Things to do before submitting a Mortgage application?

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What are some things I should do to better my credit, or increase my chances of approval for a mortgage application? My husband will turn 21 in December, and he has only one credit card which we’ve never maxed out or paid late for. We have a son (baby) and another dependent. He works full time and I work part time. We probably qualify for USDA loans or FHA mortgages. If there are any suggestions of things to do or make sure of before we apply. please feel free to share. (The price range of houses here is from 60 to 125 thousand). That is, decent housing.

6 Comments
  1. Reply
    miss attractive
    January 29, 2011 at 4:35 am

    Not sure read some mortgage tips and more on this site

  2. Reply
    neesatutt
    January 29, 2011 at 5:29 am

    make sure you get a Realtor that is working for you and knows what you want. not just some one you call in the phone book that has houses for sale. i have only found a few of them and they work for you not the person selling the house

  3. Reply
    W. E
    January 29, 2011 at 5:56 am

    If you’re debts are under control now, but want to improve your bad credit history, the most important factor is to make your monthly payments on time. Use pre-addressed envelopes enclosed with your statements to mail your payments and call the company if you don’t receive your usual statement. Also send your payment as early as possible if you carry a balance. Most companies calculate interest on a daily basis, so the sooner they receive your payment, the less interest you’ll pay.

    Don’t procrastinate. It’s the day your payment is received that counts, not the postmark date. Give the post office sufficient time (five business days is a good guideline) to deliver your mail. Late payments may mean late fees, higher interest, and/or a negative mark on your credit report.

    Never send cash. Open a checking account if you don’t have one, or spring for a money order and keep your receipt. Finally don’t forget to tell your creditors your new address when you move.

    If you are worried about making payments, make a list of your debts and when the payments are due. Contact your lenders immediately if you think you will have trouble meeting the monthly payments to arrange a payment schedule.

    Taking money from your retirement account or tapping the cash value of your life insurance policy to pay bills or living expenses may have serious implications you haven’t considered, so try to get advice from an expert before you take any major financial actions.

    Credit cards can be invaluable in a crisis, since they allow you to charge items and pay them off over time. But they can also be dangerous if you aren’t careful and charge more than you can afford. If you do use credit cards, choose those with the lowest interest rates and pay them back as soon as you can to cut your costs.

    Credit Scoring – How it Works
    . Credit scoring is a statistical method that lenders use to quickly and objectively assess the credit risk of a loan applicant. The score is a number that rates the likelihood you will pay back a loan. Scores range from 350 (high risk) to 950 (low risk). There are a few types of credit scores; the most widely used are FICO? scores, which were developed by Fair Isaac & Company, Inc. for each of the credit reporting agencies.

    Credit scores only consider the information contained in your credit profile. They do not consider your income, savings, down payment amount, or demographic factors like gender, race, nationality or marital status. Past delinquencies, derogatory payment behavior, current debt level, length of credit history, types of credit and number of inquiries are all considered in credit scores.
    Your score considers both positive and negative information in your credit report. Late payments will lower your score, but establishing or re-establishing a good track record of making payments on time will raise your score.

    Different portions of your credit file are given different weights. They are:

    35% – Previous credit performance (specific to your payment history)
    30% – Current level of indebtedness (current balance compared to high credit)
    15% – Time credit has been in use (opening date)
    15% – Types of credit available (installment loans, revolving and debit accounts)
    5% – Pursuit of new credit (number of inquiries)

    The most important factor for a good credit score is paying your bills on time. Even if the debt you owe is a small amount, it is crucial that you make payments on time. In addition, you may want to: keep balances low on credit cards and other “revolving credit;” apply for and open new credit accounts only as needed; and pay off debt rather than moving it around. Also don’t close unused cards as a short-term strategy to raise your score. Owing the same amount but having fewer open accounts may lower your score.

    Recent changes minimize the negative effects that rate shopping can have on a mortgage applicant. If there is a consumer originated inquiry within the past 365 days from mortgage or auto related industries, these inquiries are ignored for scoring purposes for the first 30 calendar days; then, multiple inquiries within the next 14 days are counted as one. Each inquiry will still appear on the credit report.

    Every score is accompanied by a maximum of four reason codes. Reason codes identify the most significant reason that you did not score higher. The reason codes can help a lender describe the reasons for higher than expected rates or loan denial. Scores are not part of the credit profile and are not covered by the Fair Credit Reporting Act.

    Your credit report must contain at least one account which has been open for six months or greater, and at least one account that has been updated in the past six months for you to get a credit score. This ensures that there is enough information in your report to generate an accurate score. If you do not meet the minimum criteria for getting a score, you may need to establish a credit history prior to applying for a mortgage.

    Other factors to a mortgage, always pay your rent by CHECK. A lender will verify with the landlord if you have paid on time, and your cancelled checks will be your way of showing proof. A lender will look at 12 month rental history, if you do not have cancelled checks that is OK – This can still be verified by the landlord. 2 years job time, 2 years W’s (not your taxes, just the w’2s will be needed).

