• When it comes to developing...

    "When it comes to developing character strength, inner security and unique personal and interpersonal talents and skills in a child, no institution can or ever will compare with, or effectively substitute for, the home's potential for positive influence."
    -Stephen Covey

  • A house is not a home...

    "A house is not a home unless it contains food and fire for the mind as well as the body."
    -Benjamin Franklin

  • He is happiest...

    "He is happiest, be he king or peasant, who finds peace in his home."
    -Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

RANLife Home Loans Builds Community Support by Asking Past Clients to Get Involved

In effort to raise support through the community RANLife Home Loans is sponsoring a booth at the “Strut Your Mutt” 5k in Salt Lake City and asking past clients to join the effort.

RANLife Home Loans is preparing for another community event and this time around they are hoping for the support of past home purchase clients and as well as other members in the community.
It’s been a busy year for RANLife after already sponsoring booths at the MS Walk, Susan G Koman Race for the Cure, and the American Diabetes Association bike tour but that doesn’t stop them from getting involved.    Their next up and coming event is the Strut Your Mutt fundraiser that will be taking place on September 21st, 2013 in Salt Lake City, UT.
RANLife takes pride in their efforts and enjoys finding ways to create more community involvement. “What better way to unite as a company and also a community than by building support through fun and family friendly events,” stated RANLife’s marketing representative, Jaymie Tarshis. This time around with the support of past purchase clients, RANLife is hoping for their biggest turn out yet.
Their goal for the up and coming Strut Your Mutt event is to raise $1,500 to help homeless pets in need. “Through the support of our community and the awesome team members here at RANLife, I know we can meet and even exceed this goal.” Often times RANLife will host a bake sale or luncheon to raise the last bit of money needed to reach their goal.
“It’s a small amount of effort, with a lot of reward.” RANLife recommends that everyone get involved in at least one community event a year. They began participation in the community more than five years ago after raising money for the local food bank and after seeing much success have decided to take on more events each coming year.
On their agenda for the remaining year are the Utah Food Drive and another 5k. In the mean time, RANLife and their company members are excited and ready to gear up for Strut Your Mutt in September.
Anyone who would like to register for the Strut Your Mutt Salt Lake City event and join the RANLife Dog Pack is encouraged to sign up at http://www.strutyourmutt.org/team/ranlife. Participants who sign up with RANLife Home Loans will also receive a free Dog T-shirt at the event.
About RANLife Home Loans
At RANLife Home Loans our experienced mortgage professionals view a refinance, or purchase of a home loan, as more than just a onetime transaction. We believe it is a start of a long term relationship that can save the homeowner thousands of dollars over the life of their loan. To find out more information please visit them athttp://www.ranlife.com.
RANLife Home Loans supports various local causes and nonprofit organizations, including the Utah Food Bank, MS Society, American Cancer Society, American Diabetes Association, and many other local organizations.
Follow RANLife Home Loans on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/ranlifehomeloans.
And stay up to date on the Home Lending Life blog at blog.ranlife.com.

The original article can be found on PR Web by clicking here

Monday, July 29, 2013

Advantages of the 15-year fixed mortgage

A standard mortgage loan term is a 30-year fixed loan however with recent changes in the market and the rise in interest rates, a 15 year-fixed also has it's advantages.  The obvious, a shorter loan term.  But that's not the only reason why this loan program is becoming increasingly popular among home buyers.

I spoke to one of RANLife's senior loan officers, Wendy Nance, who gave me her take on the advantages of a 15-year fixed mortgage.  Wendy is one of RANLife's most experienced loan officers and aided thousands of home buyers through the home loan process.  Here is what she had to say:

1. Peace of mind

"I can't stress enough how good it feels to pay off your mortgage before you hit retirement," said Wendy.  She herself has always had a 15 year-fixed mortgage because at the end of the day, she feels good knowing that she will have more money in the future after that mortgage is paid off, at a time when she really needs.

"Who wouldn't want to be free'd up out of debt faster?"  We all strive to see the day there are no more car payments, student loan payments, and even a mortgage payment.  With a 15-year fixed mortgage, you can get there faster.

