Welcome} to America's Choice Home Loans
We are a Mortgage Banker, and we help people with their largest personal investment – their home. Whether it’s a first home, a new home in a new city, or that beach or lake house you’ve always wanted, we can help. We can also help with your residential investment properties.
We’ve been in business since 1998 and thousands of people have new keys because of us.
You can apply online or visit a home loan professional at one of our local branch offices. We underwrite, close and fund 99% of our loans in-house. What does that mean for you? It means that the entire process is streamlined, efficient, and convenient.
Referrals account for a majority of the mortgage loans we have originated in our twelve plus year history. Why? Simply put, at America’s Choice we deliver value. Our interest rates and fees are among the best, but our level of service is unmatched. We invite you to find out why so many people refer their friends and family to us.
About America's Choice Home Loans
America’s Choice Home Loans is not a locksmith, but we have helped a lot of people get new house keys. We are a full service Mortgage Banker that originates, processes, closes and funds loans for our clients. Founded in 1998, the company has changed through the years with the needs of our customers. We have always emphasized technology as an important part of the way we work with people that need a home loan, but we never forget that a personal relationship is what sets us apart.
America’s Choice is approved with HUD/FHA, the Veterans’ Administration (VA), and nationally as a USDA Rural Development lender. We are a licensed lender in those states where we conduct business.
We offer a wide range of conventional home loan products and services, as well as programs administered by FHA, VA, and USDA. America’s Choice can help with jumbo loans, residential investment property loans, and second home loans. 99% of the home loans we make are done in-house, start to finish.
Along the way we have picked up a few awards from the Austin and Houston Business Journals as well Lending Tree.
Headquartered in Houston, Texas, we continue to grow. We have assembled a top management team of industry veterans that understand the business and personal side of what we do, and each is committed to the success of every home loan we work on. America’s Choice is opening new branch offices all the time, so please click on “Contact” to find the nearest branch office. Or apply on line and find out how easy getting a home loan can be. And if you are ever in the Houston area, please stop by, your keys are waiting.
America's Choice Home Loans Resources
Moving into a new home can be stressful, there is so much to think about and so much to do. We hope the resources provided here will be helpful. Please feel free to contact one of our mortgage professionals if you have questions or need assistance.
Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions or feedback.
Toll Free: 877.886.5626
8584 Katy Frwy, Suite 200, Houston, Texas 77024
ACHL Loan Programs
An FHA insured loan is a Federal Housing Administration mortgage insurance backed mortgage loan which are provided by FHA-approved lenders. FHA insured loans are a type of federal assistance and have historically allowed lower income Americans to borrow money for the purchase of a home that they would not otherwise be able to afford. To obtain mortgage insurance from the Federal Housing Administration, a mortgage insurance premium (MIP) equal to a percentage of the loan amount at closing is required, and is normally financed by the lender and paid to FHA on the borrower's behalf. Depending on the loan-to-value ratio, there may be a monthly premium as well.
The program originated during the Great Depression of the 1930s, when the rates of foreclosures and defaults rose sharply, and the program was intended to provide lenders with sufficient insurance. Some FHA programs were subsidized by the government, but the goal was to make it self-supporting, based on insurance premiums paid by borrowers. Over time, private mortgage insurance (PMI) companies came into play, and now FHA primarily serves people who cannot afford a conventional down payment or otherwise do not qualify for PMI.
A VA loan is a mortgage loan in the United States guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). The loan may be issued by qualified lenders.
The VA loan was designed to offer long-term financing to eligible American veterans or their surviving spouses (provided they do not remarry). The basic intention of the VA direct home loan program is to supply home financing to eligible veterans in areas where private financing is not generally available and to help veterans purchase properties with no down payment. Eligible areas are designated by the VA as housing credit shortage areas and are generally rural areas and small cities and towns not near metropolitan or commuting areas of large cities.
