rob spinosa: How to Rock a Mortgage Pre-Approval!!! - 06/23/22 07:37 AM
How to Rock a Mortgage Pre-Approval!!!
Buying your first home is a daunting task and can be a huge undertaking for the first-time buyer.  Shoot, even for a move-up buyer, the experienced downsizer or a seasoned investor, it can sometimes be difficult to know where to begin.  But getting a mortgage pre-approval often remains the best first step in the process, and it's also a likely reality that your Realtor won't seriously consider showing you property until you are either pre-approved or pre-underwritten by a mortgage lender or broker.  After all, it's really tough to know your purchase power and your budget … (2 comments)

rob spinosa: How to Rock Rising Mortgage Rates!!! - 06/09/22 08:34 AM
How to Rock Rising Mortgage Rates!!!
No doubt about it, since 2022 got underway, mortgage rates have been on a stairway higher and that makes it harder for our buyers to qualify for a mortgage on one hand and even when they do qualify, it puts additional strain on their household budget on the other.
So how can buyers and owners keep their rate and payment as low as possible despite rising interest rates?  In this short video, I cover three classic ways to "fight the Fed:"
Paying discount points. Choosing an ARM over a fixed rate loan. Considering an interest-only mortgage program. … (8 comments)

rob spinosa: How to Rock Second Home or Rental Property? - 05/19/22 11:55 AM
How to Rock Second Home or Rental Property?
Mortgage guidelines are positively prehistoric when compared to newer companies like AirBnB and VRBO, which have gained popularity as interest in short-term rentals has increased.
But when it comes to getting a home loan on a property that is not your primary residence, you have to state on your mortgage application whether you have a second (or vacation) home or you have a rental (aka investment) property, and there is no middle ground for a "vacation rental."  However, there can be real consequences if you get the classification wrong.  
So, let's rock the distinction between vacation … (10 comments)

rob spinosa: How to Rock a Family Opportunity Loan - 05/04/22 08:49 PM
How to Rock a Family Opportunity Loan
Looking to purchase or refinance a home for your elderly parents who wouldn't otherwise be able to obtain a mortgage on their own?
Looking to assist a disabled or special needs adult child with housing or his/her own?
Or how about putting a college-bound child into off-campus housing that you decide to purchase?
All of these are both common scenarios and often difficult ones as viewed by the inflexible guidelines in the mortgage industry.  Until now...
The Family Opportunity Mortgage can be a great way to thread the needle of otherwise detrimental occupancy requirements for primary homes, second or … (3 comments)

rob spinosa: How to Rock a Bridge Loan - 04/21/22 08:07 AM
How to Rock a Bridge Loan
If you've been lamenting how tough it is to get your offer to buy a home accepted these days, think about how much more difficult it is for those who must buy a new home BEFORE selling their existing one.  After all, it's practically impossible to make a contingent offer --- defined as one that would allow you to sell your existing home first.
It's usually in this stressful environment that someone well-meaning; a friend, a co-worker, even a Realtor, will swoop in and advise our buyer to "Just get a bridge loan!," as if there is … (5 comments)

rob spinosa: How to Rock Cryptocurrency As Your Down Payment - 03/10/22 08:03 AM
How to Rock Cryptocurrency As Your Down Payment
The mere mention of the words "bitcoin" or "cryptocurrency" or "blockchain" is sure to evoke comments and reactions that will be far-reaching.  There will be the speculators who rolled the dice and came up winners, or who are still white-knuckling their wild ride.  There will be financial technicians who have been forced to grasp how this technology has the potential to disrupt the exchange of currency as we know it.  But more than the reactions of either of these two subsets, you'll encounter the expressions of the mostly and mildly bewildered.  Because really, when … (2 comments)

rob spinosa: Five Tips to Rock Home Buying in 2022 - 02/24/22 08:00 AM
Five Tips for Rocking Home Ownership in 2022
If you searched unsuccessfully for a home and suffered one heartbreak after another in 2021, 2022 hasn't necessarily greeted you with open arms either.  Near non-existent inventory in many areas, fierce competition and rising interest rates have all conspired to make the landscape rockier still.
Despite this, I've found five tips can be a universal help in getting you into contract, regardless of your own individual circumstances.  Rock them with me on Youtube:
Ready to find Paradise City?  Please give me a like or subscribe on YouTube!
Welcome to the jungle,
Rob Spinosa
SVP of Mortgage Lending
Guaranteed Rate
NMLS: 22343 
Cell/Text: … (2 comments)

