Tag Archives: Mortgage loan

Mortgage Debt Settlement Risks You Should Know

20 Mar

Mortgage Debt Settlement Risks You Should Know.  Buying a home is a wonderful feeling and there are several ways to purchase a home:  cash, rent to own or by entering into a mortgage.  Most people opt for a mortgage and for very good reason.  A mortgage is a good way to establish a good credit history and because it is the fastest way to buy a home.  Cash takes a long time to save; whereas, a mortgage will get you into your new home almost immediately.

There are many things to consider when deciding to purchase a mortgage.  Handling your debt properly now and into the future should be your first priority because a mortgage debt that has gotten out of control can have very serious repercussions for the home owner.  So make sure you think about your long term plans and goals before deciding on how much of a mortgage you can handle.

If you happen to find yourself in a position where you have to rely on a debt settlement to get out of your current situation then there are a few things you need to look out for.   Let’s talk about a few things that you need to be aware of before entering into your next mortgage loan.

1.Tax Caveats – You will need to remember that tax does apply to loans that are more than $600.  Many times the taxes are deducted from your loan before the funds are released

2.Bad Credit Reporting – Most lenders will report your payment history to all of the major credit bureaus.  If you have not paid your mortgage on time, this will most definitely affect all of your future borrowing potential to some degree.  Even missing one payment can have a negative effect on your credit history.  Your future purchases will no longer qualify for acceptance by prime lenders and you will be forced to use subprime lenders that offer a much higher rate.

3.Watch Out For Fraudsters – Many people are approached by scammers and are tricked into hiring them to handle their debt settlement.  The scammer will ask for a large upfront fee and then take off with your money and you will have little to no recourse when it comes to trying to get your money back.  Some legitimate debt settlement companies, although legitimate, their business practices are less than favorable to the borrower.  They are known to take advantage of unfortunate situations such as these.

4.Beware Of A Possible Lawsuit – Lawsuits are very common in debt settlement cases.  It does not matter what your situation is or how it came to be; lenders will not adjust your loan to meet your current financial problems.   So remember you can be sued for not paying your debt in full.  In addition,  this will have a negative impact on your credit history.

There is so much involved when it comes to a mortgage.  It is in your best interest to find a qualified realtor to stand by you and help you through all of the potential real estate pitfalls.

A realtor can be your best friend and could save you from making an innocent mistake just because of something you were not aware of.  Your realtor has many years of experience and is there to help you every step of the way.

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

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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The In’s And Out’s Of Locking In An Interest Rate

12 Jan

The In’s And Out’s Of Locking In An Interest Rate

Congratulations on your decision to buy a new home!  Buying a new home can be a very exciting time; however, there are many things to consider and many things to get done.   One of the most important things – if not the most important thing – when buying a new home is your choice of lenders and the interest rates they charge.   Get this wrong and it could cost you thousands of dollars over the life of your loan.

Whether you are buying a new home or just re-financing your current one, it is a good idea to do some comparison shopping for the best lender with the best rates.  A low interest rate isn’t the only thing you should consider when shopping for a loan.  You will also want to consider the terms of the mortgage, what the closing costs will be and you will want to check the reputation of your lender.  Remember, this is going to be your lender for quite possibly 30 years, so you want to make sure they are reputable.

Your real estate agent will be a huge help when it comes to lenders and loans.  They will be able to provide you with a list of lenders that have the best loan packages available and will be able to tell you what their qualifying requirements are.   Your realtor can also tell you which lenders are willing to go above and beyond the call of duty  to provide you with excellent service and the ones that will make sure everything goes smoothly from start to finish.

The first thing your lender and realtor will tell you is that you need to “Lock In” your interest rate.  What that means is that the lender will guarantee you the current interest rate with specific predetermined points and fees for a specific amount of time, usually 30 days.

So after you have applied for your mortgage loan, the rates will more than likely fluctuate from day to day and week to week.  Therefore, if you don’t want to risk losing that great current interest rate, you will need to ask for a rate lock from the lender.   This will lock in your interest rate.

