ABBA First Mortgage News

Part 4 of 4 reasons why you should use a broker instead of a bank for your mortgage.

May 7th, 2019

HousingWire sat down with AIME Chairman Anthony Casa to discuss how brokers provide homebuyers with year-round low rates.

Reason #4
Q. Can real estate agents benefit by partnering with a mortgage broker?

A. There’s no question! In fact, real estate agents and mortgage brokers have a lot in common. They both want the home-buying process to go as quickly and smoothly as possible. Also, they want the new homeowner to be happy with their purchase. That’s how they get referrals! Plus, a mortgage broker can help them get them into a bigger home and outbid other buyers — all while staying within their monthly payment budget. The truth is, homebuyers may forget who funded their loan, but they’ll remember their real estate agent — and a mortgage broker can make them look like the hero. It’s a perfect partnership!

Part 3 of 4 reasons why you should use a broker instead of a bank for your mortgage.

May 6th, 2019

HousingWire sat down with AIME Chairman Anthony Casa to discuss how brokers provide homebuyers with year-round low rates.

Reason #3
Q. The media has been focusing on these decreased rates. Why is it such a big deal if mortgage brokers have been offering these rates to borrowers for some time now?

A. That’s the funny thing about it. The headlines should read, “Big Banks And Retail Lenders Are Getting To The Level Mortgage Brokers Were At Before The Rate Drop.” And broker rates are still between 0.5% and 1% lower than retail. But brokers don’t get national headlines like the big banks do. That’s something we’re looking to change with AIME. We want to shift the conversation and show consumers that mortgage brokers are the best option when it comes to purchasing a home.

Part 2 of 4 reasons why you should use a broker instead of a bank for your mortgage.

May 2nd, 2019

HousingWire sat down with AIME Chairman Anthony Casa to discuss how brokers provide homebuyers with year-round low rates.

Reason #2-
Q. Is there any connection between the recent drop in mortgage interest rates and spring home-buying season?

A. The idea that seasonality impacts mortgage rates is a misconception. The only reason we refer to spring as home-buying season is that more homes go on the market and more people start shopping as the weather gets better. Now, with the recent rate drop, we’re expecting this to be a particularly busy home-buying season — but the truth is, mortgage brokers offer lower rates and increased buying power twelve months out of the year. For us, it’s always home-buying season!

April 29, 2019 Alyssa Stringer

Part 1 of 4 reasons why you should use a broker instead of a bank for your mortgage.

May 1st, 2019

HousingWire sat down with AIME Chairman Anthony Casa to discuss how brokers provide homebuyers with year-round low rates.

Reason #1-
Q. We know that mortgage brokers save borrowers money by offering lower rates. But you’ve said that the real advantage is the increased buying power they deliver. Can you elaborate on that?

A. Of course! You’re correct that mortgage brokers have access to lower wholesale rates — usually between 0.5% and 1% lower than retail — but that’s only part of the story. You see, a lot of borrowers aren’t just looking for lower payments. They already know how much they can afford to pay each month. What they really want is to get as much house as they can within their budget — and a mortgage broker can make their money go farther. Let’s say a homebuyer’s budget for their monthly mortgage payment is $1,564. If they went retail with a 4.75% interest rate, they’d be looking at about a $325,000 loan amount. But with a 3.75% interest rate through a mortgage broker, they could look at homes up to about $338,000. And that could make the difference between getting their dream home or settling for something less.

April 29, 2019 Alyssa Stringer

Homeowners are refinancing to put money into their houses to improve them and keep them longer.

April 17th, 2019

People are staying in their homes longer and making repairs or renovations according to a new survey. The sixth annual LightStream Home Improvement Survey conducted by The Harris Poll found that 73% of owners are planning home improvements in 2019, a rise of 26% from last year. They are also planning to spend more – $9,000 on average – a record high for the survey, while the share planning to spend $25,000 or more rose by 83% year-over-year. “The majority of homeowners are planning on staying in their homes for at least 10 years—or never move,” said Todd Nelson, senior vice president of strategic partnerships at LightStream. “Regardless of their age, we found that most consumers are focusing their home improvement projects to reflect their personal lifestyle, comfort and interests.” But the reason for renovations is less about adding value than it is about creating a perfect space. Personalization is the top motivator for 27% of respondents while just 14% are driven by increasing value. Improving their home ahead of sale was the priority for just 7% while 4% were preparing for a major life event such as having a baby. (Source: Mortgage Professional America)

ABBA First has many different refinance programs to meet the needs of many homeowners. We can give you cash out of your home’s equity to help you make the upgrades that you desire. Just give us a call and let’s talk about what you may want to do with your home and take advantage of the low rates that we provide at the same time. Call 910-332-0650.

Rates increased again slightly last week

April 16th, 2019

Rates moved up a bit last week but remained near their yearly lows. For the week ending April 11, Freddie Mac announced that 30-year fixed rates rose to 4.12% from 4.08% the previous week. The average for 15-year loans increased to 3.60% and the average for five-year moved up to 3.80%. A year ago, 30-year fixed rates averaged 4.42%, approximately one third of a percent higher than today. Attributed to Sam Khater, Chief Economist, Freddie Mac –“Rates moved up slightly this week while applications for home loans decreased following last week’s jump in rates – indicating borrower sensitivity to changing rates. Despite the recent rise, we expect rates to remain low, in line with the low 10-year treasury yields, boosting homebuyer demand in the next few months.

