Category: Mortgage

7 Jul 2011

Financing Your Fixer-Upper

Whether it’s a foreclosure, a short-sell or a home neglected by a cash-strapped owner, homes that need work are often a smart buy.

But how do you finance the fix-up on your fixer-upper?

Consider an FHA 203(k) LoanThis renovation/rehab loan program combines a traditional home mortgage with a home repair loan, giving you the flexibility to buy a property that needs repair and fold the cost of those repairs into a single mortgage.

20 Jun 2011

Upside Down

While not a good place to be in it is not the end of the world. Paper wealth was exhilarating these past six years. I remember my Wachovia stock value and the value that I could receive if I sold my car or home.  It was mesmerizing.  Fast forward a few years and now appreciation levels and rates of returns have all normalized. Similar to the stock market, housing, for most of the country, is in the process of finding its new value system.

A recent report from CoreLogic indicated that underwater mortgages and borrowers with less than 5% home equity accounted for 28% of all residential properties.  More than 11.2 million, about 24% of all residential properties with mortgages were in negative equity at the end of Q110.

17 Jun 2011

How Will Mortgage Underwriters Look at Your Income?

Just imagine you have found the perfect house, started a new job and are ready to move forward with your life. Feels pretty good doesn’t it?

Now imagine that you have everything lined up except for one detail, a detail that is perhaps the most important of all. Prior to signing on the dotted line and happily moving forward, make sure that you take the time to sit down and go over the details with your Mortgage consultant.

8 Apr 2011

What If I Don’t Currently Qualify For a New Mortgage?

Let’s say you have begun your home search and you meet with a Lender.   That Lender will review your credit along with income and assets to determine if you qualify for a new loan.  What happens when you find out you do not qualify? While this type of situation is unbelievably frustrating, keep in mind that you do have options.

First, find out what steps you will need to take to get qualified. These may vary and include a credit improvement plan,  a savings plan to accumulate your downpayment and closing costs and/or a plan for how long you must be on your job or earning variable income.

24 Feb 2011

The Government’s Future Role in Mortgage Financing

Over the past few weeks there has been a lot of discussion about the future of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, along with the direction of FHA.   This is important to all of us in the Housing Industry, as currently the US Government either insures/guarantees or purchases about 90% of all Mortgages originated today. I think we are all in agreement that we would like to see Private Capital come back into the marketplace, but at this time that is coming very slowly.   There is no doubt that some changes should take place, but timing is going to be critical.   Having the Government pull back to soon and the Housing Recovery would be slowed even further.

21 Jan 2011

Loan Approval…What’s Involved?

Everyone has heard that mortgage financing is more difficult to obtain these days. What people may not be aware of, however, is the “why” behind the time it takes to get a loan approved and closed in the mortgage industry today.

Typically, your offer to purchase contract is written for a 30-day closing. In most cases, you would have already spoken to your Mortgage Consultant/Loan Officer (MC/LO)  to handle the prequalification for your loan.  Well, prequalification and full loan applications are two different things.

The most important thing you can do following prequalification is to meet with your MC/LO to complete the formal loan application. Make sure to have with you all your required documentation of income, employment and assets. In some cases you will also need to provide information on credit such as explanations for any late payments, inquiries, etc.

30 Dec 2010

See What Others See: Pull Your Credit Report Annually

As we near January 1st, we start to think about things we do at the beginning of each year, like making resolutions or changing the batteries in our smoke detectors.  This year, we are recommending you add one more thing to do at the beginning of each year and that is to review your own credit report.

Being in the mortgage industry, we see day in and day out the impact that a person’s credit can have on their ability to purchase or refinance a home.  While most people may know what they need to qualify, many don’t understand that even small positive changes to their credit score can result in a better rate.

14 Dec 2010

Mortgage Rates Increase

Rates have been rising over the past few weeks and although they are still at very low levels (the mid to high 4 percent range) they have jumped ½ a percent.  This is the most significant consistent increase since the lows that we experienced in October.

Why has there been an increase you ask? Well, rates typically move on stronger economic news which we have had in the form of some resolution of the European debt issues as well as stronger indications in the US economy. Keith Gumbinger, Vice President of HSH Associates, state in a recent article on that, “General improvement in the economy over the last couple of weeks has also had an influence on the rise in rates.”

17 Nov 2010

A Drop in Foreclosures … But Why?

This just in: foreclosures dropped 9% nationally in October.

At first glance, this sounds like it would be good news right? A closer look however, will show that it all seems to directly relate to the freeze in foreclosures from the robo-signing scandal. Last month, when it came to light that many of the Banks Loss Mitigation Departments had not properly reviewed foreclosure documents, there was a lot of pressure on banks to suspend foreclosures.

Initially, many banks did just that which, in turn, interrupted scheduled closings of foreclosed properties. After two weeks however, many banks decided that they had properly reviewed their procedures and felt confident that they had taken the appropriate steps to right “their wrongs.” Soon after, the foreclosures resumed.

14 Oct 2010

Foreclosure Freeze: What Buyers and Sellers Should Know

In the past 3 days there has been a lot in the press about the foreclosure freeze and its affect both globally and locally.  Here is an update from Monday’s blog post.

Banks and mortgage services are working at a fast pace to determine if they have any internal processing issues.  Some banks, such as Bank of America, have completed their initial review in judicial states and have found the “underlying facts supporting foreclosures to be accurate.” 

Banks are also reaching out to buyers under contract on previously foreclosed properties and asking for 90 day contract extensions while they ensure that the paperwork is in order and the title is clear.

The majority agree that buyers of foreclosed properties will face delays and sellers in the foreclosure process will have to both modify their loans and reside in their homes for a longer period of time.  But it appears that the banks are moving quickly to get issues resolved so they can keep the processes moving forward. The potential cost to the banks for delays could be in the billions so it is in their financial interest to get the investigations underway and completed.


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