Tulsa Mortgages


Tulsa County Tax Sale

Tulsa County Tax Sale

Tips for Buying at the Tulsa County Tax Sale

The biggest Tulsa, OK, real estate event of 2013 could very well be the Tulsa County Tax Sale the second Monday of June.  The June resale auction is pursuant to Oklahoma Statute Title 68, Section 3135 and is referred to as The Commissioner’s sale. This year there are currently 1264 properties scheduled to go up for auction in the Tulsa County Tax Commissioner’s Sale.

This represents exciting opportunity, but there can be some pitfalls if diligent research is not completed. Properties in some instances have valid Federal, State or City liens which would have to be settled separately from the purchase auction.

Here are a few tips:

  1. Register – Tulsa County Treasurer’s Office at the Courthouse (500 S. Denver, 3rd Floor)
  2. Have your money ready
  3. Learn the guidelines for purchasing county properties
  4. Get a list from the Tulsa County Treasurer’s office.  There is a list on their website, but it is insufficient and out of date
  5. Go see the property
  6. Carefully review the Tulsa County bid form
  7. Contact the Delinquent Tax Department at 918-596-5070 with questions, or check here for answers

Tulsa County Tax Sale by Zip Code

  • 74106 – 238 properties to be sold
  • 74126 – 186 properties to be sold
  • 74110 – 155 properties to be sold
  • 74115 – 101 properties to be sold
  • 74115 – 101 properties to be sold
  • 74063 – 66 properties to be sold
  • 74127 – 49 properties to be sold
  • 74112 – 46 properties to be sold
  • 74107 – 41 properties to be sold

Tulsa County Tax Sale by Building Type

  • 743 Residential Houses
  • 58 Commercial Properties
  • 34 Residential Duplexes
  • 23 Residential Condos
  • 5 Mobile Homes
  • 3 Out Buildings
  • 3 Multi-Unit Properties

Tulsa County Tax Sale Opportunities – Highest Values

  • 8321 E. 61st Street – $8,881,600
  • 7625 E. 21st Street – $2,274,400
  • 8338 E. 61st Street – $2,270,700
  • 311 E. 2nd Street – $954,000
  • 6209 E. 110th St. – $735,000


Posted in: For Buyers

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Selling Your Mortgage With the Home?

Home In A Box

Your assumable mortgage may be marketable.

There are plenty of them out there.  All FHA loans are assumable if the buyer can qualify.  The VA loan is assumable if by another veteran.  Even USDA rural housing and 184 Indian Benefit loans are assumable, if the borrow and the property qualify. We are all told Conforming Mortgages are non-assumable, but in fact, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac both allow assumptions on particular adjustable rate and “B” securitized products.

Get a cost analysis analysis

So, Why aren’t more sellers Marketing Their Assumable Mortgages? 

  • “Buyers will have to pre-qualify anyway.” – True. Since 1989 the lender and/or the appropriate agency must qualify and approve all mortgage loan assumptions.
  • “I got a lot of money in this house” – I can understand that argument.  Whatever cash the seller walks away with will have to come from the borrower’s pocket, either through down payment or secondary financing.
  • “Nobody would want my old loan anyway.” Ok, you’re rate is probably higher than what the market is offering today.

But you may not want to assume to be non-assumable.

  • If the seller’s loan is assumed, the closing process will be streamlined:  no appraisal, no inspections,
    and no repairs!
  • Save a pocket-full on closing costs!
  •  If time means money to you, the house could sell fast and close fast!

The buyer gets the existing payment schedule and all of the front-loaded interest the seller has already paid.  He will be making better principle reducing payments and could be looking at significant savings in the Total of Payments. 

A simple spreadsheet can show you the scenarios of an assumption vs. new financing for the particular situation, thereby giving the dollar value to both buyer and seller.  And knowing how the money flows allows for knowledgable decisions.

My point is this:  It may be a sledgehammer in your toolbox, but when you need it, knowledge of Assumable Mortgages could really help you get a job done.

Posted in: For Sellers

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What About Assumable Mortgages?

