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Are you active or retired military, or even a military spouse? Good news! You may qualify for a VA loan! A VA loan is a type of loan that is guaranteed by the U.S. government to help active or retired military and their spouses obtain the dream of homeownership. The are several advantages to getting a VA-backed loan . Up to 100% financing, no monthly mortgage insurance, fixed and adjustable rates are available, among other perks. Explore other highlights as well as the 8 simple steps to a VA loan at BankSouth Mortgage. VA Loan Highlights: • Up to 100% financing • No monthly mortgage insurance • Available to active or retired military personnel, and spouses of the military • Fixed and adjustable rates are available • Conventional and Jumbo loan options available • Thin or alternate credit is allowed • 580 minimum credit score is required   Step 1: Get pre-qualified When you begin thinking about buying a home, contact BankSouth Mortgage to get pre-qualified. A pre-qualification gives you an estimate of the size of mortgage loan you qualify for based on your credit history, income, and assets. Step 2: Apply for your VA loan Once you get under contract, we will provide you with an initial list of documents that are needed to begin processing your loan. Quickly providing all of the requested documentation is essential to moving through the loan process without delays. Step 3: Disclosures Once we have a complete application, we will prepare a packet of disclosures for you to sign. Included in these disclosures is the Loan Estimate. It is very ...

Mortgage Speak

5 VA Loan Questions Answered

Nov 4
9:00
AM
Category | Mortgage Speak
November is National Military Family month, and it also includes Veterans Day on Monday, November 11. One of the many benefits the US Government provides to past and present members of our armed forces, and qualifying surviving spouses, is backing their home loans. A VA loan is a mortgage product offered by many private mortgage lenders that gives borrowers a zero-down payment mortgage option. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) guarantees part of the loan which allows the private mortgage lender to provide the veteran with more welcoming mortgage terms which make homeownership for veterans more attainable. The process of applying for and closing on a VA loan closely resembles that of other mortgage types. There are five main steps in the process of how a VA loan works: 1. Get prequalified 2. Provide loan documentation to your Mortgage Banker 3. Appraisal is ordered 4. Processing and Underwriting 5. Close on your loan Frequently Asked VA Loan Questions and their Answers Why should veterans choose a VA loan instead of a conventional loan? To start, VA mortgage loans give veterans the option of 100% financing, low loan fees, and typically lower than market interest rates. If the price for the home is equal to or lower than the appraised value, there is no money down required. A traditional conventional mortgage requires private mortgage insurance to be paid monthly and/or annually, whereas the VA loan fee, called the Funding Fee, is a one-time fee between 1.25% and 3.3% (as of October 2019) potentially saving the borrower thousands of dollars. What makes this Funding Fee different than conventional mortgage ...

Mortgage Speak

We’ve just gotten started with 2018, but there’s been speculation about which way the housing market will go since well before the first of the year. As a savvy homeowner, it’s important for you to be aware of fluctuations in the market, especially if you’re thinking of buying a new home or making changes to your current home in the near future. Much of the predictions for this year are based on how the market fared last year, so we’ve gathered together a short year-end review of housing market high (and low) points from 2017, then turned to the experts for a glimpse at what the future may hold. A Look Back According to Realtor.com, 2017 was a fairly decent year for the housing market. Inventory continued to be in short supply, but not as badly as in previous years, causing brisk sales and shorter times on the market compared to 2016. The median existing-home price reached $248,000 in November — the strongest level in over a decade. Overall, though, sales and starts were flat compared to previous years. If you bought last year, you probably got a pretty good price and an excellent rate, and avoided the changes predicted for the coming years. Here are additional highlights from 2017’s housing market: Millennials.  Despite the notion that millenials prefer renting over buying a home, more and more millenials are transitioning to homeownership; in fact, millenials made up about 40% of mortgage originations in 2017. Renting.  Prices rose on rental units, possibly influenced by the multiple hurricanes that hit our shores in 2017. Across the country, rents averaged a 2.9% ...

Mortgage Speak

Waiting to buy a home until spring or summer seems like the obvious choice for most families. The weather is warmer, kids get to finish out the school year, and there’s (usually) an abundance of homes on the market to choose from. But what about that other crucial factor — affordability? If saving money falls high on your list of priorities, here’s why buying a home during winter might be right for you. Lower Prices A 2016 study  by NerdWallet that analyzed home sales prices in the 50 most populous U.S. metro areas found that homes are 8.45% cheaper (on average) in January and February compared to June through August. That can translate to thousands of dollars in savings. To give you an idea, consider this scenario: The median existing-home price  in June 2017 was $263,800. Assuming the 8.45% discount that you could get by buying in winter, you could save $22,291. Keep in mind, the extent of your savings will vary depending on where you live, but consider the benefits of those potential savings. Higher down payment? Money for updates or repairs? Extra funds for your retirement account? Buying during winter could open up a lot more possibilities for you. Less Competition Part of the reason prices are lower in wintertime is due to the lack of competition. Buyers come out in droves during spring and summer, but the holidays, cooler weather, and tighter housing inventory are all factors that typically keep buyers at bay during winter. With less demand, it drives prices down, making it the ideal time for buyers who are looking for the best deal possible. Plus, with fewer people to compete with, there’s less ...

Mortgage Speak

How Homeownership Builds Wealth The 4th of July is more than just a day for celebrating the freedom we gained as a nation nearly 250 years ago. It's a day for celebrating the individual freedom and opportunity afforded to each American — freedom that lets you reach for the stars and create the life you've always dreamed of. A part of that freedom means having the financial stability you need to pursue your life goals, and the earlier you secure financial freedom in life, the more opportunity you'll have to make your dreams a reality. If there's anything history has taught us, it's that homeownership is one of the best ways to build wealth and secure your financial future. Here are five primary ways being a homeowner can help you accomplish this: Homeownership can help create a forced savings . Most people aren't very good at putting money aside each month, but every financial expert would agree that having a savings cushion is essential for financial freedom. For homeowners, a monthly mortgage payment can act as a forced savings. As you pay down your principal, you build equity, which helps to increase your net worth. Homes usually appreciate in value. While there's no guarantee that the home you buy will appreciate, there's a pretty good chance. According to the Federal Housing Finance Agency's House Price Index , home values have appreciated an average of 3.33% each year since 1991. Based on this information, if you ...

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