first time buyers: Reasons for Influx of buyers moving to North Carolina in 2015! - 01/13/16 09:53 PM
Why did so many buyers move to North Carolina in 2015?North Carolina consistently ranks very high in the annual United Van Lines Movers Study and in this article we share the reasons why so many buyers moved to NC in 2015.
Guess what?  The population continues to move away from the cold of the northeastern states to warmer areas and a popular destination is the southeastern coastal states of North Carolina, South Carolina,  and Florida as you can see on this map.  Almost every time we speak to someone from the Northeast, we hear comments like “I can’t wait to get away from this brutal cold weather” or … (2 comments)

first time buyers: First Time Buyers - Solving Credit Roadblocks to Homeownership - 01/01/16 09:40 PM
 Picture this scenario:  A happy couple or individual has never purchased a home but would love to be homeowners in the future, BUT…
*  There is not a lot of credit report experience or there are credit issues
*  Has no money in reserves or for down payment
*  Doesn’t have a budget in order to afford a house payment
*  Pays cash for rent most of the time or lives with family rent free
*  Doesn’t really understand how a realtor can help them find the right home
*  Has maybe heard of an FHA loan but that is about it for mortgages
*  Doesn’t know how to be prepared for a mortgage … (0 comments)

first time buyers: Unbelievable VA Success Story for an Active Duty, 1st Time Home Buyer! - 12/08/15 10:40 PM
Under 640 score, over 55% debt ratio, VA home loan purchase that needs to close in 33 days?  No way?  Yes, Way!! So often there are times when someone has some hurdles to overcome when purchasing a home and our team is one that will figure out a way to make the loan work if it can be.  We were just recently faced with the following scenario:
620 credit score 57% debt ratio No money down Active duty service member First time buyer Need to close in 33 days The buyer provided us with everything requested up-front which allowed us to obtain … (0 comments)

first time buyers: Watch out for the Holidays and what they can do to your credit scores! - 12/08/15 01:27 AM
“Do you want to put that on your charge card for a special discount?” or “If you open a charge card with us, you will save 30% off of today’s purchase!” is what you will hear at every department store you visit over the holidays.  Sounds great, right?Not when it comes to credit scores!  There are several ways that opening a new account and then charging your purchase on the card can lower your credit scores.  You would not believe how much a new $300 card with a $270 charge can do to your credit scores!
Here are the top ways a holiday trip to the … (0 comments)

first time buyers: Credit Tricks for Buying a Home! - 12/07/15 02:40 AM
Do you have limited, but good credit and want to buy a home with little to no money down?Our USDA guaranteed loan guidelines will allow for us to add nontraditional credit to a thin credit file in order to get approval for the buyer.
Check out these 2 USDA loan approvals for very limited, but good credit buyers that needed 100% financing.  Here are two scenarios below in which we were able to help:Buyer # 1:
First time buyer with very limited credit experience Only one trade line (a student loan) reporting on credit Rent paid on time for over a year Car insurance … (0 comments)

first time buyers: What are the Robeson County, NC 2015 Town Property Tax Rates? - 11/25/15 01:30 AM
What are the Robeson County, NC & Town Property Tax Rates?If you are looking to purchase a home in Robeson County NC, you can research the property tax rates, tax bills, and values here. 
Search for Robeson County, NC deeds and other real estate public records
Look up property tax value or tax bills here
Tag fees: Lumberton: $10, Fairmont: $3.00, Town of Red Springs: $5.00
Tax Rate (multiply value times rate as %). For Example:  $100,000 value x .0077 = $770
* make sure that you include the county tax and the applicable town or fire district tax
Click here for the most recent year’s property tax rates for … (1 comments)

first time buyers: Limited credit experience and how to be prepared up front - 11/23/15 11:06 PM
A fairly common occurrence and potential roadblock to home ownership these days are prospective buyers having very limited traditional credit and having borderline credit scores in the 580-639 range. We have been successful many times in building a strong file to present to underwriting to overcome the shortcomings of the file.6 Best Tips for Limited Credit Buyers to Have Success in Purchasing a New Home! Go ahead and apply with us so we know the details to help you best Write down every account in your name paid at least 12 months – These could be used as “alternative credit” Pay … (0 comments)

