Hotel discounts – Sunset Reef Hotel http://sunsetreefhotel.com/ Wed, 03 Nov 2021 06:14:20 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.8 https://sunsetreefhotel.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/icon-120x120.jpg Hotel discounts – Sunset Reef Hotel http://sunsetreefhotel.com/ 32 32 How To Obtain A 1000 Dollar Loan https://sunsetreefhotel.com/how-to-obtain-a-1000-dollar-loan/ https://sunsetreefhotel.com/how-to-obtain-a-1000-dollar-loan/#respond Wed, 03 Nov 2021 06:14:19 +0000 https://sunsetreefhotel.com/?p=629 GreenDayOnline can help you if you need a loan for 1000 dollars without the hassle and fuss GreenDayOnline is your trusted lender connection service. We help you find trustworthy lenders when you need a loan of 1000 dollars. GreenDayOnline is a trusted source for short-term loans. GreenDayOnline is the best payday loan service in America! When you have […]]]>

GreenDayOnline can help you if you need a loan for 1000 dollars without the hassle and fuss

GreenDayOnline is your trusted lender connection service. We help you find trustworthy lenders when you need a loan of 1000 dollars. GreenDayOnline is a trusted source for short-term loans.

GreenDayOnline is the best payday loan service in America! When you have urgent financial needs, $1000 loans at GreenDayOnline.com can help you. 

GreenDayOnline Now Offers a Fast, Secure Cash Loan

  1. You can choose how much funding you require
  2. Complete the application form. It’s easy, secure, and quick!
  3. Wait for Credit Check approval Credit checks are clearly defined
  4. Receive the funds you require

Talk to us if you need a fast and secure online loan

We can help you get a $1000 payday loans, regardless of your credit score. It’s very simple! Fill out our online application for a payday loan. We connect you with reputable payday loan providers. Once we have reviewed your application, you can choose a provider to get your $1000 loan.

How much does the loan cost?

Interest rates can be expected to range between 2 and 3 percent. When applying for a short-term loan, always look for affordable solutions and viable rates.

You will avoid higher interest rates and penalties if you pay your loans on-time. Payday lenders often offer more attractive rates to customers based on their repayment history.

GreenDayOnline helps you find the best interest rates and value from the top lenders in the USA. Your payday lender will provide you with an estimate of the loan amount and interest when you apply for a loan. Compare all options. To avoid paying unnecessary penalties, refuse to pay a higher interest rate.

We make it easier to find suitable loans and offer competitive interest. The loan calculator will help you calculate the interest and repayments you can afford for your $1000 loan. You should always be prepared for financial emergencies. A payday loan can help with urgent financial matters.

How do I qualify for a $1000 loan?

GreenDayOnline will only approve you for a $1000 payday loan if you complete an online application. Our borrowers do not need to complete the rigorous checks required by conventional lenders. They simply need to meet some simple criteria in order to apply for a $1000 loan.

To apply for one of our $1000 payday loans, a client must meet these criteria:

  • You must be at least 18 years old.
  • You must provide proof of citizenship
  • A local ID issued by the US is required for US citizens.
  • GreenDayOnline allows you to get approval for payday loans ranging from $200 up to $1000.

Are you able to offer loans with no credit check?

A $1000 loan can still be applied for even if you have bad credit. After submitting the online application, you will be contacted by an appropriate lender. Online applicants are encouraged to tell payday lenders about their credit rating. This will help you avoid future penalties, high interest rates and rejection of your application.

What does the $1000 Payday loan for bad credit entail?

We can help you get a $1000 payday loan if you have $1000 to spend. Follow our online application. You will need to provide proof of income. Based on your request for a $1000 loan, our lenders will assess your ability to repay the loan and calculate your interest rate. Accept the quote from a trusted payday loan provider, and you could get your money in no-time!

Why choose GreenDayOnline

GreenDayOnline is committed to offering payday loans to our customers with ease and convenience.

The application process is quick and secure. You can register online to apply for your $1000 loan anywhere you are!

You can apply for payday loans at any time of the day, whether it’s during the week or on weekends. We are always available to help you.

Every payday loan application is transparently handled by us. The lender will disclose all interest and fees so that you don’t get caught unaware by unexpected rates.

Get a $1000 loan from us

  1. In just a few minutes, you can have your $1000 loan in bank! To apply for a quick, secure loan, simply fill out our online form. It takes only a few seconds!
  2. Register with GreenDayOnline to use the online calculator and determine your affordability for your loan.
  3. After verifying your personal information, the lender may approve your $1000 loan. Your bank account could then be credited with your $1000 loan. It’s quick, simple, and secure.

GreenDayOnline is the best online payday loan service if you need one.

Online loans are the fastest and most convenient way to get the payday loan you want. You will be able to connect with the best lenders in America and receive full transparency on every transaction. You don’t have to look through hundreds of listings to find the right lender for you. We can help you find payday loans at competitive rates from top payday loan lenders.

FAQ

How does your $1000 loan compare to other companies?

We provide a convenient, efficient and valuable way to get the loan you need. You will be fully informed about our registration requirements and procedures. All loan quotations do not include hidden fees.

Why should I choose your loan services over a bank?

A bank cannot guarantee loan approval, regardless of your credit rating. For a short term loan, conventional lenders will require you to fill out lengthy and complex applications. They may also charge exorbitant interest rates. Our payday loan services can approve you for a $1000 loan within 24 hours. You don’t have to fill out unnecessary paperwork.

How do I apply for a 1000-dollar payday loan?

Just complete the online registration. You can apply for your $1000 payday loans once you have created an account. Your application will be processed quickly and you will receive an email or text with all the details.

Can I pay my loan before the due date?

Yes. Yes. We recommend that you pay off your loan as soon as possible. Lenders view this as a positive step. This can help you avoid future payday loan refusals or harsh penalties.

GreenDayOnline is your trusted service for payday loans! We can help you find short, fast cash loans that are both affordable and valuable for your circumstances. You can apply online for 1000-dollar loans by simply visiting our application page and entering your details.

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8 Best Mortgage Lenders of October 2021 https://sunsetreefhotel.com/8-best-mortgage-lenders-of-october-2021/ https://sunsetreefhotel.com/8-best-mortgage-lenders-of-october-2021/#respond Tue, 02 Nov 2021 06:24:04 +0000 https://sunsetreefhotel.com/?p=538 October 4, 2021 12:14 PM Gabriella Cruz-Martínez, Norma Rodríguez, Fernando García Delgado and Gabriel Rodriguez Posted: October 4, 2021 12:14 PM Updated: October 6, 2021 7:05 AM Most Customizable Loans Quicken Loans Our Partner Type of Loans:Purchase, Jumbo, Refinance, Fixed, Adjustable, FHA, VA Minimum Down Payment:3% Check Price Best Marketplace LendingTree Our Partner Type of […]]]>


  1. Most Customizable Loans

    Quicken Loans

    Our Partner

    • Type of Loans:Purchase, Jumbo, Refinance, Fixed, Adjustable, FHA, VA
    • Minimum Down Payment:3%

    Check Price

  2. Best Marketplace

    LendingTree

    Our Partner

    • Type of Loans:Purchase, Jumbo, Refinance, Fixed, Adjustable, FHA, VA, USDA (specifics vary by lender)
    • Minimum Down Payment:Vary by lender

    Check Price

  3. Best Online for Military Members

    Veterans United

    Our Partner

    • Type of Loans:Purchase, Jumbo, Refinance, Fixed, Adjustable, FHA, VA, USDA
    • Minimum Down Payment:0%

    Check Price

  4. Best for First-Time Homebuyers

    Guild Mortgage

    Our Partner

    • Type of Loans:Purchase, Jumbo, Refinance, Fixed, Adjustable, FHA, VA, USDA
    • Minimum Down Payment:0%

    Check Price

  5. Best for the Self-Employed

    Caliber Home Loans

    Our Partner

    • Type of Loans:Purchase, Jumbo, Refinance, Fixed, Adjustable, FHA, VA, USDA
    • Minimum Down Payment:3%

    Check Price

  6. Best for Fast Closing Time

    Better Mortgage

    Our Partner

    • Type of Loans:Purchase, Jumbo, Refinance, Fixed, Adjustable
    • Minimum Down Payment:3%

    Check Price


A mortgage is likely the largest loan you’ll ever take out in your life. You’ll be paying it for years, which makes getting a lower interest rate essential. Comparing loan terms such as mortgage rates, fees, and closing time are steps that every home buying customer should take before settling on a lender.

When looking for the best mortgage lender, make sure they offer loan programs for consumers with different types of credit. They should also have a streamlined mortgage pre-qualification and application process and as clean a record as possible with regulating agencies.

If you’re already on your way and would just like to calculate your mortgage costs (monthly payments, fees, etc), you can use our mortgage calculator.

Our Top Picks for Best Mortgage Lenders


The first step to a new home is putting in the work and finding out how much you can afford.

Mortgage Experts are available to get you started on your home-buying journey with solid advice and priceless information. To find out more, click on your state today.

Get Started


Best Mortgage Lender Reviews


Quicken Loans

Most Customizable Loans

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Our Partner



Pros

  • First-time homebuyers can pay as little as 3% down
  • Best in customer satisfaction in J.D. Power study
  • Representatives are available every day of the week during flexible hours

Cons

  • No home equity loans or home equity lines available
  • No brick and mortar locations

Why we chose this company: Quicken’s YOURgage program allows borrowers to choose the terms of their mortgage outside of traditional 15- or 30-year periods, from 8 to 29 years.

Quicken Loans, offered by Rocket Mortgage, is the largest retail lender in the US, offering a variety of mortgage products, including conventional mortgages, ARM FHA, VA, and jumbo loans. Aside from the traditional 15- and 30-year mortgages, the lender also has loans with flexible terms between 8 and 29 years.

Quicken’s YOURgage program sets it apart from other other online lenders by allowing borrowers to choose the term of their fixed-rate loan (outside of traditional 15 and 30-year terms) and borrow up to $548,250.

And, if you haven’t saved the traditional 20% benchmark and are looking for a low down payment, Quicken has options — some loans allow first-time homebuyers to put as little as 3% down.

Quicken also stands out for the high quality of its customer experience, as evidenced by the results of J.D. Power’s 2020 U.S. Primary Mortgage Origination Satisfaction Study. Customers are able to speak with one of the company’s 3,000+ mortgage bankers 24/7 and may fully process their loan online in all 50 states. Moreover, because Quicken services 99% of its mortgages, it keeps a stable line of support from start to finish, instead of handing customers off to another company midway through the process.

QUICKEN LOANS COVID-19 RESPONSE

LATEST NEWS AS OF OCTOBER 2021

Quicken Loans clients impacted by COVID-19 can fill out an online application for assistance by visiting RocketMortgage.com. The company offers an initial three-month forbearance, extendable up to 12 months, which temporarily stops mortgage payments. Once the crisis is determined to be over, Quicken Loans says they’ll work with clients to determine the best course of action when they’re ready to resume monthly payments. Clients won’t experience an impact on their credit as a result of the forbearance.


LendingTree Mortgage

Best Marketplace

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Our Partner



Pros

  • Compare offers from over 1,500 lenders in minutes
  • Various home loan learning sources available

Cons

  • LendingTree gives your information to various loan originators when you apply. These companies compete for your business, and those lenders will contact you, probably during the same period, via phone and email

Why we chose this company: LendingTree’s large network of lenders and straightforward quote comparison process makes it our pick for the best marketplace.

LendingTree is one of the most comprehensive mortgage marketplaces around, letting you compare mortgage products from over 1,500 different lenders. You can compare lender offers online through a three-step process that consists of answering a series of questions, comparing offers side by side and discussing your options with a loan officer.

LendingTree will ask for your income, assets, education, debts, occupation and length of time at your job, and SSN at the beginning of the quoting process. The company then runs a credit check and uses your FICO score to match you with lenders from their network. Finally, you’ll be contacted by up to five lenders after they’ve put together a preliminary quote.

LendingTree also offers plenty of resources regarding mortgages and loans, including a glossary of loan terminology, current rates for all types of home loans, several calculators, and a national loan officer directory. It also features reviews so users can read about experiences other customers have had with each lender.

LENDINGTREE COVID-19 RESPONSE

LATEST NEWS AS OF OCTOBER 2021

LendingTree offers a detailed explanation of various coronavirus pandemic mortgage relief programs. It also features information about federal mortgage relief programs, instructions on finding your current loan services, and summaries of several lender relief programs. It also has a section on mortgage relief scams.


Veterans United

Best Online for Military Members

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Our Partner



Pros

  • Competitive interest rates
  • No down payment or PMI required
  • Online credit counseling program available for borrowers with poor credit history

Cons

  • No home equity loans available
  • Only has physical branches in 18 states

Why we chose this company: Veterans United’s robust online platform and online credit counseling program make it a solid choice for active-duty military members who may not have the time to visit a physical branch.

Veterans United specializes in loans backed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, and is a great option for active-duty service members and reservists, as well as veterans and their families.

Unlike some of its competitors, Veterans United doesn’t offer home equity loans or home equity lines of credit (HELOCs).

VU also offers a free online credit counseling program for veterans and service members with low credit scores called the Lighthouse Program. A credit specialist is assigned to each customer to help fix errors on credit reports, map out a score improvement plan, and advise the borrower until they reach their credit score goal.

VU’s mortgage programs are available in all 50 states and Washington DC. However, keep in mind that the lender only has physical branches in the states of Alabama, Alaska, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Kentucky, Nebraska, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington.

VETERANS UNITED COVID-19 RESPONSE

LATEST NEWS AS OF OCTOBER 2021

Veterans United offers an initial forbearance period of up to 180 days, temporarily suspending monthly mortgage payments. If necessary, borrowers have the option to extend that period for an additional 180 days. While the loan is in a forbearance program, VU won’t assess any late payment fees, and the loan won’t accrue any additional interest. Entering into a forbearance plan won’t affect a borrower’s credit score. When this period ends, Veterans United will work with individual borrowers to establish either a repayment plan or a loan modification.


Guild Mortgage

Best for First-time Home Buyers

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Pros

  • One of the nation’s top five lenders of FHA loans
  • Specific programs for low-income borrowers available
  • Home improvement and manufactured home mortgage loans available
  • Matches customers with down payment aid

Cons

  • No current mortgage rates on its website
  • No home equity products available
  • Unavailable in NY and NJ

Why we chose this company: Guild’s low credit score requirements and down payment assistance programs make it a great choice for first-time homebuyers.

Guild Mortgage offers government-backed FHA, VA, and USDA loans and programs that specialize in down-payment assistance. According to the Mortgage Bankers Association Report (MBA), Guild is among the nation’s top five lenders of FHA loans, making it an excellent option for qualifying borrowers with credit scores as low as 540 (provided they put at least 10% down).

Guild also offers an FHA Zero Down program for low to moderate-income homebuyers with below-average credit (generally under 700) and who don’t have enough saved up for a down payment.

While most FHA loans require at least 3.5% down, Guild’s Zero Down program allows applicants with credit scores as low as 640 to get an FHA home loan without the need for a down payment. We chose Guild as our best for first-time homebuyers lender because of their low credit score requirements and down payment assistance options.

Guild can originate loans in Washington D.C. and all but two states — New York and New Jersey. Additionally, the company can fully close mortgages online via its digital platform, MyMortgage, which provides added security and can help speed up the closing process.

GUILD MORTGAGE COVID-19 RESPONSE

LATEST NEWS AS OF OCTOBER 2021

Guild Mortgage offers an initial forbearance option and hardship assistance, as well assistance extensions depending on your case. This isn’t automatic, however, so be sure to ask about these options.


Navy Federal

Best In-person for Military Members

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Pros

  • 324 branches nationwide, catering to military members, reservists, veterans, retirees, and annuitants
  • Up to 100% financing and 0% down payment options available
  • Rate loan match available

Cons

  • Doesn’t offer customized rates unless you apply
  • No private mortgage insurance

Why we chose this company: A combination of its 324 branches nationwide, as well as full in-house servicing of their loans makes Navy Federal Credit Union our best in-person lender for military members.

With its 324 branches, Navy Federal Credit Union (NFCU) ranks as our best lender for in-person assistance for military members. NFCU services all of its mortgages in-house for the life of the loans, which can be important for customers looking to do business solely with their chosen lender. Furthermore, borrowers need fewer mortgage points to access the lowest available rates.

VA loans are government-backed, so they don’t feature the same interest rate across lenders. However, borrowers looking into mortgage products through NFCU can take advantage of its rate loan match. If you find a better rate elsewhere, NFCU will match it or discount $1,000 from your closing costs.

Navy Federal’s HomeBuyers Choice program is a standout option in the company’s line of financial products. It offers 100% financing, a fixed interest rate, and a seller contribution of up to 6%. This makes it a strong alternative for members of the military who are buying their first home.

Navy Federal membership is open to active-duty military members as well as reservists, veterans, retirees and annuitants.

NAVY FEDERAL COVID-19 RESPONSE

LATEST NEWS AS OF OCTOBER 2021

Navy Federal is offering eligible members a temporary suspension of their monthly mortgage payment requirements for a total of up to 18 months. Members will also be provided with options to make payments missed during forbearance, including a loan modification or a deferral. Navy Federal does advise its potential customers that closing a mortgage loan may take longer than usual, but that it’s still honoring its initial locked rates in light of COVID-19.


Caliber Home Loans

Best for Self-Employed Individuals

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Pros

  • One of the largest selections of mortgage loans on our list
  • Program available for self-employed customers
  • Some loan programs have low credit score options

Cons

  • No equity home loans available

Why we chose this company: Caliber accepts non-traditional credit information when evaluating loan applications, which greatly favors self-employed individuals and anyone with little to no traditional credit experience.

Caliber’s low minimum credit score requirements and a program tailored specifically to self-employed individuals make it much easier for them to prove how much they earn even without traditional income sources.

The company also considers alternative credit data during the mortgage application process. In many cases, these alternative sources of credit history can prevent borrowers from getting the best deals. However, Caliber claims borrowers with this alternative credit data can secure down payments as low as 3% on conventional loans.

Caliber Home Loans has one of the largest selections of mortgage products of all the companies on our list, including Conventional, FHA, VA, USDA, ARM, Refinance, Bond, Renovation, Freddie Mac HomeOne, Freddie Mac Home Possible, and Fannie Mae HomeReady.

Caliber’s online application process is another standout feature. Customers can apply online by answering a few questions about themselves, their finances and their budget. A representative contacts applicants shortly after, and the process can reportedly take as little as 15 minutes.

CALIBER HOME LOANS COVID-19 RESPONSE

LATEST NEWS AS OF OCTOBER 2021

Caliber is offering both short- and long-term options for those struggling to pay their mortgage due to COVID-19. There is a forbearance plan which postpones monthly payments, and a repayment plan to gradually pay the amounts delayed by forbearance. There is also a deferral plan under which clients pay for the months in forbearance at the end of their loan. Alternatively, clients can also apply for a loan modification.


Bank of America

Best National Bank

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Pros

  • Numerous retail and lending centers available nationwide
  • Down payment and closing costs assistance program
  • Online application

Cons

  • Rates shown are for a credit score of 740 or higher
  • Fee information isn’t available online
  • No renovation loans available

Why we chose this company: With more than 4,300 branches and 2,900 lending centers, Bank of America is the most accessible national bank for mortgage borrowers.

Bank of America’s diverse selection of mortgage products, competitive closing costs, interest rate estimates, and broad reach makes it a solid lender choice overall. It’s an even better choice for existing members, as the bank may offer them more significant discounts on origination fees.

We chose Bank of America as our best national bank based on their more than 4,300 branches and 2,900 lending centers throughout the country. As a result, accessibility is one of the bank’s strong points, especially for clients who prefer face-to-face interaction.

The bank also allows borrowers to apply and pre-qualify online. Bank of America’s Home Loan Navigator, which can be accessed on web or through the bank’s mobile app, lets users track, sign, and submit documents online.

BANK OF AMERICA COVID-19 RESPONSE

LATEST NEWS AS OF OCTOBER 2021

Bank of America is currently extending both payment deferral and forbearance options to clients experiencing financial hardship due to the pandemic. The bank states that, for both options, payment due dates will be delayed but not forgiven or erased; however, there won’t be any late charges applied and they’ll work with its clients on repayment options.

Eligibility for these programs varies depending on the owners or insurers of the loan product. If Bank of America owns the loan, both deferral and forbearance options will be available. Only those who have a single due payment on their loans can apply for a deferral. If a third party owns or is insuring the loan, Bank of America will follow its guidelines.


Better Mortgage

Best for Fast Closing Time

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Pros

  • No origination, underwriting, or application fees
  • Assistance programs for down payment and closing costs
  • Representatives available every day until 9 pm ET

Cons

  • Doesn’t offer customizable terms
  • No VA, USDA, FHA, home equity, or home improvement loans
  • Not available in Hawaii, Massachusetts, Nevada, or New Hampshire

Why we chose this company: Better Mortgage offers a fast and streamlined document submission process, which results in faster closing times for many of their customers.

Better Mortgage is an online alternative to traditional brick-and-mortar lenders. Thanks to this business model, Better has lower operating costs, which can translate into savings on some of their products. Despite this focus on the digital, borrowers also gain access to a dedicated loan officer.

Speed is another of Better’s strong suits. Consumers can obtain a rate quote and a letter of pre-approval in just a few minutes. Better also affirms that it has an average loan closing time of 32 days, which is faster than average. While these claims are difficult to verify, many customer reviews do mention closing times between one and two months, which are fairly good for this type of transaction.

