Free Money Tips

Stop paying private mortgage insurance (PMI). Home values have increased significantly in recent years.

If your first mortgage balance is now less than 80% of your home's value, you can eliminate PMI expenses. Contact your lender to find out how.

Increase your deductible on your homeowners insurance. You may be able to reduce your homeowners premium by raising your deductible. If you put your savings into a home repair account, it's likely that you'll come out ahead.

Conforming loan limit raised. New limit of $322,700 makes lower rates available to another 200,000+ American families.

Increase your deductions. Learn the value of your donations, increase your tax deductions and increase your tax refund.

Protect your credit score. Make sure that you qualify for the lowest rates by monitoring your credit report

Step 1: Examine Your Finances

If you can afford to buy a home, you must then determine how much mortgage you can afford. Lenders are apt to put your loan loan request form in the best light and qualify you for as much as they are willing to lend, which can be more than you can afford.

It's up to you to take stock of your income and expenses, both current and
projected to determine what you can comfortably manage each month. Along
with your mortgage payment, don't forget related insurance, taxes, homeowner
association dues and any other costs rolled into the mortgage payment.

Step 2: Shopping For a Loan

When you are ready to shop for a loan you have two basic types of mortgage stores to shop -- direct lenders and mortgage brokers.

Direct lenders have money to lend. They make the final decision on your loan request form. Brokers are intermediaries who, like you, have many lenders from which to choose. Lenders have a limited number of in-house loans available. Brokers can shop many lenders for each lenders' store of loans. If you have special financing needs and can't find a lender to suit them, an experienced broker may be able to ferret out the loan you need. Mortgage brokers, however, are paid with a slice of the amount you borrow, some more than others some less. Internet brokers today perhaps receive the smallest cut, sometimes none at all, and can prove to be a real bargain.

Along with shopping the source, you'll also have to shop loan costs, including the interest rate, broker fees, points (each point is one percent of the amount you borrow), prepayment penalties, the loan term, loan request form fees, credit report fee, appraisal and a host of others.

Step 3: Apply For a Loan

The loan request form process is the easy part -- provided you've gathered documents necessary to prove claims you make on the loan request form.

The loan request form will ask for information about your job tenure, employment stability, income, your assets (property, cars, bank accounts and investments) and your liabilities (auto loans, installment loans, mortgages, credit-card debt, household expenses and others).

The lender will run a credit check on you to take a look at your credit status, but you'll have to supply additional documentation including paycheck stubs, bank account statements, tax returns, investment earnings reports, rental agreements, divorce decrees, proof of insurance, and other documentation. If the lender deems you creditworthy, it will likely hire a professional appraisal to make sure the value of the home you are about to buy is truly worth your loan amount.

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