Tag Archives: Fannie Mae

Help For Underwater Or Nearly Underwater Homeowners – Have You Heard Of HARP?

14 Feb

Help For Underwater Or Nearly Underwater Homeowners – Have You Heard Of HARP? So exactly what is HARP?  Well HARP stands for “Home Affordable Refinance Program”.   The HARP program is a federal government program that was designed to help underwater or nearly underwater homeowners to refinance their homes.  The refinance enables an underwater homeowner to refinance their mortgage into a fixed loan with a lower monthly payment.

Traditionally, if you owed more than your home was worth, you would not have been able to get traditional refinancing.   The HARP program will help you refinance your home even if the value of your home has declined.  This program is not for people who simply cannot afford their current home.

Who Is Eligible? You must meet all of the following guidelines in order to qualify.

• Your mortgage must be owned or guaranteed by Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae

• Your mortgage must have sold to Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae on or before 5-31-09

• Your mortgage cannot have been previously refinance under HARP unless it is a Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae loan that was refinanced sometime during March 2009 and May 2009

• The current loan to value (LTV) ratio must be greater than 80% – 125%

• You must be current on your mortgage at the time of refinance

• You must have a good payment history over the last 12 months

• You still have to qualify income and credit wise

HARP 2.0

On October 24, 2011, President Obama announced an overhaul to the HARP program in hopes of helping more underwater homeowners.    Remember, though, that you will only be eligible for HARP if your mortgage is held by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac.  Ask your mortgage company if they participate in the HARP program.

Here are some of the changes to the original HARP program.  This new program is commonly referred to HARP 2.0

• There are no underwater limits

• You will now be able to refinance no matter how far the value of your home has dropped

• You will no longer have to get appraisals and underwriting

• It  contains modified fees.  Some risk based fees for homeowners who refinance into a shorter term loan will be eliminated or modified

• The deadline for this program has been extended through December 31, 2013

HARP 2.0 is a great option for qualified homeowners that want to take advantage of the lower interest rates that are currently available.  Talk to your realtor for more details about HARP 2.0 to see if this type of program is right for you.

About the Author:  Millie Gil has been a successful Licensed Real Estate agent for over 25 years in Florida.  Millie is Vice President of Bold Real Estate Group, a boutique agency committed to concierge personalized service for discerning buyers, sellers and renters of residential and commercial properties.  For more information please forward your request to communityinfo@comcast.net

Serving Locally and Globally.  View thousands of new and resale homes:  www.Northeast-Florida-Relocation.comwww.BoldRealEstateGroup.com,  www.NewYork-Florida-RealEstate.com, www.PGAVillage-Homes.com a Golf Style Private Community,  www.TheCascadesAtStLucieWest.com  a 55+ Resort Lifestyle Community, www.HealthcareRelocationServices.com

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Bid Farewell To Low Costs Mortgages?

25 Oct

Bid Farewell To Low Costs Mortgages?  For years the government guaranteed home loans giving potential homebuyers the push they needed to get into a new home. Now we take a step backwards because it’s beginning to get a lot more difficult.

Everyone agrees that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac must go. The aim right now is to shrink government-backed loans until they’re relatively scarce. The government has already reduced the loan limits, on a sliding scale nationwide. The current loan limits are $729,750 but will soon top out at $625,500.

So what does this really mean for homebuyers? The most significant change will be the impact on FHA homebuyers.
• Stricter home buying standards
• Higher interest rates
• Higher down payments
• Most potential buyers who once qualified for a FHA loan will be shut out

The largest pool of home mortgages went to FHA-qualified borrowers, who were only required to place three percent down. Without government backing, it’s likely everyone will need a minimum of five to ten percent down. And while the Federal Housing Administration will still be around, guidelines for borrowers will be moving more in line with the private sector.

As everyone has seen, it’s become challenging to acquire a loan because lenders are unwilling to bear the risk. For them to take on more risk, their requirements will change.

The current FHA loan requirements include;
• Two Years of steady employment, preferably with same employer.
• Last two years income should be the same or increasing.
• Credit report should typically have less than two thirty day late payments in last two years with a minimum credit score of 675 or higher.
• Bankruptcies must be at least two years old, with perfect credit since discharge.
• Foreclosures must be at least three years old, with perfect credit since.
• Your new mortgage payment should be approximately 30% of your gross (before taxes) income.

These are some of the most basic of FHA loan requirements. However, the upcoming changes will also affect home buyer’s closing costs. Lenders will undoubtedly ask to charge higher fees to accommodate more risk.