Lastly, Better offers a price guarantee, promising to match any valid competitor’s offer and credit you $100.

BETTER.COM COVID-19 RESPONSE

LATEST NEWS AS OF OCTOBER 2021

Better is currently providing loan forbearance, waiving late and overdraft fees, suspending foreclosure for all borrowers whose loan it services and suspending credit reporting following Fannie Mae guidelines. Other changes include:

– They’ve increased their minimum FICO credit score requirement for cash-out refinance loans to 680. The minimum requirement for loans for purchase or rate-and-term refinance is still 620.

– Their Jumbo loan offerings are restricted, and they cannot currently complete a Jumbo loan with a loan-to-value (LTV) ratio over 80%.

Other Mortgage Lenders We Considered

When we looked at the mortgage lending industry, we found that many home loan lenders didn’t necessarily offer the best products in the market, however, they do excel in other areas.

Guaranteed Rate: Good for fully online loan applications


Pros

  • Allow borrowers to upload and e-sign documents in 300 branches in 46 states
  • Provides sample rates for many of its loan products
  • Participates in down payment assistance programs: HomeReady, HomePossible(R), Fannie Mae 97%, and Freddie Mac HomeOne

Cons

  • No home equity products
  • Not available in Mississippi, Nebraska, Vermont, or West Virginia

Guaranteed Rate is another online mortgage lender that allows for a fully digital process that can be tracked via an interactive checklist. That said, borrowers who also want a physical branch visit one of the lender’s 300 branches across 46 states.

Guaranteed Rate has a full suite of comprehensive educational resources, including a Know Your Neighborhood feature (in beta) that gives borrowers the ability to view market and population trends by zip code, as well as school data and taxes.

While this lender includes a mortgage affordability calculator on their website, it’s unclear if the numbers provided take into account any mortgage points purchased by the borrower.

  • Loan Types – Purchase, Jumbo, Refinance, Fixed, Adjustable, FHA, VA, USDA
  • Minimum Down Payment – 3%

PrimeLending: Good for home renovation loans


Pros

  • Proprietary Loanplicity(R) app guides borrowers through the entire process, from application to closing
  • Ample selection of mortgage products
  • Participates in over eight closing cost and down payment assistance programs
  • No lending fees on any VA loan, including renovation
  • Float-down rate lock option available within 20 days of closing, if rates drop

Cons

  • No home equity products
  • Must speak with a loan officer before an online application
  • Qualifying requirements not published

PrimeLending has one of the broadest range of loan products of all the companies on our list, including some unique options, such as pool escrow loans, energy-efficient mortgages, and FHA 203(k) renovation loans. Additionally, with its Neighborhood Edge program, low- to moderate-income borrowers can receive up to $2,000 in closing credits, based on income and area.

While PrimeLending’s selection is certainly wide, the lender could be more transparent regarding its requirements for borrowers. Further, though the company touts its online availability, potential homebuyers must first speak with a loan officer before completing an application.

  • Loan Types – Purchase, Jumbo, Refinance, Fixed, Adjustable, FHA, VA, USDA, Home Renovation, Manufactured Home
  • Minimum Down Payment – Not disclosed

Flagstar Bank: Good for loan variety


Pros

  • Over 2,000 mortgage brokers in the U.S. and service loans in every state
  • Offers some options that don’t require down payments
  • Has several specialized products, such as multiple properties or high balance loans
  • Borrowers are assigned a single loan advisor and loan processor
  • Rates easily accessible

Cons

  • Home equity products not available nationwide but primarily concentrated in Michigan
  • Home equity products have an annual $7 fee and must be taken out in person
  • A high number of complaints in the CFPB database related to trouble during the payment process

Better known as a mortgage servicer than an originator, Flagstar nonetheless offers a full suite of loans, including home equity products and several specialty loans.

Some examples of the latter include the Professional loan, aimed at recent graduates with high earning potential. In some cases, Flagstar may even exclude some student loan debt from its DTI calculation.

  • Loan Types – Purchase, Jumbo, Refinance, Fixed, Adjustable, FHA, VA, USDA, Home Renovation, Manufactured Homes
  • Minimum Down Payment – 3%

How Much Will I Pay for My Mortgage?


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Mortgage Loans Guide

How Do Mortgages Work?

Mortgages are loans given by financial institutions to purchase or refinance a property. The home you’re buying with a mortgage loan serves as your collateral. If you’re unable to make your mortgage payments, the bank will seize your property.

Financing your home with a mortgage means that your lender is taking on a financial stake in the property. In some cases—such as with conventional loans with less than 20% down payment—lenders may require borrowers to have homeowners insurance to protect their investment.

If you’re thinking about refinancing your home, check our mortgage refinance calculator and our list of the best mortgage refinance companies to get started.

Type of mortgage loans

Mortgage companies offer several loan products with varying terms and interest rates to fit the needs of homebuyers.

Conventional loans: The most common type of mortgage loan. Typically offered by private lenders (as opposed to loans backed by government programs), they have a loan amount limit of $489,350 in most counties and $726,525 in more expensive areas. Homeowners’ insurance is generally required if the borrower gives less than 20%.

Jumbo loans: Jumbo loans are designed for properties exceeding the limit of $489,350. Non-conforming jumbo loans are meant for properties worth between $1-2 million. Both conforming and non-conforming loans require good credit and a sizable down payment to qualify.

FHA loans: A Federal Home Administration loan protects the lender from default. If the borrower stops making payments on their loan, the FHA pays the lender the unpaid balance on the mortgage. Mortgage rates tend to be lower than conventional loans because of this guarantee by the FHA.

VA loans: Available to service members, veterans and eligible surviving spouses, this loan offers competitive interest rates and doesn’t require a down payment or private mortgage insurance. However, it requires a VA funding fee. VA loans include options for Native American veterans, refinancing and remodeling a home for easier access for the disabled. For more information about VA loans, check out our guide to the best VA loans.

USDA loans: This loan supports low-income borrowers in rural areas. No down payment is required, and it offers competitive interest rates, flexible credit score requirements, and low monthly mortgage insurance.

Reverse loans: A reverse mortgage allows homeowners age 62 or older to convert part of their home equity into cash without having to sell their property. As long as they live in the house, they don’t have to pay back the loan. Homeowners under the age of 62 can look into home equity loans, which are similar in concept, though with different repayment rules.

Local loans: Provided by local financial institutions, these lenders have developed relationships with other local businesses, including real estate agents, local appraisers, and interior designers. These local lenders can be especially helpful when procuring home services not directly associated with your mortgage process.

Type of mortgage rates

There are a variety of costs associated with a mortgage.

The annual percentage rate (APR) is more than just your interest rate, and may include anything from interest to brokerage fees and other charges established by the lender.

When looking for a loan, always look at the most current mortgage rates.

Lenders typically divide their products between fixed mortgages and adjustable-rate mortgages.

Fixed-Rates Adjustable-Rate (ARM)
Interest rate doesn’t change during the loan term Interest rates can change during the loan term. By law, ARMs have a lifetime cap, which limits the interest rate raise on the loan
Monthly payments stay the same during the loan term Monthly payments may vary depending on interest rate fluctuation.
A good option for homebuyers planning to stay for a long time in the house A better option for homebuyers who plan to live in the house for a shorter amount of time
Three terms for fixed-rate mortgages: 15- year, 20- year, and 30- year ARMs have an adjustment period where the initial payment and rate for the loan will stay the same for an established period. It can be between 1 month and 5 years. Afterward, rates can change every quarter, year, 3 years, or 5 years
APR will not always reflect the maximum interest rate for the loan

How to Get a Mortgage Loan

Getting mortgage pre-approval before deciding on a property can be crucial. It will save you time and make the mortgage process more manageable. Check our home affordability calculator to see how much you’ll be able to afford in monthly mortgage payments.

Documents needed to apply for a mortgage:

1. Copies of your two most recent pay stubs

2. A copy of your most recent tax return

3. W-2 and/or 1099 (although some lenders may require up to two years’ worth of these, depending on your employment history)

4. A state-issued photo ID, such as your passport or driver’s license

5. Statements of all your assets (IRAs, investment accounts, checking and savings accounts, etc.)

6. Bankruptcy discharge documents (if applicable)

7. A recent credit report (typically obtained by the lender)

8. Records of any outstanding debts, such as credit card and student loan payments.

9. In some cases, lenders may require additional documentation, like a history of alimony payments and gift letters, so make sure to ask before applying.

Before applying for a mortgage, make sure to check your credit score. It is also important to compare mortgage lenders.

Even though lenders will pull your credit — and it is considered a hard credit inquiry — your score will not be affected if all the inquiries are done within 30 days. Credit reporting agencies recognize this as shopping around for the best mortgage rate.

Lastly, check your debt-to-income ratio before applying. Lenders prefer borrowers with a debt-to-income ratio lower than 36%, and many lenders will not even consider borrowers with a ratio higher than 43%.


Mortgage Lenders FAQ

What are jumbo loans?

Jumbo loans are mortgages designed to finance luxury properties and homes in competitive real estate markets. They are different from conventional loans in that they exceed the limits set by the Federal Housing Finance Agency. Because they aren’t purchased or guaranteed by Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, applicants generally need an excellent credit history, a lower debt-to-income ratio, and will have to provide a larger down payment. They may also need a greater number of tax returns and more liquidity in their bank account for the closing process, which tends to be longer because of the stricter requirements for a jumbo loan. Wells Fargo and New American Funding are examples of banks that offer jumbo loans.

What is a mortgage loan originator?

A mortgage loan originator, also known as MLO, is a trained professional that can guide applicants throughout the mortgage approval process. Their goal is to orient customers from the moment the loan application is prepared, up to its closing. Mortgage loan originators can be either state-licensed individuals or licensed company representatives.

What documents do I need to apply for a mortgage?

Copies of your last two pay stubs; a copy of your most recent tax return W-2 and/or 1099 (some lenders may require up to two years’ worth of these); a state-issued photo ID, such as your passport or driver’s license; statements of all your assets (IRAs, investment accounts, checking and savings accounts, etc.); bankruptcy discharge documents (if applicable); a recent credit report; statements of any outstanding debts; and, in some cases, additional documentation, like a history of alimony payments and gift letters. “It’s a big risk having that adjustable rate because, at this point, it can only go up, so you might as well lock it in for 30 years and never worry about it again,” Lucas added.

Which is better: fixed or adjustable-rate mortgage?

A fixed-rate mortgage is the way to go, for now. According to Tim Lucas, Managing Editor for The Mortgage Reports, adjustable rates “don’t make any sense at all,” given how low current rates are. “The only way that I would suggest an adjustable rate is if you’re expecting some big inheritance or if you’re able to pay off your mortgage in two or three years.” Lucas adds that, “It’s a big risk having that adjustable rate because, at this point, it can only go up, so you might as well lock it in for 30 years and never worry about it again.”

Who are the best mortgage lenders?

Because no two borrowers have the same needs, the “best” mortgage lender will be the one with the most options available to you. Low rates, flexible credit score requirements, being able to deliver documents electronically or in person, and having a variety of loan products available are all important. Using these and other factors, we determined that Quicken Loans/Rocket Mortgage, Veterans United, Guild Mortgage, Navy Federal, Caliber Home Loans, Bank of America and Better Mortgage are some of the best mortgage lenders in the market.

What is the average mortgage rate?

As of the week ending September 30, 2021, the average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage was 3.01%, according to Freddie Mac. Note, however, that these rates change quickly and often, and the rate you’re offered will depend on your particular situation and credit history, among many other factors.


To answer some of the questions in the previous section, we contacted Tim Lucas, Managing Editor for The Mortgage Reports; Jason Sharon, mortgage broker, US Navy Veteran, and owner of Home Loans, Inc; and Andy Harris, owner of Vantage Mortgage Group, Inc.

How We Chose the Best Mortgage Lenders

Our rankings were determined based on the following categories:

  • Types of loans offered: We favored companies that offered a variety of loan options, such as fixed- and adjustable-rate mortgages, term-lengths, and loans backed by government agencies.
  • Customer experience: We favored companies that consider alternative credit data, provide a streamlined application process, at least two forms of customer service, and a variety of resources and educational tools.
  • Reputation and transparency: We evaluated consumer complaints with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the number of regulatory actions filed with the Nationwide Multistate Licensing System

Over the course of our research, we consulted the following expert sources:

Summary of Money’s Best Mortgage Lenders of October 2021

© Copyright 2021 Ad Practitioners, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

This article originally appeared on Money.com and may contain affiliate links for which Money receives compensation. Opinions expressed in this article are the author’s alone, not those of a third-party entity, and have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed. Offers may be subject to change without notice. For more information, read Money’s full disclaimer.


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Enrollment algorithms are contributing to the crises of higher education https://sunsetreefhotel.com/enrollment-algorithms-are-contributing-to-the-crises-of-higher-education/ https://sunsetreefhotel.com/enrollment-algorithms-are-contributing-to-the-crises-of-higher-education/#respond Tue, 02 Nov 2021 06:23:50 +0000 https://sunsetreefhotel.com/?p=547 Executive Summary Hundreds of higher education institutions are procuring algorithms that strategically allocate scholarships to convince more students to enroll. In doing so, these enrollment management algorithms help colleges vary the cost of attendance to students’ willingness to pay, a crucial aspect of competition in the higher education market. This paper elaborates on the specific […]]]>

Executive Summary

Hundreds of higher education institutions are procuring algorithms that strategically allocate scholarships to convince more students to enroll. In doing so, these enrollment management algorithms help colleges vary the cost of attendance to students’ willingness to pay, a crucial aspect of competition in the higher education market. This paper elaborates on the specific two-stage process by which these algorithms first predict how likely prospective students are to enroll, and second help decide how to disburse scholarships to convince more of those prospective students to attend the college. These algorithms are valuable to colleges for institutional planning and financial stability, as well as to help reach their preferred financial, demographic, and scholastic outcomes for the incoming student body.

Unfortunately, the widespread use of enrollment management algorithms may also be hurting students, especially due to their narrow focus on enrollment. The prevailing evidence suggests that these algorithms generally reduce the amount of scholarship funding offered to students. Further, algorithms excel at identifying a student’s exact willingness to pay, meaning they may drive enrollment while also reducing students’ chances to persist and graduate. The use of this two-step process also opens many subtle channels for algorithmic discrimination to perpetuate unfair financial aid practices. Higher education is already suffering from low graduation rates, high student debt, and stagnant inequality for racial minorities—crises that enrollment algorithms may be making worse.

This paper offers a range of recommendations to ameliorate the risks of enrollment management algorithms in higher education. Categorically, colleges should not use predicted likelihood to enroll in either the admissions process or in awarding need-based aid—these determinations should only be made based on the applicant’s merit and financial circumstances, respectively. When colleges do use algorithms to distribute scholarships, they should proceed cautiously and document their data, processes, and goals. Colleges should also examine how scholarship changes affect students’ likelihood to graduate, or whether they may deepen inequities between student populations. Colleges should also ensure an active role for humans in these processes, such as exclusively using people to evaluate application quality and hiring internal data scientists who can challenge algorithmic specifications. State policymakers should consider the expanding role of these algorithms too, and should try to create more transparency about their use in public institutions. More broadly, policymakers should consider enrollment management algorithms as a concerning symptom of pre-existing trends towards higher tuition, more debt, and reduced accessibility in higher education.


Introduction

Algorithms have played a role in college enrollment as far back as their use at St. George’s Hospital Medical School in the 1970s—with an algorithm that was later discovered to be discriminating against women and racial minorities. Despite this troubling omen, algorithms have grown continually more important to how colleges shape their incoming student cohorts, a process called enrollment management. According to a 2015 Educause Survey, over 75% of colleges and universities use analytics for enrollment management, up from just over 60% in 2012, making it the most common form of data analytics in higher education. Algorithmic enrollment management is primarily done through vendors, including EAB (serving around 150 institutions), Ruffalo Noel Levitz (or RNL, serving around 300 institutions), Rapid Insight (around 150 institutions), Othot (which lists 30 institutions), Capture Higher Ed (around 100 institutions), Whiteboard Higher Education, and others, although some colleges develop their own algorithms in-house.1 This proliferation of algorithms to at least 700 institutions is not inherently problematic, as colleges have legitimate need to predict the number of students who will attend in a coming year, as well as to budget and prepare accordingly.

“The algorithmic enrollment optimization process warrants additional scrutiny, especially since it may contribute to pre-existing crises in higher education.”

However, there is cause for concern about using algorithms to determine scholarship offers for college applicants, an increasingly common practice. These algorithms help assign scholarships to maximize either net tuition or yield—the percent of accepted applicants who end up attending that specific college. Through a two-part process—first prediction, and then optimization—a college may compare from a handful to thousands of different scholarship disbursement strategies to reach their preferred financial, demographic, and scholastic outcomes for the incoming student body. While these algorithms tend to be effective in increasing net tuition and yield, the most profitable scholarship strategy may not be that which is best for student success. The algorithmic enrollment optimization process warrants additional scrutiny, especially since it may contribute to pre-existing crises in higher education, such as an increase in student debt burdens, higher dropout rates, and the failure of many colleges to proportionately enroll students of color.

Why are colleges turning to enrollment algorithms?

Understanding the broader state of higher education helps illuminate why colleges are turning to algorithms for enrollment management. The yield rate at an average college fell nearly 15 percentage points to 33.7% from 2007 to 2017. This is partially driven by high school graduates applying to more colleges and has led to more furious competition over yielding applicants, including more active recruitment activities. Recruiting one undergraduate student at a four-year private college now has a median cost of around $2,100. As tuition has risen steadily, so too have tuition discounts, such as grants and scholarships. On average, tuition discounts have doubled from $10,000 to $20,000 between 2008 and 2018 and now encompass 52.2% of institutional expenses. This suggests that colleges are more aggressively using both recruitment practices and price variation to entice enrollment.

This competition comes not just from private colleges—public colleges, especially selective, flagship, and land-grant institutions, also compete for the same students. Despite growth over the last eight years, educational support from state and local governments remains lower, on a per-student basis, than the high-water mark in the year 2000. To raise money and compete on educational offerings and amenities, public colleges have raised tuition, including a doubling of in-state tuition (before scholarships), and shifted the proportion of students towards those from out-of-state and other countries—all of whom pay more than in-state students. This data paints a picture in which the nation’s colleges are more active in using higher tuition and targeted scholarships to raise revenue.

How algorithms fit into enrollment management

It is with this context in mind that one must consider the work done by college admissions and financial aid offices, and how it is affected by enrollment management algorithms.2 College admissions and financial aid offices have critical financial goals weighing on their shoulders. These offices are solely responsible for accepting and yielding enough students to keep the college financially solvent. Only a tiny number of prestigious colleges have endowments or other income capable of supporting college functions—the vast majority are reliant on tuition. This creates enormous pressure on financial aid offices to yield enough students to cover institutional expenses without giving out too much scholarship funding, often while also juggling other goals, such as enticing a diverse and accomplished cohort of students. To do this, admissions offices first decide who to accept, possibly also assigning a categorization (e.g., strong accept vs. weak accept) or a number score about the quality of an application.3

Then, usually in a process separate from deciding who to admit, these offices allocate scholarships in an attempt to entice students to attend. Unsurprisingly, research shows that higher scholarships awards increase the likelihood of enrollment. However, it is challenging for financial aid offices to precisely allocate limited financial resources to achieve their goals, whether that be raising the most revenue, attracting the best students, or some combination of both. This is precisely where algorithms shine—they help financial aid offices make better educated guesses about how scholarship funding increases likelihood of student enrollment. In one academic study, this resulted in a 23.3% increase in enrollment yield (from 12.1% to 14.8%) of out-of-state students.4 One major vendor advertises a “10% increase in enrollment” through scholarship optimization. This scale of impact could translate into millions of dollars in additional tuition revenue, which is the most prominent reason that so many colleges are moving towards enrollment management algorithms. As an ancillary benefit, the use of these algorithms may also reduce the workload for financial aid and admissions offices facing many thousands of college applications, which in turn reduces time and labor costs.

The algorithmic enrollment management process

Prior work from New America has discussed how predictive algorithms are used to estimate which applicants are likely to attend a college, the size of incoming classes, and the financial needs of those students. However, it is important to note that the predictive aspect is only half of a two-step process. There is also a second critical step, which is the optimization of decisions that the college can make, especially around providing scholarships to accepted applicants. While optimizing scholarship disbursement has historically been done manually, there is an emerging trend of using optimization algorithms, which raise additional concerns. Understanding this two-step process is a prerequisite to identifying the possible effects of enrollment management algorithms on higher education.

Predicting likelihood to enroll

The predictive step of algorithmic enrollment is aimed at estimating how likely an accepted applicant is to enroll in a specific college. To do this, a college will first consolidate data about a college’s past applicants, including variables like their high school GPA, standardized tests scores, FAFSA data, how much financial aid they received, where they live, and demographic information. Colleges also frequently incorporate engagement metrics, such as how often applicants attend college recruitment events and what percentage of college emails they read. Using this historical admissions data, the college or a vendor will then build a predictive model with these variables to predict whether each of the accepted applicants chose to enroll. To be precise, this is an application of supervised machine learning, using methods that might include logistic regression (the most common cited by vendors), decisions trees, or neural networks. The resulting model is a complex set of associations between these input variables and whether past applicants enrolled in the college.

