A Complete Guide to Closing Costs in Kentucky


Who  pays Closing costs in Kentucky?

How much is closing Costs in Kentucky?

A Complete Guide to Closing Costs.

closing costs in Kentucky
closing costs in Kentucky

 Complete Guide to Closing Costs in Kentucky

A Complete Guide to Closing Costs

Types of Closing Costs

Let’s talk briefly about the types of closing costs you might encounter and how much those costs tend to run. Understand that closing costs, especially tax-related costs, will vary widely depending on where you live. But some costs can be estimated based on national averages.
Also, you should know that with fluctuations in the real estate market, closing costs are also fluctuating. A 2012 US News article pointed out that closing costs dropped 7 percent over 2011-2012 to an average of about $3,754.
The drops are, in part, because of 2010 regulations that were put in place by the government to shield homebuyers from “closing cost sticker shock.” Now that lenders are better at estimating final closing costs, those costs are dropping naturally.
Still, the national average for closing costs is nearly $4,000, which isn’t pocket change for your average homebuyer. So where’s all that money going? Here are some of the closing costs you might have to pay, along with average costs, based on the Allstate Home Buyers Closing Cost Worksheet.
  • Mortgage Application FeeThis fee varies from lender to lender but usually is $200-$400. You don’t have to pay this fee when you’re shopping around for a mortgage, but you’ll probably pay it when your chosen lender is processing your application. Sometimes this fee is due ahead of closing.
  • Appraisal Fee: This fee can sometimes be paid by the seller but is normally paid by the buyer. Basically, the fee goes to a professional appraiser who will ensure that the bank isn’t lending you more money than a property is worth. It’ll cost $100-$400.
  • Building InspectionIf you need to hire a home, pest or other specialized inspector, you’ll have to pay the fee. Some lenders will require an inspection to make sure the property is in good condition. This fee runs $150-$400 on average.
  • Survey: This is a fee you’re likely to skip, though it’s required by commercial lenders. It is for a surveyor to check out the lot and the structures on it to ensure the boundaries are properly noted. It can cost $300-$450.
  • Legal FeesAlthough attorney fees will add extra to your bill, you may want to pay a professional to ensure that all the documentation for your home is in order. Some lenders will bring along their own attorney, but yours will ensure that your personal interests are protected. Legal fees can run $300-$600, depending on your attorney and what you’re requiring of him or her.
  • Title Search and Insurance: A title insurance company will ensure that the title to the home is free and clear — that no one else will have claims on it. Sometimes a title search is separate from title insurance and will cost $150-$200. Title insurance varies but is usually about 1 percent of the home price.
  • Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI): If you put less than 20 percent down on your home, you’ll likely have to pay PMI. The average PMI premium is 2.5 percent of the mortgage, though your premium will vary depending on the value of your home, your credit score and your down payment. If you need PMI, you’ll likely have to pay a portion of the premium at closing. (Note: If you’re getting an FHA, VA or RHS government-backed loan, you’ll pay something like PMI, but it will be paid to the guarantor.)
  • Homeowners InsuranceAll lenders will require that you carry homeowners insurance on a property as long as it’s mortgaged. Typically, you’ll have to pay the first year’s property insurance premium in advance. Sometimes you’ll pay the insurer directly, but other times you’ll pay at closing.
  • Prepaid Interest: This one can get a little complicated. Let’s say your mortgage payment is due on the 1st of every month, but you close on your new home on the 15th. If this is the case, the lender will calculate the interest you owe for those 15-16 days remaining in the month, and that interest payment will be due at closing. Sometimes the seller reimburses these costs, since it’s often in his or her best interest to close as soon as possible — before your first mortgage payment is due. These costs will depend on your mortgage amount, interest rate and the time between closing and your first payment coming due.
  • Points: Points are another form of prepaid interest, but they’re generally not required. You can pay, usually, from 0-4 points on your mortgage. One point equals 1 percent of the total mortgage principal. (If you’re taking out a $100,000 loan, a point is $1,000, for instance.) One point usually reduces your interest rate by 1/8 percent. If you choose to pay points (rather than increasing your down payment), you’ll do so at closing.
  • Escrow Fees: The majority of homeowners use an escrow system for paying real estate taxes, fire and flood insurance, homeowners insurance and PMI. The escrow account is held either by a third party or by your lender, depending on your circumstances, and it’s used to pay all of the annual or monthly premiums for these important homeownership-related items. When you close on your home, you’ll generally need to put around three months’ worth of escrowed fees in the account.
  • Realty Transfer Tax: The taxes you pay on transferring a property are similar to the taxes you pay when you buy a new (or new-to-you) vehicle. Taxes vary by your state and municipality.
  • Recording Fees: Your local government will have to record the purchase transaction of your new home, which will cost $40-$60, on average.
  • Prorated Expenses: Some of the lump-sum costs associated with your home — water bills, homeowner association fees, condominium fees, etc. — could be split between you and the seller during your transaction. If you buy a home midway through the year, for instance, you may need to pay 50 percent of these fees. These expenses will depend on when you buy your home and are often negotiable with the seller

