Real Estate Auctions
6 views | +0 today
Follow
Your new post is loading...
Your new post is loading...
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

Short Sale : Writing A Letter Of Hardship

A short sale is when a property is sold for less than its remaining mortgage principal balance, and executed as a way for both the existing homeowner and mortgage lender to reduce their respective losses. Typically, although not always, short sales are reserved for situations of extreme financial hardship; just prior a bank beginning foreclosure proceedings. Short sales are not automatic, however. Homeowners must often prove the merits a short sale to their lender, which often involves documenting that selling the home for less than its worth is the best and most viable option for all parties involved. The short sale process starts with a letter of hardship. To prove your short sale worthiness to the bank, you ll be asked to submit a cover letter which explains your hardship, and to provide full financial disclosure. You will also need your original purchase contract, a balance sheet of your income and expenses, your asset statements and proof of income, and two years of federal tax r
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

FHFA: Home Prices Rise 0.30 Percent in January

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) reported that home prices rose by a seasonally-adjusted rate of 0.30 percent in January, and were 5.10 percent higher as compared to home prices in January 2014. FHFA oversees Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and its home price report is based on sales of homes financed by mortgages owned or backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Month- to- Month FHFA Home Prices Mixed Month to month home price data was mixed for January. Home prices ranged from -0.40 percent in the Middle and South Atlantic census divisions to +2.30 percent in the East South Central census division. Month-to month readings are considered more volatile than year-over-year home price readings. Year-over-year readings for all nine U.S. census divisions were positive and ranged from a 1.70 percent increase in the Middle Atlantic division to an increase of 8.20 percent in the Pacific division. This suggests that overall, home prices are gaining, but slowly. Commerce Department: New Home
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – March 30, 2015

Last week’s economic reports included reports on new and existing home sales and FHFA’s monthly home price index for properties associated with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac mortgages. The details: New Home Sales Surge, Existing Home Sales Drop According to the Department of Commerce, new home sales rose in January to a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 539,000 which exceeded the expected rate of 455,000 sales and the revised figure of 500,000 sales of new homes in December 2014. This was a 7.80 percent increase over December’s figure and was the first time since 2008 that new home sales met or exceeded the benchmark of 500,000 sales for two consecutive months. Sales of new homes were close to 25 percent higher than for January 2015, and analysts said that more jobs and relatively low mortgage rates could boost the traditionally busy spring and summer home buying season. The National Association of Realtors® reported that sales of previously owned homes rose by 1.20 percent in Fe
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

FOMC Statement: Federal Reserve Discusses Rate Increase, But Concerned About Growth

The post-meeting statement of the Federal Reserve’s Federal Open Market Committee indicated that while the Fed is considering raising its target rate as early as June, the agency is in no hurry to cast anything in cement. The statement cited stronger labor markets and low unemployment rates as encouraging, but noted that FOMC members remain concerned about economic growth due to low inflation failing to meet the FOMC goal of two percent. 15 of 17 FOMC members said that they expected interest rates to increase before year-end, but downwardly revised forecasts of how high rates might be raised. Committee members further expressed concerns about economic growth and inflation, which is likely to impact Fed decisions about raising interest rates or not. Economic Growth, Inflation Slower than Expected The FOMC statement noted that economic growth has “moderated somewhat,” which was less enthusiastic than in January, when the Fed noted solid economic growth. The Fed revised its project
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

Understanding the Key Factors That Affect Your Mortgage Interest Rate

When you initially start shopping for a home mortgage, you may be drawn to advertisements for ultra-low interest rates. These may be rates that seem too good to be true, and you may gladly contact the lender or mortgage company to complete your loan application. However, the unfortunate truth is that all too often, mortgage applicants are unpleasantly surprised and even disheartened to learn that they do not qualify for the advertised interest rate. By learning more about the factors that influence your interest rate, you may be able to structure you loan in a more advantageous way. Your Credit Rating One of the most important factors that influence an interest rate is your credit score. Lenders have different credit score requirements, but most have a tiered rating system. Those with excellent credit scores qualify for the best interest rate, and good credit scores may qualify for a slightly higher interest rate. Because of this, you may consider learning more about your credit score
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

