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September 13, 2011

More Obama Mortgage Refinancing Programs

Category: Mortgage News,Mortgage Reform News – admin – 2:23 pm

According to the Wall Street Journal, nearly 25% of all U.S. borrowers could eventually gain access to an Obama mortgage refinance program to secure low rate mortgages. At issue are millions of so-called “underwater” borrowers who owe more than their home is worth and can’t refinance to current low rates using traditional means.

The Obama administration’s Home Affordable Refinance Program, also known as HARP, has sought to provide a “home refinance loan”  to some of these underwater borrowers who have no equity in their homes.  To qualify, borrowers must have a mortgage is backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

HARP currently only allows borrowers to refinance at lower rates with a mortgage that is at most 25% more than their home’s current value. However, that may soon change and millions more could be eligible. The FHFA, the regulator for Fannie and Freddie, said last week it is analyzing whether it would allow borrowers who are even more underwater those homeowners owing even more than that cap to participate.

Approximately 9.8 million mortgages or 25% of all U.S. homeowners have loan finances that are 20% or more underwater. RealtyTrac reported that almost half of all U.S. home loans 16 million of the 40 million U.S. mortgages are underwater. These statistics do not exactly motivate new buyers to go get 1st home-buyer loans even if the interest rates have never been lower.

Analysts at J.P. Morgan said Friday that they believe changes to HARP mortgage financing are coming, but those changes will happen in “weeks” rather than days.  However, both groups of analysts believe another idea that has been floated to encourage banks to refinance underwater mortgages is likely off the table.


August 17, 2011

Mortgage Rates in California

Category: California Mortgage News,mortgage rates – admin – 10:29 am

You need to be careful in securing mortgage rates in California. With the ups and downs in the housing markets, lenders are skittish in providing mortgages in certain areas. Moreover, when they do provide lending, they may charge higher mortgage rates in California areas with an unstable housing market. It is important to contact as many lenders as possible when applying for a home loan mortgage. You will see a wide range of interest rates from different California mortgage lenders for a single borrower on a particular house.

Common Mortgage Myths When Shopping for a Loan Online

Fallacy #1: The more lenders you contact the better your options will be. Contacting a dozen loan companies will not lower the California mortgage rate.

Fallacy #2: Each California lender has its own criteria for determining the interest rate they charge a borrower on a particular house.

Home prices range widely from one end of the state to the other. For example, the median home price in Santa County in June 2011 was $511,750. If you live in Shasta County, on the other hand, the median home price for that month was $155,000. The choice of community within the same county can have a significant difference as well. In Los Angeles County, median home prices in Brentwood were $1,286,500. If you live near Compton, the median price was $185,000. Of course, the type of housing differs greatly. However, when shopping for California mortgage rates in you need to understand your purchase and best mortgage refinance options.

With today’s real estate market, lenders are going to check you out carefully. In order to get the best California mortgage rates, they will expect you to have stellar income and very low debt to income rations. You will need a higher than average credit rating. To land those rates, your best option is to go shopping. Ask for quotes from several different lenders and see what they say. You may get the surprise of a wide range of rates from different lenders. Make sure you know about all the fees, discount points, and surcharges involved. An innocently low rate can hid extremely high fees.

Expect the Southern California mortgage lenders  to be extra careful before lending money. They will require income verification. That means bringing in pay stubs or business documents. Your employer may need to provide verification of employment. They will want to check your personal information thoroughly. All of this is in an effort to keep the lender’s risk at a minimum. In order to get the best home loan rates for borrowers in California, be open to what the lenders ask.


August 5, 2011

Lowest Mortgage Rates of the Year on Fears of Another Recession

Category: Freddie Mac,Mortgage Rate Report – – 12:39 pm

Home mortgage rates have dipped once again to a generational low. The mortgage refinance rate has actually fallen to its lowest point since Freddie Mac started tracking interest rates in 1971. Will these record low refinance rates entice homeowners to refinance again? Americans have proved time and time again that if you give them an opportunity to save money then they will move forward with a home refinance loan transaction.

According to Freddie Mac Market Survey, the fixed 30-year rates averaged 4.39% for the week ending August 4th while the 15-year fixed fell to 3.54% amid falling bond yields and signs of a weaker-than-expected economy.

Greg McBride, senior financial analyst at Bankrate said, “Anyone who refinances at these historically low interest rates is a beneficiary of concerns about the economy and poor results on Wall Street,” said. By now most people know that home mortgage rates are great, but the real question for most borrowers is, “Do they qualify?”


July 7, 2011

Rising Home Mortgage Rates?

