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Real Estate News

Real Estate News

By Jim Parker
.....Welcome to my Podcasts.....

I share information, news, and topics about the real estate industry; how they may affect the metro Atlanta real estate market; pose problems and solutions; and address issues that may influence decisions to buy or sell real estate.

Check out my blog: for details to these or other topics.

Broker - Jim Parker
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iBuyers - the good, the bad, and the ugly

Real Estate News

iBuyers - the good, the bad, and the ugly

Real Estate News

Health and Real Estate
· Heart Disease:  659,041 · Cancer:   599,601 · Accidents (unintentional injuries):  150,005 · Chronic lower respiratory diseases:  156,979 · Stroke (cerebrovascular diseases):  150,005 · Alzheimer’s Diseases:  121,499 · Diabetes:      87,647 · Nephritis, nephrotic syndrome, and nephrosis:  51,565 · Influenza and pneumonia:    49,783 · Intentional self-harm (suicide):   47,511 Source: CDC
May 27, 2022
Class action lawsuits, violation of Sherman Anti-Trust, and who will now pay Buyer Agent commissions?
Will real estate commissions get cut in half? Massachusetts Home Sellers File Lawsuit Against MLS, Real Estate Brokerage Giants Price fixing has sent Realtor commissions soaring in an already hot market, lawsuit alleges Federal court dismisses commission-sharing case against NAR - Judge Andrea R. Wood, who presided over the case, found that the lawsuit is barred under the U.S. Supreme Court’s Illinois Brick ruling, which has generally limited federal antitrust claims under the Sherman and Clayton acts to “direct” purchasers of the price-fixed product or service, not “indirect” buyers further down the chain. Wood is also overseeing the Moehrl case.  In his lawsuit, Leeder requested that the court stop NAR from enforcing the rules that require listing brokers to offer a buyer broker commission in order to submit a listing to a NAR-affiliated MLS. Wood’s role as the judge overseeing the Moehrl suit helped inform her decision not to grant this request. Here is link to Sitzer/Winger lawsuit. JOSHUA SITZER, ET AL. V. THE NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS, ET AL.
May 25, 2022
Rising mortgage rates are causing more home sellers to lower their asking prices
Rising mortgage rates are causing more home sellers to lower their asking prices
May 23, 2022
Are the listing and cooperating brokers required to disclose information which is a matter of public record?
Are the listing and cooperating brokers required to disclose the neighboring developer’s plans and proposals for the new project, all of which are a matter of public record and equally accessible to anyone?
May 20, 2022
Down Payment Assistance Programs
Why Real Estate Agents Should Rethink Down Payment Assistance Georgia Dream Homeownership Program
May 19, 2022
Things to consider for home repairs today
Cost of home repairs - Part 1 Consumers shifting their discretionary spending; Supply chain disruptions; Building and construction workers; stiff tariffs on construction supplies; and Inflation. Cost of home repairs - Part 2 Some ways to save on construction materials and appliances: 1. Do all your product research now. 2. Stock up on what you know you’ll need, even if you won’t need it immediately. This is particularly important for lumber needs because lumber prices are expected to keep rising throughout the year. 3. If making a special order, order ASAP so you don’t have to delay an entire project (kitchen renovation, for example) for months and months due to having to wait for that special order item to finally show up. 4. Ask about purchasing floor samples on appliances — you could get 15%-30% off. 5. Call a contractor now to get on their job schedule. You’ll likely have to wait 4-6 months anyway, due to labor shortages and screaming high demand.
May 16, 2022
Multiple topics - HOAs/Legislators about Investors, Rates v. Inventory, and Crypto in Real Estate
HOAs and Legislators Consider Taking Action Against Real-Estate Investors Rising rates, low inventory causing real estate market reset: What buyers and sellers need to know Crypto Just Became Real Estate’s Hottest New Thing. Here’s What That Means For Buyers, Sellers, And Developers
May 12, 2022
FinCEN’s Focus on Money Laundering in Real Estate
Department of Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN)
May 06, 2022
Preventing real estate legal issues
Ways to resolve real estate legal issues
May 04, 2022
What Recourse You Have Against a Home Builder If Your Dream House Becomes a Nightmare?
Shor answer:  None! What Recourse You Have Against a Home Builder If Your Dream House Becomes a Nightmare Lawsuit claims D.R. Horton homes can’t withstand Louisiana humidity; Alabama case alleges ‘critical mistakes’
April 28, 2022
How is the Role of Real Estate Agents Is Changing in Today’s Market?
How is the Role of Real Estate Agents Is Changing in Today’s Market? Do you really need a real estate agent? How this homebuyer got her own housing market lead
April 26, 2022
Short Sales - Thing of the past?
Short sales...thing of the past?
April 22, 2022
Is it 2008 deja vu... all over again?