2. Lower loan costs

In most cases with a 15-year fixed mortgage you qualify for a lower interest rate, resulting in a lower monthly payment.  The savings in interest rate between a 15 and 30-year fixed loan might be as little as 1/5th of a percent, but that savings could still make a difference from $30 to $75 a month in interest, depending on your rate.  Savings over a year would be almost $1000.  Times that number by 15 years and that is a lot of savings already.

3. Life of the loan savings

One of the biggest and most obvious reasons why a 15-year fixed mortgage is better than a 30-year fixed mortgage is the savings over of the life of the loan.  Take a look at this example from Wendy:

On a standard $200,000 loan, 30-year fixed, the borrower would end up paying almost $185,000 in mortgage interest.  "These borrowers on average end paying almost double the original loan amount just to get it paid off.

On a standard $200,000 loan, 15-year fixed, the borrower would end up paying about $65,000 in mortgage interest.  This is almost a $120,000 savings by just shortening the loan term.

"You will end up saving lots of money and also have better clarity knowing that your mortgage will be paid off before you reach retirement."  Every loan program will have it's pros and cons, but in the long run, a 15-year fixed mortgage is never a bad idea.


 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

4 mortgages that you can get with little money down

Don't let down payment funds be the end to your dream of home ownership

For many, the dream of becoming a homeowner is far from sight mainly due to loan programs requiring a higher down payment.  Coming up with 10 to 20 percent of the purchase price can be quite the financial strain and most home buyers are now seeking lower down payment options.  

The good news is, there are still a few programs out there that require little to no down payment for a mortgage loan.  The Federal Housing Administration insures loans with small down payments and private mortgage insurers have also lowered their down payment requirements.  
It's even possible to get a mortgage with no down payment through the Veterans Affairs and the Department of Agriculture.  

Below you will find a few options for low down payment and zero down payment home mortgages:

If you are a qualified veteran you may qualify for this no-down purchase program.  Lenders originate the VA loans and the VA guarantees it. The borrower is required to pay a funding fee, which can vary, but the entire cost can be rolled into the loan.
  One of the biggest advantages of this loan is that there is no mortgage insurance required.  On a standard $200,000 loan, the borrower would have to pay almost $200 a month in mortgage insurance.  

To find out more information on VA loans or to see if you qualify fill out an online application by clicking here.

The Rural Development mortgage guarantee program by the U.S. Department of Agriculture is so popular that it often runs out of funds before the end of the fiscal year.  This program is like a VA loan where all the costs are rolled into the loan except it does exclude higher income families.  There is an income restriction as well as an geographical restrictions to where the home can be bought.  

Some home buyers might get discouraged to hear that the program is only available in specific rural areas set aside by the USDA but a lot of the time a USDA qualified area is within a 10 to 20 mile radius of a bigger town.  

It's worth it to call a licensed representative and find out what USDA qualified areas are around you today.  

To find out more information on USDA loans or to see if you qualify fill out an online application by clicking here.

Most assume that with an FHA loan, a high down payment is required.  However, this is not always the case.  The FHA has a low-down payment option that requires buyers to only put down 3.5 percent.  

Statistics show today that about 15 percent of all home loan borrowers get FHA insured loans.

To find out more information on FHA loans or to see if you qualify fill out an online application by clicking here.

For buyers wishing to put less than 3.5 percent down on a purchase, there is a Fannie Mae Conventional program that requires only 3 percent down.  Among these other low down payment mortgage programs, this Conventional program is unique because it allows the down payment to be the buyers cash or gift entirely.  

Conventional programs are often less costly than FHA loans, but depending on your scenario you may want to consider both options.  The program is valid for 1-unit homes only and the loan size cannot exceed $417,000.  


You Deserve To Be a Homeowner 

In today's housing market, there are multiple home loan programs that offer low and no down payment options.  Remember to use the above guide for reference when speaking to your loan officer about getting qualified.  Together, you will you be able to find the best for your situation. 

Staying up to date with today's financing options can go a long way when it comes to how much money you will need to bring to the table.  


For more questions on low to no down payment purchase programs, contact a RANLife Home Loans licensed representative today! 800-461-4152.  





