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For over 35 years

Posts Tagged ‘home mortgage fees’

Shop for a Mortgage as Rates Rise

It is always advisable to shop for a mortgage, but as rates rise the savings can be significant. Each lender offers different loan programs and sets different borrower requirements. It’s important that you get quotes from several types of financial institutions, mortgage lenders, and brokers to find one that offers the best loan program for you.
Banks
Banks are for-profit financial institutions that typically offer several different products such as mortgages, credit cards, checking and savings accounts, and more. Many large banks have branches nationwide or throughout a specific region where you can get in-person support, and they also might offer a wider selection of mortgage products.
One downside to banks is that they tend to charge slightly higher interest rates on home loans compared to credit unions, according to a side-by-side comparison by the National Credit Union Administration.
Credit Unions
Credit unions are nonprofit organizations that offer banking services to their members. In addition to offering lower interest rates on mortgages and other financial products, credit unions have historically earned the highest customer satisfaction ratings.
However, you’ll need to join a credit union to get a mortgage. Some credit unions are open to anyone, but others may require you to work in a certain industry or live in a certain area.
Mortgage Lenders
You might also find a home loan with another type of lender. For instance, online lenders, such as Rocket Mortgage, offer an end-to-end digital process. You may be able to get pre-approved, upload loan documents, and close on the loan all online. By saving money on overhead costs, online lenders may also be able to offer lower rates or special discounts.
Mortgage Brokers
Mortgage brokers are licensed to act as a go-between with you and your lender. When working with a mortgage broker, you’ll have access to a variety of residential loan programs from different lenders. The broker doesn’t make a loan. Instead, the broker has a variety of lenders they work with.
In general, a mortgage broker will have a lot of knowledge of different home loan programs, and a good idea of what you might qualify for, including what interest rate you’re eligible for.
Shop For Best Rates
Getting rate quotes from multiple lenders and comparing offers is one of the easiest ways to save money on your mortgage. That’s because the interest rate is one of the key components of the mortgage’s total cost, and rates can vary considerably with each lender. Despite this, about half of homebuyers skip shopping for the best rate.
To find the best loan for you, research all costs of the loan. Knowing just the amount of the monthly payment or the interest rate isn’t enough. Even more important than knowing the interest rate is knowing the APR — the total cost you pay for credit, as a yearly interest rate. The interest rate is a very big factor in calculating the APR, but the APR also includes costs like points and other credit costs, like mortgage insurance. Knowing the APR makes it easier to compare “apples to apples” when considering mortgage offers.
When you’re shopping around, you may see ads or get offers claiming to have rates that are very low or fixed. But they may not tell you the true terms of the deal as the law requires. The ad may feature buzz words that are signs that you’ll want to dig a little deeper.
  • Low or fixed rate. A loan’s interest rate might be fixed or low only for a short introductory period — sometimes as short as 30 days. Then your rate and payment could increase dramatically. Look for the APR: under federal law if the interest rate is in the ad, the APR also should be there. Although it should be clearly stated, you may instead need to look for it buried in the fine print or deep within a website.
  • Very low payment. This might seem like a good deal, but it could mean you would pay only the interest on the money you borrowed (called the principal). Eventually, though, you would have to pay the principal. That means you would have higher monthly payments or a “balloon” payment — a one-time payment that is usually much larger than your usual payment.
You also may find lenders that offer to let you make monthly payments where you pay only a portion of the interest you owe each month. The unpaid interest is added to the principal that you owe. That means your loan balance will increase over time. Instead of paying off your loan, you end up borrowing more. This is known as negative amortization. It can be risky because you can end up owing more on your home than what you could get if you sold it.
Find out your total payment. While the interest rate determines how much interest you owe each month, you also want to know what you must pay for your total mortgage payment each month. The calculation of your total monthly mortgage payment considers these factors, sometimes called PITI:
  • principal (money you borrowed)
  • interest (what you pay the lender to borrow the money)
  • taxes and
  • homeowners’ insurance
“Mortgage rates rose again as markets continue to manage the prospect of more aggressive monetary policy due to elevated inflation,” says Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist. “Not only are mortgage rates rising but the dispersion of rates has increased, suggesting that borrowers can meaningfully benefit from shopping around for a better rate.”

Residential Real Estate Closing Costs and Fees

In addition to a down payment, you will also have to have sufficient cash on hand to pay for closing costs. The person purchasing the home pays usually closing costs, but with some mortgages (VA for example) the seller can pay closing costs. A little-known fact is that a big part of costs and fees actually go to third parties who process the mortgage, as well as local governments as taxes.

The average closing costs percentage is usually about 2-5% of the purchase price. But all cash buyers may end of paying less and high risk buyers getting a loan may end of paying more.

