KNOW THE SCORE!
You hear it everywhere: exotic loans, FICO scores, default risks, rising interest rates. Sounds like a lot of gloom and doom, doesn’t it? While lenders are generating hot and heavy business, the truth that it’s still an excellent time to purchase a home. It’s also time to educate yourself about the economics behind securing a home loan.
The rate you are offered on a mortgage is largely based on your FICO score. What is FICO? It simply stands for Fair Isaac & Company, who developed our modern credit scoring models. The highest possible “score” is 850, and you’ll need a rating of 620 or above to be considered for the best interest rates.
Higher income does not necessarily generate a higher score. Your payment history does have significant impact, however. If you have a higher credit score, you’re probably in a position to accept a “prepayment penalty,” which is imposed when a loan is repaid early. But many borrowers who accept this “penalty” will end up paying a lower interest rate.
Be cautious out there – with so many types of loans available, you’ll find some are a good fit for you and some are downright unwise. Real estate agents and mortgage specialists work together to determine the best avenue for you to follow, leading right up to the front door of your new home!