Don’t worry, your real estate agent will be there to help you.   So don’t hesitate to pick up the phone and give them a call.  They are professionals with years of experience just waiting to help you through the home buying process and will be there for you every step of the way.

Having the right real estate agent means having an agent who is committed to helping you buy, sell or rent  your home with the highest level of expertise in your local market. This commitment level has helped me build a remarkable track record of delivering results.

Nothing is more exciting to me than the gratifying feeling I get from helping people meet their real estate needs. You can count on me to always do what’s in your best interest. I pride myself on being honest, trustworthy, and knowledgeable in the real estate market. I know how important it is to find your dream home. Therefore I will make it my responsibility to help you achieve those goals.

Whether you are an experienced investor or a first time buyer, I can help you in finding the property of your dreams. Please feel free to browse my website or let me guide you every step of the way by calling or e-mailing me to set up an appointment today.

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

11 Jan

What Is Escrow And How Does It Work?

So what exactly is escrow.  If you have recently bought a house or are thinking about buying a house, you will need to know what escrow is.  Here is a quick overview of what escrow is and how it works.

Escrow is a deposit that is held by a third party or escrow agent.  So in other words, an escrow deposit, is the money you put down on your new home.  Your escrow deposit is held in a secure location by a neutral third party.

The escrow agent works for both the lender and the buyer and their purpose is to carry out the instructions that both parties have agreed on.  The escrow agent will release your money once all of the terms of your agreement have been upheld.

Your mortgage lender will more than likely require you to open an escrow account to make sure there is enough money to cover your insurance and taxes.  The way this works is you will make an initial deposit to your escrow account followed my monthly installments.  Most lenders will arrange to have this included in your monthly mortgage payments.  When your taxes and insurance premiums come due the escrow agent will release the funds to the appropriate party.

The reasoning behind having an escrow account is to protect the lender in the event you default on your payments.  The lender is then protected from external perils that could arise as a result of you not paying your taxes or your insurance causing the lender to be left with no collateral.

An escrow account also helps the buyer because it allows you to spread your payments  evenly over a 12 month period.  Just imagine if your yearly taxes were $3000 and your yearly insurance was $1400, that would leave you owing $4400 in one lump sum.

Your escrow amounts could change from year to year due to the possible increase in your taxes and insurance.  Therefore, your lender will review and adjust your escrow amounts annually and you will be given a revised mortgage payment if your taxes or insurance go up.   On the same token; however, if your taxes or insurance rates go down, you will be given a refund.

Sometimes an escrow requirement can be waived.  Some buyers prefer to pay all of their taxes and insurance directly.  Your lender may allow you to do this if your down payment is more than 20% but they will more than likely raise your interest rate slightly to compensate.   One thing to remember is that once you begin putting your funds into an escrow account, it can be difficult to cancel this process so make sure that you fully understand what your options are before doing anything.

Well, I hope that I have fully explained what escrow means and how it works.  However, if there is anything you don’t understand or anything you have questions about, please call your realtor.  Your realtor has many years of experience with these kinds of things and will be more than happy to assist you.

Having the right real estate agent means having an agent who is committed to helping you buy, sell or rent  your home with the highest level of expertise in your local market. This commitment level has helped me build a remarkable track record of delivering results.

Nothing is more exciting to me than the gratifying feeling I get from helping people meet their real estate needs. You can count on me to always do what’s in your best interest. I pride myself on being honest, trustworthy, and knowledgeable in the real estate market. I know how important it is to find your dream home. Therefore I will make it my responsibility to help you achieve those goals.

Whether you are an experienced investor or a first time buyer, I can help you in finding the property of your dreams. Please feel free to browse my website or let me guide you every step of the way by calling or e-mailing me to set up an appointment today.

