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March 2018

Found 4 blog entries for March 2018.

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You’ve finally found what seems to be the perfect home. It’s got all your must-haves and some of your nice-to-haves, too. It looks like it’s in excellent condition, but merely looking like it’s in good condition is not enough when it comes to such a huge financial decision.

To make sure you’re not buying a money pit, you need a professional home inspection before you commit. An inspection should uncover any potential issues so you have a complete picture of what you’re buying.

Finding a Home Inspector

Many first-time home buyers don’t realize that it’s their responsibility to hire a home inspector. Make sure you make your offer conditional upon inspection or get one done before you make a bid.

To find a home inspector, people often turn to

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President Donald Trump signed the Republican tax bill into law at the end of December.

The new tax law makes sweeping changes to the tax code for businesses and, on average, American taxpayers. It changes a few longstanding tax benefits for homeowners, too.

Under the new law, the deduction for state and local property taxes is capped at $10,000. Plus, homeowners who deduct mortgage interest are limited to the amount they pay on $750,000 worth of debt, down from $1 million. On the flip side, the standard deduction has doubled, likely leading fewer homeowners to itemize their taxes.

These changes may weaken incentives for homeownership, especially in expensive coastal markets in California and the Northeast where home prices are high and

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Interest rates are creeping up, inventory is still squeezed, and some feared revised tax laws would have a chilling effect on home sales, but Northwest Multiple Listing Service leaders say the local market remains competitive.

"It seemed like there would have been a chilling effect on the real estate market at the start of 2018 with the newly revised tax laws limiting mortgage interest deductions," suggested Gary O'Leyar, designated broker and owner at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Signature Properties. "Not only did the revisions not have a chilling effect, if anything, the local market has been even hotter and more competitive than last year at this time," he added in commenting on new MLS numbers summarizing February activity.

Northwest MLS

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Mortgage rates have risen about half a percentage point since September. What does that mean for you if you’re buying a home now or plan to buy one soon?

For starters, don’t panic.

When you’re buying a home, the mortgage rate matters, but it shouldn’t monopolize your attention, says Robert Frick, corporate economist for Navy Federal Credit Union. “You shouldn’t focus on the rate and let that scare you into making a hasty decision about buying a house,” he says.

How rising rates affect your monthly payment

The average rate on the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rose to 4.54% on Feb. 16, 2018, according to NerdWallet’s daily rate survey. It averaged 3.99% on Sept. 26, 2017 — meaning it has gone up more than half a percentage point in less than

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