Faq’s - Interstate Home Loan Center, Inc.

Frequently Asked Questions

Our knowledgeable staff is ready to answer any and all questions from both new and existing customers.

What is the difference between a Mortgage Banker and a Mortgage Broker?2022-06-23T13:03:44+00:00

The main difference between a mortgage banker and a mortgage broker is that the mortgage banker has full control of your loan.  The mortgage banker processes your loan, underwrites your loan, and then funds your loan.  The mortgage broker is a middleman between your loan and a bank.  You will get faster service and stay informed using a mortgage banker.  Contact us today and learn about how Interstate Home Loan Center can help you today!

Can I refinance a loan more than once?2022-06-23T13:04:06+00:00

The short answer is yes. You can lower your rate, change the term or use the refinance process to borrow money for almost any reason you choose. Some lenders may even waive certain fees if you have used them in the past!

Is it difficult to get Mortgage Pre-Approval letter?2022-06-23T13:03:22+00:00

No, it shouldn’t take long at all once you have all the necessary paperwork. The information needed for Mortgage Pre-Approval can be put together quickly and having a better idea of what you can afford will help you to narrow down your search for a home. It will also help you decide what type of a loan best fits with both your budget and financial goals! Contact Interstate Home Loan Center today to find out more information.

Does it take a long time to get a Mortgage Pre-Approval for a first-time home buyer?2022-06-23T13:03:15+00:00

No, it shouldn’t take long at all once you have all the necessary paperwork. The information needed for Mortgage Pre-Approval can be put together quickly and having a better idea of what you can afford will help you to narrow down your search for a home. It will also help you decide what type of a loan best fits with both your budget and financial goals! Contact Interstate Home Loan Center today to find out more information.

I can’t decide if I should buy or continue renting?2022-06-23T13:03:08+00:00

There are pros and cons to renting, but the biggest reason people consider buying their first home is that they don’t want to continue paying their landlord’s mortgage. Historically, real estate is the best investment you can make.  Not sure what you can afford or how much money you need for a down payment and closing costs? Call us today. The many benefits of home ownership await you.

Equity– It’s impossible to create equity while renting.

Tax Deductible- Rental payments are not tax deductible. As a homeowner, interest paid on your mortgage payment, along with taxes and MI (in some cases) may be tax deductible. *

Same Payment Year After Year- It’s inevitable that your rent will increase when your lease is renewed. With a fixed-rate mortgage from Interstate, your principle & Interest payments will never increase. No Surprises!

Deep Sense of Pride- Apartments will forever be a temporary place to call home. Home ownership provides a true sense of accomplishment and pride.

Numerous Tax Benefits- In addition to interest tax deductions, many may also be eligible to deduct points they paid at closing. There may be additional deductions available and/or special tax credits for home improvements and numerous other incentives only available to homeowners.

*Please consult your local tax professional or CPA

How much do I need for a down payment?2022-06-23T13:02:04+00:00

Question number one when buying a home is usually “How much money are we going to need?” The necessary down payment is dependent upon the type of loan you receive (which can vary from 0%, as with VA Loans, to 25% or more as with non-QM loans). As an average, most homebuyers make down payments in the 3.5%-20% range, although your own personal situation may dictate more or less than that.  A down payment is only part of the cost involved with buying a house. Don’t forget to take closing costs into account as well.  We can help with any questions you have about the entire process.

What options are there for buyers with no money down and no cash for closing costs?2022-06-23T13:01:43+00:00

Although most programs require assets for down payment and closing costs, there are a few that don’t or may have minimal down payment requirements. Eligible Veterans can do a VA loan with no down payment. FHA only requires 3.5%. If you’re a first-time home buyer, you may qualify for State sponsored down payment and/or closing cost assistance, which may require as little as $500 in borrower contribution, based on program qualification.

What are front (housing) and back (debt to income) ratios?2022-06-23T13:01:49+00:00

Part of the mortgage application process will be the determination of how much house you can afford based on your income. The two ratios that will be computed are the front ratio and the back ratio. Front Ratio: The total mortgage payment including principal, interest, taxes, and insurance (PITI) as well as any condominium or homeowner association fees divided by your total GROSS income. Example: With a gross income of $3,700 per month and a PITI of $973, the front ratio would be 26%. Back Ratio: The total mortgage payment PLUS any car payments, credit card, and other loan payments, divided by your total GROSS income. Example: With a gross income of $3,700 per month, a total mortgage payment of $973, a car payment of $212, one credit card payment of $59, and one credit card payment of $43, for a total of $1,287, the back ratio would be 35%. The loan program in addition to compensating factors will dictate the maximum allowances for both the Front and Back Ratio in accordance to underwriting industry standards, so contact your Interstate Loan Officer to find out exactly how much you can qualify for TODAY.

