Tips on buying and financing your first home
News from NorthJersey.com:

ARA — For many younger Americans, the dream of owning their first home is alive and well. But for others, it’s still an elusive dream.

PHOTO COURTESY OF ARA

Buying your first home takes preparation.

Only five years ago, it was relatively easy to finance a home, but the Great Recession and the mortgage market’s meltdown have made it difficult for many people to qualify for home loans. The shifting state of home values and prices has complicated matters. In some markets, values have plunged by more than 40 percent. While that has created once-in-a-lifetime opportunities for younger people to enter the real estate market, others have taken a more cautious approach, waiting to see if prices will continue to fall.

Whether you’re ready now or will be down the road, buying your first home takes preparation. Here are some tips from FindLaw.com, the nation’s leading website for free legal information, on how to get started.

* Save aggressively for your down payment. Many first-time homebuyers seek a mortgage insured by the Federal Housing Association…………… continues on NorthJersey.com

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Cover story: Raising credit score for a home loan
News from Washington Times:

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Borrowers Beware: You Only Think You Know Your Credit Score.
News from TheStreet.com:

NEW YORK (TheStreet) — You’d think the credit score you get is the same one a creditor gets.

You know, the company that makes an up-or-down decision on whether you get that new home, car or loan to open a small business.

Inconsequential stuff like that.

FIND OUT NOW

But if you thought so, you’re probably wrong — or so says the nation’s consumer advocacy agency.

One in five consumers get a different credit score than the one that goes to creditors, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau says. The CFPB think that’s a big deal, since a lender could see a “meaningfully different score.” “This study highlights the complexities consumers face in the credit scoring market,” CFPB Director Richard Cordray says. “When consumers buy a credit score, they should be aware that a lender may be using a very different score in making a credit decision.” The CFPB is mandated to study and recommend any needed changes in the relationship between consumers and credit score agencies, and the study is the first major step in that direction for the agency — a thorough one that i…………… continues on TheStreet.com

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Applying for home loan,check your credit score
News from Indian Express:

Owning your own home is one of the finest feelings in the world. Nothing beats the sense of achievement and security when you first open the door to your brand new home. Purchasing your own home involves thorough planning and research and the most crucial factor which influences your decision is your financial ability. It makes sense to get all your reports and inspections completed before scouting for a house or applying for loan.

The low ticket home loans have decreased by half to 22 per cent of all loans during the last five years because of steep increase in property prices. As per the data by the Credit Information Bureau (Cibil), about 75 per cent of new accounts opened in 2011 had sanctioned amounts between R 5 lakh and R 50 lakh. This also means that the shift is clearly towards higher value loans, indicating property price rise and higher borrowing affordability. For instance, in 2011, approximately 48 per cent of the total home loans sanctioned in metro cities had a ticket size of more than R 20 lakh.

According to figures from Cibil, home loan enquiries have more than doubled from first quarter (Q1) of 2007 to third quarter (Q3) of 2011. The first three quarters of 2011 show an increase in home loan enquiries by 21 per cent over the same period last year.

The trends of acquisition of new home loans by banks show that in 2008, 23 per cent…………… continues on Indian Express

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Tips for improving your credit score
News from Pacific Daily News:

Last week, we talked about preparing to buy a home by ordering and reviewing your credit reports and scores. Today, we’ll discuss improving specific areas of your creditworthiness, to put you in the best position possible as you apply for a mortgage.

Establish a pattern of paying on time. On your credit reports, each account includes a record of your payment history. Each month will be marked as “Paid as agreed,” or late, along with the length of time in which the payment was late, in 30-day increments.

When lenders look at your credit history, they want to see that you consistently pay on time. When considering a mortgage application, with a term that can last as long as 30 years, lenders look to your past history to predict the future pattern of your payments.

If you frequently pay late, and your late payments are recent, this can indicate credit risk to a financial institution. To lessen the potential costs that come with that risk, a financial institution may charge higher interest rates than they would offer to a lower-risk applicant.

