Frequently Asked Questions

How do I know what my interest rate is? Mortgage interest rates fluctuate daily, so the rate you see when you search and apply for a loan may not be the actual rate you receive on your loan. Also, the type of mortgage program you qualify for can affect the rate. To secure a rate, you need to lock-in a rate with AFFINITY Mortgage Corporation. You can request a rate lock from us after you have formalized your loan application and after we have reviewed and verified your documentation and credit information.

If I have less-than-perfect credit, can I still get a loan? ABSOLUTELY! In our rapidly changing world, the sources and consistency of many borrowers’ incomes are not as predictable as they have been in the past. This “uncertainty” may mean a past history of slow payments on outstanding obligations due to medical issues or unforseen circumstances. AFFINITY Mortgage Corporation’s Mortgage Consultants are experienced in working with a wide range of personal circumstances and will work with you to offer loan options suited to your needs and credit history.

We’re always here to help: If you have any questions or need assistance just give us a call at 262.942.1500, send us an email or apply online today!

What is the difference between the interest rate and the Annual Percentage Rate (APR)?The interest rate is the cost for borrowing a lender’s money, over the life of a loan. The Annual Percentage Rate (APR) takes into account the total cost of a mortgage over the life of a loan, including closing fees, not just the interest due.

What is included in my monthly payment? In the early years, the monthly payment covers interest due on the loan and a small repayment of the principal balance. As you get closer to the end of the repayment term, the amount of your payment that goes toward interest decreases, and the amount that goes toward repaying the loan principal increases. AFFINITY Mortgage Corporation does not require that your payments include “escrowed” or impounded pro-rated funds for property taxes and hazard insurance. A small fee may be charged to “waive escrow”.

What are closing costs? Closing costs are fees that you must pay in order to get a mortgage. Closing costs can vary, but typically include: Appraisal fee, Credit report fee, Flood certification fee, County Recording fee, Settlement or Closing fee, Survey fee, etc…

What is an appraisal? An appraisal is a written analysis of the estimated value of your property. A qualified appraiser who has knowledge, experience, and insight into the real estate marketplace prepares the document. This ensures that you’re paying fair market value when purchasing a new home, and ensures that you get the most accurate market value in determining equity for refinancing. Typically, an appraisal is required in order to close your loan.

When will I be ready to close? It all depends on the terms and conditions of your approval. The faster you can schedule your appraisal and submit the documents listed in your loan package, the faster we’ll be able to proceed with your closing. As soon as your documents are received and approved, title work and appraisal are completed, and we have a final approval, we will be ready to schedule your closing. Of course, if you are buying a home, your actual closing date will also depend on the terms listed in your offer to purchase contract.

How much money do I need to bring to closing? The amount of money that you must bring to your closing will depend on your situation. Generally, you only need to bring money to the closing if you’re purchasing a new home. If you’re refinancing your current home, you may choose to add all of your closing fees into your loan. Because the amount of money required to close a loan varies from borrower to borrower, your AFFINITY Mortgage Corporation Mortgage Consultant and/or title insurance company representative will provide you with the total amount due prior to your closing.

What does it mean to “qualify” for a loan? All lenders have guidelines that they use to determine whether a prospective borrower has the ability to repay a loan and the necessary collateral to secure a loan. These guidelines are based on such things as the amount of equity the borrower has in his or her home, the borrower’s income, and credit history. To qualify for a loan, you need to meet these requirements. AFFINITY Mortgage Corporation offers a wide array of options that can be tailored to meet your needs and budget regardless of your credit history.

We’re always here to help: If you have any questions or need assistance just give us a call at 262.942.1500, send us an email or apply online today!

What is “equity?” Equity is the difference between the value of a property and the amount of money that is owed on the property. Equity is calculated by taking the fair market value of the property and deducting the balance due on all debts secured against it. Those debts can include first and second mortgages or home equity loans, as well as certain judgements or other charges against the property that make it security for the repayment of the debt.

What is hazard insurance? Hazard insurance is an insurance policy to protect homeowners against loss due to property damage. Lenders require that you get a hazard insurance policy before you buy or refinance a home. Hazard insurance provides compensation for losses due to property damage caused by a fire, a severe storm, or other types of perils. Generally, you have to pay for the first year of hazard insurance on the closing date. Hazard insurance is also available as part of a more comprehensive homeowners policy.

What is Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI)? Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) is the insurance borrowers are required to pay if they have less than 20% (in some cases 25%) equity in their homes. This insurance protects the lender if the borrower defaults on the loan. The lender then uses the money collected from PMI to offset any losses. AFFINITY Mortgage Corporation will let you know if PMI is required for your loan.

What is title insurance and why do I need it? Title insurance protects against any title dispute that may arise over a particular property, like your home. Before your closing, a title company researches your property’s title to ensure it was legally passed from buyer to seller, each time it was bought or sold. Title insurance further protects against illegal or fraudulent title transfers that came to light (but remained undiscovered initially) during an investigation. It also insures you against loss from easements of public record that were not included in the title report, such as a utility easement across your property. Title insurance is required to close a loan on any property.

How do I know if I need flood insurance? The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has divided most of the United States into varying flood zones according to an area’s likelihood of being flooded. If your property is in a designated flood zone, then flood insurance is required. A call to your municipal planning authority is probably the easiest way to determine whether your home is in a flood zone.