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Real Estate Lawyer
Katherind M. Blahut, PLLC Attorney At Law Call 1-786-333-4260

How much will my closing costs be?

    Closing fees average around 2% of the purchase price—on a $200,000 home, that’s $4,000—but they can go as high as 5%. The laundry list of costs is long. Before you even get to the closing table, you’ll pay the lender for a credit check and appraisal; you’ll also pay for an inspection, property survey and any attorney’s fees. At the closing you may be hit with other lender fees, plus a title search and lender’s title insurance, charges to record your deed and property transfer taxes. In addition, the lender will collect roughly two months of advance payments on property taxes and insurance. The amount you pay shouldn’t come as a surprise. Within three days of receiving your application, your lender must provide a Good Faith Estimate listing anticipated charges. The estimate is just that—a ballpark figure that can (and often does) change prior to closing day. Just before closing, you’ll get an updated list, called a HUD-1 settlement statement, that itemizes final closing costs. Compare it to the original estimate, and question any items that are substantially different. Read the entire article at Time.com

How does an escrow account work?

    An escrow account is essentially a holding tank. During a real estate transaction, the escrow officer—usually a lawyer or title company representative—holds all the important documents and deposits while the buyer and seller work out the details. The escrow officer makes sure the closing goes smoothly and everyone gets paid what they’re owed (including, of course, the escrow officer himself, who typically gets a fee of 1% to 2% of the cost of the home). After the closing, the escrow agent records the deed and title transfer that make the home officially yours. Most transactions involve a second type of escrow account, between you and your lender. Many mortgage lenders hold money in escrow to pay property taxes and insurance. Each month, you pay a portion of the estimated annual costs along with your principal and interest. At the end of the year, the lender adjusts your monthly escrow amount based on the actual tax and insurance bills. If you were short, you’ll generally be allowed to spread the difference out over the coming year. If you paid in too much, the lender will refund your money. Read the entire article at Time.com

How do I get the best rate on a mortgage?

    Like buying any product, getting the best mortgage rate requires doing some homework. But it’s not as simple as shopping for a big-screen TV. You can research online and compare prices (rates)—but only up to a point. The actual rate you’ll pay depends on your credit score and other factors, like whether you’re buying a single- family home or a condo. So shop around, but then check the fine print. Start at websites such as Bankrate and HSH, which allow you to search a database of rates submitted by lenders in your zip code. Then call a mix of national banks and local credit unions, especially if you’re an account holder. Some offer discounts to customers. If doing the legwork yourself seems daunting, you can try a mortgage broker, who works with multiple lenders and can often find a better rate than you would on your own. The broker receives a fee for bringing in the business, which may be passed on to you in the closing costs or a higher interest rate. Read the entire article at Time.com

Real Estate Law

Real estate law can be particularly confusing to the layman, that’s why I explain everything about your particular real estate needs in advance, in layman’s terms. Call me now for a free consultation: 1-786-333-4260