Home Buying in Marietta>Question Details

Joan W, Home Buyer in Atlanta, GA

Need an agent who can advise us how to use our money to get into a house fastest. Use it to fix credit or as down payment? Open to best option below.

Asked by Joan W, Atlanta, GA Thu Aug 8, 2013

1.Find an Agent who will walk us through the steps to quickly repair our credit to get us into the home we desire the soonest possible. Money is available to pay off most of these issues.
2.If faster and possible, the money can be used as down payment instead. We'd like to know if there are options out there who can work with us beforehand, with what we've got to offer now. The sooner we find a home, the better, so in the meantime,
First time Buyer
3 years in the same job here in Georgia DOWN PAYMENT, $3000-$15000 , depending on home or situation
Low credit score but NO bankruptcies, repos, evictions, etc.
No other current commitments, i.e. car loans, home lease rental, etc.
Under $95,000 total purchase
2 story or split level ok, no ranch
4 BR or 3BR w/basement
In counties, North Fulton, Cobb, Gwinett, Paulding, Cherokee
Little to no repairs Int/Ext
Safe areas ONLY
All Advice welcomed

Help the community by answering this question:


Hello I would love to help in directing or assisting you in your search in finding a new home. My first advice would be to allow a loan officer to evaluate your situation. Everybody need is different, no ones credit situation is alike. The loan officer could take a look at your credit scores and determine the time span needed to get you into the perfect home of your liking.
I learned in life people often want it fast good or cheap and most of the time we only encounter two out of three. If you ask for fast the other two options are good or cheap. If its good and cheap its worth waiting for so you probably won't get it fast. If its fast and good it probably won't be cheap.
It may not be fast but we will be able to put an expected delivery date, get the area you desire and the criteria in place to succeed to obtain the home or your dreams. I like to take my time to make sure my clients are happy. A new home is not like a pair of shoes as if you could take them back if it doesn't fit. It will be a part of your life, happy times, and probably some sad times a part of LIFE. So I don't like to push fast, but I do push good and will try my best to get you the lowest price for the best deal. If you want good advice and a solid honest agent who loves referrals give me a call Hollywood (678) 502-8238
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 9, 2013
It really sounds to me like you should be working with a Mortgage Broker first. He can find you a lender who can manually underwrite a loan. Contact me if you need a reference: morganwmcdonald@gmail.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 9, 2013

I get your urgency but as Rodney has indicated below, you really want a lender (not an agent) to counsel you on this and help you with the best scenario based on your financials. That is the fastest approach to getting into a home if you can. And if you can't buy right now, then you will know right away and can take alternative actions like renting a house

Only after you get the financial house in order are you able to benefit from a good buyers agent.

Good Luck
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 9, 2013
Must agree with Rodney here, Joan. Allow a Lender to advise you first as to what you can afford once the credit issues, if any, need polishing. Then find an Agent/Broker to advise you on an area and a home that will best suit you needs. Please call, text or email if we can provide further assistance. Good Luck!

Michael Hammond





0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 9, 2013
Tips for Finding the Perfect Neighborhood

Your neighborhood has a big impact on your lifestyle. Follow these steps to find the perfect community to call home.
◾Is it close to your favorite spots? Make a list of the activities — movies, health club, church, etc. — you engage in regularly and stores you visit frequently. See how far you would have to travel from each neighborhood you’re considering to engage in your most common activities.

◾Check out the school district. This is especially important if you have children, but it also can affect resale value. The Department of Education in your town can probably provide information on test scores, class size, percentage of students who attend college, and special enrichment programs. If you have school-age children, visit schools in the neighborhoods you’re considering. Also, check out http://www.schoolmatters.com.

◾Find out if the neighborhood is safe. Ask the police department for neighborhood crime statistics. Consider not only the number of crimes but also the type — such as burglaries or armed robberies — and the trend of increasing or decreasing crime. Also, is crime centered in only one part of the neighborhood, such as near a retail area?

◾Determine if the neighborhood is economically stable. Check with your local city economic development office to see if income and property values in the neighborhood are stable or rising. What is the percentage of homes to apartments? Apartments don’t necessarily diminish value, but do mean a more transient population. Do you see vacant businesses or homes that have been for sale for months?

◾See if you’ll make money. Ask a local real estate agent to get information about price appreciation in the neighborhood. Although past performance is no guarantee of future results, this information may give you a sense of how good of an investment your home will be. A government planning agency also may be able to tell you about planned developments or other changes in the neighborhood — like a new school or highway — that might affect value.

◾Make personal observations. Once you’ve narrowed your focus to two or three neighborhoods, go there and walk around. Are homes tidy and well maintained? Are streets quiet? How does it feel? Pick a warm day if you can and chat with people working or playing outside.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 9, 2013
What You Can Do to Improve Your Credit Score

Credit scores, along with your overall income and debt, are big factors in determining whether you’ll qualify for a loan and what your loan terms will be. So, keep your credit score high by doing the following:
1.Check for and correct any errors in your credit report. Mistakes happen, and you could be paying for someone else’s poor financial management.

2.Pay down credit card bills. If possible, pay off the entire balance every month. Transferring credit card debt from one card to another could lower your score.

3.Don’t charge your credit cards to the maximum limit.

4.Wait 12 months after credit difficulties to apply for a mortgage. You’re penalized less for problems after a year.

