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First Home Loan

First home buyers are inundated nowadays with a myriad of information about how to get their first home loan. It is obvious and simple what first home buyers want when looking for a loan. They want information that is clear, they want to be educated about the steps that are involved in getting a loan and, most importantly, they want someone they can trust to organise their finances. First home buyers are often seen as vulnerable because it is the first time they are buying a home so they are especially prone to being ripped off by bad finance sources who are just looking out for their best interests.

If at any stage you come across a housing or finance term that you are not familiar with in this article, please do a quick search on Google or yahoo to find out the meaning, it will help tremendously. Alternately go to the website at the bottom of this article and go to the glossary page.

A few areas that will be covered to help first home buyers with their first home loan will include; the type of borrower you are and the finance sources. There is also a buyer’s checklist able to be downloaded and a home loan calculator link. These topics merely scratch the surface of what is involved. It is recommended that you consult a mortgage broker or another finance source to fully inform you of what is involved when getting your first home loan.

Type of borrower

There are a few different types of home buyers which make up this category. The main three that will be accounted for in this article are; investment buyers, non-conforming buyers and first home buyers.

Investment home buyers

This particular group of buyers already own, or are paying off, some form of property already. They may have been handed down land or property by their parents or relatives or have purchased or used equity in previous properties or land to make further purchases.

Because they have existing property, banks and mortgage brokers are able to source finance a lot quicker and easier, because they have collateral behind them (which is like a security back up in case their finances go bad for the second or third property purchase).

Non conforming home buyers

Non conforming home loans are basically designed for finance for those people who may be in unusual situations with how their income is paid or how they wish to finance their home loan or mortgage. Non conforming borrowers are also people who may have been previously rejected for a home loan for a number of reasons such as bad credit history, bankruptcy or unusual incomes (more information on non conforming areas below).

Banks are normally quite reluctant to approve mortgages for those that fit into the non conforming loan borrower and people often find that their first ‘standard’ loan application is rejected by the banks.

First home buyers

Buying your first home is without doubt one of the biggest and most exciting purchases you will ever make.

What you ideally need is a mortgage broker or other finance source that will assist you in the process of weighing up your options so you have an objective assessment of what is the best loan for your situation. Mortgage brokers tend to be more objective than banks because mortgage brokers can have a look at a multitude of different finance options from different financial institutions to find the best loan for your situation. Even better, if you can find a mortgage broker than specialises in first home buyers then they will have even better information and help available because they help first home buyers all of the time.

Do you need help getting your first home loan or assistance with the First Home Buyers Grant? Don’t worry you’re not alone. It’s often hard to figure out where to start when looking for your home loan. There are so many options and so many mortgage providers to choose from. First West Home Loans specialise in helping first home buyers with the process of getting their first home. We guide you through the steps needed to successfully secure finance.

There are many incentives available to first home buyers in Australia, including the first home buyer’s grant, which is $7,000. In addition there is also the option of having no stamp duty on your purchase.

As with all things there are conditions attached.

How much can you borrow?

Using a home loan calculator can help give you a rough idea about how much you can borrow. Don’t be disheartened if it is not as much as you initially hoped for, it is a rough calculation. For an accurate assessment contact a mortgage broker or other financial source to get further information.

Backwoods Sales and Marketing Blunder is Like Handing Your Competition All Your Business

Last weekend I witnessed one whopper of a dumb sales and marketing mistake.

In fact, if you were to look up the definition of “big dumb stupid business mistake” you’d probably see a picture of the place I saw this blunder take place.

Here’s what happened:

The Mrs. and I were in this small, “jerk-water” town in the middle of the woods (in northern California) and she wanted an espresso at this dinky little espresso joint. While the lady was making the drink, I glanced down and saw the handwritten sign…


“Stop!” I said.

“What’s wrong?”

“Your sign says you don’t take plastic.”

“No problem, there’s an ATM across the street.”

OK now, here’s where the fun began:

I live in a small (really small) town myself and get this whole cash only thing. Heck, even the business center in my town is cash only.

So that blunder is not that big a crime in the grand scheme of things.

No, the problem was, there was another place, CLOSER to that ATM, to get espresso. Which meant, this espresso joint was cheerfully sending good business across the street to an ATM machine that’s closer to their competition.

I wonder how much business their competition gets from this?

I bet they have a hearty laugh every time they see a customer walking from the other place, debit card in hand.

Oh well, that’s life in the little city.

But I admit, it did get me thinking about my own marketing. In fact, afterwards I even did a quick run down of my own operations to make sure I wasn’t making a similar (embarrassingly obvious) mistake.

Not a bad habit to get into, is it?

Especially since the kind of espresso place mistake above can happen to any one of us, yet is so easily prevented.

Home Loan Modification: What Is It?

Home loan modification refers to the restructuring of mortgages for borrowers facing financial hardships, enabling them to pay off their home loan payments. In this arrangement, home owners work with their lenders to change the terms of their home mortgages, saving their homes from foreclosure. At the same time, lenders are able to recover their money in a restructured program.

Home loan plans fall under the US government’s Home Affordable Modification Program, which was unveiled in February 2009. This program was aimed at reducing the monthly mortgage payments of struggling home owners to sustainable levels. In view of this, home loan modification programs have to conform to the standards set by US government.

Mortgage modification is an effective tool for you if have fallen behind on your home loan payments and are faced with financial hardships. As the loan is restructured to make it more affordable, you are able to pay it off without losing your home or sinking into debt. Key aspects of the loan such as interest rates, monthly rates and any penalties incurred are changed, enabling you to pay off the loan from your available income. However, in order to enjoy all the benefits of mortgage modification, you need to qualify for one.

The following qualifications make you eligible for a mortgage modification.

One of the qualifications for home loan mod is that one must have originated his or her home loan prior to January 2009. This requirement was put in place in order to prevent opportunists from taking advantage of the program. You must also be the owner-occupant of your home. The other qualification for home loan modification is that you have to owe more than your home is worth. According to the US treasury department, a person with a mortgage balance which is higher than the home’s current value may qualify for home loan modification. Another qualification is that you need to prove that your current financial status has suffered significant hardship. This could be as a result of various conditions such as increased mortgage payments, medical bills or reduced income. At the same time, your monthly mortgage payments must exceed 31% of your gross monthly income.

Lastly, you need to prove that you can afford to pay the proposed monthly installments after the mortgage modification. Keep in mind that the reason for the modification program is to enable you to pay your loan, not to exempt you from paying it. In view of this, if you cannot afford to pay the proposed installments, you will not qualify for the home loan modification plan. This requirement ensures that people who knowingly took home finance that were beyond their means will not take advantage of the program.

In addition to the above mentioned qualifications, you also need the following information in order to qualify for mortgage modification. You need to provide information about your monthly gross income and assets. Further, you also need to provide information regarding your recent tax returns. You will also be required to provide account balances and monthly payments which are payable on all your credit cards. You should also present information on monthly payments and account balances of any other debts you may have such as car loans.

Finally you need a letter detailing the circumstances that led to the reduction of your income or increase in expenses. Once you have gathered this information, you should contact your lender in order to be considered for home loan modification. The lender will then assess your financial status in order to determine whether you qualify for loan modification.

You may need to hire legal counsel for guidance in the process, to help you negotiate for the best possible terms. You can get a list of approved housing counselors form the US Department of Housing and Urban Development just to be sure.