Daily Archives: November 2, 2020

Everything You Need To Know About Home Equity Loans

We all know what loans are and how banks function with respect to granting a loan. A home equity loan is different, as your house is mortgaged to the bank. This loan is basically a kind of loan which allows you to borrow money using your house as collateral. It is a lump amount that you pay off within a certain time period, including fixed interest rates and monthly payments. This loan is a type of second mortgage, your first mortgage being the one you use to acquire your house. Let’s take a look at the benefits of these loans and the risks involved.

Benefits of Home Equity Loans

1. They ideally have a low interest rate or APR (Annual Percentage Rate)

2. They are easier to qualify for, in case you are financially unstable

3. Interest rates on home equity loans could be tax-deductible

4. They allow you to borrow a comparatively large amount of money

You can avail these benefits on these loans as they are ‘safe’ loans for banks to grant their customers, considering the loan is secured by your house as collateral. In case you fail to repay the amount, the bank can lay a claim on your house, sell it, and recover the money.

Home Equity Loan Uses

You can use this loan for various purposes. It would be ideal to use it for a purpose with larger benefits as you have used your house as collateral. Common home equity loan uses include:

1. Renovate or remodel your existing house

2. Accumulate fund to invest in another house or land

3. Pay for high school/university/other educational purposes

4. Combine high-interest debts

How To Find The Best Home Equity Loan Options

It is always suggested that you look around before you fix on any particular home equity loan option. What you can do is:

1. Check up with regard to such loans with banks, brokers, credit unions

2. Make sure your financial records and bank statements are up to date (also, make sure they indicate you are financially stable)

3. Compare the pros and cons of home equity loans from various sources

The Risks Involved

The most obvious risk in relation to these loans would be the possibility of you losing your house, in case of which you fail to pay the amount to the bank. Also, there are quite a number of scams by which house owners are tricked out of their property or robbed of money. To avoid either of the two, you should do a thorough background check on the bank you are dealing with and make sure everything is legit.

4 Questions About Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) For Houses In Northern Ireland

EPCs in Belfast (or Energy Performance Certificates) is a new legislation introduced for all houses for sale or to let in July 2008. The EPCs are produced by Domestic Energy Assessors (DEA).

In this article we see the 4 most common questions. The answers are provided by Belfast DEAs.

1. What do Energy Performance Certificates show?

Energy Performance Certificates show the energy efficiency rating of the buildings. It is a document of four pages with a rating system from A-G, where A is the most efficient, and G is inefficient. This document shows the complete information regarding the cost of heating and powering a building. Additionally, it provides tips for improving the building’s energy efficiency, cost-effective improvements, and savings in this regard. Energy Performance Certificates also display the information about the ratings you can achieve if you follow all the listed recommendations. In short, these certificates display the energy efficiency of a property along with carbon emission listing as well. 

EPCs in stored, and are publicly available, in the Norther Ireland EPC Register.

2. When is an energy performance certificate required?

You need an Energy Performance Certificate when you’re building a house or selling a house. EPC became a legal requirement in Northern Ireland in 2008. And if you don’t have an EPC, you can receive a fine of up to 5,000 pounds.

EPC records how much energy efficient your building is while providing a rating between A-G. Rating at A is very efficient, and at G, it is inefficient. You need an EPC within seven days of property selling or renting. Energy Performance Certificates are produced on standard methods where you can compare your building’s energy efficiency with other buildings of the same kind. This helps in investment decisions for buyers, owners, and tenants.

3. What does the Law say about EPCs, and how long are EPCs valid for?

You always need an EPC while building a property or marking it for rent or sale. If you lack an EPC or fail to get it, there are several penalties that you may face, such as:

  • Enforcement action
  • Fine notice

An EPC is valid for 10 years, and it relates to the property, not the person. So, in the 10 years of its issuance, you can use it multiple times.

You can get an EPC from an accredited energy assessor. And a copy of it is always stored in the national register, which you can access through the EPC register.

4. What are the penalties for not having an EPC?

Having an Energy Performance Certificate is very important for many national aspects. And its central importance is in the environment. So, if you fail to get an EPC, you can face a number of penalties depending upon the conditions. These penalties are in the Energy Performance of Building Regulations. Let’s see some examples of these:

  • If you fail to display an EPC, you can be fined up to 500 pounds
  • If you fail to provide an EPC, you can be charged from 200 pounds to up to 5,000 pounds
  • If you fail to get a copy of ACIR, you can be fined up to 300 pounds
  • If you fail to display a prominent valid DEC, the fine can be up to 500 pounds

To find a competitive supplier of EPCs in Belfast just search online for the best price.