American Security Mortgage

Loan Application Checklist

May 23, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

This is a list of documents most lenders will require in order to process your mortgage application.

Verification of income

  • Earnings statements: W-2 forms, recent pay stubs and tax returns for the past two years;
  • If you are self-employed: profit and loss statements and tax returns for current year and previous two years;
  • Additional income: social security, overtime bonus, commission, interest income, veteran’s benefits and so on.

Verification of your assets

  • List of bank account numbers, the address of your bank branch, checking and savings account statements for the previous 2-3 months;
  • List of savings bonds, stocks or investments and their approximate market values;
  • Copies of titles to any motor vehicles that are paid in full.

Information about the purchase

  • Copy of the ratified purchase contract;
  • If you made a deposit to the seller to show that you are serious about buying the house, bring a copy of canceled deposit check on house.

Your debts

  • Credit card bills for the past few billing periods;
  • Other consumer debt such as car loans, furniture loans, student loans and other personal and cosigned installment loans with creditor addresses and phone numbers;
  • Evidence of mortgage and/or rental payments;
  • Copies of alimony or child support.

If you have no established credit history, supply the lender with canceled checks for rent, utilities and other recurring obligations to show payment history and amount of revolving debt.

Lenders may also ask you about the origin of your downpayment. If money for downpayment is a gift from a relative, bring to the interview a copy of gift letter and copy of gift check. The gift letter states that the money will not have to be repaid.

Having these items on hand when you visit the lender will help speed up the application process.

Keep in mind that different lenders may have slightly different information requirements, so ask your lender what to bring to your initial loan interview.

 

Acquired from:

www.Mortgage-x.com

“Onslow County Economy Fastest Growing in Nation”

April 17, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Published: Friday, January 25, 2013 at 08:00 AM.

Onslow County is America’s fastest-growing county over the past five years, according to a federal agency that tracks economics.

Total personal income in Onslow climbed 55.5 percent, from $5.3 billion in 2006 to $8.3 billion in 2011, according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis. Total personal income is defined as the amount of money earned by all residents of a given area in a particular year.

Douglas County, Colo., a Denver suburb, ranked No. 2. Rounding out the top five were Loudoun County, Va.; Paulding County, Ga.; Fort Bend County, Texas; and Pinal County, Ariz.

Wayne County, Mich., home to Detroit, is last on the list.

Onslow’s booming economy is fueled by Marines and sailors stationed at Camp Lejeune and New River Air Station, according to a recent report in the Charlotte Business Journal.

But that’s just a third of the story, said Shelia Pierce, director of Jacksonville-Onslow Economic Development.

“Our economy is powered by the U.S. Marine Corps, of course, but Onslow County also has a wide agricultural base and its tourism, which is beginning to be recognized at the national level, is a major component as well,” she said.

The military, agriculture and tourism are the top three economic areas for North Carolina, which bodes well that they are also the top for Onslow County, she said.

“Our local economy will stay secure for some time,” Pierce said, adding that now is the time to invest in infrastructure.

Onslow County Manager Jeff Hudson said growth in the county has been pronounced in the past few years.

“Information from our tax office and our building inspections offices verify that fact,” he said.

Onslow County’s total estimated tax base is $13.2 billion, said Harry Smith, the county tax administrator.

Hudson said an increasing county population has begun to strain the services provided by local government. But he said the county is committed to providing services to the expanding population as efficiently as possible.

“Onslow remains committed to high quality local government,” he said.

Contact Daily News Senior Reporter Lindell Kay at 910-219-8455 or lindell.kay@jdnews.com. Follow him on Twitter and friend him on Facebook @ 1lindell.

Why Pay A Commission?

