• Podcast,  Real Estate

    Face The Fear Podcast – Real Estate Mavens: Leslie Ferguson, Heather Regan, and Tiffany McIntosh

    To Rent or To Buy? Millennials wrestle with this decision more than any past generation, especially as student loans and stagnant wages have delayed the home-buying process substantially. In this episode, we tackle this question and many others with the help of three Real Estate Mavens: Leslie Ferguson, Heather Regan, and Tiffany McIntosh.

    • What differences have you seen between Millennials looking for housing vs. Gen X or Baby Boomers looking for housing when they were in their 20s-30s? How has the housing market changed over time?
    • How does your credit score play into the home buying or apartment renting process?
    • Where should a Millennial start when it comes to purchasing a home? What are a few key first steps and pitfalls to avoid?
    • How do taxes factor in to owning a home? 
    • What are hidden costs/fees that a first-time home buyer might not know about?
    • What questions should someone ask a real estate agent to make sure they’ll be a good fit?

    Don’t forget to subscribe and leave a review! XOXO

    Face The Fear Website: https://www.facethefearfw.com

    Contact Us: facethefearfw@gmail.com

    Our Guests:

    LESLIE FERGUSON
    REALTOR®
    260.312.8294
    leslieferguson@kw.com

    HEATHER REGAN
    REALTOR®
    260.615.2570
    heatherregan@kw.com

    reganfergusongroup.com

    TIFFANY MCINTOSH
    Mortage Loan Officer 
    260.497.8685

    Tiffany.McIntosh@53.com

    https://secure.53.com/mlo/app/mlosite/tiffanymcintosh

  • The Market: 101

    Compound Interest: How To Earn $ On Your Money

    Have you ever had a terrible day that just seemed to keep getting worse? You didn’t hear your alarm go off, so you woke up 20 minutes late. When you jumped out of bed in a panic, you stubbed your toe on the nightstand (who put that there?!). At least you still had time to make yourself a fresh, steaming-hot cup of coffee! Unfortunately, on your way to work, an idiot cut you off in traffic and that steaming-hot cup of coffee flew out of your hand and on to your favorite white shirt.

    Nice. Huffing and puffing, you barely make it into the office when a coworker stops you and says, “Are you ready for your presentation in the meeting this morning?” (Oh, sh*t. I thought that meeting was tomorrow!) Later on, you realized that you packed a can of cat food instead of chicken salad for your lunch (ew), gave your crush a fist bump in return to a high-five (awkward), dropped a stack of important documents everywhere, and ripped your pants when you bent down to pick them up (tragic). It’s 4:58pm. You’ve almost made it through the day (thank goodness), but you decide to send one last email before you head home. You need to send your coworker, Danielle, a spreadsheet she requested, and decide to mention how annoying your boss has been lately. Sent! Then your heart stops. That email didn’t go to Danielle. It went to Daniel…your boss.

    We’ve all had one of those days. But, what makes a day like this so bad? It’s not because just one little thing went wrong. Oh no. It’s because one bad experience seemed to lead to another, which led to another and another, compounding into a terrible day overall.

    While this example of a bad day demonstrates how compounding can work against you, compounding interest is a financial tool that can actually work for you in a very positive way, even on a crappy day. Holla!

    First of all, what is compound interest? Compound interest is a basic financial concept where interest is not only calculated on your initial investment (simple interest), but is calculated on your initial investment PLUS any interest you have earned previously. Your money is earning money on its money.

    *Mind blowing, I know*

    Let’s break it down:

    Say you put $1,000 into an account that is earning 5% simple interest for 10 years. At the end of the 10 years, you would have a total of $1,500. ($1,000 x .05 = $50 x 10 Years = $500). However, let’s also say that you put $1,000 into an account that is earning 5% compound interest for 10 years. In this case, at the end of 10 years, you would have a total of $1,628.89. How did you end up with more money using compounding interest vs. simple interest? Let’s break it down even further:

    For the DIY-ers out there, here’s the formula used to calculate compound interest:

    P [(1 + i)n – 1]

    P= Principal (Original Investment)

    i = Annual Interest

    n = Number of Compounding Periods

    So, to plug in the numbers from above:

    $1,000 [(1 + .05)10 – 1] = $628.89

    And here’s a comparison between simple and compound interest over time:

    If you’re like me, you probably just glazed over that last section like a Krispy Kreme donut. (I donut blame you). So, we see how the numbers work. Why does it matter?

    Compound interest could be the single most important factor either making or breaking your bank account over time. You could either be using compounding interest to your advantage by putting funds into a retirement or investment account and allowing it to compound (grow) more quickly over time. Or, compounding interest could be your worst nightmare if you’ve got high interest credit card or student loan debt, which would compound just as quickly, but in the wrong direction. (Yikes!)

    As we can see in the chart above, compounding interest produces a greater return (grows faster) than simple interest over the same period of time. And the key word here is TIME. The concept of compounding interest is pretty spectacular on its own. However, without the crucial ingredient of time (no, not thyme, sorry G’ma), your compound interest will produce very bland results. The longer you wait to withdrawal any of your funds, the more powerful – and flavorful – the compounding effect will be. (Can you tell I’m hungry? Did someone say pizza??)

    If you put $1,000 in a retirement account that grows through compounding interest, congratulations! You’re #winning at this game of life. But, if you become impatient and decide to take out $10 here or $20 there, you’ll quickly undermine all the positive benefits of compounding, while likely getting slapped with some hefty tax penalties as well (if you’re under 59 ½). Ouch – Game Over.

