Understanding your Step-Rate Mortgage Modification: Planning for the Changes to your Interest Rate and Monthly Payments

  Preparing for How Your Interest Rate Changes A step-rate modification provides a lower initial modified interest rate for a fixed period of time –making your initial payments more manageable as you work through challenges you were experiencing. Your interest rate will adjust based on the standings of your final modification agreement. It’s important to … Continue reading

Do I Have to Report my Forgiven Debt as Income on my Federal Tax Return?

Tax season is here! That means it is time to go over income from last year and determine whether or not earnings are subject to tax. This amount usually includes loans forgiven by a lender which is taxable as if the borrower earned that amount as income. However, did you know that you may qualify for … Continue reading

Is the Home Affordable Refinance Program “HARP” for me?

Are you one of the 9 out of 10 Homeowners who have not taken advantage of the Home Affordable Refinance Program “HARP”? HARP is a federal program that can help you avoid foreclosure, even if you owe more than the home’s current value! You do not need to have equity to be eligible for this program. … Continue reading

Lessons From “The Big Short”

The Big Short tells the story of the greatest economic crisis since the Great Depression- the 2008 financial crash. A time when banks were more than willing to lend to people who could never afford to pay them back. This led to un-regulated and out-of-control gigantic banks and their bankers making huge, high risk bets in … Continue reading

Interest-Only Loans Return: Should We Worry?

During the housing boom, more than 10% of adjustable rate loans were interest-only loans, where in a borrower makes monthly interest payments but pays nothing toward principal for a set time period. By eliminating the need to pay principal, an interest only loan option keeps your monthly payments lower. This was how some lenders during … Continue reading

Avoid Bankruptcy: Tips to Manage Money, Savings, and Debt

            Have you ever wondered how a person with about $50,000 or more in debt manage to pay them all off within a span of 2 or 3 years? Have you been thinking of ways to get rid of your debt and how to handle your finances? According to the Wall Street Journal and Edvisors, … Continue reading

Approved or Disapproved: How The Bank Decides Your Loan Modification

Have you ever wondered why you have been approved or rejected on your loan modification application? How does the bank decide whether to grant you with loan modification? In this 5-minute video, a pre-foreclosure attorney from the Legal Services Center of Harvard Law School explains briefly the different guidelines the bank follows in their decision-making:

Motivation Monday

“To be successful, the first thing to do is to fall in love with your work.” The VLG staff wishes everyone a Happy Monday! We hope you’re doing what you love and loving what you do. Stay motivated for the rest of the week!

Scams and Frauds: How To Avoid Them

With the increasing accessibility of information in this digital age, it is unfortunate that some take advantage of the web to deceive people. From typical email spams, scammers have now proliferated in the real estate market. As consumers, we are called for vigilance. Fox 21 News report that scammers are targeting low-income families who are … Continue reading

What Movies Tell Us About Real Estate

Everyone has some connection to real estate. We all have to live somewhere. We have to buy/sell a house or rent/lease out a condo at some point in our lives. Some movies show this relationship we have with the real estate market and portray it in an entertaining way. At the same time, these films … Continue reading