Once it is built, the model can be used to predict the likelihood of enrollment for future applicants—their likelihood of yield. For any new applicant, this predictive yield model can generate an estimated percentage likelihood of enrollment. The predictive yield model also enables financial aid officers to adjust a hypothetical scholarship amount for any newly accepted applicant and see how that funding change affects their likelihood of enrolling. With the model, admissions officers might also determine which applicants are worth focusing more time and resources on (e.g., college branded apparel and glossy pamphlets). Notably, since applicants frequently apply to multiple colleges (80% apply to three or more and 36% apply to seven or more), or alternatively can opt to not attend college at all, these models are not particularly accurate for any individual applicant. However, when used to look across many applicants, it can provide highly valuable aggregate information, such as the total expected incoming students, or total expected net tuition. Because this model is valuable in the aggregate, it can also be used in the next step of the process—deciding on a strategy for distributing scholarships.

Optimizing for financial, demographic, and scholastic outcomes

Optimization is the second half of the enrollment management process, and it seeks to discover a strategy for engaging with applicants that will lead to the best enrollment outcomes as defined by that college. Because scholarship funding is the most effective lever, the most attention is typically given to how to allocate this aid to maximize applicant yield. To do this, a college needs the predictive model from the prior step, a dataset of newly accepted applicants to that college, and at least several potential scholarship disbursement strategies to compare; one scholarship disbursement strategy is a list of individualized scholarship amounts to be offered to each accepted student. A college will then compare a set of possible scholarship disbursement strategies and choose the one which is expected, according to the predictive model, to result in the preferred incoming cohort for the college. The process by which colleges choose potential disbursement strategies can vary, but there are two important categories to consider: (1) by-hand optimization and (2) algorithmic optimization.

By-hand optimization

At present, by-hand optimization is the more prevalent approach to exploring possible scholarship disbursement strategies. “By-hand” entails that individuals (as opposed to an algorithm) choose a scholarship strategy, evaluate its potential outcomes with the predictive yield model, and then iteratively make changes to the strategy and compare the results. For instance, the software systems created by the vendors EAB, RNL, and Rapid Insight enable financial aid offices to design a strategy for how much funding each applicant will get. This strategy is then run through the predictive yield model to see how it is expected to affect enrollment. A strategy might be as simple as segmenting the students based on high school GPA and SAT scores, and then giving $5,000 to the bottom third of applicants, $10,000 to the middle third, and $15,000 to the top third. Based on conversations with vendors and software demonstrations, an applicant’s expected family financial contribution also plays a prominent role, in addition to their GPA and SAT scores. The proposed strategies can segment students by many other variables—vendors mentioned specific high schools, distance traveled to attend, Pell grant eligibility, and more. In emails and conversations, several vendors also described how their process can even allocate both a mix of need-based and merit-based aid.

Often, the vendors sell both software and consulting support to help colleges consider various scholarship disbursement strategies. The consultants and financial aid office work together, exploring various disbursement strategies and breaking down the resulting predictions. In an email, EAB notes that they often look at the effect of different strategies on “enrollment, diversity, academic profile, access or other considerations, along with net tuition revenue.” While the scholarship disbursement strategies are first chosen for the entire population of accepted applicants, individual adjustments can be made for any given student. This might reflect a special interest in enrolling individual students, based on their qualifications or college fit, or perhaps a result of negotiation by a student who has better financial aid offers from elsewhere. All the while, the financial aid office can see how much the predictive algorithm expects to dole out in scholarships and the characteristics of students it predicts will attend.

It is important to note that this approach can be time-consuming for consultants and admissions officers. They must choose some number strategies of scholarship disbursement, and then compare their predicted outcomes against one another. These employees cannot evaluate every conceivable scholarship strategy and must quickly (within days or weeks) make a decision about what scholarship strategy to implement—even if they may continue to adapt offers for individual students. In contrast, an algorithmic approach to optimization has no problem evaluating many thousands of possible scholarship disbursement strategies.

Algorithmic optimization

Optimization algorithms are an emerging alternative to manually creating and comparing scholarship disbursement strategies. While it is not clear that this approach is widely in use, a recent paper by University of Washington (UW) researchers details how implementing this algorithmic step at a large unnamed public university improved out-of-state applicant yield by 23.3% (from 12.1% to 14.8%) over the pre-existing process. A similar study using data from the Southern Illinois University Carbondale (SIUC) simulated that this approach would raise yield substantially, although it was not implemented due to a leadership change at the university. Further, at least one enrollment algorithm vendor, Othot, has implemented this type of algorithmic optimization, for which the default setting is to minimize scholarship aid while maintaining enrollment. Other vendors are at least moving in this direction as they compete to offer new “prescriptive analytics,” which is the industry’s term for guiding marketing, outreach, and scholarship decisions based on predictive models. Algorithmic optimization is clearly effective and could be ubiquitous in the next generation of enrollment analytics, and thus warrants careful consideration.

Using optimization algorithms, as opposed to by-hand exploration, for this step of enrollment management requires four inputs: a dataset of new college applicants, the predictive model from the prior step, a list of constraints set by the college, and a single value to optimize (yield, in our case). Before the algorithm starts, colleges must decide on a set of constraints, which might include a total scholarship budget and a maximum scholarship for any individual student. These constraints will determine what scholarship disbursement strategies are eligible choices; a strategy that does not meet the constraints will be thrown out by the algorithm.

Next, the optimization algorithm begins its work. To start, it generates thousands of strategies for how to disperse scholarship funding across all applicants, subject to the college-set constraints. Then, within each option, the optimization algorithm uses the predictive algorithm to see how likely each applicant is to attend, given the scholarship they would hypothetically be offered. At this point, using the predicted probability of attendance for each applicant, the algorithm can then estimate the total number of expected students and total expected tuition for each scholarship disbursement option. These values—total students yielded and total tuition paid—are examples of what the algorithm is working to maximize. The algorithm may keep trying different options by combining strong performing strategies and continually comparing them against one another, before eventually deciding it has done its best to find an optimal solution, based on its goal and constraints. This process is analogous to the by-hand alternative, except that because algorithms are tireless, they may evaluate thousands of potential strategies.

Since this process is automated, its outcome is highly dependent on the constraints selected and the value to be optimized. Thus, these are incredibly important choices by the college. Anything that can be translated into a number can be optimized for. Since outcomes like total yield and total net tuition are easy and aligned with the goals of admissions offices, these are the most likely choices. The constraints placed on the optimization algorithm are also critically important. For instance, the aforementioned papers from UW researchers and SIUC both used a constraint to require that students with higher application scores (as determined by the admissions and financial aid offices) would be guaranteed higher merit aid offers than students with lower application scores. Different constraints could impose demographic diversity, such as by race or gender, or even require that a certain mix of intended majors was expected to enroll—anything that can be quantified for every applicant can be used as a constraint. In addition to the process that generates the predictive model, the choices of what constraints to impose and what value to optimize for are hugely influential.

The potential harms of enrollment management algorithms

Algorithms can play a responsible role in higher education enrollment management and are not inherently harmful. As just one example, predicting yield is valuable for important considerations like institutional financial stability, ensuring course availability, and preparing sufficient student housing. It is also important to note that algorithms are not fundamentally changing the incentives and actions of colleges, which engaged in enrollment management practices long before algorithms. Rather, algorithms are further empowering universities to be more precise and effective in enrollment management, especially when evaluating scholarships. Again, the outcome from this trend is not definitionally bad, as it is possible that codifying rules into algorithms can make scholarship awards more consistent and fairer, or could even be used to prioritize meeting student’s full financial need. However, this is not automatically true, and it should not be assumed to be the case.

“These algorithms may be driving up the number of applicants attending college at the edge of their financial capacity.”

Understanding the algorithmic process used in enrollment management helps clarify why their widespread use might be cause for concern, of which three issues supersede the rest. First, when these algorithms work as intended, they may reduce average per-student scholarship support. Second, it is problematic that these algorithms typically optimize scholarships for yielding students, rather than using scholarships to support student graduation and success. The third concern is the possibility of algorithmic bias, through which subgroups of applicants who appear to the algorithm to be less affected by changes in scholarship funding may be mistreated. While the data necessary to definitively confirm these problems is not public, the available evidence gives weight to these concerns. Given that so many American colleges are now applying enrollment management algorithms, their total impact is potentially dramatic, and thus they deserve careful consideration and further study.

When the algorithms help colleges, they may hurt students

The stated goal of enrollment optimization algorithms is to incentivize enrollment at the precise maximum tuition (or minimum scholarship) an applicant is willing to pay to attend that college. Vendors unanimously market their enrollment management software in this way—saying they intend to allocate the “minimum amount of aid necessary to meet and exceed your [enrollment] goals.” Therefore, the fact that these algorithms appear to be highly effective becomes a real concern, in that they may be driving up the number of applicants attending college at the edge of their financial willingness, and possibly capacity, to pay. It is important to note that this is not a guaranteed outcome—algorithmic enrollment could, on net, be convincing students to shift to colleges with higher aid offerings.5 Yet this is not the most likely outcome, because the use of algorithmic modeling provides a significant informational advantage to colleges in negotiations with their accepted applicants and is therefore unlikely to systemically raise aid offers. One vendor case study from Othot claims that its analytics managed to enroll 173 additional freshmen at the New Jersey Institute of Technology, without a corresponding rise in scholarship aid. Another case study from EAB takes credit for a 33% increase in net tuition and a six percentage point decrease in tuition discount rates (from around 22% to around 16%) at Aster University. This may be contributing to broader trends in higher education, especially the falling percentage of financial need met by colleges.

This effect will be especially pronounced when algorithms are used in the optimization step, since it compares thousands of scholarship strategies to find the most effective approaches. Notably, the implemented outcome of the UW study was a strategy of lower financial aid disbursements, which even led to the creation of a new lower scholarship tier (4-8% of tuition) that had previously not existed. The algorithms in the SIUC study similarly suggested reducing scholarships. Unfortunately for students, if algorithms succeed in their intended goal of effective scholarship allocation, they may also short-change students.

Maximizing applicant yield, not student success

Enrollment management algorithms are most frequently marketed towards improving yield— that is, getting a higher proportion of prospective students to attend a college. While other factors, such as scholastic quality, cohort diversity, and student retention are mentioned, the focus on tuition and yield is evident throughout vendor case studies, reports, and sales documents. The perspective of these vendors is critical, since the overwhelming majority of colleges procure algorithmic systems, rather than develop them internally. This viewpoint informs an algorithmic approach that is concerning, simply because of what it is not: optimizing for yield is a very different goal than optimizing for student success, retention, or graduation.

The scholarship that a student receives does not only affect a student’s likelihood to enroll, it also affects their likelihood to graduate. One study found that $1,000 in additional merit aid increased the graduation odds of a student by around 0.9%, with much larger effects for need-based aid. More dauntingly, an additional $1,000 in unsubsidized loans reduced low-income students’ likelihood to graduate by over 5%, which, the study notes, is “the largest negative factor for all aid estimates.” Beyond just the ability to pay, earlier research also suggests that scholarships can influence a student’s attitude and level of commitment to college.

“Given the high percentage of college students who drop out with debt they are unable to pay, it is a matter of national concern that hundreds of higher education institutions may be optimizing scholarships to entice students to attend, rather than succeed or even graduate.”

Dropping out of college with student loan debt is the worst possible outcome of attending college, and yet is far too common. Only 62% of first-time full-time undergraduate students graduate from the institution they started at with a four-year degree within six years. A survey of 1,000 college dropouts found that, of those with loans, they held an average of $14,000 in student loan debt, and just under half were making payments on that debt. Administrative data from the Department of Education estimates that half of non-completers have student debt, and puts their average amount of loans closer to $16,000.6 According to the Center for American Progress, 90% of people who default on student loans had received a Pell grant at some point, suggesting significant financial need in college. Clearly, undergraduate students are not getting all the scholarship aid that they need. Given the high percentage of college students who drop out with debt they are unable to pay, it is a matter of national concern that hundreds of higher education institutions may be optimizing scholarships to entice students to attend, rather than succeed or even graduate.

Algorithmic discrimination

Like many other algorithmic applications, such as algorithmic hiring or facial analysis, enrollment algorithms are susceptible to the possibility of biased outcomes—such as against racial minorities, women, people with disabilities, or other protected groups. Some vendors clearly encourage using SAT scores and GPA to help determine levels of scholarship funding, which may further wealth and racial disparities, although the inclusion of families’ ability to pay may have a countervailing influence. Students who only apply to a small number of colleges, and therefore have fewer choices, may also be less responsive to scholarships, leading to algorithms to deprioritize them for aid; although this could also be true for high-income students who are similarly less responsive to scholarships. Other factors, especially prospective student engagement metrics, including their attendance at university events, could easily be correlated with demographic characteristics that would lead to bias.

Notably, the use of both predictive and optimization algorithms makes the danger of discrimination more complex than the case of purely predictive algorithms. In the two-step algorithmic process described in this paper, bias would come from a disparity in the effect of more scholarship funding on a student’s likelihood to enroll. So, if providing more aid to Black applicants had a smaller estimated effect on their likelihood to enroll than providing more aid to white applicants, then one might expect biased outcomes against Black applicants from the optimization process. This might happen if, perversely, Black applicants needed more aid than white students to meaningfully raise their likelihood to enroll. Alternatively, applicants with certain disabilities may appear to an algorithm to be less engaged, and thus in turn less deserving of attention or scholarships. For instance, college web pages that are poorly designed for prospective students with vision impairments may result in those applicants appearing to an algorithm to be disinterested.

Without auditing specific college data and models, it is impossible to know if this will typically be the case for any specific protected classes or minority groups. However, the complexity of the algorithmic process, the many potential entry points for bias, and the separation between vendor-developed algorithms and college employees all contribute to the potential for discriminatory outcomes. This is especially concerning in light of significant existing racial disparities in higher education, even at public institutions. For example, the Hechinger Report identified fifteen public flagship universities that were underserving the state’s Black population by at least 10 percentage points, and close to as many had the same issue with the state’s Hispanic population. Black and Hispanic students lag behind white students in graduation rates too—by over 20 percentage points and 10 percentage points respectively. Colleges should take these algorithmic concerns seriously, not least because civil rights law prohibits discrimination in institutions that receive federal education funding.

Other possible concerns

A range of other concerns arise when considering the dramatic proliferation of enrollment management algorithms:

  • Metrics change behavior: The metrics—values that colleges decide to count—attract attention. While colleges were clearly focused on yield and tuition before enrollment algorithms, building an entire algorithmic process that is primarily focused on maximizing yield is certain to change behavior. Infrastructure focused on yield is perhaps likely to detract from any focus on unique or hard to quantify applicant characteristics, creating a more standardized—and less creative or artistic—college application process.
  • Algorithmic drift: The first year in which algorithms are used for enrollment management, they are based on historical data that predates the algorithm. However, in the second year, and even more so in each consecutive year, the data being used to build the algorithms has itself been derived from an algorithmic process. This means that future versions of the algorithms will tend to focus on where the college has been successful in the past, potentially creating blind spots and making the process resistant to changing circumstances or to new opportunities.
  • Vendor Herding­: There are a relatively small number (between five and 10) of prominent vendors in the enrollment management algorithm market, and on the whole, the advertised descriptions of their process and analytics are markedly similar. Since their processes seem relatively consistent, the outcomes might be as well—potentially leading to consistently good results for students who match the historical expectations of colleges, and consistently poor results for students who don’t.
  • Human-algorithm interaction­s: It is reasonable to wonder how well admissions and financial aid offices understand these algorithms. Because colleges do not develop them internally, it is not likely that many university employees have strong technical backgrounds in algorithms. In other applications of mixed algorithmic and human decision-making, algorithms have had unexpected and harmful impacts—and that potential certainly exists here. As just one possible example, a financial aid officer might overestimate an algorithm, believing that it is accounting for an applicant’s challenging life or financial circumstances when it is not, leading that officer not to push for a higher aid award.

Guidance and best practices for colleges

There are meaningful interventions that colleges can take to mitigate the potentials dangers of algorithmic enrollment management. First, enrollment management algorithms should not be used in the admissions process, nor should they factor into need-based aid.

  • Admissions: Enrollment management algorithms should not be considered at all during the admissions process. Many factors, including academic preparation, life accomplishments, cohort diversity, may factor into college admissions, but a statistical likelihood of enrolling should not be one of them, as this can only distract from whether a student deserves college admission on their merits.
  • Need-based aid: Algorithms that allocate scholarships to drive yield should not be part of any process related to need-based financial aid—these goals are simply incompatible. Need-based decisions should be made solely on the basis of the prospective student’s financial necessity, taking into account how to best enable their collegiate success.

When using enrollment management algorithms outside of the bounds stated above, colleges should still exercise caution, as their implementation can have significant effects on individual students and the make-up of entire cohorts. The recommendations below offer a guide to ensuring that the worst harms of enrollment management algorithms do not come to pass.

  • Document algorithmic processes: Colleges should comprehensively document the goals, principles, processes, data, and algorithms used in algorithmic enrollment management. The intended outcomes should be explicitly stated in advance of algorithmic development, and the implementation of an algorithmic process should clearly reflect the project’s goals and principles. This documentation should be available to, and understood by, all the college employees engaged in the financial aid process. Routine retrospectives should consider evaluating the algorithm using the college’s stated goals.
  • Examine historical data: Colleges must carefully evaluate and consider the historical enrollment datasets on which they build algorithms. These algorithms are dependent on each individual college’s data, which means a college’s history may define its future. Colleges should carefully examine their historical input data to ensure that the correlations it contains are ones that college wants to perpetuate.
  • Evaluate student outcomes: Colleges should require from vendors, or perform themselves, analyses that estimate student success (such as retention and graduation), under the scholarship disbursement strategies designed by the yield optimization algorithms. Many of the enrollment management vendors do also offer student success analytics, and some firms, such as Civitas Learning, are exclusively focused on student success. These checks can help colleges recognize if their more financially efficient strategies may also drive down student persistence and graduation. An even better solution would be for colleges to rethink their optimization strategies entirely, and work towards an algorithmic approach that maximizes a combination of yield and student success metrics.
  • Use interpretable models: Colleges should opt for more interpretable types of predictive models, such as logistic regression and decisions trees, over black-box models, such as neural networks. These models are far easier to examine, both for their broad function and their impact on individual students. This makes it easier for colleges to diagnose and, if necessary, change an algorithmic decision or revisit the algorithm itself. Interpretable models also tend to be less complex, which makes unexpected and unfair algorithmic behavior far less likely.
  • Perform bias audits: Colleges should be actively introspective of their own algorithms, or alternatively be proactive in demanding bias audits from their algorithmic vendors. The challenge of algorithmic discrimination in predictive analytics is becoming better understood, and many tools exist for examining outcomes for bias. Public reporting of high-level results from these bias audits would also further transparency and help ease concerns from parents and applicants.
  • Human-led merit evaluation: When ranking or segmenting prospective students for allocating merit-aid, colleges should not overly rely on metrics such as SAT scores and high school GPA. Using human scoring of application quality can account for a far wider variety of factors, such as volunteer service, extracurricular accomplishments, work experience, and resilience in the face of adversity. Human scoring would therefore enable an algorithmic process to reward accomplished, if not traditionally academically successful, applicants receive a fair amount of financial support. This would also mitigate fears of vendor herding, especially for unconventional college applicants. Colleges should also consider randomly selecting some scholarship awards to be determined with only human judgement, and then comparing the human recommendations to that of the algorithmic process, possibly preventing unreasonable algorithmic decisions.
  • Use constraints intentionally: When using algorithmic optimization, colleges should consider using constraints to maintain student diversity—that is, requiring funding and expected yield to be well-apportioned across different groups of prospective students. For example, the constraints of the optimization process might be used to reject scholarship disbursement strategies that the predictive model suggest would lead to unbalanced populations—such as underrepresenting local students, racial minorities, or people of different sexes and gender identities.
  • Hire internal data science talent: Colleges should not exclusively rely on vendors to understand enrollment management algorithms, and thus should have internal expertise that can explore and challenge vendor claims. By hiring at least one data scientist, colleges can better ensure their use of algorithms represents their broader institutional goals and the needs of their student body, rather than the metrics that vendors choose to communicate.
  • Maintain student financial support: Finally, and perhaps most critically, in using algorithmic enrollment management, colleges should seek to become more efficient and fairer in their scholarship distribution, but not reduce overall per-student scholarships. If algorithms do lead to reduced scholarships, colleges should consider using the additional tuition to invest in other student support services, which are associated with higher student graduation rates.

Recommendations for policymakers

Likely over 700 American institutions of higher education procure enrollment management algorithms, and others have internally developed them. The proliferation of these algorithms will likely continue, as holdout colleges may be disadvantaged in competition for enrollment. Unfortunately, there is very little public information about how these proprietary systems are designed. The research that led to this report entailed extensive engagement with vendor documentation and software trainings, as well as interviews with current and former algorithm developers, just to construct this relatively high-level description. Critical details are largely obscured by vendors and colleges, including descriptions of datasets, model types and parameters, evaluation processes, employee guidance, and student outcomes. Despite these notable uncertainties, the available evidence suggests that enrollment management algorithms are meaningfully affecting the higher education market, and are more likely to reduce, than increase, scholarship offers. In turn, it is possible that these algorithms contribute to colleges meeting less student financial need, higher debt burdens, student dropout, and racial disparities. These stakes help explain why the European Commission considers enrollment algorithms to be “high-risk” under its proposed artificial intelligence regulation.

