Tag Archives: Idaho

Some local Idaho resources that other states don’t have.

In Idaho, we are blessed to have Idaho Housing and Finance Association, a local non profit agency.  IHFA has a far reaching mission to promote home ownership and affordable housing in Idaho.

I have used IHFA on numerous occasions to get the best possible loan and interest rates for my Idaho mortgage clients.  there are times when an IHFA loan is not the best loan for my client, but I always check early in the process.  IHFA also services their loans afterwards.  That means my Idaho mortgage clients will get a statement from IHFA and make their monthly mortgage payment to IHFA.  They have a local office in Boise, Idaho where one can even make a payment in person.

In addition, they offer home buyer education, down payment assistance, and housing counseling for those facing financial difficulties after they buy a home.

If you are a first time home buyer or a repeat buyer, you might be well served by using an Idaho Housing and Finance Association mortgage loan program.

to learn more about IHFA mortgages, call me at 208-861-7579.

Not everyone thinks its sunshine and unicorns in the Real Estate Market…..


In the Boise, Idaho real estate market, we have had a very good 2012 sales season.  Median prices have recovered about 25% from their lows.  This puts many homeowners back into an equity position, although there are many homeowners who are still “underwater” on their home values.

The analyst, Keith Jurow, says there is a large shadow inventory of bank owned homes that will hit the market.  Now, that doesn’t mean much in my market, Boise, Idaho nor may it mean anything in your individual marketplace.  Yes, there are bank owned homes in my market, in fact, I’ve been watching a couple of homes in my neighborhood go into their second winter without being listed for sale.  Eventually they do get on the market.  By controlling how much and how fast inventory is added, the banks can mitigate their loss.

For prospective homeowners in the Boise, Idaho real estate market, I would say don’t wait and try to time the bottom.  Interest rates are at historic lows and by all logic, will be higher in the future.  You might find that the home you are waiting on sold within days of being listed.  Furthermore, even a 1.0% increase in the historically low interest rates will equal a $112 higher payment per month on a $200,000 loan.  It wouldn’t take much to make interest rates jump from the low 3’s into the 4’s.

Anyway, I guess I will keep my sunny outlook for our market and try not to get hit by falling real estate unicorns.





Why is my loan taking so long to close?

Many people are experiencing longer times from application to closing on their home loans.  Here in Boise, Idaho, it is no different.  This is due to the rapid decrease in interest rates and revisions to existing loan programs that have made refinancing possible for many homeowners who have been prevented from refinancing the last 4 years or so.

The recession caused Banks, Title Companies, Mortgage Brokers and other related companies to lay off most of their people.  The staffing at the beginning of 2012 was probably 25-30% of the 2007 peak.  At Fairway Independent Mortgage Corporation in Meridian Idaho, we started the year with 2 loan processors.  When we had to replace one of them, we decided to hire 3 due to the massive amount of home loans we have in process.  We found that there are not that many current mortgage staff in the labor pool.  Instead, we found there are a lot of former mortgage loan processors, mortgage underwriters, and mortgage loan officers who have been working in other fields since the industry shed 75% of its people.

We were lucky to find 3 great, energetic people with the right attitude who we have been training since June.  There were some growing pains, but it has been worth it.  At our corporate office, we have been hiring additional people in the underwriting and other functions and as a result, our turn around times for loan underwriting is only 3 days on refinance loans and 2 days on purchase loans.  Many times I turn in a loan file and it gets worked on before the expected time frame.

Now many of the big, dinosaur banks have been reluctant to hire more, and I certainly understand their concern that the rates will rise and 80% of the business, refinance loans, will go away.  The result is that those big banks and the mortgage brokers who rely on their underwriting staff are experiencing extremely long turn around times.  Many banks have decided not to take too many of the Home Affordable Refinance Programs 2.0 loans so that they don’t over load their capacity to process the loans.  

Fairway Indpendent Mortgage Corportation decided many years ago that they would put their purchase loan business on a seperate, higher priority track for processing and funding.  Refinances go second and most months we won’t fund refinance loans on the last couple of days of the month so that we can finish up purchase loans that have a firm deadlines to meet.  By doing this, we can assure that our Home Buyers, Sellers, and Realtors can meet their obligations and have a “10” experience.

That doesn’t mean our refinace customers will experince long delays.  I have been getting most refinance loans finished in 3-4 weeks.  My FHA streamline refinance customers and VA Interest Rate Reductions customers have regulary been finished in 3 weeks because the loan program requires no appraisal.  That shaves a week off the typical processing time.

Here is the article that made me think about what people are experiencing in Boise, Idaho and the rest of the country when they apply for a loan.  Now, if you do not want to delay, you can always call me, your Idaho Mortgage Guy.



Summer home sales means more competition

Right now, our local market is one of the top 5 real estate markets in the country for home price appreciation.

What that means is that prices are way higher than last year’s.  I am not seeing any appraisal value problems this year, while last year I was constantly worried that my client’s home would not appraise for enough.

Home buyers in the Boise, Idaho market need to be ready to make an offer and close quickly if they find a home that meets their needs.  Ask any realtor in the Boise, Idaho market if there is a “bidding war” going on right now, and they’ll probably tell you about how they have had to deal with multiple, competitive offers, buyers paying over the asking price, and how many homes they had to make offers on just to finally get one.

I would offer the following advice to prospective home buyers:  don’t fall in love with one home, you will probably have to make offers on several homes to finally get one. 

You will want to be prepared in advance, so  call me to get pre approved at 208-861-7579.

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