Posted by: ghmcpc | April 21, 2010

The Loan Process- Organize Your Documents

There are many different pieces of the mortgage loan process a client needs to keep in mind when starting the home buying process.  More so now than ever before, documentation is crucial to the process.  Gone are the days of stated income and no doc loans.  As a lender, we will be verifying your income at your current employer and match that to your earnings over the past two years.  In addition, we will also want to see where your down-payment money is coming from.  I tell my clients to think of me as your advocate with the underwriter, I will take all your documentation and verify that everything meets the guidelines of the loan we are searching for.

It is better to tell the loan officer all the details of your finances ahead of time, instead of getting tripped up during the process when it may be to late to correct the issue.  I have listed below the information you should have available the first time you meet with your lender:

  • Copy of Purchase Sales contract or Offer to Purchase and all addenda (signed by buyer and seller)
  • Past 2 years’ tax returns and W-2s
  • Past 2 years’ employment history
  • Last 3 consecutive paycheck stubs (5 if paid weekly)
  • Name, address and phone for past 2 years’ residence(s) and landlord(s). Renters should bring evidence of 12 months’ rent payments.
  • Last 3 months’ statements for savings, checking, CD, money market accounts, etc.
  • Recent statement on retirement accounts (IRA, 401K, 403-B, Annuity, etc.)
  • Monthly payments and balances on all open accounts
  • Divorce decree (if applicable)
  • Bankruptcy schedules/Discharge papers (if applicable)
  • If you are NOT a US citizen, provide a copy of your green card (front & back). If you are NOT a permanent resident provide a copy of your H-1 or L-1 visa.


By taking the time to gather this information BEFORE meeting with your lender, you will start the process out on a smooth note and limit the questions a undewriter might ask about your qualifications.

Posted by: ghmcpc | February 23, 2010

Time is running out……

Another day, another story about the housing industry.  Many in the industry have been seeking to educate consumers about the coming increase in rates.  It usually goes something like this:

Real Estate Agent:  ” Now is the best time to buy ever!!!  Buy now before rates go up and you can’t afford the mortgage.”

Buyer:  “Why are rates going to go up?”

REA:  “Talk to Phil at Guaranteed.  He has a great handle on this and will make sure you don’t miss out on low rates.”

True story…that is how it all happens.  All jokes aside, the recent article below points out that the government intervention in the mortgage market is about to end:

“The Fed has been buying mortgage-backed securities, the bundling of home loans that are used to fund mortgage lending, since late 2008. But next month it plans to complete its purchase of $1.25 trillion in mortgages.”

“There is wide agreement that the removal of this support will mean higher mortgage rates, which could hit housing prices and sales hard.”

To read the full article, please visit

While the article does delve into some technical things about the mortgage market, I want to point out the most relevant thing to my customers.  How will this affect my mortgage payment if I am thinking of buying?

“Higher rates on the way. But even if the Fed holds onto the mortgages it has already purchased, the act of no longer buying additional mortgages is likely to raise mortgage rates in the coming weeks. Experts say a jump of at least a quarter to a half percentage point is likely.” (emphasis added)

For example, take a look at the following scenario:

        $250,000 loan- 30 YR Fixed Conventional- Rate of 5%*

The monthly payment would be $1,342.  This accounts for principle and interest.

If the same buyer waits and rates do go up by half a point to 5.5%, the monthly payment would be $1419.  A difference of $77 a month.

While $77 may not sound like a lot of money.  Over the course of a 30 year mortgage, it adds up.  It adds up to the tune of $27,720.

So if you are looking to purchase in the coming months, you could save yourself $27,000 if you act sooner, rather than later.

* This scenario assumes a purchase price of $312,500 with the borrower putting down 20% of the purchase price as a down payment.  Single Family Residence in the state of Florida, and a credit score of 740. Quote is based of the date 2/23/2010. 

Posted by: ghmcpc | February 22, 2010

Not far to go to visit the in-laws!!!!!

An interesting trend pointed out by our friends at CNBC. 

“More generations are living under the same roof and the trend will deepen as U.S. families grappling with near double-digit unemployment share expenses, a study showed Monday”

According to a survey by Coldwell Banker Real Estate in Parsippany, New Jersey, “(t)hirty-seven percent of the company’s real estate agents polled in January said that in the past year, buyers were increasingly shopping for homes that fit more than one generation.”

While this study is done in the Northeastern part of the country and may contain ZERO relevance for those of us living in the Sunshine State, it begs the question….Would you consider buying a home with the parents or in-laws in mind?

Please let me know through a comment and your vote….

To read the full article, feel free to visit

Posted by: ghmcpc | February 19, 2010

What would you do?????

More and more people are walking away from their homes when they can afford to pay the monthly payment.  The term is called “strategic default” and according to some sources, it accounts for up to 25% of current foreclosures.  Basically the borrower usually owes a great deal more than the current value of the home.

“About 25 percent of mortgage defaults across the country are the strategic kind,” says Greg McBride, senior financial analyst for “That not a small number.”

“It’s somewhat substantial,” says Bob Walters, chief economist at Quicken Loans. “We are talking about it more in the industry and it’s becoming more accepted among homeowners.”

So what do think????  Is walking away from the mortgage a smart thing to do?  Is it ok from a moral and ethical standpoint to “walk away” when you can afford to pay?

What about the business ramifications of the decision to walk away.  If you bought the home at the height of the market and now it is worth 40-50% less, what effects will the market have on the value of your home over the next 5, 10 or 20 years???

And once again, we are talking about people who LIVE in their homes.  Not those that are investors or speculators….

Posted by: ghmcpc | February 15, 2010

The blog is back!!!!!

Guaranteed Home Mortgage Company- Emerald Coast has just relocated to new office space in the Destin/Panama City Florida area. 

In addition to a new location, the blog will be a tool our office uses to keep both our clients and referral partners informed of the latest changes in the mortgage industry.

While all organizations, regardless of industry, seek to lay claim to the title of “Best Customer Service” or ” Lowest Prices”, these are things that can only be measured AFTER a transaction closes in the lending industry.

What separates one mortgage lender from another?  Is it lowest interest rates?  Fastest turnaround times?  Friendly staff?  While GHMC seeks to provide the best loan solution at the right price for each and ever client, we provide more education on the front end of the loan process to make sure the client is making the best choice for their family.

In light of this, GHMC is proud to announce that beginning in late March, we will be offering on-going webinars on a bi-weekly schedule.  In addition, past seminars will be available on-demand for further client convenience.

Initial topics will include:

    1.   Qualifying for a home loan in today’s market.

    2.   How credit works and how to repair it.

   3.   Down-payment assistance programs for Florida residents.

We are here to make the home buying process a zero-hassles, zero stress event.  Let us know what we can do to help.


Phil Heppding

Guaranteed Home Mortgage Company—National Reach…Local Solutions