Want to Close by Your Closing Date? (I Would)

My friend found their dream home in the mountains and was all set to move (the Uhaul was packed and everything!) before they were informed their mortgage file was delayed in underwriting and they were not going to close by their original closing date. While I was on-hand to commiserate with them, I bit my tongue when it came to saying this scenario was avoidable. There are three main factors that often delay a file in process or underwriting, and it behooves you as a borrower to know these potential pitfalls before you advance through the mortgage lending process.

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Are Home Prices Going to Go Up or Down?

Oddly enough, because I write this blog, I get asked all the time by friends and colleagues what I think will happen to housing prices. It has become an even more repetitive ask in these abnormal economic times, as it applies to a wide swath of the population, including: homeowners, potential homeowners, real estate agents, mortgage professionals, economists, media pundits, those casually interested in the housing market, and so on. I do not have a crystal ball, and often the speculative answers vary depending on how the question is approached. However, I do know what will influence prices in either direction.

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What’s Happening to Refinance Rates?!

This heat wave had me craving one of those $.99 Arizona Iced Teas at the convenience store the other day, but when I went to buy it, the store charged me $1.29! The cashier had no answers as to the markup, and paying a little more than I expected certainly cut into the joy of the experience, despite my ultimate satisfaction in quenching my thirst. It’s never fun to pay more than you expect, which has some borrowers looking to refinance frustrated wondering why refinance mortgage rates have shot up recently.

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10 Years After Dodd-Frank

Opinion Piece | The U.S. mortgage-backed securities famous JPMorgan Chase CEO, Jamie Dimon, railed against mortgage regulations during the bank’s second-quarter earnings call earlier this month. He indicated the reason mortgage rates aren’t 1.6 percent or 1.8 percent “is because the cost of servicing and origination is so high due to the enormous number of rules and regulations [that] are put in place [which] do not create safety and soundness.” He was obviously referring to The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, the massive piece of financial reform legislation passed as a response to the financial crisis of 2008 that just hit its 10-year anniversary. Dodd-Frank established a number of new government agencies tasked with overseeing the various components and aspects of the financial system that were believed to have caused the 2008 financial crisis, including banks, mortgage lenders, and credit rating agencies. The U.S. adopted an unprecedented volume of the new regulations outlined in the Act over the last decade, affecting everything from market structure to capital standards and balance sheet liquidity. 

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Equity is Increasing!


If you think 2020 hasn’t been full of much good news, we do have some actual good news for just about everybody who is reading this. The amount available to homeowners to borrow against their house hit a record high of $6.5 trillion earlier this year. Additionally, 9 in 10 homeowners currently have a primary rate at least 0.75 percent above the prevailing market average rate as mortgage interest rates continue to hit record lows. If that isn’t good news, then we don’t know what is! 

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Are we over it yet?

Do you know when you feel yourself getting over a cold? It’s when you can finally get out of bed and walk around without a Kleenex in your hand. You’re not 100%, but hey, you’re active, getting in the car, playing with the kids, and suddenly you see the light of big breaths at the end of dark, mucus-filled days (I know, the irony of starting this post off with a cold analogy). As we enter the start of June, there are signs that the worst of the coronavirus shutdowns and the economic impact may be over. For example, we saw an increase in new home sales for April, well above expectations. In addition, more people applied to open new businesses. Two great things!

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Do you know your mortgage type?

If the plural of tooth is teeth, why isn’t the plural of booth, beeth? One goose, two geese. So one moose, two meese? Doesn’t it seem crazy that you can make amends but not one amend? If you have a bunch of odds and ends and get rid of all but one of them, what do you call it? Likewise, figuring out which mortgage program you qualify for can be just as twisted. Let me shed some light on many of the common terms you may hear as you embark on the mortgage process.

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What is next for the economy?

In this post, I’m going to educate you about what is going on in the economy. Most any economic indicator (GDP, New Home Sales, Jobless Claims, etc.) from Q1 and Q2 is going to be, in the words of Billie Eilish, “baaaaaaaaaaad.” Don’t reach for your mid-day cocktail yet, I have some good news for you.The market is already looking forward to Q3 and Q4 numbers while closely monitoring the pace at which states are opening back up and how citizens are responding. The positive news is that the amount of money being pumped into the economy through unemployment programs and the PPP will be enough stimulant to lead to better numbers in the back half of the year.  Additionally, the Fed has done a phenomenal job rolling out the 2008 ready-made playbook and more since this crisis began. The circumstances surrounding this crisis—caused by a virus, and not from bad actors in the financial markets world—has allowed the Fed to act swiftly and effectively.Both Fed Chairman Powell and Secretary Mnuchin say they are ready with even more liquidity injections if needed. Fortunately, for mortgage rates, the volatility has died off, and that should give buyers a lot more confidence to lock their loans. The Fed will be careful not to say or do anything that has a chance of upsetting the apple cart for the foreseeable future. In fact, the Fed has ramped up the programs they already have in place to help areas of economic stress that have arisen and may arise going forward. For you as a potential home buyer or refinancer, it is amazing news that the Fed signaled that interest rates will be at zero until they are sure we are out of this economic overhang from the virus. As a result, it’s a great time to reach out to your mortgage professional and stay on top of exactly what is going on in the market. Whether or not we can win your business, we are happy to be an amazing resource in your home buying journey.

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