home buying: Manage These 3 Items Before Applying For A Mortgage - 04/11/18 05:55 AM
Mortgage lenders weigh the risk of getting their principal and interest paid back by looking at the qualities of the prospective borrrower. And due to the amount of money being requested and lent to purchase homes, those requirements can become daunting.  Working with a trusted and qualified mortgage professional makes this sometimes confusing process a little clearer.
To this end, there are three things that a potential homebuyer can do to prepare for the mortgage approval process.
Manage Debt And Credit Levels
For many homebuyers, managing their credit score is the biggest challenge. Mortgage lenders like buyers with strong credit. While getting strong credit … (1 comments)

home buying: What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – April 9th, 2018 - 04/09/18 07:07 AM
Last week’s economic reports included readings on construction spending, mortgage rates and weekly jobless claims. Other labor-related claims included ADP payrolls, Non-Farm Payrolls and the national unemployment rate.
Construction Spending Rises in February
Construction spending was higher in February according to the Commerce Department. Spending on building projects rose by 0.10 percent in February Reuters reported that construction spending rose 0.10 percent as compared to expectations of an 0.40 percent increase and January’s unchanged reading. Seasonal weather conditions typically cause lulls in building. Analysts said that residential construction spending increased by 0.10 percent to its highest level since January 2007.
Real estate analysts have … (1 comments)

home buying: What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – March 26th, 2018 - 03/26/18 08:00 AM
Last week’s economic releases included readings on new and pre-owned home sales and the Federal Open Market Committee’s customary post meeting statement. Fed Chair Jerome Powell gave his first press conference as Chair of the Federal Reserve and FOMC. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and first-time jobless claims were also released.
February Sales of Pre-Owned Homes Exceed Expectations, New Home Sales Fall Short
Sales of previously-owned homes exceeded expectations at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 5.54 million sales. Analysts expected a rate of 5.40 million sales based on January’s reading of 5.38 million sales.
Lawrence Yun, National Association of Realtors® Chief Economist, said that low … (0 comments)

home buying: What Changes Occurred In FHA And FNMA Rules During 2018? - 03/22/18 02:07 PM
The FNMA HomeReady Program
Those who are involved in the mortgage industry must keep updated on changes to FHA, and Fannie Mae (FNMA) loans. Since loan limits and other changes are often made annually, keeping up with these changes helps make sure consumers get the right information at the time of their application.
Many of the changes for 2018 are modest, but still impact existing, and new homeowners.
Changes To Loan Limit Amounts
FHA loan limits change on an annual basis as per the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008. Using this, the FHA is required to base the insured mortgage amounts on 115 … (1 comments)

home buying: 7 Excellent Ideas For Building An Eco-Friendly Home - 03/21/18 01:20 PM
In recent years, building an environmentally friendly home or updating an existing home to be more energy efficient has become much more mainstream. While building an entirely green residence isn’t always fiscally possible, simple eco-friendly building techniques and upgrades will ultimately lower your water and electricity bills.
These green home improvements will save you money in the long run, while also saving the planet. The following are some of the easiest ways to lower your carbon footprint when building or updating a home. 
Build or Purchase a Smaller Home
Smaller homes naturally have a lower impact on the environment. There is less square footage to cool and heat, … (1 comments)

home buying: Moving From An Apartment To A House? What To Remember About Your Lease - 03/16/18 01:06 PM
The major problem that the vast majority of buyers will run into – especially when purchasing their first home – has to do with a lease agreement that is still active with their apartment complex at the time of the purchase. If you locate the perfect home in February but your lease isn’t over until August, you can’t be expected to wait around.
But at the same time, the remainder of that lease agreement could represent thousands of dollars that you’ll be paying to essentially “live” in two different places at the same time.
Luckily, all hope is not lost. There are a … (2 comments)

home buying: The Benefits & Drawbacks Of Putting 20 Percent Down On A Home Purchase - 03/15/18 12:41 PM
Several generations ago, lenders required home buyers to have a 20 percent down payment in order to get a mortgage. While there were a few options out there for people who couldn’t save this substantial amount, the reality was that for the majority of people, the 20 percent down was a requirement.
It was the way to show that you were financially responsible enough for homeownership. And it was a strong way that the banks felt secure in making a home loan.
Today, however, homebuyers have many options available to them as they shop for a new home, and those mortgage options mean … (0 comments)