rob spinosa: Is a No Cost Refinance a Free Ride? - 02/10/22 07:33 AM
Is a No Cost Refinance a Free Ride?
Back in the '70's, Edgar Winter extolled the virtues of taking a free ride.  But since that time and especially when it comes to transactions in the financial world, most of us have been conditioned to know that nothing's ever free.
So how does this square with the concept of a "no cost" refinance?  We hear about these all the time and our clients ask for them.  How does the no-cost strategy work and can it offer real benefit in the right situation?  We cover all these timeless questions in this short, fun, rockin' video:
Decided … (0 comments)

rob spinosa: HELOC or Cash Out Refinance? - 02/03/22 07:52 AM
HELOC or Cash Out Refinance?
As a teenager in the '80's, our dilemmas were a little simpler --- should I stay or should I go? --- for instance.  But today's homeowner faces some additional complexities, especially when it comes to deciding the best way to finance a home renovation or other large purchase.
Using the equity in one's home has always been an enticing way to cost-effectively confront large-ticket expenses, but what's the best way to convert that equity into cash?  Should you get a home equity line of credit (a "HELOC") or should you do a cash-out refinance?  We get this question … (5 comments)

rob spinosa: YouTube Thursday? That's the Way You Do It! - 01/27/22 07:48 AM
YouTube Thursday? That's the Way You Do It!
In keeping with the spirit of YouTube Thursdays, and adhering to my resolution to build a YouTube channel this year, I'm optimistic this post will count as my first contribution.
This week, I'm covering the basics of cash out refinances, because as rates begin to rise, cash out refinances still offer value to homeowners (where "rate and term" refinances begin to make a less compelling case).  Also, we put a fun spin on the '80's hit "Money for Nothing," because while cash out refinances may offer a really cost-effective way to do home improvement, finance … (2 comments)

rob spinosa: Buying a Home All Cash, Then Getting a Mortgage - 04/14/21 07:59 AM
Buying a Home All Cash, Then Getting a Mortgage
Back in a real estate market a long time ago and in a mortgage galaxy far, far away --- otherwise known as 2009/2010 --- some buyers needed to purchase a home with cash, then hope to refinance after they had the keys in hand.  The reason for this?  Bad credit?  Nope.  Extinction of stated income loans?  Sorry, try again.  The reason was often that the homes were not eligible for financing --- many had been ravaged by the neglect of economic downturn.  Plumbing was torn out, there were holes in the walls and … (26 comments)

rob spinosa: Asian American Support Goes Viral - 03/18/21 09:47 PM
Asian American Support Goes Viral
Often, getting the first words down are the hardest. "Writer's block."  But not this time. 
So let me start by condemning the recent incident of gun violence against Asian Americans in Atlanta.  Let me take the opportunity to communicate to all Americans of all races that discrimination, in all forms, is wrong and will not be tolerated.  Not in my business, not in my community, not in the private confines of my home.  
Specifically with violence against Asian Americans, statistics show an increase in verbal and physical assaults since the onset of COVID-19. So the next time you get … (5 comments)

rob spinosa: It's Cool to Conform in 2021 - 11/29/20 09:13 AM
It's Cool to Conform in 2021
If you know me, you know that I don't like to stick to convention.  I was the teenager who skipped college, moved to Hollywood and played rock guitar.  In my 20's, I saved up vacation time not for sandy white beaches but instead for expeditions to the harsh mountain environs of the world's highest peaks.  In my 30's, I dove (literally) into the sport of triathlon --- an endeavor, to quote my Aunt Marge, that would be something she'd "rather die a thousand deaths" before contemplating.  When I come to the fork in the road where straight and … (5 comments)

rob spinosa: Marin County Vote by Mail Ballot Drop-Off Locations - 10/18/20 08:54 AM
Marin County Vote by Mail Ballot Drop-Off Locations
This election cycle, there has been much disinformation propagated about voting by mail, and in an effort to help fellow community members arrive at the truth, I am providing below the drop-off locations as an additional way to submit your ballot prior to November 3.  To receive an absentee ballot, you must have first registered online.  Once you've received and completed your ballot you can mail it back or drop it off.  At any time, if you need help or additional information, you can access it at
San Rafael
Albert J. Boro Community Center, 50 Canal … (1 comments)

rob spinosa: Form 1098 and Your Mortgage Interest Statement - 01/09/20 08:46 PM
Form 1098 and Your Mortgage Interest Statement
"At first you go bankrupt slowly, and then all at once."  This quote has been attributed to Ernest Hemingway, Mark Twain and even F. Scott Fitzgerald.  Indeed, it's a great one, though fortunately I cannot personally attest to its veracity.  Nevertheless, it does touch on a concept I want to cover at a particular time of year --- from about mid-January to the end of February.  It is during these weeks that most of us gradually give up our moorings to the previous year and then suddenly realize that we need to start planning to file … (1 comments)

