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The Facts (and Myths) on Home Inspections

The Facts (and Myths) on Home Inspections

Because home inspections are such an important part of your homebuying journey, it's important to separate the facts from the myths.

Paying Down the Mortgage: Meet Stephen, Brad and Patty

Paying Down the Mortgage: Meet Stephen, Brad and Patty

We reached out to three homeowners, all at various stages of their mortgage, and asked them how it felt to be paying off their home. Read what they had to say.

The Facts (and Myths) on Down Payments and PMI

The Facts (and Myths) on Down Payments and PMI

Before accepting the 20% down myth, it's important to do your homework, weigh the pros and cons regarding your down payment options and separate the facts from the myths.

An MVP Team Can Help You Score That Home

An MVP Team Can Help You Score That Home

For something as important as buying a home, you need the right team of housing professionals working with you.

33% of Homeowners Do This.  Would You?

33% of Homeowners Do This. Would You?

Last year, 19% of survey respondents said they would buy a house sight unseen. This year, 33%. Find out why.

Low Rates = High Purchasing Power

Low Rates = High Purchasing Power

Mortgage rates are a still a steal for buyers.

Welcome to Your New Luxury (Manufactured) Home

Welcome to Your New Luxury (Manufactured) Home

For high–end finishes at bargain prices, check out today's crop of new manufactured homes.

Could You Chart a Similar Path to Buying a Home?

Could You Chart a Similar Path to Buying a Home?

Meet Layanna, a single mom. Through her commitment and the support of her real estate agent, loan officer, and community, she's a brand–new homeowner.

Freedoms of Homeownership

Freedoms of Homeownership

When considering the pros and cons of buying a home, one thing you can place in the 'pros' column is the independence owning a home can bring.

The Math Behind Putting Less Than 20% Down

The Math Behind Putting Less Than 20% Down

Did you know that you could buy a home with a down payment of less than 20%? Lots of people do. Want to join them? Find out how all of the numbers add up.

Meet the Team: Lender

Meet the Team: Lender

Lenders will help you understand your mortgage options, terms, closing costs, and more.

Meet the Team: Real Estate Agent

Meet the Team: Real Estate Agent

You're going to be spending a lot of time with your agent so it's important to find someone who gets you.

Meet the Team: Housing Counselor

Meet the Team: Housing Counselor

While many people want to jump straight into the house–hunting part of the buying process, it's important to understand what the process entails first.

Spring Homebuying Season: Quiz #2

Spring Homebuying Season: Quiz #2

How much have you learned about the difference between the first and second–time homebuying experience? Take the quiz and let us know if you're a homebuying all–star.

What's the Point?

What's the Point?

Today's infographic considers 3 important questions to help you get the point on points.

The Right Fit

The Right Fit

When it comes to home buying, which should come first? The house or the mortgage?

The Chicken or The Egg of Real Estate

The Chicken or The Egg of Real Estate

If you're looking to buy your second, or 'move up' home, you may be faced with the difficult decision of what to do first: list your home or make an offer. Follow along as we detail some important factors that may help you on your journey.

2 x 10 Toes = We Need More Room!

2 x 10 Toes = We Need More Room!

Our first home was absolutely perfect — until kids came along and we quickly outgrew it. Follow my journey of 'moving up' and moving out.

Spring Homebuying Season: Quiz Time!

Spring Homebuying Season: Quiz Time!

How much have you learned about the first–time homebuying experience? Test your knowledge!

Closing the Deal: Sign Here and Here and...

Closing the Deal: Sign Here and Here and...

Check out the infographic which highlights the traditional closing process, so you can know what to expect on your closing day!

Keep Breathing: You've Decided to Make an Offer

Keep Breathing: You've Decided to Make an Offer

Here's an outline of the traditional offer process so you can know what to except when it's your turn to make the deal!

How Far Will Your Funds Go?

How Far Will Your Funds Go?

Steps to get a handle on how much you can borrow.

Get the Real Scoop on Down Payments

Get the Real Scoop on Down Payments

Believe that you need to make a down payment of at least 20% to buy a home? You have lots of company. Putting down that much money upfront certainly has benefits, but it's not required.

Urban or Suburban?

Urban or Suburban?

Buying a home is a big deal, so finding the right one that fits your needs is especially important and can have long–term impacts on both your wallet and your quality of life.

PROVE You're Serious by Getting Pre-APPROVED

PROVE You're Serious by Getting Pre-APPROVED

This year's Spring Homebuying Season is hot! Improve your odds of getting into a home by getting pre–approved.

Say What? Learning the Homebuying Language

Say What? Learning the Homebuying Language

Here's a quick cheat sheet of must–know terms that'll help you navigate the homebuying process. Print it out or pull it up on your phone and you'll sound like a pro in no time!

Kicking off the Spring Homebuying Season: Meet Nicole

Kicking off the Spring Homebuying Season: Meet Nicole

As a recent first–time homebuyer, I'm excited to share my journey with you over the next couple of weeks!

What's that Sizzle? It's the 2017 Homebuying Season.

What's that Sizzle? It's the 2017 Homebuying Season.

