Downpayment insurance helps recession-leery buyers (5/4/2016)
For the first time, buyers can purchase insurance that protects their downpayment if real estate values fall. One Fla. bank offers it now but more should follow.
CFPB focuses on mortgage complaints (4/27/2016)
The national consumer advocate says people still complain about mortgage servicers with “dead ends and obstacles resolving issues.” Top one: late payment issues.
Reverse mortgages safer but still have pitfalls (4/26/2016)
AARP and Consumer Reports magazine say reverse mortgage safeguards added in recent years have earned them qualified approvals – but more could be done.
Higher fees for low downpayments and credit scores (4/25/2016)
Mortgage fees have changed for low downpayment loans. Buyers with a good-but-not- great credit score pay higher fees – those with stellar credit pay less.
TRID delays may be over as lenders boost efficiency (4/22/2016)
Per Ellie Mae’s latest report, the average loan took 44 days to close last month – less time than it did a year ago before truth in lending rules went into effect.
Missing ingredient for millennials: A downpayment (4/20/2016)
Most young adults want to buy a home, but they can’t come up with enough money down thanks to stagnant wages, student loan debt and steadily rising home values.
HELOCs are back – but are they safe? (4/18/2016)
Some say home equity lines of credit helped cause the housing meltdown as owners treated their home like an ATM. But for some owners, HELOCs are a good thing.
Homeowners fight FHA mortgage-interest overcharges (4/18/2016)
FHA charges sellers a full-month’s interest at early-month closings, and a group of owners are suing four banks over the practice, including BofA and SunTrust.
Non-bank lenders are servicing more mortgages (4/13/2016)
Non-bank lenders – ones that don’t accept deposits like a regular bank – serviced 1 in 4 mortgages last year; in 2012, it was 1 in 14. Feds want more oversight.
Buyers’ top mortgage complaint? Tax data errors (4/13/2016)
A home can receive six separate tax estimates between listing and an owner’s first mortgage payment, and some estimates are more accurate than others.
Goldman Sachs to pay $5B over risky mortgages (4/12/2016)
The Justice Department accused Goldman Sachs of playing a part in the 2008 financial crisis because it misled investors about the quality of its loans.
Wells Fargo paying $1.2B for hiding bad home loans (4/11/2016)
The lender admitted that it contributed to the housing crash by falsely certifying FHA loans, making it the largest loan origination recovery fine in FHA history.
Coming soon: Online property insurance (4/7/2016)
One of Fla.’s largest residential insurers is introducing a website where consumers can purchase, pay for and bind property insurance without any human contact.
Credit unions report TRID delays (4/7/2016)
Survey: A credit union mortgage takes about five days longer from application to close than it did before new truth-in-lending rules went into effect last Oct.
Study: College debt delays homeownership (4/6/2016)
A Fed study found that for every 10% increase in student loan debt, the probability that a first-time buyer would apply for a mortgage went down by 1%.
Banks ramp up push for home-equity lines (4/6/2016)
Lenders are again touting cash-out refinances and home-equity lines of credit that allow homeowners to tap into their home equity when they need extra cash.
Fannie Mae debuts loan option for ‘green’ retrofits (4/1/2016)
Buyers who want green home options, such as solar panels, can now buy a non-green home, upgrade it and roll the installation cost into their mortgage.
5 uncommon ways to come up with a downpayment (3/30/2016)
Many people put a little money away each month toward a downpayment on a home “some day,” but additional options may help get them there faster.
Mortgage giants to reduce loan balances (3/24/2016)
About 50,000 struggling homeowners could be eligible to have their mortgage balances reduced under a new plan from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
Do buyers like the new mortgage disclosure rules? (3/16/2016)
A survey of people who bought two homes – before and after the new TRID rules went into effect – found the process easier to understand but tougher to complete.
The online mortgage has finally arrived (3/7/2016)
A number of lenders now allow borrowers to apply for a loan, submit documents and track their mortgage without any human face-to-face contact.
Wells Fargo program offers downpayment help (3/2/2016)
The NeighborWorks-Wells Fargo downpayment-aid program offers help in 40 U.S. metros, including four in Fla.: Jacksonville, Miami, Orlando and Tampa.
Home loan caps could go away for veterans (3/2/2016)
VA loans are capped based on market area, but that could change as Congress considers updates to the federally backed, zero-downpayment mortgage program for veterans.
Google to end its mortgage tool in March (2/25/2016)
The Compare service offered to help consumers track down a mortgage, but Google said it wasn’t as successful as hoped – or as profitable.
BofA’s newest mortgage: 3% down, no PMI, no FHA (2/23/2016)
The new “marketplace alternative” loan that doesn’t require private mortgage insurance should attract traditional FHA borrowers, Bank of America says.
