More Pros with the Rate Hikes

Our last few articles have been on the impact that the oncoming rise in interest rates from the Federal Reserve will have on the general public, and more specifically how it will impact those who are in the market for purchasing and refinancing. Janet Yellen has openly stated that a change from the Fed is coming soon due to the growth in our economy. We’ve mentioned both the pros and the cons of an interest rate hike, but lately we’ve been noticing more pros for our borrowers than cons.

One positive impact that this rise in interest rates can have on our current and potential borrowers is the opportunity to free themselves from Mortgage Insurance Premiums. Your Mortgage Insurance Premium is the price that you pay monthly as a part of your mortgage payment that goes into an account to protect your lender if you fall on hard times and happen to default on your loan. A Mortgage Insurance Premium or MIP for short, is usually only required for borrowers who can’t afford to put down 20% of their loan amount when applying for their mortgage loan. Up until January 2013, borrowers were able to cancel their MIP coverage once they had made enough payments and had 20% equity in their home. Now that policies have changed, borrowers no longer have the option of cancelling the MIP on their loan when they reach 20% equity.

However, being the mortgage monsters that we are here at Valley West Mortgage, we’ve recognized a way that borrowers can still break away from the bondage of MIP. With a refinance into a Conventional loan where the requirements are somewhat different than an FHA loan, borrowers can drop their MIP payment (provided they meet the aforementioned requirements).

Borrowers who used the FHA program to purchase their home who have been making regular mortgage payments have been building up equity since the day they made the first payment. Couple that with the fact that the average prices of homes around the United States has gone up in the last 2-3 years and just like that, we’ve found another reason for you to refinance into a Conventional loan. Having equity or monetary value in your home means that you can apply for a Cash-Out refinance. Thinking of going on a vacation? Have a kid going to college? Or maybe you just want to do some home improvement? A Cash Out Refinance would give you the opportunity to refinance your old loan into a new one and get cash back for some of the value that your home holds.

In 2016 about 8% of all the refinances processed were for borrowers who were switching from an FHA loan program to a Conventional loan program. That calculates to about 20,000 of those refinances per month in 2016. With the growth of our economy, it is estimated that the prices of homes will go up by about 5% (according to data found by CoreLogic). Considering the fact that over 2 million borrowers purchased homes using the FHA program in recent years, there is no doubt going to be a large wave of refinances coming from borrowers who wish to refinance in 2017.






When doing your research, always use great sources! Check out the sources for this article below.



Short Sales on the Rise

Short Sales on the Rise

The Definition:

A short sale is an "arrangement" between the current owner of a home and the bank that holds the Mortgage on the home. This arrangement allows the homeowner to sell the home and accept an offer for less than the total amount owed to pay off the Mortgage. This is particularly useful if you are "upside down" on your current Mortgage. If you are in this unfortunate position as are many families in Las Vegas and across the Nation, and your Mortgage is owned by Fannie Mae, then you should contact Valley West Mortgage and let our Mortgage Professionals help you decide if this tool is for you!

You may be able to keep your Home!

Before you decide to do a Short Sale, let us help you to qualify for a Short Refinance. The principle is the same as for a Short Sale, but you get to keep your Home by Refinancing your existing loan down to the Current Market Value. In some cases that we have seen, this has saved Hundreds of Thousands of Dollars off of the amount now owed on the Mortgage while cutting the Monthly Payment in half! You owe it to your family to at least try! If you don't ask, they can't say yes. Give us a call today, you have everything to gain and nothing to lose by trying!

Check to see if your loan is owned by Fannie Mae: Fannie Mae Loan Look Up

Check to see if your loan is owned by Freddie Mac: Freddie Mac Loan Look Up

Some of the Latest Changes

On June 1st of this year, Fannie Mae announced changes and improvements to their Loan Modification Processes. Guidelines were changed which simplified the Short Sale process a little more in favor of distressed homeowners. If you had been turned down by your Fannie Mae Servicer prior to June 1st for a Short Sale Agreement, you should try again under the revised guidelines. One of the changes provides incentive for Realtors to want to help you sell your home. The commission limit that had been placed on Realtor Commissions has been removed and replaced with allowing for "usual and customary" commission fees. Since having a competent Realtor with experience in Short Sales is essential, this change will encourage those professionals back to the marketplace. Another really big improvement is that the Deficiency (the difference between the amount owed and what the bank collects at the short sale) must be Fully Released by your Loan Servicer! They cannot make further attempt to collect the Deficiency from you after the sale is complete. Even if your mortgage is not owned by Fannie Mae you should stay informed on this subject because most other Lenders starting with Freddie Mac will adopt similar guidelines!

Are you having problems which prevent you from paying your mortgage?

