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Mortgage Lending

Portfolio Loans

Portfolio Loans | SouthStar Bank What is a portfolio loan? A SouthStar Bank portfolio loan is originated and funded right here at our institution, and never moves into the secondary mortgage market. It’s called a “portfolio loan” because it’s always going to stay in our portfolio. That means we can rely on our relationship with the customer to determine loan eligibility even if they don’t meet the typical mortgage profile. For example, meet Annie. Annie is a freelance marketing consultant with variable income.  Her credit score has taken a few hits but we’ve known Annie for years. She’s been a customer in good standing and a part of our community for a long time. Her business is picking up, and she’s starting to get back on her feet. Purchasing a home could improve her stability, her credit, and her children’s lives. She may even want to purchase a four-plex, so she can start earning some rental income on the other three units.  Annie comes to SouthStar Bank and meets with one of our loan officers to discuss the Star Advantage Loan. We look at her plans, her property, and total financial picture and make a decision about whether she’ll be a good risk. If we agree the loan makes good business sense, we move forward, even though she would not have been eligible for a loan through Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Are portfolio loans a good idea? A portfolio loan generally isn’t riskier for the consumer than any other kind of mortgage. It is riskier for the banker, which means it can come with higher interest rates and fees. Whether they are a good idea for you depends on your unique situation and goals. Would you be able to qualify for a conventional mortgage with just a little more work and time? Do you have aspirations towards becoming a landlord or real estate investor? Are you trying to purchase a non-traditional property or unique property? Of course you should carefully consider the total picture before you make your final decision. Our loan officers are happy to discuss the risks and benefits of a portfolio loan in your specific case. How do you qualify for a portfolio loan?  Applying for a portfolio loan isn’t just about forms and numbers. It’s about your story. Be prepared to sit down and discuss yours. Tell us what your assets are, what you hope to accomplish, what’s behind, and what’s ahead. Be thorough and be transparent, even if you think parts of your situation might create an issue. We might be willing to work with you anyway, or we might be able to walk you through specific steps you can take to address areas of concern. What are some common uses for a portfolio loan?  Many of our customers have used portfolio loans to: Purchase a residence after a bankruptcy, short sale, foreclosure, or divorce. Purchase a residence while self-employed. Purchase a residence as a foreign national. Purchase a rental property or a fix-and-flip […]

Build Your Future with a SouthStar Bank Construction Loan

Construction Loan | SouthStar Bank Building a house is an adventure. Whether you’re looking for the perfect lot, building a new home, or doing both, SouthStar Bank can help you get started. We offer: 1. Lot Loans Identifying the property is the first stage in building a new home. You can secure the site with a raw land or lot loan until you’re ready to build. These loans normally have periods of 12 months to 3 years, depending on how much time is needed before converting to a construction loan and are amortized over a 20-year period. The money you put down on the land is usually applied to the construction loan’s down payment. 2. Construction Loans Once you’ve confirmed your plans and budget with your builder, you are ready to convert to a construction loan. A construction loan is a short-term loan that ranges from 12 to 18 months in length, depending on the size and budget of the property you’re building. It will be rolled in with your construction loan if you have a loan on your land. The land down payment is applied to the construction loan and in some situations, lot appreciation may be used to reduce the required down payment. 3. Construction-to-Permanent Loans It’s a good idea to think about your long-term finance choices when planning to build your home. Before you start your build, work with a loan officer who will walk you through your options, whether a refinance after construction or a single “one-time-close” loan, so you know what to expect from your permanent mortgage. The fact that a one-time-close construction loan effortlessly turns to a long-term, permanent mortgage once construction is completed is perhaps the most significant advantage. As a result, this loan is the preferred option for many of our borrowers. SouthStar Bank specializes in financing for new home builds in Central Texas. With loans available from land purchase, to a seamless construction draw process, and finally permanent financing, your lender will be there to guide you every step of the way. Talk to one of our qualified loan officers today.

