5 Reasons a Pre-Approval Should be Your First Step as a Home Buyer

New Home Keys

 

The home buying process can be a long and confusing time for an individual.

Luckily here at The Orlicki Group we have a wealth of experience working with first time home buyers. Not only do we provide you with exceptional service but our in-process campaign will send you a wealth of information including simple videos to explain portions of the mortgage process. According to Zillow 77% of home buyers are getting approved prior to searching for their home. That number is up from prior generations.

Many people think that finding a house is the first step to buying only to be disappointed when they realize that either the home isn’t able to be financed or it’s not within their budget. Here are 5 great reasons why getting pre-approved is the best first step you can take when looking to buy a new home.

 

New home contract

 

 

1. Figure out your budget.

Most people when buying have some idea of what they want to spend monthly. Is it what you’re paying for rent now? Is your current housing expense too much? Are you trying to downsize? These are all great factors that we can take into consideration when we personalize your pre-approval. Many big box banks just send you out with the absolute MAXIMUM you can afford. The average DTI for a buyer in 2017 utilizing a conventional loan was 23% which is well below the max you are able to borrow. We’ll work with you to find a suitable approval number that fits your needs.

 

2. Get to know your Mortgage Professional.

Throughout the home buying process you’ll be in direct contact with your mortgage pros often. Every loan originator and team does things a bit differently so getting in touch early and working out the best way to communicate and the people you’ll be communicating with is a great way to make your home buying journey easier and stress free.

You’ll be working with these people for usually over a month (average contract to close for real estate is between 30-45 days). Getting to know them on a personal level is bound to happen. We make sure that you’re given proper guidance throughout as well as regular updates on what to expect next.

 

3. Answer any basic mortgage questions.

Whether you’re a first time home buyer or a veteran of home ownership you’re going to have questions about your mortgage needs. The mortgage process is extremely complex. When you get pre-approved first you can answer a lot of those basic questions like “What loan type is right for me?” or “How much do I need to put down for a down payment?”. the pre-approval process will help you iron out your mortgage and get answers for many of the initial questions that home buyers have.

 

4. Connect your team.

Most people have a friend or relative who works in real estate who’s given them advice over the years. 64% of people in 2016 used a realtor that was a referral from a friend or family member. Chances are you’ll be doing the same. Once you get approved your lender will forward your pre-approval to the realtor of your choosing. In our case if you are not working with a realtor we’re always happy to refer you to one of the top notch professionals that we work with regularly.

Before you start looking for homes it’s great to get everyone on your team assembled and on the same page. Once you have everyone in your corner connected and working toward the same goal the process and communication becomes seamless. The most common people you’ll want to connect with are your realtor, your mortgage professional and your insurance agent as they’ll have a good idea of your current insurance coverages and can easily get you a quote once you find a new place. Just in case you don’t, here at The Orlicki Group we always provide you with a free insurance quote to from our preferred vendor to get a better idea of what your monthly cost will be. Getting pre-approved first gives you the opportunity to get everyone involved in line and ahead of the curve.

 

5. Be aware of any roadblocks.

Many people think that a pre-qualification is the best and quickest way to start your home search. With the rise of app’s like Quicken’s Rocket Mortgage you’re able to get numbers back almost instantly. There’s only one problem with that… the lender hasn’t done its due diligence and looked at your individual scenario.

There are many different reasons why someone might not qualify for a home that are outside of your normal credit score and income. During the pre-approval we take a more in depth look and review your entire situation including your full credit report to assure there aren’t any roadblocks or red flags that might endanger your home purchase.

 

If you’re looking to buy and want to get approved now head over to our online mortgage application and we’ll get your pre-approval started!

5 Simple Steps for First Time Home Buyers

happy couple celebrate home ownership

Buying your first home can seem like a daunting task. It doesn’t have to be.

Spring is historically the busiest season for home purchases around the nation. In Florida, real estate purchases and mortgage applications especially increase while home buyers look to move or purchase before the summer heat hits. We already have some great info on our website regarding mortgage specific basics and a great guide on the home buying process. In this article though We’re going to focus on 5 simple steps you can take to improve your home buying process.

1. Get your finances in order with a well thought out budget

Throughout your mortgage qualification we’ll take into account not only what you can afford but what you actually want to spend. Many big box lenders will automatically max out your pre-qualification to get the most money out of you. It’s important to take a few moments and go through your finances to figure out what you want to pay monthly for your new home expense.

At The Orlicki Group we believe that staying within your budget is important to you enjoying your new home. We’ll talk with you about what you would like to spend and what your plans are for your down payment to get you a pre-qualification that meets your needs.

