Archive for August, 2017

Where do you fit in the “real estate circle of life”?

August 25th, 2017

Home inventory

Get ready for lift off – I think the fall market is going to be amazing! Market Watch reported that consumer confidence is at its highest level in 16 years. When consumers feel confident they get out and do things, like buy homes.

The Z Report, published by Zelman and Associates, projects that the homeownership rate for 2017 is going to be the highest it has been in three years. The president of the Mortgage Bankers Association, David Stevens, sees a strong and improving economy with low interest rates and high employment. He also commented on the fact that home-buying millennials will keep the housing market on a steady course for the foreseeable future.

Gallup did a poll that asked the question, “What do you think is the best long term investment?” Real estate came in with the highest percentage at 34% – higher than stocks and mutual funds, gold, savings accounts or bonds. An NAR (National Association of Realtors) study came out indicating that 84% of Americans now believe that purchasing a home is a good financial decision. Homeownership has proven to be an effective way to build personal wealth, renting is an effective way to build your landlord’s wealth! Either way, you are paying a mortgage.

With existing home inventories being so low, we need to look more than ever to new construction to fill the housing gap. Move-up buyers can build that larger 4 or 5 bedroom home to fill the need for their growing family. That frees up a more modest home for the millennial or first time home buyer. The down-sizing or retiring couple can build their lake home and free up their existing home for a growing family. Give me a call, and let’s see where you fit in the “real estate circle of life.”

– Randy Cullen, NMLS #326128

American Warrior Initiative – Realtor Certification Event & Gala…

August 18th, 2017

AWI invite

Become an AWI Accredited Real Estate Professional! Register for our 3 hour certification event.

The American Warrior Initiative has been able to help veterans obtain much needed service dogs, business grants, automobile purchases, home repairs, and help with medical bills, etc.
We will also be sponsoring an AWI Gala Tuesday, October 24th at The Village in Waterville, MN to raise awareness and dollars for the organization with a silent auction, appetizers, dinner and dessert.
Single Admission Tickets $50, Couple’s discount (2 tickets) $80.00
Sponsor a Table of Eight & Receive Special Perks $750.000
To register for the Gala or for more information email

A construction renovation loan may be just what you need…

August 11th, 2017

Constructionext reno loans, or any of the construction renovation products we offer, allow you to buy and renovate at the same time, saving you lots of money. Looking at a property that needs some work? Our suite of products gives you the ability to roll the work into the mortgage. You do not need to have cash to make the updates on top of your down payment.

The number one reason to use a renovation product when you purchase is the use of conventional or FHA rules for down payment. Conforming conventional loans require as little as 5% down, and FHA requires 3.5%. The product that will be recommended to you will be based upon the current purchase price of the home, the repairs you wish to undertake, and the end value that will reflect the completed project.

• FHA loans have a maximum mortgage limit in our metro area of $332,350.
1. FHA 203K Limited Renovation products allow for non-structural repairs up to                        $35,000.
2. The FHA 203K Full Renovation product would be used if you have structural
repairs, or if the scope of work will be over $35,000.
• The Conventional Renovation product also offers different programs related to the
structural or non-structural aspects of the work to be done, and comes with a higher
maximum loan amount of $424,100.
• A Conventional Construction loan may be what you need. If your project is the
purchase of a property with an existing structure that needs to be torn down and a new
home built, we have a full construction to permanent product just for you.

When you are out looking at properties that meet your size, location, and school district requirements, try to see beyond what the house looks like in its current state. Envision what it could be if you made the changes that will make it the right home for you. Have your contractor put together a plan and a bid to do the work. Then, you can buy with confidence – renovate and save. – Randy Cullen, NMLS #326128

August 4th, 2017

Young Couple Dreaming And Imaging Their New House In Real State Concept

Have you ever woken up in the middle of the night wondering if the process for applying for a construction loan is any different than applying for a regular conventional loan? Well, you’re in luck! I did wake up in with this thought in my head, and considering the large volume of new construction loans we do, I thought I would speak to the topic.

Generally, if you can qualify for a conventional loan you can qualify for a construction loan, with a few extra steps. The construction loan is just an added part of our qualifying process. For a standard conventional loan the agency automated underwriting system will read income for ratios, assets to cover the cost of the transaction, and credit score/history to determine if the file meets agency guidelines. In many cases a lower credit score and the absence of reserves will still produce an approval result for a conventional loan. For the construction loan we would require a strong credit profile and reserves. By starting with end loan structure/approval, we can determine if a construction loan will work for you.

The construction loan process looks at more elements of risk than just the initial borrower approval. We look at the big picture, which includes the scope of the project that will be undertaken, the location of the project, and the builder/contactor that will be doing the work. We need to make sure you qualify for what you want to do, that the market will support a value for the project, and the person or company you have selected for the project is qualified and licensed.

We are here to help you through the steps so you don’t have any sleepless nights wondering if construction financing can work for you! Help is only a phone call away at 952-851-8962.

– Randy Cullen, NMLS #326128