Monday, July 13, 2020

A Fun Look Back At The Homes Of The 1920s

It has now been 100 years since the start of the Roaring '20s when flappers danced in Great Gatsby. Prohibition was still a decade away. As for housing styles, it's fun to compare today's homes to those a century ago, dresses above their knees, jazz began permeating the night club scene with insane rhythms, and men dressed like the Great Gatsby. Prohibition was still a decade away. As for housing styles, it's fun to compare today's homes to those a century ago.

Back East, in places like Quincy, MA, "streetcar suburbs" were growing quickly, containing American Foursquares, Dutch Colonials, and "Quincy Capes" that were built alongside multi-family homes. House and Hammer's Jon Gorey, who lives in that area, says 1920s floor plans seemed to be made for entertaining and boasted 12-ft ceilings throughout. "The downstairs rooms are almost always connected all the way around in a circular flow pattern — which, any child can tell you, is perfect for racing around in circles. Instead of doors between rooms, there are often wide, cased openings. And when every room opens into another, and another, it helps to relieve any claustrophobic inklings you might otherwise get in a small house."
Homes in the wild west were built with different building materials than those used in colder climates. As historians note, the Los Angeles of the 1920s was roaring like it never had before. Hollywood was in its infancy and the "Go West, young man" mentality had people from all over the country dreaming of a different life. Realtor David Lubell, who specializes in selling historic Los Angeles homes, says that Mediterranean architecture began dominating southern California, derived from styles of the Iberian and Italian peninsulas. "Of course, the climate in southern California makes this a sensible outcome, but the story is more complex than just the weather," says Lubell. "More than two centuries of Spanish-Mexican settlement also had a tremendous influence on the stylistic choices in Los Angeles. The indigenous peoples use of adobe mixed with the Spanish Colonial forms set the foundation for a different kind of architecture than in the rest of the United States." This is, of course, even more prevalent in parts of the American Southwest.
This is also when modernism began to find its footing, beginning with the opening of Bauhaus, the German art school that combined crafts and the fine arts and began to spread its design love everywhere. Art deco touches meant homes were flashy, sophisticated, and fun all at the same time. Geometric shapes, shiny fabrics, stylized images of skyscrapers and airplanes, and exotic touches from Africa, Egypt, and the Far East were brought together to form an eclectic and exciting home interior. 
As for the nuts and bolts of homes of the 1920s, lath-and-plaster was still the ticket. Galvanized pipes were employed both within the house and for sewer lines as well. No one back then knew they corroded over time. And the now-infamous knob-and-tube wiring was everywhere. So if you were to buy a 1920s home that had never been updated, you'd be looking at replacing all plumbing and electrical conduits as well as the electrical panels. Toilets of the 1920s had long cords attached to tanks placed high on the wall, and tubs were surrounded by 360-degree curtains. Interestingly enough, you can still find manufacturers who make those strange looking toilets and, of course, clawfoot tubs are still the rage. How about those craftsman homes, such a beautiful home that still provides many homeowners with continued enjoyment to this day. 
Kitchens were large, usually with a large informal dining table in the center. And for those who could afford it, iceboxes were traded in for modern electric refrigerators, introduced in 1920. No longer did homeowners need to wait for the ice to be delivered by a guy in a truck. It was now contained in trays in a freezer compartment, ready to break out for cold drinks at a moment's notice.
So as you look to consider doing some updating to your home in the coming decade, remember that it was the 1920s that began a tradition of distinctive style in home interiors. It was a prosperous (and sometimes irreverent) time in U.S. history. The elements of it that have been preserved to this day are living proof good architecture and design can stand the test of time.
I hope this has been fun come back soon. 
Thank you for visiting my blog, please leave me a comment and let me if you like my blog and the information I post. 

