A Crucial Step to Improving Your Mortgage Qualification

So it’s time to upgrade your status from being a renter to a homeowner. However, buying a home takes more than just having the money, looking for the perfect place, and sending in your mortgage application. There are many things you have to prepare for, and seeing that the home financing service is the biggest player in this process, you want to do everything to qualify.
The good news is, certain strategies will help increase your chances of securing one of the most affordable mortgages. Utah is one of these states that includes the strategy of paying your existing debts.

The impact of your outstanding balances on your mortgage application

This strategy doesn’t automatically mean that you have to clear your debts to quality for a home loan. However, the fewer debts you have, the better your standing is when it comes to your mortgage. How much you owe at the moment plays a major role in your mortgage qualifications and the amount of money you can borrow from a lender.
All lending institutions first take a look at their applicants’ debt-to-income ratio before they approve (or reject) the mortgage. As such, having a high debt ratio puts you at risk of disqualification, since this means you still owe other creditors – such as credit card companies – a lot. They automatically assume that you may have a hard time making mortgage repayments on top of your other loans.

The 36% limit

Although not all lending institutions follow this, most do. This 36%  should be the limit of a borrower’s total debts versus their gross monthly income. When your current balance total is close to 36% of your gross monthly income, lenders may already reject your application.
You should first take a close look at your debts before applying for a mortgage. Pay off what you can while still saving up for a down payment, as this will free up lines of credit that will make you more favorable in the eyes of lenders.

4 Useful Reminders When Applying for a Home Loan

Buying a home is a huge undertaking. It is a complex process which makes it a little too intimidating. One wrong move could ruin your chances to own and buy the home you’ve been dreaming about. This is why it’s important to take this task seriously to avoid committing any mistakes. To make the process less of a burden, here are some reminders recommended by Altius Mortgage Group and other mortgage experts in Utah, to assist you throughout the whole process.

1. Be Sure You’re Financially Ready for It.

Before you even start hunting for houses, you have to ensure that your finances are well-managed and that you have balanced your income and expenses. Try to work and improve your credit score as well as your monthly expenses or obligations at a minimum. Lenders often go over on these things to assess your financial capacities and limitations.

2. Take Time to Understand Upfront Costs.

Upfront costs are the additional fees that lenders would ask for you on top of the amount you’re borrowing. The costs usually vary depending on the lender. There are those that have lower fees but higher purchasing amounts. Most of these are on a case-to-case basis, so you have to really understand it the fees to find out which among the offers would work perfectly for you.

3. If It Gets Complicated, Call a Pro.

The whole process will certainly be confusing at a certain point. If you happen to be struggling in understanding or absorbing everything, you could always hire someone to do it for you or guide you. As mentioned earlier, a mortgage is a complicated business which has a lot of possibilities mistakes.

4. Choose Your Mortgage Wisely.

Borrowers are typically faced with two options when choosing a loan type — interest-only mortgage or fixed-rate mortgage. To make the selection process easier, always list down the pros and cons of each option. Once you lay down everything, your mortgage application will become more manageable and a lot easier.

Buying a home is a highly challenging task, most especially the when it comes to getting a mortgage. The process sounds tedious, but with proper knowledge paired with informed decisions, it can be more manageable.

Pilot Vehicles, Light Bars, and Uses in NZ

A BeaconIn New Zealand, there are rules for the use of light bars or beacons. Not all vehicles can be fitted with these speciality lights.

What is a Light Bar?

A vehicle LED light bar is a type of beacon generally found on pilot vehicles.

A pilot vehicle — sometimes called an escort vehicle — is a vehicle (car, van, pickup truck, SUV, lorry, or some other type of vehicle) that is used to escort another vehicle, often a truck with a large load. Sometimes, the pilot vehicle leads a convoy of other vehicles. It may provide guidance when other vehicles are driving through a construction site. In airports, a pilot vehicle guides taxiing aircraft from the runway to the tarmac.

Light bars are typically installed on pilot vehicles to distinguish them from other vehicles and alert other motorists.

