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FHA Back to Work – Economic Event Brings New Opportunity to Boomerang Buyers in Alameda

Great News for Boomerang Buyers!

According to new Mortgagee Letter 2013-26, HUD announced:

As a result of the recent recession many borrowers who experienced unemployment or other severe reductions in income, were unable to make their monthly mortgage payments, and ultimately lost their homes to a pre-foreclosure sale, deed-in-lieu, or foreclosure. Some borrowers were forced to file for bankruptcy to discharge or restructure their debts. Because of these recent recession-related periods of financial difficulty, borrowers’ credit has been negatively affected. FHA recognizes the hardships faced by these borrowers, and realizes that their credit histories may not fully reflect their true ability or propensity to repay a mortgage.

The “Back to Work – Extenuating Circumstances” program is designed to help Boomerang buyers who have experienced short sale, foreclosure, bankruptcy, loan modification, or other derogatory credit event, can now qualify in 12 months. This provision waives the three year waiting period FHA had in place prior to this announcement. Again this is great news for Boomerang Buyers as the program is here through September 2016!

FHA is allowing for the consideration of borrowers who have experienced an Economic Event and can document that:

• Certain credit impairments were the result of a Loss of Employment or a significant loss of Household Income beyond the borrower’s control.
• The borrower has demonstrated full recovery from the event.
• The borrower has completed housing counseling.

Qualifications for a Back to Work – Economic Event

A Back to Work – Economic Event is an occurrence beyond the borrowers control that results in Loss of Employment, Loss of Income, or a combination of both, which causes a reduction in the borrowers Household Income of 20% or more for a period of at least 6 months.

The Approval Process Back to Work – Economic Event

Receiving loan approval using the Economic Event circumstance is not automatic. Borrowers must obtain a Manual underwrite under stricter FHA guidelines including lower debt to income ratios

How Do You Demonstrate Stability According to Guidelines?

- Stable Employment
- Completed housing counseling.
- No late payments on any credit accounts including auto loans, credit cards, mortgages, and student loans in the last 12 months
- Fully document derogatory credit was the result of the Economic Event
- Meet all other FHA requirements under the Manual Underwrite approval guidelines

To qualify or for more information contact or direct 510-282-5456.


Down Payment Assistance for California Real Estate Purchase CHDAP Alameda


Are you or is someone you know a first time buyer with a limited down payment?

One great option the CHDAP- California Homebuyer Down Payment Assistance Program! This is a deferred payment simple interest junior loan that can be used to help a borrower cover the down payment allowing the borrower to come in with only a half a percent down!

The program is through CalHFA so for more information you can also go to

Requirements are:
• 640 score
• Owner Occupied Only.
• .50% down payment (gift okay)
• Must be a first time homebuyer. Homebuyer education is required on all first time homebuyer programs CALHFA offers.
• Must have Fannie Mae approval. No manual U/W allowed.
• No Cap on DTI with a Fannie Mae approval
• Need last 3 years’ 1040’s to verify that no mortgage interest deductions were taken for that time period.
• Cannot be used with a 203K Rehabilitation Loan.
• Must not exceed income limits (based on total occupants living in the home)
*** Click this Link for Income Limits***

Property Requirements:
• Can be a single family, one unit residence, PUD or Condo
• Cannot have additional units or an in-law space
• No manufactured housing
• Must meet the requirements of the mortgage insurer/guarantor
• No leaseholds, land trusts or Co-ops allowed
• 5 acre maximum
• Defects or repairs identified by the appraiser must be corrected prior to the close of the purchase

For more information on getting pre approved for a home loan with down payment assistance please contact us at 510.282.5456, or
contact us directly through our Virtual Purchase Asssistant:


5% Gift Funds on High Balance Conventional Financing Now Available to 625K San Francisco Oakland Alameda

Are you looking to purchase and are getting a little help from mom and dad?

Well we have some great news! Guidelines have just loosened up on high balance loans, or loans available in high cost areas such as San Francisco Oakland and Alameda with the loan amounts between $417,001 and $625,500.

Recently a borrower had to have their own funds of 10% down to qualify for conventional financing, gift funds were not allowed with 10% down.

Now, a borrower who is purchasing or refinancing, may receive a gift to be used towards the down payment, prepaid items, closing costs and financing costs (unless otherwise specified).

For primary residences or second homes, the borrower must use his or her own personal assets for the minimum cash down payment of 5% on loans greater than 80% Loan to Value or LTV. For primary residences or second homes, the entire down payment may be from a gift when the LTV/CLTV is 80% or less.

Note: Gift funds are not allowed on investment properties

A gift must be from the borrower’s spouse, parent, child or dependent or any other individual related to the borrower by blood, marriage, adoption or legal guardianship or from a domestic partner, fiancé or fiancée.

The Gift Letter:

A gift letter must from the donor always be provided. The gift letter must be maintained in the file and must:
• State that the funds are given by a relative and specify the relationship to the borrower
• State that repayment is not expected or required
• Be signed by the relative (donor) and borrower
• Include the donor’s mailing address and telephone number
• State the dollar amount of the gift
• Include the subject property address

Documentation of Gift Funds:
The loan file must contain written evidence of the transfer of funds from the donor to the borrower.