The VA loan allows veterans 102.15 percent financing without private mortgage insurance or a 20 per cent second mortgage and up to $6,000 for energy efficient improvements. A VA funding fee of 0 to 3.15% of the loan amount is paid to the VA; this fee may also be financed. In a purchase, veterans may borrow up to 102.15% of the sales price or reasonable value of the home, whichever is less. Since there is no monthly PMI, more of the mortgage payment goes directly towards qualifying for the loan amount, allowing for larger loans with the same payment. In a refinance, veterans may borrow up to 90% of reasonable value, where allowed by state laws.
VA loans allow veterans to qualify for loans amounts larger than traditional Fannie Mae / conforming loans. VA will insure a mortgage where the monthly payment of the loan is up to 41% of the gross monthly income vs. 28% for a conforming loan assuming the veteran has no monthly bills.
A reverse mortgage (or lifetime mortgage) is a loan available to seniors, and is used to release the home equity in the property as one lump sum or multiple payments. The homeowner's obligation to repay the loan is deferred until the owner dies, the home is sold, or the owner leaves (e.g., into aged care).
In a conventional mortgage the homeowner makes a monthly amortized payment to the lender; after each payment the equity increases within his or her property, and typically after the end of the term the mortgage has been paid in full and the property is released from the lender. In a reverse mortgage, the home owner makes no payments and all interest is added to the lien on the property. If the owner receives monthly payments, or a bulk payment of the available equity percentage for their age, then the debt on the property increases each month.
If a property has increased in value after a reverse mortgage is taken out, it is possible to acquire a second (or third) reverse mortgage over the increased equity in the home. But in certain countries (including the United States), a reverse mortgage must be the only mortgage on the property.
A mortgage loan is a loan secured by real property through the use of a mortgage note which evidences the existence of the loan and the encumbrance of that realty through the granting of a mortgage which secures the loan. However, the word mortgage alone, in everyday usage, is most often used to mean mortgage loan.
A home buyer or builder can obtain financing (a loan) either to purchase or secure against the property from a financial institution, such as a bank, either directly or indirectly through intermediaries. Features of mortgage loans such as the size of the loan, maturity of the loan, interest rate, method of paying off the loan, and other characteristics can vary considerably.
In the United States, a jumbo mortgage is a mortgage loan in an amount above conventional conforming loan limits. The average interest rates on jumbo mortgages are typically higher than for conforming mortgages.
Home Loan Calculator Resource
Home Loans Dos & Don'ts
Below are a few reminders of "Dos and Don'ts" that are helpful to know before you close on your loan. If you have any more questions or concerns feel free to contact us.
DO keep originals of all pay stubs, bank statements, and other important financial documentation.
DO provide all documentation for the sale of your current home (i.e., sales contract, closing statement, employer relocation/buyout program).
DO notify your loan officer if you plan to receive gift funds.
DO keep a “paper trail” of any large deposits or balance transfers.
DO bring a cashier’s check made payable to the title company for the down payment and closing cost.
DO notify your loan officer of any employment changes (i.e., change of employer; recent raise/promotion; change of pay status, such as salary to commission, etc.).
DO Check out the neighborhood at different times of the day.
DO Contact your insurance agent early in the process.
DON’T change jobs/employer without inquiring about the impact this change would have on the approval/approvability of your mortgage loan.
DON’T make major purchases during or prior to closing (i.e., new car, furniture, appliances, electronics) because this might impact your qualification ratios. Please confer with your loan officer to have him/her calculate what your ratios would be with any additional debts.
DON’T obtain and/or deposit sums of money over $500 without notifying your loan officer. FNMA/HUD guidelines require documentation as to the source of these funds (i.e., copy of bonus check, copy of tax refund, copy of insurance settlement, gift letter with copy of check and deposit slips, etc.).
DON’T close/open or transfer any asset accounts without inquiring about the proper documentation required for our loan file (i.e., if you transfer all the funds in your stock account to your savings account, documentation is required).
DON’T open or increase any liabilities, including credit cards, signature loans, etc., during the loan process. Please check with you loan officer for any documentation that will be required and what impact this would have on your qualification ratios.
