Contributor | In Mortgages, Personal Finance
A former journalist and author of “The Book on VA Loans: An Essential Guide to Maximizing Your Home Loan Benefits,” Chris Birk is also content development director for Veterans United.
Looking for the perfect home on the real estate market? Unfortunately, it can be tricky if you have unpaid taxes. Failing to pay your federal income taxes can lead to the Internal Revenue Service placing a lien on your property or your assets. These legal tools protect the government’s ability to get its money. They also set off alarm bells for... Read More
You don’t have a separate rating called a mortgage credit score, but lenders do look at your score, credit history and several other factors when deciding whether to approve you for a home loan. Contrary to what some people think, though, you don’t necessarily need an excellent or good credit score to get a home loan. How high your score... Read More
One of the most cherished benefits for veterans and military families is celebrating a tremendous milestone, not to mention making waves in the housing market. With a big boost from much-coveted millennial homebuyers, the VA loan program set a new all-time record for mortgages in fiscal year 2016, according to the Department of Veterans Affairs.... Read More
Buying a home is still cheaper than renting in nearly every major U.S. market. That’s one of a few key trends that have mortgage lenders expecting big things in 2016. Nearly two-thirds of industry professionals think purchase loan volume will rise this year, according to a recent survey from trade group Lenders One. Bullish outlook... Read More
Would-be homebuyers eyeing 2016 as the year have a fair bit working in their favor. Mortgage credit continues to thaw, interest rates remain surprisingly flat and more homes are expected to hit the market as Spring approaches. To be sure, some buyers have a more streamlined path than others. Macro-level outlooks are one thing; it’s another to... Read More
Expectations are mixed for the housing market in 2016. More Americans are viewing homeownership as part of their personal American Dream than in recent years, and some industry observers believe those elusive millennials will finally start to make an impact next year. Spurred mostly by new construction, total home sales could top 6 million for... Read More
Whenever Duan Rockette meets a prospective client, the St. Louis real estate agent asks a simple question: Did you serve? That isn’t a question many real estate and mortgage professionals asked just a few years ago. But VA home loans, which require 0% down, have boomed since the housing crash, driven by a combination of... Read More
Shopping for a home loan means getting your credit pulled. There’s no way around it. Without taking a look at your credit report, most lenders won’t be able to complete your pre-qualification, much less pre-approve you to purchase a home. Granting a lender permission to pull your scores – and, yes, they do need your... Read More
One of the benefits of government-backed home loans is that they tend to have more flexible and forgiving requirements when it comes bankruptcies, foreclosures and other derogatory credit. The wait time for a VA or FHA loan in the wake of one of these events can be considerably shorter than for conventional financing. But that... Read More
Millions of veterans and active military members are eligible for what’s arguably the most powerful mortgage option on the market. VA loans feature $0 down payment, no mortgage insurance and more flexible and forgiving requirements. To be sure, VA loans aren’t the answer for every veteran. But they continue to make a huge difference, especially... Read More
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