How to Make Chicken Wings


Chicken wings are a staple appetizer at any party, but they are also good enough to compose a main course. There are many ways you can prepare chicken wings. Read below to learn how to make chicken wings.

  1. Buy your wings. Plan on each guest eating 10-15 wings if main course, or 5-7 wings if served alongside other food as an appetizer. These instructions are for 2 pounds of wings, which should comfortably serve four people, but do not hesitate to multiply or divide the recipe to fit your guest’s needs.
  2. Thaw if needed. If frozen, thaw your chicken wings. You can thaw them by placing your chicken wings in the refrigerator overnight, or in a cold bowl of water on the kitchen counter for 4 hours.

Serving our nation comes with some exclusive benefits that are sometimes overlooked. Using a VA loan backed by U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) for your next home purchase is a benefit that all veterans of our Armed Forces should be utilizing.

The intent of the VA home loan was to create affordable housing opportunities to our eligible Veterans by offering a mortgage loan that allowed for little money out of pocket and lower monthly payments (than other loan programs may offer).

When considering if you should apply for a VA loan you should first look at some of the advantages. For instance, VA requirements are less stringent than those of other popular products like conventional and FHA. Unlike Conventional loan products there is no minimum credit score to qualify. Rather, a VA approved lender looks at the entire loan application and reviews all the details and circumstances surrounding the entire application. Details such as recent credit history, employment history, assets and overall stability.

VA Home Loan Resources:

Primary VA Home Loan Benefits
Explaining How the VA Loan Works
Helpful Resources:

Mortgage Calculator – help estimating your payments
Complete Guide to Home Loan Options
Helpful Guide for Buying a House
Most Common Mortgage Questions
10 Steps to the Home-Buying Process You Must Know

VA Loans at a Glance
What are VA Loans?
A VA home loan is a mortgage that is guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

VA-guaranteed loans are made by private lenders such as banks, savings and loan associations, or mortgage companies. If the loan is approved, VA guarantees the loan when it is closed. The guaranty means the lender is protected against a percentage of the loss if you fail to repay the loan.

VA Loan Advantages
100% Financing – a down payment is not required in most instances. This will generally save you thousands of dollars out of pocket, especially compared to the other loan options. Other than the Rural Housing Loan, all other mortgage loan programs quire a minimum cash investment.
No monthly mortgage insurance – the VA loan does not have monthly mortgage insurance, saving you around $100-$200/month on your payment. USDA, FHA and Conventional mortgages generally require monthly mortgage insurance which is a cost the borrower pays for an insurance policy used to protect the lender from default on the loan.
Low Interest Rates – the VA home loan generally offers some of the most competitive rates in the country. Typically, the a 30-year fixed VA loan is about .250%-.750% lower than a traditional Conventional Mortgage loan.
Flexible Guidelines – the VA loan technically doesn’t have a minimum FICO requirement (which nearly all other loan programs do). That said, a borrower generally needs a minimum score of 620 to pass automated underwriting, however lower scores are allowed but may require a manual underwrite (which means there are more stringent requirements to qualify). Additionally, VA loans offer some of the highest Debt-to-Income (DTI) ratios of any home mortgage.
Jumbo Loans with little down – most loan amounts over $484,000 are what are considered a ‘jumbo’ loan. Conventional jumbo mortgages require a 10% down payment, whereas on a VA loan it is possible to only put 2-3% down depending on your county loan limit and available entitlement.
Ability to use multiple times – a common misunderstanding is that you can only use the VA Home Loan benefit once. In reality, you can use your VA home loan benefit as many times as you’d like. Additionally, you can have multiple VA loans at the same time.
For example, if you own a home currently (secured by a VA loan) and are looking to buy another. Instead of selling your existing property you could rent it out. Then, when you buy your next home you could potentially get another VA loan on that residence as well. In this scenario you’d have a VA loan on your old home and on the new one.

