Free Home Value Report Search For Homes

Expert Tips for Home Buyers & Sellers

Our mission at The Melissa Thompson Team is to be your best resource for real estate advice. Whether you are a buyer, seller, or investor, our team of professionals can answer any questions you might have about real estate. Subscribe to this blog to get the latest news on local market trends and receive expert tips for buying or selling a home.

How to Get the Best Possible Credit When Applying for a Home Loan

If you want to buy a home, you need to start taking steps to ensure you have the best credit possible. I’ll go over those steps today.

Get a FREE Home Value Report

If you’re thinking about buying a home, you need to start preparing to have the best possible credit when apply for a mortgage loan. 

First, pay attention to your accounts. Don’t close any accounts or open any new ones when preparing to buy a home. Also, make sure your credit to debt ratio looks good on all your open accounts. If you have a $500 limit, don’t let the balance sit at $495. 

Next, don’t switch jobs. If you do need to switch, try to stay in the same field so they have information about the switch. They want to see some job security, so if you’ve hopped around a lot that can be a problem.

Don’t close any accounts or open any new ones when preparing to buy a home.

Pay attention to your balances. If you have a high limit and you’ve maxed that out, it won’t look good to lenders. On the other hand, if you had a credit card that you use and pay off regularly, lenders will love that. 

Finally, don’t make any big purchases until after closing on a home. After you’ve got the keys to your new home, feel free to get that new furniture, just hold off until then. 

If you have any questions or are looking to buy or sell a home, please feel free to give me a call or send me an email. I’m always happy to help.

101 Things To Do In Memphis #67: Hattiloo Theatre

Since 2006, Hattiloo has honored playwright August Wilson's contribution to America's literary canon by producing one of his plays each season. They stage celebrated musicals such as The Wiz, Ain't Misbehavin', and Dreamgirls, along with traditional plays like For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/When the Rainbow is Enuf, A Raisin in the Sun, and The Colored Museum.

At Hattiloo, they value and celebrate the cultural diversity and rich history of Memphis and the Mid-South region. As a Black repertory, they focus on works written by and/or about African-Americans. They frequently partner with other arts organizations and nonprofits in collaborative projects that expand and diversify audiences. In the recent past they have collaborated with Ballet Memphis and The Dixon Gallery and Gardens.

Hattiloo maintains a robust slate of free community education and outreach programs as part of our “ArtReach” initiative, including live theatre staged in neighborhoods across the city, symposiums, panel discussions, and festivals. They also offer free, year-round youth programming, including Hattiloo Children's Theatre and Camp Awareness. Their productions and outreach programs are designed to complement each other in pursuit of their mission, serving as a lens into African-American culture for thousands of citizens, and as a gateway to the arts for thousands more.

This season, they open with In the Heights, a musical that presents the ‘inner-soul’ of Caribbean immigrants and their children. The Brother/Sister Plays will show us the ‘inner soul’ a black community and its African origins. Free Man of Color teaches us about the ‘inner-soul’ of the abolitionist movement. Radio Golf and my own play If Scrooge was a Brother will illustrate the ‘inner-soul’ of successful Blacks. And they will celebrate the 40th anniversary of The Wiz, which epitomizes the ‘inner-soul’ of the creative Black community.

Click here for tickets and more info!

Hattiloo Theatre
37 South Cooper Street
Memphis, TN 38104

901-525-0009 - Box Office
901-502-3486 - Administration

By and photo credit:

How Much Do Schools Matter When Buying Your Home?

When choosing a new home, there are usually several items on the buyer’s list of priorities, but when kids are involved, school systems often top that list.  People are often willing to pay more and sacrifice other desires to make sure they are in the best school district for their children.  Private schools may be a feasible alternative for some, but that is not the case for many. Even if buyers don’t have children (or plan to have them), they may want to buy in where the schools have the best reputation because it will have a positive effect on resale value down the road. However, it’s important to remember that a poorly ranked school district does not automatically mean that the overall quality of local education in an area is poor.  You have to do your research. Consider the age of the schools, their physical condition, the student-to-teacher ratios and standardized test scores. Understanding how the school system works in Tennessee will be helpful in your search as well. In Tennessee, your child can attend any school in your district (called “intradistrict choice”), and students at low-performing schools, as designated by the state, can attend a different school in their district.  Some districts allow student to transfer to schools either in or outside their district (“interdistrict choice”).  There are also charter schools available.  Low-income students are eligible for scholarship funding to attend private schools.  Under the federal No Child Left Behind Act, students attending a Title I school designated as “in need of improvement” have the right to attend a higher performing in the district.  So, as you can see, there are a lot of options!

Finding the best place to live near Memphis for you and your family is something the real estate professionals at Your Key To Memphis can help you do. Contact Melissa Thompson and begin your search today!