Tag Archives: TaraMortgageServices

Tara Mortgage Services Featured Blog: How Identity Theft Affects Your Home Loan Approval

DHREA 13/11/2019

It makes everyone cringe at the mere possibility of it — identity theft. Unfortunately, about 1 in 15 Americans are victims of it. And the way most find out that it’s happened to them is when their credit is pulled, and they notice something suspicious. Indeed, identity theft can even negatively affect your home loan application. Here’s how identity theft affects your mortgage application and the steps you can take to help you get approved despite the fraud.

Types of Identity Theft And How It Affects Your Home Loan Application

There are many types of identity theft. While all are serious, only one can hamper getting a home loan. With financial identity theft, a criminal is using your identity to get approved for credit. While a $300 shopping spree probably won’t affect your ability to get approved for a mortgage, it could lower your credit score and change the mortgage rate you qualify for.

However, fraudulent charges of thousands or tens of thousands of dollars are sure to halt your loan approval and here’s why:

Part of getting approved for any loan is demonstrating that you can be trusted to pay it back. And, essentially, that’s what a credit score shows. The higher the score, the more financially responsible you appear to be, and the more lenders will trust that you can and will pay back the loan.

So when it comes to mortgage approval, you can imagine how much weight your credit score carries. And if your credit shows that you have a $12,000 debt that’s currently in collections, that’s a red flag that no lender wants to see.

Home loan denied. Well, for now, anyway.

Fortunately, that’s not the end of the story! While it’s not a fast process, there are steps you can take to help clear up the crime from your credit history and get you well on your way to home loan approval.

What You Can Do If You’re a Victim

First thing you want to do it report the crime to the police. You’ll also want to file an affidavit with the Federal Trade Commission. Sometimes, a copy of the police report and the affidavit is all that the underwriter needs to move your application towards approval. Unfortunately, even with proof of a crime and loan approval, your rate may remain on the higher end of the scale because rates are determined when you first applied for the home loan.

Now we come to a fork in the road. Accept the higher rate and move forward with the home purchase. Or wait until everything gets cleared from your credit history and start the process all over again.

Both options have their advantages and disadvantages.

If you decide to purchase now, you’ll have the certainty of buying in the current favorable conditions. Your rate may be high now but, then again, it could be high later too. The market is changing all the time, and we cannot predict what your future rate would be.

However, if you decide to take the extra steps to clear your history and wait to purchase, you’ll have the peace of mind that you are getting the best rate based on your actual credit score. Your rate may also be lower than it was the first time around, possibly saving you thousands of dollars over the life of the loan.

Plus, you also have to consider the housing market. The availability of homes for sale in your price bracket may not be the same in six months. Are you willing to wait and see?

Identity theft isn’t something that’s fixed overnight. After you’ve filed a police report and an affidavit with the FTC, you still need to submit copies to the credit bureaus. This will trigger an investigation and should also stop them from showing the fraudulent info on your report. The time it takes for your report to be completely cleared varies quite a bit. It can take as little as weeks, but in some cases, it’s taken years.

We hope that you are never a victim of identity theft, in any form. However, know that there is light at the end of the tunnel when it comes to buying your dream home even if this does happen to you. Do you know what rate you qualify for? Contact us today to see how low your rate can be!

(This blog was originally published at tara-mtg.net)

Network with over 700 Real Estate Investors! Join Alex Deacon’s Real Estate Networking Group on MeetUp.com, and be one of the first to receive updates on upcoming events!

Alex Deacon Real Estate Networking Workshops

Carnegie, PA
743 Members

Learn investing from a local expert with a vast amount of experience in the Pittsburgh market. Alex started investing in 1993. We will review hands on examples, analysis, and …

Check out this Meetup Group →

Join Alex Deacon’s fast-growing Pittsburgh Landlord Group on MeetUp.com! Connect with other Landlords for monthly seminars with Q & A! Click below!

Pittsburgh Landlord Group

Carnegie, PA
234 Members

This is a great venue for Real estate investors, real estate agents and property managers to expand your knowledge and to help others in the field of being a landlord. We will…

Check out this Meetup Group →

Visit our affiliates!