The 2017 Spring homebuying season is already off to a hot start and activity is expected to grow throughout the year. Why so fast out of the gate? Let's find out.

March Madness: Host City Advantage

March Madness: Host City Advantage

As hopeful fans cheer on their teams during the 2017 NCAA March Madness Basketball Tournament, the housing industry is revving up for Spring Homebuying Season.

Saturdays + Spring = Seller's Sweet Spot

Saturdays + Spring = Seller's Sweet Spot

Homes listed during these two weeks sell on average nine days faster and for 1 percent more (about $1,500) than the average listing.

The Importance of Affordable Housing and Homeownership

The Importance of Affordable Housing and Homeownership

In commemoration of Black History Month, Freddie Mac held a panel discussion on the company's commitment to affordable housing, particularly in the African American community.

Roses are Red, Violets are Blue, What Can Your Tax Return Do for You?

Roses are Red, Violets are Blue, What Can Your Tax Return Do for You?

Have you gotten your refund already or are you planning on filing soon? Here are 3 ways your tax return could bring you closer to homeownership.

Need Housing Help? Start Here

Need Housing Help? Start Here

At one of the 14 Freddie Mac–sponsored borrower help centers across the country, you can get tips and tools to prepare for homeownership.

Forecasting 2017 with Freddie Mac's Chief Economist

Forecasting 2017 with Freddie Mac's Chief Economist

As 2016 gives way to 2017, we move away from recapping the year that was and transition to prognosticating the year to come.

Improve Your Homebuying Odds: Get Pre-Approved

Improve Your Homebuying Odds: Get Pre-Approved

Anyone looking to buy — especially in a competitive market — should ask a reputable lender to pre–approve them for a mortgage.

This Tool Makes It Easier to Manage Your Money

This Tool Makes It Easier to Manage Your Money

If your resolution is to get into a new home this year, it's important to understand how to manage your money. In fact, this knowledge is valuable in any case.

Are You On the Right Track? Understanding Your Credit Score.

Are You On the Right Track? Understanding Your Credit Score.

Your credit score is a vital piece of a lender's credit decision, influencing the credit that's made available to you and the terms that you're offered. How is your score calculated?

Calculating Renting vs. Buying

Calculating Renting vs. Buying

Our rent vs. buy calculator can help you map out the financial differences between renting and buying.

Renting & Buying: Meet the Pros

Renting & Buying: Meet the Pros

Both renting and buying have a lot of pros. Meet them now.

Homebuyers: Is $10,000 Waiting for You?

Homebuyers: Is $10,000 Waiting for You?

Eighty–seven percent of U.S. homes are eligible for one or more homeownership programs. The down payment program benefit most frequently found? About $10,000! Could you qualify?

10 Hot Housing Markets for 2017

10 Hot Housing Markets for 2017

While most predict that the housing market will cool off slightly next year, 10 cities will remain hot thanks in large part to Millennials and Baby Boomers.

Borrowing Power to Increase Nationwide in 2017

Borrowing Power to Increase Nationwide in 2017

New rules mean you may be able to borrow more next year.

Considering A Manufactured Home?

Considering A Manufactured Home?

Forget what you think you know about manufactured homes. With prices averaging $71,300, they might just be the affordable housing option you're looking for.

What Do Homebuying and High School Have in Common?

What Do Homebuying and High School Have in Common?

Counselors who can help you succeed. A high–school guidance counselor might have advised you on what you needed to do to graduate and the path you might take toward your future. A housing counselor can advise you on how to become and stay a homeowner.

Baby Boomer Myths: Up-Close and Personal with Sean Becketti, Chief Economist

Baby Boomer Myths: Up-Close and Personal with Sean Becketti, Chief Economist

Baby Boomers comprise one-quarter of the population but own two-thirds of the housing wealth. Their decisions will reshape our housing market in the coming years. Freddie Mac's chief economist uses our latest survey results to bust some myths about 55+ homeowners and renters.

Myth vs. Fact Quiz

Myth vs. Fact Quiz

Over the last few months we've been dispelling the top two myths on everything from down payments to renting. See how well you know the facts in today's quiz.

Myth vs. Fact: Home Inspections

Myth vs. Fact: Home Inspections

Home inspections are so important because they give you the opportunity to thoroughly inspect the home with a professional before you spend any of your hard-earned money to buy it. Because of this, today we're tackling the two biggest myths.

Myth vs. Fact: Qualifying for a Mortgage

Myth vs. Fact: Qualifying for a Mortgage

Confused about what it takes to get a mortgage in today's market? Here are the facts to dispel the two biggest myths about qualifying for one.

Myth vs. Fact: Down Payments

Myth vs. Fact: Down Payments

Down payment requirements are one of the biggest misconceptions in the market. Today we're debunking the top 2 myths.

Making an Offer: Getting Started

Making an Offer: Getting Started

You've found the perfect home and you're ready to make an offer. Where should you start? The first step is understanding what you can afford.

Six Down, Six to Go

Six Down, Six to Go

We're essentially half way through 2016. So how are homes sales doing?

