September 27, 2020

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Articles Published in: June 2020

HUD Extends Modified Exterior-Only Appraisals During COVID-19

HUD Extends Modified Exterior-Only Appraisals During COVID-19

The World Heath Organization says “the worst is yet to come” with regard to the global coronavirus pandemic; the Department of Housing And Urban Development responded to COVID-19 quarantine measures in March 2020, eliminating a requirement temporarily to suspend in-person or indoor appraisal activity. Those changes temporarily meant FHA appraisals would not be subject to a requirement for in-person appraisals that might run in violation of community social distancing policies. The appraisal policy (as well as modified employment verification requiremets for certain loans). But that was all set to expire (more than once, as we’ll read below) until HUD acted to extend these measures anew. Now, with COVID-19 hot spots in the forefront of American news headlines, HUD has extended the modified appraisal guidelines (as well as employment verification rules)–they | more...

 
HUD Brings Fair Housing Act Charges Against Atlanta Landlords

HUD Brings Fair Housing Act Charges Against Atlanta Landlords

Have you experienced housing discrimination at any stage in the housing process? Violations of the Fair Housing Act can occur at any stage of your journey to find a new rental home or purchase including home loans, refinance loans, home buying, etc. If you have experienced ANY kind of discrimination while looking for a house or apartment, file a complaint of discrimination with the HUD Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity at (800) 669-9777. You can also file a Fair Housing Act complaint online by visiting How to File a Complaint at the HUD official site. Why? Because Fair Housing violations continue to be an issue in the United States of America, and often the only thing that prevents those who discriminated against YOU to keep violating the law | more...

 
First Time Home Buyers: Improve Your Credit With Credit Monitoring

First Time Home Buyers: Improve Your Credit With Credit Monitoring

The COVID-19 pandemic has created economic uncertainty for many current and future homeowners. Many borrowers may have experienced financial setbacks during the coronavirus outbreak in America, and the years to come will involve a lot of credit repair and related efforts American consumers will need to get back on track financially. Protecting your credit is more important than ever–do you know what can hurt your FICO scores? Actively monitoring your credit is an important option–there are services that keep track of your credit report and learn about what affects your scores. It may be tempting to use free credit monitoring offers but financial advisors recommend comparing features on free offers versus subscription-based services. You may find that paying a small fee gets you much better options and features for managing | more...

 
Is your credit ready for an FHA loan?

Anticipating Closing Costs For Your New Home Loan

Buying a home requires planning and saving. Especially for closing costs, which can include appraisal fees, the home inspection, compliance inspections, and the Up-Front Mortgage Insurance Premium. It takes time to save for these expenses, but some borrowers will pay more up front than others. That is usually due to a combination of factors, but the thing new home loan applicants need to know is that your financial needs and goals will dictate how and when you pay certain closing costs. Did you know you can finance some closing costs and have the home’s seller help you pay for others? Government-backed mortgages like FHA home loans (including FHA One-Time Close construction loans which can help even a first-time home buyer build a home from scratch) make buying or building a | more...

 
What Credit Score Is Needed For An FHA Mortgage?

Coronavirus And Home Loan Appraisals: What You Need To Know Now

In the age of social distancing, getting a home loan might seem challenging, but the industry has tried to change with the times and there are contact-free closing procedures, online document submission, and alternative appraisal methods in effect. Some of these measures serve as a reminder that a borrower should always pay for the optional home inspection and never rely on any other viewing of the home including the appraisal for that information. Relaxed Appraisals Why? Due to the relaxed requirements for appraisals during COVID-19. FHA appraisers can do some appraisal work as “drive-bys” where the appraiser never steps in the home; some work is accomplished video tours or walkthroughs. The appraiser may never enter the home personally depending on the housing market, local social distancing procedures, the severity of | more...

 
Mortgage Rate Trends

Mortgage Rates Hovering Near Historic Lows

Mortgage loan interest rates have been holding steady near all-time lows. FHA mortgage loans (on fixed-rate 30 year mortgages) were reported at a best-execution 2.50% on Monday June 23, 2020 and talk persists that these low numbers could be with us longer than expected unless there are market forces that run counter to the current downward trend. Some marketwatchers point out that current low rates can be blamed at least in part on coronavirus concerns, but the reverse is not necessarily true if the crisis begins to abate without a feared second wave of infections. Investors and markets may not react in equal measure to the good economic news as they did to bad economic developments. What’s bad for the economy is often good for mortgage loan rates, and that’s | more...

 
Do You Know How To Dispute Your Credit Reports?

Why You Should Monitor Your Credit As A First-Time Home Buyer

Are you a first-time home buyer interested in buying or building a home? New borrowers should monitor their credit for signs of identity theft, erroneous information, and outdated credit data; doing so improves your chances at home loan approval by ruling out issues that may be related to credit report problems that are not your fault. Some future home owers already pay strict attention to their credit, but not everyone does. And they should–credit monitoring should play a crucial part of your preparation stages before applying for an FHA mortgage. The principles we are talking about here can protect you when applying for any big loan, including cash-out refinancing. Regular Monitoring Eliminates Surprises Later Having regular updates about your credit report reduces the chances of something slipping through–errors or evidence | more...

 
HUD Announces Disaster Relief In The Wake Of Hurricane Laura

FHA And HUD Announce Extended Foreclosure Relief

Are you a homeowner with an FHA loan worried about your mortgage during the coronavirus pandemic? If so, you aren’t alone. Coronavirus outbreak containment policies–lockdowns, quarantines, and other necessary measures, have brought with them economic hardship from many Americans; loss of income creates and questions about future earnings can result in late and missed mortgage payments, increasing the risk of foreclosure. But during the pandemic, federal relief measures were drafted to help–and the FHA/HUD is no exception, requiring participating lenders to delay initiating or continuing foreclosures during the crisis. Now, the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Federal Housing Administration have issued an extension (actually the second extension since the crisis began) of the foreclosure moratorium announced in March. The Old Deadline Wasn’t Sufficient The HUD official site | more...

 
Construction Loans For First-Time Home Buyers

Planning Your One-Time Close Construction Loan

Some FHA loan applicants do not realize they have the ability to apply for a One-Time Close mortgage that lets the borrower build a home on their own lot instead of buying an existing construction home. The FHA One-Time Close (OTC) construction loan, like its’ VA construction loan counterpart, is a loan backed by the government that allows the borrower to apply for a single mortgage loan to cover both the costs of construction of a home from the ground up and the purchase of the home.  This is offered as an alternative to construction loans that require two loan applications (one for construction, one for the completed home) and two closing dates. OTC Loans Have The Same Down Payment Requirements As Other FHA Loans The One-Time Close loan avoids | more...

 
FHA Refinance Options

Intro To FHA Refinance Loans

The year 2020 has brought with it historic low interest rates on conventional mortgages and FHA home loans alike. Those low rates have many more homeowners thinking about their refinance loan options and how they can take advantage of some of the lowest interest rates in recent history. Refinancing helps some borrowers save money in interest payments over the long term. It can also, depending on circumstances, help you get into a lower monthly payment. Refinancing can also result in cash back to the borrower once the original loan has been paid off and the associated closing costs dealt with. Not every refinance loan offers this, but FHA loan programs do include cash-out options. If you need to refinance your home loan because you want cash out, your loan will | more...