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The AmeriFirst Home Buyer Learning Center

10 Hotel Design Ideas to Add to Your Home

Posted by Janet Veach on Mon, Aug 7, 2017

Sometimes the best part of a trip is spending time in your luxurious hotel room, wrapped in a soft, plush robe, sipping hot coffee and appreciating the soothing ambiance.  While you do eventually have to go home, you can take some of that tranquil feeling with you by upgrading your digs with these 10-hotel inspired décor and design ideas.


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Topics: AmeriFirst guest blog

No Down Payment Mortgage Loans for First Time Buyers

Posted by AmeriFirst Home Mortgage on Tue, Jul 11, 2017

Two of the most popular mortgage loans for first time buyers are the USDA Rural Development loan and the VA Home Loan. The main reason these two loans are so popular is because either one allows you to purchase a home with very little or no money down (also known as a Zero Down or No Down Home Loan). Zero down home loans are most common among first time home buyers since they are typically young married couples or single professionals who are just starting out, and haven't yet saved enough financial resources to fund a down payment.

Download our Concise Guide for the First Time Home Buyer.

Here is a quick overview of the first time home buyer loans with zero down:

USDA Rural Development Loan

The USDA Rural Development Loan is offered through the US Department of Agriculture. With this loan you can borrow up to 100% of the appraised value of the home, and in some instances, up to an additional 2% more that can be used for small repairs or improvements. One of main requirements of the USDA loan is that the subject property must fall within a specific rural geographical location that is outside a city/metropolitan area.

To find out if a particular property falls within the USDA required area, GO HERE.

VA Home Loan

The VA Home Loan (Veterans) is another popular Zero Down Payment Mortgage offered by the Department of Veterans Affairs. Signed into law back in 1944 by then President Franklin D. Roosevelt, the Servicemen's Readjustment Act (GI Bill of Rights) offered veterans a federally guaranteed home loan with zero money down. There are some very specific eligibility requirements in order to qualify for a VA home loan. To see if you might qualify for this loan, GO HERE.

Even though both of these loan products are first time home buyer loans with zero down, there are still some out-of-pocket expenses when buying a home, i.e. earnest money, and home inspection. Make sure you have enough money saved up to cover these Buyer costs.

Learn all about the first home buying process with our "Get Mortgage Ready Kit." The free eBook has a ton of information including a glossary of mortgage terms to help you be a more powerful and educated buyer.

Pre-Approve Me for a Mortgage Loan


(cash picture derived from: Flickr user Andrew Magill)

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Topics: USDA Rural Development, first time home buyer, +, VA Mortgage Loans

Adding a Wood Deck to Expand Outdoor Entertainment Space

Posted by Guest on Mon, Jun 12, 2017

Do you live in a  small or medium sized home and find that you need to increase your entertainment and living space? One of the best capital investments you can make is to renovate by expanding on an outdoor deck. Today, building materials and kits makes it possible for the average homeowner to DIY (do-it-yourself) and save thousands, while choosing a custom layout that works for their lifestyle and family needs.

It’s important to know that building a deck isn’t a project that can be completed over the weekend. You will also have to invest in quality materials to ensure that the deck remains safe and visually appealing, years after installation.  Read on for a step-by-step plan for designing, planning and installing a deck, and to determine the resale value it can add to your home! 

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Topics: first time home buyer, DIY home improvements

What to Ask During a Home Inspection

Posted by Guest on Tue, May 30, 2017

This is an article submitted by a guest author. Not all views expressed are those of AmeriFirst Home Mortgage or its employees. 

A home inspection is an invaluable tool for a home buyer trying to decide whether or not a specific property is a good investment. Being present for the process can make the inspection even more worthwhile. Asking questions of the inspector and getting his or her opinions about the problems with the house can help the home buyer decide whether or not to move forward with the real estate transaction.


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Topics: first time home buyer, AmeriFirst guest blog, DIY home improvements

How Does Adding a Pool or Spa Impact Your Home Value

Posted by Guest on Wed, May 24, 2017

This is an article submitted by a guest author. Not all views expressed are those of AmeriFirst Home Mortgage or its employees. 

Just about everybody fantasizes about owning a pool or spa when the temperatures rise. But how does the fantasy of owning a pool or spa stack up to the reality? The answer is, “It depends.” Here are some things to consider if you’re thinking about adding a backyard pool to your property.

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Topics: AmeriFirst guest blog, seasonal, housing design

The American Dream: Not All Homes are Dreamy. Meet the FHA 203k!

Posted by Dan Moyle on Mon, May 22, 2017

Searching for the perfect home has become quite the chore in the last couple of years. The headlines say it all - housing stock is down. This means you as a buyer have fewer homes to choose from on the market. What's a buyer to do? 

This can be especially frustrating for a first time home buyer, as most first timers don't have the means to get into a bidding war. 

There's an option out there for financing your dream home - even if it looks like a nightmare. The FHA 203k renovation mortgage puts the low down payment option of the FHA loan to work with the power of after-improved value once the remodeling is finished. 

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Topics: first time home buyer, FHA 203k, renovation mortgage

House Always a Mess? 4 Hacks to Help You Get Things Picked Up

Posted by Guest on Fri, May 19, 2017

This is an article submitted by a guest author. Not all views expressed are those of AmeriFirst Home Mortgage or its employees. 

A messy home can generate stress. The stress may evolve from frantic searches that occur too often because keys, remotes and a myriad of other items get lost in the mess. Stress may occur when guests arrive and your home doesn’t have the neat appearance you’d like for it to. You may feel a sense of frustration when you try to find time in your busy schedule to clean house. Your frustration may accelerate when you realize how quickly your clean house gets messy again.

Organization is an excellent way to avoid living in a messy home. Here are some things that you can do to help pick things up:

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Topics: AmeriFirst guest blog, home maintenance

Down payment and terms shown are for informational purposes only and are not intended as an advertisement or commitment to lend.  Please contact us for an exact quote and for more information on fees and terms.  Not all borrowers will qualify.
AmeriFirst Home Mortgage is a division of AmeriFirst Financial Corporation. 950 Trade Centre Way Suite 400 Kalamazoo, MI 269.324.4240 Equal housing lender

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Download your Yearly Home Maintenance Checklist!

Taking care of a home takes work and organization. While we can't do the work for you, hopefully this checklist helps you stay organized. Download your printable version below!


Download the Home Maintenance Checklist