2. Gather all your paperwork

You know that big pile of taxes, bills, pay stubs, and paperwork you’ve been neglecting? Now is the time to get that in order. During the documentation of your mortgage we’re going to need a few things that you can prep to make your mortgage that much easier. Here’s a few things we’re going to ask for:

  • Two Years of tax returns (all pages and schedules)
  • Two years of W2 / 1099
  • Clear color copies of your Driver’s License and Social Security Card
  • 2 months of Bank records for all accounts
  • Two most recent pay stubs

There may be more that we’ll need but that’s a great place to start. Scanning everything in and digitizing it is the best way to prepare your documents. Most of your bank records and pay stubs are available online for download. If you use Turbo Tax or another online tax filing system you can download all your pertinent documents after you log in to your account. Don’t forget that we will need ALL the pages of your docs. Yes even the blank ones. We’ll guide you through every step of the process though so don’t worry. It’s easier than it sounds.

3.  Examine your credit report

During your mortgage process we’ll thoroughly review your credit report. It’s nice to know what’s coming down the pipe though. If you haven’t taken advantage within the past year now is a great time to review your annual credit report from Equifax, Experian and Trans Union. The FTC suggests that you review your credit report prior to any major purchase, like a mortgage. In a recent study the FTC noted that 1 in 5 Americans has errors on their credit report.

Another great reason to check your report annually is to safe guard yourself from identity theft. According to Credit.com

When you decide to pull your credit report the only site you should be pulling from is FreeCreditReport.com. This is the only site verified and authorized by the FTC.

“2016 will be remembered as a banner year for fraudsters, as numerous measures of identity fraud reached new heights.” Fraud losses totaled $16 billion, the report found. About 1 in every 16 U.S. adults were victims of ID theft last year (6.15%) — and the incidence rate jumped some 16% year over year.”

Taking simple steps such as reviewing your credit report annually can

4.  Slim down your baggage

Never will it be more apparent than when you are getting ready to move that you have entirely too much stuff. There’s a few ways that you can look at slimming down your belongings when moving into your new home. One simple trick is to get a large storage bin and start putting things in it as you go. See things you don’t use or have been meaning to get rid of? In the bin they go. Once the bin is full, mark that for donation and start again. You can also start by organizing your existing home regularly. Put that messy closet in order. Slim down your wardrobe.

The idea is that you want to move as little as possible into your new home to make way for things that you might need and limit the size of the moving truck or number of trips you will need to make.

5. Work with a reputable mortgage professional

Last but certainly not least you’re going to want to get pre-approved with a reputable mortgage professional. The Orlicki Group is a team of professionals with a very personal touch. Oliver has almost 200 5 Star Zillow reviews.

We can get you pre-approved and guide you through the mortgage process with ease. Don’t suffer through a disconnect with a big bank or think that a space ship mortgage on your phone is the way to go.

 

We’re always here to answer your mortgage questions and assist you with your needs. Working with first time home buyers is one of our favorite aspects of the mortgage business. Call us today at 813-302-1616 or CONTACT US to get started.

Mortgage Rates Lowest Since April Ahead of Big Jobs Report

8Questions1

 

Mortgage rates can seemingly do no wrong this week.  They fell again today–this time making it firmly into territory not seen since late April.  At current levels, many lenders have moved on to quoting conventional 30yr mortgage rates well below what I was able to give most of my past clients.

 

Today’s improvements, and indeed some of the improvements earlier this week have NOT been captured by Freddie Mac’s weekly Primary Mortgage Market Survey–the industry standard for mortgage rate tracking.  While the survey is highly accurate over the long haul, its methodology doesn’t allow it to capture all of the movement in any given week.  In fact, the only rate sheets that inform the survey response are those that come out on Friday afternoon through Wednesday morning.  Moreover, the survey responses tend to arrive more toward the beginning of the week.  That means if things are moving fairly quickly over the course of the week, Freddie’s survey will be a bit behind the curve.

 

 

There’s nothing good or bad about the lag in the Freddie Mac data.  It’s a valuable resource that just happens to be a bit too ‘wide-angle’ for the average borrower or originator seeking the most up-to-date information on rates.  I only bring it up because almost every major news outlet relies on the Freddie report for its official weekly article on mortgage rates.  Today, those articles will be saying there hasn’t been much of an improvement over last week, and it’s important you know that’s no longer the case.

