FHA Denying Support for DACA Mortgage Borrowers

What is DACA

Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (Dreamers)

An American immigration policy that allows some individuals with "unlawful" presence in the United States after being brought to the country as children receive a renewable 2 year period of deferred action from deportation and become eligible for a work permit in the U.S.

What is FHA

The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) is the largest mortgage insurer in the world with an active insurance portfolio of over $1.3 trillion. Each year, FHA helps more than a million homebuyers achieve the dream of sustainable, affordable homeownership of single family homes, while our insurance programs for multifamily properties support the availability of over 300,000 affordable rental units, including those for seniors and people with disabilities. FHA's healthcare insurance programs facilitate access to hospital medical care and assisted living in hundreds of communities across the country.

Who is Fannie Mae

Leading source of financing for mortgage lenders, providing access to affordable mortgage financing in all markets at all times. Our financing makes sustainable homeownership and workforce rental housing a reality for millions of Americans.

How are these all connected?

According to the FHA they are not going to be backing mortgages for DACA recipients, however Fannie Mae has stated that it supports (and will support) mortgages for DACA recipients.

“We have a longstanding policy on eligibility for non-U.S. citizen borrowers. Fannie Mae purchases and secures mortgages to non-citizens who are lawful permanent or non-permanent residents of the United States under the same terms available to U.S. citizens,” the government-sponsored enterprise said in a lender bulletin posted on Friday.

Fannie Mae said that it is not changing its existing policies. Rather, the purpose of issuing the bulletin was to provide “additional guidance to help lenders determine eligibility for non-U.S. citizen borrowers” in response to customer feedback on the issue.








Your Purchasing Power

Who’s your favorite X-Men character? Wolverine? Storm? Professor X? What makes that character your favorite? For some people it’s the character’s courage, or perhaps their good looks, or their intelligence. My favorite mutant character is Mystique and what makes her my favorite is her superpower. Mystique is a shape shifter, meaning she can change her body and her voice to look like anyone she chooses. Did you know that outside of the comic book world there are real-life, everyday people with super powers? You are one of them. This article is going to walk you through tapping into and applying your purchasing power.

Though I’m sure you’re not a mutant like the characters of X-Men, your purchasing power is a great power to exercise when you’re looking to buy a home. Your “Purchasing Power” is the ability and the flexibility to get the home you want. Your purchasing power can be increased by applying the following practices:

            Decrease Your Debt

Though the ultimate goal is to eliminate your household debt all together, depending on the amount of expenses you have, you may not be able to eliminate all of your debt all at once. In the meantime, decrease your debt by eliminating what you can. Pay off any outstanding medical bills. Return those overdue books to the library. Most importantly, stop using your credit cards. The minute you decide that you want to purchase a home, stop all usage of credit. Every time you swipe that card, you’re swiping yourself into debt.

            Increase Your Credit Score

Similar to how eliminating all of your debt will take time, improving your credit score will take time too. It’s easy for credit scores to drop, it’s a little tougher to bring them back up. Every 30 days the credit bureaus update with any new financial information from the previous month. That means there’s only 12 opportunities within a year for your score to go up (once each month). So each month you’ll have to make a conscience effort to change something for the better on your credit report. Remember, when credit does increase, it’s usually only increasing by a factor of roughly 1-15 points. Big events (like a delinquency or having an account go to collections) can change your credit score drastically, negatively hitting your credit anywhere in the range of 100 to 150 points so be sure to pay everything on time if not early.

            Check Your Credit Report

When you do your application to purchase a home, your credit report will be pulled and lenders will evaluate how much money you can be trusted to borrow. Do yourself a favor and check your score before the lenders do. I read once that at least 5% of Americans have a major error on their credit report. This could be caused by something as simple as someone having the same name and birthday as you. You’d be surprised how many John Smiths were born on the same day. Check your credit report to dispute any incorrect information that could be hurting your credit score.

            Add to Your Income

Another thing that lenders look for when processing your mortgage application is your debt to income ratio. This ratio compares how much debt you have to how much income you earn. It is calculated by dividing the total amount of your monthly expenses by your gross monthly income before taxes. The lower your DTI is, the more money lenders are likely to let you borrow. Increasing your income can also lower your DTI by adding to the income portion of your ratio. For example, if your monthly debt totals at $1500 and your gross monthly income is $3000, your DTI ratio would be .5 or 50%. On average lenders look for a DTI ratio of no more than 43%.  If you were to pick up a second job that brings in an additional $2000 per month and you could raise your total income to $5000, your DTI would drop to 30%, a much more ideal percentage.

You have powers nestled deep within the financial center of your brain. It’s easy to tap into those powers by doing things like paying off debt and clearing up your credit. Your purchasing power gives you the flexibility to make broader decisions when it comes to purchasing. Purchasing power also means better borrowing opportunities and access to different types of loan programs. Increase your power today!


When doing your research always be sure to consult great sources. See the sources for this article below!


