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Because we are a high-volume wholesale lending team, we have tons of lenders competing for our business. We get to pick and choose the best deal for you!


Whether it’s Conventional, FHA, VA, USDA, or Jumbo, we can find the right loan to fit your needs. We even have several options for Down Payment Assistance, making home ownership possible for many families (and individuals) who are unable to save for a down payment.

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What Is A Home Purchase Loan?

Most home buyers can’t afford to buy their home upfront without a loan. A home purchase loan allows you to borrow a significant amount of money to buy a house, using the property as security. Choosing the right home purchase loan is essential, especially in San Francisco, Berkeley, the wider Bay Area & the East Bay where house prices often exceed a million dollars. Buying a home in the Bay Area requires careful consideration and guidance to choose the right home purchase loan.

Some of the main types of loans used to purchase new homes in the Bay Area include fixed rate loans, adjustable loans, and jumbo loans. Home buyers may also have the option of choosing a FHA home loan, a VA home loan or a USDA home loan for a new home purchase depending on their needs and circumstances.


Conventional Fixed Rate Home Loans

Most California and Bay Area homes are financed through conventional fixed rate home loans. These home loans offer an unchanged or ‘fixed’ principal and interest payment throughout the life of the loan. The standard fixed rate loan terms are 10, 15, 20, 25 or 30 years, however 15 and 30 years are the most common. By choosing a shorter loan term, you can achieve significant savings in interest over the duration of the loan. There are also custom term mortgages if desired.


Conventional Conforming Loans

About 90% of the mortgages in the U.S. are securitized by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Conforming loans must fulfill certain guidelines that take into account a borrower’s credit score, a borrower’s credit history, debt-to-income ratio, the mortgage’s loan to income ration and the size of the loan. The national maximum for conforming loans is $424,100 for a single unit dwelling, however with 208 counties around the U.S. designated as high-cost competitive areas, including certain parts of the Bay Area, the maximum loan limits can reach $636,100. This type of loan can make a buyer attractive to sellers as they facilitate a smooth and rapid closing process. On the other hand, with a maximum loan amount of $636,100, this may not be enough to cover home prices in the Bay Area.


Adjustable Rate Loans

For first home buyers wishing to buy a starter home in the Bay Area, adjustable rate loans with today’s low interest rates can make monthly mortgage payments easier to afford on an expensive home. However, homeowners that keep these loans over a longer period risk increases in the adjustable interest rates may be higher than expected.


Jumbo Loans

To buy a home in the Bay Area where house prices often exceed $1 million, a jumbo loan may be needed. These loans can be fixed rate or variable interest depending on your financial situations and goals. However, jumbo loans can be slightly difficult to qualify for, with more stringent credit requirements and a larger down payment necessary.  There is also an alternative to do a 1st and 2nd mortgage combination.

Choosing the right home purchase loan can be confusing, whether you’re a first time home buyer or looking to add properties to your portfolio. Experienced Bay Area mortgage consultant Karen Douglas offers unique insights to find the right solution for you.



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I’m a paragraph. Double click here or click Edit Text to add some text of your own or to change the font. This is the place for you to tell your site visitors a little bit about you and your services.


I’m a paragraph. Double click here or click Edit Text to add some text of your own or to change the font. This is the place for you to tell your site visitors a little bit about you and your services.


I’m a paragraph. Double click here or click Edit Text to add some text of your own or to change the font. This is the place for you to tell your site visitors a little bit about you and your services.


What is a FHA Loan?

In 1934, the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) was established to improve housing standards and to provide an adequate home financing system with mortgage insurance. Now families that may have otherwise been excluded from the housing market could finally buy their dream home.

FHA does not make home loans, it insures a loan; should a homebuyer default, the lender is paid from the insurance fund.

  • Buy a house with as little as 3.5% down.

  • Ideal for the first-time homebuyers unable to make larger down payments.

  • The right mortgage solution for those who may not qualify for a conventional loan.

  • Down payment assistance programs can be added to a FHA Loan for additional down payment and/or closing cost savings.