Roxy Redenbaugh, Broker
Sr Mortgage Consultant
Residential and Commercial
The Greatest Compliment I Can Receive Is A Referral From Friends, Family, and Business Associates,
NMLS#269926 Company NMLS#1930219

Source: TBWS

Thursday, July 9, 2020

How To Select A Loan Officer

Someone once asked me: If you were shopping for a Mortgage broker. How would you select one? Do I need a mortgage broker to get a mortgage?

You might believe, the interest rate is one of the last reasons to choose a lender. I say this because almost all loans get ultimately sold to the same pool of investors-Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac or Ginnie Mae. Lenders earn their money by originating and funding loans which they then sell to investors for a small profit. The investors pay a set price for these mortgages, depending on what the market is doing on any given day.

It's important to know this as a consumer so that you realize that there isn't a huge spread in rates between one lender and the next. You should be looking for different criteria for choosing a lender to purchase or refinance a home.

You asked about mortgage brokers, but it might be a good idea at this point to talk about some terminology. A mortgage broker is a licensed person who acts as a go-between for lenders and consumers. The broker will typically receive a fee from the lender for those services. It does not usually cost more to use the services of a mortgage broker.

There are also mortgage bankers. Although you might think a "banker" is someone sitting behind a fancy desk in your local Too Big To Fail bank, the term is actually broader than that. A mortgage banker is someone who originates and funds mortgages in the name of his or her company. They will then sell the funded loan to the investor for a small profit. It does not cost more to use the services of a mortgage banker or a commercial bank when you are seeking a mortgage. 

You might ask what the difference is between a "banker" and a "broker." Both do essentially the same job, but under today's regulations, there are minor differences between the two types of loan originators. A broker is considered the "originator" under the new regulations. A banker is seen as a "creditor." The disclosure documentation is very slightly different between the two, but in most cases, there are functionally the same. A banker, however, may have a bit more flexibility when it comes to getting your loan funded. 

Let's consider that "broker" and "banker" are essentially interchangeable terms. Many people who used to be brokers are now bankers. Some don't even change the name of their company or their location. 

I'd suggest that a better way to ask your question might be to ask, "Am I better off going to my neighborhood Too Big To Fail bank or finding an independent lender (broker or banker)?" Here is what you should look for when you look for a mortgage.

First, you should be aware that getting a mortgage today involves more moving parts than previously. This means that having a loan officer to guide your application through the process is very important. It doesn't matter whether your loan officer is a banker or broker; what matters is that you have a point of contact to answer questions and let you know how the process is going.

A good loan officer will also help you as a trusted advisor; they should be able to let you know if there are ways where you might tweak your credit score so as to get better pricing on your loan. For example, raising a credit score from 735 to 740 could save $1,000 on a $400,000 loan. Accomplishing that could be as simple as reducing the balance on a single credit card.

Your loan officer should also have a good feel for the performance of the market. Mortgage rates change every day, based on the price of a type of bond called a Mortgage Backed Security (MBS). The price of the MBS changes during the day according to market activity. It directly affects the rates for mortgages. To give you an idea, if the price of the MBS goes up from one day to the next by .25% (that would be $.025 per $100 of bond value), the cost of a mortgage will improve by .25%. That means that a $400,000 mortgage would be $1,000 less expensive. 


This doesn't mean that the cost of your loan is constantly fluctuating. There will come a time in the mortgage process when you have to "lock" the rate. This means that the lender is now committed to fund the loan at an agreed price and terms, regardless of what happens in the market. If your loan officer believes, from being aware of the market activity that rates might improve over the near term, he or she may advise you not to lock right away. Conversely, your loan officer may believe that rates may increase soon based on market activity and would encourage you to lock early, thus protecting from rising rates. No one is right all the time, but you're far better off dealing with a lender who understands the mortgage markets.

To answer your question—FINALLY—the answer to your question is no…but regardless of whether you go to a Too Big To Fail bank or an independent lender (broker or banker), your interests are best served by finding someone whom you can trust as a resource and trusted advisor. 

I hope this is helpful. Good luck!


