Applying for a Mortgage? Mind Your DTI Ratio

Man showing a mortgage agreementA good balance between debt and income is an important factor for lenders when approving a mortgage application. This also refers to debt-to-income (DTI) ratio, which compares your total debt to your income.

You can calculate it by dividing your monthly debt by your monthly gross income (the result in percentage). Primary Residential Mortgage, Inc. and other mortgage companies in Fort Myers note that lenders use your DTI to determine your ability to handle the payments and the amount of house you can afford.

The Ideal DTI Ratio

If you have a low DTI, lenders will consider you an attractive candidate. Most companies want to see a ratio of 36% or lower. It is also important that no more 28% of your income will go to monthly home loan payments. Some other lenders still accept borrowers with a DTI ratio of 43% (usually the highest). For ratios beyond that, the lender is likely to deny your application, as your recurring expenses are extremely high as compared to your salary.

Lower Your Debt

There are a few ways to lower your DTI, one of which is lowering your monthly debt. You can do this by buying less and saving more. Determine where a significant portion of your income goes each month. If it goes to morning coffee, try to make your own coffee at home. You can also benefit from making dinners at home if you always dine out.

Try to Earn More

Increasing your income is another way, but it’s not easy for some borrowers. You can do it by taking a part-time job, working extra hours, or taking more tasks for an extra pay. You can also take a training course or get a certification to improve your earning potential and marketability. If you are married, you can ask your spouse to take an extra work or return to work (for stay-at-home parents).

Other than lowering your debt-to-income ratio, you should also take other steps to improve your chances of securing a loan. These include improving your credit score, fixing errors in your credit report, and saving more for a bigger down payment.

Kick Dirt From Your Home

Men preparing to clean
Many people have a hard time keeping their home clean and tidy due to hectic schedules. The article highlights some of efficient ways to keep your home spic and span, especially when operating on a tight schedule.

It takes a considerable amount of effort to keep your home clean and tidy, especially when you run a busy schedule. After a day at the office, you crave to relax for a while. Unfortunately, that is not how many evenings pan out, particularly when you have small children in the house. You need to check their homework and coax them to finish their dinner before dragging them to bed. After this, you have numerous spills, stains, and other messes to clean up, not to mention the pile of dishes in the sink.

Don’t overexert yourself

Such a hectic schedule only allows you to engage in the most basic elements of keeping your home clean and tidy. You hardly have sufficient time or even energy to do much else. Over time, you might find that your home is quite unclean, yet you cannot spare the time to do a proper job.

Don’t let the problem build up. You can hire cleaning firms that not only give you carpet cleaning services, but also provide every aspect of home cleaning. Pure Services says that some even offer to clean your windows, curtains, and even the roof as well. Rather than spread yourself too thin, give them a call and enjoy some peace of mind.

Do have good house rules

Along with tracking mud into the house, wearing shoes in the house brings bacteria and other contaminants into your home as well. It could also ruin your perfect hardwood floors.

The first secret to keeping your home clean is to leave your shoes in a corner before entering the house. You can ask your guests to go shoeless, or provide them with indoor house slippers during their stay.

Other important rules to have include not leaving dishes in the sink, especially overnight. Such a habit increases the likelihood of an infestation.

If you operate on a tight schedule, you might have trouble keeping your home clean and tidy. With a bit of adjustment and retaining the services of a professional cleaning company, you can keep your home clean and have the peace of mind you’ve always wanted.

Contaminated Land: On Developing Land in an Environmentally Sustainable Way

Waste on LandContaminated land can have serious consequences on land owners and general public health. For land owners, a contaminated site limits the use of the land and reduces its potential land value. For residents, exposure to a polluted environment could have an impact on their health.

Fortunately, companies such as Cato Bolam Consultants have experience in contaminated land remediation. The aim is to eliminate the possible risks to human health and the environment while transforming the plane into one where a project can start. By embracing more environmentally sustainable ways of conducting business, contaminated land can be an issue of the past.

What is Contaminated Land?

The Resource Management Act defines contaminated land as land that contains hazardous substances. Contamination usually happens when facilities or residential properties fail to dispose of toxic materials properly. Contamination has far-reaching effects since it is rarely concentrated in a certain area — in fact, improperly disposed of substances could end up in waterways or seep into the soil through groundwater.