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

The Facts About Financing A Second Home

11 Jan

The Facts About Financing A Second Home

Buying a second home is very exciting.  This may be a home in the place where you vacation every year, somewhere that you like to  go and relax and enjoy your time off.   Perhaps you are looking for an investment opportunity.  Whatever the case may be, here are some things to consider when it comes time to buy and finance your second home.

• It is a great time to buy a second home – the mortgage rates are low
• If you have a strong credit history you are guaranteed the best rates
• You can use the equity in your current home as a down payment or closing costs
• Lenders are offering some really affordable loan options right now
• Remember, the guidelines for how much you can quality for is based on 28% of your gross income
• If you are a long term homeowner, you may be able to borrow more than you think

A second home as an investment property is a fantastic idea.  If you are looking for a way to save money for your retirement,  this is it.  A second home forces you to put away money every month in the form of a mortgage payment.  When it comes time to retire, you can sell it or use the income, which could be significant if you have it paid off.

Another reason a second home as part of your retirement plan is a good idea is due to the fact that your investment money is subject to less income tax and the interest and taxes may be deductible.   So planning ahead could pay off in a big way.

You must make sure; however, that you have enough money to cover the mortgage payments plus any additional expenses such as repairs, yearly taxes and insurance, if they are not a part of your mortgage payment, and anything else that may arise.  The good news is if you buy the right house at the right price, your rental property should always stay rented.

So if you are able, don’t hesitate to call your real estate agent and let them know that you are ready to buy a second home and they will move heaven and earth to help you find a home that fits your needs.  Your realtor has “inside information” if you will, about all types of homes in all types of markets and some that are not even on the market yet.  So take advantage of their wealth of knowledge and the next thing you know you will be vacationing in your second home or enjoying the benefits of all that extra income!

Having the right real estate agent means having an agent who is committed to helping you buy, sell or rent  your home with the highest level of expertise in your local market. This commitment level has helped me build a remarkable track record of delivering results.

Nothing is more exciting to me than the gratifying feeling I get from helping people meet their real estate needs. You can count on me to always do what’s in your best interest. I pride myself on being honest, trustworthy, and knowledgeable in the real estate market. I know how important it is to find your dream home. Therefore I will make it my responsibility to help you achieve those goals.

Whether you are an experienced investor or a first time buyer, I can help you in finding the property of your dreams. Please feel free to browse my website or let me guide you every step of the way by calling or e-mailing me to set up an appointment today.

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

Making Sense Of Points, Rates And Fees

11 Jan

Making Sense Of Points, Rates And Fees

You have just found the home of your dreams and the seller has accepted your offer.  Now the fun begins.  You keep hearing terms like “buy down”, “discount points”, “purchase points, but you have no idea what all this means.  Do they all mean the same thing or is each term something different?  This is where your realtor comes in.  Of course you can always call your lender; however, your realtor is the one you have been dealing with and the one that will be more than happy to explain everything to you.

Purchase Points – which are also known as a buy down or discount points.  Points is a term used to define an amount of money given to the lender at closing to lower your interest rate for your mortgage loan.   Every point is equal to one percent of the total amount of your loan.  So if you have a mortgage that is $100,000 then one point would equal $1000.  Every point you buy will lower your interest rate by a certain percentage.   Just remember, the more points you buy, the more money you are going to have to come up with at closing.

The question is – is it smarter to buy points or to hold on to your money?  Well, that depends on how long you plan on staying in that home and of course what you can afford to pay.  If you are planning on staying in this home for more than five years then my advice is for you to buy as many points as you can.  Because this will lower your monthly payments and will save you interest over the life of the loan.

Interest Rates – interest rates fluctuate daily, and when you apply for a loan it doesn’t mean that the rate you were quoted that day is the same rate you will get at closing unless you “lock in” your interest rate.  Locking in your interest rate will give you a guaranteed rate within a specific time frame.  Most lock in periods are for 15, 45 or 60 days.   Keep in mind that the longer you lock in your rate the more it will cost you because a lender takes more of a risk to lock you in for a longer period of time.