first time buyers: What to do with those old credit cards that could help interest rates - 11/23/15 10:49 PM
When you are looking to raise your credit scores quickly, showing some love to that old card in the back of your wallet could get the points you want!Credit card usage and their affect on credit scores is the most misunderstood credit reporting topic among Americans and often we will hear someone say things that will most of the time negatively affect scores a lot such as:
“I just closed all of my credit cards” “I just lowered my credit limits on all of my cards” “I don’t have credit cards because they will hurt my credit” “I forgot all about my … (1 comments)

first time buyers: Understand Why and When Flood Insurance is Required on a Purchase - 10/13/15 12:04 AM
It is a given that every coastal Realtor, insurance agent, & mortgage lender should be familiar with flood insurance but there are also plenty of non-coastal properties in flood hazard areas because of being located near a river, lake, or in a low lying area where water can rise.  Below we asked a local flood insurance expert some of the most popular questions we hear from buyers and realtors.Every hurricane season that comes around, the topic of flood insurance spikes and this year was no different with the heavy rains the east coast received during the near miss of hurricane Joaquin.  So … (0 comments)

first time buyers: Check Out These 3 Real VA Home Loan Purchase Success Stories! - 10/09/15 06:57 AM
Often you hear many complaining about no one can get a loan, guidelines are too strict, & lenders won’t go the extra mile.  So that is why we LOVE sharing our buyers’ success stories.  Check out these 3 VA Home Loan Successes!
Contrary to belief, VA will allow excess acreage on appraisals:Most think that VA loans will only allow a property to have 5 acres.  Not so as long as there are sales to support the acreage!  For instance, we just received an appraisal on a property that had over 19 acres and a modular home from a VA appraiser and was approved … (0 comments)

first time buyers: Fayetteville, NC realtors, sign up for "Financing Dreams Class" for CE - 10/07/15 12:41 AM
Realtors local to Fayetteville can complete 4 hours of Continuing Education on November 12th, 2015 which will be offered by Team Move OVM and NC Housing Finance Agency.Sign Up Here Products explained in the class will include: 15,000 Special Down Payment Assistance Product Available to Cumberland County! MCC Tax Credits up to $2000 per year for qualifying first time home buyers. Click here to see the Household Income Limits for the MCC Tax Credit Down Payment Assistance programs for first time and move up buyers Details of the 4 hour “Financing Dreams Class” class which could be used as 4 hours of … (0 comments)

first time buyers: FHA changes many guidelines as of 9/14/15 that can hurt or help buyers - 09/24/15 12:17 AM
Below are the FHA guideline changes effective for FHA case file numbers assigned on or after September 14, 2015.
Below are the topics and the new guideline language which replaces the prior rules often because the prior rules were not specific enough.
Assets:  This section applies to anything pertaining to documenting assets on an FHA loanGift funds – documenting transfer:Requires donor’s bank statement, showing withdrawal of funds.
Earnest Money:Document source of funds if amount exceeds 1% of sales price, or appears excessive based on borrower’s savings history.
Large Deposit Definition:For recently opened accounts and recent individual deposits of more than 1 percent of the Adjusted Value (lesser of purchase price minus inducements or the … (2 comments)

first time buyers: Weekend Update: FHA changes tomorrow, $15k DPA, quick reference links - 09/13/15 01:07 AM
This weekend's update includes a Market wrapup (Fed meets this week), $15,000 down payment assistance for first time buyers, FHA updates tomorrow, successful CE classes last week, when does a refinance make sense (not always the 2% rule), Quick reference links
The Fed meets this coming week to decide about a Fed funds rate hike or not! 
Market wrapup for yesterday:  Not much action in the Mortgage Bond market Friday, though Bonds did manage to push higher (good for mortgage rates). Today’s tame PPI data and lower than expected Consumer Sentiment supported prices (good for mortgage rates)  Stocks ended higher for the week … (1 comments)

first time buyers: Buying Your First Home? Get $15,000 Down Payment Assistance - 09/05/15 04:13 AM
If you are a first time buyer purchasing a home in Cabarrus, Cumberland, Guilford, Johnston, or Mecklenburg Counties NC, you may be eligible for $15,000 in down payment assistance with 0% interest, no required payments, and it is forgiven after just 5 years!Most of the time when you hear something like this, it is too good to be true.  In this case, it is True!  There is a limited availability to the first 1,000 loans so see the details below and take advantage now.
The special $15,000 down payment assistance is funded through the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Hardest Hit Fund.  … (3 comments)