If I’ve Had a Bankruptcy in Recent Years, Can I Get a FHA Loan?

Yes, generally a bankruptcy won’t preclude a borrower from obtaining a FHA Loan. Ideally, a borrower should have re-established their credit with a minimum of two credit accounts such as a car loan, or credit card. Then wait two years since the discharge of a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, or have a minimum of one year of repayment for a Chapter 13 (the borrower must seek the permission of the courts). Also, the borrower should not have any credit issues like late payments, collections, or credit charge-offs since the bankruptcy. Special exceptions can be made if a borrower has suffered through extenuating circumstances like surviving a serious medical condition, and had to declare bankruptcy because the high medical bills couldn’t be paid.


What Documents are Needed to Apply for a FHA Loan?

Your loan approval depends 100% on the documentation that you provide at the time of application. You will need to give accurate information on:


  • Complete Income Tax Returns for past 2-years

  • W-2 & 1099 Statements for past 2-years

  • Pay-Check Stubs for past 2-months

  • Self-Employed Income Tax Returns and YTD Profit & Loss Statements for past 3-years for self-employed borrowers


  • Complete bank statements for all accounts for past 2-months

  • Recent account statements for retirement, 401k, Mutual Funds, Money Market, Stocks, etc. 2 month history


  • Landlord’s name, address, telephone number, or 12- months cancelled rent checks

  • Recent utility bills to supplement thin credit

  • Bankruptcy & Discharge Papers if applicable

  • 12-months cancelled checks written by someone you co-signed for to get a mortgage, car, or credit card, this indicates that you are not the one making the payments.


  • Drivers License

  • Any Divorce, Palimony or Alimony or Child Support papers

  • Green Card or Work Permit if applicable

  • Any homeownership papers

Refinancing or Own Rental Property

  • Property Tax Bill

  • Hazard Homeowners Insurance Policy

  • A Payment Coupon for Current Mortgage

  • Rental Agreements for a Multi-Unit Property



When I should refinance?

It’s generally a good time to refinance when mortgage rates are 2% lower than the current rate on your loan. It may be a viable option even if the interest rate difference is only 1% or less. Any reduction can trim your monthly mortgage payments. Example: Your payment, excluding taxes and insurance, would be about $770 on a $100,000 loan at 8.5%; if the rate were lowered to 7.5%, your payment would then be $700, now you’re saving $70 per month. Your savings depends on your income, budget, loan amount, and interest rate changes. Your trusted lender can help you calculate your options.


How much will it cost me to refinance?

Starting with an application fee for $250 – $350, you may need to pay an origination fee typically 1% of your loan amount. In most cases you will pay the same costs you had with your current home loan for the title search, title insurance, lender fees, etc. The total sum could cost up to 2-3% of the loan amount. If you don’t have the funds to pay for associated loan costs, you can search for lenders that offer “no-cost” loans which will charge a slightly higher interest rate.


What are points?

A point is a percentage of the loan amount, or 1-point = 1% of the loan, so one point on a $100,000 loan is $1,000. Points are costs that need to be paid to a lender to get mortgage financing under specified terms. Discount points are fees used to lower the interest rate on a mortgage loan by paying some of this interest up-front. Lenders may refer to costs in terms of basic points in hundredths of a percent, 100 basis points = 1 point, or 1% of the loan amount.


I’ve had credit problems in the past. Does this impact my chances of getting a home loan?

Even with poor credit getting a home loan in the Bay Area is still possible. A lender will consider you to be a risky borrower and to compensate for this they will charge you a higher interest rate, and expect a higher down payment usually 20%-50%. The worse your credit history is, the more you can expect to pay.


What does it mean to lock the interest rate?

California mortgage rates can change from the day you apply for a loan to the day you close the transaction. If interest rates rise sharply during the application process it can increase the borrower’s mortgage payment unexpectedly. Therefore, a lender can allow the borrower to “lock-in” the loan’s interest rate guaranteeing that rate for a specified time period, often 30-60 days, sometimes for a fee.

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