The Front Porch - United Carolina Group May - June Newsletter
What's happening in the housing market?
Date: 6/18/2010 1:16:52 PM ( 5 y ) ... viewed 3155 times
Inside this Issue
Trust + Familiar Faces = Happy Endings
1st Annual May Day Festival in Taylorsville
You're a First Time Buyer
The Porch Light
A Visit from the President of Flaherty Funding!
Moms Are Special
Nothing Says Summer and Americanna like a Lawn Mower Race
For a FREEReport
“5 Reasons Why You Should Buy Now”
Email or call to get your FREE report now!
The dreaded credit report…..that mysterious and fearful document. Did you know that a good credit report is critical in pursuing the American dream of home ownership? Over the course of several newsletters, I will share some insights with you that may help you protect and improve your credit history.
Before I had the wonderful opportunity to join Jamie at UCG, I had several misconceptions about the credit report. As they say, knowledge is power. The more you know and understand about what does and doesn’t affect the credit report, the more power you have in controlling this number that rates your financial responsibility.
I specifically remember worrying that my credit had been harmed because I was a few days late on one of my utility bills. The credit history that I had worked so diligently for years to preserve may have been compromised. I didn’t know that utility companies do not report to the credit bureaus even though they are a big part of our monthly expenses. It’s imperative that we pay our utilities in order to maintain our comfortable lifestyles. But unless it is requested or if you skip out on payment, the credit bureaus are not aware of the transactions that occur with utility companies. However, when you don’t have ENOUGH credit history, we can help you build it by having your utility payment history added to your report! So, you young first time home buyers, keep those payments regular! It may make a difference if you move and need to have your utilities turned on with another company. Your new provider may check with your previous service provider. You need to have at least twelve months of timely payments in order for this to be to your benefit. Now, if utility companies don’t report, then who does? Find out next time which companies do and what it reveals about you!
Trivia Contest Pizza Winner
Congratulations to Berenda Samples
Last months winner!
New Trivia Question: What year was Memorial Day made a national holiday?
A. 1868 B. 1966 C. 1971
Email or call us with your answer
YOU MAY BE OUR NEXT WINNER!
Help out our first time home buyers by contacting your senators in Washington
Chose your state to find your representatives and call or email them
Donations Please If you would like to donate or help out at our next yard sale email us at:
May is a Time to Remember
Memorial Day is a United States federal holiday set aside to remember and honor men and women who died while in military service. Memorial Day is celebrated the last Monday of May. This year Memorial Day is May 31st. Many celebrations are held in honor of our country's heroes on Memorial Day. Whether you attend a community wide celebration or choose to honor someone you know who died in service to our country on your own, take time to fly the flag of the United States on Memorial Day as a way of honoring those men and women who paid with their lives to preserve the freedoms we have in our country.
Martha's Money Saving Tips
We all love to eat out once in a while but it can be hard on the bank account. Here are some ways to save.
·Most local phone books and newspapers provide coupons.
·Purchase coupon books for school fundraisers. They will pay for themselves in as little as two meals.
·Be sure to check your bill. Mistakes are made and you could easily be over charged.
·Get a ‘to go’ box for those leftovers. They’ll make a great lunch the next day.
Request Martha’s FREE Special Report on Credit Myths!
Martha will be sharing her credit report and money saving tips each month. She's a pro at pinching a penny. But if you want to know more secrets now that can help improve your credit score, call or email us for our FREE Special Report - Myths the Credit Bureaus Want You to Believe. She will email it right out to you. If you have credit challenges, don't wait another day for this special FREE report! Her email is:
We look forward to hearing from you!
What’s Happening in the Housing Market?
As of this writing, one of our most important 100% first time homebuyer programs, USDA Rural Development, is currently on hold due to a lack of budget funding. Let me explain why first time home buyers are critical to our housing market. The mortgage and real estate industries are good barometers of what’s going on with the economy. Real estate is a bottoms-up industry. When the economy slows down, the sales of high priced homes slow down first. Starter homes are less affected. Likewise, when the economy picks up, starter home sales increase first which leads to the sell of the next higher priced homes as these families move up. This domino effect helps all home sellers. And the sale of homes helps maintain property values. So it’s important to all of us that first time homebuyers continue to buy and that we have loan programs to help them. You can help to restore this valuable program by contacting your representatives in Washington. See page 2 for a simple way to do this.
Interest rates have held steady for a while now and are still very low. Rates average from the high 4% to middle 5% range. But don’t wait for them to get lower. I don't’ expect that to happen. Interest rates cannot be quoted accurately without a loan application and credit report so keep that in mind when you are shopping rates. It’s very specific to each borrower but should fall within a general range.
If you would like to have a personal consultation about your mortgage loan, give us a call at 828-632-0650.
You may also apply online at www.UnitedCarolinaGroup.com.
Trust + Familiar Faces =
Michael and Kathy were considering a refinance on their home. Like most people, they had been solicited by other mortgage companies but felt uneasy dealing with someone they didn’t know and would never meet that didn’t know their situation. So Kathy called United Carolina Group to discuss whether or not it was the right time to refinance and would it be beneficial to them. After some number crunching, it looked like a smart move. Michael and Kathy said: “Without hesitation, we always seek the services of UCG. We have complete trust in them and know they will get us the best rate on our refinance. They are so friendly and helpful.”
