Existing home sales beat expectations in August and reached the best levels since March. Buyers have been drawn into the market by lower prices and exceptionally low interest rates. Sales increased 7.7% month over month to an annual rate of 5.03 million homes, according to NAR (National Association of Realtors). NAR also commented that rising rents push more renters to look at buying their first home. Read more »
The Federal Reserve announced today that it will sell $400 billion short term securities and reinvest that money into long term holdings like U.S. treasuries. The effort is being called “Operation Twist” and has already made an inpact on already low mortgage rates. You can see the image I attached that clearly shows a jump in price for mortgage bonds today, higher prices for bonds means lower mortgage rates.
There is a lot of disagreement about what effects this new move will bring for the economy and for inflation in particular. There were 3 Fed bank presidents that disagreed with the decision. Read more »
A lot of people want to buy a new home in today’s market to take advantage of these crazy low prices and interest rates. The problem is selling the home they already own. For some, this totally blocks them because they can’t afford to buy a new home without selling, but some owners believe they can afford to buy that new place… the problem is getting a mortgage! Loans in Charlotte might hold the key to making your dream home a reality. Read more »
FHA is lowering existing loan limits for single family housing in Charlotte MSA from $303,750 to $271,050. This change is set to go into effect on October 1st, 2011. Although I am not happy about the change I seriously doubt it will have any real impact on the local housing market and here’s why… Read more »
First let’s talk a little about what PMI is and why lenders require it. PMI stands for private mortgage insurance. When most homebuyers hear the term insurance they immediately think it is for their benefit. It gets associated with mortgage life insurance that pays off the mortgage in case they die, but PMI does not cover the borrower. PMI protects the lender in case the borrower defaults on the loan.
One thing that makes PMI such a unique form of insurance is that the borrower is required to pay for the lender’s coverage! The lender is covered against losses but the borrower pays… doesn’t seem fair does it? Actually the borrower gets a huge benefit from having the insurance, they get the opportunity to buy a house with an affordable down payment. Many borrowers can not come up with 20% to put down on their desired home, so without PMI they wouldn’t be able to buy a home at all! Read more »