Physician Loans Help New Doctors Purchase Homes


Doctors, dentists, and many others who go into the medical field often graduate with high amounts of student loan debt that they have to begin paying back after six months of graduation. While they may not be making a large amount of money immediately following graduation and have a large amount of debt, they are also very likely to earn a high salary as they advance in their careers.

This is why a number of mortgage companies offer what is commonly called a physician loan. This type of mortgage is aimed at those who may not be earning a large amount of money when they apply, so lenders usually require a fairly small down payment or even no down payment at all. They also often do not require

Free Government Program Can Help You Master Your Finances


You’re never too old to learn new things – including better money management practices. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) agrees.

To address financial literacy concerns, the FDIC created the Money Smart teaching program in 2001 to help educators and financial institutions increase consumer understanding of basic financial systems work and how to use them to stay financially healthy.

The Money Smart for Adults program is expanding to include more topics. According to the FDIC website, the updated Money Smart for Adults program is set to begin in fall 2018.

The updated program contains eleven separate modules that take one to two hours of time per module. Topics include how banking services work, the basics of credit and credit histories, how to use credit cards…

4 Top Myths Surrounding VA Loans


Home sellers and their agents may be limiting their potential base of buyers by ignoring a growing pool of them. Mortgage industry software company Ellie Mae reports that loans acquired through the Veterans Affairs (VA) Department account for 10% of all primary insured home loans.

It is easy to see why VA backing is preferable from a buyer’s point of view. If you qualify, you can purchase a house with no money down (up to a particular loan limit that varies by market) and no Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) requirement. Yet, sellers shy away from buyers with VA loans, and seller’s agents may serve as a screen to exclude VA-backed offers from ever reaching the seller.

Why is this so? It makes little sense, since the risk of default is borne by the lending institution and not the buyer. In addition, …

Is the Housing Market Turning?


Nearing the Limit

The housing market has suffered from excess demand and limited supply for years, causing a sharp increase in home prices. Add continually increasing interest rates to the mix, and eventually something has to give.

The turning point may have arrived.

The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller report shows that home prices are still rising, but at the slowest pace in almost two years. For almost a year, the National Case-Shiller Price index has risen by an annualized rate over 6% – well outpacing wages as well as inflation. Meanwhile, existing home sales were down 3.4% in September and down 4.1% from the previous year, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR) – the lowest mark since November 2015.

An out-of-balance market may be adjusting toward normalcy. That’s potentially good news for you, if you keep your finances in decent shape.

VA Loans 101


Veterans Affairs (VA) loans are invaluable for homebuyers. Their advantages include little or no money down, qualifying with a lower credit score, competitive interest rates, potentially lower closing and auxiliary costs, and no private mortgage insurance requirements.

VA loans are administered through approved lending institutions, and backed through an entitlement of up to $36,000. This entitlement can guarantee a home loan of up to 453,100 without a down payment and possibly higher in some high-cost counties.

You may qualify for a VA loan if you’re an active duty service member, a veteran in good standing, a current or discharged National Guard or Selected Reserve member, a spouse of a service member who died on active duty, or a spouse of a veteran who died as a result of military service. Your lender will require a Certificate of Eligibility, which requires different ev…

1 Of 3 Americans Wants To Buy A Home By 2020


Is a home purchase on your to-do list over the next two years? You’ll have plenty of competition finding your new home, according to the latest PenFed Credit Union National Mortgage Survey.

The survey found that 37% of American adults are planning to purchase a home within the next two years. Over half (52%) of the millennial generation plan to buy within that timeframe, with many looking forward to their first home purchase.

Millennials will need all the resources they can muster to get that starter home. Demand continues to outpace supply, pushing home prices upward and out of reach for an increasing number of Americans. The current home supply increased to 6.2 months, near the 6-month level considered a healthy balance – but affordable starter homes are still in short supply in many markets.

According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), first-time buyers need nearly 23% of their income to afford the average entry-level home. That’s the hig…

More Americans With Low Credit Scores Buying Homes


If you have a low credit score and want to buy a home, your odds of getting a loan have improved. A study by the Fair Isaac Corporation (FICO) shows that credit scores for new mortgage originations have been dropping, suggesting that lenders are slowly relaxing the tight credit policies imposed after the housing crisis.

According to the study, new mortgage loans with credit scores less than 700 increased from 21.9% of all mortgage loans in 2009 to 29.7% in 2017. These include scores in the subprime market that can reach down into the 400s. (While the typical lower credit score limit is 620 for conforming loans and 500 for FHA loans, loans may be granted at even lower credit scores with extenuating circumstances.)

The shift in average credit scores is driven by FHA loans – as expected by the lower acceptance criteria for FHA loans. The latest Origination Insight Report from Ellie Mae shows that only 16.7% of conventional mortgage loan originations in July 2018 wer…

New 3% Down Payment Mortgages Available


Are you looking for a mortgage that features a low down payment but can’t find a suitable conventional loan because of various restrictions?The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) offers loan products with down payments of just 3.5% for borrowers with FICO credit scores as low as 580 – an attractive combination for potential homebuyers with lesser credit that are struggling to come up with a sufficient down payment.

However, the FHA faces increasing competition for the low-down-payment mortgage market. The government-sponsored enterprises Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are increasing their push into this market with new loan programs that allow certain borrowers to purchase homes with only a 3% down payment.

Freddie Mac already offered 3% down mortgages under the Home Possible program designed to help low-income borrowers. The program features optional down payment sources such as family contributions and employee-assistance programs, along with income flexibility f…

Stressed By Home Buying? Don’t Be


A Stressful Experience

What’s the most stressful event you’ve had in your life? Applying for college? Going on a job interview? Hosting Thanksgiving dinner for your entire family?

According to a recent survey by, buying a home tops all of those events as “the most stressful event in modern life.” One-third of respondents said they were driven to shedding tears at some point during the process. One in ten homebuyers claimed to have buyer’s remorse after their home purchase.

Home buying can be a prolonged and confusing process – but you can reduce the stress with research and realistic expectations at every step.

Know What You Want

It’s easy to fall in love with a home at first sight, but you must look at your purchase with a practical eye.

According to the survey, the average family viewed six homes before making their choice. However, the high rate of buyer’s remorse suggests that many…