Give us a call to find out how we can help you refinance or sell your house for less than you owe.

Give Us a Call: 1-888-931-0007
Las Vegas Residents Call: 1-702-696-9900

Mortgage Loan Modification Vs. Refinance

What is the difference? Which one is right for me?

Loan Modification, or more specifically, Mortgage Modification is a tool that you may be able to use to stay in your home rather than loose it to Foreclosure. It differs from a Refinance in that Modification programs are designed to modify the terms of your existing Mortgage. A Refinance replaces your existing mortgage with an entirely new one. Since 5% of all Adjustable Rate Mortgages are going to "Reset" in the next 10 months, you could be in real trouble if you have one of those ARM loans. Ideally, you want to refinance into a low, Fixed Rate Mortgage before your current mortgage resets and before Rates on Fixed Mortgage Loans start to rise!

The Obama Administration has put forth a government mandate to Lenders called the "Federal Home Affordable Modification Program" or HAMP. Many lenders have their own guidelines under which they would agree to a Modification of your existing Mortgage but the Obama program, HAMP has specific guidelines under which a Lender must allow a Mortgage Modification if you meet the criteria. The Obama Making Home Affordable Program may be available if your loan is owned by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. If not, check with your Lender or Loan Servicer to find out what Mortgage Modification programs they might have available.

You can apply to your Lender on your own for a Modification of your Mortgage but, the process can be quite daunting. Just here locally, in Las Vegas, many Loan Modification companies or consultants have popped up in the past two years. While many have been reputable, many have been taking advantage of desperate homeowners by charging high fees in advance and then not providing the service. Some have even collected as many fees as they could and then just disappeared after stringing along as many people as possible while they collect fees from as many "clients" as they can. For this reason, the State of Nevada and many other states have enacted laws requiring any person or company engaging in Loan Modification services, to be licensed and regulated just as Mortgage Brokers and Lenders are currently.

At the end of this post, you will find important links to resources that you can and should use to educate yourself on the Loan Modification Programs that are available to you. It is important to be very well informed and know your rights before you contact one of these Mortgage Modification companies. First and foremost, check to see if your State requires Licensing for Loan Modification Companies or Consultants. Then make sure that the company you choose is licensed!

So which one should I choose?

That depends on your current situation. Generally, if you are current on your mortgage and not owing more than your home is valued at, i.e. "upside down", you should look at Refinancing first. Even if you have had a few late payments in the past two years, you may qualify so don’t tell yourself that you can’t before consulting with our Mortgage Professionals here at Valley West Mortgage. If you are not sure that you are “upside down” or have too many late payments, not enough income or a long enough employment history, etc., we will help you to determine your exact situation so that you can make an informed choice.

Here at Valley West Mortgage, we do not provide Loan Modification services. We don’t charge any fees in advance so it will cost nothing to talk to us and find out which choice makes sense for you. We can provide you with a true picture of your situation so that you will be comfortable in the knowledge that either, you can qualify to refinance and would gain a significant savings in your Monthly Payment by doing so or, you will know that you should seek a competent and trustworthy Loan Modification Specialist who is properly licensed (if required in your State). You may also choose from many non-profit homeowner counseling services in your area. Please check with your States regulatory agency for Mortgages or Real Estate and with your local Better Business Bureau before you sign a contract or pay a fee to any Loan Modification Consultant or Company!

To find out more about how Loan Modification Programs work you can go to:

Making Home Affordable: Set up specifically for educating consumers about the HAMP program enacted by the Obama Administration: Making Home Affordable

Check to see if your loan is owned by Fannie Mae: Fannie Mae Loan Look Up

Check to see if your loan is owned by Freddie Mac: Freddie Mac Loan Look Up

The Federal government also provides free resources: Call the Homeowner's "HOPE™ Hotline at 1-888-995-HOPE (4673) for information about the Making Home Affordable Program and to speak with a HUD approved housing counselor. Assistance is available in English and Spanish, and other languages by appointment. is a free website: To find a local counselor in your region:

Lastly, if you are in the State of Nevada, here is a link to check the license status of Mortgage Brokers, Lenders, Modification Companies and Individuals: Nevada Mortgage Lending Division Licensee Data . Most States are now required to have all of their licensed Mortgage Professionals registered through a recently created National Database called the "National Mortgage Licensing System" or NMLS for short.

While the State of Nevada will be one of the last States to join the NMLS System in October of 2010, your State probably already has. Here is a link to the NMLS Consumer Search for Licensees . In their search box, you can enter a Company name or an Individual (first then last name) and any location information. Once the result is displayed, you will be able to filter the results if you got too many John Smiths for example. Then check on the status of the Professional that you are thinking of working with once you are looking at the correct record.