Category: Published Articles – admin – 5:15 pm

Lenders reported home loan rates rose upward this week after remaining steady at 4.5% for the last month.  The fixed 30-year mortgage rates inched up to 4.625% according to Freddie Mac.  The mortgage rates rose from 4.50% a week earlier and back to where it was at the end of May, before the latest dip down. The interest rates tend to track the yield on the 10-year Treasury bond, which has moved higher since hitting a recent low June 24.

More and more we are noticing “refinance lenders” are extending no cost loans via their yield spread premium paid by the bank to the lender in an effort to cover the fees associated with the loan for the borrower.

Freddie Mac, which asks lenders each week about the terms they are offering to well-qualified borrowers, said the fixed 15-year mortgage rates were being offered at an average rate of 3.75% this week. Last week the rate averaged 3.69%.  The borrowers in the survey would have had solid credit, 20% down payments or home equity and would have paid 0.7% of the loan amount upfront on average in fees and discount points to the loan companies.

According to Freddie Mac’s chief economist, Frank Nothaft, “Interest rates on all mortgages outstanding in the 1st quarter of this year averaged just under 6%.” “With today’s rates, these homeowners who have the ability to refinance could shave $169 per month in interest payments on a $200,000, fixed 30-year mortgage.”

However, the trend of rising rates seemed likely to further cut into the already deflated mortgage refinance loan activity.  Since most homeowners have already refinanced their mortgages already have done so with rates below 5% for much of the last two years.  MBA published a report that indicated a 9.2% drop in new applications for home loan refinance transactions compared to the previous week. It should also be noted that refinance volume has now fallen for three consecutive weeks.

See the original article at the LA Times Online.


June 13, 2011

Getting a Home Loan with Bad Credit and No Money Down

Category: Mortgage Tips – admin – 5:40 pm

Getting a home loan with bad credit isn’t as easy as it used to be. However, it is still an option that you have. In order to get the most from your home loans, you need to make sure that you take the time to explore all of your options. Financing a home with low credit scores has changed a lot in recent years due to the huge mortgage crisis. By taking the time to learn about the process and find the best lenders, it will be easier for you to get the results that you need from your research. To get a home loan with bad credit, you were forced to pay a significantly higher interest rates with exorbitant pre-payment penalties.

In the past, a zero-down mortgage loan for first-time buyers was no big deal. In fact, in order to encourage buying, many lenders preferred to market those loans to people. Today, there is much more caution in lending to people who have less than perfect credit or who don’t have the money down to give. When you find a reputable broker or lender that you can trust, it will be easy for you to explore your options for home ownership and find the perfect home loan, regardless of your credit or the money that you have (or don’t have) to put down.

Buying a house with less than perfect credit is more critical now than ever for many people. Because of the recession, so many people are facing bad credit that it is often argued that it isn’t an accurate representation of people’s ability to pay anymore. Many claim that ‘everyone has bad credit’ these days. While the situation isn’t that extreme, there are certainly more people who have bad credit than ever before. In order to figure out how to buy a home with bad credit, you have to find lenders that will work with you and help you get the most from your lending experience.

  • No Money Down Home Loans
  • Buying Homes with Bad Credit
  • Bad Credit FHA Loans

Many people choose bad credit FHA loans, which are loans that are much more lenient and offered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). These loans give people more power to own a home when they might not otherwise be able to get approved. Of course, the reins have tightened here, as well, so a little research will be required for you to know whether you qualify or not. As long as you take the time to learn your options, it will be easy to get a home loan with bad credit.


May 23, 2011

Financing a Home in California

Category: California Mortgage News – admin – 5:36 pm

If you are looking for a housing bargain you will find no better opportunity for financing a new home in California. The fact is that property values have significantly fallen in the last five years and rates on California mortgage loans are at record lows. If you are unfamiliar with the stats of this state located in the West, then you should know that this is a state that has been battling bankruptcy for the last few years.  While the economic climate may have been better in the past, it remains a destination state for people looking to buy a home in Southern California because of the ocean, the weather and its Hollywood magnitude.

Will Low Interest Rates Help the California Housing Sector Recover?

When you are thinking about financing a home in California, the first thing you are going to want to consider is the kind of environment you want to live in. Remember that California actually offers wonderful urban and rural environments. Even the largest urban area in the state, Los Angeles offers a wide range of climates from the mountains to the ocean. California is one of the unique states where a person could snow ski and surf the same day. If you are looking to be separate yourself from the hustle and bustle of Southern California, consider Central or Northern California. What’s important when you are looking to finance a house in California is that you find a property that you can afford in an area that meets your needs.

