Mortgage Rates Newsletter - Market Analysis

Provided courtesy of: http://www.mortgagenewsdaily.com/reports/mortgage_rates/archive

Mortgage Rates Continue Defying Bond Market Weakness
Wed, 02 Dec 2020 21:33:19 GMT - Although it was the focus of yesterday's discussion , the ability of the mortgage market to hold steady in the face of bond market weakness continues to impress . This is interesting because mortgage rates take direct cues from the bond market. That's still the case, but at the moment, the mortgage side of the bond market is playing with a stacked deck . If Treasuries are only a little bit weaker on any given day (like today), mortgage bonds and mortgage rates have been consistently holding their ground or actually improving. Today was more of a "ground-holding" sort of day, but it depends on how any given lender responded to yesterday's bond market weakness. Those who adjusted rates higher yesterday were generally in slightly better shape today . Those who abstained yesterday were offering
Mortgage Rates Surprisingly Steady Despite Market Drama
Tue, 01 Dec 2020 21:39:03 GMT - Like many industries, housing finance has a superficial layer that's fairly easy to understand for the average consumer. A person wants a home. They don't want to pay cash. They get a loan. Lower rates = lower payments. The end. Shortly below that superficial layer of understanding, where a surprisingly high percentage of mortgage professionals operate, it's popular to discuss 10yr Treasury yields as a basis for mortgage rates. The only problem with viewing 10yr yields as the basis for mortgage rates is that they're not. Anyone can observe this objective fact by jumping just a bit deeper into the rabbit hole and acquainting themselves with MBS (mortgage-backed securities). These are the true raw ingredients for mortgage rates even though they frequently mimic 10yr Treasury yield movement. By
Mortgage Rates Hold Steady Over Holiday Weekend
Mon, 30 Nov 2020 22:09:53 GMT - Although many mortgage lenders were technically open for business last Friday, it's a well-known unofficial holiday. Mortgage rate movement requires bond market movement, and the post-Thanksgiving Friday invariably sees fewer traders trading fewer bonds. Even when bonds do manage to move, the people in charge of setting mortgage rates at various lending institutions tend to play it safe. In fact, many lenders simply leave rates wherever they were on Wednesday and then simply plan on getting back to work on Monday. This particular Monday, however, the average lender is still in line with Friday's and Wednesday's rates. Some of them offered lower rates in response to strength in the bond market today. Those who abstained are expected to offer token improvements tomorrow, assuming the bond market
Mortgage Rates Little-Changed But The Fed Raises Some Doubts
Wed, 25 Nov 2020 21:36:15 GMT - Mortgage rates have been operating relatively close to their all-time lows recently and today was no exception. The Fed raised some doubts as to how much longer that would be the case this afternoon when it released the minutes of its most recent policy meeting (from 3 weeks ago). The Fed questioned whether its mortgage-specific bond buying was having any ill effects. That's only a vague hint of a threat, to be fair, but on top of that, market participants also felt the Fed did less than expected to telegraph any enhancement of its bond buying plans (something that traders saw as a stronger possibility for the upcoming Fed announcement in mid-December). The market reaction was almost negligible in the bigger picture, but it looks like it would give a modest bump to rates if markets had more
How The New Loan Limits Affect Mortgage Rates
Tue, 24 Nov 2020 21:58:55 GMT - If you follow the MBS Commentary channel on this site, you will have already seen most of the following, but it's relevant for consumers as well. As far as mortgage rates are concerned, the increase in conforming loan limits doesn't have a direct impact, but it does change rate availability for those seeking certain loan amounts. There's a link below where you can see exactly what the new loan limit is for any given county. If you'd like to read the official FHFA press release, here you go , but here's the skinny on the new conforming loan limit of $548,250 for 2021, up from $510,400 in 2020. Which loans does this apply to? Conventional, conforming loans (those sold to or securitized by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which is a vast majority of the market), both refinances and purchases Does this
Self Employed Borrowers

Self Employed Borrowers

Entrepreneurship should be rewarded, but when it comes to mortgages, it hasn't always paid to be self-employed. Although over 20% of Americans are self-employed, qualifying for a self-employed mortgage is more difficult because reducing your taxable income can make it difficult to qualify for the mortgage you deserve. If you are wondering how to improve your chances of qualifying for the mortgage, providing complete and current financial documents from the past two years is essential.

Self Employed? 5 Steps to Scoring a Mortgage

While getting a loan as a W-2 employee may be cheaper and easier than if you're self-employed, you don't have to go running back to your cubicle to qualify for a mortgage. Some lenders may be concerned that you won't earn a steady enough income to make your monthly payments, and others may simply not want to deal with the additional paperwork that can be involved in providing a mortgage to a self-employed person. But don't worry; if you're self-employed, there are mortgage products available as well as steps you can take to make yourself a more attractive loan candidate.

What to Expect

As someone who is self-employed, lenders may not see you as the ideal borrower. Expect to pay higher interest rates than the ones commonly advertised on mortgage websites; those rates are for prime borrowers, or borrowers who are considered to be particularly creditworthy because of their steady, verifiable incomes and excellent credit scores. Similarly, because you may be a less attractive candidate, you might have a reduced ability to shop around and negotiate a lower interest rate. You may also have to put more work into finding lenders who are willing to work with you in the first place.