Home Loan Glossary of Terms
Anything of value. Any interest in real or personal property which can be appropriated for the payment of debt.
Broadly, all the money and other property of a corporation or other enterprise used in transacting its business.
Long-term debt, preferred stock and net worth. The loan capital of a community development loan fund; includes that which has been borrowed from and is repayable to third parties as well as that which is earned or owned by the loan fund (i.e. "permanent capital").
Assets pledged to secure the repayment of a loan.
An amount owed for funds borrowed. The debt may be owed to an organization's own reserves, individuals, banks, or other institutions. Generally, the debt is secured by a note, bond, mortgage, or other instrument that states repayment and interest provisions. The note, in turn, may be secured by a lien against property or other assets.
A failure to discharge a duty. The term is most often used to describe the occurrence of an event that cuts short the rights or remedies of one of the parties to an agreement or legal dispute, for example, the failure of the mortgagor to pay a mortgage installment, or to comply with mortgage covenants.
In a monetary context, something that has been made payable and is overdue and unpaid,
The value of property in an organization greater than total debt held on it. Equity investments typically take the form of an owner's share in the business, and often, a share in the return, or profits. Equity investments carry greater risk than debt, but the potential for greater return should balance the risk.
Liabilities, Total Liabilities
Total value of financial claims on a firm's assets. Equals total assets minus net worth.
Line of Credit
Agreement by a bank that a company may borrow at any time up to an established limit.
The rate of interest a company must pay to borrow funds currently. Program-related investments generally are offered at below market rates or at no interest rate.
Statements of actions or events of the borrower must prevent from occurring or existing, for example, additional borrowing without the lender's consent.
In commercial law, the principal is the amount that is received, in the case of a loan, or the amount from which flows the interest.
Promise to pay. Written contract between a borrower and a lender that is signed by the borrower and provides evidence of the borrower's indebtedness to the lender.
Refers to the right, in an agreement, to demand payment from the person who is taking on an obligation. A full recourse loan refers to the right of the lender to take any assets of the borrower if repayment is not made. A limited recourse loan only allows the lender to take assets named in the loan agreement. A non-recourse loan limits the lender's rights to the particular asset being financed -- an approach that is common in home mortgages and other real estate loans.
A pledge made to secure the performance of a contract or the fulfillment of an obligation. Examples of securities include real estate, equipment stocks or a co-signer. Mortgages are a form of security with strong legal standing, because they are publicly registered following a formal legal procedure. A mortgage gives the lender holding a mortgage security the right to reclaim the asset being financed, if repayment is not made.
Refers to the maturity or length of time until final repayment on a loan, bond, sale or other contractual obligation.
Statement attesting that certain statements are true. For instance, the borrower may warrant that it is a corporation, that it is entering into the agreement legally and that financial statements supplied to the bank are true.
Home Loan Checklist
When applying for a home loan it helps and saves valuable time if you get all your documents in order. The following checklist will enable you to apply for a loan without any hitches.
To apply for a home loan you will need to provide:
Loan Information: This will entail disclosing what the purchase price of the house is; the amount of loan required; monthly homeowner's dues; amount of down payment or earnest money; details of the borrower/borrowers.
Information on the Property: location and type of property; proposed use ( primary residence; secondary home ;or investment property); detailed address and ownership details or property to be purchased.
Personal Information: name of single or multiple borrowers; social security numbers; education; martial status; address of present residence( if residing for less than two years then previous residential address too must be furnished); employment information along with tenure (employment covering two whole years); number of dependents with birth dates of each.
Income Details: All sources of income of borrower as well as co-borrowers; salary, income tax; bonuses; investments ; commissions; interest payments are more. Details of current expenses, borrowings, and other assets. You will need:
- W2 forms for the last two years
- Pay stubs covering a 30 day period
- Federal tax returns (1040's) for the last two years, if: you are self-employed ; earn more than 25% of your income from commissions or bonuses ;own rental property; or are in a career where you are likely to take non-reimbursed business expenses.
