Archive for the ‘Mortgage’ Category

THE OTHER 10 COMMANDMENTS

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When Applying for a Mortgage Loan
1. Thou shall not change jobs or become self-employed.
2. Thou shall not buy a car, truck or van unless you plan to live in it.
3. Thou shall not use your credit cards or let your payments fall behind.
4. Thou shall not spend the money you have saved for your down payment.
5. Thou shall not buy furniture before you buy your house.
6. Thou shall not originate any new inquiries on your credit report.
7. Thou shall not make any large deposits into your bank account.
8. Thou shall not change bank accounts.
9. Thou shall not co-sign for anyone.
10. Thou shall not purchase anything until after the closing.

FICO REASON SCORES

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Factors contributing to someone's credit score...

Factors contributing to someone’s credit score, for Credit score (United States). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Have you ever wondered about the group of numbers following the FICO Score on your Credit Report?

e.g.  FICO Score: 500 38 21 18 05

They are not greatly complicated but are seldom used as they should be. Put simply they are the FICO “Reason Codes” and explain why your score is not higher than it is.

In the above example with the poor 500 score the meanings are:

(38) Serious delinquency and derogatory public record or collection filed. (90+ day late payments AND a public record, or account in Collection)

(21) Amount past due on accounts (current late payments)

(18) Multiple accounts with history of late payments

(05) Too may accounts with balances owed.

These are the 4 most important things related to this individual score and the things that need to be dealt with in order to improve the score.

Remember, they are not the reason your score is so low; they are the reasons it is not better.

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OWNER TO RENTER

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AT LAST, SIGNS OF INTELLIGENT LIFE IN A BANK.

Pilot programs of this kind have been running successfully inside a number of Banks. If implemented more widely this strategy will make a huge positive impact on thousands of families.

CitiMortgage announced the launch of the Home Rental Program, a program designed to provide an alternative to foreclosure and allow eligible borrowers to stay in their homes.
The Home Rental Program will be managed by Carrington Capital Management, LLC and Carrington Mortgage Services, LLC. CitiMortgage and Carrington developed the program as a pilot.
Under the program, the eligible borrower transfers ownership of the property to a vehicle established by Carrington Capital and its joint venture partner, Oaktree Capital Management, L.P. A lease will then be established for the property at a manageable monthly payment.
Lease payments will be determined by local market rates but are expected to be lower than the borrower’s mortgage obligation. Carrington will work with borrowers to establish a length for each lease.
The program will be tested in six of the hardest-hit markets to evaluate its effectiveness: Arizona, California, Texas, Florida, Nevada, and Georgia. Carrington will contact homeowners who meet eligibility requirements.
In order to be eligible for the program, candidates must: Occupy the property; owe more than their home is worth; be delinquent for 120 days; and be unable or ineligible to receive an affordable loan modification while still having the resources to make monthly rent payments. In addition, candidates must have a loan in the pilot portfolio serviced by Carrington.
To implement the program, CitiMortgage has transferred the ownership of loans in its portfolio through the sale of $158 million in mortgages to the Carrington/Oaktree partnership.
“We’re looking forward to working on this important initiative with CitiMortgage and our partner, Oaktree Capital Management,” said Bruce Rose, founder and CEO of Carrington. “Offering alternatives for borrowers looking to stay in their homes and simultaneously relieving their distress is core to the operating principles of our firm and will help substantially in the overall housing market recovery.”

MCC. FREE MONEY FROM THE IRS

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Many States, Counties, and Cities have great programs to help 1st Time home buyers, but few if any are better then the Federal Governments Mortgage Credit Certificate (MCC) program.
This turbo charges the existing TAX DEDUCTION for mortgage interest by allowing 15% of it to be taken as a TAX CREDIT.
Here’s an example:
If you pay mortgage interest of $24,000/year you can take 15% of that ($3,600) and deduct it dollar for dollar from your total tax liability.
To put it simply; if your total tax bill was $20,000 it will be reduced to $16,500. You have now got a tax free pay raise of $250/m.
You can now tell your employer to reduce the amount they take from your paystub so you get the benefit of this right away with an extra $250/month in your pocket.
This program is administered by the Counties, and your Mortgage Broker/Bank, but be aware that not all of them are familiar with it. Be prepared to educate them.

HARP – HAMP – HAFA etc

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For borrowers unable to afford their mortgage payment, listed below are the options you will need to consider in the following order… HARP is always your 1st Option

1.) HARP (Home Affordable Refinance Program) this allows you to convert to a low 30Y Fixed. You must have a Fannie or Freddie loan with good credit and be current on your payments.

2.) HAMP (Home Affordable Modification Program) this is where most of the borrowers will be; however not everyone will qualify. You will need to have a financial hardship and there are front and back end financial conditions that need to be met.

3.) HAFA (Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternative) If you were denied a loan modification and unable to afford your mortgage payments, then you may want to consider selling your property at a loss (Short Sale). Your lender would first need to agree to the short sale and the credit impact will be two years and is less damaging then a foreclosure.

4.) Deed in Lieu (DIL). This is where you give the property back to the lender by signing a Deed-in-Lieu of Foreclosure. This also avoids a Foreclosure. DIL is not possible if you have more than one loan i.e. 2nd mortgage or Home Equity Line of Credit as these stay in force and the 1st mortgage holder would have to accept responsibility for them.

5.) Foreclosure. People with excellent credit are now foreclosing on their properties by walking away from it. They believe the property will not go up in value and have suffered a substantial loss from it. Consequences apply as this will stay on your credit report for 7 years.