Outgrown Your Current Home? 5 Easy Ways to Tell if It’s Time to Upgrade

Your home is your castle, your own little piece of the American dream. But lately, your little corner of the world has been feeling cramped and you find yourself eyeing those larger homes. Is it time to pull up stakes and move on from your starter home? Growing Family If you’ve added to your family in recent years, you may have more bodies than bedrooms. A two-bedroom home may have been a great idea when it was just you and your spouse, but with two kids, you’re starting to have turf wars over the play area. Overflowing With Stuff From an overflowing toy chest to closets packed so tightly with shoes and coats you risk an avalanche every time you open the door, your home just doesn’t have the space to keep all your things. You may have even had to move some things off-site, spending money to rent storage space to keep that antique dresser your grandmother left you or the set of state spoons you carefully collected during your college years. No Rest For The Weary You’d love to s
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

3 Inexpensive Makeovers That Will Boost Your Home’s Appeal to Young Buyers

When preparing to list your home for sale, you may be wondering who will buy your home. While this initial thought may be one spurred by curiosity, the fact is that understanding who your target audience is and what they are looking for in a home may help you to position your home to sell more quickly and for a better price. If you have determined that there are many younger buyers moving into your area, you may want to make a few changes that will add appeal to this target audience. While you could spend tens of thousands of dollars or more completing a home makeover, there are a few budget-minded ideas that you may consider. Add Color to Molding and Trim One of the hottest trends in home décor and interior design is to get rid of the standard white trim and molding and to add color to these areas. Neutral hues like grays and browns have universal appeal, or you can give your space a more contemporary look by adding black to these areas. Generally, you will want a more neutral color
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

What Factors Determine Your Home’s Resale Value?

There are several factors that will help you determine the value of your home when you want to sell it. Location, condition, layout, upgrades, and events relating to your home are all important when selling your home. It’s All About Location Anyone in real estate will tell you location, location, location is the first thing to consider when buying real estate. If your home is on a busy street, it’s going to be harder to sell unless someone is looking for that exact location. If a buyer is looking to have a business inside the home, then having more exposure could be important. However, for a family, the most sought after location is in a cul-de-sac or dead-end street where traffic is kept to a minimum. Your Home’s Condition Is Important The home you are selling must be in excellent condition to ensure you get top dollar. Buyers are primarily looking for a home that is in move-in condition. If it needs painting, new flooring, a new roof, or new plumbing, it isn’t as desirable a
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

The Thriving Grand Rapids Real Estate Market

Over the course of time, the real estate market has seen its fair share of ups and downs. Despite the continual changes of the economy, property sales always find a way to thrive. This is especially true right now in the Grand Rapids Real Estate market. Wise investors are taking advantage of the many opportunities that are making their way onto the scene.
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

FHFA House Price Index Rises for 14th Consecutive Quarter

According to the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), U.S. home prices rose by 1.40 percent for the fourth quarter of 2014 and were up by 0.80 percent month-to-month from November. The seasonally adjusted FHFA House Price Index measures purchase transactions for homes connected with mortgages owned by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. FHFA also reported that home prices rose 4.9 percent year-over –year from the fourth quarter of 2013 to the fourth quarter of 2014. FHFA Chief Economist Andrew Leventis described the report for the last quarter of 2014 as “relatively strong” and also cited low inventories of available homes and improving labor markets as contributing to home price growth. FHFA House Price Index Identifies Significant Trends FHFA’s expanded house price data, which adds data from county records and the Federal Housing Administration, to the FHFA House Price Index, indicated that home prices grew by 1.30 percent in the fourth quarter; year-over-year home prices grew by
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

