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Plain Talk about Fancy Mortgages: Stick with the old-fashioned 30-year fixed.
The word “candidate” derives from the word “candid”, and politicians running for office this year have learned that voters prefer frank talk, not a sales pitch. The same is true for homeowners shopping for a mortgage. As we prepare for springtime – which is historically the best time to buy a home – it is appropriate to talk about ways to weed out the hype about exotic residential mortgages in favor of old-fashioned fixed rate loans.

The most recent bull market in real estate was artificially inflated by high-risk loans that encouraged consumers to leverage themselves to the max. The old fashioned and reliable 30-year fixed rate mortgage – which helped to steadily grow this nation’s housing market for many decades – was upstaged by sexier, trendier, more exotic residential mortgages. Too many borrowers got in over their heads and are now paying a painful price, and the current mortgage crisis has left consumers shell-shocked and wary.

Many bad loans were made to good people within the past few years, and millions of borrowers got stuck with ultra fancy mortgages that were inappropriate, expensive, and downright difficult to comprehend. To avoid that trap while getting the most from your mortgage dollars, it pays to learn as much as possible about various types of loans and refinancing programs. Choose those that help you grow equity in realistic, manageable ways.

Highly leveraged loans have their place in the market, but for most homebuyers, especially those who are not professional investors, such mortgages can be a financial nightmare. Especially in 2008, it is prudent to opt for a low-risk, no-frills mortgage with user-friendly terms and conditions that will not change with the weather but will help you safely withstand any economic climate or storm.

Here is the straight sauce on three of the most exotic – but more risky – home loans.


Suddenly hybrids came into fashion, playing upon the emotions of those who associate anything named “hybrid” with ecological responsibility and energy independence. And while these hybrid mortgages blended the best of several different types of loans into one convenient and user-controlled package, most were structured around a typical adjustable interest rate mortgage. In today’s climate an adjustable rate is too volatile for most homeowners, and the other hybrid features are just more high-risk bells and whistles.

 No Money Down Mortgages:

 Then there were those dreaded no-money-down loans. We all want to get something for nothing, and no-money-down is a phrase that usually precedes a get rich quick sales pitch. In the real estate business no down payment is another


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