Credit and Finances Future Military Homeowners

  • Why VA Loans Matter In The Presidential Election

    Why VA Loans Matter In The Presidential Election

    The election season is here and one of the groups that should most interest politicians are the military households that have VA loans and other benefits from their service. To understand the importance of the military community there are two factors to consider. First, as November looms ahead it's usually argued that there are nine swing states which will determine the presidential election. These stat…

  • Should VA Loans and FHA Mortgages Be Combined?

    Should VA Loans and FHA Mortgages Be Combined?

    Are VA loans and FHA mortgages alike? How about VA mortgages and financing from the Agriculture Department's Rural Housing Service (RHS)? Such questions are not far-fetched. A new report from the Government Accounting Office says the time is ripe to "increase collaboration and consider consolidation." But is this really a good idea? After all, could not the government save a few dollars and cut the deficit by c…

  • Tax Cut Act Offers $53 Million in Breaks for Veterans

    Tax Cut Act Offers $53 Million in Breaks for Veterans

    While much of our attention is focused on the presidential race and the impact of Hurricane Isaac, a proposal assist veterans with special tax benefits is moving through Capitol Hill. The Senate Finance Committee has approved legislation entitled the Family and Business Tax Cut Certainty Act of 2012. Under the "Returning Heroes and Wounded Warriors Work Opportunity Tax Credits" provision, qualified veterans can re…

  • You're In The Money: What Should I Do With My Military Bonus?

    You’re In The Money: What Should I Do With My Military Bonus?

    Each year, the military pays out huge amounts of money to individuals who enlist and re-enlist. These bonuses can be as much is $90,000, depending on your specialty and the length of your commitment. For many people, a military bonus is one of the few times in their lives when they have a check in their hands which is equal to a year or more of salary. This is a very big deal and one to be handled with great cauti…

  • 3 Options for Upside-Down Mortgages in the Military

    3 Options for Upside-Down Mortgages in the Military

    The housing crash of 2008 combined with high unemployment rates and the transient military lifestyle has left far too many service members facing upside-down mortgages, where homeowners owe more than the home is worth. Military homeowners, like all others, should start with their lender or servicer to see what help might be available. They can also explore their eligibility for the government's Making Home Aff…

  • 4 Questions for Single Homebuyers to Consider Before Buying

    4 Questions for Single Homebuyers to Consider Before Buying

    You can't buy a house unless you're married...right? Wrong. Single men and women make up a big chunk of the nation’s homebuyers, and that trend continues to grow. Single homebuyers purchased 33 percent of all homes sold in 2011, up from 32 percent in 2010 and 31 percent in 2009, according to the National Association of Realtors. But whether you’re single or happily married, timing your home purchase c…

  • 2012 BAH Rates Change, Increase on Average

    2012 BAH Rates Change, Increase on Average

    Active military members nationwide are still tweaking budgets and otherwise dealing with adjustments to Basic Allowance for Housing rates that took effect at the beginning of the year. Basic Allowance for Housing rates increased by 2 percent on average. Subject to change annually, these housing allowances vary depending on several factors, including geography, rank and family size. Service members considering …

  • 6 Ways To Cut Utility Costs This Winter

    6 Ways To Cut Utility Costs This Winter

    As cooler weather settles in throughout much of the country, you may be wondering what kind of dent heating your home this winter will make. There are some simple, economical ways to keep costs manageable as well as to reduce your overall utility usage whether you’re in an apartment saving for a new home, spending your first winter in a new home or just trying to spend less on utilities this year in general.…

  • 3 Simple Ways to Let a Credit Card Ruin Your Credit Score

    3 Simple Ways to Let a Credit Card Ruin Your Credit Score

    A major concern for military families is their credit. Although there are other ways to bolster your credit score, 91 percent of military respondents to a 2010 FINRA Investor Education Foundation study said they had at least one credit card. When used responsibly, credit cards can help boost your credit score and provide financing breathing room for military families. But misusing credit cards can do the opposi…