5.Don’t order items for your new home on credit — such as appliances and furniture — until after the loan is approved. The amounts will add to your debt.

6.Don’t open new credit card accounts before applying for a mortgage. Too much available credit can lower your score.

7.Shop for mortgage rates all at once. Too many credit applications can lower your score, but multiple inquiries from the same type of lender are counted as one inquiry if submitted over a short period of time.

8.Avoid finance companies. Even if you pay the loan on time, the interest is high and it will probably be considered a sign of poor credit management.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 9, 2013
When it comes to locating a "safe" area, that will be up to you. Real Estate Agents are not allowed to comment on a variety of topics. The Fair Housing Act restricts the information that can be provided by a Real Estate Agent. Visiting the area and making your own determinations about what is best for you is the way to go.

Off Limit Topics Include:
• Crime Statistic (including questions about whether a neighborhood is good or bad or safe)
• Demographics
• Environmental Concerns
• Household Income
• Religion
• Schools (including questions about how good or bad the school is)

Determining to the answers to questions on any of the topics listed above is something that you would need to do on your own. It is up to the individual to make their own determination about a specific area. If a Real Estate Agent were to comment on such a thing, it could be steering which is a prohibited act.

Some websites to try include:


Reasons Why A Real Estate Agent Cannot Comment

These links should be able to provide some of the answers you are seeking.

Rodney Mason, NMLS #151088
Sr Loan Officer
Prospect Mortgage
825 Juniper St NE, Atlanta, GA 30308
Office: (404) 591-2453
Apply Online at http://www.rodneymason.com
Licensed in Alabama & Georgia with over a decade of mortgage lending experience.

Prospect Mortgage offers a full selection of mortgage programs including:
Conventional | FHA | FHA 580-639 FICO | FHA 203(k) Renovation (Streamline & Consultant) | HomePath® | HomePath® Renovation | HomeStyle® Renovation | VA | USDA | GA Dream | Jumbo Financing
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 9, 2013
Hi Joan,
You first need to seek the advice of an experienced Loan Officer, not a Real Estate Agent. It it the Loan Officer who will review your financing options. The Real Estate Agent will be the one to locate homes for you based on your criteria one you have been properly Pre-Qualified.

When it does come time to purchase, you will need to have both a sufficient credit score and credit profile as well as enough money saved for a down payment and closing costs/pre-paids. For an FHA mortgage, most lenders require a 640+ credit score for the last 3-4 years now.

Prospect Mortgage is one of the few direct lenders to offer an FHA 580-639 FICO loan program. Credit profile is a major factor in a mortgage approval. Generally, there should be no late payments, new collections accounts/charge-offs/liens/judgments in the last 12 months. It is required that all open collection accounts must be paid in full if their cumulative balances exceed $1,000.

The 3.5% minimum down payment can be from the borrowers own funds or it can be gifted from a family member. Two months of reserves for the PITI (Principal + Interest + Taxes + Insurance) payment + HOA Dues will be required. This must be from the borrower’s own funds and not a gift. FHA loans will allow a seller contribution toward closing costs/pre-paids of up to 6% of the sales price.

To begin improving your credit score, you would need to contact each of your creditors directly to see what your options are. Paying off derogatory debt will help improve your credit score in the long run, but not immediately.

With collection accounts, most of the damage is done when they are initially placed on your credit report. Some collection companies are now reporting you are late each month the debt goes unpaid. This continues to drag on many people’s credit scores each month until the debt is paid in full. Until you do that, your credit score has little chance of improving.

In exchange for paying the collection account in full, you can try to negotiate to have them completely remove the derogatory item once the payment is received. Some collection agencies will do this, while others will not. You will just have to ask each one and see. If they will not remove it, just having it paid and closed will help in the long run.

All liens and judgments will also need to be paid in full. These impact the title position of a mortgage so they must be satisfied.

It is very important that you be VERY careful in disputing accounts. You cannot dispute accounts which you know to be accurate. For a mortgage, you cannot have an active and open account that has a disputed status. Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac/HUD all have very specific guidelines to be following when a borrower has an account in a disputed status. In some cases, it could cause you not to be able to qualify.

To build positive credit, you typically need to have 2-3 trade lines reporting for 12-24 months. There should be no late payments or other derogatory items reported in the last 12-24 months. On your Revolving credit accounts, your outstanding balance on your monthly statement should not exceed 30% of the credit limit.

If you are looking to purchase a property, working with a knowledgeable and seasoned loan officer is critical in today's market. Getting Pre-Qualified is the only way for you to find out your mortgage options. To get Pre-Qualified for your purchase, you can submit your request online at http://www.rodneymason.com.

Rodney Mason, NMLS #151088
Sr Loan Officer
Prospect Mortgage
825 Juniper St NE, Atlanta, GA 30308
Office: (404) 591-2453
Apply Online at http://www.rodneymason.com
Licensed in Alabama & Georgia with over a decade of mortgage lending experience.

Prospect Mortgage offers a full selection of mortgage programs including:
Conventional | FHA | FHA 580-639 FICO | FHA 203(k) Renovation (Streamline & Consultant) | HomePath® | HomePath® Renovation | HomeStyle® Renovation | VA | USDA | GA Dream | Jumbo Financing.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Aug 9, 2013
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