Monthly Archives: February 2014

New Home Owners Targeted in Deed Scams – Keep your eyes open and question everything!!!!

Scammers are approaching new home owners and trying to trick them into paying $83 for unnecessary property records — including deeds that are available for a few bucks at county government offices or are already supplied at the end of a real estate transaction, the Milwaukee Sentinel Journal reports.

Fake companies reportedly are soliciting customers with a formal-looking letter that resembles a government bill. The companies are using multiple names for their business, such as Record Transfer Services, Property Transfer Services, Conveyance Transfer Services, Record Retrieval Department, and National Deed Service. They often use a similar phone number: 888-874-4669.

In a recent case in Wisconsin, new home owners were asked for an $83 "document fee" for a deed and "real property records" by a certain deadline.

"Some people don't even call and ask the question," says Sherieda Wilder, a records clerk with the Milwaukee County register of deeds office. "They just automatically send [the money]. They're just excited they get their house."

Graig Goldman, a real estate broker with RE/MAX Lakeside Realty in Milwaukee, first alerted the Sentinel about the scam after two of his clients approached him separately within two months of purchasing a house to ask why they had received another bill.

At the bottom of the letter was a disclaimer: "The company Record Transfer Services is not affiliated with the State of WI or the County Recorder. … This offer serves as a solicitation for services and [is] not to be interpreted as a bill due."

"For people who don't understand the real estate process or that a deed exists, they think they have to pay this," says Cori Lamont, director of regulatory affairs with the Wisconsin REALTORS® Association.

Source: “Deed Scam Tricks New Home Owners into Buying Useless Documents,” Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (Feb. 12, 2014)

Top 9 cities for flipping houses Profits are soaring in these markets

Investors gobbled up 156,862 single family homes and flipped them in 2013, up 16% from 2012 and up 114% from 2011, according to RealtyTrac.

Homes flipped in 2013 accounted for 4.6% of all U.S. single family home sales during the year, up from 4.2% in 2012 and up from 2.6% in 2011. In short, the market is hot for house flippers, but in some areas more than others.

Flips accounted for 3.8% of all sales in the fourth quarter, down slightly from 3.9% of all sales in the third quarter and down from 7.1% of all sales in the fourth quarter of 2012 — the highest percentage of sales represented by flips in a single quarter since RealtyTrac began tracking flipping data in the first quarter of 2011.

The average gross profit for a home flip was $58,081 for all U.S. homes flipped in 2013, up from an average gross profit of $45,759 in 2012. The average gross profit for homes flipped in the fourth quarter was $62,761, up from $52,746 in the fourth quarter of 2012.

“Investors have not lost interest in purchasing and flipping homes. In fact, now that we are seeing home price appreciation they are more interested than ever,” said Sheldon Detrick, CEO of Prudential Detrick/Alliance Realty.  “The challenge for many would-be flippers in our markets is a shortage of available inventory to flip, as evidenced by the decrease in the number of homes flipped (in 2013 compared to 2012).”

So what are the top nine cities for flipping? According to RealtyTrac’s city numbers as of the third quarter 2013, here they are below from number nine through seven, ranked by profits.

9. Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, Wash.
Flipped price: $319,280
Average profit: $97,002
Number of flips: 485

8. Salinas, Calif.
Flipped price: $438,333
Average profit: $100,228
Number of flips: 69

7. Santa Rosa-Petaluma, Calif.
Flipped price: $411,909
Average profit: $113,001
Number of flips: 125

6. San Diego-Carlsbad-San Marcos, Calif.
Flipped price: $475,306
Average profit: $120,180
Number of flips: 900

5. Los Angeles-Long Beach-Santa Ana, Calif.
Flipped price: $513,975
Average profit: $127,634
Number of flips: 2,116

4. Ocean City, N.J.
Flipped price: $467,113
Average profit: $140,716
Number of flips: 53

3. Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, Calif.
Flipped price: $510,906
Average profit: $143,578
Number of flips: 197

2. San Francisco-Oakland-Fremont, Calif.
Flipped price: $621,380
Average profit: $154,130
Number of flips: 584

1. San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, Calif.
Average profit: $166,287
Flipped price: $704,762
Number of flips: 202

Source Housing Wire…

Top 9 cities for flipping houses Profits are soaring in these markets

Investors gobbled up 156,862 single family homes and flipped them in 2013, up 16% from 2012 and up 114% from 2011, according to RealtyTrac.