MACE Property Management: www.PittsburghPropertyManagement.com

Tara Mortgage Services, LLC: www.Tara-MTG.net

HDH Settlement Services, LLC: www.HDHTitle.com

Burkhead Insurance Services: Burkhead.Insure

Bin There Dump That: www.PittsburghDumpsterRental.com

Red Tree Mortgage: https://www.redtreemtg.com/

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Tara Mortgage Services Featured Blog! The Financial Benefits of Buying a Home in a College Town

DHREA 28/10/2019

Even if you’re done with college or if your children are years away from higher education, there are still many benefits to living in a college town. And don’t think that college towns are all small towns. College towns can be as urban as Tallahassee, Florida, thriving with business while remaining surprisingly low-cost.

Here are some of the financial benefits of buying a home in a college town, and remember to contact Tara Mortgage Services for even more savings options! Low mortgage rate and steady home prices (so far) make it a great time to buy a home.

Low-Cost Entertainment and Cultural Events

Colleges are known as “tastemakers” in the entertainment industry and often attract touring musicians, theater performances, and speakers, many of which wouldn’t typically come to smaller cities. Surrounding businesses host these events as well. Local theaters, bars, and city parks are great places to catch concerts that are open to the public. Let’s not forget that the colleges aren’t just hosting; they’re producing performances as well. Tickets are less expensive than even the most modest-priced Broadway show and are a great way to support your local artists.

State of the Art Medical Services

Medical schools are yet another low-cost benefit of living in a college town. Under the supervision of a licensed practitioner, medical students offer a wide variety of medical services in the university-sponsored clinic or large hospital. And since university medical facilities are the benefactors of non-profit donations, they usually have the most advanced medical equipment while remaining relatively low-cost.

Smart Rental Property Investment

If you decide to rent your property, a college town will ensure it will never be without a renter. The demand for housing is steady, and in the case of public universities, the need can be high. The caveat is that the turnover rate for renters is higher in college towns. But if you purchase a rental property in a college town like Boston or Denver, the likelihood of finding a long-term renter easier.

Whether you are buying a property for living in or renting, this could be the smartest investment of you life. Contact Tara Mortgage Services today to learn about mortgages and investment properties in our city!

Network with over 700 Real Estate Investors! Join Alex Deacon’s Real Estate Networking Group on MeetUp.com, and be one of the first to receive updates on upcoming events!

Alex Deacon Real Estate Networking Workshops

Carnegie, PA
738 Members

Learn investing from a local expert with a vast amount of experience in the Pittsburgh market. Alex started investing in 1993. We will review hands on examples, analysis, and …

Check out this Meetup Group →

Join Alex Deacon’s fast-growing Pittsburgh Landlord Group on MeetUp.com! Connect with other Landlords for monthly seminars with Q & A! Click below!

Pittsburgh Landlord Group

Carnegie, PA
226 Members

This is a great venue for Real estate investors, real estate agents and property managers to expand your knowledge and to help others in the field of being a landlord. We will…

Check out this Meetup Group →

Visit our affiliates!

MACE Property Management: www.PittsburghPropertyManagement.com

Tara Mortgage Services, LLC: www.Tara-MTG.net

HDH Settlement Services, LLC: www.HDHTitle.com

Burkhead Insurance Services: Burkhead.Insure

Bin There Dump That: www.PittsburghDumpsterRental.com

Red Tree Mortgage: https://www.redtreemtg.com/

Read More

Tara Mortgage Services Featured Blog: The Ultimate Guide to Closing Costs

DHREA 21/10/2019

Just like when you purchase a car, the listed price of the home does not include the additional fees. Essentially, the “sticker price” is not the out-the-door price. For home purchases, these additional fees are lumped together and called “closing costs.”

Here are the fees you can expect to pay in the final stretch of your home purchase. 

Closing Costs Explained

Closing costs cover the expenses that finalize your home loan, whether its a purchase or a refinance. Most of the closing costs responsibility falls on the buyer. However, the seller will pay a few as well, such as their real estate agent’s commission. 

If negotiated, the seller may also cover all or part of the buyers closing costs. 

How much will you pay in closing costs?

Average closing costs run between about 2% and 5% of the loan amount. So on a $300,000 home purchase, you can expect to pay between $6,000 to $15,000. 

The most cost-effective way to handle closing costs is to pay it upfront, out-of-pocket though some choose to finance their closing costs by rolling them into the loan. However, that’s not always an option, plus it’ll end up costing more since you’ll also pay interest.

