Discover the Best Home Loan for Your Needs with Arvest Bank
No matter the dream home you desire, Arvest Bank has the loan solution to get you there.
Story by Ann Butenas | Sponsored Content
Is it time to purchase a home, build that upscale dream home, or perhaps remodel/update your current one? Where do you begin? You are probably asking yourself myriad questions: Should I buy a new house? When is a good time to buy a new house? How do I shop for a mortgage? Do I qualify for a loan? What type of loan will best suit my needs?
You have many questions. Fortunately, Arvest Bank has the answers.
“Whatever project you want to do, we can help,” asserted Jason Peters, Mortgage Lending Manager of Arvest Bank. “Even if you just want to do minor renovations, such as in the $20,000-$30,000 range, we have loans for those, also.”
With Arvest Bank you can purchase or refinance a home; check rates and fees; and learn all about mortgages. Arvest Bank is more than a financial institution; it is also an educational resource. Helping clients make informed decisions for home financing is an integral part of the overall process for the experienced loan professionals at Arvest Bank.
“Educating our customers is a significant part of what we do,” emphasized Peters.
If you are buying your first home or have your eyes on that dream home, Arvest Bank has the product for you. Among the many loans available through Arvest include conventional mortgages, FHA loans, construction loans, Jumbo loans and more.
Conventional Loans: Offering flexibility with options
The beauty of conventional mortgage loans is that they are flexible, with terms available from five to 30 years. Borrowers can choose between a fixed or adjustable interest rate. Requirements for these loans include the borrower’s credit score, how much of a down payment will be made, the amount of the loan, and the income of the borrower.
Federal Housing Administration Loans (FHA)
These loans are federally-backed mortgages ordinarily designed for low-to-moderate income borrowers whose average credit score may be low. These types of loans usually require a lower minimum down payment and a lower credit score than conventional loans.
“The FHA loan allows for more adverse credit and a higher debt to income ratio,” Peters expressed. “This loan also allows for past bankruptcy, as long as it has been discharged for at least two years.”
Peters noted the FHA loans do have limits, however, which, in the Kansas City market are about $350,000.
Building a new home? Perhaps you should consider a construction loan. This allows you to finance costs throughout the duration of the project. With this type of loan, you can enjoy fixed rate loans, interest-only payment options, the ability to finance construction, materials, home plans and/or land.
Jumbo Loans: A bigger, more luxurious footprint may require a bigger loan
When considering purchasing or building a larger home, Arvest offers Jumbo loans, featuring flexible terms and competitive rates. A non-confirming loan, this type of loan offers financing for more expensive homes.
“These type of loans do, however, typically have higher interest rates, but they can help you finance a more expensive project for bigger, more luxurious home,” said Peters.
Home Equity Loans
For more borrowing power, you can tap into the equity in your home. Because your home is one of the biggest investments you will make, it is a great source of collateral. Whether for personal, family or household expenses, you can use the equity in your home to obtain a fixed rate loan. If you want to upgrade your home, buy a car or just consolidate debt, a home equity loan may be the answer for you. You may also wish to consider a home equity line of credit (HELOC). This allows you to borrow any funds as you need them, as opposed to acquiring them all at once, and borrow against a line of credit. An unsecured loan is another possibility, especially if you want to make home improvements without using any collateral.
When refinancing, you are essentially trading an old loan for a new one. Refinancing can offer many benefits, such as reducing your interest rate and/or the term of your loan. You may also want to refinance if you desire to build more equity. Lowering your rate by as little as 0.50% may potentially save you thousands of dollars in compound interest.
Peters indicated some people simply need to lower their monthly payment, going from a 15-year loan to a 30-year one.
“For those who do not plan to stay long in their home, they can shorten their loan,” he explained. “To see what you can do to improve your mortgage situation, I recommend talking to a lender. There is a common misconception that this entire process is burdensome, but if you work with a lender, it can be relatively easy to refinance.”
When deciding if refinancing is right for you, you should take into consideration your overall goals. There are several reasons why people refinance:
- To lower monthly payments
- To take advantage of an improved credit score
- To do a cash-out refinance, using the equity built in the home to borrow money you may want to make home renovations or to cover education or medical expenses when you don’t have access to other funds.
“When you do a cash-out refinance, it is limited to 80% of the value of the home,” stated Peters.
Peters noted there are some considerations to make before refinancing, such as understanding your goal in refinancing; the estimated value of your home; and your current mortgage payments.
“With rates at an all-time low, it would be wise to talk to a lender or banker to see if refinancing is right for you,” he emphasized. “Questions you will want to ask yourself should focus on the costs associated with doing this loan and how quickly or whether or not you will recoup those costs.”
The Application Checklist: Preparation is key
While it may seem overwhelming, Arvest Bank will walk you through the application process with ease. To get you started, you will be asked to provide the following information:
- Current email address and mailing address
- Pay stub covering the last 30 days for each applicant
- Bank statements for the last two months for all accounts
- W-2 forms for the past two years
- Current statements for all 401(k) and IRA accounts
- Social Security Awards letter, if applicable, and proof of retirement/pension income
“During the prequalifying process, you will meet with a mortgage loan consultant who will check your credit and determine what you can afford. Not all debts are factored in, only those reported to a credit agency, such as car payments, student loan payments and credit card payments,” explained Peters.
But what if my credit is not stellar?
Peters encouraged individuals to not be discouraged if their credit score is not where they want it to be.
“Even with a high debt to income ratio, there are certain loans for which you can apply,” he said. “Since 2013, credit has become more accessible to borrowers. You need qualifying credit and income, evidencing ability to make payments, as well as a proven track record of paying bills.”
Peters did point out, however, that in the past year, there’s a bit more work to do in the qualification process if you were laid off due to the pandemic or if you owned a business.
“These individuals have to demonstrate they were not impacted by the pandemic,” said Peters. “There is a bit more work to do in these areas. We require an additional 12 months of business bank statements. We look at all parameters, such as if you took out a loan to help your business, then we would check on the sustainability of your business.”
Getting started is easy and just takes minutes of your time
Arvest Bank has an app called Home4Me™ that allows you to do everything from your phone, requesting pre-qualification, initiating the application, connecting with a lender and navigating seamlessly through the entire loan process all in a secure platform.
“We can get you pre-qualified in about 30 minutes,” said Peters, noting Arvest Bank continues to service 99% of the loans made. Translation? They will be there for you throughout the duration of the loan.
At Arvest Bank, the focus is on serving customers, whether on the phone from the safety of their home during this pandemic or in-person by appointment if desired.