Thursday, September 19, 2019

Market Update Aug 2019!



Here are five market updates to help you answer consumer FAQs about real estate. We’ve taken statistics straight from Florida Realtors® to custom create these for you and your customers. Thanks for being our member!



To see the full list of counties, click HERE



Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Here's how long it takes to improve your credit score.



 


Generally speaking, the higher your credit score, the better off you are. But the recovery time from a missed payment or financial setback differs for everyone.


Generally speaking, the higher your credit score, the better off you are when seeking a loan.


But the recovery time from a missed payment or financial setback of any kind differs for everyone.


As many consumers know, your credit score plays a big role in daily life. It can determine the interest rate you’ll pay for credit cards, car loans and mortgages — or whether you’ll get a loan at all.


Those three digits can save you tens of thousands of dollars over time, or cost you just as much.


“Depending on your credit history, a 15- or 20-point shift could mean the difference between being approved or declined or better terms or higher costs,” said Rod Griffin, the director of public education at Experian, a major credit-reporting firm.


The good news is that average credit scores have steadily ticked higher since bottoming out during the housing crisis about a decade ago, when there was a sharp increase in foreclosures. Now scores are at an all-time high, according to FICO, a leading credit-scoring company. FICO scores range from 300 to 850.


However, a missed payment or default can quickly drag your score down, sometimes significantly. (See financial comparison site SuperMoney’s charts below based on data by VantageScore and FICO.)


The best way to increase your credit score comes down to paying your bills on time or reducing your credit-card balance. (The common advice is to keep revolving debt below 30% of your available credit so that your utilization rate doesn’t hurt your credit score.)


Your payment history and utilization rate typically account for 60% to 70% of a credit score, according to Experian.


Such positive credit behaviors can start to improve your score as soon as a few billing cycles. “As a rule of thumb, you could see an appreciable difference in six months,” said Ted Rossman, industry analyst at CreditCards.com.


However, that also depends on the issues you are trying to overcome.


For example, “if a missed payment has dragged your score down, your score could rebound in a month or two, a series of late payments will take longer to make a full recovery,” Griffin said.


Being late on a mortgage payment is a more serious problem, yet you can recover from that in as little as nine months. File for bankruptcy, on the other hand, and it could take 5 years to 10 years to get back to where you once were, according to Miron Lulic, the founder and CEO of SuperMoney.


 


Source: Here’s how long it takes to improve your credit score



Monday, September 16, 2019

Here are the benefits of using an in-person mortgage lender instead of an online lender.



Online lenders are now among the largest originators of mortgages, but local lenders continue to attract customers who crave an experience and connection they feel is unavailable on the internet.


“They know we’re part of the same community that they live in and care about the same things,” said Jennifer Cowles, vice president of mortgage lending and loan servicing at Workers Credit Union. “We’re nurturing relationships.”


Credit unions accounted for 9% of the $1.75 trillion in mortgages originated nationwide in 2017, according to U.S. mortgage market statistics for 2018 compiled by MagnifyMoney by LendingTree. Banks were responsible for 40% of mortgages and nonbank lenders, like online originators, originated 51%.


Just 3% of 5,187 mortgage customers surveyed only used digital self-service channels for their loan process, according to the J.D. Power 2018 U.S. Primary Mortgage Origination Satisfaction Study. Researchers found that “overall satisfaction is highest among customers who spoke only with their lender in person or over the phone (871) when applying for a mortgage, followed by satisfaction among those who used a mix of personal and self-service tools (868).”


Workers Credit Union members appreciate that they can get service over the phone or at a branch, Cowles said. “We can be face to face very easily if that’s the way the member prefers to deal with us.”


While some borrowers like the speed and convenience that online mortgages offer, others want the human touch. “When it comes to big financial decisions, some people just feel more at ease doing business in person,” according to an Investopedia article comparing Quicken Loans vs. your local bank. “If you are the type of person who likes to look people in the eye when getting advice, a local lender might be the best way to go.”


Borrowers also like knowing that their mortgage payments help their community when they use a local bank, Investopedia noted. “Smaller banks also tend to support local events and charities, thus bolstering the local community.”


Source: https://www.bizjournals.com/boston/news/2019/09/13/here-are-the-benefits-of-using-an-in-person.html



Thursday, September 12, 2019

Mortgage applications are on the rise!



