Contributor | In Mortgages, Personal Finance
A former journalist and author of “The Book on VA Loans: An Essential Guide to Maximizing Your Home Loan Benefits,” Chris Birk is also content development director for Veterans United.
Bouncing back from bankruptcy or foreclosure takes time. But that doesn’t mean you have to shelve your homebuying aspirations for some interminable stretch. They’re called “boomerang buyers” for a reason. Consumers may be able to close on a home loan just a couple years removed from one (or both) of these fiscal hiccups. A lot... Read More
Save for maybe the diehard financial romantics, it’s a rare wedding where “credit scores” share billing with sickness and health. But it might be time to update those well-worn marriage vows. From that moment forward, your spouse’s credit profile will play a big role in your collective financial future. That’s especially true when the time... Read More
Many homebuyers are drawn to the lure of the fixer-upper. And with good reason, at least on paper. But the “buy low, sell high” ethos of fixer-uppers isn’t exactly a guarantee. There are plenty of people who snagged the worst house in a great neighborhood and turned it into their dream home. You’re just as... Read More
Losing a job is tough enough. But what do you do if you find yourself out of work when you’re weeks or even days from closing on your dream home? Brutal. But it happens. Employment isn’t a requirement for getting a home loan – just ask retirees. The issue is ensuring there’s stable, reliable income... Read More
We all make financial missteps, whether it’s an impulse purchase in the checkout aisle or something less defensible, like an extended warranty or rental car insurance. But bigger purchases – like, say a home – can really magnify mistakes. Missteps when it comes to securing a mortgage often prove especially damaging, given the size and... Read More
When you’re hoping to lock down a home loan, the focus is on making sure you look like a safe bet for prospective lenders. Conversation tends to drift to the key pieces of the pre-approval puzzle, from credit score and stable income to acceptable debt levels and suitable assets. No one’s arguing the wisdom there.... Read More
Younger, first-time homebuyers are an increasingly rare sight in the current housing market. The homeownership rate for the 35-and-under crowd fell to a 22-year low in the second quarter, according to the Census Bureau. A bounce might loom on the horizon as lenders start to loosen credit and underwriting requirements. Even with a broad thaw,... Read More
The seesawing housing market continues to defy economists and expectations. Pending home sales dipped in June after a string of strong months, catching many by surprise. Mortgage rates are sinking back down near historic lows. Home prices are on the rise, but inventory is still tight in some communities. In short, it’s a tough time... Read More
The nation’s second-largest mortgage lender recently raised eyebrows after suggesting it might stop making FHA loans. JPMorgan Chase has already scaled back lending to lower-credit borrowers, citing the increased costs of foreclosure and regulatory action. But the firm’s chief executive went a step further in a conference call last week, noting Chase is “struggling” with... Read More
Homeowners who stop paying their mortgage do so for a host of reasons. Lives and financial circumstances change. Job loss or relocation might put consumers in a bind. Housing values can plummet, leaving homeowners owing far more than the property is worth. About 6% of all mortgage loans were at least one payment behind at... Read More
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