Mortgage & Financial News

Come here to read about what is going on in the world of Mortgages and what financial information is affecting the mortgage markets.

Found 323 blog entries about Mortgage & Financial News.

The holiday season is upon us and you may be thinking about finding a special or unique gift your family member or loved one could use for years to come. In my previous article entitled, “Part 1 – Holiday Gift Ideas for First-Time Home Buyers,” I discussed gifting down payment funds or First-Time Homebuyer Savings Account (FHSA) contributions to first-time buyers to help purchase their new home. In this article, I will discuss another way you can help a home buyer. 

Even though the interest rates on home mortgages are historically very attractive, they are rising. As interest rates rise, a homebuyer’s purchasing power is reduced. An exceptional gift idea is helping your relative or loved one with an interest rate or mortgage buydown. Buying down an

294 Views, 0 Comments

Saving for a down payment on a home is the most difficult step in the process of buying a home for 25% of first-time buyers, according to the National Association of REALTORS (NAR) 2017 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers. Of those buyers, 55% said student loan debt delayed them in saving for a home. Now couple those issues with the high price of real estate in the Boulder area, and it makes it very difficult for first-time buyers to get started. In fact, according to the same profile from NAR, the typical first-time buyer might delay a purchase for three years to save for a down payment. In an appreciating market such as in the Boulder area, purchasing the first home gets harder as time goes on. 

NAR also says that 25% of first-time buyers depended

408 Views, 0 Comments

In Colorado, real estate brokers are not licensed to practice law and/or give legal advice. Yet licensed brokers can prepare contracts to buy and sell houses as a daily course of business. Colorado brokers are allowed to render services to real estate clients to a greater degree than in many states. This allowance dates back to the infamous (at least in the Colorado real estate industry) Conway-Bogue case. The bottom line of the decision was that brokers were allowed to work with contracts in real estate transactions without an attorney only if they filled in the blanks of standard and approved forms.

Part of the issue back then, however, was that there were no defined standard and approved forms. The Conway-Bogue Case dates back to 1957, but it

269 Views, 0 Comments

Stress is starting to run a little high with interest rates on the rise. Here’s a brief history lesson first!  Over my 40-year history as a Realtor, I’ve seen a wide range of mortgage interest rates. In the early ‘80s, rates seemed like they were going up every day, and in October 1981, the Freddie Mac rate soared to 18.44%! I can remember thinking, if only the rates would just go back down to 12% all would be right with the world. Rates did gradually get better, even with many ups and downs, but the valley was in October 2012 at the end of the recession when it dropped to a record low of 3.36%. You know the old saying, “What goes up must come down!”. In the world of interest rates, there’s also another adage: “What goes down must come up!”. From that

102 Views, 0 Comments

This week’s Aging at Altitude Conference in Boulder organized by the Daily Camera was an amazing event! The parking lot at the new Boulder Jewish Community Center was packed, and there was even overflow parking at adjacent facilities. The huge attendance was evidence of our large baby boomer and senior population seeking out resources and information. One of the sessions at the conference was about using reverse mortgages as a financial tool for those age 62 and over. I spoke on the panel with two reverse mortgage specialists. We dispelled many of the myths that have been keeping seniors from using this valuable tool. Here is a synopsis of what we shared. 

In 1988, Federal Housing Administration (FHA) reverse mortgage insurance legislation was

118 Views, 0 Comments

When you prepare to sell your personal residence -- if you have lived in it for the last two out of five years -- there can be a substantial capital gains exclusion. Tax Reform 2018 retained the home sale tax exclusion of $250,000 for single people and $500,000 for married couples filing jointly. This means you can exclude that amount of profit from your tax liability. This is all well and good, but in some markets like the city of Boulder, where average home prices exceed $1 million, these exclusions have not kept up with the market.

However, capital improvements made to your home could help reduce your taxes. In any market, it is important to keep records of the capital improvements you make to your home. Why? Because any capital improvements you

225 Views, 0 Comments

When you think of “mortgage insurance,” you may think of a type of life insurance that if you die, the mortgage on your house is paid off for the benefit of the survivors. Private Mortgage Insurance, known as PMI, is not that at all. PMI is insurance to protect the lender in the event the borrower defaults. PMI is usually required on conventional home loans where the down payment is less than 20%.

Without PMI, the risk to the lender would be higher, and lenders would not be as willing to commit as many funds towards low down payment programs. With PMI, conventional loan programs are available to buyers with as little as 3% down.

In rapidly appreciating markets, buying with as low a down payment as possible, makes a lot of sense.  When a market

201 Views, 0 Comments

Over the last several years, we have enjoyed record-low mortgage rates and a prevailing sense of relative stability. During times of stability, the question as to whether to lock the interest rate while you are under contract on a home, isn’t as critical as in times of rising interest rates. In recent months, there has been upward pressure on rates, making it a more relevant conversation.

To lock or not to lock, that is the buyer’s choice. However, buyers need to understand that is a commitment from both the lender and the buyer to close at the agreed upon interest rate.

The scenario goes like this. One day you write a contract on a home knowing you can afford it at a certain interest rate. Then while you are waiting to close, the interest rate

273 Views, 0 Comments

The real estate market in Boulder County is red hot, which makes maintaining your mortgage approval a must if you're shopping for a home.

“It can be a lot of work to get your mortgage approved. Once it is approved, it is important not to make any major financial changes until you sign your final disclosure and the loan is closed,” says Jessica Shanahan, loan officer with Premier Lending.

To keep your mortgage approval, you need to know the financial moves not to make.   

Your mortgage approval is primarily based on documenting your income and assets, your equity stake or down payment, your credit history and the cash you'll have left over after the deal is done, according to Tuttle’s Real Estate Update.

After your mortgage is approved,

287 Views, 0 Comments

When most people think of IRAs, SEPs, and 401ks, they usually think of investing in the stock market or mutual funds. However, if you set up a self-directed IRA account (SDIRA), your retirement plan has the capability to hold real estate along with a variety of other real estate-related investments, such as notes. Anyone can use their retirement plan to invest in real estate -- you just need to have the proper plan in place.

Finding a qualified Realtor can give you a significant advantage as you walk though this alternative real estate acquisition strategy. A Realtor has the knowledge and expertise to make these key financial investments move more smoothly. 

Here are the steps you can take and requirements you should be aware of.

Setting Up

289 Views, 0 Comments