November 1, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Homeowners attempting to sell their home without the assistance of a real estate professional generally do so for one and one reason only: to avoid paying a commission fee. Is it worth it? Only the homeowner can answer that, but experience has shown that many for-sale-by-owners find that it’s not. Before making a costly mistake, consider the benefits, from A-Z, you receive from working with a trained real estate professional:

Advertising-Agent pays all advertising costs

Bargain-Research shows 77% of sellers felt their commission was “well spent”

Contract Writing-An agent can supply standard forms to speed the transaction

Details-Agent frees you from handling the many details of selling a home

Experience/Expertise-Agent knows marketing, financing, negotiations, and more.

Financial Know-How-Agent is aware of the many options for financing the sale

Glossary-real estate professional understands, and can explain, real estate lingo.

Homework-Agent will do homework on how to best market your home.

Information-Agent will know or can get the answer to your questions.

Juggle Showings-Agents will schedule and handle all showings.

Keeps Your Best Interests in Mind-It’s an agent’s job!

Laws-Agents will be up-to-date on real estate laws that affect you.

Multiple Listing Service-Most effective means of bringing together buyers and sellers.

Negotiation-Agent can handle all price and contract negotiations.

Open Houses-Popular marketing technique.

Prospects-Agent has a network of contacts that can produce potential buyers.

Qualifies Buyers-Avoid opening your home to “curiosity seekers.”

REALTOR®-Agent and member of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® who subscribes to a strict code of ethics.

Suggested Price-Agent will do a market analysis to establish a fair price range.

Time-Is one of the most valuable resources in an agent.

Unbiased Opinion-Most owners are too emotional about their home to be objective.

VIP-That’s how you’ll be treated by your agent!

Wisdom-Agent can offer wisdom that comes with experience.

X Marks the Spot-Agent is there with you through the final signing of papers.

Yard Signs-Agent provides professional signs, encouraging serious buyers.

Zero-hour Support-Selling a home can be emotional; an agent can help.

from NCCOAST Homes Magazine, Coastal Coast Edition  May 25-June 29, 2012

 

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12 Things You Should Know About VA Loans

August 27, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

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Get your FREE Copy of the

“12 Facts You Need to Know

 About VA Loans” Today!

Do I Need To Sell My Home Before I Can Qualify For A New Mortgage On Another Property?

April 1, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Although every situation is unique, it is not uncommon for homebuyers to qualify for a mortgage on a new home while still living in their primary residence.

Perhaps you are outgrowing your current house, or have been forced to relocate due to a job transfer?  Regardless of the motivation for keeping one property while purchasing another, let’s address this question with the mortgage approval in mind:

So, Do I Have To Sell?

Yes. No. Maybe. It depends.

Welcome to the wonderful world of mortgage lending. Only in this industry can one simple question elicit four answers…and all of them may be right.

If you are in a financial position where you qualify to afford both your current residence and the proposed payment on your new house, then the simple answer is No!

Qualifying based on your Debt-to-Income Ratio is one thing, but remember to budget for the additional expenses of maintaining multiple properties. Everything from mortgage payments, increased property taxes and hazard insurance to unexpected repairs should be factored into your final decision.

What If I Rent My Current Property?

This scenario presents the “maybe” and the “it depends” answers to the question.

If you’re not quite qualified to carry both mortgages, you may have to rent the other property in order to offset the mortgage payment.

In that scenario, the lender will typically only count 75% of the monthly rent you are proposing to receive.

So if you are going to receive $1000 a month in rent and your current payment is $1500, the lender is going to factor in an additional $750 of monthly liabilities in your overall Debt-to-Income Ratios.

Another detail that can present a huge hurdle is the reserve requirement and equity ratio most lenders have. In some cases, if you are going to rent out your current home, you will need to have at least 25% equity in order to offset your payment with the proposed rent you will receive.

Without that hefty amount of equity, you will have to qualify to afford BOTH mortgage payments. You will also need some significant cash in the bank.

Generally, lenders will require six months reserve on the old property, as well as six month reserves on the new property.

For example, if you have a $1500 payment on your old house and are buying a home with a $2000 monthly payment, you will need over $21,000 in the bank.

Keep in mind, this reserve requirement is incremental to your down payment on the new property.

What If I Can’t Qualify Based On Both Mortgage Payments?

