For millions of first-time homebuyers and other homeowners, the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), is the best resource they’ll ever find. Originated back in 1934, the FHA is a government agency that facilitates access to home ownership for more Americans. They do that in an ingenious way, since the FHA doesn’t actually lend their own money ...Continue Reading →
Amid our current rosy good news of stock market surges and economic growth, there sits an extremely prickly thorn: high credit card debt. In fact, the levels of U.S. consumer credit cards and other personal debt have reached levels not seen since the debt parade stopped in 2008 with the U.S. financial collapse.
In fact, as of 2016, our collective consumer credit card debt climbed to $927.1 billion, ...Continue Reading →
There are many reasons why a record number of consumers are getting shut out of traditional lending, unable to get a mortgage, auto loan, or even a single credit card. In fact, millions of Americans suffered significant damage to their credit scores through the Great Recession, leaving them with foreclosures, bankruptcies, and a whole lot ...Continue Reading →
Anyone who’s in the mortgage business knows that the halcyon days of an easy refi boom driven by historically low rates is probably over, which means that credit score will be more important than ever in getting a borrower approved for the right loan product. But even if you pull their credit and they fall ...Continue Reading →
Approving mortgages is all about assessing risk, as underwriters scrutinize every detail and shred of data in hopes of accurately predicting if a potential borrower will pay their mortgage on time every month – or default.
That’s good news for consumers that are good stewards of their financial affairs since keeping a great credit score, a low debt load, and plenty of assets will help them get approved for the best low-rate mortgage loan when it comes time to refinance or ...Continue Reading →
How much interest will you pay over the course of your lifetime? If you add up all the interest the average person spends on mortgage payments, car loans, and credit cards, the aggregate number is pretty starting: $279,000.
That’s the amount of total dollars spent (or wasted, depending on how you look at it), over a consumer’s lifetime when you factor in the typical use of debt, loans, and finances. But that number could easily jump higher for some consumers, or ...Continue Reading →
Many retailers now offer extended service plans or warranties for an additional cost, covering you in the event that your laptop or phone or major appliances goes kaput sooner or later. But is it worth the extra cost? Statistically, the answer is probably “no” for most items.
“From a purely economic standpoint,” says Rajiv Sinha, marketing professor at Arizona State University, “It usually doesn’t make sense to buy an extended warranty.”
But there are times and circumstances where you may feel better protecting ...Continue Reading →
Have you thought longingly about buying your first home, only to cancel out that dream once you look at the down payment requirements? It’s true that a mortgage payment often costs less than renting these days, and there are fantastic benefits to home ownership like equity appreciation and tax breaks, but there’s no getting around the fact that they need a whole lot of money, all at once and up front, in order to buy, right?
Maybe not. The good ...
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a federal consumer watchdog group, just released plans to further regulate payday lending, a practice that’s viewed as predatory to consumers. While payday loans are certainly popular, they are oft criticized as charging exorbitant fees and interest rates, setting up borrowers to fail and setting them further back financially. Even President Obama lent his support to the idea of further regulation that would help protect consumers.
“If you lend out money, you have to first make ...Continue Reading →
In a shocking development from the “you can’t make this stuff up,” department, former Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke recently disclosed that he’s had some mortgage trouble of how own. Speaking to a conference at the National Investment Center for Senior Housing and Care, Bernanke confessed that he’d been denied for a mortgage refinance on his own personal residence.
“I recently tried to refinance my mortgage and I was unsuccessful,” said Bernanke to moderator Mark Zandi of Moody’s Analytics in front ...Continue Reading →