With today’s constantly changing federal lending regulations, choosing a reputable, knowledgeable and local lender can do more than just get you the best rate and lowest fees. Our Mortgage Specialists want to help make the daunting task of financing as smooth as possible for you. Borrowing money has become a little more paper intrusive and the guidelines have gotten a bit tighter, but following recommendations from our lenders will help your financing sail through underwriting and close on time. Let’s get started.
Why do I need Title Insurance?
I’m often asked what is title insurance and why am I required to have it? Title insurance is a protection policy against loss which may arise from problems connected to the title of the property that you are purchasing. The home and the land you’re looking to buy may have had ...read more »
How to Guard Against Mortgage Interest Rate Fluctuations
By Kenneth Wohl, VP, RCB Bank Mortgage So you’re looking to buy a home and you’re shopping around for the best interest rate. One day the Annual Percentage Rate is listed as 3.625% APR, and the next day it is 3.875% APR. This can mean the difference of thousands of dollars in the ...read more »
When is buying a home not in your best interest?
By Kenneth Wohl, VP, RCB Bank Mortgage When a client tells me they’re ready to buy a home, I believe it’s my job as a lender to help guide them toward a decision that is best for their financial well-being, even if it means suggesting they hold off on purchasing. Owning a home...read more »
Is Buying a Home a Good Investment?
By Kenneth Wohl, Loan Officer, RCB Bank Millennials, is Buying a Home a Good Investment? You’ve heard it countless times, “Save now for the future.” Financial planners, current retirees, your parents - they tell you to put away as much money as you can into your 401k...read more »
Reasons why your mortgage payment changes
Does it seem like your mortgage payment changes each year? What’s the deal? Let’s look at three reasons that may cause an increase in your monthly payment. Your adjustable loan rate changes. If you have an adjustable rate mortgage, after a certain period of time (usually 5-1...read more »
Before house hunting, prepare with this three-step guide
Is buying a new home on your bucket list for 2016? If you’re ready to take the next step in purchasing your first home or even your tenth, there are three things you should do to prepare. Get pre-qualified for a mortgage. To a seller, providing a pre-qualification letter with your...read more »
Merry Christmas – Should I gift myself an extra mortgage payment?
Paying down debt is a great gift to give yourself. And while your home is most likely your biggest debt, making an extra payment may not be the best use of your money. Every household is different, so let me share a few thoughts to consider as you decide how to spend any extra cash yo...read more »
What you need to know about student loan debt and new mortgage guidelines
Many of us have accumulated some student loan debt during our education. When preparing loan documents, I often see student loans set in deferment or forbearance, temporarily delaying payments or reducing the monthly payment. New guidelines in the mortgage industry change the way lenders calculat...read more »
New Rules in Lending Protect Borrowers
by Kenneth Wohl, VP, Mortgage, RCB Bank The days of decoding cumbersome mortgage documents are over. As of October 3, 2015, new rules have streamlined the documentation process to make it easier for you to understand the terms of your loan, including all costs and risks. New standardized form...read more »
Homebuying Step Six: Close the Deal!
By Kenneth Wohl, Mortgage Officer Purchasing a new home is an important decision, one which should be carefully considered. Over the past couple of months, I’ve taken a close look at each step in the homebuying process. So far, I’ve shared important questions to ask about the ...read more »
Homebuying Step Five: Secure Mortgage Approval
By Michael Decker, RCB Bank Mortgage Loan Originator We’re currently discussing the six steps of the homebuying process. So far I have covered steps one through four: decide to buy, organize paperwork, shop for a home and prepare an offer. Now, let’s take a look at step five: ...read more »
Homebuying Step Four: Prepare an Offer
By Michael Decker, RCB Bank Mortgage Loan Originator Over the past month, I have been discussing the homebuying process. I have currently covered the first three steps: decide to buy, organize paperwork and shop for a home. When you find THE ONE, it’s time to prepare an offer on the pro...read more »
Homebuying Step Part Three: Shop for a Home
by RCB Bank Mortgage Loan Originator Michael Decker We are currently looking at the six homebuying steps: Decide to buy Organize paperwork Shop for a home Prepare an offer Secure a mortgage Close the deal In step one, I discussed the importance of a...read more »
Homebuying Step Part Two: Organize Paperwork
by RCB Bank Mortgage Loan Originator Michael Decker Purchasing a new home is an important decision, one which should be carefully considered. It’s wise to familiarize yourself with the homebuying process, so you can be prepared and help make the process run smoother. Currently, I am cov...read more »
Homebuying Steps Part One: Decide to Buy
