Mortgage News

As Mortgage Professionals, like it or not
As a Mortgage Broker, like it or not, I am in sales. Yes..........sales!
Why should you use me versus the other 100K plus loan officers in the nation? I don't just sell rate & closing costs but they are important and I AM the Broker-a huge advantage; I sell myself, my experience and reputation. I may tell you NOT to purchase now or refinance for good reasons.

You must be:

1. Qualified 2. Committed 3. Motivated
And this means, my loan comparisons will show you the savings or payment you can or can't afford!
The following are 5 reasons why deals fail to go to closing for loan officers, banks and brokers who want you to purchase or refi NO MATTER WHAT:

1. The approach is confrontational rather than consultative
When prospects (yes, you) feel confrontation, they often feel provoked and challenged. Salespeople who are too anxious to close the sale or get their prospects to see their point of view, may only decrease their odds of closing. A soft approach is always better. This means having the patience & time to answer all basic questions, sometimes over & over.
Selling is not about getting people to see your point of view. It is about allowing yourself to see the customer's point of view.

2. The prospect feels pressured rather than being helped
When prospects feel pressure, they feel that demands are being placed on them. Pressure violates trust when the salesperson doesn't show respect for their ideas and opinions. Creating demand usually doesn't work. Patience, respect and understanding usually do.
Pressure rarely works & can backfire. Taking the high road to an indecisive borrower &  waiting can pay off for you and me. You may wait and be better served and I may be your 'Trusted Advisor.'
When you truly want to serve your clients, they know it, and everyone wins.
3. Borrowers feel the lender is aggressive rather than supportive
People don't usually reward aggressive behavior. When lenders become aggressive, their only goal is to share what is important to them - getting paid by closing you whether it's appropriate or not.
There is a big difference between aggressive and assertive behavior. 

4. Lender has self-focused goals, versus customer-focused ones

You, the borrower,  have a multitude of choices of who to use and also have the opportunity to find a broker with first-time homebuyer programs, lower rates and customer-oriented communication.
You want someone who can assist you, service you and educate you.
Professional salespeople help, support and share knowledge with their prospects. They pass along important information and ask customers to buy once they've demonstrated clearly how their product or service will help achieve the desired results or objectives.
As a former Top Producing loan officer in the builder community,  I learned a long time ago: "Take care of the client, & the commissions take care of themselves".
5. Loan Officers who mistakenly take prospect problems personally (hint: It's about you, not me)

And when they do, inexperienced loan officers often retreat  or hide when confronted with a problem instead of listening carefully and responding immediately.
Let's face it, in today's Mortgage climate there is no shortage of client questions & concerns. We have to stay patient. When you call to discuss a problem or issue you are concerned about, expect the problem to be addressed immediately.
Banks who ignore problems or concerns instead of putting them out on the table and dealing with them, will lose their customers' trust. It's a much better decision to take action quickly & decisively.

Just have questions? Need a comparison of loan options to help you decide to refinance, take cash out or not? Want to know if it's a 'good time to buy?' Call me at 562-320-0510 or email at: 
NMLS#254859 Corp NMLS# 1150921

Posted by Anne James on July 30th, 2019 10:52 AM

VA Loan Cosigner Requirements

One of the benefits of VA loans is that they allow veterans to secure home loans with lower interest rates and lower qualifications than a traditional loan. Even with these lower qualifications, however, VA loan applicants sometimes still need a co-signer to qualify. If you fall into this category, it’s a good idea to understand who can co-sign on your VA loan and how it might affect your odds of qualifying for that loan. Fortunately, Reliance Mortgage Service Inc, is well-equipped to answer any of your VA loan co-signer questions.

Individuals who can co-sign on VA loans include:

  • Your spouse (must be legally married)
  • A single military member (if you are unmarried)
  • Certain lenders will also allow a single non-military person

In short, it’s perfectly normal for a VA loan borrower to need a co-signer to qualify for a loan. If this describes you, the more you know about who can co-sign for you and how it will affect your loan, the more of a head start you’ll have in the process. 