If you have this pattern, first recognize that this negative information stays on your credit report for a finite period of time: in most cases, seven years. With time, you can replace negative marks with positive ones. Next, your most recent behavior will be considered more…………… continues on Pacific Daily News

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7 key steps to finding the right home loan
News from Daily Breeze:

Mortgage rates have plunged to record lows, below 4 percent. That’s great – but only if you can actually qualify for a loan, and that’s not easy. After giving away the store during the housing boom with disastrous results, lenders have tightened their underwriting standards, leaving many would-be home buyers out of luck.

But there are steps homebuyers can take to find the right mortgage, and qualify for it. Here are seven:

Improve your credit score

A credit score below 620, as measured by the Minneapolis company FICO, will knock most potential buyers out of the running for a mortgage. And even if you can qualify for a loan, lenders reserve their best interest rates for borrowers with the highest credit scores – typically 740 and above. If a bad credit score pushes up your interest rate by even one percentage point, you could end up paying $ 85,000 more over the life of a $ 400,000 loan, according to Tracy Becker, president of North Shore Advisory, a credit repair company in New York state.

To see where you stand, start by c…………… continues on Daily Breeze

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Will a Settled Car Loan Help My Credit Score?
News from Fox Business:

Dear Driving for Dollars,
If I pay a settlement amount on my car loan and they mark “settled” on my credit, will it help my credit score?
— Trish

Dear Trish,
Settling a car loan debt, when you and the lender agree on a lower balance than your original loan and make the loan paid in full, will lower your credit score compared to paying the car loan on time. I’m guessing that you are asking if settling will help your score because you are already experiencing damaged credit due to late payments or missing them entirely.

The more late payments or missed payments you have, the more your credit score will decline. As a result, if you are unable to make the payments per the original terms of your car loan, then settling the debt sooner rather than later would help your credit score in the sense that it would have a smaller drop than if you continued to miss payments.

Get more news, money-saving tips and expert advice by signing up for a free Bankrate newsletter.

Bankrate’s content, including the guidance of its advice-and-expert columns and this website, is intended only to assist you with financial decisions. The content is broad in scope and does not consider your personal financial situation. Bankrate recommends that you seek the advice…………… continues on Fox Business

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Mortgage Musts: 7 key steps to get a home loan
News from MyWebTimes.com:

Mortgage rates have plunged to record lows, below 4 percent. That’s great — but only if you can actually qualify for a loan, and that’s not easy. After giving away the store during the housing boom with disastrous results, lenders have tightened their underwriting standards, leaving many would-be home buyers out of luck.

But there are steps homebuyers can take to find the right mortgage and qualify for it. Here are seven:

1. IMPROVE YOUR CREDIT SCORE: A credit score below 620, as measured by the Minneapolis company FICO, will knock most potential buyers out of the running for a mortgage. And even if you can qualify for a loan, lenders reserve their best interest rates for borrowers with the highest credit scores — typically 740 and above. If a bad credit score pushes up your interest rate by even one percentage point, you could end up paying $ 85,000 more over the life of a $ 400,000 loan, according to Tracy Becker, president of North Shore Advisory, a credit repair company in New York state.

To see where you stand, start by checking your credit report, which is available free at annualcreditreport.com, preferably at least six months before you’re ready to shop for a home. You can get a free report once every 12 months from each of the three credit reporting companies — Experian, TransUnion and Equifax. Make sure there are no mistakes on the re…………… continues on MyWebTimes.com

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Importance of Credit Score When Purchasing a Home
News from Patch.com:

You’ve found the perfect home that you know should be well within your budget. Now all you need to do is secure the loan—but you’re either turned down or you have to pay a higher rate.  In today’s economy, many buyers are facing this exact issue. They have the means to meet their potential mortgage payment but unfortunately, an issue in the past damaged their credit score and it’s preventing them from getting a loan.