AssumableAssumable Mortgages

An associate called today asking, “What about an assumable mortgage?”  An assumable mortgage is a type of financing in which one person may take over the existing mortgage from another, or as some say, step into the shoes of an existing home


Although most home buyers today would find current rates to be lower than what mosthome sellers would be offering, the front loaded interest already paid and the reduced closing costs can provide advantages.

For sellers, whether or not your home mortgage is assumable by others could be a great selling point, especially in the years to come as rates return to normal levels. Another consideration is the process is streamlined and does not require an appraisal, repairs or a termite inspection.

When are home loans assumable?

Mortgage notes include a clause stating whether or not the loan is assumable, so that is definitely a place to start.  Here is a general overview:

Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac (Conventional Loans)

With little exception, conventional mortgage loans made after 1980 are not assumable and must be repaid on the sale of the property.  If an exception is granted (example: certain divorce scenarios, on certain products such as adjustable rate and a few “B” securitized paper) lenders will require an interest rate at the current market price or the current rate, whichever is higher, and the borrower will have to meet the same qualifications as they would for a new loan.

So why would anyone ask for an exception?

Because you do get the benefit of all the front-end interest that has already been paid, and your payments will have more principle reduction due to the inherited amortization, so total of payments can be much less even at a comparatively higher interest rate.  I can send you a spreadsheet that will assist you in comparing the option by attaching a dollar value to each scenario.

Housing and Urban Development (FHA, including Section 184)

Although everyone tells us FHA loans are assumable, the reality is that assuming an FHA loan is not a simple consideration. In Chapter 6 of HUD Directive Number: 4330.1 we are given 12 pages of supplemental guidelines, with highlights including:

  • Mortgages originated before December 1, 1986, generally contain no restrictions on assumptions and qualifying is not required. Such loans are almost 30 years old, so it’s likely few if any remain outstanding.
  • Some mortgages executed in years 1986 through 1989 contain language that is not enforced due to later Congressional action.  Mortgages from that period are now freely assumable, despite any restrictions stated in the mortgage.
  • Mortgages originated on or after December 15, 1989 require the new borrower must be creditworthy according to current HUD standards
  • Lenders must not approve an assumption unless the property is a primary or secondary residence, but later we are told that
  • Under the Cranston-Gonzalez National Affordable Housing Act Of 1990, HUD cannot insure a mortgage for a secondary residence and prohibits the assumption of an FHA mortgage made after January 27, 1991 on property intended for use as a secondary residence except for certain hardship exceptions.
  • Each mortgage must contain a due-on-sale clause permitting acceleration. If a sale or other transfer
    occurs without lender approval the lender MUST demand immediate and full repayment of the loan.
  • o FHA will allow the loan to be assumed after it has been in place for 12 months on a primary residence, 24 months if originated as a secondary residence.
  • o The lender must release the seller from the liability of repaying the mortgage if there has been a satisfactory creditworthiness check for the new borrower and the prospective purchaser assumes personal liability to repay the loan.

Section 184 Indian Loans

  • Eligibility. The security instrument must note that the Section 184 loan may be assumed by a qualified borrower. Borrowers who wish to assume a guaranteed loan must qualify under Chapter 5: Loan Processing and the Firm Commitment.  At the time of application for such a transaction, the lender must submit all of the 4/01/2011 Chapter 8-4 information listed in Chapter 5 to HUD for review. Lenders may not approve assumptions of Section 184 loans without prior HUD authorization.
  • Release of Liability. All Section 184 loan assumptions include a release of financial liability for the seller. A release of liability must be completed and signed at closing. When the closing documents and release of liability are received, HUD will issue a revised guarantee certificate that reflects the new borrower of record.  On trust land, the leasehold documents must be revised. To facilitate the revision, the lender must provide a copy of the release of liability and a deed of transfer to the BIA. The BIA will then record the changes in accordance with current policies and practices, and provide a copy of the approved assignment of the lease to the lender. A copy of the closing documents must be submitted to the Office of Loan Guarantee within 30 days after closing. The release is contained in the Release of Seller Form.(see Appendix 8.8)
  • Tribal Involvement. On trust land, the lease document may require tribal approval of the assignment of the lease to the new borrower. Lenders should not proceed to closing on the assumption until and unless the tribe has assigned the leasehold to the new borrower, and it has been approved by the BIA.
  • Down payment. A down payment is not required on an assumption if the owner is willing to sell the property for the outstanding indebtedness. If the seller is charging a higher price, the buyer must make up the difference between the purchase price and the outstanding Section 184 debt. Any secondary financing used to make up this gap must be in a second lien position and will be included in the assessment of the borrower’s ability to afford the home.

