How To Reduce Your Closing Costs



The good thing about closing costs is that they’re negotiable, in some respects.  You can’t avoid paying underwriting fees or taxes to the government, for example, but you can arrange to have loan costs paid on your behalf.

It’s called a “zero-cost mortgage”.

A zero-cost mortgage is exactly what it sounds like — it’s a mortgage in which all closing costs are paid by the lender instead of the borrower. Loan sizes don’t increase and nothing is “rolled in”.  It’s a true no-cost loan.  However, there is a trade-off.  In order to have your closing costs waived in full, you’ll be asked to accept a higher mortgage rate than the “market” rate.

For larger loan sizes, the bump to interest rate is usually about a quarter-percent; for smaller sizes, it’s about a half.

Zero-cost mortgages are excellent in a falling interest rate environment because they limit  costs to zero, and because they offer an immediate payback.  Not every bank or lender will offer them, though.  Horizon Financial, Inc. does.

If you’d like to see the math on a zero-cost mortgage,  call or email me. I’m happy to talk to you about it.

Posted by Bob Dangelo, a senior Loan Officer with over 20 years mortgage lending experience.  You can reach Bob toll free at Horizon Financial (877) 627-9211 ext 110 in Greenville, SC    864-527-8900 ext 110 or email at

Existing Home Sales Inch Up In August

Sales of existing homes recovered in August, perhaps the result of a post-tax credit normalization.

As compared to July, Existing Home Sales rose 8% in August, buoyed by falling interest rates and slow-to-rise home prices. There’s lot of “good deals” out there and home buyers in Simpsonville are taking advantage.

The housing gains are relative, however. August’s total units sold barely crossed 4 million and still trails the average figures of the last few years by close to 1 million units.

Despite that, the August Existing Home Sales report can be considered a strong one. This is for several reasons:

  1. Sales volume increased in August without tax credit or government intervention
  2. Sales growth is not limited by geography. All 4 regions — Northeast, Southeast, Midwest, and West — showed improvement last month.
  3. Repeat buyers are driving the market, representing 48 percent of sales, up from forty-three percent in July.

And, perhaps most important to the housing market market, the number of available home resales dropped by almost one full month last month.  At the current sales pace, the national inventory would be depleted in 11.6 months.

For home buyers, the data presents an interesting opportunity. With average mortgage rates rising from their best levels ever and home affordability cresting in places like Riverwalk , this autumn may represent the turn-around point for the housing market nationwide.

If you’re planning to move in early-2011, consider moving up your time frame.

Posted by Scott Fowler.