Monthly Archives: October 2011
Which cities are home buyers targeting the most? Realtor.com recently released its search rankings of 146 metros during the month of September. The following are the 12 most-searched markets last month, including their median list prices.
1. Chicago: $199,000
2. Detroit: $89,000
3. Los Angeles-Long Beach, Calif.: $335,000
4. Philadelphia: $234,900
5. Atlanta: $159,900
6. Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, Fla.: $140,000
7. Phoenix-Mesa, Ariz.: $150,000
8. Las Vegas: $120,000
9. Dallas: $191,025
10. Boston-Worcester-Lawrence-Lowell-Brockton, Mass.: $330,000
11. Riverside-San Bernadino, Calif.: $195,000
12. Orlando: $159,500
Romanii din Franta reactioneaza. Satui sa fie asimilati cersetorilor si hotilor de pe strazile Parisului, membrii comunitatii noastre din Franta au vrut ca mesajul lor sa fie clar auzit, chiar din fata Turnului Eiffel.
Organizatorii sunt oameni de foarte buna calitate, care au studiat sau lucreaza in Hexagon, fara sa deranjeze pe nimeni. Atunci, se intreaba ei pe buna dreptate, altii de ce ne-ar ridiculiza pe noi?
La mitingul din fata Turnului Eiffell au participat zeci de studenti, avocati, ingineri si medici care traiesc si studiaza in Franta. Cu totii au avut un mesaj clar pentru francezi.
Romanii spun ca deja au avut parte de experiente neplacute in institutiile franceze.
Protestul conationalilor vine dupa ce intr-o emisiune televizata am fost ridiculizati, pretextul fiind meciul de fotbal Romania- Franta. La un alt show francezii ne-au facut pe fata, cersetori.
Survey Reveals 5 Home Buying Myths
Overall, today’s home buyers tend to be fairly knowledgeable about the real estate market, but there are still a few points of confusion in the process, a new survey by Zillow of 1,000 potential home buyers finds.
Here are the five main areas of confusion the survey revealed:
- Appreciation: About 42 percent of home buyers believe home values will appreciate by 7 percent a year. Reality: Historically, home values in a normal market appreciate by 2 to 5 percent in a year.
- Mortgage insurance: 41 percent of buyers think they will have to purchase private mortgage insurance, regardless of the amount of their downpayment. Reality: Buyers only need to purchase PMI if their downpayment is less than 20 percent of the home’s purchase price.
- Appraisals: 56 percent of the buyers said the purpose of the appraisal was to determine if a home was in good condition. Reality: That’s the purpose of a home inspection; an appraisal estimates fair market value.
- Home owner’s insurance: 37 percent of home buyers said that buying home owner’s insurance is optional. Reality: Lenders require homebuyers to purchase homeowner’s insurance.
- Ownership: 47 percent of home buyers said a prospective buyer owns a home after the purchase contract is signed. Reality: The purchase and sales agreement is the beginning of the closing phase, but it can be a long process until they finally take ownership.
Source: Zillow Inc.
It’s the last full week of October. Next week only has two days of October in it, but with one of them being Halloween there is still much of October to be enjoyed. While you start to consider just how close that makes the holidays and it raises your anxiety level slightly, here are some real estate headlines to prep you for the week ahead:
- AOL Real Estate has a feature on glass houses that will shatter your expectation. That’s their description, not mine.
- On a very different note AOL Real Estate also has a feature on the homes of Libyan dictator, Muammar Gaddafi.
- Via Inhabitat.com, in Ottowa, Canada an architect created an amazing structure that houses two separate homes on one small lot. And both places are incredible.
- And finally, The Wall Street Journal asks if Oracle CEO, Larry Ellison, isn’t the most avid trophy home buyer in the world?
*The Washington Post's Mensa Invitational once again
invited readers to take any word from the dictionary, alter it by adding,
subtracting, or changing one letter, and supply a new definition.*
Here are the winners:*
1.* Cashtration* (n.): The act of buying a house, which renders the subject
financially impotent for an indefinite period of time.
2.* Ignoranus*: A person who's both stupid and an asshole.
3.* Intaxicaton*: Euphoria at getting a tax refund, which lasts until you
realize it was your money to start with.
4.* Reintarnation*: Coming back to life as a hillbilly.
5.* Bozone *( n.): The substance surrounding stupid people that stops bright
ideas from penetrating. The bozone layer, unfortunately, shows little sign
of breaking down in the near future.
