On this page, you will find interesting articles and information to help you with your real estate needs. Click on the links to view.
Effective January 15, 2011 – Lower Minimum Loan Scores Allowed for FHA Purchase Transactions
Effective January 15, 2011 FHA has lowered the minimum score and LTV allowed for FHA purchase transactions. If your credit score is below 500, you do not qualify for this loan. Loan scores 500-579 allowed, with additional requirements and 10% down. Loan scores of 580-599 allowed, with additional requirements and 5% down. Loan scores 600 and higher allowed with 3.5% down.
3 Questions You Must Answer Before Buying A Home: http://kcmblog.com/2011/01/04/3-questions-you-must-answer-before-buying-a-home/
A reader asks, “What is the first thing I should do as a first-time homebuyer?”
Answer: The first thing I would do is get pre-qualified. This will give you a realistic price point for your home search. Then, do some research on the area you would like to live – schools, convenient to shopping and your daily commute, etc. I would do some “window shopping” on the internet at homes and get a feel for how much house you can buy, narrowing down the most important features needed of your new home. Then, I would find a good realtor that knows the area well, has good contacts to help you with your mortgage and home inspection and an agent that understands construction of homes. This will help you to learn what to look for in quality-built homes. My website has home searches broken down into areas and communities if you are interested: http://karen.hughes.harrynorman.com
Introducing WaysHome from Fannie Mae
Today, January 6, Fannie Mae launched WaysHomeTM, a new interactive video to educate homeowners about their options to avoid foreclosure, motivate them to make the right decisions, and encourage them to seek help. WaysHome is part of Fannie Mae’s Know Your OptionsTM consumer initiative to help today’s struggling homeowners and is available on KnowYourOptions.com.
A unique and innovative learning tool, WaysHome allows homeowners to put themselves into real-life situations and make decisions — then see the consequences of these decisions play out in front of them. Through WaysHome, homeowners can:
- Participate in an interactive video simulation.
- Select a character and go through the simulation “playing” that character.
- Follow characters as they encounter financial hardships and challenges that affect their ability to pay their mortgage.
- Choose different paths based on real-life situations.
- Experience the positive outcomes or negative consequences of their choices (i.e., if they avoid taking action, foreclosure may be their only option).
- Learn about options that may be available to help.
- Discover the right paths to avoid foreclosure, know their options, and find their way home.
Benefits to You
Our research shows that many homeowners still don’t know about — or understand — their options to avoid foreclosure. In fact, many homeowners who are seriously delinquent or in foreclosure have little to no contact with their mortgage company. WaysHome is designed to bridge that gap and encourage homeowners to take action before it’s too late.
Most Americans Say It Is a Good Time to Buy a Home
by The KCM Crew on January 19, 2011
We have been making two major points for several months. If you are selling a house, you must do it now AND if you are buying one, you must also do it now. This sounds crazy – but it is true. PRICE is the most important thing to a seller. With prices projected to fall through the first half of 2011, if you want to sell, do it now. The alternative might be to wait over a year just for prices to recover to current values.
The second point revolves around the fact that buyers are more concerned about COST (price AND interest rate). Fannie Mae, the National Association of Realtors, the Mortgage Bankers Association and the PMI Company are all projecting interest rates to rise this year. If you want to buy, your best time to purchase could be right now.
We have had people question us on the second point. We truly believe it is a good time to buy however. And a new survey says that the majority of Americans agree with us. Gallup just released a poll showing that 67% of Americans think this is a good time to purchase a home. The interesting thing is that the same poll showed that more people believed that prices would decrease (27%) than increase (21%). Most people realize that this is a opportune time to purchase even if prices continue to soften.
Even the Gallup people weighed in on the subject:
Overall, there is good reason for most Americans to think now is a good time to buy a house. Interest rates remain near historic lows. Home prices are down sharply, providing many incredible buys.
There may be people advising you to use caution before buying a home right now. That is probably good advice. However, there is a difference between caution and fear. Fear could paralyze you and prevent you from making a good decision. Caution will make sure you make the right decision. And remember: if you do think it makes sense to buy your home today, 2 out of 3 people agree with you.