Land Contamination due to Agriculture and Improper Waste Disposal

Studies show that there are about 20,000 sites contaminated with heavy metals, arsenic, pesticides and other hazardous substances. Previous farming practices during the 1950s were one of the biggest contributors to land contamination. Back then, farmers used dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane, a chemical compound known for its adverse environmental impact, as a pesticide. Additionally, activities such as sheep dipping, historic mining, timber treatment, and the storage and use of petroleum products all had their part in causing soil contamination.

Managing Contaminants in Soil to Protect Human Health

Regional councils have made it a point to monitor land where hazardous activities have taken place since 2008 and add them to a register. Additionally, the Ministry for the Environment has created a National Environmental Standard to make the process of managing contaminated land a lot easier. As a result, environmental agencies have been able to strictly regulate the use of soil contaminants.

Contaminated land raises the issue of improper waste disposal. Simply following established guidelines for proper waste disposal makes the country a cleaner and greener place to live in.

Batam among Key Tourism Attractions in Indonesia for 2017

Tourism Attractions in IndonesiaThe Batam Island in Indonesia is expected to account for 20 per cent of the country’s target of 15 million foreign tourists in 2017.

Wisnu Bawa Tarunajaya, assistant deputy for Tourism Human Resource Development, said that Bali would remain as the country’s top destination amongst overseas visitors, with 40 per cent of the target number. Jakarta would account for 30 per cent of the expected tourist count, while other parts of Indonesia would attract the remaining 10 per cent of the target.

Tarunajaya said that those from Australia, China and other ASEAN countries are likely to be make up the population of foreign visitors in Indonesia this year.

Key Spot

In Batam, shopping malls like WOW Getaways with duty-free items are a reason why tourists love to explore the area. Some particularly like the place’s bustling nightlife, and the idea that there are nearby resorts and beaches makes it more attractive.

While it may not be as popular as Bali, Tarunajaya said that Batam would be one of the key areas that will help Indonesia in realising the target number for 2017. In the previous year, the government had aimed to record 4.4 million of foreign tourist arrivals in Bali.

Explore Indonesia

The Ministry of Tourism is believed to be planning the development of alternative tourist attractions in the country, which it sees as a way to stimulate competition in the tourism industry, according to Tarunajaya.

These development projects include the Lake Toba in Sumatra, Tanjung Klayang in Bangka-Belitung province, Thousand Islands in Jakarta, Tanjung Lesung in West Java, Mandalika in Lombok, Labuhan Bajo in Flores, Wakatobi in Sulawesi and Morotai in Maluku.

Conclusion

There is a bright side on Batam being a less popular choice than Bali. It just means tourists can experience a more relaxing holiday or vacation due to fewer people. This is especially good for those that want to avoid crowds and hope to make their trip as worthwhile and stress-free as possible.

Types of Loans for Potential Homeowners

loan options
Though almost everyone thinks of buying a home, it’s not as easy as it sounds. This is where a mortgage comes in as the best option. Looking for the best choice of loan can also be challenging because, apart from interest rates, other factors also count. Seeking some advice from a financial expert keeps you from committing to the wrong option.

Below are some of the loans a mortgage company may suggest:

Conventional Loans

These are mortgages that have fixed rates and are not guaranteed or insured by any federal government. It’s a bit challenging to acquire these loans because of the many requirements involved. The conditions include a high down payment, income, and credit score assessment. While that’s a rigid requirement, conventional loans have some costs that are lower compared to guaranteed loans. This type of loan will depend on an individual’s financial position.

Federal Housing Administration (FHA) Loans

These are loans that are usually insured by the government and offer an affordable down payment, sometimes as low as 3.5%. These loans can be used to purchase or refinance one to four unit properties. It’s relatively easier to qualify for this than conventional loans because the requirements are minimal and relaxed. FHA loans from mortgage providers are the perfect option for the first-time homeowner.

Veterans Affairs (VA) Loans

Veterans Affairs loans are flexible because little to no down payment is required. There are no additional costs such as mortgage insurance, and you are also provided with total financing. The loan has fixed-rate terms of 10, 15, 20, 25, or 30 years. They are the most favorable type of mortgage loan because the requirements are quite flexible.

Since everyone wants to own a home rather than rent, it’s good to understand your financial position first. Without making any hasty decision, consider the available options depending on what you can afford. These are not simple decisions to make unless you are a financial expert.