ISO Down Payment Help?

ISO Down Payment Help?

If you're in the market to buy your first home, but know you'll need some help with your down payment or closing costs, assistance may be right under your nose.

Time to Test Your Homebuying Smarts

Time to Test Your Homebuying Smarts

Take the time to see what you learned in our 'It's About Time' blog series quiz.

Many Returns of the Day, USDA!

Many Returns of the Day, USDA!

Congratulations to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development on its Single-Family Housing Guaranteed Loan Program's 25th anniversary! Freddie Mac looks forward to working together even more closely over the next 25.

Beware of Phishers Trying to Hook Your Closing Costs

Beware of Phishers Trying to Hook Your Closing Costs

Homebuying season can be open season for scams. Don't get caught.

Calculating Ways Homeowners Can Save Money

Calculating Ways Homeowners Can Save Money

During the homebuying process, you're probably focused on all of the related costs. Why not think a bit about how you might save money once you're a homeowner? Freddie Mac's calculators and worksheets can help.

Down Payments: There's Help for That

Down Payments: There's Help for That

'If only I could afford the down payment, I could buy that home.' You might be able to do both. An acceptable down payment might be smaller than you think (hint: less than 20%). On top of that, you might be eligible for down payment assistance.

Dear Seller, Pick Me

Dear Seller, Pick Me

Congratulations, you've found the home of your dreams! Before you submit an offer, you may want to include one thing to set you apart from the competition — a letter to the seller.

Try, Try Again: Responding to a Counteroffer

Try, Try Again: Responding to a Counteroffer

You've found the right team. You've found the right home. You're all set to name a price and start moving in furniture, right? Wrong! Making the initial offer is often just the first of several steps before signing the contract.

Take the Anxiety Out of Your First Home Offer

Take the Anxiety Out of Your First Home Offer

Here's how to put together an opening bid on a house without making yourself a nervous wreck.

First-time Homebuyers Spring Back

First-time Homebuyers Spring Back

Early reports are showing first-time homebuyers coming back into the market.

Job Interview Questions for Your Next Lender

Job Interview Questions for Your Next Lender

Questions you'll want to ask to find that lender who will follow through on their promises, close your loan on time, and get you the best deal you can afford.

Homework and a Home Purchase

Homework and a Home Purchase

Before making a major purchase, consumers are routinely advised to 'do their homework first.' What does this mean in the context of buying a house? It's more than just getting your financial house in order — you also need to study where you live now.

Do You Know Your Housing Lingo?

Do You Know Your Housing Lingo?

If you've just dipped your toe into the house-hunting world, it's easy to feel overwhelmed — especially when everyone seems to be speaking an unfamiliar language.

Putting Together a Homebuying Dream Team - Part 2

Putting Together a Homebuying Dream Team - Part 2

The last two positions for your dream team of home buying professionals are critical for catching costly issues early and avoiding legal complications when its time to close.

Putting Together a Homebuying Dream Team - Part 1

Putting Together a Homebuying Dream Team - Part 1

A dream team of home buying professionals can help you save time and money by catching costly issues early and avoiding legal complications in the closing.

Mortgage Rates: Still Something to Celebrate

Mortgage Rates: Still Something to Celebrate

Today's mortgage rates remain near historic lows and this has an important and direct effect on how much home you can afford.

What Should Home Shoppers Know About Remodeling?

What Should Home Shoppers Know About Remodeling?

From a home shopper's point of view, buying a recently remodeled house could be a savvy way to buy cool upgrades, like an upscale bathroom, for about half the project's original cost. Remodeling Magazine's latest Cost vs. Value report shows why.

Top 5 Cities for Walking, Biking, and Transit

Top 5 Cities for Walking, Biking, and Transit

Why is location so important? Because it's about convenience, quality of life, and being close to things that matter most.

3 Tips to Find the One

3 Tips to Find the One

You've pored over local real estate listings and watched hours of house hunting shows. You're ready to take the plunge and start seriously looking for a new home. How can you make sure you pick the right one?

3 Tips to Find the One

3 Tips to Find the One

You've pored over local real estate listings and watched hours of house hunting shows. You're ready to take the plunge and start seriously looking for a new home. How can you make sure you pick the right one? Follow these 3 tips.

How Much Home Can You Afford?

How Much Home Can You Afford?

Condo? Fixer-upper? McMansion? Starter home? Town house? Tiny house? Before you start looking seriously at buying ANY kind of home this spring, you'll first need to answer the single-most important question: How much home can I afford?

Spring Forward to Spring Homebuying

Spring Forward to Spring Homebuying

Today kicks off our 'It's About Time' blog series that will help you be ready in time for spring homebuying.

You've Got Mail

You've Got Mail

Do you want to know more about buying or renting a home, the housing market and housing finance? It's quick and easy when you sign up for our weekly roundup.

Did it Work?  Test Your Knowledge

Did it Work? Test Your Knowledge

Take our quiz to test your knowledge on How it Works.

How It Works: The Mortgage Loan Application Process

How It Works: The Mortgage Loan Application Process

Read on to see what the mortgage application process is all about.

