Explore Altamonte Springs, FL
By Chris Brown- Florida Home Loan Specialist | Certified Mortgage Planner, Chris Brown 407.367.2974
(Chris Brown | Certified Mortgage Planners)
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A recent joint report from Forbes and GreatSchools debunks a powerful myth in housing. There's little correlation between Public School Quality and the Median Price Point for a home. In other words, the most expensive districts don't always have the best schools. And spending per pupil seems only loosely correlated, too. The study, titled America's Best Schools For Your Housing Buck, puts tiny Falmouth, Maine at the top of....   Read the COMPLETE BLOG POST HERE: Getting More Educational Bang For Your Housing Buck  
By Chris Brown- Florida Home Loan Specialist | Certified Mortgage Planner, Chris Brown 407.367.2974
(Chris Brown | Certified Mortgage Planners)
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  In an echo of February's Case-Shiller Index report, the government's own home price-tracker -- the Home Price Index -- showed home values slipping between January and February 2011. The Federal Home Finance Agency data had home values down 1.6 percent nationwide in February, on average, marking the fourth straight month in... Read the COMPLETE BLOG POST HERE: Foreclosures And Short Sales Distorting "Home Price Trackers"  
By Chris Brown- Florida Home Loan Specialist | Certified Mortgage Planner, Chris Brown 407.367.2974
(Chris Brown | Certified Mortgage Planners)
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Be prepared for Friday morning. Mortgage rates and home affordability could worsen quickly. At 8:30 AM ET, the Bureau of Labor Statistics releases its April Non-Farm Payrolls report and momentum has been strong. The monthly jobs report is a market-mover and analysts expect that 196,000 new jobs were added last month. If those expectations are...   Read the COMPLETE BLOG POST HERE: Job Growth Returning To "Normal" Levels -- A Bad Sign For Mortgage Rates  
By Chris Brown- Florida Home Loan Specialist | Certified Mortgage Planner, Chris Brown 407.367.2974
(Chris Brown | Certified Mortgage Planners)
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    Home remodeling projects are expected to top $130 blllion this quarter, their highest total since Q1 2008. A likely catalyst is that the average cost of a home improvement project is falling fast. With the economy loosening up and contractor costs on a downswing, some in Orlando homeowners are choosing to put money back into their respective homes, and making home improvements. If you're...   Read the COMPLETE BLOG POST HERE: How To Screen For A Good Home Contractor    
By Chris Brown- Florida Home Loan Specialist | Certified Mortgage Planner, Chris Brown 407.367.2974
(Chris Brown | Certified Mortgage Planners)
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Among the most challenging aspects of shopping for a mortgage is how rates change constantly. It's hard to pin them down. For example, in 2011, mortgage rates have expired every 3-and-a-half hours, on average. That's fast. There's two main catalysts for changing mortgage rates. The first can be grouped as "scheduled events"; the planned release of market data which includes the Existing Home Sales report, or a scheduled government statement such as when the Federal Open Market Committee meets. When the outcomes of...   Read the COMPLETE BLOG POST HERE: Geopolitics Have Mortgage Rates Poised To Change
By Chris Brown- Florida Home Loan Specialist | Certified Mortgage Planner, Chris Brown 407.367.2974
(Chris Brown | Certified Mortgage Planners)
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  Your home's windows look best when they're clean on both the inside and the outside. It's a quarterly housekeeping chore, at minimum, and should coincide with seasonal changes. But washing windows can be a drag on the environment. Most homeowners use multiple rolls of paper towels to finish the job, and many commercial window cleaners are chemical-loaded. Fortunately, there's a way to.... Wash Your Windows The Eco-Friendly Way  
By Chris Brown- Florida Home Loan Specialist | Certified Mortgage Planner, Chris Brown 407.367.2974
(Chris Brown | Certified Mortgage Planners)
Comments 1
Debt-to-Income (DTI) is one of the many new mortgage related terms many First-Time Home Buyers will get used to hearing. DTI is a component of the mortgage approval process that measures a borrower's Gross Monthly Income compared to their credit payments and other monthly liabilities. Debt-to-Income Ratios are designed to give guidance on acceptable levels of debt allowed by particular lenders or programs. There are actually two...   Read the COMPLETE BLOG POST HERE: What's My Debt-to-Income (DTI) Ratio?
