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Real Estate - Mortgage

Lending gets easier for Millennial home buyers

According to the latest Millennial Tracker from Ellie Mae, the average FICO score for a Millennial buyer has dropped two full points over the last year. Increasing accessibility According to the tracker, the average Millennial FICO score on all mortgage loans decreased from 725 in November 2016 to 723 in November of this year. Millennials aren't just buying homes; They're refinancing, too Still, Millennials have higher average FICO scores than most buyers. “With the average credit score dipping, lenders are extending credit to borrowers who may have had no previous access to the housing market,” Tyrell said. More than two-thirds of Millennial buyers used conventional products, while 30 percent used FHA loans. Just 2 percent took out VA loans. Men made up the largest majority of Millennial home buyers, accounting for 68 percent of all closed loans. The Millennial home buyer gender gap: male vs. female mortgage characteristics Female buyers, who accounted for just 32 percent of Millennial buyers, were much more likely to buy a home while single. In fact, 59 percent of female Millennial buyers in November were single, 40 percent were married, and 1 percent were separated. Get today’s mortgage rates Want to take advantage of today’s loosening credit standards?

When your medication costs more than your mortgage

Since this is the road they’ve chosen to go down, let’s lay out some facts about the root causes of outrageous drug prices. It is a fact that pharmaceutical companies develop life-saving medications and breakthrough cures. It is also a fact that pharmaceutical companies control the price of drugs. Consumers rightly ask, “Why is the cost of my health insurance going up?” Rising drug prices are a big reason why. Here’s another fact: Nobody aside from pharmaceutical companies benefit from out-of-control drug prices, and that is why hospitals and insurance companies work hard on behalf of patients and consumers to negotiate lower prices. Patients see the result of those outrageous drug prices reflected in the price they pay at the pharmacy, the bill they get from a hospital visit, and the premium they pay for health insurance. As a result, too many families are forced to make an impossible choice between paying for their child’s prescription and paying their mortgages. Big Pharma would have us to believe that there is a binary choice between affordability and innovation. The fact is, nine of the 10 leading pharmaceutical companies spend more on sales, advertising, marketing, and lobbying than they do on research and innovation. But instead of talk that passes the buck on drug pricing, screams about the supply chain, and blames anyone but themselves, let’s talk about how we can work together on real solutions that truly balance affordable access with world-class innovation.

New tax law expected to slow rise of home values, creating winners and losers

To pay for other tax cuts benefiting individuals and corporations, the GOP tax plan trims the mortgage interest deduction and property tax deduction, which combined allow some homeowners to take tens of thousands of dollars off their taxable income. Economists and housing experts broadly agree the changes will slow price increases in expensive housing markets — though nobody expects housing value to decline given the overall strength of the economy and the fact that there are relatively few houses for sale in top markets. Housing prices have been increasing by about 6 percent a year over the past five years nationally, according the Standard & Poor’s Case-Shiller index. Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody’s Analytics, a research firm, estimates that in the New York metropolitan region, some counties could see prices 10 percent below where they would have been without the tax bill by summer of 2019. “The impact on house prices is much greater for higher-priced homes, especially in parts of the country where incomes are higher and there are thus a disproportionate number of itemizes, and where homeowners have big mortgages and property tax bills.” According to Moody’s analysis, home prices in the District could deflate by 2 percent, 2.5 percent in Montgomery County and 2.3 percent in Arlington County. By way of example, if the price of a $500,000 home in the District would have risen to $525,000 by the summer of 2019, under the new law it will only go up to $515,000, assuming a 3 percent rather than 5 percent increase. The new law’s effect on property taxes will impact more than 90,000 homeowners in the Washington region, according to ATTOM. To Pinto and some housing experts, Congress’s decision to take a few steps back from subsidizing homeownership is welcome news after years of government advocacy of homeownership. Beyond tweaking the mortgage interest deduction and state and local tax deduction, the GOP tax bill also doubles the size of the standard deduction to $24,000 for a married couple. In the past, the value of the housing deductions may have nudged people into buying homes even when they may not wanted to, Pinto said.

Can you prepay your real estate taxes before the tax bill takes effect? Find...

