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Articles written by Tammy Engel

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 By Tammy Engel    Local News    January 7, 2017 

What happened to rates?

Happy New Year. Have you been getting a bunch of mailers about refinancing your current home loan? Me, too. Is it really a good time to refinance? Only “maybe.” Many factors come in to play when...

 

Be like 'Buyer A'

“I’ve never worked with someone like you before when buying houses … it makes me wonder how many times I’ve been swindled or made bad decisions – thank you for walking us through...

 

Need help?

If you’re behind on your mortgage payments, or worried about how you’ll make the next one, join the more than 1.5 million families who have been helped so far. Fannie Mae has a great resource at...

 

Don't fall for it!

After you’ve done a new home loan, your mailbox gets stuffed with all kinds of mail. Anything you receive from your lender would be important, of course, as would anything from the local county tax...

 

Know before you owe

It’s important to have a monthly housing budget in mind when you shop for a new home. The on-line calculators you see on web sites are interesting, but don’t account for everything that might be...

 

It's taking FOREVER (again!)

Several weeks back my phone rang and a California City caller wanted to know if it was real that home loan appraisals were taking over a month. For her rural area, it was true. What’s that about?!...

 

Notes From a Seller

Now that I’ve been on the other side of the desk, let me share a few personal notes about being the seller in a real estate transaction. It’s really fun to hear your Realtor call to say there’s...

 

Really – shop that internet offer!

Out of curiosity, I looked at online mortgage rates today. The findings are astonishing, and suggest that before you click away, you really should shop any online mortgage offer you’re...

 

'Roadblocks to the American Dream'

The Center for California Real Estate has released a report about “Roadblocks to The American Dream.” In it, they cite current challenges facing home buyers. Here are their findings: 29% have...

 

'I'm a little put out…'

If you have been party to any home financing recently, you’ve probably said the same thing: “This should not be anything of concern, as I have very strong credit.” Welcome to my world. Once...

 

Why a Calculator Isn't Helpful

She was very surprised when I told her the monthly payment would be $1127 per month. “But my Realtor told me the payment would be only $925!” The Realtor was using a mortgage calculator to...

 
 By Tammy Engel    Local News    July 9, 2016

Choosing your escrow company

It’s less prevalent than it was before, but sometimes you still see listings where the seller has an established relationship with their own title and escrow company. Oftentimes this would be a bank...

 

Hooray for USDA, and Other Stuff

This fall, the USDA home loan program is reducing its mortgage insurance premiums, which will make its loan program more affordable than ever. In context, it means that using USDA financing to buy a...

 

Be Savvy

Consumers, we want your business! Advertising is designed to make you pick up the phone, or visit a web site, and it’s funny the way things are presented to compel you to do so. There are ads that...

 
 By Tammy Engel    Local News    May 28, 2016

Does Having a Co-Signer Help?

When you bought your first car, mom or dad was probably there to help you qualify for the car loan by being your co-signer. That made them jointly obligated for repayment of the loan, since you...

 
 By Tammy Engel    Local News    May 14, 2016

Do This!

Who doesn’t love a good list? Here’s a resource for anyone thinking about buying a home or refinancing. Use it to educate yourself now about what you’ll be asked to document for your mortgage...

 

Exceeding your budget

There’s a popular television show depicting the home buying process, where we get to watch home buyers look at different properties with their Realtor. There’s plenty of conversation about...

 

New year financing strategies

Take time now to review your financial health. Investigate some of these ways you might re-arrange your financing to save money this year and beyond. Refinance your home loan for a lower interest...

 

Which is the better deal?

Shopping for a home loan isn’t fun. You hear a bunch of numbers and aren’t really sure how to make sense of it all. Have another look at my website article “Comparing Loan Offers” if it intere...

 

Clean up the clutter

Once the holidays are over many people look around and decide they need to clean up their clutter for the new year. Here are two ways to do just that. If you find you’re receiving unwanted credit...

 

Prepare your kids to buy their first home

You don’t want your kids to miss out on today’s housing market opportunities, and everything is different since you bought your house. Here’s a primer on how to position your young adults for...

 

Check it out

When you apply for financing, we’ll likely ask you for your last two bank statements. Here’s a quick run down of what we’re looking for. Many single people have put their parents on title as...

 

Affordability snapshot

Time for a quick snapshot of our market’s affordability. Interest rates are still low, and homebuyers will be pleasantly surprised at how that affects a monthly house payment. The usual disclaimers...

 

Here's a TIP

New mortgage disclosures became effective this week. Consumers will now be given a Loan Estimate at the beginning of their loan process. This form combines several earlier forms into one format....

 

Nope, that won't help your score

A new survey conducted by TransUnion indicated that home buyers may not be as prepared to purchase a home as they thought. The survey revealed that those looking to buy a home within the next 12 to...

 

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