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Points Versus Fees

Posted On: 03/30/2016
Question: We want to buy a house and have been looking at loan choices from different lenders. They all seem to require an origination fee. One lender says it will waive the 1 percent loan origination fee if we will accept a .25 percent rate increase. Should we go for the higher...

What’s the Deal with ‘Nonbanks’?

Posted On: 03/23/2016
Question: In the course of looking for a mortgage we met a loan officer who said he worked for a “nonbank.” What happens if we get a mortgage from a nonbank and the company goes out of business? Answer: For you as a borrower, nothing. In general terms, a bank is an institution...

We Struck it Rich!

Posted On: 03/09/2016
Question: We recently came into a lot of money. Does it makes any sense to use our once-in-a-lifetime windfall to pay off the mortgage? Some of our friends say we’d be better off investing the funds. ANSWER: With mortgage rates near historic lows, the effective cost of borrowing is...

Quest for a Short-Term Loan

Posted On: 03/02/2016
Question: We need a temporary loan to move from the house we’ve got to the house we want. We have a limited amount of equity. Which would be better for us, a reverse mortgage or a bridge loan? Answer: If you do not have significant equity in your home, it may be that neither...

Will New Rules Slow My Closing?

Posted On: 02/24/2016
QUESTION: We know that new lending rules began a few months ago. Will this delay our ability to get a mortgage or slow down a home sale? ANSWER: There have been a lot of claims that the latest mortgage rules will slow the lending process but it’s not entirely clear that they will....

Do You Know Your 3 Cs?

Posted On: 02/17/2016
QUESTION: We spoke with a loan officer who said our mortgage application would be a success because we did well with “the three Cs.” This is code to us. What are the three Cs? ANSWER: Every business has shortcuts and that’s true with lending. Some lenders will tell you...

Tight Credit in Rearview Mirror?

Posted On: 02/10/2016
Question: Mortgage rates are under 4 percent and we would like to refinance before they rise, something we think will happen in 2016 because of the Federal Reserve’s expected hikes. What can we do to get past tight credit standards? Answer: According to the Office of the Comptroller of...

Bullish on Buying?

Posted On: 02/03/2016
Question: Real estate values in our area increased strongly in 2015 and are predicted to go up this year, too. Doesn’t this mean that now is the time to buy, before prices go higher still? Answer: The future remains a mystery, despite the best efforts of economists and soothsayers to...

Move In With Mom and Dad?

Posted On: 01/27/2016
Question: Our parents are in the process of retiring to a new location. I’d like to join them, but I’m finding that despite a good education and training I have not been able to advance in my field because of widespread layoffs. I know it’s not “cool,” but...

Will An Addition Add Value?

Posted On: 01/20/2016
QUESTION: We own a 1,700-square-foot home, which has been completely redone. We are considering putting a small casita (one room with small bathroom, shower and kitchenette) in the backyard. Is this a smart investment? We got a bid for around $10,000 to do the project and want to know if this...
Join our Real Estate Newsletter - includes great tips and articles on the latest real-estate trends, plus lists upcoming real-estate training opportunities, clubs, or networking events.
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