mortgage2019: How to Successfully Get a Mortgage in 2019 - 09/09/19 10:51 AM
If you've traveled on an airplane recently, you probably went through a security check at the airport.  These security checks are required by a federal law called the USA Patriot Act.  This very same law has a provision that requires mortgage companies, banks, and financial institutions to document your source of funds when you buy a house or refinance a mortgage.  In short, the US government has recruited mortgage lenders in its fight against terrorism!  In fact, lenders are required by law to ask you for:
The exact source of funds used for your down payment and earnest money deposit. … (1 comments)

mortgage2019: 3 Ways to Improve Home Buying Power - 08/19/19 12:01 PM
If you or anyone you know is buying a house this summer, chances are you’ll be dealing with competing for offers and low inventory issues.  Here are three ways to avoid getting priced out of the house you want:
1 – Consider Your Overall Debt Strategy
For example, what would it look like if you used some of your down payment funds to pay off other debts instead of using those funds for a down payment?  This may open the door to getting you qualified for a larger mortgage so you can bid higher on the house. Plus, home loans often carry … (1 comments)

mortgage2019: Three Questions to Ask Before Investing in Real Estate - 07/22/19 07:39 AM
How can I increase my rate of return?  The cornerstone of any smart investment strategy is to calculate your rate of return.  With real estate this is done by running the numbers using an internal rate of return (IRR) formula that takes into account: Present Value (PV) - what am I paying out of pocket to get into this investment? Term (N) - what's my timeline and how long am I going to hold this investment? Periodic Cash Flow (PMT) - what's my monthly cash flow? Future Value (FV) - what are my net proceeds (after expenses) when I sell … (2 comments)

mortgage2019: Summer 2019 Guide to Mortgage Rates - 06/03/19 09:20 AM
Mortgage rates are determined by the supply and demand for mortgage bonds in the bond market.
Why Mortgage Bonds? When you get a mortgage in the US, your mortgage company is getting the money from Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, or other "securitizers". These "securitizers" get their money by issuing bonds to bond market investors.  These bonds are called "mortgage bonds" or "mortgage-backed securities".  Therefore, the mortgage rate you pay is really determined by the supply and demand for mortgage bonds in the bond market.

The Role of the Federal Reserve As you can see from the chart, the Fed owned … (1 comments)

mortgage2019: How to Trade-Up (or Down) Using a Reverse Mortgage - 05/28/19 10:37 AM
Home prices in many markets have gone up recently.  This is leaving many retirees with sticker shock when it comes to trading up, or even trading down. 
Consider Anna and Olaf who are in the process of selling their $400,000 home.  They’ll be left with net proceeds of approx. $364,000 after paying 9% in sales expenses (transfer taxes, real estate commissions, etc.).  The new house they want to purchase costs $500,000, leaving them $136,000 short.
Option 1: sell or liquidate $136,000 worth of investments or retirement assets. They will need to “gross-up” the withdrawal to account for taxes if the funds … (1 comments)

mortgage2019: Two Ways to Be More Strategic with Your Credit - 05/20/19 11:12 AM
Your length of credit history looks at how long your accounts have been opened. This has a 15% impact on your score. The longer your accounts have been opened, the higher your score will be; newly opened accounts will bring your score down. Here are three practical steps for you to improve your score in this area:
Don't close your credit accounts. If you must, close the newest ones instead of the oldest ones. Your score will improve over time if you keep accounts open and use them every once in a while. Think twice before jumping on … (1 comments)

mortgage2019: 3 Reasons to Finance Your Home Improvements - 05/13/19 07:56 AM
If you’re thinking of paying cash for home improvements, you may want to think twice.  Here are three reasons why you may want to consider a cash-out mortgage refinance or home equity loan instead:
1 – Preserve your cash: a large home improvement project could quickly deplete your savings. Think about this project in the context of the next 3-5 years. What other large expenses could crop up during that time period, and would it be useful to keep your savings on hand for those items?
2: Opportunity Cost of Money: would it more useful to invest that money in a college savings plan or … (1 comments)

