Are Atlanta Home Mortgage Lenders And Brokers Being Squeezed Out Of The Mortgage Market?

Mortgage guidelines and rules are changing daily because of the current mortgage crisis. Foreclosures are up, and the Atlanta market is eighth in over-all foreclosures nationwide. Larger investors are turning down four times as many loans and have dropped more than half of the programs as they less than a year ago. This isn’t a very optimistic picture for those smaller lenders and brokers that are trying to keep their heads above water.

Atlanta mortgage brokers operate as a virtual lending arm for larger banks like Countrywide, Chase and Bank of America. Basically they capture business that the larger banks retail divisions miss or can’t handle. Larger banks, by in large depend on loan originators with less experience to process loans. The loans are then processed through their financial assembly line to obtain a closed loan. Each person within the chain has a specific job but rarely has time to change programs, rates and terms in the middle of the process that would upset the assembly line.

For the most part, this is where smaller lenders and brokers carved out their living. These mortgage companies have the time, personnel and experience to “shift gears” on more difficult loans. Now that a large percentage of the “difficult” loans are non-existent in today’s market the rules are changing. Larger banks are beginning to give emphasis to their retail departments while tightening the rules for the broker relationships they have established. Many smaller broker shops are feeling that this is the larger investors’ way of closing down their wholesale divisions.

However, some Atlanta mortgage brokers are seeing the glass “half full” during this time of crisis for most people in the lending industry. Jeff Stephens, president of Global Lending in Atlanta Georgia sure seems to think so. “Before the mortgage boom brokers provided a real service for a certain segment of the market. Our services are needed now more than ever. There are a dozen different investors with a hundred different products each having 30 or more pages of guidelines. A professional broker will know which programs will save the borrowers the most time and money”.

He continued, “the very fact that banks are turning down 4 out of 15 loans makes our services almost indispensable. More than half of the loans that are turned down by one investor may very well work with another investor. Applying to the wrong lender, or having your application presented without all of the facts can cost you thousands in today’s changing market.”

-Hundreds of small brokers and lenders have thrown in the towel as a result of the looming mortgage crisis and many more are expected to follow. The number of smaller broker shops that are still in business are roughly the same amount there was before the refi-boom. Some are seeing this as a market correction, in effect the hangover after the party. Still others are taking a more legislative view point by asking elected officials to reenact GAFLA (Georgia Fair Lending Act) laws that were passed by Governor Roy Barnes during the middle of the boom.

The editors of Lendfast.com believe that this is a market correction and further legislation will only slow down or halt the recovery process. Historically, when law makers dismiss foreclosure remedies and raise lending liabilities lenders simply stop lending their money. During the “hey-day” of GAFLA we saw a mass exodus of lenders from the state of Georgia based on their inability to sell their loans with Georgia laws attached to them. Adding this stipulation to lenders in this market will be disastrous to our economy and bring lending to a screeching halt for lenders small and large. If we let the “wound” heal, the “band-aid” can be removed in a year or two and you can bet lenders will be more conscious of their lending practices.

Affordable Atlanta Apartments

There are cities in the U.S where apartment rents are as high, or higher than house payments – but Atlanta apartments are not among them. In fact, there are plenty of great deals in terms of affordable apartments in Atlanta today, and many are offering some real move-in deals these days. If you are planning to relocate to the Atlanta metro area and are (A) on a limited budget, (B) don’t want the hassle and responsibility of home ownership, and/or (C) are planning on living in the area a limited time (5 years or less), you owe it to yourself to check your option for Atlanta Georgia apartments.

Economics

Let’s face it – since the mortgage brokers got burned in the recent sub-prime debacle, they’re being a lot more careful these days as to who they’re loaning money to. Gone are the days when almost anyone and their uncle could qualify for a home loan – and the median house payment in the Atlanta metro area is around $250,000, which means at least a four-figure house payment for most people – at least between $1400 and $2000 per month on a 30-year fixed rate mortgage.

Couples with small families (1-2 children) can rent a three-bedroom apartment convenient to shopping, entertainment and public transportation for as little as $750 per month. If your work is located close to town center and you can dispense with the expense and responsibility of owning an automobile, you’ll be amazed at how much money you’ll have left over each month – something to seriously consider when the cost of gasoline and car maintenance and insurance is factored into the equation.