Do You Qualify for a VA Loan?
Basic Eligibility Requirements:

Active-duty military with 90 days of continuous active duty
Vetarans with 90 days of consecutive active duty service during eligible wartimes
Veterans with more than 181 days of active duty service during peacetime (for most service prior to 1981)
Veterans with at least 24 months continuous active duty (service after 1982)
6 or more years in the National Guard or Reserves – 1 year of credible service is a year in which you earned the full retirement credits, meaning you drilled consistently throughout the entire year and were awarded a credible year.
Cadets of the U.S. Military, Coast Guard Academy or Air Force
U.S. Naval Academy Shipmen
The spouse of a servicemember that is a POW or MIA
Must use for a primary residence (single family home, townhome, 2-4 unit, VA-approved condo, manufactured home). 2nd home and investment properties are only eligible for an IRRRL refinance assuming it has an existing VA loan. If you’re looking to buy a 2nd home or investment property then only a Conventional Mortgage is allowed

How to Make a Healthy Lunch

It’s too easy to reach for the quick burger and fries on your lunch break. But with some quick prep work and forethought, you can make a more healthy and fulfilling lunch for yourself or for your family. It’s a good idea to use lunch as an opportunity to work healthy foods into your diet, keeping yourself in great shape and full throughout the day.

  • Silverware
  • 2 slices of whole grain bread
  • One or 2 slices of lean white meat
  • 3 pieces of dark green lettuce
  • One teaspoon of low fat mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup sliced raw vegetables
  • 3/4 cup berries or one piece of fruit
  • One small bag of baked chips
  • Water or low sugar juice


“It is the sad reality that there are companies out there who judge a loan by its size,” says Peak Finance Company sales manager Tamir Lahav. The differences in commissions is definitely a factor. Since commissions are typically a percentage of the loan, smaller loans mean less money for the person you work with.

Making matters even more unsavory for lenders is the paperwork required for all loans, regardless of their size. Because the amount of work, time, and (by relation) costs to originate each loan is the same regardless of size, “applying those costs to a small loan makes the APR higher,” says Realtor® Bruce Ailion, with Re/Max Town & Country in Atlanta.

In essence, this means you’re paying a higher interest rate on this loan—which is bad enough, but Ailion notes that this can also trigger “regulatory scrutiny that the loan may be a predatory loan,” even if it isn’t.

The bottom line: Small loans are often not considered to be worth the trouble to big lenders, who might be less motivated to have you as a client. As a result, they might not even want your business, or be willing to work with you only at a higher interest rate than what you’d get on a larger loan.

How to get a small loan for a home
This doesn’t mean getting a small home loan is impossible; it means you’ll have to shop around a bit more than usual. And here’s the thing: Some banks actually welcome smaller loan sizes.

“Many banks receive government incentives to originate smaller loans in certain areas to help support and reinvest in that community as part of the Community Reinvestment Act,” says Elise Leve, senior mortgage banker with Citizens Bank.

So how do you find these small-loan-friendly lenders? One, you can start shopping for mortgages at Another route is to work directly with a mortgage broker—an intermediary who shops the entire market of lenders, then presents you with your best options. They may charge you an upfront fee for this service, or they may offer a “no cost” loan where their fee is covered by charging you a slightly higher interest rate. But you get a lot in return.

“Mortgage brokers are more creative, and think outside of the box in making a deal work,” says Tanya Stawski, a real estate agent with Sotheby’s Realty Beverly Hills. Stawski says many of her clients who couldn’t obtain loans from their banks had better luck with brokers.

You can also ask your real estate agent for recommendations.

“Realtors intimately know how the mortgage broker works—whether they are they responsive, accurate, deliver on time, are they there to fix things, and how much they care,” Ailion says. “They work with good mortgage brokers, transaction after transaction.”

Before you run with a recommended broker, pay attention to how willing the broker is to explain things to you.

“It is just as important to work with a broker who can take the time to properly educate you as a buyer as to why there may be certain differences between certain loan scenarios,” says Lahav. Because no matter how small your loan, it’s essential to understand the terms so you don’t end up in over your head.