This answer is pretty straightforward, and doesn’t require a financial calculator to figure out.

If you are in this situation, then you will have to sell your current home before buying a new one.

If you aren’t sure of the value of the home or how your local market is performing, give us a ring and we’ll happily refer you to a great real estate agent that is in tune with property values in your neighborhood.

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As you can tell, purchasing one home while living in another can be a very complicated transaction.  Please feel free to contact us anytime so we can review your specific situation and suggest the proper action plan.

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Ten Things You Can Do To Protect Your Identity

March 28, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Facts About Identity Theft:

It’s estimated that there were 10 million victims of identity theft in 2008, and 1 in every 10 U.S. consumers have reported having their identity stolen.

The U.S. Department of Justice reported in 2005 that 1.6 million households experienced fraud not related to credit cards (i.e. their bank accounts or debit cards were compromised).

And, the U.S. DOJ also reported that those households with incomes higher than $70,000 were twice as likely to experience identity theft than those with salaries under $50,000.

What Is Identity Theft?

According to the United States Department of Justice, identity theft and identity fraud “are terms used to refer to all types of crime in which someone wrongfully obtains and uses another person’s personal data in some way that involves fraud or deception, typically for economic gain.”

Such personal information may include your name, address, driver’s license number, Social Security number, date of birth, credit card number or banking information.

Victims of identity theft can spend months trying to restore their good name. And most victims do not realize it has happened until they get denied for a mortgage or a credit card.

Ten Ways to Protect Your Identity:

1.  Dumpster Diving –

Avoid “dumpster diving” by shredding all papers that contain any personal information.

Criminals sift through trash looking for the following:

-Bank Statements
-ATM Receipts
-Canceled Checks
-Credit Card Statements
-Credit Card Purchase Receipts
-Credit Card Solicitations (unopened “pre-approval” solicitations)
-Pay Stubs
-Tax Documents
-Utility Bills
-Expired Identification Cards (Drivers License, Passports…)
-Expired Credit Cards
-Medical Statements
-Insurance Documents

2. Personal Info / Phone Calls -

Never provide personal information, including your Social Security number, passwords or account numbers over the phone or internet if you did not initiate the call.

If you are asked for any type of personal information, before giving any information, ask the caller for their name, telephone number and the organization that they are representing.

You should then call the company using the customer service number the company provides with your account statement. Do NOT call the number you were given by the caller.

To reduce the number of solicitations you receive, you can sign up at the do not call registry:

web: http://www.donotcall.gov
call: (888) 382-1222

3. Look Over Your Shoulder –

Avoid “Skimming and shoulder surfing” (Never let your credit card out of your sight).

Pay with cash. Try never to let your credit card out of your sight to avoid a fraud scheme known as “skimming”.

According to Wikipedia:

“Skimming is the theft of credit card information used in an otherwise legitimate transaction. It is typically an “inside job” by a dishonest employee of a legitimate merchant. The thief can procure a victim’s credit card number using basic methods such as photocopying receipts or more advanced methods such as using a small electronic device (skimmer) to swipe and store hundreds of victims’ credit card numbers.”

Be aware of people “shoulder surfing”. This is when they are looking over your shoulder or standing too close trying to obtain your PIN number when making purchases with your debit card. They may also be listening for your credit card number.

4. Secure Your Mail –

Always mail your outgoing bill payments and checks from the post office or a neighborhood blue postal box and never from home.

Pick up your incoming mail as soon as it is delivered. The longer it sits the better chance a criminal has of stealing it.

-Get a P.O. Box.
-Lock Your Mail Box

Contact your creditors if a bill doesn’t arrive when expected or includes charges you don’t recognize. It may indicate that it was stolen.

5. Read Credit Card Statements -

Review account statements to make sure you recognize the purchases listed before paying the bill.

If your credit card holder offers electronic account access, take advantage and periodically review the activity that is posted to your account.

The quicker you spot any unauthorized activity, the sooner you can notify the creditor.