A bit of 2008 déjà vu: The housing market hits a level not seen since the last bubble
April 20, 2022
Appraisers have become "invisible"
Residential appraisers are doing their jobs remotely The Appraisal Foundation - In 1989 the US Congress passed Title XI of the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act of 1989 (FIRREA), more commonly known as the Savings and Loan Bailout Bill.  FIRREA established a real estate appraiser regulatory system involving the Federal Government, the states, and The Appraisal Foundation (Foundation).Each US state or territory has a real estate appraiser regulatory agency that is responsible for licensing and certifying real estate appraisers and supervising their appraisal-related activities, as required by Federal law. The Appraisal Subcommittee (ASC) of the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council monitors and reviews the work of The Foundation. The Committee also maintains oversight authority over the states to ensure the minimum qualifying criteria to license and certify real estate appraisers are implemented and that appraisers are held to a professional set of ethical standards.  The  Foundation’s Appraiser Qualifications Board (AQB) sets the minimum Real Property Appraiser Qualification Criteria and the Appraisal Standards Board (ASB) develops the generally accepted standards of practice for the appraisal profession (the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice). The ASC's Mission Statement: To provide federal oversight of State appraiser and appraisal management company (AMC) regulatory programs and a monitoring framework for the Appraisal Foundation and the Federal Financial Institutions Regulatory Agencies in their roles to protect federal financial and public policy interests in real estate appraisals utilized in federally related transactions. A full list of state appraiser regulatory agencies is available here on our website.
April 18, 2022
What Is eClosing Software?
What Is eClosing Software? Notarize and Snapdocs announce eClosing partnership
April 13, 2022
Will the U.S. Supreme Court decide if you can use house plans to sell your home?
Unsuspectingly Following Your Floor Plan into an Architectural Copyright Wall Earlier this month, the U.S. Supreme Court was asked to consider revisiting an August 2021 decision made by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit (Designworks Homes, Inc. v. Columbia House of Brokers Realty, Inc., Case No. 19-3608 (8th Cir. 2021)). The Eighth Circuit decision is presented as upsetting a long held real estate industry practice of relying on reproductions of architectural floor plans in their marketing and sales materials. In August 2021, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit issued its decision indicating pictorial floor plan reproductions, of an otherwise constructed building, may be found liable for copyright infringement as architectural copyrights. NAR Asks Supreme Court to Protect Consumers from Lawsuits When Making Floor Plans of Their Homes - The Eighth Circuit's decision not only puts countless consumers at risk of costly, burdensome litigation for making a floor plan of their own home, but it also strains a key sector of America's economy and threatens a critical tool of transparency for potential home buyers.
April 11, 2022
When should you make an insurance claim?
Who ya' gonna call?    And what will you tell them?
April 08, 2022
Opendoor disciplined by North Carolina Real Estate Commission
Opendoor disciplined by North Carolina Real Estate Commission
April 07, 2022
Affordable housing initiatives - coming to your state, county, or municipality?
Almost half of American renters fear they’ll never own a home - Lending Tree found 48% of renters believe rising home prices & stagnant wages mean they’ll never become homeowners. Affordable Housing Initiative In Florida Tops 62,000 Signatures - If proposal gets on ballot & approved by 60% of voters, it would establish & require state trust funds receive at least 25% of revenue from document-stamp taxes collected on real-estate transactions & detail how money could be used to address affordable housing. Federal programs for affordable housing -cities, towns, and counties have an important role to play in the funding process for affordable housing, mostly from the federal government & most programs are administered by HUD. Funding a local housing strategy - have you heard the innovative approach that Iowa took regarding affordable housing e insurance?  I’ll be reporting on that in an upcoming podcast..stay tuned for more! Capital gains tax on main residences unlikely to solve housing problems, experts say - Canada has realized this....will the Untied States try it?  Will the  US reduce the amount of sales "gain" to tax more of the proceeds? City of Charleston searching for a real estate broker for affordable housing projects Affordable Housing solutions - comprehensive local housing strategy provides a guiding framework for cities, towns, and counties to coordinate requirements to make substantial progress toward meeting their housing needs. HUD Announces November Single Family Note Sale Made Up of Reverse Mortgage Properties - HUD will offer up to 50% of  1,730 homes in multi-loan pools for bids first by eligible non-profit organizations and units of state and local government. FACT SHEET: Biden-⁠Harris Administration Announces Immediate Steps to Increase Affordable Housing Supply -  Tucker Carlson exposes real estate companies 'wrecking' America - 4 unit apartments on single family lots.  Cities like Minneapolis and Sacramento have begun to allow multifamily dwellings on single-family lots. HUD-FHFA Initiative on Housing Supply - focus on entry-level/affordable unit production…create/preserve/sell to homeowners and non-profits 100,000 units over the next 3 years Estimated 100,000 houses of worship in the US in next several years will be closing.
