Added Insights

Informed Decisions ...

Don't respond to solicitations. Solicitations are generally vague and don't address your specific circumstances.

Remember, you are choosing the person, the company and the loan that best serves your interests. Do not let them choose you!

It's about suitability not eligibility. You need the mortgage option that is most suited to your specific circumstances, rather than the mortgage that enables you to qualify for the biggest payment. Remember, the costs of buying a home must be in balance with a comprehensive financial plan that meets your needs today and well into the future.

Only compare apples to apples. When comparing the specifics of loan offers from various prospective lenders, make sure you are making a fair comparison by ensuring that each offer is quoting the exact same variables such as: mortgage type, interest rate, mortgage term, down payment, loan amount, points, mortgage insurance and other fees and charges. Any oranges in the mix make a fair comparison impossible.

Professionalism, experience and relationships matter. You deserve to be served by a mortgage professional who has wisdom gained from substantial experience in working with consumers. Moreover, you need a professional who is well thought of and connected to other financial and real estate professionals. Demand the best of the best-you are worth it!

Slowing Home Appreciation

If you're a homeowner looking to refinance, rising rates aren't your only concern. Thanks to higher interest rates, it will become more expensive for homebuyers to borrow money, so fewer people will be able to afford to buy homes. Fewer buyers mean a larger inventory of homes to choose from, which slows down the appreciation of real estate value. And lenders look at the value of your home when you apply to refinance your mortgage.

 

Specifically, in order to refinance, the magic number is an 80 percent loan-to-value ratio. But once the value appreciation of your home slows, your LTV ratio might become higher, which means more risk for the lender. So once rates increase, refinancing might be more difficult to get approved or will cost you more in terms of a higher interest rate.

 

Experts recommend keeping at least three months expenses in a reliable, liquid account - though even an extra $1,000 can be a life-saver. But finding $1,000 to save isn’t always easy. That’s why we’ve put together information on how to save and protect yourself. See American Saves Icon above or click here for ideas.