Boomerang Buyers Making Moves to Return to Home Ownership

February 25, 2014

Now that the worst of the foreclosure crisis is in the rearview mirror, former home owners who lost their homes to a short sale or foreclosure are re-entering the housing market. They've spent the last few years rebuilding their credit — and they're ready to buy again. 

"We're about three years past the peak of the foreclosures, and that's about the time when most people would qualify for another loan," says Daren Blomquist, spokesman for RealtyTrac. "The market really needs boomerang buyers to maintain the current recovery."

Some boomerang buyers heading back to the housing market may find they have to make down payments of at least 20 percent to qualify for a loan, but others are finding opportunities to put down as little as 3.5 percent or 5 percent. 

The wait times for qualifying for a loan can vary depending on the former home owners' circumstances. Typically, the wait times following a short sale or foreclosure are as follows: 

  • Seven-year wait for home owners with a previous foreclosure before they can qualify for a new mortgage through mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. If the foreclosure was  included in a bankruptcy, the borrower has to wait only four years.
  • Two-year wait for home owners who underwent a short sale before they're eligible for another Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae loan. 
  • Three-year wait for home owners seeking a Federal Housing Administration loan after a foreclosure or short sale. Some home owners who underwent a foreclosure because of at least a 20 percent cut in their pay may be able to qualify for a new mortgage after just a year through FHA's Back to Work program. 

Source: "'Boomerang' Buyers Get Another Chance at Homeownership," Sun Sentinel (Feb. 24, 2014)

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'Boomerang Buyers' Are Staging a Comeback
Remaking the Dream
Foreclosed Home Owners Return to Market