Thank you for visiting my blog, please leave me a comment and let me if you like my blog and the information I post. 

Roxy Redenbaugh, Broker
Sr Mortgage Consultant
Residential and Commercial
The Greatest Compliment I Can Receive Is A Referral From Friends, Family, and Business Associates,
NMLS#269926 Company NMLS#1930219

Wednesday, June 17, 2020

Selling Your Home During Quarantine: all the same rules apply, but looks are everything!

Social distancing. It’s just not fun. And it’s certainly not ideal for selling your home, if that was
your plan before this COVID-19 quarantine guidelines made life difficult. Open houses and house tours are, after all, all about the number of feet crossing your threshold — not people keeping their distance.
The current state of the US housing market reveals that homebuyers still want to buy houses. The big difference is that they are making the transition to the virtual home-buying experience (including live video-chat tours) instead of tromping through homes right now. So if you were planning to list your house before all this hit, all is not lost. It’s the perfect time to get your home ready to sell, making it visually virtual delight.
Your first assignment is to walk the perimeter of your home and re-enter it through your front door, imagining it through the eyes of a potential homebuyer. Go through each room in your house and see with homebuyer eyes the amount of clutter you’ve accumulated. Don’t worry, it’s human nature. However, clutter detracts from the beauty of your home and its prime selling features. If you would buy a used car containing a trash bag full of laundry in the back seat or chapstick and hair ties in the center console. Why take chances at this point, when you want the highest price for your house, and you already have challenges showing it during quarantine?
Decluttering means eliminating large furniture/ too many pieces of furniture so that rooms appear larger. If you need tips on this, go online and see what homebuilders or stagers do with each room, and give each room a definite purpose. That means your master should not be your home office, your exercise room and your sleep space all at once. Place extra stuff in storage for now. Or donate it or sell it using appropriate distancing rules and washing your hands often.
This process of decluttering has more of a purpose than just making the home appear more spacious. It’s also helping you prepare for the eventual move. You plan on moving anyways so you might as well start organizing and packing your belongings.... Start by cleaning out your closets and other storage areas before moving onto individual rooms. Sell or donate the items you don’t want to keep, and then begin moving everything else to a storage unit. You’ll be amazed how large your house really is once you begin reducing the amount of ‘stuff’ that fills it from wall to wall.
As you declutter, deep clean, uses the used car analogy. What if that same car you were looking at buying had fast food wrappers on the floorboards, or the steering wheel and dashboard were covered in dust? You would probably think the previous owner didn’t take good care of their car, even if it ran perfectly. Same with houses, presentation is everything.
It’s also a great time to fix a few things. Take notes on each room as well as the home’s exterior and make a punch list, knocking out each task one by one. You’ve definitely got the time. If much of what you see appears dated, why not do a few inexpensive updates, such as changing out the hardware in your kitchen, replacing old doorknobs, updating outlet and light switch plates, adding floating shelves here and there, and doing a bit more feature lighting?
Even if homebuyers hesitate to make an appointment to walk through your home, they will probably drive by it. So curb appeal is definitely called for. “You may live in sunny Sacramento, CA where you can use plants year-round to make your house more appealing to homebuyers, or you may live in Minneapolis, MN where snow may still cover the ground in late spring and you have to work a little harder to make your home shine. Either way, you’ll never get a second chance at a first impression for homebuyers. So rake that yard, pick up debris, pressure wash your driveway, add a few potted plants here and there, consider repainting or staining your front door, and throw down a new welcome mat.
No matter what you do to improve the look of your home before it hits the multiple listing service as well as the video chat world, it will pay off — in photos as well as in person.
Thank you for visiting my blog, please leave me a comment and let me if you like my blog and the information I post. 