HomeSteps: More Questions Answered

HomeSteps: More Questions Answered

More questions answered about HomeSteps just in time for spring homebuying.

How It Works: The Closing Process

How It Works: The Closing Process

You'll sign many important documents at closing, the final step in the homebuying process when the property is legally transferred to you. Learn more about what to expect at closing and how it all comes together.

How it Works: Making an Offer

How it Works: Making an Offer

Learn about the process for making an offer in our How it Works series.

HomeSteps: Your Top Questions Answered

HomeSteps: Your Top Questions Answered

Today we answer your top questions to help you start your home search at HomeSteps.

How it Works: Amortization

How it Works: Amortization

Your amortization table outlines every monthly payment you make on your loan and its contribution toward equity. Find out how it works and why it's important.

How It Works: PMI

How It Works: PMI

If you're in the market to buy a home, you've likely heard the acronym 'PMI.' What is it and how does it work?

The Top 10

The Top 10

The results are in. We've run the numbers and here are 10 most-read posts of 2015. See what interesting topics you might have missed.

Tips, Bits & Lists: It's a Wrap

Tips, Bits & Lists: It's a Wrap

Today we wrap up our 12 days of tips, bits & lists blog series with an overview of the financial obligations that come with homeownership.

Tips, Bits & Lists: Day 11

Tips, Bits & Lists: Day 11

On the 11th day of tips, bits & lists, we introduce you to 11 online calculators designed to help demystify mortgages.

Tips, Bits & Lists: Day 10

Tips, Bits & Lists: Day 10

On the 10th day of tips, bits & lists, we take on the 10 words you'll want to brush up on if you're in the market to buy a home.

Tips, Bits & Lists: Day 8

Tips, Bits & Lists: Day 8

Today's 8-question quiz will test your knowledge on down payments.

Tips, Bits & Lists: Day 7

Tips, Bits & Lists: Day 7

Today in our tips, bits & lists blog series learn about the 7 factors that affect your mortgage interest rate.

Tips, Bits & Lists: Day 6

Tips, Bits & Lists: Day 6

On the 6th day of tips, bits & lists, we talk about the six things to know about apartment leases.

Tips, Bits & Lists: Day 5

Tips, Bits & Lists: Day 5

On the 5th day of tips, bits & lists, we give graduates tips for improving their credit – or establishing it in the first place.

Tips, Bits & Lists: Day 4

Tips, Bits & Lists: Day 4

On the 4th day of tips, bits & lists, we're focused on the 4 Cs. You're probably thinking diamonds, but actually we're talking about the 4 Cs of qualifying for a mortgage.

Tips, Bits & Lists: Day 2

Tips, Bits & Lists: Day 2

In October 2015, two new mortgage disclosure forms went into effect as part of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's Know Before You Owe mortgage rule. What are these forms and how can they help you? Find out here.

12 Days of Housing Tips, Bits & Lists

12 Days of Housing Tips, Bits & Lists

On these 12 days of Christmas and all through the year, Freddie Mac is serving up housing tips to those far and near. There will be tidbits and resources and quizzes too, but nowhere will you find a turtle dove or two. Today's tips are just for you.

HomeSteps.com: Fresh Look; Same Quality Difference

HomeSteps.com: Fresh Look; Same Quality Difference

Freddie has affordable and repaired homes available across the country just waiting for an owner. Now looking for one just got easier, thanks to HomeSteps®' redesigned website.

The Closing Process: What to Expect

The Closing Process: What to Expect

You've saved for it, searched for it, found it, and negotiated over it. Finally, you're ready to take possession of it — your new home. Before that can happen, however, comes the closing process.

Paperwork: What to Expect

Paperwork: What to Expect

Many people feel overwhelmed with the homebuying process because of the amount of paperwork and signatures required. How can you ease the anxiety? Get familiar with the documents before closing and lean on your team.

Your Answers Are Just a Click Away

Your Answers Are Just a Click Away

At home or on the go, My Home is built to share and connect people with in-depth and user-friendly information that answers important questions about home. Find out why it's worth getting connected.

Home Inspections: What to Expect

Home Inspections: What to Expect

Home inspections are so important because they give you the opportunity to thoroughly inspect the home with a professional before you spend any of your hard-earned money to buy it. Here's what you can expect from yours.

Down Payments: What to Expect

Down Payments: What to Expect

If you're in the market to buy a home, your down payment is probably top of mind. Here's what you should expect.

Giving Credit Where Credit Is Due

Giving Credit Where Credit Is Due

It's International Credit Union Day – and we're giving credit where credit is due.

Teaming Up in Tampa

Teaming Up in Tampa

Freddie Mac is teaming up to help make the dream of homeownership a reality for families in Florida.

Meet the Experts: Housing Counseling

Meet the Experts: Housing Counseling

Learn 3 ways housing counselors can help you.

Meet the Experts: Home Purchase Costs

Meet the Experts: Home Purchase Costs

Watch this video to understand the 3 main costs of buying a home.

