Tag Archives: credit score

Hard Pull; Soft Pull: How’s your Credit Score?

Posted by Michael Hughes    August 19, 2010

How do credit inquiries affect your score? Well there are two types of credit inquiries–hard inquiries (“hard pulls”) and soft inquiries (“soft pulls”).

Hard pulls
A hard pull is defined as an inquiry that will affect your score. If you’ve ever viewed your credit report you’ll see a section dedicated to credit inquiries. That’s because the credit bureaus keep a record whenever your credit history is viewed by a service provider or credit lender. Pulls that will show on your report as hard pulls include those by landlords, credit card issuers, insurance companies and service providers (think satellite television, phone service, the electric company…). Records of all of these inquiries will remain with you for 1-2 years. Most people have some inquiries; it’s just what happens as you go through life.

Soft pulls
Soft pulls are not visible on your credit report and thus have no affect on your score. Soft pulls on your credit report come from viewing your report yourself, along with any job-related requests that are made. Also, when your information is sent to companies for marketing purposes they can appear in the

Your Right to Opt Out

Lastly, in regards to the pre-approval notices you receive in the mail, you have the right to opt out from receiving these solicitations. To opt out contact each of the three bureaus (TransUnion, Equifax and Experian) individually. You can also call 1-888-5-OPTOUT (1-888-567-8688). This will remove your name from mailing and  telemarketing lists for two years. Read the entire story.

If you have questions regarding this article or have thought about selling, renting, investing or  would like to Buy A House In Boulder check out my website. You may also call, text me 303-359-6627 or e-mail Michael Hughes at Fuller Sotheby’s International Realty in Boulder, CO. Featured Listings


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Filed under bad credit, Boulder Economy, Buying a Home in Boulder, buying a home in Boulder CO, credit cards, economy, good credit, house in boulder, relocating to boulder, relocating to boulder county, Sotheby's International Realty-Boulder

The Appraisal

The Appraisal

By Michael Hughes December 10, 2009

For first time buyers, buying a home can be a complex and confusing process. If you are working with a realtor, you most likely have been preapproved by a lender. This usually is a quick conversation with a reputable lender regarding your income and credit score.  While preapproved and prequalified have over time become somewhat synonymous, the preapproval is stronger and comes with a letter stating that the lender is confident you will be approved for the loan amount. The preapproval letter Is absolutely necessary when submitting an offer to purchase.

You have probably looked at several homes before finding the right one, in the right condition and in the right location. Then you submitted a purchase offer. After one or several counteroffers, the purchase offer has finally been accepted. Congratulations, you just got part way there.  There are still several steps, which must take place to fulfill the conditions of the purchase agreement. One of the key steps is the appraisal.  In most cases you have already spoken to the lender and understand how much you will need to bring to the closing table at a given purchase price.  The lender, in most circumstances, will want to use their own licensed real estate appraiser. The appraiser will assess the property using an intricate set of criteria to reach the appraised property value. Technically, this value is the opinion of the appraiser of what the property is worth. The result of the appraisal is of paramount importance when it comes to financing your mortgage.

If the property appraises for less than the purchase price, then you will have decisions to make. A couple things can happen; (1)  you can go ahead and pay the amount you offered, (2) you can renegotiate the price to near the appraisal price if the seller is willing to budge or (3) you can cancel the contract in writing before the appraisal objection deadline and your earnest money will be returned to you.

If the property does appraise, the deal moves forward with the other conditions of the contract in place, such as inspection, title, loan conditions, etc.

The appraisal is what I consider the most important piece of the puzzle. It can make or break the deal, depending upon the results. When a property appraises properly everyone will feel at ease and you are well on your way to living your dream. If you have any questions regarding financing, appraisal, inspection objection deadline or buyer tax credits (Must be under contract by April 30, 2010 and close before July 1, 2010) call me.

Contact me today if you or anyone you know in Boulder or the surrounding area needs real estate help or for just a quick question
e-Mail michael.hughes@sothebysrealty.com Direct 303-359-6627 Website: www.bolderrealestate.com

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Divorce and Your House in Boulder

By Michael Hughes   October 4, 2010

Usually when divorcing, the home is the single largest asset you own house in Boulder.  One or both of you will be moving out of your Boulder Real Estate.  These are not merely financial decisions but often intertwined with very real feelings and emotional issues around the marriage, the kids (if there are any and sometimes known as dogs or cats), possessions and money. I always suggest if couples have made the final decision to get divorced, get the house ironed out as quickly as possible.

If You’re Staying in the house

You have to ask yourself a lot of questions.  Can I afford the mortgage? It costs a lot, do not underestimate this.What is my budget? Do I really want the house or is this another “I win” because I now own the house?  Will there be any capital gains on this acquisition or sale? Do I know how capital gains tax works? Will I feel comfortable here or does this house harbor so many bad memories that it will interfere with my peaceful living here?  Is the market heading up or down and what does that mean to me, and this asset, in the future when I wish to sell the house?