“[I]t is possible that these algorithms contribute to colleges meeting less student financial need, higher debt burdens, student dropout, and racial disparities.”

Beyond the already mentioned steps that colleges can take, policymakers should demand more transparency in how enrollment management algorithms are used. State lawmakers can request public colleges and universities document the use and effect of these algorithms, and press vendors to provide more technical details. If enrollment and financial trends at public colleges are concerning—such as a falling percentage of need-met or stagnant racial disparities—lawmakers should consider commissioning an independent, third-party assessment of enrollment management practices, including the role of algorithms.

The Department of Education (ED) has a role to play, too, and should comply with recent OMB guidance to document what algorithmic systems might be covered by its enforcement and oversight capacities. In the future, ED could also survey colleges, or at least those that receive federal funds, to determine the scope of use of enrollment management algorithms. Based on this survey, ED could issue guidance on best practices for algorithmic enrollment management, especially regarding student success and student body diversity. More broadly, the availability of college financial aid data for policy researchers is seriously lacking, preventing much important analysis. Congress should take steps to enable and encourage more exchanges of student financial data for policy research purposes. This would shed light on the effects of algorithmic enrollment, as well as many other issues in higher education finance.

On a broader level, the wide use of enrollment management algorithms is symptomatic of pre-existing trends in higher education—towards greater competition for student tuition dollars. Perhaps policymakers should react not to the use of algorithms directly, but instead to the incentives that are driving colleges towards elaborate price discrimination to maximize tuition revenue. By better funding public higher education institutions and mandating that they lower tuition and better support the financial needs of local students, policymakers can improve college access and affordability. In turn, this will create downward pressure on the cost of tuition at private universities, reversing recent trends. While the role of enrollment management algorithms warrants greater transparency and oversight, policymakers should not lose sight of the broader incentives that have led colleges to this point.


The Brookings Institution is a nonprofit organization devoted to independent research and policy solutions. Its mission is to conduct high-quality, independent research and, based on that research, to provide innovative, practical recommendations for policymakers and the public. The conclusions and recommendations of any Brookings publication are solely those of its author(s), and do not reflect the views of the Institution, its management, or its other scholars.

Microsoft provides support to The Brookings Institution’s Artificial Intelligence and Emerging Technology (AIET) Initiative. The findings, interpretations, and conclusions in this report are not influenced by any donation. Brookings recognizes that the value it provides is in its absolute commitment to quality, independence, and impact. Activities supported by its donors reflect this commitment.


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Battle Of Secured Credit Cards: One Card That Reigns Supreme https://sunsetreefhotel.com/battle-of-secured-credit-cards-one-card-that-reigns-supreme/ https://sunsetreefhotel.com/battle-of-secured-credit-cards-one-card-that-reigns-supreme/#respond Tue, 02 Nov 2021 06:23:44 +0000 https://sunsetreefhotel.com/?p=550 Secured credit cards might not get as much attention as lucrative rewards credit cards, but they play a crucial role in the world of credit cards, offering credit to those with less than perfect credit scores. If your credit could use some work, you still shouldn’t settle for just any secured card. Like any category […]]]>

Secured credit cards might not get as much attention as lucrative rewards credit cards, but they play a crucial role in the world of credit cards, offering credit to those with less than perfect credit scores.

If your credit could use some work, you still shouldn’t settle for just any secured card. Like any category of cards, secured credit cards aren’t created equal.

We welcome you to the battle of secured credit cards! We’re going to look at the best secured credit cards on the market, compare their value, pros and cons and find the winner.

Let the battle begin.

Picking contenders for the best secured credit cards

Not all secured credit cards have made it to our battle. That doesn’t mean there’s something wrong with them. For instance, the Secured Mastercard® from Capital One is a solid secured card that can help a cardholder create a relationship with one of the top card issuers, and the same applies to the Citi® Secured Mastercard®.

However, the credit card market is becoming more and more competitive. Today, some secured credit cards offer rewards – and these are the credits cards that are going to take part in our battle. Why simply build credit when you can build credit and earn cash back?

It’s also important to mention that all the secured credit cards competing in our battle don’t charge annual fees (and we recommend staying away from secured cards that do). Plus, our contenders all offer free credit tracking tools to help you monitor your progress.

Without further ado, meet our contenders.

The battle

Round 1: Amazon Secured Card vs. Navy Federal Credit Union® nRewards® Secured Credit Card

Qualifier: Bank of America secured credit cards

Round 2: Discover it® Secured Credit Card vs Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards Secured Credit Card

Final

Winner

Secured credit cards with membership requirements

In the first round, we’re going to take a look at two secured cards that offer rewards but come with certain requirements or limitations, such as membership requirements or limited card acceptance.

Round 1: Amazon Secured Card vs. Navy Federal Credit Union® nRewards® Secured Credit Card

The Amazon Secured Card and the Navy Federal Credit Union® nRewards® Secured Credit Card both offer rewards and require a membership to be eligible to apply.

The Navy Secured card earns 1 point per dollar and offers a few options to redeem rewards for cash back at a 1-cent-per-point value.

The card requires a deposit of at least $200, which then becomes your credit line. The credit union will review your account for a higher credit limit after three months with the card, and for an upgrade to an unsecured credit card after six months.

There’s no annual fee, and other common credit card fees are quite low: The card only charges up to $20 in late or returned payment fees.

All of this is great news for credit builders. There’s only one catch: You’ll need a Navy Federal Credit Union membership to apply for this card.

Unlike other credit unions, Navy doesn’t offer an option to make a small donation to become a member. To be eligible for a membership, you must be a current or retired armed forces member or have one in your immediate family. Membership is also available to Department of Defense civilian employees. If you don’t fit into any of these categories, you’re out of luck with the Navy nRewards Secured card.

The Amazon Secured Card also requires an eligible membership to earn rewards. This membership, however, is much more accessible – the card earns 2 percent back on all Amazon purchases if you’re subscribed to Amazon Prime.

It’s also a very affordable card. The minimum security deposit is $100, there’s no annual fee and a late fee is only up to $5. On top of that, the purchase APR is just 10 percent, and it’s non-variable, meaning it doesn’t change based on the prime rate, which is a rare feature.

As for graduating to an unsecured card, you may become eligible for the unsecured Amazon Store Card after 12 months of responsible card usage and credit building.

The only caveat is, you can only use the Amazon Secured Card at Amazon.com and Amazon physical stores. That’s rather limiting, but luckily, Amazon sells just about everything. You can even earn rewards on your dining if you buy restaurant gift cards on Amazon.

For that reason, we’re giving this round to the Amazon Secured Card. For those who qualify, the Navy nRewards Secured card is an excellent option, but overall, the Amazon Secured is much more accessible and offers great value.

Winner: Amazon Secured Card

Bracket showing the Amazon Secured Card winning over the Navy Federal Credit Union nRewards card

Bank of America secured credit cards

Bank of America currently offers three secured credit cards, but only two have made it to our battle since they offer rewards—the Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards Secured and the Bank of America® Unlimited Cash Rewards Secured.

Now, it’s time to set these two contenders against each other to pick one to compete in the second round. They’re both general secured credit cards that offer solid rewards—but only one will make it to the ring.

Qualifier: Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards Secured vs. Bank of America® Unlimited Cash Rewards Secured

Both of these products are secured versions of Bank of America’s unsecured credit cards with identical rewards systems.

The Customized Cash Rewards Secured earns 3 percent cash back in the category of your choice (gas, online shopping, dining, travel, drug stores or home improvement/furnishings) and 2 percent cash back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs. You can earn bonus cash back on up to $2,500 in combined purchases in these categories. All other purchases earn 1 percent back.

The rewards structure on the Unlimited Cash Rewards Secured is much simpler. It’s a traditional 1.5 percent cash back card, meaning it earns 1.5 percent back on all purchases.

Other terms on the two cards are similar. The minimum deposit is $300, and Bank of America will periodically review your account to determine whether you may qualify to have it returned. The purchase APRs are the same, and both cards offer similar benefits, like access to your FICO score from TransUnion.

The difference then lies in value these cards provide.

Crunching the numbers

Consider this scenario: You spend $15,900 on the Customized Cash Rewards Secured annually, which we consider the average credit card spend. You make a point to use the 3 percent category for restaurants and the 2 percent cash back category for grocery stores.

You spend $3,600 on dining and $4,700 on groceries annually, both of which figures are also close to the averages, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics. You’ll earn $108 in the 3 percent category, $94 in the 2 percent category and $76 on the rest of your spending ($7,600).

All in all, you’ll get $278 in cash back per year—even without working to maximize the 3 percent and 2 percent cash back categories.

With the same $15,900 spend, you’ll earn $239 in a year with the Unlimited Cash Rewards Secured.

We have a clear winner.

Winner: Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured

Bracket showing the Bank of America Customized Cash card winning over the Bank of America Unlimited Cash card

Secured credit cards from top issuers

Now that we have a contender from Bank of America, we can set it against the Discover it® Secured Credit Card—a secured card that’s been long considered the best offer in its space by many experts.

Will it hold its top spot? Let’s find out.

Round 2: Discover it® Secured Credit Card vs BofA

The Discover it Secured Credit Card has been reigning supreme in the secured credit card market.

For a while, it was the only general secured credit card from a top issuer that offered rewards: 2 percent cash back at gas stations and restaurants (up to $1,000 in purchases per quarter) and 1 percent cash back on everything else. Additionally, like other rewards cards from Discover, the Discover it Secured matches all the cash back you earn in the first year.

To open the card, you need a security deposit of at least $200. Then, Discover will review your account monthly starting at eight months with the card to determine if you qualify for an upgrade to an unsecured card.

The Discover it Secured doesn’t charge an annual fee. It also “forgives” cardholders for the first late payment, not charging a late payment fee. On top of that, the card comes with a low intro APR of 10.99 percent on balance transfers for the first six months—a great offer if you want to move a balance from another higher-interest card.

As far as secured cards went, this offer was hard to compete with—until Bank of America’s secured cards entered the ring.

As you can see, the Discover it Secured offers some notable perks that the Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards Secured doesn’t.

Now, let’s get to the important part: their value.

Crunching the numbers

Let’s take the same scenario with the $15,900 spend.

As you remember, we got $278 in annual cash back with the Customized Cash.

With the Discover it Secured, you easily maximize the 2 percent category due to the low quarterly spend cap. Using our previous figure, you spend $3,600 on restaurants annually alone, and you can only get 2 percent back on up to $1,000 per quarter.

This means, you’ll get $80 in the 2 percent categories and $119 on the rest of your spending ($11,900), totaling to $199 in yearly cash back.

That’s not great news for Discover it Secured. However, it still has an ace up its sleeve—the CashBack Match bonus in the first year.

CashBack Match turns your $199 earned in the first year into $398. That’s $120 more than what we got with the Customized Cash in the first year.

The Customized Cash wouldn’t even catch up in the second year. After two years, keeping the same spend, you would have earned $556 with the Customized Cash and $597 with the Discover it Secured.

After three years, the Customized Cash would start offering you more in long-term value. However, remember that three years is a long time in the credit world. Hard inquiries fall off your credit reports, missed payments begin to have less weight and credit scores keep going up (if you’re responsible managing and building your credit, that is).

If things go well, after two years you may very well product change your secured card to a better rewards credit card or even have a few good cards in your wallet.

Considering this, as well as extra benefits that Discover offers, the Discover it Secured wins this round.

Winner: Discover it Secured

Bracket showing the Discover it Secured winning over the Bank of America Customized Cash card

Final: Discover it Secured vs. Amazon Secured Card

We have made it to the closing round of our battle with our two outstanding contenders: the Discover it Secured and the Amazon Secured Card.

In truth, the Amazon Secured Card has plenty to offer to cardholders with a Prime membership. The convenience of Amazon is in its ability to offer just about any kind of product. You can shop for groceries, clothing, household supplies, electronics and much more—and earn unlimited 2 percent cash back.

Still, it’s a closed loop retail card, and you won’t be able to use it anywhere outside of Amazon. Staying tied to one merchant is rarely a good idea, even as big as Amazon. You may end up missing out on better deals from other stores or find that a brand you love isn’t available on the site.

Plus, you’ll miss out earning rewards on some common expenses, like gas, insurance charges, streaming services, entertainment and more.

The card also won’t help you create a relationship with any of the top card issuers. The Amazon Secured Card is issued by Synchrony Bank, known for its store credits cards from many brands. The only way up from the Amazon Secured Card is to the Store Card from the same issuer, which offers generous 5 percent back on Amazon purchases – but also only works on Amazon.

The Discover it Secured, on the other hand, can be used at any merchant that accepts Discover. And as your credit grows, the issuer may be open to offer you its other popular products, such as the Discover it® Cash Back, one of the best 5 percent cash back cards, or the Discover it® Miles, a convenient flat-rate travel card.

Considering all this, it’s clear that victory belongs to the Discover it Secured once again.

Bracket showing all the match-ups and the Discover it Secured winning overall

The battle winner: Discover it Secured Card

All of our competitors are outstanding secured credit cards with no annual fees, credit tracking tools and excellent rewards. You can’t go wrong adding any of them to your wallet while you’re building credit.

However, the Discover it Secured still holds first place, thanks to its cash back rates, CashBack Match—an intro offer rare for this class of cards—and an opportunity to create a relationship with one of the top credit card issuers.

Whichever secured credit card you choose, make sure to use it as a tool to practice responsible card usage and remember about credit utilization (how much balance you carry compared to how much available credit you have). A low deposit may be attractive, but if you’re trying to keep your credit utilization ratio under 30 percent to help your credit, it may prove challenging—think of always keeping your balance under $60 because your credit limit is only $200.

If you’ve saved up for a security deposit and want to check your credit card options, head over to CardMatch. With this handy tool, you can browse credit card offers matched to your credit profile. Checking CardMatch won’t hurt your credit, and you’ll get offers you have a good chance of being approved for.


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Pineapple Express : , INC. MANAGEMENT’S DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS OF FINANCIAL CONDITION AND RESULTS OF OPERATIONS (form 10-K) https://sunsetreefhotel.com/pineapple-express-inc-managements-discussion-and-analysis-of-financial-condition-and-results-of-operations-form-10-k/ https://sunsetreefhotel.com/pineapple-express-inc-managements-discussion-and-analysis-of-financial-condition-and-results-of-operations-form-10-k/#respond Tue, 02 Nov 2021 06:23:35 +0000 https://sunsetreefhotel.com/?p=556 Forward-Looking Statements Our Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations section contains not only statements that are historical facts, but also statements that are forward-looking. Forward-looking statements are, by their very nature, uncertain and risky. These risks and uncertainties include international, national, and local general economic and market conditions; our ability […]]]>

Forward-Looking Statements

Our Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of
Operations section contains not only statements that are historical facts, but
also statements that are forward-looking. Forward-looking statements are, by
their very nature, uncertain and risky. These risks and uncertainties include
international, national, and local general economic and market conditions; our
ability to sustain, manage, or forecast growth; our ability to successfully make
and integrate acquisitions; new product development and introduction; existing
government regulations and changes in, or the failure to comply with, government
regulations; adverse publicity; competition; the loss of significant customers
or suppliers; fluctuations and difficulty in forecasting operating results;
change in business strategy or development plans; business disruptions; the
ability to attract and retain qualified personnel; the ability to protect
technology; the risk of foreign currency exchange rate; and other risks that
might be detailed from time to time in our filings with the SEC.

Although the forward-looking statements in this Annual Report reflect the good
faith judgment of our management, such statements can only be based on facts and
factors currently known by them. Consequently, and because forward-looking
statements are inherently subject to risks and uncertainties, the actual results
and outcomes may differ materially from the results and outcomes discussed in
the forward-looking statements. You are urged to carefully review and consider
the various disclosures made by us in this report as we attempt to advise
interested parties of the risks and factors that may affect our business,
financial condition, and results of operations and prospects. We do not
undertake any obligation to update forward-looking statements as a result of new
information, future events or developments or otherwise.

The following discussion of our financial condition and results of operations
should be read in conjunction with our financial statements and the related
notes, and other financial information included in this Annual Report.

The independent registered public accounting firms’ reports on the Company’s
financial statements as of December 31, 2020, and 2019, and for the years then
ended, includes a “going concern” explanatory paragraph that describes
substantial doubt about the Company’s ability to continue as a going concern.


Introduction


The Company has spent the last several years recasting the direction of the
Company. We intend to take advantage of the opportunities that have been
identified in the cannabis sectors. The market opportunities that are opened to
a cannabis company include PVI’s involvement with cannabis delivery, retail,
manufacturing, and cultivation. Our main focus has been to receive 45.17% of all
net income (loss) generated by PVI from its business ventures, as well as
selling the Top Shelf System to cannabis dispensaries.


Our Business


The Company was originally formed in the state of Nevada under the name Global
Resources, Ltd.
on August 3, 1983. It changed its name to “Helixphere
Technologies Inc.
” on April 12, 1999, and to “New China Global Inc.” on October
2, 2013
. It reincorporated in Wyoming on October 30, 2013, and changed its name
to “Globestar Industries” on July 15, 2014. On August 24, 2015, the Company
entered into a share exchange agreement with Better Business Consultants, Inc.
(“BBC” dba “MJ Business Consultants“), a corporation formed in California on
January 29, 2015, all of BBC’s shareholders, and the Company’s majority
shareholder at that time (the “BBC Share Exchange”). Pursuant to the BBC Share
Exchange, BBC became a wholly owned subsidiary of the Company. Upon consummation
of the BBC Share Exchange, the Company ceased its prior business of providing
educational services and continued the business of BBC as its sole line of
business. BBC has three wholly owned subsidiaries, Pineapple Express One LLC, a
California limited liability company, Pineapple Express Two LLC, a California
limited liability company, and Pineapple Properties Investments, LLC, a
Washington limited liability company. Better Business Consultants, Inc. has
since been sold by the Company. On September 3, 2015, the Company changed its
name to “Pineapple Express, Inc.” from “Globestar Industries.”


  33





ln addition to having stakes in the foregoing business ventures, the Company was
also assigned a patent for the proprietary Top Shelf Safe Display System (“SDS”)
for use in permitted cannabis dispensaries and delivery vehicles across the
United States
and internationally (where permitted by law), on July 20th, 2016
by Sky Island, Inc. (the “SDS Patent”) via a Patent Assignment Agreement (the
“Patent Assignment Agreement”). The SDS Patent was originally applied for and
filed on August 11, 2015, by Sky Island, Inc. and received its notice of
allowance from the United States Patent and Trademark Office on March 22, 2017.
It is anticipated that the Top-Shelf SDS product shall retail for $30,000 per
unit. Pineapple intends to sell the Top-Shelf SDS units to PVI for use in retail
storefronts and delivery vehicles as well as to sell the Top Shelf SDS
technology to other cannabis retail companies. The Company anticipated beginning
sales of the Top Shelf SDS system in the second quarter of 2021.

In 2019 the Company entered into a Share Exchange Agreement, as amended (the
“PVI Agreement”), with Pineapple Ventures, Inc. (“PVI”) and PVI’s stockholders.
In connection with the PVI Agreement, the Company acquired a total of 50,000
shares of PVI’s outstanding capital stock, equaling 50% of the outstanding
shares of PVI. The Company’s ownership interest in PVI was reduced to
approximately 45% in January 2020. As a result of the investment in PVI, the
Company entered the cannabis cultivation, production and distribution sector
throughout California. PVI has several leased properties that are currently
being developed to provide these cannabis-related services.

During 2019, PVI took preliminary business steps towards a project with Nordhoff
Leases, LLC
(“Nordhoff”), a related party, in which Nordhoff subleased 38,875
square feet in a building to three 15% owned entities by PVI; however, the
contemplated project never matriculated and the planned contribution of Nordhoff
to PVI was nullified. In June and July of 2020 PVI sold its 15% investments in
three entities, including the cannabis licenses associated with them for $2.87
million
to support its operations and assigned its three 15% owned entities’
subleases with Nordhoff to the buyer as part of the sale. PVI received 15% of
the proceeds of the sale of the entities and their cannabis licenses.

Pursuant to an Agreement and Plan of Merger (“Merger Agreement”), dated as of
April 6, 2020, by and between, Pineapple Express, Inc., a Wyoming corporation
(“Pineapple Express”), and Pineapple, Inc., a Nevada corporation (“Pineapple”)
and wholly-owned subsidiary of Pineapple Express, effective as of April 15, 2020
(the “Effective Date”), Pineapple Express merged with and into Pineapple, with
Pineapple being the surviving entity (the “Reincorporation Merger”). The
Reincorporation Merger was consummated to complete Pineapple Express’
reincorporation from the State of Wyoming to the State of Nevada. The Merger
Agreement, the Reincorporation Merger, the Name Change (as defined below) and
the Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws of Pineapple were duly approved by the
written consent of shareholders of Pineapple Express owning at least a majority
of the outstanding shares of Pineapple Express’ common stock. Pursuant to the
Merger Agreement, the Company’s corporate name changed from “Pineapple Express,
Inc.
” to “Pineapple, Inc.

