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STOP! You must read!

by Nate Martinez

Buying a home?

 

 

Our FHA adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) provides many advantages. 

Interest rates are historically low and there are plenty of homes to choose from. A government-insured FHA 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM)1 may provide additional benefits.

Benefits within an ARM’s reach:

• The initial interest rate (start rate) is very attractive and principal-and interest payments are fixed for the first five years after which the payment may increase.

• There are built-in limits on the amount the interest rate can change at each rate adjustment.  The interest rate can go up or down a maximum of 1% at the initial and subsequent rate adjustments and a maximum of 5% above or below the note rate over the life of the loan.

• High loan amounts up to $729,750 are available in certain metropolitan areas with high housing costs 2 (Interest rate is illustrative. Rates change daily. Contact us for current rates).

 

FHA 5/1 ARM:

$193,000 Base Loan Amount with 3.5% Down Payment:

Months 1 - 60: Interest Rate: 2.750% / APR: 3.163% / Monthly Payment: Between $960.11 – $952.69 1

Months 61 - 72: Interest Rate: 2.375% / APR: 3.163% / Monthly Payment: $859.55 1

Months 73 - 103: Interest Rate: 2.125% / APR: 3.299% / Monthly Payment: Between $836.37 - $831.99 1

Months 104 - 360: Interest Rate: 2.125% / APR: 3.299% / Monthly Payment: $760.22

 

$197,342.50 Total loan amount (with 2.25% financed FHA Mortgage Insurance Premium):

FHA 30-year fixed-rate:

Months 1 - 122:

Interest Rate: 4.875% / APR: 5.559% / Monthly Payment: Between $1,132.21 - $1,115.051

Months 123 - 360: Interest Rate: 4.875% / APR: 5.559% Monthly Payment: $1,044.36 

 

Call me Today to get started on your loan application - with these rates NO one should be waiting to buy!

 

Interest rate and monthly payment amounts on ARM loans may increase after consummation. The payment amounts provided do not Interest rate and monthly payment amoutns on ARM loans may increase after consummation. The payment amounts provided do not include homeowner’s insurance or property taxes which must be paid in addition to your loan payment. Your actual payments may be higher. Closing costs are assumed to be paid by the borrower at closing. If the closing costs are financed, the loan and payment amounts will be higher. Your loan’s interest rate will depend upon the specific characteristics of the loan transaction and your credit profile up to the time of closing.

1. Interest rates may increase after consummation.

2. Increased FHA and conforming loan amounts are only available on loans closed and funded on or before December 31, 2010.

 

Halloween Safety

by Nate Martinez

Safety is an important thing, no matter what holiday we are celebrating, however, Halloween can add a few tricks which we all need to watch out for. You don't want to spoil the fun with an unnecessary trip to the ER! Here are a few simple rules to keep in mind:

1.) If you or your child is wearing a costume that is dark in color, make sure you are equipped with flash lights, glow sticks or something that is reflective so you are visible to on-coming traffic. The CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention) reports that the amount of deaths among pedestrians ages 5 to 14 is four times higher on Halloween than any other day of the year. That's why Halloween safety is not only for trick-or-treaters, but for drivers as well. Be on the look-out for dark movement, and take it slow especially in the neighborhoods where kids will be out.

2.) If you or your child is wearing a mask, make sure the mask do not restrict their peripheral eye sight. When crossing the street, make sure you remove the mask so you can see clearly everything that is around you. You also want to consider costumes that are fire proof or fire retardant. Costumes that are overly large, ackward or too big in size could be a trip hazard. Make sure the costume fights appropriately.

3.) Have a plan and a curfew. Map out a route for your kids so you know where they will be at all times. Set a specific time for their safe return. If your child has a cell phone, make sure they take it with them while trick or treating. There is always safety in numbers so make sure you and your child stick with the group. If they are not trick or treating with a group of friends, you or a responsible adult should always accompany your child.

4.) Examine all the goodies before you eat! It is important to check for proper seals and wrapping before dispursing candy and treats to your children. If something has a broken seal, you should throw it away immediately. You should only take home-made foods from people you know and trust.

5.) Never go into the home of a stranger or get into their car. Teach your children about "stranger danger" and how to handle a situation if a stranger should approach them. Cutting across back alleys and through dark parking lots is asking for trouble. Make sure you stay in well-light, populated areas.