Rural Development (USDA Loans)

The Guaranteed Rural Housing loan is assumable subject to the following conditions:

  • Subject property and applicant(s) must meet all criteria for the Rural Development Guaranteed Housing Program.
  • Applicant (buyer) must be credit-approved by USDA Loan.
  • In accordance with Rural Development (FmHA) Instruction 1980-D, no release of liability will be granted to the original Borrower.
  • A new title policy will be required at closing.

Veterans Administration

The VA mortgage assumption can be a good idea if the buyer’s VA entitlement is tied up in another loan. The seller can allow his or her entitlement (originally used to acquire the VA loan that is being assumed) to be used by the buyer.  If a seller allows his or her entitlement to stay with the loan and be used by the buyer, the seller will be unable to restore this entitlement until the buyer pays the loan in full.  If a buyer replaces seller’s entitlement with his or her own, then the seller’s entitlement is released from the loan.

VA loans that closed before March 1, 1988, may be assumed without approval from the VA or the lender. Additionally, the purchaser does not have to be a veteran.  Loans closed after require the buyer to be VA eligible and credit-qualified by the lender.

Again, exceptions can be found. VA can allow an unrestricted transfer. For example, this is allowed in cases where a military spouse and a non-military partner are co-borrowers who are currently getting a divorce.

In cases of unrestricted transfer, the VA must approve the transaction, not the lender.

Considerations for Buyers When Assuming a Loan

  • The application process consists basically of a credit check and no property appraisal is required.
  • The assumable mortgage may not cover the full cost of the home. If this is the case, the buyer will likely have to pay the difference.  That may mean a large down payment, or having to find additional financing (a second mortgage) to pay the difference between the assumable mortgage balance and the price of the home.
  • The buyer will need to agree to assume the indemnity liability, and the sale will not be complete until the loan holder approves the assumption.  This can take time.
  • The buyer will need to be qualified by the agency and/or the loan holder before the loan assumption can be approved.  You must demonstrate good credit and that you have enough income to support the mortgage loan. In this way, qualifying to assume a loan is similar to the qualification requirements for a new one.

Considerations for Sellers When Offering Assumption

  • If you have equity in the home you will forgo it unless you can collect a down payment.
  • The existing loan must be current.
  •  When an FHA-insured loan is assumed, the insurance remains in force (the seller receives no refund). The owner(s) of the property at the time the mortgage insurance is terminated is entitled to any refund.
  • When a VA assumption, It should be made clear that even though the release may be approved, the veteran’s home loan benefit may not be restored unless the assumer is willing to substitute his or her VA home loan entitlement.
  • The seller may still be responsible for the loan repayment unless there is a Release of Liability (ROL) provided.  Any seller who allows assumption by a buyer without a release of liability from the lender is looking for trouble. Even if the buyer pays the seller’s ability to obtain another mortgage will be prejudiced by his continued liability on the old one.  The release of liability from the lender must be in writing, and you must preserve the document. This will protect you in the event that the new borrower defaults and the collection agency comes after you because it knows nothing about your release of liability. This has happened!

If the article doesn’t answer all of your questions, please don’t hesitate to drop a question in the comments, or for direct communication, please call me at 918-949-7248.

Posted in: Conforming, FHA, Jumbo, Mortgage Types, Section 184 Indian Loans, USDA Rural Development, VA

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Tulsa, OK HUD Approved Condos

Tulsa CondominiumTulsa, OK HUD-Approved condos are hard to Find.

Tulsa OK HUD-Approved condos are hard to find. What does this mean for Tulsa condo owners trying to sell their condo?

