Are you refinancing your mortgage or selling your home?  Now it’s time to prepare your home for a real estate appraisal.
Here are some simple steps you can take to prepare for the appraisal and to get the most beneficial value for your home. 
You can expect that the appraiser will need access to all interior rooms including bedrooms and bathrooms, and will take pictures of most rooms which will be included in the appraisal report.  If you are having your home appraised for a government sponsored loan program like VA or FHA, there are specific requirements that the appraiser will check for – utilities on and operational, chipping or peeling paint, and any “health or safety hazards” as defined by these organizations.
Make sure the appraiser has access to the property that he/she requires.  The appraiser will measure the home and sketch the floor plan.  The exterior of the home will be examined and photos taken of the front, rear, street, and any additional exterior features.
Prepare you home in advance to get the best results for your appraisal inspection. Look at your home with a critical eye.  The appraiser will note both positive attributes as well as any adverse conditions (leaks, pealing paint, exposed wires, loose railings) so it’s important to have these remedied prior to the appraisal inspection.  Do some minor sprucing up, declutter and clean to give an overall positive impression.
Lastly, let the appraiser know if you’ve done any home improvements and point these out during the inspection.  After all, who knows the house better than you….
Did you know that an appraisal is not the same as a home inspection? Learn more about the differences here.

This was a guest post written by MaxVantage AMC.

MaxVantage AMC        
For all of your real estate appraisal needs.

MortgageCast #9 | Homebuying Strategies

Day 1 Certainty, Layered Risk and TBD Approvals

Being a home buyer in the current market can be challenging. Luckily we have tools, resources and strategies to be sure our clients have the best chance of securing a home and mortgage.

It's been a bit since the last MortgageCast was released but Erin the Expert dives deep into the tools and strategies she uses to make sure her clients have the best shot at buying the home of their dreams. This one is a bit longer but there are many important concepts to be learned. The mortgage business is ever changing and technology is advancing rapidly so being aware of it and knowing how to leverage it is an advantage Erin and her team have over other mortgage lenders. When you're ready to start the home buying (or refinance) process be sure to reach out to me directly.

by Erin the Expert

Day 1 Certainty (D1C)

Layered Risk

TBD Approvals

Additional Resources

Are you a first time home buyer?

Consider downloading our FREE homebuying guide specifically for those new to the process. It's packed with useful information, checklists and tip sheets to get you off on the right foot.

Are you ready to take the next step?

It's time to get pre-approved with Erin the Expert!

Contact Erin Directly

For the Week Ending January 11, 2019


Please enjoy this quick update on what happened this week in the housing and financial markets.


The government shutdown, in its third week, hasn't yet shown signs of affecting the economy. However, it has impacted some mortgage programs like USDA.
After a dismal December, stocks are rebounding, helped in part by progress in U.S./China trade talks. These improvements have pressured mortgage rates.
Although recent concerns about the economy have surfaced, the job market remains strong. Jobless claims fell more than expected last week to 216,000.


The recent drop in mortgage rates has sparked a jump in applications. Mortgage applications were up 23.5% from the previous week.
Just over 10% of agents surveyed by NAR said the shutdown was having an impact on their clients. Gov't and non-gov't employees alike have been affected.
More first-time buyers are turning to their parents for help with down payments. A recent HUD report shows 26% of FHA borrowers got assistance from a relative.

Rate movements and volatility are based on published, aggregate national averages and measured from the previous to the most recent midweek daily reporting period. These rate trends can differ from our own and are subject to change at any time.

Then And Now 2018

Jan 10
Category | General

A typical home payment has not changed much in the last dozen years. Incomes have risen, and slightly higher payments can actually be easier to afford than they were back then.

At the current level, a median priced home is probably well within reach of a family earning close to the median income.

Want to learn more? Ready to make a move?

We’ll be happy to help you determine a payment and purchase amount that work for you. Please reach out.

The Monmouth County, NJ First Time Homebuyer Assistance Program is designed to provide financial assistance to low income families to purchase an affordable home in the form of a deferred payment second mortgage loan in an amount not to exceed $10,000 for down payment and closing costs (only).


  • MUST BE a resident of Monmouth County for 1 YEAR before applying for a grant.

  • ALL applicants must complete a pre-purchase housing counseling course and provide a certificate of completion with the First-Time Homebuyer application.

  • MUST BE an individual(s) that never owned a home (except if an applicant has previously owned a home he/she still may qualify if they meet 1 or more of the following criteria:

    • An individual that has not owned a home in 3 years prior to receiving home assistance. 

    • An individual who is a single parent even if the individual owned a home with his or her spouse or resided in a home owned by the spouse

    • An individual who is a displaced homemaker even if as a homemaker the individual owned a home with his or her spouse or resided in a home owned by the spouse. 

    • Must be low income. Gross annual income does not exceed 80% of the county median income:



  • Property MUST be the principal residence

  • Applicant must purchase a house located in the participating municipalities ONLY.

  • Fist-time homebuyer can only purchase a 1-4 family property or condominium unit.

  • Housing unit cannot exceed the max purchase price of $337,000 for 1-family & condominium, $432,000 for 2-family unit, $532,000 for a 3-family unit and $648,000 for a 4-family unit. 

  • Mobile homes are not eligible for purchase using First-time Homebuyer program funds

  • Co-signor not allowed

Still have questions about the FIRST-TIME HOMEBUYER ASSISTANCE PROGRAM? Contact us today! 


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