.Case-Shiller: Rising Home Prices Boost Inflation

December home prices rose by 0.10 percent according to the Case-Shiller 20-City Home Price Index. The composite report tracks home prices in 20 U.S. cities. December’s results boosted home prices by 4.50 percent year-over-year, which is approximately double the inflation rate for 2014. Analysts note that the overall reading was less significant than individual readings for the 20 cities included in the report. Regional Home Prices Suggest Disparity in Housing Recovery The top three month-to-month home price increases for cities surveyed were led by Miami, Florida with an increase of 0.70 percent, Home prices rose by 0.50 percent in Denver, Colorado, and by 0.50 percent in San Francisco, California. Chicago, Illinois posted a month-to-month loss of -0.90 percent; Cleveland, Ohio followed with a loss of -0.50 percent, and Las Vegas, Nevada and Minneapolis, Minnesota were tied with monthly losses of -0.30 percent for home prices. Winter weather conditions and the holidays can dampen de
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – March 2, 2015

Last week provided several housing-related reports including New Home Sales, Pending Home Sales and Existing Home Sales reports. Case-Shiller and FHFA also released data on home prices. The details: Sales of Pre-Owned Homes Hit Nine-Month Low According to the National Association of Realtors® (NAR), Sales of pre-owned homes dropped to a seasonally-adjusted annual reading 4.82 million sales in January as compared to an estimated reading of 4.95 million sales and December’s reading of 5.07 million existing homes sold. This was a month-to-month decline of 4.90 percent, and represented the lowest reading for existing home sales in nine months. Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the NAR, said that a short supply of available homes coupled with rising prices contributed to the drop in sales. While mortgage rates remain near historical lows, higher home prices and short supply are negatively impacting affordability; this puts home buyers who rely on mortgages in competition with cash buyer
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

Fed Not in a Hurry to Raise Rates

Minutes of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting held January 27 and 28 were released on Wednesday. According to the minute’s transcript, it appears that Fed policymakers are in no hurry to raise the target federal funds rate. Members said that raising rates too soon could swamp the strengthening economy and expressed concerns that changing the committee’s current “patient” stance on rising rates could cause more harm than good to current economic conditions. FOMC members discussed the Fed’s use of the word “patient” in its guidance, and said that dropping the word could incorrectly suggest that the Fed is planning to act sooner than later on raising the Fed’s target interest rates, and could result in “undesirably tight” financial conditions. While a majority of members agreed on protecting current economic conditions by raising rates too soon, member viewpoints varied on which conditions would support the first rate hike. Target Inflation Rate of Two P
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

Questions First-Time Home Buyers Should Ask

First-time home buyer questionsNationwide, mortgage rates are low and home prices remain relatively low, too. This combination, plus rising rents, is pushing renters in some cities toward first-time homeownership. Buying your first home can be exciting, but you should also do your research to make sure that you ask the proper questions of the process, and make the best choices for yourself and your household. For example, recommended questions for first-time buyers to ask home sellers include : What major repairs have been made to your home? Although standard disclosure forms are supposed to provide information regarding past damage and renovation to the property, there are occasionally repairs that are omitted or otherwise forgotten. Be proactive and ask pointed questions about the roof, the foundation, and the electrical system. Some home issue have a way of resurfacing many years later and it s best to know in advance. To which school district does the home belong? As a first-time
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

Considering a Reverse Mortgage Loan? Here’s What You Need to Know

Many seniors are looking for a great way to improve their financial situation. Retirement or semi-retirement can be difficult due to the need to live on a fixed income. Some may have been unable to save enough in their working years, or their accounts may have been hit hard by stock market fluctuations. Still others are feeling the effects of inflation and the rising costs of medical care and general living expenses. If you are like many other seniors, you may not have a huge cash reserve available in your bank account, but you may have a sizable nest egg in your home. The fact is that you can tap into that equity without selling your home or taking on a mortgage payment when you apply for a reverse mortgage. What Is A Reverse Mortgage? A reverse mortgage is a unique type of loan that utilizes the current equity in your home and allows you to make regular withdrawals from that equity. Rather than you making a payment to a lender, the lender pays the funds to you. The terms of the mort
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