- Year-to-Date Profit and Loss Statement (for self employed).
- Corporate or partnership tax returns (if applicable).
- Pension Award letter (for retired individuals).
- Social Security Award letters (for those on Social Security).
- Bank statements for previous two months (sometimes three) on all accounts. All pages.
- Statements for two months on all stocks, mutual funds, bonds, etc, etc.
- Copy of latest 401K statement (or other retirement assets).
- Explanations for any large deposits and source of those funds.
- Copy of HUD1 Settlement Statement on recent sales of homes.
- Copy of Estimated HUD1 Settlement Statement if a previous home is for sale, but not yet closed.
- Gift letter (if some of the funds come as a gift from a family member). Gifts can also require: Verification of donor's ability to make the gift (bank statement) ; copy of the check used to make the gift ; copy of the deposit receipt showing the funds deposited into bank account or escrow.
Explanations for any of the following items which may appear on your credit report:
- Late payments
- Credit inquiries in the last 90 days
Copy of bankruptcy papers if you have filed bankruptcy within the last seven years.
- Copy of purchase agreement (if you have already made an offer)
- To document receipt of child support (if you desire to show it as income)
- Copy of Divorce Settlement (to show the amount)
- Copies of twelve months canceled checks to document actual receipt of fund.
All details must be supported by documentary proof and filed neatly so that the information is easily accessible. Be organized and request the institution where you are applying for a loan to give you a list of documents required along with the loan application.
For quick loan approval fill all details accurately and honestly this will ensure faster completion of procedures.
Home Loan Frequently Asked Questions
Below are Frequently Asked Questions that often are encountered through the course of the home buying process. You also can use our Home Loan Glossary to address additional terms or questions that arise.
|1 ·||How much do I need for a down payment on a home?|
America's Choice Home Loans offers a variety of different loan programs including first-time home buyer programs, and low down payment options. Imagine getting into your very own home with little money down! Each loan program we offer has different rules about the down payment amount required. Down payments can also vary by the amount you want to borrow, as well as factors like credit history. To find out what options we have for you, contact one of our experienced Loan Officers for a no-obligation quote, or click "Apply Online" on the top right of your screen to start a custom loan search. Each loan program we offer has different rules about the down payment amount required. Down payments can also vary by the amount you want to borrow, as well as factors like credit history. To find out what options we have for you, contact one of our experienced Loan Officers for a no-obligation quote, or click "Apply Online" on the top right of your screen to start a custom loan search.
|2 ·||Should I get pre-qualified before looking for a property?|
You don't have to apply for a loan before looking for a property, but it's a good idea to get pre-qualified for a home loan before you find a home to purchase. When you get pre-qualified, you know ahead of time how much house you can afford, what you can expect your monthly payment to be, and how much money you will need for the down payment and settlement costs at closing. Also, many real estate agents will take your offer more seriously if you have been pre-qualified.
|3 ·||What are the advantages of purchasing a home?|
Buying a home gives you personal benefits such as a sense of buying a stake in your community, and pride for achieving the American dream of home ownership. However, there are some strong financial benefits as well. One of the largest benefits of homeownership is the tax savings you receive. Interest payments on a home mortgage may be 100% tax deductible (consult your tax advisor to learn more). And as you continue to pay your mortgage payment, you are building equity in your home, as opposed to a rent payment that goes into somebody else's pocket. You build equity faster as the value of your home increases, and you can borrow against that equity to pay off debts, send your child to college, make home improvements, or take a much needed vacation. With today's low down payment options, affording a home is a lot easier than you may think.
|4 ·||Will I have to pay PMI?|
Private mortgage insurance (PMI) is required for all loans that exceed 80% loan-to-value (LTV). If you put less than a 20% down on your purchase loan, you will likely be required to pay mortgage insurance until your LTV reaches 78% or below. America's Choice Home Loans may be able to help you avoid the expensive costs of PMI with one of our home mortgage programs. Give us a call or apply online to find out how.