If you are looking into California home financing, you are also going to want to be sure that shop for a loan online with local lending companies. There are many experienced California lenders that have the ability to service your needs. This means that you are going to want to make sure that you can make only the kind of monthly payments that truly work with your lifestyle. When you are considering a California home loan, you should think about going outside of the major national banks and loan companies, because there are great local lenders in the Golden State. This is smart because you will find the lowest mortgage rates that way. You can find a good lender that you can trust when you look on the internet. The internet can be a very valuable resource when it comes to finding a lender in the great state of California.  The FHA loan in California is the most popular home finance programs for first time home buyers in the state. For many people, the first step will be to sit down and go over finances. You will need to make sure that you have enough money after taking out all of the expenses, loans, and credit that you have to pay back. The most important thing is that you are honest about your financial situation.


May 18, 2011

Lenders Report Lower Mortgage Rates for Refinancing

Category: Mortgage News,Mortgage Rate Report – admin – 8:55 am

Just when you though it could not happen again –refinance applications shot up again last week.  Most financing insiders attribute it to the falling interest rates. Many homeowners are making a last ditch effort to improve with a mortgage rate refinance. The Mortgage Bankers Association announced lower than expected rates in their report of seasonally adjusted index of applications for home financing activity.  The MBA report monitors the demand for purchase home loans and refinancing, climbed 7.8% in the week ended May 13.

Can Mortgage Rates Get Any Lower?

The MBA’s seasonally adjusted index of house refinance applications rose 13.2%, while the gauge of loan requests for home purchases dipped 3.2%. The refinance share of loan activity increased to 66% of total applications, the largest amount since late January. Michael Fratantoni, MBA’s vice president of research said, “The 30-year fixed mortgage rate is now 53 basis points below its 2011 peak, and has decreased for five straight weeks.”  He also noted that the mortgage refinance activity has risen nearly 33%.” The 30-year fixed interest rates averaged 4.60% in the week and that was the lowest rates reported since November 2010, when low rate records were being set.


May 10, 2011

Nearly 30% of Homeowners Have Underwater Home Loans

Category: Mortgage News,Mortgage Relief News – admin – 9:01 am

Almost a third of borrowers have experienced a significant loss of value in their home as over 28% of homeowners are strapped with an “underwater mortgage”. Property values fell 3% from the prior quarter and are now nearly 30% lower than the June 2006 peak. Real estate data analytics firm Zillow said its home value index for the first three months of 2011 declined 8.2% from a year earlier to $169,600. The first-quarter decline was the steepest since 2008. Zillow now doesn’t expect home values to reach bottom before 2012, “at the earliest.” “Home value declines are currently equal to those we experienced during the darkest days of the housing recession,” Zillow Chief Economist Stan Humphries said. “With accelerating declines during the first quarter, it is unreasonable to expect home values to return to stability by the end of 2011. We did expect substantial payback from the home-buyer tax credits, which buoyed the housing market last year, but underlying demand post-tax credit, as well as rising foreclosures and high negative home equity rates makes it almost certain that we won’t see a bottom in home values until 2012 or later.”

According to Zillow the level of single-family homeowners who owe more on their home loan than the property is worth rose to a new high of 28.4% at March 31, up from 27% at the end of 2010. Home loan default rates increased during the first quarter as banks ended moratoriums related to last fall’s robo-signing debacle. Zillow also reported that one out of every 1,000 homes in the country was lost to foreclosure in March.


May 2, 2011

Mortgage Lending Demand Rising

Category: Mortgage News – admin – 3:15 pm

We have heard reports from MBA and local loan officer surveys that home loan guidelines have been less restrictive as of late, with companies seeing an increase in approvals for conventional and FHA mortgage submissions in the last few months. According to a Federal Reserve survey, mortgage lenders and banks loosened lending terms in the first quarter as they forecast improvement in the U.S. economy and companies sought more home loans. “The April survey indicated that, on net, mortgage lending standards and terms generally had eased somewhat further during the first quarter of this year,” the central bank said today in its quarterly survey of senior loan officers.

The Federal Open Market Committee renewed their pledge to hold the home loan rate low for an “extended period” and complete a $600 billion bond purchase program by the end of June. “Clearly, we are seeing a turn in the cycle,” said Mark Vitner, senior economist for Wells Fargo Securities LLC in Charlotte, North Carolina.