Roxy Redenbaugh, Broker
Sr Mortgage Consultant
Residential and Commercial
The Greatest Compliment I Can Receive Is A Referral From Friends, Family, and Business Associates,
NMLS#269926 Company NMLS#1930219

Friday, June 12, 2020

Mortgage Giants Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae Offer More Relief To Worried Homeowners

In a move sure to bring a sigh of relief to millions of distressed homeowners, loans backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will now defer all missed mortgage payments, tacking them on to the end of their loans already in forbearance.
HousingWire’s Ben Lane reports that under the new program, borrowers who took forbearance due to COVID-related issues will not have to repay their missed payments until they sell their homes, refinance their current mortgage or their mortgage matures. Under the program, the borrower begins making their mortgage payments again when they’re able.
Lane quotes FHFA Director Mark Calabria, saying, “For homeowners in forbearance due to COVID-19, payment deferral allows them to make up missed forbearance payments when they sell their home or refinance. This new forbearance repayment solution responsibly simplifies options for homeowners while providing an additional tool for mortgage servicers. Borrowers who can pay their mortgage should, because missed payments remain an obligation that will ultimately have to be repaid.” The extension can continue up to 180 days beyond the 180 days granted by forbearance.
“The issue is that forbearance is not forgiveness; therefore, borrowers in forbearance have to repay their missed mortgage payments one way or another,” says Lane. “The GSEs’ (government-sponsored loans’) new payment deferral allows borrowers who took forbearance to shift as many as 12 months of mortgage payments to the end of their loan and is available to homeowners who have completed a COVID-19 related forbearance plan and are able to continue making their full monthly contractual payment but cannot afford full reinstatement or a repayment plan to bring their mortgage loan current.
According to Freddie Mac, the maturity date, remaining term, interest rate and payment schedule of the borrower’s mortgage remains the same as it was before. In addition, Freddie Mac said that utilizing the payment deferral option does not prevent a homeowner from someday being eligible for a Freddie Mac modification if payment relief is needed in the future. This option will be available starting July 1, 2020.
For more information on how this all works, contact your mortgage professional.
I am always available to answer any questions you may have. 
Thank you for visiting my blog, please leave me a comment and let me if you like my blog and the information I post. 

Roxy Redenbaugh, Broker
Sr Mortgage Consultant
Residential and Commercial
The Greatest Compliment I Can Receive Is A Referral From Friends, Family, and Business Associates,
NMLS#269926 Company NMLS#1930219

Source: Housingwire | TBWS

Tuesday, June 9, 2020

Best Advice I Would Give To First-Time Homebuyers

I was once asked: We're in the process of hopefully purchasing our first home, and I'm a little lost on everything that is going on.  What's the best advice you would give to first-time homebuyers?

Without question, your first step in the home buying process is to begin getting your financing in order. I realize this may seem like slightly self-serving advice since I am in the mortgage business, but the fact is that most people who buy homes today do so with a mortgage. That part is often the most challenging, with far more moving parts and potential snags than in years past.

This fact should not intimidate or deter you; getting a mortgage today is more involved, but it is not the impossible task some would have you believe it is.

It's an excellent idea to know the shape of your credit. Lenders do NOT require that every applicant is solid gold and squeaky clean, but you should be aware where you stand at the outset. If there are errors on your report, or old past-due accounts you have forgotten about or public records (judgments, etc.), now is the time to be aware of them and deal with them.

You can get a free credit report from sites like FreeCreditReport.com that covers just one bureau (Experian) or Creditkarma.com, which covers (TransUnion) and (Equifax). Most of those sites will try to sign you up for various premium services, but what you're interested in at this stage is whether there are items that you should take care of to get approved for a mortgage. If there are any past due accounts, you should bring them current as quickly as possible. Likewise, if there are judgments or collection accounts, try to settle them. In particular, lenders require that any public record items (judgments and liens) be resolved before closing.

One place you can be sure to get the most accurate and up to date information that is on your report is by going directly to each bureau of the three credit bureaus and bypass these companies altogether. At AnnualCreditReport.com will give you a Free report. If you want scores you will have to pay a fee to each bureau. 