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Ways to Pay Closing Costs

There are several ways to pay closing costs. Start by getting a Good Faith Estimate and then figure out which option will work best for you.

Good Faith Estimate

According to the Federal Reserve, the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act requires that a lender give you a “good faith estimate” of your closing costs within three business days of your submitting your loan application.
Basically, the Good Faith Estimate (GFE) is part of shopping around for a mortgage. Because different lenders will have different requirements, closing costs can vary widely. So before you choose a mortgage, carefully look over the GFE to find differences between lenders.
While federal regulations aiming for more transparency in home lending have made good faith estimates somewhat more accurate, you have to remember that it’s still an estimate.
Saving for closing costs is a “hope for the best, plan for the worst” situation. Try to figure out the most you’d have to pay in closing costs and be prepared to pay them (while still leaving some cash in reserves). But you should also find the best lender for your needs and reduce closing costs as much as possible.

Pay in cash

The easiest way to pay closing costs, of course, is cash. If you have enough money in savings to pay for your down payment and your closing costs and to have cash in reserves, this is often the best option.
Paying more closing costs keeps you from taking out a bigger loan and can save you money on mortgage interest, which may save you a fortune over the life of your loan.

Roll it into the mortgage

If you don’t have plenty of cash on hand, you can roll your closing costs into your mortgage. Because closing costs are generally a small amount of money compared with your overall mortgage, most lenders don’t mind rolling part or all of the closing costs into the loan.
However, you do have to be careful because rolling your closing costs into your mortgage may mean you can’t spend as much money on a house. For instance, if, based on your credit, your lender agrees to finance up to 90 percent of the value of a $150,000 home, they may not go over that loan-to-value ratio, even to roll in closing costs.
In this scenario, say you’ve agreed to put $15,000 (10 percent) down on a home worth $150,000. Your lender agrees to finance 90 percent of the home’s value, leaving a $135,000 mortgage. If you don’t have cash for the $5,000 in closing costs, you could ask the lender to roll that into your loan, making your mortgage $140,000.
But if the lender isn’t comfortable financing 95 percent of the home’s value (a very high loan-to-value ratio in the world of home lending), you may be out of luck. In this case, you might have to find a cheaper home so that you can pay a smaller down payment and have money left for closing costs.
One thing to note: many government-backed loans, like the FHA and VA loans, are set up specifically for first-time or lower-income home buyers, who often have trouble saving for a down payment and closing costs. Because of this, it’s common for these loans to roll closing costs into the mortgage and to finance even above 95 percent of the home’s value.

Ask the seller to pay some costs

This is easier to accomplish in a sluggish housing market, or any time the seller is ready to get out of the home ASAP. In some cases, the seller will take part of the closing costs out of the money they’re getting when they sell the home.
If you don’t have money to pay closing costs, this is a good way to save money without increasing your loan (and, thus, your monthly mortgage payments). And what’s the worst that can happen? The seller may just say no.

Ask the lender to pay closing costs

Sometimes a lender will pay your closing costs, even if they don’t roll them into your mortgage. For instance, your lender might just outright pay $4,000 toward your closing costs but then raise the interest rate on your loan by 0.25 percent or more. (They’re not in the habit of giving away free money, after all.)
You’ll need to make sure this doesn’t come back to bite you. Figure out how much that extra interest will cost you over the life of your loan, or at least the length of time you plan to be in the home, and see if this is a reasonable approach for you.

Borrow for your closing costs

Taking out a separate loan for a down payment is usually a no-no. Your main lender wants to be the only one to have a claim on your home if you should default.
However, you could take out an unsecured loan to cover closing costs. Just be careful here, as interest rates could really bite on a personal unsecured loan.