3 Important Questions to Ask Before Starting a Jewellery Business

The Jewellery Business“Diamonds are forever” as they say. True or not, turning jewellery into a business has its own advantages and risks. Before getting into the industry, here are three important questions to ask. Let them guide you in making the right decision.

Do I Have Enough Start-up Money?

Jewellery is expensive and trying to turn it into a business will involve several costs. If you already have a collection of jewellery, which you are willing to use as preliminary materials, then you are on a good start. However, it is important to save enough money for other business costs such as purchasing machines, product packaging, and managing of taxes and legal documents. In addition to these expenses is the possibility of employing extra help. To determine the start-up money you will need, create a budget plan that covers your business’ first two years.

How Do I Find a Manufacturer?

While most jewellers design and craft their own products, a number still prefer to work with manufacturers. Jewellery artisans are hard to find and even if there are some nearby, finding one that suits your style can be difficult. According to JewelCast Ltd, a jewellery manufacturer from the UK, the best way to find a jewellery artisan for a local jewellery business is by doing a lot of research. Start by determining the style you would like to employ and searching for manufacturers that practice the aesthetic. Also, ensure that the manufacturer is within the vicinity as to prevent travel and shipping costs.

Do I Need to Put Up a Store?

Putting up a physical store sounds good business, but the costs that come with it can be too much. In this age of websites and social media, a number of jewellers prefer to sell their products online. Apart from cutting the costs that come with a physical store (rent, maintenance, security) it also allows them to manage other businesses. However, if you have enough money and see the business as a long-term commitment, then a physical store is tremendously beneficial for your brand.

Putting up a jewellery business involves a lot of costs, which you should prepare for. Make sure to reach a wise and beneficial decision before investing entirely.

Choosing the Perfect Interior Doors for Your Budget and Style

Interior Doors

Doors, no matter how beautiful, often go unnoticed. They’re like trimming and moulding. People don’t really see them until something goes horribly wrong. But how your interior doors look and feel can have a big impact on how the entire room looks and feels.

Triline Quality Door Systems shares that the best internal doors combine style and function. Whether you’re reconstructing or remodelling your house, it pays to put a little bit more thought into what doors to install.

Here’s what to consider when choosing interior doors for your house:

Style of House

Choose doors that complement your décor of choice. A contemporary house goes well with minimalist flush doors and glazed doors, while reclaimed doors give your home character. If you don’t have a lot of space, folding and sliding doors are the answer.

Size of Door

Most internal doors run 762 mm in width and 1,981 mm in length. Thickness is anywhere between 35 to 40 mm. However, you don’t have to conform to these measurements. Imposingly large and wide doors can give an airy, bright feeling to a room.

Door Materials

Hard and soft woods, such as mahogany, cherry and pine, are traditional choices. But they’re not recommended in areas where moisture can cause the wood to expand, like bathrooms. Metal and glass options are also popular and offer a chic, modern look.

Fire Rating

Consider getting fire-rated internal doors that pass Australia’s fire rating system. Fire doors can be part of an effective passive protection system against fires by sealing a room and preventing fire and smoke from seeping out. They also come in various styles and designs.

Your home’s interior doors affect the way each room feels. When shopping, consider the factors mentioned above, but don’t forget about how the doors make you feel. Your interior doors should make you feel safe and comfortable in your own home.

Will Your Diamond Jewelry Outlive You?

Diamond ForeverDiamonds are forever; you hear this often enough that it becomes true. But much like ill-fated relationships, diamonds don’t last ‘til the end of time.

The Hardest Natural Substance

The only thing that can cut a diamond is another diamond. This is true, but the hardest natural substance on earth isn’t immune to degradation. It can, over time and in certain conditions, deteriorate to graphite – the mineral you’ll find in pencils. A diamond degrades to graphite at high temperature.

Because the hardest natural substance in the world is also made of carbon, it will burn just like coal. Apart from high temperatures, poor handling can also affect the valuable gem.

Dirt from the oil in your fingers can take away a diamond’s brilliance. When it loses its sparkle, your diamond jewelry can lose its appeal. Over time and with enough damage, its value also goes down.

Diamond Love

It’s important to maintain the value of your diamond jewelry because it can help you with future financial problems, such as emergency repairs at home. When you retain the brilliance and value of your diamonds, you can use it as collateral to get a substantial loan. A diamond loan service would serve you better than if you were to pawn your diamonds. A loan gives you better terms, which will allow you to reclaim the precious jewelry.

