THE BEST TIME TO SELL YOUR HOME IS COMING SOON!

If you are like many buyers and sellers, when you are in the moment of looking to purchase or thinking of selling your home, you all ask the same questions; Is now the right time to sell your home? Likewise, is this the right time to buy a home? My simple answer is, “the best time depends on your priorities, goals, and situation.”

When I started in this business almost 20 years ago, my ego sometimes got the best of me; I thought I knew it all and could foresee when rates would go up or down and how these changes would affect the housing market. I learned very quickly that I do not possess this superpower. I promptly changed my tune – my job is to guide my clients with the safest and most secure loan choices possible and let the historical data help build some consensus to formulate a plan or strategy to buy or sell.

With that said, it’s interesting to see what market professionals are saying is the best time to sell your home. If you have been on the fence waiting for the right time to sell, you might want to look at the data. According to Realtor. com®’s fourth annual Best Time To Sell report, the ideal time to list your home in Sacramento is the week of April 17. Because it possibly has the perfect balance of housing market conditions that favor home sellers, more so than any other week in the year.

Also, Money.com listed Elk Grove #4 on their list of best places in the country to sell a home in 2022. According to Realtor.com’s chief economist Danielle Hale, “Sellers listing in mid-April can expect to find relatively high buyer interest, coupled with limited competition from other sellers, that equates to fast-selling homes at top dollar,” she said in a recent news release. But, of course, market conditions are variable and not always the same for everyone, and the best time to list your home can change quickly.

If you think it’s time, here are three things you should do first:

#1) Find an experienced lender to secure financing to know your options and what you qualify for if you are thinking of buying a new home after you sell. It’s not just about getting a great interest rate; it’s also about working with a lender who will take the time to be sure you are in the right loan for your situation.

#2) Find a great Realtor to work with to list your home and possibly help you find another. I know some of the best in the business and would love to introduce you to one or two that work in your area.

#3) Layout your Game Plan with your agent and your lender. Once you have settled on your agent and lender, it is best to be open with your budget, dream neighborhood, and comfort level regarding the monthly payment and cash needed to close. This will help your team implement a strategy that will put you in the best position to win.

The above information is for educational purposes only. Guild Mortgage Company offers home financing only. All loans are subject to underwriter approval. Terms, conditions, and eligibility requirements apply.

Buy a Home for Your Parents With This Special Loan Program

As a long-time Mortgage lender in Sacramento, I have used this relatively unknown loan program to help my clients purchase new homes for their parents while avoiding the more stringent rules and higher rates that come with buying an investment property.

It is not uncommon that I get that call from a concerned client, trying to figure out how to help their parents move closer to them, so they can spend more time with the grandkids, or worse case they need emergency help. The challenge of long-distance caregiving can be a significant drain on the family, and this program may be the answer.

Unfortunately, purchasing a second home or investment property often means you need to put up a much larger down payment than you would for a primary residence, and the interest rate might be higher. The benefit of this Family Opportunity Mortgage is that even if you currently own a primary residence, the new loan is subject to the same guidelines and rates as an owner-occupied home! If your parents don’t have sufficient income or cannot work and wouldn’t qualify for a mortgage on their own, this could be the program you could use to help them.

This unique mortgage offers several benefits over traditional second home mortgages. First, no occupancy requirements – For second homes, typical rules require the borrower to occupy the home for some part of the year. There is no such requirement for this type of mortgage however, the parents must live in the property as their primary residence.

Secondly, there are no distance requirements – Some underwriters may require that a second home not be located near your primary residence. This rule has softened, but the underwriter would ask for a strong case of why this home should be considered a 2nd home under standard underwriting guidelines. But thankfully, with this program, there are no distance requirements! The home could be located right next to yours or in a different town; it’s still priced and underwritten as a primary residence, allowing you to secure a home for your parents at a lower cost.

Not all lenders offer this program, so be sure to ask your lender if this is available or give me a call anytime. We can cover this in more detail to see if you are eligible for this unique program.

The above information is for educational purposes only. All data, loan programs, and interest rates are subject to change without notice. All loans are subject to underwriter approval. Terms, conditions, and eligibility requirements apply. Always consult an accountant or tax advisor for complete eligibility requirements on tax deduction.

COVID-19 Questions You Should Ask The Lender before Accepting Offer!

“In this COVID-19 world, what questions should I ask the buyer’s lender before accepting an offer on my listings?”

When was the last time credit was pulled? Ideally the last week or so.

If an FHA/VA offer, can you fund with their FICO today? Many lenders have changed the minimum FICO requirements. If the buyer’s credit was pulled prior to that change, do they still qualify?

Are you able to lock loans prior to final approval or appraisal? You want a “yes” – if rates go up after application, it could hurt their pre-approval or scare the buyer away from an increased payment. Many lenders are not allowing this. If that’s the case, can they withstand, and are they prepared for a rate increase?

What happens if the loan program is suspended during the loan process? Once you are locked you are “mostly” safe from program changes or program suspensions.