Pay Down Your Debts Before You Apply for a Mortgage to Increase Purchasing Power





valleywestmortgage_whitney_rushWHITNEY RUSH, VALLEY WEST MORTGAGE


Gifting Down Payments

Receiving & using a cash gift is one of the most common processes when purchasing a new home. Most forms of cash gifts are used for the 20% down payment.

We've provided a brief breakdown of the process and how to ensure you're not denied from your lender due to in proper gifting.

Down Payments

Down payment "gifts" can make it easier to purchase a home.

Loan programs including FHA, VA, USDA, Conventional, and Jumbo loans, allow the use of cash gifts.



First-time home buyers are most likely to receive a cash gift among all buyer types to make a 20% down payment.

You can often qualify for the lowest mortgage rates offered and with a 20% down payment, there is no requirement for PMI (Private Mortgage Insurance)

Mortgage limits are capped at $484,350 except within those high cost areas where homes exceed the national average

High Cost Areas are capped at $726,525 for single-family homes, and multi-unit homes.

Low-down-payment loans also allow cash gifts for down payment. (ie. as little as 3% down)


Down Payment Letter

There are 3 steps that should be taken in order to avoid denial from your lender:

  1. Correctly Written Gift Letter
  2. Documenting the Gift from the Giftor
  3. Documenting the Receipt of the Down Payment Gift

**There may be tax implications for givers of a cash gift for down payment and for the receivers. Everyone's tax situation is different. Please consult a tax advisory for more information.**


If you have questions about a "Down Payment Gift." Contact Us Today! We will be happy to walk you through the process.



What's Affecting The Mortgage Rates Today

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:


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!


We're striving to make the applicate process more streamline by offering services that are more automated and user friendly.

Visit Valley West Mortgage for our Online Application and our Secure Document Uploading


Resources: www.themortgagereports.com, www.mortgagedaily.com


Shopping for a Mortgage Loan

How Do You Shop for Rates?

The top tools for mortgage shopping

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.

Lenders were 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.

Get Today’s Mortgage Rates

If you’re looking to buy a home and need a quick quote, pre-approval, or want to speak to a mortgage loan originator you’re in luck, we have everything you need.









A Rise in Your Credit Score

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.

The 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!






valleywestmortgage_whitney_rush WHITNEY RUSH, VALLEY WEST MORTGAGE





Millenials are Taking Over

With a count of 75.4 million people, Millennials are the United States’ largest living population, surpassing the Baby Boomers who’s population consists of 74.9 million Americans. Millennials are those citizens that were born between roughly between 1983-1999, currently those between the ages of 18-34 in 2017. Millennials, being the largest age bracket in the US, are also the largest population expected to purchase homes this year.

Millennials however, also have reservations when it comes to home buying. Most Millennials admit that their largest issue with home buying is having a lack of knowledge about the industry, with their second largest issue being a lack of trust with lenders and banks because of the aforementioned absence of home buying knowledge. Around 32% of Millennials are currently living at home with their parents. Some are waiting for marriage before leaving the nest, others are stuck in an unexperienced rut and simply don’t know how to move out.

Millennials with drive and ambition have the ability to take over the housing market. First time homebuyers are projected to be the bulk of the purchase market in 2017, and 75% of those buyers are predicted to be Millennials. Overall, Millennials are a very strong minded hard working group with the potential to stir up a housing boom, something that would greatly benefit the economy. So what can more Millennials do to ease their uncertainty about the housing market?

Get Finances in Order

When you’re young, you’ve got a drive that will push and motivate you to go full throttle on anything you set your mind to. This is the drive that gives college students the ability to study (or party) all night and get up and be fully functional for school or work for a full 8 hours the next morning. Millennials work hard but we can also be impulsive. We tend to have a “Cross that bridge when we get there” mentality. It’s a combination of our high energy and spur of the moment mentality that causes us to make lots of money but still somehow spend more than we earn. It’s important to get and keep your finances in order when you want to buy a home. You have to plan and save accordingly for your down payment and closing costs. Programs do also exist for borrowers who do not have a full down payment readily available.

Understand the Process

Home buying consists of a lot of phone calls, emails, and in person meetings. The amount of questions you may have as a first-time home buyer can seem overwhelming but questions are good, they are the tool we use to learn. Once you’ve decided on a bank to borrow from, ask as many questions as necessary until you fully comprehend what the entire process is, step-by-step.

Know the Market

Educate yourself on the sales of homes in and around your desired neighborhood. The best way to be sure that you’re not being overcharged on the price of a home is to compare the home you want with others that are similar.

Homebuying is an experience that can only truly be learned by going through the process. Buying a home is a huge step for Millennials, Generation X, and Baby Boomers alike. Times have changed making the availability of homes more abundant through the growth of the economy. If you’re a Millennial, do what you do best. Take life by the horns and own it!



When doing your research always be sure to consult great sources. See the sources for this article below!








Down Payment Assistance Program

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!




