Is It Getting Any Easier To Get A Mortgage Loan?

Northern VA Mortgages

One of the great things about working with seasoned, top producing Realtors is that they have their hands not just on the pulse of the real estate market, but on the mortgage market as well. Otherwise, you may just be rolling the dice!

Here at The Belt Team, we have several top notch lenders we work with – some of whom we have worked with for almost 30 years. (That’s like eternity in the loan business!) This is a win-win not just for our current buyer clients, but also for our past clients who may be looking to refinance with today’s favorable interest rates! (Call us at 703-242-3975 if you need a referral.)

Last week we met with one of our trusted partners (John Clark Jr with New Penn Financial) and he provided us with some great news. His company has made enhancements to some of their mortgage products that may just benefit YOU. Here are the highlights:

A non QM loan!

  • Debt-to-Income (DTI) Offering up to 55%
  • Interest Only Available
  • Non-Warrantable Condos
  • Expanded Timeline for Use of Projected Income
  • Open to First Time Homebuyers

JUMBO Advantage:

The maximum LTV/CLTV/HCLTV for Cash‐out Refinances from $1,000,001
to $1,500,000 has been increased to 75% (from 70%).

80‐10‐10 Loan Option: These used to be very popular, but are much harder to find in today’s market.

INVESTOR Loan Limit: We have increased the number of properties to be able to finance to 10,with Fannie Mae approval and unlimited number of properties financed, if we are financing a primary residence.

Qualified Assets as Income: We will now accept any qualified/retirement asset as potential
passive income, even 401k accounts. We also follow Fannie’s revised rule that permits us to divide the asset by the actual term of the new loan to determine income available. (This is great news for our high net worth clients!)

Contact John Clark directly for details and more information!

Not only is all of this great news for certain clients who will take advantage of these programs, but we see it as a positive sign in the market that the stronger institutions are loosening up their guidelines and taking somewhat of a more common sense approach. Kudos to New Penn Financial!

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National Housing Update By The Numbers

Wondering where things are in the housing market on a national level? Watch this 1 minute video for an update on home sales, home prices & interest rates.

If you’re thinking about buying or selling a home in Northern Virginia, call The Belt Team at (703) 242-3975 to find out what’s happening in YOUR neighborhood – because in real estate, it’s all about LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION!

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Wondering how much you can afford? Contact John Clark with New Penn Financial (our preferred lender) for a confidential pre-approval.

Mortgage Minute: New Expanded FHA & VA Guidelines From NPF Benefit Home Buyers

Today’s “Mortgage Minute” is just in from our trusted lending partner, Senior Loan Officer Paul Diaz with New Penn Financial! If you’re thinking of buying a home in Northern Virginia this year – this may interest you!

Northern VA Mortgage Financing          Home Mortgages in Northern Virginia


“Please let your homebuyers know that qualifying for an FHA and VA loan with
New Penn Financial has never been easier! With New Penn’s unparalleled customer service and far-reaching guidelines, more borrowers gain access to a mortgage to purchase their new home. Here are some of the things we may be able to do:

  • FICOs (credit scores) starting at 580 (FHA) and 560 (VA)
  • Increased DTI (debt-to-income ratio) limits up to 60%
  • Revised tradeline requirements
  • Government down payment assistance permitted

Note that these are not set-in-stone guidelines, but we may have flexibility in these areas when compensating factors are involved. Examples of compensating factors would be high income, large assets or long time on the job.

When the market is contracting as a whole, New Penn Financial, LLC is expanding what we offer! Don’t hesitate to contact us. You may be pleasantly surprised that you can buy a home sooner than you think!


Contact Paul Diaz at New Penn Financial for full details of program guidelines.

Mortgage Minute For Homebuyers: Long Term Rate Lock For New Construction

Today’s “Mortgage Minute” comes from our trusted lending partner at New Penn Financial. Senior Loan Officer Paul Diaz tells us that his company is now offering a fantastic opportunity for homebuyers looking to buy a new construction  home.

Northern VA Mortgage Financing New Homes Sign

Most lenders lock in interest rates for buyers for a 60 day period. So if you are buying a home that’s under construction and it’s farther than 60 days out to completion, you used to have to worry about what would to happen to interest rates during that time period. Now you don’t!

Here’s what Paul says about the program:

“Building a home may take longer than the usual 60-day mortgage interest rate lock period. In fact, it almost always does! Fortunately, we have a product called “Home Builder Rate Lock Advantage“. With this product, you can lock in your rate for up to 360 days. No more sweating rate increases during construction. If rates drop, just reset to the lower rate. You can’t lose.

Here are the highlights for qualified borrowers:

  • Extended rate lock choices on FHA and conventional fixed-rate and adjustable-rate mortgages
  • The option to reset to a lower market rate before closing or shift to a better fitting mortgage at closing
  • An affordable lock-in fee that may be refunded in closing costs

Our “Home Builder Rate Lock Advantage” means total peace of mind— no matter which way rates go. It’s just one more way that New Penn helps make home ownership easier!”

