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Homeownership: What Americans Think

There is a growing number of people debating whether the government should continue its level of support for homeownership. Mortgage assistance is being pulled back and even the mortgage-tax-deduction is now up for debate. We want to look at how the people of this country view owning a home and the reasons they buy. Last […]

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Honesty Is the Best Policy

For years, many buyers weren’t honest about their income and some loan officers didn’t care. The loans were bundled by Wall Street and sold to investors who were told anything but the truth about their value. For years, some real estate professionals prodded appraisers to move that appraisal up ‘just a bit’ and most sellers […]

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It Takes A TEAM

Today, people say: “It takes a village to raise a child”. The realities of today’s life (two family incomes and such) have extended a family to lean on others (neighbors, relatives, teachers, etc.) to protect and teach our young people about culture, history and acceptable behaviors. Teams, because of their ability to provide specialized solutions […]

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If Your Goal Is to Buy Low, Buy Now!

There is a very famous saying which asserts “Sell High, Buy Low”. It is obviously great advice no matter what the investment. Below is a graph showing the cycle of investments. It shows the points of maximum risk and maximum opportunity when purchasing. We want to sell high (point of maximum risk) and buy low (point […]

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When Did ‘EXPERT’ Become a Dirty Word?

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 The world around me is evolving rapidly. Sometimes I wonder if I can even keep up with all the advances and changes. One big […]

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Loans Just Got MORE Expensive

The administration recently announced increases to the insurance premiums that the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) charges. FHA is the dominant loan program in the marketplace today.  The FHA has two types of Mortgage Insurance Premiums – Up Front Mortgage Insurance Premium (UFMIP)  and the  Monthly Mortgage Insurance Premium (MMIP). Let’s see how these impact a borrower’s ability to purchase. UFMIP […]

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Where Are Mortgage Costs Headed?

We have received many questions regarding the government’s plans for limiting federal support of the mortgage process. We realize that there is much confusion and concern surrounding this issue. However, The KCM Crew does not get involved in discussing the possibilities of future legislation nor are we in the business of lobbying for certain outcomes. This will be […]

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Selling Your House? 5 Reasons To Do It NOW!

The conventional wisdom when selling a home has always been to wait until the ‘Spring Buying Season’. Over the years, that has seemed to make sense and is now accepted as a good strategy for those who want to sell their house and receive the best possible price. This real estate market has shattered many previously […]

The First Question You Should Ask Your Listing Agent

What is the most important thing a seller should look for when hiring a real estate agent to sell their house? We are often asked this question. Is it the size of the company they are licensed with? Is it their marketing program? Their years experience in the business? Should you choose the agent who […]

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As We Were Saying…

Several months ago, we explained that there would be an opportunity to sell your house at a higher price in the first quarter of this year than you could later in the year. Our believe was that the robo-signing mess would delay foreclosures coming to the market and that your home would sell at a […]

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Like Comparing Apples to Oranges

Over the next several months, there is going to be some confusion about how well the real estate market is doing. Some headlines are going to announce several consecutive months of increased sales. Other headlines are going to talk about a near total collapse in housing. Both headlines will be based on facts supplied by […]

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This Is a Job for Superman, Not Clark Kent

We found this past weekend’s New York Times article, You Don’t Have To Pay It, very interesting reading. It was a piece on whether it makes sense to pay a 6% commission to your real estate agent in today’s market. In the article, there are sellers, buyers and even agents debating what is the right number that […]

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Where Are Housing Prices Headed?

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) has been reporting great news recently. Last week’s Existing Home Sales Report and yesterday’s Pending Sales Report both showed consecutive months of increases in the number of homes sold. Finally, buyers are jumping off the fence and taking advantage of one of the most opportune times to purchase a […]

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Does Health Care Bill Contain 3.8% Home Sales Tax?

As the states and the new Congress renew the debate about the Administration’s Health Care Bill, we are again getting many questions about a possible 3.8% tax on home sales that some claim is in the bill. To answer these questions, we have decided to re-run a blog post we did last year. – The KCM […]

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Distressed Inventory to Step Out of the Shadows

We are beginning 2011 with much more positive news about real estate than we have had in several years. The pending sales numbers (houses going into contract) have been climbing for several months. Last month’s Existing Homes Sales Report from the National Association of Realtors showed an increase of over 12%. Demand definitely seems to […]

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Is the Housing Market Starting to Come Back?

It seems that the housing market is finally showing signs of a recovery. We are not suggesting that it will come roaring back and we will see 2006 numbers again. However, the National Association of Realtors released their December Existing Home Sales Report yesterday. The report showed a 12.3% increase in closed transactions over the month before. […]

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You Need an EXPERT, Not Just an Agent

A major national television network called us a few weeks ago to do a live interview. To Steve Harney, our lead author, it was an honor to visit their Manhattan studios and meet Gerri Willis, the anchor of her own show – The Willis Report.  She and all the people on her staff were both extremely […]

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Our Lead Author, Steve Harney, on The Willis Report

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 & effectively explain a complex housing market. Take a 14-Day Free Trial of our monthly membership to see how we can help you!

Questions Sellers Should Ask Before Choosing An Agent

Once a homeowner decides to sell their home and hire a professional agent to market it for them, most sellers will interview a few agents before signing on the dotted line. That’s a good idea. However, most sellers don’t have a clue on who is the RIGHT choice. Many sellers pick and agent based on a “connection” or […]

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Why Prices Will Soften in the 1st Half of 2011

The big question facing real estate in 2011 is which direction are home prices headed. We agree with most experts who believe prices will continue to soften for the first half of the year. Supply and demand will determine this. Let’s look at where real estate sits entering this year compared to the beginning of […]

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Will Foreclosures Be Erased?

A court in Massachusetts voided two bank foreclosures this past Friday. The decision has already created a ripple effect across the banking community. Will other courts also decide to void local foreclosures? Does this put an added burden on banks when they are trying to complete a foreclosure process? What will it mean to the […]

How Should Your Home Be Marketed?

Differentiating a home from the massive inventory is difficult. In a world of information overload, building excitement about a single home (when there are “three just like it” for sale on the same block) is a monumental task. Really, MARKETING a home is an agent’s primary job. I mean, agents don’t determine price (the buyer […]

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What You Want to Hear vs. What You Need to Know

A new year brings changes. Some homeowners will decide that this is the year to move on with their lives in some way. Some will move south to join children and grandchildren. Others will move either east or west in search of a better career opportunity. Growing families may decide to purchase a larger home […]

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2011: The Year a House Again Becomes a Home

For almost a decade now, every time we talked about real estate we immediately discussed money. We didn’t talk about the value of a home but instead about the price of the house. We didn’t worry about a roof over our heads but instead the ceiling on our interest rate. We didn’t care as much about […]

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Real Estate 2010: The Year of Intervention

This past year has been very challenging for real estate. The market was defined by outside intervention. This intervention tugged at historic trends. Government involvment caused market fundamentals to be distorted beyond recognition. Unpredictability was the only thing we could predict. Modifications The administration’s announced goal of the modification program was to save 3-4 million families […]