Since the VA loan co-signer application process can sometimes be a daunting one, we have provided below two of the most frequently asked questions regarding the use of co-signers on VA loans.

Who Is An Eligible Co-Signer?

VA guidelines clearly specify who veterans can use as co-signers on VA loans and who they can’t. First, the VA permits legally married spouses to co-sign on a loan. Those veterans who are unmarried can get a fellow veteran who is unmarried to co-sign on their VA loan. A third option, which is only available through some lenders, allows veterans to use an unmarried, non-military individual as their co-signer, but this comes with a catch: the VA will consider only the veteran’s property in what they can “guarantee,” not the co-signer’s. In other words, using this option can limit how much you qualify for. Since not every lender will allow this third option, if you find yourself in this category, we strongly recommend that you find out if your lender handles this situation before you begin the loan application process. 

Will A Co-Signer Affect My Chances Of Getting The Loan?

Co-signers can often make the difference in securing a VA loan or not. Just as your financial information and credit history is taken into account when determining if you qualify and what rates you’ll receive, your co-signer's information must also be scrutinized. How will the VA look at your and your co-signer’s information? For one thing, VA loans don’t rely on high credit scores to determine eligibility. Instead, they look at your and your co-signer's most recent 12 months of credit history, while being less strict about credit scores, bankruptcies, and foreclosures.  

If you find yourself needing a co-signer to qualify for a VA loan, know that the ability to include a co-signer has allowed thousands of veterans in you area to secure a VA loan. Fortunately, now that you know who can and cannot act as your co-signer – whether your legal spouse, a fellow unmarried veteran or an approved unmarried non-veteran – you can avoid unfortunate surprises and get a head start on identifying who your co-signer will be. 