List of Buyers Closing Costs

Property-related fees

Appraisal fee: A home appraisal checks that the property is worth the amount you are borrowing. The typical cost is about $300 and $400.

Home inspection: Home inspections are usually required, especially if you’re getting a government-backed loan such as an FHA. A home inspection is also a smart move for you, the buyer, as it will reveal any potential problems before the deal is final.

If the inspection finds problems, you can use it to negotiate a lower price. Depending on how bad the issues are, you may be able to back out of the contract. Home inspection fees are about $300 to $400.

Loan-related fees

Application fee: This fee covers the cost of processing the loan, such as credit checks and administrative expenses. This fee varies depending on the amount of work it took to put process your loan. 

Our office uses digital mortgage processing, which helps to speed up the timeline as well as lower our overall expenses. We pass these savings to our clients!

Assumption fee: This only applies if the seller has an assumable mortgage in which you are taking over the remaining balance. The amount depends on what that balance is.

Attorney fees: Some states require an attorney to be present at the closing. The amount depends on how much the attorney charges per hour and how many hours they are present at the signing.

Prepaid interest: In some cases, you’ll be required to pay the interest that accrued between the settlement date and the first mortgage due date. The fee depends on the amount borrowed and your interest rate. 

Loan origination fee: Also known as an underwriting fee, administrative fee, or processing fee, this covers the evaluation and preparation of your mortgage loan. You can expect to pay about 0.5% of the amount you’re borrowing. 

Discount points: Discount points reduce your interest rate and are especially attractive if you plan on staying in your home for several years. The cost of one point equals 1% of the loan. So for a loan of $350,000, a 1-point payment would be $3,500. This fee only applies if you purchase points.

Mortgage broker fee: Brokers usually charge a commission as a percentage of your loan amount. The amount varies. 

Mortgage insurance fees

Mortgage insurance application fee: If your down payment is less than 20%, you’ll have to get private mortgage insurance (PMI). This fee varies by lender.

Upfront mortgage insurance: Some situations require borrowers to pay the first year’s mortgage insurance premium upfront. Expect it to be about 0.55% to 2.25% of the purchase price of the home.

FHA, VA, and USDA fees: If your loan is government-backed, you’ll have to pay the following fees:

  • Mortgage insurance premiums for an FHA loan
  • Guarantee fees if it’s a loan funded by the Department of Veterans Affairs or the U.S. Department of Agriculture. 

Property taxes, annual fees, and insurance

Property taxes: Buyers usually pay two months’ worth of property taxes at closing.

Annual assessments: If your homeowners’ association requires a yearly fee, you might have to pay it in one lump sum upfront.

Homeowners insurance premium: Homeowner’s insurance covers your property in case of damage. Some homeowner’s associations include it in the monthly fee, so it’s worth asking before you purchase it separately.

The amount depends on where you live and the home’s value.

Title fees

Title search fee: A title search makes sure that the person selling the house is the true owner and that there are no claims or liens against the property. It’s relatively labor-intensive, especially if the records aren’t computerized.

It’s about $200 but varies among title companies. The search fee may be included in the cost of title insurance.

Lender’s title insurance: This protects the lender in case there’s a mistake in the title search, and someone makes a claim on the property. Coverage lasts until the mortgage is paid off.

Owner’s title insurance: Similar to the above, except this insurance helps to protect you, the buyer. It lasts as long as you or your heirs own the home and costs about 0.5% to 1% of the property purchase price.

Insider tip: A discount is sometimes available if you purchase the lender and owner policies at the same time.

It may seem like it’s a lot to handle, but with preparation, all of these fees are quickly taken care of. Plus, some may even get covered by the seller! Contact Tara Mortgage Services and let us show you how affordable homeownership can be. 

Network with over 700 Real Estate Investors! Join Alex Deacon’s Real Estate Networking Group on MeetUp.com, and be one of the first to receive updates on upcoming events!

Alex Deacon Real Estate Networking Workshops

Carnegie, PA
737 Members

Learn investing from a local expert with a vast amount of experience in the Pittsburgh market. Alex started investing in 1993. We will review hands on examples, analysis, and …

Check out this Meetup Group →

Join Alex Deacon’s fast-growing Pittsburgh Landlord Group on MeetUp.com! Connect with other Landlords for monthly seminars with Q & A! Click below!