By Chris Brown- Florida Home Loan Specialist | Certified Mortgage Planner, Chris Brown 407.367.2974
(Chris Brown | Certified Mortgage Planners)
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  The National Association of REALTORS® Pending Home Sales Index rose for the third straight month last month. A "pending home sale" is a home under contract to sell, but not yet closed. The Pending Home Sales Index rose 5 percent in March, posting its second-highest reading since April 2010. Not coincidentally, that month marked the expiration of...   Read the COMPLETE BLOG POST HERE: Pending Home Sales Point To Seller's Market This Summer
By Chris Brown- Florida Home Loan Specialist | Certified Mortgage Planner, Chris Brown 407.367.2974
(Chris Brown | Certified Mortgage Planners)
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  Earlier today, the Federal Open Market Committee voted to leave the Fed Funds Rate unchanged within its current target range of 0.000-0.250 percent. The vote was 10-0 -- the third straight meeting after which the FOMC vote was unanimous. In its press release, the FOMC noted that since its March 2011 meeting, the economic recovery is proceeding "at a moderate pace" and that labor markets conditions are "improving gradually". Household spending and business investment "continue[s] to....   Read the COMPLETE BLOG POST HERE: A Simple Explanation Of The Federal Reserve Statement (April 27, 2011 Edition)
By Chris Brown- Florida Home Loan Specialist | Certified Mortgage Planner, Chris Brown 407.367.2974
(Chris Brown | Certified Mortgage Planners)
Comments 1
  After posting an all-time low in February, New Home Sales rebounded strongly last month. Based on joint research from the Census Bureau and HUD, 300,000 new, single-family homes were sold on a seasonally-adjusted, annualized basis in March. It's an 11 percent improvement from February, and right in-line with the 6-month average. The supply of....   Read the COMPLETE BLOG POST HERE: New Home Supply Falls To 16-Year Low
By Chris Brown- Florida Home Loan Specialist | Certified Mortgage Planner, Chris Brown 407.367.2974
(Chris Brown | Certified Mortgage Planners)
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  The Federal Open Market Committee starts a two-day meeting today, the third of its 8 scheduled meetings this year. The FOMC is a special, 12-person committee within the Federal Reserve. It's led by Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke and the group is responsible for voting on our nation's monetary policy. This includes setting the Fed Funds Rate, the rate at which banks borrow money from each other overnight. The general public tends to...   Read the COMPLETE BLOG POST HERE: Mortgage Rates -- And Home Affordability -- At The Whim Of The Federal Reserve
By Chris Brown- Florida Home Loan Specialist | Certified Mortgage Planner, Chris Brown 407.367.2974
(Chris Brown | Certified Mortgage Planners)
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    How do you use your garage? If you're like most homeowners, you park your car(s) in it, then use the remaining available space for the random storage of "things that don't go in the house".  Your garage can do so much more -- all it needs is a little bit of organization. In this 4-minute video from Lowe's YouTube series, you'll see how cabinetry, shelving, hooks and a master plan can add purpose to....   Read the COMPLETE BLOG POST HERE: How To Make More Space In Your Garage
By Chris Brown- Florida Home Loan Specialist | Certified Mortgage Planner, Chris Brown 407.367.2974
(Chris Brown | Certified Mortgage Planners)
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Veterans with active duty service (who were not dishonorably discharged) during World War II and later periods are eligible for VA loan benefits. World War II (September 16, 1940 to July 25, 1947), Korean conflict (June 27, 1950 to January 31, 1955), and Vietnam era (August 5, 1964 to May 7, 1975) veterans must have at least 90 days of service. Veterans and active duty military personnel who served during peacetime must have had more than 180 days of active service. Veterans of enlisted service starting after September 7, 1980, or officers with service beginning after October 16,1981, must in...   Read the COMPLETE BLOG POST HERE: VA Loan Requirements & Eligibility
By Chris Brown- Florida Home Loan Specialist | Certified Mortgage Planner, Chris Brown 407.367.2974
(Chris Brown | Certified Mortgage Planners)
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  Home resales rose 4 percent last month, according to the March Existing Home Sales report. A total of 5.1 million homes were sold on an annualized, seasonally-adjusted basis. The strong results re-establish the national, long-term trend toward rising home resales. March marked the 6th month out of....   Read the COMPLETE BLOG POST HERE: Demand Is Rising, Supplies Are Falling : Home Prices Set To Rise?