Reason To Refinance. Eight reasons to save money

What exactly is a refinance? Simply put, a refinance (or REFI for short) is a loan that has been financed again. There are dozens of beneficial opportunities that are presented to homebuyers that choose to refinance. In most cases a refinance allows for the borrower to obtain a new loan with a lower interest rate and lower monthly payments. It’s important for current homeowners to know that a refinance could mean saving some money every month and as a result, having more money in your pocket as well. As a proud representative of Valley West Mortgage, a company that specializes in refinancing, I’d like to share with you 8 reasons why you should refinance your home loan. Do we all need another reason to refinance?

Reason To Refinance: Cash Money

A Cash out refinance is the kind of refinance that will allow the borrower to receive some money for the equity (or the value) of their home. This kind of refinance will allow you to obtain a higher loan amount than what you already owe, and in turn you will get difference for the two loans in cash. For example, if the total cost of your home is $400,000 and you’ve already paid $100,000 on the loan, then you’ve still got $300,000 to pay off. If by chance you need $50,000 to pay off a debt, put a down payment on a new car, invest in a stock, or embark on some other business venture, you could refinance your current home loan to $350,000. This will include your former balance of $300,000 plus the $50,000 that you wanted. The difference of $50,000 will be given to you in cash.

Reason To Refinance: Lower Interest Rates

If you bought your house at a time when interest rates were high, a refinance could give you the chance to get a lower mortgage rate. This kind of refinance (in most but not all cases) will make your monthly payments lower, meaning you could pocket the money you would have been spending on your mortgage payment.

Reason To Refinance: Save For Something Special

If your daughter’s Sweet 16 is coming up or you want to take family vacation next year, you could refinance for lower mortgage payments, save the extra money and put it towards something you really want.

Reason To Refinance: Change In Household

If you have a spouse who has passed away or maybe an ex-spouse who no longer lives with you, you could refinance the loan into just your name. Or maybe your parents bought you your first home and now that you’ve got a family of your own you want to refinance the payments into your name instead of your parents’ names.

Reason To Refinance: Get Out Of An Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM)

An Adjustable Rate Mortgage is a type of loan that allows for your interest rate to go up or down. When rates are low an ARM could be phenomenal for your finances, but when rates rise and Arm can be financially draining. A refinance will give you the opportunity to change your mortgage to a fixed rate mortgage, meaning your payments will not fluctuate with rates.

Reason To Refinance: Change Your Bank

If you originally took out your mortgage loan will a small state bank or credit union and you are moving to a state where this bank doesn’t do business, you could refinance your home loan with a new bank that is closer to you.

Reason To Refinance: Shorten The Life Of Your Loan

Although refinancing to a higher mortgage payment won’t save you money right away, it could save you money in the long run. If you refinance and change your loan term from a 30 year fixed mortgage to a 15 year, the amount of interest you would have paid at the end of your 15 year loan will be significantly less than what you would have paid had the life of your loan been longer.

Reason To Refinance: Credit Card Debt

Thousands of Americans are spoiled by the luxury of credit cards. We can spend now and pay later. The problem occurs when we get a little too credit happy and we lose control. Drowning in credit card debt is not a way to live your life. The constant letters and phone calls from bill collectors can be agonizing. Refinancing on your home loan can provide you with a way to pay on credit card debt.







Escrow Account Information You May Not Know

One of the terms that is often used in the mortgage business, especially during the closing of a mortgage loan is “Escrows” or “Escrow Account”. An escrow account, sometimes called an impound account, allows you to pay the homeowners insurance and property taxes on your home. It’s important that your taxes are paid on time and in full to the county tax assessor to avoid penalties and tax liens. Essentially, every month the deposit amount for your escrow account will be added to your total mortgage payment. This deposit amount that will go into and build up your escrow account is determined based upon your insurance premium and your annual property taxes. The exact amount will be calculated at the closing of your mortgage loan. You may be wondering, “Why is the deposit for my escrow account added to my mortgage payment by my lender, instead of my lender giving me the freedom to pay it on my own?” The answer to that is simple. It’s for your own protection. Countless homeowners and new homeowners in particular have trouble keeping up with their taxes and insurance. Your lender adds your escrow account payment to your mortgage payment to ensure that every month there is money deposited into the escrow account.

Escrow Accounts Details

Like we discussed earlier, your taxes need to be paid in order to keep away penalties from the county. Your insurance needs to be paid so that in the event of a fire or natural disaster you will have coverage for the repairs. By having money deposited into your escrow account when you make your monthly mortgage payment, you ensure that your escrow account will be padded with cash when it comes time for your taxes and insurance to be paid. Some mortgage banks require that an escrow account be established if you as the borrower have made a down payment of less than 20% of your loan amount. Your escrow account is held by a third party, usually an escrow officer or title agent, so you never have to be concerned with whether or not your payment will be applied to correct account. Your escrow officer will handle all of the payments and paperwork for you.
We went over a lot in this article, so let’s review.