The Company is based in Los Angeles, California. Through the Company’s operating
subsidiary Pineapple Express Consulting, Inc. (“PEC”), as well as its PVI
portfolio asset, the Company provides capital to its canna-business clientele,
leases properties to those canna-businesses, takes equity positions and manages
those operations, and provides consulting and technology to develop, enhance, or
expand existing and newly formed infrastructures. Pineapple aims to become the
leading portfolio management company in the U.S. cannabis sector. The Company’s
executive team blends enterprise-level corporate expertise with a combined three
decades of experience operating in the tightly regulated cannabis industry.
Pineapple’s strategic asset integration has provided it with the infrastructure
to support its subsidiaries with cost-effective access to all segments of the
vertical: from cultivation and processing, to distribution, retail and delivery.
With its headquarters in Los Angeles, CA, Pineapple’s portfolio company, PVI, is
rapidly increasing its footprint throughout the state and looking to scale into
underdeveloped markets. While PVI is generating revenues from the
above-mentioned means, PEC is currently still in development and is currently
not generating revenues. The Company receives monthly dividends equal to
approximately 45% of PVI’s income that provide regular operating cash flows.


  34





In October 2020, PNPXPRESS, Inc. (an entity managed by PVI) secured three
cannabis licenses, including consumer delivery and statewide distribution, from
the City of Los Angeles for a retail storefront location at the intersection of
Hollywood & Vine (1704 N. Vine Street). The lease was signed in October 2020.
This 3460 square foot dispensary will be called Pineapple Express and is
scheduled to open by June of 2021, pending inspections from the city. PVI has
received 30% equity and will receive a management fee of 10% of sales of this
entity.



Impact of COVID-19



In March 2020, the World Health Organization declared the outbreak of a novel
coronavirus (COVID-19) as a pandemic, which continues to spread throughout the
United States
. As a result, significant volatility has occurred in both the
United States
and International markets. While the disruption is currently
expected to be temporary, there is uncertainty around the duration. To date, the
Company has experienced declining revenues, difficulty staffing interpreters,
difficulty meeting debt covenants, maintaining consistent service quality with
reduced revenue, and a loss of customers. Management expects this matter to
continue to impact our business, results of operations, and financial position,
but the ultimate financial impact of the pandemic on the Company’s business,
results of operations, financial position, liquidity or capital resources cannot
be reasonably estimated at this time.

Year Ended December 31, 2020, as compared to Year Ended December 31, 2019


Revenue


Revenue from operations for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2020, was $0,
which represents a decrease of $15,000, or 100% from $15,000 during the fiscal
year ended December 31, 2019. The decrease in revenue was related to generating
3 months of consulting revenue from PVI in 2019 with no such revenue generated
in 2020.

Operating Loss from Continuing Operations

Operating loss from continuing operations for the fiscal year ended December 31,
2020
, was $668,418, a decrease of $947,756, or 58.6%, from an operating loss
from continuing operations of $1,616,174 during the fiscal year ended December
31, 2019
. We noted that general and administrative expenses were significantly
higher for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2019, compared to the fiscal year
ended December 31, 2020, resulting in a decrease of the operating loss.


General and Administrative


General and administrative expenses for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2020,
were $661,557, a decrease of $960,988, or 59.2%, from $1,622,545 during the
fiscal year ended December 31, 2019. The most significant changes include a
decrease in legal and professional fees of approximately $576,000, a decrease in
consultant fees by approximately $387,000, a decrease in rent expense by
approximately $102,000, offset by an increase in directors consulting fees by
approximately $150,000.


Depreciation


Depreciation expense for the fiscal years ended December 31, 2020, and 2019 was
$6,861 and $8,629, respectively. The decrease comes from an asset which became
fully depreciated in 2020.


Other Income/Expense


During the fiscal year ended December 31, 2020, the Company has total other
expense of $480,410, consisting of $53,821 in interest expense, $388,099 in
losses from the Company’s equity method investment, $25,000 gain from debt
settlement, and $63,490 of liquidated damages on litigations settlement.

During the fiscal year ended December 31, 2019, the Company has total other
income of $447,712, consisting of $631,360 of other income from a mutual release
agreement, net of $104,775 in losses on settlements of debt, $17,588 in interest
expense and $61,285 in losses from the Company’s equity method investment.


  35






Net Loss


As a result of the foregoing, the Company recorded a net loss of $1,148,828 for
the fiscal year ended December 31, 2020, as compared to a net loss of $1,168,462
for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2019.

Liquidity and Capital Resources

As of December 31, 2020, the Company had a working capital deficit of
$2,773,936, and $0 in cash. As of December 31, 2020, the Company’s current
liabilities included $869,911 in accounts payable and accrued liabilities,
$615,000 in settlement payable, $52,408 in accrued interest payable, $857,175 in
related party notes payable, $19,838 in other notes payable, $169,000 in
advances on agreements and $100,048 in contingent liabilities. The Company has
funded its operations since inception primarily through the issuance of its
equity securities in private placements to third parties and/or promissory notes
to related parties for cash. The cash was used primarily for operating
activities, including cost of employees, management services, professional fees,
consultants, and travel. Management expects that cash from operating activities
will not provide sufficient cash to fund normal operations, support debt
service, or undertake certain investments the Company anticipates prosecuting
for its business proposition both in the near and intermediate terms. The
Company will continue to rely on financing provided under notes from related and
third- party sources, as well as sale of shares of its common stock in private
placements, to fund its expected cash requirements.

We intend to continue raising additional capital through related party loans.
Additionally, in 2021 the Company is planning to apply to have its common stock
quoted on the OTC Markets, at which point the Company plans to raise money
through issuances of debt and/or equity securities in private placements to
accredited investors. There can be no assurance that these funds will be
available on terms acceptable to us, if at all, or will be sufficient to enable
us to fully complete our development activities or sustain operations. If we are
unable to raise sufficient additional funds, we will have to develop and
implement a plan to further extend payables, reduce overhead and operations, or
scale back our current business plan until sufficient additional capital is
raised to support further operations. There can be no assurance that such a plan
will be successful.

Our consolidated financial statements included elsewhere in this Annual Report
have been prepared assuming that we will continue as a going concern, which
contemplates continuity of operations, realization of assets, and liquidation of
liabilities in the normal course of business. As reflected in such consolidated
financial statements, we had an accumulated stockholders’ deficit of
$14,567,489, and had a net loss of $1,148,828 and utilized net cash of $543,624
in operating activities as of and for the year ended December 31, 2020. These
factors raise substantial doubt about our ability to continue as a going
concern. In addition, our independent registered public accounting firms in
their audit reports to our consolidated financial statements for the fiscal
years ended December 31, 2020, and 2019, expressed substantial doubt about our
ability to continue as a going concern. Our ability to continue as a going
concern was raised due to our net losses and negative cash flows from operations
since inception and our expectation that these conditions may continue for the
foreseeable future. In addition, we will require additional financing to fund
future operations. Our consolidated financial statements included elsewhere in
this Annual Report do not include any adjustments related to the recoverability
and classification of recorded asset amounts or the amounts and classification
of liabilities that might be necessary should we be unable to continue as a
going concern.

Based on our management’s estimates and expectation to continue to receive
short-term debt funding from a related party on as needed basis, we believe that
current funds on hand as of the date of issuance and proceeds of such loans will
be sufficient for us to continue operations beyond twelve months from the filing
of this Form 10-K. Our ability to continue as a going concern is dependent on
our ability to execute our business strategy and in our ability to raise
additional funds. Management is currently seeking additional funds, primarily
through the issuance of equity and/or debt securities for cash to operate our
business; however, we can give no assurance that any future financing will be
available or, if at all, and if available, that it will be on terms that are
satisfactory to us. Even if we can obtain additional financing, it may contain
undue restrictions on our operations, in the case of debt financing, or cause
substantial dilution for our stockholders, in the case of equity and/or
convertible debt financing.


  36





Cash Flows Used In Operating Activities


Operating Activities


During the fiscal year ended December 31, 2020, we used $543,624 of cash in
operating activities, primarily as a result of our net loss of $1,148,828,
offset by amortization of right-of-use asset of $40,775, $66,303 in stock-based
compensation, depreciation expense of $6,861, and a loss from the Company’s
equity method investment of $388,099.

Operating assets and liabilities increased by $138,457 primarily due to an
increase in accrued interest payable of $53,117, an increase in due to
affiliates of $51,508, and an increase in accounts payable and accrued
liabilities of $25,888.

During the fiscal year ended December 31, 2019, we used $353,867 of cash in
operating activities, primarily as a result of our net loss of $1,168,462,
offset by amortization of right-of-use asset of $101,973, depreciation expense
of $8,629, $631,360 in income from a debt mutual release agreement, net of
$104,775 in losses on settlement of debts, $293,900 in stock-based compensation,
and a loss from the Company’s equity method of $61,285.

Operating assets and liabilities generated an increase in cash of $972,874,
primarily due to an increase in accounts payable and accrued liabilities of
$398,526, an increase of $447,320 in stock subscription receivable, an increase
of $69,517 in contingent liabilities and an increase of $39,148 in due to
affiliate.



Investing Activities



During the fiscal years ended December 31, 2020, and 2019, we had no cash flows
from investing activities.


Financing Activities


During the fiscal year ended December 31, 2020, we received $551,824 in cash
from financing activities, primarily from the proceeds of related party notes
payable. During the fiscal year ended December 31, 2020, the Company repaid
$8,200 of related party notes payable.

During the fiscal year ended December 31, 2019, we received $353,867 in cash
from financing activities, primarily from $387,367 in proceeds from related
party notes payable, offset by $30,000 repayment of advances on agreements and
$1,000 repayment of related party notes payable.

Off-Balance Sheet Arrangements

During the fiscal year ended December 31, 2020, the Company did not have any
transactions, obligations or relationships that could be considered off-balance
sheet arrangements.



Critical Accounting Policies



Use of Estimates


The preparation of financial statements in conformity with GAAP requires
management to make estimates and assumptions that affect the reported amounts of
assets and liabilities, disclosure of contingent assets and liabilities at the
date of the financial statements and the reported amounts of revenues and
expenses during the reporting period. Significant estimates include the
recoverability and useful lives of long-lived assets, fair value of right-of-use
assets and lease liabilities, assessment of legal accruals, the fair value of
our stock, stock-based compensation and the valuation allowance related to
deferred tax assets. Actual results may differ from these estimates.


  37






Stock-based Compensation


The Company periodically issues restricted stock and warrants to employees and
non-employees in non-capital raising transactions for services and for financing
costs. The Company accounts for restricted stock and warrant grants issued and
vesting to employees based on the authoritative guidance provided by the
Financial Accounting Standards Board (“FASB”) where the value of the award is
measured on the date of grant and recognized as stock-based compensation expense
on the straight-line basis over the vesting period.

The Company accounts for restricted stock and warrant grants issued and vesting
to non-employees in accordance with the authoritative guidance of the FASB where
the value of the stock compensation is based upon the measurement date as
determined at either a) the date at which a performance commitment is reached,
or b) at the date at which the necessary performance to earn the equity
instruments is complete. In certain circumstances where there are no future
performance requirements by the non-employee, restricted stock and warrants
grants are immediately vested and the total stock-based compensation charge is
recorded in the period of the measurement date.

The fair value of the Company’s warrant grants, including the put obligation
liability from the THC Merger, are estimated using the Black-Scholes-Merton and
Binomial Option Pricing models, which use certain assumptions related to
risk-free interest rates, expected volatility, expected life of the stock
options or warrants, and future dividends. Compensation expense is recorded
based upon the value derived from the Black-Scholes-Merton and Binomial Option
Pricing models and based on actual experience. The assumptions used in the
Black-Scholes-Merton and Binomial Option Pricing models could materially affect
compensation expense recorded in future periods. In light of the very limited
trading of our common stock, market value of the shares issued was determined
based on the then most recent price per share at which we sold common stock in a
private placement during the periods then ended. As of the fiscal year ended
December 31, 2020, and 2019, there were no outstanding warrants or options.


Investments - Equity Method


The Company accounts for equity method investments at cost, adjusted for the
Company’s share of the investee’s earnings or losses, which are reflected in the
consolidated statements of operations. The Company periodically reviews the
investments for other than temporary declines in fair value below cost and more
frequently when events or changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying
value of an asset may not be recoverable. As of December 31, 2020, the Company
believes the carrying value of its equity method investments were recoverable in
all material respects.

© Edgar Online, source Glimpses


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Boston’s teacher diversity has barely budged in 10 years. District leaders hope the next decade will look different https://sunsetreefhotel.com/bostons-teacher-diversity-has-barely-budged-in-10-years-district-leaders-hope-the-next-decade-will-look-different/ https://sunsetreefhotel.com/bostons-teacher-diversity-has-barely-budged-in-10-years-district-leaders-hope-the-next-decade-will-look-different/#respond Tue, 02 Nov 2021 06:23:25 +0000 https://sunsetreefhotel.com/?p=598 Paillant’s experience as a student of color with a teacher who looks like her and speaks her family’s language is a rarity in Boston Public Schools. Her school, Mozart Elementary, where 40 percent of students are white, stands out with a staff that’s nearly half Black or Hispanic, better reflecting its student body than most […]]]>

Paillant’s experience as a student of color with a teacher who looks like her and speaks her family’s language is a rarity in Boston Public Schools. Her school, Mozart Elementary, where 40 percent of students are white, stands out with a staff that’s nearly half Black or Hispanic, better reflecting its student body than most others. But district-wide, while 85 percent of public school students are children of color, only 40 percent of the district’s 4,570 teachers and guidance counselors are Black, Hispanic, or Asian American.

Despite a decades-old federal court order and myriad programs, the diversity of Boston’s teaching corps has barely budged in 10 years, during a period when the city saw an influx of Hispanic and other students of color. The district has some promising programs devoted to recruiting, developing, and retaining teachers of color, but their small numbers do little to improve overall diversity. From 2014 to 2020, teacher pipeline programs brought in 42 educators of color, a sliver of the 2,191 educators hired externally during that period; among the latter were 868 new teachers of color.

Critics say the district isn’t doing enough to expand its programs and diversify its teaching ranks.

“It’s a question of priorities,” said Miren Uriarte, a former Boston School Committee member. “There’s lip service to it, maybe even some effort, but there’s no commitment to making sure that it happens.”

Hispanic students face the slimmest chances of having an educator of their ethnicity. Hispanics are now 42 percent of the student population, up from 37 in 2007. But the percentage of Latino teachers ticked up to just 11 percent, from 9 percent, since then. Black students account for nearly 30 percent of students, while 23 percent of teachers are Black. And language gaps loom large in a district where nearly half of students are current or former English learners.

Racial gaps can hinder student achievement, and research shows that students of color who have teachers of their race or ethnicity are more likely to graduate high school and enroll in college. This may be due to the student being inspired by the teacher, seeing someone like themselves as smart and successful, and that teacher having higher expectations of them than a white teacher, experts say.

BPS has the highest portion of Black teachers among Massachusetts districts by far, but it still falls short of the 25 percent threshold that US District Judge W. Arthur Garrity imposed in 1974 during desegregation, which is still in effect. BPS acknowledges it only met that mark for about three years since 2000, between 2000 and 2005.

During that time, the BPS equity chief reviewed each hire and ensured that diverse candidates were considered, leading to 26 percent of teachers being Black one year, said Barbara Fields, BPS’s equity head at the time. She and other critics say the district has ceded too much hiring power to principals since the mid-2000s.

“If this were truly a priority, the district has the means to make it happen,” Fields said. “We’ve done it before.”

District officials say they do plenty to push schools to hire diverse educators, from requiring schools to set diversity goals, to building pipelines of quality applicants, to offering $1,000 signing bonuses for teachers of color. Starting this year, principals hiring white teachers must describe their efforts and challenges finding a candidate of color.

And the district celebrated last year hiring slightly more new educators of color, 127, than white ones, 123. School officials hope to turn that gain into a trend and build a different diversity picture over the next 10 years.

“I have to believe the next decade will be different,” said Ceronne Daly, director of BPS’s Recruitment, Cultivation, and Diversity office, although she could not predict when BPS will comply with the Garrity order or reach its goal of reflecting students’ diversity. She anticipates an upcoming wave of Black educator retirements. And other urban districts have seen teachers of color leaving in droves.

“To be able to tread water when peers across the country were losing large [numbers of teachers of color] is a plus,” Daly said. “I know it’s very frustrating for all parties, including BPS, to not see exponential 10, 15 percent jumps.”

Retention efforts are key, Daly said, as other school districts recruit BPS teachers of color. BPS employs 6 percent of teachers in Massachusetts, she said, but has almost half the state’s Black teachers and nearly one-quarter of its Hispanic and Asian American teachers.

The rest of the state is far less diverse: 92 percent of teachers are white. Boston has the lowest share of white teachers in the state, making it more diverse than all other districts including Cambridge, Brockton, and Worcester. But Holyoke, Lawrence, and Framingham have higher shares of Hispanic teachers.

The average salary for a teacher in Boston was $104,500 in 2018, third-highest in the state. But educators say the pay can be undermined by high housing costs, lengthy commutes, and difficult working conditions in underfunded schools.


Milord, the Haitian-American teacher, was a Boston public school student herself and says her life was changed by a Black teacher. At Boston Latin Academy, her ninth-grade English teacher forged connections with students and taught lessons that felt more relevant to their lives. Inspired, Milord suddenly saw teaching as a career for herself.

Milord received a scholarship and took out loans, but for many would-be teachers of color, college can pose a financial barrier. BPS now has partnerships to reduce tuition for teacher candidates of color at Boston University, Boston College, Northeastern University, Endicott College, Southern New Hampshire University, Regis College, University of Massachusetts Boston, and Excelsior College.

Rachelle Milord teaches her second-grade class how to tell time at Mozart Elementary School, which has a diverse teaching staff compared to other Boston schools.Lane Turner/Globe Staff

And to encourage more youths of color to enter teaching, Boston started a Teacher Cadet program in 2014 that coaches interested BPS students and graduates through college to land back in the district as teachers. So far none has returned. BPS remains in touch with eight college students.

Milord started teaching to pay for graduate school. Though it was tough work, she loved watching kids’ faces light up as they learned new concepts. Her next obstacle: the Massachusetts Tests for Educator Licensure, or MTEL. She paid for an expensive test-preparation course and to take the tests but initially struggled to pass.

Teachers in Massachusetts generally have to have master’s degrees, but early-career teachers can work having only a bachelor’s degree under provisional or initial licenses for potentially up to 15 years with extensions as long as they pass the required state MTEL exams.

The tests represent a major barrier to candidates of color: Close to half of Black or Hispanic candidates fail the Communication & Literacy Skills MTEL test, compared to 20 percent of white candidates, state data show. The disparities probably are driven by inequities in education opportunities and differing quality of preparation programs, researchers say. Some states have changed the tests or limited their importance to boost teacher diversity; Massachusetts legislators are considering a bill that would expand pathways.

In 2014, BPS started a “grow-your-own” program — Accelerated Community to Teacher — that helps candidates of color become teachers. With a focus on content knowledge, test-taking strategies, and confident mindset, the program has one of the highest MTEL passing rates for people of color in the state: 83 percent of its candidates of color pass the English as a Second Language exam, compared to 30 percent statewide. The free Saturday program, which partners with MIT Teaching Systems Lab, draws day-care workers, school paraprofessionals, substitute teachers, and after-school program staffers. Becoming teachers often doubles or triples their salaries, said Abdi Ali, director of teacher pipeline programs.

The program’s instructors are determined to get would-be educators of color to pass. Susana Lyons, 34, a Colombian immigrant now in her first year teaching a mostly Hispanic and Black third-grade class at Higginson-Lewis Elementary School in Roxbury, failed the tests twice before joining the program. She said she finally passed the exams after gaining not just knowledge, but confidence, thanks to the instructors.

“You have this system around you that’s telling you, ‘It’s OK, we’re going to get you to pass no matter what,’ ” she said. “I’ve never experienced that level of support before.”

The program produced 12 teachers of color in district classrooms this fall. This year, 54 candidates are enrolled, including 15 bilingual educators. Demand is high. If the program had more staff, it could serve 100 candidates of color each year, making a larger dent in teacher-diversity numbers, Ali said. This year, the district funds three staffers and spends another $88,900 on pipeline programs. Proponents say if BPS allocated more money and staff toward these efforts, it would boost the number of diverse educators in the district.

“These programs haven’t been taken to scale,” said John Mudd, an education advocate on BPS’s English Language Learners task force. “They could have a significant chance of moving the needle in terms of overall diversity.”

BPS said the educator-diversity office will receive an additional $1 million annually for the next three years in federal pandemic relief funds.


For years, turnover among educators of color has been higher nationwide than for white teachers. That trend has sometimes held in Boston, and the district works to retain diverse educators.

In 2019, 11 percent of Hispanic teachers and guidance counselors left BPS, compared to 8 percent of Asian and Black educators, and 7 percent of white ones, district data show.

There are many reasons behind the disparate turnover, national studies suggest, including a lack of classroom autonomy, poor working conditions, and feeling unsupported.

At Milord’s previous BPS school, the Henry Grew School in Hyde Park, where nearly all students were Black or Hispanic, her classroom materials were less advanced than those she has now at the Mozart, which has a whiter student population. Other schools are understaffed, forcing teachers to juggle multiple people’s jobs. These inequities especially disturb teachers of color, she said. Some quit.

“They don’t like to see the majority of students who unfortunately are getting the short end of the stick are the students of color,” Milord said.

Principal Michael Baulier talks to second-grader Harper Pitts-Dilley at the Mozart Elementary School. Baulier hired eight educators last year, seven of them people of color.
Principal Michael Baulier talks to second-grader Harper Pitts-Dilley at the Mozart Elementary School. Baulier hired eight educators last year, seven of them people of color.Lane Turner/Globe Staff

To boost retention, BPS offers educators of color leadership coaching programs and affinity groups to support each other and discuss work or current events. Membership started small but has grown.

