Mortgage Tips

Does the Presidential Election Affect Mortgage Rates?

This election cycle has been one of the most turbulent in recent memory. There’s a lot of political attention from the national level all the way down to local elections.

But what does this mean for mortgage rates?

We’ll start by taking a look at the role of the Federal Reserve and its relationship with the president to fully understand their influence on mortgage rates. (more…)

When Is It Time to Refinance My Home Loan?

With record low interest rates inspiring confidence in the real estate market, it may be an ideal time to consider refinancing your current mortgage loan if you wish to lower your interest rate and payment, shorten the term of your loan, get cash out for home improvements or consolidate higher interest debt. (more…)

Should You Choose a Conventional Loan or an FHA Loan?

The two most popular home loan programs are the FHA loans and the conventional loan. Both can be great options for first-time homebuyers, but each offer pros and cons. At Chris Doering Mortgage, our loan experts are knowledgeable on a range of home loan programs.

Here, we outline the key differences between these two home loans and the advantages and disadvantages of each.


Buying A New Home: How Should I Prepare?

When you’re considering buying a new home, the process can seem overwhelming. Where should you even begin? The process can be confusing and seem daunting to get started.

We have some tips on what you should do to jumpstart the process and get on the road to purchasing a home:

Strengthen Your Credit Score

Getting the best interest rates available will depend largely on your credit score. A credit score of 700 or more should get you a good rate while being over 750 should allow you to get some of the best rates available.

One good idea to help your credit before buying a home — don’t apply for a new line of credit within a year before applying for financing.

Know What You Can Afford

One general rule of thumb with purchasing a house is that you shouldn’t spend more than 30 percent of your monthly net income on a house, but this is far from exact.

If you’re not ready for the pre-approval process, one way to figure out a ballpark figure that you might be able to afford is a mortgage calculator. It can produce what you would expect to pay monthly on a house, but it still depends on the net monthly income for the person or people purchasing the house.

If you want to create a budget, you can use our mortgage calculator tool here or read more about mortgage calculators to know how they work and can make the process easier on the buyer.

Don’t forget about closing costs, either. These can sneak up on buyers in the end, so it’s best to plan and begin to save so you have the money ready for them.

Pre-approval is Key For Buying a New Home

Starting to shop for homes without being pre-approved can lead to disappointment in the end. It’s best to start with the pre-approval process, figure out how much of a house you can comfortably afford and then begin looking after that with a pre-approval letter in hand. Ignoring the pre-approval process means you can get excited about houses for sale that you might not actually be able to afford.

The pre-approval process goes through a preliminary credit review and credit check to give let you know how much you can afford to spend on a house. It can also give you some leverage during the negotiating process when you find the home you want because it shows the seller that you are financially capable of buying the home.

Chris Doering Mortgage can walk you through the home buying process, starting with the very first steps. We can pre-approve customers for home buying and explain every step along the way. Call us at 352-244-0840 or send us a message from our website.

The Ultimate Guide to Veterans Home Loans

Guide to Veterans Home Loans

In 1944, the United States government created a veterans home loans program to assist returning service members in purchasing homes.

Since then, over 21 million veterans and their families have benefited from the program. In 2015, the total number of veteran home loans was 631,142. That number represents the highest total in the history of the program, surpassing the previous record of 630,000 set in 2013. This map shows the program’s history on a state-by-state basis.

Here’s what you need to know about securing veterans home loans:


To secure a VA loan, certain conditions must be met. According to Veterans United Home Loans, you may be eligible for a VA home loan if you meet one or more of the following criteria:

  • You served 90 consecutive days of active service during wartime.
  • You served 181 days of active service during peacetime.
  • You have more than six years of service in the National Guard or Reserves.
  • You are the spouse of a service member who has died in the line of duty or as a result of a service-related disability.

In order for the VA loan to be approved, the applicant must have a Certificate of Eligibility (LINK:, which verifies to the lender that you are eligible for the VA loan.

A loan specialist can help lead the process of securing this certificate, which doesn’t need to be completed until the loan process officially begins. A reliable income is also a crucial part of being approved for veterans home loans.


VA loans offer multiple benefits for returning service members. Sometimes home sales can be delayed while buyers save money to put toward down payments. With veterans loans, buyers needn’t worry, as no payment is required, allowing veterans to finance the total cost of their homes.

This loan also allows the buyer to avoid paying for private mortgage insurance. Without a downpayment of 20 percent or higher, PMI becomes an added monthly cost. When the 20 percent threshold is reached through mortgage payments, the PMI can be removed from the payment.

With veterans home loans, PMI is never included in the payment. This can save the buyer anywhere from $100-400 per month if the house costs between $100,000-500,000.

There’s also a benefit for interest rates. Veterans home loans can offer interest rates that are lower than the average, sometimes by as much as one percent.


If a returning service member purchases a house with a VA loan, they can also refinance their existing loan. This allows the buyer to save money with cheaper rates.

The qualification process for refinancing is similar to being eligible for a VA loan.


If you’re interested in applying for a veterans home loan in Gainesville, then you’ve come to the right place.

The staff at Chris Doering Mortgage has been successfully qualifying veterans home loans for years. Our team has many years of experience and together we would gladly guide you through the entire process from beginning to end.

Contact us today to qualify for your new home!

352-244-0840 or message us on our website.