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Homeownership and Your 2017 Tax Return

The deadline to file your 2017 tax returns is approaching on April 17th. If you have not filed your taxes yet, you can take this opportunity to talk to your tax professional about how homeownership may impact your tax return this year. Here are a few reasons why you may want to. Mortgage Interest may …

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Mortgage Applications Rise 4.1% According to Most Recent Data

The Mortgage Bankers Association reported a 4.1% increase in mortgage applications from the prior week. Steve Remington, Benchmark’s Chief Operations Officer, noted that the increase in applications could be a consumer response to the recent trend in the market, indicating a shift from the prolonged period of low interest rates. “Mortgage Bankers Association Data indicates …

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How To Prepare Your Home For Winter

It’s That Time Of Year Again Winter officially begins on Thursday, and if you haven’t already winterized your home, it’s time to take action. Follow these steps to keep the comfort in, keep the cold out, and ensure your family’s safety. The energy cost savings doesn’t hurt, either, so get to it!   Seal Drafty …

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Purchasing or Refinancing with the HomeStyle Renovation Program

The HomeStyle Renovation Program is available to borrowers who are looking to make Renovations, Repairs, or Improvements to a home with a single loan, rather than with a second mortgage, or home equity line of credit. At Benchmark, we know how important it is to make a house your own. Your Benchmark loan originator can …

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Summer Water Conservation Tips For Your Home and Garden

Being our most important natural resource, conservation of fresh water is a universal responsibility. Here are four simple ways that you may be able to reduce your fresh water footprint and save on your water bill.   Use Less On Lawn Care Did you know that nearly 60% of a person’s water consumption may be used on lawn and garden …

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4 Tips to Save for Your Child’s College Tuition

Do you have children or grandchildren? If you do, you are likely considering their higher education opportunities long before they have similar thoughts of their own. If trends are any indicator, the cost of four year and two year universities continue to rise every year. As the cost of college increases, planning and investing in your child’s future …

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Buying Still Cheaper Than Renting

Even in light of rising home prices, Trulia‘s October 2016 “Rent vs. Buy Report” successfully argues that owning your home with a conventional 30-year fixed rate mortgage costs less than renting in major US metros, even in high priced areas like Honolulu, HI (which sees 17.4% cost reduction over renting). The highest difference was 53.2% in Miami, FL …

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Low Housing Inventory Driving Values Up

Many people may have been watching home values steadily rise over the past year, and notice that it isn’t slowing down. Another Housing Bubble? Is this the aftershocks of 2008? Has sub-prime lending made a comeback as the Federal Reserve has hesitated to raise interest rates? Are new homeowners soon to be upside down on …

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