first time buyers: Homebuyer Series: The Last Steps to be Ready for Closing - 09/04/15 09:01 PM
Over the last 6 weeks, we have been providing a roadmap to get you through the roadblocks to homeownership and today we are going to finish up with the last steps to be ready for closing which you can even start working on today.  Everything up to this point has been what to do very early in the purchase process:  Establishing credit worthy of a great rate and approval, Saving down payment tips, following a budget to afford a home, how to pay your rent, understanding how the right realtor can help you find the right home, and knowing the mortgage loan … (0 comments)

first time buyers: Homebuyer Series Week 6: Knowing Your Low to No Down Payment Options - 08/29/15 10:26 PM
In this series, we are providing tips to avoid the Most Common Roadblocks to Home Ownership.  So far in previous weeks, we have discussed how to solve 1) limited or bad credit, 2) no down payment, 3) not having a budget, 4) documenting rent history, 5) not understanding a Buyer’s Agent role.  Today, we are discussing Roadblock # 6:  “I have heard of FHA, but that is about it for mortgage loan knowledge”.
A lot of buyers have the misunderstanding that either they need perfect credit, 20% down, or need an FHA loan.  But there are SO many other great mortgage loan options for today’s homebuyers.  … (0 comments)

first time buyers: Homebuyer Series Week 4: Best Tips for Paying Rent & Why - 08/22/15 03:14 AM
In this series, we are providing tips to avoid the Most Common Roadblocks to Home Ownership.  So far we have discussed how to solve limited or bad credit, no down payment, and not having a budget.  Today, we are discussing Roadblock # 4:  Not being able to document rent or housing history to show, as a buyer, that you are able to handle a new mortgage payment.  After reading comment if you found helpful.
First of all, there are plenty of situations where a buyer does not have to prove a rent history because of the program type and overall strength of … (0 comments)

first time buyers: Homebuyer Series Week 5: Why Using a Good Realtor is So Important! - 08/22/15 02:53 AM
In this series, we are providing tips to avoid the Most Common Roadblocks to Home Ownership.  So far we have discussed 1) how to solve limited or bad credit, 2) no down payment, 3) not having a budget, and 4) documenting rent history.  Today, we are discussing Roadblock # 5:  Why and How You Should Use a Realtor to Make Your Home Purchase Easier.   Realtors, Add any other ways a Realtor can help a buyer avoid these or other roadblocks in the comments section.
A lot of buyers, especially first time buyers, think that they can do it all themselves OR just don’t know … (3 comments)

first time buyers: Homebuyer Series Week 3: Creating a budget that will help you qualify! - 08/10/15 01:21 AM
In last week’s article (step 2), we explained lots of unique tips for saving money for a down payment and an emergency fund.  Today we are providing solutions to the # 3 Roadblock mentioned for first time buyers which is NOT having a budget in place to afford the mortgage payment and upkeep of a home purchase.
Let’s face it, Budgeting is Tough!  We want satisfaction from buying something now and not when we have saved up enough money to buy it!  To solve this common issue/habit, let’s talk today about:
Creating a budget that will allow for a home purchase & savings … (1 comments)

first time buyers: Homebuyer Series Week 2: Save up to $40,000 down in a year or less! - 07/31/15 07:17 AM
In the article last week we talked about credit and today we are providing solutions to the # 2 roadblock mentioned for first time buyers:  Buyers that have no or little money for down payment or reserves. 
Read last week's article that had little known tips for establishing or correcting credit here.
To solve this popular issue, let’s talk today about:
*  No to Low Down Payment Mortgage Loan Options
*  Saving for down payment & a rainy day fund (what lenders call reserves)
Keep in mind, even though there are great no money down home loan programs, home buyers that have money in the bank will have more lending options, will qualify … (2 comments)

Russell Smith, Loan Officer Communication & Execution You Deserve (Blue Ridge Bank Mortgage) Rainmaker large

Russell Smith

Loan Officer Communication & Execution You Deserve

Wilmington, NC

More about me…

Blue Ridge Bank Mortgage

Address: 6303 Oleander Drive, Suite B-103, Wilmington, NC, 28405

Office: (910) 352-6344

Mobile: (910) 352-6344

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The goal of my blog is to give you real world mortgage solutions to actual mortgage scenarios I see everyday.




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