Mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac announced recently that first-time Suffolk County NY homebuyers may be seeing a game changer with lower 3 percent down payment requirements. This is designed to expand credit for qualified home shoppers who may have been sidelined the last few years because of higher down-payment requirements.

A recent examination of what's holding back Suffolk County NY homebuyers argues that the down payment is the biggest challenge for first timers.

Suffolk County NY Homebuyers to see 3 percent down payment options from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac

These loans will meet Fannie Mae's usual eligibility requirements, including underwriting, income documentation and risk management standards. These loans will require private mortgage insurance or other risk sharing, as is required on purchase loans acquired by the company with greater than 80% LTV.

Any Suffolk County NY homebuyers can take advantage of Fannie's loans as long as at least one co-borrower is a first-time buyer.

New Option Not Just for Suffolk County NY Homebuyers

Eligible homeowners who wish to refinance their Fannie Mae-owned mortgage but do not qualify under the Home Affordable Refinance Program can refinance their loan up to the 97% LTV level under a limited cash-out option.

Fannie Mae says it has implemented prudent risk management practices to ensure that loans the company acquires are appropriately underwritten, including mortgages with lower down payments. These include essentially eliminating risk-layering on purchase money loans, requiring income documentation to avoid "low-doc" or "no-doc" lending, and requiring income verification.

Fannie Mae has also worked to provide lenders with greater clarity on what circumstances would result in a loan repurchase request. Some lenders have said that uncertainty around these requests has led to them curtailing mortgage availability. This new clarity is intended to help lenders make mortgages to more creditworthy borrowers.

Similarly, Freddie Mac announced its Home Possible Advantage program, an affordable conforming, conventional mortgage with a 3% down payment to help more first-time Suffolk County NY homebuyers jump into the market.

Get more information about becoming a Suffolk County NY homebuyer and news affecting mortgage rates and qualifications in our section on Suffolk County NY Mortgage Info to your right under Suffolk County NY Real Estate Categories.

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Suffolk County is one of 62 counties in New York. The county is in the New York metro area. We can help you find real estate in any of these areas of Suffolk County: Babylon, Bellport, Centereach, Cold Spring Harbor, Commack, Dix Hills, Farmingdale, Farmingville, Greenlawn, Half Hollow Hills, Hauppague, Holbrook, Holtsville, Huntington, Islandia, Islip, Lake Grove, Lake Ronkonkoma, Lindenhurst, Melville, Oakdale, Patchogue, Sayville, and Smithtown. Just click the "Search for Suffolk County NY Real Estate" link at the top or bottom of this page.

As the year is winding down, some December deals are starting to heat up. But not everything is a bargain. Some things you should definitely avoid buying in December, and some things, depending on when you buy during the month, can be a real bargain…

We have more tips for you at the link to your right under Suffolk County NY Real Estate Categories. And don't forget, Follow us on Twitter and Like us on Facebook!

Suffolk County is one of 62 counties in New York. The county is in the New York metro area. We can help you find real estate in any of these areas of Suffolk County: Babylon, Bellport, Centereach, Cold Spring Harbor, Commack, Dix Hills, Farmingdale, Farmingville, Greenlawn, Half Hollow Hills, Hauppague, Holbrook, Holtsville, Huntington, Islandia, Islip, Lake Grove, Lake Ronkonkoma, Lindenhurst, Melville, Oakdale, Patchogue, Sayville, and Smithtown. Just click the "Search for Suffolk County NY Real Estate" link at the top or bottom of this page.

Many young "would-be" Suffolk County NY homebuyers are finding themselves in a position that young Suffolk County NY homebuyers haven't been in before.

Statistics tell us there aren't as many young Suffolk County NY homebuyers as there used to be. Thirty-six percent of American homeowners are 35 and younger, the lowest on record since 1982, when the census's Housing Vacancy Survey began tracking homeownership by age. Those age 65 and older have a much higher rate of homeownership – 80 percent – but that's expected. The longer you live, the more time you've had to save and buy a house.