” Note: Rates indicated do not include fees and points and are provided for evidence of trends only. They should not be used for comparison purposes.

Happy Tax Day-(it’s also my sister Lois’ birthday! Happy birthday Lois. This is my gift to you.)

April 15th, 2019

Just a reminder from your friends here at ABBA First Mortgage that today is the last day for you to file your taxes. Unless of course you applied for an extension.

After weeks of rate reductions, we see a slight increase in this past weeks rates

March 29th, 2019

With mortgage rates rising last week, LendingTree’s Mortgage Rate Competition Index revealed that the average borrower could have saved $38,123, while a refinance borrower could have saved $43,712.

The report showed that, for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages, 26% of purchase borrowers got offers under 5%, up from 13% last week. This is an increase from last year’s rate, when 0.3% of purchase offers were 4.375% – its most common interest rate. If these rates seem high compared to what ABBA First offers- THEY ARE! Our average 30 year rate is 3.875% to 4.0% for a 30 year rate purchase mortgage for borrowers with good to excellent credit. Please check our rates page or call one of our loan officers for the best rates advertised at 910-332-0650.

Across all 30-year fixed-rate mortgage purchase applications on LendingTree’s website, the index climbed to 0.81, up 3 basis points from the week prior. Ultimately, this showed that the average borrower could have saved $38,123 on a $3000,000 loan over 30 years.

On the other hand, 31.3% of 30-year fixed-rate mortgage refinance borrowers received offers under 4.25%, rising from 12.1% one week before. This is higher than last year’s rate when 1% of refinance offers were under 4.25%.

And with a wider refinance market index of 0.93, the typical refinance borrowers could have looked for the lowest rate and cut back $43,712.

According to the report, the most common interest rate was 4.25% across all 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage refinance applications. Again, all that ABBA First can do is ask you to compare our rates with the competition and see for your self how much lower our rates are!

A bird in hand is worth two in the bush!

March 27th, 2019

Rates are the lowest in 13 months. People “think” that this will continue and rates will fall some more. But if the economy begins to pick up this spring, rates will rise once again and we may have seen the last of the low rates this time around.

The end of March not only brings us springtime, it also represents the closing of the first quarter of the year. And it has been a very interesting quarter. For example, stocks have quieted down a bit from a very volatile fourth quarter. Meanwhile, the jobs situation has turned very volatile, with big gains one month and then a dismal showing the following month.

Should we be worried about the small gain in jobs last month? Based upon the large gain in January, there does not seem to be any immediate cause for concern. However, the March jobs report is right around the corner and if we don’t get a major upward revision in February’s numbers and the March report is weak, then we might see speculation regarding our economy slowing down.

One benefit of a perceived slower economy continues to be lower interest rates. At the end of last year, most analysts were predicting rising rates throughout the year. Instead, rates have fallen during the past few months and the meeting of the Federal Reserve Board last week did nothing to change that outlook. A word of caution. If we do have a rebound in job growth, this could be accompanied by a reversal of the rate trend we have been experiencing. If customers are considering borrowing for a purchase, it is always better to go with the bird in hand, instead of chasing the two in the bush.

Lowering the interest rate bar again for mortgages

March 25th, 2019

Mortgage rates fell quickly after the Fed’s announcement Wednesday that it would be getting back into the bond-buying business, big time – which could take rates even lower.

The average rate on the popular 30-year fixed, which had been sitting for days at 4.40 percent, fell sharply to 4.34 percent, according to Mortgage News Daily. Although that is the lowest in over a year and 19 basis points lower than a year ago nationally, ABBA First leads the charge and offers a 30 year mortgage rate which is BELOW 3.875% for 30 year mortgages. While the rate had surged to over 5 percent at the start of November, which caused home sales to fall sharply in December and January, ABBA First has kept its rates lower than the rest of the country all this time offering its clients the lowest advertised rates daily.

The move in mortgage rates followed Fed Chairman Jerome Powell’s announcement that the central bank would end the so-called runoff of bonds from its balance sheet sooner than most expected. That caused the yield on the 10-year Treasury to tumble. Mortgage rates loosely follow that yield.

“This is about as big of a change as anyone expected. It means the Fed will be buying more bonds more quickly,” wrote Matthew Graham, chief operating officer of Mortgage News Daily. “And bond buying results in lower rates, all other things being equal.”

Even small rate moves can have a big impact on homebuying, especially since so many buyers today are facing overheated home prices and are therefore on the edge of being able to afford a home at all. Looking at the 30-year fixed rate on a $300,000 mortgage, every 25 basis point move down means a savings of $50 on a monthly payment. With the rate now down about 75 basis points from November, that’s a savings of $150 per month.

The drop in rates helps both potential buyers and current homeowners who might be able to benefit from a refinance — but it all comes with a caveat. The Fed isn’t raising rates because the economy is weakening.

“While a plus for homebuyers, if concerns about the economic outlook rattle consumer and homebuyer confidence, it could offset the benefit of lower mortgage rates,” noted Danielle Hale, chief economist at