But how do you take care of your diamonds? First, handle your precious jewelry with care. Second, clean it with a degreasing solution, and gently scrub away dirt with soft, clean toothbrush. And third, store your diamond jewelry in individual, fabric-lined packages. You can also wrap your diamonds in soft tissue paper.

Precious jewelry needs proper care. Even the hardest substance on earth needs thoughtful maintenance. When you look after your diamond jewelry, it may just outlive you.

Lifestyle Adjustments to Increase Your Savings

Save MoneyEveryone could use a bit more money in their savings account. In fact, there is no point to being wasteful. It doesn’t help you; it burdens you, and it burdens the environment, as well. Here are some simple tips to make sure you have more money left for your savings every payday.

Mind how you use water

Water is the most important liquid in the world, but there’s still a lot of it so it’s cheap. The problem is, there will come a day when clean water will become rare and expensive. Just watch Waterworld and The Book of Eli. Do your part in saving water. Fix any leaks in your plumbing. In fact, call a plumbing contractor in Denver like Done Plumbing & Heating and have them repair or replace leaky pipes. Instead of setting your sprinklers to automatic, water the garden yourself. Don’t buy or use a dishwasher. Buy rubber work gloves and dishwashing soap and do it manually.

Mind how you use electricity

A dishwasher isn’t just a water-waster; it’s also an energy hog, so wash your dishes manually. Instead of using a clothes dryer, buy a clothesline and air dry your clothes and sheets when the weather permits. Replace all your old light bulbs with LED; LEDs cost more to buy, but they are brighter, last longer, and use only a fraction of the power your old bulbs use. Get rid of old appliances that do not comply with modern energy use standards. Check if your refrigerator doors still seal in the cold air. Have a professional check your home insulation. Poor insulation is one of the most common reasons households spend more on energy.

Sell your car

If you don’t really use your car anyway, just sell it and replace it with a bicycle. If you still need a vehicle, but what you own now is a gas-guzzling SUV or a pony car, sell it and buy a smaller and more fuel-efficient model, like a Mini, a Honda Fit, or a Chevrolet Spark. All of these cars are big enough for a family of four, but they cost a lot less to own. You even save on parking space.

You can also just sell your car and put the money in your savings. Take the bus or train to work, ride your bike, or carpool with friends. It’s so much cheaper and you don’t contribute to the traffic situation.

Don’t buy new clothes

How many sets of clothes do you have? Do you even wear all of them? Get rid of the ones you don’t wear anymore by selling them online or in a garage sale, or donate them. Stick to enough work clothes for one to two weeks, some clothes for home and for going out, some for working out or playing sports, and that’s it.

There are so many ways to save more money if you are only willing to look at how you spend it. Follow this advice and watch your savings grow.

 

The Role of Commercial Divers: When is Deep “Deep”?

Commercial DiversOften mistaken as having the same abilities as a scuba diver, commercial offshore divers know more than the basics of diving. They’re not your average diver.

For instance, an entry-level commercial diver requires additional training before they can assist underwater construction services. Uccdive.com added that they have to use different types of diving gears, several types of materials, and plenty of skills to carry out certain duties.

The Dynamic Role

Commercial divers inspect and repair services in offshore oil. For both offshore and inshore services, they are necessary for the fitting of power plant outfall and intake pipes, in harbor construction, and in pipe pulls. These divers need thorough experience and training to ensure that underwater facilities are on stream even if it is through underwater welding, security of a platform, or recovery of a vessel.

Like anyone who spends a long time underwater, the U.S. Department of Labor says commercial divers are at risk of hypothermia, respiratory and circulatory problems, and drowning.

The Deepest “Deep”

Marianas Trench has the depth of 11,033 meters below sea level and is the deepest place among all oceans. It lies north of Guam in the Pacific Ocean running for 2,550 km below the waters lying between Japan and Australia. The only known person who has ever reached the depths was the explorer and movie director James Cameron using a manned craft.

Cameron constructed a 24-foot submersible vehicle for the dive, calling it the Deepsea Challenger. He describes it as a long, green torpedo that vertically maneuvers through the water. Equipped with nine and a half inches thick window, he was able to watch his descent and view the remarkable species on the ocean floor.

The new technology and vehicles today enable mankind to investigate more on the mysteries that lie in the deepest ocean floors. Someday soon, this capacity will be able to benefit commercial divers in their work.

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