Skip to content

Lending Cafe Bookmark and Share

Monthly Archives: December 2011

Consumer Confidence Lodges Second Month Of Gains

Consumer confidence, which can help gauge how willing Americans are to spend money, has built upon its late-2011 gains, suggesting that 2012 may bring with it an enhanced ability for homeowners to conduct a mortgage refinance or purchase a new home.

The Consumer Confidence Index (CCI), measured by The Conference Board, currently sits at an eight-month high of 64.5 for December, after rising 10 points from the 55.2 mark it set in November. The CCI exceeds the expectations of analysts, who had previously predicted a reading of 58.9. In the six previous months, the CCI had fallen, but its resurgence suggests that consumers may enter the new year with increased optimism about the economy. Generally, the higher the CCI, the more healthy consumers think the economy is.

How To Screen Rental Property Tenants

Following a report last week that showed seasonally adjusted multifamily home construction increased by 25.3 percent from October, along with the fact that rent prices are up in most major metropolitan markets, many property owners are reaping the benefits of rental properties. But, before you apply for real estate investor loans and rental property loans, consider the steps that need to be taken to find reliable tenants.

Once prospective renters have expressed interest in your property, you need to find a way to enact administrative hurdles to eliminate undesirable prospective tenants without complicating the application process so much that no interest in the property is generated. This can be done primarily through a small application fee, which will isolate serious applicants from the rest of the pool.

Owners Realizing Benefits Of Rental Property Mortgages

Construction of new homes, particular multifamily dwellings, surged last month, even though numbers still lag behind rates that experts consider to be healthy. Still, many savvy borrowers are jumping on board during this unusual time of the year to build, as they seek real estate investor loans from lenders.

Construction of new homes increased last month by 9.3 percent from October 2011 to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 685,000, which represents 24.3 percent growth from last year, according to a joint release from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the U.S. Census Bureau. Building permit requests, which are indicators of future home construction, also increased in November.

How To Conduct A Mortgage Refinance When Delinquent

Although homeowners who are delinquent on their mortgages may feel as though they are closer to foreclosure than they are to getting back on track with their loan payments, there are many paths out of delinquency if homeowners know how to refinance properly.

While lenders have different definitions of what is considered to be a delinquent mortgage, Lender Processing Services (LPS) considers delinquency to have set in after 30 days of late payments. According to LPS, which tracks non-current payment and foreclosure rates in the United States, monthly delinquency rates increased last month to 8.15 percent - more than 4 million homes - which represents a 2.7 increase over November 2010 numbers. However, at this time last year, the delinquency rate was nearly 10 percent higher, and it was about 30 percent higher at its peak in January 2010, so there is reason for optimism.  

Knowing When To Refinance From An Adjustable To A Fixed-Rate Mortgage

When interest rates on adjustable-rate loans increase after several years, some homeowners may not be able to adjust their budgets adequately to account for the change, even though they knew that rates would increase. Some of these homeowners may also be plagued with the additional challenge of being "underwater" - owing more on the balance of their mortgage than their home is worth.

If you are one of these homeowners - there are more than 10 million in the United States - you may be looking to relieve yourself of your financial burden without moving into a new home. The Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) may be the answer to your problem.

Mortgage Refinances, Home Purchases Affected By Payroll Tax Extension

Homeowners who refinance their properties and homebuyers who seek out new properties will be faced with higher fees on FHA loans and other mortgages backed by government sponsored entities beginning next year.

Earlier this month, Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA) proposed raising fees on mortgages backed by government sponsored entities as a means to pay for extending the payroll tax. In response to his idea, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) and the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) sent him a letter stating that higher fees unfairly target U.S. homeowners.

How Can I Prepare For A Mortgage Refinance?

Mortgage lenders have been bogged down recently by a surge in homeowners who want to refinance their properties. With mortgage rates at historic lows, borrowers are taking advantage of an opportunity to make money off of their homes. To accelerate the refinance process, borrowers should thoroughly prepare before they meet with a mortgage lender.

Online personal finance resource LendingTree found in a survey this month that the average mortgage refinance takes 45 days to complete, so if you're asking yourself, "Should I refinance?" you'll need to be aware of several preparatory steps before you act.

Mortgage Refinances, VA Loans Helping Improve Housing Conditions For Vets

More than 67,000 United States war veterans were homeless on any given night in January 2011. While this number may seem high, it is actually a 12 percent decrease from the same count conducted one year prior, when 76,000 veterans were homeless, according a U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) press release.

When a U.S. soldier returns home from war, trauma from the battlefield is not their only challenge. Finding permanent housing can be a significant hurdle as the solider re-acclimates to life back home. With this in mind, the Obama administration set a goal to end homelessness among veterans by 2015.

Beware Tax Issues When Seeking Foreign National Loans for Investments

Non-U.S. citizens who are considering investing in property in the United States should give pause before they buy because they will be subject to taxes upon sale of a property.

When applying for foreign national loans, investors from abroad must plan ahead for what they intend to do with a property once they acquire it. If your goal as a foreign investor is to resell the property in a few years, it would be prudent to understand how U.S. tax law could affect your purchase.  

Government Formulates Plans To Keep Former Owners In Homes

When a home is foreclosed, the homeowner is usually forced to relocate their families and start a new life, as the lender seizes the home and sells it. But now, several government agencies are developing plans to allow former owners of real estate owned (REO) properties to stay in their homes for longer.

In a press release earlier this month, Freddie Mac announced it would suspend all of its evictions involving foreclosed properties from December 19, 2011, through January 2, 2012, in an effort to ensure a greater degree of certainly for families during the holiday season.