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15 vs 30 Year Mortgage – The Pro’s and Con’s 15 vs 30 Year Mortgage – The Pro’s and Con’s(1)

15 vs 30 Year Mortgage

If you’re like many homeowners you’ve probably contemplated going with a 15 year mortgage vs the more common 30 year fixed program. So what are differences and I can I get a better rate by going with a shorter term? Below are some pro’s and con’s associated with the 15 vs 30 year mortgage programs:

15 vs 30 Year Mortgage – The Rate Difference:

The up side of going with a 15 vs 30 year mortgage is that the 15 year mortgage will come with a bit lower rate. For example, today the average 15 year mortgage would go for about 3.25% while its 30yr counterpart would go for 3.75%. Rates on the 15 year mortgage are lower because the lender is theoretically taking on less risk by having its money out there for a shorter period of time. As a rule of thumb, the shorter the term of the mortgage, the lower the rate will be.

15 vs 30 Year Mortgage – Monthly Payments

One important factor to consider when weighing out the pro’s and con’s of a 15 vs 30 year mortgage is the monthly payment. Payments with the 15 year mortgage are going to be much larger than the longer term since the loan repayment is spread over half the number of months (180 months vs 360 months). It’s therefore sometimes more difficult to qualify for a 15 year mortgage in regard to DTI (debt to income ratio) because you will need to have a relatively high amount of monthly income to support the larger payment associated with a 15 year mortgage vs its 30 year counterpart.

15 vs 30 Year Mortgage – Total Cost Comparison:

If you have sufficient income to support the larger payment that comes with the 15 year mortgage, it may very well be worth consideration since the total interest paid within the 360 payments associated with the 30 year mortgage is much more costly than that of the total interest paid within the 180 payments associated with the 15year mortgage. The total paid on either mortgage is shown on the TIL (Truth In Lending) document which is included in your loan application package as well as again at closing. Many consumers are shocked to see how much their home will ultimately cost by the end of the repayment term. This is perhaps the most compelling reason to consider a 15 year mortgage if you can handle the larger monthly payments.

Author “Joe Mortgage” is a mortgage industry leader who is owner of hotratequote.com and is committed to bringing readers relevant and important information. Find out more at the following link for a expert consultation on considering a 15 vs 30 year mortgage.

How Do I Get the Best Chicago Mortgage Rates? How Do I Get the Best Chicago Mortgage Rates?(4)

Best Chicago Mortgage Rates

With today’s historically low interest rates, many folks here in the Windy City seem to be asking how they can obtain the very best Chicago mortgage rates. Here are a few pointers to help consumers source the best deal:

Broker Vs. Banker:
There are two main types of lenders to consider.  The first are mortgage brokers who technically do not fund the transactions with their own funds, however they usually have the widest selection of secondary market investors to place the loans with (these investors being Wells Fargo, Citibank, Chase, and GMAC just to name a few). The downside of the broker not using their own funds to actually close your deal is their outsourcing of underwriting. Simply put, brokers typically don’t underwrite the transaction in-house and therefore you may not know of some challenges, hurdles, or additional documentation required until you get close to closing. This can sometimes result in additional headaches for borrowers hoping for the smoothest transaction possible. Unlike brokers, mortgage bankers are similar but almost always have in-house underwriters who clear the loan to close and they ultimately fund the loans themselves which give them the final say in accepting documentation, conditions, etc.

Understanding Cost Structures and How These Banks’s Make Money is Important to Getting You the Best Chicago Mortgage Rates:

It’s important to understand that Broker companies typically have the lowest overhead costs which can often result in the absolute lowest rates. However, many consumers still shy away from them due to the fact that they also usually outsource many of the essential services that go into getting your loan to the closing table and that can lead to some of the headaches mentioned above in Tip#1. On the other side of the spectrum, the “Big Banks” such as Wells Fargo, Chase, and Citi have the absolute highest overhead costs and that often trickles down to the consumer in unfavorable rates. The Big Banks have massive ongoing costs including billboards, tv and radio commercials, web banner advertisements, numerous levels of management, loss mitigation departments, legal departments, and the list goes on. For this reason, you can usually get the best Chicago mortgage rates by going with the lender in the middle of the spectrum: the mortgage bankers. These guys typically have relatively low overhead costs yet still have the control of essential services under their roof, specifically underwriting and closing departments.

