106 Mortgage Secrets All Homebuyers Must Learn - But Lenders Don't Tell

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One of America’s top real estate authorities explains the inside secrets of the mortgage business

Each year, more than ten million American homebuyers, homeowners, and realty investors enter the mortgage arena to finance or refinance their homes and rental properties. And each year, millions of borrowers pay more than they have to. But you won’t be one of them with Gary Eldred’s 106 Mortgage Secrets All Homebuyers Must Learn–But Lenders Don’t ...

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One of America’s top real estate authorities explains the inside secrets of the mortgage business

Each year, more than ten million American homebuyers, homeowners, and realty investors enter the mortgage arena to finance or refinance their homes and rental properties. And each year, millions of borrowers pay more than they have to. But you won’t be one of them with Gary Eldred’s 106 Mortgage Secrets All Homebuyers Must Learn–But Lenders Don’t Tell.

Eldred explains all of your mortgage options and gives you the inside information you need to make the most intelligent money-saving choices. He simplifies the complicated math of mortgage financing and tells you how to make sure your loan rep is being honest with you. He covers every aspect of the mortgage process and highlights the key criteria you should always consider when making your decision. With these 106 secrets, you’ll have the confidence and the knowledge to:

  • Increase your borrowing power
  • Get the lowest interest rate
  • Understand ARMs
  • Cut the cost of mortgage insurance
  • Save big with seller financing, foreclosures, and REOs
  • Perfect your credit profile
  • Avoid getting taken by the fine print
  • Get maximum return on your home investment

There’s no reason to get a good mortgage, when you can get the perfect one for you. Simple, concise, and comprehensive, this book covers everything mortgage hunters should know–especially the 106 secrets lenders don’t want to reveal.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780471263951
  • Publisher: Wiley, John & Sons, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 3/21/2003
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 271
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 9.01 (h) x 0.79 (d)

Meet the Author

GARY W. ELDRED, PhD, has been a successful real estate investor for over twenty years and has served on the business school faculty at Stanford University and the University of Virginia. He is also the author of numerous real estate titles, such as the Make Money series; The 106 Common Mistakes Homebuyers Make (and How to Avoid Them), Third Edition; Value Investing in Real Estate; The Complete Guide to Second Homes for Vacations, Retirement, and Investment; Yes! You Can Own the Home You Want; and coauthor of Investing in Real Estate, Fourth Edition, all from Wiley.
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Table of Contents

Introduction: Will You Pay Too Much for Too Little?


Secret #1. Affordability Depends on You.

Secret #2. How You Choose Your Property and Arrange Financing Will Add (or subtract) Tens (or even hundreds) of Thousands of Dollars to (from) Your Net Worth.

Secret #3. Separate the Emotional from the Financial.

Secret #4. Align Your Self-Talk with Your Priorities.

Secret #5. Don't Focus on the Kind of Home You Want Now, Focus on the Kind of Home You want 5, 10, or 15 Years From Now.


Secret #6. 10,000 Lenders Set Their Own Standards.

Secret #7. You Can Make Your Qualifying Ratios Look Better.

Secret #8. You Can Lift Your Qualifying Income.

Secret #9. Reduce Your Disqualifying Debt.

Secret #10. Use Compensating Factors to Justify Higher Qualifying Ratios.

Secret #11. Never Fib to a Lender.

Secret #12. Can't Qualify on Your Own? Enlist the Help of a Cosigner, Co-Borrower, or Co-Owner.

Secret #13. Let Tenants pay Your Mortgage.

Secret #14. Don't Change Your Loan Status.


Secret #15. Most Borrowers Who Want a Long-Term Fixed-Rate Loan Should Choose 15 years, not 30.

Secret #16. Lower Interest Rate Means Big Savings.

Secret #17. Lower rates Magnify Borrowing Power.

Secret #18. ARMs Can Offer Greater Borrowing Power, Lower Costs, with Manageable risk.

Secret #19. State and Local Housing finance Agencies Offer Low-Interest Mortgage Bond Loans.

Secret #20. Assume a Low Interest Rate Mortgage.

Secret #21. "Assume" a Nonassumable Mortgage.

Secret #22. Save $1000s with a Mortgage Credit Certificate (MCC).

Secret #23. Seek Employer Assistance (or seek an employer who give assistance).

Secret #24. Trade Off Points for a Lower Interest Rate.

Secret #25. Negotiate a Temporary Buydown with the Sellers.

Secret #26. New Home Builders Offer Mortgage Incentives.

Secret #27. How to Borrow Jumbo Amounts Without Paying Jumbo Rates.

Secret #28. Your After-Tax, Cost of Borrowing May not be as Low as You've Been Told.


Secret #29. ARMs do not Necessarily Present More Risk Than Fixed-Rate Loans.

Secret #30. ARMs for the Short-Term Don't Always Prove Best.

Secret #31. ARMs for the Long-Run: How to Lower Costs and Alleviate "Risk".

Secret #32. You Can (sort of) Forecast Interest Rates.

Secret #33. Watch Out for Low Teaser Rates.

Secret #34. Your Start (teaser) Rate Isn't Your Contract Rate.

Secret #35. No One Best Index.

Secret #36. Don't Ignore the Margin.

Secret #37. All Caps Aren't Created Equally.

Secret #38. That Flashy Convertible Could Prove to be a Clunker.

Secret #39. APRs tell You Nothing About ARMs (and very little about fixed-rates).


Secret #40. Emphasize all 5 Cs of Credit Approval.

Secret #41. Credit Scores can Shape Your Destiny.

Secret #42. Your Credit "Score" Doesn't Necessary Represent Your Credit Strength.

