Student Loans and Qualifying for a Mortgage

mortgageporter_student_loansEDITORS NOTE 4/13/2016: FHA has revised their calculation requirements for student loans! It is now the greater of the actual payment or 1% of the balance or what is reported on the credit report. 

My son graduated from Seattle University a few months ago and has recently landed his first “real job” in the tech world. I couldn’t be more proud of him!  Many first time home buyers, who have gone to college may be surprised to learn how student loans may impact how much mortgage they qualify for. Different types of mortgages have different guidelines with how they treat student loans and other debts with deferred payments. The guidelines below apply to both home purchases and refinances…and, of course, are subject to change.

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Are you buying a new home? WAIT to buy new furniture!

iStock_000008143756_MediumI have been working with a couple of clients who are buying homes and who’ve recently asked if it’s okay for them to buy furniture before closing on their new home. It must be all the “Fourth of July blow-out” sales going on that’s causing this question to come up recently.

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Fannie Mae no longer requires revolving debts to be closed

MortgageThis week, Fannie Mae issued new underwriting guidelines for conforming loans approved through DU (Fannie Mae’s automated underwriting system). One of the new guidelines that is catching a lot of attention is that Fannie Mae will no longer require that revolving debts that are paid off in order to reduce a borrowers debt to income ratios and help them qualify, to also be closed.  The new guidelines will allow a revolving debts that are paid down to zero balance to no longer be factored for qualifying purposes.

If I can help you with your purchase or refi mortgage needs for your home located anywhere in Washington state, please contact me.

 

What are Debt to Income Ratios?

seesawLet’s begin by addressing what a debt to income ratio is.  It’s pretty much like it sounds.  It’s factoring in your monthly payments plus the proposed mortgage payment (PITI = principal, interest, taxes and insurance) and home owners dues, if any.   Your monthly gross income that is used for qualifying is divided into the monthly debt which produces your DTI (debt to income ratio).

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Determining Rental Income for a Conforming Mortgage

iStock-000018668640XSmallRecently Fannie Mae updated their guidelines for rental income, including the addition of Rental Income Worksheets for the lender to complete to help make sure the rental income is calculated correctly. How much rental income may be used and how it is calculated will depend on when the borrower obtained the rental property, when rents were collected and what how many units there are with the subject property. Underwriters are looking the likelihood that the rental income will continue as well as the losses too. If your rental is producing a net loss, that will factored into your qualifying ratios.

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Freddie Mac loosening up on Large Deposits

mortgageporterraiseDocumenting large deposits on bank statements has been a royal pain in the behind for many borrowers going through the mortgage process.  I am very pleased to share with you that Freddie Mac has updated guidelines that lenders, including Mortgage Master, are embracing.

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Fannie Mae to increase minimum down payment in November

Fannie Mae is scheduled to update their automated underwriting system (aus) Desktop Underwriter (DU) to DU Version 9.1 on November 16, 2013.  In their release notes from August 20, 2013, Fannie Mae reveals that for they will increase the minimum down payment from 3% to 5% for Fannie Mae conventional loans.

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How does a Loan Mod impact buying your next home?

Many home owners who were unable to refinance and did not qualify for special programs like HARP opted for a loan modification (or loan mod). A loan mod is when the existing mortgage terms are adjusted or modified, in most often cases to reduce the mortgage payment.

To be clear, I am not in the “loan mod” part of the mortgage industry. My focus is on helping Washington home buyers and home owners with mortgages for purchasing a home or refinancing their mortgage.  With my mortgage practice, I do come across home owners who have had a loan mod and they are often surprised to learn how it may impact their odds buying a home. 

Many lenders view a loan modification, if done for reasons of financial distress, as a “pre-foreclosure” or short sale.

A lot will weigh on the borrowers credit report. Lenders will look to see how the loan mod was reported to the bureaus. For example, some lenders may have added language to the credit report such as “PAYING UNDER PARTIAL AGREEMENT” or “LOAN MODIFIED…” which indicates a loan modification has taken place. Lenders will weigh if the borrower had late mortgage payments, how late the payments were and how recent the last late payment took place. 

It’s also possible that the loan mod may not prevent you from buying your next home depending on your circumstances and how the loan mod was reported to the bureaus.

If you’ve had a loan modification in the past few years and are considering buying your next home, you will want to connect with a mortgage professional as soon as possible to see what your options are. 

If you are considering a loan mod, please review this information from Washington State DFI. Another great website for you to check out if you are a Washington state homeowner in distress is www.homeownership.wa.gov.

If you are considering buying a home located in Washington state, I’m happy to help you. Worse case, if you are not able to “buy now” we can work on a plan together so that you’ll be in a better position in the future.