Finance terms of 2015

Refinance Mortgage - Current mortgage rates remain attractively low. Call First Mortgage today and let one of our loan professionals provide you with a "Good Faith Estimate" of closing costs for a refinance on your present mortgage. To view some examples of refinance cost and what a lower interest rate can do for you , go to our "Refinance Examples" page. If you have an ARM (adjustable rate mortgage) with a scheduled rate increases and you are planning on staying in your home at least five years, now may also be the time to refinance to a fixed rate mortgage. Cash back amounts may be used to pay-off any high interest second mortgages, credit cards or other personal loans.

FHA Mortgage – We offer both fixed and adjustable-rate FHA mortgages. They can be used to purchase or refinance owner occupied homes. FHA mortgages are insured by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Homebuyers can put down as little as 3% of the lesser of the FHA appraisal value or the purchase price, and if refinancing, get a higher mortgage than would be available under a conforming conventional mortgage. Qualifying standards are not as strict as most conventional mortgages and interest rates are slightly lower than conventional loans. For a list of FHA Loan Limits click here)

VA Mortgage – A fixed-rate loan available for purchasing or refinancing an owner occupied home. VA mortgages are guaranteed by the Department of Veterans Affairs, to qualified veterans’, reservists’ on active duty, or the surviving spouse of a veteran with 100% entitlement. Qualified buyers can use a VA loan to purchase a home with no money down or refinance their home at 90% of value. VA mortgage interest rates are slightly lower than conventional mortgages and have lower closing costs. Present VA loan limits are $203,000 for a purchase and $144,000 on a refinance loan. A Certificate of Eligibility from the Veterans Administration is required. Your lender can provide the needed request forms, or you can obtain them from the nearest VA office or the VA web site.

USDA Guaranteed Rural Housing Loan/100 % No Money Down - This loan is used by borrowers to purchase a home they will personally occupy. This 30 year fixed rate mortgage is offered to families whose income does not exceed 115 % of the median income for the area (to see a chart of incomes limits by family size click here). There is no loan limit as long as the borrowers meet income ratios. This no down payment loan can be used to purchase rural property (most city properties in Western Colorado and Southeastern Utah are eligible). Closing cost and repairs can be included if the appraised value warrants. There is a 1.5% up front Funding Fee, but this loan does not require monthly mortgage insurance premium. New homes have a minimum landscape requirement. Older or existing homes must meet minimum thermal standards. Recent legislative changes, effective May 15, 2001, now authorize the USDA Guaranteed Rural Housing Program to be used for both purchase and refinance loans.

Conventional/Conforming Fixed Rate Mortgage - Financing which is not insured or guaranteed by a government agency. These conforming mortgages are sold on the secondary mortgage market to Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, two quasi-governmental agencies that buy mortgages from cooperating lenders. The type, maximum LTV ratio, terms, income/debt ratios, and restrictions are set by each agency. The maximum mortgage on a single family home that both agencies will purchase is currently $275,000 (11/28/2000). Conforming loans tend to have the strictest qualifying criteria. If your credit is shaky or you have been job-hopping in recent years, you may find it easier to qualify for a non-conforming mortgage. We can help you decide on the best course to follow.

Conforming Convertible ARM - An adjustable-rate mortgage, which allows you to convert to a fixed rate at certain specified times, usually between the second and fifth year. There is a fee to convert, and your rate will be approximately .325% higher than the going rate for fixed rate mortgages.

Conforming Convertible Loans (7/1 5/1 3/1) - An ARM loan, this convertible loan offers a fixed rate for the first three, five or seven years, then switches to a traditional ARM that fluctuates with the market. This loan could be useful if you strongly believe that interest rates will fall, you only plan to have the mortgage for a short period of time, or, your income will increase substantially in the next few years and you want to qualify for a higher loan amount.

Less Than Perfect Credit Mortgages - For those consumers that have experienced difficulty in obtaining credit approval due to unforeseen credit problems in the past. First Mortgage loan officers can help guide you through the options available to help make that new home a reality.

Home Equity Loans (Up To 125% LTV) - A loan that offers you the option of borrowing cash against the equity you have in your home to pay-off high interest credit cards or use the loan proceeds to pay for home improvement projects or needed home repair.

No Income Verification Mortgage/No Ratio Loans - These programs are offered to self employed borrowers with established credit histories and the option to obtain loans base on that payment history. These loans do not require income verification and the associated cost lengthy work of providing audited profit and loss statements.

Alternate Documentation Mortgages - These loans have less traditional documentation requirements. There reduced employment and income verifications documentation offers borrowers with less traditional or hard to explain income sources an alternative to the time consuming rules of conforming loans.

Manufactured Home Loans are available from several of our end investors as an alternative to the higher cost loans generally offered through manufactured home dealers.

