Today’s Home Financing Options

FINANCING CONFUSIONYes the world of mortgage financing has changed. Some for the better, a lot for the worse. Lenders have tightened their guidelines to a point that even with ½  down payment, some lender won’t touch someone with a credit score under 580. We had 7 lenders turn it down. Fortunately FHA can do the loan and it is approved. But, this illustrates the difficulty that we are all experiencing in today’s lending environment and the lenders, it seems, are still trying to find their way in the dark. We constantly get call from Realtors about what programs are available and how to make an offer work with the financing. First of all, virtually all of the traditional and a lot of non traditional loans are still available. The biggest difference is the underwriting guidelines that are substantially different. Credit scores rule. The lower the score, the more difficult it will be to obtain favorable rates and terms, if financing is granted at all. It is a waste of time, in today’s mortgage market, to look for homes if you have not been pre-approved. Not pre-qualified but pre-approved. The buyer needs to meet with the mortgage professional and bring in all relevant documents and letters of explanation, then obtain a lender pre-approval, letter in hand. Then start their search. Once, not so long ago, it was pretty simple to just to get some information then send buyers out to find their home. Not so today. While the loans still exist the lenders are making sure that every “i” is dotted and “t” is crossed. Today’s mortgage professional needs to make certain that everything is in order to properly submit a file so that it will make it to close and fund on time. They also need to have all the current loan programs, including FHA and VA as well as conforming and non-conforming loans. If not then you need to make sure you have alternate lenders available to handle those files. FHA is not the program of old. FHA has undergone substantial updates to their programs and well as their appraisals. In a lot of cases it is just as easy, if not easier, to get a loan bought FHA than conforming Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, and the rates in most cases are a little better.So, just like a carpenter, you need all the tools to get the job done. And your lender needs to help provide those tools. If you’re having trouble with traditional loans have your lender submit FHA and that should help get you deal to the closing table.

Beginning Photography Tips – Shooting Out of the Box Like a Pro

Most people assume that beautiful pictures are taken by great photographers with very good, very expensive photography equipment. While that may be true most of the time, it is not true all of the time. Beautiful pictures can be turned out by nearly anyone with a camera, expensive or not, with a little forethought. In fact, thinking before you snap might be the main key to creating that master piece to hang on the wall.Here are some things to remember when taking pictures:1. Move in Closer – Once you see the shot, before you hit the shutter, move in closer. Cut out the background distractions. In other words, if you’re looking at a sleeping puppy, for instance, fill your viewfinder with the puppy. Cut out what’s behind it or next to it. Move in until the sleeping puppy fills your view from side to side.2. Be Quick – This may take some practice, but learn to be quick, in case your subject moves or flies away or gets tired waiting for you to snap the shutter. Take the picture. Don’t worry about shooting too many shots. In this digital age, wasting film has become a thing of the past. Remember… see it… compose it… shoot it…3. Composition is Important – A well composed picture is much more pleasing to the eye, so take a little time to balance your shot. Keep the horizon of the shot level. Crop out the extra stuff in the viewfinder. Move the subject around the frame. In other words, just because the vase is in the middle, doesn’t mean it has to be there in your photo. Move it off center for a more interesting shot.4. Be Selective in Subject Matter – In order to take interesting and arresting shots it will be necessary to determine what really tickles your fancy. This will require shooting all kinds of subject matter until you figure this out about yourself. Once you find your passion, your art will follow. Finding ways to document the different aspects of your passion will take a lifetime. You will never run out of sunsets or cars, or people or landscapes, if that is what you are passionate about. Again, fill your viewfinder with your passion and leave the rest out.5. Focus on Your Subject – Pay attention to your subject matter. Learn to blot out or to blur the background. You want to move the subject forward so that it dominates attention of those looking at the picture. Just like some artists paint the same subject over and over, it will be necessary to shoot the same subject over and over with different, shutter speeds, through different apertures or in different light. The subject might look better centered in the frame, or it might look better to one side or the other. Play around until you’re satisfied.6. Playing Around with Shutter Speed – One of the greatest opportunities with photography, which is sometimes left out of beginning photography tips, is experimenting with shutter speed. Shutter speed allows you t speed up time or to slow down time. Using the shutter speed effectively is what controls the freeze frame moment. Using a slow shutter speed and a tripod can capture a time lapse event. While using a fast shutter can capture that split second event that the eye might miss. The important thing is to experiment and or play around. This is the way to learn what can happen.7. Pay Attention to the Light – Now don’t go looking at the sun, but do look at how the light is playing around your subject. Is it an overcast day or is it blindingly bright. How to the shadows fall over your subject or are there any shadows at all? Is your subject squinting? Can you see your subject; meaning is the sun in front of or behind? Harsh light can bring out bold colors, while indirect light can make your focus soft. Paying attention to your light source is probably the number one for success when passing on beginning photography tips.8. Watch the Weather – The sky can affect how your pictures come out. An overcast sky will mute your picture tones and wash out your sky and background. Sometimes black and white photography works better on an overcast day. If it’s sunny outside, then the sky is the limit. If your camera allows you to shoot through filters, then get a polarizer lens. This is the lens that pops out fluffy white clouds against deep blue skies.9. Keep Settings Simple – In the beginning, it is best to stay with simple camera settings. Don’t just leave it in automatic and shoot. That can be sometimes frustrating while attempting to achieve a certain effect. Put your camera is semi automatic to allow for some adjustment and after you get better, put it in manual program to allow you total freedom over your settings. So start slow and grow, learning as you go along.10. Go for It, Be Bold – Don’t worry about whether or not you’ve got the camera set on the correct settings. Take the shot and keep taking the shot until you’re satisfied with the picture. Don’t be afraid, timid or paralyzed by indecision. There is no such thing as politically incorrect in taking pictures.I hope you have enjoyed my beginning photography tips.

