home mortgage for Townhome or Rowhouse

Think You’re Buying a Townhome/Rowhouse?….Think Again.

In the world of real estate transactions involving condos and townhouses, if it looks like a duck, talks like a duck and walks like a duck…sometimes it’s not a duck. Frequently enough, some home buyers want to split hairs between single family residence living and the condo life. They make a slight compromise on privacy for the sake of limited maintenance. They seek a larger floorplan perhaps. There are many reasons but in the end, they seek a townhome or row house. Excitedly, the purchase agreement is executed, the inspection is scheduled and it’s often at this point, . . …

A Deeper Examination of Schools Near Your Next Minnesota Home

We highly value the feedback we get on how we can improve your home search tool, the Home Scouting Report®.  Over time, your recommendations have led to many additions (all available by clicking on our ugly mugs after you’ve logged in).  Now, we’ve added another interactive research tool; The Minnesota Report Card from the Minnesota Department of Education. While you’ve always been able to get basic school information via the Map View of your Home Scouting Report® but with this new tool, you’ll have access to these additional resources: My School – Demographics, trend data, graduation rates, contact information and …

How to Refinance Your LLC Properties’ Mortgages into Your Own Name

Attempting to navigate the process of refinancing mortgages out of the name of a LLC and into your own name with a conventional mortgage can be a lot like walking across a minefield with a blindfold on.  Perhaps one of the main reasons for this is that the guidelines that affect these transactions have trickled out here and there, over a long period and have been amended periodically.  Here is a summary of guideline considerations to take into account when considering refinancing your investment property loans from a LLC into your own name: Are LLC’s eligible to be refinanced from …

Top Three Reasons to Feel Good About Buying a Home in the Twin Cities

It doesn’t happen very often where, in a compact period of time, I see a wealth of reliable data released that shed such sunny light on the decision to buy a home in the Twin Cities but lately that has been the case.  If you’ve been contemplating such a decision, here are 3 great reasons to feel good about your decision and its timing in ascending order. Reason 3: CNBC Ranks Minnesota as a Top State for Business. CNBC’s announcement may seem boring, and it definitely is, but from the perspective of a homebuyer or homeowner, it’s critical.  This is …

The FHA 1 Year Waiting Period After Short Sale, Bankruptcy or Foreclosure – Back to Work

Where was this three years ago?  Better late than never I suppose.  FHA is now insuring loans to homebuyers who have experienced an Economic Event (Short Sale, Bankruptcy, Deed in Lieu of Foreclosure or Foreclosure) in the past and can document that (1) their certain credit impairments were the result of a Loss of Employment or a significant loss of Household Income beyond the borrower’s control, (2) the homebuyer has demonstrated full Recovery from the event and, (3) the homebuyer has completed housing counseling. FYI, in the event of a short sale, this is for buyers who DID have late …

Tell a Veteran to Miss a Payment to Qualify for a Short Sale and You May be Up Against the CFPB

Statistically, over half of the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau (CFPB) complaints to the Office of Servicemember Affairs (OSA) have to do with mortgages.  Of these, 58 percent of them had to do with loan modification, mortgage collection practices or foreclosure . . . and yes . . . short sales would fall under this category.  While this is a broad range of complaints, I’d like to focus on servicemembers with Permanent Change of Station (PCS) orders and how they relate to short sales. For Realtors processing short sales on behalf of servicemembers, they’ll want to know that the CFPB is …

Different Mortgage Types and What They Mean to Buyers and Sellers in a Competitive Market

This podcast outlines the differences between Minnesota mortgage pre-approvals and how they affect purchase transactions.  Homebuyers and home sellers can learn the risks and benefits of each different type and how they relate to their transaction.  This is essential information for understanding the implications of your choice on loan type for your purchase in a seller’s market.  If you’re a seller, it’s essential for understanding the risks and advantages of accepting an offer that comes with one type of mortgage financing vs. another. Charles Dailey – Branch Manager, Loan Officer, Certified Military Housing Specialist – CA DOC, MN DOC & …

Dual Agency in Minnesota

Reblogged: Deanna Wyman There is a commonly held belief that every Realtor’s dream is to handle both sides of a transaction-a practice known as dual agency. An unfortunate number of people are under the impression that this practice is a great idea. Well, I’m here to tell you that dual agency isn’t actually worthy of its reputation. In fact, I try to avoid it at all costs. Even if it means turning down a potential business, I’ll refer a client to another agent in order to best represent the client I’m already working with. Think about it, the listing agent …

Your Rental Rate: Too High, Too Low – Rent vs Own Home Calculator

Every time we read an article online about taking a more analytical approach to deciding whether or not to buy a home, you’ll always get comments about how “personal” or “emotional” the decision is but if you’ve found this page, that’s not why you’re here.  You’re looking for a “left brain” experience and you’re going to get it. When analyzing a decision on a move, it’s important to know the variables, have all the tools and take the whole decision under consideration.  It can be frustrating poking around all over the internet to find these facts, tools and calculators so …

Homebuyers: Thinking About A Lowball Offer? Think Again.

 If you are under the impression that the Minnesota real estate market is still a buyer’s market, it may be time to put away the bell bottom hip huggers and burn the flower power polyester pullover.  Okay, that may be dating back a bit too far but you get my point.  Let’s time warp to 2013. Long gone are the days of putting in a lowball offer and hope it sticks.  It won’t and it doesn’t anymore.  I know, I know…your friends, family and colleagues who purchased homes just a few years ago still boast that they got their home …

When it Comes to Your Credit Report, Be Yourself.

