Category Archives: Mortgage

MN Housing in Washington County, MN Down Payment Assistance

mn_housing_in_washington_countyMinnesota is a big state. You could choose to live anywhere in Minnesota, but for the purposes of this article let’s consider MN housing in Washington County.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with Washington County, it’s at the easternmost end of the Minneapolis-St. Paul metro area. If you’re in Washington County and head east, you’ll soon be in Wisconsin.

Washington County is spread out over 423 square miles, with a variety of housing options to choose from in a wide range of different settings. You can live in suburban Oakdale (near St. Paul) or if you want a more rural feel, Afton, which reminds many people of Northern MN. MN Housing in Washington County is also popular for people who want resort-like settings, with stylish and serene lakefront and riverfront homes. Minnesota is known for its many lakes, and they’re all over Washington County. You should check out beautiful Lake Elmo in particular. Stillwater, MN is the county seat, and it overlooks the St. Croix River.

You get the best of both worlds– well three worlds actually– when you live in Washington County. One moment you’re in “the city,” and the next you’re in “the suburbs,” and soon after you find yourself in the rustic, rural areas where there are farmlands, wide open spaces and splendid vistas.

Lake Area Mortgage, a division of Lake Area Bank, can help you find and buy MN housing in Washington County. Down payment assistance is available for qualified buyers. Call Lake Area Mortgage at 651-209-2900 before you start searching for a new place to live– Lake Area Mortgage is in the business of helping people with the process of purchasing a new home in Minnesota, and Washington County is one of those beautiful places where people want to live, work and play! It combines natural beauty with modern amenities and facilities.

Mortgage Rates Inch Up With Positive Job Report

After posting record lows the last few weeks, mortgage rates inched higher this week, Freddie Mac reports in its weekly mortgage market survey. Yet, rates still remain near 60-year lows.

An employment report that was better than market expectations helped to lift long-term Treasury bond yields and mortgage rates as well, Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac’s chief economist, notes. In September, the economy added 103,000 workers; however, the unemployment rate still remained high at 9.1 percent.

Here’s a closer look at rates for the week ending Oct. 13.

30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 4.12 percent, with an average 0.8 point, moving up from last week’s record-hitting 3.94 percent average. A year ago at this time, 30-year rates averaged 4.19 percent.

15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.37 percent with an average 0.8 point–that’s up slightly from last week’s low of 3.26 percent average. Last year at this time, 15-year rates averaged 3.62 percent.
5-year adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 3.06 percent, with an average 0.6 point, and inching up from last week’s 2.96 percent. Last year at this time, the 5-year ARM averaged 3.47 percent.
1-year ARMs: averaged 2.90 percent with an average 0.6 point, a drop from last week’s 2.95 average. A year ago, 1-year ARMs averaged 3.43 percent.

Minnesota New Record Mortgage Interest Rate Lows

30-year and 15-year fixed-rate mortgages hit record lows again this week reported by Freddie Mac in its weekly mortgage market survey.

“Continued investor concerns over the state of the European debt markets kept U.S. Treasury bond yields low and allowed mortgage rates to ease once more this week, says Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac’s chief economist.

Here’s a closer look at rates for the week ending Sept. 15.

30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 4.09 percent this week, down from last week’s previous record of 4.12 percent. Last year at this time, 30-year rates averaged 4.37 percent.
15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.30 percent, dropping from last week’s record low of 3.33 percent. Last year at this time, 15-year rates averaged 3.82 percent.
5-year adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 2.99 percent this week, up slightly from last week’s 2.96 percent average. A year ago at this time, the 5-year ARM averaged 3.55 percent.
1-year ARMs: averaged 2.81 percent, down from last week’s 2.84 percent average. A year ago, the 1-year ARM averaged 3.40 percent.

2011 Freddie Mac Standard Loan Modification

Struggling homeowners that have Freddie Mac mortgages will have a new opportunity for loan modifications beginning next month.

The new option is called a Standard Modification. It is intended for borrowers who are ineligible for a Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) loan modification, or have previously defaulted on a HAMP or other loan mod. If you are approved, the mortgage principle and monthly payment will be reduced by at least 10 percent, making the payments more affordable.

To qualify, you must be at least 60 days past due on your mortgage. If you are not at least 60 days past due, you could qualify if you can prove that you are in imminent danger of default. This would mean you must provide proof of an eligible hardship and providing verification of income.

Mortgages that are approved for modification will have their interest rates modified to 5 percent and the amortization period extended to 40 years from the time of the modification.

Similar to HAMP, borrowers approved for the program must undergo a three-month trial period during which they must keep up with their new payment schedule before the loan modification is finalized and made permanent. Lenders approving the new standard modification will receive cash incentives of up to $1,600 per homeowner approved to encourage them to finalize a borrower’s status within 2 months of the end of the trial period.

Lenders may begin trial modifications for approved homeowners under the program as soon as Oct. 1, 2011. As of Jan. 1, 2011, all borrowers seeking a loan modification of any type on a Freddie Mac-supported mortgage must be evaluated for eligibility under the program.

The new Standard Modification replaces the existing Freddie Mac loan modification called a Debt Coverage Ratio, which now is being referred to as a Classic Modification. The government’s HAMP loan modification will continue to be available as well.

CLick Here Does Freddie Mac Own My Mortgage

Purchase After Foreclosure or Short Sale

You are eligible to purchase on a government loan, 3 years after the date of

  1. sherrif sale
  2. discharge date if included in a bankruptcy
  3. date of sale if short sale

Please beware and make sure if you are 1-2 years out you are checking and watching your credit to make sure that the below scenario does not happen to you.

You are also eligible for first time home buyer status where you may be approved for down payment assistance.

Today my client was beginning a mortgage pre-approval to purchase a new home. Due to husband’s loss of job in 2007 they lost their home to foreclosure. I was confident after my initial conversation that they would have no problem approving for a new loan. The sheriff sale was over 3 years ago. Both buyers have stable full time employment for the past 2 years. They had paid off a Mercedes lease 2 months ago and over $65,000 in credit cards, student loans, and unsecured debt in the past 24 months. There had been no late payments or collections in the past 3 years.

Unfortunately there was a surprise. Even though the home had foreclosed in 2007, EMC mortgage corporation still reflects they owe $129,000 on a home equity lien. EMC is reporting them late every month for the past 3 years. My client immediately called EMC and was told they still owe $129,000. The only solution will be hiring an attorney. Their credit is further damaged beyond the damage incurred by the initial foreclosure They should have over 700 credit scores after significant payoff of all debts and time elapsed, however their score is 576 today. We cannot help them purchase at this time until they agree to get EMC to settle, write off debt, or they pay it off.

FHA VA Mortgage Disputed Tradeline Credit Accounts

Disputed Tradelines update to policy

The FHA TOTAL Mortgage Scorecard User Guide states that the loan casefile must be manually downgraded to a Refer recommendation and the loan must be reviewed by a Direct Endorsement (DE) underwriter if the borrower is disputing any credit accounts or public records. As a result, the following new message will be issued on all FHA loan casefiles to remind lenders of this requirement, but the recommendation will not be changed to a Refer due to this message:

If the credit report reveals that the borrower is disputing any credit accounts or public records, the mortgage loan application must be referred to a DE underwriter for review

See our page on disputed credit accounts.