Tag Archives: buying a home

Top 3 Reasons You Should Buy a Home This Year

Changes to lending guidelines hope to spur first time home buyer sales.

It’s a fact that buying real estate is one of the best investments you’ll ever make. Aside from the growth in equity that will add to your overall wealth, New loan programs for home buyershomeowners are entitled to certain tax benefits not afforded to renters.

That being said, there are new incentives available in 2015 that should give those who are “on the fence” about buying a home new reasons to consider.

1. Cost of Private Mortgage Insurance Is Dropping

Private Mortgage Insurance, or PMI, is required for certain loans obtained by home buyers using 3 percent (or less) of the purchase price of a home as a down payment. The premium is applied as a fee on top of your loan amount. Typically the cost of PMI equaled 1.35% of the total amount of the loan. The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) has recently announced they will drop the cost of PMI by nearly 38%. to .85%. This means the average home buyer can save up to $900 per year.  read more

Will Lenders Loosen Loan Standards In 2015?

New guidelines from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac may help boost the real estate market.

As we mentioned in our last article, lending practices over the last few years have tightened up…and for the most part, for very good reasons. Of course, with those tightened restrictions, Santa Clarita Real Estate Updateunder such monikers as “QM” (Qualified Mortgages), many potential home buyers were left in the lurch, unable to obtain loans at nominal and competitive rates.

So the lending industry ended up in a tradeoff: More restrictions led to less risk, boosting the industry to some degree without the chance of another real estate crash. However, in many markets, this has restricted the opportunity for a true (and final) real estate recovery. read more

Buying a Home When You’re Self-Employed

New rules have made the home buying process a bit trickier if you own your own business, but it’s not impossible.

There was once a time when, if you were self-employed, that it wasn’t that much harder to get a home loan than if you were gainfully working for someone else. Lenders used to use your Cheryl Lichen -ooper“stated income,” with very loose rules on verification. At the height of the subprime lending craze about a decade ago, it was pretty easy to get a loan without any type of income verification. In some cases, your tax returns weren’t even needed to prove you earn what you said you earned. read more

Santa Clarita Condo Prices Jump In October

Equity has risen nearly $40K since January.

A report recently released by the Southland Regional Association of Realtors showed the median price of condominiums in the Santa Clarita Valley rose by $9,000 in October over the Buy a condo in Santa Claritaprevious month.

The median price reached $89,000 last month, showing a total of $39,000 in equity gains since the beginning of this year, when prices averaged $250,000.

What has triggered this rise in condo prices?

First of all, the real estate market overall has had a pretty good year. We’ve seen stability in the marketplace for both condos and single family homes across the Santa Clarita Valley. Buyers have also enjoyed the benefit of low interest rates that have recently dropped back below 4 percent. The lending market, having instituted guidelines for Qualified Mortgages (QM) has boosted confidence in the real estate community by insuring that buyers who qualify for a home loan can TRULY afford the home they are purchasing. This has given a boost to mortgage investors as well. This is extremely important in the continuing recovery and growth of the real estate market. read more

New 15 Year Mortgage Is Offered To Buyers With Zero Down Payment

Wealth Building Home Loan program gives buyers an opportunity to pay off mortgage faster with less risk.

There are many home loan types available to home buyers. The most popular is the traditional 30 year fixed-rate mortgage. However, these loans, while usually offering some of the best Santa Clarita Real Estaterates to qualified buyers, require a down payment of 20%. There are other loan options with lower down payment qualifications. The ARM (Adjustable Rate Mortgage) is an option used by many who are looking to get into a home with a lower mortgage payment to start, but know that their interest rate (And loan payment) will eventually rise over time. read more

Just How Important Is Your Credit Score When Buying a Home?

While there are loan programs available for the credit-challenged, the higher your score, the more options at your disposal.

With loan rates having recently dropped to levels not seen in nearly a year and a half, those who were on the fence about buying a home are once again considering their options. This Cheryl Lichen -oopersudden drop in rates gives many qualified buyers incredible opportunities with increased buying power. So what happens if your credit isn’t considered “golden?”

There are programs available through the FHA for the credit challenged, but before you jump into the car and begin hunting down real estate “for sale” signs, you might want to make sure you have as many of your credit “ducks in a row” as possible. Here are the top three things to consider regarding your credit BEFORE beginning your home search. read more

The Home Buying Process: Contingencies

What is a contingency anyway? And how does it protect both the buyer and the seller during escrow?

If you’ve never purchased a home before, you might want to prepare yourself just a little, as there’s a little bit of paperwork involved. Actually, that’s an understatement.Cheryl Lichen -ooper There’s a decent amount of paperwork involved. If you’re in the “looking” process, then you probably already encountered at least some paperwork while getting yourself pre-approved for your home loan.

When you finally do decide on the home of your dreams, we’ll sit down together and write up your offer. Unlike personal property, real estate comes with a lot of legalities that insures both the buyer AND the seller are qualified to perform the transaction. For the most part, a buyer’s qualifications mostly revolve around their ability to pay for the home, either as an all cash sale, or by obtaining a home mortgage loan. For the seller, we have to make sure that they are the actual owner of the property and that they are legally entitled to authorize the sale of the home. read more