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The latest numbers from mortgage analysts Ellie Mae show that the average FICO score of approved conventional mortgages is 732. If a borrower has low cred​it scores (650 and under), then that average FICO score could seem like a chasm between them and the Home for Sale in Huntersville they want to buy. But just because the average credit scores for a conventional mortgage are above 732 doesn't mean low-credit borrowers are shut out of homes.

There are a good amount of options, and the federal and state level for mortgages can help even low-credit borrowers get the home of their dreams. Here are three types of loans you may want to explore.

 

1. USDA Loans

USDA loans are a great option for borrowers with low credit scores, because the minimum score for approval is 640. Not only that, but you won't have to make a down payment for this mortgage. It sounds like an incredible deal and, for the consumer with bad credit, it is a legitimate option.

However, borrowers need to know the very clear limits the USDA places on where homes can be bought. Because the program was initially started to provide economic stimulation in rural areas, only homes outside of urban areas are eligible for the USDA mortgage program.

As far as the hard numbers go, several sources indicate that the borrowers' mortgage can't be more than 29 percent of their income, and the overall DTI is 41 percent. Both home prices and borrower income are capped, and that cap depends on the area in which the borrower wants to buy.

To understand exactly where the urban limits are for the city in which you live, the USDA's website has a straightforward mapping app that shows clear boundaries between urban and rural.

2. State Bond Programs

While the USDA program is available in all states, bond programs tend to be specific to certain states. For example, Florida's first-time homebuyer bond program offers up to $15,000 toward down payment and closing costs. The product is treated as a second mortgage.

Like the USDA mortgage, the credit scores needed for this loan are pretty low: 660. Also, there are income limits and limits on the purchase price of the home. The down payment assistance is "free" - you don't have to pay it back as long as the home is your primary residence for five years after closing.

The catch here is that the interest rates are higher because they're set by the state. So, while the borrower is getting up-front free money, they end up paying for it on the back end over the life of the loan.

3. FHA Loans

Ellie Mae estimates that 689 was the average credit score for borrowers who were accepted for an FHA loan. These loans require a 3.5 percent down payment if the borrower's credit is 580 or higher, Zillow says, while scores between 500 and 579 require a down payment of 10 percent. The standard for the total mortgage payment is 31 percent of income, and DTI needs to be less than 43 percent. Mortgage insurance applies to the life of the loan.

A cursory view of the numbers makes the FHA loan a good bet for borrowers with average to bad credit scores who have the ability to make a 3.5 percent down payment. However, there can be some problems.

The FHA has their own criteria for the condition of the home the borrower is buying—if certain things need to be fixed, those fixes have to happen before closing and paid for out-of-pocket by the seller. However, if the borrower can find a home in good condition with only minor repairs noted during inspection, closing should proceed with the normal aches and pains.

How to Make Your Outdoor Space More Inviting and Fun

by Compass Real Estate Group

This time of year folks begin to get outdoors to do more around their homes because it is nice and warm outside.   It’s also a good time to do a bit of work outside the house and make your outdoor space more inviting and fun for family and friends.   Below is a list of ways in which you can accomplish this.

If you already have landscape lighting, why not purchase a few fun colored lights to use in them for different holidays.  This will defiantly make your outdoor space a lot more fun.

If you are getting tired of mowing your grass then you may want to replace your grass with a garden.  You might want to add a garden of flowers or a garden of vegetables or even put in a koi pond.  Any of these ideas will help to keep you from spending your summer evenings mowing the grass all the time, therefore making your outdoor space more fun. 

If your patio furniture is old and outdated, now is the time to go out to purchase some that allows you to show your style more effectively.  Outdoor furniture always makes outdoor spaces more inviting and fun. 

Adding a new doorbell to the outside of your Home for Sale in Huntersville may seem like a small thing, however if you find a nice one that lights up the front door area it can do wonders towards making your home seem more inviting at night.    

If you don’t already have a swimming pool, summertime is a great time to add one.  Not much can make your outdoor space more fun than a swimming pool for all to enjoy.   

If you do add a swimming pool why not go out and make it really fun and cool by adding an outdoor shower to the mix.  This type of thing is pretty rare unless your home is at the beach, therefore your outdoor shower may quickly become the talk of the neighborhood.   

There are so many ways in which to make your outdoor space more inviting and fun; these are just a few of them that you may want to try.   

Monteray Oaks Subdivision - 353 Monteray Oaks Circle Fort Mill, South Carolina

by Compass Real Estate Group

This beautiful Home for Sale in Huntersville located in Fort Mill, South Carolina has a large covered front porch. Tons of upgrades include hardwood flooring throughout main level, canned lighting, plantation shutters, French doors, archways throughout, surround sound and much more. Large open kitchen with huge island, lots of cabinets and counter space. Open living room with gas fireplace & lots of windows for natural sunlight. 4 bedrooms, 3.5 baths.

