Cash in on Your Home's Equity

Real estate values have recovered and most folks now find that they have quite a bit of equity in their homes. Of course, that equity doesn't do much good just sitting there. Is it ever a good idea to use some of that equity to pay off credit cards, pay for college, or make home improvements?

Real Estate Market Trends

Real estate prices are cooling in Washington and on the Olympic Peninsula. In Seattle, price reductions are becoming more common than multiple offers. Port Townsend and Jefferson County is sure to follow suit.

Property Taxes

In Washington State, property taxes account for about 30% of all state and local taxes. The amount paid by each homeowner is determined, in part, by the value of the property.

What could possibly go wrong?

While it may sound nice to imagine that nothing can go wrong with your real estate transaction, we have to be prepared for the possibility that things don't come together perfectly.

What is title insurance?

Title insurance usually protects against errors or omissions in deeds, mistakes in examining records, fraud, forgery, undisclosed heirs and spousal claims. Ultimately the policy protects the owner and lender from the possibility that the seller (or previous sellers) couldn't rightfully sell the property.