For more smart financial news and advice, head over to MarketWatch.

How to Make Cream Cheese Frosting

The Simple Steps on How to Make Cream Cheese Frosting

For many desserts, an amazing cream cheese frosting recipe is literally the icing on the cake! Learn how to make cream cheese frosting with these simple steps and tips for getting that perfect creamy, delicious consistency every time.

Are you a fan of cakes and cupcakes? If so, you’ll likely agree that a good cream cheese frosting recipe is a must for any baker. Cream Cheese frosting is simple to make, and comes together easily if you keep these tips in mind. I’ve compiled the essential steps that you need to know in how to make cream cheese frosting that’s fluffy and delicious each time. Here’s the simple steps to making cream cheese frosting and the simple tips to getting the perfect frosting consistency every time.


Many financial institutions offer breaks on rates and fees for active duty military personnel, veterans, and their families. If you seek out the top military loans for your credit type you could save hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars.

Are you a member of the military or a veteran? SuperMoney can help you learn what to expect and what to pursue when applying for a mortgage, auto loan, personal loan, or credit card.

USAA offers a suite of financia

The best military loans of 2019

We’ve put together a list of the best lenders offering loans with special perks for the military community.

To give you an idea of what interest rates you can expect, here’s are some typical rates for each loan type:

l services: from banking to insurance to loans.

The lender offers both conventional and VA loans. With a conventional loan, you need at least a 5% down payment and a 620 credit score. But with a VA loan, no down payment is required, and you don’t need to meet any credit requirements.

The only catch to the VA loan is the funding fee, which can range from 1.25% to 3.3% of the loan amount. But if you’re entitled to service-connected disability payments, you don’t have to pay the fee.

The VA loan also doesn’t require private mortgage insurance. Conventional loans, on the other hand, require insurance unless you make a down payment of 20% or more.

French Onion Soup Recipe

I was listening to a podcast the other day, and the person was talking about their favorite foods, and onions and garlic came up on her list. And I have to say – I’m right there at her side.

So naturally, we are big fans of French Onion Soup at our house. My husband doesn’t get soup very often when we are out, but if French Onion Soup is on the menu, he’ll get it.

And luckily, this French Onion Soup Recipe is so easy – although it does take a little bit of time. But believe me – it’s worth every minute you have to spend!

Newcastle Permanent have a great range of variable loan products suitable for a wide range of borrowers. You can borrow up to 95% of the property’s value and there is a choice between principal and interest or interest only payments. With a variable home loan from Newcastle Permanent, you’ll be able to make unlimited additional repayments whenever you can and take advantage of other flexible features such as repayment holidays and a redraw facility (fees may apply). To help you save on interest a partial offset account is available with most of the variable loans offered by Newcastle Permanent and there is a full offset account when you choose its Premium Variable Home Loan option.

Variable Package Home Loan

There are two variable rate package loans from Newcastle Permanent including a discounted option available on loans of $150,000 or more and the premium plus package available on loans starting from $5,000. For a yearly service fee, you’ll be able to make use of a number of flexible features including an extra repayments facility, repayment holidays and an offset account. Redraws are fee free and you can choose a repayment frequency to match your pay cycle – weekly, fortnightly or monthly.

Slow Cooker Asian-BBQ Fusion Chicken

The ingredients list in this chicken dish seem a little crazy – Lemon, BBQ sauce, ginger? What?!

But WOW do they work well together! The flavor of this dish is BOLD… I almost guarantee you’ve tasted nothing like this before. You will LOVE it!!

By the way – do you have my FREE slow cooker meal plan yet? Grab it right below:

Ok back to the recipe at hand…

You will also love it because it’s a slow cooker meal and freezes great if you want to prepare it ahead of time!

The myriad of financing options available for first-time homebuyers can seem overwhelming. But taking the time to research the basics of property financing can save you a significant amount of time and money. Understanding the market where the property is located and whether it offers incentives to lenders may mean added financial perks for you. Take a look at your finances to ensure you are getting the mortgage that best suits your needs.

