Most Personal Loan Borrowers See Higher Credit Scores

MoneyTipsCan you raise your credit score by taking out a personal loan? You can if you borrow responsibly – and a new study from LendingTree.com shows that borrowers with lower credit scores can see significant benefits. Outstanding personal loan balances have nearly tripled since 2011, rising from $46.4 billion to $125.4 billion by June 2018. While that’s a small slice of America’s $13.54 trillion total household debt, the effect on credit scores shouldn’t be ignored. LendingTree found that 62.4% of personal loan recipients had a higher score one month after receiving a loan – surprising since pre-loan credit checks…

Gwinnett County Back to School Protocol

Parents/Guardians of Students in Gwinnett County Public Schools, GCPS is preparing to start the 2020-21 school year as planned on August 5. As part of the planning process, we gathered feedback from families about their preferred way to return to school. A survey completed in mid-June showed that 43 of parents prefer a return to in-person instruction; 34 prefer 100 digital learning; and 23 prefer an option that combines in-person instruction with digital learning. GCPS considered this feedback and other relevant information available at the time. We thoroughly studied combining in-person and digital learning. The many challenges related to this…

9 Splurges That Save You Money in the Long Run

Smart shoppers know that comparing prices to find the best deal can pay off. However, buying the cheapest option doesn’t always mean you’re actually getting the best deal. In fact, it can make financial sense to spend more on some products and services to save money over the years. “Sometimes, we might think we’re saving money on cheaper items, when in reality, splurging a little on the more expensive competitor would have saved us more over the long run,” said Matt Dworetsky, president of Dworetsky Financial in Wall Township, New Jersey. Keep reading to find out when splurging on the pricier option…

Real Estate Investing for Beginners

Real estate is an imperishable asset, ever-increasing in value with time. Even at a very small scale, real estate remains to be a proven method for building cash flow and wealth. With well-chosen assets, real estate investors can enjoy excellent returns, value appreciation, leverage, and diversification of their investment portfolio. For those who are worried about the current recession, there are stricter regulations to protect the housing market now, unlike the crashes experienced before. Due to the low correlation that real estate has with other asset classes, adding real estate to your investment portfolio can lower its volatility and provide a…

Can You Back Out of a Home Purchase Agreement?

If things go wrong and you need to back out of a home purchase, you may wonder if you can get out of the deal without penalty.   You have house hunted so extensively that you believe you should have your own HGTV series. You find the home of your dreams, sign a purchase agreement, pay an earnest deposit, snag a great mortgage, and cannot believe your good fortune. And then, something goes wrong, and you wonder if you should pull out of the deal.  Can you back out of a home purchase agreement?  Yes, but the wording included in the purchase…

What’s the ‘Buyer’ Real Estate Market Like Right Now?

This week during our HRG team meeting, we were discussing what the real estate market looks like right now for our current buyers. After a slower spring market due to the pandemic, we saw an increase in the number of buyers who were ready to take advantage of the close to 3 mortgage rates to purchase a home. However, while many sellers decided that now was the right time to sell, others have continued to wait – essentially creating a seller’s market, making it more difficult for buyers to take their time to find their next home. What does a seller’s…

Hidden Costs of House Flipping

It’s not as easy as home-improvement shows make it look. Anyone who is as obsessed with HGTV as we are could be forgiven for indulging in fantasies of quitting your day job and reinventing yourself as a Fixer Upper–style home-improvement superstar. I mean, who wouldn’t want to be the next Joanna Gaines or Leanne Ford? But if your reveries are quickly outpacing your reality, you might want to think twice before diving head first into the house-flipping market. Shows tend to gloss over some of the less glamorous parts of the process (hello HVAC repair work), bend the constraints of time and space (you’re doing this all in…

Will a Pool Add Value to Your Home? Experts Weigh In

A pool’s impact on your property value depends on these variables. Installing an in-ground pool costs upward of $30,000. It’s an eye-catching addition to your landscaping, and it makes your house the go-to hangout spot among friends and family. But is it worth the investment? Will a pool add value to your home? Like any home improvement, a well-designed pool should increase your property value, but the reality depends on several factors. Here, experts explain four things that affect the monetary worth of a backyard pool. Buyer Characteristics Any sale requires a buyer. If all the people viewing your property specifically want…

11 Unexpected and Refreshing Household Uses for Listerine

Listerine is known for killing germs that cause bad breath, but winning the war against halitosis is hardly its only triumph. Antiseptic mouthwash can take on all sorts of tough tasks — here are 12 unexpected and amazing ways to use it. 1. Clean your garbage disposal. It’s a brilliant but disgusting concept, really — a blender made especially for grinding up and flushing food refuse, built right into your kitchen sink. But after a while, you might notice it start to stink like a bowl of leftover chili that’s been sitting in the sun for two weeks. Pour in a half-cup of Listerine…

7 Ideas to Use Paint to Restore Worn-Out Things in Your Home

Paint isn’t just for walls. Here’s how to breathe new life into old stuff (like your worn-out vinyl floor). Did you know that a little paint can perk up carpets, appliances, and even vinyl floors? With proper prep, you can paint just about anything in your house. Here are seven of our favorite house paint ideas to give new life to old things: 1 Paint Door, Drawer, and Cabinet Hardware Spray paint can turn builder-grade brass locks and hinges into fashion-forward hardware with an oil-rubbed bronze, pewter, or stainless look. Insert the door lock’s spindle into a square of Styrofoam,…