Paying rent on time is a good way to make sure you don’t get evicted. Now, thanks to a new Fannie Mae policy change, that positive payment history could significantly boost your prospective clients’ chances of being approved for a home mortgage loan. 

As of Sept. 18, Fannie Mae is adding a new feature in its automated underwriting system that considers mortgage loan applicants’ rent payment history – with their permission – during the credit review process. That means that paying rent on time will officially count for something as your buyers look to transition from renter to homeowner. Continue reading

High home values. Low interest rates. Competitive bidding. 

Some interesting trends are happening in the real estate industry right now. As an agent out there helping your clients buy and sell homes, it’s your job to stay connected to what’s going on. Doing so allows you to help many families find the homes of their dreams. And gives you a few nice paychecks in the process.   Continue reading

When someone is ready to buy a house, they often hop in their car and start browsing the local home listings for their new home. It can be an exciting venture, especially when they’ve found a few in their price range.

But what is their “price range,” really? Do they know what that corner dream house with the covered patio and finished basement will cost them each month? Continue reading

Close to the grocery store. Walking distance from the park. Near grandma and grandpa. Short commute to work. 

There are many considerations your clients sift through when deciding where to look for their next home. All of the ones above are pretty common and important. But there is one factor that can sometimes be a deal-breaker for parents – the school district.  Continue reading

Mowing the grass for an elderly couple next door. Hosting a neighborhood cookout. Offering someone vegetables from your garden. 

Being a good neighbor is something everyone should focus on. Not only is it just a nice thing to do, but some benefits could come your way as a result of your kindness. 

According to the® Good Neighbor Report results, 77 percent of respondents said they had a good neighbor, while only 7 percent said they did not. Those are encouraging results for everyone. 

As a REALTOR® whose job is to build strong business (and personal) relationships with people – your neighbors, the business community, and potential clients – it’s essential to maintain a neighborly vibe with anyone you meet. This can especially pay off down the road by landing you some potential new clients and referrals. 

Here are some simple but impactful actions you can take to be a good neighbor in your community. You can pass along this wisdom to your clients, too, so they can also keep the peace and make their neighborhoods the envy of the community. Continue reading

Late last week, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced that it is being more much more lenient on the rules mortgage lenders must use to assess student loan debt for home loan applicants. The move brings FHA more in line with other government-backed mortgage programs like Fannie and Freddie, which eased their criteria in recent years. 

The new standard removes a requirement to calculate a borrower’s monthly student loan payment as 1% of their outstanding student loan balance instead of the actual monthly payment that could be significantly less than 1 percent of the balance.  Continue reading

When mortgage rates drop to near historic lows like recently, many homeowners start thinking about either refinancing their current homes or buying a new one.  

According to Freddie Mac and the National Association of Homebuilders, mortgage rates are expected to hover around 3 percent this year. The National Association of Realtors projects the rate will reach 3.2 percent in 2021, and Wells Fargo believes rates will be around 2.89 percent. All these numbers are attractive for both new home buyers and those looking to refinance. 

There are benefits and pitfalls to both that a knowledgeable and professional agent can communicate to put you in the best position possible.  

Despite it being a seller’s market where home prices in many regions are skyrocketing, you could still manage to land the home of their dreams without breaking the bank.  

However, if you aren’t up for getting into possible bidding wars, are still content in your current home, or need to squeeze some money out of your monthly budgets, refinancing can provide some benefits. 

To help you clients determine whether they should buy now or refinance instead, here are some essential considerations to share. 

Continue reading

realtor testimonials
“Courtney did a great job helping us sell our house. She was in constant communication with us throughout the entire process and we sold our house for more than our original asking price. She’s the best!”

“Our family needed to relocate quickly when my husband’s job transferred him. Luckily, after reading reviews online, we found James at XYZ Realty! He helped expedite the buying process so we could get settled a few days before my husband started his new position. We’d recommend James to anyone looking to buy a home.”

Perhaps just as important as the commission check you get every time you sell a home, is the feedback you receive from your clients. While the check will help pay next month’s bills, positive feedback like Courtney and James (they aren’t real people) received is invaluable and key to helping you build your reputation as THE real estate agent to call when it’s time to buy or sell a house. Continue reading

VA Home Loan
2020 has been one for the record books in regards to home sales and mortgage originations. For Veterans and active military personnel, the year is unprecedented – with 1.2 million home loans tallying $363 billion in homeownership opportunities – guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. The figure represents the most home loans ever assured in a single year by the government entity. Continue reading