Thursday, July 18, 2013

Hitting close to home: RANLife Home Loans sponsors 5k benefit race



Here at RANLife Home Loans, we jump at the opportunity to help build community support.  One of the most satisfying, fun, and productive ways to unite is through community events and fundraisers; it brings us together closer as coworkers, friends, and family. 

This brings us to a close family member of one of our very own RANLife team members, Charlee Nelson.  Charlee is one of the only known children in UT living with Late Infantile Batten Disease (http://www.bdsra.com), a condition that will take her life within a few short years.  

Charlee started having frequent daily seizures at only 3 1/2 years old and she and her family have endured 21 long months of testing to find this rare genetic diagnosis.  This process has taken a major emotional and financial toll on her loving family, who would od anything for their little angel.

Charlee's family and friends started a support group named, Charlees Angels, where other community members as well as family and friends can gather in support for this young girl.  They hose marathons, tournaments, and other local fundraisers to aid in the cost of her treatments.  The next event is coming up right away!

RANLife Home Loans is proud to announce that they will be sponsoring the Charlee's Angels 5k benefit coming up on September 7th, 2013.  More information on the benefit can be found below or by clicking here.




We would like to encourage anyone interested to get involved! If you live in the Salt Lake area you can participate in the race by registering here.

If you do not live in the area, or would rather make a donation directly, please donate online by clicking here.

More information on both Charlee, Charlee's Angels, and their fundraising events please visit www.charleesangels.org.  



Wednesday, July 17, 2013

RANLife Home Loans introduces two new grants to assist first time home buyers

Two new grants will be available to first home buyers nationwide. The grants were designed to assist home buyers in the mortgage process and also help stabilize the housing market.


ranlife home loans, home grants, first time home buyer grant, home grant
Get into the home you deserve with RANLife Home Grants.
We wanted to ensure down payment and closing cost assistance was available for everyone.
RANLife Home Loans, a leading nationwide mortgage lender, is pleased to announce that they will be offering multiple home grants to first time home buyers nationwide hoping to foster some relief and provide financial assistance to those striving to become homeowners.
The two available RANLife grants, The Community Stabilization Grant (CSG) and The Home Rental Credit (HRC) Grant, are designed to assist first time home buyers with closing costs and others fees involved in the home buying process.
In conjunction to the two grants, RANLife has created a specialized grant department that researches any available local municipal or government grants. The grant department specialists handle all of the applications from start to finish with each of these grant programs to make the process stress free for clients.
RANLife’s grant department began in 2011 after recognizing a need for more grant assistance for client’s in all states where they do business. “We wanted to ensure down payment and closing cost assistance was available for everyone,” said Tyler Knowles, RANLife’s Grant Department Supervisor. Most government grants are state, county, or city specific and often run out of funds early in the year.
The two home buyer grants can be used separately or combined in a single transaction. Unlike other forms of government assistance that come with various stipulations such as having to repay the grant when the buyer sells the home, the CSG and HRC are true grants that require no form of repayment.
Though RANLife designed the grants to support first time home buyers it was also designed to help the economy while stabilizing the housing market. “If we don't have buyers we don’t have business, and our economy suffers because of it,” stated Knowles.
Nathaniel Williams was a recent recipient of both the CSG and HRC grants. The combination of the two grants paid for a substantial portion of his closing costs and helped him get into the home of his dreams.
“This has been an awesome program so far,” commented Knowles. Many times RANLife comes across a buyer with high enough income and credit to purchase their dream home but not enough funds to put it all together. “Not only do these grants help with loan costs but they assist buyers in achieving the American dream.”
RANLife plans to continue funding the grant program, though funds are still limited and reviewed yearly. To find out more information on RANLife’s first time home buyer grants or other grant programs available, please click here.
About RANLife Home Loans
At RANLife Home Loans our experienced mortgage professionals view a refinance, or purchase of a home loan, as more than just a onetime transaction. We believe it is a start of a long term relationship that can save the homeowner thousands of dollars over the life of their loan. To find out more information, please visit them athttp://www.ranlife.com. Also follow them on the RANLife blog and other social media. NMLS #3151.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

5 steps to help you recover from a bankruptcy

Anyone who has experienced a bankruptcy knows how hard it is to reestablish good credit again.  The good news is, it's not impossible.  

