Mortgage

3 Things to Consider When Moving to a Larger Alaskan Home

With mortgage rates still at historically low rates and home values rising, many Alaksan residents are currently contemplating a move— even in the midst of the current, and somewhat uncertain, economic climate. However, if you've been wondering, now is indeed the time to purchase a home with more storage space, more bedrooms, more overall square footage or even a home in a better neighborhood. 

As your real estate agents in Fairbanks, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North Pole, and beyond, Madden Real Estate is happy to help you find your bigger, better dream home, but there are just a few factors to consider in your decision to move up.

The right mortgage
When moving up in ...

What You Should Know Before Refinancing Your Alaskan Home

The idea of cutting your monthly mortgage payment down by refinancing your loan may sound intriguing to you as an Alaskan homeowner, but there is much more to consider before diving in. In fact, there are cases in which refinancing does not truly pay off for the homeowner. But don't worry! As your local real estate experts, you can count on Madden Real Estate to help you make the best decision for your situation.

Below are four factors to consider before making the decision to refinance your mortgage:

Refinancing is not free
Just as you likely paid some closing costs when you purchased your home in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North Pole, and the surrounding areas, you will...

Where to Save for a Down Payment in Fairbanks AK

For homebuyers in Alaska this summer, saving for the down payment is one of the biggest hurdles in front of the finish line. In the past, we've shared how to start saving for the down payment, but you might be wondering where to keep the money.

Below are four options for risk-free accounts in which you can keep your down payment. You may sacrifice return, but you can be assured the money will be there when you need it to purchase your home in Anchorage, Fairbanks, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, or the surrounding areas!

Online savings account
Compare online rates to determine which online savings account is best, but this may be the easiest option for moving around funds. You can track the money easily via online banking and set up transfers in a snap. You also don't need to worry about the bank not being open when you need to pull your down...

What Do You Actually Need to Qualify for a Mortgage in Alaska?

When it comes to buying a home in Alaska, you would be surprised by the number of potential buyers that sit back because they do not think they will qualify for a mortgage. However, the reality is that qualifying for a mortgage is simpler than you think and as a result, you are missing out on the many benefits of homeownership!

If you're sick of renting, given the increasing costs each year, and are ready to settle into a place of your own, now is the time! Don't allow yourself to put off homeownership any longer, just research the facts. Consider the following your checklist of what it takes to qualify for a mortgage:

1. A Down Payment
Did you know nearly half of all ...

Money-Saving Tips for Alaska Homebuyers To Follow This Spring

While we are only days into the new season, this spring is already projected as a stand-out period for first-time buyers to enter the real estate market. Mortgage rates are still historically low, home prices are rising in addition to rents and first-timers are ready to invest into something of their very own in Alaska.

But when you are new to purchasing a home, you can overlook the many ways you can potentially save money in the process. Keep the following in mind as you house hunt this spring and as always, do not hesitate to reach out to our experts at Madden Real Estate with any questions!

Look past cosmetic issues
Many first-time buyers in ...

4 Reasons Why Lenders Reject Alaska Mortgage Applications

If you're just beginning the home buying process in Alaska, your first step will be getting pre-approved with a local lender. Next up? Finding your dream home and submitting a mortgage application to keep the purchase moving forward. However, many buyers find their application in the rejection pile due to factors they weren't aware of at the time. 

As your local real estate experts, Madden Real Estate has provided below four reasons why your mortgage application may be rejected so you can be sure to avoid them:

You don't have enough credit
While poor credit can put you in a sticky situation with lenders, not enough credit can do just the same. It is essential to build your...

The Cost of Waiting to Buy a Home in Alaska— Rising Interest Rates!

It is not uncommon for Alaskan homebuyers to sit on the fence, wondering if there will be a better time to purchase a home down the road. Will you be able to get a better deal on a property in a few months? Will the real estate market slow down? These are all valid questions, but it's also important to consider the flip side and what it could cost you if you choose to wait to buy a home.

In today's market, interest rates continue to rise and waiting as little as a few months could cost you more than you think in your monthly mortgage payment. According to real estate news outlet Keeping Current Matters, the cost of waiting to buy is defined as the additional funds it would take to buy a home if prices and interest rates were to increase over a period of time.

For instance, in today's real estate market with an interest rate of 4.4 percent...

5 Things to Avoid When Preparing to Buy a Home in Fairbanks AK

With spring just around the corner and the Alaska real estate market preparing to pick up for the busy season ahead, there are numerous buyers on the fence wondering about their first step. Should I get pre-approved? Should we wait until we have a 20 percent down payment?

All of the questions running through your head are important to answer to get a better handle on the mortgage process, and as your local real estate experts, we're breaking down the steps you should avoid so you can embark on your homebuying journey with few hiccups along the way.

Do Not: Wait until you have a 20 percent down payment
Mortgage rates today are still hovering around historic lows— but not for...

Prepare for Closing Costs When Buying a Home in Alaska

The process of buying a home in Alaska can be both exciting and overwhelming, especially if it's your first time conducting a home search. There are many details to get in order, from the number of bedrooms you need to the best location, and it is easy for a few to fall through the cracks. One in particular that is commonly overlooked is the amount you will owe in closing costs. 

