View our clients most Frequently Asked Questions below or connect with us. Virtual appointments are available!
A. At Fairfield County Bank, we let our clients take control of the timeframe in which their loan is approved. We do this by leveraging our “FasTrack Approval” process. FasTrack loans are prioritized when submitted to underwriting because all the necessary documentation is provided up front. This way, we can make a fast initial credit decision and, as a result, close your loan faster. Ask your Fairfield County Bank mortgage expert how you can leverage FasTrack so you too can close faster!
A. At Fairfield County Bank meeting our clients desired closing date is one of the pillars of our success. Our local closing team is dedicated to working with you and your closing attorney to ensure that your closing takes place on time. While there are regulatory constraints and milestones that need to be met before a loan can close, by working together as a team we will get you to your closing on time! Ask your Fairfield County Bank mortgage expert how quickly we can close your mortgage.
A. When obtaining a residential mortgage lenders are obligated to demonstrate a consumer’s ability to repay the loan. To do this the lender must consider your,
debt-to-income or the residual income that the you will have after paying non-mortgage debt and mortgage-related obligations
your employment status
Other financial resources outside of your equity in your dwelling or real property that secures the repayment of the loan. To meet this requirement specific documentation and paperwork is required.
While this sounds daunting your Fairfield County Bank mortgage loan expert will give you tips on ways to streamline this process.
A. When getting a mortgage there are two numbers that reflect mortgage costs: the interest rate, and the annual percentage rate, or APR. The interest rate is the cost of borrowing the principal loan amount, which can be fixed or variable and is expressed as a percentage. The APR is a measure of the cost of credit that includes fees paid to the lender upfront. These fees generally include but may not be limited to: points both discount and origination, pre-paid interest, loan processing fees, underwriting fees, document preparation fees, private mortgage insurance, if applicable, and escrow/settlement fees
A. Closing costs are fees associated with a home purchase (or refinance) that are paid at the time of the closing of a real estate transaction. The closing is the point at which the title of the property is transferred from the seller to the buyer. While both the buyer and the seller typically incur closing costs, the buyer’s closing costs typically include, but are not limited to:
a property appraisal
administrative and legal fees
real estate taxes
if applicable, mortgage insurance
These fees may vary greatly depending on the price of the home that you are purchasing and the location. Ask your Fairfield County Bank mortgage expert for a personalized quote and for details.
A. Fairfield County Bank offers a “relationship discount” to clients who have a Pinnacle Checking Account and agree to automatic withdrawal of their mortgage payment. Ask your Fairfield County Bank mortgage expert about the discounts that are currently being offered and the criteria to qualify for them.
A. A mortgage rate is the rate of interest charged on a mortgage. While the lender determines mortgage rates, they are either fixed, staying the same for the term of the mortgage, or variable, fluctuating with the benchmark index and a margin. Mortgage rates vary for borrowers based on their individual credit profile and the amount that they are looking to borrow in relationship to the value of the property being financed. Ask your Fairfield County Bank mortgage expert for your personalized rate quote!
A. Like most financial instruments, mortgage rates are determined by what happens in the economy and financial markets. These markets fluctuate daily and sometimes multiple times throughout the day, and so can mortgage rates. When completing your loan application you will be given the option to lock your interest rate or float it. Floating your rate means that the interest rate and price are subject to change without notice until you request your rate to be locked. Review your options with your Fairfield County Bank mortgage expert and find out what should be considered when making this decision.
A. There may be an opportunity for you to take advantage of a lower rate if rates go down prior to closing even if you have locked the rate and price at application. The ability to do this depends upon many factors including, but not limited to, market conditions at the time the loan was locked and market demands for the loan program chosen. Additionally, there may be additional fees and costs to obtain the lower rate, as well as time limitations. Ask your Fairfield County mortgage expert about the options that make the most sense for you and your family.
A. Discount points, also known as mortgage points, are pre-paid interest that is available when obtaining a mortgage. One point equals one percent of the loan amount. Paying points upfront at your closing allows you to buy your interest rate down over the life of the loan. In some cases these points can be deducted from your federal tax liability. However, because everyone’s financial situation is different, you need to discuss the deductibility of these points with a certified tax planner. Ask your Fairfield County Bank mortgage expert about this option to see if this make sense for you.