Closing Costs and Getting the Best Chicago Mortgage Rates:

You may see some lenders advertising “not closing costs”, especially on refinance transactions. Be careful though because usually they have built those costs into the interest rate one way or another. For example, it should be up to you the consumer whether you’d like the closing costs paid at closing in cash, rolled into the new loan, or, paid for by the lender but in exchange for a slightly higher interest rate. Typically with mortgage bankers such as Bridgeview Bank, they can cover most or all of your closing costs and still get you a rate that is lower than any of the “big banks”.

Author Joe Karns of Bridgeview Bank is a seasoned mortgage professional dedicated to bringing his subscribers relevant and useful information on how to obtain the most competitive mortgage rates. Want a free mortgage checkup?   Check out the following link for some FREE expert advice on how to source the best Chicago mortgage rates.

VA Streamline Refinance Rates – How to Get the Best Deal VA Streamline Refinance Rates – How to Get the Best Deal(1)

VA Streamline Refinance Rates – How to Make Sure You Are Getting the Best Deal

You’ve served your country with honor, now let the VA loan program honor your service as you search for the lowest VA streamline refinance rates.  The VA loan program rewards service men and women by being more aggressive that conventional loans in the area of loan-to-value and credit related qualifications.  Below are some primary factors to consider when comparing VA streamline mortgage rates:

VA Streamline Refinance Rates – Banks or Brokers?

One important factor to consider is whether its better to work with one of the big banks for your refinance(Wells Fargo, Chase, US Bank, etc) or whether its advantageous to work with a smaller local mortgage broker or banker such as Bridgeview Bank.  The “big banks” may have a lot of flashy advertising and tv commercials promoting their VA refinance capabilities but remember, those ads are expensive and often times they are forced to pass along some of that expense to the end customer in the form of slightly higher interest rates and fees.  Since smaller banks and brokers have much lower overhead cost, you may find an overall cheaper deal.  Also, remember that the VA Streamline Refinance program is virtually identical no matter who you do business with, so be careful not to fall for a big bank using a flashy name to give the impression that their version of the VA program is unique.  Banks both large and small can quote you VA Streamline Refinance Rates so get a quote from a variety and go with which ever you feel most confident with.

VA Streamline Refinance Rates – Closing Costs?

Another factor to consider when in search for the best VA streamline refinance rates  is closing costs.  Since mortgage rates are so low these days, it should be possible for the lender to pay for 100% of your closing costs.  You may not end up with the absolute lowest rate, however by using this strategy you will likely still save a good amount on your monthly payment and also then not need to bring any money to closing.  Be sure to ask the lenders you’re considering whether they can cover any or all of the closing costs when they are quoting you VA streamline refinance rates.

Finally, once you have narrowed the best refinance lenders down to your top two or three, and you’ve asked all the right questions, its time to compare their rates, terms, cost, and most of all:  their reputation and credibility. If you  grade the best refinance lenders on their credibility and experience first, you will have the best chance for a smooth and efficient refinance transaction.

Author Joe Karns of Bridgeview Bank is a seasoned mortgage professional dedicated to bringing his subscribers relevant and useful information on how to compare mortgage rates. Want a free mortgage checkup? Check out Joe Karns at the following link for more a FREE refinance consultation and expert advice on getting you the best VA streamline refinance rates.

HARP Rates – How Does PMI and LPMI I Affect Refinancing? HARP Rates – How Does PMI and LPMI I Affect Refinancing?(20)

HARP PMI – How Does PMI Affect Refinancing?

With the new HARP 2.0 program in full swing now, many folks are needing to know if they will qualify with their current mortgage insurance, both PMI(private mortgage insurance) as well as LPMI (lender paid mortgage insurance) scenarios.  That being said, HARP PMI has quickly become a major question in determining HARP eligibility so we’ve put together a little Q&A:

HARP PMI Question #1 – If my current loan has PMI, will my new loan it too?

If your current (Conventional) loan has monthly PMI included, then your new loan would as well under the new HARP 2.0 program.  Essentially, the PMI certificate from your existing loan is simply transferred to the new loan and you would continue paying the same amount.  Please note that not all PMI companies and end lenders allow this so its best to complete our simple live rate quote form and discuss your scenario with on of our qualified lenders to see if your scenario will w0rk.

HARP PMI Question #2 – If my current mortgage has LPMI(Lender Paid Mortgage Insurance) will my new one have it?

This depends on whether your current lender paid the entire LPMI amount up front when you last closed or whether they are paying it monthly behind the scenes.  If its the later of the two, then you can sometimes just transfer that way of having it paid to the new lender and pay a slightly higher rate with the new lender to offset them taking on the LPMI.  However, if the LPMI was paid by your current lender all at once, then that is usually a sunk cost and you’d need to pay for LPMI again one way or another on the new loan.  Still, its not too expensive to have the LPMI rolled in so be sure to ask lenders what their LPMI options are.