Homes flipped in 2013 accounted for 4.6% of all U.S. single family home sales during the year, up from 4.2% in 2012 and up from 2.6% in 2011. In short, the market is hot for house flippers, but in some areas more than others.

Flips accounted for 3.8% of all sales in the fourth quarter, down slightly from 3.9% of all sales in the third quarter and down from 7.1% of all sales in the fourth quarter of 2012 — the highest percentage of sales represented by flips in a single quarter since RealtyTrac began tracking flipping data in the first quarter of 2011.

The average gross profit for a home flip was $58,081 for all U.S. homes flipped in 2013, up from an average gross profit of $45,759 in 2012. The average gross profit for homes flipped in the fourth quarter was $62,761, up from $52,746 in the fourth quarter of 2012.

“Investors have not lost interest in purchasing and flipping homes. In fact, now that we are seeing home price appreciation they are more interested than ever,” said Sheldon Detrick, CEO of Prudential Detrick/Alliance Realty.  “The challenge for many would-be flippers in our markets is a shortage of available inventory to flip, as evidenced by the decrease in the number of homes flipped (in 2013 compared to 2012).”

So what are the top nine cities for flipping? According to RealtyTrac’s city numbers as of the third quarter 2013, here they are below from number nine through one, ranked by profits.

9. Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, Wash.
Flipped price: $319,280
Average profit: $97,002
Number of flips: 485

8. Salinas, Calif.
Flipped price: $438,333
Average profit: $100,228
Number of flips: 69

7. Santa Rosa-Petaluma, Calif.
Flipped price: $411,909
Average profit: $113,001
Number of flips: 125

6. San Diego-Carlsbad-San Marcos, Calif.
Flipped price: $475,306
Average profit: $120,180
Number of flips: 900

5. Los Angeles-Long Beach-Santa Ana, Calif.
Flipped price: $513,975
Average profit: $127,634
Number of flips: 2,116

4. Ocean City, N.J.
Flipped price: $467,113
Average profit: $140,716
Number of flips: 53

3. Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, Calif.
Flipped price: $510,906
Average profit: $143,578
Number of flips: 197

2. San Francisco-Oakland-Fremont, Calif.
Flipped price: $621,380
Average profit: $154,130
Number of flips: 584

1. San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, Calif.
Average profit: $166,287
Flipped price: $704,762
Number of flips: 202

Source Housing Wire…

If You Want to Flip, Do It Now

In 2013, home flips snagged sellers a tidy profit. But the trend may not continue.

RealtyTrac's Home Flipping Report for the fourth quarter of 2013  showed single-family home flips were up 16 percent from 2012 and up 114 percent from 2011. The average gross profit for a home flip—defined as a home being purchased and subsequently sold again within six months—was $58,081 for all U.S. homes flipped in 2013, up from an average gross profit of $45,759 in 2012. The average gross profit for homes flipped in the fourth quarter was even greater, at $62,761.

But while profits are strong in flipping right now, according to Housingwire, "the market may be peaking." Flips accounted for 3.8 percent of all sales in the fourth quarter, down slightly from the third quarter and down from 7.1 percent year-over-year. Housingwire reports that the diminishing availability of foreclosures may make it difficult for investors to find properties to flip in the coming year.

Major markets with big year-over-year decreases in home flipping included Philadelphia (down 43 percent) and Phoenix (down 32 percent).

Source: "Flip now if you plan to flip that house at all," Housingwire (Jan. 30, 2014)

Read more

House Flips Up 16% as Prices Rebound