What Light Bars are Installed on Pilot Vehicles?

On a pilot vehicle, an amber light bar is usually installed. Other pilot vehicles also use a combination of an amber and purple light. For loads 5 metres wide, a pilot vehicle can use an amber beacon or light bar. For a load over 5 metres wide, a lead pilot vehicle is required to activate amber and purple light bars. This lead pilot is followed by another pilot vehicle, which has an amber beacon and a warning sign to warn other vehicles that a wide load is following.

The overdimension vehicle should also have its amber light bar. The beacon should be activated if it follows a pilot vehicle. If it is not led by a pilot vehicle, and the vehicle and its load are less than 3.7 metres wide, the beacon is only required to be activated during dark hours. If it’s over 3.7 metres wide, the light bar should be on at all times.

Vehicles that have no reason to use a light bar may be in violation of the law if they are installed with light bars or beacons. These lights are for the safety of motorists and pedestrians and are not to be used as decoration. Before purchasing a specific type of light bar, find out if it is legal for you to install it on your vehicle.

Ways to Boost Company Sales through Online Marketing

People designing a websiteToday, the world is becoming smaller thanks to the emergence of the internet. More people are in contact with others because of this technology. In the business world, many companies have benefited from the internet because they can now reach a wider client base.

The computer finds use in many aspects of education, business, and health. Conventional ways of doing businesses are now outdated, and internet marketing has taken over. It is the newest trends today that work because it is less expensive and can reach more people. 

There are many ways to use internet marketing in business. It all boils down to the proper use of resources and knowing what’s trending.

Set up a website

Setting up a website is not easy, it’s challenging. However, with the help of IT support and technical experts, you can set up a website offering your various products and services. When a customer visits your website, they will know everything about your company.

Hopefully, your website attracts a following and loyalty from your clients.

Website design

One of the first things customers look in a website is its design and user-friendly services. They want to place orders and payments easily and without any hassle. Moreover, having a design that catches the attention of your customers is good for business.

Establishing a client support system

The best way to make customers come back to purchase more products or services is through a good customer support. When you have a system that answers to every query, processes the orders efficiently and has good after sales service, the customers will want to patronize your products.

Search Engine Optimization

If you want your business ranking high first in search engines on the internet, performing search engine optimization (SEO) comes highly recommended. For instance, you are in the business of selling jewelry and have an online presence, you can actually hire SEO services for your enterprise.

Some SEO companies have areas of specialization, like ones for dental clinics, hotels and, yes, for jewelers, such as seoforjewelers.com.

Internet marketing is not as easy as it looks. Many elements need consideration. However, the results will outweigh all the efforts. With a good website, customer service and SEO, you can look forward to more sales and profit.

Starting Over: Chasing Business Success After Falling Once

Man Cutting a Red Ribbon with ScissorsStarting a business is challenging, as it takes guts and courage. Sometimes, your first try does not yield good results and not everyone becomes the millionaire they’ve always dreamt of. You may even go bankrupt because of one wrong business decision.

Learn from your mistakes and try again. Here are some things to consider after recovering from a bankruptcy:

It’s OK to be Old School

Everyone you meet may be sporting the latest Apple gadget. While many say that to be successful, you have to look the part, there’s nothing wrong with pinching pennies when starting out.

Take a page from Warren Buffett’s playbook: “Does your old car really need an upgrade if it’s still working well?” Rather than spending on things you don’t need, save as much as you can, so that your business can have a bigger emergency fund.

Try a Different Venture

If you failed at your first try, and it led to you filing for bankruptcy, Utah Bankruptcy Pros says that this doesn’t mean you’re not cut out to be an entrepreneur. This may mean that you need to be in a different business. Try something related to technology.

Utah Business ranks Provo as seventh in “Next in Tech,” so you know there’s a good chance of success in this field, especially for startups.

Don’t Compromise on People

Your employees will define your company, so choose the best ones. It may be tough finding people who will work for the salary you’re willing to offer, but the key is finding people who are enthusiastic about what they do. It should never be about the money, but of course, you should be willing to pay them their worth. Provo mayor John Curtis says he knows some rich people who are unhappy, and those are not the employees you want on your team.

