Tag: loanoriginator

Mortgage News Matters

How to Choose the Best Mortgage for You

Any homebuyer will tell you that choosing the perfect mortgage is just as important as choosing the perfect home. For many, buying a home with cash is not possible, which is why finding the right mortgage loan program is essential. When choosing the right mortgage for you, it is important to find one that works with your unique budget, as it is an expense that you will be paying off over the course of many years.

To better help you on your home buying journey, we’ve compiled a list of 5 guidelines to follow when choosing the right mortgage for you.

  1. Determine how much you can afford. Your mortgage is made up of two main costs. These are (1) the loan principal and (2) the interest. The principal is the loan amount you are applying for. The interest is the additional amount tacked onto your monthly payments, as a fee for borrowing money from your lender. Your monthly payments are paid through an amortization schedule set by your lender. For more information on determining how much of a mortgage you can afford, take advantage of our free Mortgage Calculator offered on our website.
  2. Set a goal and start a savings plan. We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again, buying a home is one of the biggest financial decisions one can make in one’s lifetime. There are many costs to consider outside of the initial sale price listed on the For Sale sign. Costs like down payment, closing costs, and insurance to name a few. It is important to acknowledge each of these commonly overlooked costs before purchasing a home and setting a goal to achieve them. For a comprehensive list of these costs, refer to our post on Costs to Consider.

    In addition, you’ll want to start a savings plan that can act as a step-by-step guide to reaching your savings goals. For helpful tips on saving towards your home buying goal, refer to our blog on How to Start Saving for a Down Payment.
  3. Consider different types of mortgage loan programs. Since each homebuyer has needs and wants that are unique to them, there are a variety of mortgage loan programs to choose from. At VanDyk Mortgage, we specialize in 15- and 30-year Conventional loans, FHA loans, USDA, VA, and Adjustable Rate Mortgage loans.

    Each loan program has different requirements and qualifications that must be met by borrowers. For an extensive list of each loan program and its specific qualifications, refer to our Mortgage Loan Options on our website.
  4. Understand how much insurance you will be required to pay. The cost of mortgage insurance varies depending on which type of mortgage loan you end up choosing. For some loans, insurance is required, while for others, it comes in the form of an upfront funding fee.

    Your insurance premium is based on different factors, such as the amount of money you can put towards your down payment or your own unique credit score. For more information on mortgage insurance and how much it could cost you, refer to our post What is Mortgage Insurance?
  5. What type of loan do you qualify for? One of the most important questions you can ask yourself when choosing the right mortgage loan for you, is ‘What type of loan do I qualify for?’ You can be as determined as you’d like to save towards your goal for the perfect home, but if you don’t qualify, your efforts may be in vain.

    The best way to determine this is to talk with an experienced Loan Originator as soon as you are ready to start looking for your new home. They can go over all of your loan options, what types you qualify for and how to start saving towards your goal. To reach out to one of our experienced Loan Originators, contact us today!
Mortgage News Matters

Zero Down and Low Down Payment Mortgage Options

For buyers currently looking to purchase a home – affordability is the name of the game. And finding a mortgage loan that requires zero – or low down payments, is essential to their home buying process. Fortunately, VanDyk Mortgage provides a variety of mortgage loan options with low or no down payments required for our cost-conscious buyers.

Low-Down Payment Mortgage Loan Options:

30-Year Conventional: With consistent interest rates and monthly mortgage payments, the traditional 30-Year Conventional Loan is one of the most popular mortgage loan options. Programs with down payments as low as 3%, the 30-Year Conventional Loan is a great option for those seeking to purchase a home, before they have the funds necessary to do so. Keep in mind, whenever you put a less than 20% down payment on a home, you may be required to pay Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) until you own enough equity in your home.

FHA: The Federal Housing Association, or FHA loan, is an ideal option for first-time homebuyers with less than perfect credit. With a down payment as low as 3.5% and lower than average interest rates, the FHA loan is a great option for buyers who do not meet the requirements for a traditional 30-Year Conventional Loan.

Zero or No Down Payment Mortgage Loan Options:

VA: A VA, or Veteran Loan, is the best option for Veterans or active duty military members looking to purchase a home of their own. There is no down payment required and low-interest rates. VA loans require no monthly mortgage insurance, making it possible for a buyer to purchase a home without paying out of pocket.