 

Lawn Care in the Fall and Winter

by Compass Real Estate Group
fall-lawn-care
 
Cooler weather has arrived and grass growth is minimal, but that doesn’t mean you should take a break from caring for your lawn. Winter lawn maintenance is essential in preparing your yard for beautiful grass in the spring. From December through February, here are some steps you should be taking:
 
Zoysiagrass:
  • Mow overseeded areas when they exceed 1 inch in length, and let grass clippings lay.
  • Water periodically, especially if you overseeded in the fall.
  • Only fertilize overseeded areas. This should be done in December and February.
  • Treat winter weeds as needed with broadleaf herbicides.
Tall Fescue:
  • Mow to maintain a height of 3 inches, removing any clippings or other debris from laying on the grass.
  • Water as necessary. Grass needs around 1 inch of water per week.
  • Fertilize the entire lawn in February.
  • Treat winter weeds as needed with broadleaf herbicides.
Bermudagrass:
  • Mow overseeded areas when they exceed 1 inch in length, and let grass clippings lay.
  • Water periodically, especially if you overseeded in the fall.
  • Only fertilize overseeded areas. This should be done in December and February.
  • Treat winter weeds as needed with broadleaf herbicides.
Make sure to remove the last of the leaves to help grass receive more sunlight, and try to avoid walking on grass as it can become more brittle and easily damaged during winter. We appreciate you being proactive and managing your lawn so that the community landscaping will look great come spring and summer!

What are Home Values in the Lake Norman Area looking like?

by Compass Real Estate Group

The Homes in the Lake Norman Area in Cornelius NC, 28031 zip code over the last year continue to show growth in 2015-2016.  Take a look at what the MLS numbers show us.

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August Newsletter for the Lake Norman Area

by Brock Zevan

NAR's chief economist, Lawrence Yun, said that the four month streak of sales gains through June showcased a solid first half of 2016. Yun noted, "Existing sales rose again last month as more traditional buyers and fewer investors were able to close on a Home for Sale in Huntersville despite many competitive areas with unrelenting supply and demand imbalances." Yun added that, "Sustained job growth as well as this year's descent in mortgage rates is undoubtedly driving the appetite for home purchases." NAR's economist added a cautionary note: "Looking ahead, it's unclear if this current sales pace can further accelerate as record high stock prices, near-record low mortgage rates and solid job gains face off against a dearth of homes available for sale and lofty home prices that keep advancing."

Key Takeaways

  • June's median price for existing homes (non-new builds) for all housing types was $247,700, up 4.8 percent over June 2015 ($236,300). June's increase represents a 52nd straight month of year-over-year gains.
  • Total housing inventory by the end of June fell slightly 0.9 percent, to 2.12 million existing homes available for sale. Unsold inventory now sits at a 4.6-month supply at the current sales velocity.
     
  • First-time buyers generated 33 percent of transactions in June, 3 percent higher than seen in May and a year ago -- in fact this is the highest since July 2012 (34 percent). 
     
  • Freddie Mac data shows the average commitment rate for a 30-year, conventional, fixed-rate mortgage fell from 3.60 percent in May to 3.57 percent in June. Mortgage rates have now dropped for four consecutive months, and June's rates were the lowest since May 2013 (3.54 percent). The average commitment rate for all of 2015 was 3.85 percent.

Make Your Offer Count!

Before making an offer on a home in today's competitive housing market, it is more important than ever for home buyers get their financial house in order when applying for a loan.

While there are online resources available that can provide a sense of one's overall financial position, be sure to review your credit report in person with your mortgage professional and get pre-approved for a loan before making an offer on a home.

A little preparation goes a long way and can make a big difference when it comes to closing on your dream home. Contact us today to get the right loan for your current needs!

 

Tips for Sellers

When preparing your home for sale, a number of simple cosmetic changes often provide the biggest return on investment. Here are three tips to upgrade your house without breaking the bank:

 

 

  • Bring in the light. The right light creates the right mood. Adding lights to dark rooms can make your home feel warm and inviting. Bring outdoor light inside by opening curtains and installing economical suntubes.
  • Create Space. Many of today's buyers are looking for open rooms. Consider removing unwanted walls to make your home feel more spacious. Buyers will often pay a premium to get a bit of extra room.
  • Replace Flooring. Get rid of that old carpet in the den and replace it with today's newer hardwoods and laminates. You don't have to spend a lot to make a big impression!

These simple tips can help you sell your home and take advantage of today's market. Please contact us if you have any questions about selling your home. We are here to help!

Should I Buy a Home Now?

by Brock Zevan

I'm often asked if this is a good time to buy a Home for Sale in Huntersville. Some clients are concerned that home prices may fall down the road, while others are convinced that home prices will go up.

Home prices are one factor in determining your cost of ownership, but so are interest rates and financing availability. Even though interest rates have fluctuated, they are still near historic lows. Since your monthly mortgage payment is a combination of paying down your principal and paying the interest owed, a one point rise in interest rates could cost tens of thousands of dollars over the life of your mortgage!

While a home is a major investment, it is also the center of your personal life. It's important to live in a home that reflects your taste and values, yet is within your financial "comfort zone." To that end, it may be more important to lock in today's relatively low interest rates while they are still available.

Please give me a call if I can be of any assistance in determining how much home you can afford in today's market.

Displaying blog entries 1-7 of 7

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