Be aware that collection agencies will typically settle for much less than the amount listed on the credit report—but you'll have to report as income the amount they reduced the debt to settle. You should be very careful about paying off any collection accounts older than two years. Doing so will upgrade the status from "collection" (bad) to "paid collection" (slightly less bad). The problem with this is that it will also change the "Date of Last Activity" (DLA) on your report. A collection account that is, say, three years old may reduce your credit score by 10 points. A recent "paid collection" may reduce it 20 points or more.

It's not too early in the process to find a loan officer to help you with this part of the process. You should specifically look for someone with whom you feel comfortable and confident. It is not worth focusing on the rate someone may offer if they aren't available to be your trusted adviser. You want someone who responds promptly to emails, phone calls, and texts, and who gives you straightforward answers in plain language. The difference in rate between different lenders is quite small since all lenders sell their loans to the same pool of investors for the same price on any given day.

When you've found a loan officer you like, you should begin the preapproval process. You'll typically provide current pay stubs, W2s, and bank statements. The loan officer will help you with your application, then submit it to the Automated Underwriting System (AUS). They will get an answer literally in seconds. You are hoping for AUS findings of "Approve/Eligible" or "Accept," depending on which system they are using. The AUS findings will specify what, if any, additional documentation you might have to provide. The important thing is to get your starting point.

You should ask your loan officer if they can do a "TBD Approval." This means that they will submit your loan application to an underwriter for review and approval even though the property is "To Be Determined." When you get your loan approval back in a day or two, it will be the same as though you had an actual "live" deal. Having an underwriting approval in hand will make for a much stronger offer to the seller. This can be a make-or-break a deal if you find yourself competing with any other buyers for a property. Hope this is useful.. good luck!

Get in on our next HomeBuyers 101 Zoom Workshops.. come join us, you can talk to industry professionals about the home buying process, the struggles, the pros and cons and get your questions answered.  Click here and sign up.. 

All attendees get my Free Buyers Guidebook. 

Thank you for visiting my blog, please leave me a comment and let me if you like my blog and the information I post. 

Roxy Redenbaugh, Broker
Sr Mortgage Consultant
Residential and Commercial
The Greatest Compliment I Can Receive Is A Referral From Friends, Family, and Business Associates,
NMLS#269926 Company NMLS#1930219

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Myths About Realtors That Need To Go Away

People often believe a real estate agent is simply someone who knows about homes for sale in their area, hammers signs into front yard lawns, and makes a slew of money just showing up at an open house. A no-brainer, right?
Not quite. In perpetuity there have been a host of myths about how a real estate agent’s business works, and as in any other scenario where people don’t know what they don’t know, faulty perceptions and assumptions are created. 
First of all, we don’t know of any Realtor being paid a salary. Because agents sitting in model homes on weekends can’t control when their builders’ houses might be ready to sell, they may receive a meager draw against commissions. But like resale agents, they don’t get paid a fee until escrow closes and keys are handed out. So who pays for all those lavish broker events, open houses offering refreshments and fancy brochures? The agent does. No matter what an agent puts into their efforts, however, there is never a guarantee they will recoup their outlay on marketing, gas used up showing hundreds of houses to potential buyers, lunches with clients, endless hours of negotiating, time spent with home stagers, etc. In other words, no matter how gorgeous the real estate office and how fancy their brand, they each hang their own shingle and pay for it as completely as any small business person does.
Real estate commissions are another point that gets messed up in people’s headsThey look at the entire commission (customary-but-negotiable commissions vary from area to area) being proposed by the listing agent and assume every dime goes into that agent’s pocket once settlement takes place. But here’s the scoop: commissions are legally paid to the agent’s employing brokerage company, which in turns pays both the selling and buying agents after taking out agreed-upon fees. While the same agent may represent both the seller and the buyer, it is a much rarer occurrence, which in turn carries its own complications and liabilities.
Speaking of liabilities, most states require licensed agents to carry Errors and Omissions insurance, a separate fee paid by the agent to protect both themselves and their brokers from unforeseen contractual complications, and some have their own on-staff legal team as well. The agent’s commission split with the employing broker varies from broker to broker, often depending on the company’s business model as well as the agent’s level of production. Rookies generally have higher splits than seasoned pros.
Throw in agents paying taxes, social security and a host of other fees, and you’d see how they earn their living not unlike those in other industries — except they don’t get paid every two weeks and often can go months with no commissions at all.
So next time you see an agent (1) making 30 trips to show a buyer homes only to find that buyer decides not to buy after all (2) wielding brooms and secretly tidying up a house for showings like Annette Bening does in the movie American Beauty (3) dealing with sellers who perpetually refuse to be realistic about what their house is worth, sometimes keeping their house on the market for a year or longer, or (4) meeting with vendors, home stagers, contractors, inspectors, videographers, etc., know they are running a business in which they invest themselves, their weekends, and their very own dollars. They do this betting their skills, the market, and their clients all converge in one happy scenario to make the American Dream stay dreamy.