    There are other factors to consider, besides credit. Medical Bills are Over looked buy underwriting (since medical is a unforseen event), where as credit cards, are looked at (since you purchased items on a credit card.) Also, Job time of 2 years, Rental history for 2 years is looked at. What collections & judgements are on your credit report. Some collections may not have to be paid off. Judgements may need to be paid off – depends on the Lender and Their Underwriter. All of these are taken in as a factor on getting a home loan. Credit can be worked on, by adding alternative credit. If you are paying regularly on a cell phone, auto insurance, rent, etc – these are called alternative credit.. All is not HOPELESS – ok – take a deep breath. If your credit score is 500 or higher, anything is workable, with a seller second – etc the higher the credit score the better. Lenders look at the middle score…of the 3 scores. If you only have 1 score or 2 scores (have seen it), it is still workable….but unless a lender sees the whole picture – credit – income – job time, etc – than you will not have a “true” picture of what you can afford – Hope this helps – There are also Government programs out there, but they too are looking for job time, etc…..They are not so much looking a credit – but the other factors are taken into consideration. With a government loan – collections and judgements will have to be paid (most ppl do not know that) but for FHA it is true….

    ALSO –
    When you Decide to buy, decide on how much you want to spend, if you want to escrow the taxes and insurance. Say the taxes are 1200 a YR and insurance 800 a year (just an estimate, ok) That is 2,000 a year divided by 12 = 166.66 If you paid 1,000 a month now – (166.66) your P/I Principle and Interest would be 833.34. Now you decided on the price range you are looking into. If you have great credit, a 1 loan at 130,000 at a rate of 7 percent over a 30 year time would be 864.89 – This is just a estimate – ok –

    It greatly depends if you need help with closing cost, (The seller could do Seller Help toward your closing cost). If that is the case, I normally tell my clients NOT to hackle over the price, since you are asking for closing cost help – especially if the home is thru a realitor, and the seller has to pay the realitor their fee which runs from 3-6 percent of the selling price, and you ask for 3-5 percent toward closing cost -assistance) Follow me so far??

    Talk with a broker, a broker underwrites for many company’s (I underwrite for 150 companies) so I only have to pull credit 1 time, and they look at my credit. A single lender (not a broker) has programs available, but they may not be able to help you and your situation, so you go elsewhere, and than that person pulls your credit (see what I mean.) If you shop, your credit is pulled and that is considered a soft pull, for a 30 day period. Just like shopping for a auto, it is good for 30 days. If you apply for a credit card, that is considered a “hard” pull and it drags down your credit score. When looking for a home, please do not apply for a credit card, Department Charge Card, Gasoline Card or make any major purchases, like a auto, etc. This will pull your credit down.

    Try to find someone (broker) that will pull your credit one time, and submit your loan application to company’s that will go off his credit report. By the way, a loan application is called a 1003, and they will issue you a GFE (Good Faith estimate, with-in 3 days, that is per the RESPA laws, and the TIL (Truth in Lending). The GFE will tell you the up-front closing cost associated with your loan. The TIL will tell you the terms, rate associated with your loan. This is a estimate only – not the final – but it does help you figure things out.

    Go to these websites

    http://www.nehemiahcorp.org/

    http://www.fanniemaefoundation.org/

    http://www.fha-home-loans.com/

    http://www.freddiemac.com/

    Welcome to the USDA Income and Property Eligibility Site

    http://eligibility.sc.egov.usda.gov/eligibility/welcomeAction.do

    1. This site is used to determine eligibility for certain USDA home loan programs. In order to be eligible for many USDA loans, household income must meet certain guidelines. Also, the home to be purchased must be located in an eligible rural area as defined by USDA.
    To learn more about a USDA home loan program, click on the Loan Program Basics link on the left side of this screen and select one of USDA’s home loan programs.
    To determine if a property is located in an eligible rural area, click on the Property Eligibility link on the left side of the screen and select a Rural Development program. When you select a Rural Development program, you will be directed to the appropriate property eligibility screen for the Rural Development loan program you selected.
    To determine income eligibility of an applicant/household, click on the Income Eligibility link on the left side of the screen and select a Rural Development program. When you select a Rural Development program, you will be directed to the appropriate income eligibility screen for the Rural Development loan program you selected.
    To find out how to apply for a Rural Development Loan, click on the Contact Us link on the left side of the screen and then select a Rural Development Loan program.

