Study: What do Realtors really want from lenders? (4/23/2015)
Inman study asked why real estate pros recommend a particular lender, what types of lenders do they prefer, and what behavior puts a lender in the penalty box?
Reverse mortgage rules to get stricter (4/20/2015)
Recession-era home values fell, and reverse mortgage lenders, notably FHA, lost a lot of money. As a result, the bar for applications rises on April 27.
House approves legislation to ease home loan rules (4/15/2015)
The U.S. House passed a bill that would make it easier for many buyers to qualify for a mortgage, with potentially enough votes to override a presidential veto.
Will lenders take foreclosed owners back? (4/13/2015)
On paper, many foreclosed owners can again qualify for a home. However, some larger lenders hurt during the recession aren’t yet willing to take a chance.
Expect closing problems around Aug. 1 change date (4/13/2015)
For title companies and lenders, the mortgage system changes radically Aug. 1, and it will take time to adjust. Be prepared for unexpected problems this summer.
First-time homebuyers can get $2K per year (4/10/2015)
A little-used Fla. program allows many first-time buyers to receive up to $2,000 per year – half the mortgage interest paid – when filing federal income taxes.
Early recession foreclosures now off credit reports (4/9/2015)
A foreclosure damages credit reports for up to seven years from the first missed payment. So far, 29% of ex-owners are free and clear, and 60% will be by Dec 31.
Mortgage credit conditions best in years (4/8/2015)
It’s not as easy to get a mortgage loan as it was in, say, 2006 – but the Mortgage Bankers Association says tight loan standards eased significantly last month.
Study: Tight credit nixed about 4 million homebuyers (4/8/2015)
A lack of available credit hindered the real estate rebound, according to the Urban Institute, with its strongest impact on African Americans and Hispanics.
$1B foreclosure prevention program strategy shift (4/7/2015)
Some first-time buyers could receive up to $15K toward a downpayment under a proposed rule change covering the way Fla. doles out money from its Hardest Hit Fund.
HUD cuts chances of reverse mortgage problems (4/2/2015)
New rules protect spouses who still live in a home even if their name didn’t appear on the paperwork for a reverse mortgage.
CFPB’s 26-page ‘toolkit’ explains Aug. 1 changes (4/1/2015)
The federal consumer agency will change the mortgage process starting in Aug, and their new step-by-step guide explains how the new process will work.
Why aren’t more potential sellers selling? (3/31/2015)
Many move-up buyers still don’t have enough equity in their current home for a downpayment on a new property. In Fla., it impacts one in four homeowners.
Most millennials don’t understand closing costs (3/26/2015)
Survey: Two out of three younger adults don’t understand closing costs – and many don’t even know they even exist. Among all adults, it’s one out of three.
Freddie’s 3% downpayments start next week (3/19/2015)
It will get easier for some buyers to qualify for a mortgage starting Monday when Freddie Mac lowers its minimum to 3%, a move Fannie Mae took in Dec.
Downpayments in Fla. vary by county (3/18/2015)
RealtyTrac: In Sumter County, the average downpayment for a home in 2014 was less than 4%; in Dixie County it was 27%.
Mortgage docs locked in stone 3 days before closing (3/16/2015)
On Aug. 1, new mortgage rules kick in. One of the biggest impacting Realtors: Buyers will get docs three days before closing, and any change will cause a delay.
Buyers may find mortgages easier to get (2/25/2015)
Note to buyers: If a mortgage lender turned you down last year, try again. MBA survey finds looser requirements for credit scores, downpayments and other terms.
FHFA hints at aid for underwater owners (2/10/2015)
In the past, the agency has refused to consider reducing the principal on underwater properties. Nationwide, about 5.1M homeowners had negative equity in 3Q 2014.
87% of buyers qualify for some downpayment help (2/4/2015)
RealtyTrac: Every Fla. county has at least 10 downpayment assistance programs, and some have more than 20. In most Fla. counties, 84% to 97% of buyers qualify.