Another problem you may encounter is that if you've used lots of business expenses to reduce your taxable income on your tax returns, lenders may wonder if you make enough money to afford a home. Finally, banks may want to see a lower loan-to-value ratio (LTV ratio), meaning that you'll need to come up with a larger down payment.

Mortgage Options

Due to the subprime mortgage crisis, it may become more difficult for the self-employed to obtain mortgages as banks shy away from riskier investments to protect their financial interests and their reputations.

However, some lenders may still be willing to give you one of the following types of loans.

  • Stated Income/Stated Asset Mortgage (SISA) 
    This type of mortgage is based on what you tell the bank your income is; the bank will not seek to verify this amount. Stated income loans are sometimes also called low-documentation loans; this is because while lenders will not verify how much you make; they may seek to verify the sources of your income. Be prepared to provide a list of your recent clients and any other sources of cash flow, such as income-producing investments. The bank may also want you to submit an IRS Form 4506 or 8821. Form 4506 is used to request a copy of your tax return directly from the IRS, thus preventing you from submitting falsified returns to the mortgage company, and costs $39 per return. But you may be able to request Form 4506-T for free. Form 8821 authorizes your lender to go to any IRS office and examine the forms you designate for the years you specify. This service is free.
  • No Documentation Loan 
    In this type of loan, the lender will not seek to verify any of your income information. This may be a good option if your tax returns show a business loss or a very low profit. Because it is riskier for the bank to lend money to someone with an unverified income, expect your mortgage interest rate to be higher with either of these types of loans than with a full-documentation loan. Low and no documentation loans are called Alt-A mortgages, and they fall between prime and subprime loans in terms of interest rates. For lenders, they are considered riskier than prime loans, but less risky than subprime loans.

While many self-employed individuals and couples may choose one of the above options due to the difficulty of sufficiently documenting their incomes, those who can prove their incomes and who are willing to submit the extra paperwork can still apply for full-documentation loans, which will have lower interest rates than their low- and no-doc cousins. While a traditional employee might simply need to provide copies of W-2s for the last two years, because self-employed individuals do not receive this document, they may need to provide information about their businesses, such as previous years' tax returns, a current business license, a signed statement from an accountant, profit and loss statements, and balance sheets.

Getting a joint mortgage with a co-borrower who is a W-2 employee, such as a significant other, spouse, or trusted friend, is another way to improve your prospects of getting approved for a mortgage if you are self-employed. This provides more assurance to your lender that there is a steady income to pay back the debt.

Finally, a parent or other relative might be willing to cosign your mortgage loan. Keep in mind that this person will need to be willing and able to assume full responsibility for the loan if you default.

Can You Really Afford It?

It can be easy to get into trouble with low- and no-documentation loans because it's easy to fudge the numbers. Realize that you, not the bank, know best about whether you can really afford the loan, and that you will be the one who truly suffers if you lose your home. Learn from the experiences of all the subprime borrowers who have gone into foreclosure and don't get in over your head.

Make Yourself an Attractive Candidate

If you know you can make the payments, you can do some of the following things to improve your chances of getting a loan.

  1. Max Out Your Credit Score
    In any type of borrowing situation, a higher credit score will make you a more attractive candidate to get the loan in the first place and to qualify for lower interest rates if you're approved.
  2. Offer a Large Down Payment 
    The higher your equity in the home, the less likely you are to walk away from it in times of financial strain. Therefore, the bank will see you as less of a risk if you put lots of cash into your purchase up front.
  3. Have Significant Cash Reserves
    In addition to a large down payment, having plenty of money in an emergency fund shows lenders that even if your business takes a nosedive, you'll be able to keep making your monthly payments.
  4. Pay Off All Your Consumer Debt
    The fewer monthly debt payments you have going into the mortgage process, the easier it will be for you to make your mortgage payments. If you pay off your credit cards and car loans, you may even qualify for a higher loan amount because you'll have more cash flow.
  5. Have an Established Track Record of Self-Employment
    If you can show that you know how to play the self-employment game and win, lenders will be more willing to take a chance on you. Some advice suggests that you should have at least two years of self-employment history; other advice, however, says that when interest rates are low, you should try to get a mortgage as soon as you're ready, even if you don't have a long history of successful self-employment.
  6. Be Willing to Provide Documentation
    Being willing to fully document your income through previous years' tax returns, profit and loss statements, balance sheets and the like will increase your chances of qualifying for a loan.

The Bottom Line

If a W-2 employee loses his or her job, the person's income will drop to zero in the blink of an eye in the absence of unemployment insurance benefits; those who are self-employed often have multiple clients and are unlikely to lose all of them at once, giving them more job security than is commonly perceived. Of course, if you're self-employed, you're already used to having to work extra hard to file additional tax forms, secure business licenses, get new clients and keep your business running. Don't let anyone tell you that you'll never get a mortgage if you're self-employed, or that you shouldn't quit your day job to pursue your dream of running your own business until you've already purchased a home. Armed with a little knowledge and patience, you'll be able to have your own home and work in it, too.

I Want a Better Mortgage has the knowledge and experience to find you the best mortgage product and help you prepare and improve your changes of a mortgage. We have access to many lenders and can offer a wide range of innovative mortgage options for self-employed Americans. Our range of mortgages for Self Employed offers competitively-priced financing for business owners and those who are self-employed. Contact one of our experts today and get the mortgage you deserve.

 

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