Buying a house can be a stressful process, especially when you’ve found your dream home and have put in your bid. While it’s easy to spend all of your spare time worrying endlessly if your bid will be accepted it won’t get you any closer to hearing that “yes”. Here are five things you can do instead of worrying and will help relieve stress instead. Read a book - Immerse yourself in another world by picking up a book. Spend some time browsing the shelves of your local library or bookstore for something that catches your eye. If you aren’t normally a reader choose a genre similar to your movie tastes or ask a librarian for a recommendation. Meditate - I’m sure you’ve heard it a million times before. Every time the topic of lowering stress come up you are sure to have meditation suggested as a combative tool. But it’s so widely recommended for good reason! Science has proven that meditation really does lower stress levels. With its popularity comes a plethora of options for you to experiment with. You can try in-person classes, apps, or CDs. There are even many different ways to meditate so find what works for you and keep practicing. Exercise - Exercise may not be everyone’s favorite past time but it is an excellent way to lower stress. Don’t worry this doesn’t mean you need a gym membership or to spend hours lugging weights around. Walking, dancing and even vigorously cleaning can all count as exercise if they raise your heart rate. You can even think of it as prep for move in day. Spend time with friends - Gather a group of friends together to catch up over brunch or go out on the town for the night. Either way, you will have a blast spending time with those you care about and lowering your stress levels. Social engagement is an important facet of human life and when you gather a group of friends there is almost a guarantee for some laughter. And yes, laughing really does help you reduce stress! Get outside - Spending time in nature is a guaranteed way to destress with endless possibilities. You can go for a hike, ride a bike, spend time on a boat, at the beach or in your own backyard. You also have the added benefit of the ability to combine this tip with any of those given above. Lay out a blanket to sit on to read or meditate, gather a group of friends for a game of kickball, or go for a run as a group or by yourself. Waiting to hear if your bid on your dream home has been accepted can be a stressful time, but it doesn’t have to be. By spending your time engaging in activities that help lower your stress levels you will not only keep yourself from worrying but also do yourself some good too. Whether you choose to snuggle up with a good book or go out on the town with some friends you’ll be glad you gave yourself some downtime before move in day!

Just the thought of having to pay on a mortgage for three decades can leave a sinking feeling in the pit of your stomach or restless sleep. Fortunately, there’s away to get relief. You could pay your mortgage principal off early.

Paying your mortgage principal off early is smart because most banks stack your interest onto early or upfront mortgage payments. It’s similar to how credit card companies and college student loan lenders set up your payments so that they recoup much of the interest early.

Start chipping away at mortgage payments

To reduce the amount of total interest that you pay your mortgage lender, consider paying more toward your principal. To achieve this, you could:

  • Get a low interest rate mortgage, preferably a fixed interest rate.
  • Refinance your existing mortgage. If you have a 30-year mortgage, consider getting a 20 year mortgage. A downside to refinancing is that your monthly payments will increase, in part because you’ll pay closing costs again. Use a mortgage calculator to determine what your new monthly payments will be before you take this route. Confirm the payments with your lender before you ink a new contract. Make sure that you can regularly make the payments on time even if your or someone you co-signed the mortgage with gets laid off.
  • Submit your mortgage payment before the due date if you have a simple interest mortgage. With a simple interest mortgage, interest builds over the course of a month. Sending in a mortgage payment before the due date could save you from paying additional interest. As a tip, this step also works with paying down credit card balances that are on a simple interest plan.
  • Avoid late payments. Not having to pay late fees and fines is an all-around advantage. Submit too many late payments and your lender could raise your interest rates. Of course, submitting late payments also impacts your credit score.
  • Put money that you earn freelancing, contracting or working overtime toward your principal.
  • Rent out a portion of your home to generate extra income. Use this money to pay your mortgage off early.

Paying your principal down early is a great way to start living mortgage free. But, the early payoff doesn’t suit everyone. Consider your lifestyle. If your children will be attending college within three years or less, you may want to postpone paying more toward your mortgage principal and simply continue making your minimum mortgage payments. Other reasons that you may want to wait to increase your mortgage payments include caring for aging parents, job uncertainty and exceptionally low interest rates.

It can make better financial sense to invest in an IRA to grow your wealth if your mortgage interest rates are exceptionally low. On the other hand, paying your mortgage off early can position you to walk away with a larger profit should you sell your home. Paying your mortgage off early also gives you more financial freedom to enjoy travel, invest in art and enjoy more life experiences that you appreciate. And it’s a great way to reduce stress and enjoy a good night of sleep.

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A well-installed roof will usually have a useful life of more than 20 years. Exceptions to this would be tin, slate, tile, and copper roofs, which last for decades before you are required to repair or replace them. However, the fact is, a roof's useful life is dependent on climate, snow load, material, quality, design, maintenance, and installation. While buying a new house, make sure you check the roof. Get a complete roof inspection and only if the roof is durable, place your offer. Licensed home inspectors can do the inspection for you. Or, you could also hire a professional roofing contractor for a certified inspection. If you can not obtain a roof inspection before making an offer on the property, your real estate agent can present an offer contingent on the roof passing an inspection or being replaced if need. To prevent the occurrence of significant costs, obtain assurance from the homeowner that their insurance covers replacement costs for the roof in case of a major storm, fire, or any devastating event before the closing. Read the fine print carefully. Some plans only provide depreciating value; which in the case of an old roof could amount to nothing, A rather common misconception is that if your roof is leaking, it needs to be replaced. The truth is, leaks typically occur due to leaking flashings or shingle damage. A complete roof failure is very rare and can only happen because of two major causes – poor installation or natural disaster. Instead of crawling up your roof to check for damages and breaking limbs in the process, use a high-powered pair of binoculars. Look out for cracks, twisted or damaged flashings or missing shingles. More often than not, problems in the roof are not discovered until a lot of the damage has already occurred. An annual roof inspection is a wise choice to make. In case any damage is found, you have two options – either to reroof or to re-cover the existing roof. Most city building codes allow re-covering only once, after which you need to reroof. In case you opt for reroofing, the costs could vary depending on materials selected, the contractor’s pay and the location of your house, labor rates and the time of the year. The best plan would be to take quotations from at least three contractors and compare the prices and services offered. If you are an experienced homeowner who can accomplish a wide range of repair or replacement tasks around the house, roofing is not one to tackle on your own. Roofing is a dangerous job that requires precision professional expertise. A builder or contractor possesses the right kind of equipment, technology, and skills needed to accomplish the task. Also, your insurance can only offer protection against an accident. If the roof is not built or installed correctly by professionals, the insurance company will not provide coverage against damage. Contact your homeowner's insurance agent for a referral to an established and reliable contractor.

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North Attleboro, MA:

This Single-Family in North Attleboro, MA recently sold for $380,000.
This is a Cape style home and features 9 total rooms, 2 full baths, 4 bedrooms, 5.27 acres, and was sold by
Cedar Hill Realty

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Attleboro, MA:

This Single-Family in Attleboro, MA recently sold for $300,000.
This is a Raised Ranch style home and features 6 total rooms, 2 full baths, 1 half bath, 3 bedrooms, 0.37 acres, and was sold by
Cedar Hill Realty

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