Friday, May 20, 2011

The 5 Most Important Facts Most Home Buyers Don?t Know

For many things, people assume to know more than they actually do. This is especially dangerous in the home buying process. Recent Oklahoma Mortgage marketplace survey indicates that there are several aspects of the home buying process that continue to elude prospective home buyers. Here are some surprising results of our findings, along with five things most home buyers don’t know, but should:

1. FHA loans & 100% USDA Loans are available to all buyers

More than two in five (42 percent) prospective home buyers think that only first-time buyers qualify for an FHA & USDA loan, a mortgage insured by the Federal House Administration or by the United States Department of Agriculture. This is not the case. In fact, these loans are available to all buyers who meet eligibility requirements. Among the key attractions of FHA loan: a minimal or even no down payment in some cases, relaxed credit score requirements, low cost, and low interest rates. Key attractions of 100% USDA Loan zero down payment, relaxed credit score requirements, low cost, and low interest rates.

2. Mortgage rates vary daily

Fifty-five percent of prospective home buyers don’t realize that mortgage rates, which are determined by a slew of factors, can—and do—change daily (and sometimes more than once a day if certain economic reports are released). Just by monitoring rates, you could save yourself money. For example, a rate change of 0.125 percent to 0.25 percent could mean thousands of dollars in savings each year. To get the best rates, monitor them. The best indicator is the movement of the 10-year Treasury bond. And, don’t stop at the first rate you see—shop around.

3. Lender fees change and are negotiable

When you apply for a loan, the bottom line is that you’re going to have to pay lender fees. These fees—from origination fees to credit report fees to appraisal fees and more—can add up quickly. The good news, and what 34 percent of prospective home buyers don’t know, is that fees not only vary from one lender to the next, but that they’re negotiable. This is all the more reason to shop around for different mortgage rates from various lenders.

4. Interest rates on ARMs don’t always reset higher

While rates on adjustable rate mortgages (ARMs) do often increase after five years, they can also decrease. Prospective home buyers may not realize this because many people (57 percent) simply don’t know how adjustable rate mortgages work. The interest rate on an ARM is made up of two parts: the margin, which is a fixed percentage and the index, which goes both up and down with the general movement of interest rates. If you’re planning on living in a home only for a few years, an ARM could be a good loan option.

5. Pre-qualified doesn’t mean much, Loan-Approved Does!

Just because you have a “pre-qualification” for a home loan doesn’t mean you’ve secured financing, yet 37 percent of prospective home buyers believe it does. Most of the time when you’re “pre-qualified,” a lender has figured out approximately how much you can afford, but they haven’t run your credit or requested any sort of documentation to support/verify the information you provide. That is why it is so important to make sure your lender has fully approved your potential loan before you go out house hunting.

To Apply online and get a “FREE” Full-Mortgage Approval, Log on to
918-459-6530 or 1-866-205-7266

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Oklahoma Mortgage Rate Declines To Its Lowest Since January

According to a Wall Street Journal article on 5-5-2011 the average rate on the 30-year mortgage matched its lowest level since mid-January this week, according to Freddie Mac's weekly survey released Thursday.

The mortgage averaged 4.71% for the week ending May 5, down from 4.78% last week and 5% a year ago, according to the survey.

Meanwhile, the 15-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.89% this week, the lowest since the beginning of the year. It averaged 3.97% last week and 4.36% a year ago.

Five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages averaged 3.47% this week, down from 3.51% last week and 3.97% a year ago.

And 1-year Treasury-indexed ARMs averaged 3.14%, down from 3.15% last week and 4.07% a year ago.

To obtain the rates, the fixed-rate mortgages required payment of an average 0.7 point, while the five-year ARM required an average 0.6 point and the 1-year ARM required an average 0.5 point. A point is 1% of the mortgage amount, charged as prepaid interest.

"Weaker economic data reports reduced Treasury bond yields and allowed mortgage rates to drift lower for the third consecutive week," said Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist at Freddie Mac, in a news release. "For instance, real economic growth in the first quarter fell short of the market consensus forecast and represented the slowest pace since the second quarter of 2010. In addition, both the manufacturing and service sectors exhibited growth at a slower rate in April."

But reports on the housing market were a bit more uplifting, he added.

"The National Association of Realtors reported pending home sales rose in March for the second month in a row to the highest index reading since
November 2010," Mr. Nothaft said. "Also, the Federal Reserve reported credit standards among commercial banks for prime mortgages were unchanged on net in the second quarter of the year, following two quarters of tightening."

Take advantage of the low mortgage rates, Apply online for a "FREE" Pre-Approval before its to late.