Fees – since when have you ever bought anything that did not have some sort of fee associated with it?  Well, a mortgage is no different.   Some of the fees you can expect are:  title fees, underwriting fees, land survey fees,  appraisal fees etc.  Each lender is different and will work your loan differently; some lenders will charge you lower fees but a higher interest rate.

So before you sign on the dotted line, make sure you do your homework and most definitely ask your realtor to let you know who they have had the best experiences with.  Make sure there are no hidden fees and make sure that you fully understand what costs are involved and what your obligations are for the life of your loan.

Having the right real estate agent means having an agent who is committed to helping you buy, sell or rent  your home with the highest level of expertise in your local market. This commitment level has helped me build a remarkable track record of delivering results.

Nothing is more exciting to me than the gratifying feeling I get from helping people meet their real estate needs. You can count on me to always do what’s in your best interest. I pride myself on being honest, trustworthy, and knowledgeable in the real estate market. I know how important it is to find your dream home. Therefore I will make it my responsibility to help you achieve those goals.

Whether you are an experienced investor or a first time buyer, I can help you in finding the property of your dreams. Please feel free to browse my website or let me guide you every step of the way by calling or e-mailing me to set up an appointment today.

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

Should I Buy A Home If Interest Rates Rise?

10 Jan

Should I Buy A Home If Interest Rates Rise?

You may ask this question and get ten different answers.    Just because the interest rates have risen does not necessarily mean it is not the right time to buy.  If you hold off, this mistake could cost you thousands.

So how do you know when it’s ok to buy a home if you know the interest rates are rising?  Well, that is a good question and here are some facts to help you sort through it all.

1.  Consider specialty loan options

• Hybrid mortgages – this is a mortgage loan that will offer a very low rate for a fixed amount of time, usually 5-7 years, then the loan will revert to an adjustable rate mortgage.  This sounds a bit risky; however, if you are not planning on staying in your current home for more than five years, this is a fantastic option for you

• An ARM  loan with an option that would allow it to be converted to a fixed rate loan when at the borrowers discretion

• An interest only loan – this is a loan that requires you to make payments to the interest only for a set number of years, then it converts to an amortized loan with interest and principal payments each month

2.  Talk to a tax advisor – before you do anything, make sure you talk to your tax advisor about whether or not one of these types of loans is right for you.

3.  Ask for a Buy Down – this is a fee paid at closing to get a lower interest rate.  Sometimes a motivated seller will be willing to paying some if not all of the buy down just to get the deal.

4.  Ask the seller to pay some or all of the closing costs.  Quite frequently the seller’s closing costs are used as a write off by the buyer.  (Check with your tax advisor before doing this)

5.  Lower prices mean lower loan amounts so don’t let higher interest rates chase you off.  With some skillful negotiating your realtor can help you secure an unbelievable deal  saving you loads of money.  So a high interest rate does not have to mean more money.

Remember, many people drop out of the home buying market when the interest rates go up, but as you can see this could be a very costly mistake.  Some of the best mortgage loans come about when the lenders are competing for your business and when sellers are realizing that there are more homes for sale than there are buyers.

So talk with your realtor and come up with a game plan to help you find your dream home.  Don’t let rising interest rates stop you, use it to your advantage!

Having the right real estate agent means having an agent who is committed to helping you buy, sell or rent  your home with the highest level of expertise in your local market. This commitment level has helped me build a remarkable track record of delivering results.

Nothing is more exciting to me than the gratifying feeling I get from helping people meet their real estate needs. You can count on me to always do what’s in your best interest. I pride myself on being honest, trustworthy, and knowledgeable in the real estate market. I know how important it is to find your dream home. Therefore I will make it my responsibility to help you achieve those goals.

Whether you are an experienced investor or a first time buyer, I can help you in finding the property of your dreams. Please feel free to browse my website or let me guide you every step of the way by calling or e-mailing me to set up an appointment today.

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

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