Contact Paul Diaz.

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Mortgage Minute for HomeBuyers: “What’s A Qualified Mortgage?”

New mortgage guidlelines

If you’re buying a home in Northern Virginia, you may have heard talk of new mortgage guidelines & regulations, but aren’t sure what that means for you. So we asked our Partner Paul Diaz, Senior Loan Officer with New Penn Financial, to explain.

Northern VA Mortgage Financing
Paul Diaz


What Is A “Qualified Mortgage”?

Lenders that follow underwriting guidelines and product guidelines exactly when they write a loan will be considered to be making a ‘qualified mortgage”. “Qualified mortgages” will provide lenders and borrowers certain legal protections in the event the borrower should default.

Lenders will more than likely still write mortgage loans that are not considered to be qualified mortgages, but because they will lose some protection should the borrower default on a mortgage loan, most other lenders might just stick to the new definition and stay within the guidelines. This may mean less flexibility in the marketplace for some buyers.

Parameters for a qualified mortgage are as follows:

  • Have a loan term of 30 years or less.
  • Not have negative amortization (monthly payment must cover all the interest due).
  • Not be an “interest only” loan.
  • Not be a “balloon payment” loan where a large lump sum of the principal is due back at one time (exception made for small lenders).
  • Upfront points and fees must not exceed 3 percent of the total loan amount. Note: This cap on points and fees may make lenders less likely to offer smaller loans (less than $100,000).
  • Debt-to-income ratio may not exceed 43 percent. *Note: This can be superseded if the loan is originated and kept in portfolio by a qualified small lender, or if the loan is approved by FHA, VA, USDA, RHS, Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. But it may become harder for people with higher debt loads to get approved for a new home if they cannot stay below the 43 percent debt-to-income ratio.

This last guideline is likely to affect many Buyers in Northern Virginia.


If you’re wondering how much of a mortgage you can qualify for, contact our partner Paul Diaz at New Penn Financial. He can help you analyze the loan product that works best for your needs and help you get pre-approved for a mortgage. This gives you the power of a CASH buyer!

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Good News For Those Who Have Been Through Foreclosure, Short Sale or Bankruptcy

Here’s this week’s Mortgage Minute from our lending partner Paul Diaz at New Penn Financial:

Northern VA Mortgage Financing   Paul Diaz New Penn Financial

HUD announced some good news in August for borrowers who have been through foreclosure, short sale or bankruptcy – and lenders just started to roll it out this month. If this profile fits you and you’re ready to buy a home, here’s what you need to know about the program we are offering:

Program For Shorter Waiting Period after Bankruptcy, Foreclosure, and Short Sale.

The waiting period after a bankruptcy, foreclosure, or short sale has been reduced to just one year from the event!

Thumbs Up To The Belt Team

Program Requirements:

1. Purchase Transactions Only

2. Housing counseling must be completed 30 days prior to loan application

3. The bankruptcy, foreclosure or short sale must be related directly to the loss of job OR 20% income reduction for at least 6 months

4. Credit must have been satisfactory before the bankruptcy, foreclosure or short sale and be satisfactory for a minimum of 12 months after the event.

*** Program requirements may change

Belt Team CEO Terry Belt comments, “We are thrilled to be partnering with a lender who shares our values and whose mission is to help change lives for the better. Not only does New Penn Financial offer the program above, but they have all kinds of niche products that fit the many needs of our clients.”

Contact Paul Diaz at New Penn Financial for more information. Buying a home could happen sooner than you hoped!

Unusual Mortgage Financing May Help You!

Box with Bow

Mortgage underwriters (the people who actually “approve” your loan when you’re buying a house or refinancing) like to think that everyone fits into a little square box with a nice big ribbon on top. But homebuyers are not all the same.

If you have a situation that may be a bit outside the box, don’t worry. We have a wonderful resource for portfolio loans in Northern Virginia! (Portfolio loans are loans that are held by the lender, rather than being sold on the secondary market. As a result, the lender can often be more flexible in their underwriting guidelines.)

Here are some examples where our lender partner may be able to help you:

Check MarkYOU’RE SELF-EMPLOYED– but have been self-employed for less than the standard 2 year requirement. Our lender can work with just 1 year of self-employed or commission income..


Check MarkYOU’RE FINANCING A LUXURY HOME and only want to make a 15-20% down payment. Our lender can do 85% LTV to $1 million and 80% LTV to $1.5 million  (owner occupied.)

Northern VA Mortgage FinancingThere are lots of other ways our lender can help. If you don’t fit inside that neatly wrapped borrower gift box, and you want to buy or refinance a home in Northern VA – don’t give up! Reach out to our lender, Paul Diaz with New Penn Financial. There’s a good chance he can help!