Tag Archives: Mortgage

Come visit our new location!

27 Jun

We’ve moved! Come by and see us or call me at 469.786.8662

Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.

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Addressing appraiser shortage isn’t a simple fix

23 Jun

Reblogged from Scotsman Guide – Victor Whitman

Addressing appraiser shortage isn’t a simple fix

Much ink has been devoted to news stories over the last few years about the declining number of residential appraisers and the dearth of young people going into the profession. Although it is true that the number of appraisers is down nationwide, the challenge of producing quicker, accurate appraisals is nuanced.

It will take more than simply adding to the overall numbers of qualified appraisals to ensure timely service in all areas, industry experts told Scotsman Guide News.

A declining number of appraisers has been the focus of concern. According to the Appraisal Foundation, the pool of people qualified to assess a home’s value has dropped from 96,251 individuals presently, down from 121,344 a decade ago.

These lower numbers are primarily driven by a steep drop-off in state-licensed appraisers. The number of state-licensed appraisers, who have less training than certified appraisers but are qualified to handle most home appraisals, has fallen dramatically, to 7,854 nationwide today, down from 30,286 in 2007.

The number of certified residential appraisals has dropped as well, from 54,177 to 49,187 over the past 10 years. The number of certified general appraisers, who are able to appraise both commercial and residential properties, has risen to 39,210, up from 36,881 a decade ago, the Appraisal Foundation reported.

Increasing the number of appraisers won’t solve the problem of getting a timely appraisal done in many parts of the country, however, said David Bunton, president of the Appraisal Foundation, a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit that sets the congressionally mandated standards for appraisers. He said the real issue is not so much a lack of professionals overall. It is that certified and state-licensed appraisers often aren’t willing to travel far afield to do the work.

Appraisers have to spend more time on the job and get paid less on average than they did a decade ago, Bunton said. Nowadays, in the post-financial crisis world, the federal government requires a firewall between lenders and the appraisal process. Appraisals are now ordered through third-party appraisal management companies, which take a cut of the fee.

“The economic issue sort of transcends all areas. It can be urban or suburban,” Bunton said. “If I have to drive three hours in each direction to go view a property, and I am being offered a relatively modest amount, I just won’t do it. I am going to go out and do either litigation support or divorce work or insurance, or move on to something else.”

Fewer rural appraisals

The sharp drop in state-licensed appraisers has come about largely because the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) now only accepts a valuation from certified appraisers for FHA-backed loans. Bunton said state-licensed rural appraisers have been disappearing since FHA changed the rule in 2008.

Rural appraisers often typically do just one or two appraisals a month. It is a part-time job. When the FHA stopped accepting appraisals from state-licensed appraisers, they had the choice of going back to school or letting their credentials lapse. The cost and time involved in getting certified didn’t make sense to them, Bunton said. Given that the FHA would no longer accept their appraisals, they stopped doing appraisals, even for the loan types that still accepted them.

“We visited with a congressman from New Mexico,” Bunton said. “He represented the entire southern half of New Mexico. He said Las Cruces, New Mexico, has a population of 100,000, and we only know of two people who want to do residential appraising. I went back and looked, and there is a federal registry of appraisers, and there were 47 people with a Las Cruces address that were on the appraiser registry. They are there. They just don’t want to work for the money being offered.”

During an interview last week, Susan Allen, senior vice president in CoreLogic’s Valuation Solutions Group, said that the focus of the industry’s attention should not be fixated on the number of appraisers at a given time. She noted that demand for appraisals fluctuates greatly, while the numbers of appraisers can’t be adjusted that fast.

“No matter how we adjust appraiser certifications, training requirements, or education requirements, we are not going to instantaneously see 25 percent more appraisers available in that market to fill the void,” Allen said. “So, it is not practical that we are going to address the industry’s desire to compress turn times solely by increasing the number of appraisers to the point where we can handle peak mortgage application volume in every part of the country. It is not going to happen.”

Allen said that improvements in efficiency and turnaround times will likely depend on technological advances and improvements to the process. She said although computer valuation models have improved, technology won’t ultimately replace the need for live appraisers.

