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When buying a first home, many people are making one of the biggest purchases of their lives. Without home buying experience, it can be difficult to separate fact from fiction.  Get the facts on these common first-time home buying myths:

Myth – It takes a 20 percent down payment to buy a home.
Reality – Required down payment amounts vary by type of loan, and they are on average lower than you may think. in 2014, the median down payment for all first-time buyers was 6 percent, according to the National Association of REALTORS®. One reason is that some first-time buyers use FHA loans, which require down payments as low as 3.5 percent. Conventional loan programs have become available requiring down payments as little as 3 percent for first-time home buyers, and VA loans may require no money down for qualified veterans or active military personnel.  Some conventional loans do require 20 percent down, but you may be able to lower that percentage with private mortgage insurance. There are also many down payment assistance programs that can help eliminate or reduce down payment requirements for qualified borrowers.

Myth – If you owe a lot of student loan debt, there is no way you can get a mortgage.
Reality – Don't assume that having a lot of student loan debt automatically disqualifies you from getting a mortgage. The key factor is not necessarily the size of your loan obligation, but the amount of your total monthly debt payments compared to your monthly income. This is called your debt-to-income ratio, or DTI.

Myth – If your credit score is lower, you should not even try to get a mortgage.
Reality – Potential buyers often assume they will not be approved for a mortgage even though many may qualify. However, factors other than your credit score are considered during the mortgage application process. Buyers with lower credit scores still may be able to get a mortgage if they have good income and lower levels of debt.

Myth – Buying a home isn't a good investment.
Reality – Real estate, like other assets, rises and falls based on supply and demand. In recent years, home values in most markets have been rising. While all real estate is local, if you bought a home in March 2012, by August 2014, the national median home price as measured by Case-Shiller had risen 29.6 percent.

Myth – The mortgage interest tax deduction is going away.
Reality – Though the deduction has its critics, most observers believe it is unlikely that Congress will eliminate the mortgage interest deduction any time soon. Many states also allow homeowners to write off the interest they pay on their mortgages from their state income taxes. Check with your accountant or CPA on if you can qualify for this type of tax deduction.

Myth – I'm about to get married, and the wedding is so expensive I won't be able to buy a home.
Reality – According to TheKnot, the average wedding has 138 guests who typically give a gift valued at $100 each. That's $13,800 in spatulas, baking pans and other things. If every guest contributed to a down payment fund instead, you may have enough saved for a down payment.

 

Have more questions? Contact your local mortgage consultant, today!

 

 

Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2015. All rights reserved.

All first mortgage products are provided by Prosperity Home Mortgage, LLC. (877) 275-1762. Prosperity Home Mortgage, LLC products may not be available in all areas. Not all borrowers will qualify. Licensed by the NJ Department of Banking and Insurance.  Licensed by the Delaware State Bank Commissioner.  Also licensed in District of Columbia, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia.

NMLS ID #75164 (NMLS Consumer Access at http://www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org/)

©2016 Prosperity Home Mortgage, LLC. All Rights Reserved.


New Mortgage Consultant Trainees Join Prosperity Home Mortgage, LLC

Prosperity Home Mortgage, LLC (Prosperity) would like to congratulate 15 new Mortgage Consultant Trainees for having graduated the Prosperity Mortgage Consultant Training program on Wednesday, April 6, 2016.

“We are committed to bringing the best and brightest talent into the mortgage industry, and this group of trainees was our best to date,” said Ron Wivagg, National Sales Support Manager. “These new mortgage consultants are bright, energetic and creative people who will build relationships and work with some of the top producing real estate agents throughout the Mid-Atlantic region, from New Jersey down to South Carolina.”

The training program continues as the new trainees will spend the next 60 days partnering with Prosperity’s most successful mortgage consultants to give them valuable real life experience in addition to their classroom training.

“Prosperity continues to lead the way with cutting edge technology, which attracts top professionals such as the individuals within this group,” explained Randy Krout, National Sales Manager. “With the best-trained, best-equipped mortgage consultants, Prosperity will continue to help home buyers and homeowners meet their unique home financing needs.  Success begins with our people, which is why we strive to recruit the very best in the business.”

Learn more about careers at Prosperity Home Mortgage by visiting our Careers Webpage, or follow @PHMJobs on Twitter to get daily updates on the latest job openings.

