Archive for September 18, 2012

Home Advantage Down Payment Assistance.

How much Down Payment Assistance can I get with Home Advantage?  This depends on the price of the home and lending guidelines.  Home Advantage provides down payment assistance up to 4% of your loan amount.  So if your loan amount was $200,000, you would potentially be eligible for $8,000 in down payment assistance!

Do I have to pay the Down Payment Assistance back?  The money would have to be paid back eventually, but there is NO monthly payment and ZERO interest!  You would repay the down payment assistance when you either sell the home, rent it out, or pay off your 30 year mortgage.

What loan programs can be used with Home Advantage?  Almost any loan program can be paired with this down payment assistance program, including Conventional, FHA, USDA, and even VA loans.

Is Home Advantage any different than other Down Payment Assistance programs?  Yes.  The rates are much better than other programs that have been offered by Washington State in the past.  Also, for this down payment assistance program you DO NOT have to be a first time home buyer AND it can be paired with the MCC program!  This is unprecedented as in the past most programs have only been available to first time home buyers and could not be paired with the MCC.

Is Home Advantage right for everyone?  Everybody’s personal situation is different.  To find out more about Home Advantage guidelines, as well as other down payment assistance programs offered by the state, go to our Calendar/Reservations page and sign up for one of our FREE First Time Home Buyer workshops.  Don’t make the biggest decision of your life without getting educated first!!!


Fannie and Freddie Short-Sales

Where’s all the short-sales?  If you’re a first time home buyer in Seattle and you’re wondering where all the inventory is, you’re not alone.  Transaction types in King County are down across the board, including short-sales.

I thought there was supposed to be tons of distressed properties out there?  One of the reasons short-sales are not coming on the market is that many financial institutions require that a homeowner miss multiple payments before they’ll even review a homeowner’s request for a short-sale.  Homeowner’s may be hesitant as missed payments will lower their credit score.

Will more short-sales come on the market in the future?  They might.  Starting November 1st, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will start to review short-sale requests even if the owner is CURRENT on their mortgage.  This may allow for more inventory to come on the market, therefore giving first time home buyers more houses to choose from.

So will we see another dip in the Seattle market?  With signs of a housing recovery and potential appreciation on the horizon, many underwater homeowners that aren’t FORCED into default may continue to make their payments and wait the decline out.  So even though this new change may put some much needed inventory into circulation it may not be enough to cause a continuing decline in Seattle area housing values.

Don’t buy your first home before getting educated!  If you’d like to find out more about the Seattle housing market or general information about becoming a first time home buyer go to our Calendar/Reservations page and sign up for one of our First Time Home Buyer/Down Payment Assistance workshops.