Why are there so many different rates and how should I choose one?2022-06-23T13:01:55+00:00

Different loan programs and products have different rates, it is only natural to feel confused. Let your Loan Officer at Interstate Home Loan Center show you all the different products which will help you make an informed decision. For example, you shouldn’t necessarily take a rate just because it’s low.  In fact, a lower rate on the wrong loan can cost you thousands of dollars. That’s why we discuss your financial goals with you and help you access the best rate on the right loan to help you achieve financial freedom.

What is the difference between and Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM) and a Fixed Rate Mortgage (FRM)?2022-06-23T13:00:18+00:00

ARM– A mortgage in which the rate changes during the life of the loan based on movements in an index rate, such as the rate for Treasury securities or the Cost of Funds Index. Arms usually offer a lower initial interest rate than fixed-rate loans. The interest rate fluctuates over the life of the loan based on market conditions, but the loan agreement generally sets the maximum and minim rates. When interest rates increase,generally, your loan payments increase.  For more information on Adjustable Rate Mortgages, download the Consumer Handbook on adjustable-rate mortgages from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

FRM– A fixed rate mortgage carries the same rate for the term of the mortgage. The interest rate and term are fixed at the start of the mortgage. The monthly amount for the payment of principal and interest will not change during the term of the mortgage, regardless of market conditions.

What is an Escrow Account?2022-06-23T13:00:29+00:00

Lenders put a portion of your monthly mortgage payment into an escrow account – a holding bin of funds to cover your homeowner’s insurance, flood insurance if applicable, and your property taxes. When these payments are due, the lender pays them from the escrow account on your behalf. Escrow accounts are required on conventional loans when the loan to value is greater than 80% per investor guidelines.

What does Mortgage Insurance (MI) mean?2022-06-23T13:00:12+00:00

Mortgage insurance is usually required on a conventional loan any time that the down payment is less than 20% of the sales price (or the appraised value if the appraisal is lower than the sales price) of the property. Premiums vary based on the amount of down payment and credit scores. Higher coverage is required with a lower down payment to address the greater risk. This insurance protects the lender should you default on the loan and it’s required by the investor. On an FHA loan, it’s automatically required upfront and monthly.

What is the best way to get a mortgage?2022-06-23T12:59:19+00:00

It is a good idea to do some research on mortgage programs and rates. You can do most of your research on-line or by phone. Organize the necessary financial paperwork and contact the team at Interstate Home Loan Center. We can help you navigate the process of getting a mortgage on Long Island. When making mortgage comparisons, you must be sure you are comparing mortgages of similar terms, i.e., a 30 year vs. a 15 year, do the mortgages you are comparing have prepayment penalties and do they have similar rate lock durations? There is a lot of difficult jargon when it comes to getting a mortgage. Let our experts help you select the best option for you and your financial goals.

Does refinancing a loan cost money?2022-06-23T12:56:55+00:00

While there are several benefits to refinancing like saving money on payments and shortening the term of your loan, refinancing does come with a cost. The process typically costs 2-6% of your loan amount. There are additional fees that can vary from lender to lender. Contact us today and let us help you decide if refinancing a loan on Long Island makes financial sense for you!

What documents am I going to need?2022-06-23T12:59:39+00:00

Required documentation varies by loan type but generally you will need the following documents for your pre-approval:

-Copy of last 2 years W-2 or 1099

-Copy of last 2 years Tax Returns

-Recent Paystubs

-Bank Statements

-Copy of Driver’s License/ Government issued Photo ID and Social Security Card

What are points and should I pay them?2022-06-23T13:00:05+00:00

Points and discount points are the same thing. They are percentage points of a loan amount. They are an elective fee that you may choose to pay at the time of closing. They reduce the interest rate that you pay. Sometimes it’s worth paying points to get a lower interest rate and to make sure that you’re comfortable with your monthly payment. If you have the additional cash, are payment sensitive, and/or will be living in the home longer term, then paying points may make sense. Your Interstate Loan Officer will help you look at the options.

If I have a bad credit score, can I still get a mortgage?2022-07-11T11:09:23+00:00

The truth is that it depends on how low your credit score is. If you think your credit score may cause an issue in obtaining a loan, please reach out to our office. The team at Interstate Home Loan Center has experience is working with individuals with lower credit scores and helping them get a loan to purchase a home. We have many Non-QM loan products that can help your dream of home ownership come through. Call us today and let our experts help you!

How do I know if it makes sense for me to refinance a loan?2022-06-23T12:58:17+00:00

First assess your financial mortgage related goals: i.e., are you looking to improve your monthly cash flow, lower your monthly payments, reduce your mortgage term, do you need to take out cash utilizing the equity from your home? Obtaining the right mortgage for your needs could make sense even when rates are not at their lowest levels. Contact the team at Interstate Home Loan Center to learn more about how we can help you!

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