Real Estate Information Archive
Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 22
There have been 190 New listings in the past week and 16 properties sold in the same time period. The average sale was $239,244.00 and the average market time was 106 days. The majority of these homes were detached, ranch style, 3 bedroom, 2 bath units.
Fiduciary. Person acting in a position of trust, responsibility and confidence for another, such a broker for his client.
Q: What is the difference between appraised value and market value?
A: A certified appraiser who is trained to provide the estimated value of a home determines its appraised value. The appraised value is based on comparable sales, the condition of the property, and several other factors.
Market value is the price the house will bring at a given point in time, once you and the buyer establish a “meeting of the minds” on price.
Topping the list of 2011 resolutions, many consumers will be paying off credit cards and getting out of debt.
“Many consumers use credit cards without considering the long term impact it can have on their finances,” said Mechel Glass, director of education for CredAbility, a national nonprofit credit counseling and education organization. “Interest and finance charges add up fast, and for consumers making only minimum payments or who have even a single late payment, rising balances can quickly outpace their ability to pay.”
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the average cardholder had $5,100 in credit card debt in 2009 and that figure is closer to $6,500 in 2010. If you have an interest rate of 18% and make just the minimum payment toward this debt each month, it will take you 25 years to pay it off. In addition to the $6,500 principal, you will pay an additional $9,173 in interest. Your $6,500 in purchases will cost you $15,673. And that assumes that you don’t use the card to make any additional purchases. (This example includes a payment equal to interest plus 1% of the balance).
Just like every other resolution on your list, eliminating credit card debt requires focus and commitment. CredAbility offers the following tips to help consumers eliminate their credit card debt.
Stop using credit cards. It may seem simple, but if you are used to buying everything on credit, it is a tough habit to break. Cutting up your credit cards is one way to ensure you won’t use them. Another would be to secure your cards in a safe deposit box at your bank or other hard to reach location to make impulse purchases much harder. Before you make any purchase, ask yourself “Do I really need this? Can I pay for it with cash?” If you answer no to either question, skip the purchase. Ideally, only use credit as you would cash—when you know you can pay the bill off on-time and in-full.
Resist the temptation of credit card offers. Open your mailbox on any given day and there is likely to be another offer for another credit card. Shred these offers without opening them and you will be less likely to be tempted by teaser interest rates or offers to consolidate your credit card bills. You can further reduce these offers by requesting that your name and credit information not be provided to financial institutions. You can do this by calling 1-888-5-OPTOUT (1-888-567-8688) or online at www.optoutprescreen.com.
Create a repayment plan. Look at all of your credit card debt and make a plan for how you will pay off the balances. While you need to make at least the minimum payment on all of your cards, prioritize the order in which you will pay the cards off. You might choose the card with the highest interest rate as the one to pay off first. Perhaps you have a small balance on a couple of cards. Paying those off first may provide you with a sense of accomplishment and help keep you on track. Document your plan to help you stay focused and as each balance is paid, redirect the money you were spending on that card to reduce the balance on another.
Pay more than the minimum. When you make a purchase with a credit card and make only minimum payments, repaying the debt can take years, and even decades. It is not uncommon for consumers to pay three times the original purchase price when interest and other charges are factored in. On a $6,500 debt, if you pay $163 a month, it will take you five years and two months to pay off the balance and you will pay $3,481 in interest. Increase your payment to $200 per month and you will pay it off in just three years, months and pay $2,479 in interest. Use bonuses from work or other unexpected gifts of money to reduce your credit card balances. Your credit card statement is now required to include how long it will take you to pay off your balance making the minimum payment.
Can’t give up credit cards altogether? If you can’t give up using credit, be sure to use it wisely. Limit yourself to two or three cards and choose those with the best terms, including low rates, no annual fee, and reasonable interest terms, such as a 25 day grace period before you begin paying interest on a purchase. Be sure to read and understand the terms of your credit card agreement—be aware of hidden fees that might impact you.
For more information, visit www.CredAbility.org.
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the U.S. Department of the Treasury released the December edition of the Obama Administration’s Housing Scorecard. The latest housing figures show continued home affordability in the housing market, with interest rates near record lows, but the market remains fragile, as prices are unsettled. Foreclosure starts and completions dropped significantly in November, as lenders review internal servicing procedures. The housing scorecard is a comprehensive report on the nation’s housing market.
“The Obama Administration’s broad set of programs have helped promote stability for the housing market, neighborhoods, and the nation’s homeowners, but there is much more work to be done,” said HUD Assistant Secretary Raphael Bostic. “Since taking office in 2009, the Administration’s efforts have helped millions of families stay in their homes and helped millions more refinance, but the data clearly show that the market remains extremely fragile. That’s why we’re continuing to focus on successfully implementing the programs we’ve put in place—such as additional refinancing assistance and emergency loans to help unemployed homeowners—and ensuring that help is available to homeowners as early as possible.”
“While much work remains to be done to help families that have been hurt by this crisis, the Administration’s programs have benefitted many homeowners directly while setting standards for the entire industry,” said acting Assistant Secretary for Financial Stability Tim Massad. “This is a major reason why there have been more than twice as many modifications and other foreclosure alternatives as foreclosure completions since April 2009.”
The December Housing Scorecard features key data on the health of the housing market including:
-Foreclosure starts and completions dropped significantly in November. As lenders review internal procedures related to foreclosure processing, many foreclosure actions have been delayed, leading to a 21% drop in foreclosure activity in November. While this is the biggest month over month decrease since 2005, the decline is likely to be temporary as lenders eventually revise and resubmit foreclosure paperwork in the coming months.
-As expected with the expiration of the Home Buyer Tax Credit, new and existing home sales have remained below levels seen in the first half of 2010. However, this month’s report also shows that home prices and home equity declined moderately, as prices remain unsettled at this fragile stage of the recovery.
-More than 3.9 million mortgage aid offers were initiated between April 2009 and the end of October 2010—more than double the number of foreclosure completions during that time. These actions included over 1.4 million Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) trial modification starts, more than 600,000 Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loss mitigation and early delinquency interventions, and nearly 1.8 million proprietary modifications under HOPE Now. While some homeowners may have received help from more than one program, the number of agreements offered were more than double the number of foreclosure completions for the same period (1.7 million).
Data in the scorecard also show that the recovery in the housing market continues to remain fragile. While the recovery will take place over time, the Administration remains committed to its efforts to prevent avoidable foreclosures and stabilize the housing market.
For more information, visit www.hud.gov.
Q: How can I protect my home from creditors?
A: Check with your state. It may provide special protection through the filing of a homestead exemption, which exempts some or all of the value of your equity in the homestead – the home that you live in and the land on which it sits – from claims of unsecured creditors. Whether to file a homestead exemption will depend on your situation. Contact your county recorder’s office for details.