If you are thinking of buying or selling and need a Realtor give me a call. 
Thank you for visiting my blog, please leave me a comment and let me if you like my blog and the information I post. 

Roxy Redenbaugh, Broker
Sr Mortgage Consultant
Residential and Commercial
The Greatest Compliment I Can Receive Is A Referral From Friends, Family, and Business Associates,
NMLS#269926 Company NMLS#1930219


Monday, April 27, 2020

The Most Popular Rehab Loan Only Requires 3.5% Down Payment...



Question: Is it possible to include extra funds for renovations in a loan for a new house?

Yes. The most common loan product for that today is the FHA 203(k) renovation loan. With 203(k), you can get money not only to purchase the home but also to refurbish it. You can use the funds not only to replace and repair things like carpets, roofs, kitchens, and bathrooms but also to add on. You can repair and rehab an existing swimming pool, but can’t dig a new one.

With 203(k) Standard, you’ll work with a consultant approved by HUD. That person will guide you through the process of gathering estimates for the work you plan. Expect to pay $500 to $1,500 for his or her services, depending on how extensive the work you plan to do.

Once you have your estimates, your loan officer will order the appraisal. There will be an “as is” value and an “as completed” value. The loan will be based on the second, higher value. The excess funds will go into a separate escrow account and be disbursed to the contractor as needed. If the property won’t be habitable while the work is being done, you’ll also be able to finance up to 6 months’ interest into the loan—assuming the as completed appraisal has a high enough value. Your down payment will be as low 3.5% of the financed value. The 203K Standard is limited to your county loan limits. Check with me or your lender for specifics.

There is also a “streamline” 203(k), which does not require the services of a consultant. Repairs are limited to $35,000. The paperwork is pretty much the same, and the rate is usually the same as for the full 203(k) loan.

The most important thing to realize is that, while this is an excellent loan program, it is not by any means a “turnkey” purchase; as the buyer, you’ll have to be quite involved in the process, from start to finish. In my experience, few people are willing to be that involved.

Still, if you can find the proverbial diamond in the rough—a trashed-out home in a nice neighborhood—you can build some immediate equity and get a home with a lot of new parts, to your specifications. You want to be sure that both your real estate agent and loan officer are experienced with this loan—there are a LOT of moving parts. BUT I am here to help you along the way. 

I hope this has been insightful.. please let me know if you have any questions. Comments are always welcomed and appreciated. 

Thank you for visiting my blog, please leave a comment or question and come back soon. 

Roxy Redenbaugh, Broker
Sr Mortgage Consultant
Residential and Commercial
The Greatest Compliment I Can Receive Is A Referral From Friends, Family, and Business Associates,
NMLS#269926 Company NMLS#1930219

Saturday, April 18, 2020

How to get Private Mortgage Insurance to STOP

I get this question a lot; When can I stop paying PMI?  