rob spinosa: What Kind of Insurance Do You Need When You Buy a House? - 01/07/20 07:48 AM
What Kind of Insurance Do You Need When You Buy a House?
Let me start by saying that I'm not in the insurance business, but that the insurance business is in mine.  And my business is helping home buyers and homeowners get a great mortgage.  So just what are the insurance requirements when you buy a home or go to refinance a mortgage on residential real estate you own in California?  Why does your lender care about the insurance coverage you keep?  
Homeowner's Insurance
Also known as "hazard insurance," or "fire insurance," this is the key policy you will be required to carry if … (23 comments)

rob spinosa: The Haunted Loan Process - 10/13/19 09:44 PM
The Haunted Loan Process
As we wind our way closer to Halloween, I wanted to cover a few of the graveyard variety hobgoblins of the mortgage process.  You know, the things our clients don't tell us at the start and that later come back to haunt their home loan transaction like so many nightmares on Friday the 13th.  The goal here is not to scare the prospective borrower, but instead to provide fair warning about the actions you can take or avoid at the start of your application that will help you close your loan on time and without undue stress.  Let's … (27 comments)

rob spinosa: Lock Watch for the Week of 4/15/2019 - 04/14/19 09:14 AM
Lock Watch for the Week of 4/15/2019
Fairly light week of reports that should mean no fireworks.  But beware every time you issue such a comment...
Economicalendar (all times are Pacific):
Mon, 4/15:    Empire State Mfg Survey (5:30am).
Tues, 4/16:     Industrial Production (6:15am), Housing Market Index (7am).
Weds, 4/17:     International Trade (5:30am), Beige Book (11am).
Thurs, 4/18:    Jobless Claims, Philadelphia Fed Bus. Outlook Survey, Retail Sales (5:30am), Business Inventories (7am) and Fed Balance Sheet (1:30pm).
Fri, 4/19:        Housing Starts (5:30am).
10-Year Treasury History
2.56%     Market Open
2.51%     One Week Ago
2.59%     One Month Ago
2.83%     One Year Ago
(Need a rate quote for your … (2 comments)

rob spinosa: Lock Watch for the Week of 4/8/2019 - 04/05/19 07:03 AM
Lock Watch for the Week of 4/8/2019
Inflation readings and auctions should backdrop an interesting week.
Economicalendar (all times are Pacific):
Mon, 4/8:    Factory Orders (7am).
Tues, 4/9:     JOLTS (7am), 3-Yr Note Auction (10am).
Weds, 4/10:     CPI (5:30am), 10-Yr Note Auction (10am), FOMC Minutes and Treasury Budget (11am).
Thurs, 4/11:    Jobless Claims and PPI (5:30am), 30-Yr Bond Auction (10am) and Fed Balance Sheet (1:30pm).
Fri, 4/12:        Import and Export Prices (5:30am), Consumer Sentiment (7am).
10-Year Treasury History
2.51%     Market Open
2.49%     One Week Ago
2.62%     One Month Ago
2.78%     One Year Ago
(Need a rate quote for your specific scenario?  Click anywhere on this link.)
Paying … (1 comments)

rob spinosa: Is Your Mortgage Lender Requiring Flood Insurance? - 04/02/19 07:40 AM
Is Your Mortgage Lender Requiring Flood Insurance?
Up until this point, everything was going great.  You loved the house, it fit your budget and, by the grace of God, your offer got accepted.
But then it was your mortgage lender, Dasher of Dreams, who let you know that the property sits in a special flood hazard area, and that it will require flood insurance.  I know --- this is something that should have been revealed earlier in the process, and most often it is, but this time around, the fact that the property may be susceptible to flooding risk came up late and … (2 comments)

Rob Spinosa, SVP of Mortgage Lending, Marin County (Guaranteed Rate, Marin County, CA)

Rob Spinosa

SVP of Mortgage Lending, Marin County

San Anselmo, CA

More about me…

Guaranteed Rate, Marin County, CA

Address: 324 Sir Francis Drake Blvd., San Anselmo, CA, 94960

Office: (415) 367-5959

Mobile: (415) 367-5959

Email Me

REX Homebuyer Participating Lender

80-10-10 Loans

What Happens if My Appraisal Comes in Low?

Can I Get a Cosigner on a Mortgage?




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