By Michael Decker, RCB Bank Mortgage Orginator Purchasing a new home is an important decision, one which should be carefully considered. If you’re a first-time homebuyer, it’s important to find a qualified mortgage specialist to help you determine if home ownership is right for yo...read more »
Spring Clean Your Financial Life
By Kenneth Wohl, RCB Bank Mortgage Officer Kyla Wohl, RCB Bank Loan AA, spring cleaning her financial life. As temperatures rise and the flowers and trees begin to bud, we all get the itch to start spring cleaning. Spring cleaning typically involves deep cleaning your home, organizing ...read more »
Why a mortgage loan may suddenly be denied
by Kenneth Wohl, VP Mortgage Today’s home buying process usually begins with a mortgage application and pre-approval. A pre-approval is proof for sellers that a potential buyer can secure a loan. It also gives buyers an idea of what they can afford. It’s important to understand a...read more »
Mortgage Tips for a Smart 2015
By RCB Bank Mortgage Originator Michael Decker This year take control of your financial future by putting a little extra thought into your mortgage. Here are my top three tips for those of you who currently have a mortgage and for those of you who are thinking of purchasing a home in 2015.&nb...read more »
Lower down payment opportunity available for first-time homebuyers
By RCB Bank Mortgage Officer Michael Decker Is the burden of a large down payment causing you to wait to buy a house? Good news. Fannie Mae has announced an option for qualified homebuyers that allows for a down payment as low as 3 percent. The 97% loan-to-value mortgage, available for pr...read more »
Does checking my credit affect my credit score?
By RCB Bank Mortgage Officer Michael Decker Home buyers have long known that a higher credit score usually means you’ll qualify for a lower mortgage rate, so it’s no surprise one of the top questions we get is “will shopping for mortgage rates lower my credit score?” ...read more »
Importance of a mortgage pre-approval
By RCB Bank Mortgage Officer Michael Decker So much has changed in the past few decades that the old ways of buying or selling a home simply won’t work today. For decades, buying a home was pretty much the same thing: You shopped around, made an offer and then went to the bank to get a ...read more »
Year-End Closing Mortgage Benefits
By RCB Bank Mortgage Officer Michael Decker With the holidays inching closer and the New Year not far behind, you may be thinking it’s too late to close on a new loan by January 1st, or that it’s not worth the hassle during an already hectic time of the year. Let’s look ...read more »
Am I getting the right mortgage for me?
By Kenneth Wohl, VP, Mortgage Taking out a loan and assuming debt is a big decision. Your home loan is most likely your largest debt and making sure you choose the right loan and lender should not be taken lightly. Here are four questions to ask. How many lenders have I spoken to? One? Wa...read more »
The big deal about credit scores
By Kenneth Wohl, VP, RCB Bank Mortgage Point-blank, credit gets you what you want! It can help you buy a house, start a business, purchase a car, and get better insurance rates. Your credit score is tallied approximately by using 35-percent payment history, 30-percent amounts owed, 15-percent...read more »
Need money? Is a second mortgage the answer?
By Michael Decker, Mortgage Originator, RCB Bank Second mortgages can be used to fund a variety of projects and goals. When you need money, sometimes a second mortgage is the answer. You may be familiar with the mortgage used to purchase your home (first mortgage), but what’s a s...read more »
Contemplating a second home?
By Michael Decker, Mortgage Originator, RCB Bank Now may be the time to buy. If you’re toying with the idea of buying a second home, now could be a good time to take the leap. Interest rates are still low by historic standards, and while home prices are recovering from the bust, the...read more »
Should I pay off my mortgage?
By Michael Decker, Mortgage Originator, RCB Bank Have you ever considered the amount of interest you will pay on your 30-year mortgage? If you have a high rate, you could pay up to double the amount of your purchase price in interest alone. Many people have tried to aggressively pay down ...read more »
Are you financially ready to be a homeowner?
By Michael Decker, Mortgage Originator, RCB Bank Whether you’re looking to settle down with your significant other or you’re itching to invest in more than just your monthly rent, the time may come when you’re ready to switch hats from renter to homeowner. So how do you know...read more »
A look into mortgage rates, part III: 9 tips for a money-saving mortgage shopping experience
By Michael Decker, Mortgage Originator, RCB Bank When you begin looking for a mortgage lender and shop for the best mortgage rate, it’s important to be thorough and understand you’re not always comparing apples to apples. For example, lender fees vary by company, so the mortga...read more »
A look into mortgage rates, part II: Economic factors that help determine mortgage rates
By Michael Decker, Mortgage Originator, RCB Bank Mortgage rates are affected by a number of factors, including the rate of inflation, the price of U.S. treasuries and the Federal Reserve. That's because all these things and more affect how much investors are willing to pay to invest in th...read more »
A look into mortgage rates, part I: Who really sets mortgage rates?