As an informed mortgage customer, you should make your mortgage banker walk you through each cost, and explain in detail what you are paying.   Lenders are required to give you a Good Faith Estimate.

It is advisable that you fully understand the total cost of purchasing a home in advance of finalizing a contract. State laws and fees will vary depending on the practice and real estate law within the state. Here’s a breakdown of the most common closing costs and fees with a rough estimate of average cost:

 

Appraisal :($200-$600) – This is paid to the appraisal company to confirm the fair market value of the home.

         Buyer’s Attorney Fee: (not required in all states – $400 and up)

Lender’s Attorney Fee: (not required in all states – $150 and up)

Escrow Deposit for Property Taxes & Mortgage Insurance: (varies widely) – Often you are asked to put down two months of property tax and mortgage insurance payments at closing as a requirement by the lender.

Credit Report: (up to $50) – A Tri-merge credit report is pulled to get your credit history and score.  You cannot supply your consumer pulled report and the scores pulled form the internet from any place other than myfico.com are not real scores nor are they accurate.

Closing Fee or Escrow Fee :(generally calculated a $2.00 per thousand of purchase price plus $250 – $500) – This is paid to the title company, escrow company or attorney for conducting the closing. The Title Company or escrow oversees the closing as an independent party in your home purchase. Some states require a real estate attorney be present at every closing.

         Home Owners Association Transfer Fees – The Seller will pay for this transfer which will show that the dues are paid current, what the dues are, a copy of the association financial statements, minutes and notices.  The buyer should review these documents to determine if the Association has enough reserves in place to avert future special assessments, check to see if there are special assessments, legal action, or any other items that might be of concern.  Also included will be Association by-laws, rules and regulations and CC & Rs.  The fee for the transfer varies per association, but generally around $200-$300.

Title Company Title Search or Exam Fee (varies greatly) – This fee is paid to the title company for doing a thorough search of the property’s records. The title company researches the deed to your new home, ensuring that no one else has a claim to the property.

Survey Fee (varies greatly) – This fee goes to a survey company to verify all property lines and things like shared fences on the property.  This is not required in all states but will be required if you are getting a loan. The cost will depend on if an existing survey exists, if there have been additions or deletions to the property since it was last surveyed, the size and complexity of the property, et. al.

Courier Fee (up to $50) – This covers the cost of transporting documents to complete the loan transaction as quickly as possible.

Lender’s Policy Title Insurance: (Calculated from the purchase price off a rate table. Varies by company) – This is insurance to assure the lender that you own the home and the lender’s mortgage is a valid lien. Similar to the title search, but sometimes a separate line item.

         Loan Application Fee: (Varies by lender) A fee charged to process an application for a loan, such as a home mortgage from a lender or mortgage broker.

Owner’s Policy Title Insurance: (Calculated from the purchase        price off a rate table. Varies by company) – This is an insurance policy protecting you in the event someone challenges your ownership of the home.

Transfer Taxes :(varies widely by state & municipality) – This is the tax paid when the title passes from seller to buyer.

Recording Fees: (varies widely depending on municipality) – A fee charged by your local recording office, usually city or county, for the recording of public land records.

Processing or Loan Origination Fee :(varies by lender) – This goes to your lender. It reimburses the cost to process the information on your loan application.

Underwriting Fee: (varies by lender) – This also goes to your lender, covering the cost of researching whether or not to approve you for the loan.

Loan Discount Points: (often zero to two percent of loan amount) – “Points” are prepaid interest. One point is one percent of your loan amount. This is a lump sum payment that lowers your monthly payment for the life of your loan.

Pre-Paid Interest :(varies depending on loan amount, interest rate and time of month you close on your loan) – This is money you pay at closing in order to get the interest paid up through the first of the month.

    Private Mortgage Insurance: If your down payment is less than 20%, the lender may require that you purchase this insurance to protect them from repossessing and selling the home for less than the loan value.

Property Taxes: proration depending on what has been already paid or is owed by the Seller:

Wood Destroying Pest Inspection and Allocation of Costs: – If required by the lender or buyer, the inspection generally runs up to $125.00

Last, but not least, you probably will get your own home inspection to verify the condition of a property and to check for home repairs that may be needed before closing.  These inspections can include general inspection, RADON testing, seawall, pool and roof inspections, Chinese drywall, mold and more.

Closing costs and fees are part of a mortgage, and knowing what they are and how much they should be is a good idea. This will put you in a position to challenge a cost or fee that seems exorbitant. Even if everything is correct, you have the right to ask, and your mortgage company has the duty to explain — in detail — each and every closing cost and fee.