Secret #43. You Can Discover Your Credit Scores.

Secret #44. You Can Improve Your Credit Score(s).

Secret #45. Garbage in, Garbage Out (GIGO).

Secret #46.Credit Repair Firms Can't Fix Your Credit or Boost Your Credit Scores.

Secret #47. Credit Counselor Can Scam You, Too.

Secret #48. Credit Counselors and Debt Management Firms Do Not Improve Your Credit Record or Boost Your Credit Score.

Secret #49. Bankruptcy (Chapter 7) Doesn't Ruin Your Credit.

Secret #50. Your Ex-Spouse can Ruin Your Credit (and other tales of double counting).


Secret #51. You Can Buy with Little or Nothing Down.

Secret #52. No Matter How Much You earn, FHA May Hold the Key to Your Home Financing.

Secret #53. Discover FHA's Best Kept Secret: The 203 (k) Program.

Secret #54. Too Many Vets Pass up VA Loans.

Secret #55. The USDA Offers a Prime Choice for Low- to Moderate Income Homebuyers.

Secret #56. Community Lending Goes Mainstream.

Secret #57. Not-for-Profit Housing Groups Help People in Need to Buy and Finance Homes.

Secret #58. Local Governments Assist with Down Payments.

Secret #59. Even Fannie and Freddie Accept Little- or Nothing-Down Loans.

Secret #60. Cut the Cost of PMI by Learning Where Rates Break.

Secret #61. Before You Obtain a PMI Little- or Nothing-Down Loan, Understand the High Cost You'll be Paying.

Secret #62. Reduce the High Cost of Low Down Payments with a Second Mortgage.

Secret #63. Use Pledged Collateral to Eliminate PMI.

Secret #64. Search for Sellers with Low-Equity Assumables.

Secret $65. You Can Avoid PMI with a Higher Interest Rate Mortgage.


Secret #66. Sellers can Nearly Always Beat the Banks at Their Own Game, But You Must Do More Than Ask.

Secret #67. Ask the Seller and Lender to Cooperate with a Refi Blend.

Secret #68. Bridge the Assumable Gap with a Seller Second.

Secret #69. Avoid the Bang of a Bursting Balloon.

Secret #70. Buy on the Installment Plan.

Secret #71. Try it Before You Buy It.

Secret #72. Buy and Lease Simultaneously.

Secret #73. Beat High Interest Rates with Wraparound Financing.

Secret #74. Don't Dilly-Dally with Due Deligence.

Secret #75. Negotiate a Pre-Foreclosure Workout.

Secret #76. Buy (carefully) at the Foreclosure Sale.

Secret #77. Locate a foreclosure Pro.

Secret #78. HUD May Hold the Keys to Your Home or Investment Property.

Secret #79. VA Offers Deals to Both Veterans and Non-Veterans.

Secret #80. Let Fannie or Freddie Treat You to Below-market Financing.

Secret #81. Buy and Finance Directly with a Lender.


Secret #82. It's a Jungle Out There.

Secret #83. Tell Your Loan Rep to Take Out the Garbage.

Secret #84. Don't Place Much Faith in the Good Faith Estimate.

Secret #85. What's the Real Cost of a No Cost Mortgage?

Secret #86. Does Your Loan Permit Unlimited Prepayment?

Secret #87. An Assumable Loan May Offer Much Less Than You've Assumed.

Secret #88. Appraised Value Doesn't Necessary Equal Market Value.

Secret #89. On Occasion, Lenders Want Appraisers to Lowball Their Appraisals.

Secret #90. Appraisals Don't Forecast the Future.


Secret #91. Refuse to Yield to the Yield-Spread Premium.

Secret #92. Red and Yellow, Black and White, Lenders Treat Them All Alike.

Secret #93. Rate Quotes: Fact or Fiction?

Secret #94. What Rate Will You Get at Closing?

Secret #95. Achieve Your Best Rate.

Secret #96. Industry Pros and Government Agencies Need Your Help.

Secret #97. How to (almost) Vanquish Tricks of the Trade.


Secret #98. Treat Your Home and Your Home Financing as an Investment.

Secret #99. Stay Alert for Opportunities to Refinance.

Secret 100. Use Refinancing to Create Other Benefits.

Secret #101. Refinance and Safely Invest the Proceeds.

Secret #102. Never Buy Bi-Weekly Baloney.

Secret #103. Cancel Your PMI. Get a Refund from FHA.

Secret #104. Negotiate Out of Escrow.

Secret #105. Just Say No to Home Equity Loans.

Secret #106. Trouble, Trouble, What to Do?

Conclusion: You Can Live on the House.


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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 21, 2004

    Great Investment

    For 17 dollars you can arm yourself with the knowledge to ask the right questions during the mortgage hunt. For those of us not gifted with the legacy of strong financial skills this book is an excellent investment in changing that cycle for future generations. Read carefully, digest and supplement with your own research and you can begin the path to home ownership. As stated by an earlier reviewer this book is aimed at those of us with low cash reserves, credit concerns, and little access to capital, however aren't we the ones who could benefit most from this information? The process of wealth building must begin somewhere and this is as good a place to start as any. I was particularly pleased to read the debunking of many mortgage myths i've heard a million times (and I'm sure you have too!) Happy Reading!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 23, 2004

    Not for well-qualified mortgage applicants

    The secrets are mostly geared to help those with bad credit, little downpayment, moderate-to-low income, etc. The author has lots of ideas for creative financing to get you into a house if you really can't afford it. But if you are in a good credit and financial situation, then a trustworthy mortgage broker can easily take the place of this book.

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