Archive for August, 2015

Offering two new additions to Minnesota Housing loan programs…. by Barb Crea

August 28th, 2015

M+M With the Fall Parade of Homes just  around the corner, we  are thrilled to  have new additions to offer borrowers  who  qualify for Minnesota Housing  loan programs! Minnesota  Housing is  NOW offering an Upfront Paid  Mortgage  Insurance option along  with the Freddie Mac HFA Advantage.

Upfront Paid Mortgage Insurance will allow your buyers to benefit from a lower monthly payment on a conventional loan by having all or most of the mortgage insurance premium paid upfront by the lender. The Upfront Paid Mortgage Insurance option offers a lower interest rate than the popular HFA Preferred Risk Sharing program with no mortgage insurance, and can be layered with the Fannie Mae HFA Preferred program and the NEW Freddie Mac HFA Advantage program. Just like all of Minnesota Housing’s conventional programs, the Upfront Paid Mortgage Insurance program has the benefit of a lower mortgage insurance premium than the mortgage insurance required on standard conventional loans. The Upfront Paid Mortgage Insurance program can also be layered with Start Up, the Mortgage Credit Certificate Program (MCC), or Step Up (for non-first time homebuyers). An additional layer may include the Monthly Payment Loan or the Deferred Payment Loan to assist your buyers with their down payment and closing costs. Upfront Paid Mortgage Insurance requires a minimum 720 credit score. Read the rest of this entry »

There are some great programs for first time buyers…by Randy Cullen

August 24th, 2015


The Fall Parade of Homes is right around the corner. This year, the Parade starts September 12th and runs through October 4th.  It’s a great time to be out looking at everything new construction has to offer, especially if you are a first time home buyer. There are some great programs for those first time buyers, and everyone knows someone who may be eligible to use first time home buyer financing. Let’s touch on the most popular program offered by Minnesota Housing for you to share with friends, family, and clients.

Minnesota Housing Finance Agency offers the Start Up Program for qualified first time buyers in our metro area. Our 11 county Twin Cities Metro Area includes the counties of Anoka, Carver, Chisago, Dakota, Hennepin, Isanti, Ramsey, Scott, Sherburne, Washington, and Wright. The new home needs to be in a development that has been zoned for residential housing, must be connected to city services, and the total purchase price cannot exceed $307,300. Start Up refers to a first time buyer, or someone who has not had a mortgage interest deduction on their federal tax returns for the previous three years. The program sets income limits based upon family size. For example, a 1-2 person household in our 11-County Metro area cannot have annualized income over $86,600 per year. The income limit increases to $99,500 for a 3-person or greater household. Start Up loans can be done for Conventional, FHA, VA, or RD (Rural Development) borrowers. This program also has 3 options for down payment assistance to offset costs and make the transaction more affordable.

Monthly Payment Loans – This program provides up to the greater of $5,000 or 5% of the purchase price, not to exceed $7,500. This money is used to help offset the costs associated with down payment and closing costs on a new purchase, and is set up on a 10 year repayment plan (120 months) at the same rate as the first mortgage. This program helps to relieve the up-front cash burden, allowing buyers to purchase the home they want without having to use every penny of their savings! Read the rest of this entry »

Buyers may want to rethink the ‘buy now and remodel later’ strategy. – by BarbCrea

August 14th, 2015

Buy Any Home And Customize It To Your StyleFor first time home buyers, trying to maneuver through the real estate and mortgage process can be daunting – navigating the ocean of Realtors and Builders can make their palms sweat!  We all need to embrace these first time buyers, determine what they need and help them find the right home in the right neighborhood. Collectively, we offer the experience and the wisdom they can draw from to make the right choices.

As our pre-approved first time home buyers shop for their perfect house, we often hear them comment about the condition of the houses they’re looking at – houses that haven’t been updated in years and are worn and old looking, houses that need repairs – some minor and some pretty major. Sometimes the house works but there’s no garage, or maybe the house needs another bedroom and/or bathroom. If the repairs are minor, often buyers will ask the seller to make the repairs and move ahead with the purchase. They plan on adding that addition, remodeling that kitchen, or finishing the basement along with doing other updates and improvements at a later date.

Buyers may want to rethink the ‘buy now and remodel later’ strategy. Why, you ask? The minimum required down payment to do a purchase-rehab loan and make all of the repairs and improvements can be substantially lower than the amount of equity required in a home that you already own, live in, and then decide to remodel. Once a buyer closes on the purchase of a home and later decides to remodel, the new loan needs to be done as a refinance. Refinance rules can be more restrictive and possibly limit the renovations.

You know your buyers. Suddenly, a new listing hits the market in their ideal neighborhood and school district. You check out the house and KNOW they’ll struggle with the condition it’s in. As they walk through the house making comments that the flooring needs to be replaced, the wallpaper needs to come down and the walls painted, the kitchen is old and needs to be updated, and on and on… Remind them this house IS in their ideal neighborhood and school district. Recommend they consider purchasing it with a mortgage that will allow them to make all the desired repairs and customize it to their style, including maybe adding a deck or finishing the lower level.

Our extensive lineup of construction loans and home remodeling options can help your buyers purchase the right home AND repair or remodel it – all in one loan. The Kate Wilson Mortgage Team is well versed in construction and rehab financing, including the FHA Streamline 203k and Full FHA 203k programs, along with Fannie Mae’s HomeStyle Renovation Loan!  For more information, contact Barb at (952) 851-8992 or Randy at (952) 851-8962 or visit – Barb Crea NMLS #31038

Fannie Mae’s HomeStyle Renovation Loan is just one of the many options available in our line of construction financing! – by Randy Cullen

August 7th, 2015

model-kitchen-before-afterAnother product in our extensive lineup of construction and home remodeling options – The Fannie Mae HomeStyle Renovation Loan – This conventional mortgage program can help you purchase a property AND repair or remodel it – all in one loan with as little as 5% down, and at an attractive interest rate!  It also has a refinance option that allows you to update your current home and include the renovation costs in a new conventional mortgage.  So now you can go out and find that not so perfect house in that perfect location you always wanted!  We have the product to help you with the updating or repair a new home may need to become your perfect home; or, let’s tackle some of the projects your current home needs, so you can stay put and make it your dream home.

The HomeStyle Renovation Loan is a single-close loan that enables you to purchase a home that needs remodeling, or refinance your current mortgage and include the necessary funds for a full home remodel in the loan balance.  Both structural and non-structural repairs and improvements are allowed. You will need to use a licensed contractor to perform the work, and make sure whatever you plan to do will add value.  This product cannot be used for tear-downs or for the purchase of a new construction home that is not finished. A tear down would consist of removing a foundation, which the program does not allow.  Additions to the existing foundation are allowed…so hello room additions!

Property Eligibility – one- to four-unit principal residence, one-unit second homes, or one-unit investment properties including units in condos and PUDS.  Think of all the possibilities!

The loan amount is based on the “as-completed” value of the home rather than the present value.  For purchase-rehab loans we look at the total cost and the as-completed value of the project, using the lesser of the two for calculating your loan-to-value and investment needed.  For refinance-rehab loans we use the as-completed value of the project to determine loan-to-value and investment.  For either option, this is a conventional loan with a maximum loan amount of $417,000.

Renovation costs are limited to 50% of the “as-completed” appraised value of the home.  This means a home with an as-completed valuation of $200,000 could have up to $100,000 worth of repairs and upgrades.  Think of what you could do! Read the rest of this entry »