If you’re contemplating purchasing a home, especially if you’re a first-time buyer, you need to do everything you can to boost your credit score. This will make it more likely that you’ll qualify for a loan and will help you secure a lower interest rate. Below are a few steps to get you started:

  • Get a free credit report. You can do this here once a year. This site is maintained by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and is the only site that provides a truly 100 percent free credit score. There are other sites with similar names, but they are not  maintained by the FTC. If you prefer not to use the web, you can also get your free credit report by calling 1-877-322-8228.
  • Check your credit score.…………… continues on Patch.com

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7 credit card myths and tips to avoid debt
News from newjerseynewsroom.com:

BY PAUL SISOLAK

The word “myth” usually conjures up images of aliens, Bigfoot or a U.S. economic recovery. Rarely, if ever, do we lump personal finance and credit cards into the camp of unfounded rumor.

Credit cards have always seemed pretty simple to understand — swipe, receive bill, pay bill. If only it were that straightforward. Credit card debt was more than $ 700 billion in 2011, hinting at the fact that Americans have not been very cautious with their lines of credit, and that there is a lack of understanding of the obvious and not-so-obvious myths involving our trusty plastic cards.

With April being National Financial Literacy Month, it is time to debunk some of the most common credit card facts and fictions.

1. Debit and credit cards boost your credit score.

Look at a debit card and credit card side by side, and it is hard to differentiate the two. Both operate on a similar principle but are actually very different when it comes to your credit score.

A debit card has no effect on a credit score because it is tied to a checking account. Because funds are automatically deducted, there is no credit…………… continues on newjerseynewsroom.com

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Real estate: Tips on buying and financing your first home
News from Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:

(ARA) – For many younger Americans, the dream of owning their first home is alive and well. But for others, it’s still an elusive dream.

Only five years ago, it was relatively easy to finance a home, but the Great Recession and the mortgage market’s meltdown have made it difficult for many people to qualify for home loans. The shifting state of home values and prices has complicated matters. In some markets, values have plunged by more than 40 percent. While that has created once-in-a-lifetime opportunities for younger people to enter the real estate market, others have taken a more cautious approach, waiting to see if prices will continue to fall.

Whether you’re ready now or will be down the road, buying your first home takes preparation. Here are some tips from FindLaw.com, the nation’s leading website for free legal information, on how to get started.

Save aggressively for your down payment. Many first-time homebuyers seek a mortgage insured by the Federal Housing Association, which insures loans made by lenders for qualifying homebuyers. The program allows buyers to put down as little as 3.5 percent of a home’s cost. However, if the home you want to buy doesn’t qualify for the program, you’ll need to obtain a conventional loan, which will require you to put dow…………… continues on Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

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How your credit score can impact the purchase of a home
News from Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:

(ARA) – Purchasing a home can be the most rewarding – and also the most frustrating – financial transaction of your life. Especially today, when the news is filled with stories about the great market conditions for buyers. One aspect of the home buying process that’s often overlooked is the extra cost that interest from a home loan adds to the total price of the home.

It’s true that interest rates are at historical lows. It’s also true that lenders have reduced the types of loans they offer, and simultaneously have become more stringent about who qualifies.

A recent study by VantageScore Solutions, the company behind the VantageScore credit score model, shows that the rate of default for homeowners with good credit (a credit score of 700 or better based on the VantageScore scale of 501-990) has decreased dramatically since 2009. Also notable is the increase in the last two years of new loan applicants with a score of 700 or better (less than 40 percent in 2009; 90 percent in 2011). The result? A good credit score can help shave thousands of dollars in interest off the cost of a loan.

So, before you even begin looking at houses, getting your credit in good order is essential. A good credit score will help you qualify for the most favorable loan terms, and make buying a home a positive long-term experience. Here are a few tips from VantageScore Sol…………… continues on Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

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Check your credit before buying a home
News from Morganton News Herald:

MORGANTON — If you’re looking to buy a home, make sure one of your first steps is taking a close look at your credit report.

A credit score summarizes a person’s historical credit information and banks use that number to determine if the person is credit worthy, said Jennifer Wright, a local BB&T mortgage loan officer.

Beverly Carlton, executive director of Olive Hill Community Economic Development Corporation, said credit history gives lenders an indication of how you can be expected to pay them in the future.

