Sunday, May 31, 2015

How Long Does it Take To Get Approved For a Mortgage?

How Long Does it Take To Get Approved For a Mortgage?

Congratulations, you're about to buy your first home!  The big question remains, though: how long does it take to get approved for a mortgage?  Here are some ways you can determine that:

Shopping For Loans: 14 Days

Before you commit to a mortgage, you are going to need to do a significant amount of research to determine what type of loan you want and ensure you're receiving the best deal possible.  To do this, start by looking at price quotes online for different factors (higher/lower down payment, variable time-length) and determine which is the best option for you.
After you do this, you will want to schedule meetings with several lenders in your area to confirm their lowest available rates.  You are able to pull your credit score several times within a two-week period without having it affect your credit score, so don't worry about that.

Get Pre-Qualified: 3 Days

Once you've decided on a lender, it's time to get pre-qualified!  The lender will look into your financial situation and give you their best estimate of how much of a home you can afford.  This process can take anywhere from one to three days, depending on how much paperwork you have to process.

Get Pre-Approved: 7 Days to 60 Days

Getting a pre-approval is one step further than a pre-qualification, because your lender needs to verify all of the financial information you gave them in order to become pre-qualified.  This process can drastically vary in length depending on if you're self-employed, have other investment properties, have gone through a divorce or filed for bankruptcy, etc.

Loan Approval: 4 Days to 21 Days

Once you have a pre-approval letter, you are now officially allowed to make an offer on a home!  Once you have done this, your lender will need to do an appraisal of the home.  This is done to make sure that you're purchasing the home at market value in order to protect both you and the lender.  The appraisal scheduling process could take up to two weeks, and the approval will follow within a few days.
Once you've been approved, you're in the clear!  As you can see, there are a lot of variable factors that affect how quickly you're approved for a loan.  In order to expedite the process, you'll want to have your files and documents well-organized and ready for the loan approval process.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Short Sale

Deed in Lieu of Foreclosure Explained

You may have heard the term, "Deed in Lieu of Foreclosure."  Essentially, a "deed in lieu of foreclosure" is when a borrower gives all of the property to a lender in an effort to avoid a foreclosure on a defaulted loan.  While this seems fairly drastic, this can help the borrowers avoid the financially and emotionally taxing efforts associated with foreclosure.
Many borrowers choose this option because they are immediately released from the debt associated with their defaulted mortgage.  In addition, a borrower's credit score will be less damaged by a deed in lieu of foreclosure as oppose to going through a foreclosure.
Many lenders prefer this option, because it allows them to reduce the financial burden and time associated with repossessing a home and usually prevents the borrower retaliation that is common with foreclosure proceedings.  However, if there are any liens associated with the home, the lender will much prefer to foreclose upon the home as it would make the title clearing process much easier.
When proceeding with a deed in lieu of foreclosure, both the borrower and the lender must enter into the agreement in good faith and voluntarily.  During this process, the fair market value of the home is considered when reaching the agreement; the lender will often ask the borrower to write a letter expressing their voluntary participation in the agreement.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Purchasing a Home

Purchase a Home

Purchasing a home is a very exciting time, and being well prepared will help you make better decisions. Take this opportunity to learn more about home buying and the mortgage process. Below and throughout this site, you will find information that will help you with the purchase of your new home.

Am I really ready to buy?

Buying a home offers many advantages, one of the most significant being that it allows you to build equity (ownership) when you pay your mortgage each month. A common myth is that monthly mortgage payments are more expensive than rent. But, in many cases, mortgage payments can be even less than rent. When considering home ownership for the first time, you need to decide whether buying makes financial and practical sense for you right now or if you are better off renting. Consider both the advantages and disadvantages to renting as well as buying, and weigh the pros and cons for your particular situation.

How much “house” can I afford?

The first step toward finding the right home is to quickly compute your purchasing power and determine how much you can afford to pay each month. This saves you time by allowing you to focus on homes in your price range.
Some up front costs include:
Down payment: Typically ranges from 3-30% of the cost of the house. The more you can put down, the greater equity you will have in your home and the lower your monthly payment will be. For down payments less than 20% you may also need to pay mortgage insurance.

Closing Costs: Typically range from 2-6% of the loan amount depending on your area.

On-going Costs: Your housing costs can include the following:
  • Monthly mortgage payment
  • Homeowners insurance
  • Mortgage Insurance
  • If applicable - Flood Insurance
  • If applicable - Property taxes
  • Utilities
  • Maintenance