“We have to leverage appraisers for their unique skill sets, especially research and analysis,” Allen said. “Those things are critical in our business for understanding value, but we have to fuel that appraiser with robust data, analytics and appropriate technology to allow them to proficiently do their job.”

>> See the original Article here: http://www.scotsmanguide.com/News/2017/06/Addressing-appraiser-shortage-isn-t-a-simple-fix/?utm_source=TopNews062317&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=TopNews

The views expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.

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Love those happy customers!

20 Jun

The views expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.

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Congratulations Sminu & Samantha!

16 Jun

Great closing today with Sminu & Samantha! Congratulations on your new home and happy moving this weekend. We love our customers who are referred by past customer. It tells us we are doing something right!

The views expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.

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Mortgage Time

9 Jun
Little Reaction to Big Events
During a light week for economic reports, investors were focused on three big events. There was little reaction to the events, however. For the first time in a month, mortgage rates ended the week a little higher, rising from the best levels of the year.
Three events on Thursday had the potential to significantly affect mortgage rates. However, none of the three caused much reaction. In the U.S., the testimony of former FBI director James Comey did little to change expectations for the investigation of the Trump administration’s dealings with Russia. In Europe, the European Central Bank (ECB) made no change in policy, and there was no additional guidance provided about the timing for a reduction in bond purchases. The third event did produce a surprising result, but it still had little impact on U.S. markets. In the election in the United Kingdom, Prime Minister Theresa May’s party unexpectedly failed to gain a majority in Parliament. This will weaken her position in the upcoming negotiations for the British exit from the European Union.

On Tuesday, the Bureau of Labor Statistics released the JOLTS (job openings and labor turnover rates) report. Fed Chair Yellen has described this data as being very useful in evaluating current labor market conditions. It revealed that job openings in April rose to a record high level and that the quits rate held steady at an elevated level of 2.1%.
Both readings are viewed as signs of a strong labor market. A high quits rate is viewed as a signal of strength because workers are more likely to leave their jobs willingly when they are confident about their ability to get another one.
Looking ahead, Wednesday will be the big day next week with a Fed meeting, Retail Sales, and CPI. Investors widely expect a federal funds rate hike from the Fed, and they will be looking for guidance about future monetary policy. Consumer spending accounts for about 70% of economic output in the U.S., and the retail sales data is a key indicator. The Consumer Price Index (CPI), a widely followed monthly inflation report, looks at the price change for goods and services which are purchased by consumers. After that, Housing Starts will come out on Friday.

The views expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.

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Another great closing with a 4 Seasons Real Estate client!

26 May

So fun to close with you today Amy Harwood! Thank you for the mortgage referral! What a caring realtor you are to make sure your clients new home build punch list is 100% complete before signing the closing papers. You’re the best!

The views expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.

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Mortgage Time

26 May
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Mortgage Time

Mortgage Market News for the week ended May 26, 2017

Compliments of

Julie C. Nichols

Vice President, Sales | Mortgage Lending
NMLS ID: 280620 | Licensed in CO, KS, NM, OK, TX

