Conventional rates today fell considerably today but, do you know what does effect the rates to rise and fall as they do?
The most crucial clues offset each other — Return of investment (Treasury Yield) on the government's debt obligation rose while oil prices fell. Shown below are some factors you might want to consider:
Major stock indexes opened slightly low and flat (neutral for mortgage rates)
Gold prices fell $8 to $1,232 an ounce. (That is not-good for rates because the change is so small. In general, it’s better for rates when gold rises, and worse when gold falls. Gold tends to rise when investors worry about the economy. And worried investors tend to push rates lower)
Oil prices fell another $1 to $67 a barrel (that’s good for mortgage rates today, and nice to have dropped through the $70 threshold — an improvement long-term because energy prices play a large role in creating inflation)
The yield on ten-year Treasuries fell 1 basis point (1/100th of 1 percent) to 2.86 percent. That is good for mortgage borrowers because mortgage rates tend to follow Treasuries
CNNMoney’s Fear & Greed Index (Tool that is comprised of 7 key market indicators) remains at 46 (out of a possible 100). That is still in the “neutral” range. Normally, “fearful” investors push bond prices up (and interest rates down) as they leave the stock market and move into bonds, while “greedy” investors do the opposite
Predictions indicate for the year 2018 we should only see less than four rate hikes in 2018. So if your looking to purchase soon contact us today! And keep an eye on the markets!
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FHFA increases conforming loan limits for a 2nd straight year
Loan limits to match rising home prices
On Tuesday, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) that the maximum conforming loanlimits for mortgage to be obtainedce in 2018. The 2018 maximum conforming loan limit for a one-unit property will be $453,100, an increase from $424,100 in 2017. This allows home buyers to purchase a home without resulting in a Jumbo loan with higher interest rates.
For areas in which 115 percent of the local median home value exceeds the baseline conforming loan limit the maximum loan limit will be higher than the baseline loan limit. The maximum loan limit in those areas as a multiple of the area median home value, while setting a "ceiling" on that limit of 150 percent of the baseline loan limit. Median home values generally increased in high-cost areas in 2017, driving up the maximum loan limits in many areas. The new ceiling loan limit for one-unit properties in most high-cost areas will be $679,650 — or 150 percent of $453,100.
Special statutory provisions establish different loan limit calculations for Alaska, Hawaii, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. In these areas, the baseline loan limit will be $679,650 for one-unit properties, but loan limits may be higher in some specific locations. (See Below)
Because of generally rising home values, the increase in the baseline loan limit, and the increase in the ceiling loan limit, the maximum conforming loan limit will be higher in 2018 in all but 71 counties or county equivalents in the U.S.
What Is A Mortgage Loan Limit?
A loan limit is the maximum amount a lender will approve under certain guidelines.
There is not just one loan limit, but many. Conventional mortgages adhere to one set of loan limits, and FHA another. VA loans loosely follow conventional guidelines, but, technically, VA loanshave no limit. Loan limits are a means of standardizing loans nationwide. That gives lenders and investors more confidence in these loans, which pushes mortgage rates down for consumers.
Now's the time the time to start thinking about your future.
Over the years, shopping for a mortgage has become better than ever. Purchasing a home is more accessible online and mobile, which makes the process more fitting for those of us looking for our dream home. Valley West Mortgage is here to make that happen, with our online pre-approval form, loan application, and secure loan docs upload capabilities to ease the stress of buying a home.
Buyers have been using a combination of resources when looking for mortgage information that include, real estate agents, online, family, friends, and lenders. Out of which, most buyers found that the industry professionals, family, and friends were more trustworthy over online resources.
Lenderswere the top preference for recent buyers, with 77 percent saying they used a lender for information when shopping for a mortgage. Two-thirds also said they looked for information directly from an agent, while 69 percent said they used online resources, including Realtor.com, credit management sites and social media.Valley West Mortgage is your Mortgage Banker offering the lowest mortgage rates in the Las Vegas Valley.
Online mortgage resource users are buyers between 18 to 34 and 45 to 64. Nearly half of all buyers said they used online resources out of convenience. 22 percent said because of their “practicality,” and another 12 percent said they were “easy to understand.”
If you’re wondering, it’s not going away anytime soon. Mobile usage during the mortgage shopping process has jumped to 65 percent and 73 percent hope to do so in the future.
Tools That Help Your Mortgage Buying Needs
Specifically, online tools and mobile resources are available to you 24/7 which is why it makes it more convenient to start your search there. You can compare mortgage quotes, obtain a mortgage quote, fill out a mortgage application,submit documents to your lender and look for advice about getting mortgage via your mobile device without the hassle of leaving your home.
Some changes took effect at the top of this month that could have amazing results on your credit score!
