If you have not Refinanced yet, Why not? Do you need a personal Invitation?

If so, here it is……

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You are cordially invited to save hundreds of dollars off your monthly mortgage payment by refinancing your loan today. Dan Shlufman and Classic Mortgage hereby request the presence of your loan application at our processing center in Maywood, NJ. We would be thrilled to share this special time in history with you when we have the lowest interest rates on record.

The pleasure of your patronage is respectfully requested. Please RSVP to the contact information listed below at your earliest convenience. We want to make sure that we have funds put aside so that you can enjoy a lower monthly payment for 15, 20 or 30 years.


If you would like us to book a hotel or a flight which you can pay for with these savings, please let us know. Also, if you need cash to pay off high interest credit cards; for a home renovation; college or a business investment, you can do that too.

Contact me today and find out how you can save hundreds of dollars on your monthly payment by refinancing. You can also buy a new home with a great interest rate. As Eddie the pitchman from the 80’s might say, “act now, these Crazy rates won’t last forever!”


Warmly (or, maybe with this weekend’s weather, I should write “Hotly”),


Daniel M. Shlufman, Esq.


BREAKING MORTGAGE NEWS-Rates to Plunge on Brexit!

Last night, the United Kingdom shocked the world by voting 52% to 48% to leave the European Union. Though their Prime Minister David Cameron campaigned hard against the withdrawal, the British people decided that it was in their best interest to do so. This vote is seen as an anti-immigrant one as the UK wants to limit access to its borders. As a result of the financial uncertainly this has caused, MORTGAGE RATES WILL BE PLUMMETING today and at least in the short term.


So, what does this have to do with mortgages? Well, I am glad you asked! As the financial analysts and traders were blindsided by the result of the vote, the world stock markets are in turmoil. The British Pound is at a 30 year low v. the dollar and the Dow Jones is down 3% before the open. As a result, the yields on the 10 year US Treasury, which is one of the indexes that effects mortgage rates is down 22 points. That means that mortgage rates are going to open significantly lower today.

If you can act fast, there may be a unique opportunity to refinance and take advantage of what may be a significant “blip’ in the market. This could last for some time until the markets stabilize but there is no way to know. What I can predict with relative accuracy is that today, mortgage rates should be the lowest they have been for the year.

Contact me today and find out how you can save hundreds of dollars on your monthly payment by refinancing! Have a great weekend.



Memorial Day, A Time to Remember Those Who Fought and Died to Protect our Freedom

This month, instead of writing about mortgages or real estate, I am going to write about the importance of Memorial Day. To avoid too much heaviness, I will end with some interesting facts! And, after Memorial Day, if you are looking for a house or have a high interest mortgage loan, please reach out to see how I can assist!


Memorial Day is not all about barbeques and a long beach weekend. Though it has morphed into the unofficial start of summer, Memorial Day is really about honoring the men and women who died while serving in the United States military. Beginning with the Civil War, over 1,200,000 soldiers have died during wartime. We owe it to their memory to take some time out of our day next Monday to remember their sacrifices. As the famous quote says, “all gave some and some gave all.” In these divisive times with our unprecedented fractured populace, we need to remember what we have in common and not what drives us apart. For all the ideological differences that exist, we must never forget the freedoms we have or the lives that have been lost in pursuit of these freedoms.

Memorial Day was first observed after the Civil War as a response to the unprecedented carnage of the Civil War with over 620,000 casualties on both sides. It was originally known as Decoration Day when flowers, wreaths and flags were placed on the graves of soldiers. It has become an American holiday observed on the last day of May since 1971. Memorial Day is a federal holiday when all non-essential government offices are closed. In 2000, Congress established a National Moment of Remembrance where Americans pause for one minute at 3:00 PM in an act of national unity.

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Memorial Day Facts:

1. More than 36 million Americans will travel at least 50 miles from home on Memorial Day
2. It is a tradition to fly the American flag at half-mast from dawn until noon and then at full height for the rest of the day
3. Waterloo, New York is considered the birthplace of Memorial Day since it began its annual community service in 1866.
4. The tradition of wearing red poppies on Memorial Day originated from John McCrae’s 1915 poem In Flanders Fields.
5. In 1868, President Ulysses S. Grant presided over the first Memorial Day ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery (which was Robert E. Lee’s plantation prior to 1864)

Happy Memorial Day!

So You Want to Buy your First Home. Do You Know……?

Your Credit Score: Before you get started, contact a mortgage lender and ask them to run your credit report so you know your credit score. They will also be able to tell you if there are any issues on your credit report. If there are, this will be the time to address them. But, do NOT run your credit report yourself through a free online credit report company. These credit reports are not the same ones as the mortgage lenders use and your scores will not be accurate.


How Much You Have for a Downpayment & Closing Costs: The more money you put down on a house, the lower your mortgage payment will be. If you are able to put down at least 20%, you will avoid private mortgage insurance or PMI. You should also budget another 3-6% of the purchase price for closing costs. However, houses can be purchased now with as little as a 3.5% downpayment. You may also be able to finance the closing costs in the mortgage by obtaining a seller’s concession of 3-6% of the purchase price.