 

 

All first mortgage products are provided by Prosperity Home Mortgage, LLC. (877) 275-1762. Prosperity Home Mortgage, LLC products may not be available in all areas. Licensed by the NJ Department of Banking and Insurance.  Licensed by the Delaware State Bank Commissioner.  Also licensed in District of Columbia, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia.

NMLS ID #75164 (NMLS Consumer Access at http://www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org/)

©2016 Prosperity Home Mortgage, LLC. All Rights Reserved.


26 Prosperity Home Mortgage consultants recognized as top in the country

We are proud and excited to share that Prosperity Home Mortgage, LLC, (Prosperity) been recognized for its exceptional mortgage originators by Mortgage Executive Magazine! The industry publication honored both The Nation’s Top 200 Mortgage Originators, as well as The Nation’s Top 1% of Mortgage Originators, in its winter 2016 edition, and 26 members of the Prosperity team were named to these exclusive lists.

“It’s a tremendous honor for so many of our mortgage originators to have been recognized by Mortgage Executive Magazine as the top in the country,” said Tim Wilson, CEO of Prosperity. “I’m proud of our entire sales organization for achieving such honors, and I’m confident that with our continued commitment to providing personalized and focused service to each and every Prosperity customer, we’ll remain among the top lenders in the nation.”

Tom O’Keefe, a mortgage consultant with Prosperity’s Bethesda, Md., office, ranked among the top 200 mortgage originators nationwide by annual mortgage volume. In total, there are over 380,000 state-licensed mortgage loan originators in the United States*, and O’Keefe was named as No. 119 for the country. He has been in the mortgage industry for over a decade, and he closed 208 loans for a total volume of $100,407,831 in 2015.

In addition to O’Keefe’s award, 25 mortgage consultants with Prosperity were named to the magazine’s list of The Nation’s Top 1% of Mortgage Originators. To be eligible for that list, a loan originator had to personally produce at least $30 million in 2015. Below are the Prosperity members who were recognized:

  • Derek Alverson, Richmond, Va.
  • Glenn Benson, North Bethesda/Rockville, Md.
  • Carleton Chambers, Ashburn, Va.
  • Jonathan Dailey, Bethesda, Md.
  • Jacob Darwish, Gaithersburg/North Potomac, Md.
  • Jody Eichenblatt, Alexandria, Va.
  • Michael Graff, Devon and Haverford, Pa.
  • Mona Guynn, Vienna and Oakton, Va.
  • Jonathan Haug, Chesapeake, Va.
  • Michael Joseph, Potomac, Md.
  • Bradley Katzen, Washington, D.C.
  • Alex Luboff, Ridley/Folsom, Pa.
  • Denee Mueller, Cary, N.C.
  • Joseph Nalls, Rockville, Md.
  • Alicia O’Brien, Richmond, Va.
  • Jonathan Okun, Bethesda, Md.
  • Anthony Pellegrino, Cary, N.C.
  • Terrence Schenck, Fairfax, Va.
  • Greg Scholl, Washington, D.C.
  • Christopher Siegel, Reston and Herndon, Va.
  • Michael Storti, West Chester, Pa.
  • Rex Ann Strecker, Mt. Pleasant, S.C.
  • David Turner, Springfield, Va.
  • Kathryn Welsh, McLean, Va.
  • William Woodfin III, Midlothian, Va.

The two lists appear in the winter 2016 issue of Mortgage Executive Magazine, which can be viewed online at http://mortgageexecutivemagazine.com/MEM16-01Winter2016/#?page=0.

Congratulations to the best team in the industry!

 

 

 

All first mortgage products are provided by Prosperity Home Mortgage, LLC. (877) 275-1762. Prosperity Home Mortgage, LLC products may not be available in all areas. Not all borrowers will qualify. Licensed by the NJ Department of Banking and Insurance.  Licensed by the Delaware State Bank Commissioner.  Also licensed in District of Columbia, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia.
NMLS ID #75164 (NMLS Consumer Access at http://www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org/)
©2016 Prosperity Home Mortgage, LLC. All Rights Reserved.


Winners honored at Ellie Mae Experience 2016 conference in Las Vegas

We are proud to announce that Prosperity Home Mortgage, LLC (Prosperity), has been inducted into the Ellie Mae Hall of Fame, an honor given each year to mortgage lenders and partners that have distinguished themselves through their industry leadership and innovative use of Ellie Mae technologies!  Prosperity was selected as a winner in the Outstanding Efficiency and ROI category. This year’s Hall of Fame winners were announced in six different categories at the 2016 Ellie Mae Experience conference, and several members of the Prosperity team were in attendance to accept the award.