This is a HUGE concern for Tulsa condo sellers, particularly if their condo is priced $250,000 or below. Not being able to accept FHA, VA or Section 184 Indian Loans literally removes 95% of prospective Buyers. How long will your Tulsa condo be on the market if you have to wait for a cash buyer or one with conventional financing with 20% down? Cash buyers expect a deal and may not be willing to pay fair market value. Buyers with conventional financing and 20% down are not usually shopping in the lower price ranges – OR do not want to tie up their cash on a large down-payment when it’s so inexpensive to borrow money.

And none of these loan programs (FHA, VA or 184) are available if the condo property is not HUD approved.

HUD Certified condominium complexes offer distinctive advantages over Non-Certified properties by qualifying for:

  • Lower down payments
  • Section 184 allows for 97.75% financing without monthly mortgage insurance
  • VA allows for 100% financing without mortgage insurance
  • 6% seller contributions are always available (conforming loans on condos usually allow only 3%), which equals less costs at closing for the buyer
  • Debt to Income Ratios and credit underwriting are much more lenient
  • You can borrow up to 110% so you can purchase and remodel in one loan
  • You can do an energy efficiency loan to replace windows, appliances, water heater, doors, etc.
  • Down Payment Grant Programs and Bond money most often amend FHA loans (click here for condo down payment assistance program)
  • Owners can be selling to a larger portion of the home buying market
  • It increases demand

Get an FHA Condo mortgage quote here

So what is HUD approval?

HUD oversees the FHA mortgage program, the VA sponsored program (100% financing) and mortgages back by the Bureau of Indian Affairs (checks and balances).  Since 2009 HUD has required condominium complexes to be “warranted” to be accepted for HUD mortgage programs.  This generally means an audit needs to be done to make sure the common areas are maintained, the complex is fully insured, association dues are 85% current, mostly owner occupied, the association is controlled by unit owners, etc. – mainly: just being well managed.

So Why are HUD Approved Properties hard to find?

Up until 2009, HUD allowed FHA mortgages to be placed on condo units through a process called a “spot check”.  That meant they would gather papers from the condo complex in a random, per-transaction method, and approve the quality of the complex on each individual loan.  This was inefficient and FHA absorbed many foreclosed loans due to condo association failures.

Then came 2009.  HUD does not allow spot checks any more.  The complex must get certified.

How To Become a HUD Certified Complex?

HUD is pretty friendly when it comes to approving well-managed properties.  They want to promote urban growth and are rebuilding their HUD approved roster.

The Distinction of Certification comes from one of two ways:

Go to HUD Directly – Called a HUD Review Approval Process (HRAP).  The process, if done well by you mortgage consultant, should take 6-8 weeks.  The application itself is free, but self-managing the process is not wise for amateurs and in reality fees will be paid to attorneys, management companies, appraisers, etc. to prepare the finalized application.

Use a HUD Direct Endorsed Lender – Called a Direct Endorsed Lender Review Approval Process (DELRAP).  Now a HUD direct lender is not the same as a lender that offers FHA mortgages.  Contact me to avoid middlemen and get one in your area.  This recommended route would usually take approximately 2-3 weeks.  DELRAP generally costs on par with a HUD direct approach but the process is faster and moderately more stream lined.

We will need some basic Condominium Association Documents:

  • The Declaration of Condominium, CC&R’s (Covenants, Conditions & Restrictions)
  • By-Laws of the HOA with (if applicable) amendments
  • Copy of the Current Annual Budget
  • Insurance Certificates held by association which should include General Liability and Hazard on Common Element Buildings
  • 90 days balance sheet

I can get you there.  Condo associations should usually be protecting the interests of the owners by keeping the condo development HUD-Approved.  This will increase the number of buyers who can purchase units in the development, which in turn increases the demand to buy into the development and helps support property values.

If the article doesn’t answer all of your questions, please don’t hesitate to drop a question in the commentsor for direct communication, please call me at 918-949-7248.