Freddie Mac: First-Time Homebuyer Gains Hold Steady in 2015

Freddie Mac: First-Time Homebuyer Gains Hold Steady in 2015

According to the latest numbers, Freddie Mac financed affordable mortgages for nearly one million first-time homebuyers and over 4.5 million low- and moderate-income borrowers between 2009 and 2015.

Top 5 Concerns of Potential Homebuyers

Top 5 Concerns of Potential Homebuyers

What's the biggest concern about buying a home? Redfin posed that question to more than 3,500 households. Check out this year's top five and how they compare to last year's.

All in a Rate: 7 Key Factors

All in a Rate: 7 Key Factors

Become a savvier shopper by learning what 7 factors affect your interest rate.

Floor Plans of TV's Most Famous Fictional Families

Floor Plans of TV's Most Famous Fictional Families

Big fan of The Simpsons? How about The Big Bang Theory? Or maybe Friends, or even Frasier? It's easier than ever to live like your favorite TV character.

Getting Down to Brass Tacks: Equity Matters

Getting Down to Brass Tacks: Equity Matters

Homeownership sounds appealing for many reasons, and the chatter about 'building equity' has you particularly intrigued. But what exactly does building equity mean and how does it work?

The First Rule of Mortgage Applications Is: You Do Not Lie on Mortgage Applications

The First Rule of Mortgage Applications Is: You Do Not Lie on Mortgage Applications

A recent column by Ken Harney highlights why borrowers should never stretch the truth on a loan application to get a mortgage or a better interest rate.

Counseling Without the Couch: What a Housing Counselor Can Do for You

Counseling Without the Couch: What a Housing Counselor Can Do for You

A housing counselor can be a great ally for a homebuyer – especially for someone navigating the process for the first time.

Down Payment Hurdles May Be Easier to Clear Than You Thought

Down Payment Hurdles May Be Easier to Clear Than You Thought

Lack of funds for a down payment is the reason often given for not buying a home. Contrary to what some believe, the down payment doesn't need to be 20% or more of the purchase price. And for eligible homebuyers, financial help with the down payment is available.

4 Reasons Home Sales Are Surging

4 Reasons Home Sales Are Surging

Reports the Associated Press: 'Home sales are on pace for their best year since 2007. First-time buyers are streaming back into the market.' Why all the activity now after so many years of sluggishness?

May Home Sales

May Home Sales

With new home sales data out for May, we're currently running 17,000 home sales (non-seasonally adjusted) above the May 2013 rate keeping us on track for the best year in home sales since 2007.

Get Ready, Set Before Going to Shop for Your First Home

Get Ready, Set Before Going to Shop for Your First Home

Buying your first home is a huge and often intimidating step. How to start? Read on for tips from the Independent Community Bankers of America.

5 Tips for a Better Credit Score

5 Tips for a Better Credit Score

Your credit score influences a lender's decision to give you a single-family home mortgage loan – or not. These five tips can help you gain or maintain solid credit.

Spring Homebuying: Test Your Knowledge

Spring Homebuying: Test Your Knowledge

We hope you enjoyed our series on spring homebuying. Take today's quiz to test your knowledge.

What Home Means

What Home Means

In honor of National Homeownership Month and our important mission to make home possible we asked, 'What does home mean to you?' See what people from across the nation said.

5 Tips for House Hunting With Kids

5 Tips for House Hunting With Kids

Including your children in your home search can help them better adapt to change and ease anxiety. Here are 5 tips to help make your house hunt an enjoyable family task.

4 Ways to Bridge the Cash Gap

4 Ways to Bridge the Cash Gap

Need help with cash for down payments and closing costs? Here are 4 ways to close that gap.

Use Your Assets

Use Your Assets

Good news for retiring Baby Boomers and other savvy homebuyers who have limited incomes but substantial financial assets – these will help you to qualify for a low-rate mortgage.

Choosing a Neighborhood: 5 Considerations for First-time Buyers

Choosing a Neighborhood: 5 Considerations for First-time Buyers

Choosing a neighborhood is about more than location, location, location. These 5 considerations can help you buy a home that is a good fit, will serve you well and will be a good investment for your future.

Did You Know?

Did You Know?

If you're in the market to buy a home, it's good to be in-the-know. We're here to share some fun and interesting housing-related facts to keep you sharp and entertained.

April, Make or Break for Home Sales

April, Make or Break for Home Sales

Pending home sales trend bodes well for best home sales since 2007.

Spring Homebuying Kicks Off Best Year for Homes Sales in Seven Years

Spring Homebuying Kicks Off Best Year for Homes Sales in Seven Years

In the March edition of RealtyTrac's HousingNewsReport, Freddie Mac Deputy Chief Economist Len Kiefer outlines the top three reasons why he's optimistic about this year's spring homebuying season and 2015 home sales.

Homes from Seattle to Miami: Start Your Search Here

Homes from Seattle to Miami: Start Your Search Here

Are you looking for a 2 bed, 2 bath home in Seattle? Or perhaps you have your sights set on a 2 bed, 2 bath condo in Miami. HomeSteps® has homes just like these and more across the country – one of them may be the home you've been dreaming of.