To prepay property bills, residents must not have any unpaid tax bills from years prior. Here’s a rundown of which jurisdictions in the region accept prepayments and how to make these payments: Alexandria The city of Alexandria says it has fielded a rush of calls about prepaid tax options ahead of the new tax bill’s taking effect. By Tuesday afternoon, the city had already received $1 million in prepayments — far more than in most years, according to Craig Fifer, a spokesman for the city. The county says it accepts payments on “active Real Estate” accounts. Loudoun Loudoun County residents can prepay their taxes by mailing a check or paying with cash or credit card at one of the county’s two treasury offices in Leesburg and Sterling. Payments must be received by Friday, Dec. 29. The District says that people can prepay their taxes online at www.taxpayerservicecenter.com or at any D.C. branch office at Wells Fargo. Wells Fargo will accept payments via check or credit card. Residents must bring their 2017 real property tax bill to the branch office for their payments to be processed. Montgomery County The Maryland county passed last-minute legislation Tuesday that would allow residents to prepay their 2018 property bills.

How the GOP Tax Bill Affects You

The changes involve so many parts of the tax code that how the tax bill affects you depends on your personal situation — how many children you have, how much you pay in mortgage interest and state/local taxes, how much you earn from work, and more. *If you itemized before, you got a $21,100 tax break for the standard deduction and your two personal exemptions, plus the amount you itemized, so you might not be coming out ahead under the new plan. The estate tax uses a bracketed system with increasing marginal rates, just like the individual income tax does. The Tax Policy Center projects that everyone, on average, will save money from the tax-bracket changes. Federal Individual Income Tax Rates for Middle-Income Earners, 2017 vs. 2018 The Tax Policy Center says about 90% of middle-income households will have a lower tax bill, while 7% will have a higher one. (L44) That means it will be less expensive for businesses to make certain investments. You Own (or Work for – or Invest in) a Corporation Corporations, like individuals and estates, pay tax under a bracketed system with increasing marginal rates. Those with profits under $50,000 will have a higher tax bill because their rate will increase from 15% to 21%. And anyone with student-loan debt will still be able to deduct the interest, even if they no longer itemize because of the higher standard deduction. The House bill wanted to eliminate medical-expense deductions, but the final bill keeps it and provides a small boost for three years, as noted above in "You Itemize and File Schedule A."

What Happens If I Skip a Mortgage Payment?

What if you're late on your mortgage payment? Every home loan agreement offers borrowers a grace period for late payments. Typically, there’s a 15-day grace period, in which case you would have 14 days after your payment is due to pay your bill without incurring a late fee. These Solutions Can Help You Come Up for Air The Foreclosure Process Explained in 4 Simple Steps How to Get a Mortgage With No Credit: A Ray of Hope for 'Invisibles' How a missed mortgage payment affects your credit Mortgage lenders typically report late payments to credit bureaus after they become 60 days past due—meaning you usually have two months to make up for a missed payment. Will my bank start foreclosure proceedings if I miss one payment? “Mortgage lenders don’t want to foreclose on your home because it results in a loss or a cost to them." At that point, you’ll receive a letter from your mortgage servicer notifying you that you’ve defaulted on your loan; you then typically have 90 days to pay off your most recent bill before your mortgage lender can begin foreclosure proceedings. I don't think I can make next month’s payment. “People often feel like they don’t want to turn themselves in, but you don’t know what your options are until you talk to your lender,” Cecala says. “You’re generally always better off working with your loan servicer or a nonprofit that offers counseling and mortgage relief services.” The post What Happens If I Skip a Mortgage Payment?

Ho Ho Ho! ‘Tis the Season of Giving the Gift of … Down Payment

The holiday season has arrived! However, one of the best things during the holidays are the gifts under the tree… and oh! the gift of down payment. It’s the solution to their homeownership dilemma — the cash gift of down payment. This is simply a monetary present given to a home buyer to fully or partially cover the down payment for a home purchase. Also, for this fund to qualify as a down payment, the giver has to prove that the money was indeed theirs to give. Who are the Possible Sources of Cash Gifts? As lifted from the HUD guidelines, there are varied sources of cash gifts. The HUD identifies these following donors as acceptable sources for an FHA loan down payment: Family or relatives Employer or labor unions a Friend(s) a government agency or a public office offering homeownership assistance a charitable organization The HUD also stated clearly that any monetary present from a person or an entity who has or may have interest in the sale of the house isn’t acceptable. You can get an FHA home loan with a down payment of 3.5 percent at the very least.