Posted in: Condos, FHA, First Time Home Buyers, For Sellers, Mortgage Types, Section 184 Indian Loans

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Household Budget Detox

Household Budget Detox


The other day, while reviewing a mortgage application, I was told by the applicant about their 30 day juice diet.  My client had bought a $400 juicer and everday had 3 huge glasses of vegetables and fruit – mostly kale, carrots and apples – and that’s it; they ate nothing.

Why would anyone ever do this?

“To detoxify and loose a bunch of excess weight”, they replied.

Ok, that sounds like a good reason, but as their mortgage advisor I wanted them to take a similiar approach toward their spending habits and household finances.

So how would you detoxify your household finanances and loose a bunch of excess expenditures?

Click here for an simple to use spreadsheet.

Work Within a Budget – We all have probably made one before, but have you ever “worked within one” by reviewing and updating it consistently?  This means simply having a spreadsheet that you record into and review at a steady pace.  You don’t have to track every detail.

Start with a flow chart to classify expenses:

  1. Necessity – fixed payments and not flexible.  Examples are housing payment and car payment.
  2. Necessity but Flexible – can be adjusted.  Examples are utilities and food.
  3. Discretionary – expenses you want to make.  Examples are haircuts, supplies, dry cleaning and entertainment.

Now the hard part:  start slashing items in column three and search for ways to trim column two.

Use automated tools to execute your budget.

  • Use your bank’s bill pay service
  • Set up automatic payments
  • Use bank’s transfer service to put money into savings
  • Pay with debit card so you can track expenditures
  • If you get cash divide the money into envelopes and write the purpose on the envelope

Use the 10/10/10 Savings Rule on every paycheck.

  • 10% saved for short term needs – vacation, birthday/holiday gift giving
  • 10% saved for intermediate needs or emergencies – car trouble, loss of job
  • 10% saved for retirement or real estate investment

Have an accountability partner.  Accountability is in direct proportion with effectiveness and success. Use a family member, close friend or partner to back you up and help you stay on track.  If your finances are more complicated, use a software program, Certified Public Accountant and/or Financial Planner.

A budget can get you there.  The key to these ideas is to have a reasonable budget to begin with, sticking to the process and reviewing results.  If your money problems are too serious to fit your budget seek professional help immediately by contacting a non-profit credit counselor (a church or United Way).

If the article doesn’t answer all of your questions, please don’t hesitate to drop a question in the comments, or for direct communication, please call me at 918-949-7248.

Posted in: Company News, First Time Home Buyers, Household Finances

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How To Buy A Green Home

How To Buy A Green HomeNew Windows

If you are in the market to buy an eco-friendly dwelling, researchers say you should expect to pay more, on a national average 9% more, than comparable homes that are not green.  They are more sustainable, have lower utility costs and healthier.

What makes a home green?

Green is vogue, and green is vague.

And if you use the term wrong, there is always the bigger and badder hippie who will accuse you of green-washing: the practice of marketing a product as eco-friendly when it really isn’t.Bring it.

How to define a green home?

  • Limits over-usage of resources – It is energy efficient
  • Healthy – Utilizes non-toxic materials
  • Sustainable Future – locally sourced materials and sustainable

Who is a green real estate expert in your market?

Earth Advantage does a certification for realtors, but plenty of realtors know green, and a certificate usually won’t guarantee the agent is an expert; only that they paid someone to say they were. I bet you could ask for referrals, interview a few on the phone, and pick a favorite.The green types, we recognize each other.

Indicators of a Green Home

  • Appliances – Energy Star can be a plus
  • Windows – double pane
  • Heat and Air System – refurbished duct system, programable thermostat
  • Plumbing – water system, In-line water heaters
  • Could do an energy audit – Pro Energy Consultants are
  • You can ask for paper work but some don’t have it – the certification process for a lot of green features may not be standardized yet.

Discern the dwelling’s relationship to the land.

  • The home’s orientation – sun exposure and prevailing winds, which affect maintenance, heating and cooling
  • Landscaping – Look for native plants sustainable watering demands

Let’s talk.  Those of us who are passionate about green tend to have a deeper knowledge of the product.  And because, here is the good news: I can get you there!  I have a mortgage product that will absorbthe costs of making a home energy efficient, and provide you with one simple payment.

