In my last blog, I addressed a few of the most common misunderstandings about how credit relates to the mortgage process. In part two of this three-part blog series I discuss the misunderstanding and realities of credit scoring. Let's take a look!
#1 One of the most common questions asked is, “My scores are bad, but my wife's are good… can you just use hers and ignore mine?”
Unfortunately, no. I must use the lowest of the middle score of all borrowers. Each borrower has three scores.  I take the middle score of each borrower and then use the lowest of these scores for mortgage qualification purposes. This is a federal guideline (there is no way around it). It’s important to understand that a borrower’s credit score will impact the programs available and rate Greenway can offer.
#2. “I was late paying my $12 GAP bill. What’s the big deal?” 
In this circumstance, the amount of payment is not relevant. Magnitude not relevant. It’s the fact that you didn’t pay on time. One 30-day late payment will reduce your score by up to 110 points, regardless of how much you were late paying.
Here's how some other derogatories will ding your credit score:
  • Collections: -200 points
  • Maxed Credit Card: -45 points
  • BK: -240 points
  • FC: -160 points
Clients often say…“I’ll just pay off my collection and that will get my score back.” No. The scoring model looks at history too. Once you pay it off, it will remain on your credit report for quite some time.
The only way to keep your credit report clean is to be responsible and timely with your credit over the long term.
#3: “I have no credit cards and no debt. Why is my credit score not 850?”
We call this a Thin Credit File, which is little or no credit history. It’s important to rember that the scoring models look at credit behavior over time. So, no credit does not mean good credit. You have to build a track record of creditworthiness.
Stayed tuned for Part 3, where I will cover the tools and resources available to assit you with credit related issues! In the meantime, you can learn more about me by clicking here!




Please enjoy this quick update on what happened this week in the housing and financial markets.



Continued progress in trade talks with China is helping stocks rally to record highs and driving bond yields higher. Increased bond yields are pressuring mortgage rates higher.


U.S. service companies grew at a faster pace in Oct after sinking to a 3-yr low in Sept. Measures of sales, new orders and employment all rebounded from the previous month.


Jobless claims fell more than expected last week. Along with last week's payroll gains, this shows consistent strong labor market conditions and continued job growth. 


Construction job openings increased in Sept on a year-over-year basis. The estimated number of job openings was 338,000.


CoreLogic's House Price Index for Sept showed house prices continue to go up, rising 3.5% year-over-year. Prices were 0.4% higher in Sept than in August.


Down payment assistance on FHA loans increased from 30% in 2011 to 40% in 2018. Also, a new study debunks the myth that down payment assistance buyers are more likely to default.


Autumn is in full swing. Kids are back at school, football has started, and the weather is cooling off. In fact, fall is a great time to get a great deal on a new home especially because current market conditions are favorable toward buyers in many areas. 

Most home buyers assume buying in the spring or summer gets you the best selection and home shopping opportunities. Experts would disagree. Home buying the in the fall -- especially fall of 2019 -- can yield huge savings on the mortgage rate and home price. It’s wise to start shopping now and take advantage of this window, before the holidays and the cold weather hit.

Here are 3 Reasons why Fall 2019 is the Time to Buy:

Reason #1: Interest Rates are at Historical Lows

Rates are currently at or near three-year lows. And they’re expected to stay low through the autumn. If you’re thinking about buying a home, taking advantage of these low interest rates can be paramount for your purchasing power. Locking in a low interest rate will save you a lot of money later down the road and even in the near future.

Reason #2: Lower Prices

Fall produces urgent sellers. Most sellers list their homes in the spring and summer. If the seller’s house is still sitting on the market in the fall, they are likely willing to lower prices. For buyers, this is a leverage point for you to lock in a good rate and to get a great deal on the purchase price of a new home.

Reason #3: Less Competition

Between September and December there is less home buyers searching for homes. Why? Because many buyers and sellers get their real estate business done before the school year starts. Therefore, come the holidays, there is less home buyers searching. In addition, cooler weather also gives you an edge when looking for a home. Potential buyers favor warmer weather when they don’t have to brave the cold or snowy conditions.

Now is the Time

If you want to capitalize on the fall market, now is the time. We can’t stress enough that today’s low mortgage rates are favorable for buyers. Take advantage and lock in a low rate!

Get Ahead of the Game

Be sure to check out homes for sale, make sure to get pre-approved FIRST, and speak with your local Greenway Loan Officer to discuss your mortgage options.  With the right planning and preparation, you could land your desired home for less and be moved in before next year!


Learn about the intricacies and differences between credit scores and your credit report in Erin's three-part blog series on "Understanding the Credit Landscape". Erin also includes some tools and tactics for managing each!

This week, Erin the Expert explains the differences between a credit report and a credit score. Let's take a look!

Understanding the Difference between Credit Reports & Credit Scores

Many people do not understand that there’s a difference between your credit report and your credit score. A credit report is a repository of an individual’s credit profile, maintained by the three credit bureaus: Transunion, Experian and Equifax.

The credit report contains a listing of the following:

  • Listing of all businesses extending loans and credit

  • Initial loan amounts (or credit limits)

  • Current balances

  • Payment history, i.e. payment amount and if the account was paid on time or late

  • Hard Inquiries (more on this later)

  • Previous addresses

  • Employment history

  • Credit blemishes (aka as derogatories) such as late payments, collections, bankruptcy and foreclosure

Let's get back to credit scores. Credit scores are formulas that use information on your credit reports maintained by the 3 credit bureaus that we mentioned before. A score is rendered for each that identifies the quality of your credit profile for particular purposes.

There are many scoring models, but the two main methods are FICO and Vantage. FICO is the scoring model used by the mortgage industry, specifically Revision 9 which was introduced in 2017. FICO9 includes trended data, which is a historical analysis of credit payment “behavior”. Vantage, on the other hand, renders different scores than FICO. This model weighs different aspects of your credit report.

Although services like Credit Karma give you your Vantage score, these scores are not valid for mortgage qualification. The best way to be proactive and ensure the highest credit score possible is to monitor and manage your credit reports as there can be inaccurate information -It’s best to clear up any errors quickly.

How can inaccurate information end up on your credit report?

Some typical examples include:

  • Common and family names (example: John Smith and John Smith Jr.)

  • Collections you’re unaware of such as: medical and fraudulently opened accounts

The only way for you as a consumer to get an accurate report directly from the three bureaus at no cost is through  This is the only site approved by the federal government and it allows you to obtain your reports on a yearly basis.

Stay tuned for next week's blog, Part 2: Misunderstandings & Realities of Credit Scoring. 

For the Week Ending November 1, 2019


Please enjoy this quick update on what happened this week in the housing and financial markets.


The Fed cut policy rates by 0.250% this week, the 3rd cut in as many meetings. A Fed rate cut doesn't directly impact mortgage rates, other than HELOCs.
Weekly jobless claims rose more than expected last week. The numbers still support a solid labor market.
Consumer spending increased marginally in September, while wages were unchanged. Inflation was also muted, helping to keep mortgage rates low.


Home prices rose 3.2% in August, up from the 3.1% gain in July, according to Case-Shiller. Prices in the nation's 10 major cities rose 1.5%.
Pending home sales rose 1.5% in September over August, the second straight month of gains. Sales were 3.9% higher than in September 2018.
Homeownership rates rose in the 3rd quarter to 64.8%, up 0.7% from the 2nd quarter. The uptick is attributed to low mortgage rates.


Rate movements and volatility are based on published, aggregate national averages and measured from the previous to the most recent midweek daily reporting period. These rate trends can differ from our own and are subject to change at any time.


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