6.* Foreploy*: Any misrepresentation about yourself for the purpose of
7.* Giraffiti*: Vandalism spray-painted very, very high
8.* Sarchasm*: The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the person
who doesn't get it.
9.* Inoculatte*: To take coffee intravenously when you are running late.
10.* Osteopornosis*: A degenerate disease. (This one got extra credit.)
11.* Karmageddon*: It's like, when everybody is sending off all these really
bad vibes, right? And then, like, the Earth explodes and it's like, a
12.* Decafalon* (n.): The grueling event of getting through the day
consuming only things that are good for you.
13.* Glibido*: All talk and no action.
14.* Dopeler Effect*: The tendency of stupid ideas to seem smarter when they
come at you rapidly.
15.* Arachnoleptic Fit* (n.): The frantic dance performed just after you've
accidentally walked through a spider web.
16.* Beelzebug* (n.): Satan in the form of a mosquito, that gets into your
bedroom at three in the morning and cannot be cast out.
17.* Caterpallor* ( n.): The color you turn after finding half a worm in the
fruit you're eating.
The Washington Post has also published the winning submissions to its yearly
contest, in which readers are asked to supply alternate meanings for common
And the winners are:** *
1.* Coffee*, n. The person upon whom one coughs.
2.* Flabbergasted*, adj. Appalled by discovering how much weight one has
3.* Abdicate*, v. To give up all hope of ever having a flat stomach.
4.* esplanade*, v. To attempt an explanation while drunk.
5.* Willy-nilly*, adj. Impotent.
6.* Negligent*, adj. Absentmindedly answering the door when wearing only a
7.* Lymph*, v. To walk with a lisp.
8.* Gargoyle*, n. Olive-flavored mouthwash.
9.* Flatulence*, n. Emergency vehicle that picks up someone who has been run
over by a steamroller.
10.* Balderdash*, n. A rapidly receding hairline.
11.* Testicle*, n. A humorous question on an exam.
12.* Rectitude*, n. The formal, dignified bearing adopted by proctologists.
13.* Pokemon*, n. A Rastafarian proctologist.
14.* Oyster*, n. A person who sprinkles his conversation with Yiddishisms.
15.* Frisbeetarianism*, n. The belief that, after death, the soul flies up
onto the roof and gets stuck there.
16.* Circumvent*, n. An opening in the front of boxer shorts worn by Jewish
Most popular free and paid downloads
By Inman News
Editor's note: This article contains an updating list of the most popular free and paid iPhone apps for working with PDF documents, a popular file type for sharing documents across devices and platforms.
These apps allow users to read PDF documents, convert files to PDF format, scan images and store as PDF files, and share the files with others, among other tasks. The list is based on a search of the keyword "PDF" at apps-ranking site TopAppCharts.com.
4.-3TurboScan: quickly scan multipage documents into high-quality PDFs
Number 14 in Business (-3 today)
TurboScan turns your iPhone into a multipage scanner for documents, receipts, whiteboards, business cards, etc. With TurboScan, you can quickly scan your documents and store, print…
$1.99 — More details › Get it ›
Mortgages – Triggers for Rejection
“WE regret to inform you…” Nobody applying for a new mortgage or a refinancing wants to see or hear these words. But last year more than two million people were turned down for home loans, according to federal data, often because they didn’t meet certain lender requirements or because their applications were incomplete or otherwise problematic.
And that number, from the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council, doesn’t even include those who abandon the often-complicated mortgage qualification process. The Mortgage Bankers Association estimates that about half of those who try to refinance and 30 percent of buyers are either denied or drop out.
“A lot of people have credit banged up,” said Michael Fratantoni, the association’s vice president for research and economics.
Lenders’ underwriting criteria have become more rigorous in recent years; some banks have tightened up beyond federal requirements. Here are the six biggest triggers for rejection, according to industry experts.
INSUFFICIENT INCOME Lenders want to make sure you can afford to make the mortgage payments. Someone who earns, say, $40,000 a year need not bid on a $750,000 apartment, unless there’s a trust fund with quarterly payouts or other money available. Also, lenders typically look for at least a two-year track record of income, which could hurt those who may have switched jobs recently. “It’s common to get turned down if you have a gap in employment history over the last two years,” said Erin Lantz, the director of the Zillow Mortgage Marketplace, an online loan-matching service.
CLOUDY FINANCIAL PICTURE Generally, total debt payments, including the mortgage, cannot exceed 45 to 50 percent of your adjusted gross monthly income. Borrowers may be surprised at what counts and what doesn’t. Overtime and bonuses are included only if you’ve worked for the same employer at least two years, and have a history of receiving them, said Mark Lazar, who with his wife, Anna, owns Allied Financial, a mortgage brokerage in River Edge, N.J. Lenders may also disallow rental income from a property you own, unless you have at least 30 percent equity in it, he said.
