mortgage

How Much Higher Will Mortgage Rates Go This Year

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With the tapering of the Fed’s Quantitative Easing (QE) program, economists are predicting that rates will continue rising for the remainder of 2013. This is based on the dramatic rise of the 10 year Treasury yield over the last month to which mortgage rates are loosely tied. The 30-year, fixed rate loan recently went above […]

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2013 Conforming Loan Limits For Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac Remain Unchanged

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The maximum conforming loan limits for mortgages acquired by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in 2013 will remain at existing 2012 levels, per FHFA guidelines. In most of the country, the loan limit will be $417,000 for one-unit (single-family) properties. But in certain more expensive metro areas, the conforming limits are as high as $625,500. The confirming […]

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Existing and Proposed Government Housing Refinance Programs

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One of the most frequent questions I receive is around getting guidance on the various government refinance programs on offer. The table below, published in a recent report looking at the effectiveness of existing refinancing programs, provides a succinct summary of the key refinance programs on offer to Americans. It also contains a couple of […]

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Saving $95,000 by Refinancing into a Lower Rate and Shorter Duration Mortgage

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Many homeowners with good credit are ditching their old 30-year fixed rate mortgages for the 15-year or 20-year versions. This is primarily to leverage historically low rates for these shorter duration loans and benefit from the significant interest savings over the life of the loan. In fact, a friend of mine did exactly this when […]

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Should You Pay Off Your Mortgage Early or Invest The Extra Cash?

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Many of us dream about how it would feel to not have a monthly mortgage payment. Owning your home free and clear is the aspiration of numerous homeowners. But even without – in most cases – that hefty payment leaving your checkbook every 30 days, there are actually some reasons not to pay off your […]

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15 Year Versus 30 Year Fixed Rate Mortgages – How to Determine Which is the Better Option

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As mortgage rates continue to hover at 30 year lows, many people are wondering whether a 15-year or a 30-year mortgage term is a better option. After all, even though payments on the 15-year option would be higher, the lower interest rates on the shorter term loan are keeping payments, in many cases, at very […]

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Looking Beyond the Monthly Payment and Calculating the True Cost of Your Refinance

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Mortgage lenders often attract homeowners seeking to lower their mortgage interest rate with some simple math, usually presented in one of two ways: 1) Comparing the nominal closing costs to the total savings from 30 years of a lower monthly payment, or 2) How few months it will take before you break even with your […]

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Solving the Housing Foreclosure Crisis by Cutting Mortgage Principal Balances – Big Mistake

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Mortgage interest rates are at their lowest point in decades (about 4.5%) and the housing credit has been in effect for more than three years, yet the housing market is tepid at best, with foreclosures at record highs and government housing institutions having to put more distressed assets on their books. This has spurred rumors […]

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Housing Market Predictions and Forecast For Home Prices in 2011 and 2012

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[September 2011 update] The American housing market is still in the doldrums according to the latest S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index which showed that U.S. home prices are down a record 5.9% from the corresponding quarter last year (2010). But there is some good news in that home prices are up 3.6% from last quarter. The […]

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Alternative Home Loan Modifications Outpacing Government HAMP Mortgage Relief Program in Helping Homeowners

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In a sign that private enterprise is still much more efficient than government run programs, USA today published a story confirming that private servicers’ alternative home loan modifications are outpacing government sponsored HAMP mortgage modifications. Despite the attention given to the federal government’s $50 billion Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP), which was designed to lower […]

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