GMFS, LLC

NMLS: 64997

Direct: 469.786.8662Fax: 888.267.4250
Cell: 214.616.4549

nicholsteam
www.gmfslending.com/julie.nichols

2500 N. Dallas Parkway | Suite 440

Plano, TX 75093

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Fed Minutes Reveal Plan
With few new political headlines or major surprises in the economic data, it was a quiet week. Wednesday’s release of the Fed minutes was the biggest market mover, but those gains were offset by small losses on other days. Mortgage rates ended the week with little change.
Wednesday’s release of the detailed minutes from the Fed meeting on May 3 said that Fed officials expect to raise the federal funds rate again "soon." To explain the need for the rate hike, they said that they viewed the slow economic growth during the first quarter as "transitory." Fed officials also expect inflation to gradually rise. This information was in line with the Fed statement on May 3 and recent comments from Fed officials.
The minutes did contain new information about the Fed’s plan to reduce the $4.5 trillion of mortgage-backed securities (MBS) and Treasuries on its balance sheet. The plan calls for a gradual reduction by no longer reinvesting all of the principal payments received. The amount that will not be reinvested will be announced in advance and will increase over time on a fixed schedule. Although many questions remain unknown, investors were pleased to see a plan which is intended to minimize disruptions to the market, and mortgage rates improved slightly after the minutes were released.
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On Friday, the first revision to first quarter Gross Domestic Product (GDP) showed an increase to 1.2% from the original estimate of 0.7%. GDP is the broadest measure of economic growth. First quarter GDP has been coming in at low levels in recent years, so these weak results were not surprising. Early estimates for second quarter GDP are for much stronger growth of around 3.0%.
Looking ahead, the important monthly Employment report will be released on Friday. As usual, this data on the number of jobs, the unemployment rate, and wage inflation will be the most highly anticipated economic data of the month. Before that, the Core PCE price index, the inflation indicator favored by the Fed, will be released on Tuesday. The ISM national manufacturing index will come out on Thursday. Mortgage markets will be closed on Monday in observance of Memorial Day.
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The views expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.

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What is a jumbo home loan and why would you need one?

24 May

Reblogged from Nerdwallet – Emily Starbuck Crone – via GMFS Mortgage

Jumbo Loans: When a Regular Mortgage Isn’t Enough

If you’re shopping for an expensive home or searching in a hot real estate market, you may find that the amount you need to borrow exceeds the loan limits for traditional loans.

Your best option could be a jumbo loan, which allows you to borrow a larger sum of money for a property than a conforming loan. A conforming loan is a mortgage that “conforms” to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac requirements regarding credit, debt and loan size.

Jumbo mortgages and conforming home loans have many similarities, but there are some key differences to be aware of, including the amount of down payment, cash reserves and credit score you’ll need to qualify.

What is a jumbo loan?

A jumbo mortgage, or jumbo loan, is a home loan that’s bigger than the loan limits set by Fannie and Freddie. Also called a non-conforming mortgage, jumbo loans are considered riskier for lenders because these loans aren’t guaranteed by Fannie and Freddie, meaning the lender is responsible for any and all losses if a borrower defaults.

Jumbo loans are typically available as both fixed rate and adjustable rate and come with a variety of terms. They can be used for primary residences or investment properties and second homes.

When you’re choosing a mortgage, you may need a jumbo loan if the amount exceeds limits for conforming loan limits in your county. A conforming loan is a mortgage that “conforms” to Fannie and Freddie’s requirements regarding credit, debt and loan size.

Jumbo loans vs. conforming loans

The key difference between a jumbo mortgage and a conforming loan is the size of the loan. A few other factors can differentiate jumbo loans from conforming loans.

Potentially higher interest rates

Jumbo interest rates may be slightly higher than those on conforming loans, depending on the lender. However, many lenders can offer jumbo loan rates that are competitive with conventional loans, and some may even offer slightly lower rates depending on market conditions, so make sure to shop around.

Heftier down payment

While it’s become easier to get away with smaller down payments on conforming loans, jumbo loans will require a higher down payment. The minimum down payment for a jumbo mortgage is 10% for most lenders, says Jim Sahnger, a mortgage broker with Schaffer Mortgage Corporation in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. SoFi is one such lender. For jumbo loans up to $1 million, Wells Fargo permits down payments of 10.1% with no private mortgage insurance, says Eric Gotsch, area sales manager for Wells Fargo Home Mortgage. Other lenders, such as US Bank, require at least 20% down.

Higher closing costs and fees

The loan is bigger and there are some extra qualifying steps, which means higher costs at the closing table.

Qualifying for a jumbo loan

Underwriting criteria for jumbo loans are stricter because they are larger and riskier for lenders.

Credit score

Most lenders require your FICO score to be higher than 700, and sometimes as high as 720, if you’re in the market for a jumbo loan, Sahnger says. He observes some lenders go as low as 680, but that’s usually the minimum.

Debt-to-income ratio

Your debt-to-income ratio is also considered to ensure you don’t become over-leveraged, though lenders tend to be somewhat flexible when considering this factor, Sahnger says, especially if you have plentiful cash reserves. However, some lenders have a hard cap of 45%, he says.