By Chris Brown- Florida Home Loan Specialist | Certified Mortgage Planner, Chris Brown 407.367.2974
(Chris Brown | Certified Mortgage Planners)
Comments 2
  According to the Census Bureau, seasonally-adjusted, single-family Housing Starts rebounded in March, increasing 8 percent over February's 2-year low. We can't put too much faith in the data, however, because for the second straight month, the government reports that the data's margin of error -- 15 percent -- exceeds its....   Read the COMPLETE BLOG POST HERE: Building Permits Rise In All 4 Regions
By Chris Brown- Florida Home Loan Specialist | Certified Mortgage Planner, Chris Brown 407.367.2974
(Chris Brown | Certified Mortgage Planners)
Comments 0
  Homebuilder confidence is falling -- a good sign for buyers of newly-built homes in and around The Crossings. According to the National Association of Homebuilders, the Housing Market Index slipped one point to 16 in April. It's the 5th time in 6 months that the index read 16 -- a figure exactly in line with the 1-year average, but still considered "poor". The Housing Market Index reports on....   Read the COMPLETE BLOG POST HERE: As Buyer Traffic Grows, Homebuilder Confidence Slips
By Chris Brown- Florida Home Loan Specialist | Certified Mortgage Planner, Chris Brown 407.367.2974
(Chris Brown | Certified Mortgage Planners)
Comments 1
  There's a long-standing myth that freezer-section produce is "worse for you" than fresh produce from a farm. The truth, however, is often the opposite. Because of upgrades in packaging and delivery methods, frozen produce is often more fresh than "fresh produce", and contains higher nutrient levels, too. The key is to know how to shop for it. The main advantage that frozen produce carries over fresh produce is that frozen produce is picked in its....   Read the COMPLETE BLOG POST HERE: Which Is Better : Fresh Produce Or Frozen Produce?
By Chris Brown- Florida Home Loan Specialist | Certified Mortgage Planner, Chris Brown 407.367.2974
(Chris Brown | Certified Mortgage Planners)
Comments 2
The VA Funding Fee is a fee that is required in order to receive a VA loan. There are a few exceptions that allow for the fee to be waived: Veterans who are getting VA compensation due to service related disabilities. Veterans who would be receiving VA compensation due to service related disabilities if they were not already receiving retirement pay. Loans for spouses of veterans who passed away in service or because of service related disabilities. VA funding rates have changed over time, but the rates listed in this article are for VA loans that will be closed before October 1, 2011. If you are...   Read the COMPLETE BLOG POST HERE: What Is The VA Funding Fee?  
By Chris Brown- Florida Home Loan Specialist | Certified Mortgage Planner, Chris Brown 407.367.2974
(Chris Brown | Certified Mortgage Planners)
Comments 2
  Foreclosure activity is much slower this year than last. According to foreclosure-tracking firm RealtyTrac, the number of national foreclosure filings plunged 35 percent in March 2011 as compared to March 2010, a statistic that reflects a more healthy housing market and more robust outlook for 2011. A "Foreclosure filing" is defined as....   Read the COMPLETE BLOG POST HERE: Foreclosures Drop 35 Percent Year-Over-Year
By Chris Brown- Florida Home Loan Specialist | Certified Mortgage Planner, Chris Brown 407.367.2974
(Chris Brown | Certified Mortgage Planners)
Comments 2
  After this week ends, the FHA is raising mortgage insurance premiums on its new Orlando borrowers. It's the FHA's third such increase in the last 12 months. Beginning with FHA Case Numbers assigned April 18, 2011, mortgage insurance premiums will be higher by 25 basis points per year, or 0.25%. Against a $200,000 loan size, the MIP increase....   Read the COMPLETE BLOG POST HERE: Get Your Applications In : FHA Mortgage Insurance Premiums Rising 0.25 Percent April 18, 2011

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