Pittsburgh Landlord Group

Carnegie, PA
223 Members

This is a great venue for Real estate investors, real estate agents and property managers to expand your knowledge and to help others in the field of being a landlord. We will…

Check out this Meetup Group →

Read More

Tara Mortgage Services featured blog: Mortgage Mythbusters: First-Time Homebuyer Edition

DHREA 25/09/2019
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Entering the housing market as a newbie can be intimidating. Even more so when you hear rumors about how “difficult” or “expensive,” it is. But don’t believe it! As the experts in first-time home loans, we have all the answers and resources to make your home purchase happen with ease.

Find out the truth about buying your first home, and for personalized answers, contact us! 

Myth #1:

You need 20% downpayment.

While a 20% down payment means you won’t pay private mortgage insurance (PMI), you can buy a home with much less down. In fact, there are loan programs that require as little as 3% down. Are you a veteran, currently enlisted, or a spouse of a member of armed forces? Then you may qualify for zero down! 

20% down has its perks, such as no PMI and building equity a lot sooner. But that doesn’t mean you MUST have 20% now to buy a home. When it comes to how much you can afford to pay every month, an FHA loan with 3% may be the most affordable option.

Myth #2:

You won’t qualify for a home loan if you have student loans.

Got student debt! So do most borrowers! Student debt and credit card debt are different “in the eyes of lenders.” So even if you have substantial student debt, buying your first home is still very much possible. 

Myth #3:

Avoid adjustable-rate mortgages like the plague.

The 2008 housing crisis is still fresh on many buyer’s minds, and this may make you wary of adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs). But you shouldn’t be! The bust was more of an issue of too-lax qualifying standards and less about the loan program itself. 

ARM loans are an attractive option because of the low fixed interest rate it offers for the first few years. An ARM is a great option if you plan on refinancing or selling within 10 years. In fact, it could potentially save you thousands.

Myth #4:

You won’t qualify for any government home loan program. 

Government-sponsored loans from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac offer numerous affordable lending options. Eligibility is much easier than other loan programs and could be based on the location of the home, your income, your military status, and even your first-time homebuyer status! 

Curious as to which government loan you qualify for? Contact us today to get started!

Myth #5:

Your pre-approval can be used on ANY home.

The property itself may impact how much you’ll ultimately be able to borrow, especially when it comes to the final cost. So even if you were approved for a specific amount, your pre-approval might not be work in that particular property. This is most often the case when it comes to properties like condos and townhomes that may have higher final cost due to property tax rates and homeowners association fees. 

Myth #6:

You don’t need a real estate agent.

Searching home listings via the internet is easy but presenting you a list of homes for sale isn’t the only thing a real estate agent does! They work as your advocate. They know the housing market well, know all the right questions to ask, negotiate on your behalf, and make sure that you are absolutely satisfied with your new home purchase. 

Whether you’re a first-time buyer or an experienced “flipper,” real estate agents offer an invaluable service in the homebuying journey. 

So what’s the truth about purchasing a home as a first-time buyer? It’s easier than you think! Contact us today to get matched with a home loan program that fits your budget and lifestyle. For the fastest response, use our contact form located on our site or give Tara Mortgage Services a call. We look forward to serving your mortgage needs!

Network with over 700 Real Estate Investors! Join Alex Deacon’s Real Estate Networking Group on MeetUp.com, and be one of the first to receive updates on upcoming events!

Analyzing your next RE Deal and the actions steps from A-Z to get to closing

Saturday, Oct 12, 2019, 10:00 AM

Hampton Inn Bridgeville
150 Old Pond Rd Bridgeville, pa

25 Members Attending

We will discuss the steps from start to finish in detail. From creating your business model, how to find the great deals before the other person does and the specific steps to get that deal under contract and to the closing table. We are going to cram in a lot in 2 hours but it will be worth every minute.

Check out this Meetup →

Join Alex Deacon’s fast-growing Pittsburgh Landlord Group on MeetUp.com! Connect with other Landlords for monthly seminars with Q & A! Click below!

Pittsburgh Landlord Group

Carnegie, PA
203 Members

This is a great venue for Real estate investors, real estate agents and property managers to expand your knowledge and to help others in the field of being a landlord. We will…

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The ABCs of Land-lording

Thursday, Oct 10, 2019, 6:30 PM
9 Attending

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Visit our affiliates!