FHA 203(k) Rehabilitation Mortgage - A single mortgage that provides cash for the purchase or refinance of a home, plus needed repairs. To be eligible, the property must be a one-to four- family, owner occupied dwelling that has been completed for at least one year. A minimum of $5,000 must be spent on eligible repairs, which can include costs to bring the home up to Cost Effective Energy Conservation Standards. An escrow account is created to pay for improvements as the work is completed. Please call for specific details and requirements.

Best Ways in Which You Could Use Your Credit Card

What are the different ways in which you’ve used your credit card till now ? Supermarket shopping, for eating out, at the theatre, to buy holiday gifts, filling fuel in your car, while traveling etc. are the usual necessities for which we rampantly use the plastic currency. But there are still other ways in which you could use your credit card to save up that extra buck.

Paying up for construction work with a credit card does seem an odd proposition doesn’t it? Yes it does seem, provided you don’t know how to use it tactfully. As usual, you can pay your contractor with real cash or check. But you can best way to use your credit cardalways buy the raw materials like cement, bricks, metal etc. using plastic money can’t you? These days, many contractors are also agreeing to accept payments for building permits and other construction works.

For Paying Childbirth Bills

Of all the unlikely situations for using your credit card, maternity bills payment is something that you might really find an unexpected treat! Imagine paying up all those high pregnancy bills of your wife! That can be quite a big relief isn’t it? Apart from pregnancy bills you could use the credit card to pay up adult therapists and health clubs.
For Paying Adoption Agencies

Paying up the adoption agency fee with your credit card is something that you might not have thought of till now. You can pay up the adoption attorney and also the birth mother charges with your credit card.
For Paying Up the College Fee of Your Children

Many colleges don’t insist on cash payments. They accept bank checks and also credit cards. So if you think paying in plastic, is the easiest for you, you can always pay up in that. There are no hassles regarding that. These days even schools accept credit card payment right from kindergarten level to the high school level. Many private tutors don’t mind getting paid via credit cards.
For Bail in Prisons

This is one of the most uncommon usages of the credit card that I have come to know of! If you’ve offended law some way and want to avoid spending a night in jail, pay up bail money with your credit card! You may not be able to access your bank during the emergency. But you always carry the cash card with you don’t you?
For Funerals

Hey! You don’t need money only for living in this world, but also for going out of it! Today, one might have to make arrangements for one’s own funeral! So if you want your mortal remains to be bid farewell in the way you desire during the funeral process, pay up at funeral homes for it . You can also opt for funeral insurance. You need not pay up for yourself but also for any loved one too.
For Church Donations

If you want to make some contributions to your church, and are not carrying enough cash to put on the church plate, you can always pay with your credit card. Make direct payments or pay up at websites such as MyChurchDonations.Com or HolyProcessing.com.

The Reverse Mortgage Saga Continues

Reverse Morgages Safe?

So, if you've been keeping up to date with blogitecture.net, you will know that I, Mark, have been having in depth conversations with my mother about her decisions to pull out the equity on her home and get a reverse mortgage. This has caused me to have my own debates within my head and has had an extreme amount of pressure put onto me. I was always under the impression a reverse mortgage was a complete scam yada yada yada- but after doing some healthy amount of research I came under several different conclusions, which I thought my findings might be helpful for my readers.

The following comes from FTC's .gov website:

There are three types of reverse mortgages:

single-purpose reverse mortgages, offered by some state and local government agencies and nonprofit organizations
federally-insured reverse mortgages, known as Home Equity Conversion Mortgages (HECMs) and backed by the U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
proprietary reverse mortgages, private loans that are backed by the companies that develop them

Now, from my experience, the single purpose reverse mortgage was the one that always caused me to raise red flags. But most importantly, the proprietary reverse mortgage loan is the one that consumers should be most aware of. These types of loans are NOT federally insured and are known to be conducted by shady mortgage firms that have only one interest in mind, which is money.

After doing some more research on recent news regarding reverse mortgages, I came across this article on Examiner.

“The new jumbo program gives thousands of seniors the ability to tap into their home’s equity,” said Donald Gigantino, Vice President for Reverse Mortgage Space. “This will be a real game changer to the market.”

This was the article my mother came across where she referenced this new "jumbo program". As of now, there isn't much information about it, but, again, it is a federally insured loan which makes me feel a lot better. It's called the "HomeSafe" (I'm sure the home isn't safe after a reverse mortgage, regardless!), and it's a new option for seniors 62 and older. What's important is making sure that you KNOW who your lenders are, as many of them are money hungry sharks. The Coldwell Bankers are always someone to trust, but if they are not in your area, there are many other financial institutions you can be able to choose from.

Veteran's Loan Options

VA Loans and Mortgages

Being a veteran and struggling for money can be two combinations that really can cause some damage. There are some options that one can take as a veteran such as getting a mortgage or loan from the proper lender. A veteran co-worker of mine qualified for a VA loan which was offered for Florida residents. I'm just going to briefly summarize the qualifications that are needed in order to get one of these VA loans.

In order to be eligible for a VA home loan the borrower must have enough entitlement, which is simply the amount the VA will give to a veteran borrower. What is considered a full entitlement is normally adequate, which is the sum for $417,000.

