited until April. For example what happens when a buyer executes a contract on a home with an inspection option period and the home has issues that the Seller won't pay for... Buyers may just find themselves starting over. The same goes for appraisals, if the home being purchased has an appraisal issue that cannot be resolved between the buyer and seller, the contract may fall apart. For these reasons and more, sooner is better than later.

To read more in depth information about the tax credit and its limitations and qualifications, please download the following information sheets:

RE/MAX Home Buyer Tax Credit Flyer

Home Buyers Tax Credit FAQ's

Home Buyer Tax Credit Issues Briefing

If you would like more information about the homebuyers tax credit or the process of buying a home, please feel free to contact Lorna Calder

 

 

RE/MAX Agents know the Tax Credit

by Lorna Calder

Do you want more information on the homebuyers extended and expanded tax credit? RE/MAX agents know the Tax Credit....

Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 10

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