What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – May 2, 2016

Last week’s economic news included Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, along with new and pending home sales readings. The Federal Open Market Committee of the Federal Reserve met analyst’s expectations and did not raise the target federal funds rate, which remains at 0.25 to 0.50 percent. Freddie Mac’s mortgage rates survey and the Labor Department’s weekly jobless claims report were also released. Case-Shiller: Home Price Growth Slows in February Average home prices growth slowed in February according to the S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Index. Home prices fell from January’s year-over-year reading of 5.70 percent to 5.40 percent. 13 of 20 cities included in the index showed slower growth in home prices. Portland, Oregon showed the highest year-over-year price gain at 11.90 percent followed by Seattle, Washington...

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Fed Holds Steady on Federal Funds Rate

In its post-meeting statement, the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) of the Federal Reserve announced its decision not to raise the current federal funds rate of 0.25 to 0.50 percent. Although FOMC members acknowledged further improvement in the U.S. economy and jobs markets, the committee cited the following as influencing its decision not to raise the current federal funds rate: Household income continued to rise, but consumers have “moderated” their spending. Inflation is expected to remain below the Fed’s goal of two percent in the near term. Temporary influences including low energy and import prices are expected to ease. FOMC monetary policy decisions made in April’s meeting were guided by the Fed’s dual mandate of achieving maximum employment and its inflation goal of two percent....

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The HARP Refinance Program Has Been Extended into 2016: Here’s How You Can Take Advantage

With the Home Affordable Refinancing Program recently being extended until the last day of December, 2016, many homeowners who have found their assets in a challenging situation have been given a second chance to apply and receive an affordable mortgage. By taking advantage of the HARP program, eligible borrowers can refinance to the current mortgage rates on their homes while avoiding paying for private mortgage insurance or putting down the principal. A Quick Primer On The HARP Refinancing Program With the economy in a strong downturn in 2008, the value of millions of American homes plunged and the owners found themselves owning property with negative equity. The Home Affordable Refinancing Program was created by the government to assist people whose home values were lower than...

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5 Documents First-time Home-buyers Need for a Smoother Purchasing Process

With all the work that goes into finding the kind of home you’ll want to put an offer on, it can be easy to forget about all the little things that happen after the deal has been made. While the paperwork involved in purchasing may seem like a long way off, here’s a quick review of some of the documents you’ll need when the time comes to seal the deal. Your Credit Report It’s important to review your credit before putting an offer in, so ensure that you request your credit report in advance and review it for any errors that may be present. If there are any discrepancies negatively impacting your credit score, you’ll be able to have them corrected before they can cause...

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You Ask, We Answer: 5 Ways That You Can Proactively Build and Improve Your Credit Score

If you’re planning to buy a house or take out a business loan in the near future, you’ll want to work hard to boost your credit score well ahead of time in order to improve your likelihood of getting the loan you need. A great credit score can also make you more desirable to employers and help you to negotiate lower car insurance rates. But what can you do in order to build your credit score over time? What are the best strategies for boosting that score as high as possible? Here’s what you need to know. Dispute Errors On Your Credit Report According to the FTC, 25% of Americans have significant errors on their credit report. Whether it’s a fully paid debt erroneously reported...

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