We’ve talked about the importance of your credit score in some of our recent posts. Your credit score—more importantly your FICO credit score (which is a combination of your credit scores and credit history)—is assessed to determine your eligibility for lines of credit, personal loans, auto loans, and more importantly, home loans. The higher your FICO score is when you apply for a mortgage, the better your chances are at negotiating mortgage loan terms with your bank or broker.
In a recent review of the three main credit bureaus, Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau found a number of concerns within the credit reporting processes of the agencies. The main issues that were called to attention included improper quality control procedures as well as incomplete and inadequate investigations when handling disputed accounts from consumers.
Your Credit Score
Raising your credit score can be challenging. Collections, debts, and student loans often tend to sneak up on us when we least expect it. One late credit card payment could drop your score down 90 or more points, and once your score is down (or damaged) it takes time to repair it again. Because of the difficulty of maintaining good credit, it’s important that the information on your credit report is accurate. Otherwise you could be receiving penalties and dropped points on someone else’s behalf. For far too long consumer credit reports have been erroneous due to insufficient identity information. As a part of the new standards set for the credit bureaus, the government has outlined a list of ways for the credit bureaus to improve on accuracy of information before applying a collection to someone’s credit report. Beginning July 1, 2017 a new and improved list of standards was set for credit bureaus.
Equifax, Experian, and Transunion are due to pay more than $17 million in restitution back to consumers who’ve been victims of false reports. They are also due to pay at least $5 million in fines and penalties to the Federal Government. 12 to 20 million Americans are expected to benefit from the new standards put in place by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Those who will the see the change are most likely consumers who had civil debts and tax liens on their credit report.
Checking Your Credit Report
Your credit score updates every month. Be sure to be on the lookout for a rise in your score!
When doing your research, always be sure to consult reliable sources. Check out the sources for this article below!
Earlier this year, we touched on national stress tests done by big banks. Since the Federal Reserve conducted their annual stress test last week and have now released their reports, today we’ll expand on the explanation of the stress tests.
Banking institutions with $50 billion or more in total assets are required by the Federal Reserve to conduct an annual stress test to ensure that through a national financial crisis (like a recession), the banks will retain their financial flexibility to lend to households and businesses. The stress tests are done to satisfy a requirement for the Comprehensive Capital Analysis and Review, also conducted annually by the Federal Reserve. Banks are also required to publish the results of their stress tests to demonstrate to the public their ability to withstand crisis. According to the results that were released by the Federal Reserve Board, our nation’s 34 largest banks passed the stress test.
"This year's results show that, even during a severe recession, our large banks would remain well capitalized," Governor Jerome H. Powell said. "This would allow them to lend throughout the economic cycle, and support households and businesses when times are tough."
Now take a sigh of relief, because that’s definitely good news. Passing the stress test means that if our economy fails, our banks will hold strong. The 34 big banks mentioned above hold more than 75% of the assets of all domestic banking institutions in the U.S. In other words, 75% of our country’s money is held within and managed by the 34 largest banks in the nation. It goes without saying that the funds held within the Big 34 are critical to our nation’s economy, hence the necessity of annual stress tests.
The stress tests come in two forms: the adverse scenario and the severely adverse scenario and all 34 banks are tested against both. The adverse stress test tests for stability of the banks given a United States recession. The severely adverse stress test tests for stability of the banks given a global recession. The tests weigh in factors like unemployment and elevated stress in loan markets and real estate.
Our nation’s banks are in good condition. They are doing a great job at keeping reserves on hand to protect against any future losses or disruptions in our economy. Those of us in the mortgage industry are overjoyed to know that our banks are taking care of themselves. A well-structured banking system means that there are enough national funds to go around to lend to borrowers who wish to purchase homes.
When doing your research, always be sure to consult reliable sources. Check out the sources for this article below!
Three Square is a Feeding America affiliate, serving four counties in Southern Nevada: Clark, Nye, Lincoln and Esmeralda. Three Square and Feeding America estimate the number of food-insecure persons in our service area to be more than 296,000. Food insecurity occurs when people aren’t able to secure enough food for a healthy diet and active lifestyle, at some point during the year.
We at Valley West Mortgage love to make contributions to our community and this is no different. Three Square and Nacho Daddy teamed up today by having locals donate canned goods/non-perishables to Three Square. By giving back they offered $2.00 tacos and a free beverage upon donations.
With interest rates at an ideal level, employment rates up, and more credit available to borrowers as of late, the housing market has opened a window of opportunity for you to purchase a home. However, borrower’s often find it difficult to meet the demand of a down payment. What if I told you that there’s a chance for assistance with your down payment? Various state, county, and city governments offer financial assistance to borrowers (who meet specific qualifications) who are ready to purchase a home. Qualification criteria varies, but if you're eligible you could receive down payment assistance ranging from a few thousand dollars to larger amounts, depending on what state you’re in, your qualifications, and where the home is located.
