A non-conforming loan is any loan that doesn’t adhere to the Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac lending guidelines. These government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) have certain rules that loans—referred to as “conforming loans”—have to meet regarding loan amount and credit score.
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Jumbo loans. Their name kind of hints at their function. The jumbo loan program is designed for loan amounts that exceed the conventional conforming loan limits of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA). In other words, they’re big loans. Some might even call them “jumbo.”
A large loan amount can mean something different to everyone—especially depending on where you live—which is why the FHFA carved out some guidelines on jumbo loans. Understanding them will be key to understanding when you need a jumbo loan.
With all the specialized loan programs out there—FHA, VA, etc.—it’s easy for the standard, conventional loan to get lost in the shuffle. After sifting through all these programs, you may find yourself stepping back and asking, “Wait, just what is a conventional loan?”
The word “conventional” simply means the loan is not part of a specific government program like FHA and VA loans are. Instead, they’re offered by mortgage companies, banks, and credit unions. Conventional loans that follow specific guidelines set by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac—two federally backed companies that buy and guarantee mortgages—are known as conforming loans.
What is an FHA loan? The literal definition of an FHA loan is pretty straightforward: It’s a mortgage that’s insured by the Federal Housing Administration. But that doesn’t really tell you much.
So … let’s try again. What is an FHA loan, really? FHA home loans are geared toward borrowers who have lower down payments or credit challenges that may make it difficult to buy a home. This makes these loans particularly attractive to first-time homebuyers.
National Hispanic Heritage Month is held each year from September 15 to October 15, celebrating the culture and significant contributions of Hispanic and Latino Americans.
Fall is a fun season to be enjoyed regardless of where you reside in the country. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to trek to New England or upstate New York to get a look at the beautiful fall foliage. There are opportunities all over the country—many likely within a day’s drive from you.
Though plenty of leaf-peeping can be done outside of these regions, here are a few major players to get you started.
Understanding the homebuying process is one thing, but did you know you should also have a solid grasp on the mortgage process before you look to buy a new home? That’s because one typically precedes the other. Unless you’re an all-cash buyer, you’ll want to understand how the mortgage process works. Once you do, it’s a whole lot simpler to create your housing budget, make a list of your needs vs. wants, and proceed with eyes wide open.
Technology makes our daily lives so much easier—though that addiction to social media and doom scrolling is another story! Our tech-savvy world is so connected that you don’t even have to make your way to a loan advisor’s office to apply for a mortgage. This is great news in the time of COVID, as it not only saves time and hassle, but can be a healthy, responsible approach for those who would rather abstain from optional meetings.
Protecting your credit is important all the time, but especially when you’re in the middle of—or about to begin—the homebuying process, it’s even more crucial to protect your credit. That’s because there aren’t many other times in our lives where we need a loan of this size.
That means that in addition to getting your finances and paperwork in order, you’ve got to protect your credit like nobody’s business. Thankfully, there are a few easy, low-cost ways of doing this so your housing dreams don’t get derailed.
Interest rates are low, and it seems like open houses are springing up everywhere now that COVID restrictions are lifted. You may even have friends who recently purchased a new home, leading you to wonder whether you should be buying instead of renting.
There are so many options out there that promise to help you build wealth. High-interest rate savings accounts can make a few drops in the bucket, but not many. The stock market is certainly a vehicle for making money, but you have to know what you’re doing, what you’re buying, and when to get out. Retirement accounts can be a great way to accrue money over time, but 65 is a long way off for some people. Then there are cryptocurrencies. A year ago, it seemed the sky was the limit for these virtual coins. This year, it’s a whole different story.
It’s the age-old question: when is it a good time to buy a home? The problem with that question is it has no right answer. You can have the most favorable market conditions in the world—low listing prices because it’s a buyer’s market, low interest rates, loose qualification standards—but if you’re not in the right position to buy, it’s still not a good time to buy a home.
You’ve just bought a home. Congrats! Now, you may wake up every morning feeling exactly as you did when you were renting. After all, aside from a new home and possibly a new neighborhood, not much has changed in your day-to-day life.
While this may be true of your daily routine, your first year as a homeowner comes with some subtle differences compared to renting. For one, you’ve locked in your housing costs—and your residence—for as long as you want. There is also the peace of mind that comes with knowing that this property is yours.
It’s been nearly five years since the last summer Olympics, so people are understandably ready for some action! Whether you’re more of a spectator or participant, there are plenty of ways to celebrate the summer Olympics in style—especially now that gatherings have resumed.
So dust off your TV screen and backyard games, and get ready to celebrate the summer Olympics in new and creative ways!
In today’s competitive housing market, there’s a good chance that your offer won’t be the only one a seller is entertaining. It’s not uncommon to hear sellers have more than 10 offers for one property . . . or that some buyers have put in offers on more than 20 homes, just to lose out time and time again.
In a market like this, it’s not enough to simply have your ducks in a row and walk in with a pre-approval. A market like this takes work if you want to win a bidding war.
Like any other item for sale, the value of a home can be viewed two ways: the price you pay for a home, which can be the list price—or a higher or lower price depending on demand (in a hot market, the price may be above the asking price, while in a cooler market it might be below), and there’s the home’s appraised value. This is the price determined by a licensed professional home appraiser who will take many factors into consideration, including the home’s features, condition, improvements, location, and market trends.
July 4—also known as Independence Day in the U.S.—celebrates the adoption of the Declaration of Independence.
You may have known that much, but there is so much more behind this beloved summer holiday, so let’s dive right in!
Down payments can be one of the most daunting parts of the homebuying process. We all know, it’s a lot of money! Thankfully, you don’t necessarily have to drain your savings to come up with the sum. There are a few other ways to secure a down payment, including gift funds, grants, and down payment assistance programs.