Category Archives: mortgage

Underwater on Your Mortgage? A New Refinance Program May Help You

Are you feeling trapped by your mortgage?

The HARP II Refinance Program May Help You

With the new Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) loan, you may be able to refinance no matter how upside-down your mortgage is!

If you currently have a mortgage held by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, the HARP II refinance loan can help you lower your interest rate, decrease your monthly payments and help you start turning your finances around.

Under the enhanced and expanded provisions of HARP you may be able to receive one of the following benefits, either a reduction in your interest rate, a reduction in the amortization term, a reduction in your monthly principal and interest payment or a move from an adjustable rate loan to more stable loan product.

You may be eligible for this refinance program if your FICO score is 620 or above and your home loan was sold to Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae before June 1st, 2009. If you are eligible for the program there are no loan to value restrictions and the appraisal fee may be waived.

If you would like to find out if your mortgage loan is held by Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae, you can look up your information on their respective websites: www.freddiemac.com/mymortgage or www.fanniemae.com/loanlookup.

To find out more about taking advantage of the Home Affordable Refinance Program II, contact your lender or local mortgage professional today.

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It Pays to Check Your Credit Before Starting Your Home Search

You can check your credit online for free at http://www.AnnualCreditReport.com

It is a good idea to check your credit before meeting with a loan officer and before you start shopping for your dream home.

As part of the loan application process, the  bank or mortgage company will check  your credit worthiness before lending you money to buy that home. They want to see that you have a good record of paying your bills on time. A good credit history and a high credit score shows the lender that you are responsible and can be trusted to repay the debt.

You can check your credit by ordering a copy of your credit report and credit score so that you can see where you stand. By reviewing your credit report you can see if there are any errors such as debts or judgements that have already been paid off and not reported as paid as agreed. You will be able to see if there are accounts that have been closed, credit lines have been reduced or if there are any suspicious entries or enquiries on your report.

You can order a free copy of your credit report from each of the three main credit reporting agencies – Equifax, Experian and Transunion, through AnnualCreditReport.com. If you want to check your credit score you will need to pay a small fee to order your credit score. You can purchase your credit score at the same time you order your credit report. Each credit reporting agency may calculate a different score for you, based on the data they have and the metrics they use, so you may want to order your credit score from each agency. You may be offered a discount for purchasing all three at the same time.

If there are incorrect items on your credit report you should contact the credit reporting agency where the error is reflected and ask them to investigate the item.

The strength of your credit history and credit score can make a difference in how much credit a lender will extend to you, what kind of financing options are available to you and what kind of interest rate is available to you.

Your credit report may show that your proportion of balances to total credit lines is high. In which case, you may want to take action to pay down those outstanding balances and limit new borrowing to improve those ratios. Alternatively, you may not have enough of an established credit history. Lenders want to see a good credit history that shows that you can responsibly manage credit.

If you can take the time to check your credit report for accuracy, report any errors to the credit reporting agencies to be investigated and take steps to improving your credit score, those steps may well save you thousands of dollars over the life of your loan.

San Antonio Home Sales Are Up as Mortgage Rates Continue to Drop

If you are thinking of buying or selling a home in San Antonio, this is a good time to be in the market. The San Antonio Board of REALTORS® (SABOR ) recently reported a 7 percent increase in September sales compared to the same month in 2011, according to the September 2012 Multiple Listing Service report by). The average and median prices for September are also up, both showing a 2 percent increase from last year.

“Sales in the midrange of prices ($200,000 to $500,000) have been up the last several months, peaking in June,” Liza Reyes, SABOR Chairman of the Board, said. “This month, a good portion of sales continued to occur in this midrange, which kept prices higher and on par with previous months.”

Locally, the total number of homes sold has steadily increased in 2012, with only a small taper in September after the summer boom. However, the comparative increase in sales, with 1,683 homes sold in San Antonio in September 2012, compared to 1,534 in September 2011, confirms that the local housing market is holding steady.

Mortgage rates this month at or around 3.49% are back at record lows. The decline in the 30-year fixed rates is partially due to a result of the Federal Reserve’s recent move to buy $40 billion of mortgage-backed securities each month until the job market improves. As a result, mortgage applications for refinancing and home purchases increased across the nation.

Home buying affordability remains high for home buyers who buy now while rates are low.

Setpember 2010 September 2011 September 2012
Total Month  Sales 1,391 1,534 1,683
Average Price $185,778 $190,211 $192,594
Median Price $149,900 $152,500 $157,900

For more information about buying or selling a home in the San Antonio area, contact San Antonio real estate resource, Trudy Edwards of Legend Realty Group, KELLER WILLIAMS Realty Heritage at (210) 595-9801 or truesarealestate@gmail.com for a complimentary consultation.

Help for Homeowners –

If you are having difficulty making your mortgage payments or are at risk of falling behind in your mortgage payments you, there may be help for you to enable you manage your payments and stay in your home. To explore your options you should first visit the government website www.makinghomeaffordable.gov to find out if you can take advantage of the “Making Home Affordable” program. You may be eligible for special refinancing or loan modification if your mortgage company is participating in this program. You can find out if your loan is eligible for refinancing or modification by going to http://www.makinghomeaffordable.gov or by contacting Fannie Mae, at 1-800-7FANNIE (8am to 8pm EST) www.fanniemae.com/loanlookup or Freddie Mac 1-800-FREDDIE (8am to 8pm EST) www.freddiemac.com/mymortgage
You don’t have to be behind on your mortgage to seek help with this program. If you have a loan that is an adjustable rate mortgage, a balloon note or a high interest rate you may be able to refinance at a better interest rate. Or if you are experiencing a financial hardship due to a loss of income since you obtained your loan, you may be eligible for a home affordable loan modification. If you qualify for the loan modification option, participating lenders may even be able to reduce your first lien mortgage payments to no more than 31% of your gross income, by either reducing your interest rate, increasing the term of the loan or by a forbearance. Go to www.makinghomeaffordable.gov today to see if you may be eligible for loan modification or contact your lender and ask if they are participating in “the Home Affordable Modification Plan” or HMP.
Visit www.knowyouroptions.com to explore your options

If you are a homeowner and are already 90 days behind on your your mortgage payments you may be able to get help through the Emergency Homeowners’ Loan Program. This program is only available for a limited time so you must act quickly. To learn more go to Emergency Homeowners' Loan Program or cal 1-888-995-HOPE today to learn more and speak to a housing counselor to discuss your options.