Thursday, July 21, 2016

Peer-To-Peer Loans: a Safe Haven For Borrowers

Image Source: dailyworth.net
Peer-to-peer lending is a common topic of interest among borrowers and their financial advisers. Peer-to-peer lending, otherwise known as P2P lending, is a practice in which individuals borrow money from a business or group online. Since the entire process is online, there is a fundamental assumption that interest rates are lower and that the loan nature yields a higher return rate compared to traditional bank lending. It is also known as crowd-lending.

The number of applications for P2P loans has gone down in the last few years. Most financial advisors attribute this to the unstable local economy. Nevertheless, there has been a shift in how P2P loans are seen, with economic groups encouraging more people to utilize peer-to-peer lending, particularly if an individual has a high-interest debt on their credit cards.

There has been an unhealthy practice of applying for loans to pay off existing ones, an irrational move, but one that has ensnared many borrowers, nonetheless. The consequences are obvious: people spiral into more debt and do not find a way to properly pay off their loans. The borrower usually speaks with his or her local bank and some form of compromise is made, usually in the form of the borrower paying a high penalty.

Image Source: telegraph.co.uk
This can be potentially avoided with a P2P loan, which offers an alternative means to break out of the cycle of debt-aggravation. It must be emphasized, though, that peer-to-peer lending is not a fail-safe method. There are inherent risks involved in conducting business online. Individuals also have to be wary of sensitive data being stolen, especially in sites that have not been properly secured.

Steve Liefschultz is the chairman and chief executive officer of Equity Bank, a locally owned and managed finance company that specializes in investment lines of credit and real estate loans in Claremont and Minnetonka, Minnesota. Peer-to-peer lending is part of its services. Learn more tips about lines of credit by visiting this Facebook page.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

A Mortgage Guide For First-Time Homebuyers

Applying for a mortgage is easier when one understands what needs to be done beforehand. Listed below are a few essential techniques that will benefit any first-time buyer.

http://i.telegraph.co.uk/multimedia/archive/02390/home-scrabble_2390293b.jpg
 Image Source: telegraph.co.uk

Be very diligent with monthly payments: What is listed as the mortgage rate is just the premium. This does not include hidden costs to homeownership. Failing to recognize this can often lead to trouble. First-time homebuyers should take this into account and diligently assess their budget. Talking to their real estate agent or a financial expert dealing with real estate loan is a good idea. This allows the homeowner to create effectively a monthly budget that is transparent and honest.

http://www.brimg.net/images/slideshows/mortgage/2014/7-crucial-facts-about-fha-loans/6-insurance.jpg
 Image Source: bankrate.com

Know closing costs: Many first time buyers focus on the upfront expenses of purchasing a home. This is understandable. However, other expenses should not be overlooked. These include closing costs such as settlement fees, taxes, and other things such as homeowners’ insurance or similar association fees. Homebuyers should speak with their consultant on these or look at an online mortgage calculator.

Be very aware of one’s credit score: This is of particular importance to real estate loan advisors. Successful mortgage applications rely heavily on one’s credit score. Having a low rating, or worse, a notification of one’s inability to afford a home or pay monthly dues, reduces significantly the chances of having one’s mortgage approved. There are ways to improve one’s credit score, and these can be discussed with one’s financial advisor.

Purchasing a home is an incredible milestone in any adult’s life, and this can be easier when one is educated on the process.

Steve Liefschultz of Equity Bank has helped hundreds of people obtain their real estate loan in many states, including Minneapolis, which is one of the bank’s newer branches. To learn more, like this Facebook page.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

A Look Into The Top Industries In Minnetonka

Image source: twincitiespropertyfinder.com
Minnetonka is a suburban city located in the Hennepin County, eight miles west of Minneapolis. It is one of the best places in the state to look for a job or start a business with its robust roster of big corporations and small businesses. The city also boasts of a low unemployment rate of 4.3 percent.