Positive Change in the Management Will Change the Organization Positively

Management was considered a skill and art. People said leaders are born. Then people said leaders could be inspired. Now people say that leaders could be trained. It is true that we could be trained and taught to become leaders. Management is a leadership skill. The best leadership ever is the leadership by example. If the example is right then the understanding will be full. If the example is not right then the understanding will not be right.Companies and organizations have managers and management levels. Smaller companies might have only one level of management and there might be only one individual as a manager. Larger corporations have different levels of management. There might be junior managers who directly deal with base level employees. There might be middle managers who interact between the junior managers and the senior managers. There might be a higher management team which would be at the top of the organizational structure.If an organization is established to be bigger, the management would have been planned and structured beforehand. Most organizations that are worldwide and famous now, were not planned to be so when they were initiated. If you take any of the gigantic businesses, corporate companies or organizations, most of them were not meant to be grown into worldwide entities. In fact, some of the current successful and worldwide businesses were opened up for fun. We can consider the United Nations Organization as one of the very few organizations which were meant to be worldwide as they were established.The change becomes necessary when the organization transforms from a small group of people having fun to a larger entity of importance in the society. When Facebook was launched, it consisted of only one manager; the founder himself. Now it has over 10,000 employees with different levels of management. Google was started with two people. Now it has more than 57,000 employees worldwide. This is the transformation that takes place when a company or organization grows.All companies had to face the issue of transforming from a smaller stage to a bigger stage. Once they transform, the organizations which changed their structure of management accordingly were able to survive. The management of whichever organization was resistant to change had to pay the price of losing the organization. If an analysis is done on the organizations, companies or corporate businesses which were closed or sold, then the management would be held responsible for ending up in such situations.The most effective mode of management is to lead by example. A military is a controlled system that runs by orders. One of the most important aspects in the military is that the leader who is giving an order also carries out that order. For example if a soldier is required to wear a uniform, then the chief of the battalion is required the same. If a soldier is required to carry out training exercises, the commander is required too. In other words, militaries are successful organizations not because the leaders or managers have much authority but because they lead by example.As a simple fact, if a manager keeps his table clean all the time, he can ask his subordinates to keep their table clean. There will be no opposition. Since the subordinates know that their manager always keeps his table clean, they will have no excuse or reason to give him. The leader gets his authority through his example behavior and not through shouting at people.Since management is essentially leadership, it should lead by example. The duty of higher management is to make sure that there are example leaders in the middle management. The middle management consists of the most sensitive links with most critical positions. The middle management of any organization is the bridge between the workforce and the managing force. If the bridge is not right, then the journey wouldn’t be fulfilled.As organizations transform from small to big, the gap for a middle management arises. The top managers might be able to manage 10 staff but not 100. If the top management decided to manage all staff without middle management, it is like building a suspension bridge without any poles in the middle. It will work for up to a certain length. If the bridge exceeds the optimum length, then the strength would be in question.It is the same with a growing business. There have to be changes to address the needs of tomorrow. Most organizations fail because they try to address the problems that took place yesterday and they forget to think and make a plan to avoid problems tomorrow. In the long run, this kind of organization will have problems piled up from the past and will be facing problems in the future as well.The aspects of the management should change in a way that the management should be able to think, anticipate and identify potential problems in the future. They should then be able to get ready to face and solve the problems before the problems hit the organization. If this is not considered by the management, then the day to day problems will keep all the staff occupied in problem solving. While everyone is busy trying to solve the problems, the intended regular tasks will be missed. The missed tasks will seed for new problems in the future. Since the management is not willing to change, the same will take place in a loop.A few managers don’t consider themselves as examples. The manager might not think that he is not supposed to be an example, but the employee will always look at the manager as an example. If the manager is not punctual, then the employee will either become like the manager or will not like the manager. If people don’t like other people, it is hard to take tasks from them. If you are a manager and your employee doesn’t want to take tasks from you, then you are in trouble.Every single aspect of the manager is critical to the organization. If there are five different managers in an organization, all of them should be together and be leading by example. The employees who look at the managers should get an impression to become like the managers. In a few organizations the founders or the owners make sure that the staff will like the management. If someone in the management is spoiling the name of the entire management, that person would usually be fired.Some say that the only job of a manager is to hire staff. I strongly disagree. The only job of a manager is to manage. Managing is a leadership aspect. The best leadership is to lead by example. To be a positive example, the manager has to be positive in all qualities. If the manager is positive in all senses, the employees will like the manager. If the employees like the manager, then they will listen to the manager. If the manager asks them to do something, they will do it. A positively qualified example manager is going to ask only something good for the organization. At the end, a positive change in the management will change the organization positively.