A. Yes! Fairfield County Bank offers loan programs with as little as 3% down and in some cases you can finance up to 100% of the purchase price. These loan programs do have restrictions such as income limits and the sales price. Many of these programs also require that at least one borrower fulfill a first-time homebuyer educational class. These classes can be offered online or in some case they are offered face to face. Ask your Fairfield County Bank mortgage expert about your down-payment options to determine what makes the most sense for you.
A. The COVID-19 crisis has influenced some of the documentation requirements that borrowers are asked to provide throughout the loan process. These changes include, but are not limited to,
borrowers being asked to provide evidence that they have not been furloughed and/or that their income and/or hours have not been reduced
self-employed borrowers are asked to complete a COVID-19 questionnaire explaining how their businesses have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic
additionally, they are asked to provide documentation that their current and expected income has not or will not be negatively impacted by COVID-19
borrowers who have outstanding mortgages are asked to provide proof that all outstanding mortgages are current and, if they have been placed into forbearance, they must prove that is no longer the case
borrowers who own rental properties and rely on that rental income to pay their mortgages are asked to supply documentation of timely rental payments by their tenants
some mortgage programs have been suspended and/or additional limitations have been placed on them
Ask your Fairfield County Bank mortgage expert what documents you will need to complete your loan application.
A. A mortgage banker works for a bank or similar lending institution which actually provides borrowers with the money for the loan. A mortgage broker doesn’t represent one institution but works with many to shop for a loan for a specific individual. The broker charges a fee and acts as the middle person between you and the lender. At Fairfield County Bank, we offer a hybrid approach to mortgage lending. We work with several national and regional mortgage lenders for whom we originate loans. We originate, underwrite and close those loans in Fairfield County Bank’s name and then, later sell the loan. We also provide funding through our own Fairfield County Bank portfolio. This allows us the ability to shop for the loan that best suits your mortgage needs ensuring that you are able to achieve your short and long-term financial goals. Ask your Fairfield County Bank mortgage expert which loan is best for you while helping you achieve your personal financial goals.
A. As part of the loan approval process a residential property appraisal will need to be completed. The purpose of the appraisal is to develop an opinion of value for the real property. This is known as the market value. Since each property and interior is unique, more often than not the appraiser needs to inspect the property. Location and upgrades or improvements that have been made to the property can most impact its value. The lender is prohibited from speaking directly to the appraiser (to avoid the appearance of collusion), so an AMC or appraisal management company is hired by the lender to act as a go between in scheduling and communicating with the appraiser. There are times that a drive by appraisal can be used; however, there are very specific restrictions and conditions for this. If you have additional questions about the home appraisal process, speak with your Fairfield County Bank mortgage expert.
A. Mortgage insurance lowers the risk to the lender who is making a loan to you, so you can qualify for a loan that you might not otherwise be able to obtain. It is required when the down payment being made is less than 20% of the purchase price or value, whichever is lower. The cost of the mortgage insurance depends on many factors, including but not limited to:
the type of the mortgage being requested (fixed or adjustable)
the loan size
the amount of the down payment
the borrower(s) credit score
There are times when mortgage insurance may not be required with less than a 20% down payment by leveraging a first and second mortgage. To do this, very specific criteria must be met. It is important to remember that mortgage insurance protects the Bank and not the borrower. Ask your Fairfield County mortgage expert for specific details.
A. When you refinance your home, your old loan is paid off and the lender's title policy expires. Therefore, when you refinance, lenders will require a new lender’s title policy to be issued to protect their investment in the property. Your existing owner's title policy (if you have one) does not need to be reissued but the lender’s policy does because it doesn't provide protection to the lender against events that may have transpired between the time you purchased the property and when it is refinanced. For example, you may have taken out a second mortgage that could threaten the priority of the new lender's mortgage. Or, there could be legal judgments against you or a mechanic's lien against the property by a supplier who wasn't paid for home improvements. Lenders also insist on a new title policy because many mortgages are packaged as securities and sold to investors in the secondary mortgage market. Title insurance is the only practical way to provide the assurance investors require and to ensure that the mortgages backing these securities are valid and enforceable. If you have additional questions, please ask your Fairfield County Bank mortgage expert.