For more information on transferring gift funds and how to structure your transaction feel free to call me 510.282.5456 or visit My team and I look forward to helping you!


FHA Mortgage Insurance is Going Up_ Does it Make Sense to do an FHA Streamline Refinance in Oakland Alameda Berkeley?

Does it make sense to take advantage of today’s rates while resetting your mortgage insurance AND taking a higher mortgage insurance rate?

As a loan officer, this is definitely one of the most challenging questions we face when handling a refinance. Especially when FHA Mortgage Insurance will be on the rise again April 1st 2013.

In order to take advantage of today’s rates when refinancing an FHA mortgage there are two major things to consider.
1 – The Proposed Rate vs. Your Current Rate – how much interest will you be saving monthly? What are the long and short term benefits and consequences?

2 – You Proposed Mortgage Insurance vs. Your Current Mortgage Insurance.

FHA Mortgage Insurance seems to change roughly about once a year. It doesn’t seem to go down either. Know that when you refinance out of your current FHA loan and into a new FHA loan you WILL be paying higher mortgage insurance unless your FHA loan was endorsed prior to May 1 2009.

When refinancing an FHA loan into another FHA loan you must consider the upfront mortgage insurance you are going to be charged as well as the monthly mortgage insurance you are going to be charged. While the interest savings could be phenomenal and a “no brainer”, once you factor in the addition of both up front and private mortgage Insurance your savings may not add up to what you originally thought you were saving.

Not to mention you are resetting your mortgage insurance on your loan. FHA mortgage insurance is set to stay on your home loan for a fixed number of years or to a 78% loan to value. You may have been paying mortgage insurance for the last 3 years and this will re-set when doing a streamline refinance.

That being said, with the changes to mortgage insurance coming soon, your position to refinance will make less sense in a couple months than it does now.

This may be a good time to pull the trigger.

For honest accurate advice feel free to contact me via phone 510.282.5456, or CLICK HERE fill out our quick form and we will be in touch.



I know, Déjà vu right? “Garrick, don’t be so redundant, you just wrote about this!”

Yes, it’s true, once again FHA Mortgage Insurance is set to rise again for case numbers pulled on or after April 1 2013, and no this is not a bad April Fool’s Day gag.


The changes below will you show you that if you are currently in an FHA loan endorsed after May 1 2009 it may make sense for you to refinance. If your loan was endorsed prior to May 1 2009, then your current mortgage insurance wont change and you should definitely explore options. Either way give me a call/txt at 510.282.5456 or fill out this form for more information:

We can see if a streamline refinance makes sense. Remember, chances are your mortgage insurance may be higher but if your rate is above 3.5% there may be opportunity and the savings in interest may make sense. I will advise you if I think it does not make sense as well.


Keep your head up! Right now it is difficult to get into a property at all with FHA financing due to the shortage of inventory. Now with mortgage insurance going up I realize this is equally discouraging. The good news is IN THE BIG PICTURE you are in the purchase market at the right time with historic rates, and low values.


Increases are as follows:

•30 year fixed with loan to values of 95% or lower will increase from 1.2% to 1.3%
•30 year fixed with loan to values greater than 95% will increase from 1.25% to 1.35%
•30 year fixed High Balance with loan to values of 95% or lower will increase from 1.45% to 1.5%
•30 year fixed FHA High Balance with loan to values greater than 95% will increase from 1.5% to 1.55%
•15 year fixed with loan to value of 78.01% – 90% will increase from .35% to .45%
•15 year fixed with loan to values greater than 90% will increase from .6% to .7%
•15 year fixed FHA High Balance with loan to values of 78.01% – 90% will increase from .6 to .7%
•15 year fixed FHA High Balance with loan to values greater than 90% will increase from .85% to .95%

There are additional increases on loan between $625,500 and $729,750.

High Balance loan limits in Alameda County and the Bay Area currently go to $729,750.

Other changes were announced as well to the terms of Mortgage Insurance.

The table below shows the previous and the new duration of annual MIP by amortization term and LTV ratio at origination.

Term LTV (%) Previous New

≤ 15 yrs ≤ 78 No annual MIP 11 years
≤ 15 yrs > 78 – 90.00 Cancelled at 78% LTV 11 years
≤ 15 yrs > 90.00 Cancelled at 78% LTV Loan term
> 15 yrs ≤ 78 5 years 11 years
> 15 yrs > 78 – 90.00 Cancelled at 78% LTV & 5 yrs 11 years
> 15 yrs > 90.00 Cancelled at 78% LTV & 5 yrs Loan term

For a copy of the HUD letter please go to:

As always if you are looking to purchase or refinance your home my team and I are here to help!

Purchase Assistant:

Refinance Advisor:

I hope you found this useful and remember:

Unity is strength… when there is teamwork and collaboration, wonderful things can be achieved.
Mattie Stepanek

We are here to help you achieve wonderful things!