Assuming that by "PMI" you mean Private Mortgage Insurance as opposed to the mortgage insurance required on FHA loans, the process is simple. You simply have to demonstrate to the lender that your loan is 80% of your home's value or less. Lenders have a variety of requirements for this proof. Some accept a computerized value assessment, called an Automated Valuation Model (AVM). Think Zillow on steroids. An AVM typically costs about $20.00. Other lenders require an appraisal with an exterior-only inspection, called a "drive-by" appraisal. This costs about $350.00. Some lenders require a full appraisal, which costs about $500.00.

If you believe your property has appreciated enough—and a quick "Zestimate" from Zillow will give you a rough idea—you should contact your lender. Your monthly statement will give you the customer service number. They will tell you their requirements. You will have to pay for the appraisal ahead of time. It's important to check the value of your home at least annually so you know when you can remove our PMI or refinance to remove it. 

One more very important fact while you are checking the value is to do a mortgage loan analysis on your current loan and check current mortgage rates, maybe it makes more sense to refinance, reduce your rate and remove your PMI. 

Some lenders won't consider removing PMI until you have had the loan for at least 12 months.  Lenders also require that your loan is in good standing, with no late payments for the last 12 months.

Private Mortgage insurance drops off automatically once the loan-to-value ratio (LTV) drops to 78% of the original value. For a 30 year mortgage, this occurs in around 10 years.


FHA mortgage insurance works differently. For loans originated between January 1, 2000, and June 3, 2013, mortgage insurance would drop off once the loan balance fell to 78% of the original purchase price, but no sooner than 5 years. This meant that a borrower with an FHA loan could make a payment after 5 years to reduce the loan balance to 78%. For a starting balance of $300,000, that would mean a principal payment of $37,000 at year 5.

After June 3, 2013, borrowers will have to refinance into a conventional loan to drop the mortgage insurance, since FHA MI now remains with the loan for its entire term. In this case refinancing into a conventional loan once you have 80% loan to value, providing a new loan without any MI required. 

I hope this has been insightful.. please let me know if you have any questions. I welcome your questions and comments.


Thank you for visiting my blog, please leave a comment or question and come back soon. 

Roxy Redenbaugh, Broker
Sr Mortgage Consultant
Residential and Commercial
The Greatest Compliment I Can Receive Is A Referral From Friends, Family, and Business Associates,
NMLS#269926 Company NMLS#1930219

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

What Does It Take To Get A VA Home Loan With 100% Financing & ZERO Down Payment

I Get this question a lot; What's the minimum credit score for a VA home loan approval?


Technically, there is no minimum credit score for a VA-guaranteed home loan. A veteran borrower could have no FICO score and get an approval based on "non-traditional" credit. This means providing evidence that he or she meets financial obligations in the form of utility bills, insurance payments and the like.


Although a lender could approve a borrower with a score of, say, 500 by manually underwriting it, I think the odds of that happening are quite remote. Someone with a 500 score would have some combination of currently delinquent obligations, collection accounts and possibly liens and judgments. This would indicate to a lender that the borrower doesn't have adequate control of their finances.

Practically speaking, getting an approval with a 580 score is realistic, although the rate will be higher than for someone with a higher score, and the borrower may have to clear up any currently delinquent obligations before the lender will fund the loan.

The good news is that low credit scores are fixable, although it may take some time and effort. If there are credit cards that are close to the credit limit or over the limit, reducing the balances will improve the scores significantly. If there are collection accounts and judgments, it is worth contacting the creditors to negotiate lower settlement amounts.

Finding a loan officer who's willing to help you through the process of getting qualified—even if you have major craters on your credit report—is worth doing early in the game. It is ALWAYS possible to improve a credit score, but it takes a plan and the determination to follow through and execute it.


