Saturday, April 28, 2012

The Latest:

Well, everyone's wondering when, not if, the low interest rates will come to an end. The Fed's Bernanke still insists he'll hold them down through yearend 2014, but an increasing number of folks are questioning how likely this will be in the real world, particularly when the economy really gets into a solid recovery mode. It's showing continuing signs of a recovery, the economy in general and housing in particular.
However, in stats just released the past few days, the 'recovery', while still moving along, has changed to an even slower pace than in the prior quarter.
So where does that leave you if you're making a rate-based decision? Well, 30 year fixed rates again dropped this past week--to 3.88%. My opinion: they're likely to remain at or under 4% for the remainder of the summer, at least until Labor Day. I'm even willing to hazard a guess that they well might stay in this range through the balance of the year. But, come next spring, especially if the recovery picks up steam, look for a gradual increase through 2013.
Things that could alter these projections: failure to alleviate the Student Loan debt load--huge and getting worse daily; and the outcome of the elections in November.

What to do? If you're a buyer, as I've said before, DON'T DELAY! The quarter point increase that you get hit with is the $25-100,000 reduction in purchasing power (depending on your income/assets) that you'll have to figure how to deal with. If you're a seller, take advantage of the market of lots of cash in hand buyers and low rates and get your house on the market and into the competition. We're seeing homes, if priced right & "done", going fast and showing, in some cases, multiple offers again! Take advantage now!Call: Peter: (415) 279-6466 or Jane: (415) 531-4091.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Mortgage Issues
So you've searched and searched with your Realtor and finally found the "perfect" house. You looked at all types of designs, floor plans, lot locations and sizes, decided your wants and needs, and finally found the one that matches, or at least comes as close as you're ever likely to be. Now you need to pay for it. Unless you're one of the few who can just write a check for the entire purchase, this means getting a mortgage.
Now, as I mentioned in my book, The Complete Idiot's Guide to Buying a Home, there are many different ways to borrow to complete your purchase. However, the most common way is to obtain a loan from a bank, either by going directly to your bank or through a mortgage broker. However, since the financial meltdown of four years ago, this has frequently become an exercise in frustration. However, you can get a mortgage, at a reasonable interest rate (currently just under 4% for 30 years), and minimize the aggravation that recently has become all too common.
According to Mark Greene in Forbes, the way to do this is to get what he calls the "Perfect Loan". But when you look a bit closer at the item, you find that lenders realize there isn't such a thing. Rather, it's the "Perfect Loan File". All the right documents, proper underwriting, and so on. In essence, it's an updated game of CYA (Cover Your A--). Lenders have always played this game to some degree, but now, they are much more dogmatic about it. It usually involves providing copies of every piece of information about your financial life from the day you reached legal age. If you have questions, check with your lender, or give a call to our experts at Mortgage Service Professionals: (415) 345-3006.
And while you're at it, if you haven't called a Realtor to not only help you find that perfect home, but also to get yours sold, give us a call: Peter: (415) 279-6466 or Jane: (415) 531-4091. You'll be glad you did!