Right now, many fees in connection with a mortgage loan are regulated by the FHA, however, if more loans are backed privately, lender’s will argue that these fees must increase.

The fees that will probably increase include;

• Loan Origination: This fee is usually known as a loan origination fee but sometimes is called a “point” or “points.” It covers the lender’s administrative costs in processing the loan. FHA regulates this fee to a maximum of 1% of the loan amount. Often this is expressed as a percentage of the loan. Generally, the buyer pays the fee, unless otherwise negotiated.

• Credit Report Fee: This fee covers the cost of a credit report, which shows your credit history. The lender uses the information in a credit report to help decide whether or not to approve your loan and how much money to lend you. Typically $50 – $100

• Mortgage Broker Fee: Fees paid to mortgage brokers

• Underwriting Fee: Fee charged by investor for underwriting the submitted loan file and all of its paperwork.

Bottom line – do your homework and seek out the advice of your realtor for financing recommendations.

If you are considering buying or selling property, planning to relocate, looking for Vero Beach homes for sale, or looking for any other information about real estate in Vero Beach, or the surrounding areas, you have come to the right place. This complete Vero Beach real estate resource offers everything you will need: access to property listings with photographs and virtual tours, home valuation tools, and real estate articles to help guide you through the home buying or selling process.  Bold Real Estate Group can assist you with buying, selling or renting a home, find information about Vero Beach communities , schools, real estate market conditions, recreation and much more!

About the Author:  Millie Gil has been a successful Licensed Real Estate agent for over 25 years in Florida.  Millie is Vice President of Bold Real Estate Group, a boutique agency committed to concierge personalized service for discerning buyers, sellers and renters of residential and commercial properties.  For more information please forward your request to communityinfo@comcast.net

View thousands of new and resale homes:  www.Northeast-Florida-Relocation.comwww.BoldRealEstateGroup.com,  www.NewYork-Florida-RealEstate.com, www.PGAVillage-Homes.com a Golf Style Private Community,  www.TheCascadesAtStLucieWest.com  a 55+ Resort Lifestyle Community, www.HealthcareRelocationServices.com

5 Reasons To Buy a Home In Cascades Community Now

15 Oct

5 Reasons to buy a home in Cascades community now.  With prices declining in many markets, it now makes the cost of buying a home a better financial deal than renting. However, many potential homebuyers are transfixed on the market, wanting to believe prices will drop lower. The question is how low do you expect home prices to fall?

Now is the right time to buy in Cascades and here are some great reasons to contact Bold Real Estate Group now;

• Renting isn’t such a great deal. This is all about Economics 101: Demand for rentals the past few years has increased  — a consequence of foreclosures and fewer existing renters making the decision to buy  –  and supply hasn’t kept up as there has been little new construction since the financial crisis hit. That’s pushing up rental prices.

• Mortgage rates are at historic lows. Right now the average mortgage rate hovers around 4.6 percent on a 30-year fixed rate mortgage which is beyond dirt cheap.  While many mortgage lenders advertise fire-sale cheap rates that are lower than four percent, the fees almost double to that of the averaged rate loans.

• There is far less competition for buyers. There may be plenty of potential homebuyers at open houses these days, but the anemic sales pace is proof that there are fewer serious buyers looking to make a deal. That makes it less likely you’ll find yourself in a bidding war today. It also means you can negotiate more effectively with eager sellers.  Wait to dive in and you could find yourself in a more crowded pool of buyers.

• Qualifying for a mortgage is likely to get harder, not easier. The goal of Washington in the coming years is to shift more of the mortgage market out of the hands of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and into the hands of the private market. It is admittedly too early to know when and what that transition might look like. But whether the government backing is scaled down or disappears all together, that means higher borrowing costs. Moreover, there’s already a new federal regulation being considered that would require banks that want to keep selling 100 percent of their mortgages to Fannie and Freddie to hold borrowers to tougher lending standards.

Its common sense that potential homebuyers want the best price possible but the market is at the lowest it’s been in over 30 years. Wait much longer and you may be spending hundreds more on a monthly mortgage loan.

