Michigan First Mortgage Blog

How Credit Affects Your Mortgage

By Zarine Torrey, Senior Mortgage Loan Officer

For some, home ownership is a critical part of the American Dream. There is a profound sense of pride and freedom that comes from owning a home, in addition to increased financial security. Buying a home is a major step in one’s life, and takes efficient planning.

Before you look for a home, it’s smart to check your credit scores, with a pull from the three major credit agencies. Your credit is one of the most important factors in qualifying for a mortgage. It also dictates what program you can qualify for, the amount of …

Refinancing Do’s and Don’ts

By Ted Lyons, Mortgage Loan Officer

Refinancing your home can be a great financial tool to lower your interest rate, shorten the loan term, decrease your monthly payment, or convert one sort of asset (equity in your home) into another (cash in your hands). Here are some tricks of the trade that can help you take advantage of this strategy:

What are the two basic reasons I might refinance my mortgage?

With some limited exceptions, most people refinance their home to lower their interest rate, shorten the term of their mortgage, or decrease the payment by extending the loan over a longer time (rate/term …

Cut Your Energy Costs

Cutting back on your energy use doesn’t require a lot of effort. In fact, most of the things you’re being charged for can be easily avoided. Here are some small ways to save big money.

Unused = Unplug

Whether it’s the toaster, blender, diffuser, space heater or laptop charger, anything plugged in is using energy – even when it’s not in use! We suggest unplugging anything that isn’t used daily. It requires a small amount of effort to plug it in when you do use it, but according to the Department of Energy, the cash savings will add up.

Line Dry Laundry

Dryers use …

How to Boost Your Credit Before Buying a Home

Your credit score has the potential to determine the result when it comes to big purchases like a home. Often times, without a good score – typically in the 700s or higher – you’ll face higher interest rates on a loan.

While a credit score can’t be corrected overnight, there are a few ways to help push it in the right direction.

Decrease Debt

Paying down your credit cards can significantly help in the long-run. When your credit is under review, lenders will be looking at your history, balances and trends. If they can see that you’re making an effort to pay off …

Budget-Friendly Ways to Winterize Your Home

As the cold months seem to get colder, it’s important to remember winter home care. Putting in the necessary work early could save you money over time. Here are some easy ways to winterize your home this season:

Change Furnace Filters

Remember to clean or replace these at least once a month during the winter. When the filters get dirty, it restricts airflow in the home, which can increase energy demand. By cleaning the filters monthly, you’ll be saving money throughout the winter.

Reverse Fans

A ceiling fan isn’t just useful in the summer, it can be extremely useful in the winter too! Reverse …

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