Cash is King – Upside Down Mortgage Solutions

September 29, 2006

These Credit Secrets will Lower Your Interest Rate!

In a mortgage lender’s eyes, a good credit score translates into lower interest rates for home-shopping borrowers. The higher your score is, the less risk you are, and the more likely it is you will pay off your debt. For this reason, borrowers with lower scores usually end up paying higher interest rates on their loans not to mention the terms of the loan will be more favorable. If this is you, don’t panic. Here are a few guidelines on what you can do to adjust your score and receive a favorable review from the underwriter:

Should I pay off all past due balances and charge-offs?This is usually a good idea, but you only need to worry about the past due balances and charge-offs that have occurred in the last two years. Items more than two years old have little effect on your current credit score. In fact, if you pay off delinquent items over two years old, it can actually bring your credit score down – something you don’t want to do. Bringing that score up means you’ll get a better interest rate on your loan.

 

Should I close existing credit card accounts that I don’t really use?“No.” Part of your credit score is based upon credit history. Even if you don’t use old credit cards much, you will still benefit from the credit history they represent. Rather than trying to pay off all your credit cards, move part of the debt from one card to another to evenly distribute of debt. Try to keep the ratio of debt to credit limits at about 30% of the available credit or less. If your credit provider will increase your line of credit, the ratio of debt to available credit is automatically reduced.When married couples have separate credit card accounts, the debt can be transferred from one spouse to another to clear up credit issues for the other spouse. That spouse with clean credit can be designated as the sole borrower on the loan, but ownership of the home can still go in both names.

 

What about errors on my credit report?If you have items that are showing up on your credit report that you know you have already paid, request that these items be removed by the credit bureau. They are obligated to rectify this within 30 days. If there are items on your credit report less than two years old, if possible, send in your payment and mark the back of the check with the following notation: “Accepting this check is evidence that the transaction is complete and this charge will be deleted from my credit record.” If necessary, the cancelled check will be proof that the item should be promptly removed from your credit report if it interferes with the closing of your loan. 

 

You can have all the best advise in the world but if you are NOT working with a professional Loan Consultant than you can find yourself paying a higher rate than your credit actually deserves.  Do your homework, shop around and most importantly ASK QUESTIONS! I am always here to help anyone in need of expert loan advice so please email me at brent@brentlane.net .

 

September 23, 2006

Real Estate Opportunites and Realizing your Dreams!

So are you tired of hearing about the “housing bubble” and that Real Estate is doomed?  I know I am, Where are all the positives and what about the great run up in housing prices and how we really needed a breather.  There are some obvious statistics that do go to show the Real Estate market is changing but are there some positives out there for certain people.

I thought I would put together a list of opportunities that today’s Real Estate market has available and how to best utilize the tools you have to leverage these opportunities. 

  1. The First Time Home-buyers Market is seeing some of the best opportunity in years.  Seller are doing anything they can to unload their properties often paying upwards of $15,000 in closing costs to help the buyers into the market.  I have seen it time and time again, a buyer paying nothing to buy a new home, that is ZERO dollars out of pocket and skip a months rent in the process.  There has never been a better time. 
  2. So if you own your own home and need to sell you won’t get what your house was worth not even 6 months ago!  This is a fact!  Now another fact you may want to consider, If you were thinking of buying a house with another 1500-2000 square feet larger now is the best time ever because of the dip in housing prices.  A home that you once considered out of your price range could now be well within your means simply due to interest rates staying relatively low and housing prices coming down long enough for there to be some sensational deals.
  3. OK if you are a Real Estate investor this is your moment.  It wasn’t the past few years when prices were racing to all time highs and you could buy a house and the value would go up $100K in six months.  Now is the time to find value, true buy and hold investment deals, short sales that I covered previously and most importantly the bail out deals that are everywhere.  If you don’t think this is the time then do some homework and you will see that more money will be made in Real Estate investing in a down market than in a booming market.  More foreclosures, people willing to do most anything to get out from under higher payments and those avoiding financial struggles including foreclosures and bankruptcies.  Seize this time and you will find some incredible deals out there.
  4. If you are fast approaching retirement years this could be the moment to reevaluate your financial picture and set a course for financial independence.  An equity analysis could unlock some potential and pad the investment accounts like never before.  Most people plan to pay their homes off only to use that equity as retirement.  If this is the case why not be proactive and use the equity earlier.  With a small shift in thinking and a shift in Mortgage terms you could go from paying the house off by reducing the principle monthly or accumulate a large enough chunk of money using equity repositioning.  With this method you would pay equal amounts to your investment accounts as you would to reduce your principle in order to capitalize on compounding interest.  This method will not only accumulate more dollars than paying principle, it will show you a path to wealth creation that you may have never thought possible.