    If you’re someone who struggles with delayed gratification (aka ME), here’s a life hack to make you think twice about taking money out of your compounding accounts. It’s called the Rule of 72, and it’s a fast calculation to show how quickly your money can double inside a compounding account (without taking withdrawals – no touchy).

    Simply divide 72 by the annual interest percentage to see how many years it will take for your money to double. For example, if you’re earning an average of 8% annually in an investment account, your money will double in 9 years (72 / 8 = 9). You put in $1,000 today and you’ll have $2,000 in 9 years. Cha-ching! Obviously, the more money you can invest early on, and the longer you can let it grow, the better your outcome will be.

    This is exactly why the best time to start saving is today. Like, NOW. (Actually, the best time to start saving was yesterday…but there’s no time like the present!)
    If you want to see for yourself how compound interest works, check out this, this, and this. You’re welcome.

    Written By: Kaitlyn Duchien

    Contact Us: facethefearfw@gmail.com

  • Real Estate,  Videos

    First Time Home Buyer? What You NEED To Know!

    This week, the DeVisser Real Estate Group is our special guest on Face The Fear! Brendin DeVisser, a Millennial real estate agent, answers some of your most common questions about the home-buying process. Don’t forget to like, subscribe, and leave a comment! The DeVisser Group with Five Star Lakeshore is a hardworking team of real estate agents in West Michigan who work hard to inform and educate people on the home buying process, especially when it’s their first time buying a home! From credit scores to pre-approval, we can help you better understand these big transactions that can change your life. With helpful guidance and preparation, you’re on your way to owning your own property! If you have any questions, you can find us on social media (links below) or give us a call!

    DeVisser Group:

    Website: http://brendin.seewestmichiganhomes.com

    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/brendinfives…

    Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/bd5starreal…

    Twitter: https://twitter.com/bdevissfivestar?l…

    LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/brendin-d…

    Snapchat: @bdvrealestate

  • Real Estate

    First Time Home Buyer? What You NEED To Know!

    Feel free to watch the video here!

    Hey guys! For those of you who don’t know me, I’m Brendin DeVisser, a real estate agent in West Michigan! I’m 25 and I’m the founder of The DeVisser Group with Five Star Lakeshore which consists of other real estate agents and my marketer.

    My goal here is to quickly and simply, help you through the process of buying your first home! I know it can sound intimidating and stressful, however, if you surround yourself with professionals you can trust, that stress and intimidation will disappear

    I was 19 when I first invested in real estate. Crazy right? Was I scared? Nah. I’m a big tough man and I can handle all this stressful money stuff. I’m kidding. Of course, I was scared!I was putting a lot of money into something that would eventually be mine, but right now felt like it was burning a hole in my wallet. However, with the right guidance from experts I trusted, I was able to purchase a duplex, rent it out and start paying it off. 

    You’re buying your first home, or you’re thinking about it. Well, now is the time to do it! The real estate market is still hot but it won’t be forever. Interest rates will rise and so will the prices of homes. 

    So, where do you start? 

    You contact someone like us. A real estate team you can trust to guide you and prepare you for what is ahead. If they’re anything like us, they will be there to answer any questions you have, anytime. You want to prevent as many conflicts from arising as possible and that is the agent’s job. 

    They can refer you to a bank or lender they rely on to check your credit score to see if you’re capable of getting a loan and eventually approval to buy a home. 

    What’s a credit score?

    Ahh, the dreaded credit score. If you’re afraid of it, it’s for one of three reasons.

    1. You don’t know what it is, therefore you’re afraid of the unknown. 
    2. You don’t have one.
    3. You have a bad one.

     First of all, what is a credit score?

    Simply put, a credit score is something you receive and earn by making a payment on time and for a period of time. (Examples: Phone, car, rent etc.)

    Secondly, how do I improve my credit score?

    • Increase your points by paying in full and on time
    • 850 is a perfect score 
    • Earning a perfect score gives you the best possible interest rate for purchasing your home 
    • Accomplishing this proves to a lender/bank you’re responsible
    • If you have zero credit it will be very difficult in most instances to get an approved loan for a home
    • This process is similar to a car loan if you’ve had one, but we are generally talking a bigger loan, which means more requirements. 
    • Consistent payments for at least 6 months is what lenders are looking for

    Keeping this up and being responsible with your money and payments will offer an easier time buying a home later on.

    Do you have to be Pre-Approved to buy a home?

    Yes, unless you’re paying in cash. 

    The preapproval letter tells us you are ready to buy a home

    To Rent or to Buy? 

    This is the question I get all the time.

    If you plan on staying where you are for a short period of time, renting could be your best option. However, if you plan on settling down in the area for several years, investing in a home, in my opinion, is the best way to go. Then you can add equity (or real property value) instead of paying rent for something you don’t (and won’t) own.

     It’s different for everyone, so make sure you’re talking to a professional you trust to figure out what’s best for you and your situation!

    Some Challenges I Ran Into Buying My First Home

    As I mentioned before, I was 19 when I first bought my duplex. I was taught to use cash for everything so, if you were paying attention, you know what that means. My credit score was NOT perfect, which made it difficult to take out a loan and buy my first home. Learn from my uneducated 19-year-old self and start working on that credit score! Find people you trust and search for a worthy investment!

    These simple steps are crucial as a first time home buyer! I hope this was helpful and if you have any questions feel free to contact us. You can find us on almost every social media platform to learn more about real estate.

    Article Contributed By: Brendin DeVisser

    DeVisser Group:
    Website: http://brendin.seewestmichiganhomes.com
    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/brendinfivestarealestate/?ref=settings
    Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/bd5starrealtor/
    Twitter: https://twitter.com/bdevissfivestar?lang=en
    LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/brendin-devisser-877a09118/
    Snapchat: @bdvrealestate