HARP PMI eligibility can be a tricky subject so its best to consult with one of our qualified lenders.  Simply complete the free Live RateQuote form on this website to see if your scenario will work.

Question #3 – If I have to take on new LPMI with my HARP refinance because my original lender paid it all at once, how much should my new LPMI cost?

Generally speaking, if your new lender needs to roll LPMI into your rate, the rate should only be about .125% – .375% higher and then you would not be paying any monthly PMI on the new loan.  The lender essentially buys out of the PMI requirement by using the extra premium they earn by charging the slightly higher rate and use that money for the PMI buy-out.  The result is that you would not be required to pay monthly PMI on the new loan.

Conclusion:

All this HARP PMI and LPMI stuff may seem a bit confusion and may would agree with you that it shouldn’t have to be this complicated.  It’s best to consult with one of our qualified lenders to see if your scenario will work with the new HARP 2.0 program in relation to your loan’s PMI or LPMI.

Author Joe Karns is a seasoned mortgage banker and owner of the mortgage blog, hotratequote.com, is dedicated to bringing his subscribers relevant and useful information. Want a free mortgage checkup? Check out Joe Karns at the following link for more a FREE refinance consultation.  Or, click here for a free quote and to determine if your HARP PMI scenario qualifies

 

Is FreeCreditReport a Scam? Is FreeCreditReport a Scam?(1)

Is FreeCreditReport a scam?

 

Many people who have tried it would say it is, or at minimum, very misleading.  Nearly all of these companies including FreeCreditReport .com were investigated by the FTC a few years back and fined for their practices. that alone should be enough to scare you away from using FreeCreditReport .com (scam) but if that is not enough here is some more food for thought:

FreeCreditReport .com – Is Free really Free?

When in your life has the word free really meant free? buy 2 get one free! – but first you have to shell out the money for the first 2. Free does not exist from a “for profit” company, especially from FreeCreditReport .com which many believe to be a scam.

Many websites like FreeCreditReport .com are considered to be a misleading scam because they are owned by the credit reporting agencies themselves – Experian, TransUnion, or Equifax – all of these are “for profit” companies, out to make a buck from you. You will not get your credit score, and it will probably be just a synopsis of your full credit report. in addition, companies like FreeCreditReport .com are believed to be a scam because they will not tell you that by law they are required to provide you with a full credit report, totally free, once a year.

Although there are literally thousands of websites out there like FreeCreditReport, they all operate on the same premise. You enter all of your personal information – and I mean all of it because it will not let you continue without all the fields being filled out. Then they tell you will get much better information if you sign up for a membership for the small fee of $1.00 – followed by a monthly charge of $15.00. There is an opt out that the FTC made companies like FreeCreditReport .com scammers add, but good luck trying to find it. what happens to all the information that you just gave FreeCreditReport .com? Even if you did not finish the transaction, the credit reporting agencies keep it and update your information on your credit report with it.

As a consumer you absolutely need to know that AnnualCreditReport.com truly is the only place to get a “FREE” report because it is mandated by the FTC.  FreeCreditReport .com is bogus.

 

For more information about FreeCreditReport .com and expert credit repair consulting from Jordan Tobin, Click Here.

You can request your free report online, by phone or by mail. Visit AnnualCreditReport.com, call 1-877-322-8228, or fill out the Annual Credit Report Request form and mail it to Annual Credit Report Request Service, P.O. Box 105281, Atlanta, GA 30348-5281. No matter how you request your report, you have the option to request all three reports at once or to order one report at a time. by requesting the reports separately, you can monitor your credit more frequently throughout the year. There is really no benefit to you, the consumer, of having a report monthly – and it will cost you $180.00 for the first year, which is the minimum length of “membership” for the competing “scammer” sites out there.

For more information on how credit can impact your ability to get a home loan, check out mortgage expert, Joe Karns, or for a free refinance quote check out www.HotRateQuote.com.

At the end of the day, it is up to you to decide whether websites such as freecreditreport is a scam or not, but many angry consumers are saying that it is.

How to Find the Best Refinance Lenders in Today’s Market How to Find the Best Refinance Lenders in Today’s Market(1)

Best Refinance Lenders – How to find the pro’s?