home buying: What Items Can Change My Mortgage Pre-Approval Status? - 03/15/18 12:38 PM
When you are purchasing a home, your lender may recommend you obtain a mortgage pre-approval before you find the home of your dreams. There are some benefits to being pre-approved before you find a home, but oftentimes, people confuse pre-qualifications with pre-approvals.
So the question many buyers have is what exactly is a mortgage pre-approval? In a nutshell, it’s when the lender provides you (the buyer) with a letter stating that your mortgage will be granted up to a specific dollar amount.
What Do I Need For Pre-Approval?
In order to obtain a pre-approval for your home purchase, you will have to provide your … (0 comments)

home buying: What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – March 12th, 2018 - 03/12/18 11:26 AM
Last week’s economic releases included reports on Non-Farm Payrolls, ADP payrolls, and the national unemployment rate. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and new jobless claims were also released.
Public and Private Sector Jobs Show Mixed Readings
ADP Payrolls reported 235,000 private sector jobs added in February as compared to January’s updated reading of 243,000 jobs added. Analysts estimated 205,000 private sector jobs would be added, but this was based on the original reading of 234,000 jobs added. February was the fourth consecutive month when private sector job growth exceeded 200,000 jobs.
According to the federal government, Non-Farm payrolls added 74000 public and private-sector jobs … (0 comments)

home buying: 3 DIY Projects That Will Keep You Busy Until the Weather Warms Up - 03/09/18 07:17 AM
Do you find yourself staring out the window, longing for an early sunrise, hot days and late evenings? With spring just around the corner, it might feel like summer is a lifetime away.
However, the good news is that you can be productive around the home while you wait for summer to arrive. Let’s take a quick look at three easy do-it-yourself projects that will keep you busy until the summer sun is shining.
Add A Splash Of Spring-y Color
As long as you are willing to do the prep work, painting is one of the most straightforward home improvement projects you can undertake. … (1 comments)

home buying: The Benefits of Using a Veterans (VA) Loan To Purchase Your Home - 03/07/18 10:08 AM
U.S. military veterans have opportunities to enjoy some richly-deserved benefits in other aspects of their lives, including some special options for financing their homes. VA loans may give active military personnel, retired veterans, and sometimes surviving family members of veterans the ability to purchase homes that might not prove available to them through more conventional mortgage loans.
But the mere fact that you can do a thing doesn’t necessarily mean that you should. In some circumstances, military home seekers may find other types of loan options more amenable to their specific needs.
If you’ve decided to pursue a mortgage loan during or following your military … (0 comments)

home buying: What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – March 5th, 2018 - 03/05/18 07:12 AM
Last week’s economic releases included readings on new home sales, pending home sales and Case-Shiller Home Price Indices. Construction spending and consumer sentiment reports were also released, along with weekly readings on average mortgage rates and new jobless claims.
New Home Sales Drop in January
New home sales were reported at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 593,000 sales in January according to the Commerce Department. Analysts expected a rate of 693,000 sales based on December’s upwardly revised rate of 643,000 sales of new homes. January’s reading was 7.80 percent lower than for December; January’s reading was one percent lower than for January of 2017.
The average … (0 comments)

home buying: Should You Get Pre-Qualified Or Pre-Approved For Your Home Purchase? - 03/01/18 10:36 AM
Often times, home buyers can be disappointed when they find their dream home only to discover they are not able to get a mortgage to purchase the property. There are methods that potential buyers can use to ensure this does not happen to them.
One of the options is to ensure you obtain a pre-qualification from your lender. It is important to understand the difference between a pre-approval and a pre-qualification. While both are helpful, they do not carry the same weight.
What are the differences between these options?
A pre-qualification allows a borrower to determine how much money they may be able to … (1 comments)

home buying: How To Use Your Down Payment to Achieve Your Home Buying Goals - 02/27/18 01:21 PM
When you are considering purchasing a home , understanding the lending guidelines regarding a down payment is important. 
Here are a few key tips to consider:
Gifting of a Down Payment
There are some programs that will allow you to use a gift for your home down payment. However, before you assume this, make sure you talk to your loan officer. Generally speaking, the lender will require the person making the gift to provide a letter stating the money was a gift and does not require repayment.
Windfalls as a Down Payment
When people hit the lottery or come into money through an inheritance, one of … (1 comments)