According to Freddie Mac there are three main types of down payment assistance are grants, second mortgage loans, and tax credits. They include: Grants – Grants are funds that you do not have to pay back as long as you own and occupy your home for a certain period of time. Second mortgage loans – The most common down payment source, many second mortgage loans offered by state and local governments have low or zero interest rates, and the payments are deferred over a specified time span and, in many cases, the loan is completely forgiven over time. Tax credits – Certain states and local governments, including housing finance agencies, issue mortgage credit certificates, which reduce the amount of federal income tax you pay. This makes more money available upfront for your down payment or closing costs.
For certain programs, assistance can be restricted to target a certain demographic of borrowers, like first-time home buyers as well as low to moderate income home buyers. Some type of home buying education counseling may be required, which is to your advantage anyway. Loan Officers will be a great resource to you when it comes to inquiring about different types of assistance.
Our friends at Freddie Mac recommend that potential first time home buyers sit in on at least one educational workshop about home buying and down payment assistance. Many non profit housing organizations hold classes for surrounding communities. Don’t let the idea of a down payment snuff out your home buying dreams. Help is available for those who seek it.
When doing your research always be sure to consult great sources. Check out the sources for this article below!
One of the most widely known collections of children’s stories ever written is the book of Aesop’s Fables. Aesop’s fables are a collection of simple fairytales that give life lessons to children through the art of storytelling and if your parents read you Aesop’s fables as a kid, you’ve heard the charming story of the Town Mouse and the Country Mouse. This touching story tells of two mice, cousins as the story goes, one who lived in the city and one who lived in the country. By the end of the story, the readers learn a valuable lesson about appreciating the environment that they live in.
As humans, we know that there are several choices to make when it comes to choosing a living environment for our families. The difficulty comes when trying to make the right choice. At Valley West Mortgage, we conduct business in over a third of the states in the country, so needless to say, our borrowers have lots of options.
Living in the city almost always means that you’re living in close proximity to restaurants, cafes and shopping centers. Businesses that operate in the city are also known to stay open later which is convenient for people whose work hours aren’t the typical 9-5. Cities are also always changing with new construction and rerouting to improve and expand the city. Las Vegas is a great example of a city that’s always under construction. We’re always taking out the old and putting in the new to keep our city looking modern and appealing. Statistically, homes also appreciate more quickly in the city because of all of the construction that goes on. Homes in Las Vegas that are near the new site of the coming Raiders Stadium will likely be more valuable once the stadium is complete because residents will be so close to our new NFL Team. Cities are almost always home to large attractions and tourist centers so there’s always some kind of activity to do. Last but not least, transport is something that’s definitely more abundant in the city than in the suburbs. Busses often run on a 10-15 minute schedule to accommodate the amount of people that use public transportation. Cab and Uber drivers are also always only a few minutes away. There are some cons to living in the city though. All of that transportation means that there’s traffic and in big cities like Los Angeles, there’s a more than enough to go around. Attractions and tourist centers means lots of tourists and lots of hustle and bustle around the city, which means a lot of noise. Construction around the city means longer commutes and plenty of detours around developing areas.
Living in the suburbs comes with more free space for developing your home. City homes are often smaller in comparison and lack yard space because of the need to accommodate so many people in a set number of square miles. In the suburbs, you have more freedom to expand your territory in and outside of the house. It’s also quieter in the suburbs. Residents have the flexibility of living further away from their neighbors so a lot of the busy sounds of city are eliminated. If you’re a pet owner, your pets and your children are probably safer in the suburbs as well. Less people equals less crime and less traffic. In the suburbs, you’re more likely to know the people in your neighborhood because people stick around longer, unlike in the city where people move more often. This one’s a longshot but we’ll throw it in for good measure. Have you ever thought about your health as a factor when deciding between the city and the suburbs? Less traffic means less stress on your morning and afternoon commutes to and from work. Lowering stress increases life expectancy and heart health. The food you eat from a local farmer’s market in the suburbs is probably more likely to have a higher nutritional value than the produce you’ll buy from the larger stores in the city that have gone through a few states before actually reaching the destination. Better quality food develops a healthier body. Also, less people equates to less pollution and breathing clean air is important for the health of our lungs.
No matter where you live, there will always be pros and cons. City life is thought to be more suitable for younger people who are always on the go. Suburban life is said to be better equipped for families and pets who need space and stability. Whether you’re a country mouse or a town mouse we’re confident you’ll decide on an amazing place to call home.