Many first-time homebuyers in Alaska are not aware of closing costs, but as your local experts in Anchorage, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North Pole and the surrounding communities, you can count on Madden Real Estate to ensure you know exactly what you're in for in today's real estate market.

What are closing costs?

Closing...

4 Hidden Costs of Homeownership in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Wasilla AK

Once you've made the decision to buy a home in Alaska, your next few steps will likely be entirely financial. From making a budget to going over your finances to meeting with a lender and getting pre-approved, every cost involved with your Alaskan home purchase should be considered to avoid any surprises.

However, many new homeowners in Fairbanks, Anchorage, North Pole, Wasilla, Eagle River, and Palmer often find there are a few hidden costs that they didn't account for going into the process. As your local real estate experts, you can count on Madden Real Estate to fully prepare...

When a 30-Year Mortgage Is Not for You in Fairbanks AK Real Estate

One of the first steps you will take on your homebuying journey in Alaska is meeting with a lender to discuss your eligibility to take on a mortgage loan. You will likely be given a few quotes based on different loan products, each varying by terms, conditions, and interest rates. A 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is a common choice for homebuyers in Anchorage, Fairbanks, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla, North Pole and the surrounding areas, however, there are a few reasons why this mortgage may not be for you.

As you decide which mortgage may be right for you this year, consider the following reasons to choose a loan other than the 30-year...

Types of Debt That Can Affect Your Alaska Mortgage Approval

The summer season is upon us here in Alaska and with the market (and the weather!) beginning to heat up, many more buyers are out and about browsing available homes! But once you've found your dream home in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Wasilla, Palmer, or North Pole and you've moved on to applying for a mortgage, you may find that there is one factor that is stalling your loan approval— debt.

As we have mentioned in past blog posts, it's important to groom your credit score as much as possible before applying for a mortgage, but also to pay down high interest debt. There are a few common types of debt that will affect your mortgage approval and as your local real estate experts, we've listed them below!

Student Loans
Student loans—while considered unsecured...

How to Prepare to Buy A Home in Fairbanks Alaska This Summer

While inventory may be lower than it has been in past months, there is no shortage of homebuyers in the Fairbanks Alaska area! Buyer traffic has continued to rise and with May having just begun, it's safe to say we are in for a busy summer in the local real estate market!

If you have just started your home search in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Wasilla, Palmer or North Pole, now is the perfect time to prepare to make your home purchase a reality. Below are five ways Alaskan buyers can prepare to purchase a home this year:

Research your creditYour credit score will be an important piece of the puzzle when meeting with a lender. They will comb through your credit, pulling your scores from the three major reporting bureaus, to determine...

Upgrade Your Front Entry

Looking to upgrade your front entrance? Re-Painting is a great place to start.  Fresh paint is an affordable, interesting way to update your home and it also offers long-term protection.

Choose a color that complements the style of your home and existing exterior colors.  For something eye-catching, go with light or deep colors. A unique color scheme is the best way to stand out but don't go overboard.

Re-staining the front door will set your home apart on a street lined with factory-painted doors.

Create contrast to add visual interest and personality to your front entrance.

Accessories are easy and inexpensive finishing touches that make a noticeable difference.

...

Fairbanks and Anchorage AK Home Projects That Do Not Pay Off At Resale

In a previous blog post, I introduced you to how you can renovate your home in Alaska while increasing your property value. Projects like remodeling your kitchen and bathrooms, redecorating and boosting outdoor appeal are all excellent ways to ensure you have a favorable turn-out when the time comes to sell, but it's also important to keep in mind those that can do the opposite.

If you have home projects on the horizon this year, you will want to steer clear of the following three that can hurt your property value in Fairbanks, Anchorage, Eagle River, Palmer, Wasilla and the surrounding areas:

Removing bedroom space
Maybe you'd like to expand your closet, create a recreational space or even make room for a master suite— but just remember, once you've decreased the number of bedrooms in your...

4 Things People Forget to Do Before Moving to a New Home in Alaska

Spring is nearly here and along with the new season will come a wave of activity in the real estate market. More buyers will begin their house-hunting journey for properties in Anchorage, Fairbanks, Wasilla, North Pole, Palmer and the surrounding areas and sellers will take the necessary steps to list their home and move on.

It will be a busy time for moving in Alaska and with the hustle and bustle, many things are bound to be overlooked. Madden Real Estate has put together a list of common things people forget to do before moving to a new home in Alaska so you can cross the added stress off of your list!

Cancel any recurring charges
Memberships and mail orders are two factors that can continue to rack up your credit card bill while you're in the midst of moving in ...

Misinformation About Buying A Home in Alaska Is Holding Back Would-Be Owners

With the rising costs of rent and mortgage rates that continue to dip below expected levels, dreams of homeownership are becoming quite commonplace for many renters in Alaska. However, many would-be buyers are holding back this year due to misinformation about what it takes to become a homeowner.

A new survey from Bankrate.com found that nearly half of all current renters say they haven't purchased a home yet because they don't think their credit score is high enough or they don't have enough money saved for a down payment

So what does it take? It's important to keep the following two factors in mind before you jump to conclusions about your ability to purchase a home in Alaska this year!

Credit ScoreAnother study from Fannie Mae recently found that 59 percent of Americans "don't know" or...