We’ve had over 100 new blog posts this year, and in those, we covered a lot. 2020 was a big deal with pandemic-related changes to the homebuying process, unheard of low mortgage interest rates, increased buying and selling activity as renters left big cities and settled elsewhere, and, of course, a political environment that kept everyone glued to the news. The list could literally go on and on.
As we approach 2021, with the hopes that it’ll be less chaotic than its predecessor, We thought it was a good time to look back at 5 of our top blogs of 2020, which – interestingly – are still as relevant as they were when first published.
Let’s get started, and work our way to the top post of the last 12 months.
When this blog was published in May, we thought it was the perfect time to refinance. Since then, interest rates have dropped over and over again, making this article even more timely. Should you refi? That depends on how long you will stay in your home and whether lowering monthly payments, reducing loan duration or building home equity more quickly is a goal of yours.
Although you can technically refinance immediately, there are some rules and timeframes to consider. Read this post to see if refinancing makes sense for you.
Are you considering renting out the home you live in now and purchasing a second? This blog post weighs the pros and cons of renting versus selling your place outright, delves into determining if you can afford an additional mortgage and can help you choose the right home loan if you decide to gown down that path.
We also outlined six steps you’ll want to tackle before becoming a landlord, including how best to screen applicants, create a lease agreement and whether getting a property manager might be the right decision. Read more about it here.
Do you consider yourself a first-time homebuyer? Even if you’ve owned a home in the past, don’t have a stellar income, haven’t saved a sizable down payment or have a less-than-perfect credit score, you may still qualify.
This post covers the top indicators that the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) uses to determine if you’re a first-time homebuyer. It also digs into seven federal mortgage programs, including V.A. loans, USDA loans and Home renovation loans. Discover the program best suited for you.
In April, at the beginning of the pandemic here in the U.S., the mortgage industry had no idea what was going to happen. With so many Americans out of work or fearing they would be soon, mortgage lenders industry-wide started tightening up their product offerings. And everyone started talking about the “F” word: Forbearance.
The combination of unemployment, uncertainty on Wall Street and the spread of the virus contributed to a drop in purchase mortgage applications and refinancing. Read the blog here.
A good — or great — credit score is probably the most important thing when it comes to getting approved for a home loan. In this post, we dig into how credit reports are pulled together and what type of credit score you’ll need for the best home loan choices for first-time homebuyers.
Plus, we provide six tips to consider to work on building (or maintaining) a good credit score, including keeping revolving credit accounts open and diversifying your credit mix. Read more here.
Now, get your home in 2021!
Those were our most popular blog posts of 2020, but there’s much more to come in 2021. If you are a prospective homebuyer with questions about home financing, please reach out to one of our local loan officers to discuss how best to work with your real estate agent, how much you’ll need for a down payment or what happens during a mortgage closing.
Or, if you’re ready to get started now, you can always apply online!