VA Home Loan is 100% Zero down payment required, making this the most idea home loan for veteran and their families. Many unfortunately are not aware of the program or don't think they will qualify. I encourage you to look into your eligible if you have ever been in the military. 

You will also need to get your Certificate of Eligibility (COE) you can do this very easy by going through the Web LGY System . You can also obtain your COE by completing VA Form 26-1880 PDF and mailing it in. Click here for the fill in form ... You will need your discharge or separation papers DD214 to complete this form.

How to Apply for a VA Home Loan Certificate Of Eligility (COE)

Thank you for visiting my blog, please leave a comment or question and come back soon. 

Roxy Redenbaugh, Broker
Sr Mortgage Consultant
Residential and Commercial
The Greatest Compliment I Can Receive Is A Referral From Friends, Family, and Business Associates,
NMLS#269926 Company NMLS#1930219

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Increasing Your Credit Score 9 Tips To Help You

Improving your credit score can be a daunting task and if you are trying to do it on your own, do some research and get some advise from an expert. You may do more harm then good if you are not careful. 
You sacrifice and work hard to pay off a credit card or two and get that liberating feeling that you're making progress. Then you check your credit score to see the effect of your admirable prudence, and you find the number has gone down, instead of up!
What you need to understand is that credit scores factor not just with the amount of debt you have; they also look at your credit utilization — the percentage of your credit limit that you're currently using. "That scoring factor is one reason your credit score could drop a little after you pay off debt, having low credit utilization (30% or less) is good; having no credit utilization may be harmful to your score."
What about paying off installment loans? "Paying off an installment loan, like a car loan or student loan, can help your finances but might ding your score," they report. "That's because it typically results in fewer accounts. (That's not a reason not to do it! Don't stretch out a loan and pay more in interest to save some credit score points.)”
Once you've gotten your balances to zero, guard your credit by making it easier on yourself to pay on time by setting up electronic reminders, monitor your credit report for errors, and dispute any you see. Someone's file may be mixed up with yours, or your identity may have been stolen — both of which can seriously affect your score.
And just because you cleared out some debt, don't get tempted to apply for more credit products in a short period of time , whether it's the purchase of a car, furniture or to take a trip. "Opening new credit lowers the average age of your credit accounts and involves a "hard inquiry" which can result in a small, temporary drop in your score, if you can, wait at least six months between credit applications.
Depending on your total available credit, it might hurt your score to completely close a credit account with a high credit limit. The fact that you have been offered a lot of credit means you have demonstrated proficiency, and that credit utilization thing comes into play again. To make sure closing one card doesn't impact your score, pay off balances on all other cards.
And lastly, if you've just qualified to buy a home and are waiting to close escrow, this is NOT the time to buy furniture on credit, especially if your qualifying ratios are borderline. Before making any large purchases on credit, consult your loan officer. There will be a final credit check before you close, and if your number has gone down, you may risk getting your approval nullified.
Here's some general tips to help you increase your credit scores. 
1. Pay down your balances to 30-50% of available credit. 
2. Increase your available credit when possible.
3. Transfer debt to other accounts to get a better balance of 30-50% on each account.
4. Build new credit 
5. Build old credit, use your zero balance credit cards for monthly expenses that you pay off  each month so you are not paying interest on the account. 
6. Use a variety of different types of credit. 
7. Avoid changing addresses and jobs frequently. 
8. Clean up your credit report, you can do it yourself or hire a pro. It's estimated that over 40 Million Americans have errors on their credit report. 
9. Get a FREE copy of your credit report at www.annualcreditreport.com 
Contact me for a referral to a professional if needed, I have been working with a great credit repair company for over 10 years. They have done wonderful things for many of my  clients. 

Thank you for visiting my blog, please leave a comment or question and come back soon. 
Roxy Redenbaugh, Broker
Sr Mortgage Consultant
Residential and Commercial
The Greatest Compliment I Can Receive Is A Referral From Friends, Family, and Business Associates,
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