August 2010


Tips to Help Sellers Rethink Proper Price

With home prices unsettled in many markets, it’s hard for sellers to know the sweet spot at which to list their home. When that conundrum results in unrealistically high asking prices, give sellers six reasons to reduce their home price. Here are just two of the free tips in the September “Pricing and Prep that Sells Your Home” article package now available at the REALTOR® Content Resource:

1. You’re drawing few lookers. You get the most interest in your home right after you put it on the market. If your agent reports there have been fewer buyers calling about and asking to tour your home than other homes in your area, that may be a sign buyers think it’s overpriced.

2. You’re drawing lots of lookers but have no offers. If you’ve had 30 sets of potential buyers come through your home and not a single one has made an offer, something is off.

Also covered in the September “Pricing and Prep that Sells Your Home” article package now at the REALTOR® Content Resource are free tips on using comparable sales to price your home, listing and selling your green home, preparing your home for sale, and making your home FHA-friendly.

Source: HouseLogic

Housing Experts Say Tax Credit Had to End

Will the government revive tax credits to encourage home sales? Housing experts are dubious.

Even suggesting that the tax credit might be revived could have a negative effect on the market, says housing economist Tom Lawler, because it could “lead many a prospective home buyer to hold off on buying a home.”

Earlier this month Richard Dugas, CEO of PulteGroup Inc., said earlier in August on an earnings call: “Almost regardless of how future demand plays out, we still believe that the tax credit had to end. We need to know the true level of demand without government stimulus distorting the market so that we can continue to properly position our business for ongoing improvement.”

Source: The Wall Street Journal, Nick Timiraos (08/30/2010)

 

 
Administration Undecided about Another Tax Credit
Following the 25.5 percent year-over-year drop in existing home sales last month, the federal government is looking to stabilize the housing market. But another home buyer tax credit is up in the air.
Read more >
BB&T Tops Customer Satisfaction Rankings
In general, consumers are more likely to be satisfied with the loan-origination process than they were with the loan-modification process.
Read more >
Finders Fees are Bringing in Buyers
Sellers are upping their chances of finding a willing buyer by offering a finders fee to co-workers, friends, and acquaintances.
Read more >
How to Vet a Builder
Before hiring a builder, home owners must do their research. Here are four ideas to pass on to your clients who are considering a custom project, repairs, or upgrades.
Read more >
‘Collectible’ Homes Hit Hard by Downturn
The slow real estate market has not been kind to historic homes. Dwellings designed by Wright, Neutra, and Schindler are listed for a fraction of the original price, but still are without buyers.
Read more >

5 Reasons Homeownership Trumps Renting

The seemingly endless run of bad housing news is discouraging some potential home buyers from considering a purchase. But the truth is that the advantages of homeownership have very little to do with investment gains. The best things about owning a home have a lot more to do with personal comfort and satisfaction.

Here are five of them:

· Be your own landlord. The bank can only kick you out if you don’t pay; a landlord can be much less dependable – deciding to sell the property or choosing to live there themselves.
· Paying the principal is forced savings. Yes, it’s possible that home prices will fall further. It is also possible that your 401(k) will lose value. But over the long haul, both are likely to enjoy modest gains in value.
· Fixed-rate mortgages never rise – and eventually you pay them off. With mortgage rates at record lows, people who buy now are locking in real bargains.
· Good schools. Family-sized rentals are harder to come by in areas with excellent public schools.
· Spacious properties in pleasant neighborhoods. Sizable homes in attractive communities are almost always owned – not rented.

Source: The New York Times, Ron Lieber (08/27/2010)

“It has to be true (or at least half true) because I read it on the internet” yeah right! One of our clients is in the process of refinancing their house on a 15 year fixed rate loan, they requested that we lock the rate in, which we did (let the buyer’s remorse begin or for you psychology majors, Cognitive Dissonance). We told him that his total transaction costs all in was going to be somewhere between $3200 and $3400.  Hi ho hi ho to the internet he goes, never mind it wasn’t even on the same day. He sends a copy of us a web page that he finds and it said the lender fees were $2349 and he wanted us to match the fees. Rule number 3 in sales “Never negotiate with a phantom” and rule number 4 is “Only negotiate on apples to apples basis.” We go to the web site plug in the borrower’s scenario and yes the LENDER FEEs are $2349. However in the heading in the very next column was “Closing Costs,” when you click through on that column it added $1500 to the lender fees. $2349 + $1500 = $3849.  Even at the high end of our estimate our costs were less. Another trick of the internet lenders is to show you discount points and then somewhere in the smallest font possible they disclose that there is an origination fee. As we have said before if someone is offering a better bona fide deal than us, we will tell you to take the deal. You could wind up like a customer we talked to about two years ago, that did not like what we had to offer and they are still trying to get a mortgage.

