Keep an open mind when house hunting

Q. My grandson and his wife want to purchase a house in a subdivision with homeowners association fees. I feel they should move farther out of town and buy some property with a house already on it. Could you please give me your opinion?

A. I have no problem with the idea of looking for a house already built on a piece of property out of town, but why is that the only option? I would take a look at all the different possibilities available, not just one or the other. Then sit down with your grandson and his wife and show them your findings. The choice is going to come down to what your grandson and his wife want, but it can’t hurt for you to present them with different ideas.

Q. I recently closed my club charge account and membership. I did not utilize the savings at the club enough to warrant paying the annual membership fee.

Within two weeks, and after cruising along in the low 810s, my credit score fell by 25 points. Why, if my credit report shows 100 percent on-time payment, no inquiries, no new accounts, 21 years of flawless history and $10,000 credit available? I have no bills other than monthly utilities and taxes.

Why did my rating slip, and should I be penalized for closing/canceling that or any other unused card?

A. You’re assuming that your credit score dropped a few points because you closed out your club card, and perhaps that was one of the variables, but not to worry. If that’s the only problem, you’re going to find that your credit will jump right back up again.

Let me ask this: You had an 810 credit score and now it’s 785. Do you think that’s going to make any material difference on the amount of credit you’ll be offered? No, it won’t change anything. Don’t lose any sleep over it.

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