I even have a motgage product that will Refinance your home to be more green.


Posted in: FHA, For Buyers, Mortgage Types, Section 184 Indian Loans, USDA Rural Development

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Who Wants Credit?

Big WheelBeware of Danger.

 I was a kid my brother and I used to ride our big wheels up and down the driveway and sometimes beyond,encroaching the street and thereby terrorizing the neighbors.  You see, before we had moved in, another child, while riding his big wheel, had been hit by a car.   The big wheel, being so low to the ground, was considered by the neighbors to be too dangerous for children to ride.

Fortunately, my brother and I had nothing but fast times and race track memories of our Big Wheel rides.

Even so, I know several people who still believe Big Wheels are too dangerous.

There are also people who think carrying credit cards to be too dangerous.

I understand credit cards may cause problems, but I think they are something we all should be able to benefit from.  I have used a credit card since college and I do not have one single regret.  But who should use credit cards comes down to simple decisions:

Why you would want a credit card

credit card

  • Convenience – No need to carry cash – or the risk of losing it.
  • Peace of Mind – if you loose it, it’s simple to replace
  • Tracking you expenses – Monthly statements itemize your expenses so you can see where your money goes
  • Consumer Protection – If you don’t receive your item you ordered or the merchant won’t honor a return, your credit card issuer is usually the best fix for your problem
  • Insurance Benefits – Many cards offer product insurance, and many offer free car rental insurance
  • Extended Warranties – Some cards offer one on certain items
  • Rewards – what do you want?  Mileage, free gas, cash back – many thing can be rewarded to you for free by simply using a credit card for purchases.
  • Credit History – Nothing builds credit like properly managing a revolving  credit account.  Good credit history can save tens of thousands of dollars over the life of a auto loan, maybe more on a mortgage. Sometimes even employment can depend upon it

Who should not want a credit card?

  • Financially undisciplined people – if you do not have control of your spending, you should probably not apply for any type of financing.
  • You are unwilling to pay a bill completely every month – if you can’t make a purchase, wait until the monthly statement arrives, and then pay for your item, you would loose out onmost of the rewards and good credit history benefits.
  • You’re personally irresponsible – If you do not honor the terms you agree to when you sign contracts, or you are unwilling to read contract agreements before signing them, you should only pay with cash.

grow a credit score


Credit cards have been used poorly by some people and gotten them into trouble, but that is no reason for responsible people to miss out on the benefits that come with managing a credit card responsibly; and, properly managing a revolving credit account will build your credit faster than anything else you can do.


Want more information regarding the best cards available?  Call me at 918-949-7248 or email at jregur@midtownmtg.net.


Posted in: Credit

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How to Maintain Good Credit Through A Divorce

How to Maintain Good Credit Through A Divorce

Divorce Credit Split

Maintaining your good credit rating through a divorce can require more forethought than some assume.   Even your credit report can’t tell you every account your spouse may have opened, but it is absolutely a report you want to see.  Debt should be divided evenly.

How to Divorce Credit that is not yours

When vacating a marriage you have communal property and communal debt.  When anyone in the marriage obtained credit during your marriage, you and your spouse became engaged in a contract agreeing to pay the creditor. A divorce decree does not change that contract. When you divorce, each of you remains fully liable for your all of the debts on each of your individual credit reports.  Make a list of all the accounts that need to be closed.

What Credit Will You Keep Through Your Divorce?

There are several ways to prevent credit obligations from making divorce more difficult than it already is.  There are also a few things you can do to re-establish your own distinct credit lines after divorce occurs.

  • Communicate with your soon-to-be-ex-spouse.

Make a clean and thorough financial list.  Order a credit report and take an inventory of all the accounts the marriage has created.  Make a post divorce budget for each with attention to each parties individual income and ability to make payments.  You may want to close joint bank accounts immediately.

  • Communicate with your creditors.

Decide which debt belongs to whom, and then ask each company and bank that extended you credit to transfer the debt to the name of the person who will be responsible. In some instances you may need to close the account entirely and open up new individual accounts, or freeze accounts that cannot be separated.  If you have to keep joint accounts, have the creditor send you statements even if your spouse is to make all future payments.  If your spouse fails to pay or declares bankruptcy you will be required to pay the joint debt.