How To Maintain Adequate Homeowners Insurance Coverage

Maintain adequate homeowners insurance coverageIn the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, stories have emerged of homeowners whose hazard insurance coverage was too low to cover the damage to their respective properties. Unfortunately, this scenario is common among U.S. homeowners, and is not just limited to damage from natural disasters. Homeowners nationwide are often woefully under-insured against catastrophe in its many forms. Whether you re buying a home, or own one already, revisit your hazard insurance policy choices and be sure that your bases are covered. Here are four common components of a homeowners insurance policy : Dwelling/Building Coverage Look for the amount listed under this section and divide it by the square footage of your home. Talk to your insurance agent, your real estate agent and perhaps even your contractor to determine whether your current coverage is sufficient. Be sure to consider lot size and building materials. Liability Protection What if a person is injure
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

Variable-rate vs. Fixed-rate Mortgages – Which is Better for Your Situation?

When applying for a new home mortgage, many loan applicants initially consider applying for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage. This is perhaps the most common and traditional type of mortgage available. It allows you to enjoy the opportunity to pay for your home over the course of 30 years with equal payments every month. While this is one option, there are actually multiple choices available. For some applications, a variable rate mortgage may be more advantageous. If you are comparing the options between a fixed rate and a variable rate mortgage, you may consider a few points. A Lower Initial Interest Rate When you compare the fixed rate and variable rate options, you will immediately notice that the variable rates have a lower start rate. The interest rate will influence the mortgage payment amount. Because of this, you will benefit from a lower initial mortgage payment with a variable rate. However, it is important to understand that the interest rate on a variable rate mortgage will
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – March 23, 2015

Last week’s events included the National Association of Home Builder’s Housing Market Index, which fell to its lowest reading since last summer. Other news included reports on housing starts and building permits, the FOMC meeting statement and Fed Chair Janet Yellen’s press conference. Home Builder Confidence Falls, Building Permits Rise The NAHB Wells Fargo Housing Market Index fell by two points for a reading of 53 in March. The expected reading was 57. Analysts said that this proves that lower mortgage rates and steady job growth aren’t fueling housing markets as expected. NAHB chief economist David Crowe also cited supply chain issues such as a shortage of available lots, labor shortages and tight mortgage underwriting standards. Home builders remain optimistic that as labor markets continue to improve and more home buyers enter the market during the traditional spring and summer buying season, that builder confidence will also grow. The Department of Commerce reported tha
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

Taking an Extended Vacation? Renting Your Home to Long-Term Tenants is an Option

Taking an extended vacation can seem like a dream come true. You may have plans to spend your summer in Europe, your winter in the Caribbean or even a full year or longer exploring a different region. If you have the luxury of taking an extended vacation, you may have your sights set on adventure and relaxation. However, you also need to consider the practicality of leaving behind your home and belongings for an extended period of time. A great idea is to take on a long-term tenant for your home, and there are a number of benefits that you can enjoy by doing this. Generate Income From Your Home When you lease your home to a long-term tenant, you will be able to generate a monthly income from the property. This can be used to pay for your mortgage, property insurance and other related expenses while you are gone. Essentially, it can make it more affordable for you to take your trip for an extended period of time. Decrease Your Maintenance Expenses When you are away from your home, you
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

The Ultimate Guide to Surviving the Mortgage Process

If you have heard nightmarish stories from friends and family members about the home mortgage application process, you are not alone. In fact, some of these stories may have even been a reason why you have held out on moving forward with your plans to purchase your first-home. While some have indeed had unpleasant experiences, the fact is that there is nothing to be intimidated about. When you follow a few easy tips, you can streamline the process and navigate through it with minimal effort or stress. Find The Right Mortgage Professional To Work With One of the best steps that you can take when applying for a mortgage is to choose a friendly, knowledgeable and experienced mortgage professional. Do not be afraid to ask the loan officer how long he or she has been working in the field and with the current company. They want your business, and they should be more than willing to answer your questions. More than that, pay attention to how easy it is to get ahold of them and how quickly th
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