The top industries in Minnetonka are retail and wholesale trade, health care, and travel, hospitality, and tourism. Minnetonka is home to industry giants such as Cargill, an international food conglomerate ranked by Forbes as “the single largest private company in the U.S.” The UnitedHealth Group, a preeminent healthcare organization ranked six in the Fortune 500 list, is also headquartered in Minnetonka. Other distinguished companies providing employment and business opportunities in the city include SuperValu, St. Jude Medical, and Carlson.

Image source: startribune.com
In addition to these corporations, Minnetonka also houses a significant number of small businesses. There are over 200,000 small businesses in the city, which indicates a lively entrepreneurship environment in the community. According to personal finance website NerdWallet.com, the city of Minnetonka has the fourth highest rate of businesses per 100 people in the state of Minnesota.

The city of Minnetonka offers plenty of opportunities for both job seekers and entrepreneurs. Its proximity to downtown Minneapolis is also a great advantage for the thriving suburban city.

Read more about the city of Minnetonka by following this Facebook page for Steve Liefschultz, Equity Bank, chairman and CEO. Equity Bank is a finance company specializing in investment lines of credit and real estate loans in Claremont and Minnetonka in Minnesota.



Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Brimming with History: Best Landmarks to Visit in Minneapolis

There are numerous modern attractions in downtown Minneapolis, from stadiums and bars to restaurants and shopping centers. The city is hip and thriving and is a massive hit among millennials. However, despite its contemporary style and lifestyle, the city still believes in the preservation and conservation of historical landmarks. So, if the traveler is fond of exploring places with great stories behind them, then he can never go wrong with strolling the streets of the Twin Cities.

http://www.gannett-cdn.com/-mm-/d206d7dc2d214bf5a65d2d605cee210e2b9a9c4f/c=4-0-3260-2448&r=x404&c=534x401/local/-/media/2015/12/10/USATODAY/USATODAY/635853573243378901-MTM03.JPG
Image source: usatoday.com

1. Mary Tyler Moore Statue TV show fans will absolutely love this place, which is a definite must-see. The statue, which was built in 2002 and located in the Minneapolis Visitor Information Center at 505 Nicollet Mall, depicts the iconic “hat-throwing” scene done by Mary on her show “The Mary Tyler Moor Show.” Most of the scenes in the show that ran from 1970 to 1977 were shot in downtown Minneapolis.


2. Stone Arch Bridge The Stone Arch Bridge was built in the 19th century. Now, it has become a sightseeing favorite for tourists because of its impressive traditional architecture. James J. Hill built the bridge as a passageway for his trains to cross the Mississippi River. Now, the bridge is almost entirely for pedestrians—runners, bikers, and tourists.

3. Foshay Tower Fans of historical architecture will absolutely love this tower because it was the very first skyscraper to be built in Minneapolis. It was constructed way back in 1929 and is the tallest building between Chicago and the West Coast. The 447-feet high building got its inspiration from the Washington Monument.

http://www.waynemoran.com/new_images/stone_arch_bridgesm.jpg
Image source: waynemoran.com

Planning to visit, live, or establish business in Minneapolis? Subscribe to this blog for Steve Liefschultz, Equity Bank CEO.

Monday, May 23, 2016

The Best Places To Start a Small Business In Minneapolis

Image source: wikimedia.org
Minneapolis has been ranked the fourth best place to start a new business, according to a 2014 report by personal finance website, NerdWallet. The city does not only have a remarkable economy and highly educated workforce, it also boasts of low unemployment rates and a variety of business assistance services that turn startups into success stories. Additionally, the city offers a variety of financing programs for business owners and has one of the lowest business taxes in the country.

Image source: cbslocal.com
The suburban city of Minnetonka has the fourth highest rate of businesses per 100 people. It is home to well-known and established companies such as Cargill, a company providing food, agriculture, and financial industrial products and services. In 2014, the company was ranked as the single largest private company in the country. Minnetonka also houses the headquarters of the UnitedHealth Group, a leading healthcare company ranked 14 in the Fortune 500 list.

Eden Prairie is another great city for business startups. The city boasts of high average revenue per business, low unemployment rate, and high percentage of businesses with paid employees. Roseville is also included in the list, boasting of a low 2.8% of unemployment rate and low business taxes for the Minneapolis-Saint Paul area.