About the Author:  Millie Gil has been a successful Licensed Real Estate agent for over 25 years in Florida.  Millie is Vice President of Bold Real Estate Group, a boutique agency committed to concierge personalized service for discerning buyers, sellers and renters of residential and commercial properties.  For more information please forward your request to communityinfo@comcast.net

View thousands of new and resale homes:  www.Northeast-Florida-Relocation.comwww.BoldRealEstateGroup.com,  www.NewYork-Florida-RealEstate.com, www.PGAVillage-Homes.com a Golf Style Private Community,  www.TheCascadesAtStLucieWest.com  a 55+ Resort Lifestyle Community, www.HealthcareRelocationServices.com

Home | Sign-up for a Tour! | Homes For Sale | Homes Short Sale | Search Foreclosures | Open House | Homes For Rent | Renter’s Insurance | Cascades Resources | Cascades Events | Community Tour | Home Virtual Tour | Driving Directions | Cascades Q & A | Cascades Floorplans | Cascades HOA | Community News | Community Providers | Cascades BLOG | Buyer’s Resources | Dream Home Finder | Search MLS | Home Inspection | Home Warranty | Florida Relocation | Property Taxes | Tax Estimator | Insurance Quote | Buy A Short Sale | Seller’s Resource | Market Analysis | Short Sale Inquiry | Our Commitment | Outbound Relocation | Sold Homes Report | Jobs Opportunity | Senior Care Living | Workforce50.com | Retired Brains | Tradition | The Vineyards | Kings Isle 55+ | Magnolia Lakes | Sawgrass Lakes | Lake Forest | Lake Charles | Tesoro Homes | The Club SLW | Belmont SLW | Country Club Estates | Lakes At SLW | Viscaya Falls | PGA Village | Verano PGA | Seasons 55+ | Paradise Villas 55+ | Tampa Homes | Ocala Homes | Naples Homes | Fort Myers Homes | Jacksonville Homes | Ponte Vedra Homes | Orlando Homes | New Developments | Discovery Tours | Costa Rica Homes | Vero Beach 55+ | Florida Package | Costa Rica Package | Real Estate Glossary | Golf Course Finder | FREE Moving Quote | Market eNewsletter | Currency Converter | FREE Credit Score | Airport & Flights | About St. Lucie West | Connect Utilities | Global News | Books WebStore | Retirement Homes By State | Local Hospitals | Dining Guide | St. Lucie County Profile | New Developments | Cost of Living Data | Taxes by State | For Buyers | For Sellers | Homeowners | Mortgage Calculator | Mortgage Rates | Loan Quote | Get Pre-Approved | Mortgage Articles | Lending Sources | Financing Terms | St. Lucie County | Martin County | Palm Beach County | Indian River | Broward County | Brevard County | Okeechobee County | Miami-Dade County | Referral Network | Real Estate Career | Real Estate School | Guest Bloggers | Contact Us | Testimonials | About Us | Our Blog | About Florida | Se Habla Español | Why Use A REALTOR® | North Florida Homes | Privacy Policy | Florida New Developments

7 Steps to Take Before You Buy a Home

15 Aug

7 Steps to Take Before You Buy a Home

By: G. M. Filisko

Published: February 10, 2010

By doing your homework before you buy, you’ll feel more content about your new home.

1. Decide how much home you can afford

Generally, you can afford a home priced 2 to 3 times your gross income. Remember to consider costs every homeowner must cover: property taxes, insurance, maintenance, utilities, and community association fees, if applicable, as well as costs specific to your family, such as day care if you plan to have children.

2. Develop your home wish list

Be honest about which features you must have and which you’d like to have. Handicap accessibility for an aging parent or special needs child is a must. Granite countertops and stainless steel appliances are in the bonus category. Come up with your top-five must-haves and top-five wants to help you focus your search and make a logical, rather than emotional, choice when home shopping.

3. Select where you want to live

Make a list of your top-five community priorities, such as commute time, schools, and recreational facilities. Ask your REALTOR® to help you identify three to four target neighborhoods based on your priorities.

4. Start saving

Have you saved enough money to qualify for a mortgage and cover your downpayment? Ideally, you should have 20% of the purchase price set aside for a downpayment, but some lenders allow as little as 5% down. A small downpayment preserves your savings for emergencies.

However, the lower your downpayment, the higher the loan amount you’ll need to qualify for, and if you still qualify, the higher your monthly payment. Your downpayment size can also influence your interest rate and the type of loan you can get.

Finally, if your downpayment is less than 20%, you’ll be required to purchase private mortgage insurance. Depending on the size of your loan, PMI can add hundreds to your monthly payment. Check with your state and local government for mortgage and downpayment assistance programs for first-time buyers.

5. Ask about all the costs before you sign

A downpayment is just one homebuying cost. Your REALTOR® can tell you what other costs buyers commonly pay in your area—including home inspections, attorneys’ fees, and transfer fees of 2% to 7% of the home price. Tally up the extras you’ll also want to buy after you move-in, such as window coverings and patio furniture for your new yard.

