Greg Cowart on Zillow
Greg Cowart - Mortgage Broker or Lender at The Securus Group
Greg Cowart - Roseville Loan Guy

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Marvel & DC Comics illustrator in Roseville for a free event for commic book fans (and their families)

A new limited edition comic book series, Planet Protectors, is coming soon to Roseville.  You can get a free copy and have it signed by the illustrator Friday (TODAY). Bernard Chang, of both Marvel and DC Comics fame, will be signing comics and taking pictures with fans Friday, September 14, 2012 at the Roseville Utility Exploration Center.

Friday, September 14, 2012 | 3 – 7PM
@ the Utility Exploration Center
1501 Pleasant Grove Blvd., Roseville (map)
FREE event open to the public

Rocklin Patriot Day, Sept 9th, 2012 (SUNDAY)

Rocklin is coming together as a community on this 11th anniversary of the tragedies that occurred on Sept, 11th, 2001. Although these attacks remain in our hearts and on our minds, we can come together to build a stronger community that supports our businesses and honors those who serve. The 2nd annual Rocklin Patriot Day is happening tomorrow 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the RC Willey parking lot on Lonetree in Rocklin.

This day is sponsored by those of us in the local Rocklin Community and is free to the public. There will be lots events, booths, kid’s entertainment, food, and music, plus Police and Fire Department demonstrations to make it a very memorable day for everyone. Color Guard to honor public servants who help keep us safe. Police Department demonstrations and displays such as, K9 demo, SWAT vehicle,  Motorcycles, etc.  Fire Department demonstrations and displays such as, Fire Truck and ladder, the Jaws of Life etc.  Entertainment for the kids.  Music.  Food booths to taste RockIin’s culinary delights. And topping it off with animal booths.

Football fans? The 49ers don’t play until 1:15 and the Raiders don’t play till Monday, so you can still find a way to be here for at least a while (I will be there in the morning)…

And here are a few pictures from last year…

Weekly Update: Only 80,000 jobs? It must be the end of the world!

Last week, in the midst of writing about whether interest rates could fall any further – pontificating on how bad economic news generally results in lower interest rates and why – I was inclined to say that we’d probably reached the bottom for this cycle…and perhaps for all recorded time.

Then the June employment data was released….

The headline, of course, was the meager gain of 80,000 payroll jobs over the course of the month, and the fact that unemployment remained at 8.2%, unchanged from the prior month. And that’s about as far as most people read.

Such a superficial reading hit the stock markets hard, inspiring further headlines, such as this from The New York Times: “Job Growth Falters Badly, Clouding Hope for Recovery.” In other words, it’s possible to wrench from a very complex set of figures the simple conclusion that we’re on the precipice, once again, of overall economic decline. Take a shallow breath, and the pundits add a few words about the political significance of all this. (Bad for Obama, good for Romney, apparently.)

All of this, however, pays no attention at all to the portions of the report that aren’t quite as eye-catching. For me, the most significant are the group of figures that suggest the manufacturing sector isn’t doing as poorly as analysts were beginning to think they are. detailed the mild but still meaningful bits of growth as follows: “Relative strength in the goods-producing sector. Employment in this sector rebounded 13,000 after a 21,000 decline in May. Manufacturing increased 11,000 after a 9,000 rise in May. Construction posted a modest 2,000 gain after dropping 35,000 the month before. Mining edged up 1,000, following a 3,000 advance in May.”

A close reading of these improvements suggests that we may be on the verge of a gradual sea change – one that pushes the core of the economy in the direction of growth, not toward another recessionary decline. Along with better manufacturing data and slightly better construction figures – and we should anticipate that the construction employment figure will continue to grow, especially after last month’s surge for new home sales – we can also find some solace in the fact that employment gains really weren’t very far from the consensus of economists.

There are two reasonable conclusions here:

First, the psychology in the big world of investors is operating under the assumption that we’re in big trouble if the markets aren’t making significant gains. They’re not – though the gains in real-estate-related indicators have very recently been surprisingly good.

In general, the jobs report suggests very little forward movement last month. But the mild recovery in manufacturing, the fact that the unemployment rate didn’t worsen, and the upward revisions in many recent employment numbers (again, think construction) all suggest that we may expect better data soon. When, we don’t know. But the point remains: There is less likelihood that “Hope for Recovery” has been clouded than there is that our economic feet are simply stuck in the mud. Especially in the Roseville/Rocklin and greater Sacramento market, where real estate data is on fire!

The second reasonable conclusion is that we may see the super-low interest rates of today for longer than many of us have anticipated. Indeed, they may even go lower on more bad economic news in the near-term future. Unfortunately, low rates are now the embodiment of an economy that refuses to pick up. But the economy refuses to pick up because of all the reasons for concern and uncertainty, and they are – fittingly – utterly unpredictable.