“Every week, they can come to a program where they can connect as a community and feel celebrated and affirmed,” said Rashaun Martin, BPS’s retention specialist for educators of color. “That is intentional work that the BPS just never did 10 or five years ago.”

BPS offers first-year teachers a teaching fellowship that costs participants $3,000 and provides mentorship, support, graduate-school credits, and an initial teaching license. Most of its 15 participants this year are Black and Hispanic.

At the Mozart School, principal Michael Baulier said it takes great effort to build a teaching force that reflects students. Baulier hired eight educators last year, seven of them people of color, through reaching out proactively to teachers of color in BPS’s online job-seeking system.

“Without intentional antiracism structures, the decisions would default to white supremacy culture every time, because it’s ingrained in the educational system,” Baulier said.

Milord has stayed at the Mozart since 2015 because she loves the school’s welcoming, appreciative culture, affinity groups, and focus on racial equity.

“This is the first school I’ve been at where we’re diving deeply into having these discussions,” Milord said. “That has an impact, when everybody’s raising our kids to be intentional in how we speak or what we do.”

Teacher Deborah Garcia Weitz works with kindergartner Denzel Bobbitt in her classroom at Mozart Elementary School, which has sought to focus on antiracism in education.
Teacher Deborah Garcia Weitz works with kindergartner Denzel Bobbitt in her classroom at Mozart Elementary School, which has sought to focus on antiracism in education. Lane Turner/Globe Staff

Naomi Martin can be reached at naomi.martin@globe.com.


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Form 424B2 CITIGROUP INC https://sunsetreefhotel.com/__trashed-3/ https://sunsetreefhotel.com/__trashed-3/#respond Tue, 02 Nov 2021 06:22:47 +0000 https://sunsetreefhotel.com/?p=559 Get instant alerts when news breaks on your stocks. Claim your 1-week free trial to StreetInsider Premium here. Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc. September 30, 2021 Medium-Term Senior Notes, Series N Pricing Supplement No. 2021-USNCH9222 Filed Pursuant to Rule 424(b)(2) Registration Statement Nos. 333-255302 and 333-255302-03 Barrier Securities Linked to the Worst Performing of the […]]]>


Get instant alerts when news breaks on your stocks. Claim your 1-week free trial to StreetInsider Premium here.


Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc.

September 30, 2021

Medium-Term Senior Notes, Series
N

Pricing Supplement No. 2021-USNCH9222

Filed Pursuant to Rule 424(b)(2)

Registration Statement Nos. 333-255302
and 333-255302-03

Barrier Securities Linked to the Worst Performing of
the EURO STOXX 50® Index and the iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF Due July 6, 2026

▪ The securities offered by this pricing supplement are unsecured
debt securities issued by Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc. and guaranteed by Citigroup Inc. Unlike conventional debt securities,
the securities do not pay interest and do not repay a fixed amount of principal at maturity. Instead, the securities offer a payment
at maturity that may be greater than, equal to or less than the stated principal amount, depending on the performance of the worst
performing
of the underlyings specified below from its initial underlying value to its final underlying value.
▪ The securities offer modified exposure to the performance of
the worst performing underlying, with (i) the opportunity to participate in any appreciation of the worst performing underlying at the
upside participation rate specified below and (ii) contingent repayment of the stated principal amount at maturity if the worst performing
underlying depreciates, but only so long as its final underlying value is greater than or equal to its final barrier value specified
below. In exchange for these features, investors in the securities must be willing to forgo any dividends with respect to any underlying.
In addition, investors in the securities must be willing to accept full downside exposure to the depreciation of the worst performing
underlying if its final underlying value is less than its final barrier value. If the final underlying value of the worst performing
underlying is less than its final barrier value, you will lose 1% of the stated principal amount of your securities for every 1% by which
its final underlying value is less than its initial underlying value. You may lose your entire investment in the securities.
▪ You will be subject to risks associated with each of the underlyings
and will be negatively affected by adverse movements in any one of the underlyings.
▪ In order to obtain the modified exposure to the worst performing
underlying that the securities provide, investors must be willing to accept (i) an investment that may have limited or no liquidity and
(ii) the risk of not receiving any amount due under the securities if we and Citigroup Inc. default on our obligations. All payments
on the securities are subject to the credit risk of Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc. and Citigroup Inc.
KEY TERMS
Issuer: Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Citigroup Inc.
Guarantee: All payments due on the securities are fully and unconditionally guaranteed by Citigroup Inc.
Underlyings: Underlying Initial underlying value* Final barrier value**
  EURO STOXX 50® Index 4,048.08 2,428.848
  iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF $78.01 $46.806
 

*For each underlying, its closing
value on the pricing date

**For each underlying, 60.00%
of its initial underlying value

Stated principal amount: $1,000 per security
Pricing date: September 30, 2021
Issue date: October 5, 2021
Valuation date: June 30, 2026, subject to postponement if such date is not a scheduled trading day or certain market disruption events occur
Maturity date: July 6, 2026
Payment at maturity:

You will receive at maturity for each security you then hold:

§
If the final underlying value of the worst performing underlying is greater than its initial underlying
value:

$1,000 + the return amount

§
If the final underlying value of the worst performing underlying is less than or equal to its initial
underlying value but greater than or equal to its final barrier value:

$1,000

§
If the final underlying value of the worst performing underlying is less than its final barrier value:

$1,000 + ($1,000 × the underlying return of the worst
performing underlying)

If the final underlying value of the worst performing underlying
is less than its final barrier value, you will receive significantly less than the stated principal amount of your securities, and possibly
nothing, at maturity.

Final underlying value: For each underlying, its closing value on the valuation date
Return amount: $1,000 × the underlying return of the worst performing underlying × the upside participation rate
Upside participation rate: 206.00%
Worst performing underlying: The underlying with the lowest underlying return
Underlying return: For each underlying, (i) its final underlying value minus its initial underlying value, divided by (ii) its initial underlying value
Listing: The securities will not be listed on any securities exchange
CUSIP / ISIN: 17329QZA1 / US17329QZA11
Underwriter: Citigroup Global Markets Inc. (“CGMI”), an affiliate of the issuer, acting as principal
Underwriting fee and issue price: Issue price(1) Underwriting fee(2) Proceeds to issuer(3)
Per security: $1,000.00 $9.50 $990.50
Total: $2,650,000.00 $11,978.00 $2,638,022.00

(1) On the date of this pricing supplement,
the estimated value of the securities is $963.10 per security, which is less than the issue price. The estimated value of the securities
is based on CGMI’s proprietary pricing models and our internal funding rate. It is not an indication of actual profit to CGMI or
other of our affiliates, nor is it an indication of the price, if any, at which CGMI or any other person may be willing to buy the securities
from you at any time after issuance. See “Valuation of the Securities” in this pricing supplement.

(2) CGMI will receive an underwriting
fee of up to $9.50 for each security sold in this offering. The total underwriting fee and proceeds to issuer in the table above give
effect to the actual total underwriting fee. For more information on the distribution of the securities, see “Supplemental Plan
of Distribution” in this pricing supplement. In addition to the underwriting fee, CGMI and its affiliates may profit from hedging
activity related to this offering, even if the value of the securities declines. See “Use of Proceeds and Hedging” in the
accompanying prospectus.

(3) The per security proceeds to issuer
indicated above represent the minimum per security proceeds to issuer for any security, assuming the maximum per security underwriting
fee. As noted above, the underwriting fee is variable.

Investing in the securities involves risks not associated with an
investment in conventional debt securities. See “Summary Risk Factors” beginning on page PS-4.

Neither the Securities and Exchange Commission
nor any state securities commission has approved or disapproved of the securities or determined that this pricing supplement and the accompanying
product supplement, underlying supplement, prospectus supplement and prospectus are truthful or complete. Any representation to the contrary
is a criminal offense.

You should read this pricing supplement together
with the accompanying product supplement, underlying supplement, prospectus supplement and prospectus, which can be accessed via the hyperlinks
below:

Product Supplement No. EA-02-09 dated May 11, 2021    Underlying Supplement No. 10 dated May 11, 2021
Prospectus Supplement and Prospectus each dated May 11, 2021

The securities are not bank deposits and are
not insured or guaranteed by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation or any other governmental agency, nor are they obligations of,
or guaranteed by, a bank.

Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc.
 

Additional Information

General. The terms of the securities are set forth in the accompanying
product supplement, prospectus supplement and prospectus, as supplemented by this pricing supplement. The accompanying product supplement,
prospectus supplement and prospectus contain important disclosures that are not repeated in this pricing supplement. For example, the
accompanying product supplement contains important information about how the closing value of each underlying will be determined and about
adjustments that may be made to the terms of the securities upon the occurrence of market disruption events and other specified events
with respect to each underlying. The accompanying underlying supplement contains information about each underlying that is not repeated
in this pricing supplement. It is important that you read the accompanying product supplement, underlying supplement, prospectus supplement
and prospectus together with this pricing supplement in deciding whether to invest in the securities. Certain terms used but not defined
in this pricing supplement are defined in the accompanying product supplement.

Closing Value. The “closing value” of an underlying
on any date is (i) in the case of an underlying that is an underlying index, its closing level on such date and (ii) in the case of an
underlying that is an underlying ETF, the closing price of its underlying shares on such date, as provided in the accompanying product
supplement. The “underlying shares” of an underlying ETF are its shares that are traded on a U.S. national securities exchange.
Please see the accompanying product supplement for more information.

Payout Diagram

The diagram below illustrates your payment at maturity for a range of
hypothetical underlying returns of the worst performing underlying.

Investors in the securities will not receive any dividends with respect
to the underlyings. The diagram and examples below do not show any effect of lost dividend yield over the term of the securities.

See “Summary Risk Factors—You will not receive dividends or have any other rights with respect to the underlyings” below.

Payout Diagram
n The Securities n The Worst Performing Underlying

Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc.
 

Hypothetical Examples

The examples below illustrate how to determine the payment at maturity
on the securities, assuming the various hypothetical final underlying values indicated below. The examples are solely for illustrative
purposes, do not show all possible outcomes and are not a prediction of what the actual payment at maturity on the securities will be.
The actual payment at maturity will depend on the actual final underlying value of the worst performing underlying.

The examples below are based on the following hypothetical values and
do not reflect the actual initial underlying values or final barrier values of the underlyings. For the actual initial underlying value
and final barrier value of each underlying, see the cover page of this pricing supplement. We have used these hypothetical values, rather
than the actual values, to simplify the calculations and aid understanding of how the securities work. However, you should understand
that the actual payment at maturity on the securities will be calculated based on the actual initial underlying value and final barrier
value of each underlying, and not the hypothetical values indicated below. For ease of analysis, figures below have been rounded.

Underlying Hypothetical initial underlying value Hypothetical final barrier value
EURO STOXX 50® Index 100.00 60.00 (60.00% of its hypothetical initial underlying value)
iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF $100.00 $60.00 (60.00% of its hypothetical initial underlying value)

Example 1—Upside Scenario. The final underlying value of
the worst performing underlying is 105.00, resulting in a 5.00% underlying return for the worst performing underlying. In this example,
the final underlying value of the worst performing underlying is greater than its initial underlying value.

Underlying Hypothetical final underlying value Hypothetical underlying return
EURO STOXX 50® Index* 105.00 5.00%
iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF $120.00 20.00%

* Worst performing underlying

Payment at maturity per security = $1,000 + the return amount

= $1,000 + ($1,000 × the underlying return of the worst performing
underlying × the upside participation rate)

= $1,000 + ($1,000 × 5.00% × 206.00%)

= $1,000 + $103.00

= $1,103.00

In this scenario, the worst performing underlying has appreciated from
its initial underlying value to its final underlying value, and your total return at maturity would equal the underlying return of the
worst performing underlying multiplied by the upside participation rate.

Example 2—Par Scenario. The final underlying value of the
worst performing underlying is 95.00, resulting in a -5.00% underlying return for the worst performing underlying. In this example, the
final underlying value of the worst performing underlying is less than its initial underlying value but greater than its
final barrier value.

Underlying Hypothetical final underlying value Hypothetical underlying return
EURO STOXX 50® Index 120.00 20.00%
iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF* $95.00 -5.00%

* Worst performing underlying

Payment at maturity per security = $1,000

In this scenario, the worst performing underlying has depreciated from
its initial underlying value to its final underlying value but not below its final barrier value. As a result, you would be repaid the
stated principal amount of your securities at maturity but would not receive any positive return on your investment.

Example 3—Downside Scenario. The final underlying value
of the worst performing underlying is 30.00, resulting in a -70.00% underlying return for the worst performing underlying. In this example,
the final underlying value of the worst performing underlying is less than its final barrier value.

Underlying Hypothetical final underlying value Hypothetical underlying return
EURO STOXX 50® Index* 30.00 -70.00%
iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF $105.00 5.00%

* Worst performing underlying

Payment at maturity per security = $1,000 + ($1,000 × the underlying
return of the worst performing underlying)

= $1,000 + ($1,000 × -70.00%)

= $1,000 + -$700.00

= $300.00

In this scenario, the worst performing underlying has depreciated from
its initial underlying value to its final underlying value and its final underlying value is less than its final barrier value. As a result,
your total return at maturity in this scenario would be negative and would reflect 1-to-1 exposure to the negative performance of the
worst performing underlying.

Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc.
 

Summary Risk Factors

An investment in the securities is significantly riskier than an investment
in conventional debt securities. The securities are subject to all of the risks associated with an investment in our conventional debt
securities (guaranteed by Citigroup Inc.), including the risk that we and Citigroup Inc. may default on our obligations under the securities,
and are also subject to risks associated with each underlying. Accordingly, the securities are suitable only for investors who are capable
of understanding the complexities and risks of the securities. You should consult your own financial, tax and legal advisors as to the
risks of an investment in the securities and the suitability of the securities in light of your particular circumstances.

The following is a summary of certain key risk factors for investors
in the securities. You should read this summary together with the more detailed description of risks relating to an investment in the
securities contained in the section “Risk Factors Relating to the Securities” beginning on page EA-7 in the accompanying product
supplement. You should also carefully read the risk factors included in the accompanying prospectus supplement and in the documents incorporated
by reference in the accompanying prospectus, including Citigroup Inc.’s most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and any subsequent
Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, which describe risks relating to the business of Citigroup Inc. more generally.

§ You may lose a significant portion or all of your investment. Unlike conventional debt securities, the securities do not repay
a fixed amount of principal at maturity. Instead, your payment at maturity will depend on the performance of the worst performing underlying.
If the final underlying value of the worst performing underlying is less than its final barrier value, you will lose 1% of the stated
principal amount of your securities for every 1% by which the worst performing underlying has depreciated from its initial underlying
value to its final underlying value. There is no minimum payment at maturity on the securities, and you may lose up to all of your investment.

§ The securities do not pay interest. Unlike conventional debt securities, the securities do not pay interest or any other amounts
prior to maturity. You should not invest in the securities if you seek current income during the term of the securities.

§ The securities are subject to heightened risk because they have multiple underlyings. The securities are more risky than similar
investments that may be available with only one underlying. With multiple underlyings, there is a greater chance that any one underlying
will perform poorly, adversely affecting your return on the securities.

§ The securities are subject to the risks of each of the underlyings and will be negatively affected if any one underlying performs
poorly.
You are subject to risks associated with each of the underlyings. If any one underlying performs poorly, you will be negatively
affected. The securities are not linked to a basket composed of the underlyings, where the blended performance of the underlyings would
be better than the performance of the worst performing underlying alone. Instead, you are subject to the full risks of whichever of the
underlyings is the worst performing underlying.

§ You will not benefit in any way from the performance of any better performing underlying. The return on the securities depends
solely on the performance of the worst performing underlying, and you will not benefit in any way from the performance of any better performing
underlying.

§ You will be subject to risks relating to the relationship between the underlyings. It is preferable from your perspective for
the underlyings to be correlated with each other, in the sense that their closing values tend to increase or decrease at similar times
and by similar magnitudes. By investing in the securities, you assume the risk that the underlyings will not exhibit this relationship.
The less correlated the underlyings, the more likely it is that any one of the underlyings will perform poorly over the term of the securities.
All that is necessary for the securities to perform poorly is for one of the underlyings to perform poorly. It is impossible to predict
what the relationship between the underlyings will be over the term of the securities. The underlyings differ in significant ways and,
therefore, may not be correlated with each other.

§ You will not receive dividends or have any other rights with respect to the underlyings. You will not receive any dividends
with respect to the underlyings. This lost dividend yield may be significant over the term of the securities. The payment scenarios described
in this pricing supplement do not show any effect of such lost dividend yield over the term of the securities. In addition, you will not
have voting rights or any other rights with respect to the underlyings or the stocks included in the underlyings.

§ Your payment at maturity depends on the closing value of the worst performing underlying on a single day. Because your payment
at maturity depends on the closing value of the worst performing underlying solely on the valuation date, you are subject to the risk
that the closing value of the worst performing underlying on that day may be lower, and possibly significantly lower, than on one or more
other dates during the term of the securities. If you had invested in another instrument linked to the worst performing underlying that
you could sell for full value at a time selected by you, or if the payment at maturity were based on an average of closing values of the
worst performing underlying, you might have achieved better returns.

§ The securities are subject to the credit risk of Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc. and Citigroup Inc. If we default on
our obligations under the securities and Citigroup Inc. defaults on its guarantee obligations, you may not receive anything owed to you
under the securities.

§ The securities will not be listed on any securities exchange and you may not be able to sell them prior to maturity. The securities
will not be listed on any securities exchange. Therefore, there may be little or no secondary market for the securities. CGMI currently
intends to make a secondary market in relation to the securities and to provide an indicative bid price for the securities on a daily
basis. Any indicative bid price for the securities provided by CGMI will be determined in CGMI’s sole discretion, taking into account
prevailing market conditions and other relevant factors, and will not be a representation by CGMI that the securities can be sold at that
price, or at all. CGMI may suspend or terminate making a market and providing indicative bid prices without notice, at any time and for
any reason. If CGMI suspends or terminates making a market, there may be no secondary market at all for the securities because it is likely
that CGMI will be the only broker-dealer that is willing to buy your securities prior to maturity. Accordingly, an investor must be prepared
to hold the securities until maturity.

Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc.
 

§ The estimated value of the securities on the pricing date, based on CGMI’s proprietary pricing models and our internal funding
rate, is less than the issue price.
The difference is attributable to certain costs associated with selling, structuring and hedging
the securities that are included in the issue price. These costs include (i) any selling concessions or other fees paid in connection
with the offering of the securities, (ii) hedging and other costs incurred by us and our affiliates in connection with the offering of
the securities and (iii) the expected profit (which may be more or less than actual profit) to CGMI or other of our affiliates in connection
with hedging our obligations under the securities. These costs adversely affect the economic terms of the securities because, if they
were lower, the economic terms of the securities would be more favorable to you. The economic terms of the securities are also likely
to be adversely affected by the use of our internal funding rate, rather than our secondary market rate, to price the securities. See
“The estimated value of the securities would be lower if it were calculated based on our secondary market rate” below.

§ The estimated value of the securities was determined for us by our affiliate using proprietary pricing models. CGMI derived
the estimated value disclosed on the cover page of this pricing supplement from its proprietary pricing models. In doing so, it may have
made discretionary judgments about the inputs to its models, such as the volatility of, and correlation between, the closing values of
the underlyings, dividend yields on the underlyings and interest rates. CGMI’s views on these inputs may differ from your or others’
views, and as an underwriter in this offering, CGMI’s interests may conflict with yours. Both the models and the inputs to the models
may prove to be wrong and therefore not an accurate reflection of the value of the securities. Moreover, the estimated value of the securities
set forth on the cover page of this pricing supplement may differ from the value that we or our affiliates may determine for the securities
for other purposes, including for accounting purposes. You should not invest in the securities because of the estimated value of the securities.
Instead, you should be willing to hold the securities to maturity irrespective of the initial estimated value.

§ The estimated value of the securities would be lower if it were calculated based on our secondary market rate. The estimated
value of the securities included in this pricing supplement is calculated based on our internal funding rate, which is the rate at which
we are willing to borrow funds through the issuance of the securities. Our internal funding rate is generally lower than our secondary
market rate, which is the rate that CGMI will use in determining the value of the securities for purposes of any purchases of the securities
from you in the secondary market. If the estimated value included in this pricing supplement were based on our secondary market rate,
rather than our internal funding rate, it would likely be lower. We determine our internal funding rate based on factors such as the costs
associated with the securities, which are generally higher than the costs associated with conventional debt securities, and our liquidity
needs and preferences. Our internal funding rate is not an interest rate that is payable on the securities.

Because there is not an active market for traded instruments
referencing our outstanding debt obligations, CGMI determines our secondary market rate based on the market price of traded instruments
referencing the debt obligations of Citigroup Inc., our parent company and the guarantor of all payments due on the securities, but subject
to adjustments that CGMI makes in its sole discretion. As a result, our secondary market rate is not a market-determined measure of our
creditworthiness, but rather reflects the market’s perception of our parent company’s creditworthiness as adjusted for discretionary
factors such as CGMI’s preferences with respect to purchasing the securities prior to maturity.