Image source: minneapolis.org
With all these factors considered, it is no wonder Minneapolis is the perfect place for a budding entrepreneur to start a business.

Equity Bank offers expert services in investment lines of credit and real estate loans. Based in Minnetonka, MN, the company helps clients in their agricultural, real estate, and business needs. Learn more about the company and its services through its official website.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Obtaining a Real Estate Loan with Bad Credit

The speed and ease in which a person’s real estate loan is processed are based on credit score. If a person has an excellent credit rating, the process is significantly reduced. On the opposite end, having a bad credit score could potentially delay a person’s application by months, if not, years. This often overlooked factor has been the detriment to several hundreds of applicants. This is why banks and other financial institutions continuously stress the importance of prevention; proper management of one’s finances and bank transactions should be maintained. That said, obtaining a real estate loan with bad credit – while difficult – is not impossible.

Image source: realestatebulldog.com

One can improve his or her odds by providing financial documents that prove economic stability. This could be a statement of rental payment or even credit card bills that have been paid on time. Bad credit scores are the results of past negligence. Applicants must be able to show that these mistakes will not be repeated in the future. It is suggested that at least 12 months’ worth of timely and proper payment be received and noted.

Image source: realtybiznews.com

Applicants must also explain their low score. Lenders are more forgiving for a low rating due to understandable factors such as medical bills or student loans. The key is to not to be perceived as a risky investment. One must remember that financial groups are extremely protective of their assets and will most likely provide a loan to an individual who is capable and willing to return their investment.

Steve Liefschultz is the CEO of Equity Bank, which deals with various investment lines of credit and real estate loans. Learn more by liking this Facebook page.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Fixed-rate and Adjustable-rate Mortgage Loans: Information for first-time Homebuyers

Before embarking on the home buying process, knowing more about the different mortgage types available and their advantages and disadvantages can help buyers make an informed choice.

http://cdn.gobankingrates.com/wp-content/uploads/true-costs-of-owning-a-home.jpg
Image source: gobankingrates.com

Fixed-rate mortgage loans, as the name implies, have an interest rate that remains unchanged throughout the entire repayment period. Repayment periods for fixed-rate mortgage loans typically come in 10, 15, and 30-year terms. Thirty-year term fixed-rate mortgage loans are the most popular because the monthly mortgage loans are much lower. All fixed-rate mortgage loans are fully amortized, with the money paid to go toward interest costs and to pay off the loan principal. Because the amount they need to pay never changes, many buyers find it easier to budget around their monthly payments. One disadvantage though of fixed-rate mortgage loans is their relatively higher interest rates compared to other loan types.

Adjustable-rate mortgages (ARM) have interest rates that typically start low but are periodically adjusted according to an interest index and the margin agreed upon by the lender and the borrower. As such, mortgage payment can vary. ARMs can be attractive to first-time homebuyers, but it should be noted that the lower initial payments come with the risk of drastic changes in interest rates.

Hybrid ARMs are a popular type of ARM. With hybrid ARMs, there is a period in which the interest rate does not change. Once the fixed-rate period ends, the interest rate is adjusted based on the index and the margin. Fixed-rate periods can be as short as three years and as long as 10 years. A 10/20 hybrid ARM will then have a fixed period of 10 years where the interest doesn't change, followed by a floating period of 20 years, during which the interest rate can fluctuate.

Many real estate experts recommend ARMs to those who plan to sell their homes after the fixed rate period is over, while fixed-rate mortgages are typically advised to those who plan to keep their homes for the duration of the repayment period.

Other popular types of mortgages include government-insured loans such as FHA loans, VA loans for members of the US military and their families, and USDA/ RHS loans for rural borrowers.

http://lendclear.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/ARM.jpg
Image source: lendclear.com


Buying a home is an important life decision. Homebuyers are encouraged to research their mortgage options carefully with the assistance of a trusted mortgage banker.

Steve Liefschultz heads Equity Bank of Minnetonka, a locally-owned financial firm. For more real estate news and articles, like this Facebook page.