    Rural Housing Direct Loans are loans that are directly funded by the Government. These loans are available for low- and very low-income households to obtain homeownership. Applicants may obtain 100% financing to purchase an existing dwelling, purchase a site and construct a dwelling, or purchase newly constructed dwellings located in rural areas. Mortgage payments are based on the household’s adjusted income. These loans are commonly referred to as Section 502 Direct Loans.
    2. Purpose: Section 502 loans are primarily used to help low-income individuals or households purchase homes in rural areas. Funds can be used to build, repair, renovate or relocate a home, or to purchase and prepare sites, including providing water and sewage facilities.
    Eligibility: Applicants for direct loans from HCFP must have very low or low incomes. Very low income is defined as below 50 percent of the area median income (AMI); low income is between 50 and 80 percent of AMI; moderate income is 80 to 100 percent of AMI. Click here to review area income limits for this program. Families must be without adequate housing, but be able to afford the mortgage payments, including taxes and insurance, which are typically within 22 to 26 percent of an applicant’s income. However, payment subsidy is available to applicants to enhance repayment ability. Applicants must be unable to obtain credit elsewhere, yet have reasonable credit histories. Elderly and disabled persons applying for the program may have incomes up to 80 percent of area median income (AMI).
    Terms: Loans are for up to 33 years (38 for those with incomes below 60 percent of AMI and who cannot afford 33-year terms). The term is 30 years for manufactured homes. The promissory note interest rate is set by HCFP based on the Government’s cost of money. However, that interest rate is modified by payment assistance subsidy.
    Standards: Under the Section 502 program, housing must be modest in size, design, and cost. Modest housing is property that is considered modest for the area, does not have market value in excess of the applicable area loan limit, and does not have certain prohibited features. Houses constructed, purchased, or rehabilitated must meet the voluntary national model building code adopted by the state and HCFP thermal and site standards. Manufactured housing must be permanently installed and meet the HUD Manufactured Housing Construction and Safety Standards and HCFP thermal and site standards.
    Approval: Rural Development officials should make a decision within 30 days of the Rural Development office’s receipt of the application.
    Basic Instruction: 7 CFR Part 3550 and HB-1-3550

    Section 502 Guaranteed Loan Program:
    1. Section 502 loans are primarily used to help low-income individuals or households purchase homes in rural areas. Funds can be used to build, repair, renovate or relocate a home, or to purchase and prepare sites, including providing water and sewage facilities.
    Eligibility:
    Applicants for loans may have an income of up to 115% of the median income for the area. Area income limits for this program are here. Families must be without adequate housing, but be able to afford the mortgage payments, including taxes and insurance. In addition, applicants must have reasonable credit histories.
    Approved lenders under the Single Family Housing Guaranteed Loan program include:
    Any State housing agency;
    Lenders approved by:
    HUD for submission of applications for Federal Housing Mortgage Insurance or as an issuer of Ginnie Mae mortgage backed securities;
    the U.S. Veterans Administration as a qualified mortgagee;
    Fannie Mae for participation in family mortgage loans;
    Freddie Mac for participation in family mortgage loans;
    Any FCS (Farm Credit System) institution with direct lending authority;
    Any lender participating in other USDA Rural Development and/or Farm Service Agency guaranteed loan programs.
    Terms: Loans are for 30 years. The promissory note interest rate is set by the lender.
    There is no required down payment. The lender must also determine repayment feasibility, using ratios of repayment (gross) income to PITI and to total family debt.
    Standards: Under the Section 502 program, housing must be modest in size, design, and cost. Houses constructed, purchased, or rehabilitated must meet the voluntary national model building code adopted by the state and HCFP thermal and site standards. New Manufactured housing must be permanently installed and meet the HUD Manufactured Housing Construction and Safety Standards and HCFP thermal and site standards. Existing manufactured housing will not be guaranteed unless it is already financed with an HCFP direct or guaranteed loan or it is Real Estate Owned (REO) formerly secured by an HCFP direct or guaranteed loan.
    Approval: Rural Development officials have the authority to approve most Section 502 loan guarantee requests.
    Basic Instruction:7 CFR Part 1980.

  4. Reply
    bianca
    January 29, 2011 at 6:35 am

    you can’t change your or your husband credit or work history.
    the lender will look for 2 years history. you need to meet loan requirments to gualify and with your young age only cash reserves can help you .

  5. Reply
    Dion A
    January 29, 2011 at 6:38 am

    Two things to consider, your credit score and your debt to income ratio. Credit score is a rating of how responsible you are with credit (bills, credit cards, loans, etc.) and they look at how much credit you have had and how you have handled it. Debt to income ratio is how much you can afford based on what you owe on bills every month (loans and credit, not your TV, power, etc.) divided by how much you make.

    Tips: Call a mortage broker or go on Lending Tree, Ditech, etc. and fill out an application. They will tell you how much a bank is willing to lend you by checking your credit, this gives you a starting point on your house price. If your credit score is low they will tell you exactly why (this is all free, they are trying to get your business) and how to fix it.

    Definintly use FHA, they will let you finance closing costs and require little to no down payment on a house. Any bank can get you a FHA loan. Your mortage broker (I like Lending Tree) will be your best asset, a good Realtor can find you a house, but they are not always experts on financing.

  6. Reply
    bidia
    January 29, 2011 at 6:55 am

    all paperwork ready, banks statements, pay slips bills, etc

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