“Having a good credit report means it will be easier to get loans and lower interest rates and prime loans,” said Carlton. “Lower interest rates usually translate into smaller monthly payments. Poor credit scores usually translate into higher interest rates and subprime loans.”

An average “good” score for a first time homebuyer would be around 640, said Wright, but the criteria varies from lender to lender.

Sometimes lenders will work with people with lower scores if there were extenuating circumstances leading to the low sc…………… continues on Morganton News Herald

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How to improve your credit score – Business Standard
News from How to improve your credit score – Business Standard:

How to improve your credit score
Maintain discipline on repayment dates and commitments. If debt is high, try part payment
Arvind Rao / Mumbai Mar 04, 2012, 00:45 IST

Poor credit history is a common problem that can destabilise your finances. It may happen during the early employment days when individuals borrow to buy vehicles or take personal loans to meet their rising credit card bills. Equally susceptible are mature families who borrow to fund the higher education of their children or any other incidental needs.

This credit data is submitted by lenders to credit reporting agencies like CIBIL (Credit Information Bureau (India) Limited) on a regular basis. An individual’s credit score provides a credit institution with an indication of the probability of default. These scores play a critical role in the loan approval process.

 

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Tips for purchasing a home
News from Richmond Register:

RICHMOND — Buying your home is an exciting experience, and it may be the largest financial investment you will ever make.

Taking the time to learn about the steps involved in the process will help ensure that you purchase a quality home at a price you can afford.

The seven basic steps to buying are:

Prepare for home ownership

Begin by seeking homebuyer education. A free workshop on Home Buying and Borrowing will be conducted at the Madison County Extension Education Center, 230 Duncannon Lane, Richmond, on Tuesday, Feb. 21, at 6:30 p.m. Please call 623-4072 to register.

Monitor your credit record. Your credit score is a key factor in determining the rate of interest that you will pay for your mortgage loan.

Generally, a higher credit score will qualify you for a lower interest rate.

Save time, energy and money by having a realistic idea of what you need and how much you can afford before you start home shopping.

Shop for a loan

• Gather all the information you need to complete the mortgage loan application.

Compare the different types of mortgages offered and the tradeoffs associated with each option.

• You can avoid paying for private mortgage insurance if your down payment equals at least 20 of the purchase price.

• You will be in a better position to have your offer accepted if you are prequalif…………… continues on Richmond Register

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Does Your Credit Suck?
News from Salt Lake City Weekly:

Posted // February 15,2012 –

This article not prepared by City Weekly Staff

The real-estate market right now has heated up. Anyone trying to buy a decently priced home will find that the house they find to buy may have multiple offers on it. For reals. Why? I believe renters have finally figured out that rents are high and mortgage payments are cheaper than rent. But what if your credit scores suck and you can’t buy? Here’s some advice:

1. If you think your credit score sucks, it may very well not suck. I often talk to people who say things like: “I filed bankruptcy once.” That was 10 years ago and, well, if your credit has been good since your bankruptcy, then you should be able to qualify for a loan if you have good income and not too high of a debt load each month. Check with a lender, a good lender. Sit down, eye to eye, and have them go over your financial life. Spill your guts and see what they think. If you need some improvement, the lender will tell you how to fix your credit and maybe help you fix your credit. All for free.

2. If you want to improve your credit ratings, work toward these goals:

• If you have a $ 500 limit on your credit card, keep your balance under 30 percent—$ 150 or less. Credit raters love that!

• Improve your payment history—this makes up 35 percent of your total credit scor…………… continues on Salt Lake City Weekly

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How To Fix Your Credit Score After A Big Problem (Credit Score:Understanding The Basics)

Big, bad problems can happen to you – bankruptcies, divorces, law suits, nonpayment of taxes. These are big problems that can affect your credit score in as big way. If you have faced a large problem that has ruined your credit, you need
to take action fast and work consistently to boost your FICO scoreBig, bad problems can happen to you – bankruptcies, divorces, law suits, nonpayment of taxes. These are big problems that can affect your credit score in as big way. If you have faced a large

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