In the Market: First impressions matter

Nneka Madus
Posted by Nneka Madus
Mortgage Market Analyst

This feature is a real estate news and information roundup from a millennial’s point of view. When a young professional moves from Indianapolis (median home price $125K) to San Francisco (median price $1 million), you can expect an adventure. Nneka Madus, an analyst in Bank of the West’s Mortgage Division, did just that and has plenty to share in her quest to own a home in San Francisco.

Young father and mother with two kids entering their new home carrying boxes, smiling.First impressions matter. Experts say that you only have a seven-second window to make a first impression on someone. The same can be said for homes, according to Kimberly Dawn Neumann’s article. Buyers, she writes, know within seconds if your home is The One. So, sellers, don’t leave all the pizzazz for the sprawling master suite because before you can count to eight your open house visitors have likely already decided if this house is the right one for them. They may not be waiting for the formal tour to make an assessment. Before selling your home, you may want to consider the selling strategies listed in Kimberly’s article to help strengthen your home’s first impression. Using some sneaky science could be the difference between your home lingering on the market or selling quickly.

Watch out for wire scams! Usually, being alert and promptly responding to your lender’s requests at each step of the application and review process helps a mortgage transaction run more smoothly. However, the rush to comply with requests from the lender may be a sweet spot for hackers. In this Washington Post guest column, Jill Chodorov, an associate broker, points out a trend in which hackers intercept email communications to try to steal money from loan applicants. Scammers may strike during the closing process, when the sense of urgency can be particularly high. Don’t let your hard-earned money end up in the wrong hands.

Three positive changes are coming in 2016 to Fannie Mae’s credit-scoring system. Two of the changes directly impact how lenders assess an applicant’s creditworthiness, and the other provides data analytics to help borrowers make better home-financing decisions. In this Housing Wire article, Brena Swanson goes into more detail about what these changes mean and how borrowers may benefit. Bottom line, Fannie Mae is implementing changes to make homeownership smarter, safer, and open to more consumers. For those in the market for a new home, getting a mortgage next year may be easier and cheaper.

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