During the past couple years in which the mortgage market has been in turmoil, determining who are the best refinance lenders has become a real challenge.  While current interest rates are still at historic lows, the fact remains that the lending guidelines have tightened up to a degree that is unprecedented.   So much, in fact,  that the average loan officer has trouble keeping up with the constant guideline changes and hoping to provide a high level of customer service.  This challenge is resulting in the weaker loan officers leaving the industry and the pro’s within the best refinance lenders now getting the lion’s share of the market.

During your search for the best refinance lenders, its crucial to remember that the same primary hot buttons remain unchanged:

1) Keep in mind that the lenders with the lowest rates may not be the best deal overall.  Even the best refinance lenders often forget to properly disclose the fact that their apparently low rate includes “discount points”.  This additional fee may be getting you what appears to be a great low rate, but you do not necessarily need to pay any additional fees to get a good rate.  Always ask even the best refinance lenders to give you options and proceed carefully.

How to find the best refinance lenders?

Whenever you embark on a search for the best refinance lenders, you will find numerous lenders trying to attract you with their seemingly lucrative offers.  However, you must know that not all of them can offer you the best loan.  Some of the best refinance lenders’ reputable brand comes from millions of dollars they spend on expensive advertising.  Those TV ads and billboards may help you recognize their brand, but it works against you in regard to their ability to get you the lowest rate.  All that overhead costs money, some of which is passed down to you, the customer.  The key to remember is that the best refinance lenders are not always the ones with the most well known brand name.  Do your research on websites like HotRateQuote to compare mortgage rates and terms so you have all the necessary information to form an education decision.

Here are some points to consider while searching for the best refinance lenders for your your home loan:

1) Start by leveraging the power of the internet.  A simple search for the best refinance lenders on online will yield thousands of results, but the key is to start with the more reputable “portal sites” such as BankRate.com, LendingTree.com, and HotRateQuote.com.  Try to not be diverted by flashy-looking promotional ad banners and buzz word offers but instead try and focus on the numbers:  rates, APR, total fees, etc.  These websites have gotten really good and organizing the best refinance lenders’ rates and terms so check to see what the top 3-5 offers appear to be within the name loan type category.

 

2)  Be weary of excessive fees.  In most cases, the  “lowest rate” offer often comes with some hidden costs, which can quickly add up since they are usually percentage-based figures tied to the loan amount.  These extra costs, also known as ” junk fees”, can make your refinance a costly transaction and sometimes not even worth it anymore.    These “junk fees” include but are not limited to:  “processing fees, application fees, doc prep fees, courier fees for mortgage brokers, etc.”  A good rule of thumb to use when considering the total cost, even with the best refinance lenders, is “how long will it take for the proposed monthly savings to exceed the total cost of this transaction?”.  Example:  Lets say you stand to save $52/month but the total fees are $3572.  It would take you a whopping 68 months (over 5 years) to break even!  Any break even point longer than 24 months is not a good deal.

3) Think you’ve found the best deal now?  Be careful, you might also want to ask what documentation is going to be required.  This is a major factory in getting any refinance transaction closed these days.  Some bank’s guidelines have got so ridiculous that it seems like the hurdles between you and the closing table can never be overcome.  Most banks follow the same set of guidelines nowadays, all requiring the standard two years tax returns with W2’s, last two pay stubs, and last two bank statements.  However, I’ve heard of some real world situations recently that you probably wouldn’t even believe.  A good friend of mine was trying to get the third round of underwriting conditions satisfied when she was then told that she also needed to produce the original building permit for the apparent renovation work that was done to her kitchen from 9 years ago, when she had only owned that home for the last 5 years!  This means that she was forced to take a full day off work and beg City Hall to dig up old building permit records just to satisfy the lender and get her refinance closed.  Crazy, huh?   But you’d be surprises how often even the “best refinance lenders” come up with these crazy underwriting conditions.  The key is to always ask what documentation will be required up front.

Go with the “pros” – Go with the best refinance lenders

Finally, once you have narrowed the best refinance lenders down to your top two or three, and you’ve asked all the right questions, its time to compare their rates, terms, cost, and most of all:  their reputation and credibility.  If you “go with the pro” and grade the best refinance lenders on their credibility and experience first, you will have the best chance for a smooth and efficient transaction.

Author Joe Karns is sales and marketing leader dedicated to bringing his subscribers relevant and useful information. Want a free mortgage checkup? Check out Joe Karns at the following link for more a FREE refinance consultation and expert advice on finding the Best Refinance Lenders:  Best Refinance Lenders

Best Refinance Lenders – How to find the pro’s? Best Refinance Lenders – How to find the pro’s?(2)

Best Refinance Lenders – How do I find the pro’s?