home buying: Questions and Answers Regarding Escrow Accounts - 02/21/18 10:50 AM
Whether you are purchasing a new home or you are considering applying to refinance your home, chances are the lender will require an escrow account. These accounts are often a source of confusion for homeowners. In reality, these accounts benefit the homeowner and help protect the lender.
What is an escrow account?
Escrow accounts are sometimes called “impound” accounts. These accounts are set up to help manage payments of property taxes and homeowner’s insurance. Depending on the individual requirements of the lender, you may be asked to pay as much as one-quarter of these upfront and they will be put into the account … (0 comments)

home buying: What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – February 20th, 2018 - 02/20/18 01:35 PM
Last week’s weeks economic releases included readings on the NAHB Housing Market Index, housing starts and building permits issued and consumer sentiment. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and new jobless claims were also released.
NAHB: Builder Confidence in Housing Market Holds Steady in February
The National Association of Home builders reported an index reading of 72 for its Housing Market Index in February. January’s reading was also 72; readings over 50 indicates that more builders than fewer are confident about housing market conditions.
Three readings comprising the overall NAHB HMI reading include builder confidence in current market conditions, which was one point lower in … (0 comments)

home buying: Down Payments 101: Is It Worth It to Put More Than 20 Percent Down? - 02/09/18 08:04 AM
Are you thinking of buying a new home this spring or summer? If so, you’re not alone. Many thousands of individuals and families alike will become homeowners this year. Whether you’re a first-time buyer or a seasoned veteran of the housing market, you probably know there are significant choices to make. One of the big decisions you will have to ponder is how much you want to invest in your down payment.
With that in mind, let’s try to answer the question of whether or not it is worth it to put more than 20 percent of the home’s price in your … (0 comments)

home buying: What Is Mortgage Insurance & How Does It Benefit Me? Let’s Take a Look - 02/02/18 10:00 AM
Are you in the market for a new home? If you are considering a mortgage, you may be curious about mortgage insurance, commonly referred to as PMI or MI. Let’s explore the topic of mortgage insurance, including how it works to reduce risk and how it benefits you as the mortgage borrower.
Mortgage Insurance = Risk Reduction
You might not know this, but the toughest part of the home buying process for many individuals and families is coming up with the required down payment. For example, if you were to buy a $200,000 home, you may want to invest $40,000 or $60,000 or … (0 comments)

home buying: What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – January 29, 2018 - 01/29/18 06:51 AM
Last week’s economic news included releases on new and existing home sales along with weekly readings on mortgage rates and first-time jobless claims.
Home Sales Fall Due to Slim Supply of Homes
December sales of previously-owned homes dipped to an 18-year low with a reading of 5.57 million sales on a seasonally-adjusted annual basis. Pre-owned home sales were expected to reach 5.73 million homes based on November’s downwardly- revised reading of 5.78 million sales. December sales were 3.6 percent lower month-to-month, but were 1.10 percent higher year-over-year.
Analysts credited the shortage of sales to tight inventories of homes for sale. Low inventories of homes … (0 comments)

home buying: Speed Your Mortgage Approval up by Following This Checklist - 01/25/18 03:46 PM
Have you finally found your dream home after months of searching, only to discover that the seller has received other offers? Few circumstances can raise your stress level as much as finding yourself in a bidding war against another buyer. However, being unprepared by not having your finances in order can make the situation even worse. Let’s take a quick look at a few ways that you can speed up your mortgage approval if you are in a hurry to buy your next home.
Pull Your Credit Report ASAP
The first step you will want to do is check your credit report so … (1 comments)

Joe Gonzalez, NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563 (CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029) Rainmaker large

Joe Gonzalez

NMLS# 126036 (610) 739-6563

King of Prussia, PA

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CrossCountry Mortgage, LLC NMLS #3029

Address: 625 W. Ridge Pike, Building C, Suite 100, Conshohocken, PA, 19428

Office: 610.355.8039

Mobile: 610.739.6563

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