Lenders use three criteria to decide whether or not to approve a mortgage application. Borrowers must meet minimum standards for credit scores, loan-to-value ratios (LTVs) and debt-to-income ratios (DTIs) in order to be approved. Minimum standards vary by the type of mortgage in which you are applying for and by the lender.
Over the past three years, mortgage lenders have been slowly loosening their standards for mortgages. Understanding the reasons for this trend and the differences among different loan types will help today’s borrowers understand their options.Credit scores, LTVs, and DTIs
The most widely discussed lending standards are FICO scores, the credit [...]
Comps. They’re the one thing that can cause a seller some tense moments as they work with their real estate agent to come up with a price for their home. ‘Comps’ is actually the shortened version of comparisons. Basically, they’re the prices of homes sold in your area in the past 3-6 months. While the concept of a comp is pretty easy to understand, that doesn’t mean that comps are without nuances.
There are several things you need to keep in mind as you use comps to set the price for your home or, in the case of a buyer, use comps to determine whether a home’s price is fair.Comps, CMAs, and Why They’re Important
A CMA is a [...]
The term “mortgage” is a 13th century Middle English word imported from Anglo-French: “mort” is French for death, and “gage” means pledge in Latin. In early Anglo-Norman law, property pledged as security for a loan was usually held by the creditor who could farm it and sell the proceeds — a sneaky form of interest in an era when lending for profit was considered a form of sinful usury. When the debtor finally couldn’t stand watching his wealthy creditor get even richer off his mortgaged land, he found a way to pay off the debt. If he couldn’t find the cash by the time he died, the land would become the creditor’s. Hence the name [...]
A lot of factors affect the homebuying decision. No matter where you choose to move, you want to be comfortable, right? Determining an area’s housing affordability is important information to arm yourself with during the beginning stages of your home buying search. The expenses incurred after the purchase of your home don’t end when you move in, you’ll be responsible for utilities, taxes, and the upkeep of your home. Are your pockets crinkling at the thought of all the expenses? Don’t worry, according to U.S. News and World Report, these are the cities with the best housing affordability. If you’re in the market for a new home, finding one in any of [...]
We all have those television shows we’ve binge-watched episode after episode, rerun after rerun, for as long as they’ve aired and in the years after. Many of those shows took place inside of a family’s home with the living room area as the most popular focal point of the set, and many of them are as familiar to us as our own living rooms. For example, at first glance, most people are able to immediately recognize the white couch and curved stairway that stood behind it from the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air or the floral and bamboo couches displayed in the living area of Golden Girls. What other obvious living rooms come to mind? Well, let’s take a trip down memory [...]
If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to live in one of the original colonies, the great state of Pennsylvania has more than its rich history to offer. Nestled in the northeastern region of the nation, Pennsylvania has several neighbors. It’s between Delaware in the southeast, Maryland to the south, West Virginia to the southwest, Ohio to the west, Lake Erie, Ontario to the northwest, New York to the north, and New Jersey to the east.
The state’s five most populous metro areas are Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Allentown, Erie, Reading, and Harrisburg – the capital of Pennsylvania. In and around the state are numerous suburbs and counties. Each, of course, [...]