“We are proud to honor our newest members of the Ellie Mae Hall of Fame,” said Jonathan Corr, Ellie Mae president and CEO. “The companies recognized today represent some of the top innovators in the mortgage industry. They show market leadership and innovation through their use of Ellie Mae’s all-in-one Encompass mortgage management solution and through their use, have driven compliance, quality and efficiency across their organizations. We congratulate them on this achievement and welcome them to the Ellie Mae Hall of Fame.”

Ellie Mae is a leading provider of innovative on-demand software solutions and services for the residential mortgage industry. Mortgage lenders of all sizes use Ellie Mae’s Encompass® all-in-one mortgage management solution to improve compliance, loan quality and efficiency across the entire mortgage lifecycle.

“We are incredibly honored and excited to have been recognized by Ellie Mae for our efficient and effective use of their mortgage management solution,” said Tim Wilson, president and CEO of Prosperity. “In everything we do, we’re focused on providing personalized and exceptional service to each of our mortgage customers, and receiving awards like Ellie Mae’s Hall of Fame proves our dedication to such goals and showcases how we’ve been able to achieve them.”

 

Click here to learn more about Prosperity!

Click here for more information on the Ellie Mae Hall of Fame!

 

 

 

About Ellie Mae:  Ellie Mae (NYSE:ELLI) is a leading provider of innovative on-demand software solutions and services for the residential mortgage industry. Mortgage lenders of all sizes use Ellie Mae’s Encompass® all-in-one mortgage management solution, Mavent Compliance Service, and AllRegs research, reference and education resources to improve compliance, loan quality and efficiency across the entire mortgage lifecycle. Visit EllieMae.com or call (877) 355-4362 to learn more.

All first mortgage products are provided by Prosperity Home Mortgage, LLC. (877) 275-1762. Prosperity Home Mortgage, LLC products may not be available in all areas. Not all borrowers will qualify. Licensed by the NJ Department of Banking and Insurance.  Licensed by the Delaware State Bank Commissioner.  Also licensed in District of Columbia, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia.
NMLS ID #75164 (NMLS Consumer Access at http://www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org/)
©2016 Prosperity Home Mortgage, LLC. All Rights Reserved. 


Appraisals Continue to Play an Important Role in Assessing a Home's Value

By Keith Loria


If you’re involved in a real estate transaction, whether you're the buyer or the seller, understanding the importance of an appraisal—and what it says about the home—is critical.
 
In its simplest terms, the appraisal is a professional assessment of a home’s value, performed by a licensed appraiser, who considers things such as the property’s features, current market conditions, and supporting data on sales of similar properties. From there, an appraiser will use a formula to calculate the true value of the home.
 
Appraisals are conducted by independent contractors who have no affiliation with the buyer or seller. Appraisers work for a fee, rather than a commission, so there’s no bias on his or her part when determining the value of a property. Not only does the appraisal allow sellers to establish a fair market value of the property involved in the transaction, the appraisal process also goes a long way toward helping a lender determine how much they can safely lend to buyers.
 
While all appraisals are different, ranging in length from a few pages to more than 100, they all include details about the house, a description of the neighborhood and side-by-side comparisons of similar properties. The appraisal will also contain an evaluation of the area’s real estate market, notations of major problems with the property that will affect its value and an estimate of the expected time it will take to sell the property.
 
Many of today’s appraisals are placing a greater emphasis on green features, with appraisers estimating higher prices when energy-efficiency methods are installed, a trend that’s not likely to go away anytime soon. This is something that you or your REALTOR® should point out if you’re accompanying the appraiser on the viewing.
 
In the end, keep in mind that you don’t necessarily need to agree with the outcome of an appraisal and base your buying or selling decision strictly on the results that come about through the process, but the appraisal is an important barometer to keep in mind as you work with your agent to determine the best price point at which to list your home.
 
To learn more about the appraisal process, contact a local mortgage consultant today.

 

 

Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2016. All rights reserved.

All first mortgage products are provided by Prosperity Home Mortgage, LLC. (877) 275-1762. Prosperity Home Mortgage, LLC products may not be available in all areas. Not all borrowers will qualify. Licensed by the NJ Department of Banking and Insurance.  Licensed by the Delaware State Bank Commissioner.  Also licensed in District of Columbia, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia.
NMLS ID #75164 (NMLS Consumer Access at http://www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org/)
©2016 Prosperity Home Mortgage, LLC. All Rights Reserved.


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