Tag Archives: tax savings

Does A Home Loan Scare You?

Does a Home Loan Scare You?

Does a Home Loan Scare You?

Well, it doesn’t need to…  I talk to lots of buyers every day that procrastinate when it comes to speaking with a lender about a mortgage.  Some are nervous about their credit scores, but others simply have heard myths like ”pulling your credit lowers your credit score”.  The bottom line is that when it comes to buying a home, information is power and the more you know and understand about your loan process the more confident and worry free you can be when you buy that new wonderful home.

Granted, some lenders are not worth a grain of salt and they arrogantly talk circles around clients instead of taking the time to explain, educate and inform clients about the process.  However, there are also some really great, service friendly lenders who will spend as much time as needed explaining the process and helping a buyer feel more secure with their home purchase.

A great lender will email the client a fees worksheet that clearly outlines various types of loans that the client qualifies for, discloses loan origination fees, down payment requirements and the buyer’s closing costs – basically all monies needed at the closing.  They will also provide information about monthly payment amounts and estimated taxes and insurance amounts.

There are a number of items that the lender needs from the buyer such as a loan application, tax records, W2’s, verification of employment forms, copies of bank accounts – just to name a few.  Our favorite lenders ask for these documents the day of application so they can verify that the buyer fully qualifies for the loan.  This avoids so many pitfalls that can happen in the loan process – especially since the buyer sometimes may have a situation that he doesn’t know will cause problems with the loan – and through analysis of these documents, the lender can confirm the qualification.

Working with a lender before you start looking at homes is the best way to go!  It allows you to know what price range home you want to look for and begins the education process that is so crucial to owning a home.  Give us a call if you want the information for our preferred lenders.  We love them and they take great care of our clients!!


Have You Filed Your Homestead Exemption For 2014?

Ever wondered about how the Texas Homestead Exemption works?

If you own a new home by January 1st,  you will want to add a homestead exemption to your property.  You are allowed to have one property identified as your homestead.  There is no fee to declare a homestead for tax purposes. 

Upon purchasing a new home, you will likely receive a number of mailouts and phone calls from companies requesting to do this service for you but it is a simple process that you can do yourself with no fee.  If you live in Tarrant County, go to tad.org and click on the “New Homestead Application” form.  You can print off the form, fill it out and mail it in.  You will need your closing date and legal address of the property as well as a copy of your updated drivers license that shows the new address. If you are in another county, simply go to that county’s appraisal district website and request the same form.   


How much does this help you with taxes?  (Show me the money)

School districts grant 15k off the value of your home to be assessed school taxes.  Any taxing unit can grant up to a 20% decrease in taxed value, but not less than 5k in decreased taxed value. 

For example, a home appraised at 100k, would be allowed a 20,000 decrease in tax value – so you would be taxed on an 80k amount.  The school taxes would be 100k minus 15k which equals an 85k taxed value.  It is definitely worth your time and energy to file for a homestead exemption.  If you purchased a home in 2013 with our Real Estate team you will receive a reminder this month to file your homestead exemption.  The deadline for filing is April 30th.  Happy Tax Savings!