Author Archives: Alisia Leyva

Jumping Through the Mortgage Hoops

Your buyer might be finding it harder to obtain a home loan approval.

The Wall Street Journal has recently reported that mortgage lenders have tightened their standards. 70% of mortgages granted in 2020 went to borrowers who had a credit score of at least 760, which is up 61% in 2019. Mortgage availability went down 35% annually in 2020.

Why are lenders making it harder for potential borrowers?

Forbearance is a major fear lenders have – to receive approval for a mortgage, some borrowers have reportedly signed statements saying they have no intention of requesting forbearance after they are approved for the mortgage.

The Wall Street Journal explains, “The meteoric growth of home prices has made some lenders reluctant to take on first-time home buyers or others they view as slightly risky. Lenders who were comfortable offering mortgages of $300,000 or $320,000 to borrowers with good-but-not-great credit histories might not be willing to lend the $350,000 or more now required to buy the same property.”

How can your buyer up the odds for their lender to approve a loan?

Shop Early

Make sure you insist that your clients begin shopping for lenders as soon as possible. Shopping around from three to four different lenders before even meeting an agent will give your buyer a better idea of what they can borrow.

Understanding and Improving Credit Scores

Here are the scores lenders look at and categorize:

Perfect Credit Score: 850

Excellent Credit Score: 760-849

Good Credit Score: 700-759

Fair Score: 650-699

Low Score: 649 and below

There are ways buyers can help improve and adjust their credit scores. They can request a free credit report once a year from TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian through this website.

Let your buyers know that they can review their credit reports for any errors – if there is an error on one of their accounts, they’ll need to refute the error with the bureau by providing documentation.

Tackling what buyers owe is a major step in improving credit scores – paying on time, and (if they can) paying more than their minimum balance, can help build up that perfect payment history that they need.

For more real estate news and tips, stop by AmeriTitle’s Blog.

Happy National Fair Housing Month!

This April marks the 53rd anniversary of the Fair Housing Act! This legislation prohibits any housing discrimination based off of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, disability, and family status.

The Fair Housing Act is a great reminder to come together and take action to create equal opportunities in every community. Fair housing is a crucial part of building strong, diverse, and vibrant communities.

For more on what you can do to celebrate and commemorate Fair Housing, check out the National Asosciation of Realtors’ website.

For a free print out on Fair Housing that you can use around your office, check out The Department of Housing and Urban Development’s flyer, here.  

Bringing Employees (and Pets) Back into the Office

After a little over a year of working from home, it looks like employees are slowly making their way back into the office with the help of vaccine rollouts.

Being at home this often has definitely started new routines and expectations – namely, for your pets. Who’s going to give them constant belly rubs and quick potty breaks if you’re not home all the time like you once were?

Companies are now considering allowing employees to bring their pets to work as they return to the office. According to a survey from Canfield Pet Hospital and OnePoll, 59% of executives state they would allow “more flexibility” for employees to take care of their pets during the work day, and 50% say they would allow employees to bring their pets to work.

Why are companies being so cool about this?

Well, with such an extended period of time being at home, employees are having a hard time thinking of giving up their space to commute and return to the office. The survey also found that 63% of pet owners report anxiety over how their pets will handle their post-pandemic work routine. Companies are hoping that these possible new pet policies will help entice them back.

What are your thoughts? Would you prefer more flexibility for your pet with returning back to the office? Let us know in the comments below!

For more real estate news and updates, stop by AmeriTitle’s Blog.