IRA Non-Recourse Loans – Get Started with Us Today

IRA Non-Recourse Loans | SouthStar Bank Consider the following scenario: You want to buy real estate using your self-directed IRA. The non-recourse loan is applied for by your IRA or retirement plan and the debt is secured by real estate.   Some of your IRA money and the non-recourse loan are used to purchase the property, leaving the rest of your IRA funds invested and earning interest. For example, let’s say you find an investment property for $200,000 and have $200,000 in your IRA. You don’t use all the money in your IRA, but maybe $100,000, then you can get a non-recourse loan in the name of the self-directed IRA to make up the difference. Your IRA now has $100,000 in it, which is earning interest and growing. These loans are often utilized to provide you with additional funds in the event that your property requires repairs or upgrades, or to invest in commercial real estate. Taking out a non-recourse loan allows you to diversify your investing portfolio rather than putting all of your eggs in one basket. It’s a huge win for you and your retirement account. By leveraging the bank’s money, non-recourse lending enhances your IRA. Furthermore, the IRA’s money is safeguarded and can be used for other investments. How Do Non-Recourse Loans Work? When you have a small IRA or just don’t have enough funds to invest in real estate, your IRA can get a non-recourse mortgage loan. The non-recourse loan is a loan in the name of the IRA, secured by collateral (usually the property being purchased). The loan is based on the value of the real estate investment and in most situations, the IRA holder’s credit does not play a role in the IRA’s eligibility. Borrow What You Need There is no minimum or maximum loan amount at SouthStar Bank. The loan is in your IRA’s name and the amount you can borrow is determined by the value of your real estate investment. SouthStar Bank offers non-recourse IRA loans for single-family houses and condominiums (2-4 units). Keep in mind that the property’s net operational income/cash flow must be sufficient to cover loan payments. A percentage of the purchase price must be vested in a self-directed IRA for eligible borrowers. Your non-recourse IRA loan down payment will be determined by the property you buy, its condition and estimated cash flow. A 40 percent down payment is usually required by SouthStar Bank. Non-Recourse Loan Benefits A non-recourse loan, as mentioned above, is a form of loan that you can take out using your IRA to buy real estate investments. Your IRA owns these loans, which are subject to UDFI (unrelated debt-financed income) and must be returned through your IRA. Non-recourse loans have other advantages than helping you finance your real estate venture. Your IRA, not you, is responsible for your loan When you open a non-recourse loan, your IRA owns it, not you, which means that you will not be held personally liable should anything happen over […]

Finding the most qualified mortgage lender starts here

Finding the Most Qualified Mortgage Lender Starts Here Most Qualified Mortgage Lender | SouthStar Bank SouthStar Bank designs a home loan experience specifically for you. We realize you’re one of a kind. Your mortgage should be too. If you want the opportunity to see what’s possible for your mortgage lending future, start here.  We pride ourselves on having the ability to provide traditional local bank service with big bank opportunities. Our traditional mortgage lending offers extensive options to serve you better such as: Star Advantage Program: Home loans for unique situations (also known as Portfolio Loans) Traditional Fixed and Variable Rate Mortgages: Conventional (Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac), FHA, Jumbo, Rural Living, USDA, VA Low Down Rural Acreage Refinance Interim Construction to Permanent Financing Trust a mortgage banker in your community that can guide you through the process Close to home, a mortgage banker can be a reliable ally. They will take the time to get to know you and personalize lending solutions to your specific needs. It doesn’t have to be tough to get a mortgage loan. Your Mortgage Loan Officer will work with you to gather the necessary documentation for a loan decision. Although different loan types are available, the application and review process is much the same. To give you a better idea of what to expect, here’s a synopsis of the mortgage loan process: 1. Application Your MLO will work with you to finish your application and gather any papers required for underwriter assessment. Regulatory disclosures are made when needed. 2. Pre- Approval To make an initial credit decision, the Underwriter will analyze your application and paperwork. If the loan is initially authorized, your loan officer will advise you on the conditions that must be met in order for the loan to be issued, and collect any additional paperwork as required. Many real estate agents will require you to complete this step prior to viewing properties, especially in competitive Central Texas markets such as Austin. Pre-approval will give you an accurate understanding of budget and allow you to make a quick, competitive offer when you find the property. 3. Appraisal Once a property is selected, the Appraisal Reviewer and SouthStar Bank will organize the receipt of the property appraisal. The appraisal and estimated value of the property will be reviewed by the Appraisal Reviewer. You will receive a copy of the appraisal once it has been accepted. 4. Approved for Closing The Processor will re-submit the file to underwriting for final evaluation once all of the conditions have been completed. The Loan Closer will compile and submit the loan closing document package after final approval is received. 5. Ready for Closing Your loan officer will walk you through the final numbers and disclosures and answer any questions you may have. The Closing Agent will confirm the amounts required to close with you and set a date for the closing, at which time you will sign the final loan documents. Get started today! Buying a home is no easy task. There are piles […]