Many young Suffolk County NY homebuyers are beginning to wonder if they've done something wrong, and will they ever have a place of their own.

Suffolk County NY homebuyers are finding themselves facing financial hurdles

Financial Hurdles for Suffolk County NY Homebuyers Today

There are numerous factors pushing against millennials' plans to become Suffolk County NY homebuyers, including the economic hangover from the recession, but student loans are a major obstacle. Even if a lender doesn't see your massive student loan debt as something that could prevent you from making a mortgage payment, plenty of potential homeowners do.

Student loans have kept many potential Suffolk County NY homebuyers on the sidelines in recent years, and that trend is poised to get even worse going forward.

Other "would-be-buyers" are burdened with the lack of any credit history at all. Lenders generally see you as a risk if you have no credit history.

The best advice most lenders have for young Suffolk County NY homebuyers is to establish some credit as soon as possible. Getting a credit card will help, providing you don't abuse it and turn no credit into bad credit. The average millennial is two to four times more likely to make a late payment than older generations. So be careful with credit cards.

Your geography may be an obstacle. If you graduated from college and moved to  Suffolk County NY with a lot of student debt and no other credit, your chances for becoming one of the few Suffolk County NY homebuyers in your age bracket to own their own home is slim.

If you have good credit, a good job, some funds for a down payment, and are not strapped with a lot of student debt, getting a mortgage may still be a challenge if you're using the bigger lenders. Sometimes it's better to shop the smaller lenders and credit unions. Oftentimes they may be willing to keep your mortgage "in-house" rather than re-selling your loan to Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac.

Smaller lenders can work around some circumstances and situations with less red tape, and without having to worry about guidelines on the loan resale market.

Consider an FHA loan. These loans are insured by the Federal Housing Administration and are for first-time Suffolk County NY homebuyers, although the FHA defines that as anyone who hasn't owned a house in three years. Generally, you'll need a down payment of at least 3.5 percent and a credit score of at least 580, although some lenders won't even begin a discussion unless you're in the mid-600s.

Talk to as many lenders as possible, and see what specific programs they offer and what the best rate around is. Go in person to a branch office and speak directly with a loan officer. Your chances of becoming one of the newest Suffolk County NY homebuyers is much better going that route than trying to apply online, or through a larger lender.

We can help you find the best lender for your set of circumstances. Contact us and let us help you get on the right path to becoming a Suffolk County NY homebuyer.

Suffolk County is one of 62 counties in New York. The county is in the New York metro area. We can help you find real estate in any of these areas of Suffolk County: Babylon, Bellport, Centereach, Cold Spring Harbor, Commack, Dix Hills, Farmingdale, Farmingville, Greenlawn, Half Hollow Hills, Hauppague, Holbrook, Holtsville, Huntington, Islandia, Islip, Lake Grove, Lake Ronkonkoma, Lindenhurst, Melville, Oakdale, Patchogue, Sayville, and Smithtown. Just click the "Search for Suffolk County NY Real Estate" link at the top or bottom of this page.

According to the latest forecast from Freddie Mac's economists, Suffolk County NY mortgage rates are expected to hit 5 percent for a 30-year fixed rate loan in 2015.

Expect to see interest rates climb throughout 2015, with yields on the 10-year Treasury averaging about 2.9 percentage points, up from about 2.6 percentage points in 2014, and 30-year fixed Suffolk County NY mortgage rates mortgage gradually climbing, averaging 4.6 percent and rising to 5.0 percent by the end of next year.

Economists expect higher Suffolk County NY mortgage rates in 2015

Rising Suffolk County NY Mortgage Rates May Dampen Affordability

Meanwhile price increases are expected to slow from the 9.3 percent pace we saw in 2013, the 4.5 percent we saw this year, and 3.0 percent in 2015. Continued house price appreciation and rising Suffolk County NY mortgage rates will dampen homebuyer affordability.

Total housing starts in 2015 will increase by 20 percent and total home sales will increase by about 5 percent over that time period to the best sales pace in eight years.