5 Tips for First-time Homebuyers

5 Tips for First-time Homebuyers

Buying a home is an exciting experience, but it can also be overwhelming if you don't understand the entire mortgage process. Check out these five tips from Bankrate.com to make it easier.

Freddie Mac: Your Top Questions Answered

Freddie Mac: Your Top Questions Answered

Today we answer your top questions.

Spring Forward to Buying a Home

Spring Forward to Buying a Home

The crocuses will be poking up soon, and, with the change in weather, the housing market, too, will be warming up. Our new blog series on the Spring Homebuying Season starts this week – to help you get ready to buy a home.

5 Tips for First-time Homebuyers

5 Tips for First-time Homebuyers

Buying a home is an exciting experience, but it can also be overwhelming if you don't understand the entire mortgage process. Check out these five tips from Bankrate.com to make it easier.

Looking for Happiness?  Try These Towns.

Looking for Happiness? Try These Towns.

Happiness can't be bought, but it can be found. Where? For starters: Sea Ranch, CA; Cedar Rapids, IA; and Kansas City, MO. If you're looking to buy a home and be near happy people everywhere, check out these ZIP codes.

87% of U.S. Homes Qualify for Down Payment Assistance

87% of U.S. Homes Qualify for Down Payment Assistance

You could get down payment help for more than 68 million homes across the country.

4 Tips to Finding a House You Love

4 Tips to Finding a House You Love

Buying a home can be an emotional experience. It's a big investment, and you want to be happy with your home. If you're ready to buy, here are a few tips — along with pitfalls to avoid. Let's start with 'Don’t fall in love with a house you can't afford'.

3 Ways Your Tax Refund Can Bring You Closer to Homeownership

3 Ways Your Tax Refund Can Bring You Closer to Homeownership

Over the course of the next few months, nearly 8 out of 10 tax filers will get a refund. Here are three ways yours could bring you closer to making your dream of homeownership a reality.

The Affordability Stretch Got A Little Easier

The Affordability Stretch Got A Little Easier

With homebuyer affordability improving, some Americans are feeling the burn a bit less as they stretch to make homeownership a reality.

Double-Digit Rates? 1 in 3 Consumers Would Still Prefer to Buy

Double-Digit Rates? 1 in 3 Consumers Would Still Prefer to Buy

A new poll finds that many consumers view buying a home as a better investment than renting, even if mortgage rates were to climb.

How Many First Responders Own Homes?

How Many First Responders Own Homes?

Most firefighters, police and paramedics are homeowners, says a new Freddie Mac analysis of data from the U.S. Census and Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Punxsutawney Phil's Prediction

Punxsutawney Phil's Prediction

Today is Groundhog Day. And in a time honored tradition, all eyes were on Punxsutawney Phil. Is spring coming early or is it still 6 weeks away?

Treasury Announces $5k Bonus to HAMP Borrowers in Good Standing

Treasury Announces $5k Bonus to HAMP Borrowers in Good Standing

Eligible HAMP borrowers in good standing for six years will receive invitations from to apply for a $5,000 lump sum payment from the Treasury to reduce the balances on their Freddie Mac mortgages.

The Urban Flock

The Urban Flock

Remember when families flocked to the suburbs to trade the 'congestion and pollution' of city life for tree-lined streets and manicured lawns? We do, too, but today's market is eyeing the urban core.

4 Tips for Buying a HomeSteps Home

4 Tips for Buying a HomeSteps Home

HomeSteps homes are definitely worth a look if you're shopping for a home. Buying one is even easier with these 4 tips.

Nearly 50% of Homebuyers Aren't Shopping Around

Nearly 50% of Homebuyers Aren't Shopping Around

A recent study by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the Federal Housing Finance Agency found that almost half of U.S. homebuyers fail to shop around for mortgages.

Best Bang for the Condo Buck

Best Bang for the Condo Buck

In today's purchase market, condos could be the answer for many first-time homebuyers and those with lower and/or limited incomes. See where you get the best bang for your buck.

3% Down: More Questions Answered

3% Down: More Questions Answered

Since lenders will soon begin taking applications, today we're answering more questions about our new 3% down mortgage - Home Possible Advantage.

In Good Faith

In Good Faith

Closing costs average about $2,539 – so it's important to understand what your costs will be before you commit to the loan. That's where the Good Faith Estimate comes in.

Don't be one of the 70% who is Unaware of Down Payment Assistance

Don't be one of the 70% who is Unaware of Down Payment Assistance

70% of U.S. adults are unaware of the down payment assistance programs for middle-income homebuyers in their community – don't be one of them.

2014 Industry Projections - Did We Get it Right?

2014 Industry Projections - Did We Get it Right?

It's that time of year when we take stock. So let's look back at 5 key housing predictions for 2014. Did projections hit the target? And what do we think will happen in the year ahead?

Today's Renter? Tomorrow's Homebuyer? Get the Facts from Our New Survey

Today's Renter? Tomorrow's Homebuyer? Get the Facts from Our New Survey

Many renters live paycheck to paycheck - and 61% plan to keep renting in the next three years, new Freddie Mac research shows.