Nonetheless, it is easy to imagine investors finding solace and inspiration in some future news, and finally allowing interest rates to start rising toward the levels that they should occupy. I mean, who knows? My point this week isn’t that there’s much to rejoice about in the employment data. It’s that there is equal or better reason to be patient and find slow growth and improvement in the report.


Greg Cowart
(916) 412-3313

HARP 2.0: The Facts!

With more than 11 million homeowners underwater on their mortgages, 2008’s HARP (Home Affordable Refinance Program) mortgage has been updated to allow more homeowners to refinance their mortgages, taking advantage of today’s historically low interest rates. AKA: HARP 2.0…

The first edition of HARP was a great idea, in theory anyways. If the banks, lenders, and servicers implemented the program exactly as it was written it would have helped many millions of homeowners refinance to lower interest rates, lowering their payments, and even probably had a positive effect on the national housing market and overall economy as less of those homeowners would have lost their homes and had more money in their pockets to spend.

But that’s not how it happened, the banks and servicers applied their own “overlays” to the program’s guidelines, making it hard for many underwater homeowners to qualify. Because of this only about 800,000 homeowners were able to take advantage and lower their rate/payment.

In comes HARP 2.0, with easier guidelines for borrowers to qualify, now unlimited Loan-To-Value ratios are allowed, as well as “Representation & Warrants” requirement waivers, relieving lenders of almost all Reps & Warrants of the original loan, making it much more likely that they participate. The Federal Housing Finance Agency estimates that at least another 1 million homeowners will benefit from a HARP 2.0 refinance before expiration of the program at the end of 2013.

Here are some important facts!

  1. The current loan must be backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. You may not know your loan is backed by either of these entities because you make your payment to someone else (Bank of America or Wells Fargo for example) but in reality they are probably just the servicer of your loan and the security was at some point sold to Fannie/Freddie. I can quickly help you do this search to find out.
  2. The current mortgage must have been originated before May 31st, 2009.
  3. HARP loans are available for all occupancy types (primary residence, second home, and investment properties).
  4. The mortgage must have not had a 30 day late payment in the past 6 months, and must have had no more than one 30 day late payment in the last year.
  5. The current Loan-To-Value ratio must be over 80% (otherwise you may already qualify for a non-HARP refinance)
  6. Except for a small exception for some of the earliest HARP refinances in March-May of 2009, those that have previously refinanced under the HARP program will not qualify.
  7. Both Fannie and Freddie’s guidelines are nearly the same but Fannie Mae’s are actually a little bit more liberal (which is a good thing as they hold many more HARP-eligible loans than Freddie Mac does).
  8. Loan-Level-Price-Adjustments (LLPA’s), fees added on that can increase closing costs, the interest rate, or both (depending on how your lender structured your scenario) have been drastically reduced for HARP 2.0 loans. This was one of the issues with HARP the first time around, LLPA’s would make it very tough to refinance as they would add up to a point that HARP borrowers were no longer eligible for the lowest rates. Under the new program it’s feasible for a HARP borrower to get a lower rate than an non-HARP borrower because of the LLPA cap.
  9. Property Inspection Waivers (PIW’s) are the big one here. Under the new rules lenders will be issuing PIW’s allowing the HARP borrower to not have to have an appraisal at all. Not only making a lot of these refinances possible, but saving consumers a few hundred more dollars in the process! PIW’s will not be issued on all refinances, but they will be on many (I can tell you before you shell out $400 for an appraisal if your loan was issued a PIW).

This is great news for homeowners who have made it a point to keep up with their payments! With the updated guidelines rolling out in March eligible homeowners in this category may be able to take advantage of HAPR 2.0 in the very near future. And even if you did miss a payment this program is available through December 2013. If you can get and stay current for the next 6 months, you may be eligible too.

My gift to you: The Science Of Getting Rich

The Science Of Getting Rich Book Wallace D WattlesHappy Friday everyone! I just pulled out one of my favorite books, a century-old manuscript that is both the predecessor and influence for some of the most read books of the last 100 years, such as ‘Think & Grow Rich’ (1937) and ‘The Secret’ (2006), and re-read it. ‘The Science of Getting Rich’ by Wallace D Wattles was written way back in 1910 but the methods inside still hold true today… And I want to share it with you.

It’s a pretty quick read but it can (and probably will if you are like me) change your life. It’s not just about becoming wealthy monitarily, although you certianly will if you totally buy in, but about inner, full personal development; holistically.

Just click on the cover of the book for the FREE e-book download. I have obtained permission to share this with everyone and the license in this version of the book allows you to share it with anyone you would like as well!

(There is also a newer, slightly updated, version of the book that I do not have permission to put on my website but I can give it to you, just give me a call or e-mail and I’ll get you a copy right away)

Happy Thanksgiving!

