Mortgage and real estate news this week

As the mercury drops across much of the country, mortgage rates continue to rise, albeit slowly. Fortunately, they are still low enough to be favorable to most borrowers. Here is the latest news on what is happening in the industry.

1. Why you should probably get a mortgage rate foreclosure

The Federal Reserve’s Open Market committee is due to meet on Tuesday and Wednesday, and the most likely outcome is that mortgage rate hikes will accelerate. This means the window may close to take advantage of the current low rates, and if you’re looking to refinance your loan or take out a new one, you would likely benefit from securing something in line with the market before the meeting.

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2. The rise of home office valuations

One of the bottlenecks in the pandemic real estate boom has been the lack of qualified real estate appraisers to approve property values. This bottleneck should be eased somewhat as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac roll out policies that will allow appraisals to be conducted without the traditional in-person property visit. Here’s how it would work and how it might help.

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3. Mortgage rates continue to rise

The latest Bankrate survey shows mortgage rates have risen throughout October and the trend is expected to accelerate in the coming weeks. For now, however, the refi train is still stationed for millions of owners.

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4. Prepare for the end of your HELOC

If you have a home equity line of credit, it is important to understand that after the initial withdrawal period during which you can withdraw money from your equity, you enter the repayment phase, during which you are responsible for paying off your balance. When that time comes, you have options on how to proceed. Here is a guide to some of the more common action plans.

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5. Get rid of PMI

Even homeowners who have no plans to move can benefit from soaring house prices through the associated increase in their equity. If you made a small down payment when you first bought your home, you may be paying private mortgage insurance (PMI) on top of your regular loan fees. If the value of your home has increased enough that you now owe 80% or less of your total home value, you may be able to stop paying these additional fees.

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