Cash reserves

You’re more likely to be approved for a jumbo loan if you have enough cash in the bank. Gotsch says jumbo loan borrowers may need to show they have enough cash reserves to cover one year of mortgage payments.

Documentation

To prove your financial health, you’ll need extensive documentation, perhaps more than for a conforming loan. You should be prepared to hand over your full tax returns, W2s and 1099s when applying, in addition to bank statements and information on any investment accounts, Gotsch says.

Appraisals

Some lenders may require a second appraisal of the home you’re planning to purchase.

Loan limits

The loan limit for conforming loans varies by county because some real estate markets are much pricier than others. For 2017, the conforming loan limit for one-unit homes in most counties nationwide is $424,100. However, in “high-cost areas,” especially in the Northeast and on the West Coast, conforming loan limits are expanded to $636,150 since higher home prices are the norm.

The Federal Housing Finance Agency, which sets the loan limits for conforming mortgages, allows even higher loan amounts in Alaska, Hawaii, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The county with the highest conforming loan limit is Honolulu, Hawaii, where only mortgages above $721,050 are considered jumbo loans.

>> Read the original article: https://twitter.com/GmfsMortgage/status/866703969569177600

The views expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.

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Smart Investing

23 May

Who wants a vacation home on the Pacific Coast? That’s exactly what Serge and Rob did with their smart financing. Do a refinance cash-out your home at a low interest rate and find your perfect vacation destination! We can’t wait to hear about the gorgeous sunsets. Congratulations Serge & Rob!

The views expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.

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5 Mistakes buyers need to avoid when they’re making an offer

18 May

Reblogged from Realtor.com

Making an Offer: 5 Mistakes to Avoid

In competitive housing markets across the country, making an offer that sticks has become increasingly difficult. Ensure your client doesn’t make the process even tougher by succumbing to one of these common mistakes.

Delaying

“Time kills deals,” says Andrew Sandholm of BOND New York Properties in New York. “Dragging your feet means you could wind up paying more in a bidding war situation or missing out on the property altogether.” Buyers need to be ready with their paperwork, such as bank statements, a preapproval letter, and documents supporting proof of funds, from the day they begin house-hunting mode. That way they can pounce quickly with an offer when they do find a home they like.

Making an offer for their preapproved amount

Smart buyers are getting preapproved to show a seller they’re financially able to purchase a home. However, Chuck Silverston, principal at Unlimited Sotheby’s International Realty in Brookline, Mass., warns buyers against using that document to come up with an offer amount.

“Many buyers come in with a preapproval for the exact offer price, but when you’re competing against other offers, including cash offers, you want to show financial strength,” Silverston says. “An exact preapproval could make a listing agent nervous because not only does the buyer not have any wiggle room to negotiate, but they might no longer qualify if interest rates rise.”

Submitting a lowball offer

Lowballing a seller often backfires, particularly in a seller’s market. “A lowball offer that isn’t backed up with math or comparable sales data is disrespectful and could turn off the seller and possibly mean you will miss out on the property completely,” Sandholm says.

Waiving inspection contingencies

“I don’t care whether it’s new construction or even your mom’s house you’re buying from her – get it inspected,” urges Joshua Jarvis of Jarvis Team Realty in Duluth, Ga. Further, if you waive the inspection contingency in your offer, you may lose the earnest money if you later back out of the deal.

Not presenting yourself well enough

In a seller’s market, buyers need to take steps to make sure they look good in the eyes of the seller. “In today’s highly competitive environment, the listing agent is trying to determine which buyer will be the easiest to deal with,” Silverston says. Buyers may want to avoid pointing out every defect, making nitpicky queries, or questioning the seller’s tastes.

“Basically buyers who act less than enthusiastic will see themselves at a competitive disadvantage when sellers are comparing multiple offers,” he says.

>> Read the original article here: http://realtormag.realtor.org/daily-news/2017/05/10/making-offer-5-mistakes-avoid?om_rid=AAG3Ej&om_mid=_BZHf1FB9bzqfP2&om_ntype=NARWeekly

The views expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.

#MortgageBlog

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#GMFS

#JulieNichols

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