6. Monitor Credit Report -

Review your credit report at least once a year to look for suspicious activity. If you do spot something, alert your card company or the creditor immediately.

7. Email Links –

Never click on a link provided in an email if you believe it to be fraudulent.

Keep in mind, no financial institution will ask you to verify your information via email.

Criminals may link you to phony “official-looking” web site to confirm your personal information. This is known as “phishing”.

According to Wikipedia:

“Phishing” is the criminally fraudulent process of attempting to acquire sensitive information such as usernames, passwords and credit card details by masquerading as a trustworthy entity in an electronic communication.

8. Opt Out –

Opt out of credit card solicitations. (Take your name off marketers’ hit lists)

You can opt out of credit card solicitations by calling 1-888-567-8688 to have your name removed from direct marketing lists.

You can do this online at OptOutPrescreen.com, which is the official consumer credit reporting industry opt-out website for the three credit companies:

Experian
Equifax
Trans Union

9. Safeguard Your Social Security Number -

Protect your Social Security number.

Never carry your Social Security card or anything else with your social security number on it in your wallet or purse, along with your driver’s license.

Do not put your Social Security number or driver’s license number on any checks you may write.

Only give out your Social Security number when absolutely necessary.

10. Read Privacy Policies –

Find out what company privacy policies are (know who you are dealing with).

When being asked for your Social Security number or driver’s license number, find out what the company’s privacy policy is.

Inquire as to why it is being asked for.

Ask who has access to your number.

Ask if you can arrange for them not to share your information with anyone else.

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Related Credit / Identity Articles:

Is There A Rule-of-Thumb Regarding The Number Of Credit Lines To Have Open?

March 28, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

While the actual credit score has a big impact on a loan approval, it’s not the only component of the credit scenario that underwriters consider for a mortgage approval.

Since loan programs, individual lenders and mortgage insurance companies all have their own credit report restrictions, it’s difficult to define a standard Rule-of-Thumb to follow.

However, the number of “Open and Active Trade Lines” seems to be the common denominator in most approvals.

A trade line is basically a credit card, installment loan or other credit liability that is reported to the credit bureaus and displayed on a credit report.

Credit Trade Line / Approval Bullets:

  • Banks usually won’t count a trade line that is less than 12 months old.
  • The minimum number of trade lines most lenders find acceptable is 4 open and active trade lines.
  • Lenders like to see at least one credit line of $5,000, or all credit lines to total $1,000 or more.

Exceptions to Trade Line Rules:

Interestingly enough, a recent list of Mortgage Insurance requirements included a favorable trade line requirement, which read:

Min 3 trade lines @ 12 mo reporting. Cannot be ‘authorized user’

Basically, this means as long as the lender, and the loan program allow for less than 4 trade lines, this mortgage insurance company will accept only 3 trade lines that are in the borrower’s name.

Another exception to this rule is if you have no FICO score, and no negative trade lines.

In this case you may qualify for an “alternative credit” loan. The most common loan of this type is insured by FHA, but there are select programs that are usually targeted to assist people whose culture does not trust or use banks.

Borrowers applying for a non-traditional credit loan will still need to prove they have successfully paid their bills on time for 12 months by clearly documenting at least four creditors.  A verification of rent from a property management company, power, utilities, cell phone… are alternative sources of credit that can be used.

*A letter from a landlord or creditor stating that the bills were paid on time is not acceptable forms of proof.  Lenders will need canceled checks and / or copies of bank statements to start out with.

Since not all companies report to credit bureaus, it’s possible to get a free credit report at AnnualCreditReport.com to verify your total reported trade lines.

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Related Credit / Identity Articles:

Alternate Sources For Establishing Credit

March 28, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

While the basic Rule-of-Thumb for acceptable credit history is a minimum of four trade lines documented on a credit report, there are alternative methods of building a credit picture that an underwriter can use to make a decision for a loan approval.