When doing your research always be sure to consult great sources. Check out the sources for this article below:
Here’s an interesting statistic: 85 million families in the United States own pets. Dogs, cats, iguanas, snakes, even pigs! You name it, there’s someone out there who’s got it. Our little cozy critters and loving companions bring us comfort, love and protection. But how has having a pet affected your home? If you’ve ever house broken a dog, you know that it can be an exasperating task. I don’t even want to imagine what it’s like trying to house break a pig. Our homes are an important asset in our financial portfolios, so it’s important that we keep them in good shape. How many of us have walked into someone’s home and instantly smelled the odor coming from a litter box? Let me tell you, it’s not pleasant. In this article, we’ll discuss a few ways to keep your home looking and smelling like it’s pet free, even if it’s not.
House breaking is potty training for your pet. It’s specifically important for dog owners. If you plan to leave your dog out while you’re not home, the use of pee pads will definitely be necessary until your pet is accustomed to a regular schedule where they know when you will be home to let them out. Take time with your pet to train them. Pee pads will keep your carpet clean during training (if you can convince your puppy to use them). There’s also crate training, with idea that if you keep your dog in it’s cage then he won’t pee just because he doesn’t want the pee in there with him. Dogs are smart, they can figure out the pattern. They’ll eventually learn and sense what time you will be home, and hold it until then.
Zoning your Home
You can create “Zones” inside your home that are pet free like the kitchen or the bathroom. I’ve known people that had pets that were never allowed to come upstairs, for example. That way your pet doesn’t carry his hair into every room in the house. If you can cut down on the amount of shed hair around the house, you can cut down on the odor it carries. You can also use kiddie gates to keep pets out of certain spaces. Although, if you have an animal that is prone to shedding, some pet hair will always transfer from room to room just on your clothes. The idea, is that what few strands of hair that transfers from your socks into the room will be cleaned up with your weekly dusting. Also, the less time your pet spends in a particular room, the less likely the room is to smell like them.
Using Baking Soda
There are plenty of products out there that are designed to eliminate pet odor. You may have one in your refrigerator door though that you’ve been forgetting about. Baking soda is a fantastic odor eliminator, especially when used on the carpets. Baking soda has the chemical ability to absorb odor molecules and trap them. You can sprinkle baking soda right out of the box and on to your carpet. Let it sit for 20 minutes, or overnight if you haven’t deodorized the carpet in a while. Just be sure that no one walks on it or disturbs in so it can take full effect, then just vacuum it up when you’re ready!
Living with a pet is an awesome experience for everyone in the family. Cleaning up after a pet is a big responsibility, but if you apply a few of the methods above, it’ll be a breeze.
When doing your research, always be sure to consult great sources. Check out the sources for this article below!
Though we strongly encourage you to never miss a payment (because of the negative repercussions that it could have on your credit), we’re aware that sometimes things happen that are out of our control.
Missing a payment on your mortgage loan may seem like the end of the world. In most cases, you know ahead of time that you are going to miss a payment. In a more drastic scenario you may be faced with a situation where you have to use your mortgage money for some other dire expense at the last minute. Either way things happen, and lenders know that. If you’ve reached the point where you can’t pay your mortgage it’s probably safe to assume that your savings are running low and your other bills may be suffering as well. Don’t let things get out of hand. Instead, take control of the situation before it becomes financially overwhelming.
Begin by speaking to your lender. It’s imperative that you let them know your financial situation before you actually miss your payment. This is why it’s important to choose the right lender before actually taking out a mortgage loan.
You need to know that if a time of struggle comes, your lender will have your back. Find comfort in knowing that you are not the first nor will you be the last person to miss a mortgage payment. Your lender should be able to design a payment plan to best suit your needs. A payment plan will keep you mortgage paid, keep your lender happy, and keep your credit in good standing.
It’s not okay to simply ignore the issue. Ignorance is not always bliss. Banks are experts at knowing where their money is and when it should be coming in, and it doesn’t take them long to figure out when some of it is missing. Some banks will allow a grace period of a few days for you to provide payment without incurring a late fee. Other lenders may even let you skip a payment and make up for it the following month.
Ultimately, non-payment of your loan can and most likely will lead to foreclosure. However, there are steps and programs out there in existence to help you stay current with your payments. Your home loan is one of the biggest investments you will ever make. Because of this, your mortgage payment is going to be amongst the highest of your monthly expenses.
The best advice we can give to prospective and even current borrowers is to plan ahead by making sure that you have your own financial safety net. This is one of the things that lenders will check for before granting you a home loan. Don’t deplete that savings account just because you got approved for your loan. You never know when it might come in handy.
When doing your research always be sure to consult great sources!