I sometimes have people ask me what the requirements are to count alimony or child support income towards qualifying for a mortgage.
First we need a copy of a divorce decree or separation agreement (if the divorce is not final) that explains all the terms of any alimony and child support, and any other financial arrangements that may have a positive or negative impact on your mortgage application.
In general, we have to review the payment history to determine if it’s been stable income for the borrower. We have to document no less than six months of the borrower’s most recent regular receipt of the full payment. Continue reading Getting A Mortgage Loan With Child Support And/Or Alimony
Some people don’t know that you can’t refinance your VA loan without waiting 210 days after your last loan. Some people do know this guideline. However, there are some specifics that people are not aware of.
One very important nuance is that you have to wait 210 days from the date that the first payment was due on the prior loan. The 210 day waiting period doesn’t start from the date of your prior closing date.
Below is an example:
A VA loan closed in January, and had a first payment due date of March 1st, a check is written March 8th, and that check clears March 12th.
Can they refi 210 days from January 1st, March 1st, March 8th, or March 12th, in order to meet the VA seasoning requirements?
The answer is they can refinance 210 days from March 1st, and they also have to have made 6 payments to close a new VA refinance.
Mortgage guidelines have the ability to change at any time, so always talk to a well-reviewed mortgage loan officer to make sure you understand the current guidelines and how they might apply to you.
Every year, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) sets a dollar cap on conventional mortgages that Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae are allowed, commonly referred to as a conforming loan limit. In 2020, the conforming loan limit for a single-family home was $510,400. This year, the conforming loan limit for a single-family home increased to $548,250, nearly 7.6% higher!
This means Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae can purchase conventional loans valued at or under the conforming loan limit from mortgage lenders. In most areas, the maximum conforming loan limits are as follows: Continue reading 2021 Mortgage Loan Limits
When you qualify for a mortgage loan, it may not be for the amount you want. Outstanding debts can affect how much you are able to borrow. But in some instances, you may be able to pay off the debt in order to qualify for a larger loan.
If you reduce the number of installment payments to 10 or fewer, the loan may not be included in your debt-to-income ratios. However, if the debt requires a large monthly payment, an underwriter may consider it a risk in your debt-to-income ratio. Continue reading Can paying off a debt help qualify you for a mortgage?
What is a community property state?
In the U.S., nine states have tried to alleviate the pressure of divorce by passing community property laws.
In Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Washington, and Wisconsin, community property laws require divorcing couples to split assets acquired during a marriage equally. Marital property includes earnings, all property bought with those earnings, and all debts accrued during the marriage.
When getting a mortgage in a Community Property State, a spouse might not be on the new mortgage but their credit report will still be pulled and their debts will be added to the debt-to-income ratios of the mortgage borrower. However, this only applies to FHA & VA mortgages taken in the above states, not on Conventional loans. Continue reading Getting A Mortgage In Community Property States
If you have variable income that changes and fluctuates, the rules of assessing your income to qualify for a mortgage are different than if you had a fixed salary.
Some types of variable income would be: Continue reading Variable Income Types
Mortgage lenders are now required to confirm that you are still employed prior to closing on a mortgage, three business days prior in fact. Mortgage lenders are always required to verify that a borrower has not lost their job, been furloughed, laid off, or had their income altered prior to closing because it impacts their ability to repay the loan. Previously, lenders were able to document a borrower’s employment 10 calendar days prior to settlement. Continue reading What is a COVID VOE?
With a VA loan, the United States Department of Veterans Affairs requires that the closing costs on a VA refinance be recouped in 36 months or less. If the recoupment period is over 36 months the loan will be rejected.
In other words, the refinance closing costs divided by the monthly savings has to be 36 or less, signifying the number of months in the recoupment period.
For example, if the closing costs on a VA refinance are $3,000 and the monthly savings on the refinance are $400 a month, the recoupment period is 7.5 months because $3,000 divided by $400 a month in savings = 7.5 (well within 36 months). Continue reading VA Refinance Recoupment Period
A Credit Score Simulator can help with “What If” scenarios to determine what you could potentially do to raise your credit score. It can also show you what could negatively impact your credit score. It is important to see how your credit choices might affect your credit score because your credit score will impact the underwriting of your loan, your interest rate quote, and even the cost of your mortgage insurance.
Some of the various things a Credit Score Simulator can measure to see how they will impact your credit score are: Continue reading Credit Score Simulator
Forbearance, only do it if you absolutely have to. Some people are taking a Forbearance on their mortgage as a way to take a break on their mortgage payment when they really do not need to.
But forbearance does not mean you can skip mortgage payments and never pay them back. You have to repay any missed or reduced payments in the future. So, if you’re able to keep up with your payments, keep making them.
Taking a forbearance will also impede your ability to refinance. Having a forbearance on your credit report means you cannot get a new mortgage. You would have to bring the loan current. Continue reading Mortgage Forbearance