Friday, June 27, 2008

Money smart

We didn't buy at the bottom of the market (nor at the top, thankfully) so how are we able to put so much money into improvements??

1. We are fortunate to live on a Healthy Neighborhoods target block When I first heard about this program, I, like many, thought it was too good to be true. By putting a minimum of $40k into home improvements, which must include exterior improvements, we’re eligible to roll the construction loan and our existing mortgage into a new 30-yr-fixed mortgage at the published Fannie Mae 60 Day Rate minus 100 basis points (1 percentage point). And there’s no catch...seriously! So we applied and were approved for the program in winter 2008.

2. Next step was to apply for the Maryland Historic Tax Credit. Maryland values its historic properties and Patterson Park is a national historic district. By incorporating some historic elements into the design and maintaining existing historic elements, we're eligible to receive 20% of the rehab (not as in Betty Ford...yet) costs back as a state income tax credit. Words of caution...the application was complicated so we subbed that out to our good friend Todd at Trace; you can't perform any work at all to the house prior to submitting and while you're application is under review; and finally, their website says 30 days to review...they'll tell you they need 60 days, and they'll take 70 days. We were counting on the 30 so this was the first delay...

3. City property taxes, won't dwell on these, but our assessment is "frozen" for ten years such that we're not penalized tax-wise for improving the property. City tax review was complete in 30 days.


Chris said...

I want pictures of demo!!!

You forgot one person in the cast of characters.

Corey said...

Wish I could get these loans, but they don't seem to help out people in Canton. Oh well!