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Sandra Aslin

Agent

Expert Realtor (13 years experience)

Specialties:
Buyer's Agent,
Listing Agent,
Relocation,
Consulting

Advice

  • (19 Contributions,
  • 0 Best Answers,
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Keep your home California

Principal relief for stressed homeownersA limited number of underwater homeowners in California will soon be able to get principal reductions of up to $100,000 apiece on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac loans through the federally funded Keep Your Home California program The California Housing Finance Agency set up four programs under the Keep Your Home name to distribute California's Share of the funds -- $1.9 billion.  It allocated $772 million to principal reduction – enough to help an estimated 9,000 borrowers. To qualify for the principal reduction in California, homeowners must live in the home, owe more than it is worth, be of low-to-moderate income, and be delinquent or have some hardship that puts them in imminent risk of default. The balance on the first mortgage cannot exceed $729,750.  Other rules apply, but there is no asset limitation.  The maximum reduction is $100,000 per homeowner. For more information on the Keep Your Home programs, visithttp://keepyourhomecalifornia.org/.

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short sale fraud update

Short sale fraud "heating up," expert saysA panel of short sale experts presenting at CALIFORNIA REALTOR® EXPO 2012 in Anaheim last week said that "fraud is heating up like a wildfire right now ..." and "we've got to be aware that this fraud is changing directions, jumping containment lines."Making sense of the storyShort sales involve the selling of a home for less than is owed on its mortgage. Among the most common forms of fraud are: Flopping, non-arm's length transaction, side agreements, and false information. Flopping: Scammers arrange to buy a home at an artificially deflated price intending to flip it immediately at its actual value. Non-arm's length transactions: The buyer in a short sale is related to the seller by blood, marriage, or some type of business or personal affiliation.  This istypically arranged by an underwater borrower to regain ownership of the property free from the mortgage debt. Side agreements: In addition to payments included in a lender's "approval letter," the buyer and seller have side agreements to pay off junior liens, short sale negotiators' fees, or other third-party fees. False information: The transaction includes phony details in the closing settlement statement, or HUD-1, to hide buried costs and fees.

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How can I refinance?

Answer

Is a mortgage refinance right for you?With rates for 30-year mortgages hovering below 4 percent since last October, all kinds of homeowners are trying to get their monthly mortgages reduced, say lenders and mortgage experts.Along with months of record-breaking low interest rates, other factors are driving the refinancing boom: a competitive lending market and changes in some federal refinancing programs for struggling homeowners. It's prompted many established homeowners with old-school, high-interest mortgages to decide it's time to refi.Making sense of the storyTo determine whether you should refinance, look at how long you plan to be in your current home and whether the upfront costs outweigh the monthly savings. Generally the primary reasons for refinancing a mortgage are to:Lower monthly mortgage payments.Eliminate the unpredictability of an adjustable-rate mortgage by switching to a fixed rate.Free up home equity cash for home improvements, college costs or other expenses.Shorten the loan term, say from a 30- to a 15-year mortgage, which can save thousands in interest payments.It pays to compare quotes from several lenders because they offer different rates and fees. Start with your current lender or sit down with a local loan originator. You can also do refinance comparisons online, using mortgage calculators at sites like Bankrate.com or those of individual banks and lenders.If you're a struggling homeowner, ask your lender about changes in the federal Home Affordable Refinance Program and FHA refinance programs that have made refinancing options more plentiful.

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What do I really need to do to get my home ready for selling?

Answer

Some homeowners believe that making improvements to their house themselves – aka do-it-yourself projects – will save them a lot of money. This may be true for some projects, but not for all.Unless the homeowner is a home builder, the project could turn disastrous and become even more expensive. In these cases, it's best to consider hiring a contractor.According to the president of the National Association of the Remodeling Industry, homeowners who forego hiring a contractor often open up a wall and inadvertently create a major electrical, plumbing, or structural problem. Those mistakes cost even more than the original project.However, there are some projects that are well within the skill set of a non-tradesman, including small roof repairs and paint jobs. As for the rest, homeowners should think long and hard before deciding to tackle a project themselves.

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How soon after a short sale can I get a mortgage loan to purchase a house?

Answer

In summary, the home owner benefits from a Short Sale because:The seller can avoid having a "foreclosure" on their credit report.According to recent Fannie Mae guidelines, if you go through a short sale you can be eligible to buy a home with a Fannie Mae loan 2 years after the short sale is complete. After foreclosure, a homeowner must wait at least five years to be eligible for a Fannie Mae loan.

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How soon after a short sale can I get a mortgage loan to purchase a house?

Answer

In summary, the home owner benefits from a Short Sale because:The seller can avoid having a "foreclosure" on their credit report.According to recent Fannie Mae guidelines, if you go through a short sale you can be eligible to buy a home with a Fannie Mae loan 2 years after the short sale is complete. After foreclosure, a homeowner must wait at least five years to be eligible for a Fannie Mae loan.

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Mortgage rates hit a new all time low

The average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage fell to an all-time low of 3.36%, according to a weekly survey by mortgage finance backer Freddie Mac. The rate dropped from 3.40% the previous week.he fixed-rate 15-year mortgage also hit a new record low of 2.69% from 2.73% a week earlier.Rates have been falling to news lows since the Fed announced last month that it would buy $40 billion in mortgage-backed securities each month. The central bank hopes that keeping interest rates low through this policy, known as quantitative easing, will fuel home buying, which will lead to more spending, and eventually more hiring. 

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