November 10, 2014
Refinancing must be in the air because I was interviewed twice in the last week about them. The first story appeared here. The second story, This Could Be Your Last Shot to Refinance a Mortgage, is in the Fiscal Times. It reads, in part,
After the Fed’s announcement Wednesday that it would end its historic $3 trillion bond-buying program, mortgage rates predictably began to rise.
The good news is that they were rising from the lowest rates of the year, after tumbling through most of October. At just over 4 percent, today’s mortgages rates still remain extremely low by historical standards. In 2008, before the housing busts, rates were around 6.5 percent.
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Banks are stilled scarred from the housing bust and are dealing with significant changes to the regulatory environment, so lending standards are much tighter than they were in the past. Even former Fed chair Ben Bernanke recently admitted to having had his mortgage refinance application rejected.
To get the best rate, you’ll need excellent credit and lots of documentation of your income and assets. The average credit score for closed loans in September was 726, according to Ellie Mae.
Finally, shop around. “Talk to a big bank, talk to a little bank, talk to a mortgage broker,” says David Reiss, a professor of real estate finance at Brooklyn Law School. The gap between the best and the worst mortgage deals can be as much as a full percentage point.| Permalink