Chris D Smithson
Chris Smithson

Archive for the ‘General’ Category

Questions to Ask When Considering Selling

October 10th, 2017 by Chris Smithson

These questions will help you decide whether you’re ready for a home that’s larger or in a more desirable location. If you answer yes to most of the questions, you may be ready to move.   Have you built substantial equity in your current home? Check your annual mortgage statement or call your lender to […]

5 Vital Financial Steps Millennials Must Take

August 4th, 2017 by Chris Smithson

Millennials face a lot of financial challenges, from student debt to tough employment markets. But one member if that generation, Ashlee Veneman, a senior planning analyst at The Planning Center in Fresno, Calif., has some good answers for Generation Y: Article By Ashlee Veneman, a senior planning analyst at The Planning Center in Fresno, Calif I came […]

Everything You Need To Know About USDA Loans

July 6th, 2017 by Chris Smithson

What Is A USDA Loan? The USDA home loan program is one of the best-kept secrets in the home buying market today. This zero-down, 100% financing home loan is sponsored by the United States Department of Agriculture to promote home-ownership in less-dense communities across the U.S.   For this reason, it’s often known as the USDA Rural Development Loan […]

Rent or buy? In Whatcom County, it may take longer to break even

June 30th, 2017 by Chris Smithson

Some honest information. A new report suggests that for some people in Whatcom County, it makes more financial sense to rent a home rather than buy if they plan on being here less than four years A new report suggests that for some people in Whatcom County, it makes more financial sense to rent a home […]

8 Tips For Adding Curb Appeal And Value To Your Home

June 28th, 2017 by Chris Smithson

Homes with high curb appeal command higher prices and take less time to sell. We’re not talking about replacing vinyl siding with redwood siding; we’re talking about maintenance and beautifying tasks you’d like to live with anyway. The way your house looks from the street — attractively landscaped and well-maintained — can add thousands to […]

For Sale By Owner Cautions

February 28th, 2017 by Chris Smithson

In today’s market, with home prices rising and a lack of inventory, some homeowners may consider trying to sell their home on their own, known in the industry as a For Sale by Owner (FSBO). There are several reasons why this might not be a good idea for the vast majority of sellers. Here are […]

When to Lock In Mortgage Rates: 4 Signs It’s Time

January 30th, 2017 by Chris Smithson

One huge question among home buyers who need a loan is this: when to lock in mortgage rates. Some panicky sorts might presume they should lock one in ASAP (because have you seen how rates are rising?), while others argue that the waiting game could pay off (in case rates fall). Who’s right? A rate lock is important because mortgage interest rates fluctuate in […]

7 Reasons to Own A Home

January 17th, 2017 by Chris Smithson

Tax benefits. The U.S. Tax Code lets you deduct the interest you pay on your mortgage, your property taxes, and some of the costs involved in buying a home. Appreciation. Historically, real estate has had a long-term, stable growth in value. In fact, median single-family existing-home sale prices have increased on average 5.2 percent each year […]

Questions to Ask When Choosing a Lender

December 12th, 2016 by Chris Smithson

Loan terms, rates, and products can vary significantly from one company to the next. When shopping around, these are a few things you should ask about. General questions: What are the most popular mortgages you offer? Why are they so popular? Are your rates, terms, fees, and closing costs negotiable? Do you offer discounts for […]

How to Prepare to Finance a Home

December 12th, 2016 by Chris Smithson

Develop a budget Instead of telling yourself what you’d like to spend, use receipts to create a budget that reflects your actual habits over the last several months. This approach will better factor in unexpected expenses alongside more predictable costs such as utility bills and groceries. You’ll probably spot some ways to save, whether it’s […]

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Chris Smithson


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