You Have Just Closed On Your Dream Home…Congratulations!
Below are some frequently asked questions that can help you with what to do next.
It has been brought to our attention that there are companies sending out letters that look like they are coming from Launch CU asking for personal information. For your safety and security, we recommend that if you receive a letter in the mail that seems suspicious, please reach out to us right away to verify its validity. CLICK HERE for examples of these solicitations.
Is there anything a new homeowner needs to do after they close on their new home?
Yes, they need to apply for homestead exemption. The number of exemptions are approved by the County the property is located in. After each closing our closing team provides the county website in a thank you email to encourage members to get it done as soon as possible. March 1st is the deadline to file for homestead exemption in Florida.
What is an escrow account?
Escrow is established at the loan closing with the borrower paying the initial deposits for property taxes and homeowners and/or flood insurance premiums. The monthly loan payment includes an escrow payment. The escrow account is used to pay the borrowers taxes and insurance on time, so the homeowner doesn’t have to worry about these.
When and how are my property taxes paid?
Florida property taxes are due in November. We partner with a vendor that provides us tax information so that we can pay taxes as soon as they are available on the county websites. Taxes paid after 11/30 are higher so we pay all in November
How is my homeowners insurance paid?
We pay insurance daily. Our service goal is to pay Homeowners/flood insurance 3 weeks prior to the due date. This is not always possible and is usually due to smaller insurance companies not generating invoices early enough for us to receive them and pay within that timeframe.
What should a homeowner do if they are changing insurance companies?
Contact us before paying for the new policy. We can pay the new premium out of the escrow account. The refund (if any) from the prior policy will be sent to the homeowner. Most often the refund needs to be deposited back into the escrow account to prevent a shortage in the escrow when escrow analysis is completed.
What is escrow analysis and when does it occur?
Escrow analysis is completed annually by the lender. Launch completes escrow analysis in January. If there is a change to the monthly mortgage payment of the loan, the Effective payment change date is the March 1st payment. The analysis determines if we are collecting enough in the escrow account to cover the property taxes and insurance due. We require a 2- month cushion to remain in the escrow account at Launch. If the property taxes or homeowners/flood insurance significantly increased in the prior year versus what we were collecting for, the escrow account will have a deficiency and often a shortage. This means that the monthly escrow payment will increase to collect that deficiency and/or shortage. We allow members to pay back the deficiency/shortage over the next 12 months.
What is the difference between a Deficiency and a Shortage related to Escrow Analysis?
A Deficiency is caused by there not being enough $$ in the escrow account to pay for your escrowed bills. A Shortage means that your escrow balance fell below the required minimum balance. The escrow analysis statement will detail what occurred in your escrow account in the past year.
Can I pay my escrow deficiency/shortage to keep my payment from increasing?
Yes, Launch allows you to pay a lump sum to pay the deficiency/shortage. But your payment will still increase because we must collect a higher amount to prevent a deficiency to occur again.
If my monthly mortgage payment changes, does the borrower have to do anything?
Yes. Depending on how the member pays their mortgage payment they may need to make some changes so that their monthly payment posting is not delayed. We do not accept partial payments. If payment received is less than the full P/I/T/I monthly payment, the amount received will not be posted to the mortgage. It will be deposited into the member’s savings account.
Can I pay my mortgage loan ahead?
No. Launch doesn’t allow you to be “paid ahead” on your mortgage, but you can pay down your principal balance. You can do this by paying more on your monthly mortgage payment or at any time by paying a lump sum payment or just an additional payment.
When will I get my annual mortgage interest statement so that I can complete my income taxes?
Mortgage interest statements (1098) will be received by January 31st and sent to the primary borrowers mailing address.
Can I get a copy of my loan documents?
The deed and mortgage are a matter of public record. These are easily accessible through the county public records website where the home is located. Other loan documents such as the note, appraisal, survey that are not public record may be requested from the servicing department. The most common request we receive is for documents that can be accessed thru the county website. When a mortgage is paid off, the satisfaction of mortgage is also a matter of public record and can be accessed on the county website.
How do I get information about my mortgage loan with Launch?
A mortgage statement is included in the monthly member statement. The mortgage statement includes any transactions including escrow disbursements that occurred in the prior month and when the next payment is due. It also includes year to date balances in the escrow account and interest paid.
Digital Banking – the mortgage loan is also seen in digital banking
What does it mean that Launch “doesn’t sell my mortgage”?
Many larger banks and mortgage companies will originate the loan but will immediately sell it to an investor company. Launch does not do that. We retain all of our loans and if you have a question about your mortgage, when you call Launch, you are talking to a member contact rep that is local in Florida. Or a member can come into any branch to ask questions. A member service representative will assist you and will conference in a mortgage servicing representative to assist if necessary.
How do I get new documents to the Launch mortgage servicing department?
- Email securely to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Fax to (321) 349-0801
- Drop off at any branch and indicate to the MSR/Teller to send to mtgservicing
- Mail to: Launch 300 S. Plumosa St, Merritt Island, FL 32952
How do I obtain a payoff on my Launch mortgage loan?
You may request a payoff at any of our branches in person.
Third Party requests (another lender or title company) must be faxed with the member’s authorization to (321) 349-0801. Please allow up to 72 hours for third party requests to be completed.