It’s easy to think of starting a business, but making it happen requires hard work and perseverance. The people who succeed are those who never give up.

Best Accounting Practices for Small Businesses

Calculating TaxesJuly 7 marks the deadline for income tax submissions for individuals and businesses alike. Are you ready to file your business taxes? It may still be April, but you can start working on your taxes early to prevent complications down the road. For an easier time with your taxes, you can consider the following practices.

Get an Expert

Do you have an accountant? It may be time for you to hire small business accounting services here in Auckland. An accounting firm can show you what you can claim and what you cannot claim. They can teach you the taxes you need to pay for.

Best of all, you can deduct all the fees you pay your accountant from your taxes.

Know your Deductibles

Speaking of deductibles, you can go to the Inland Revenue Department’s website to find the business expenses you can claim and deduct from your taxes.

These business expenses include mileage rate for using your own vehicle for your business, travel expenses, using your home for business, employee or client entertainment expenses, and much more. Again, accounting services can help you with this.

Write, Write, Write

Still on the subject of claims and deductibles, you best write all of your expenses down. When the IRD challenges your claim, since you have written your expenses down, you can prove that you actually spent on such costs.

Although most Kiwis tend to keep everything in their heads, you can break away from the typical Kiwi psyche and actually write down your expenses.

Review Everything

Besides your expenses, you can consider your fixed assets, sell surplus, and write off other assets, including ones thrown out or lost. You can also review and update your inventory, throw away unusable ones, and write off obsolete inventory.

Finally, you can also review your overdue receivables, write-off bad debts, and optimise your invoicing for a more efficient administrative process.

With the practices above, you can definitely file your taxes on time without any errors while maximising your deductibles.

Choosing the Right Courier Service

Man with his thumbs up deliveryFor some people, getting a package is one thing they look forward to: it may be a gift or an anticipated order. Or it is something that could make or break your business. This is where your search for reliable courier services in Ottawa begins.

Here are some of the questions you need to ask.

What are your needs?

What are the sizes of your packages? How far will you send them and how often? Do you need the packages delivered on the same day? Do you handle the same types of packages each time?

Are they reliable?

A delivery service is an extension of your service. No matter how good your product is, if it does not arrive on time, then this is not good service at all.  You can forget about repeat orders.

Do you have special needs?

Do they handle big packages?  What if you require sending perishable or fragile items, do they have special provisions for these? It is also important to find out how they usually handle the packages, from bringing it physically from the loading area until they bring it down, to the actual delivery to recipients.

What is their track record?

If you are thinking of getting a smaller, local company, check the past credentials. Bond and insurance are crucial. You get information about their security policy. Do they leave packages unattended?

Is the price right?

Ask for special prices. Maybe your bulk orders translate to discounted packages. On the other hand, there may be hidden charges not specified outright. Check out the fine print to be sure.

Is there a need for speed?

Most of us need very fast delivery. Even if most of the time, you do not need to rush orders, you never know if there may be unforeseen circumstances. Scrutinize the delivery options offered. It could be overnight, or 2 hours, but the important thing is you meet the one that meets your needs.

These are just some of the questions you need to ask in order to find the best courier service for you. Happy hunting!

Trade Show Trends: AR/VR, Personalization, and Going Beyond Tradition

Man looking for a strategy online
Only a few months have gone since the beginning of 2017, which means there are still many trade shows to attend and organize. Every year, those involved in trade fairs think of unique ways to stand out and draw in consumers and industry influencers. If you’re an exhibitor, here are some trends that you may want to suggest to companies that offer trades how marketing services.

Augmented/Virtual Reality

From websites to trade shows, AR and VR are rising stars. It’s not that they haven’t been so the past couple of years, but they are more popular now than ever. If you want to capture the attendees’ attention and engage with them through interactive activities, any of these should do the trick. However, if you’re looking for something that’s easier to implement, then AR is the way to go.