Find Out How Much to Expect in Closing Costs

That’s a lot of information, and, unfortunately, it doesn’t tell you exactly how much you’ll pay in closing costs. You may not know exact closing costs until you’re ready to close on your home, but you can get a good idea of these costs online by using these resources:
  • SmartClosing Calculator – This calculator from Zillow will calculate costs based on where you’re buying a home, so taxes and government fees will be added in. The calculator will also show you the total amount you can expect to pay in mortgage payments, including real estate taxes and homeowner’s insurance.
  • Federal Reserve Settlement Costs Worksheet – This worksheet is good for comparing potential mortgage. It lets you compare the closing costs for two loans.
  • How do closing costs impact my interest rate? – This calculator from Yahoo! Homes will show you how financing closing costs, as opposed to paying them in cash, will affect your mortgage’s interest rate.

 

Call or text me at 502-905-3708 or email me at kentuckyloan@gmail.com NMLS#57916 Kentucky Mortgage Loan Only!

Joel Lobb
Mortgage Loan Officer
Individual NMLS ID #57916
 
American Mortgage Solutions, Inc.
10602 Timberwood Circle 
Louisville, KY 40223
Company NMLS ID #1364
 

Text/call:      502-905-3708

 

fax:            502-327-9119

email:
          kentuckyloan@gmail.com
 
 

 

The view and opinions stated on this website belong solely to the authors, and are intended for informational purposes only. The posted information does not guarantee approval, nor does it comprise full underwriting guidelines. This does not represent being part of a government agency. The views expressed on this post are mine and do not necessarily reflect the view of my employer. Not all products or services mentioned on this site may fit all people. NMLS ID# 57916, (www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org). Mortgage loans only offered in Kentucky.

Your Guide to Interest Rate Locks


Your Guide to Interest Rate Locks.

 

Guide to Rate Locks

Locking your interest rate gives you the best chance of receiving what you spent all that time shopping for.

Generally, the terms you are quoted when shopping among lenders represent the terms available to borrowers who are closing their loans immediately.

The quoted terms you receive may not be the terms available to you at closing; weeks or even months later.

Because of this you should not rely on the terms quoted to you when shopping for a mortgage loan unless the lender/loan officer is willing to lock-in the interest rate for you and this rate lock guide will help you do that.

What is an interest rate lock?

Rate locks, lock-ins or rate commitments, are a lender’s promise to hold a certain interest rate at a specified cost, usually for a certain time period, while your loan application is being processed.

Depending upon the loan officer, you may be able to lock in the interest rate and cost you will be charged when you file your application, during processing of the loan or when the loan is approved.

A rate lock given to you at the time of application may be useful because it’s likely to take your mortgage lender several weeks or longer to document and evaluate your loan application.

During this time, the cost of mortgages may go up or down.  But if your interest rate and cost are locked in, you should be protected against increases while your application is processed.

Keep in mind, if the lender finds information which is different then your original application the interest rate lock could well be voided and cause your interest rate and cost to go up substantially.

If you lose the rate lock you may not be able to afford the higher interest on the mortgage and thus lose the mortgage and the house you’re purchasing.

However, a locked rate could also prevent you from taking advantage of price decreases, unless your lender is able to lock in a lower rate that becomes available during this period. Keep in mind most loan officers/lenders are not able to lower your interest rate once you’ve signed a rate lock commitment.

It’s important to recognize that a lock-in is not the same as a loan commitment.  A mortgage loan commitment is your lender’s promise to provide you with a loan up to a certain amount at some point in the future.

Generally, you will receive a loan commitment from a loan officer only after your application has been approved.  This loan commitment will usually show the loan terms which have been approved, including the loan amount.

How long the commitment is valid, and the lender’s conditions for making the loan such as receipt of a satisfactory appraisal.

Will my rate lock be In writing?

Only a few lenders have specific forms that set out the exact terms of the lock-in agreement.  So, if they don’t offer one upfront, ask them to fill out and sign one or you’ll need to take your business elsewhere.

Others may only make a verbal lock-in promise on the telephone or at the time of application.  Verbal agreements are very difficult to prove and if there’s a dispute the loan officer will undoubtedly win, since there’s nothing in writing.

Some lenders rate lock forms can contain information which is difficult to understand or even hidden in the fine print.  It’s always a wise decision to obtain a blank copy of the loan officers rate lock form to read carefully “before” you apply for a mortgage loan.  If at all possible, show the rate lock form to a real estate professional or lawyer.

Buyer beware, it’s essential to stay on top of your interest rate lock and to make certain you have the interest rate and terms in writing. Never assume the loan officer has locked your interest rate or it’s locked, but in actuality they are floating your interest rate hoping to get a better rebate.

One of their better schemes is to misquote the interest rate in hopes the rate will come down to what they originally quoted you, if it never does they simply try to charge you more right before closing.

