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Homestead Financial Mortgage

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Is Now a Good Time to Refinance my Home Loan?

Is Now a Good Time to Refinance my Home Loan?

Homeowners often ask if it is a good time to refinance their home loan. The answer is certainly yes.  In fact, interest rates are at their lowest levels since 1958 when Dwight D. Eisenhower was president.  Since interest rates are extremely low, this gives tremendous opportunity to credit worthy consumers to take advantage of a refinance home loan. Continue reading “Is Now a Good Time to Refinance my Home Loan?”

What Mortgage Lenders Wish Borrowers Knew About Home Appraisals

An important part of any home buying transaction is the appraisal. Home appraisals help establish your home’s market value, the sales price it would likely bring in an open and competitive real estate market. If you plan to use your home or other real estate as security for a loan, mortgage lenders will require an appraisal to make sure the property will sell for at least the amount of the loan. While many real estate agents use a comparative market analysis (CMA) to help home sellers determine a realistic asking price, a real estate appraisal and CMA are two different things. A real estate appraisal is much more detailed than a CMA and the only valuation report a mortgage lender will consider when it comes to whether or not they’ll lend a prospective borrower money. If you plan to apply for a mortgage in the near future, equipping yourself with the following facts about real estate appraisals will make the appraisal process less intimidating. Continue reading “What Mortgage Lenders Wish Borrowers Knew About Home Appraisals”

Securing a Home Loan with Bad Credit – Part II

In “Securing a Home Loan with Bad Credit – Part I” we explored mitigating factors borrowers should consider highlighting when it comes to securing a home loan even when you have bad credit.  In addition to highlighting the financial assets you do have, your job security and proving your self-discipline as a saver rather than a spender, there are four other factors you should also highlight.
Continue reading “Securing a Home Loan with Bad Credit – Part II”

Securing a Home Loan with Bad Credit – Part I

When it comes to securing a home loan today one of the biggest misconceptions is that you need to have an excellent credit rating, a large down payment and low debt-to-income ratio with steady significant income.  But the truth is home ownership can happen even if you have bad credit due to a foreclosure or bankruptcy or if you have previously been turned down for a loan.  Here are some things to keep in mind.
Continue reading “Securing a Home Loan with Bad Credit – Part I”

Should I Pay Down My Mortgage with Extra Money or Invest?

So you have some extra dollars and want to know what to do with it? For the purposes of this article, lets assume “spending it” isn’t an option. What are the benefits if I pay down my mortgage vs investing the extra money? When you evaluate the numbers, it boils down to emotion vs logic. Continue reading “Should I Pay Down My Mortgage with Extra Money or Invest?”

Bank vs Mortgage Lender: What’s the Difference?

The Bank vs Mortgage Lender Difference

Homeowners seeking financing often ask what the difference between a bank and a mortgage lender is when it comes to doing a home loan. Whether it is a refinance home loan or a purchase home loan, there are distinct differences. A bank, as most people are very familiar with, primarily service checking accounts, savings accounts, CD’s, car loans, and sometimes “Home Equity Line of Credit” second mortgage loans. Some may even do first mortgage position loans, though not all. A Home Equity Line of Credit, also known as a HELOC is a secured home loan that is in second lien position to the primary first mortgage loan. This is referred to as a 2nd mortgage. A HELOC is usually a variable rate loan based on “Prime Rate”, which is an index based loan. Continue reading “Bank vs Mortgage Lender: What’s the Difference?”

5 Tax Return Pointers to Help You Qualify for a Mortgage

For any of us interested in qualifying for a mortgage in the near future you should also pay attention to how we are required to file our tax returns. With April 15th fast approaching, here a some tax return pointers to make sure your return doesn’t keep you from qualifying for a mortgage. Continue reading “5 Tax Return Pointers to Help You Qualify for a Mortgage”