April 05, 2022
New condo mortgage rules create barriers for borrowers
There are an estimated 175,000 condo associations in the U.S., according to the Community Associations Institute, making the property type an important part of the housing market. Those associations oversee millions of condo units – some are high-value penthouses, but many units serve as retirement homes, starter homes and investment properties. Expect HUD to issue its own addition to cap on investment properties and delinquent condo fees. Non-warrantable mortgages aren’t resold to Fannie and Freddie. Instead, they’re held in the portfolio of a lender, or sold to private investors. Source:  Bankrate article
March 30, 2022
Foreclosures are on the rise. Here’s what that says about the housing market
Foreclosures are on the rise. Here’s what that says about the housing market
March 23, 2022
How many foreign investors are Buying real estate in the United States?
Foreign buyers are moving in on US real estate Israeli-based app is making it easier for foreigners to buy US real estate Arizona officials enraged over farmland purchases by Saudi Arabia to grow hay
March 18, 2022
Fair Housing Resources
Fair Housing Compiled Resources Fair Housing homepage Latest videos, news, publications, and information about fair housing. Fairhaven: Interactive Training Supports Fair Housing(link is external) Fair Housing Self-Study Module - designed to increase awareness and greater understanding of fair housing issues. Fair Housing Compiled References A collection of videos, articles, publications and other resources compiled by NAR Library & Archives. The Fair Housing Act - NAR resources and compliance information about the Fair Housing Act. Fair Housing Grants(link is external) - Grants to state and local associations to help their members learn more about fair housing. Real Estate Brokerage Essentials: The Fair Housing Chapter - Noncompliance with fair housing laws is a risk that responsible real estate brokers simply cannot assume as a cost of doing business. Download this chapter for free and re-energize your fair housing compliance program. Fair Housing Month Check out this collection of videos, articles, book recommendations, and podcasts to help you celebrate Fair Housing Month in April. Fair Housing Makes Us Stronger: Celebrating 50 Years of the Fair Housing Act - Watch a collection of videos, presentation materials, and showcase stories about this important fair housing plays in our industry and in our communities. What Everyone Should Know About Equal Opportunity in Housing A broad overview of fair housing as it relates to REALTORS® and their clients. REALTOR® Fair Housing Declaration Show you support equal opportunity in housing by displaying this declaration of following fair housing laws and your commitment to provide professional service. Americans with Disabilities Act Download a complete copy of NAR's ADA Compliance Kit. Fair Housing Initiatives Program (FHIP)(link is external) The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) provides grants through FHIP to organizations that work on fair housing issues. Honoring the Legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. Information on NAR's $1 million contribution to the Washington, D.C., Martin Luther King, Jr. National Memorial Project Foundation in 2007.
March 15, 2022
Miscellaneous topics in real estate 3-12-2022
Is Buying Distressed Properties a Good Real Estate Investment? What Will 2022 Look Like for Senior Housing? As gas prices soar, will real estate agents reconsider cost and way of doing business? Bend real estate group’s lawsuit prompts federal judge to block Oregon’s new ‘love letter’ ban Oregon ban on real estate ‘love letters’ blocked by preliminary injunction Insights into How Conflict in Ukraine Impacts Florida Real Estate Ukraine Invasion Poised to Affect High-End Real Estate Market
March 12, 2022
Wrapping up February 2022 - Where are they coming from? - Build-to-Rent - Buying with Crypto - More Fraud
People are moving to Atlanta. Here's where they're coming from. - Can you gues? Real Estate Developers Pivot to Build-to-Rent Can You Buy a House with Crypto? Some Lenders Say ‘Yes’ What to know about cryptocurrency and real estate Operators of Investment Coaching Scheme Banned from Industry and Ordered to Pay Millions in Redress to Defrauded Consumers
February 28, 2022
Is the Housing Market Stuck? Why Buyers Are in a Rush—and Sellers Just Won’t Budge