Posted by Anne James on June 25th, 2019 1:41 PM
Becoming a mortgage broker in California can seem confusing at first. The state offers three different types of broker licenses, issued by different agencies, and having different licensing requirements.
There is the finance lender license (CFL) and the residential mortgage lender license (CRML) both of which are issued by the California Department of Business Oversight (DBO). There is also the real estate broker license, often called a BRE license because it is issued by the Bureau of Real Estate which also allows for working as a mortgage broker.
The different broker licenses have slightly different licensing requirements. Some have to submit a surety bond as an extra layer of protection for homebuyers, whereas others need to pass pre-licensing education and an exam. Read on below for an overview of the different license types and what you need to do to get licensed.
For fun, here's some industry postings of actual jobs as loan officer:
California Mortgage Broker License types
The following are the three types of mortgage broker licenses issued in California and who is required to obtain each of these.
?Finance broker license: Anyone making and brokering consumer and commercial loans in the state is required to obtain this type of bond (except those listed here). The limitation of this type of license is that such brokers are only allowed to broker loans with those holding a finance lender license. They cannot do business with any other type of lenders in the state, such as banks or credit unions.
?Residential mortgage lender license: This type of license is required of those who make or service residential mortgage loans in California. While it allows them to make and service loans it also lets  them to broker loans IF they also have a mortgage loan originators license. RML license holders can broker to other RML lenders, as well as institutional lenders, such as state or federally chartered institutions.
?Real estate broker license: This license allows licensees to act as real estate brokers and mortgage brokers in California. Due to the combined nature of the license, application requirements differ from the other two licenses and previous experience and an examination are necessary.
How to get licensed
The pre-licensing and application requirements for the different mortgage broker licenses vary slightly. Here is what each license applicant has to complete and comply with in order to obtain one of the above licenses.
To obtain a finance broker (and/or) lender license, you must apply through the Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System (NMLS) and submit a license application. The license applicationmust include a business plan, responses to disclosure questions, certificate of authority, an organizational chart, and a number of additional documents. Upon applying you will also be required to:
?Have a net worth of $50,000 if you are only applying for a residential broker license, a net worth of $250,000 if you are applying for a residential lender/broker license, and a net worth of $25,000 if you are applying for a non-residential lender or broker license (these applicants apply directly through the DBO instead of the NMLS)
?Submit and maintain a $25,000 surety bond for any of the above licenses.
?Submit criminal background checks for the owners, officers, directors, managers and all other persons responsible for lending activities
?Pay a $400 licensing and processing fee when applying at the NMLS
Residential mortgage lender license requirements
To obtain an RML license, you need to comply with the license requirements detailed below. Remember that to use your RML license for mortgage brokering activities, you must hold a California mortgage loan originator license, which you can also apply for through the NMLS. RML licenses are also obtained through the NMLS. When applying, apart from completing your application form, you will also need to:
?Become an approved lender or servicer for at least one of the following: the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), Veterans Administration (VA), Farmers Home Administration (FmHA), Government National Mortgage Association (Ginnie Mae), Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae), or Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac)
?Submit audited financial statements that document a net worth of at least $250,000
?Submit a $50,000 surety bond
?Submit criminal background checks performed for all stockholders, principal officers and directors
?Pay a $1,100 licensing and processing fee through the NMLS
Real estate broker license requirements
To become licensed as a real estate broker, you will need to apply through the California Bureau of Real Estate. Additionally, to function as a mortgage broker, applicants must also get a mortgage license originator endorsement from the NMLS. To become licensed as real estate brokers, applicants will need to:
?Submit a broker examination application (and pay a $95 exam fee)
?Complete or submit proof of completion of eight college-level courses in real estate
?Provide proof of at least two years of full-time licensed salesperson experience within the last five years
?Pass the broker examination
?Complete and submit a broker license application (and pay a $300 licensing fee) and a Live Scan Service Request
Unlike the above license types, applicants for this license are not required to post a surety bond. Once you have received your real estate broker license from the BRE, you can then apply for an MLO endorsement through the NMLS. This will require you to submit an application and, depending on whether you are applying as a company or individual, you may also be required to pass further education and examination.
Surety bond requirements
The requirement for finance brokers and residential mortgage lenders to obtain a surety bond may require some explaining for new applicants. Surety bonds are binding agreements required by the state. They are put in place to guarantee that licensees who are bonded will comply with state laws and regulations such as the California Residential Mortgage Lending Act or the California Finance Lenders Law.
The provisions of these bonds vary depending on the license type. They are typically conditioned to guarantee that licensees will comply with any agreements they have with their clients and fulfill any obligations they have under the above-mentioned laws. Bonds also guarantee that licensees will not engage in dishonest business practices such as fraud or misrepresentation.
If brokers are found to have violated any of the above conditions, a claim can be made against their bond by anyone who has been harmed as a result of such violations. In this case, the surety which backs the bond will extend compensation to claimants, which can be as high as the full amount of the bond. Under the bond agreement, the bonded licensee must then repay the surety in full for any compensation it extends.

Posted by Anne James on March 5th, 2019 8:05 AM

Getting pre-approved for a home loan purchase doesn't have to cost you more than 4 FICO points for a 'hard inquiry.' Once you've let your loan broker or loan officer run your credit, you should know your real FICO score-not the Credit Karma or credit card FICO reported so often inaccurately from a Residential Mortgage Credit Report that should be handed to you in a two-page summary and reviewed for issues with your 'first-choice broker' or lender.
After you know your RMCR FICO score, the middle of the three scores and the lowest middle of two or more borrowers, you can shop rates confidently by comparing rates for the loan on the same day with two or three lenders. The is rates change daily so be sure and ask for your LOAN ESTIMATE from the lenders on the same day. 
About running that RMCR report with your 'First-Choice' lender: Get the FICO scores and review or choose another lender. The rest should go off your Consumer two-page FICO scores you are entitled to recieve.
Happy hunting and remember, you have only 14 days to recieve full lender approval once you make a successful offer on a home so get that pre-approval first!

Posted by Anne James on November 6th, 2018 9:07 AM
What Is the FHA 203K Program?