Non-Traditional Booth

Try experimenting with unusual booth setups to evoke an emotional response and give attendees something to ponder on. You can use larger setups to create a comfortable setting or a digital lounge with recharging stations.

If you’re all for going green during the exhibit, share an Earth-minded advocacy and use sustainable practices, such as using recycled and repurposed materials. Another “smart” idea would be using smart fabric walls with LED backlight.

Personalized Experience

Allow the attendees to create their experience. A customized, interactive experience gives the participant a unique understanding of your product, which should be your intention as an exhibitor – to provide a demonstration that is favorable to the needs of a customer.

Trends may come and go, but that’s what makes events something to look forward to each year. This is the reason you should always do your research and stay updated on the latest trade show news. Sometimes, it’s just a case of trial and error, but it doesn’t hurt to try different things for the sake of staying ahead of the competition.

This is the Kind of Home You Want to Live In

Dream HomeIf you are looking for a dream house, you have to prepare a checklist that you can tick off to save your time and effort in house hunting.

There are features that can help you evaluate whether the home you have seen on paper or the one that was proposed by your former real estate agent, is indeed the one right for you. It may also involve working with a credible lender like Primary Residential Mortgage, Inc.

Characteristics of the Ideal House

A single level house is perfect for people who dislike the fuss, yet want to maintain the easy and cozy atmosphere in his home. A single level house is easy to clean up, not to mention that everything is within your reach.

A house with taller ceilings also gives you more “space” to breathe. A 9-ft. ceiling is enough to make your house appear bigger than usual. Moreover, a house with a connecting door towards a garden (or what is now generally called “the outdoors” is a nice change to ordinary structures and house designs.

Your ideal house should also have maximum insulation. This helps lower the energy that you will need for your home. You may also define your ideal home as roomier, slightly different from the usual, though a project that goes between design and architecture (or rather, what is beautiful and practical).

Whatever your choice of ideal home is, it is expected that you will have to shell out money for it. Do you have an investment? Aside from planning what kind of house you’d build, it may be wise to think of the money you’d spend on the building itself. There are various borrowing plans for you to choose from, so search for a reliable lending company that will help you choose the right loan program that suits your budget and lifestyle. As with any expenditure, what you borrow should reflect what you are willing and able to pay.

You have the option whether to take the FHA loan program, the HARP loan, jumbo loans, rural housing, or VA loan. Your ideal house, more importantly, is the product of your blood and sweat, and an investment that came from your own pockets.

Understanding the Forces Behind Mortgage Rates

 Mortgage Rate in TempeWe all know what mortgage rates ought to be. We will complain when they are too high and rejoice when they are too low. This is because we have come to terms with the fact that market forces beyond our lender’s control are in charge of interest rates and there is nothing we can do about it.

Do you know what controls the mortgage rate quotes in Tempe? Let's find out:

How Do Mortgages Get Funding?

This is the first link in the puzzle. The money you get from your mortgage comes from huge financial investors who provide funds by investing in mortgage-backed securities. This is the secondary market. The lenders use the money from these securities to mortgage buyers who will often repay fast enough to facilitate the sale of another mortgage.

As the investors in the secondary market aren’t interested in quick returns, the lender can keep circulating the money in form of more loans and collect profit which will pay the mortgage-backed security investor once the time is right.

The Secondary Market Controls Your Rates

As the secondary market is the one providing the money, you lender will offer an interest rate subject to what the secondary market is willing to buy.

Consequently, mortgage rates will fluctuate in tandem with:

  • U.S. stocks
  • Foreign market
  • The job market
  • Inflation

These are only some of the factors that affect the economy, hence the trust or willingness of the secondary market to fund the lenders.

The Easiest Way to Predict Mortgage Rates

Even though there are tons of factors affecting mortgage rates, you can do an easy prediction by monitoring the 10-year Treasury bond yield. If the yield goes up, mortgage rates go up and vice versa.

Knowing mortgage rate determinants won’t necessarily help you get a better deal. After all, they are adjusted after 10 years. It will only make you more comfortable when buying your home since you will know what’s going on in the background.