Chicago FHA mortgage rates for today

What Questions Should You Ask Your Lender When Applying for a Loan?

                  When shopping for renovation loans and FHA 203k renovation loans, what questions should you ask your lender to be sure they are qualified and ensure a smooth process? Renovation loans are popular because they are flexible: you can take a property in need of a lot of work, and turn it into a good-as-new home, or find a home needing minor updates and make it the way you want. Checking Lender Experience While many lenders say they do renovation loans, it is important to find out how many they’ve actually done. One of the most important things to determine is the amount of experience your lender has with renovation loans. Renovation loans are different than traditional mortgages. Not only does the borrower need to be approved, but contractors doing the renovations need to be involved as well. Everything that needs to…

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How to Find the Right Lender for a FHA 203k Renovation Loan

                  A renovation loan, or FHA 203k renovation loan, is a great tool for buying a home that needs some repairs or improvements to raise the value of the home. Renovation loans allow buyers to incorporate renovation costs into the mortgage in order to improve the home and raise its value immediately, rather than waiting to renovate years down the road. In addition, this can save money in comparison to a second mortgage or use credit cards to make improvements. When shopping for a lender, what questions do you need to ask when considering a renovation loan, or FHA 203k renovation loan? How Experienced Is the Lender? How many renovation loans has the lender done in the past? There are many moving parts to a renovation loan: you have to approve the situation, know the timing of everything, and know what is…

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Are You Thinking About Buying a Chicago Area Home in 2017?

                    With 2016 behind us, and the beginning of 2017 underway, many folks take a step back and look at their New Year’s resolutions and what they would like to accomplish in the coming year. While reflecting on their aspirations for the year, many renters and first-time buyers have the goal of purchasing a new home in 2017. If buying a home is one of your New Year’s resolutions, take some time to figure out and assess where you are now, and where you need to be in order to buy a home. Doing an assessment with a qualified mortgage loan officer will help you determine where you are at financially, and things you can to do to help you prepare to buy a home. Examining Your Savings, Debt and Credit An important aspect of your financial picture is your amount…

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Chicago Illinois Mortgage Rates Week in Review for the Week Ending 03/01/2013

Mortgage rates have steadily risen since the beginning of the year as signs showed the U.S. economy was growing, and the global economy had stabilized. A big part of the renewed optimism was the view that Europe was on the mend, and through selective austerity, the European Union would hold together and the status quo would survive. Well, what goes up comes back down, old is new again and Europe is back in the headlines. The focus now is Italy, and the election results last week showed that it may be a while before they find a true solution to the European economic crisis. In an upset of expectations, the biggest winner in the election was a comedian leading an anti-establishment party. The right and left wings split, and in Italy’s parliamentary system, it looks doubtful that anyone will be able to make alliances to form a working government. This…

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Chicago Illinois Mortgage Rates Week in Review for the Week Ending 02/01/2013

The consensus in the markets now, is that the worst of the decline is behind us, and the economy is on the mend. The economic data last week was mixed. Reports showed that the overall US economy shrank in the last quarter of last year, the first time we have seen a fall in the last 3 years, with GDP coming in .1% lower than the previous quarter. But this was mostly a result of a drop in government spending, and private industry continues to grow. The Case Schiller home index shows housing prices are moving higher, consumer confidence came in strong and China came in with strong manufacturing  numbers, another indication that the global economy is better than expected. The Big Kahuna of reports is always the monthly jobs report, and this month showed an increase of 157,000 jobs, while the unemployment rate ticked a touch higher to 7.9%….

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Chicago Illinois Mortgage Rates Week in Review for the Week Ending 01/25/2013

Mortgage rates blipped sharply higher last week after a trifecta of optimism hit the market. One of the biggest reasons interest rates are so low, is because of fear that the European Union is, and has been, on the verge of collapse. To stave off the collapse the ECB, Europe’s version of the Fed, lent out cheap money to banks throughout the continent to maintain liquidity in the system. Last week they announced that more than half the banks participating in the program will be paying off the loans as soon as they are contractually able to (this week). That is much better than expected, and a sign that the overall economy is in much better shape than has been projected.Rates dropped into their lowest range when the markets expected that the European Union was about to collapse, so this good news is indeed bad news for the lower trend…

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Chicago Illinois Mortgage Rates Week in Review for the Week Ending 01/11/2013

For a good part of last year, the financial markets moved up and down based on whatever was happening in Europe. The problems there aren’t fixed, but this has moved firmly to the backburner as all the attention now is focused on our own political issues. We have been muddling along and the US economy has been slowly but steadily improving, and unemployment has slowly but steadily been dropping. The biggest crises we have now seem to be of our own making. We came into the New Year courting disaster, and ground the brakes down to dust as we stopped just short of the fiscal cliff. The agreement didn’t really end anything though, it just forced a break in the action so the two political parties could re-group for the next battle. For our next crisis, we are bumping up against the debt ceiling again and this will have to…

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Chicago Illinois Mortgage Rates Week in Review for the Week Ending 07/14/2012

In the mortgage industry, the big news last week was the Fed announcement that they will be extending their quantitative easing program and placing economic benchmarks to replace their previous time table. With the announcement, the Fed committed to an additional $45 billion dollars of treasury and mortgage bond purchases each month. The goal of this program is to drive rates lower so that there is a bigger incentive to invest money since the yield is so low. The bigger change was that the dates the program was in effect for have been removed and replaced with specific performance benchmarks. The program will continue until unemployment drops to 6.5%, or on the flip side, inflation moves up to 2.5%. This is the firs time the Fed has given specific guidance to unemployment rates, and they are saying that they are willing to put up with a little extra risk of…

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Chicago Illinois Mortgage Rates Week in Review for the Week Ending 11/30/2012

If you have watched the financial news over the last few weeks, you probably get a tinge of anxiety every time you hear the phrase “Fiscal Cliff”. The markets for Treasuries and mortgage bonds moved back and forth over the last week based on each rumor and news clip relating to who had the cards and what was going to be done politically to forge a solution in time. The phrase does sound ominous, and with grid lock built into the system in Washington, the odds of the Republicans and Democrats coming together on a compromise solution before the beginning of the year seems slim, so what will happen if we do go over this cliff? In reality probably not that much, at least at first. The biggest thing that will happen automatically, is that tax rates will rise for everyone after January 1st as the Bush tax cut hits…

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Chicago Illinois Mortgage Rates Week in Review for the Week Ending 11/16/2012

The mortgage backed securities markets went up and down like a yoyo this week, but in the end, despite all the movement, mortgage rates are stable and at about the same level as the week before. The election is over which brings some stability to the markets, but there are still a lot of unknowns, which means uncertainty is still the major vibe. The US economy has been improving, but the reports moving forward are going to be skewed for a while as the impact from Hurricane Sandy is felt. All the devastation will mean a drop in jobs, production and economic activity at first, and then a spike as the cleanup and rehab takes over. The focus now moves to concern over how we will make it past the fiscal cliff, and what will become of the rest of the world. The fiscal cliff is scary, and our government…

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