For potential home buyers with little or no credit history, keeping records for 12 months of paying bills on time is essential for mortgage loan approval. In fact, loan officers will appreciate receiving proof that you have paid a variety of accounts regularly and on time. Even if you do not have a credit history, or your credit report isn’t as good as it could be, this may enable you to get a mortgage.

The industry term for this is “thin credit.”

Some loan types, namely FHA and USDA, will accept alternative credit sources in order to establish proof of financial responsibility.

Alternative credit is unreported to the bureaus, but will still be verified and can be instrumental in a home loan approval.

Those with thin credit don’t usually have bad credit, but have just not had an opportunity to build enough traditional credit, such as bank/store credit cards, auto loans, etc.

Alternative Sources for Building Credit:

  • Rental History – Canceled checks and letter from property management company
  • Medical Bills – 12 months of statements from medical billing company showing paid as agreed
  • Utilities – power, gas, water, cable, cell phone
  • Auto Insurance
  • Health / Life Insurance – as long as it’s not auto-deducted from pay check

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What’s The Difference Between A Primary Residence, Second Home and Investment Property?

March 28, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 


When applying for a mortgage, a borrower’s “Occupancy Type” is a major factor in the amount of down payment required, loan program available and mortgage interest rate.

Whether you are purchasing, doing a rate/term refinance or taking equity out of your property through a cash out refinance, occupancy type is always considered by the underwriter.

Three Types of Occupancy:

Owner Occupied / Primary Residence -

According to HUD, a principal residence is a property that will be occupied by the borrower for the majority of the calendar year.

At least one borrower must occupy the property and sign the security instrument and the mortgage note for the property to be considered owner-occupied.

Second Home -

To qualify as a second home, the property typically must be at least 50 miles from the primary residence, and it cannot appear that the real estate is being purchased for rental investment purposes.

Investment Property -

A property that is not occupied by the owner and is typically utilized for rental income purposes.

Down Payment Requirements:

Owner Occupied / Primary Residence -

Purchases for VA and USDA can go up to 100% financing, while FHA requires 3.5% of the purchase price as a down payment.  Conventional financing may require anywhere from 5% – 25% depending on the credit score, county, property type and loan amount.

Second Home -

Average 10% down for a purchase, and 25% equity for a refinance.

Investment Property -

Down payment requirements will range from 20-25% depending on the number of units.  When doing a cash-out refinance on an investment property with 2-4 units, the required loan to value will need to be 70% or lower to qualify.

…..

*It should be noted that on any high balance loan amount the above mentioned Loan-to-Value (LTV) requirements will change. Credit score requirements also apply.

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What’s My Debt-to-Income (DTI) Ratio?

March 28, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Debt-to-Income (DTI) is one of the many new mortgage related terms many First-Time Home Buyers will get used to hearing.

DTI is a component of the mortgage approval process that measures a borrower’s Gross Monthly Income compared to their credit payments and other monthly liabilities.

Debt-to-Income Ratios are designed to give guidance on acceptable levels of debt allowed by particular lenders or programs.

There are actually two different Debt-to-Income Ratios that underwriters will review in order to determine if a borrower’s monthly income is sufficient to cover the responsibility of a mortgage according to the particular lender / mortgage program guidelines.

Most loan programs allow for a Total DTI of 43% and a Housing DTI of 31%.

Two Types of DTI Ratios:

a) Front End or Housing Ratio:

  • Should be 28-31% of your gross income
  • Divide the estimated monthly mortgage payment by the gross monthly income

b)  Back End or Total Debt Ratio:

  • Should be less than 43% of your gross monthly income
  • Divide the estimated house payment plus all consumer debt by the gross monthly income

Remember, the DTI Ratios are based on gross income before taxes.  Lenders also prefer to use W2’s or tax returns to verify income and employment.

However, the adjusted gross income is used to calculate DTI for self-employed borrowers on most loan programs.  Since there is room for interpretation on these guidelines, it’s important to review your personal income / employment scenario in detail with your trusted mortgage professional to make sure everything fits within the guidelines.

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