By Michael Decker, Mortgage Originator, RCB Bank When you take out a loan, you aren't the only one taking a risk. Mortgage interest rates are the cost of borrowing money and a kind of insurance for the lender. Generally, the higher the risk means the higher the cost of borrowing money. Th...read more »
USDA Rural Development Loans
By Michael Decker, Mortgage Originator, RCB Bank The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development Loan Program is a fantastic 100 percent financing, no down payment opportunity for eligible homebuyers. Determining home-buying areas and the buyers who are eligible for USDA Loans is...read more »
Financing options for home construction
By Michael Decker, Mortgage Originator, RCB Bank The time has arrived and you are ready to build your dream home. Whether it's a tiny ranch or a luxurious craftsman house plan, your dream home is soon to be a reality! The first step in the home building process is obtaining financing for ...read more »
Mortgage Requirements for the Self-Employed
By Michael Decker, Mortgage Originator, RCB Bank Self-employed individuals often find it more difficult to obtain financing for their homes. Over the past few years underwriting standards have tightened and more documentation is needed by your lender in order to approve a loan. Prior ...read more »
Guide to VA Loans
By Michael Decker, Mortgage Originator, RCB Bank Stillwater A VA loan is a mortgage loan in the United States guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). The loan may be issued by qualified lenders. The VA loan was designed...read more »
Down Payment Gifts
By Michael Decker, Mortgage Originator, RCB Bank Stillwater According to the National Association of Realtors, last year 27% percent of all first-time home buyers received a gift from a family member or friend to help them cover a down payment, a percentage of the home’s cost paid at cl...read more »
When is a good time to refinance your home?
By Michael Decker, Mortgage Originator, RCB Bank Stillwater Refinancing your home can provide an opportunity to save money on your monthly payment, payoff your home faster or take cash out for some other purpose. A number of factors contribute to determining the best time to refinance.&...read more »
Would you benefit from biweekly payments?
By Michael Decker, Mortgage Originator, RCB Bank Stillwater Most people pay their mortgage monthly, submitting a payment once a month. There is an option to make biweekly mortgage payments, paying half of your full mortgage payment every two weeks. So what’s the difference? Ma...read more »
Ease your mind with a home warranty
By Michael Decker, Mortgage Originator, RCB Bank Stillwater As a first time homebuyer, the purchasing process in itself can be overwhelming. Now, you’re solely responsible for all maintenance and repairs. A home warranty can offer peace of mind when it comes to expensive home repa...read more »
Ins and outs of Home Inspections
By Michael Decker, Mortgage Originator, RCB Bank Stillwater Buying a home is a big investment and that’s why the home inspection is an important part of the home-buying process. Some loans don’t require a home inspection, but it is recommended. Wouldn’t you want ...read more »
Understanding your Mortgage Options
By Michael Decker, Mortgage Originator, RCB Bank Stillwater Thinking mortgage? The first step is to know your options. Let’s look at some of the basic types of mortgages and see if we can figure out what’s right for you: Conventional Loans: A traditional approach t...read more »
Rising Mortgage Rates on the Horizon
If you are contemplating buying a home, now might be a good time, as interest rates are expected to rise in the near future. The Good News is that mortgage rates are still sitting at all-time lows. In April, the average 30-year rate was 4.20% and the average 15-year rate was at 3.29%, accordi...read more »
New Mortgage Rules for 2014
By Kenneth Wohl, VP, RCB Bank Mortgage On January 10th 2014, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) put into effect new mortgage rules. These new rules have forced lenders to do a more thorough screening of the applicant’s repayment capabilities, which in turn requires lenders ...read more »
Unexpected Homeowner Expenses
By Kenneth Wohl, VP, RCB Bank Mortgage With mortgage rates still at historic lows and our local housing market strong with great inventory, it seems like a good time to buy. Before you purchase, there are a few expenses you should be aware of. When you choose to buy a house, realize there...read more »
Is it worth paying Mortgage Points?
A typical question asked when financing your home, be it a purchase or refinance, is, “would you like to pay points?” Many borrowers are often misinformed or confused about mortgage points. I can help. Sometimes the word “points” gets thrown around loosely and people r...read more »
What NOT to do during your loan process
You found your dream home, made an offer and it was accepted, yeah! You have already applied for a mortgage and your loan officer said it looks as if you would qualify. Closing is a few weeks away and you are eager to move in. One of the most exciting times in our lives can also turn out to b...read more »
Home Buying Basics
Buying a home can be an intimidating process, but with a little knowledge under your belt, you can better understand the process and become a stronger borrower. Here some things you should know before you buy. Obtain a pre-qualification from your lender: Before you begin house hunting, identi...read more »