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What is a Mortgage Servicer?

You recently closed on your mortgage loan and have been making your payments to your lender. Then one day, you get a letter in the mail informing you that your loan has been sold and you have a new mortgage servicer taking care of your loan. What does this mean and how does it affect your mortgage? Here’s what you need to know about mortgage servicers: It is very common for your lender to sell your loan soon after originating it. Many lenders and brokers do not have enough reserves to keep mortgage loans on their books. Instead they sell them to investors or government-backed enterpri...

July 24th, 2019 | Conventional Loans, What is a Mortgage Servicer?

How Do I Get Rid of Private Mortgage Insurance?

Private mortgage insurance (PMI) is required by lenders when borrowers contribute less than 20% of the home’s value as a down payment. This insurance protects the lender, not the homebuyer. If the loan borrower defaults on the mortgage for any reason, the insurance will reimburse the lender up to 20% of the original loan amount. Homebuyers pay for the PMI premiums, either up front in a lump sum each year or built in to their monthly mortgage payment. While PMI is helpful for allowing borrowers to become homeowners without saving up a full 20%, the premiums do add up over time. The good n...

June 12th, 2019 | Conventional Loans, Mortgage Insurance, How Do I Get Rid of Private Mortgage Insurance?

How to Calculate Your Debt-to-Income Ratio

When you are ready to apply for a mortgage loan, your lender will ask you for all sorts of financial information. One of the things lenders do with this data is to calculate your debt-to-income (DTI) ratio. A DTI ratio is one of the most basic methods lenders use to determine how much of a monthly mortgage payment you can afford.  You can calculate this number before talking to a lender so that there will be no surprises about how much you might expect to borrow. First, total all your monthly liabilities – including the potential housing payment - and divide that number by your g...

April 17th, 2019 | Credit, Fixed Rate Mortgages, Conventional Loans, Preapproval, How to Calculate Your Debt-to-Income Ratio

What Are Mortgage Points?

If you have ever checked out the current status of mortgage interest rates, you may have seen the average points listed next to the rates. What are these points and how do they affect your interest rate? Points Defined Mortgage points, or discount points, are upfront fees paid to your lender that allow you to “buy down” your interest rate on your home loan. The idea is that you are prepaying some of the interest on the mortgage, which gives you a lower rate. The more points you pay, the lower your interest rate will be. One point is equal to 1% of the total mortgage loan amou...

February 6th, 2019 | Interest Rates, Conventional Loans, Fixed Rate Mortgages, What Are Mortgage Points?

30-year Mortgages vs. 15-Year Mortgages

The majority of American home buyers sign up for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages (FRMs) – the staples of mortgage lending. And yet there is another option that may serve many borrowers better: the 15-year fixed-rate mortgage. Both loans include an interest rate that does not change over the course of the loan but one is paid off twice as fast as the other. Both can be financially savvy in certain situations. Payments If you are looking for the lowest monthly payment, a 30-year FRM beats the 15-year. That is because the loan principal balance is paid off twice as slowly than the 15-yea...

November 7th, 2018 | Conventional Loans, Mortgages, Mortgage, 30-year Mortgages vs. 15-Year Mortgages

How to Qualify for a Mortgage When Your Income Isn’t Steady

Mortgage lenders love to see borrowers with consistent, steady incomes. But not all borrowers have jobs that send a paycheck every two weeks. Of course there are plenty of self-employed entrepreneurs, but there are also people who are depend on tips for income, those who get paid by contract and also individuals who work per diem or on call. All of these situations can make it very challenging to provide proof of the steady income that mortgage lenders adore.  Fortunately, those with more creative incomes can still qualify for a home loan and it is getting easier. For example, in recen...

October 10th, 2018 | Purchasing a Home, Conventional Loans, How to Qualify for a Mortgage When Your Income Isn’t Steady

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