MYRTLE BEACH — More young homebuyers are choosing 15-year fixed rate mortgages, according to an Atlanta mortgage broker, but the trend does not seem to have caught on yet in the Myrtle Beach area.
Karen O’Donovan, loan officer for the Myrtle Beach office of Atlanta-based Silverton Mortgage Specialists, and Marvin Heyd, broker in charge for Prudential Myrtle Beach Real Estate, say the young buyers in this market are still choosing 30-year mortgages.
The information from Silverton in Atlanta said that the shorter-term mortgages have traditionally been popular among older buyers, which O’Donovan and Heyd said is still the case for them.
Low interest rates for 15-year loans, 2.72 percent in the Myrtle Beach area according to Silverton, is what is luring younger buyers into loans they can pay off in half the time of a traditional, 30-year mortgage.
Heyd said that his older customers are choosing 10-year and 15-year mortgages, but the longer mortgages are still tops among younger buyers.
He said his company has closed 92 loans in the last month. Forty of those were financed and all were for 30 years.
Like Heyd, O’Donovan said her younger customers typically get some type of government-backed mortgage loan, such as from the Federal Housing Administration. Those are 30-year loans.
The mortgage delinquency rate nationally slid under 7 percent in February, down 3.16 points from January and 6.51 points from February 2012, according to information from Lender Processing Services.
While numbers for Horry County are not available, information from SiteTech Systems shows the number of home loans in foreclosure to have fallen to 4.65 percent of all the county’s home loans in December, the last month for which data is available. That figure is a full 2 points below the 6.65 percent of all mortgages that were in foreclosure in December 2011, according to SiteTech’s numbers.
The December 2012 foreclosure rate for the Myrtle Beach area is still about 0.4 points above the next highest South Carolina geographic area, which was Hilton Head Island where 4.21 percent of all loans were in foreclosure in December.
The state foreclosure sales rate was 3.14 percent and the national rate 3.16 percent in December, the SiteTech numbers showed.
Nationally, according to the Lender Processing numbers, 5.1 million mortgages were either 30 days past due or in foreclosure in February, down from 5.2 million in January.
Property owners in Georgetown County who may be receiving a tax discount illegally need to call the Tax Assessor’s office by Sunday or they’ll pay for their silence.
The office has made a list of those who are and beginning Monday will start sending out corrected tax bills for this year and last. Those who call to say they are or may be among the group will only be rebilled for the current year.
The office has identified a number of Waccamaw Neck property owners who rent their homes for more than 14 days a year but still claim it as their primary residence and pay a 4 percent rather than 6 percent property tax rate, which is not allowed. Additionally the office has found a number of people claiming a Homestead Exemption who should not be.
Owners who feel they may be in either of these categories and want to be rebilled for one year rather than two have until Sunday night to call the Assessor’s office at 545-3017 and leave a message confessing that they are or may be guilty.
Contact STEVE JONES at 444-1765.