 


Homebuyers are taking advantage of lower mortgage rates and a slow summer for sellers, and that is driving mortgage applications higher. Total mortgage application volume rose 2% last week compared with the previous week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s seasonally adjusted index. Volume was up 69% than the same week one year ago, when interest rates were much higher. The week’s results included an adjustment for the Labor Day holiday.


Source: Weekly mortgage applications rise as buyer’s market takes hold



Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Mortgage payment or rent? There's no contest study finds!



Homeownership has been so positive for most owners, that they would never choose to return to renting.


A new study from the Bank of America found that 83% would never go back and 93% said that their lives have been happier because of homeownership.


The Homebuyer Insights Report also discovered that 88% said buying their home was the best decision they ever made while 79% said it has changed them for the better.


Emotional attachment and improved lifestyle both contribute to their happiness. And many said they have benefitted from new hobbies such as gardening/landscaping and interior design/remodeling.


“We know how much homeownership means, and we see examples every day of how owning a home gives our clients the power to build personal wealth and make memories,” said D. Steve Boland, head of Consumer Lending at Bank of America. “They’ve told us very clearly that homeownership is invaluable, and that’s why we’re actively providing assistance with down payment and closing costs to help people buy homes and create a new lifestyle.”


Being able to house the whole family under one roof (24%), a sense of pride (47%), and allowing them to entertain more (49%) were all cited as positive changes since buying a home.


Emotions vs. equity

While respondents said homeownership builds both emotional and financial equity, it is the emotional value that is most important.


More than half of current homeowners define a home as a place to make memories, compared to 42% who view a home as a financial investment.


Most Americans agree that owning one is a way to build lifelong memories with loved ones, and 70% say they are more emotionally attached to their homes than they anticipated. More than two-thirds believe it would be difficult to move from their home because of the memories made there.


 


Source: https://www.mpamag.com/market-update/mortgage-payment-or-rent-theres-no-contest-boa-study-finds-177230.aspx?utm_source=Pinpointe&utm_me%E2%80%A6



Monday, September 9, 2019

Are Homeowners Happy? Survey Says: You Betcha!



 


A new survey conducted by Bank of America has found the vast majority of homeowners are highly satisfied with owning their residences and would never go back to renting.


According to the new Bank of America’s Homebuyer Insights Report that polled 1,919 adults, 93 percent of respondents said they were happier because they bought a home, with 88 percent stating it was the best decision they have ever made and 79 percent claiming that owning a home has changed them for the better. Two-thirds of respondents who are homeowners said their relationships with family and loved ones have changed for the better since purchasing a home, and 78 percent are satisfied with the quality of their social life–a higher share than the 58 percent of prospective homebuyers who were quizzed on the quality of their social life. As for giving up homeownership, 83 percent of respondents that own a residential property said they would never go back to renting.


“We know how much homeownership means, and we see examples every day of how owning a home gives our clients the power to build personal wealth and make memories,” said D. Steve Boland, head of Consumer Lending at Bank of America. “They’ve told us very clearly that homeownership is invaluable, and that’s why we’re actively providing assistance with down payment and closing costs to help people buy homes and create a new lifestyle.”


Source: Are Homeowners Happy? Survey Says: You Betcha!



Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Homeownership is the Top Contributor to Household Wealth



 


Two US Census Bureau researchers have determined that the biggest determinants of household wealth are owning a home and having a retirement account.  While that may not be surprising, the degrees of magnitude are.


Using data from the 2015 Survey of Income and Program Participation, Jonathan Eggleston, an economist, and Donald Hays, a survey statistician in the Bureau’s Social, Economic and Housing Statistics Division found that the wealth inequality between homeowners and renters is striking, with the former having median net worth 80 times that of the latter.  Further, they found wide variations in wealth across demographic and socioeconomic groups.  Given that the two are using 2015 data and with the rapid increase in home values since then, the degree of inequality today is probably greater.


The authors say net worth is an important indicator of economic well-being that provides insights into a household’s economic health.  For example, during financial hardships such as illness or unemployment wealth is a buffer.  It is measured by the value of assets owned minus the debts owned.  Therefore, net worth can be negative. Households in the top 1 percent of net worth were excluded from the study.


About half of households had outstanding unsecured debt with a median of $7,500.  Credit card and store bills were the most common unsecured liability and about one in five households had outstanding student loan debt, with a median for those that did of $20,000.


Source: Homeownership is the Top Contributor to Household Wealth