Wall Street Bankers Still Playing Games

In the mortgage channel it’s harder to play games than it used to be, but it appears that the same folks – the too-big-to-fail Wall Street Bankers – who threw this country into the worst recession in history and destroyed my industry are still finding ways to gamble with customer’s money and use taxpayers as...

Bait-and-Switch Scam Bites Online Mortgage Lender

I will try not to gloat as I write this. Often when I am quoting interest rates and fees clients will tell me that they’ve seen better rates or prices from online mortgage lenders. Since I can broker to almost every mortgage lender in the country, and since we all get our money from the...

Mortgage Advisors Should be Finance Experts

One of my biggest gripes for a long time has been that mortgage originators are not properly educated in finance.  Those who have taken the initiative to educate themselves, either through a degree in finance or college-level finance courses are an exception.  Very few companies – if any – actually provide their originators with any...

What is Your Mortgage Worth?

This isn’t something most folks think about. When an investor (say Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, for example) buys your mortgage, how much are they willing to pay for it, and why? If you have a $100,000 mortgage you would think the lender would pay $100,000, right? It turns out that isn’t so. Here’s why...

Regulators Push for Looser Credit

For years lenders have been facing heavy political pressure to tighten credit. The three main tools advocated by legislators and regulators have been: Tighter credit standards – ensure borrowers are over-qualified. Strict buy-back agreements. Agencies can force lenders to buy back any loan for almost any reason, even if the loan is performing perfectly. This...

Finance Home Improvements and Be Debt Free Before You Retire

I just came back from a home show this weekend and was taken aback by how much homeowners fear financing nowadays. I understand why this is – after all, a lot of homeowners experienced a lot of pain in the last eight years. There is no question that acting irrationally can be a bad move,...

The Appraisal System is Broken (I’m whining again)

This one is long, and boring, and important. I’ve had yet one more borrower hurt by a broken system, and really want to find a solution to this. You may not know that I used to be an appraiser. In fact, I founded what eventually became one of the largest real estate appraisal firms in...

Worse Than We Thought – Mortgage Originations at 17-Year Low

From Mortgage Professional America: “Mortgage lending has hit a low not seen in 17 years as rising interest rates and spiking home prices keep borrowers at bay. Mortgage lenders did a total loan volume of $226 billion in the first quarter – the lowest quarterly amount since 1997, according to a Bloomberg report. Wells Fargo...

The Next Crisis is About to Hit

Bob Piepergerdes, director of Retail Credit Risk for the Office of Comptroller of the Currency (OCC to you) has been sounding the alarm for a while, but his warnings have received scant media attention.  What is he so worried about? As you probably know, one of the reasons for the financial meltdown was that the...

Getting a Mortgage 1 Year After BK or Foreclosure

An old client contacted me yesterday worried that she would not be able to get a mortgage to buy a home.  Her loan had gone into default a couple of years ago and a Notice of Default – the first step in the mortgage process – had been filed.  To your credit report, this is...