55% of American banks surveyed reported improvements in the credit quality of large and middle-sized home loan applicants, the Fed said. About 35% reported improvements in the credit quality of small firms, according to the survey. U.S. economic growth slowed in the first quarter to a 1.8% annual rate after a 3.1% pace in the final three months of 2010 as government spending declined and consumer purchases cooled. The economy will probably expand by 2.9% this year, according to a Bloomberg News survey of 74 economists in April. The survey of loan representatives at 55 American banks and 22 U.S. branches and agencies of foreign banks was conducted from March 29 to April 12, the Fed said.

Some categories of mortgage lending have shown signs of improvement in recent months. Commercial and industrial loans increased at an annual rate of 11.3 % in March, the largest gain since October 2008, according to Fed data, and the fifth consecutive monthly increase.  Lending to businesses is still far from its peak. Commercial and industrial loans rose to $1.25 trillion as of April 13 after reaching a trough of $1.21 trillion in October. Commercial real estate loans have dropped to $1.46 trillion from $1.73 trillion in December 2008, according to a separate Fed report.

Some banks also eased standards for mortgage loans, though demand was mixed, according to the survey. Consumer interest in home mortgages dropped. U.S. consumer borrowing increased for a fifth straight month in February on an increase in non-revolving credit as education loans expanded, the Fed said in a separate report last month. Credit climbed $7.62 billion, the most since June 2008, to $2.42 trillion. Revolving credit, which includes credit cards, and home equity lines of credit indicates Americans remain reluctant to take on more debt even as the economy and job market improve.

The Federal Reserve said last week that “the housing sector continues to be depressed.” Conforming and current FHA rates have risen since the Fed began its second round of asset purchases in November, rising to 4.8 % on April 21 for a 30-year fixed-rate loan from 4.17 % in November.


April 20, 2011

New Rules and Standards for Home Mortgage Loans

Category: Home Loan Guidelines,Published Articles – admin – 2:12 am

Before the housing bubble exploded, many home mortgage lenders and brokers were not operating with consumers’ best interest in mind.  They enabled and sometimes encouraged borrowers to take out mortgages with interest rates that shot upward after an introductory period even ones in which the principal balance rose over time. The Dodd-Frank mortgage reform bill passed last year aims to prevent these practices from coming back, mandating that lending companies ensure that all borrowers have the ability to pay back their home loans. As required by the Dodd-Frank law, the Federal Reserve on Tuesday proposed a set of minimum standards for home loans with no cost, creating an “ability-to-repay” requirement for most home loans, as part of an effort to make sure that U.S. lenders don’t return to the shady practices of the housing market boom.

Mortgage lenders would be able to meet that standard by verifying the consumer’s income or assets or making a “qualified mortgage” that requires the lender to calculate the maximum interest payment in the first five years. Home mortgages that meet that standard would have protections against lawsuits. They also would have restrictions on fees and would not allow the principal balance to grow.

The Fed also provided two more options for satisfying the “ability-to-repay” standard. Those affect lenders who are providing mortgage refinance loans with risky features and those in rural and other underserved areas. The Fed is seeking comments on the proposal by July 22. However, the central bank will not complete the process, as its authority over mortgage lending rules is scheduled to transfer to the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on July 21. At that point, the consumer bureau is charged with taking over the proposal.


March 14, 2011

Forecasting Mortgage Rates in 2011

Category: Mortgage Rate Report,Published Articles – – 12:54 pm

Most economists believe that rates will go higher in 2011.  So far, we have seen higher FHA rates, conventional rates, and mortgage refinance rates on the whole.  According to Lead Planet chief economist, Josh Emmons, “Expect rates to continue to inch up in 2011, before inflation kicks in, causing rates to jump significantly.” While a higher FHA insurance premium and other rates on those holding a 15-year mortgage or 30-year mortgage are expected to rise which means the economy is improving, as long as mortgage rate refinancing and other rates in regards to mortgages increase at a gradual, manageable pace.  Having said that, rates are still quite favorable, and you can still take advantage of fixed rate refinancing.  Read the original article online> Mortgage Refinance Rates Forecast for 2011.


March 10, 2011

Congress Votes to Kill FHA Short Refinance Program

Category: Mortgage Relief News – admin – 5:13 pm

According to Reuters, the U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday approved the first of four bills aimed at eliminating government mortgage relief programs for homeowners hurt by the housing crisis, though none are expected to clear the Senate. The House voted 256-171 to kill a popular Federal Housing Administration program that enabled borrowers who were stuck with an underwater mortgage to refinance into a better loan.  Specifically, the FHA short refinance allowed people who owe more than their home is worth to refinance into a government-backed 30-year fixed rate mortgage. Republicans argued the mortgage relief program was ineffective and not worthy of taxpayer support and the vote to kill the program broke largely along party lines.


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