It's important to take the appropriate actions after filing bankruptcy in order to get credit scores rebuilt, especially if you would like to be able to buy a home again.  Low credit scores often result in higher interest rates and fees and make obtaining a home much more difficult.

Despite your situation, your goal should be to repair your credit as fast as possible.  With a few simple steps, you can be back on your feet in a short amount of time.  Here's how:

1.  Set Boundaries on Spending


Start by tracking your expenses over a 2 to 3 month period in order to figure out what you are spending and where your money is going.  From there, make a realistic budget that fits within your monthly income.  Find spending areas that can be cut and instead delegate that money to a savings account you can have in case of emergency.  

Sometimes putting together an excel spreadsheet or using a budget calculator online can better help organize your expenses.  The website mappingyourfuture.org provides a great budget calculator that takes into account everything from utilities to childcare, to clothing and entertainment expenses.  

2. Check Your Credit Report Beforehand


After a few months of filing bankruptcy, look at your credit report to ensure every closed account and debt is properly reporting.  You can request a free report once a year from each of the three major credit-reporting agencies (Equifax, Experian, and Transunion) by visiting www.annualcreditreport.com.  You also want to take control of your finances and start making some smart moves, which means monitoring your report regularly for errors.


3. Pay Your Bills On Time, Every Time


No matter how big or small, every delinquent payment harms your credit score.  Bill-paying habits account for 35 percent of your overall credit score.  Creditors want to know that after a bankruptcy you aren't going to make the same mistakes again, and what better way to prove that than a perfect payment history.  One great way is to setup automatic payments on the days you get paid.  This way your bills get paid no matter what, and before other unnecessary or last minute expenses.  One great website that is free to use and reminds you to pay your bills is https://www.mint.com/

4. Get a Secured Credit Card


It's like a regular credit card, but you are only allowed to spend the money you actually have.  Genius, right? Secured credit cards act like prepaid cards or debit cards so you treat it like you would cash.  They are a great alternative for those with low credit scores or those who cannot qualify for a regular credit card.  Use it sparingly for 6  to 12 months and then try to negotiate for an unsecured card.  

Options about secured credit cards can be found at http://www.creditcards.com/secured-credit-cards.php

5. Continue Practicing Good Habits


Once you get the above four steps down, make it a commitment and stick to it.  Remember that credit not only comes from paying bills on time but through spending habits as well.  

If you have three credit cards and all three are maxed out, your scores are likely to hurt from it.  Creditors like to see spending control and spending within your means.  Just because they give you a $500 limit, does not mean you should charge it up to $500.  The golden rule is to never spend more than 30 percent of the maximum limit on your credit card.  On a $500 credit card, never spend more than $150.  

Also, pay off any existing collections, tax liens, or judgments.  Though your scores may take a hit at first, in the long run they will begin to improve as you decrease the amount of derogatory accounts.  

In conclusion, recovering from a bankruptcy is easier than it seems.  It just takes a little preparation and a lot of dedication, but in the end you can repair your credit and qualify to buy a home again within just a couple years.  

If you have any other questions about bankruptcy or qualifying for a mortgage please contact us at info@ranlife.com

Friday, July 12, 2013

Sell your house: 4 tips every home seller should know

If you've been on the fence about selling your home, now is the time! With high demand and low inventory for homes, values are rising faster than ever and home owners are recognizing that it is the perfect time to sell your home.

The selling process can sometimes be quite stressful but with the right steps you can sell your home hassle free and still get the value you deserve.  I talked to some real estate agents from RANLife Real Estate about the home selling process.  Below are the tips they recommended:

Start with an inspection

You may think everything in your house is perfect, but things can go wrong that you may not even be aware of.  Save time and money by having an inspection done prior to putting your home on the market so that the buyer has no reason to hesitate or negotiate a lower sales price.  By taking care of this problem before hand you could save hundreds if not thousands of dollars.