 

This is a timely piece of information as well, because tomorrow brings the important Employment Situationreport (aka “jobs report, nonfarm payrolls, or NFP”).  This is the biggest piece of economic data that comes out each month and it has the greatest potential to cause movement in the bond markets that dictate mortgage rates.  With rates at 5-month lows and even a 50% risk of a big bounce higher, it’s even harder to make a caseagainst locking today.  Granted, risk-takers could be rewarded if the report is exceptionally weak, but even then, we have to consider that rates can sometimes bounce higher simply because they’ve gotten tired of moving consistently lower.  We’re not quite to the point where that’s an imminent risk regardless of the data, but certainly, an equivocal jobs report wouldn’t make any strong arguments for rates to continue lower.

Mortgage Rates on Year’s Longest Winning Streak

Mortgage rates moved moderately lower yet again.  This extends a winning streak that began on July 14th, making it the longest positive trend in 2015.  If this seems paradoxical in light of everything you may have heard about the Fed hiking rates this year, that’s normal.  Market participants and pundits have a long history of getting too attached to a certain idea only to be punished by markets for the imbalance.

 

CLICK HERE FOR THE REST OF MY REPORT!

Mortgage Rates Back to ‘Golden-Era’ Levels

January 16, 2015

Mortgage rates continued moving aggressively lower this week, largely because broader bond markets moved even more aggressively lower.  In fact, in that sense, mortgages had a hard time keeping up, and that ultimately helped them hold their ground on Friday when broader markets finally underwent a correction.

 

Friday aside, the net effect is what’s important here.  Rates are back in the range that prevailed during the “golden era” from mid 2012 to mid 2013 when the most prevalently quoted conforming 30yr rates stayed between 3.125 and 3.625% for top-tier borrowers.

 

2015 continues to live up to its promise of volatility, and next week could be the wildest yet.  Unfortunately, volatility goes both ways.  The long term trend has certainly been positive for fans of low rates.  And while there’s no reason that can’t continue, there’s also never a guarantee.

 

You can read the rest of my weekly mortgage news update here – CLICK HERE FOR THE WEEKLY UPDATE 

Mortgage Rates Now Back to 20 Month Lows

Screen Shot 2015-01-14 at 11.51.22 AM

January 13, 2015

Mortgage rates fell only modestly today, but it was enough for the best rate sheets since mid-May 2013.  That’s a new 20 month low, on average.

Once again, there were no meaningful events on the economic calendar to motivate market movements.  Instead, the bond markets that dictate mortgage rates were simply along for the ride as other sectors underwent more volatility.  Like yesterday, this was most noticeable in equities markets (stocks).  While rates won’t always be falling when stocks are falling, the bigger the movement becomes in one, the more likely the other will be affected.  Today’s movement in stocks was big enough that bond markets couldn’t help but trade sympathetically.

 

Because of this, bond markets were near their best levels of the day in the afternoon when stocks hit their lows.  This resulted in widespread positive reprices from mortgage lenders.  As such, the average morning rate sheet wasn’t quite as strong as yesterday, but the average afternoon rate sheet is slightly stronger. CNBC has even caught on to the mortgage buzz. You can watch a great video report at their Debt site from Kellie Grant.

 

Rates have certainly been trending lower since the beginning of 2014.  That trend has much to do with Europe, and until the trend in European economic concerns reverses, the trend in rates is likely to continue.  The tricky part is that the reversal could begin at any time and we wouldn’t really be able to identify it without some hindsight.  Coming up in the middle of the night tonight, Europe will get an important piece of news in the form of a court ruling that will speak to the European Central Bank’s ability to stimulate the economy as it sees fit.  While it could just as easily result in very little drama, this is one of those periodic events that has the potential to cause current trends to accelerate or seemingly reverse course.  That makes floating more risky in the short term.

 

Reach out to me today for a free review of your current mortgage, a good faith estimate for your existing home purchase or to get more info on these great rates. – Oliver Orlicki

Mortgage Rates Begin 2015 at Long Term Lows

Mortgage rates bounced back after rising somewhat abruptly last week.  The bounce was already in progress as early as last Friday, but received further support on 3 out of this week’s 4 business days (markets were closed for New Years Day).  Friday was the biggest of those 3, leaving many lenders’ rate sheets in the best shape since May 2013.

The most prevalently quoted rates for top tier borrowers seeking conforming 30yr fixed loans (best-execution) fell from 3.875-4.0%down to 3.75-3.875%.

 

Mortgage Rates Level Off After Hitting Lows

Market Summary

Mortgage rates finally saw some balanced volatility this week.  Each of the past 2 weeks had either been decisively positive or negative.  This week ended up being both.

Things started strong with new 19-month lows on Monday and Tuesday.  The next 2 days brought a sharp turn in the other direction surrounding the FOMC Announcement.

The week in review is below. Make sure to check in next week for your weekly mortgage report.