By Andrea Woroch More Americans than ever are buying homes. In fact, a report from Zillow estimates 6.9 million existing home sales this year, the most since 2005, and projects a nearly 22% one-year gain in sales, the largest jump since the early 1980s. If you are among the millions hunting for a home, it’s
Veterans Affairs (VA) loans are invaluable for homebuyers. Their advantages include little or no money down, qualifying with a lower credit score, competitive interest rates, potentially lower closing and auxiliary costs, and no private mortgage insurance requirements. VA loans are administered through approved lending institutions and backed through an entitlement of up to $36,000. This
With interest rates currently at a three-year low, it is clear that home values are on the rise. This makes it a great time to purchase a home — especially for first-time buyers. However, buying a home is no cakewalk; it must be handled with great care, and you must be prepared before applying. Here
For years, you have been dreaming about buying your first home and now you are debating taking action. Are you ready to enter the home buying market? Consider these seven signs before taking the plunge. 1. Having Job Security – Mortgage loan approvals require a steady regular income. Is your employment situation secure enough that
You have just closed on your home purchase and money is going to be tight for a while. Should you buy a home warranty to help you avoid out-of-pocket expenses or will it be a waste of money? Before you decide if it will be worth it to you, you should understand what a home
Selling a home can be a stress-inducing experience, especially if you are counting on the sale of your existing home to fund the purchase of a new home. It can seem like you are coordinating a million things at once. A simple checklist can help you to keep track during the chaos and prevent necessary
You’ve set up a lame date for the upcoming weekend but you’re hoping a better offer comes along. If one does, you’re ready to accept it and cancel your earlier date. You’re hedging your bets, so you won’t be sitting home alone on Saturday night. That logic applies to real estate transactions as well. Perhaps
The coronavirus outbreak that began in Wuhan, China, in late 2019 has spread fast and caused global panic. Even the financial markets have suffered, causing the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) of the Federal Reserve to decrease its rate by half a percentage point in an emergency move. This sets the Fed’s target interest range
You have decided that it is time to sell your home. Regardless of the reason why, you want as smooth and as quick of a sale as possible. To keep your sale trouble-free, consider these potential stumbling blocks before you begin your home-selling journey. Overpricing – Set the price using appraisal values and market rates,
The home appraisal process can be one of the most nerve-wracking parts of a home sale. A single independent party is assessing the fair market value of your home, and the appraiser’s conclusion can sink the deal. Banks will not approve the loan if the appraisal does not give them sufficient collateral. The primary factors
Interested in buying a fixer-upper? There are several different methods of acquiring a renovation loan, but two federally backed renovation mortgage programs will allow you to do a combined purchase and repair mortgage loan – the FHA 203(k) loan and the Fannie Mae Homestyle Renovation mortgage. They are perfect for rehab work on foreclosed properties,
As the housing market recovers, many homeowners still owe more on their house than it is presently worth. In many cases, people who are “upside down” on their mortgage, as this is known, can negotiate with their lenders to sell their homes for less than what they owe, rather than go through foreclosure. These types
Conversation | 8 Comments You must be logged in to comment Submit Carla | 05.16.16 @ 20:01 I would have loved to have had these tips when we bought a home. My Son will need them soon. Thanks! trish | 05.16.16 @ 20:03 Wow what great tips I could have used 10
Most credit cards have rewards programs or sign-up bonuses these days, and many of those rewards increase with your level of spending. Doesn’t it make sense to funnel your large regular expenses, such as mortgage payments, through your credit card to reap those rewards? Paying your mortgage with a credit card may be a reasonable
Mortgage Protection Life Insurance (MPI) is designed to cover your mortgage payments in case of a catastrophic life event. Policies can vary, but MPI generally covers your mortgage payments if you are disabled or lose your job, and will pay off the mortgage if you pass away. Note: Because of the close acronyms, people sometimes
While most people know what a foreclosure is, a short sale is still a bit of a mystery. Short sales began to occur more frequently after the 2008 sub-prime mortgage housing crisis, as distressed homeowners found themselves unable to handle their mortgage payments. Essentially, in a short sale, the homeowner sells a home for less
Getting approved for a mortgage can be a daunting task as a young adult. You are just getting your financial life started and your finances may not be in perfect shape. Do not worry, though; it is possible to get a mortgage as a young homebuyer with the help of the five keys listed below.
Declaring bankruptcy can take quite a toll on your life, as well as your credit rating. Because of this, people tend to look at bankruptcy as the end of potential home ownership. While bankruptcy is a serious issue and should only be undertaken as a last resort, it is not the end of the world.
You probably comparison-shop for items such as shoes or computers and prioritize your choices – “I’ll buy the merchandise at vendor X if I cannot get a better deal at vendors Y or Z.” Why wouldn’t you do the same comparison-shopping for mortgage lenders on arguably the largest purchase you will make in your life?
While the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau require all lenders to follow specific guidelines when it comes to pricing, rates, and other factors, that does not mean that all lenders are equal. While it is true that some may be able to give borrowers a slightly better rate, that is not the only difference between them.
Many homeowners know to shop around for mortgages and to compare more than just the interest rate before selecting a lender, but even these borrowers may end up with a monthly mortgage payment that is higher than it could be. While smart borrowers will save money, they can save even more by following these tips:
Conversation | 12 Comments You must be logged in to comment Submit Brittany | 04.14.16 @ 23:04 Saving money when it comes to mortgages is seriously extremely beneficial. Especially when it comes to today’s current market. Kamie | 04.14.16 @ 23:12 I know you definitely want your realtor or even a mortgage
The loan approval process may seem convoluted with confusing language and odd delays. In a way, it does have its own language – and understanding that language can give you a better feel for where you are really at in the process. Let’s draw an analogy while we look at things from the lender’s perspective.
You made a few phone calls to mortgage companies, checked rates on the web and narrowed your search to a few brokers or lenders who all have the same, reasonable interest rates. How do you choose one over the other? First of all, kudos to you for doing your homework. While buying a home is
Few things are more effective at fighting identity theft than credit freezes. When you freeze your credit, potential lenders can’t access your credit file to assess the risk of lending money to you. No risk assessment means no credit – so identity thieves can’t use your stolen information to create fake accounts in your name.
By Laurence Jankelow, cofounder at Avail Whether you’ve owned your two-flat duplex for years or you’re trying to decide whether real estate is the right addition to your portfolio, it’s important to think of rental property as an investment. Like any investment, your goal should be to maximize returns. You don’t need to predict which
Congratulations! You’ve just finished paying off your mortgage – probably the largest debt you’ll ever have in your life. Should you expect your credit score to increase as a result? Not necessarily. Your credit score is calculated from your credit report, a history of all of your borrowing and payment activity. While your mortgage was
When you were a first-time homebuyer, you were probably surprised by the total amount of fees and closing costs. Are you familiar with the costs on the selling side? A recent study from Zillow and Thumbtack calculated the average costs of selling a home both nationwide and in specific markets. The national average is $20,851,
Some trends fade and then return after a few decades or so, like bell bottoms and tie-dye. You probably have a few things in the back of your closet waiting patiently to become a hot new retro-style – whether that’s good or bad for society in general. Unfortunately, that’s true for financial trends as well
Risky home loans led to the 2008 housing crisis and the subsequent Great Recession. Regulators and lenders quickly tightened mortgage-underwriting standards to prevent future crashes. Have we forgotten the roots of the housing crisis in just over a decade? The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) thinks so and has taken action to reverse trends showing increased