• Although vacationing during the cold winter months is exciting, it’s important to take care of all the mundane details before leaving your home for a significant amount of time. Nobody wants to worry about the safety of their home while vacationing, and you won’t have to if you take these steps.

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  • Characterized by bright colors, woven fabrics and handcrafted pieces, southwestern-style decorating takes influences from Native American, Spanish and Mexican art. Whether you live out west and want your home to reflect your surroundings, or you simply want to incorporate colorful or handmade items into your existing decor, here are some tips to help you...

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  • A new phenomenon is affecting the mortgage and real estate industries. People who bought a home or refinanced in the last few years have such a ridiculously low mortgage rate that they don’t want to move and have to accept a new mortgage with a higher rate. But the reality is that these people...

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Types of Homes You’ll Find While House Hunting

Types of Homes You’ll Find While House Hunting

Looking for a home but not sure what all of the names mean? Cape Cod? Bungalow? While there are many types of homes and many variations of those types in America, there are a handful of common styles that you should be familiar with when searching for the perfect house. While we’ve covered a few styles before, there are additional designs to consider. Whether you are looking for a starter home, a long-term residence or a place to accommodate a growing family, check out the following five types of homes and their features before you embark on your house hunting journey.

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Myths about HARP and Loan Modifications

Myths about HARP and Loan Modifications

Editors note: We have some great news! Quicken Loans allows refinances of up to 200% of your home’s value on mortgages owned by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac through the HARP Program.  In order to participate in HARP, either Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac must own your loan.  See if you qualify for HARP or call today (800) 251-9080 to find out how much you could save. And finally, the Federal Government has extended HARP until the end of 2015. Myth: Everyone can qualify for HARP or for a loan modification – regardless of their ability to pay their existing mortgage or their previous pay history. Fact: Loan modifications are intended to prevent foreclosures for borrowers who are in default or are in imminent danger of default. If you qualify for a refinance now, you will NOT qualify for a loan modification. There are very specific, stringent guidelines you must meet in order to qualify for a loan modification under the plan. A homeowner must prove financial hardship due to job loss, change in income, mounting debt, adjusting interest rate, etc. An official document must be signed certifying you can no longer afford your mortgage payment. Myth: The government is able to drive interest rates lower in the future to help all borrowers. Fact: The government has been attempting to drive rates down for the past three months. Though the Federal Reserve has been continually lowering the Fed Funds rate, this action or other action by the government cannot completely control the…

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Mortgage Rates and the Market

Mortgage Rates and the Market

Generally speaking, interest rates are influenced by supply and demand. When the economy is robust and borrowing is strong, interest rates rise. When the economy softens and there is less borrowing, interest rates go down. But interest rates are also influenced by what the Federal Reserve, also known as “the Fed”, does and where the fed funds rate is set. Short-Term & Long-Term Rates The federal funds rate, also known as the fed funds rate, is the interest rate charged when banks lend funds to one another. This is a short-term rate, or a rate that is two years or less in maturity. When the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) raises or lowers the Fed funds rate, it affects mortgage rates that are tied to short-term interest rates, such as home equity rates and adjustable rates. When short-term rates fall, borrowing and spending usually increase. This can cause inflation, something the Federal Reserve wants to keep in control. Long-term Interest Rates Long-term interest rates, or rates that are 10 years or more in maturity such as for 30-year mortgages, are influenced by short-term rates in a round-about way because they can rise when concerns about inflation increase. To keep inflation under control, the Fed started raising short-term interest rates in 2004. Because of this, people who have adjustable rate mortgages have been refinancing into longer-term fixed-rate mortgages to avoid rising rates, especially since long-term rates have remained historically low for quite some time. Fed Funds Rate The Fed Funds Rate…

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HARP and Loan Modification – Making Home Affordable Program: Refinance Relief for Responsible Homeowners

HARP and Loan Modification – Making Home Affordable Program: Refinance Relief for Responsible Homeowners

Editors note: We have some great news! Quicken Loans allows refinances of up to 200% of your home’s value on mortgages owned by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac through the HARP Program.  In order to participate in HARP, either Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac must own your loan.   See if you qualify for HARP or call today (800) 251-9080 to find out how much you could save. And finally, the Federal Government has extended HARP until the end of 2015. At Quicken Loans, our goal is to make sure you’re always in the best mortgage for your financial situation. As you’ve heard in recent news, our government released a multi-step plan to help American homeowners. We’re extremely excited to be a part of the plan that could help millions of responsible homeowners in America. If you’re hearing conflicting information about the Making Home Affordable plan, check out our loan modification and HARP refinancing program myths and FAQs. Or get started now and find out if you qualify for the new plan with our easy Making Home Affordable HARP qualification tool now! Depending on your situation, you will fall into one of three scenarios: You owe less on your mortgage than your home is worth.This means that you can qualify for today’s already low mortgage rates! We can help you.The message of the plan is clear – the government wants American homeowners who currently qualify for a refinance to take advantage of historically-low mortgage rates. Waiting any longer could cost you money. Call us today…

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Tomorrow's Fed Meeting Will Likely Leave Rates Unchanged – Market Update

Tomorrow's Fed Meeting Will Likely Leave Rates Unchanged – Market Update

Treasuries sold off on Friday and have opened up even lower this morning ahead of tomorrow’s Federal Reserve meeting and also on speculation that this week’s reports will add to signs that the recovery is sustainable. It’s expected that the Federal Open Market Committee will leave rates unchanged, however many will be watching closely for news of a possible QE3.

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