Recent News

FHA Mortgage Insurance Premiums : Don’t Confuse The FHA’s Wish List For Your Own Reality

This is a snippet from page 348 of the Special Topics sub-section in the 2011 Congressional Budget. It recaps the new FHA mortgage insurance guidelines for case numbers assigned after April 5, 2010. It also shows the FHA's request to have authority over its mortgage insurance premiums from Congress. According to the highlighted text, the FHA wants make two changes, pending congressional approval.

The Bankrate Mortgage Rate Trend Index Was Less than 25% Accurate In 2009

If you want to know where mortgage rates are headed in the future, you may be better off ignoring the experts. I conducted a 50-week study of the popular Bankrate.com Mortgage Rate Trend Index and it showed that the "expert consensus" on mortgage rates is wrong 3 times more often than it's right. That's not good.

The Future Of Mortgage Rates, Jumbo Mortgages And Portfolio Lending

Tuesday, I asked my Twitter friends what mortgage questions they'd like to have answered. I picked 3 replies and pushed it to video.

Foreclosure Distribution In The United States (2005-2009)

Clearly, some states are more foreclosure-heavy than others. And always have been.

Bring The Blog Video Tour | Mortgage And Real Estate Blog Content For Busy Professionals

Author's Note: This is the second in a week-long series of Bring the Blog promotional posts. Watch the Bring the Blog video tour and consider taking our 15-day, guaranteed-to-love-it trial. Bring the Blog makes blogging easier -- make it a part of your social marketing strategy for 2010.

9 Things To Watch While Waiting For Mortgage Rates To Dip A Bit More

Aside from mortgage rates, there's other factors that account for your final mortgage approval and none of them are within your control. Rates may fall back to 4.500 percent at some point in the future, but when they do, you might not be able to take advantage. Here's 9 things that can go wrong.

Moving In The Next 5 Years? Rethink Your Current Mortgage And Save 40% Per Month.

Planning to move in the next few years? Get smart about it. Swap out the high-rate, 30-year fixed you're carrying and convert it to something more appropriate. Refinancing to today's rate might save you 40 percent on your monthly payments.

The Jobs Report : Good For The Economy, Awful For Mortgage Rates

According to the government, the U.S. economy shed just 11,000 jobs in November, a 100,000 job improvement from October and the lowest tally since June 2007. Furthermore, the national Unemployment Rate dropped to 10.0 percent.

The data is building economic optimism on Wall Street, forcing a retracement of the flight-to-quality bets made since October. These safe-haven bond buys dropped rates to their lowest levels of all-time last week. This week, not so much.

There's a massive MBS sell-off in process. Rates unwound 3 weeks of improvement in the first 3 minutes of trading.

Using Consumer Confidence To Guess Where Mortgage Rates Are Going

Many analysts believe that confidence correlates to spending. Looking at the trendline chart, they've got good reason -- there relationship between sales and confidence appears to be direct. But there's some analysis worth doing, too.

Trends In Mortgage Rates : What The Fall Season Brings To Rate Shoppers

Like in 2006, 2007 and 2008, Autumn 2009 is marked by falling leaves and falling mortgage rates.

The trend looks more like a pattern.

Based on Freddie Mac data of the last 4 years, 30-year fixed mortgage rates rise from January through August, and fall through fall. There's 6 weeks left until January. The clock may be ticking for today's home buyers and rate shoppers.

Summarizing The New, Stricter FHA Streamline Refinance Program (Changes Effective November 17, 2009)

Want to refinance on the FHA Streamline Refi program? Better get a move on. Beginning in just 5 days -- November 17, 2009 -- the FHA changes over to new guidelines for its popular FHA-to-FHA refinance program. Getting approved for a Streamline Refi will be more difficult and more expensive.

FHA Mortgage Rates Are Lower Than Conventional Mortgage Rates

FHA mortgage rates are lower than conventional mortgage rates right now.

Talking Mortgage Rates To 6 Percent, FHA Streamlines, And The First-Time Home Buyer Tax Credit Extension

Earlier, I asked my Twitter followers what mortgage questions they'd like to have answered. I picked 3 of their replies and pushed it to video. The video is a quick 2 minutes.

Comparing FHA And Conventional Mortgages With Less Than 20% Downpayment

With foreclosures proliferating, PMI defaults are up 26 percent over last year and double the levels from 2007. Private mortgage insurers are paying out on many more claims than was expected and, as a result, are booking huge losses. Homeowners are about to pay the price. To shore up balance sheets and protect against future losses, mortgage insurers have raised insurance rates and toughened underwriting guidelines.

Foreclosures Per Household Data Shows The Way To The Homebuying Bargains

The severity of the "Foreclosure Crisis" depends on where you live, it seems. According to the RealtyTrac.com Q3 foreclosure report, Foreclosures Per Household skews heavy towards just a few states. Nevada leads the nation with 1 foreclosure per 23 households. Its rate is six times the national average of 1 foreclosure per 136 households. Arizona, California, and Florida are a distant 2, 3 and 4, respectively.

Mortgage Rates Are Not As Low As Newspapers Are Reporting

Thursday, Freddie Mac published its weekly mortgage market survey. The report showed mortgage rates sub-5 percent, trolling near all-time lows. Versus October 2008, 30-year fixed mortgages are down 1.07%. The press was eager to report this story -- mostly because anytime mortgage rates below 5.000 percent, it makes for good copy. But, for rate shoppers in Cincinnati and Chicago, by the time Friday's business section was delivered, the Freddie Mac survey was already out-of-date.

Fannie Mae To Get Tougher On Mortgage Insurance, Income Levels and Credit Scores

For the second time in 10 weeks, Fannie Mae is toughening its mortgage guidelines again. Again. According to an internal Fannie Mae document, a review of the group's current "risk appetite, eligibility requirements, mortgage insurance options, and pricing" spawned changes spanning credit scoring, income requirements, loan-level pricing adjustments.

Are You Moving In The Next Few Years? Save Big Money On Your Mortgage.

Planning to move in the next few years? Here's a simple way to save some money. Convert your 30-year fixed rate mortgage to a 5-year ARM. It's playing the mortgage system to your advantage.

How To Find Distressed Properties Using Foreclosures-Per-Capita Statistics

According to the August RealtyTrac.com foreclosure report, the severity of the "Foreclosure Crisis" depends on where you live. Foreclosures Per Household are highly skewed towards just a few states. The data is so lop-sided, in fact, that 41 states fall below the national average. For shoppers of foreclosed homes, the RealtyTrac data is a true buyer's guide to Where To Find Distressed Homes.

Have You Given Your Application Yet? In 5 Days, New Mortgage Guidelines Go Into Effect And They’re Harsh.

Effective Tuesday, September 1, conforming mortgage approvals are due to toughen up again. Fannie Mae is imposing strict new lending guidelines that should slow down purchase and refinance activity in Cincinnati and parts elsewhere. It's the first major conforming mortgage guideline change since April and this one is a big one -- 15 separate underwriting areas are affected.