6.) As bad as it sounds, it is a fact of life these days and knowledge will lead to prevention. Sex offenders and ciminals live in all areas of the Valley. You can research your community online to learn more about who is living nearby. http://www.azdps.gov/Services/Sex_Offender/ or www.glendaleaz.com/police/sexoffenderinfocenter.cfm.

7.) Kids will be kids but it is imperative that we teach kids of all ages the difference between tricks and vandalism. Throwing eggs at a house may seem funny but they need to know the other side of the coin as well, that clean up and damages can ruin Halloween for everyone. If they are caught vandalizing, make them clean up the mess they've made.

8.) Some sick people find Halloween a great night to hurt cats. Explain to your kids that animal cruelty of any kind is not acceptable. Kids may already know this on their own but stress the point that it's not acceptable behavior. Make sure that they know that harming animals is not only morally wrong  but punishable by law and will not be tolerated.

9.) Pet safety is just as important to remember too! No matter how much your dog or cat may beg for some of your Halloween candy, always remember that chocolate is deadly to them in any amount. There's a chemical that naturally occurs in chocolate that they can not tolerate. Also, if you plan to dress up your pet, it is best not to use a mask. However, if you must use a mask on your pet, make sure that it's eyes have plenty of room to see and that there is nothing covering it's nose or confining it's mouth.

10.) Although, there is not really a set age limit for Halloween participants, it is important to teach older children how to trick or treat without scaring people into believing their maybe a robber or someone there to cause them harm.

If you have older children who will be trick or treating this year, make sure they wear a costume that is easy to identify as a "costume" and not a prowler!

Wondering what to do for Halloween this year?

by Nate Martinez

Check out these great Halloween and Fall events surrounding the Phoenix metro area!

Pumpkin Days and Fall Maze

Find the perfect pumpkin for your family in the pumpkin patch, or get lost in the six-acre family corn maze. October 1, 2010 - November 21, 2010. Tolmachoff Farms 5726 N. 75th Ave, Glendale, AZ 85303 - 623-386-1301.

Boo! at the Zoo

Harmony Farm is transformed into a fall festival, complete with games and activities. October 23, 2010 - October 24, 2010 Phoenix Zoo 455 N. Galvin Parkway , Phoenix, AZ 85008 - 602-273-1341.

Cave Creek Wicked

This second annual event offers Halloween fun for all ages, including pumpkin carving, mazes, trick or treating, costume parades. October 30, 2010 Downtown Cave Creek Cave Creek and Schoolhouse roads , Cave Creek, AZ 85331 - 602-400-3330

Howl-Ween Doggie Costume Party and Contest

Spooky canines are the main event at this Halloween party, which invites visitors to dress their dogs in funny or scary costumes. Prizes are given for the best doggie custume. October 28, 2010 W Scottsdale Hotel and Residences 7277 E. Camelback Road , Scottsdale, AZ 85251 - 480-970-2100.

Halloween Spooktacular

Take the kids in their costumes to the courtyard at the library for some safe trick-or-treating. A haunted house and costume contest are featured. October 29, 2010 Chandler Library Plaza 125 E. Commonwealth Ave. , Chandler, AZ 85225 - 480-782-2727.

Field of Screams

This free, family-friendly Halloween event features a hay maze, a pumpkin patch and carnival rides along with costume contest begining at 6, 7 and 8pm. October 30, 2010 Goodyear Ballpark and Recreational Complex 1933 S. Ballpark Way , Goodyear, AZ 85338 - 623-882-3120.

"Fall Fright Fest"

This free Halloween event features games, food booths, raffles, face painting, trick or treating. October 30, 2010 Mountain View Community Center 1104 E. Grovers Ave. , Phoenix, AZ 85022 - 602-534-2500.

Halloween Fun Party

Children ages 3 to 6 can dress in costume, make Halloween crafts, sing songs and play games. October 26, 2010 Rio Vista Community Park and Recreation Center 8866 W. Thunderbird Road , Peoria, AZ 85381 - 623-773-7137.

Halloween Carnival

Families can enjoy themed carnival games, contests, candy, a petting zoo and bingo at this festival. October 29, 2010 Earl Edgar Recreational Complex 201 E. Centre Ave. , Buckeye, AZ 85326 - 623-349-6621.

Haunted Halloween Party & Candy Hunt

Kids 2-12 can dress in their costumes to visit this childcare center for holiday activities, including a haunted candy hunt and bobbing for apples. October 30, 2010 KidsPark 4848 E. Cactus Road, Suite 220 , Scottsdale, AZ 85254 - 602-788-2445.