6. Get your credit in order

A credit report details your borrowing history, including any late payments and bad debts, and typically includes a credit score. Lenders lean heavily on your credit report and credit score in determining whether, how much, and at what interest rate to lend for a home. Most require a minimum credit score of 620 for a home mortgage.

You’re entitled to free copies of your credit reports annually from the major credit bureaus: Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion. Order and then pore over them to ensure the information is accurate, and try to correct any errors before you buy. If your credit score isn’t up to snuff, the easiest ways to improve it are to pay every bill on time and pay down high credit card debt.

7. Get prequalified

Meet with a lender to get a prequalification letter that says how much house you’re qualified to buy. Start gathering the paperwork your lender says it needs. Most want to see W-2 forms verifying your employment and income, copies of pay stubs, and two to four months of banking statements.

If you’re self-employed, you’ll need your current profit and loss statement, a current balance sheet, and personal and business income tax returns for the previous two years.

Consider your financing options. The longer the loan, the smaller your monthly payment. Fixed-rate mortgages offer payment certainty; an adjustable-rate mortgage offers a lower monthly payment. However, an adjustable-rate mortgage may adjust dramatically. Be sure to calculate your affordability at both the lowest and highest possible ARM rate.

More from HouseLogic

Learn how Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac mortgages can help you save on financing

Learn more about the costs of homeownership

Other web resources

Homebuyer counseling resources

Get a free credit report from each of the three credit reporting bureaus

G.M. Filisko is an attorney and award-winning writer who has thrice survived the homebuying process. A frequent contributor to many national publications including Bankrate.com, REALTOR® Magazine, and the American Bar Association Journal, she specializes in real estate, business, personal finance, and legal topics.

New Incentives To Buy A Fannie Mae Foreclosed Home By Bold Real Estate Group

24 May

Everyone has heard how good of a deal you can get when you purchase a foreclosed home but just how good is “good” and how do you negotiate a good deal?

Finding the Deals

Remember that negotiation dealings will vary depending on the current stage of the foreclosure process.

• First, to get a great deal you should consider fixer-upper foreclosed homes for a higher profit margin. Fix the property up and instantly you’ll increase the value in the home. This type of distressed property can be purchased under market value with a renovation loan to take care of needed repairs.

• Check prices in the neighborhood. Your realtor will do comparisons of the most recent six-month period. You’ll want to stay at least 20 percent below the median price of recent sales in that neighborhood.

• Search bank websites since many list their foreclosed properties for sale online.

• Look up government-owned listings. HUD and Fannie Mae, just to name a few, both list their foreclosed properties online. Once you find a home you’re interested in, your agent will make an offer through the representing agent of that property. But the departments warn that the homes are sold “as is” and after the sale is made, the government is not responsible for any repairs or problems.

Negotiating with the seller (banks)

Find important clues to cleverly negotiate with the banks;

• Days on the market: How long has the property been in the market?

• Offers received: How many offers have been received so far? You may not necessarily get an exact figure, but it does not hurt to ask. Is the foreclosed house under contract or are there any pending offers? Was any contract canceled? Was it due to a financing contingency or inspection?

• Condition of the foreclosed property: Age of the house, roof, appliances, air-conditioning unit, water heater, etc.
While a foreclosure seems like a good deal, foreclosures can come with some downsides including homes that have liens against them. It can also be difficult or downright impossible to inspect foreclosed homes in advance of their sale, which means there’s no time to check if the basement is flooded or if there are any appliances left.

So while its harsh, it’s still true that you can benefit from others misfortunes by seeking homes reclaimed by lenders. While foreclosed properties do involve risk the bargains are way-to-good to pass up.

About the Author: Millie Gil has been a successful Licensed Real Estate agent for over 25 years in Florida.  Millie is Vice President of Bold Real Estate Group, a boutique agency committed to concierge personalized service for discerning buyers, sellers and renters of residential and commercial properties.  For more information please forward your request to communityinfo@comcast.net

Servicing:  Port St. Lucie, Palm City, Jensen Beach, Stuart, Vero Beach,  Hutchinson Island, Fort Pierce,  Palm Beach, Jacksonville, Jacksonville Beach, Ponte Vedra Beach, Palm Coast, Neptune Beach, Amelia Island, Atlantic Beach, Fernandina Beach, Saint Johns, Saint Augustine, Daytona Beach, Fleming Island and New York real estate.

View thousands of listings  www.Northeast-Florida-Relocation.comwww.BoldRealEstateGroup.com,  www.NewYork-Florida-RealEstate.com, www.PGAVillage-Homes.com, www.TheCascadesAtStLucieWest.com, www.HealthcareRelocationServices.com

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