Loan Types
Conventional Loans
Conventional loans are mortgages that are not insured or guaranteed by the federal government. They are typically fixed-rate mortgages. Although their stricter requirements for a bigger down payment, higher credit score, lower income to debt ratios, and potential to need private mortgage insurance make them the most difficult mortgage type to qualify for, conventional mortgages are usually less costly than guaranteed mortgages.
Conventional loans are defined as either conforming loans or non-conforming loans. Conforming loans comply with guidelines such as loan limits set forth by the government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac because lenders package these loans and sell securities on them in the secondary market. The 2018 loan limit for a conventional mortgage is $453,100 but the amount is higher for designated high-cost areas. (To find out what happens to your mortgage in the secondary market, read Behind The Scenes Of Your Mortgage.) A loan made above this amount is called a jumbo loan and usually carries a slightly higher interest rate because these loans are less attractive to the secondary market. For non-conforming loans, the lending institution underwriting the loan, usually a portfolio lender, set their own guidelines.
FHA Loans
The Federal Housing Administration (FHA), part of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, provides various mortgage loan programs. An FHA loan has lower down payment requirements and is easier to qualify for than a conventional loan. FHA loans are excellent for first-time homebuyers because, in addition to lower upfront loan costs and less stringent credit requirements, you can make a down payment as low as 3.5%. FHA loans cannot exceed the statutory limit. (For more on this type of loan, see Insuring Federal Housing Authority Mortgages.)
VA Loans
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) guarantees VA loans. The VA does not make loans itself, but guarantees mortgages made by qualified lenders. These guarantees allow veterans and service people to obtain home loans with favorable terms, usually without a down payment. In most cases, VA loans are easier to qualify for than conventional loans. Lenders generally limit the maximum VA loan to conventional mortgage loan limits. Before applying for a loan, request eligibility from the VA. If you are accepted, the VA will issue a certificate of eligibility you can use to apply for loan.
In addition to these common loan types and programs, check into programs sponsored by state and local governments and agencies to increase investment or home ownership in certain areas. (For further reading, see Shopping For A Mortgage.)

Equity and Income Requirements
Home mortgage loan pricing is determined by the lender in two ways, both based on the creditworthiness of the borrower. In addition to checking your FICO score from the three major credit bureaus, lenders will calculate the loan-to-value ratio (LTV) and the debt-service coverage ratio (DSCR) to set the loan price.

LTV is the amount of actual or implied equity that is available in the collateral being borrowed against. For home purchases, LTV is determined by dividing the loan amount by the purchase price of the home. Lenders assume that the more money you are putting at risk (in the form of a down payment), the less likely you are to default on the loan. The higher the LTV, the greater the risk of default, so lenders will charge more.

LTV also determines whether you will be required to purchase private mortgage insurance (PMI). PMI insulates the lender from default by transferring a portion of the loan risk to a mortgage insurer. Most lenders require PMI for any loan with an LTV greater than 80%, meaning any loan where you own less than 20% equity in the home. The amount being insured and the mortgage program will determine the cost of mortgage insurance and how it’s collected. (For more on PMI, read Six Reasons To Avoid Private Mortgage Insurance and Outsmart Private Mortgage Insurance.)

Most mortgage insurance premiums are collected monthly along with tax and property insurance escrows. Once LTV is equal to or less than 78%, PMI is supposed to be eliminated automatically. You may be able to cancel PMI once the home has appreciated enough in value to give you 20% equity and a set period has passed, such as two years. Some lenders, such as the FHA, will assess the mortgage insurance as a lump sum and capitalize it into the loan amount.

As a rule of thumb, try to avoid PMI because it is a cost that has no benefit to you. There are ways to avoid paying for PMI. One is not to borrow more than 80% of the property value when purchasing a home; the other is to use home equity financing or a second mortgage to put down more than 20%. The most common program is called an 80-10-10 mortgage. The 80 stands for the LTV of the first mortgage, the first 10 stands for the LTV of the second mortgage, and the third 10 represents the equity you have in the home.

