As mortgage rates climb, beware of not accurate quotes

Fed Chairman Bernanke

St Paul, MN: Mortgage rates the last few weeks have climbed steadily on the statement from the Federal Reserve that they plans to scale back, and ultimately end the buying of Mortgage backed Securities by the middle of 2014.
This news translated into mortgage rates having one of the worst weeks in history, with Friday alone generating a 1/4% rise in interest rates. While 1/4% isn’t a killer by itself, combined with the rate increases from the earlier part of the week, the combination proves to be a nightmare for mortgage rates. Real mortgage rates ending Friday for the best clients are now about 4.625%.  This compares to 3.50% just a month ago.

BEWARE OF WHAT YOU READ – Not all Mortgage Quotes are current

I took numerous calls this week, where clients complained about the rate I was telling them compared to what they were reading elsewhere for “average rates.”  Most of the average rate information published on web sites, newspapers, and reported by the media comes from the weekly rate report published by Freddie Mac.  While the report is great for tracking averages over time, it is the AVERAGE of rates compiled through the end of the previous week, then reported on the following Thursday.

freddieAnother problem is many web sites don’t update daily, or even weekly.  Newspapers, and other print media may have collected rate information on Wednesday morning for publication in Sundays paper. This week, that would leave people with quotes at least .375% to .500% lower than reality.

If you are buying Google stock, does it matter what last week average price was, or what you can buy if for today?  Only rely on constantly updated and accurate rate reporting system, or while a phone call to a Loan Officer.

Check LIVE and CURRENT MN and WI Mortgage Rates 24/7

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Mortgage Rates for week ending March 16th, 2013

Minneapolis, MN: Freddie Mac yesterday the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey(R) (PMMS®), showing average fixed mortgage rates rising this week on stronger signs of jobs growth and consumer spending. ir-2The 30-year fixed averaged 3.63 percent, its highest reading since the week of August 23, 2012. The 30-year fixed hit its average all-time record low of 3.31 percent the week of November 21, 2012.

News Facts

  • 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rates averaged 3.63 percent with an average 0.8 point for the week ending March 14, 2013, up from last week when it averaged 3.52 percent. Last year at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 3.92 percent.
  • 15-year fixed rate mortgages this week averaged 2.79 percent with an average 0.8 point, up from last week when it averaged 2.76 percent. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 3.16 percent.
  • 5-year adjustable rate mortgages (ARM) averaged 2.61 percent this week with an average 0.6 point, down from last week when it averaged 2.63 percent. A year ago, the 5-year ARM averaged 2.83 percent.

Quotes
Attributed to Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist, Freddie Mac.

“Fixed mortgage rates rose this week on stronger signs of jobs growth and consumer spending. The economy added 236,000 new workers in February which helped push down the unemployment rate to 7.7 percent. This helped offset the effects of the payroll tax holiday expiration and led to a 1.1 percent increase in retail sales, which was well above the market consensus forecast.”

Freddie Mac was established by Congress in 1970 to provide liquidity, stability and affordability to the nation’s residential mortgage markets. Freddie Mac supports communities across the nation by providing mortgage capital to lenders. Today Freddie Mac is making home possible for one in four homebuyers and is one of the largest sources of financing for multifamily housing.

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Freddie Mac’s survey is the average of loans bought from lenders * last week, including discount points. Applicants must pay all closing costs at these rates. No cost loan rates higher.

Follow this link to view today’s best MN and WI mortgage interest rates.


MN FHA streamline Refinance Loans

FHA Refinance

Learn About Your Mortgage Options

Homeowners enjoy the benefits of investing in their property year after year. For some, there comes a time when that investment can come in handy. Refinancing with an FHA loan can prove to be an effective way to put that equity to work. Keep in mind that FHA refinancing is only available to homeowners who are currently using their home as their principal residence.

FHA options to homeowners who are considering an FHA refinance mortgage:

FHA CASH-OUT REFINANCE

This refinancing option is especially beneficial to homeowners whose property has increased in market value since the home was purchased. A Cash Out refinance allows homeowners to refinance their existing mortgage by taking out another mortgage for more than they currently owe.

FHA STREAMLINE REFINANCE

This refinancing option is considered streamlined because it allows you to reduce the interest rate on your current home loan quickly and oftentimes without an appraisal. FHA Streamlined Refinance also cuts down on the amount of paperwork that must be completed by your lender saving you valuable time and money.