How Filing a Homestead Exemption Can Help Homeowners

How Filing a Homestead Exemption Can Help Homeowners Are you a recent homeowner? A Homestead Exemption can be an excellent option to reduce your tax burden. Homestead exemptions have the potential to lower your taxes by removing part of your home’s value from taxation. From the Texas Comptroller: “For example, your home is appraised at $100,000, and you qualify for a $25,000 exemption (this is the amount mandated for school districts), you will pay school taxes on the home as if it was worth only $75,000.” While this is a law that exists in most states, property owners might not understand how the exemption works and who can claim it. In this article, we explain what a homestead exemption is, its benefits, who qualifies and how to file What is a Homestead Exemption and How Does It Work? With a homestead exemption, homeowners can deduct part of the property value from their taxes, lowering their overall tax bill. Typically, there is a fixed discount, and then the rest of the value is taxed at the normal rate. This favors homes that have a lower value. Exactly how much protection the exemption provides and how it’s applied varies by state. In some locations, the benefit is automatic. In others, including Texas, a homeowner must first file a claim with their state to be able to receive it. This means that if you’re eligible for a homestead exemption in Texas, you can potentially reduce your tax burden just by filing a claim. Other homestead exemption benefits include protection of a homeowner’s primary residence from creditors in the event of bankruptcy or a deceased spouse. It also helps the surviving spouse with continual tax relief. In addition to financial protection, this exemption offers physical shelter, in that it prevents the forced sale of the property. Benefits of Filing for a Homestead Exemption The benefits of filing for a homestead exemption include: Relief from property taxes – Since property taxes are based on the property’s assessed value, being able to reduce the home’s value on your tax statement makes the property tax significantly lower.  Protection from a forced sale – Having a homestead exemption shields the property from a forced sale to pay off creditors. For example, if you had trouble paying bills, without the homestead exemption, creditors could try to seize your property to satisfy your debts. Exceptions are mortgage foreclosures and failing to pay property taxes.  Advantages for a surviving spouse – Though state laws vary, in most cases, if the homeowner dies, their surviving spouse is guaranteed the right to stay in the home for their lifetime. They must, of course, continue to make mortgage and other payments in a timely manner. In Texas…. An Important Note: The homestead exemption protection from creditors will not prevent a bank from foreclosing on the home and taking possession of the property if the homeowner defaults on their mortgage payments.   Who Qualifies for a Homestead Exemption? To qualify for a homestead exemption, you […]

Welcome Bo Rodman!

Bo Rodman has gained extensive knowledge during his eight years in the banking industry. Spending time as both a credit analysis and a lender Rodman is excited to be a part of the SouthStar Bank team. An Austin native, Rodman is eager to share his knowledge of the area. “I enjoy relationship banking and helping achieve what is in our client’s best interest,” he says. “When I am able to approve a client’s loan that had been turned down at other banks, it is always a good feeling.” Rodman particularly enjoys learning from his clients. “The opportunity to learn how people are putting money to work in new and creative investments or business models is the most interesting part of my job,” he says. Rodman, a Texas A&M graduate, specializes in commercial lending where he has handled a wide variety of loans including spec construction loans, small business lending, accounts receivable lending, and equipment loans. Since joining the SouthStar Bank team, Bo has added consumer mortgage lending to his list of services available to his clients.  Rodman is involved with multiple organizations including: Community Foundations Tax Prep, St. Luke’s UMC Board of Trustees, Bachelors of Austin, and Anthropos Arts. In his free time, he also enjoys spending time outdoors fishing, hunting, doing lawn work, and slalom skiing. NMLS #1909096

Welcome Allen Strickland!

Allen Strickland joins the team at SouthStar Bank in Harker Heights as Senior Vice President and Branch Executive. With two decades of industry experience, he worked his way up from a teller and quickly earned praise as a strategic banker and team leader. Runner Up for Best Loan Officer in Brown County two years running, Stickland is confident in building relationships and recognition in the Harker Heights community. In his new role he hopes to expand SouthStar Bank’s presence in the market through his team’s personal involvement. As a community lender, he will offer residential mortgage loans as well as commercial financing. Strickland enjoys uncovering the specifics of each individual borrower’s needs. “It is fulfilling to sit with a client, discuss their situation and uncover deeper goals than just the present loan request they may have,” he says. Allen and wife Amie have been married for 10 years and have four children ranging in age from 17 to 5. Amie is an RN at Seton Hospital in the Harker Heights area. In his spare time Allen and his family love watching, playing, and coaching all sports. They are currently coaching their 5-year-old daughter’s soccer team- brave parents! NMLS # 1619700

Welcome Jesica Garza!