The loans are to only be used specifically for the owned properties and homes. There are several things that are considered a "home", such as an approved condominium or a townhouse. These are also eligible for a VA home loan.

The borrower must have current residence at the property that they are applying for. Of course, you must have official documentation that you are a current resident of that home and that you will be a resident of that home for a period of time. If the borrower is on duty or deployed, the only person who is eligible for the "occupancy requirement" would be that soldier's spouse. However, the borrower has the option of getting an extension on the approved loan up to a period of 1 year.

The borrower is required to have enough income to qualify for the loan, and, at times, the credit score determinations might vary. The credit score determinations are set specifically by the VA lender and they can set minimums to what they choose. The normal debt to income ratio is 41% for a VA loan. However- a VA Stream-line loan doesn't call for income and credit requirements.

More information about the qualifications regarding the VA loan can be found on the internet. There are other options for when considering funding, as well. If you are a retired military personnel, you could qualify for a reverse mortgage. Also, Military.com has many options for financial assistance and funding specifically for veterans. VA Loans for Florida Residents can be found at ColonialFirst for further reading. VeteransUnited also offers great information for veterans as far as obtaining loans.

The Reverse Mortgage Debatable

Reverse Mortgaging your Home

Today my mother and I had a long discussion about what she plans to do after he retirement. In a few months, after decades of constant, tedious working, she will be retiring at the ripe age of 65. For those who haven't followed my previous writings, my mother is in a position where the only equity she has is in her house. She has no other income aside from social security, and the monetary assistant she gets from me (which most of the time she refuses). We had a long conversation about how she will be paying for many things she plans to do. She wants to go to Europe, she wants to go on a cruise or two, and she has a taste for fine-dining. That's fine and all, but my mother's funds are not quite in the position to be acting upon these ideas she has floating around. Personally, I am well off financially. I don't have really much to complain about. For the last few years she has insisted that she give me the house when she passes, but I've refused every time. To me, it's not a great big of a deal.

Reverse Mortgage Disadvantages vs Advantages

Today, when we had our talk, she offered it once again, and, as always, I refused once again. Out of the blue she stated that if that was the case, she's looking into a reverse mortgage. I have to give it to my mother, she is somewhat technical savvy. She knows how to use the internet to her advantage when it comes to researching and tapping into new resources- such as reverse mortgages. Now, I know what you're thinking. Reverse mortgages have had a very bad wrap lately. But that said, it's not always right for everyone. You must follow some strict criteria when planning to go after something of this magnitude and life changing. For example, my mom has no heirs on her house. If she doesn't actually pay off the loan- that's perfectly fine that the bank repossesses the house in her eyes when she passes. I, of course, had to do my own research on this subject because I have to admit that I wasn't well up to date with reverse mortgage qualifications and the downsides/plus sides. There are plenty of resources you can use at your disposal if researching online. For example, one must be very clear what the disadvantages are just as much as they are aware of the positives. Always be aware of interest rates and make an extra effort of finding a good lender.

Take into consideration that there are lot of sharks out there. You have to be very picky of who you contact when it comes to getting a reverse mortgage. These lenders can make a lot of money off of you and they're more than willing to say something or do something shady just so you will pull your reverse mortgage with them. I have compiled a lot of good information regarding this topic and will be giving it to my mother tomorrow. I will post again with the information that I've found out.

A Fresh New Start

Thanks for visiting blogitecture.net. We are currently in the process of restarting our blog. Please bookmark our page and stay tuned for weekly updates on viral web content, useful information and how-to's that will interest everyone of all ages! We are currently in the process of recreating blogITecture centered around business and finance and will help assist you with all aspects of the subject: mortgages, loans, lender information, business, and the economy. Currently we are writing up a storm for content and constantly searching the web for new and relevant topics. If you have feedback for us, please contact us without hesitation at admin@blogitecture.net. We are hoping that within a short period of time we can get our previous subscribers back to normal pace! Thank you for your understanding when it comes to rebuilding websites: a slow and boring process.

But let's get up to speed on a few things and make it less boring. The topic today is unemployment rates. What did president Obama promise? An unemployment rate under 7%. What is the unemployment rate today? 5.9%. So what are all the right-wing hawks complaining about when they scream Obama is a "JOB KILLIN' PRESIDENT"? We're not too sure, because the current unemployment rate is a vast improvement over the destructive policies of the last administration. So what are their excuses, now? Surely there's some explanation for such an improvement in the unemployment rate, right? Conspiracy theories are the goto choice for right wing talking heads these days. You hear everything from "the books are cooked" and a fun assortment of theories you'd only hear if you turned on the X-Files.

But, in reality, we are tired of these excuses, justifications, and dumb-whitted explanations that really make no sense. So, we salute the president in a quite great achievement regarding the unemployment rate. A rate that could have been only achieved via the policies Obama put into place, such as the stimulus and social safety net programs that kept the unemployed and the desperate afloat as the economy attempted to recover.

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