Successful Thinkers Founder on Sacramento TV

A lot of you know that I am very happy, and now even proud, about my experience with Successful Thinkers. Here is the group’s (can we call it a group?) founder, Jim Bellacera, on News 10’s ‘Sacramento & Friends’ this morning…

Moving on, for the better!

Some of you may already know, but now that it is official I wanted to make an little announcement. As of today I am moving my real estate finance business over to a new company….

After 15 years in the real estate and lending business, I recently moved to expand my horizons with a company that I feel will allow me to offer my clients and partners even better service, lower rates, as well as quicker and easier closings going forward. Although my address has changed, my goal of providing you with excellent service has not.

In making my decision to move, I needed to make sure that my new company would be able to offer everything that Comstock could, and more, and I’ve found the best possible situation here at Innerwork Mortgage in Roseville. I can still offer great programs like CalHFA’s CHDAP (and other CalHFA programs), the 3% grant from the NHF Platinum Program DPA (Restore Homeownership Program), Mortgage Credit Certificates (MCCs), conventional, FHA, VA, USDA financing, and more. Innerwork’s banking platform is built for speed and efficiency and fast closings are the norm.

My new office is up and running at full speed and I am ready to assist all of my clients and partners with any sort of real estate financing needs. Please keep this new e-mail address for future records and give me a call/e-mail any time. I’d love to talk to you about the exciting new things that are happening at Innerwork Mortgage!

Greg Cowart

P.S. I also want to take this opportunity to thank Comstock Mortgage for the opportunity they gave me for the last two+ years.

Innerwork Mortgage

I am pleased to announce a new Down Payment Assistance Grant Program being offered by Comstock Mortgage

I am very pleased to announce a new Down Payment Assistance Grant Program being offered by Comstock Mortgage.  It is our Return to Homeownership Program and, as opposed to many community-lending products from agencies like SHRA and CalHFA this grant is not only for first time homebuyers and is actually a grant, not a 2nd mortgage or anything of the sort. It’s really free money!

This loan is originated, underwritten, and funded within Comstock Mortgage, with underwriting/docs/funding all in our Sacramento home office. There are no outside agencies providing overlays, restrictions, or time delays to the purchase process. It really is THAT simple… 

Of course there are some rules and not every buyer or property will qualify. Some of the pertinent features of the loan are:

** Loan
– FHA 30–year fixed rate loan only (no 203K)
– Interest rate is determined daily, currently 5.5%

** Grant
– 3% of total loan amount
– Proceeds can be used for:

  • down payment
  • closing costs
  • prepaid items
  • earnest money

– Not a 2ndlien: Grant does not need to be calculated into the loan calculation in any way

– No monthly payment: Since it’s not a loan there is no monthly payments and the grant does not have to be paid back

 **Borrower Eligibility
– Income limits ( Sacramento, El Dorado, Placer counties $87,720.00)
– Buyer does not have to be a 1st time homebuyer

 **Properties Allowed

– Owner occupied primary residence in California
– Single Family Residences, FHA approved Condos, Planned Unit Developments (PUD’s)

**Properties Not Allowed
– 2-4 Units
– Rental Homes
– Co-ops
– Investment Properties
– Recreational, vacation, or second homes
– Manufactured Housing


– Underwritten by Comstock Mortgage Underwriting Staff
– Run through FNMA Desktop Originator Automated Underwriting
– Minimum FICO score of 640
– Seller paid closing costs up to 6% to cover normal and customary fees

 Please call me with any questions…


Comstock Mortgage is now fully VA approved!

Hello everyone,

For years we’ve been serving the greater Sacramento area real estate world in the best way any company can, with all of the products and tools anyone would possibly need to obtain the best possible financing for their homes. But we still have to act as broker for a few loan products that we were not able to do in-house. This is not a problem, it’s the same issue every mortgage broker has to face on every one of their loans, but we as a locally-owned mortgage banker, do not have to deal with on the vast majority of ours. One exception was VA financing. A great product that we do a lot of for our clients, but one we had to broker to another bank to close. Taking the control of turntimes, underwriting, and closing out of our hands.

In 2010 Comstock Mortgage submitted our application for authority to close VA Loan “in-house”.  After a long awaited decision, we have finally received the news that our VA application has been APPROVED.  What a great way to start 2011!!!!

Now we can turn our in-house underwriting, docs, and closing, 24 hour turntimes, as well as all the other benefits of closing loans in house that we already provide to the real estate world for Conventional, FHA, USDA/Rural, and other in-house products to VA buyers as well. All the details are just now being rolled out and we should have the Comstock Mortgage VA financing available very soon!

I’ll be keeping an eye out to see (make sure) this product can be combined with our ‘Return To Homeownership’ Down Payment Assistance Grant program, as I expect it will…