USDA: Backed by the US Department of Agriculture, a USDA, or Rural Housing Loan, is for buyers who are looking to purchase a home in a rural or suburban area with minimal investment. These loans require no down payment and provide flexible credit guidelines, as well as low monthly mortgage insurance costs.

To learn more about low and zero down payment loan options offered at VanDyk Mortgage, visit our website Loan Options.

Mortgage News Matters

Tips for Buyers in a Seller’s Market

Finding yourself a buyer in a seller’s market can often feel intimidating. When inventory is low, and demand is high, sellers are the ones who hold all the leverage.  This is why finding your competitive edge is critical to the home buying process. To make sure you stand out from the crowd, consider using our tips for buying in a seller’s market.

  1. Begin your search today! In a seller’s market, time is of the essence. It is important to do your research and prepare beforehand with important information, such as reports, open houses, and offer due dates, to avoid wasting precious time.
  2. Obtain pre-approval. Getting preapproved by a lender before making an offer tells you how much buying power you truly have and helps pre-determine your bottom line. 
  3. Reduce or eliminate certain contingencies, such as inspections or move-in dates. This reduces common time-consuming obstacles to the home buying process.
  4. Present a strong (or best) offer price. If it is in your budget to do so, consider offering more than the asking price. This will set you apart from other buyers and provide you a competitive edge.
  5. Consider a cash offer. A cash offer tells the seller you are a serious buyer, and not interested in wasting their time. Offering a cash deposit for up to 1% of the offer price is a great way to stand out from the rest.
  6. Do not present a counteroffer. In a seller’s market counteroffers are seen as mere time-wasters. In many cases, sellers will not even consider looking at them. Always start with a strong offer price.
  7. Know your budget and be ready to bid. In a market with more buyers than sellers, a bidding war is almost certain. Understanding your budget and preparing beforehand to bid, is the best way to ensure, both you and your offers are taken seriously.
  8. Avoid being too choosy. As houses move quickly on and off the market, it is important to reduce your non-negotiables. For example, location is important, but renovations can be done anywhere. Limiting various terms is crucial to buying a home in a seller’s market.
  9. Stay alert to new listings. You may think you have found your perfect home, only to find that it has just been sold. Do not get discouraged! The key to being a buyer in a seller’s market is remaining patient and vigilant for the next opportunity that comes along!
Mortgage News Matters

How Much is Your Home Worth?

Understanding how much your home is worth is extremely valuable information for any homeowner. It can help you to better make decisions when pricing to sell or deciding whether or not to refinance.

Though some may assume you need to seek professional guidance, there are many steps you can take on your own before doing so.

To help you take these steps and determine the value of your home, we’ve put together 5 useful tools that can give you all the information you need!

  1. Use automated valuation model or AVM. An automated value model is a tool that helps determine the value of your property by looking at public records, such as local market information, price trends, and tax assessments. Leading AVM providers, such as FreddieMac, Equifax, and VeroValue can deliver this information extremely quickly and can be a major reason many homeowners choose to utilize their services.

    Keep in mind that these results are mostly accurate, however, they do not account for the property’s current condition and can be slightly off. If you’re considering using the AVM, it is important to talk with a real estate expert for more information.
  2. Get a CMA, competitive market analysis. Though not as accurate as getting an appraisal, a competitive market analysis is a great way to get a good estimation of your home’s value. Homeowners can perform their own market analysis by researching comparable properties in their area or areas like theirs. Homeowners can also receive this information easily through a real estate agent.
  3. Use the FHFA House Price Index Calculator. The FHFA House Price Index Calculator projects the value of a home in today’s market that was purchased at a specific time, based on the average appreciation of homes in the area.

    It is important to keep in mind other factors that will affect the actual value of the home, like its condition or whether major renovations need to be made, just to name a few. The calculator just provides a projection of the home’s value.
  4. Get an appraisal. One of the best ways to determine the value of your home is to get an appraisal. One thing that many homeowners might not realize is that you don’t have to be associated with a lender before ordering an appraisal on your home – you can get one at any time. Professional appraisers evaluate the market, your property, and comparable properties to create an official report.
  5. Look at comps in your neighborhood. Comps are comparable properties for houses in similar markets to yours. Homes are compared by certain factors, such as size, location, conditions, and upgrades.

    Keep in mind that you may have to adjust your findings when it comes to the major differences in homes, such as the number of bedrooms or renovations that have been made. Experts suggest finding at least three valid comps to most accurately determine your home’s market value.