FHA steals Fannie’s thunder on low downpayment loans (2/22/2016)
Fannie Mae introduced a 3% downpayment mortgage as a way to attract first-time buyers, but FHA’s 3.5% downpayment mortgage still dominates the market.
Florida has 231 programs that help low-income buyers (2/19/2016)
Down Payment Resource says 113 agencies administer those 231 programs, and 94.4% currently have funds available to help prospective homebuyers.
It took longer to close in January (2/19/2016)
The average time in Jan. climbed to 50 total days – four days more since the “Know Before You Owe” mortgage disclosure rules took effect in Oct.
Banks start to ease 20% downpayment for jumbo loans (2/17/2016)
20% downpayments for a jumbo loan became an industry standard after the bust, but now lenders are starting to approve ones with 10% down – and sometimes less.
Reverse mortgages a good option for certain buyers (2/15/2016)
Low-income retirees with cash from a previous home sale may be able to use a reverse mortgage that allows them to avoid any monthly mortgage payments.
Lending disclosures delay 1 in 10 transactions (2/15/2016)
However, the disclosures, which went into effect last Oct., have derailed only 1% of transactions, according to a Realtor survey released by NAR.
Renovation mortgages a good fit for some buyers (2/9/2016)
Mortgages such as FHA’s 203K and Fannie Mae’s HomeStyle allow buyers to land a good deal on a fixer-upper and remodel it to fit their personal taste.
Subprime loans are back – but with changes (2/3/2016)
Credit firm Equifax says the number of subprime loans – borrowers have a 620 or below credit score – is rising. But lenders today focus more on ability to repay.
Home affordability still high – but for how long? (2/3/2016)
Housing is still affordable in most U.S. cities, but a report claims that could change within two years if home values keep rising at the current rate.
Bill to expand homeownership passes House (2/3/2016)
The NAR-supported H.R. 3700 bill eases some rules, including FHA condo loan restrictions, to help more buyers qualify for housing. It now goes to the Senate.
1 extra week for new mortgage disclosure closings (1/20/2016)
What was the impact of Oct. 3 mortgage disclosure changes? New home closings take about an extra week, according to Ellie Mae’s monthly report.
Fannie, Freddie 3% loans not very popular (12/17/2015)
Not many buyers take advantage of the low downpayment loans Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac debuted about a year ago – most still prefer FHA programs.
FHA: Loan limits won’t change in 2016 (12/10/2015)
The conforming loan range for buyers seeking a Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loan remains the same in 2016, but selected metros will see an increase.
Most mortgage loan limits stay the same in 2016 (12/2/2015)
The ceiling for conventional loans will remain at $417K next year for most U.S. metros, though a few that already have higher limits (none in Fla.) will see an increase.
New mortgage rules: A ‘Y2K’ panic that didn’t happen (12/1/2015)
Mortgage lenders and real estate agents worried that new Oct. 3 TRID rules would prolong closings and delay home sales. But overall, that hasn’t happened.
Quicken rolls out DIY mortgage applications (12/1/2015)
Quicken Loans announced a new move for the mortgage business: The self-service mortgage application. Some reports say it’s “as easy as ordering a pizza.”
FHA didn’t ease all condo financing rules (11/30/2015)
While recently announced FHA condo changes will help more buyers, challenges remain, such as the loss of spot loans and some still-rigid FHA regulations.
Is saving for a home downpayment a priority? (11/23/2015)
Freddie Mac survey: Only 39% of U.S. renters think so, while 59% prioritize saving money for an emergency, and 51% save for retirement.
Avg. downpayments rise with tighter inventory (11/19/2015)
LendingTree: Downpayments for conventional 30-year FRMs rose slightly in 3Q to 17.63%, up from 17.34% quarter to quarter and 16.29% year-to-year.
FHA loans back on solid ground (11/17/2015)
The fed-backed mortgage program hasn’t had enough capital to meet congressional mandates since 2008 – but that officially changed yesterday.
Market moving OK under new mortgage disclosure rules (11/16/2015)
A panel discussing the new RESPA-TILA mortgage disclosure rules that went into effect on Oct. 3 said they’ve seen few “closing delays and other harmful effects” so far.
HUD eases FHA condo financing rules (11/13/2015)
The change, effective immediately, should qualify more condo complexes under FHA. That, in turn, will give more buyers access to FHA low-downpayment loans.
More homebuyers bypass banks for loans (11/9/2015)
Banks are losing some of their mortgage traction: In 2014, almost half (47%) of all mortgage loans were originated by non-banks, compared to 43% in 2013.