January 10th, 2017

FHA lowers rates for first-time buyers

Posted by at 2:28 pm

The FHA has announced lower insurance premiums for first-time homebuyers – lowering rates by about a quarter-point to 0.60 percent of the loan balance for most borrowers. Effective Jan. 27, the cuts would bring an average annual savings of about $500, and serve as a virtual parting gift from President Barack Obama’s administration. Incoming president Donald Trump will have a narrow window after his inauguration Jan. 20 to consider whether to play Scrooge – weighing objections to lower fees against the benefits. Some Congressional Republicans argue that taxpayers already face too much risk if borrowers default. They point to 2013, when the FHA’s Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund (MMIF) fell below its mandated reserve of 2 percent in the wake of the Housing Crisis, and had to dip into the U.S. Treasury for a cash infusion of $1.7 billion. But outgoing...
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January 9th, 2017

USDA Income Limits for 2017

Posted by at 9:33 am

This article outlines the income limits for USDA financing in 2017 for each county throughout Washington State. The USDA Rural Housing program is a wonderful zero down payment home purchase option for many people in rural areas, and especially those in Northwest Washington, where most areas are eligible. As you can see in the overview of this program, one of the limiting factors of getting 100% financing with a USDA Rural Housing loan program is household income. As opposed to most programs which have a primary limited factor of a loan amount, USDA limits it’s loan programs by income limits. The USDA income limits are intended to limit the program’s availability to households that have no more than 115% of the area’s median family income. Unlike the debt-to-income ratio that’s used to calculate the borrower’s ability to repay their mortgage loan, the USDA income...
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October 19th, 2016

10 Things to Know During the Mortgage Loan Process – Question 10 – Where Will I be Closing, and How Much Do I Bring to Closing?

Posted by at 8:11 am

This is the last in a series of posts of 10 things to know during the mortgage loan process. Where will I be closing, and how much do I bring to closing? Question #10 is, where will I be closing, how much do I have to bring to closing, and can I bring a personal check? The answer is, closing will usually take place at an escrow company’s office, and that office is always listed on your residential purchase and sale agreement or sales contract – it’s usually who you made your earnest money check out to. Sometimes we will arrange for a mobile signer to meet you at your home or your office if that’s more convenient for you, but closing at the escrow office is more efficient for your loan process. To know how much to bring to...
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October 19th, 2016

10 Things to Know During the Mortgage Loan Process – Question 9 – How Will I be Kept Updated on the Status of my Loan?

Posted by at 8:09 am

This is the ninth in a series of posts of 10 things to know during the mortgage loan process. How will I be kept updated on the status of my loan? Question #9 is how will I be kept updated on the status of my loan? The answer to that is you will receive emailed status updates whenever we reach a particular milestone – appraisal ordered, appraisal received, loan approved, documents ordered, etc. Additionally, you will receive an email every Friday from my processor with a summary of the status of your file headed into the weekend. Our goal is to constantly communicate the status of your loan to you so you’ll never have to wonder where you are or what’s next. In the event you do have a question, you are welcome to call and ask. You’re always welcome...
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October 19th, 2016

10 Things to Know During the Mortgage Loan Process – Question 8 – Is the APR the Same as my Interest Rate?

Posted by at 8:04 am

This is the eighth in a series of posts of 10 things to know during the mortgage loan process. Is the APR the Same as my Interest Rate? Question #8 is regarding APR, which is quite often mistaken as your interest rate. This will be shown on your initial disclosure, and quite often the APR is higher than the actual note rate, or the actual quoted interest rate. There are two rates on the initial disclosure. The note rate is the rate used to calculate your monthly payment based on the figures shown. You may or not be locked at this rate. The “APR,” or annual percentage rate, is different than your note rate, or the rate shown on your initial disclosure, because the APR, in addition to interest, includes some of the additional costs of obtaining your financing. Simply...
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October 19th, 2016

10 Things to Know During the Mortgage Loan Process – Question 7 – Once I Sign the Application, am I Committed to Borrow the Money?

Posted by at 8:03 am

This is the seventh in a series of posts of 10 things to know during the mortgage loan process. Once I sign the application, am I committed to borrow the money? Question #7 is, once I sign my application, am I committed to borrow the money? Or a lot of people feel like once they’ve signed the application, they’re obligated to borrow. That is absolutely not the case; in fact, none of the documents that you have received from me until you’re actually at closing and sign your note, are contractual. So all we’re doing with an application is qualifying you – putting you in a position to buy a home. In other words, this is to get you pre-approved for the mortgage loan that you’re applying for. Previous Question – Next Question As always, should you have additional questions, please contact...
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October 19th, 2016

10 Things to Know During the Mortgage Loan Process – Question 6 – What are Origination and Discount Points?

Posted by at 8:02 am

This is the sixth in a series of posts of 10 things to know during the mortgage loan process. What are origination and discount points? Question #6 is, what are origination and discount points? Briefly speaking, origination and discount points are both a percentage of your loan. If we’re talking about 1 point, it would be 1 percent of the loan amount. If your loan amount was $200,000, then your origination or discount point would be $2,000. The origination point and discount point will affect your mortgage loan interest rate, usually by a 1/4 of a point for each point on fixed rate loans, and usually by 3/8 of a point on fixed to adjustable rate loans. By paying origination and discount points, you get a lower interest rate. Or, you could also ask us about loans with no origination and...
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