FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions

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Mortgage Loan Process

  • Where Can I Learn More?
  • What Is Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI)?
    Private mortgage insurance applies to borrowers who make a down payment that is less than 20 percent of the selling price of the mortgage. Mortgage lenders often require a borrower to acquire another type of insurance, which is private mortgage insurance. This insurance covers the lender in the unfortunate event that the borrower is not able to repay the loan and the lender is not able to recover costs of the foreclosure and also selling the property.
  • What Is A Good Amount Of Money To Have Available For A Down Payment?
    A down payment of 20 percent or more of the home purchase price is no longer a requirement, nor is it always in your best interest. There are loans available for as little as 3% down. The exact amount of your down-payment depends on many different variables. This is an important factor in your Mortgage loan and is discussed in depth with you by your Mortgage Loan Specialist.
  • What Is An Escrow Account?
    Your mortgage lender may require or suggest that you set up an escrow account. An escrow account is established to pay taxes and/or insurance (including flood insurance). A portion of the monthly payment is deposited into the account to make these payments. Escrow payments may change because the amount of your real estate taxes and/or insurance bills may fluctuate.
  • What Taxes and Insurance Must I Pay as a Home Owner?
    Homeowners are required to pay property taxes and they must also have some type of homeowners insurance to protect their home, which is now their asset. State laws and other variables affect how homeowners pay for property taxes and insurance, but today, many mortgage lenders require homeowners to pay into an escrow account. The lender or mortgage servicer maintains an account to cover your property tax and homeowners insurance expenses. Each month, a portion of your mortgage payment will be put into this account and when your taxes or property insurance are due, the lender or servicer will pay them for you.
  • What is a Credit Score?
    A credit score is a primary indicator of how likely borrowers will repay future debt. Mortgage lenders review your credit history by reviewing your credit report. This report gives an indication of how well you have paid your bills and other financial obligations in the past. Additionally, the report will show how much debt you already have, for example, your credit cards, car, student and other types of loans. The most common credit score used by lenders is the FICO®score, which can range anywhere between 300 and 850. The higher the FICO credit score a borrower has, the better. Your FICO credit score will determine the amount of money you can borrow and the terms of your loan, including the interest rate and length of loan. Credit scores do vary and change.
  • What Information Do Mortgage Lenders Need From Me To Qualify For A Mortgage Loan?
    To help you get a mortgage loan, mortgage lenders require information related to your employment, finances and information about the home you wish to purchase. They will ask you specific, detailed information about these topics so that they can arrive at a monthly payment that you can afford and will be able to sustain.
  • What Are The Advantages Of Owning My Own Home Vs. Renting?
    Owning a home can be as affordable as renting, and in some part of the United States, it can be more affordable to own rather than rent. Borrowers can compare costs by researching home prices in the areas they want to live, calculate what a mortgage loan would cost them, and compare that to the cost of renting a similar type of home. While homeownership is not the right option for everyone, the advantages are many. Some of those advantages include building equity and earning tax advantages. Borrowers can build their wealth as they gain more equity over the course of time. Additionally, per Internal Revenue Service code, loan interest is tax deductible. Homeowners must be prepared to consider maintenance costs of keeping their home in good condition. Also, the value of a home can fluctuate in value. Buying a home requires a significant amount of cash upfront, so selling it during the initial years of ownership may be difficult and something to consider in light of job and other commitments.

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