The next time you hear reports telling you that the Real Estate market is going under, think opportunity.  I have always liked the saying, “if everyone is headed down the same path doesn’t make it the right path!”  I think you can learn a lot from that statement because if you take advantage of these time you will be heads and shoulders above the rest of the crowd because you saw opportunity where others saw a failing market.

Thanks for visiting my site.  I have a team of mortgage professional who specialize in helping my clients move up from First Time Home Buyer through home ownership in retirement years making sure that every step of the way is handled with my clients short-term and long-term financial goals in mind.  You mortgage should be more than just a payment it should help you achieve a financial goal.  That’s where I am at my best, helping my clients reach their financial dreams.  You can contact met through my website (www.brentlane.net) or email Brent@brentlane.net

September 14, 2006

I can’t pay my Mortgage! I’m going into Foreclosure!

THIS ARTICLE IS GOOD BUT READ

HOW TO REFINANCE AN UPSIDE DOWN MORTGAGE

* Look for the FREE REPORT at the bottom

Read the Part II – I list more options for people facing foreclosure. THIS LINK WILL SHOW YOU FINANCING OPTIONS AVAILABLE FOR PEOPLE FACING FORECLOSURE

It is a very interesting time in a person’s life when they come to a financial cross road!

There is always that point of “pay the mortgage or eat!”

With the ever changing economic environment and the constantly fluctuating real estate market it is quite possible you found yourself between a rock and a hard spot, financially.  With the threat of loosing your home to foreclosure and the embarrassment of the situation you often feel the need to hide.

Sure you need to be concerned but there is a light at the end of the tunnel. It is a no brain-er, eating is always more important than the mortgage payment.  You can’t tell your kids that, “no food this month, I had to make my mortgage payment!”  But at some point you need to face the music, tighten the financial belt and make some pretty tough decisions.

Cuts in the family budget need to be made but where to start is the question.  Some are obvious but others are not quite as obvious.  Here is a short list:

  1. Eating out for any meal is always more expensive than cooking or making your own food. (obvious)  Start by taking your lunch to work and staying home to eat.
  2. Consolidate your high interest credit cards to you low interest credit cards to reduce your monthly payments. (not so obvious) Start with the department stores they are typically the highest.
  3. Look for any fees that you pay monthly that could be reduced to increase monthly income.  Start with your bank accounts, cell phone bills, phone bills, gym memberships, or subscriptions.  (not so obvious)
  4. Call you creditors and ask for a decrease in interest rate because other credit card companies are offering lower rates. (not so obvious)
  5. Find your other large monthly expenses and look to make changes to those.  This may even require selling your car for a while giving you time to get caught up.  You can always rent a car when you need one and Enterprise will pick you up. (obvious)

If you have made every possible cut to the finances you feel is necessary you need to take it to the next level.  Your home is taking advantage of you and you need to get out or you need to refinance.

A refinance can create some breathing room giving you a chance to not only get caught up but it could possibly make a majority of your problems go away.  Wait there is a catch, you still have a mortgage payment so your finances need to be put back in order with your refinance and not have it set you back with an even higher payment than before.

I have also heard the argument that “my current loan is too good and if I refinance I will lose my great 30 year fixed rate I got back in 2003.”  Yes rates are higher, BUT YOU ARE GOING TO LOSE YOUR HOUSE TO FORECLOSURE!!! WAKE UP!!!!  This is just a way to justify things but in reality you need to make changes.

Last argument, “My house isn’t worth what I owe on it!  I’m upside down NOW WHAT?”  A great article on a short sale.  If you fall into this category you really shouldn’t go it alone.  I am more than willing to offer my advice on the subject and more times than not I will be able to negotiate an even lower payoff than you may have on your own but there are rules you need to follow.

You can find out more about those rules in my FREE REPORT!

“Refinancing SECRETS for an Upside Down Loan that Banks Don’t Want You To Know because it will Cost them THOUSANDS of Dollars!”

JUST SEND ME AN EMAIL with “Refi Secrets for Upside Down Loans!” as the subject to Brent@brentlane.net

Read my most recent articles about

Upside Down Right Side Up HERE and Professional Loss Mitigation Negotiator HERE!