Hw to See if You Can Afford a Second Home

The decision to buy a second home may be made for a number of reasons. For example, you may have a destination where you and your family love to spend free time in, and you may be ready to settle into your own space in this location. You may considering the tax benefits associated with a second home, and you may even have plans to live in the home as your primary residence after you retire. While there may be numerous benefits associated with the purchase of your second home, you may be concerned about how affordable it will be for you to manage the additional expense of a second mortgage payment. Consider All Of The New Expenses Related To The Purchase A second mortgage payment may be a rather major expense to take on, but it is not the only expense related to buying the new property. In order to ensure that the mortgage payment is affordable, you need to ensure that all aspects of secondary home ownership are affordable for you. For example, consider HOA dues, repairs and maintenanc
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

5 Spring Decorating Ideas To Spruce Up Your Home

With spring just around the corner, now is a good time to begin decorating your home for the upcoming season. Whether you enjoy chic decorations that are budget-friendly or easy changes to create a fresh look, below are five quick ideas to brighten up your home for the season. Add a Pop of Color Spring is a good time to add color to your décor. Switch your tablecloth in the dining room for one with lighter colors. Cover decorative pillows with pastel pillowcases to lighten a room. Adding decorative centerpieces to tables that contain a pop of spring colors is also a simple way to get your home ready for spring. Find A Spring Wreath Wreaths are usually hung during the Christmas holiday, but other seasonal wreaths are becoming a popular trend. You can purchase a floral wreath to hang on your front door or get creative and make a spring wreath using flowers, plastic eggs, fabric or a variety of other materials. Place Flowers Around The House Flowers are perfect to use when decorating fo
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

3 Tips to Pay off Your Mortgage Faster

If your personal budget is similar to many other people’s budgets, your home mortgage payment is by far the largest expense that you pay for each month. In fact, this payment may easily account for 20 or 25 percent or more of your take-home income. Understandably, you may be focused on trying to pay this expense off early. By focusing on this payment, you can build equity and may be able to achieve financial security more quickly. You simply have to find a way to put aside a bit of extra cash regularly so that you can make extra payments, and there are few easy ways that you can consider. Use Your Tax Refund First, if you are one of the many taxpayers who receives a refund each year, consider setting aside some or all of this refund to reduce your outstanding mortgage balance. Some taxpayers may have such a sizable refund that it can account for two or more mortgage payments each year. However, even a few hundred dollars extra put toward your principal balance will save you a consid
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

3 Ways To Purchase Foreclosed Properties

The process of buying a foreclosed home is slightly different from the process of buying a non-foreclosure home. If you want to invest in foreclosures, therefore, it is important to understand the different ways by which to purchase a foreclosed home. There are three main ways to buy a foreclosed home. Buying before the auction Some delinquent homeowners may want to sell their homes before facing an actual foreclosure.In this instance, the homeowner, in agreement with the lender, agrees to sell the home for less than the amount owed on the mortgage.This is called a short sale. Short sales are pre-foreclosures , of sorts. By broadening your home search to include short sales, you can identify homes that may be sold at a discount. Buying at the auction Another way by which you can invest in foreclosure homes is by buying the home at auction. From area to area, the legal requirements for the sale of a foreclosed home at auction may differ. If you plan to buy at auction, you ll want to be
more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by David Brooks
Scoop.it!

How To Install A Water Heater Jacket

A simple way to save money is to improve your home s energy efficiency rating. For example, homeowners can save up to 9 percent per year on water heating costs simply by installing a water heater jacket. Water heater jackets are easy to install. Here s how you do it : First, before you go shopping, check whether your water heater is a gas model, or an electric one. Then, write down your water heater model number. Most water heater jackets list compatible water heater models on their respective packaging. Look for jackets with a value of R-8 . Then, as you start your project, be sure to turn the water heater off. Water heater jackets are pre-cut to make installation simple. Remove the outer packaging and separate the jacket s pre-cut pieces. There will likely be a top, a body and belts. You ll want to have plenty of duct tape on hand, too. Next, shape the top of the water heater jacket to fit your appliance. Trim around the pipes which enter the water heater, then tape the areas closed
more...
No comment yet.