Top Tips to Build and Maintain Healthy Credit

7 Tips to Build and Maintain Healthy Credit

Building and maintaining healthy credit is important. A good credit score can help you achieve some of your biggest financial dreams, like owning a home or even starting your own business.

If you’re like most people, your credit score isn’t perfect – and that’s ok! There are plenty of steps you can take to begin building and maintaining solid credit.

Here are our top tips to help you build and maintain a healthy credit score:

  1. Swipe Responsibly

A good rule of thumb for building solid credit is to only borrow what you can afford to pay back. This means, only using your credit card if you have enough available in your bank account to pay the balance off in full right away. It is also good practice to leave your credit card at home if you’re heading out shopping or somewhere you will be tempted to spend.

  1. Stay Below Your Limit

Experts recommend keeping your credit spending at about 30% of your maximum balance. Avoid maxing out your credit cards to keep you in a good place financially and out of debt.

  1. Start Small

If you are just starting to build your credit, do your research and begin with opening only one card. The last thing you will want to do is open a number of new cards, creating additional debt to keep track of.

  1. Never Miss a Payment

Missed credit card payments not only leave you behind in debt but also show lenders that you have a track record of being financially irresponsible. This can negatively affect your future when it comes to, for example, wanting to purchase a home as you are more likely to be approved if you have a healthy credit history and a higher credit score.

  1. Pay More than your Minimum Due

If you’ve had a credit card for some time now, it is likely you also have built a balance on that card. This is not necessarily a bad thing for building credit, as long as you are consistently making payments on-time every month. If you are unable to pay off your balance in full, you’ll want to make sure you are paying more than the minimum payment due in order to pay off your balance as quickly as possible to help improve your credit score and avoid pesky interest payments.

  1. Build a History

If you’ve just opened a new card, plan to keep it long-term to help you display a solid history of creditworthiness. Lenders appreciate at least a few years of experience in maintaining timely payments and the longer you keep your card, the more likely your credit score will increase.

  1. Regularly Review your Account History

Take some time to review what you are spending money on. If you find yourself swiping your card every time you grab a latte in the morning, you likely aren’t using your credit wisely. Try designating your credit card for emergencies or basic needs such as groceries and gas to help promote good spending habits. Also, keep an eye out for any types of fraudulent purchases; if you notice anything strange, notify your credit card company immediately to save yourself from financial distress.

5 Great Ways to Celebrate Mom this Mother’s Day

With Mother’s Day coming up this Sunday, you may be scrambling to find the perfect way to express your appreciation and gratitude for the Mom in your life. While no gift, regardless of price, can thank her enough, there’s plenty of ways to thank the woman who helped raise you without breaking the bank. After all, it’s the thought that counts right?

Consider doing one of these five things for Mom this Mother’s Day:

Breakfast in Bed: A Mother’s Day tradition that never goes out of style. This Mother’s Day, show your thanks by waking up before her and bringing her breakfast in bed. There’s no doubt she’ll be overjoyed to spend a morning relaxing and enjoying a meal in the comfort of her own bed, and it’s a perfectly sweet way to show your gratitude.

Frame Favorites: Be prepared, this may bring on the water works! Show your mom how much you care by giving her a framed photo of you both of a special time you spent together. Or, if you’re feeling creative, take the time to hand-write a personal poem or a heart-felt letter, then frame it for her instead!

Give Her the Day Off: Flip the script and take on the Mom duties! From the moment she wakes up, give her the day to herself to enjoy and relax. Then, take on her usual tasks and tackle any chores she completes throughout the day. She’ll be moved by your thoughtful gesture and feel cherished on her special day, but most of all, she’ll enjoy a leisurely day off!

Spend the Day Together: As you grow older and your own life becomes busier, finding time to spend with mom can be a challenge. Devote this Mother’s Day to spending it with your mom doing what she likes to do. Take her to a movie, out to brunch, shopping, or just relax at home and catch up on life. Remind her how grateful you are for having her in your life, and thank her for helping make you the person you are today.

Pamper Her: Treat your mom to a spa-like experience to give her some deserved R&R. You can save money by turning your living room into an at-home resort using candles, music and a variety of lotions, oils and beauty supplies. Or, surprise her with a scheduled day of pampering at your local spa. This thoughtful idea will surely give her a Mother’s Day she won’t forget!

Thank you, moms, for all that you do! And to all of our friends and families in the communities we serve, we wish you and yours a Happy Mother’s Day!

Inlanta Mortgage Named 2019 Top Workplace

Inlanta Mortgage Named 2019 Top Workplace

We spend much of our time everyday at work and Inlanta works hard to make our work-home the best it can be. And we’re being recognized for this! We’re pleased to announce that Inlanta Mortgage has again been named a Top Workplace by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel for 2019. We’re honored to be recognized with this award that’s based solely on our employee feedback, and we thank all of Team Inlanta for making this happen.