BAD CREDIT Lenders typically reject applicants with a FICO score below 620, Mrs. Lantz said. “Some lenders would draw the line a little higher, closer to 660,” she added, citing Zillow data that show about a third of Americans have credit scores so low they are unlikely to obtain any mortgage. Failing to pay your mortgage on time affects your score. “If you have late payments within the last 24 months on,” said Marisol Torruella, a loan originator with the New York Municipal Credit Union, “the likelihood of getting another mortgage is less.”
LOW APPRAISAL You may think the home you’re refinancing or buying is worth around $800,000, but the appraiser says it’s closer to $700,000. Suddenly your new mortgage is in jeopardy. This is the predominant reason people are denied home loans today, according to industry experts.
PROPERTY PROBLEMS Sometimes, Mr. Lazar said, issues turn up within a building, apartment unit or house, like a major repair or safety problem that needs to be addressed before an application can be approved. Other times, he said, it may be financial woes within a condominium or co-op, like having a large number of owners delinquent on their fees, or unfinished common areas or amenities.
INFORMATION MIX-UPS About 12 percent of new mortgage applications were denied because of unverifiable information or incomplete credit applications, according to the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council. This also may include misinformation: If you’re renting out the property that you want to refinance, your application for an owner-occupied loan can be rejected, Mr. Fratantoni said.
Daily Real Estate News | Tuesday, October 11, 2011
Las Vegas police and real estate agents are warning renters of a new scam in the area, which has also been stretching nationwide. Scammers are posting housing ads online, such as on Craig’s List, that promote a vacant home available for rent. The unsuspecting renter pays a security deposit and sends monthly rent checks to who they believe is their landlord.
But the landlord doesn’t really own the property and is pocketing the money, police and agents warn. Scammers are targeting vacant homes and foreclosed properties in the rental scam, they say.
Brenda Crosbie-Jaeger, a real estate agent in Las Vegas, says the scammers are posing as real estate professionals and putting together fake lease agreements and forging the seller’s name. They’re also changing the locks on the house so the new renters can move in.
Police are encouraging renters to work with a licensed real estate professional or property management firms to make sure they’re renting a property that is indeed for rent.
Source: “Police, Realtors Warn of Vacant Home Rental Scam,” KTNV-13 News (Oct. 7. 2011)
Who was it that said that the definition of insanity is to repeat the same action and expect a different outcome?
Back in March, Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne — the King and Queen of Heavy Metal whose music most recently helped rescue a lost autistic child — listed their Malibu beach house for the umpteenth time, that time at $10 million, to be lowered three months later to $9.5 million. Somewhere along the line (we slept through exactly when) they either pulled it from the market or the last listing expired. The result was the same: It didn't sell at $9.5 million.
So now they've put it back in the active listings at $9,450,000.
Is my calculator broken or is that just a $50,000 price reduction on a $9.5 million listing? A measly 0.5 percent? A drop in the proverbial beach-sand bucket? Enough to cover a party at the Osbournes, back in the day?
The Osbournes have had this home on and off the market for eons. Sometimes they rent it out for the summer — asking $40,000 a month — or year-round. But if it's a serious sale they are chasing, they seem to be losing the race to dropping prices.
So now we have it, again: The same 4,500 square feet, same five bedrooms, same walled Italian garden entry, same gourmet kitchen and same proximity to the La Costa Beach Club.
Rick Sharga, executive vice president with Carrington Mortgage Holdings, says the housing market is in a “catfish recovery,” with the market hitting bottom this year but prices mostly remaining flat until 2014.
The looming shadow inventories of distressed properties are continuing to prevent prices from rebounding, he explains. Sharga, former senior vice president at RealtyTrac, says more than a million foreclosure actions failed to move forward this year due to delays, which will cause a delay in prices rebounding. Sharga made his comments during a talk at the Asian Real Estate Association of America conference last week in San Francisco.
About 800,000 REOs remain on banks’ books, with three-quarters of those not yet listed for sale, Sharga says. What’s more, an additional 800,000 homes are in foreclosure, and 1.5 million loans are delinquent, HousingWire reports.
Sharga says he expects monthly foreclosures to remain high through 2012, and REO inventories to stay elevated through 2013.
Source: “Housing Market Hit Bottom: Former RealtyTrac Exec,” HousingWire (Sept. 30, 2011)