Owing a HOME: the cornerstone of The American Dream...well we all know how that went during the "Great Recession" and historically it's had it’s ups and downs. Now when compared to other nations, we still have it good, the recession also brought: record low interest rates vs. 24% in Argentina and 32% in Brazil (Source: World Bank 2010-2014).To add, the 30 year mortgages period, which for us is "standard" for many foreigners it's "unbelievable" adding to the fact that our land governed by laws that protect both Buyers & Sellers and among other benefits, yes your house won't be taken away from the government, the only tax you pay upon sale if any is " capital gains" vs. for example the high 45% you would pay in a country like Ecuador. To add to icing on the cake, we have it so good we're actually on the rebound of a new upward cycle in a very optimist real estate market.
Now some changes are coming, both oldies and newbies to the market need to know a couple of things when it comes down to the act of buying & selling real estate: rates can vary within a couple of days, down payments in the good old USA border the 10% if you are a US Citizen or Resident and 30% for qualified foreign nationals, yes there's credit for you too. The there's the paperwork, some changes here: the days of filling out the famous "HUD" (HUD-1 refers to: the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the form itself is a standard use in the United States of America which itemizes services and fees charged to the borrower by the lender or broker when applying for a loan for the purpose of purchasing or refinancing real estate) settlement form and getting a Good Faith Estimate (GFE) from the lender are winding down. On October 1st, 2015, those two forms are going away. The Truth in Lending Act (TILA) disclosure form is going away, too. Replacing them are two new forms: the 1.) Closing Disclosure and 2.) Loan Estimate.
There are also new rules for the closing procedure. One rule requires all forms to be ready three days prior to closing. NAR (National Association of Realtors) is recommending you actually get everything ready seven days prior to closing, so when you go into the three-day period, you don't have to make any changes. For those who’ve already purchased hopes, you know that making changes as the clock winds down comes with a cumbersome set of hurdles.
What this means is, you and the other settlement service providers, including the lender and title agent, are under the gun to get everything squared away earlier than you have to today. And the buyers and sellers have to be cooperative as well, because if last-minute changes are made, a new three-day waiting period kicks in, at least in some cases.
Yes, owing a home entails a long list of documents and forms, but it still is a great investment and this is still a very good moment to buy and pass on to your loved ones in form of inheritance, US currently holds a 40% - vs Japan at 55%, South Korea 50% and very soon Ecuador to achieve a Guinness World record of 75%!
You can familiarize yourself with these new forms on the website of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), which has taken over administration of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) from HUD. Goto: http://www.consumerfinance.gov/knowbeforeyouowe/compare/