Could you force a lock date, per the contract, to protect your seller from suspended or canceled loan programs? Write it into additional provisions. Some lenders are not allowing loan to be locked until loan is approved and, in some cases, once all prior to doc conditions are met. Guild can lock day 1

Have you verified the Borrower’s full-time employment within the last 24 hours? Employment is tenuous today. It can change at any moment.

What are your current underwriting turn times? It longer than 3-4 days, a 30-day, or less, COE will be challenging.

Will you be requiring employment verification at the Funding/Closing Table? If they want verification done on or the day before the closing date, it could be a challenge to close on-time if the employer is not responsive or available.

What is your company’s policy on appraisals currently? Do they allow drive-by or desk reviews?

What are your appraisal turn times? If longer than 10 days, a 30-day close will be challenging.

Can the lender honestly close in 30 days? What % of the time do they experience that today?

Does the buyer currently own a home and if so, have they requested payment forbearance? If any mortgage loan is currently in forbearance, the buyer cannot likely get a new loan.

Is the lender allowing e-closings? If not, how long is the current process from CD to funding?

Does the lender allow for early closing if everything is done?

If you have questions on any of these, please do not hesitate to ask.

BE SAFE!

DOES LEASING A CAR AFFECT A BUYER’S ABILITY TO BUY A HOME?

As a mortgage professional for almost 20 years, I know just about every gotcha that can cause an underwriter to deny your loan. We look at monthly minimum obligations you pay on your debts. We take those minimum payments, including your proposed total mortgage payment (principal, interest, taxes, insurance, and private mortgage insurance), and then divide this by your gross income. This debt-to-income ratio is the barometer we use to determine your ability to repay the mortgage.

My wife, a college professor, texted me:

“My friend, who is a business/finance professor and contract attorney is insisting that leasing a car will not affect buying a home because it’s not debt… He says he also teaches Mortgage people this stuff.”

WIFE: “Can I tell him he’s wrong?”

ME: “Yes, he’s wrong. It’s debt!” 

WIFE: “LOL, I knew it! He is generally full of crap, but when he said that’s what he teaches in his classes, it made me pause.”

Imagine you have a $375/month car payment, which is nearly equivalent to $75,000 in spending power when buying a home. Or imagine you are a 2-car family spending $750/month on car loans. This reduces your buying power by $150,000. So instead of affording that charming $500,000 home, you have had your eye on, your max is only $350,000. As my clients know too well, this could hinder getting into that perfect neighborhood with the right schools and the short commute you so desperately want.

And here is the rub – a leased vehicle is even worse. Are you listening, Mr. Professor? Most of us know that when your lease period expires; you either lease again, or keep the leased vehicle with a large buyout (this could be money you need for your down payment or closing costs for a new home). Whereas with a conventional car loan, when you make your last scheduled payment, you own the car free and clear (aka no debt).

Also, in some circumstances, if you are a few months shy of paying off your auto loan, an underwriter will not hit you with the monthly auto debt and will not hold it against your ratios. You can see why the hair on the back of my neck jump to attention hearing this professor tell his many students that a car lease is not debt and will not affect their ability to buy a home. Rubbish!

This one financial decision can be the reason you miss that opportunity to get into your dream home. When something sounds too good to be true, it genuinely is too good to be true. My best advice is to sit down with a trusted mortgage professional before paying off any debt, or restructuring those credit card balances, and work through your debt-to-income ratios with someone who does this every day.

3 ‘Must Know’ Pieces of Advice for First-time Home Buyers

3 'Must Know' Pieces of Advice for First-time Home BuyersWhen delving into the realities of homeownership in Sacramento, there can be many factors involved that make it difficult to determine what you need to know and what can wait until later. If you happen to be a first-time buyer who’s looking for the best tips for purchasing a home, look no further than the following three-pointers to set you on the right path.

Get Familiar With Your Credit Score

If you haven’t looked at your credit report for a long time, it can be a daunting task to request this information. Fortunately, your credit report is free from AnnualCreditReport.com and it will prepare you for what lenders are going to see. By taking this important step, you will be able to determine any delinquent accounts or balances owing that have gone to collections, and hopefully have these cleaned up before they can become a problem for your mortgage.

Determine The Price You Can Pay

While you may have a price in mind for what you’re willing to pay for a home, it’s important to determine your debt-to-income ratio before putting in an offer. Your DTI ratio can be determined by taking your total monthly costs, adding it to what you would be paying for a home and dividing it by your monthly gross income.

Organize Your Housing History

If you have a good history as a tenant, the next step will probably be the easiest of all, but it’s very important in order to prove you’re a responsible candidate for homeownership. Once you’ve acquired a Verification of Rent from any applicable landlord in the previous year, you’ll want to ensure that you have money in the bank. But don’t assume you need 20% down to get into your first home. Unfortunately, many first time homebuyers think they need this large down payment to qualify and that is just not true.

There are a lot of things to know when it comes to buying a home, but if you’re a first-time buyer the most important thing is to ensure that your finances are organized and that you’re not diving into more house than you can afford. By taking the time to determine your debt-to-income ratio and looking into your credit, you can ensure a positive first-time buying experience. If you’re wondering about homes for sale in your area, you may want to contact your trusted real estate professionals for more information.