Alaska home mortgages

Posted by  on Apr 16, 2009
If you’re purchasing your first home with a mortgage in Alaska or you’re relocating, you should do your homework. It’s important to learn about Alaskan properties and home mortgage rates before looking for your new home and mortgage.

Home costs range in price depending on the zip code you’re shopping in, and so do the mortgage loan costs. The median price of a home in Alaska is $144,200. This is just a starting point, though. One of the more popular places to live in Alaska, the Anchorage area, has a median home value of $224,000.
While the costs of homes and mortgages in Alaska may seem small in comparison to more highly populated states, the average income is also lower than in many other states.

Alaskan properties have been appreciating at above average rates, and incomes often do not appreciate at the same pace. As a result, many people’s incomes are too low for the traditional home loans and median home purchase costs. Homeowners in many parts of Alaska pay more than the recommended 30% of their incomes toward their mortgage.

State law in Alaska only allows issuance of adjustable-rate mortgages on residences where the owner lives. Homeowners should be prepared for variances in their mortgage rates as they pay off the home loan. Foreclosures are often the end result when a homeowner cannot keep up with the rising mortgage interest rates.

Alaska does have some programs to make purchasing homes and paying mortgages easier to swallow, though. The state of Alaska has a Permanent Fund Development program that disperses a yearly payment to all qualified residents. This comes from a share of their investment earnings. If you’re buying a home with a mortgage in the state of Alaska, you qualify for both federal and state FHA and VA loans. First-time home buyers qualify for Alaska FHA loans with interest rates that are below market value. Depending on your income, you may qualify for assistance with your down payment as well. There are similar programs in both metropolitan and rural areas.

Alaska also offers no-down-payment home loans to people of very low income, those with disabilities, veterans, teachers, firefighters, law-enforcement officers, and nurses. Who will qualify for each of these home loans vary depending on the county in which you are buying a home and getting a mortgage.
Whether you’re an Alaskan resident looking at your first mortgage, or you’re relocating, it’s important to shop around and be aware of the laws and practices.


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