Although the rate on the second mortgage will be higher than the rate on the first, on a blended basis, it should not be much higher than the rate of a 90% LTV loan. An 80-10-10 mortgage can be less expensive than paying for PMI and also allows you to accelerate the payment of the second mortgage and eliminate that portion of the debt quickly so you can pay off your home early.

The debt service coverage ratio (DSCR) determines your ability to pay the mortgage. Lenders divide your monthly net income by the mortgage costs to assess the probability that you will default on the mortgage. Most lenders will require DSCRs of greater than one. The greater the ratio, the greater the probability that you will be able to cover borrowing costs and the less risk the lender takes on. The greater the DSCR, the more likely a lender will negotiate the loan rate because even at a lower rate, the lender receives a better risk-adjusted return.

For this reason, include any type of qualifying income you can when negotiating with a mortgage lender. Sometimes an extra part-time job or other income-generating business can make the difference between qualifying or not qualifying for a loan or receiving the best possible rate.

Fixed vs. Floating Rate Mortgages
Another consideration is whether to obtain a fixed-rate or floating-rate mortgage. In a fixed-rate mortgage, the rate does not change for the entire period of the loan. The obvious benefit of getting a fixed-rate loan is that you know what the monthly loan costs will be for the entire loan period. A floating-rate mortgage, such as an interest-only mortgage or an adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM), is designed to assist first-time homebuyers or people who expect their incomes to rise substantially over the loan period. (To learn more, see Mortgages:Fixed-Rate Versus Adjustable-Rate.) When researching which type of mortgage to select, compare interest rates with a mortgage calculator.

Floating-rate loans usually allow you to obtain lower introductory rates during the initial few years of the loan, allowing you to qualify for a larger loan than if you had tried to get a more expensive fixed-rate loan. Although a floating-rate loan can be helpful for some borrowers, they can be risky if your income does not grow in step with the increase in interest rate. The other downside is that the rate change is uncertain since it is usually linked to a future market rate.

The most common types of ARMs are a one, five, or seven-year ARM. The initial interest rate is normally fixed for a period of time and then resets periodically, often every month. Once an ARM resets, it adjusts to the market rate, usually by adding some predetermined spread (percentage) to the prevailing U.S. Treasury rate. Although the increase is typically capped, an ARM adjustment can be more expensive than the prevailing fixed rate mortgage loan to compensate the lender for offering a lower rate during the introductory period. (To learn more about the risks involved with adjustable-rate mortgages, read ARMed And Dangerous.)

Interest-only loans are a type of ARM in which you only pay mortgage interest and not principal during the introductory period until the loan reverts to a fixed, principal-paying loan. Such loans can be very advantageous for first-time borrowers because only paying interest significantly decreases the monthly cost of borrowing and will allow you to qualify for a much larger loan. However, because you pay no principal during the initial period, the balance due on the loan does not change until you begin to repay the principal.

Weigh the benefit of obtaining a larger loan with the risk. Interest rates typically float during the interest-only period and will often adjust in reaction to changes in market interest rates. Also consider the risk that your disposable income won’t rise along with the possible increase in borrowing costs. (Interest-only loans can be beneficial, but for many borrowers they represent a trap. Read Interest-Only Mortgages: Home Free Or Homeless?)

The Bottom Line
If you’re looking for a home mortgage for the first time, you may find it difficult to sort through all the financing options. Take time to decide how much home you can actually afford and then finance accordingly. If you can afford to put a substantial amount down or have enough income to create a low LTV, you will have more negotiating power with lenders and the most financing options. If you push for the largest loan, you may be offered a higher risk-adjusted rate and private mortgage insurance. A good mortgage broker or mortgage banker should be able to help steer you through all the different programs and options, but nothing will serve you better than knowing your priorities for a mortgage loan.