4 Easy Ways to Pay off Your Mortgage Early

You made it!  You’re a homeowner, you’ve signed the mountains of paperwork, and now you’re entertaining the idea of paying off your mortgage early.  Just the idea of owning a home free and clear brings a sense of super-human power and fulfillment. Whoever you are and wherever you are, you can apply these 4 easy tips to shave years off your mortgage. 1. Make one extra payment a year.  This can sound daunting, but there…

Infographic: How to Improve Your Credit Score

It’s no secret that good credit is an important factor when preparing for a home purchase. If you are trying to improve your credit score, there are some simple ways to make great progress. Have you looked at your credit report recently? If not, now is a good time to do so. And if your credit report contains mistakes, ensure they are corrected. If you changed your name, it is important to have your new…

6 Tips for Renting Out an Investment Property

We recently covered four questions to ask yourself before buying an investment property. Now that you’ve taken the leap and made a purchase, it’s time to find some tenants! Here are 6 tips for renting out an investment property: 1. Understand the law.  Speaking with an attorney will ensure you are abiding by your state’s landlord/tenant laws, while calling your accountant to discuss impending changes to your finances will confirm that you are in compliance with…

Contra Costa County Real Estate Market Data

If there were any doubt, today’s Bay Area real estate market can be summed up as described by a recent Mercury News article: “Bay Area real estate: too many buyers, not enough houses.” Despite our continued seller’s market, you can still prepare to make a great investment with current Contra Costa County real estate market data in hand. In 2016, sales and median home prices increased in Alamo, Clayton, El Cerrito, Martinez, Oakley, and Orinda, making these…

9 Home Appraisal Tips for Success

Countless factors are considered when appraising a home. Since you can’t control surrounding influences, such as the condition of a neighbor’s home, it’s important to do all you can to showcase your property’s best features. Make your home looking fabulous on appraisal day 1. Do your research Research appraisers before hiring, and be sure the person you choose has extensive knowledge of your area. Discuss your home with them in advance and let them know the…