In Issue 75 We Touch On:
Realtors Cross The Line
Millennials Need Credit Help ?
Why Rates Have Fallen
I love winning. It doesn't matter what the competition is. Whether it's a big contract or a game of backgammon, I want to win. If I lose, I try to understand what I could have done differently to avoid that outcome. But I don't dwell on it. The faster I move on to the next competition, the faster I can create an opportunity to win. Why am I sharing this? I want you to win too! When someone seeks me out for help - a personal matter, a financial matter, marketing or other business help, whatever - they are putting their trust in me to help them win. I don't take that lightly and do my best to return their trust with any advice I can offer to help them achieve the best outcome possible. That's winning.
The current newsletter and all prior newsletters are archived at the Mortgage by Randy blog. Bookmark it and share with your friends and family. You can make your own comments and feedback as well. Time for the news…
Mortgage Market: I Love Realtors But Don't Let Them Cross The Line
Real estate agents work hard to earn and keep their license. Their license is to facilitate real estate transactions. Real estate agents are not licensed, and in many cases are truly ignorant about, the mortgage process. Naturally, they have a vested interest in a real estate transaction closing. When mortgage financing is part of that transaction, sometimes real estate agents cross the line and contact the buyer's mortgage representative seeking information about the mortgage status.
It is up to the licensed mortgage professional to take a stand in this situation. First, real estate agents are not entitled to know anything about a borrower's personal financial affairs. The status of the mortgage is a two way street between borrower and mortgage professional. Second, real estate agents sometimes lack understanding about the mortgage process and terms such as "commitment letter."
Sometimes a real estate contract stipulates that the buyer present the seller with a mortgage "commitment letter" by a certain date. There is never a firm commitment to do a mortgage until closing when the docs are signed. A conditional commitment letter may be issued which basically says that the mortgage is tentatively approved pending confirmation of certain criteria. In other words it's a wishy washy commitment. But that's the best that can be made available at any time prior to closing.
What's the difference between a commitment letter and a pre-approval letter? Not much. Both can be used for toilet paper as neither is binding. Both documents have plenty of "outs" since there are so many variables needing to be verified including income, appraisal, employment, title and more.
Questions? Contact me.
Personal Credit: Millennial Generation Managing Credit OK But Without Knowing How
The Millennial generation, defined as 18-34 year olds, are not that knowledgeable about how credit scores work but their behaviors indicate that their instincts are solid. This is revealed in a recent study by the Consumer Federation of America. For example, only 6 percent correctly identified the main factors that determine a credit score and falsely believe that age is a factor in the credit score formula. On the other hand, Millennials are carrying lower credit card balances compared to older generations and have more of an understanding that making late payments is bad compared to the older Generation X.
Whatever your age, if you have credit score questions, don't hesitate to ask me. There is a lot of misinformation floating around - especially on the Internet. Make sure you rely upon a trusted and qualified source.
Ask Me Your Credit Score Questions
Have you been given credit score advice that you are not sure about or read an article that has conflicting credit score information from what you believe to be true? I am here to help. Submit your question and I will be happy to respond. For more free and easy to read credit score tips visit the DailyDollar and click on the Credit Score and Credit Monitoring sections. Remember, to get a truly free approximation of your credit score, read my article about Credit Sesame and try them out.
Economy & Financial Insights: International Unrest Drives Interest Rates Lower
Civil unrest in the Ukraine combined with the rise of new extremist militant groups in the Middle East has contributed toward international flight to safety of cash investments in U.S. debt. This has depressed interest rates and created more opportunity for potential home buyers to qualify for a mortgage.
Two forces working against consumers are 1) inflation is making an appearance and 2) home prices are rising. Keep your eye on the inflation rate. Although it has been under control, the trend is not our friend and it is the type of economic force that can get out of control quickly.
Americans are enjoying more personal income in 2014 and even better, they aren't spending all of it. The savings rate is just under 5% which means people continue to pay off debt or build up their rainy day and retirement funds.
Question of the Month: How Are Co-Borrower Credit Scores And Income Combined By Lenders?
When dealing with couples, I can't tell you how many times that the couple thinks they can qualify for a loan when one spouse has good income and credit issues while the other spouse has good credit but is self-employed or has limited income to document.
Giving Back: Michelle's Angels Foundation Seeks Volunteers
Lenders will take the credit scores of both spouses and average them so the the spouse with lower scores will pull down the couple's overall score. If both incomes are needed to qualify then make sure both sets of credit scores are good enough so that the average of them is high enough to qualify for good pricing.
Many people suffer quietly. They may be too proud to ask for help.Some just lack the support network needed to get through a challenging situation. People need to know that someone cares. That is the inspiration behind Michelle's Angels Foundation. Now your opportunity awaits to get involved with the Angel Army.
Do you have 1-2 hours per month to make a few phone calls, or mail out handsome kits designed to create an uplifting experience for those being added to the prayer list at MichellesAngels.com? That's all it takes to make a big difference in someones life. It can all be done from the comfort of your home. Orientation and training is provided to all volunteers.
Contact me to learn more about getting involved. You will find it to be a very rewarding experience.
Need volunteers? Do you have a fundraising event upcoming? Do you have a personal web site where you are raising donations for your cause? Submit the information to email@example.com by the 5th day of each month and we will do our best to include your information in the next issue.
Have a safe and relaxing Independence Day. Enjoy the fireworks! And to all you baseball fans out there don't miss the final All Star Game that Derek Jeter will ever play in on July 15.
Mortgage by Randy newsletter, Copyright 2008-2014 Randy Mitchelson. All Rights Reserved.
Randy Mitchelson is a licensed mortgage professional. All material presented herein is believed to be reliable but we cannot attest to its accuracy. All material represents the opinions of Randy Mitchelson. Recommendations may change and readers are urged to check with their financial advisers before making any decisions. Opinions expressed in these reports may change without prior notice. Mitchelson can be reached at 239-851-6738.
You have permission to publish this article electronically or in print as long as the following is included:
Randy Mitchelson is an entrepreneur, author and community activist with 20 years experience in financial services. Mitchelson has served in leadership roles for Fortune 500 firms Bank of America, KeyBank and CIBC.
As a licensed mortgage professional and member of National Association of Mortgage Brokers, Mitchelson educates both individuals and groups about credit scoring by conducting personalized credit report reviews, action plans and one on one consultations. He is author of the free monthly newsletter, Mortgage by Randy.
He is an online marketing expert and Vice President at iPartnerMedia.com. He founded of Estero, Florida based National Web Leads, LLC, (NWL) in 2005 which helped advertisers drive new customer acquisition through email, web display, social media, keyword search strategies, mobile devices and more.
Mitchelson also writes the DailyDollar™ personal finance newsletter. U.S. News and World Report named DailyDollar to its list of 8 Savvy Personal Financial Podcasts.
Mitchelson earned his BS and MBA at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, NY. He is a founding member of the Southwest Florida Regional Technology Partnership Inc. and the Michelle’s Angels Foundation Inc. He is married to Susan, a Pharmacy Supervisor in the Lee Memorial Health System in Fort Myers, Florida.