If You’re Leaving the house

How will this affect my credit score if the former spouse doesn’t pay the mortgage?  Should I set up a divorce lien and quit claim the property?  If your former spouse doesn’t pay, the lender couldn’t care less about your divorce, they just want their money.  If you are still on the mortgage it could impair your ability to receive financing to buy another house for several years.

What’s it worth?

There are many ways to ascertain what the value is without a huge fight.  Call me if you need help with this in a non combative manner. Think calm and logical.

If you are selling the house

You absolutely want to get top dollar.  The other side to this is, you want to sell it quickly (take that bandaid off quickly) and minimize the pain and suffering and get disentangled as quickly as possible.  The longer the sale takes the more stress experienced on both sides and the lower the price will be when you do finally sell it. Settle on an at market or event priced home, do not over price it you will get less than you would have had you priced it at market value.

Present a United Front to Potential Buyers

When people see a divorcing couple they usually see the word “bargain” flash across their mind and circle in for the kill.   This can be totally alleviated.  Discretion is the word.  Present a united front for possible buyers and you will usually alleviate the possibility of a lower offer.

I have helped many people in divorce settle their home out quickly and to every ones satisfaction.

The house as a commodity

Your Boulder home is now a commodity.  You must detach from the emotional aspect of your home and think of it as Boulder Real Estate.  Often easier said than done.  This is divorce.  As the Nike logo says “Just Do It.”  What this means is you detach, you listen to your advisors your attorney and your realtor about what needs to happen to get it sold.  You don’t want just the lawyers coming out with money in the bank! It means you detach yourself from your house and listen to other people’s advice about what you need to do to sell it.

Do not spend money on anything unless it is deferred maintenance.  Agree up front, in writing if possible, who will pay for what.  Stage the house minimally. In other words clear out the clutter and the family pics.  Neutral, neutral, neutral.   Price it properly.  Price it to move.  Avoid relying on gossip regarding prices in the neighborhood.  Get the facts.  Call me now for an absolute accurate Price Analysis based on todays’ market. I can help.

Outcome of setting your price too high

Setting a price that’s too high has a potential of three or more negative effects. First, it will take more time to sell your house,  that extends the time you’re making the mortgage payments. Second, your house will become stale or shop worn and potential buyers will wonder what’s wrong with it.  The price you eventually get will be lower after “chasing the market.”  Third when an offer is made if it is too high and it doesn’t appraise it presents the buyer and seller with a new set of problems and the buyer can walk away from the deal.

Don’t leave it empty

If you and your spouse have both moved out of the house, leave some simple furniture there until the house sells.  Have it staged by a no cost staging company, ask me how. Rent furnishings if necessary.  Empty houses are  hard for most   buyers to imagine living in.  Also if just one of you is living there try to leave a few clothes from both parties.  It is a dead giveaway when you walk in and there is one empty walk in closet in the master suite.  Buyers are always looking for the “reason” why sellers are selling to offer less.

If you have questions about this article or anything Boulder give me a call or text me anytime. Michael Hughes-Fuller Sothebys International Realty=303-359-6627  or you can email me at michael.hughes@sothebysrealty.com or you can visit my website at www.BolderRealEstate.com

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Filed under Boulder Economy, Divorce, foreclosure, real estate, Uncategorized

Short Sale Better Than Foreclosure

Foreclosure vs. Short Sale
By Michael Hughes
Do you avoid pain whenever possible? Better the “S” word (ShortSale) than the “F” word (Foreclosure). Many folks are going in to foreclosure not even considering the less painful and less impacting financial option of a short sale. In desperation, many people try selling their home themselves to save on realtor’s commissions, pricing it just above market and what they owe, only to end up in foreclosure. It is a difficult choice but when given the facts the choice becomes much less painful and simple.
Homeowners can avoid foreclosure if they act quickly. I have helped many home owners avoid foreclosure by negotiating a short sale for them. Some people just don’t understand the long term effects of foreclosures, or are afraid of considering a short sale because they think it will cost them more money. That is simply not true. Here are the facts that show the benefits of a short sale compared to a foreclosure:
Short sales generally do not influence credit scores, late payments or default in payments can put downward pressure on credit by 50 to 150 points. A short sale is not a critical mark on your credit report, most credit bureaus mark it as a paid note. If there have been no late payments, some buyers can buy again immediately. If there have been late payments, two years is required to apply for a Fannie-Mae backed mortgage, or 3 years for an FHA loan. Short sales help the economy because the banks have less debt, the homes are kept by individual owners who take care of them, and the bank will pay the realtor’s commission who helped sell the home.
Foreclosures generally drop the FICO and other credit scores from 200 to 400 points. Foreclosure will remain a derogatory mark on credit reports for 7 to 10 years. Most cases must wait at least 7 years before buying again, if the home was a primary residence it may be shortened to 5 years. Foreclosed homes can ruin a neighborhood, causing even further deterioration in the market values surrounding the home. Some people strip the home of valuables and leave the home abandoned.

Ican help you. If you have questions about this article or houses in Boulder or Boulder Real Estate give me a call anytime. Michael Hughes-Fuller Sotheby’s International Realty 303-359-6627 or you can visit my website at www.BolderRealEstate.com

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