The FHA 203K loan program provides home buyers the opportunity to buy and fix up a property, without exhausting their personal savings.  Home buyers can purchase a property and include whatever costs to make required repairs or desired updates, or to fully renovate the property, all into one simple thirty-year fixed loan.   ALL work starts after, not during escrow, the purchase of the property, using the money set aside by the lender.
Image result for How much do you have to put down on a 203k loan?
To qualify for a 203k loanyou'll need to meet the same requirements as any other FHA loan: Your credit score must be at least 620 or 640, depending on the lender. Your maximum debt-to-income ratio can only be 41% to 45% You need a down payment (or home equity if you are refinancing) of 3.5% or more.
What are the drawbacks to an FHA 203k loan? For one, the interest rate is higher than an a simple FHA Purchase loan or refinance. Secondly, it takes some work; you must get bids on the repairs or renovations approved by the underwriter and the money is withheld and invoices submitted to escrow for payment. Also, there is a limit to the renovation loan amount-usually $35,000 up to 100%.
For more information, call Anne E James at 562-320-0510 or email

Posted by Anne James on July 30th, 2018 11:06 AM
Homeowners who might provide a listing for potential Homebuyers won't sell as buying another home, whether bigger or downsizing, means a mortgage with a rate hihger-- one to two percent higher than their current home. In addtion, the new home will be up to thirty or forty percent higher in price than their current home. Historically low rates and rising prices have created a pressure cooker for desperate buyers who are moving to lower-priced counties with a long commute or simply to other states such as Nevada, Texas, or even across country if job offers await at higher pay.
Potentially exisiting home sales rose by 3.3 percent, or a gain of 194,100 sales, per First American Financial Corp. statistics. That market is under-perforning by 4.2 percent or 256,000 in sales, locking out would-be homebuyers and literally locking in potential home sellers. That's a big market out there to sell your home to or a lot of equity locked up in a low-rate on existing homes.
One answer to rate-locked homeowners is to take cash out of their existing home in the form of a Home Equity Line of Credit to downsize or move to a retirement state. With historically high rents, waiting for rates to come down while collecting rent may make sense.
Anne E James is a California-licensed Mortgage Broker with 23 years experience in lending. You can email her at
Posted by Anne James on July 23rd, 2018 5:08 PM
Buying a home and finding homeowners insurance at the last minute is a drag on you, the buyer, and, Reliance Mortgage Service, the lender. Here's the best unbiased comparison of homeowners insurance companies I've seen from LendEDU, a nonprofit consumer company:
Lendedu Best Homeowners Insurance 2018

Click on the link and you'll find student loan comparisons and more!

Best, Anne E James, 

Posted by Anne James on June 27th, 2018 5:46 PM
Posted in:VA Loans and tagged: Rocket Loan Depot Freedom
Posted by Anne James on April 3rd, 2018 7:11 AM
Posted by Anne James on March 20th, 2018 7:20 AM
Mortgage Rates Lowest In Weeks

Mortgage rates fell today following a tame read on inflation as well as the announcement of Rex Tillerson's departure from the White House.  The Consumer Price Index--the most widely followed economic report on consumer-level inflation--showed prices moving up 0.2% in February (rounded up from 0.1501%).  The median forecast called for a 0.2% increase.  

When inflation is falling (or rising more slowly), it tends to benefit bond markets, thus pushing rates lower.  Given that the inflation data was fairly close to forecasts, it didn't have any sort of extreme impact today, but it added some downward pressure on rates.  The Tillerson news came out a few minutes later.  Markets reacted as they typically do to news that creates uncertainty with stocks and rates moving lower together.  But since Tillerson's departure wasn't a huge surprise, it too failed to cause a profound move lower in rates.  

Even then, we have to separate the intraday rate movement that exists in bond markets from the 1-3x per day rate sheet changes from mortgage lenders.  As of this afternoon, most lenders are still on their first rate sheet of the day.  Even so, those rates had improved enough to make them the lowest in more than a week.  That said, many borrowers will still see the same NOTE rates as yesterday with the improvement coming in the form of lower upfront costs or a higher lender credit (aka, lower EFFECTIVE rate, not lower NOTE rate).

Posted by Anne James on March 13th, 2018 4:42 PM


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