A conforming mortgage is one that, quite literally, conforms to the mortgage guidelines set forth by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. Each year, the government sets the maximum allowable loan size for a conforming mortgage, based on 'typical' housing costs nationwide.
Loans in excess of this amount are typically called 'jumbo'. While home prices increased from 1980 to 2006, so did conforming loan limits. Since then, however, as home prices have dipped, the conforming loan limit has held. Now, in 2010, for the 5th consecutive year, the government set $417,000 as the nation's conforming mortgage loan limit. The 2010 conforming loan limits, as released by the government, are:
- 1-unit properties : $417,000
- 2-unit properties : $533,850
- 3-unit properties : $645,300
- 4-unit properties : $801,950
But conforming loan limits don't apply to all U.S. geographies equally. As a result of various economic stimuli since 2008,...
Despite the economy's improvement and prodding from Congress, banks don't seem ready to open their purse strings just yet. Nationally, mortgage approval . The data comes from a quarterly survey the Federal Reserve sends to its member banks.
The Fed asks senior bank loan officers around the country whether 'prime' residential mortgage guidelines had tightened in the last 3 months. For the period July-September 2009:
- Roughly 1 in 4 banks said guidelines tightened
- Roughly 3 in 4 banks said guidelines were 'basically unchanged'
Just one bank said its guidelines had loosened. In the third quarter of this year, I have already seen the effects of tighter lending guidelines for Indianapolis home buyers. Combine the Fed's survey with recent underwriting updates from the FHA and from Fannie Mae and it becomes clear that mortgage lenders are much more cautious about their loans than they were, say, 2 years...
Home affordability improved this week after the Federal Reserve released its November 3-4, 2009 meeting minutes.
The FOMC Minutes is a companion to the Federal Reserve's post-meeting press release. It's released 3 weeks after the Fed adjourns and details the internal debates that shape our nation's monetary policy.
As compared to the press release, the minutes can be rather lengthy. November's press release featured 428 words, the minutes offered 6531.
However, this extra level of detail shapes markets and mortgage rates. With Wall Street unsure about the economy's path, investors look to our nation's central bankers for guidance.
The Fed has made several points clear:
- The economy shows tell-tale signs of improvement
- Unemployment threatens the recovery
- Inflation pressures are low, for now
It's official -- home prices are no longer in free fall.
According to the Federal Housing Finance Agency, the Home Price Index posted its since 2007 last quarter.
The news was reported Tuesday.
The Home Price Index is an interesting metric. It's huge in its scope, accounting for every home sold in the country that backs a mortgage bound for Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac with two notable exceptions:
- It doesn't track new construction
- It doesn't track multi-unit homes
Because the Home Price Index makes these specific exclusions, and because it doesn't account for FHA and jumbo mortgages, some analysts discount the HPI's relevance.
They prefer the private-sector Case-Shiller Index instead. Now, to be fair, the Case-Shiller has its own set of flaws, too. For example, it excludes condos and co-ops, and only tracks sales in 20 cities nationwide. But, of all the private home valuation...
Will Hansen and Horn Home Builders be the next casualty of the Indianpolis real estate market?
The talk on the street indicates it is probable. It was first reported on WishTV.com the Indianapolis home builder was having problems paying bills and is being sued by subcontractors for money they are owed.
Customer complaints about work which had not begun or homes not completed on time also made the news. The Indianapolis Star picked up the same story, stating the Builders Association of Greater...
Indianapolis offers the most affordable housing in the nation, according to CNNMoney. You can read the full story here.
I don't know what the criteria was for determining the most affordable cities to buy a home. It appears to be based on income, average home sale prices and affordability score.
The article states the median home price in Indianapolis is $107,000, which is about right. Median home price indicates the number at which as many homes sold above the median price...
There are lessons to be learned in every breathing moment, should we take time to stop and look around. Sometimes the profound smacks us upside the head and says, “Pay attention”; other times the soft whisper of the wind and the sunset teaches us the beauty of a quiet evening. Life is an ever evolving lesson.She made her way into this world in April, 2008, with a cry to let us know she had arrived. One look and I could see her mothers face looking back at me. It’s quite remarkable when you see the face of your child in the eyes of your grandbaby.
There’s something so sweet and innocent about a newborn. It was love at first site. She grew, as babies do, so fast it seems – where did the time go. I should have cuddled her more because now she has no time. She is exploring her own world, as...