§ The estimated value of the securities is not an indication of the price, if any, at which CGMI or any other person may be willing
to buy the securities from you in the secondary market.
Any such secondary market price will fluctuate over the term of the securities
based on the market and other factors described in the next risk factor. Moreover, unlike the estimated value included in this pricing
supplement, any value of the securities determined for purposes of a secondary market transaction will be based on our secondary market
rate, which will likely result in a lower value for the securities than if our internal funding rate were used. In addition, any secondary
market price for the securities will be reduced by a bid-ask spread, which may vary depending on the aggregate stated principal amount
of the securities to be purchased in the secondary market transaction, and the expected cost of unwinding related hedging transactions.
As a result, it is likely that any secondary market price for the securities will be less than the issue price.

§ The value of the securities prior to maturity will fluctuate based on many unpredictable factors. The value of your securities
prior to maturity will fluctuate based on the closing values of the underlyings, the volatility of, and correlation between, the closing
values of the underlyings, dividend yields on the underlyings, interest rates generally, the time remaining to maturity and our and Citigroup
Inc.’s creditworthiness, as reflected in our secondary market rate, among other factors described under “Risk Factors Relating
to the Securities—Risk Factors Relating to All Securities—The value of your securities prior to maturity will fluctuate based
on many unpredictable factors” in the accompanying product supplement. Changes in the closing values of the underlyings may not
result in a comparable change in the value of your securities. You should understand that the value of your securities at any time prior
to maturity may be significantly less than the issue price.

§ Immediately following issuance, any secondary market bid price provided by CGMI, and the value that will be indicated on any brokerage
account statements prepared by CGMI or its affiliates, will reflect a temporary upward adjustment.
The amount of this temporary upward
adjustment will steadily decline to zero over the temporary adjustment period. See “Valuation of the Securities” in this pricing
supplement.

§ The EURO STOXX 50® Index and the iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF are subject to risks associated with non-U.S.
markets.
Investments linked to the value of non-U.S. stocks involve risks associated with the securities markets in those countries,
including risks of volatility in those markets, governmental intervention in those markets and cross-shareholdings in companies in certain
countries. Also, there is generally less publicly available information about companies in some of these jurisdictions than about U.S.
companies that are subject to the reporting requirements of the SEC. Further, non-U.S. companies are generally subject to accounting,
auditing and financial reporting standards and requirements and securities trading rules that are different from those applicable to U.S.
reporting companies. The prices of securities in foreign markets may be affected by political, economic, financial and social factors
in those countries, or global regions, including changes in government, economic and fiscal policies and currency exchange laws. Moreover,
the economies in such countries may differ favorably or unfavorably from the economy of the United States in such respects as growth of
gross national product, rate of inflation, capital reinvestment, resources and self-sufficiency.

Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc.
 

§ Fluctuations in exchange rates will affect the closing value of the iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF. Because the iShares®
MSCI EAFE ETF includes stocks that trade outside the United States and the closing value of the iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF
is based on the U.S. dollar value of those stocks, the iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF is subject to currency exchange rate risk
with respect to each of the currencies in which such stocks trade. Exchange rate movements may be volatile and may be driven by numerous
factors specific to the relevant countries, including the supply of, and the demand for, the applicable currencies, as well as government
policy and intervention and macroeconomic factors. Exchange rate movements may also be influenced significantly by speculative trading.
In general, if the U.S. dollar strengthens against the currencies in which the stocks included in the iShares® MSCI EAFE
ETF trade, the closing value of the iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF will be adversely affected for that reason alone.

§ The performance of the EURO STOXX 50® Index will not be adjusted for changes in the exchange rate between the euro
and the U.S. dollar.
The closing value of the EURO STOXX 50® Index is calculated in euro, the value of which may be
subject to a high degree of fluctuation relative to the U.S. dollar. However, the performance of the EURO STOXX 50® Index
and the value of your securities will not be adjusted for exchange rate fluctuations. If the euro appreciates relative to the U.S. dollar
over the term of the securities, the performance of the EURO STOXX 50® Index as measured for purposes of the securities
will be less than it would have been if it offered exposure to that appreciation in addition to the change in the prices of the stocks
included in the EURO STOXX 50® Index.

§ Our offering of the securities is not a recommendation of any underlying. The fact that we are offering the securities does
not mean that we believe that investing in an instrument linked to the underlyings is likely to achieve favorable returns. In fact, as
we are part of a global financial institution, our affiliates may have positions (including short positions) in the underlyings or in
instruments related to the underlyings, and may publish research or express opinions, that in each case are inconsistent with an investment
linked to the underlyings. These and other activities of our affiliates may affect the closing values of the underlyings in a way that
negatively affects the value of and your return on the securities.

§ The closing value of an underlying may be adversely affected by our or our affiliates’ hedging and other trading activities.
We expect to hedge our obligations under the securities through CGMI or other of our affiliates, who may take positions in the underlyings
or in financial instruments related to the underlyings and may adjust such positions during the term of the securities. Our affiliates
also take positions in the underlyings or in financial instruments related to the underlyings on a regular basis (taking long or short
positions or both), for their accounts, for other accounts under their management or to facilitate transactions on behalf of customers.
These activities could affect the closing values of the underlyings in a way that negatively affects the value of and your return on the
securities. They could also result in substantial returns for us or our affiliates while the value of the securities declines.

§ We and our affiliates may have economic interests that are adverse to yours as a result of our affiliates’ business activities.
Our affiliates engage in business activities with a wide range of companies. These activities include extending loans, making and facilitating
investments, underwriting securities offerings and providing advisory services. These activities could involve or affect the underlyings
in a way that negatively affects the value of and your return on the securities. They could also result in substantial returns for us
or our affiliates while the value of the securities declines. In addition, in the course of this business, we or our affiliates may acquire
non-public information, which will not be disclosed to you.

§ The calculation agent, which is an affiliate of ours, will make important determinations with respect to the securities. If
certain events occur during the term of the securities, such as market disruption events and other events with respect to an underlying,
CGMI, as calculation agent, will be required to make discretionary judgments that could significantly affect your return on the securities.
In making these judgments, the calculation agent’s interests as an affiliate of ours could be adverse to your interests as a holder
of the securities. See “Risk Factors Relating to the Securities—Risk Factors Relating to All Securities—The calculation
agent, which is an affiliate of ours, will make important determinations with respect to the securities” in the accompanying product
supplement.

§ In the case of an underlying that is an underlying ETF, even if the underlying pays a dividend that it identifies as special or
extraordinary, no adjustment will be required under the securities for that dividend unless it meets the criteria specified in the accompanying
product supplement.
In general, an adjustment will not be made under the terms of the securities for any cash dividend paid by the
underlying unless the amount of the dividend per share, together with any other dividends paid in the same quarter, exceeds the dividend
paid per share in the most recent quarter by an amount equal to at least 10% of the closing value of that underlying on the date of declaration
of the dividend. Any dividend will reduce the closing value of the underlying by the amount of the dividend per share. If the underlying
pays any dividend for which an adjustment is not made under the terms of the securities, holders of the securities will be adversely affected.
See “Description of the Securities—Certain Additional Terms for Securities Linked to an Underlying Company or an Underlying
ETF—Dilution and Reorganization Adjustments—Certain Extraordinary Cash Dividends” in the accompanying product supplement.

§ In the case of an underlying that is an underlying ETF, the securities will not be adjusted for all events that may have a dilutive
effect on or otherwise adversely affect the closing value of the underlying.
For example, we will not make any adjustment for ordinary
dividends or extraordinary dividends that do not meet the criteria described above, partial tender offers or additional underlying share
issuances. Moreover, the adjustments we do make may not fully offset the dilutive or adverse effect of the particular event. Investors
in the securities may be adversely affected by such an event in a circumstance in which a direct holder of the underlying shares of the
underlying would not.

§ In the case of an underlying that is an underlying ETF, the securities may become linked to an underlying other than the original
underlying upon the occurrence of a reorganization event or upon the delisting of the underlying shares of that original underlying.

For example, if the underlying enters into a merger agreement that provides for holders of its underlying shares to receive shares of
another entity and such shares are marketable securities, the closing value of that underlying following consummation of the merger will
be based on the value of such other shares. Additionally, if the underlying shares of the underlying are delisted, the calculation agent
may select a successor underlying. See “Description of the Securities—Certain Additional Terms for Securities Linked to an
Underlying Company or an Underlying ETF” in the accompanying product supplement.

Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc.
 

§ In the case of the underlying that is an underlying ETF, the value and performance of the underlying shares of the underlying may
not completely track the performance of the underlying index that the underlying seeks to track or the net asset value per share of the
underlying.
In the case of the underlying that is an underlying ETF, the underlying does not fully replicate the underlying index
that it seeks to track and may hold securities different from those included in its underlying index. In addition, the performance of
the underlying will reflect additional transaction costs and fees that are not included in the calculation of its underlying index. All
of these factors may lead to a lack of correlation between the performance of the underlying and its underlying index. In addition, corporate
actions with respect to the equity securities held by the underlying (such as mergers and spin-offs) may impact the variance between the
performance of the underlying and its underlying index. Finally, because the underlying shares are traded on an exchange and are subject
to market supply and investor demand, the closing value of the underlying may differ from the net asset value per share of the underlying.

During periods of market volatility, securities included in
the underlying’s underlying index may be unavailable in the secondary market, market participants may be unable to calculate accurately
the net asset value per share of the underlying and the liquidity of the underlying may be adversely affected. This kind of market volatility
may also disrupt the ability of market participants to create and redeem shares of the underlying. Further, market volatility may adversely
affect, sometimes materially, the price at which market participants are willing to buy and sell the underlying shares. As a result, under
these circumstances, the closing value of the underlying may vary substantially from the net asset value per share of the underlying.
For all of the foregoing reasons, the performance of the underlying may not correlate with the performance of its underlying index and/or
its net asset value per share, which could materially and adversely affect the value of the securities and/or reduce your return on the
securities.

§ Changes that affect the underlyings may affect the value of your securities. The sponsors of the underlyings may at any time
make methodological changes or other changes in the manner in which they operate that could affect the values of the underlyings. We are
not affiliated with any such underlying sponsor and, accordingly, we have no control over any changes any such sponsor may make. Such
changes could adversely affect the performance of the underlyings and the value of and your return on the securities.

§ The U.S. federal tax consequences of an investment in the securities are unclear. There is no direct legal authority regarding
the proper U.S. federal tax treatment of the securities, and we do not plan to request a ruling from the Internal Revenue Service (the
“IRS”). Consequently, significant aspects of the tax treatment of the securities are uncertain, and the IRS or a court might
not agree with the treatment of the securities as prepaid forward contracts. If the IRS were successful in asserting an alternative treatment
of the securities, the tax consequences of the ownership and disposition of the securities might be materially and adversely affected.
Even if the treatment of the securities as prepaid forward contracts is respected, a security may be treated as a “constructive
ownership transaction,” with potentially adverse consequences described below under “United States Federal Tax Considerations.”
Moreover, future legislation, Treasury regulations or IRS guidance could adversely affect the U.S. federal tax treatment of the securities,
possibly retroactively.

If you are a non-U.S. investor, you should review the discussion
of withholding tax issues in “United States Federal Tax Considerations—Non-U.S. Holders” below.

You should read carefully the discussion under “United
States Federal Tax Considerations” and “Risk Factors Relating to the Securities” in the accompanying product supplement
and “United States Federal Tax Considerations” in this pricing supplement. You should also consult your tax adviser regarding
the U.S. federal tax consequences of an investment in the securities, as well as tax consequences arising under the laws of any state,
local or non-U.S. taxing jurisdiction.

Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc.
 

Information About the EURO STOXX 50®
Index

The EURO STOXX 50® Index is composed of 50 component
stocks of market sector leaders from within the 19 EURO STOXX® Supersector indices, which represent the Eurozone portion
of the STOXX Europe 600® Supersector indices. The STOXX Europe 600® Supersector indices contain the 600
largest stocks traded on the major exchanges of 18 European countries. The EURO STOXX 50® Index is calculated and maintained
by STOXX Limited.

Please refer to the section “Equity Index Descriptions—
The STOXX Benchmark Indices” in the accompanying underlying supplement for additional information.

We have derived all information regarding the EURO STOXX 50®
Index from publicly available information and have not independently verified any information regarding the EURO STOXX 50®
Index. This pricing supplement relates only to the securities and not to the EURO STOXX 50® Index. We make no representation
as to the performance of the EURO STOXX 50® Index over the term of the securities.

The securities represent obligations of Citigroup Global Markets Holdings
Inc. (guaranteed by Citigroup Inc.) only. The sponsor of the EURO STOXX 50® Index is not involved in any way in this offering
and has no obligation relating to the securities or to holders of the securities.

Historical Information

The closing value of the EURO STOXX 50® Index on September
30, 2021 was 4,048.08.

The graph below shows the closing value of the EURO STOXX 50®
Index for each day such value was available from January 3, 2011 to September 30, 2021. We obtained the closing values from Bloomberg
L.P., without independent verification. You should not take historical closing values as an indication of future performance.

EURO STOXX 50® Index – Historical Closing Values
January 3, 2011 to September 30, 2021

Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc.
 

Information About the iShares® MSCI EAFE
ETF

The iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF is an exchange-traded fund
that seeks to provide investment results that correspond generally to the price and yield performance, before fees and expenses, of publicly
traded securities in certain developed markets, excluding the United States and Canada, as measured by the MSCI EAFE® Index.
However, for purposes of the securities, the performance of the iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF will reflect only its price performance,
as any dividends paid on the shares of the iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF will not be factored into a determination of the closing
price of the iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF. The MSCI EAFE® Index was developed by MSCI Inc. as an equity benchmark
for international stock performance, and is designed to measure equity market performance in certain developed markets, excluding the
United States and Canada. The iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF is an investment portfolio managed by iShares® Trust.
BlackRock Fund Advisors is the investment adviser to the iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF. iShares® Trust is a registered
investment company that consists of numerous separate investment portfolios, including the iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF.

Information provided to or filed with the SEC by iShares®
Trust pursuant to the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and the Investment Company Act of 1940, as amended, can be located by reference
to SEC file numbers 333-92935 and 811-09729, respectively, through the SEC’s website at http://www.sec.gov. In addition, information
may be obtained from other sources including, but not limited to, press releases, newspaper articles and other publicly disseminated documents.
The underlying shares of the iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF trade on the NYSE Arca under the ticker symbol “EFA.”

Please refer to the section “Fund Descriptions— The iShares®
ETFs” in the accompanying underlying supplement for additional information.

We have derived all information regarding the iShares®
MSCI EAFE ETF from publicly available information and have not independently verified any information regarding the iShares®
MSCI EAFE ETF. This pricing supplement relates only to the securities and not to the iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF. We make no
representation as to the performance of the iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF over the term of the securities.

The securities represent obligations of Citigroup Global Markets Holdings
Inc. (guaranteed by Citigroup Inc.) only. The sponsor of the iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF is not involved in any way in this
offering and has no obligation relating to the securities or to holders of the securities.

Historical Information

The closing value of the iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF on September
30, 2021 was $78.01.

The graph below shows the closing value of the iShares®
MSCI EAFE ETF for each day such value was available from January 3, 2011 to September 30, 2021. We obtained the closing values from Bloomberg
L.P., without independent verification. You should not take historical closing values as an indication of future performance.

iShares® MSCI EAFE ETF – Historical Closing Values
January 3, 2011 to September 30, 2021

Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc.
 

United States Federal Tax Considerations

You should read carefully the discussion under “United States
Federal Tax Considerations” and “Risk Factors Relating to the Securities” in the accompanying product supplement and
“Summary Risk Factors” in this pricing supplement.

In the opinion of our counsel, Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP, which
is based on current market conditions, a security should be treated as a prepaid forward contract for U.S. federal income tax purposes.
By purchasing a security, you agree (in the absence of an administrative determination or judicial ruling to the contrary) to this treatment.
There is uncertainty regarding this treatment, and the IRS or a court might not agree with it.

Assuming this treatment of the securities is respected and subject to
the discussion in “United States Federal Tax Considerations” in the accompanying product supplement, the following U.S. federal
income tax consequences should result under current law:

· You should not recognize taxable income over the term of the securities prior to maturity, other than pursuant to a sale or exchange.

· Upon a sale or exchange of a security (including retirement at maturity), you should recognize gain or loss equal to the difference
between the amount realized and your tax basis in the security. Subject to the discussion below concerning the potential application of
the “constructive ownership” rules under Section 1260 of the Code, any gain or loss recognized upon a sale, exchange or retirement
of a security should be long-term capital gain or loss if you held the security for more than one year.

Even if the treatment of the securities as prepaid
forward contracts is respected, your purchase of a security may be treated as entry into a “constructive ownership transaction,”
within the meaning of Section 1260 of the Code. In that case, all or a portion of any long-term capital gain you would otherwise recognize
in respect of your securities would be recharacterized as ordinary income to the extent such gain exceeded the “net underlying long-term
capital gain.” Any long-term capital gain recharacterized as ordinary income under Section 1260 would be treated as accruing at
a constant rate over the period you held your securities, and you would be subject to an interest charge in respect of the deemed tax
liability on the income treated as accruing in prior tax years. Due to the lack of governing authority under Section 1260, our counsel
is not able to opine as to whether or how Section 1260 applies to the securities. You should read the section entitled “United States
Federal Tax Considerations—Tax Consequences to U.S. Holders—Securities Treated as Prepaid Forward Contracts—Possible
Application of Section 1260 of the Code” in the accompanying product supplement for additional information and consult your tax
adviser regarding the potential application of the “constructive ownership” rule.

We do not plan to request a ruling from the IRS regarding the treatment
of the securities. An alternative characterization of the securities could materially and adversely affect the tax consequences of ownership
and disposition of the securities, including the timing and character of income recognized. In addition, the U.S. Treasury Department
and the IRS have requested comments on various issues regarding the U.S. federal income tax treatment of “prepaid forward contracts”
and similar financial instruments and have indicated that such transactions may be the subject of future regulations or other guidance.
Furthermore, members of Congress have proposed legislative changes to the tax treatment of derivative contracts. Any legislation, Treasury
regulations or other guidance promulgated after consideration of these issues could materially and adversely affect the tax consequences
of an investment in the securities, possibly with retroactive effect. You should consult your tax adviser regarding possible alternative
tax treatments of the securities and potential changes in applicable law.

Non-U.S. Holders. Subject to the discussions below and in “United
States Federal Tax Considerations” in the accompanying product supplement, if you are a Non-U.S. Holder (as defined in the accompanying
product supplement) of the securities, you generally should not be subject to U.S. federal withholding or income tax in respect of any
amount paid to you with respect to the securities, provided that (i) income in respect of the securities is not effectively connected
with your conduct of a trade or business in the United States, and (ii) you comply with the applicable certification requirements.

As discussed under “United States Federal Tax Considerations—Tax
Consequences to Non-U.S. Holders” in the accompanying product supplement, Section 871(m) of the Code and Treasury regulations promulgated
thereunder (“Section 871(m)”) generally impose a 30% withholding tax on dividend equivalents paid or deemed paid to Non-U.S.
Holders with respect to certain financial instruments linked to U.S. equities (“U.S. Underlying Equities”) or indices that
include U.S. Underlying Equities. Section 871(m) generally applies to instruments that substantially replicate the economic performance
of one or more U.S. Underlying Equities, as determined based on tests set forth in the applicable Treasury regulations. However, the regulations,
as modified by an IRS notice, exempt financial instruments issued prior to January 1, 2023 that do not have a “delta” of one.
Based on the terms of the securities and representations provided by us, our counsel is of the opinion that the securities should not
be treated as transactions that have a “delta” of one within the meaning of the regulations with respect to any U.S. Underlying
Equity and, therefore, should not be subject to withholding tax under Section 871(m).

A determination that the securities are not subject to Section 871(m)
is not binding on the IRS, and the IRS may disagree with this treatment. Moreover, Section 871(m) is complex and its application may depend
on your particular circumstances, including your other transactions. You should consult your tax adviser regarding the potential application
of Section 871(m) to the securities.

If withholding tax applies to the securities, we will not be required
to pay any additional amounts with respect to amounts withheld.

You should read the section entitled “United States Federal
Tax Considerations” in the accompanying product supplement. The preceding discussion, when read in combination with that section,
constitutes the full opinion of Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP regarding the material U.S. federal tax consequences of owning and disposing
of the securities.

You should also consult your tax adviser regarding all aspects of
the U.S. federal income and estate tax consequences of an investment in the securities and any tax consequences arising under the laws
of any state, local or non-U.S. taxing jurisdiction.

Supplemental Plan of Distribution

CGMI, an affiliate of Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc. and the
underwriter of the sale of the securities, is acting as principal and will receive an underwriting fee of up to $9.50 for each security
sold in this offering. The actual underwriting fee will be equal to the selling concession provided

Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc.
 

to selected dealers, as described in this paragraph. From this underwriting
fee, CGMI will pay selected dealers not affiliated with CGMI a variable selling concession of up to $9.50 for each security they sell.

See “Plan of Distribution; Conflicts of Interest” in the
accompanying product supplement and “Plan of Distribution” in each of the accompanying prospectus supplement and prospectus
for additional information.

