Jeff and Barbra met each other in the air force, serving together for years in the state of Oregon.  After falling in love and getting married, they decided on purchasing their first home!  However, being very uneducated about real estate, mortgage, or buying homes in general, they decided to go to a real estate agent!  This real estate agent showed them a gorgeous selection of homes in the North Portland area.  Luckily, a four bedroom house with beautiful views of Mount Hood and downtown Portland, costing only $215,000 became available for sale.  For lack of better words, Jeff and Barbra experienced love at first sight! 

After finding their dream house, and refusing to consider any other houses, Jeff and Barbra then went to a va loan specialist.  Once speaking with this lender, Jeff and Barbra were shocked!  Although they have amazing credit and qualify for the loan, the debt incurred from their recent wedding and their current income levels were too high to cover a loan for that full $215,000, and only qualified in the $180,000 range.  Because of this, their dream home merely sizzled away to a different family, leaving Jeff and Barbra devastated!

Although this is a fictional story about a couple who did not work the system strategically, this could very much be you when purchasing your next home!

It is highly recommended for veterans to go to their VA lender before looking at homes through a real estate agent.  Instances like that of Jeff and Barbra will not happen because you would first know how much money you can spend on a home before becoming emotionally invested to a home you simply cannot afford.

In addition to discovering how much money you will receive with a va loan, it is strongly encouraged to get pre-approved by your lender before visiting a real estate agent.  There are two main types of approval that veterans can apply for: pre-qualification and pre-approval.  What a pre-qualification does allows the lender to understand what you want in terms of buying your new home.  Information such as your income, credit, and other forms of financial structure are not needed in this phase because the lender is merely trying to understand what your plans are in achieving your new dream house!

On the other hand, a pre-approval allows the lender to view your income, pull your credit, review W2s and Tax returns, and analyze all other financial forms in order to accurately come up with the loan amount you would qualify for!

Because of the trauma people like Jeff and Barbra experienced, realtors today recommend you visiting a lender before coming to them.  Together, Lenders and realtors work together in helping you avoid conflict in finding your dream home!

In an interview with The Real Estate books in the fall of 2012, Kerry Greenwald was asked this question, “What do you see happening in Clark County in the next five years?”

Kerry replied, “I imagine that Clark County will experience major growth in the next five years, with the Ridgefield and La Center areas growing the most. With tax advantages, a young population, and as an attractive place for businesses, this area has the potential to really take off!”

Flash forwarding a couple years later, Ridgefield is experiencing what the Columbian newspaper calls a “Rebirth!” With acres and acres of ready to develop land, along with a prime location for businesses being right next to both the railroads and freeway, Ridgefield is slowly but surely becoming one of the more reputable towns in Clark Country.

As a current resident of Ridgefield, Greenwald expressed that, “This recent boom is a great opportunity for small to medium sized businesses to succeed due to the attractive population increases along with the ongoing residential construction projects!” With the increase in recent home sales, along with the land open for development, like Greenwald predicted, Ridgefield is about to prosper to levels incomparable in the Clark County history books!

For more information about the growth of Ridgefield, visit

When it comes to purchasing home loans, the main question that many people have before initiating the process is, “How is my credit?”  Before mortgaging a loan, lenders need to be assured that they will receive an adequate return from their investment before financing a home.  With our most recent financial crisis, many people became concerned about mortgages, worried that their current credit score will deter on their dreams of purchasing or refinancing their home.  Because of this, there are always certain tricks, or in further perspective, general practices that must be exemplified in order to maintain a great credit score.

Ideally, banks and lenders love a credit score that ranges around 760.  With this score, many banks give customers eligibility to their maximum loan programs.  This does not mean people cannot achieve higher credit scores ranging in the 800s, but by most judgments, having a score of 760 will grant you the same program eligibility that those with higher scores are eligible for. 

Nevertheless, the problem that looms the mortgage industry today is that most Americans do not have that attractive looking score of 760.  In fact, approximately 62.8% of people have scores below 750 based on a recent poll conducted in 2014. 

Due to this astonishingly high percentile, everyone is now starting to realize the importance of increasing credit scores with goals of increasing their home loan eligibility.  Here are common, practices that people can do to increase these scores:

  • Analyze current score
    • If errors are found, you have the right to dispute objections to proper authority!
  • Lower your overall debt load
    • You do not have to pay these collections in full, but deplete these amounts as much as you can!
  • Pay your bills on time
    • Set up reminders with the help of your bank!
  • Minimize the amount of collections
    • The more credit cards you have, the lower your score will be!


When mortgaging, banks heavily rely on credit scores when deriving what loan program, if any, works for their customers.  Using a process called Mid-Score, banks take the middle ranked credit score from these three sources: Equifax, Transunion, and Experian.  However, if you are married, they take the LOWER mid-score of the couple.  This process allows banks to curate a program that fits your credit derived lifestyle.  Because of this, it is strongly suggested to check your credit score consistently using these three secure domains, allowing you to see exactly what the bank will see!

At Creekside mortgage, we specialize in VA Loans.  Although credit checks with these types of loans are not always mandatory, we strongly encourage all potential homeowners to be mindful of their credit scores because having more options means you will have better rates!