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Sales of Vacation Homes Soar

Blog posted On July 20, 2021

After spending 15 months inside, people are itching to get out. They’re also itching to spend some of the money they’ve been saving for the past year. Consequently, the sale of vacation homes has seen a noticeable increase during the first four months of 2021. 

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What the Fed is Saying About Surging Home Prices

Blog posted On July 13, 2021

Last week, the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) released their June meeting minutes. While the large focus of the meeting was inflation, asset purchases, and interest rates, the Committee also had its eye on the climbing home prices. Over the past year, home prices have seen their highest appreciation in over 30 years – up nearly 15% in April. Home buyer demand has been soaring while inventory has remained near record lows – causing a steep increase in prices. Meanwhile, the Fed hasn’t budged.

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Good News Ahead for Buyers After a Surge in New Listings

Blog posted On July 06, 2021

Over the past year, home inventory has dropped to record low levels. Historically low mortgage rates have driven eager home buyers into the market, but with hesitant home sellers and overpriced home building materials, the supply of homes has not risen alongside buyer demand. Consequently, buyers have faced increased purchasing competition, higher sales prices, and fewer options to choose from. However, more supply is on the horizon.

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What Lies Ahead for the FHFA?

Blog posted On June 29, 2021

Last week was a busy week for the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA). On Wednesday, the Supreme Court decided that the structure of the Agency was unconstitutional. By Thursday morning, Biden had appointed a new director. Sandra Thompson, FHFA’s deputy director of the division of housing mission and goals, will replace Mark Calabria as director of the FHFA. So, what exactly happened and what’s coming next?

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What is Inflation, How Does it Affect Interest Rates, and Why Does it Matter?

Blog posted On June 15, 2021

Over the next two days, the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) will hold their fourth meeting of the year to discuss interest rates and their Summary of Economic Projections. The central bank has kept the benchmark interest rate near zero since they made an emergency rate cut last March. But with the economy continuing to gain strength, many experts are wondering when the Fed will begin tapering asset purchases and raising rates again.

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Fannie Mae RefiNow Available Tomorrow

Blog posted On June 04, 2021

Fannie Mae has launched RefiNow, a new refinance program designed for eligible homeowners who have not yet taken advantage of record-low mortgage rates. Fannie Mae RefiNow guarantees homeowners will get an average interest rate reduction 0.25%* lower than their qualifying market mortgage rate. As an added bonus, CMG Financial will give homeowners a $500 appraisal credit.

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Is the Housing Market Headed Toward a Crash?

Blog posted On June 01, 2021

It’s no secret that the housing market is still red hot. Supply is low, demand is high, and home values are soaring to some of their highest levels since 1999. The market has been getting hotter and hotter over the past year, leaving many people wondering, “are we headed to a crash?”

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Biden’s Impact on Housing in His First 100 Days

Blog posted On May 11, 2021

It’s hard to believe that we’re already 100 days into President Biden’s term. A couple of weeks ago, he gave his first address to Congress with updates on his progress so far and plans to come. Here are some of the ways he has impacted the housing industry over the past 100 days.

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Congress Introduces First-Time Homebuyer Act

Blog posted On May 04, 2021

Last week we looked at President Biden’s Downpayment Toward Equity Act of 2021. Initially, it seemed like it was an updated version of his proposed tax credit. However, last Tuesday, two U.S. Representatives introduced another bill called the First-Time Homebuyer Act, which would more closely resemble Biden’s original tax credit plan.

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3 Major Updates to Biden’s Home Buyer Assistance Bill

Blog posted On April 27, 2021

Earlier this year, we took A Deeper Look at President Biden’s Proposed Tax Credit. Initially, the tax credit was designed to “help families buy their first homes and build wealth by creating a new refundable, advanceable tax credit of up to $15,000.” However, on April 14th, lawmakers published a new draft of the Downpayment Toward Equity Act of 2021 that had a few key differences from its original concept.

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4 Ways the Housing Market Could Change After the Pandemic

Blog posted On April 20, 2021

The housing market saw notable shifts when coronavirus initially broke out last year. Mortgage rates dropped, home prices surged, and an increasing number of buyers fled the cities into suburban areas. Now, as the economy is gaining strength, we will likely see the housing market shift again – specifically in these four ways.

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New Home Buyers are Taking Charge of the Current Market

Blog posted On April 13, 2021

Last year, the number of first-time home buyers hit its lowest level in over 30 years. The coronavirus pandemic likely played a large role in the decline, but outside of that, the market had other challenges for first-time buyers as well. Low inventory, high demand, and rising mortgage rates are all making it harder for new buyers to break into the homeowner’s club. Consequently, first-time buyers are having to pave more creative paths to homeownership – paths that may differ from their parents and grandparents.