But it doesn’t end with that! This year, we’ve also been named a 2019 Best Companies to Work For by National Mortgage News and a Top 10 Mortgage Company in Customers Satisfaction for 2018 by SocialSurvey. And we proudly rank between 4-5 stars on the popular employee review sites Glassdoor & Indeed, and have a 4.9 star rating on customer review engine, SocialSurvey.

2019 Top Workplace Award Criteria

Top Workplace honors are awarded to companies whose employees have rated their companies highly in categories such as leadership, direction, ethics, culture, training and benefits. Top Workplace award winners do not know whether their employees have rated them favorably until a third-party, Workplace Dynamics, collects and reviews all results. Some examples of questions employees were asked to answer include: “I believe this company is going in the right direction,” and “At this company, we do things efficiently and well.”

Join Team Inlanta

Learn more about what makes Inlanta a place people want to work and why we’re committed to positively impacting everyone we touch while striving to improve the lives of those we serve and work with in our communities. At Inlanta, we’re proud to be a family-owned business since 1993 where we treat our employees like family, and are employees are commonly referred to as “Inlanta Family” or “Team Inlanta.”

Learn more about how you can become part of our team by contacting us today, visit our visiting our Team Inlanta website.

The Power of Pre-approval

The Power of a Pre-approval

Whether you’re currently looking for a new home or not, you’ve probably heard the phrase, “Get pre-approved.” Perhaps it was through a radio or TV ad, on social media, or from your friends or family. What you should know is what being pre-approved means in the homebuying process, and how it can make you stand out in a crowded buyer’s market.

What is a Pre-Approval?

To get a mortgage loan, you need to be pre-approved by a lender. This means that your lender will need to collect certain documentation, such as bank statements and W2s, to verify your income and determine that you are able to repay the loan.

Why is it Important?  

Getting a pre-approval from a trusted lender is a powerful tool for homebuyers for many reasons, and is recommended before you even begin home shopping so that you may: 

  1. Know your Budget
  2. Gain Peace of Mind
  3. Get Ahead of your Competition
  4. Increase Buying Power
  5. Expedite your Closing

With a pre-approval, your Realtor will know you’re a serious buyer and understand your budget, helping narrow your home search to homes that are a right match for you. It can save you from the heartache of falling in love with a home you can’t afford, while letting your realtor know that you’re ready and able to make an offer on a home anytime, anywhere.

For the sellers, a pre-approval makes you an attractive buyer as it shows sellers that you are financially capable of purchasing their home, giving them the peach-of-mind that your offer will stand.

Lastly, it expedites the closing process which means smoother stress-free closings and getting you into your new home that much sooner.

Ultimately, getting pre-approved is a smart move if you’re looking to buy a home anytime soon. To get your free pre-approval, reach out to one of our loan experts in your area or apply for your pre-approval today using our fast and easy online application process!

Benefits of VA Mortgage Loans

Benefits of VA Mortgage Loans

At Inlanta, we believe in honoring our Vets who have proudly served and sacrificed for our country to protect our freedom. And it’s personal for us, with our Vet loan officers representing every branch of the military.

If you are a veteran or active military member, it is our privilege to serve you to help make homeownership possible. We are all committed to serving Veterans with our VA loan program, and have also partnered with Pets for Vets, an organization that helps pair rescue dogs with at-risk returning veteran, and donated $25,000 to their cause earlier this year.

Why Choose a VA Loan?

A VA (Veterans Affairs) mortgage loan is designed specifically for service members, veterans, and eligible surviving spouses to help them purchase a home.

VA Loans offer excellent benefits that allow eligible VA borrowers to purchase a home with:

  • No money down
  • No Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) required
  • More flexible credit guidelines

PMI is usually required if a down payment of 20% is not provided when purchasing a home. With the VA mortgage loan, both the down payment and PMI requirements are waived for veterans.

What Can You Do with a VA Loan?

A VA loan is similar to any other conventional loan, allowing you to:

  • Purchase a home or condo
  • Build a new home
  • Refinance your current home
  • Make improvements on your current home, such as adding energy efficient features

Who is Eligible?

Veterans and surviving spouses must meet requirements to qualify for a VA mortgage loan, based on available entitlement and years of service. To learn more about our VA mortgage loans, contact your local Inlanta loan officer today.

Did you Know?

This year marks the 75th anniversary of the GI Bill! Passed in 1944 as the “Servicemen’s Readjustment Act,” the law that positively impacted millions of veterans and their families by providing a wide range of benefits to Veterans including low-cost home loans, education and vocational training, unemployment payments, and an expansion of Veterans’ health care.