Homeownership: The American Dream (Part 3)

In the last two posts, we’ve talked about the American dream and its benefits, but how ready are you to help people make their dreams come true? People contact you because they want something better, but you have to be able to get them through all the nervousness and fear created by the conflicting news in […]

Homeownership: The American Dream (Part 2)

A major benefit to homeownership is community. There is a greater sense of community among homeowners than there is with renters. Studies have shown that homeowners have a higher participation in local volunteer activities; participate more in local political activities and organizations; have higher voting rates; and are more involved in self-help activities (like the […]

Homeownership: The American Dream

As a real estate professional, it’s important to understand, and remind yourself, that homeownership really is the American Dream and your job is to be the guardian and guide to make that dream a reality. This is especially important in a market where some people may be misinformed about the benefits and possibilities of buying […]

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Are Home Prices About to Rise Or Fall?

The big question in real estate today is which direction home values are headed. There is no shortage of opinions on the subject. National Association of Realtors Chief Economist Lawrence Yun, during the National Association of Real Estate Editors conference in Denver a few weeks ago, said: “This time next year, there could be a […]

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Rents On the Rise [INFOGRAPHIC]

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Some Points About Points

One of the more frequent topics discussed between loan officers and borrowers center around discount points. “What are points?” “Should I pay points?” “What about NO points?” And so on… So today, I decided to give you some information and some things to consider: First, a definition- Discount Points are pre-paid interest that allows a […]

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The Cost of Owning a Home (Last 20 Years)

Notes from the report: Prices and mortgage payments are based on the median existing single-family home price, averaged from quarterly data to obtain annual prices. Mortgage payments are calculated using the interest-rate average for that year and assume a 20% downpayment and fixed 30-year term. Rent is the median gross monthly rent from the 2010 […]

The Real Value of Homeownership…It’s Not Monetary

There are numerous media sources reporting the advantages and disadvantages of homeownership. Every expert (from international money managers who have hundreds of billions of dollars of assets under management to local and national real estate experts) has chimed in on the subject. The bottom line is that the percentage of folks that own a home […]

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Harvard University: Echo Boomers to Drive Recovery

The Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University just released their annual State of the Nation’s Housing 2012. In the report, Harvard explained that, starting this year and continuing over the next twenty years, the echo boomers (born in the late 1970s and early 1980s) will drive the housing market. “After several false starts, […]

Sizzle vs. Steak or Sizzle AND Steak?

It’s often so difficult to choose who to work with in a real estate transaction. It’s tough to know the great agents and loan officers. I believe finding the great ones can truly prove to be a gift to your future. What is the “Steak”? To me, that’s the part of the agent or loan […]

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Owning a Home: A Good or Bad Thing?

We love to hear from our readers. Last week, we received this email from Neal Paskvan who is an agent at Baird & Warner, a real estate firm in the Chicago area. “I was at my mother-in-law’s home yesterday and some of her neighbors (a few older couples) started showing me their Chicago tax bills and the average […]

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National Housing Survey [INFOGRAPHIC]

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News Flash: Lenders Are Busy

We live in a post-subprime world…and with that, come some good things and some not-so-good things. Much of the “bad” in mortgages has been cleansed (bad loan products and many of the unqualified “professionals”). And that is good. But another consequence of the past five or so years is the shear loss of people who […]

Buying a Home? What About Greece? The Election?

Our founder, Steve Harney, occasionally asks to do a personal post on what he sees as important to our industry. Today is one of those days. Enjoy! – The KCM Crew As I travel across the country speaking with thousands of agents a month, I am always amazed at the first two questions I am […]

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National Headlines and Local Real Estate Markets

Do National Real Estate Headlines Actually Influence Local Markets? This is a question we are frequently asked. Local real estate professionals know the best information for either buyers or sellers is local market data. However, we must realize that what happens in the national real estate market dramatically impacts regional and local markets. For example: […]

Green Mortgages

With spring in full bloom and the landscape at its peak greenness, I was moved to share my thoughts on how smart financing can help the environment. Beyond the paperless mortgage that can save trees, I am talking about two loan products that can finance energy efficient improvements to your home. And both can be […]

New Single Family Homes: 2011 vs 2006

The Census Bureau just released their findings on new single family residential construction built in 2011. Here is a table comparing  last year to 2006: The KCM CrewWe believe every family should feel confident when buying & selling a home. KCM helps real estate professionals reach these families & enables the agent to simply & […]

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Everybody Calm Down! The Sky Is NOT Falling

After weeks of continuous good news about the housing market, the naysayers jumped all over this month’s Pending Sales Report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR). Pending sales were down from the previous month. This must be proof that all that other positive news on real estate should be ignored – right? WRONG!! It […]

The Emotion Driving the Housing Recovery

This blog often discusses the data behind the housing market. Today, we want to address the emotion behind the market comeback; a belief in homeownership which is still alive and well in this country. A study conducted by Coldwell Banker and psychotherapist Dr. Robi Ludwig found that owning a home is still very much a […]

The Unspoken Appraisal Problem

As lenders, buyers, sellers, and real estate agents, the big unknown after a deal is put together is the appraisal. A proper pre-approval can smooth out the other components of the mortgage approval (income, assets, and credit- even title issues can be uncovered before the contracts are signed), so the only “unknown” is the appraisal. […]

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Home Prices: It’s About Supply & Demand

The real estate market continues to heat up as we head into the summer. Will this increase in demand equate to an increase in home prices? That depends. Remember, the price of any item is determined by the supply of and demand for that item at any point in time. Let’s look at the facts […]

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Another Positive Report!

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The Top 5 Reasons Deals Fall Apart

I’ve been told that 29% of all contracts signed never make it to the closing table- that nearly 3 in 10 transactions where a buyer and seller have come to terms (no easy feat in this market) fall apart. In a more normal market, I would say 90% of deals close. So, I figured if […]

The Lesson of Megan

This upcoming weekend, my daughter Megan, the eldest of our four children is graduating from Binghamton University. When these type of life events happen, I like to reflect upon both “How did we get here?” and “What are the best actions I can take to make sure things stay on the right path?” As I […]

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Sales Are Up. Prices Still Have a Way To Go.

We believe the housing market is recovering. We believe that sales will be robust through the rest of the year. However, we also believe that the increase in demand will not impact prices in a big way as we think there will also be an increase in the supply of homes coming to the market. […]