Categories for Questions

Understanding Mortgage Rates: How the Federal Funds Rate Affects Mortgage Rates

December 5, 2016 by Leave a comment

Eight times every year, the Federal Reserve’s Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meets to discuss and possibly alter their position on monetary policy. There are several different courses of action they could take, the most common being quantitative easing, buying and selling government securities, and raising or lowering the federal funds rate. Most recently, the... View Article

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Over a 30-year period, is it generally cheaper to rent or to buy a house in expensive places like San Francisco or New York City?

October 9, 2014 by Leave a comment

Yes, housing prices can be astronomical in cities such as San Francisco. But monthly rents are also extremely high in these cities, especially in their more desirable neighborhoods. Here’s some good perspective: A recent study by Trulia of the country’s largest 100 metropolitan areas found that buying a home in these urban areas is 38... View Article

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After I buy a home and rent it out, how long do I have to wait to take out a home equity line of credit on that property? I’d like to do this quickly so I can use my line of credit to buy another home.

September 26, 2014 by Leave a comment

The good news is that you can take out a home equity line of credit, better known as a HELOC, on a rental property. Most lenders will give you a HELOC – if your credit is good – on rental properties that have up to four units. And lenders don’t care what you’ll use your... View Article

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What is a mortgage-backed security?

September 19, 2014 by Leave a comment

If you took out a mortgage loan to pay for your home, the odds are high that your mortgage is backing up a publicly traded security. This sounds complicated. But mortgage-backed securities are actually a common and important investment type today. Here’s how the process usually works: First, a homeowner takes out a mortgage from... View Article

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Is it worth it to make double payments on my 30-year fixed-rate mortgage with an interest rate of 4.75 percent?

September 15, 2014 by Leave a comment

It’s tempting, if you can afford it, to make two mortgage payments a month. This will help you slash the time it takes to pay off your mortgage loan. And over time, it can save you a significant amount in interest payments. And let’s be honest: It’s nice not to have make those mortgage payments... View Article

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