What Is A Settlement Statement?

A settlement statement, also known as a closing statement or HUD-1 (Housing and Urban Development-1) form in the United States, is a document used in real estate transactions to outline the details of a property sale. It provides a summary of all the financial transactions that occur between the buyer and the seller during the closing process. The settlement statement typically includes details such as the purchase price, loan amount, down payment, closing costs, and any adjustments or credits related to the transaction. It also outlines the distribution of funds among the parties involved, including the buyer, seller, real estate agents, and lenders. The purpose of the settlement statement is to provide a transparent breakdown of all the costs and payments associated with the real estate transaction. It is usually prepared by the closing agent or settlement agent and is reviewed and signed by both the buyer and the seller […]

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The Pros and Cons of Buying New Construction

Buying a new construction home can offer several advantages, but it also comes with its own set of drawbacks. To make an informed decision, consider the following pros and cons of purchasing a newly built home: Pros of Buying a New Construction Home: Customization: Many builders allow buyers to customize various aspects of the home, including floor plans, finishes, and sometimes even the layout. This enables you to create a living space tailored to your preferences. Energy Efficiency: New homes are often designed with the latest energy-efficient technologies, such as energy-efficient appliances, windows, insulation, and heating/cooling systems. This can lead to lower utility bills and a reduced environmental impact. Warranty: New construction homes typically come with warranties that cover structural issues and major systems for a certain period (e.g., 10 years). This provides peace of mind and protection against unexpected repair costs. Modern Amenities: New homes often feature contemporary amenities […]

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Essential Tips for First Time Home Buyers

Certainly buying a home for the first-time can be an exciting yet daunting experience.  Here are some essential tips to help you navigate the process and make informed decisions:   Assess Your Finances: Review your financial situation and determine how much you can comfortably afford for a down payment, monthly mortgage payments, property taxes, insurance, and maintenance costs. Set a Realistic Budget: Based on your financial assessment, set a clear budget for your home purchase. First-time homebuyers should remember to consider additional costs such as closing costs, moving expenses, and potential renovations. Check Your Credit Score: A good credit score is crucial for obtaining a favorable mortgage rate. Review your credit report, correct any errors, and work on improving your credit score if needed. Pre-Approval for a Mortgage: Get pre-approved for a mortgage before you start house hunting. This will help you understand your budget and show sellers that you’re […]

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10 Summer Maintenance Tips

Here are 10 home summer maintenance tips to help you keep your home in good condition all year long: Check and clean your air conditioning system: Before the hot weather hits, inspect your air conditioning system. Clean or replace the filters, remove any debris around the unit, and consider scheduling a professional tune-up to ensure it’s running efficiently. Inspect and clean your gutters: Summer can bring occasional rainstorms, so make sure your gutters are clear of debris to prevent water damage. Remove leaves, sticks, and any other obstructions that may be blocking the flow of water. This maintenance tip can also help prevent house fires. Check and maintain your outdoor plumbing: Inspect outdoor faucets, hoses, and sprinkler systems for leaks or damage. Repair or replace any faulty components to prevent water waste and potential water damage. Inspect and clean your windows and screens: Remove dust and dirt from your windows […]

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What are the requirements for a VA loan?

A VA loan is a mortgage loan program offered to eligible veterans, active-duty service members, and select military spouses by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). To qualify for a VA loan, you need to meet certain requirements.  Here are the key criteria: Eligibility: You must meet the VA’s eligibility requirements, which typically include: a. Active-duty service members: Generally, you need to serve for at least 90 consecutive days during wartime or 181 days during peacetime.  b. Veterans: You must have been discharged under conditions other than dishonorable after completing the required service period.  c. National Guard or Reserve members: You may be eligible if you have completed at least six years of service and have been honorably discharged, placed on the retired list, or transferred to the Standby Reserve or an element of the Ready Reserve.  d. Military spouses: Certain surviving spouses of service members who died in […]

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Making Successful Moves with Pets

I volunteer at an animal shelter and a frequent reason for owners surrendering their animals is they are moving, and they feel it is too difficult to take their pets.  We always took our pets with us when we moved, so I needed help understanding the problem. So, I asked a group of military wives to assist me to determine if a “How To” article would help or if moving is an excuse to not have a pet. Most thought it was an excuse, but there were some valid points made for not taking pets on a move.  Below I provide I tips on how to move with an animal.  I would like to extend a thank you to the Kings Bay Military Wives Group on Facebook for helping me with this article.  We have made many moves with pets, so I thought I would share how we did it. […]

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The Secret to Coping with PTSD

Dogs are widely utilized to assist men and women who suffer from post traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD. There are a number of specific reasons why dogs can help heal a person afflicted with PTSD. Dogs are Vigilant in Watching Over Their Owners One of the reasons dogs can assist in coping with PTSD arises from the fact that they are truly vigilant. Researchers have concluded that the vigilance of a dog, in relationship to his or her owner, is akin to soldiers and the buddy system in the military. *This post may contain affiliate links – if you purchase something from this post, I receive a small commission with NO extra cost to you. To see my full disclosure click here. Thanks for supporting us! A person who has a nightmare with a dog in the room can better appreciate the level of vigilance associated with a canine. When […]

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The Best Tips for Military Families at Disney

Disney on a Budget

Disney World is one of the most magical places on Earth. From the smells, the treats, the rides, the characters, and the smiling and friendly staff, Disney is a favorite vacation location for us. Want to know how we did Disney in a week for less than $2,500 for a family of 4 (at the time it was 3 adults, both parents, a grandparent, and 1 child)? I will share my budget and tips for how we made amazing memories in the happiest place on earth! We love Disney so much, my daughter and I have been 4x in the last two years with a combination of different family members and friends. *This post may contain affiliate links – if you purchase something from this post, I receive a small commission with NO extra cost to you. To see my full disclosure click here. Thanks for supporting us! Buy Military […]

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Tips When Traveling With Your Infant

Tips for Traveling Infants and Newborns

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of 1 Natural Way, a TRICARE breast pump provider. All opinions are entirely my own. If you have questions about my full disclosure, click here. When I was 19, I traveled to Spain with my family for a family vacation.  The first leg was with my step-mother and two-year-old sister from Atlanta to England.  When we went to de-board the plane, my sister fell out right there in the aisle – full out wailing, and complete humiliation for me! My stepmother walked right off the plane. And there I was. Like a cat herder – railing it in. If that is not natural birth control, I don’t know what is. I vowed that I would do everything I could to have a plan with my own children. Yes, I know you are laughing because plans usually go out the window […]

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Power of Attorney – 5 Reasons You Must Have One

Power of attorney

I can’t tell you how many times I have called a company to deal with my husband’s bills or handle something, and I get, “We can’t discuss that with you!” Sound familiar? I handle everything in my household – EVERYTHING.  So that was a big issue for me.  Even if you don’t handle everything, there may come a day when your spouse is deployed or gone and you will need to manage things. This is why you must make getting a Power of Attorney a TOP priority. I will give you 5 reasons this is so important and how it can help your family. *This post may contain affiliate links – if you purchase something from this post, I receive a small commission with NO extra cost to you. To see my full disclosure click here. Thanks for supporting us! Power of Attorney – In Simple Terms So what is […]

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