MACE Property Management: www.PittsburghPropertyManagement.com

Tara Mortgage Services, LLC: www.Tara-MTG.net

HDH Settlement Services, LLC: www.HDHTitle.com

Burkhead Insurance Services: Burkhead.Insure

Bin There Dump That: www.PittsburghDumpsterRental.com

Red Tree Mortgage: https://www.redtreemtg.com/

Read More

Tara Mortgage Services Featured Blog: The Essentials of Getting a Veteran Home Loan

DHREA 11/09/2019
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If you are an active member of the Military, a veteran or a spouse of a member of the armed forces, you may qualify for a unique mortgage program from the Department of Veteran Affairs. VA loans offer some of the most affordable ways to finance a home purchase. 

VA loans are exclusive to members of the Military and their spouses, and there are particular eligibility requirements. Here’s what you need to know about qualifying for a VA loan.

 Secure A Certificate of Eligibility (COE)

A Certificate of Eligibility (COE) is a document that proves you meet the requirement of being an active member of the Military, a veteran, a National Guard, a reserve member, or a surviving spouse. The COE, however, does not mean you qualify for a mortgage. It is just evidence that you are eligible for a VA loan program. 

If you had previously applied for your COE but have since misplaced it, you can easily apply for another. 

Check Credit Report for Errors

Your credit report determines your eligibility for a mortgage and the rate you qualify for. With a prequalifying application, we’ll do a “soft credit check” to give you an idea of where you stand. When you are ready to apply, a “hard pull” will provide you with a definitive view of your financial health. 

Review it for inconsistencies such as strange social security numbers, credit accounts you don’t recognize, late payments that never happened, or incorrect balances. 

If you find errors, dispute them with the credit bureaus. They now offer online dispute services, so correcting them goes by much faster. 

Limitations of a VA Mortgage

VA loans are for purchasing primary residences, not a rental or vacation property. To make sure you indeed plan to make the property your primary residence, you’ll be required to occupy the home within 60 days of closing. This may be waived if the house is undergoing significant renovations or if you are deployed. Note, however, that the spouse of the active military member can fulfill this requirement. 

What Out For These VA Qualifying Mistakes

After submitting your COE, qualifying for a VA loan is straightforward. However, two actions could make your deal fall through. 

Avoid Changing Employment

If you’re a veteran, hold a civilian job while an active member of the armed forces, or are a surviving spouse, do not to make any changes to your employment. The length of work, amount of hours, and income all factor into the loan qualification decision.  Changing employment while in the loan process could disqualify you!

Avoid Big Purchases

One of the factors used to determine your eligibility for a VA loan is your debt-to-income ratio which determines the amount of debt you carry compared to your income. So if you finance a big purchase, such as a car, it will increase your debt and change your ratio, disqualifying you from getting a VA loan. 

Want to learn more about the benefits of a VA loan? Contact Tara Mortgage Services! Our dedicated team of mortgage professionals has all the answers to your home loan and refi questions. 

Network with over 700 Real Estate Investors! Join Alex Deacon’s Real Estate Networking Group on MeetUp.com, and be one of the first to receive updates on upcoming events!

Alex Deacon Real Estate Networking Workshops

Carnegie, PA
711 Members

Learn investing from a local expert with a vast amount of experience in the Pittsburgh market. Alex started investing in 1993. We will review hands on examples, analysis, and …

Check out this Meetup Group →

Join Alex Deacon’s fast-growing Pittsburgh Landlord Group on MeetUp.com! Connect with other Landlords for monthly seminars with Q & A! Click below!

Pittsburgh Landlord Group

Carnegie, PA
194 Members

This is a great venue for Real estate investors, real estate agents and property managers to expand your knowledge and to help others in the field of being a landlord. We will…

Check out this Meetup Group →

Visit our affiliates!

MACE Property Management: www.PittsburghPropertyManagement.com

Tara Mortgage Services, LLC: www.Tara-MTG.net

HDH Settlement Services, LLC: www.HDHTitle.com

Burkhead Insurance Services: Burkhead.Insure

Bin There Dump That: www.PittsburghDumpsterRental.com

Red Tree Mortgage: https://www.redtreemtg.com/

Read More
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