Email me at Brent@brentlane.net and I will help in any way I can.  If you want to keep the house you need to make changes somewhere and my short list is only the beginning.  If you just want to move out and move on then we need to talk about a short sale or straight sale of your property.  If I am in your corner, you will have the best chance at making it out, making the best choices possible and do it in a very timely fashion (2 weeks).  

September 12, 2006

The “Get out of Debt” Plan and Forget the “Jones'”

Ok! I know I said you need a plan so I will share one technique I use all the time.  Take out a piece of paper and write out the people you owe money to, how much you owe them and what you pay them monthly.  Now get a monthly total for your debts or liablities so you know what you owe. Is it what you thought it was or more?

Turn the paper over and write out how much you make every month after taxes and then write down any yearly income or money that comes in from other sources.  I also want you to write down your tax return if you received one over the past two years.  Take the tax return number and divide that by 12 months so you can add that back into you monthly totals. How do you match up monthly to the debts?

Once you know what you owe monthly and what you make monthly you need to prioritize the debts based on necessity and interest rate.  Pay the debt you must pay every month and pay any extra money to the highest interest rates.  If you focus on the highest interest rates first you can start to pull yourself out of debt one payment at a time.  This plan will only be beneficial if you have some self discipline because we can all be tempted to purchase the latest and greatest item out there but when you are behind you need to focus if you are ever going to get caught up!

There are a few areas that we should talk about if we want our plan to work.  If you receive a large tax return you should consult with your tax preparer or possibly hire a CPA for an hour and make the proper adjustments to you paycheck with-holdings.  With this adjustments you can break your tax return into monthly cash flow instead of one large check at the end of the year.  This quick and easy item could save you thousands of dollars in yearly interest expense depending on the size of your tax return.

If you are going to take the time to write out all your debts and expenses you should take it a step further.  Know where you money is going in all aspects of your life.  This calls for a working “Spending Plan” or “Family Budget”.  Here is a free copy of a budget. http://www.toolkit.cch.com/tools/downloads/fambudgt.xlt It may seem a bit overwhelming at first but if you take the time to use a budget you will ultimately achieve levels financial maturity that you thought were years ahead.  Wait until you see how much you are spending on coffee at Starbucks or on eating out!  Once you see your expenses laid out in front of you it is easier to take the step necessary to become financially healthy.

I have help many people with their finances pulling some out of some serious situations and the single thing that all my successful clients have in common was patience.  It can take 10 minutes to create a lifetime of debt so unless you have a lucrative money making idea or career the only way to pay off the debt is one payment at a time.  If I can offer any advice please feel free to contact me at brent@brentlane.net and I would be happy to help.  My website also has several other articles and downloads that may come in handy when putting together your “Get out of Debt” plan.  www.brentlane.net

September 4, 2006

Living Paycheck to Paycheck to Poor House!

Living paycheck to paycheck seems to be a pretty common occurrence for many people.  The bills keep coming month in and month out keeping them buried under debt.  The paycheck seems to get that much smaller every month yet somehow they make it all work, probably with more credit.  Is there a light at the end of the tunnel or are they doomed to live a life buried in debt payments?

Some choose the path of “Pay Nothing” a truly go for broke, forget the credit, “I don’t care what you want or who you are I’m not paying you a dime.”  This causes some major credit problems and has long-term repercussions.  After hiding out away from all those phone calls from debt collectors, after changing their address and their phone numbers they come back to a world that still wants their money.  This is not a good choice and will more than likely delay the inevitable, paying back what they owe!  If you find yourself considering this option just know that there is another way. 

Another choice would be to file for bankruptcy.  The most common form of bankruptcy is a chapter 7 which will completely eliminate or discharge all your debt.  The path is a two sided sword, did you learn from previous mistakes or are you doomed to repeat?  Life lessons are important and should never be ignored.  We should ask ourselves regularly if we have been in that particular situation before and what did we learn last time.  A bankruptcy will buy them time, their credit will suffer for some time but in the end it’s all about life lessons and having a plan moving forward.

The path of most resistance is always the path least travelled.  Most people look for short cuts or easy ways to avoid problems.  They focus on instant gratification instead of patience and pay a hefty price for their approach.  If you approach the debt with a plan, you can eliminate the debt, build wealth and have many of the things you always wanted.  Even if you are behind today there are still options that can help you pay your debt and keep your credit in tact. 

There are many people who developed a detailed plan but the one that sticks out in my mind is www.davidbach.com.  His plan is detailed yet easy to follow.  There are some free items on his site that will help you not only get out of debt but find money you didn’t know you have.  If you need some help putting it all together, I am happy to help.  You can reach me at brent@brentlane.net.

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