Understanding the Term ‘Jumbo Mortgage’

If you’re like most prospective home buyers, you’ll likely apply for a common mortgage loan called a conforming loan. Though the Federal Housing Finance Agency establishes limits on conforming loans, borrowers may still exceed conforming loan amounts in particular cases. When this occurs, the mortgage instrument is called a jumbo mortga... More

Resolve to Save For Your Down Payment In The New Year

These days, many Americans dream of buying a home but find themselves feeling overwhelmed or defeated by the struggle to save enough for a down payment. Under current economic conditions, the days of a 20 percent down payment are long gone, and many Americans struggle to save even 5 percent of their dream home’s purchase price. Many find ... More

Today’s Thirtysomething Crowd Has More Credit Card Debt Than Ever Before

Are you racking up more credit card debt than in past years? If so, you aren’t alone. A new survey conducted by revealed the shocking reality of credit card debt among younger Americans: a stunning 75 percent spend more than they earn each month. For most of these young spenders, the disturbing trend stems not from reckless ... More

How To Pay Off Debt And Still Save For A Down Payment At the Same Time

Many a prospective homeowner has been frustrated by long-term debt that seems to quash any hope of saving enough for a down payment on a home. In fact, among renters who wish they could own a home, debt is cited as the number one roadblock to doing so. Debt payments, especially of the high-interest variety like credit cards, can eat up a ... More

Savvy Buyers Don’t Settle For The First Mortgage Loan They’re Offered

When it comes time to buy a first home, most buyers will consult a familiar lender, like their local bank, for a mortgage loan. Although that can simplify the process, it will rarely yield the best loan option. For optimal results, consumers should go “mortgage shopping” and meet with at least two lenders before making a decision. ... More

Three Options For Homeowners With An ‘Underwater’ Mortgage

The term “underwater mortgage” means you owe more on your home than what you could sell it for in present market conditions. The situation can seem hopeless – pouring money into a property that will not yield a financial benefit, and which could actually damage your finances instead. However, consumers who find themselves in this ... More

Unnecessary Credit Card Charges: Learn To Avoid Them

Even the most well-educated consumer can get tripped up by unexpected – and unnecessary – credit card charges and fees. Though credit card companies often fly under the radar with these money-makers, it’s possible for the savvy consumer to avoid them altogether. Read on for several of the most common surreptitious credit card charges.... More

Watch For These Unwanted Surprises On Your Credit Report

If you scan your credit report annually, like financial experts recommend, you’re probably familiar with much of the information listed: name, address, social security number, existing debts and credit applications. If you look closely, however, you may find some surprising information that can have a negative impact on your score. Make ... More

Mortgage Loans 101: Understanding Your ‘PMI’ Payment

There are plenty of fees and monthly payments to contend with when you’re purchasing a home. One common fee you may have heard of is Private Mortgage Insurance, commonly called PMI. When taking out a conventional mortgage loan and making a down payment of less than 20 percent of your new home’s purchase price, you will be required to ... More

Three Important Reasons To Just Say ‘Yes’ To A Home Inspection

Buying a home is a costly endeavor, and many a prospective buyer will look for opportunities to save a few dollars throughout the process. Skipping the optional home inspection, however, could have negative consequences that far outweigh several hundred dollars in savings. Although it’s not required by law, here are three reasons to insist ... More