Interest Rate Forecasting in a Volatile Time

This past weekend, I saw a decent movie… Hot Tub Time Machine and one of the running themes in the movie reminded me of the shift in the bond market last week (and what our immediate future looks like). Without giving away the whole movie, I want to explain…. In the movie Crispin Glover plays […]

The Fed’s Report Card in Real Estate

“Alas, all the Fed’s purchases and all the government’s men can’t put the residential real estate market together again.” – from a column by Caroline Baum in Business Week In yesterday’s blog, I covered the reasons the administration’s new modification program could make sense. Today, I want to look at the other side of the […]

New Modifications: Nonsense or Does It Make Sense?

Last week ended with a somewhat surprising announcement that the administration has decided to offer an addition to their modification program called Making Home Affordable Program Enhancements to Offer More Help for Homeowners. The new enhancements look to give relief to people who are unemployed and those approaching 20% negative equity in their homes. Why […]

KCM Weekend Library Links

Interested in knowing what’s been going on in the real estate market as of late?  Check out our KCM Weekend Library Links below, and see all the real estate articles that we’ve shared over our Blog, Twitter and Facebook the past week.  There is a lot of information floating around out there, so we’ve done […]

Pricing a House in Today’s Real Estate Market

A question that I am often asked is how you correctly price a home in today’s rapidly evolving market. The word that comes to my mind first when thinking about pricing is compelling. If you are looking to sell a home anytime this year, I believe you must make the price so compelling that a […]

5 Good Reasons to Sell Your House NOW!

In Monday’s blog, 5 Good Reasons to Buy That Home NOW!, I discussed why now was the best time to jump in and buy a home. Today I want to discuss why now is also the time to sell a house you own. It might seem contradictory to claim that it is the best time […]

The Countdown to March 31st

There’s only a few days left until The Fed exits the Mortgage Back Securities Purchase market…..and there is no shortage of opinions of what that means for mortgage rates available to consumers. In one camp are those who believe that when the only purchaser of any product (whether they be mortgages or pencils) decides to […]

5 Good Reasons to Buy that Home NOW!!

If you are considering whether or not to purchase a home in the near future, let us discuss why this might be the optimal time to do so. There are five excellent reasons to buy a home now instead of waiting until later. Let’s go over them quickly in this post. 1.) The Homebuyer’s Tax […]

Foreclosures Easing Up? Not Exactly

There has been much conversation about how distressed properties will impact home prices as we move into the second half of 2010. And it appears that no matter how much data is available, there still remains a feeling that the situation is improving. People look at the foreclosure filings and say things are in fact […]

Professors Case and Shiller: Unplugged

In real estate, when we hear the names Case and Shiller we immediately think of the Case-Shiller Price Index. The monthly index is well respected and oft times quoted by the leading economic news sources in the country. From the Wall Street Journal to the Washington Post, from CNBC to Bloomberg News, when residential home […]


Bedside Manner or Skilled Hands?

Imagine for a moment that you have been told that you need surgery.  You have a choice between two surgeons: The first has a wonderful disposition.  He holds your hand as he explains the procedure, the risks, the rewards, and the likelihood of success.  He may even shed a tear as you deal with the […]

Interest Rates in the Post Fed-Purchase World

Many experts believe that 30 year mortgage rates will rise quickly and dramatically once the Fed ends their policy of purchasing mortgage-backed-securities at the end of this month. However, as we get closer to the Fed’s exit there seems to be debate as to how much of an impact it will have. On one side […]

Behind on Your Mortgage? This May Help

After receiving an overwhelming response to Friday’s post, I realized two things. First, more people than I thought are willing to admit that they need help with their mortgage payment. Second, there are many people out there who are willing to help. Both realizations were great news to me. Usually when I post on the […]

An Open Letter from Steve Harney

Today’s blog is going to be different than my normal posts. Usually I give you a story in the news and my insights on the subject. Today I am going to talk about me, because I think my story can help others avoid making mistakes regarding their home. There are many families struggling to make […]

Can Option ARMs Bear the Weight of Interest Rates?

In a previous post, we talked about our concerns regarding the number of families in 2010 that were going to have their Option ARM mortgages resetting or recasting. The term ‘reset’ deals with the change of interest rate. The term ‘recast’ deals with the actual change in the mortgage amount. In either case their mortgage payment could be affected. […]

It Is Hard to Buy a House If You Don’t Have a Job

One of the biggest challenges to a housing recovery is the current rate of unemployment. It is obvious that a person without a job can’t get a mortgage. An additional impact is that many people who are currently employed are afraid to commit to buying a home because of the uncertainty of the job they […]


What is Today’s Luxury Buyer Thinking?

Whenever you are selling anything, it helps to have an idea what your customer is thinking. I had the opportunity to attend a session at the Luxury Portfolio Summit in Las Vegas which covered the findings of the Survey of Affluence and Wealth in America 2010 produced by American Express Publishing and the Harrison Group. […]

Is the JUMBO Market Loosening up?

There has been an improvement in the interest rates available for Jumbo Mortgages, and that is encouraging news.  In addition, some lenders are even lowering the amount of down payment required in the Jumbo loan programs- which is even more good news. Let’s begin with some basics. Jumbo mortgages are those mortgages which exceed the […]

KCM Weekend Library Links

We all know that if you want to keep current on what’s going on in anything, you need to stay on top of what is being published by the people in that field.  That is why every weekend we bring together all the articles (from a myriad of sources) together in order to keep people […]

FHA 203(k) – Understanding Its Real Value – Part 2

Here is Part 2 of Skip Schenker’s two part series on understanding the FHA 203(k) and its real value. In case you missed yesterday’s, here is a link to Part 1. How Is the Appraisal Completed? The appraiser is given a detailed report from either a licensed contractor [for the “Streamline” 203(k)]; or from an […]

FHA 203(k) – Understanding Its Real Value – Part 1

Many readers have requested a post on the FHA 203k program. I was lucky to meet Skip Schenker, a national expert and instructor on the subject, while we were both speaking at a conference in Dallas last month. I asked him to share some of his thoughts. Here is his contribution. – Steve Harney The […]

Puzzled Banks Now Buying Time

Often I get asked why banks are not foreclosing on borrowers even after they do not make mortgage payments for many months. Actually, the answer is quite logical. To fully appreciate the banks position we must understand that the current housing market is like a Rubik’s cube. Every action the bank takes creates a challenge […]

Has It Become Stupid NOT to Walk Away?

Yesterday I posted on the latest Negative Equity Report from First American Core Logic. In that post, I quoted the report as saying that one of the ramifications of negative equity is that it is: a major factor in changing homeowners’ default behavior. That change in behavior could take on many different forms. One of […]


I’m Fine, It’s My House That’s Drowning.

First American Core Logic just released their Fourth Quarter 2009 Negative Equity Data Report last week. Negative equity, often referred to as “underwater” or “upside down,” means that borrowers owe more on their mortgage than their homes are worth. The reason this report is so important is that studies have shown that there is a direct […]