The Coronavirus pandemic has affected us all.
But all of us at Pacific Home Loans, as well as all the realtors, title agents, attorneys, notaries, appraisers, and all of the other professionals we work with, are committed to making the home buying process as safe as possible for all concerned.
Good news! It is still possible to apply for a mortgage, shop for homes, and even close on a home loan at this time.
Here at Pacific Home Loans, our technology and systems are a priority to ensure we are best serving our customers. Due to this focus, we have been easily able to transition to completing 100% of the mortgage application, documentation, and approval process digitally, so that you can apply and get approved for a Hawaii mortgage from the comfort of your home. Click here to get started.
What’s more, Pacific Home Loans has been working with other real estate professionals to minimize risk for everyone. You can go through the entire process of buying a home while maintaining social distancing protocols.
I have borrowed money on several occasions from Pacific Home Loans and specifically Steven Mangum. I have referred him 100’s of new clients, realtors and professional folks needing money. He has never disappointed and in fact comes up with the best rates in the current market. Today, I closed a new home loan with him at 2.875%, no points! He says it was the lowest rate he had ever closed. Just call Steven and let him go to work for you!!
– Fred Haywood
Looking at homes – What to expect during Coronavirus
Realtors aren’t doing ‘open houses’ during this time; showings are generally “by appointment only,” but that could mean there’s less competition from other buyers.
Realtors are conscious of social distancing guidelines when showing houses. For example, realtors have stopped driving people around to view listings – be prepared to meet your realtor at the property for the showing.
You will likely be asked to use hand sanitizer and don a mask and gloves when viewing homes for sale. These measures will help to protect you, your realtor, and the seller or property tenants.
Realtors are embracing new technologies to conduct video and virtual home tours. You may be able to take a tour right from your laptop or even from your mobile phone. Many realtors post video tours of their listings on their websites, or on YouTube or Vimeo.
Above all, if you’re sick, or you’ve been exposed to someone with the virus, stay home! We can still do all the mortgage business online and by phone. There will be homes available after you recover. Be patient.
More and more mortgage documents support encrypted, virtual e-signatures. There is no need to risk coming to an office or handing papers back and forth. All Pacific Home Loan’s initial disclosures and documents are easily executed with an e-signature right from your computer or mobile device in the comfort of your own home.
Electronic Mortgage Applications
There is no need to come into our offices and meet in person to apply for a mortgage. The entire application can be completed from your computer or smartphone.
Supporting documents are submitted electronically, as well.
Our system is entirely paperless, which minimizes the chances of viral infection – and maximizes convenience! Our encrypted document management system is safe, easy to use, and secure.
Appraisals and Coronavirus
The Federal Housing Finance Agency – the top regulator in the home mortgage industry – has instructed Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to adopt alternative methods for home appraisals to maintain social distancing throughout the process.
Depending on how much you put down and the nature of the property (primary residence, second home, etc.,) lenders may accept an exterior-only appraisal, known as “drive-by” appraisals, or a ‘desktop’ appraisal, which uses internet research on comparable home sales, rather than a traditional appraisal in which the appraiser enters the home and does a full interior inspection.
In some cases, the appraisal may even be waived, though new construction still generally requires a traditional appraisal. Call us for details.
This approach has helped to allay concerns both from homeowners and appraisal professionals of the risk involved in having appraisers entering homes and potentially contracting or spreading the virus.
Refinancing during Coronavirus
The coronavirus has caused the Federal Reserve to drop rates significantly, resulting in mortgage rates being historically low. For a rate quote specific to your scenario, give us a call! (808) 891-0415
A rule of thumb says refinancing makes sense if you can save 0.75% or more with your new loan. Today’s low rates mean homeowners can benefit by refinancing loans that are even just a year old!
Thank you very much for such great service and accomplishing a 2.875% loan / 30 years fixed, for us. We are over the moon, especially during this time of uncertainty. You have been such a great lender for myself and my friends and clients over the years. I really am stoked to have the opportunity to work with you and your excellent staff. I am super stoked to recommend Pacific Home Loans.
– Martin Lenny
Documenting your Income for a Mortgage during Coronavirus
You will still need to document your income to support the new mortgage. Due to the large number of layoffs and furloughs that have resulted from coronavirus, lenders have been extra careful in this area. However, with so many businesses closed, both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are allowing lenders to use alternative documentation to demonstrate income, including:
• An email from your employer, identifying your name and current employment status.
• Current pay stub
• Most current bank statement
The way things are shaking out, you can expect lenders to double-check “continuity of income” all the way to loan closing. That means they want to make sure that your income on the application has not been interrupted because of the coronavirus.
Self-employed borrowers may need to submit some extra employment verification documentation, too. So be sure to anticipate that, and have that documentation available, just in case it’s needed.
Notarizing Documents during Coronavirus
The National Notary Association has also developed and approved procedures that can help keep both signers and notaries safe until the current pandemic runs its course. For example, mobile notaries can travel to meet you in a safe location. In some cases, much of the process can be handled from behind a window – though you will still need to physically hand over your ID for verification. They cannot verify your ID from behind a glass.
Escrow Signings and Closings
Pacific Home Loans is cooperating with other vendors to ensure that escrow signings and closings are as safe as possible for everyone. For example, we have implemented ‘drive-through escrow signings.’ You will not even have to leave your car.
Act now, before rates rise
The Federal Reserve has been actively encouraging lenders to do business, and has pushed interest rates to historic lows. If you can document that your income is secure, and you have the necessary down payment (as low as zero for VA loans, 3 percent for conforming loans, or 3.5% for FHA loans), now is a terrific time to buy a home.
For more information, call Pacific Home Loans today at (808) 891-0415. Or for faster results, fill out our online application here.
This, too, shall pass. Meanwhile, stay safe and healthy!
Mahalo nui loa.