IHDA offers REALTORS® valuable resources for clients

A woman who is buying her first home

First-time buyers could benefit from mortgage programs offered by the Illinois Housing Development Authority. (Bigstock Images)

The Illinois Housing Development Authority (IHDA) offers a list of “top performing” lenders in Illinois as well as single-family mortgage programs that can help homebuyers with good credit but without the means for down payments.

To get the details about the 1st HomeIllinois program and the @HomeIllinois mortgage program, as well as the information about participating lenders, REALTORS® can visit the IHDA site’s “Information for Realtors” page.

IHDAFor example, the site says 1st HomeIllinois program provides:

  • $7,500 cash assistance for down payments and closing costs;
  • secure 30-year fixed-rate mortgages at competitive rates; and
  • choices of loan types (conventional, VA, USDA or FHA).

The @HomeIllinois program offers a 30-year fixed rate mortgage with options for:

  • $5,000 down payments or closing assistance for buyers;
  • lender-paid mortgage insurance for buyers; and
  • federal tax credit certificates for first-time buyers.

Try these 5 ideas for improving landscaping

North American Home in the suburbs.

Image by Bigstock

Replacing fences, installing fountains, staining a deck, planting a tree and fertilizing a lawn are five suggestions for improving the landscaping around a home that can be done relatively inexpensively, according to this week’s edition of the NAR blog, Styled, Staged & Sold.

The authors provide suggestions for reducing the price of these projects, including ways to do them yourself. In many circumstances, the projects can be done for less than $1,000.

Styled Staged & Sold nameplate

Get more information.

Show your support for fair housing in April

Fair Housing poster 2016Make sure your potential clients know you support diversity and fair housing by using materials provided by the National Association of REALTORS® during Fair Housing Month in April.

Among the ideas offered by NAR are:

Find out more about the Fair Housing Act – which prohibits discrimination in renting, buying or securing financing for any housing – by visiting this page of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s website.

Monday deadlines for ‘early voting,’ ‘curbside voting’ or ‘vote by mail’ applications

VOTE - Make the REALTOR Voice Heard

Illinois REALTORS® who want to participate in the General Primary but will not be able to vote on Tuesday, can visit the office of their local election authority through Monday for “early voting,” “curbside voting” or “vote by mail” options.

According to the Illinois State Board of Elections, “early voting” is allowed at the office of the election authority or at a location established by the authority. If the location for early voting is considered “permanent,” the available hours must be identical to the available hours on election day. If the location is temporary, the hours can be different.

Monday is also the last day for any temporarily or permanently physically disabled voter to request “curbside voting,” according to ISBE. With this request, two election judges of opposite party affiliations deliver a ballot to the point where a voter is unable to continue forward motion toward the polling place.

As for the “vote by mail” option, Monday is the last day registered voters can apply in person at the election authority or to an approved local official for a “vote by mail” ballot, according to ISBE.

Illinois voters can visit the Illinois State Board of Elections website to look up the location for their polling place or registration site. All that’s needed are: first name, last name and ZIP code.