We’ve seen it happen so many times with some loan officers or brokers even altering the original terms they quoted you such as raising the margin, adding a prepayment penalty, or changing indexes, caps, or even loan programs without the borrowers knowledge.

Will you be charged for a rate lock?

Generally mortgage lenders do not charge a fee for locking in the interest rate for your mortgage.  Some loan officers may try to charge you a fee up-front, these loan officers should be avoided at all cost.

One of the few times a legitimate fee is charged is when a mortgage borrower needs to have a longer than normal rate lock.

How long are rate locks valid?

Usually the lender/loan officer will promise to hold an interest rate for a given number of days.  To get the predetermined interest rate you must close the loan within that time period.  Rate locks of 30 to 60 days are the most common.

Lenders that charge a lock-in fee may charge a higher fee for the longer rate lock period.  Usually, the longer the period, the greater the fee.

The rate lock period should be long enough to allow for closing.  Before deciding on the length of the rate lock to ask for, have your your lender estimate (in writing, if possible) the time needed to process your mortgage loan.

You’ll also want to take into account any factors that might delay the closing of your loan.  These may include unanticipated construction delays if purchasing a new home.

What happens if the rate lock expires?

If you don’t close your loan within the lock-in period, you might lose the interest rate you locked.  This could happen if there are delays in processing whether caused by you or not.

On occasion, lenders are themselves the cause of processing delays, particularly when loan demand is heavy.  This happens most often when interest rates fall suddenly causing the amount of refinances to skyrocket.

If your rate lock expires, lenders could offer you the mortgage loan based on the prevailing interest rate.  If market conditions have caused interest rates to rise, you will most often be charged more for your loan.

One reason why some mortgage lenders may be unable to offer the interest rate after the period expires is they can no longer sell the loan to investors at the lock-in rate.

When lenders lock in loan terms for borrowers, they often have an agreement with investors to buy these loans based on the rate lock terms.  The agreement may expire around the same time that the rate lock expires and the lender may be unable to afford the same terms if market rates have increased.

How can you speed up the approval of the loan?

While the lender has the biggest role in how fast your loan application is processed, there are many things you can do to speed up approval. Try to find out what documentation the lender will require from you in advance.

Much of the information required by your lender can be brought with you when you apply for a mortgage loan.  This may help to get your application moving quickly through the loan process.

Once you’re done shopping for rates and have decided on a lender, be sure to bring the following documents:

  1. Purchase contract for the home you’re buying (if you don’t have a copy of the contract, check with your real estate agent).
  2. Your bank account numbers, the address of your bank branch and your latest bank statement, plus pay stubs, W-2 forms.
  3. If you are self-employed bring your balance sheets and tax returns for the previous 2 years.
  4. Information about debts, including loan and credit card account numbers and the names and addresses of your creditors.
  5. Evidence of your mortgage or rental payments, such as cancelled checks or mortgage statements.
  6. You’ll need your VA Certificate of Eligibility from the Veterans Administration if you want a VA-guaranteed loan.  Your lender should be able to help you obtain the certificate.

Be sure to respond promptly to your lender’s requests for information while your loan is being processed. It is also a good idea to call the lender and real estate agent from time to time.

It’s always a good idea to keep notes on your contacts with the lender so that you will have a written record of your conversations.

Asking about rate locks

When you’re ready to settle on your loan, you’ll want to get the loan terms that you’ve locked in. To increase the likelihood, it’s important to learn as much as you can about what the lender is promising you before you apply for a loan.

Ask for this additional information when you’re shopping for a loan:

  1. Does the lender offer a rate lock of the interest rate?
  2. When will the lender let you lock in the interest rate?  When you apply?  When the loan is approved?
  3. Will the rate lock be in writing?  If the rate lock is not in writing, you will have no record of the lender’s agreement with you in case of a dispute.
  4. Does the lender charge a fee to lock-in the interest rate?  Does the fee increase for longer rate locks? If so, how much?
  5. Can you float your interest rate for now, and lock in later?
Loan processing time
  1. How long does the lender expect to take to process your loan application?
  2. What has been the lender’s average time for processing loans recently?
  3. Has the lender’s loan volume increased?  Heavy volume might increase the lender’s average processing time.

Joel Lobb (NMLS#57916)

Senior  Loan Officer

502-905-3708 cell

502-813-2795 fax

jlobb@keyfinllc.com

Key Financial Mortgage Co. (NMLS #1800)

107 South Hurstbourne Parkway

Louisville, KY 40222