What Amount You Can Borrow on a Mortgage: You will need to compile copies of your income documents such as paystubs, W2 statements and federal tax returns so your mortgage lender can review them. Your mortgage lender can then let you know how much you can borrow to buy a house. Generally, you can spend from 33-45% of your gross monthly income on your mortgage payment. You can also spend 38-55% of your gross monthly income on the total debt payments which includes your mortgage payment and all other monthly debt payments (e.g. car, credit card, student loans).

Where You Want to Live: Use online tools to explore various towns you may want to consider. There is information about school ratings, commute times, amenities, etc. that can easily be found on various websites. Once you have decided on a few towns, visit the towns and drive around. You cannot get a feel for a place until you have seen it in person.

A Good Real Estate Agent: Once you have completed the above steps, you will want to speak with a real estate agent to assist you with the process. An agent will be able to help you decide which features you want and don’t want in a home and then match these with available properties. They will also have market expertise and local knowledge. Once you find a home, a real estate agent will help you negotiate the price and assist throughout the home-buying process. But, before hiring an agent, get referrals from people you trust as well as professionals in related fields. Then, read the agent profiles and reviews online to see the experiences others have had with that agent. You should also interview several agents on the phone or in-person before hiring one.

With the information above, you will be on your way to buying your dream home!

Pre-qualification vs Pre-approval

Many of you have probably heard the terms pre-qualification and pre-approval.  You may have wondered what these terms mean and how do they differ?

If it’s spring, it must be the housebuying season, right?

I know that the calendar says it is spring.  I also know that Easter and Passover are coming weekend. Though, like many others, I just don’t know where the spring weather is!  For those of us in the residential housing game, which each year feels more and more like a Game of Thrones, the spring weather is very important. For sellers and buyers alike, there is a big psychological boost when warm weather finally arrives.  Like the Israelites roaming the desert, the homebuyers are looking for a sign from above that it is time to enter the Promised Land (of homeownership)!

Photo via mypreferredlender.net

I am hoping that we finally get some warm weather next week.  And, while knowing that “hope” is not an effective business strategy, I am still predicting a very strong housing market.   Though the “so called” experts only expect housing prices to rise about 3% over last year’s prices, I think that the increase will be significantly larger. I am expecting the increase to be more like 5%-8% possibly higher.  As for the number of previously owned home sales which decreased to 4.93M nationwide in 2014 from 5.09M in 2013, I see a reversal of this for 2015.  I believe that nationwide we will be slightly above the 5.09M number.

First of all, interest rates have continued to remain low despite the dire predictions for this year. Since rates have actually decreased, not increased since January 1st, home affordability has improved since 2014. With the higher employment numbers so far this year, more people are in a position to buy a home now than they were last year.

In addition, the banks are finally easing up on their credit requirements. In January, the Federal Housing Administration (i.e. FHA) dropped their mortgage insurance rates from 1.35% to .85%. Here is a link to a 2 minute video about this reduction and it’s effect — Changes to FHA Mortgage Insurance Premiums January 2015.  With FHA loans allowing credit scores down to 580, low downpayments (including gifts and up to a 6% seller’s concession); and debt-to-income ratios as high as 55% of gross income (with income from non-occupying co-borrowers included), these loans will enable a lot of people to buy homes.

Other new first time home buyer programs were implemented by Fannie/Freddie which now allow for a 3% downpayment with credit scores as low as 620.  This will allow home buyers with less than $10k down to buy a $300,000 house or apartment!   For more information and for each of their specific program requirements (since they vary slightly), you can view this short You Tube video. — Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac 3% Downpayment for Conforming Loans.

There is also pent up demand for housing. The leading edge of the Millennials, who are now in their early 30s, are being “forced” by demographics, income and family size to purchase homes.  Though they prefer to stay flexible by renting and live in/near cities, like those of us who came before them, there comes a time when practicality and affordability (i.e. realization that you are no longer so young), trumps desire.  For many of the older Millenials, that time is now!

On the other end of the demographics are the folks who are retired or semi-retired and looking to unload the family home that they no longer need. For these people, who held out for higher prices after the housing collapse, housing prices, though not back to 2006 levels, have returned enough for them to consider selling.  The irony is that it is the clash of these two very similar generations, the formerly largest and most selfish generation of Baby Boomers with the (unbelievably) even larger and more selfish Millennials, will together bring back the housing market beginning this year. Their “partnership” will also allow the improvement to continue for the next several years, and probably accelerate as well.

So, there you have it. IMHO, there will be a very strong purchase market this year. But, if this does not occur, I will be back in the fall to tell you why. Since, like the rest of the “so called” experts, if I am wrong, it won’t be my fault. Rather it will be caused by something happening that was unexpected (at least to me)!

If you “like” these monthly posts, PLEASE “Like” my business Facebook page — New York Real Estate Lawyer or subscribe to my mailing list HERE.  Then, check back there often for several posts a day on articles about residential real estate, mortgages, and interest rates.

Happy Easter and Happy Passover to those who celebrate each.


Mortgage Checklist Documents

A lot of people have been asking lately what documents they need to provide in order to get approved for a mortgage to buy a house. With this video, we’ll go over the documents that you need to provide the lender to make the mortgage application easier for you and the lender. They fall within basically three different categories.

Watch this video and learn about the requirements and documentations you need to prepare to get a mortgage for that home purchase.