Kenneth R. Harney

Kenneth R. Harney

Washington Post Columnist

Kenneth R. Harney can be reached at kharney@thewarrengroup.com
KENNETH HARNEY

Tax Reform Could Cost Homebuyers

With the health care bill back-burnered on Capitol Hill, the focus has shifted to tax reform. Among the key financial matters in play: Homeowners’ prized mortgage interest and property tax deductions.

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Mountain Of Mortgage Paperwork Wears Down Borrowers

Could getting a home mortgage under today’s post-housing bust regulations and procedures be even remotely comparable to going to the dentist to get drilled? Or anything like having your annual physical, where every body part potentially is subject to inspection and prodding?

KENNETH HARNEY

Don’t Let Closing Costs Surprise You

Everyone knows that financing and closing on a home purchase can be complicated. Which is why more than a year ago the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau issued a set of new disclosures and rules designed to bring greater clarity – and certainty – to transactions.

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IRS May Be Stepping Up Scrutiny Of Mortgage Deductions

If you’re like millions of homeowners, you recently received a familiar, innocuous-looking document from your lender. It’s called Form 1098 and it totes up how much interest you paid on your mortgage last year. Your lender is required by law to fill it out and send it to the IRS.

KENNETH HARNEY

Realty Kickbacks Prompt Penalties By CFPB

If your real estate agent requires you to get a mortgage pre-approval from one specific lender as a condition of submitting an offer to buy a house – even if another lender already pre-approved you – would you think something is fishy?

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A Big Holiday Gift For Homeowners

The biggest holiday gift this year for millions of Americans doesn’t fit under a tree and can be a little hard to grasp, but it may be of exceptional value: If you own a home, the odds are good that your equity holdings increased by thousands of dollars over the past 12 months.

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Escrow-Free Home Loans Open New Options To Buyers

If you’ve got a home mortgage, you probably also have an escrow or impound – a savings account incorporated into your monthly payment and managed by your loan servicer so that your annual property tax and hazard insurance bills get paid on time. Most lenders require them and will only allow a waiver if you pay a higher interest rate or a fee.