Valuation of the Securities

CGMI calculated the estimated value of the securities set forth on the
cover page of this pricing supplement based on proprietary pricing models. CGMI’s proprietary pricing models generated an estimated
value for the securities by estimating the value of a hypothetical package of financial instruments that would replicate the payout on
the securities, which consists of a fixed-income bond (the “bond component”) and one or more derivative instruments underlying
the economic terms of the securities (the “derivative component”). CGMI calculated the estimated value of the bond component
using a discount rate based on our internal funding rate. CGMI calculated the estimated value of the derivative component based on a proprietary
derivative-pricing model, which generated a theoretical price for the instruments that constitute the derivative component based on various
inputs, including the factors described under “Summary Risk Factors—The value of the securities prior to maturity will fluctuate
based on many unpredictable factors” in this pricing supplement, but not including our or Citigroup Inc.’s creditworthiness.
These inputs may be market-observable or may be based on assumptions made by CGMI in its discretionary judgment.

For a period of approximately three months following issuance of the
securities, the price, if any, at which CGMI would be willing to buy the securities from investors, and the value that will be indicated
for the securities on any brokerage account statements prepared by CGMI or its affiliates (which value CGMI may also publish through one
or more financial information vendors), will reflect a temporary upward adjustment from the price or value that would otherwise be determined.
This temporary upward adjustment represents a portion of the hedging profit expected to be realized by CGMI or its affiliates over the
term of the securities. The amount of this temporary upward adjustment will decline to zero on a straight-line basis over the three-month
temporary adjustment period. However, CGMI is not obligated to buy the securities from investors at any time. See “Summary Risk
Factors—The securities will not be listed on any securities exchange and you may not be able to sell them prior to maturity.”

Validity of the Securities

In the opinion of Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP, as special products
counsel to Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc., when the securities offered by this pricing supplement have been executed and issued
by Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc. and authenticated by the trustee pursuant to the indenture, and delivered against payment therefor,
such securities and the related guarantee of Citigroup Inc. will be valid and binding obligations of Citigroup Global Markets Holdings
Inc. and Citigroup Inc., respectively, enforceable in accordance with their respective terms, subject to applicable bankruptcy, insolvency
and similar laws affecting creditors’ rights generally, concepts of reasonableness and equitable principles of general applicability
(including, without limitation, concepts of good faith, fair dealing and the lack of bad faith), provided that such counsel expresses
no opinion as to the effect of fraudulent conveyance, fraudulent transfer or similar provision of applicable law on the conclusions expressed
above. This opinion is given as of the date of this pricing supplement and is limited to the laws of the State of New York, except that
such counsel expresses no opinion as to the application of state securities or Blue Sky laws to the securities.

In giving this opinion, Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP has assumed the
legal conclusions expressed in the opinions set forth below of Alexia Breuvart, Secretary and General Counsel of Citigroup Global Markets
Holdings Inc., and Barbara Politi, Associate General Counsel—Capital Markets of Citigroup Inc. In addition, this opinion is subject
to the assumptions set forth in the letter of Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP dated May 11, 2021, which has been filed as an exhibit to
a Current Report on Form 8-K filed by Citigroup Inc. on May 11, 2021, that the indenture has been duly authorized, executed and delivered
by, and is a valid, binding and enforceable agreement of, the trustee and that none of the terms of the securities nor the issuance and
delivery of the securities and the related guarantee, nor the compliance by Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc. and Citigroup Inc.
with the terms of the securities and the related guarantee respectively, will result in a violation of any provision of any instrument
or agreement then binding upon Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc. or Citigroup Inc., as applicable, or any restriction imposed by
any court or governmental body having jurisdiction over Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc. or Citigroup Inc., as applicable.

In the opinion of Alexia Breuvart, Secretary and General Counsel of
Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc., (i) the terms of the securities offered by this pricing supplement have been duly established
under the indenture and the Board of Directors (or a duly authorized committee thereof) of Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc. has
duly authorized the issuance and sale of such securities and such authorization has not been modified or rescinded; (ii) Citigroup Global
Markets Holdings Inc. is validly existing and in good standing under the laws of the State of New York; (iii) the indenture has been duly
authorized, executed and delivered by Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc.; and (iv) the execution and delivery of such indenture and
of the securities offered by this pricing supplement by Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc., and the performance by Citigroup Global
Markets Holdings Inc. of its obligations thereunder, are within its corporate powers and do not contravene its certificate of incorporation
or bylaws or other constitutive documents. This opinion is given as of the date of this pricing supplement and is limited to the laws
of the State of New York.

Alexia Breuvart, or other internal attorneys with whom she has consulted,
has examined and is familiar with originals, or copies certified or otherwise identified to her satisfaction, of such corporate records
of Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc., certificates or documents as she has deemed appropriate as a basis for the opinions expressed
above. In such examination, she or such persons has assumed the legal capacity of all natural persons, the genuineness of all signatures
(other than those of officers of Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc.), the authenticity of all documents submitted to her or such persons
as originals, the conformity to original documents of all documents submitted to her or such persons as certified or photostatic copies
and the authenticity of the originals of such copies.

In the opinion of Barbara Politi, Associate General Counsel—Capital
Markets of Citigroup Inc., (i) the Board of Directors (or a duly authorized committee thereof) of Citigroup Inc. has duly authorized the
guarantee of such securities by Citigroup Inc. and such authorization has not been modified or rescinded; (ii) Citigroup Inc. is validly
existing and in good standing under the laws of the State of Delaware; (iii) the indenture has

Citigroup Global Markets Holdings Inc.
 

been duly authorized, executed and delivered by Citigroup Inc.; and
(iv) the execution and delivery of such indenture, and the performance by Citigroup Inc. of its obligations thereunder, are within its
corporate powers and do not contravene its certificate of incorporation or bylaws or other constitutive documents. This opinion is given
as of the date of this pricing supplement and is limited to the General Corporation Law of the State of Delaware.

Barbara Politi, or other internal attorneys with whom she has consulted,
has examined and is familiar with originals, or copies certified or otherwise identified to her satisfaction, of such corporate records
of Citigroup Inc., certificates or documents as she has deemed appropriate as a basis for the opinions expressed above. In such examination,
she or such persons has assumed the legal capacity of all natural persons, the genuineness of all signatures (other than those of officers
of Citigroup Inc.), the authenticity of all documents submitted to her or such persons as originals, the conformity to original documents
of all documents submitted to her or such persons as certified or photostatic copies and the authenticity of the originals of such copies.

Contact

Clients may contact their local brokerage representative. Third-party
distributors may contact Citi Structured Investment Sales at (212) 723-7005.

© 2021 Citigroup Global Markets Inc. All rights reserved. Citi
and Citi and Arc Design are trademarks and service marks of Citigroup Inc. or its affiliates and are used and registered throughout the
world.


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Where to invest $ 1,000 right now https://sunsetreefhotel.com/where-to-invest-1000-right-now/ https://sunsetreefhotel.com/where-to-invest-1000-right-now/#respond Tue, 05 Oct 2021 06:25:53 +0000 https://sunsetreefhotel.com/where-to-invest-1000-right-now/ There is more than one way to be successful in investing, but one of the best proven strategies is a simple buy and hold strategy. Be patient, even in the face of brutal market liquidations, wins more often than he loses because stocks tend to rise over the long term. It is important to find […]]]>

There is more than one way to be successful in investing, but one of the best proven strategies is a simple buy and hold strategy. Be patient, even in the face of brutal market liquidations, wins more often than he loses because stocks tend to rise over the long term.

It is important to find good companies that can withstand the rigors of market corrections. Even when stock indexes regularly set new records, savvy investors can still find some great deals to buy now. If you have $ 1,000 to invest that you won’t need for at least three to five years – and preferably decades – the following three actions can reward investors who wait.

Image source: Getty Images.

1. Annaly Capital Management

Mortgage Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) Annaly Capital management (NYSE: NLY) is the leading mortgage REIT (mREIT) and most important by market capitalization. It invests in mortgages and mortgage-backed securities, primarily those guaranteed by the full confidence and credit of the federal government in the event of default.

The so-called agency-backed mortgages, as they originate from Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Ginnie Mae, represent 99% of Annaly’s mortgage portfolio at the end of June. While this protects her business to some extent, one of the biggest risks Annaly faces is that the Federal Reserve is pumping billions of dollars into the economy.

Easy money policies could have a negative impact on the long-term health of the economy and could help fuel the soaring inflation we are experiencing. This is also why Annaly is is experiencing an increase in its constant prepayment rate (CPR), or the percentage of its portfolio that it expects to pay back within one year.

The TPC jumped to 26.4% this quarter from 23.9% in the first quarter. While mREIT expects its long-term CPR to be 12.9%, better than the 18% it predicted a year ago, it is still up from the rate of 11, 8% than he expected two months ago.

Like all REITs, however, Annaly is required to pay out most of its profits in the form of dividends. The company’s dividend currently pays around 10% per year, which is well within its average over the past two decades, as it has returned some $ 20 billion to shareholders in the form of dividends. Look for this mREIT to continue to grow and reward its investors for years to come.

Person receiving the injection from the nurse.

Image source: Getty Images.

2. Novavax

It is clear that one of the main selling points right now for Novavax (NASDAQ: NVAX) is the potential of its vaccine candidate against the NVX-CoV2373 coronavirus, which shows great promise. It provides the biotechnology at clinical stage with a real opportunity to be one of the big three in vaccine production as the company looks forward to completing its regulatory application in the fourth quarter.

While this is a good catalyst for short-term growth, it wouldn’t be a very convincing argument for Novavax to be a long-term part of its portfolio if it were just a one-ride pony. Yet it is a drug development company and it has several therapies in progress. These include the Nanaflu for regular flu, which met all of its primary endpoints in phase 3 testing, and a COVID / flu vaccine mashup, for which it recently began clinical trials.

It’s still just a start with this one, but since each individual vaccine candidate has had positive results so far, there is a good possibility that a combined vaccine could be similarly successful. It is a great advantage to provide a reason for patients to be blocked fewer times. While Moderna also pursues a dual-use vaccine, Novavax could be the first on the market, which could give it a competitive advantage.

Biotech in the development stage is inherently risky, so I wouldn’t go all out on Novavax, but an investment of $ 1,000 as part of a larger portfolio could be a risk worth taking.

Couple sitting with an advisor.

Image source: Getty Images.

3. Successful holdings

FinTech Holdings reached (NASDAQ: UPST) has been public for less than a year (it went public last December), but it’s already making waves. The shares rose 700% in 2021 and rose more than 16 times their offer price of $ 20 per share. The market obviously likes what the company sells.

Uses achieved artificial intelligence (AI) to determine loan eligibility, which is a big difference from traditional lending institutions that use FICO scores or a handful of rule-based criteria to determine loans. The fintech AI channels its decision-making process across more than 1,000 data points, creating a network effect that he says allows him to accurately quantify the real risk. This ends up providing more loan opportunities at lower rates for the borrowers.

The vast majority of its lending business is unsecured personal loans, but it has recently expanded to include auto loans. He sees further growth opportunities with credit cards, mortgages, student loans and home equity lines of credit. Obviously, there is always a risk of default in the Upstart lending process.

Economic downturns like last year’s pandemic-induced recession could cause borrowers to default on their loans. Upstart says that because it is a digitally native transaction, consumers might not see a loan received through its operations as significantly as they see one obtained through a bank or other traditional channel.

Upstart appears capable of mitigating these risks. Revenues jumped 1,018% in the last quarter with commission income 1,300% higher, as loan issuance through its banking partners jumped more than 1,600% from the previous year. This allowed it to achieve operating income of $ 36 million this year, compared to a loss of $ 11 million last year, while adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) closely $ 60 million was a big leap from the $ 3 million loss a year ago.

Upstart isn’t the cheap stock it was when it went public or even a month ago (it’s up 60% since then), so an investor may want to wait for any signs of pulling back. But as part of a larger portfolio, a $ 1,000 stake in this fintech stocks might not be a bad place to start right now.

This article represents the opinion of the author, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a premium Motley Fool consulting service. We are heterogeneous! Challenging an investment thesis – even one of our own – helps us all to think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.


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Fees that added $ 1,000 to the average cost of refinancing are waived https://sunsetreefhotel.com/fees-that-added-1000-to-the-average-cost-of-refinancing-are-waived/ https://sunsetreefhotel.com/fees-that-added-1000-to-the-average-cost-of-refinancing-are-waived/#respond Tue, 05 Oct 2021 06:25:53 +0000 https://sunsetreefhotel.com/fees-that-added-1000-to-the-average-cost-of-refinancing-are-waived/ A commission that made the refinancing backed by the federal government mortgages more expensive during the pandemic as more homeowners tried to take advantage of historically low mortgage rates will end on August 1. Local politicians, realtors and mortgage industry groups were among those who wanted the Federal Housing Finance Agency to waive the refinancing […]]]>

A commission that made the refinancing backed by the federal government mortgages more expensive during the pandemic as more homeowners tried to take advantage of historically low mortgage rates will end on August 1.

Local politicians, realtors and mortgage industry groups were among those who wanted the Federal Housing Finance Agency to waive the refinancing fees on home loans guaranteed by backed mortgage financiers Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. by the government. The 0.5% fee, which took effect in December and intended to cover expected losses from the pandemic, added $ 1,000 or more to the average cost of refinancing.

Kyle Manseau, senior vice president of operations at Allied Mortgage Group, based in Bala Cynwyd, called the elimination of fees “a snap in terms of impact on borrowers and affordability.”

“We had to turn down some borrowers who were about to qualify” for a lower mortgage rate because they had too much debt and couldn’t afford the fees, he said. These homeowners will now be able to take advantage of low rates, he said.

The 30-year fixed mortgage rate was on average 3.11% in 2020, and 2.94% in the first half of 2021, according to a monthly averages analysis by Freddie Mac.

“LEARN MORE: Proposed developments could add 1,300 new homes to help transform Philly’s Callowhill neighborhood

The pandemic policies of the Federal Housing Finance Agency and Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac “were effective enough to warrant a quick conclusion” of the additional charges, the agency said in a statement. Sandra L. Thompson, acting director of the agency, said the elimination of the fees “reinforces the FHFA’s priority of supporting affordable housing while simultaneously protecting the safety and soundness” of government-sponsored businesses.

Greg McBride, chief financial analyst at Bankrate, called the charges “ill-conceived.” That meant borrowers refinancing a $ 300,000 loan would lose $ 20 per month in potential savings, he said.

“The rationale for the fees when they first hit the market was that there was a need to pay for the pandemic-related forbearance and payment relief costs incurred by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac,” McBride said in a statement. “But the punished homeowners were the ones who weren’t at high risk, didn’t need forbearance or payment relief, and in fact reduced their risk to the mortgage market by lowering their rates and prices. monthly payments. He never passed the odor test to begin with.

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac billed the fees to the lenders, who largely passed the fees on to the homeowners. McBride advised clients to seek out lenders as some agents may see an opportunity to continue charging additional fees for refinancing in an attempt to recoup money lost due to competition and low rates.

According to the Mortgage Bankers Association, about 65% of mortgage applications last week were for refinances.

Bob Broeksmit, president and CEO of the association, said the group looked forward to working with the Federal Housing Finance Agency and lawmakers “on ways to continue to protect homeowners and taxpayers while ensuring a liquid and well-regulated mortgage market “.

“With less than 2% of [Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac] with forbearance loans and continued home price appreciation resulting in significant equity for the borrower, fees are not required, ”Broeksmit said in a statement.

“LEARN MORE: Want to go swimming? Rent your neighbor’s pool.

Homeowners nationwide have an average of 68% of their home equity, according to valuation-focused real estate brokerage HouseCanary. That’s about $ 282,000 in equity on a home of $ 414,000, the national average value of a home.

The elimination of federal refinancing fees “is great news for the majority of homeowners with conventional mortgages who have the ability to refinance,” said Robert Humann, director of revenue at Credible.com, a lender market. Given the uneven economic recovery, he said, even small changes in homeowners’ interest rates “can be very significant for family and individual budgets.”

And because Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have started charging the fees in response to concerns about the pandemic, canceling it “means they’re optimistic about the future and the economy rebounding,” he said. -he declares.

Rates will eventually move higher from their all-time lows, he said, so “there is now a very good window of opportunity for people.”

The Philadelphia Inquirer is one of more than 20 news organizations producing Broke in Philly, a collaborative reporting project on solutions to poverty and the city’s push for economic justice. Find all our reports on breakinphilly.org.


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How ex-pastor and wife accumulated 30 rental properties in 2 years https://sunsetreefhotel.com/how-ex-pastor-and-wife-accumulated-30-rental-properties-in-2-years/ https://sunsetreefhotel.com/how-ex-pastor-and-wife-accumulated-30-rental-properties-in-2-years/#respond Tue, 05 Oct 2021 06:25:53 +0000 https://sunsetreefhotel.com/how-ex-pastor-and-wife-accumulated-30-rental-properties-in-2-years/ Camron and Alexis Cathcart sold their house and put a down payment on a rental property. After their first flip, they were able to re-value the house and get cash refinancing. They then use private and hard cash loans to buy more rental homes in a short period of time. Camron and Alexis Cathcart own […]]]>

  • Camron and Alexis Cathcart sold their house and put a down payment on a rental property.
  • After their first flip, they were able to re-value the house and get cash refinancing.
  • They then use private and hard cash loans to buy more rental homes in a short period of time.

Camron and Alexis Cathcart own 30 rental units which they believe generate enough cash to make them financially free.

But before it got there, they lived in Denver, where Camron was pastor in a church. And they lived paycheck to paycheck. Any additional expense that arises would put them in a loop.

Their turning point was a $ 15,000 medical bill they incurred after transporting their daughter to an off-grid hospital when she had an allergic reaction.

“We didn’t know how to pay for it. I remember my wife and I sitting there one night looking at each other and like, that’s just not how we want to live,” Camron said.

Camron has always been interested in the idea of ​​generating passive income through real estate. But the only kind of experience he had was watching HGTV and following real estate influencers.

“We’ve always been interested in this. And so when we decided to go into real estate, I just bought all the books I could buy on real estate investing and listened to all the podcasts that I could listen, ”Camron said. “And that inspired me and motivated me to dive.”

How they started

Camron and Alexis had a big hurdle: real estate in Denver was too expensive. The typical house cost around $ 467,000 at the start of 2019, according to Zillow (it’s now around $ 563,000). So, in June 2019, they sold their house and decided to move to a more affordable city, namely St. Louis, where the typical home value is $ 161,038.

About three months later, they made their first purchase with the money they earned from selling their house. The purchase price for the first home was $ 150,000. They used the profits from their home sold to make the 25% down payment. Their original plan was to spend an additional $ 15,000 on cosmetic upgrades and then rent them out.

But it didn’t turn out as well as they had imagined. Upgrades were priced closer to $ 75,000 if a contractor supported them. Camron said it was an amount that would have put them at a loss. So the couple decided to do it themselves.

“We had a 1 year old daughter. We had a 2 week old daughter at the time. And we took a pack-and-play for our 2 week old daughter,” Camron said. “We moved a queen-size mattress over there and slept on it with our 1 year old daughter. And we stayed there for about a month and painted and laid the floors and refurbished the wardrobes. And we did it all. ourselves. “

Once the improvements were made, they were able to refinance their mortgage based on a higher appraised value of $ 200,000. This allowed them to cash in $ 160,000, or 80% of the appraised value, which the bank covered.

The house was then rented for $ 1,700 per month. Once they covered their monthly payments, which included the mortgage, vacancy, and insurance, they said they were making $ 220 per month in profits.

“Once we have completed this property even though we have done so many things wrong even though we had to leave money tied up in the property which is not what a seasoned real estate investor will tell you. looks like doing, he taught us and motivated us so we could do it, “Cameron said.” And so the second we finished with this property, we were looking for more. “

Scaling up to 30 properties

A month after renting the house, they were able to move on to purchase their next two properties. While they could have used their withdrawal money to make the next purchase, Camron realized during the process that they didn’t have to use their own money to scale.

So they kept their money in the bank as a cushion and used a private cash loan from a family friend to buy the second property and a hard cash loan for the third property. The first loan was for two months, with an interest rate of 12%. The hard money loan was also 12% but had an origination fee of 1%, which amounted to $ 750, based on their loan. And there was an additional 2% on the back end, which was $ 1,500 due at the end of the term.

They repeated the same process and did a cash refinance based on the increase in the value of the home. They then used the money to pay off their initial lenders. The conventional mortgage was then paid using rental income. This is commonly known as the BRRRR method, which means buy, rehabilitate, lease, refinance, and repeat. Three properties in, they said they were earning around $ 1,000 in net profit each month.

“And then we had cash flow rentals with no money out of pocket. My wife and I looked at each other and we were like, ‘This is amazing,’” Camron said. “I don’t know why more people aren’t doing this. And that’s when we were like, ‘This is what we want to do forever.'”

They repeated this process several times until they accumulated 30 cash-generating rental properties in less than two years. Public property documents and registration records viewed by Insider confirmed the size of their wallet.

One of the main things that Camron says really helped them on their journey was attending meetings with like-minded people doing the same thing. He also met another real estate influencer, Sam Primm, who owns 167 rental units himself. Camron and Alexis were able to learn from Primm’s approach to finding a good property and acquiring loans.

Camron recommends that beginners check out free online resources such as Larger pockets, a website that offers educational content, tools for finding deals and a network. He also highly recommends the YouTube channel SamFasterFreedom, that’s what he followed when he started.

Camron said the hardest part is taking the first step. But once that’s settled, the rest is easy. Even if you make mistakes along the way, that’s okay because you learn from them and get better in the next round.

“The most important thing for us was to overcome the fear of the unknown because we had never done it before. And so we had no real estate experience, and we were afraid to do it,” Camron said.


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