Saturday, September 29, 2012

3 FHA Mortgage Niches To Help You Survive The Mortgage Crisis

The advice I'm about to give goes against the grain in the mortgage business where everyone likes to advertise that they offer 1200 different loan programs for borrowers with all types of credit. I'm going to give it anyway.
The very best way to make your mortgage marketing successful is to concentrate it on a very tightly defined niche and position yourself as the expert in that niche. Borrowers aren't attracted to those one size fits all ads and you are throwing away your money.
Here are three niches that an FHA mortgage specialist can use to close more loans in less time with more profit and, most importantly, happier customers that are anxious to refer their friends and relatives.
1. First Time Home Buyers.
This is the most obvious FHA niche market. After all, this was the reason the FHA program was created in the first place. In spite of what you hear in the news, a housing downturn presents the best time for smart and well advised first time home buyers to enter the market.
The key to marketing to first time buyers is to understand that they need a lot of information and guidance before they trust. Study their needs in today's market. Those needs are a little different than they were during the boom times.
Create a free report that shows how FHA mortgages can help meet those needs and put that home buyer in a position to profit when real estate values start rising again - as they always do. Create a series of follow-up letters and reports that you can send out over time. Get their email addresses and set up an automatic series of emails that can be sent out to them over a long period of time. Educate them and they will trust you.
2. Manufactured Home Refinances and Purchases
This is actually 2 niches in one and each category has slightly different needs. They are both high on the list of the most lucrative FHA markets that exist. This is because potential borrowers in these 2 areas have problems that the FHA loan program provides a better solution for than they are getting elsewhere.
Get set up with some of the lenders still offering FHA financing on manufactured homes and become a master at knowing what loan characteristics those lenders prefer. In spite of tightening guidelines, this market is still huge. Locate reputable local structural engineers and foundation contractors to help you quickly determine whether a manufactured home qualifies for FHA financing or what it will take to get it there.
Then, if you want to enter the manufactured home purchase market, get in contact with manufactured home dealers and offer them a solution to help get their homes sold. Use the same free report techniques to market your services directly to buyers. Use those buyers to help establish a relationship with some of those dealers.
You can enter the manufactured home market and have fewer parties to keep happy by locating owner financed manufactured homes in your area. In some parts of the country, many investors bought renovated and owner financed or lease purchased FHA qualified manufactured homes during the housing boom of the last few years. These loans often included very high interest rates and balloon notes which the buyer must pay off soon. You can often locate these situations through the local tax records. Keep in mind that if locating them was easy, this technique wouldn't be as profitable. A mortgage originator who has mastered the process of getting manufactured home loans approved can really help these people out of a tough situation and get paid well doing it.
3. Cash Out Debt Consolidations - With A Twist
I know every subprime call center on earth has been pounding these prospects with solicitations, and taking advantage of them, for years. Yet there is a growing group of consumers who are now realizing that they need to get rid of the debt in their lives if they ever want to make it through tough economic times. These people are very wary of mortgage brokers calling them to try to lower their payments using some sort of subprime teaser rate mortgage that traps them in a bad situation later on.
In fact, if they watch the news much, potential borrowers think every mortgage broker they meet is skillfully hiding his or her horns, tail and pitchfork long enough to get that borrower's signature on the contract selling their soul. Here is a strategy that might help get around that predisposition.
This subset of home owners who wish to get rid of debt as quickly as possible is already prepared to cut back their lifestyle in order to pay off debt. Unfortunately, a lot of their debt has crazy high interest rates. How much better might their situation be if all that debt was refinanced into one 15 year fixed rate mortgage. Yes, you did read that correctly. I'm talking about probably raising their payment. However, if they qualify I'm also talking about lowering the interest rate on that debt so they can get it paid off without the interest eating up all the payments they are making.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Financial Education and Building Wealth Strategies

Wow, are we getting some one-two punches to our economy or what? Daily in the papers and news are stories of the housing collapse, subprime problems, the stock market dropping, and the shrinking dollar -whew! Yet, we are supposed to remain optimistic and not get sweaty palms.... Right.
Quoted by Donald Trump and Robert Kiyosaki from their new book, "We are losing our middle class, and a shrinking middle class is a threat to the stability of America and to world democracy itself." Think about that a minute....
The lack of financial education has now come to a head. How did you learn to manage your finances and investments? From your parents, friends, or were you self taught? Unless you went on to college and specifically pursued those areas for career or interest purposes you probably never had a "formal" training or education about the subject. You were never taught about building wealth .
It's disturbing to hear statistics such as:
o More people will file bankruptcy this year than will graduate from college
o The number 1 resolution this year is to get out of debt - overtaking losing weight for the first time
o Last year there were over 80 million unpaid credit cards in the U.S.
The list goes on, and every American will feel the effects of the global change taking place right now. So, what can we do about it? There are ways to begin solving the problems and it starts with financial education and a mindset to get out of debt.
You can be taught the Six Steps to Freedom, then teach others, who will then teach others, and who knows - maybe it will finally become a part of our school's curriculum!
o Take an objective assessment of your finances (There are professionals who can assist in developing a plan to restructure your debt, with an objective to get out of debt)
o Minimize your taxes and increase your cash flow
o Create savings and emergency funds
o Ensure proper protection (such as insurances and trusts to name a couple)
o Building wealth for the long term (Fund college accounts and retirement)
o Freedom for life - make your dreams a reality!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

The Environment Is Big News

Thanks to decades of dedication by teachers who have brought environmental topics into the classroom, today's students are more educated about ecology and the natural world than ever before. And now, thanks to Hurricane Katrina, the hurricane and resulting flood that devastated a large part of the Gulf Coast in the summer of 2005, environmental issues have hit the front pages of newspapers and prime time TV newscasts. The environment is big news. And for a lot of kids, it's scary news.
Global warming; polar bears facing extinction; colonies of bees dying all over the U.S.: these and other stories on TV have the potential of upsetting school-aged children. For teachers, this can be a big problem, or it can be an opportunity to engage children, to inform them of the problems and their possible solutions, and to excite children about scientific topics and procedures.
Luckily, written and video material abounds that teaches children about science and the natural world. Books, magazines, and DVDs are available that cover every conceivable topic. Teacher's guides are available for many of the periodicals, offering suggestions for incorporating the material into the class curriculum. Much of this material is geared toward current environmental concerns.
Yes, the environment is a big, scary news story right now. But with the right material and a creative approach, teachers can redirect their students' fears to learning, to scientific knowledge and to developing an activist approach to the world that may send some of these young people into the direction of solving many of these serious worldwide problems.
Aldene Fredenburg is a freelance writer living in southwestern New Hampshire. She has written numerous articles for local and regional newspapers and for a number of Internet websites, including Tips and Topics.