Buying a home? Beware of FHA changes

In the good old days a person could pay on their mortgage until they obtained a certain level of equity in their home and at that point not be required to pay for mortgage insurance. Now, homeowners obtaining new loans will be required to carry mortgage insurance for the life of their loans. This could potentially add thousands to the cost of the loan over time.

Mortgage insurance protects lenders. It is estimated that 1 in 5 loans are FHA. These types of loans usually require a smaller down payment than a conventional loan. As banks tightened their finances more people were forced to go to FHA. The housing bust has changed the way the organization does business in some respects.

If you live in Arizona one community you may want to consider is Dobson Ranch. It’s one of the older homeowner associations the nation and considered to be a well run community of over 4,000 homes. Homes in Dobson Ranch are often considered highly valued because of the history of the area. The association ensures lawns and landscapes are reasonably well taken care of. They offer a lot of activities, several lakes and several community centers. Our family has lived in this area for over twenty years now.

If you eventually refinance from FHA to conventional you can then get free from this new mortgage insurance requirement.

Pwllheli Home Rates increasing 300%


Flooding is the reason homeowner rates in this town are increasing by 300%. Climate change is being blamed and the rising sea levels.

Ok, so where is Pwllhelli you may ask? It’s somewhere in Wales. I don’t care where you live – three hundred percent is a lot.

That 300% rate increase caught my eye.

Alaska Leads the Nation

The state carries the highest rates for workers compensation insurance – the fund that pays employees for injuries. Their rates about 160% the national median. Alaska employment has been increasing and injuries have been decreasing – yet rates are rising.

One of culprits in Alaska’s high insurance rates are due to the high cost of treatment. If medical costs are high insurance costs will follow suit. The insurance that pays for the medical claims are going to base their rate on that. Prescription pain killers account for about 40% of the cost in Alaska. Many claim the state has a drug epidemic on several fronts. Some cities here are fighting a crime wave dealing with crack cocaine and meth as well.

A recent documentary described the struggles law enforcement in Alaska is having trying to stay atop the drug wave. I watched the program and it tore my heart out. A woman who turns to prostitution several times a day to pay for her addiction. A man who pan handles every day just to get enough money to keep his addiction in line. In both cases they need a fix within 8 hours or their bodies begin a vicious cycle of withdrawal. Both described lives that they regret turned out the way they have. It was very sad.