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Buying a house in Swanton

Vast and luxurious homes abide in this incredible lakefront community. Nestled conveniently near Deep Creek Lake Park and Jennings-Randolph Lake, this quaint community is full of mystique. In the past, Swanton had a population of under 100. Regardless of population, the homes available in this community are beguiling. At a glance, Swanton seems to be a relaxing getaway type of town, complete with many cabin-like inns and upscale rental homes.

Fun and relaxing Swanton

Thrills and serenity meet

While Swanton may be a small community, it borders the large Deep Creek Lake Park. With hiking trails, fishing and beautiful scenery, life in Swanton is always an adventure. Amazing yet quaint restaurants, shops, and old country bed and breakfasts make up a good part of the community. It is a mere 16 minute drive to Oakland, Maryland, which Travel and Leisure Magazine touted as the number one place in the country to see fall foliage. Swanton is the place to be for thrill seekers and serenity seekers alike. Not only do residents hike year round in Deep Creek Lake Park, but there is biking, boating, fly fishing, and exploring. Adventure is around every corner. Homes in the community are built for the often tough winters that Garrett County experiences. However, Swanton is a place where residents still have a strong sense of community.

Places to see in Swanton

Thrilling lifestyle for everyone

Warmer months boast an array of activities for families. Such activities include learning how to fly fish, glass blowing workshops, and walks at the local nature center. The Aquatic Center in nearby McHenry, Maryland provides a thrilling alternative to hiking. Additionally, there is a movie cinema and several restaurants a few minutes' drive away. In the winter months, there is an exciting Husky Power Dogsledding race that residents enjoy. With its fun and vibrant atmosphere, Swanton boasts a little something for everybody.

Common Questions About Buying a Home in Swanton

All The Answers You Need to Settle Down Sooner

Should I choose a fixed or adjustable rate?

It depends how long you expect to stay in the home. Adjustable rates are good for people who may not be in the home long, whereas fixed rates are ideal for people who are confident of settling in.

Do I need a home appraisal?

Probably—in most cases, the homebuyer must use an appraiser to evaluate the value of the home. Appraisal costs vary depending on the value of the property, as well as the state the house is in. Buyers cannot choose their own appraiser—the bank makes the decision.

What is PMI?

Private mortgage insurance (PMI) is required when a homebuyer makes a down payment of less than 20%, or when a borrower refinances with less than 20% equity in the home. PMI fees vary according to your down payment and credit score, and adds a premium to your monthly mortgage payment. Please note, PMI is tax-deductible in 2015 and 2016 for certain income brackets.

What does Loan-to-Value mean?

Loan-to-Value (LTV) is the percentage of your home’s value that your loan represents. When refinancing, the calculation is simply the loan amount divided by the appraised value. When buying a home, the LTV is found by dividing by either the purchase price or appraised amount, whichever is lower. When the LTV is less than 80%, the lender generally requires PMI.

For example:

Purchase price: $100,000
Down payment: $15,000
Loan amount: $85,000
Appraised value: $110,000
LTV: $85,000/$100,000 = 85%

What are closing costs?

Closing costs are standard fees associated with a real estate transaction. You will typically pay about 2-5% of the purchase price in closing costs—the exact amount depends on where you are buying (or refinancing), as well as number of extra fees involved in your particular transaction. Earnest charges no lender fees, so the borrower is only responsible for 3rd-party fees.

What should I consider before refinancing my mortgage?

Refinancing your home loan is an attractive option when rates are low. A simple rate and term refinance can help you lower your monthly payment and potentially eliminate your PMI premium, as long as you have built up enough equity in the home. You might also use a cash-out refinance to access some of the equity you’ve built up in the home (which may result in a higher monthly payment on your new loan).

However, keep in mind that refinancing a mortgage does involve several fees (closing costs). Before refinancing, you should calculate the ‘break-even’ point at which your refinanced loan makes up for the closing costs. If you plan to leave your home before this time, it’s better to stay with your current mortgage.

Knowledge Is (Buying) Power

Further Resources from the Earnest Blog

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The intelligent home loan

When it comes to finding the right home loan, Earnest works hard to ensure that the process pain-free. We use an industry-leading and intuitive online-only application (meaning most times no scanner or fax machine required), a 5-star client service team, and a unique rolling pre-approval that stays current while you track down that perfect home. At Earnest, the home loan process is like no other.