Equifax

Finance Blog

Stay financially savvy with the Equifax Advisor.

Sign up for our FREE Monthly Email Newsletter

 

Thank you for signing up for the FREE Equifax monthly newsletter

In addition to keeping in the financial know, you may be interested in checking your credit score and report.

Understand your credit. Help protect your identity.

Equifax Complete™ Premier Plan

  • Know What May Influence Your Credit Score and Be Alerted of Changes
    Credit score monitoring with custom alerts
    Important Disclosure: The Equifax credit score and 3-Bureau credit scores are based on an Equifax credit score model and are not the same scores used by 3rd parties to assess your creditworthiness.¹
  • Help Protect Your Identity
    Automatic fraud alerts encourages lenders to take extra steps to verify your identity²
  • Lock Your Credit
    The ability to lock and unlock your Equifax Credit Report³
Save 75% your first 30 days with the purchase of Equifax Complete™ Premier

$4.95 for the first 30 days, then $19.95 per month thereafter. You may cancel at any time; however, we do not provide partial month refunds.4

¹The credit scores provided under the offers described here use the Equifax Credit Score, which is a proprietary credit model developed by Equifax. The Equifax Credit Score and 3-Bureau scores are each based on the Equifax Credit Score model, but calculated using the information in your Equifax, Experian and TransUnion credit files. The Equifax Credit Score is intended for your own educational use. It is also commercially available to third parties along with numerous other credit scores and models in the marketplace. Please keep in mind third parties are likely to use a different score when evaluating your creditworthiness. Also, third parties will take into consideration items other than your credit score or information found in your credit file, such as your income.

²The Automatic Fraud Alert feature is made available to consumers by Equifax Information Services LLC and fulfilled on its behalf by Equifax Consumer Services LLC.

³Equifax Credit Report Control™ is only available while you have a current subscription to Equifax Complete Premier. Locking your credit file with Equifax Credit Report Control will prevent access to your Equifax credit file by certain third parties, such as credit grantors or other companies and agencies. Credit Report Control will not prevent access to your credit file at any other credit reporting agency, and will not prevent access to your Equifax credit file by companies like Equifax Personal Solutions which provide you with access to your credit report or credit score or monitor your credit file; Federal, state and local government agencies; companies reviewing your application for employment; companies that have a current account or relationship with you, and collection agencies acting on behalf of those whom you owe; for fraud detection and prevention purposes; and companies that wish to make pre-approved offers of credit or insurance to you. To opt out of such pre-approved offers, visit www.optoutprescreen.com/.

4We will require you to provide your payment information when you sign up and we will immediately charge your card $4.95. After that, we will charge the card $19.95 for each month you continue your subscription. You may cancel at any time; however, we do not provide partial month refunds.

Equifax® is a registered trademark and Equifax Complete™ Premier is a trademark of Equifax, Inc. © 2014, Equifax Inc., Atlanta, Georgia. All rights reserved.

Four Questions to Ask When Buying a HUD Home

Written by Ilyce Glink on September 23, 2013 in Real Estate  |   1 comment

Buying a HUD home can be a good option if you’re willing to do some work to the property. Ilyce Glink, real estate expert and Managing Editor of the Equifax Finance Blog, gives you four questions to ask before making an offer.

buying a homeA HUD home is one that was originally purchased with an FHA loan and has, through foreclosure, become property of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

Buying a HUD home, while different than buying a non-distressed home, can be a great option—provided you’re willing to put a little work into the property. Many of these government foreclosures are sold as-is, which is important to keep in mind when you are reviewing listings online.

HUD homes are first offered to owner-occupant bidders, and they are then opened to bids from investors. In order to buy a HUD home, you will need to make an online bid during the designated “offer period.” The price of these homes will continue to drop until an offer is made and accepted.

If you’ve decided you want to purchase a HUD home, be sure to ask yourself the following four questions before getting started:

1. Do I have a qualified real estate agent?

Only real estate agents who are registered with HUD can represent homebuyers in the HUD online auction process. But just because you’ve found an agent registered with HUD does not mean that you’ve found your perfect match.

In order to find the right real estate agent for your homebuying needs, search through the HUD homes that are listed in your area and determine which agents have represented the highest number of winning bids.

Next, interview the top two or three agents. Ask each of them how the HUD homebuying process works, how long the agent has represented buyers, whether the agent will accompany you to inspect properties, and what special knowledge he or she has gained from writing so many winning bids. The answers to these questions will help you determine which agent will work best for your situation.

2. Should I do a home inspection?

Because HUD homes are sold as-is, you could end up purchasing a home in need of repair. According to HUD, the agency does not warrant the condition of its properties nor does it pay for repairs. It does, however, urge potential buyers to get an inspection prior to submitting an offer.

When you go to inspect the property, make sure you take photos and detailed notes. This will help you remember any home improvements that need to be made when it’s time for you to make your offer.

3. Is my financing and paperwork in order?

As you prepare for your HUD home purchase, work on getting all of your loan documentation together ahead of time. Your lender will likely need your W2 forms, paycheck stubs, tax returns, and copies of your savings, investment, and retirement accounts, as well as documentation of other assets and liabilities. You’ll also need copies of your driver’s license and other identifying information.