May Day Festival
From left:Matt Bombria,Judi Stiff, the May Day Festival organizer and Jamie Harrington
The 1st Annual May Day Festival was held in Taylorsville, NC and United Carolina Group was proud to be one of the title sponsors. The festival was coordinated by Judi Stiff and was a fundraiser for the Christian Crisis Center. There were food vendors, arts and crafts, bake sales and many musical groups. We had a booth and gave away a gift basket full of goodies which was won by Phyllis Burke. We also held a bake sale to raise money for our church project called All Things Possible. It’s a ministry started by my Sunday school class to provide funds to pay utility bills, buy groceries and assist with housing for families in need in Alexander County. This past winter, the ministry provided assistance to those in need in excess of $6400.00! We never imagined that we would be able to serve so many families and we’re thankful for everyone that has supported the project this year. We are planning our 2nd Annual Gigantic Yard Sale to be held at the office so start cleaning out the garage! For more information on the ministry go to www.AllThingsPossible.blogspot.com
Ms. Phyllis Burke, Drawing Winner
You’re a First Time Buyer?
Don't Know What To Do?
Well, don’t worry. We got you covered! As a first time home buyer, you might feel a bit intimidated by the entire home buying process. It's normal to feel that way! Congratulations on taking the first step!
Doing your homework ahead of time is important in this process. Call us and we’ll discuss the different types of mortgage loans that are available and which one will fit your needs. We’ll help you determine the maximum dollar amount that you can spend based on your income. You can shop confidently, knowing how much you can spend and what will be required of you. Make a list of the things you want in your first home and know the areas you would like to live in. If you use the services of a real estate professional, ask if they are familiar with those areas. As you are narrowing down your choices, consider the work that needs to be done to the home, both structurally and cosmetically. Check out the neighborhood carefully. Do you feel comfortable and safe there? Do people live there a long time or does there seem to be high turnover in the area. This could be a sign of problems. Once you've decided on the home, you will submit an offer. Your real estate agent will require a pre-approval letter, which we can provide for you. This gives you more credibility because the seller knows you are serious and that you have made arrangements to obtain financing. It confirms that you are in the right price range for your budget. After you get the house under contract, we can help you the rest of the way. We enjoy working with First Time Homebuyers and will take good care of you. Just call us at 828-632-0650 and check us out on the web at: www.UnitedCarolinaGroup.com We’re here for you! Also, if you need a real estate professional, let us know. We work with the best in the industry and can recommend someone in your area!
The Porch Light
They are First Time Homeowners! When Bradley and Brittany came to United Carolina Group, they had never purchased a home before. They had found the home they wanted but didn’t know the next steps. We took them by the hand and made sure they got to the closing table, safe and sound. Check out the article for First Time Homebuyers on page two. After it was all over, they said: “UCG did a great job answering all our many questions. They were always friendly and warm. We even got to close early and everything went smoothly.”
A Visit from the President of Flaherty Funding!
United Carolina Group spent several months in 2009 going through a major process to be approved by the NC Commissioner of Banks to become a branch office for Flaherty Funding, a mortgage bank located in Rochester, NY. UCG had been a mortgage brokerage for nearly 14 years but the time came to make a change. We are so happy with the change and more importantly the choice we made. By joining with Flaherty Funding Corporation, we can now offer you nearly all loan products available including FHA, VA, USDA and conventional loans. We fund our loans and have in house underwriters for certain programs. We were recently honored to have the president of the company, Tom Flaherty visit us in Taylorsville and spend a day with us planning for the future and to discuss how we can better serve you. Mr. Flaherty and all the team in NY are wonderful, caring people and we’re honored to be part of the team. And we won’t hold it against them that they don’t have a southern accent!
Moms Are Special!
Mother’s Day has passed for this year but I was blessed to be able to spend time with my mom and also my son Todd on Mother’s Day weekend. All the family went out to eat (except my older brother David and his family that live in Myrtle Beach) at a new restaurant we have discovered in Mooresville called Gagliardo’s Grill Express. They have fantastic hot wings! Check them out. Our moms are special every day but we get busy with life and sometimes forget to let them know how much they mean to us. If you know a single or widowed mother in your neighborhood or community, take time to find out if there is anything you can do for her. It can be as simple as a note, or taking her car to the mechanic for needed maintenance or repairs. Perhaps you could get a group together and help with home repairs that need to be done or cleaning up around the outside of her home. Encourage the children to make cards or write notes as well. By doing so you'll make a mother feel special who may not get that attention very often. For all our mothers who will be reading this newsletter we salute you for the special people you are! You do so many things to make our lives special and we love and appreciate you.
Nothing Says Americanna Like a Lawn Mower Race!
Have you ever been to a lawn mower race? I’ve been once. It’s the funniest thing! Imagine rather large, grown men on the Lawn Boy, geared up with helmet and padding, prepared to do serious battle with the neighbor. They meet at the starting line and battle it out around a small dirt track circle, dust flying into the air and all over everyone! Spectators, young and old, cheer their favorite lawn mower racer as if he was a NASCAR favorite. You can’t help but have fun at something so crazy - and so American. I find it interesting that when times get tough and the budget gets tight, that we can still come up with ways to have a good time. And in the south, it usually involves racing something. It’s fun to watch the crowd. Some were serious about their race team and some were there just to see it with their own eyes. I was in that category. There were moms and dads, grandparents, children. It was obviously a non-exclusive event and everyone was having a good time - together. When I get frustrated with politics, government and irresponsibility, I think about moving to some place like Ecuador where it’s quiet and peaceful. But then it occurs to me, I would really miss the resourcefulness of America, where you can always drag out the old Toro and race around a circle with your friends. I am from a family of racers and race enthusiast but I think lawnmowers are the one thing we’ve never raced. Hmm, maybe I could be the first. I’m going to gas up the John Deere right now!