7 options to consider if you cannot repay mortgage

What if you find yourself in a situation where you can’t afford to pay your mortgage payments? What are your options? Talk to your banker Rather than worrying and losing sleep over the matter, it is best to talk to your banker (off the record) as soon as possible to find out your options and if something can be worked out with your bank, e.g. extending loan tenure and lowering mortgage payment. Scenario of a Reduced Salary - What Information you cannot volunteer to the bank If you have several personal loans. Let's say your outstanding personal loans are $60,000 repayable over a 5 year period. When you took these loans, your salary was $5,000. Once you exceed 12 times your salary, the bank or banks may collectively come after you and ask you to reduce your debt to 12 times monthly income. Most borrowers expect people to help them while they do not give any collateral nor guarantees nor interests to friends who helped them. Selling your home may be the best option if the property market is favourable and you are in deep financial distress. Bankruptcy refers to a legal status when you can’t repay debts of more than $15,000.

With deduction evaporating, more California homeowners pay property taxes early

Changes to the tax law will limit the deductibility of property tax starting next year. Alameda County put out a media advisory this week encouraging people to consider paying the second installment early. Levy said his office has seen an uptick in early payments. “I sort of have a feeling that now that Congress passed the bill, that number will go up,” he said. Levy also said that his office had explored whether it could collect next year’s taxes early. Amanda Fried, a spokeswoman with the San Francisco Treasurer & Tax Collector, said that about 23 percent of San Francisco property owners have paid their second installment so far this year, versus 21 percent at the same time last year. The office has not sent out a special advisory. The county has also seen an increase in prepayments, said assistant tax collector Robin Elliott. Her office is not offering advice on prepayments. “We always say that’s up to the taxpayer,” she said.

Cashback offers may not lead to best mortgage deal

They are in a privileged position over non-first timers as they only have to find a 10% deposit whilst for second-time buyers, it is 20% of the purchase price. AIB are currently offering variable rates at between 2.75%-3.15% depending on loan-to-values — how much of a deposit you can put down against the purchase price of the property — from the lower interest rate figure being 50% and higher rate relating to a 10% deposit. Consider interest rates first, cashback offers second. For example if you borrow €200,000 and you are shopping around for the best mortgage deal, and you get attracted to a 2% cashback offer of €4,000. However, the additional cost of a higher mortgage rate could end up costing you far more. There are some exceptions to this and this might be the bigger factor when deciding which bank to use and trump the rate or cash back offer. For non first time buyers, the general same principles apply as above but for buy-to-lets, the rates are less favourable, typically being more than 1%-1.5% higher than other mortgage borrowers. The majority of people were unaware that recent changes meant that most banks now charge no breakage fee, or only a small one, when people break out of a fixed rate early. But many lenders are offering cashback to new customers to help with switching costs. These are welcome changes, as mortgage interest rates in Ireland are more expensive than the eurozone average.

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Opinion: Why apartment REITS are not a good home for your...

So say most recent earnings reports for the biggest apartment REITs. In fact, it’s the lowest year-over-year growth rate the company has experienced since 2010. Seattle properties experienced the biggest lift with rent increasing 6.4% from the second quarter of 2016. From 2010 through 2016, the firm’s San Francisco properties experienced annual rent growth of nearly 8% on average. It’s interesting to compare Equity Residential to Camden Property Trust CPT, -0.61% because the latter, in addition to Los Angeles and San Diego, has more non-coastal secondary city property in places such as Houston, Atlanta, Dallas, Charlotte, N.C.,Denver, Phoenix, and Tampa, Fla. among others. Investors in Camden or other companies with property in places other than first-tier cities, but still large cities, may not want to get their hopes up. Moreover, the Rent Café report indicates that close to 347,000 new apartment units are scheduled to enter the market in 2017. There are 7,000 new apartment units scheduled to be delivered in New York City this year, by contrast, and that has helped drive down the average monthly rent to $4,054 from $4,154 so far. According to Rent Café: “These perks aren’t limited to overly-popular markets such as NYC or San Francisco, either. All of these stocks trade with dividend yields in the 3% range or roughly one percentage point higher than the 10-year US Treasury.

Inventory at Lowest Since 2013