Well, those 5% mortgage interest rates didn’t make landfall as predicted for 2019. Instead, the winds of change flew in the other direction with rates tumbling to under 4% (hat tip to interest rate meteorologist, Barry Habib of MBS Highway for predicting this), producing a mini-refi wave across the country. (Don’t worry, the hurricane and weather analogies are almost over).
So, should the rate climate change (couldn’t resist), prompt you to trade in your 2013 – 2018 mortgage for a new 2019 model? Sure, but not without a few cautionary words of advice.
You must be prepared. Flashlights, extra batteries, candles, water, full tank in your car and so on. Caught short in any of these precautions and you leave yourself on the outside looking in, NOT a good place to be. Here’s what being prepared looks like in today’s mortgage application process:
- Have three things ready day one: 1) a recent pay stub 2) your 2018 W-2 form and 3) your current monthly mortgage statement.
- When you get the disclosures from the lender, sign them THAT Day (if not sooner).
- Don’t change jobs, borrow money or co-sign for a loan. You can give blood.
- Make sure your loan officer is LICENSED.
These things will keep you in the front of the line and help avoid storms (sorry, can’t help myself) when it comes to securing your rate and closing on time. Naturally, other items and factors come into play, but these are the cheat notes that will give you a good head start on traffic.
It’s also best to remember that lots of people are lowering their rate, cutting their term to 15 years (a great way to take advantage of rate declines) and buying a new home right now. It’s busy out there and those who don’t heed these four points will find themselves frustrated. Don’t let that be you.
If any of this disappoints or discourages you let me suggest that if you’re OK with 5% interest rates you can delete everything you’ve just read here and close in a light breeze with not so much as a cloud in the sky.
Shamrock also produced a fun, cool video to help with some of this. You can find it here
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