mortgage2019: Real Estate Investors Now Get a Special 20% Tax Deduction - 04/16/19 06:28 AM
The IRS recently issued some guidelines that allow real estate investors to take a tax deduction for up to 20% of the income they generate from rental properties. These guidelines were issued in January 2019 to clarify certain provisions of the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Click here to view the full announcement and the new guidelines.
The new tax deduction is generally available to eligible taxpayers with 2018 taxable income at or below $315,000 for joint returns and $157,500 for other filers. Those with incomes above these levels are still eligible for the deduction but are subject to limitations. … (1 comments)

mortgage2019: How to Solve Your Negative Equity Problem - 04/08/19 09:18 AM
One out of every ten homeowners in America owes more on their mortgages than the value of their homes. You may want to consider the "cash-in mortgage" strategy if you're in that situation. You can use this strategy to reduce your mortgage in order to refinance your loan into a lower payment.  You can also use the strategy to sell the property without having to do a short sale.

Cash-in Mortgage Refinance Using cash to pay down your mortgage may allow you to refinance into a lower interest rate and lower your monthly payments. For example, consider a homeowner who … (1 comments)

mortgage2019: How to Swim With the Sharks (and not get eaten alive!) - 03/25/19 10:49 AM
Getting a mortgage today is a lot like swimming in a pool filled with sharks.
My role is to help you navigate these dangerous waters and get you to the other side safely. Here are just a few of the sharks we'll need to watch out for:

Buy-Back Sharks Most mortgages today are sold after the closing to large financial institutions like Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. These gigantic companies are in business to make money... a lot of money. These sharks have been under a lot of pressure by the government lately, and they're circling the waters looking for … (1 comments)

mortgage2019: Two Ways to Benefit from Rising House Prices - 03/18/19 10:22 AM
House prices have gone up in many markets across the country. This chart illustrates what rising house prices could mean for you based on your home value and the rate of appreciation in your neighborhood. Here are two ways you may be able to benefit if your home has gone up in value:
1 – Cash-out Mortgage Refinance
You may be able to access some of your newly created home equity by refinancing your mortgage into a higher-balance loan. Cash-out proceeds may be used for:
Debt consolidation – pay off other debts with higher interest rates Home improvements – make new indoor … (1 comments)

mortgage2019: How Payment History Impacts Your Credit - 03/11/19 09:22 AM
Your timely payment history has a 35% impact on your credit score. Paying debt on time and in full has a positive impact. Late payments, judgments, charge-offs, collection accounts, and bankruptcies have a negative impact. If you have had any bankruptcies within the last 7 years, it will seriously affect your ability to borrow or establish new credit accounts.  If you have had any judgments within the last several years, it is very important that you pay off the judgment and get a "satisfaction of judgment" from the court. Any unsatisfied or recent judgments will make a bad dent in your … (1 comments)

mortgage2019: 3 Ways to Get Prepared for Home Ownership - 02/25/19 09:20 AM
1: Prepare Your Credit Mortgage lenders typically require at least 24 months of good credit history in order for you to qualify for a mortgage.  It's normally a good idea to have a few credit cards, a few installment loans, and 24-month history of making rent payments on time.

2: Prepare Your Cash Flow Mortgage lenders typically require less than a 43% debt-to-income ratio in order to qualify for a mortgage.  This means that your total monthly debt payments (including the new mortgage payment) should be no more than 43% of your monthly income.

3: Prepare Your Savings Mortgage lenders typically require … (2 comments)

mortgage2019: Three Steps to Get Started as a Real Estate Investor - 02/18/19 08:32 AM
1 – Determine your approach and your investment objectives Are you looking to “buy and flip” or “buy and hold”?  If you’re looking to buy and flip, you’d probably want to start looking for homes that have the highest potential resale value after-improvements.  If you’re looking to buy and hold, you’d probably want to start looking for homes that have the highest potential cash-flow opportunities.

2 – Determine your budget It’s a smart idea to “never be 100% invested” when you invest in real estate.  For example, if you have $100,000 available to invest, you may want to set aside … (0 comments)