Jesica Garza joins SouthStar Bank’s Georgetown Branch as Assistant Vice President of Lending. A Certified Mortgage Planner, Jesica brings three years of mortgage lending experience as well as her expertise from teaching mortgage and real estate investing to continuing education students. Garza is local to Georgetown, proudly graduating as a Georgetown Eagle in 2004 and continuing to Texas State University to pursue her degree in International Relations. A legacy to a family of builders, Garza especially enjoys working on construction and home improvement loans of all kinds. Active in the community, Garza previously served the Austin Board of the National Association of Professional Mortgage Women. In addition, she is heavily involved with her husband’s non-profit, Flatwater Foundation, and its mission to provide access to therapy for families coping with a cancer diagnosis. Jesica and her husband, Mark, have 2 kids; one smart-as-a-whip 6-year-old son and a beautiful 3-month-old daughter. NMLS # 1508061

Congratulations Greg Vesely! Top Austin Mortgage Producer

Greg Vesely, Senior Vice President of Mortgage Lending & Branch Executive at SouthStar Bank, was recognized as a ‘Top Residential Mortgage Producer’ in the Austin area. Vesely closed 28 portfolio mortgage loans with a volume of $14.78 million in 2018, 26 within the Austin MSA. This does not include his investor and ranch loans where his clients hold the property in an LLC. With 25 years of industry experience, Greg Vesely has a keen eye for strategy and a commitment to customer service. “I enjoy being my clients’ trusted advisor,” he says. “By understanding their needs, I’m better equipped to help them achieve growth and success.” Vesely is a graduate of Texas State (Southwest Texas). He also holds a Series 6,63, Group 1 license from the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Inc. (FINRA). His vast expertise in lending makes him a go-to resource not only for residential mortgages, but also commercial financing. Greg is involved in the Steiner Ranch community, a place he’s called home for over 18 years. He contributes his time to March of Dimes, the Chamber of Commerce, Toys for Tots and United Way. “I love to volunteer and help support the community,” he says. When he isn’t working or volunteering, Greg and his wife Kay love to travel. Especially when that travel involves watching their daughter, Kaylee, play in golf tournaments See the full Top Residential Mortgage Producer list here. NMLS # 621784

A Quick Start Guide to Buying Land and Building Your Custom Dream Home

Buying a home is a significant financial step for many Americans. While new master-planned communities and existing homes offer trendy upgrades and many other benefits, they all lack one thing – complete customization. When buyers look to custom build their homes, the only limits are their imagination and project budget. They’re free to design a home that fits their personality and lifestyle. However, building a custom home instead of purchasing an existing home or buying from a community builder requires careful planning. Unsure of where to begin? Use this step-by-step quick start guide to build your custom dream home with confidence. Step 1: Secure a bank pre-qualification to uncover your loan options. If you’re hoping to finance the custom build of your next home, you won’t be able to use a traditional mortgage. Unlike conventional home mortgages where the home serves as collateral, custom-built homes are usually set for construction on unimproved property. Therefore, you must work with a financial institution that offers lot or construction loans. A lot loan, construction loan, or construction-to-permanent (C2P) loan allows you to pay for the land only, construction only, or both. Depending on the loan type, borrowers have the flexibility to fund the construction portion of the build at pre-determined completion checkpoints. The loan can then be converted into long-term permanent financing (mortgage) at closing.  These loans are unique and not offered by many traditional mortgage companies.   Step 2: Identify your perfect parcel of land. A real estate professional with experience in rural properties can help you quickly identify your purchase options. Their expertise can also alert you to special considerations such as: Before you start your search, note your ideal parcel location and include your preferences for such items as utility connections, trees, and ponds. As you narrow down your selection, make sure you’re comfortable with any applicable building restrictions or setback requirements for the lot.  Step 3: Find an architect to design your home.                         An experienced architect can create construction plans and define a project timeline. A full-service architect often works with home buyers from concept through completion. Costs can either be hourly or a fixed fee based on a percentage of the construction costs. It’s also possible to be charged fees based on the completion of each building phase. Step 4: Choose a builder for your custom dream home. To find a competitively priced builder that meets your needs, look for those that will bid on the architecture plans. Find qualified builders by seeking referrals from real estate professionals, architects, and mortgage loan professionals. Step 5: Select a community bank that offers construction lending. Borrowers can secure financing with the same community bank that provided the pre-qualification figures or with another lending institution.  In either case, building a relationship with the lender is vital. The stronger the relationship, the better the overall experience will likely be from project beginning to end. A lender that understands your needs and wants can be a valuable source for advice and solutions as […]

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