Do some research to see if you qualify for FHA financing or special FHA deals, such as the $100 Down Payment Incentive program or the Good Neighbor Next Door program. The latter offers a discount for law enforcement officers, teachers, firefighters, and emergency medical technicians who are buying HUD homes, as long as they meet certain eligibility requirements.

Before your sale is final, you’ll need to provide the seller with a prequalification letter from your lender with the sales contract. The letter must state that you are qualified for the amount of the contract and must also note the type of financing and any assets that have been verified for closing.

4. What if I change my mind?

If you are buying a HUD home, the earnest money is not in jeopardy until the contract is signed, so you’ll have a few days after the bid is accepted to cancel. Once you submit your offer, you can cancel it before the HUD agent opens the bid electronically. You can even cancel your offer after the bid is opened by sending an email to the company managing the home.

If you’re interested in learning more about HUD homes, check out the hud.gov website and www.hudhomestore.com.

Ilyce Glink is the author of ten books, including the bestselling 100 Questions Every First-Time Home Buyer Should Ask. Her nationally syndicated column, “Real Estate Matters,” appears in more than 125 newspapers and Websites, and her online “Ask Ilyce” columns are read by hundreds of thousands of people every month. She is a top-rated radio host on WSB Radio in Atlanta, the Home Equity blogger at CBS MoneyWatch.com, host of the Internet program “Expert Real Estate Tips,” managing editor of the Equifax Personal Finance Blog, and publisher of ThinkGlink.com.

1 comment

  1. Mike says:

    I just closed on a HUD home on 08/2013. There are many good and bad things about buying from HUD. The price of the homes are very competitive in the market. But in my opinion, HUD greatly under estimates the cost of repairs. They consider most things to be cosmetic, but in your eyes, it should have been part of the repair list. My house had wet spots on the ceiling, but HUD would not repair or replace the roof. Their estimate of repairs was $1600, but I have spent $16,000 so far. Most of that cost was to replace the roof and repair the inside water damage. Another thing that can happen is that the utilities are off and you cannot do a proper inspection. FYI, you will have to pay to have them turned on and also pay a fee to either winterize or dewinterize the property. All these cost will add up. Just make sure you are getting a good deal. Even with the 20k I will drop on my house, it will hopefully increase in value due to the land it is on. Good luck and happy bidding.


Leave a Comment


Name :


Commenting guidelines

We welcome your interest and participation on this forum, but be aware that comments will be published at Equifax's sole discretion. Please don't use this blog to submit questions or concerns about your Equifax credit report or raise customer service issues. Instead, you should contact Equifax directly for all such matters and any attempts to do so in this forum will be promptly re-directed.

Some other factors to consider when commenting:
  1. Registration and privacy. While no registration is required to visit our forum, participants wishing to post a message must register by creating an account. All personal information provided by forum members incident to registration is governed by our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.
  2. All comments are anonymous. We'll delete your name, e-mail address, and any other identifying information, including details about your investments.
  3. We can't post or respond to every comment - As much as we'd like to, we can't post every comment, nor can we guarantee that we will respond to each individual message. All questions or comments about your Equifax credit report or similar customer service issues should be handled by contacting Equifax directly.
  4. Don't offer specific legal, tax or financial advice. All of the materials on this Site are for information, education, and noncommercial purposes only and this forum is not intended as a means of expressing views or ideas regarding any specific legal, tax, or investment advice. While offering general rules of thumb is both permitted and encouraged, recommending specific ideas or strategies regarding investments, taxes, and related matters is prohibited.
  5. Credit Repair. This blog is not intended as a venue for the discussion or exchange of ideas regarding credit repair or other strategies intended to assist visitors and community members improve or otherwise modify their credit histories, ratings or scores.
  6. Stay on topic. Your comment should be concise and pertain to the specific post in question.
  7. Be respectful of the community. The use of profanity, offensive language, spam, and personal attacks will not be tolerated and egregious or repeat offenders will be banned from future participation. We encourage disagreement and healthy debate, but please refrain from personal attacks on our WordPresss and contributors.
  8. Finally: Participation in this forum may be terminated by Equifax immediately and without notice for failure to comply with any guidelines or Terms of Use. As such, you should familiarize yourself with all pertinent requirements prior to submitting any response through the blog or otherwise. All opinions expressed in this forum are solely those of the individual submitting the comment, and don't necessarily represent the views of Equifax or its management.

Equifax maintains this interactive forum for education and information purposes in order to allow individuals to share their relevant knowledge and opinions with other members and visitors. We encourage you to participate in discussions about personal finance issues and other topics of interest to this community, but please read our commenting guidelines first. Equifax reserves the right to monitor postings to the forum and comments will be published at our discretion. Do you have questions or comments about your Equifax credit report or customer-service issues regarding an Equifax product? If so, please contact Equifax directly. All opinions and information expressed or shared in blog comments are solely those of the person submitting the comments, and don't necessarily represent the views of Equifax or its management.


Real Estate Archive