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Can Rates Go Down Any More?

It appears they CAN and that they WILL. The buzzwords today are Quantitative Easing. It is another of the weapons the Fed has at its disposal to impact the economy, as a whole, and interest rates in particular. Let me explain. In so far as the Fed has already lowered the rates they charge to […]

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The New Foreclosure Mess: A Possible Silver Lining

There is no doubt that the current foreclosure mess is creating havoc in the housing industry. Listings are being removed from the market and many closings are being delayed and, in some cases, even canceled. No one is sure what the full impact of the situation will be or when it will be rectified. However, there […]

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The New Foreclosure Mess: What It Means To You

Last week, we reported on the beginnings of the mess the banks created by using ‘robo-signers’ to fast track foreclosure filings. We detailed the challenge and said that “the process of foreclosing may grind to a screeching halt”. And, it has. Bank of America has announced that it has halted foreclosures in all fifty states. […]

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Where to Rent and Where to Buy

10/11– Here is Forbes’ take on both Zillow and Trulia’s Rent vs Buy calculations. (h/t Cliff Freeman)   ORIGINAL POST We have done many posts on the benefits of homeownership believing that owning a home remains a major piece of the American Dream. We have also posted on the pure financial benefits of purchasing a home. […]

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Luxury Real Estate Market Gaining Momentum

The news about the housing market still seems to be dominated by stories of pending disaster. Headlines report that some believe that there is a 25% chance of a ‘double-dip’ in home prices. We can understand the concern. The last Existing Home Sales Report by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) showed that sales were […]

Your Home Is An Investment. Treating It Like One?

There is a pendulum when we look at real estate. On one side is Real Estate as an Investment. On the other is Real Estate as a Home – a place to raise a family, have the pride of homeownership, etc. In the house price frenzy of a few years ago, people looked at their […]

If HE Says It Is Time To Buy a Home, BUY A HOME!

“If you don’t own a home, buy one. If you own one home, buy another one. And if you own two homes, buy a third and lend your relatives the money to buy one.” – John Paulson 9/27/2010 WOW! That’s a powerful statement. There is no question that John Paulson is a bull when it comes […]

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Forget Headlines. Get To the Core of the Story

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) will release their Pending Home Sales report today. The report will generate headlines and those headlines will seem in conflict with each other. The reason for the confusion is that there will be nuances within the report. In order to truly understand the report, we must peel away the headlines […]

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Taking the “Horror” Out of Selling and Buying a Home

The following blog post was written by Joanne Mills, a Keeping Current Matters subscriber on Long Island, NY. We enjoyed her post and received permission to share it with you, our readers.  – The KCM Crew First, what is a home? This is what you will find in the dictionary. Home – noun 1. a […]

Who Actually Works On Your Mortgage File?

One thing I have learned is that many customers meet with a loan officer and fill out an application and then they feel like they enter a black hole. They don’t know “what happens next” or “who all these people are”. Today, I thought I might shed some light on the typical roles and responsibilities […]

Is It Time To Buy a Second/Vacation Home?

All you read in the news today is that real estate prices have fallen dramatically in many areas. However, are lower prices a chance for purchasers to buy that second/vacation/retirement home they always dreamed of owning? We want to look at the second home buyer and see whether the current market presents a tremendous opportunity […]

Why Did Your Parents Buy Their Home?

We are in an interesting time in real estate. Every decision we make about our housing options seems to be tied to money. Articles are written explaining that prices will still drop and therefore buying a home makes no sense. Some people have judged whether living in their home over the last ‘x’ amount of […]

Look at the Cost, Not Just the Price

An interesting thing happened last week. For the first time since April, the interest rate for a 30 year fixed mortgage increased two weeks in a row. It didn’t increase much (.05%) but it was news because it had been so long since rates have ticked up. It will be interesting to see what the Fed reports […]

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Be Prepared For Some Confusion Tomorrow!

9/23 – As expected, the Existing Home Sales Report shows a 7.6% increase in month-over-month sales and a 19% decrease in sales year-over-year. No real news here.   ORIGINAL POST The National Association of Realtors (NAR) will release the Existing Home Sales Report tomorrow. Be prepared for the confusion when the news media starts announcing […]

Who Is Saying It is Time To Buy a Home? EVERYONE!

“Enough with the doom and gloom about homeownership.” – WSJ 9/16/2010 WOW! If that quote was attributed to the National Association of Realtors or the National Association of Home Builders, it would have been quickly dismissed. However, it was the Wall Street Journal that was calling for the end of the ‘doom and gloom’ talk […]

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Time Magazine: As Wrong Today as They Were in 2005

Time Magazine’s cover story last week was titled Rethinking Homeownership: Why Owning a Home May No Longer Make Economic Sense. The webpage title for the online version of the article was After Housing Bubble, the Dark Side of Homeowner Dreams. The actual article title on the internet was The Case Against Homeownership. It is rather […]

4 Loan Programs You NEED To Know About

While a vast majority of all mortgage products are fairly “vanilla”, there are a couple of other flavors of loans that, if you meet the criteria, may help you get approved, or may help make your purchase more affordable monthly, or lessen your need for as much cash to close. Recognize that each of these […]

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All We Said Was…10,000 Houses Will Sell Today

Yesterday, we wrote a blog post about headlines that may result from the next few monthly reports issued by National Association of Realtors (NAR). The post addressed the fact that there were extenuating circumstances (the homebuyers’ tax credit) that would give the perception that demand had fallen off the charts. The analysis given explains why we […]

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Today, you need an INDUSTRY LEADER

We are at a very interesting crossroad in the real estate industry. Whether you are buying or selling a home, you should not deal with ‘just anyone’ in real estate. You need someone who can explain what is happening in the market and help you understand your options. You want an expert, an industry leader. […]

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4 Ideas To Spur Home Sales

A new Home Buyer Tax Credit is unlikely.  Interest rates can’t go much lower.  So, how can a market where buyers who are afraid of losing their jobs begin to digest the massive quantity of current and shadow inventory without another major correction in pricing?  Here are four “outside the box” ideas that deserve consideration: […]

Financial Planning: 5 Reasons To Buy a House Today

Steve Harney has posted about the importance of homeownership often on this blog. He sees it as part of the American Dream and feels that there is a value in owning your own home that far transcends any economic advantages. He has done a great job of making his case. However, we want to look at […]

Our Opinion: No New Tax Credit Coming

Reuters report 9/1: “It is not high on anyone’s list that we have heard. We have not heard Congress talking about renewing it.”  – HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan regarding a possible renewal of the homebuyer tax credit.   ORIGINAL POST Rumors are running wild that the administration is considering a new tax credit for homebuyers. We don’t want […]

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Future Home Prices: Expectations from the Experts

MacroMarkets has assembled a very distinguished panel of over 100 economists, investment strategists, and housing market analysts who are surveyed every month regarding their 5-year expectations for future home prices in the U.S. The report is the Home Price Expectations Survey. Their purpose for this undertaking? We are hopeful that this survey, and our panelists, will […]

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Sense of Urgency?

It’s been hard to fault home buyers who haven’t rushed to buy a home, now that there is no longer any Federal Tax Credit. I mean, if you read this blog with any consistency, we all know that home prices are going to continue to tumble, and there is no indication of interest rates climbing […]

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Everybody Calm Down. Armageddon Is NOT Upon Us!

CNBC report 9/2: “Pending sales of previously owned U.S. homes rose unexpectedly in July … suggesting a tax credit-related housing market decline was close to bottoming.”   ORIGINAL POST The new housing numbers have definitely been a major news story over the last 48 hours. The Dow dropped over 100 points on the announcement of July’s existing […]