Simplicity

As a homeowner, you bear all liability when something breaks down. You are also responsible for all property taxes. When renting apartments in Atlanta, payment taxes are the landlord’s responsibility (these are certainly factored into the rent, but you won’t have to worry about whether or not they’re paid). The greatest thing about Atlanta apartments however is the fact that when something breaks down or something starts leaking, there is usually an on-site maintenance staff right there to take care of it. You won’t have to worry about trying to schedule a plumber or HVAC repair person or taking time away from work to deal with the problem.

Equity

Even if you can afford to buy a house in Atlanta, chances are it won’t be worth it unless you plan to stay in the house for five years or longer. The days of skyrocketing, inflated home values are now past; even in areas where home values are not falling, the rate of increase is much more gradual than in the past. The general rule-of-thumb among realty experts is that is you are not planning to live in the home more than five years, it makes more economic sense to rent.

See Them Beforehand

Many excellent Atlanta apartments maintain websites at which you can take “virtual tours” of the property. You’ll be able to see pictures of apartments in Atlanta and the surrounding metropolitan area before you even arrive in town – saving a great deal of time in finding your new lodgings.

Fix Your Credit Before Applying For a Loan

If you know you have a very low credit score, and perhaps a nasty looking lend report, you could yearn to do some research on repairing your credit, before applying for a Home Loan. While repairing your spoiled lend is no easy task, it’s something that you can do yourself, apart from paying a credit repair business or getting involved in one of the many credit repair scams out there.

Be warned, there is no easy fix. Improving your lend study legitimately does take time, a purposeful effort, and strict adherence to a personal debt repayment plan. However, once your credit is improved or repaired, you may be able to qualify for a Home Mortgage.

According to the Franchise Tax Board, first, you will yearn to acquire an up-to-date copy of your lend report.
If a business takes “adverse action” against you, like denying your application for credit, insurance, or employment, you’re entitled to a free lend report. Your request must be made within 60 days of receiving observe of the action.
If you’re unemployed and plan to look for a job within 60 days, you’re also entitled to one free credit report, per year.

If you’re on welfare or if your study is inaccurate because of fraud, including identity theft, you are also entitled to one free credit report per year.

How to Request a Copy of your Credit Report

Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion are the three nationwide consumer reporting companies. If you ask for your credit report, they are required to provide you with a free duplicate once every 12 months.

You can also call 1-877-322-8228
Annual Credit Report Request Service
P.O. Box 105281
Atlanta, GA 30348-5281

How to Repair your Own Credit

To correct or repair facts on your credit study that is incorrect, you will want to write the consumer reporting companies listed above. The Franchise Tax Board advises the following: “Include copies (NOT originals) of any documents that support your position. In addition to providing your complete name and address, your letter should identify each item in your report you dispute; state the information and the reasons you dispute the information, and ask that it be removed or corrected. You may want to enclose a duplicate of your report, and circle the items in question. Send your letter by certified mail, with a return receipt request so you can licence that the consumer reporting company received it. Keep copies of your debate letter and enclosures.”

What If the Negative Information on My Credit Report is Accurate

Unfortunately, in this case, the only way this facts can be removed is via the passage of time. Use the following time table to calculate how long this facts will remain on your credit report:

– Most accurate negative information: Seven years from the date the drill took place.
– Bankruptcy information: 10 years from the date the bankruptcy took place.
– Unpaid judgments: Seven years or until the statute of limitations runs out, whichever is longer.
– Criminal convictions: no time limit, may never be removed
– Information reported in response to your application for a job that pays more than $75,000 a year also has no time limit.
– Information reported because you’ve applied for more than $150,000 value of credit or life insurance: no time limit.

Where to Turn If You Need Help

Just because you have a failing lend score or a dreadful credit study doesn’t defaming you can’t acquire credit. Every creditor has their own set of standards, and views credit scores and reports uniquely. If your recent bill payment history has been improving, this can earn you some credit worthiness. Some creditors may look only at recent years to appraise you for credit.

If you are looking for help adhering to a allot and making your payments on time, in a consistent fashion, you may yearn to try to work out a repayment plan with your creditors, or you might take into account contacting a credit counseling organization.

All this hard work is ultimately a huge step towards financial freedom, and being able to get a loan to buy a home or Refinance a home you already own.

For more information, visit the FTC’s website.