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Resources2017-01-10T19:43:09+00:00

To us, the word “partnership” means support. We aim to provide individuals and credit unions with all the information they need, whether someone is applying for a new mortgage or a credit union is trying to provide their clients with the best financial products and services on the market.

Commonly Asked Questions about Loan Types & Fees

Interest rates fluctuate based on a variety of factors, including inflation, the page of economic growth, and Federal Reserve policy. Over time, inflation has the largest influence on the level of interest rates. A modest rate of inflation will almost always lead to low interest rates, while concerns about rising inflation normally cause interest rates to increase. Our nation’s central bank, the Federal Reserve, implements policies designed to keep inflation and interest rates relatively low and stable.
An adjustable rate mortgage (ARM) is a type of loan that offers a lower initial interest rate than most fixed rate loans. The trade-off is that the interest rate can change periodically, usually in relation to an index, and the monthly payment will go up or down accordingly.
Against the advantage of the lower payment at the beginning of the loan, you should weigh the risk that an increase in interest rates would lead to higher monthly payments in the future. It’s a trade-off. You get a lower rate with an ARM in exchange for assuming more risk.
For many people in a variety of situations, an ARM is the right mortgage choice, particularly if your income is likely to increase in the future or if you only plan on being in the home for three or five days.
Here is some detailed information explaining how ARM’s work.

 

Adjustment Period

With most ARM’s, the interest rate and monthly payment are fixed for an initial time period, such as one year, three years, or seven years. After the initial fixed period, the interest rate can change every year. For example, one of our most popular adjustable rate mortgages is a seven-year ARM. The interest rate will not change for the first seven years (the initial adjustment period) but can change every year after the first seven years.

 

Index

Our ARM interest rate changes are tied to changes in an index rate. Using an index to determine future rate adjustments provides you with assurance that rate adjustments will be based on actual market conditions at the time of the adjustment. The current value of most indices is published weekly in the Wall Street Journal. If the index rate moves up so does your mortgage interest rate, and you will probably have to make a higher monthly payment. On the other hand, if the index rate goes down your monthly payment may decrease.

 

Margin

To determine the interest rate on an ARM, we’ll add a pre-disclosed amount to the index called the margin. If you’re still shopping, comparing one lender’s margin to another’s can be more important than comparing the initial interest rate because it will be used to calculate the interest rate you will pay in future.

 

Interest-Rate Caps

An interest-rate cap places a limit on the amount your interest rate can increase or decrease. There are two types of caps:

  1. Periodic or adjustment caps, which limit the interest rate increase or decrease from one adjustment period to the next
  2. Overall or lifetime caps, which limit the interest rate increase over the life of the loan

 

As you can imagine, interest rate caps are very important since no one knows what can happen in the future. All of the ARMs we offer have both adjustment and lifetime caps. Please see each product description (link to Products) for full details.

 

Negative Amortization

Negative amortization occurs when your monthly payment changes to an amount less than the amount required to pay the interest due. If a loan has negative amortization, you might end up owing more than you originally borrowed. None of the ARMs we offer allow for negative amortization.

 

Prepayment Penalties

Some lenders may require you to pay special fees or penalties if you pay off the ARM early. We never charge a penalty for prepayment.

 

Contact a Loan Officer

Selecting a mortgage may be the most important financial decision you will make, and you are entitled to all the information you need to make the right decision. Don’t hesitate to contact a Loan Officer (link to Team) if you have questions about the features of our adjustable rate mortgages (link to Products).

Origination points are considered a form of interest. Each point is equal to one percent of the loan amount. You pay them up-front at your loan closing in exchange for a lower interest rate over the life of your loan. This means more money will be required at closing, however, you will have lower monthly payments over the term of your loan.

To determine whether it makes sense for you to pay origination points, you should compare the coast of the origination points to the monthly payments savings created by the lower interest rate.

Divide the total cost of the origination points by the savings in each monthly payment. This calculation provides the number of payments you’ll make before you actually begin to save money by paying origination points. If the number of months it will take to recoup the origination points is longer than you plan on having this mortgage, you should consider the loan program option that doesn’t require origination points to be paid.
If you’d prefer not to make this calculation the “old-fashioned way,” we have an origination points calculator.

Commonly Asked Questions about Loan Applications

Yes, applying for a mortgage loan before you find a home may be the best thing you can do! If you apply for your mortgage now, we’ll issue an approval subject to you finding the perfect home. We’ll issue a pre-approval letter as soon as possible. You can use the pre-approval letter to assure your realtor and sellers that you are a qualified buyer. Having a pre-approval for a mortgage may give more weight to any offer to purchase that you make.
When you find the perfect home, you’ll simply call your Loan Officer (link to team page) to complete your application (link to application). You’ll have an opportunity to lock in our great rates then and we’ll complete the processing of your request.

Commonly Asked Questions about Our Property Center

A credit score is one of the pieces of information that we’ll use to evaluate your application. 

Credit scores are based on information collected by credit bureaus and information reported each month by your creditors about the balances you owe and the timing of your payments. A credit score is a compilation of all this information converted into a number that helps a lender to determine the likelihood that you will repay the loan on schedule. The credit score is calculated by the credit bureau, not the lender. Credit scores are calculated by comparing your credit history with millions of other consumers. They have proven to be a very protective way of determining credit worthiness.

Some of the things that affect your credit score include your payment history, your outstanding obligation, the length of time you have had outstanding credit, the types of credit you use, and the number of inquiries that have been made about your credit history in the recent past.

 

Credit scores used for mortgage loan decisions range from approximately 300 to 900. Generally, the higher your credit score, the lower the risk that your payments won’t be paid as agreed.
Using credit scores to evaluate your credit history allows us to quickly and objectively evaluate your credit history when reviewing your loan application. However, there are many other factors when making a loan decision, and we never evaluate an application without looking at the total financial picture of a borrower.