This video could save some veterans thousands. VA loan applicants pay a funding fee - as of 2014, 2.15% of the total loan amount - which can be thousands of dollars.Some veterans and spouses are eligible for exemption. Broadly speaking, veterans who received disability benefits - current or former and who are NOT currently in debt to the government may be exempt from the funding fee.Some spouses may qualify as well. The key thing to understand is, exemption from the funding fee is NOT automatic! Borrowers must certify their veteran status, government debt, benefits and active service stateon VA Form 26-8937. It is important to tell your mortgage company that they need to submit this form EARLY in your home-buying process - if they just look up your records without submitting the form the VA will not begin the review and approval process and your home purchase could be delayed by weeks.
Loans from FHA-approved lenders (Federal Housing Authority) provide more flexibility than conventional loans. Here are some of the things generally allowed in re-establishing credit via FHA loans: If you went through foreclosure or deed-in-lieu, if 3 years have passed, you may be eligible If you had outstanding tax liens, if youve arranged a repayment plan with Federal (IRS) or state tax authorities, you may be eligible If you have judgements that have been paid, you may be eligible If you went through bankruptcy at least 2 years ago, you may be eligible. For borrowers with unusual credit records — for example, those who prefer paying in cash and carrying no debt — FHA may be an option. Likewise, new or first-time buyers with little established credit should investigate FHA programs for assistance. Talk to an FHA-approved lender to learn more.
"Do you want to pay points?" is the kind of mortgage question that leaves many people thinking "I dont even know what that is!" Heres a simple explanation. Points are pre-paid interest. You pay interest now (which is frequently tax-deductible) to lower your long-term rate. "One point" is 1% of the total loan amount. If your lender is willing, ask to compare a loan package with 0 points to options with 1, 2 or more so you can see the short-term and long-term effect. As an example and general guideline, on a 30-year mortgage, your interest rate will go down by about 1/8 (0.125) for each point paid -- 3% interest would drop to 2.75% with 2 points paid. If you plan to stay in the home for a while, points can reduce your monthly payment, while the up-front tax deduction might help with first-year finances. PRO TIP: In some market conditions, negotiating to have the seller pay points may be an option. Talk with your real estate professional and lender.
Beautiful, modern model homes and neighborhoods can make the job of comparing different builders and projects a challenge. Here are a few questions to help you. Ask everyone the same questions, like: How is the final price of a home in your project set, and when? Do you offer a warranty option? Can we have a copy of the warranty terms? How many different models are available? Can we see plans or brochures? Can I make changes and upgrades during construction? Until what stage? When do inspections take place in your construction schedule? Who would be supervising construction of our particular home? When is completion scheduled? What happens if there are delays? Also ask about other projects, and their history in this business: Are you insured? Licensed? How many other homes have you built? Where? Do you provide references, such as from prior buyers? Ask for written confirmation of things you consider to be key. Compare the answers from different projects, sales teams and builders. And consider involving a real estate buyers agent, or new-home cobroker, for professional advice.
A builder can help make the home-purchase process easier and faster by making arrangements to have a lender on-hand who is already familiar with the project and/or models. The question the home buyer must answer for themselves is, is this "preferred lender" the best choice for them. The most effective way to do this is probably to obtain loan terms from other lenders. With multiple Loan Estimate forms in hand, you can easily compare apples-to-apples and see what advantages the preferred lender has to offer. In addition, you should be aware of current market conditions for transactions like yours. Compare all terms carefully; if in doubt, or if some aspect of a builders offer are only available with the preferred lender, ask for clarification in writing. Should you feel pressured toward one particular lender, ask for written confirmation that no parties are receiving monetary benefits from any other parties. That is illegal under RESPA (Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act) regulations! The desire to close quickly is natural, but make sure your long-term financial interest and home choices are not compromised for short-term speed. .
Homeowners insurance is required to close the transaction. Start early to give yourself the best shot at saving costs here. Get quotes from several insurance providers. Compare insurance costs as part of comparing properties. For example, a newer brick home may have lower premiums than an older wood home. Location may affect insurance costs. Check on the proximity of fire hydrants and fire departments; closer may equal savings. Look for group protection through service organizations or alumni associations. Home purchase may be an excellent time to consolidate insurance and pocket savings. Covering home, auto and other insurance with the same company is frequently less expensive. Consider and shop deductible options in the process. Raising deductible may lower premiums, if you can handle the increased out-of-pocket consequences.
Deciding "older home or newer home" is a unique challenge for each buyer and place. Here are some general guidelines to think about. Home Age and Neighborhood Age. More-established neighborhoods with a higher average home age develop their own ambiance over time. Is that what you want? Property Tax Rates. An older home may have a lower tax rate; make sure to ask and compare. Maintenance. Homes require maintenance as they age, but you should assess what has already been done on an older home case-by-case. Energy efficiency is also a key concern; building standards have improved efficiency standards over time, so you may find newer homes to score higher on this key cost. Consider what you want to spend time on, and what you enjoy as well.
Adan has already made a name for himself as a talented and ambitious writer. With a passion for exploring the world and sharing his insights with others, he has contributed articles to a variety of online magazines, covering everything from politics and culture to science and technology. When he's not busy writing, Adan enjoys traveling, playing guitar, and trying out new foods and drinks