During the past couple years in which the mortgage market has been in turmoil, determining who are the best refinance lenders has become a real challenge.  While current interest rates are still at historic lows, the fact remains that the lending guidelines have tightened up to a degree that is unprecedented.   So much, in fact,  that the average loan officer has trouble keeping up with the constant guideline changes and hoping to provide a high level of customer service.  This challenge is resulting in the weaker loan officers leaving the industry and the pro’s within the best lenders now getting the lion’s share of the market.

During your search, its crucial to remember that the same primary hot buttons remain unchanged:  1) Keep in mind that the lenders with the lowest rates may not be the best deal overall.  Even the best refinance lenders often forget to properly disclose the fact that their apparently low rate includes “discount points”.  This additional fee may be getting you what appears to be a great low rate, but you do not necessarily need to pay any additional fees to get a good rate.  Always ask even the best refinance lenders to give you options and proceed carefully.

How to find the best refinance lenders?

You will find numerous lenders trying to attract you with their seemingly lucrative offers.  However, you must know that not all of them can offer you the best loan.  Some of the best refinance lenders’ reputable brand comes from millions of dollars they spend on expensive advertising.  Those TV ads and billboards may help you recognize their brand, but it works against you in regard to their ability to get you the lowest rate.  All that overhead costs money, some of which is passed down to you, the customer.  The key to remember is that the best refinance lenders are not always the ones with the most well known brand name.  Do your research on websites like HotRateQuote to compare mortgage rates and terms so you have all the necessary information to form an education decision.

Here are some points to consider while searching for the best refinance lenders for your your home loan:

1) Start by leveraging the power of the internet.  A simple search for the best refinance lenders on online will yield thousands of results, but the key is to start with the more reputable “portal sites” such as BankRate.com, LendingTree.com, and HotRateQuote.com.  Try to not be diverted by flashy-looking promotional ad banners and buzz word offers but instead try and focus on the numbers:  rates, APR, total fees, etc.  These websites have gotten really good and organizing the best refinance lenders’ rates and terms so check to see what the top 3-5 offers appear to be within the name loan type category.

 2)  Be weary of excessive fees.  In most cases, the  “lowest rate” offer often comes with some hidden costs, which can quickly add up since they are usually percentage-based figures tied to the loan amount.  These extra costs, also known as ” junk fees”, can make your refinance a costly transaction and sometimes not even worth it anymore.    These “junk fees” include but are not limited to:  “processing fees, application fees, doc prep fees, courier fees for mortgage brokers, etc.”  A good rule of thumb to use when considering the total cost, even with the best lenders, is “how long will it take for the proposed monthly savings to exceed the total cost of this transaction?”.  Example:  Lets say you stand to save $52/month but the total fees are $3572.  It would take you a whopping 68 months (over 5 years) to break even!  Any break even point longer than 24 months is not a good deal.

3) Think you’ve found the best deal now?  Be careful, you might also want to ask what documentation is going to be required.  This is a major factory in getting any refinance transaction closed these days.  Some bank’s guidelines have got so ridiculous that it seems like the hurdles between you and the closing table can never be overcome.  Most banks follow the same set of guidelines nowadays, all requiring the standard two years tax returns with W2’s, last two pay stubs, and last two bank statements.  However, I’ve heard of some real world situations recently that you probably wouldn’t even believe.  A good friend of mine was trying to get the third round of underwriting conditions satisfied when she was then told that she also needed to produce the original building permit for the apparent renovation work that was done to her kitchen from 9 years ago, when she had only owned that home for the last 5 years!  This means that she was forced to take a full day off work and beg City Hall to dig up old building permit records just to satisfy the lender and get her refinance closed.  Crazy, huh?   But you’d be surprises how often even the “best refinance lenders” come up with these crazy underwriting conditions.  The key is to always ask what documentation will be required up front.

Go with the “pros” – Go with the best refinance lenders

Finally, once you have narrowed the best lenders down to your top two or three, and you’ve asked all the right questions, its time to compare their rates, terms, cost, and most of all:  their reputation and credibility.  If you “go with the pro” and grade the best refinance lenders on their credibility and experience first, you will have the best chance for a smooth and efficient transaction.

Author Joe Karns of Bridgeview Bank is one of the very best best refinance lenders and is a seasoned mortgage professional dedicated to bringing his subscribers relevant and useful information. Want a free mortgage checkup? Check out Joe Karns at the following link for more a FREE refinance consultation and expert advice on finding the Best Refinance Lenders:  Compare Mortgage Rates

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