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HUD Holds FHA Premiums Steady, Home Buyers Still Win

Blog posted On April 06, 2021

Last week, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Marcia Fudge announced that there would be no cuts to FHA mortgage insurance premiums (MIPs). Most of the housing industry had hoped for a 0.25% reduction, but for now the benchmark annual MIP rate will remain at 0.85%. 

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More First-Time Home Buyers Choose Conventional Over FHA Loans

Blog posted On March 30, 2021

The FHA Loan has been a cost-effective staple for first-time home buyers since its creation in the 1930s. With low down payments and lenient credit requirements, the FHA Loan has helped millions of home buyers over the years. However, recent data by the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) has shown a sharp decrease in the number of buyers who are financing their first homes with the FHA Loan. Over the past 1-2 years, more first-time buyers have been choosing the conventional financing route – but why? When might a conventional loan be a better option for first-time buyers? 

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How Housing Has Changed in a Year & Where it’s Headed Next

Blog posted On March 23, 2021

Unexpected is an understatement when describing this past year. A global pandemic, a struggling economy, and so much more led to a 2020 that we won’t be forgetting anytime soon. And in the midst of it all, the housing market took a turn that hardly anyone expected – breaking records, surging demand, and a much-needed hand that helped keep the economy going through unprecedented times. Now, many of us are wondering: what’s next?

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How the American Rescue Plan Will Impact Housing

Blog posted On March 16, 2021

Last week, Congress approved a $1.9 trillion relief package known as the American Rescue Plan. President Biden signed the plan on Friday, which means the sixth coronavirus relief measure should be disbursed very soon – giving many Americans a $1,400 direct payment and millions of others assistance with unemployment benefits, small business loans, vaccine investment, and community support. 

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How Millennials are Shaping the Current Housing Market

Blog posted On March 09, 2021

For decades, Millennials have sat on the sidelines and delayed milestones like homeownership. Two years ago, Millennials – people born between 1981 and 1996 – officially became the largest generation in America, totaling at 72.1 million people. Last year, they became the largest home buying population in America, making up 38% of all buyers. And today, they’re driving the housing boom – with existing sales up 24% annually.

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3 Reasons You Should Refinance Now

Blog posted On February 23, 2021

Mortgage rates have trended near historic lows for almost a year now, with the number of new home purchases and refinances surging in response. At the end of last month, the number of refinance application submissions were up 59% year-over-year, hitting their highest level since March 2020. Thousands of homeowners have already refinanced their mortgage to take advantage of low rates, but if you haven’t yet, here are three factors to consider before you make your mortgage move.

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A Deeper Look at President Biden’s Proposed Tax Credit

Blog posted On February 09, 2021

Last month, Joe Biden celebrated his inauguration as the 46th president of the United States. Now it’s down to business. One of the proposed changes that the Biden Administration mentioned in their campaign was a $15,000 tax credit for first-time home buyers. According to real estate experts, if this credit is passed by Congress, it could be a positive change for the industry.

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HUD Announces That the FHA is Backing DACA Mortgages

Blog posted On February 02, 2021

Last month, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) declared that the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) would begin backing mortgages for immigrants under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. This announcement marks the first time that DACA status recipients would be eligible for FHA loans, provided that they meet all other FHA requirements.

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Generation Z Home Buyers Entering the Market with Help from Family

Blog posted On October 23, 2018

With so much focus on Millennial home buyers, the next incoming generation of buyers has been slightly overlooked.  According to Zillow, 3% of last year’s home buyers were born after 1995, meaning over 100,000 homeowners across the country are 23 and younger.  “I’m a little surprised to see the numbers as large as they are,” commented Rob Dietz, chief economist and senior vice president for economics and housing policy for the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB). 

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Demand for Down Payment Assistance on the Rise

Blog posted On June 05, 2018

Saving for a down payment is the most commonly reported obstacle to homeownership.  With rents rising and student debt accumulating, the problem is even more exacerbated with first-time home buyers trying to enter the market.  As the down payment obstacle persists, the demand for down payment assistance has also continued to increase.  According to a Scotsman Guide interview with Down Payment Resource CEO Rob Chrane, as of the first quarter of 2018 there are approximately 2,503 down payment assistance programs nationwide, and the demand for down payment help is likely to continue.

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Your Mortgage Shouldn’t be One Size Fits All

Blog posted On May 31, 2018

At this year’s Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) Secondary Marketing conference, one of the most prevalent topics of discussion was the growing market for different types of mortgage loans besides common options like the 30-year fixed rate mortgage.  The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is the cornerstone of American homeownership and has helped families nationwide become homeowners for almost a century.  As the housing market changes, interest rates fluctuate, and regulations evolve, newer, more innovative mortgage products are starting to emerge.  In today’s mortgage market, your mortgage should not be “one size fits all.” 

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