FHFA defends lower downpayments (1/29/2015)
The agency approved 3% downpayments on conforming mortgages, but critics say it could lead to another real estate meltdown. FHFA explains why it won’t.
The return of the 3% downpayment (1/26/2015)
An increased number of lenders have reduced downpayment requirements and/or mortgage fees; as a result, more buyers may now qualify for a home loan.
No further FHA fee reductions under consideration (1/19/2015)
According to HUD Secretary Julian Castro, buyers shouldn’t wait to see if FHA mortgages get cheaper – there won’t be additional reductions anytime soon.
Buyers turning to credit unions for mortgages (1/19/2015)
Credit unions have quadrupled market share since 2006. Navy Federal Credit Union, which serves military families, had generated almost $20M as of Sept.
Many buyers don’t comparison shop for a mortgage (1/13/2015)
CFPB study: While buyers spend a lot of time home shopping, almost half spend little time comparing mortgage products to find the best loan deal.
Interest-only loans return: Is that good or bad? (1/9/2015)
Mortgages that allow buyers to avoid principal payments for a while work only if home values rise. But new rules have eased fears over the meltdown-related loans.
Lower FHA rates should be available later this month (1/9/2015)
FHA says it will first issue a mortgagee letter that explains the new rules to lenders, and the lower-cost loans should be offered to buyers by late January.
3% down mortgages roll out at breakneck speed (1/5/2015)
A number of 3%-down mortgages have already hit the market. With fewer gray areas, the new Fed rules make it easier for lenders to make underwriting decisions.
Mortgage fraud: Fla. still No. 1 but things improved (12/17/2014)
LexisNexis study: Fla. led the nation in mortgage fraud in latest report, but with 24% fewer confirmed cases of mortgage fraud in a year-to-year comparison.
New lending guidelines target first-time homebuyers (12/16/2014)
The new guidelines should add more low-end buyers and, as a result, more move up buyers by lowering minimum credit scores (620) and forgiving one-time problems.
70% don’t know about downpayment assistance (12/15/2014)
Many potential mid-income homebuyers don’t think they qualify for downpayment assistance. Often, however, they do – and would become buyers if they knew.
Do buyers with pre-purchase counseling fare better? (12/15/2014)
A pilot FHA program sparked a debate: Buyers with pre-counseling perform better, but are they more prepared, or is it the result of an extensive background check?
Second job? It may not help qualify for a mortgage (12/8/2014)
New federal ability-to-repay mortgage rules require buyers to have had the part-time job for at least two years with a few other limited exceptions.
FHA announces 2014 loan limits: No change (12/8/2014)
FHA’s 2015 maximum loan limits in high cost metropolitan areas of the country will still top out at $625,500; in lower cost areas it will remain at $271,050.
Mortgage lenders set to relax standards (12/2/2014)
New federal guidelines clarify banks’ rules for selling mortgages to Fannie and Freddie. Lenders are now expected to relax a bit and approve more applications.
Most lenders say mortgage approval still a challenge (11/20/2014)
Mortgage survey: 71% of lenders said they don’t plan to make mortgage approval any easier because “It’s not worth the risk.”
Mortgage applications take surprising turn (11/20/2014)
The Mortgage Bankers Association reported a 5% application increase last week, but homebuyers submitted most of them – not owners trying to refinance.
Report: Shaky FHA finances move onto solid ground (11/18/2014)
Annual report shows FHA’s insurance fund grew $21B and out of negative equity. NAR then renewed its push for lower premiums and no life-long mortgage insurance.
Lenders step up efforts to help vets buy homes (10/28/2014)
The popularity of VA loans has surged, in part because some of the nation’s biggest lenders started aggressively marketing the program to U.S. military troops.
Risk of mortgage fraud high in 5 Fla. cities (10/28/2014)
CoreLogic reports a national increase in mortgage fraud, and many of Fla.’s cities rank at the top, including Miami, Orlando, Tampa, Sarasota and Jacksonville.