3% Down: Your Top Questions Answered

3% Down: Your Top Questions Answered

Get the answers to your top questions about our new 3% down mortgage.

Borrowing Power Increases in 46 U.S. Counties Next Year

Borrowing Power Increases in 46 U.S. Counties Next Year

Borrowers in high cost areas will be able to borrow more next year based on the Federal Housing Finance Agency's (FHFA) designation of high-cost areas for 2015.

The $1.5 M Question: Rent vs. Buy?

The $1.5 M Question: Rent vs. Buy?

Mike and Jen can afford $1,400 per month on housing and have saved $10,000 for a down payment. But, they're left wondering which option – renting or buying – makes best financial sense. Lets find out.

More Possible Home Possible

More Possible Home Possible

Next month, enhancements to Freddie Mac's Home Possible® Mortgages will make more homes possible for families nationwide.

Supersizing the American Dream

Supersizing the American Dream

Did you know that new homes today are 61% larger than in 1973? And, while the size of new homes has increased, the average household size has decreased, giving us even more living space.

The Rising Generation of Hispanic Homebuyers

The Rising Generation of Hispanic Homebuyers

If you are wondering who tomorrow's homebuyers will be, look no further than the nation's fastest-growing population segment — Hispanics.

Cribs: Rachel vs. Richie

Cribs: Rachel vs. Richie

All-American Sitcoms: They've made their way into most of our lives — from their theme songs to their cast of characters. And for 30 minutes each week, we were invited into these characters' homes. What would it cost to live there today?

Celebra

Celebra

It's National Hispanic Heritage Month, when we recognize and celebrate the heritage and culture of Hispanic and Latino Americans and the contributions they've made to the United States. To help celebrate, let's start by getting educated.

Homeowner Confidence at Four-Year High

Homeowner Confidence at Four-Year High

Did you know that some 65% of homeowners say they are confident they would get the asking price for their home if they put it on the market today? That's up from 40% in 2010.

What We Think About Homebuying: Survey Says...

What We Think About Homebuying: Survey Says...

A new survey shows 68% of Americans think it's a good time to buy a home – yet many have misconceptions about getting a mortgage or the downpayment required.

How Much Will You Bring to Closing?

How Much Will You Bring to Closing?

The average closing costs are $2,539, but they can vary widely depending on where you live. See where your state stacks up.

Why People Rent:  Survey Says...

Why People Rent: Survey Says...

Did you know in a recent survey more than 55% of people gave this reason why they'd rent instead of buy: not enough savings or too much debt. At the bottom of the list? Concern housing prices might fall.

Good to Knows about REOs

Good to Knows about REOs

If you're looking to buy a home, you'll likely come across homes for sale referred to as 'REO' or 'bank-owned.' What are these properties and should you consider looking at them? Lets take a look.

Home Searches Made Easier

Home Searches Made Easier

Home searching just got easier with HomeSteps.com's Home Search Account. Register today.

Nearly 30% of Housing Metros Unaffordable

Nearly 30% of Housing Metros Unaffordable

With the latest data, 47 of the 163 metros are now unaffordable. While that's only 29% of markets, these markets represent roughly 44% of households in our sample.

The Math Challenge: Whether to Rent or Buy?

The Math Challenge: Whether to Rent or Buy?

Find out which is the better option when the monthly payment is the same.

Who's Who?

Who's Who?

The homebuying process: It's exciting, can be intimidating and there are a lot of people involved. The good news? All these people work hard to make your experience as smooth as possible, including several that will hold your hand throughout the process. Let us introduce you.

Taking Responsibility

Taking Responsibility

While shopping for your home is fun and exciting, it's important to remember the responsibilities and financial commitments you'll have as a homeowner. Saving for your down payment and signing on the dotted line are simply the first steps to homeownership.

Three Ways to Improve Your Credit Score Today

Three Ways to Improve Your Credit Score Today

Your credit is a key factor in qualifying for a mortgage, and the higher the score the better. If your credit score is lower than you'd like, don't despair. These three steps can help you begin rebuilding it today.

Down Payments and PMI:  Get the Low Down

Down Payments and PMI: Get the Low Down

If you're in the market to buy a home, you've probably heard the rule of thumb that you shouldn't buy a home unless you can put down 20% to avoid paying Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI). Why is 20% the magic number and what is PMI?

Five Generations in Housing

Five Generations in Housing

Did you know that 76% of first-time homebuyers are Gen Y? And that only 55% of The Silent Generation finances their home purchase? No matter our age, we all play an important role in today's housing market.

Where Inventory is Better

Where Inventory is Better

Did you know that Florida metros boast some of the best opportunities to buy a home based on inventory? Based on the number of homes for sale per household, Miami-Ft. Lauderdale-Pompano Beach and Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater top the list in inventory across the nation's major metropolitan areas.

5 Percent Down Payment?  You Bet.

5 Percent Down Payment? You Bet.

Did you know 40 percent of today's homebuyers using mortgage financing are making down payments that are less than 10 percent?