FHA Up Front Mortgage Insurance Premiums (UFMIP)

FHA has recently made changes to the required mortgage insurance. June 11, 2012 is the date FHA Up Front Mortgage Insurance Premiums (UFMIP) will be lowered for some borrowers applying for FHA Streamline Refinance Loans. An FHA Mortgagee Letter 12-4 explains the changes, which affect some, but not al, FHA streamline refinancing loans:

For all FHA Streamline Refinance transactions that are refinancing existing FHA loans that were endorsed on or before May 31, 2009, the UFMIP will decrease from 1.75 percent to just 0.01 percent of the base loan amount.

Basically, those borrowers who have an FHA home loan for a single-family property that was endorsed on or before May 31, 2009 are eligible for a lower rate on their Up Front Mortgage Insurance Premiums. It’s important to note that this rule applies only to those with an FHA Streamline refinancing loan with a case number assigned on or after June 11, 2012.

The same mortgagee letter contains another announcement; “Decrease to Annual Mortgage Insurance Premium on Certain Streamline Refinance Transactions”. In this message, the FHA states, “For all Single Family Forward Streamline Refinance transactions that are refinancing FHA loans endorsed on or before May 31, 2009, the Annual MIP will be 55 basis points, regardless of the base loan amount.”

These two items make for a very significant savings on FHA streamline refinance transaction here in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and the rest of the country.

One other item. It’s important to remember that the FHA does not regulate FHA streamline mortgage interest rates or set them in any way except to state that such rates must be reasonable and customary according to the housing market in that area. Borrowers should expect to negotiate interest rates with the lender and/or comparison shop for the best rates and terms. 


New FHA Streamline Refinance Guidelines

New FHA Streamline Refinance Rules

St Paul, MN:  Home owners with an existing FHA mortgage loan – rejoice. Washington has announced new guidelines to make it cheaper and easier for homeowners to refinance FHA mortgages. The reason is pretty simple – since FHA already backs your mortgage, they’re the ones who are on the hook if you default. So if refinancing will help make your mortgage more affordable for you, it makes sense for them to help.

The updated guidelines apply to FHA Streamlined refinancing, which is about as close to automatic loan approval as any refinance program can get. There are many variables to the program, but under the best circumstances, you don’t even need an appraisal, making it a great loan for underwater home owners.

Reduced FHA Fees

The changes announced dramatically reduce some of the fees usually charged for FHA mortgages and refinancing. FHA loans have two major mortgage insurance parts. The upfront fee, and the monthly mortgage insurance. For refinances starting June 11th 2012 and after, the current upfront fee of 1 percent of the loan amount is being reduced to a mere 0.01% – equal to $10 on a $100,000 mortgage – while the annual insurance premium is being cut by more than half, to 0.55 percent of the balance, down from 1.15 percent currently.

The administration estimates the reduced annual fee will save an additional $95 a month on a $175,000 mortgage, on top of the actual savings from refinancing to a lower mortgage rate.

Anyone can with an FHA mortgage can refinance at anytime, but to qualify for the reduce fees, you must have obtained your current FHA mortgage prior to June 1, 2009.

Home Lost Value?

The FHA streamline refinance option that does NOT require an appraisal is a great option for homes that have lost value. Homeowners can be underwater on their FHA mortgage (i.e., owing more than their home is worth) and still qualify for refinancing. In fact, there’s no limit on how far underwater a borrower can be and still get an FHA Streamline Refinance.

If you’re underwater, but have a second mortgage or HELOC (home equity line of credit)  – you’ll have additional challenges – so be sure to speak with a good licensed loan officer to determined your exact situation.

Bottom Line

FHA does not do loans. Lenders do loans that FHA insures. Although FHA has pretty generous guidelines for refinancing, it’s still the lender’s call on whether to refinance or not. Some lenders will have tighter guidelines, and some may even refuse to refinance a mortgage even if it appears to meet FHA requirements. The new guidelines remove some of the obstacles that sometimes make lenders reluctant to do an FHA streamline refinance, by taking such loans out of the formula used to assess their performance as FHA approved lenders. Since many of these mortgages are considered somewhat riskier than more recent home loans, some lenders have been reluctant to refinance them for fear of damaging their rating with FHA.

To see if you can obtain an FHA mortgage refinance, check with your local approved FHA mortgage lender.

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