It’s important in life and in mortgage lending that you be yourself.  Accordingly, when your loan officer is presenting you and your loan application to an underwriter, you do everything you can to be as accurate and honest as possible.  You take a detailed loan application and cough up unending amounts of documentation so, . . you’re good right?  Actually, there’s a 25% chance that’s not quite right. One in four consumers found an error in a credit report issued by a major agency, according to a study by the Federal Trade Commission.  Five percent found errors that could lead …

Buy a Home Now vs. Wait – Who Needs a Forecast for that?

Charles Dailey – Branch Manager, Loan Officer, Certified Military Housing Specialist – CA DOC, MN DOC & WI DFI The Home Buyers Scouting Report® is provided directly to the buyer by HBM II, a licensed national real estate brokerage service company, not to or through a lender. The FREE home finding service is provided directly to prospective homebuyers by HBM II and its real estate brokers, as part of their ordinary real estate brokerage services. HBM II, Inc. works cooperatively with other real estate agents across the United States in attempting to find ready, willing and able buyers for homes …

Fannie Mae Requirements for Investor and Second Home Borrowers with Five to Ten Financed Properties

Most lenders will restrict the number of properties an investor can finance to a total of four properties.  This restriction was recently loosened to allow for up to ten financed properties.  There are unique restrictions regarding credit score, Loan to Value (or LTV) and reserve requirements that make getting them funded very difficult. Here are a couple of bullet point guidelines you’ll need to be aware of: No foreclosures in the preceding 7 years No late mortgage payments within the last 12 months 6 months of mortgage payments in need to be in reserves for each other second home or …

Gaining an Edge With the Best Homebuyer Education

This episode of the Twin Cities Real Estate Radio Show covers comprehensive homebuyer education and wraps it up in a bow called DoorSteps. Charles Dailey – Branch Manager, Loan Officer, Certified Military Housing Specialist – CA DOC, MN DOC & WI DFI The Home Buyers Scouting Report® is provided directly to the buyer by HBM II, a licensed national real estate brokerage service company, not to or through a lender. The FREE home finding service is provided directly to prospective homebuyers by HBM II and its real estate brokers, as part of their ordinary real estate brokerage services. HBM II, …

5 Things I Wish All Homebuyers Knew Before Getting Their Mortgage

A good mortgage loan officer is like a financial psychiatrist for residential housing.  Years of training and experience are packed into our minds for the purpose of reacting correctly to buyers’ financial profiles, stories and desires.  The moral of the story?  All those years of training and experience are an empty value unless you put your entire buyer profile, story and set of desires before your loan officer.  Not doing this is like buying a 600 dollar phone and only using ten percent of its features. A good mortgage loan officer is not a peddler of a financial commodity (I …

New Minnesota Housing Mortgage Loan Programs – not just for First Time Homebuyers!

Through the Minnesota Housing Finance Agency (MFHA), the State of Minnesota offers eligible homebuyers loans with subsidized interest rates and mortgage insurance for low-to-moderate income homebuyers, that is correct, it is not just for first time homebuyers anymore! Start Up is the new Minnesota Housing statewide mortgage loan program for low-to-moderate income first-time homebuyers.  Click here for detailed information on Start Up (first-time homebuyer loan program). Step Up is a new Minnesota Housing loan program for non-first-time homebuyers to purchase or refinance a home.  The program offers affordable fixed-rate loans and access to down payment and closing cost loan options …

iLoan Puts its Money Where its Mouth is for Veterans Using VA Loans

For a long time, we’ve been trying to figure out what we can do for our VA clients besides being highly trained, offering superior interest rates, and providing high-touch service.  We had talked about doing something more for some time now and finally thought we should get off our laurels and get ‘er done. For any military veteran or Foreign Service worker who chooses to do his or her Veteran’s Administration insured mortgage with iLoan, there will be no cost for the appraisal.  This is a value of between four hundred and five hundred fifty dollars which; a minor sacrifice …

Developing a Lease-to-Own Market

A lease-to-own (LTO) transaction is one in which a potential home buyer occupies the home as a tenant but has an option to purchase it within a specified period at a specified price. In exchange, the potential buyer pays a non-refundable option fee upfront plus a monthly rent. In a recent article, I noted the intense interest in LTO deals today by wannabe home buyers who can’t qualify for the mortgage they need to make a purchase now. Despite the large demand, not many LTO deals are being done. They are very complicated and most potential buyers and sellers don’t …

The MN Mortgage Financing Contingency – What it is and what it isn’t

The “Written Statement” of Lender Commitment is a misunderstood, under-utilized, and yet incredibly significant component of the Minnesota Association of Realtors’ (MAR) Residential Purchase Agreement. Despite the almost universal acceptance of the MAR forms in MN purchase transactions, the “Written Statement” or Lender Commitment Letter component is seldom explained to a buyer or seller. The Financing Contingency (Conventional, FHA or DVA) which functions to describe the financing that a buyer is attempting to obtain, contains the clause referring to the Lender Commitment Letter (referred to as a “Written Statement”.)  The Financing Contingency requires an option to be chosen at the …

Low Appraisal Challenges in a Newly Inclining Real Estate Market

After half a decade of falling home values, the real estate industry has become well versed in the language of declining markets. Buyers have learned to be skeptical, buyers’ agents have sharpened their teeth advocating for lower purchase prices and appraisers have become increasingly conservative in order to meet the demands of an equally conservative lending industry. Enter: 2012 Twin Cities Real Estate Market. New to the scene and largely forgotten by all arrives a balanced market which quickly reveals itself as an inclining market. This new market was initially greeted with skepticism and disbelief by much of the real …