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Welcome to our blog, where we’ll feature expert advice, insights and up-to-date news for the residential lot and land real estate industry.

Online Customer Support Center Helps You Get More Out of LotNetwork.com

Posted July 22, 2014 post comment

We have launched our new Online Customer Support Center and think you will really love how it enhances your customer service experience on LotNetwork.com and helps you get more out of your membership.

The Online Customer Support Center is the newest feature that adds to LotNetwork.com’s customer-focused philosophy, and joins our existing 24-7 telephone hotline and customer support email interfaces.  Now there are 3 ways that you can get help and support on LotNetwork.com.

Help & Support Icons

Site Updates & Improvements

You may have noticed that we’ve added a number of major site improvements at LotNetwork.com over the past few months. One of the most obvious is that the entire web site has received a visual update, with the new design being both more attractive and user friendly.  In addition, we have enhanced our search functionality on the site by refining our search algorithms and adding a prominent search box in the middle of the Home page, making it easier for potential buyers to find the properties that fit their needs. We also added new Resource Pages to provide tips and tools for those considering buying lots and land; selling lots and land; financing construction or a purchase; designing a home; and building a home. And we now have new Pro Pages for Agents and Brokers and for Builders and Developers, to help explain how LotNetwork.com can help you when you are an industry professional. Read more…

Understanding Property Taxes

Posted April 30, 2014 2 comments

Whether you own a vacant lot, single-family home or a commercial building, you likely will pay property taxes. These types of taxes have been collected in the U.S. since early colonial days, and they are not going away. In the words of Benjamin Franklin…”Nothing is certain but death and taxes.”

Here’s some information to help you better understand property taxes.

What are Property Taxes?

A property tax is a tax that is imposed by a local government entity, like a county, city or town, on the value of property in its jurisdiction.

Unlike income or inheritance taxes that are connected to an individual person, property taxes are based on the value of the physical item at issue – the property.  Because property taxes are based on value, they also are called ad valorem (or “according to value”) taxes.The Ins and Outs of Property Taxes - Money Bags in Field

There are several different kinds of property that are taxed, including both real estate and personal property (like vehicles). For this article we will focus on property taxes on land and improvements, also commonly referred to as real estate taxes.

Property Taxes Across the Nation

Property taxes are the primary source of income for most local governments across the country. Your local government uses the real estate taxes that you pay for services like police protection, fire protection, sanitation, government programs, parks, roads and schools. Read more…

Home Construction Loans (Part 2 – Terms for Construction Loans)

Posted March 30, 2014 4 comments

Home construction loans help you finance your new home from the ground up. This page describes the typical Terms for Home Construction Loans, and is the second part of our article that will help you understand all about construction loans and how they work.

[Click here for Part 1 of this Article on Home Construction Loans]

 << Previous Page

Terms for New Home Construction Loans

In addition to construction budgets, draw schedules, converting loans and some of the other unique aspects of construction loans we’ve described, continue reading to learn about how construction loans work and the typical loan terms. We’ll now look at the following loan terms and characteristics:

Build with Home Construction Loans

  • Availability
  • Down Payment/LTV
  • Loan Length
  • Amortization & Payments
  • Interest Rates
  • Collateral
  • Underwriting & Processing

 

Availability

The crash of the nation’s housing markets directly affected the financial industry and its willingness to extend real estate credit, especially loans for new development, vacant land purchases and new home construction. All of these loan types are considered “riskier” loans by banks, so they simply were not even offered by banks for several years. Under those economic conditions there were not as many borrowers actively seeking these types of loans at that time anyway. Read more…

Construction Loans: Financing Your New Home from the Ground Up

Posted March 29, 2014 8 comments

Home construction loans help you get from a vacant lot…into your dream home. So if you’re dreaming of building a new house from the ground up, you first need to understand construction loans. Home construction loans are not like most loans and in this article we describe how they work, typical loan terms and how these loans are different from other real estate loans.

Also read our other articles in this series on real estate loans for buying land and building homes:

Be Prepared When Seeking Construction Loans

Be Prepared When Applying for Construction Loans

Building a new home can be an exciting experience, and if you’re ready to start building your new home as soon as possible then a construction loan likely is what you need. But to apply for and close on this type of loan you first must be prepared, meaning you will need to complete some important design and planning work in advance. Read more…

Why Do Banks Treat Lot And Land Loans Differently?

Posted February 28, 2014 post comment

From a borrower’s perspective, it often is more difficult to get lot and land loans than it is for the same borrower to get a loan for buying a built home. Understanding the bank’s perspective can help explain some of the reasons why lot loans and land loans are treated differently by banks.

In the first article in this series we discussed how your own personal situation and needs can help you decide whether you should seek a construction loan, lot loan or land loan for buying a homesite and building a new home. In other related articles we explained how Home Construction Loans have their own unique requirements and procedures and also described the terms for Lot and Land Loans in more detail.

Banks, and Lot and Land Loans

Borrowers who are seeking financing will learn that lot and land loans can be both harder to acquire and have less favorable terms when compared to the typical “purchase money” loan for buying an existing home. In fact, you may find that some banks just don’t offer lot and land loans at all, or only provide them with onerous loan terms that you would not even want to consider.
 Read more…

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