  • Do the right thing for yourself.

Establish at least one new trade line as an individual.  Maybe get your own credit card but do not let the balance exceed 29% of the credit limit.

If you are worried about your spouse borrowing money in your name then you could enroll in a credit monitoring service so you will be informed of all changes to your credit report.

During divorce negotiations, keep your joint bills current, even if you ultimately will have no responsibility for the debt. If you don’t, the missed payments will become part of your credit history, and your creditors could become more reluctant to release one party from joint liability.  Remember, always receive monthly statements for every account you are on, and read them!

Ask the credit grantor to remove your spouse’s name as an authorized user or close the joint account to avoid additional charges.  Authorized users are able to charge onto the account but are not responsible for the repayment of the bill.

Inform all creditors, in writing, that you are not responsible for debts charged by your ex-spouse on joint accounts after the divorce and close as many of the joint accounts as possible. Follow up by calling the company and asking them to note your account.  Ask them to email you confirmation that they noted the account.  This may not prevent them from trying to collect from you, but it does show that you attempted to act responsibly.

Even if your ex spouse is responsible for payment of an account that you are on, if payment is not made or they file bankruptcy on the account, the creditors will come after you for repayment.  The creditors will not care what the divorce decree states if the debt was initiated by both of you.  You may want to include remedies in you divorce settlement to cover situations of this nature, such as having property or funds put into escrow until debts are paid.  But these ideas are for the purpose of discussion and do not constitute legal advice.  But I do believe the thought process ideally goes like this:

  1. Close all joint accounts
  2. If you can’t do that, have someone refinance the debt into their name alone
  3. If you can’t do that, sell the property
  4. If you can’t do that, cover yourself.  All of yourself.

With questions call me at 918-949-7248.  I can get you there!

Posted in: Credit

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Tips for First Time Home Buyers

Tips for First Time Home Buyers

Unusual Home

Many people delay their first real estate investment.  To them it may be a scary, confusing and stressful process.  But knowledge is power, and understanding a few pointers can prepare you to further explore the home buying process, turning the overwhelming and intimidating experience into an exciting one.

Step One – Get Pre-Approved

Although you should not rely on your mortgage adviser to determine what you can afford, knowing your limits and the cause and effect of closing cost options can help you comfortably commit to your budget.  Know your budget and weed out homes that you cannot afford.

A good reason to start with you pre-approval from a lender is you may want to polish your credit report before submitting to the bank.  Paying down credit balances may be a more effective saving method than making larger down payments.

Step Two – Set Priorities

Know your requirements for room counts, square footage, school system and location.  These are the permanent features that do not change without considerable investment.

On the other side of the list are the wants, the things that can be improved upon after you buy the property.  This can include a pool or hot tub, landscaping, finished attic or basement and hardwood floors.

Assessing the wants versus needs will help to keep focused on what is important and where the values are in your real estate search.  Look for homes that have all of the needs and leave some of the wants for future investment.

Step Three – Find the Best Real Estate Team

The real estate team is most often headed by a professional Realtor of your choosing.  Although they will be compensated by the commission paid by the seller, you should take the role of employer when considering your options.  Know what features you value in the realtor you will choose.  You should consider their strength as a negotiator, an advocate, a personal shopper and diligent communicator.  A good Realtor will enhance the investment of time and money you are giving to the project.

But the next most important member of your real estate team may be the home inspector.  They will help you avoid costly problems evident only from a thorough home inspection.  Just as with the Realtor  you should talk to several before hiring one.  Ask for qualifications, what is included in the inspections, how much time he spends and how he reports back to you.  Areas of concern may include but not be limited to construction quality, type and integrity of the foundation, condition of plumbing, heat and air system, electrical wiring and roof.

Knowing what you can afford and what you are looking for in a home will help you recognize how valuable a prospective property may be for you.  And once you know how to value a property, you will be more confident in how much to offer for it.

Posted in: 100% Programs, FHA, For Buyers, USDA Rural Development

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