 

Phoenix Now Offering $15,000 To Eligible HomeBuyers!

by Nate Martinez
The federally funded Neighborhood Stabilization Program (NSP) enables eligible applicants to realize their dreams of homeownership in the city of Phoenix by providing monetary incentives to assist with down payment, closing costs and home improvements. Please call or email if you or someone you know is interesting in learn more or qualifying TODAY for one of the following NSP programs NOW available!
  
Currently there are THREE programs available:
1.) Homeownership Assistance to purchase a foreclosure home within the city of Phoenix limits.
 
2.) Home Improvement Program to purchase a foreclosure home needing repair in certain designated Phoenix area zip codes.
 
3.) Move-In Ready Program (MIR) provides $15,000 in assistance to eligible homebuyers, to purchase homes in established neighborhoods in Phoenix that have been newly renovated by program.
 
Each of the NSP programs provides the following:

  • a three-year home warranty policy
  • friendly guidance throughout the process
  • assurance that the buyer is ready for successful homeownership

Eligible Home Buyers Must Meet This Criteria:

 

  • Do not currently own any real estate
  • Will occupy the home as your primary residence
  • Earn within the program’s income requirements, which are less restricted than you may think.  For example, a household of four can make $79,100 and still qualify for the program.

Bank of America News Alert!

by Nate Martinez

Bank of America announced on Friday a temporary freeze on home foreclosures unless the foreclosure has been approved by a judge or court proceeding. This decisions comes after bank officials testified that they had signed thousands of documents a month often without reviewing the information. The banks are now taking a time out to verify the documentation is accurate before moving to the final stages of foreclosure. It is likely that hundreds of thousands of foreclosures are now in limbo. And the number will continue to grow if other lending companies follow in Bank of America's footsteps. Politicians and state Attorneys General are calling on financial institutions to widen the review. There are currently 5 million loans that are seriously delinquent or are in the initial stages of foreclosure.

If freezes spread to other home lenders, or if other lenders follow Bank of America and expand their moratoriums, it could greatly increase the impact on the market. If this freeze continues, it could cause mortgage companies to move towards more short sale transactions, which will have a more substantial impact on market prices. "It might stimulate a little more short sale activity, as lenders and servicers look for ways to more efficiently move the property outside the foreclosure," said RealtyTrac Senior VP, Rick Sharga. "Typically your discount on short sales is only 15%, compared to 35% for a [foreclosure sale]." There is a level of uncertainty about the halt in foreclosures as it could potentially cause further damaged to the already depressed housing market. A prolonged delay in foreclosures could also hurt long-term prices by driving investors who had been returning to the real estate market to invest elsewhere. The delays will also lead to longer vacancy of homes in neighborhoods.

The moratoriums could last until January 2011 since it will take a few weeks for loan servicers to review the paperwork and institutions often freeze foreclosures during the holdiay season anyway. The good news is the banks will be forced to review their foreclosure processes to ensure the proper handling of borrower's accounts. And it is a bit of good news for those homeowners who are trying to negotiate short sales. We could also expect that this decision could cause an increase in the amount of approved loan modifications.

If you know someone who is facing a forclosure or who needs assistance with a loan modification, please contact our office. There are options available to help.

 

Today's Interest Rates

by Nate Martinez

During the 2003-2005 boom, we thought we had seen the lowest interest rates possible - well today, the rates are even better! If you are thinking of buying a home, now is the time to do it. Who knows how long the interest rates will stay this competitive.

FHA/VA loans: based on a  $75,000 purchase price you would need 3.5% down ($2625.00 down payment). As long as your FICO score is 620 or better, and you are purchasing the home as an owner/occupant, you could see an interest rate as low as:

15 year fixed: 4.000%

30 year fixed: 4.250%

5/1 ARM: 3.125%

Conventional - Investor or Non-Owner Occupied Loans: based on a $75,000 purchase price you would need 25% down ($18,750 down payment). As long as your FICO score is 740 or better, and you are purchasing a single family home as an investment (non-owner occupied) you could see an interest rate as low as:

15 year fixed: 4.125%

30 year fixed: 4.625%

5/1 ARM: 3.750%

*information based on today's rates and subject to change and final qualification of subject borrower*

 

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Nate Martinez
RE/MAX Professionals
20241 North 67th Avenue, Suite A1
Glendale AZ 85308
623-643-1010
602-430-5226
Fax: 602-532-7352

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