De-Clutter, and De-Personalize


When selling your home, first impression is the most important factor.  You are going to be moving anyway, so why not start packing now? By clearing out closets and freeing up living space not only will it attract buyers but it will make the stress of moving easier in the end.  Also, start by taking down lots of family photos and personalized memorabilia.  This makes it easier to buyers to envision their family and personal belongings in the home.


Put yourself in the buyers shoes


Walk up to your front door and ask yourself, would you be enticed to come in and look at this home? Do you feel welcomed?  If not, try adding some simple additions to your landscaping to burst that curb appeal.  Sometimes as simple as adding a new welcome mat and rearranging furniture can help a home feel open and inviting.

Price your property right according to market value


It's good to do some research on your own and find out what similar homes are selling for in your area but the best resource is to talk to a real estate agent directly.  An agent can give you a Comparative Market Analysis on your home to find out its exact value.  This is important because if your home is priced too high it will deter buyers from even taking a look at it and if your home is priced too low you may not get the equity out of it you deserve.  Real estate agents will be able to give you the best advice on pricing your home to sell in the current market.

To talk to an agent, get more information on selling your home, or for any questions please visit ranliferealestate.com.  One of their qualified agents can give you the most update to date market information on buying, selling, or the value of your home.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

June loan officer of the month - Kyle Smart

RANLife Home Loans would like to congratulate the top Loan Officer in Sales for the month of May, Kyle Smart!


ranlife home loans, loan officer of the month, kyle smart, home loans


Who exactly is Kyle Smart?

Kyle Smart is an experienced loan officer that has been with RANLife for two years now.  Prior to beginning his career at RANLife, Kyle gained valuable experience in sales and customer service that have helped him to become the successful mortgage consultant he is today.  Over the last two years Kyle has assisted hundreds of homebuyers in obtaining their dream of homeownership and reaching their financial goals.

Kyle’s enthusiasm and passion for his work keep his clients coming back to him for all their financial needs.  You can usually find him staying late to work that “extra mile” in order to ensure that every client’s needs are taken care of.  His ability to get the job done in a timely fashion makes him a huge a huge asset to RANLife’s team of loan officers.

If you would like to get prequalified to buy a home or are thinking of refinancing, please contact Kyle at the information below via email or telephone or you can also fill out an online application on his webpage.

*Other skills: Bilingual (Spanish)

Office: 801-478-4577

Cell: 801-916-5068

Email: Kyles@ranlife.com

Monday, July 1, 2013

Nearing the end of low interest rates - is it still smart to refinance your mortgage?

refinance, refinance your home, refinance your mortgage, interest rates


The last few years we have experienced historical low interest rates in the mortgage market.  Many homeowners have already taken advantage of the low rates and have even dropped their rate to as low as 3 percent.

Though it's been a long and steady recovery, the housing market is finally picking up again.  Home values are going up and homeowners that were once underwater now have regained equity. All of this excitement leads to one final question, are we coming to the end of low interest rates? The simple answer is, YES.

I spoke to one of RANLife's highly experienced mortgage loan officers, Lisa Mabey, and she made a couple of key points on interest rates and the market for homeowners on the fence about refinancing:
  • It's not too late to refinance.  Prices are going up, interest rates are going up.  It's best to make a decision, quick!
  • The more rates go up, the less you qualify for.  Procrastination is deadly.
  • Rates have been low for much too long, there is no choice but for them to go up from here.
  • Rates could go up even more and are predicted to be at 6 percent within the next year.
  • If you are unsure on the best option, call a RANLife loan officer.  Even if you don't want to drop your rate, you can still refinance to lower your term while keeping your payment the same.
Check your options.  New loan programs and changes in the market can make a big difference on what you qualify for.  It's worth it to take five minutes of your time to talk to a loan officer and be certain on the best financial decision.

Be prepared with current loan information in case the loan officer asks.  Sit down and make sure you know your approximate principal balance, your current interest rate, and an approximate value for your property.  Your loan officer will analyze the situation from there and let you know what you can become.

With the right preparation and research, making a decision should be quick and simple.  Just remember to do it fast before rates go up any higher!

Please send any questions about rates, loan programs, or other loan questions to info@ranlife.com.