29 01, 2019

Home Buying Tips for Millennials

2021-09-28T16:52:11+00:00January 29th, 2019|Tips & Advice|

The American dream of owning a home is still alive. Millennials are now buying homes more than ever. Buying a house for the first time can seem like a stressful process. There’s no shame in asking for help, especially when buying your first house. Check out these tips we have for millennial homebuyers looking to make the next step.

Get Pre-Approved

A pre-approval letter is the real deal, a statement from a lender that you qualify for a specific mortgage amount based on an underwriter’s review of all of your financial information such as credit report, pay stubs, bank statement, salary, assets, and obligations. Pre-approval should mean your loan is contingent only on the appraisal of the home you choose, providing that nothing changes in your financial picture before closing. The reliability and simplicity of your offer stand out from other offers. And pre-approval can give you that reliability edge. It’s also important to remember that after you get pre-approved, do not make any other major purchases, such as buying a car. This changes your finances and has an impact on what you were pre-approved for previously. If the car purchase can wait, then put this major purchase off until after you have closed on your home mortgage purchase loan.

Pay Off Small Debt

Chances are if you’re a millennial in your twenties, you have student loan debt. If you have student loan debt, don’t think you can’t get a mortgage. Don’t worry about this debt as much as credit cards, car payments, and any other monthly payments you might have. Just make sure you don’t miss a payment and factor in these monthly payments into your total budget. However, it’s important to remember […]

24 01, 2019

Benefits of Working With a Local Mortgage Lender

2021-09-28T16:52:15+00:00January 24th, 2019|Buying a home|

There are so many options when it comes to borrowing money for a home loan. From private lenders to big banks, there are pros and cons to each process. We’ll breakdown why borrowing from a local lender, like first Ohio home Finance, is a better route to go for some homebuyers.

The downside to doing business with a big national bank is that they’re, well big. Often times, mortgage lending is less than 10% of the business that most banks do. Rather than having a personal relationship with your mortgage lender and having the freedom to text or call them and get a quick response, you’ll likely have a 1-800 number where you’ll call a call center and get transferred to a different person each time. At First Ohio Home Finance, you will have one loan officer that you will work with directly and mortgage lending is 100% of our business. Since we have local offices in Central and Northern Ohio, you can meet face to face with your loan officer during the mortgage loan process and develop a trusting relationship and be treated as a person rather than a number.

Another perk of working with a local lender is if you don’t fit the standard profile. For example, if you are self-employed. Digging up tax returns, profit and loss statements, and business balance sheets isn’t always easy to do for a self-employed home buyer, but a local lender may be more willing to help you through it. If you have a few credit goofs on your credit report, your local lender might be more understanding than a large bank. They might be more willing to work with you over a period of time to raise your credit score. Or […]

14 01, 2019

Everything You Need to Know About Mortgage Interest Rates

2021-09-28T16:52:18+00:00January 14th, 2019|Uncategorized|

In general, the longer your loan term, the more interest you will pay. Loans with shorter terms usually have lower interest costs but higher monthly payments than loans with longer terms. The cost of rising rates can be limited by making appropriate loan program or pricing choices. A borrower can pay points or use a shorter term to lower the cost of interest. However, the savings may be offset by higher upfront costs or higher monthly payments.

How to Lock In Your Rate

You can prevent rates from rising further by locking in a rate as soon as you find the rate you are comfortable with. But, be careful that the rate lock period will not expire before you can close on your loan. Frequently, rate locks last for 30, 45 or 60 days, but they can be shorter or longer. If you do not lock in a rate, the rate shown on your application may change before closing.

Interest Rates Affect Real Estate Prices

When rates are rising, is it likely that real estate prices will rise too. As mortgage rates increase, owning a home becomes more expensive and sales of homes typically decline. Rising rates are a reaction to inflation. Markets will vary, yet inflation usually affects home prices too. At times, prices may rise at an even faster pace when rates are moving up.

How Interest Rates Affect Your Monthly Payment

As interest rates rise, so will your monthly mortgage payment. It’s important to closely monitor rates and if you find one that works for you, don’t delay. A rate increase of just 1% on a $200,000 30-year-fixed rate loan can increase your monthly payment by about $119.

For more information about interest rates and market […]

9 01, 2019

What is the Ohio Heroes Program?

2022-02-17T21:42:37+00:00January 9th, 2019|Tips & Advice|

The Ohio Heroes program is a mortgage program offered by The Ohio Housing Finance Agency’s (OHFA) and rewards Ohio residents who serve the public with a discounted mortgage interest rate including FHA and Conventional loans.

Those in the following professions qualify for this program:

  • Veterans
  • Active-duty military members or reservists (surviving spouses included)
  • Police
  • Paid and volunteer firefighters
  • Emergency medical technicians
  • Paramedics
  • Physicians
  • Nurse practitioners
  • Registered nurses
  • Licensed practical nurses
  • State tested nurse aides
  • Pre-K through grade 12 teachers, administrators, and counselors.

You can choose to include down payment assistance in your Ohio Heroes loan. Down payment assistance is forgiven after seven years. If you sell or refinance your home within seven years, your down payment assistance may be forgiven if you sell then buy another home in the state of Ohio. Refinanced loans do require a prorated recapture of the down payment assistance.     Grant money is available for income-eligible applicants, that does not have to be repaid.


Qualified buyers are required to complete free homebuyer education. OHFA’s streamlined education program allows you to complete a course offered by any U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)-approved counseling agency in Ohio. Homebuyer education is not completed until after homebuyer has submitted their loan application with their loan officer.

First Ohio Home Finance works closely with OHFA to help those in qualifying professions achieve the dream of homeownership. To learn more about the program, visit […]