Use Your Assets

Use Your Assets

Did you know that you can use your financial assets to qualify for a conforming, conventional mortgage?

One Loan Per Second

One Loan Per Second

Did you know that it used to take up to two years worth of documentation and two months wait time to find out if your mortgage would be approved?

Small Towns, Odd Names:  We're Here

Small Towns, Odd Names: We're Here

Whether you live in New York City with over eight million others or Chicken, AK with just seven, we're funding loans right where you live. Big or small, north or south, whatever the name, we're here.

Price Per Square: A Global Perspective

Price Per Square: A Global Perspective

Did you know that housing in major U.S. cities is relatively inexpensive compared to other cities around the world?

Mortgage Rates Once Hit 18.45%

Mortgage Rates Once Hit 18.45%

Did you know that the interest rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage hit a record high of 18.45 percent in October 1981?

Buying a Home? Get CreditSmart

Buying a Home? Get CreditSmart

There's a good reason why we dream of owning a home. And, there's also a good reason to prepare and become financially literate first. Why? Because educated borrowers are better prepared for successful, long-term homeownership and overall financial stability. Get smart through CreditSmart, our free financial education program.

All in the Family

All in the Family

Did you know that 14 percent of recent homebuyers purchased a home to accommodate growing households as their adult children, siblings or aging parents move in?

Fixing to Sell REO in Today's Market

Fixing to Sell REO in Today's Market

In order to compete for value conscious buyers in today's market, Freddie Mac's HomeSteps® sales division repaired nearly half of the REO homes it sold in 2013, up from about a third in a typical year. Examples of winning kitchen and bathroom upgrades can be seen here.

Down Payment Assistance:  It's The Real Deal

Down Payment Assistance: It's The Real Deal

You've found your first home and your lender has approved you for a mortgage. But there's one catch you're short of the cash you need for a down payment. Don't sweat - help may be available.

Bigger Pinch: Housing Affordability

Bigger Pinch: Housing Affordability

So where's the most affordable place to buy a home for the typical family? You might be surprised. The NYC metro is actually more affordable than Boulder, San Jose and Barnstable Town, MA. The most affordable metro area in the country is now Decatur, IL.

Mansion or Yurt: What Can You Afford?

Mansion or Yurt: What Can You Afford?

Dreaming of owning a home and wondering how much you can afford? You're not alone. It's one of the most important questions you'll need to answer before you can begin house hunting – and many factors, aside from your income and car payment, come into play.

The 4 Cs of Qualifying for a Mortgage

The 4 Cs of Qualifying for a Mortgage

Thinking about buying a home but not sure whether you qualify for a mortgage? Here's what lenders look for in a borrower.

Interest Rate vs. APR

Interest Rate vs. APR

Ever wonder why mortgage rates are quoted both in terms of interest rate and APR? And what the difference is?

Mortgage Myths Busted

Mortgage Myths Busted

What do unicorns, leprechauns, and the mandatory 20 percent home down payment have in common? They're all myths.

Three Tips for Mortgage Newbies

Three Tips for Mortgage Newbies

More tips on how to safely apply for a mortgage.

Attention Renters:  Opportunity is Knocking

Attention Renters: Opportunity is Knocking

With rates near historic lows and a rebounding housing market, opportunities for first-time homebuyers abound. Plus, factor in the current rent vs. buy cost analysis and you may find that homeownership makes good financial sense.

What's the Point?

What's the Point?

Your financial house is in order and you're ready to make your dream of homeownership a reality. Now it's time to get a mortgage. As you shop around, you'll see that many lenders offer a menu of mortgage rate-point combinations. So what are these so called 'points' and is there a point in paying them?

Financially Speaking, What's Your IQ?

Financially Speaking, What's Your IQ?

April is Financial Literacy Month – an ideal time to brush up on your financial education and life-long money management skills. To get started, let's take a look at your financial IQ.

Protect Your Mortgage Application from Identity Thieves

Protect Your Mortgage Application from Identity Thieves

Mortgage applications are a gold mine for identity thieves. Here's a common sense tip for keeping your personal data away from prying eyes.

Do You Know How You're Scored?

Do You Know How You're Scored?

Your FICO® score is an important part of a lender's credit decision, influencing the credit that's made available to you and the terms that you're offered. It's calculated using information from several pieces of data from your credit report. Scores range from 300 (worst) to 850 (best). Find out how a FICO Score breaks down.

Taxes Are Not the Only Thing Due April 15th

Taxes Are Not the Only Thing Due April 15th

Taxes are not the only thing due April 15th – it's also the deadline for homebuyers and real estate agents to take advantage of the HomeSteps Winter Sale Promotion.

First Steps for Homebuyers

First Steps for Homebuyers

With the spring home buying season upon us, here are some rules of the road to know before you buy a home in today's market.

Mortgage Rates: From Dirt Cheap, to Cheap

Mortgage Rates: From Dirt Cheap, to Cheap

The same home you considered buying a year ago with a $200,000 mortgage would now cost about $90 more in interest payments per month, or about $1,080 per year, given the general rise in mortgage rates since last year. But let's put this increase into perspective – and take the long view.