6.) Bankruptcy. Regardless if it’s a Chapter 7 or 13, it will stay on your credit report for 10 years.
With the new Bankruptcy ACT of 2005 it is now more difficult to file for Chapter 7 and most likely you will need to file a 13, which still requires you to pay back your debts.

NEGATIVE EQUITY REFINANCING

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The Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) is now available to 5 million homeowners who have a solid payment history on an existing mortgage owned by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. Normally, these borrowers would be unable to refinance because their homes have lost value, pushing their current loan-to-value ratios above 100%. Under the HARP Program, many of them will now be eligible to refinance their loan to take advantage of today’s lower mortgage rates or to refinance an adjustable-rate mortgage into a more stable mortgage, such as a 30-year fixed HARP loan.
The HARP Program and HARP 2.0 are available now.
For a full description of this great program and to see if your loan qualifies go to http://www.harploan.org/faq.html
Here are some recent statistics to illustrate the success of HARP 2:
o. One in 7 of all refinances in the 1st quarter of 2012 was through HARP.
o. The number of refinances in the 1st quarter was double that for the last quarter of 2011 driven by a sharp increase in those with above 105% Loan to Value (LTV)
o. FHFA officials attribute the increase to the removal of the loan-to-value (LTV) ceiling for borrowers who refinance into fixed-rate loans and the elimination — or lowering — of fees for certain borrowers.
o. In March, there were nearly 80,000 HARP refinances, a quarter of them on loans with LTVs greater than 105 percent.
o. More than 4,400 loans with LTVs greater than 125 percent were refinanced since the beginning of the year; over half these loans were refinanced in the states of California, Florida, and Arizona.
• The number of loans refinanced through HARP in the first quarter of 2012 nearly doubled compared with the number of loans refinanced through HARP in the fourth quarter of 2011, driven by a sharp increase in the number of loans refinanced above 105 percent LTV.
• In March, there were nearly 80,000 HARP refinances, a quarter of them on loans with LTVs greater than 105 percent.
• More than 4,400 loans with LTVs greater than 125 percent were refinanced since the beginning of the year; over half these loans were refinanced in the states of California, Florida, and Arizona.

What $25m Payback?

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In February, US Attorney General Eric Holder announced the unprecedented $25 billion settlement with the five largest banks in the US. One of the provisions of the settlement is a $2,000 payment to homeowners who lost their homes to foreclosure.

4 months later, people are asking, “When am I going to get my check?”

The answer is, “It depends.”

One thing is for certain. It won’t be this week or this month. It will take up to two months to select an administrator and six to nine months to actually get the ball rolling.

Then you have to meet a few other requirements.

Did Bank of America, Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo or Ally Financial service your loan? If so, good, because the settlement only applies to them. But even then, you’ll only qualify if your loan was NOT a government-backed mortgage (such as FHA, VA, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac loans), and which account for over half of home mortgages.

Did you lose your house between Jan 1, 2008 and Dec 31, 2011? If so, good, because the settlement only covers those four years. (This period is for when the house went back to the bank or an investor, not the loan origination date, as some reports indicate.)

Are you feeling lucky? The $1.5 billion set aside for these payments will cover 750,000 borrowers. We have no numbers on how many foreclosures these five lenders completed from 2008 to 2011, but there were roughly 3.8 million foreclosure sales during that period, over five times as many as will receive payments.

According to the plan eligible borrowers will be contacted. Given that everyone who is entitled to these checks has lost their home and have now moved, it will be interesting to see if they can actually find you. Hopefully you filled out a Change of Address for with the US Postal Service

Good luck

PENDING RATIOS STILL IMPROVING

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The ratio between pending sales and listed properties is the best single indicator of future market direction.
Silicon Valleys Pending Home Sales Index (PHSI) has now improved for 16 months in a row from from February 2011 to May 2012.
A PENDING SALE is defined as a Signed Purchase Contract.
Given the Federal Reserves commitment to keep rates down for at least another year this trend seems sure to continue with a steady increase of home prices.

Mortgage Activity Increasing Rapidly

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A large increase in Mortgage loan applications for Buyers is another strong sign that the market is getting back to normal in many parts of the Country. Overall the number of applications for mid February to mid March was  22% greater then for the same period last year.

When added to the recent large increase in the number of Pending sales contracts this bodes well for a much stronger market overall.

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Obama Refi Plan: 580 FICOs Okay, So Are 140% LTVs

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President Obama is urging Congress to pass a bank tax, funneling the money over to the Federal Housing Administration which will then refinance non-GSE borrowers who are under water on their loans.

Wednesday morning the White House released certain details of its latest refi plan, opening up the initiative to borrowers with a minimum credit score of 580 and loan-to-value ratio of up to 140%. But there is one catch: these mortgagors must be current on their existing loan.

For loans with LTVs above 140%, lenders would have to write down the principal before refinancing, according to a White House fact sheet released to the media.

This plan will “help millions of responsible homeowners who make their payments on time but find themselves trapped under falling values or wrapped in red tape,” President Obama said at a rally in Falls Church, Va., Wednesday morning.

The White House estimates FHA will need $5 billion to $10 billion to fund this new refi program for private mortgages and create a separate mortgage insurance fund.

“This will help the FHA better track and manage the risk involved and ensure that it has no effect on the operation of the existing [FHA] Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund,” a White House fact sheet says.

To get the program off the ground, Congress will have to pass legislation that authorizes FHA to refinance higher LTV loans along with the proposed bank tax to fund the program.

The President calls the tax the “Financial Crisis Responsibility Fee,” noting that it will be imposed on the “largest institutions based on their size and the riskiness of their activities.”

Washington insiders consider the bank tax a “non-starter” in the Republican-controlled House of Representatives.

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