Single-family originations will fall an additional 8 percent from 2014 to 2015 to $1.1 trillion annualized as increases in purchase-money lending are insufficient to offset a drop in refinance. Refinance is expected to make up just 23 percent of originations in 2015.

The good news for 2015 is that the U.S. economy appears well poised to sustain about a 3 percent growth rate in 2015 — only the second year in the past decade with growth at that pace or better. There are several reasons for the better economic performance. Governmental fiscal drag has turned into fiscal stimulus, lower energy costs support consumer spending and business investment, further easing of credit conditions for business and real estate lending support commerce and development, and more upbeat consumer and business confidence, all of which portend faster economic growth in 2015.

With that, the economy will produce more and better-paying jobs, providing the financial wherewithal to support household formations and housing activity. All of this according to Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac vice president and chief economist.

With the forecast of higher Suffolk County NY mortgage rates on the horizon, there may never be a more affordable time to buy a home than right now. Talk to us about rates, and where prices are for Suffolk County NY housing. We're here to help.

Don't forget, we also post daily at Twitter, and Facebook as well. We'd love for you to check us out there as well.

Suffolk County is one of 62 counties in New York. The county is in the New York metro area. We can help you find real estate in any of these areas of Suffolk County: Babylon, Bellport, Centereach, Cold Spring Harbor, Commack, Dix Hills, Farmingdale, Farmingville, Greenlawn, Half Hollow Hills, Hauppague, Holbrook, Holtsville, Huntington, Islandia, Islip, Lake Grove, Lake Ronkonkoma, Lindenhurst, Melville, Oakdale, Patchogue, Sayville, and Smithtown. Just click the "Search for Suffolk County NY Real Estate" link at the top or bottom of this page.

The burden of Suffolk County NY household costs fell for the third consecutive year, according to the U.S. Census’ 2013 American Community Survey. Nationwide last year, 39.6 million households spent more than 30 percent of their income on housing, which is a decrease from 40.9 million in 2012 and down from the peak of 42.7 million in 2010.

Suffolk County NY household costs are mostly dropping among home owners, while they continue to strain renters

Suffolk County NY household costs are mostly dropping among home owners, while they continue to strain renters, according to a recent analysis by the Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies of the data. In 2013, 26 percent of home owners were considered burdened by household expenses (i.e.: spending more than 30 percent of their income on housing), compared to half of all renters at 49 percent.

Why Suffolk County NY Household Costs Are Escalating For Renters

The number of renter households is on the rise, which partially explains why Suffolk County NY household costs for renters are escalating. But renters are also plagued by rising rents that are not matching incomes. Median renter costs were up about 5 percent in 2013 compared to 2001, even though median incomes were nearly 11 percent lower, according to the report.

This has led to more renters being severely burdened by Suffolk County NY household costs in 2013, paying more than 50 percent of their incomes toward housing costs. 11.2 million renters were in this category.

The number of home owners burdened with higher Suffolk County NY household costs is dropping. After surging during the housing bubble, inflation-adjusted owner costs have dropped about 2.5 percent below their 2001 level. Owner burdens are also down due to a significant reduction in the overall number of home owners in 2013 than 2012. This decline in the number of home owners for the third straight year suggests that many burdened owners dropped out of ownership, moving into the costly rental market.

Get more timely information about Suffolk County NY household costs and news affecting those costs in our section on Suffolk County NY Real Estate News to the right under Suffolk County NY Real Estate Categories.

We post daily to Twitter, and also on our Facebook Page. We'd love you to check us out there too.

Suffolk County is one of 62 counties in New York. The county is in the New York metro area. We can help you find real estate in any of these areas of Suffolk County: Babylon, Bellport, Centereach, Cold Spring Harbor, Commack, Dix Hills, Farmingdale, Farmingville, Greenlawn, Half Hollow Hills, Hauppague, Holbrook, Holtsville, Huntington, Islandia, Islip, Lake Grove, Lake Ronkonkoma, Lindenhurst, Melville, Oakdale, Patchogue, Sayville, and Smithtown. Just click the "Search for Suffolk County NY Real Estate" link at the top or bottom of this page.
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