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Welcome to your constantly updated resource for news and views on the Brookline Real Estate market. Here you will find commentary and statistics to explain the daily changes in the Brookline specific housing market.

Whether you're looking for an estate in Cottage Farm, a condo in Brookline Village or are just stopping by please feel free to read along and comment at will. If you are interested in speaking about renting an apartment, buyer representation or listing your home please feel free to contact me.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Critical Change to Mortgage Regulations for Buyers

One thing that nobody on the national level has discussed yet (as far as I can find) is the critical change in qualification requirements from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac on interest rates for mortgages. Officially effective on March 1st, but in practice in most cases already, banks are going to begin providing interest rates based on customers' FICO credit scores. Our in-house mortgage representatives from William Raveis provided us with a sample breakdown this morning which I will provide below:

The score categories are:

FICO below 620
620-639 FICO
640-659 FICO
660-679 FICO

The way this translates on a sample 6.125% rate is:

FICO below 620 - sample rate would change to 6.625% with one point being purchased
620-639 FICO - sample rate would change to 6.625% with 3/4 of a point being purchased
640-659 FICO - sample rate would change to 6.5% with 1/2 of a point being purchased
660-679 FICO - sample rate would change to 6.5% without any points being purchased
680 FICO and up - sample rate would apply

This is all pretty complex for a first-time home buyer to understand when they are not being advised by a strong mortgage professional. We will also see additional changes in the requirements for condominium association reviews by lenders. I will discuss those tomorrow.


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The views expressed on these pages are the opinion of the author and any public contributors. They do not substitute for the advice of a legal or financial professional. These opinions are not representative of any firm or business. Please always consult an attorney, financial professional or sign a contract with a Buyer Agent or Seller's Agent for specific advice.