Chase Bashing Part II
 

A while back we had to bash Chase regarding their false claim of the “Mortgage that pays you back” but charges you a higher rate. Chase has earned another bashing.  If a client has a second mortgage with Chase and would like to refinance their first loan, Chase needs to complete a subordination agreement, which means they agree to go back into second position. Every other lender will tell us their policy up front with regard to the maximum combined loan to value, but not Chase. In most cases they require the customer to spend $400 on an appraisal and send them the paperwork with a check for $250. If they keep your check they will subordinate. If they send back your check its “game over”, you just wasted $400. Other lenders tell us what the CLTV is and using free resources we can determine if the scenario is going to come together. Could someone tell us if Chase is on the “To big to fail list?”   

 

This does make sense!
 

OK some good news, we talked about how wonderful FHA streamline refi’s are. We have also talked about how much of a pain FHA condo’s were too. What we did not tell you is that if a condo owner has a current FHA loan it does not matter if the condo project is currently approved. There is no appraisal on a streamline refi and the only concern the borrower has is that they may need HO6 insurance, if they don’t already have it. Makes total sense!

 

We will not be publishing our newsletter next week. Be safe and enjoy the Labor Day Weekend!

Erin and I want to sincerely thank you for your gracious support and entrusting us with your referrals.

Kathleen~

The Meredith Mortgage Team, CMPS®

Certified mortgage planning specialist

“We Will Always Have Your Best  

  Interest In Mind”   

Erin & Kathleen

The Bay Area’s Premier

Mortgage Banker and Broker

 

(925)983-3048 office

(925)226-3215 efax

(925)918-0585 mobile

meredithteam@cmgmortgage.com

emeredith@cmgmortgage.com

Apply For Mortgage Financing with The Meredith Team, Click Below: 

http://www.cmgmortgage.com/LO/meredithteam/GetStartedApply.shtml

The Home Ownership Accelerator  is helping people

pay of their mortgage in record speed…click here

 

Mortgage Rates Continue to Fall

Average interest on long-term mortgages slid to a record low for the eighth time in nine weeks and could dip more. Freddie Mac reports that 30-year fixed loans averaged 4.36 percent this week, down from 4.42 percent a week ago; the 15-year fixed rate fell to a new low of 3.86 percent from 3.90 percent; and adjustable-rate mortgages were also below 4 percent.

The Mortgage Bankers Association’s Michael Fratantoni said the group expects that rates “will begin to rise as the economic situation improves along with jobs.”

Source: Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Sam Spatter (08/27/10)

Call Us To Refinance NOW!!!!

The Meredith Mortgage Team, CMPS®

Certified mortgage planning specialist

“We Will Always Have Your Best  

  Interest In Mind”   

Erin & Kathleen

The Bay Area’s Premier

Mortgage Banker and Broker

 

(925)983-3048 office

(925)226-3215 efax

(925)918-0585 mobile

meredithteam@cmgmortgage.com

emeredith@cmgmortgage.com

Apply For Mortgage Financing with The Meredith Team, Click Below: 

http://www.cmgmortgage.com/LO/meredithteam/GetStartedApply.shtml

The Home Ownership Accelerator  is helping people

pay of their mortgage in record speed…click here

 

 

Foreclosures Down, But Late Payments Up
The inventory of houses in the process of foreclosure are down for the first time since 2006, but the number of loans that are one payment late went back up.
Read more >
Mortgage Rates Continue to Fall
Average interest on long-term mortgages hit a record low for the eighth time in nine weeks, and could go even lower.
Read more >
Flood Insurance Program in Debt and in Trouble
The National Flood Insurance Program is $19 billion in the hole, and could add nearly $1 billion more in debt each year.
Read more >
Amount of Negative Equity Declines Slightly
The good news is that the number of U.S. residences with negative equity fell in the second quarter. The bad news is that the decline was due mostly to foreclosures.
Read more >
4 Business Tips for Social Networking Success
Are you using social networks to garner more business leads? Read tips on how to expand your reach.
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Two Real Estate-Friendly Google Tools
These two technologies from the Web search giant could help you promote yourself online.
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