Is the Housing Market Stuck? Why Buyers Are in a Rush—and Sellers Just Won’t Budge Millennials are willing to make rash decisions to afford a home in a competitive market, including buying a home sight unseen (90%), purchasing a fixer-upper that needs major repairs (82%), and offering over asking price (80%). - Nonetheless, the fact that home sellers today can make a killing isn’t persuading many to budge, perhaps because once they sell, the question remains: Where will they live? Most sellers, after all, are also buyers.
February 11, 2022
Multiple Topics
Evaluating Real Estate Investments -- Identifying Fraud | Whitman Legal Solutions, LLC - JDSupra The growth of Stewart Title toward an end-to-end real estate experience - HousingWire Virtually Real, Real Estate: An Intro Into “Real Estate” in the Metaverse | Ingram Yuzek Gainen Carroll & Bertolotti, LLP - JDSupra FinCEN Seeks Comments on Potential Requirements Under the Bank Secrecy Act | Weiner Brodsky Kider PC - JDSupra Emboldened by a hot property market, sellers push real-estate agents to lower commission fees
February 04, 2022
Best Sources for Keeping Up-to-Date on Real Estate Appraisal News
Best Sources for Keeping Up-to-Date on Real Estate Appraisal News
February 02, 2022
Six Important Things to Know About Wire Funds
Real Estate Tips: Six Important Things to Know About Wire Funds Wire funds are processed through the Federal Reserve on the East Coast – so there is a five hour time difference. Escrow officers have cut off times to wire out and receive funds. Wire funds are not instant, it is not like a text or an email. Wire funds can take several hours or up to even three days depending upon a variety of things including initiating wires and banks; it depends if you are using a bank or a brokerage company as well. Title companies never change their wire instructions ever. Wire fraud is email hacking – they will hack, watch, monitor and send change of instructions. Sellers Receiving FundsPick up the phone and call your escrow officer and provide all bank information verbally Mae sure escrow officer is the correct escrow officer Buyers: Pick up the phone and call your bank or brokerage company to confirmDo you need to be in person to initiate a wire? Can it be done via email/online? Are there daily limits to wire limits? Title companies’ internal processes are different and on how they notify buyers/sellersEscrow officers may have access to wire boards Departments within a title/escrow that notify the escrow officer that notifies you
January 19, 2022
Affordable housing initiatives are coming to your state, county, or municipality - Have you heard or seen them?
Almost half of American renters fear they’ll never own a home - study by Lending Tree  Affordable Housing Initiative In Florida Tops 62,000 Signatures - If proposal gets on ballot & approved by 60% of voters, it would establish & require state trust funds receive at least 25% of revenue from document-stamp taxes collected on real-estate transactions & detail how money could be used to address affordable housing. Federal programs for affordable housing -cities, towns, and counties have an important role to play in the funding process for affordable housing, mostly from the federal government & most programs are administered by HUD. Funding a local housing strategy - have you heard the innovative approach that Iowa took regarding affordable housing e insurance?  I’ll be reporting on that in an upcoming podcast..stay tuned for more! Capital gains tax on main residences unlikely to solve housing problems, experts say - Canada has realized this....will the Untied States try it?  Will the  US reduce the amount of sales "gain" to tax more of the proceeds? City of Charleston searching for a real estate broker for affordable housing projects Affordable Housing solutions - comprehensive local housing strategy provides a guiding framework for cities, towns, and counties to coordinate requirements to make substantial progress toward meeting their housing needs. HUD Announces November Single Family Note Sale Made Up of Reverse Mortgage Properties - HUD will offer up to 50% of 1,730 homes in multi-loan pools for bids first by eligible non-profit organizations & units of state & local government. FACT SHEET: Biden-⁠Harris Administration Announces Immediate Steps to Increase Affordable Housing Supply - Tucker Carlson exposes real estate companies 'wrecking' America - 4 unit apartments on single family lots.  Cities like Minneapolis & Sacramento have begun to allow multifamily dwellings on single-family lots. HUD-FHFA Initiative on Housing Supply -  focus on entry-level & affordable unit production…create, preserve, & sell to homeowners & non-profits 100,000 units over the next 3 years Buffalo: 201 affordable apts cost $76 million($380K/apartment) Other information and solutions
January 13, 2022
Real Estate in the Metaverse
Real estate in the metaverse is booming. Is it really such a crazy idea? Use your grade school and middle school analytical asking questions... Who What Where When  Why How Update 1-12-22:  Investors are paying millions for virtual land in the metaverse Update 1-16-2022:  Who Wants To Become A Digital Landlord? Updated:  Virtually Real, Real Estate: An Intro Into “Real Estate” in the Metaverse
January 08, 2022
2022 GAR Contract Changes
I recommend you take a course to get a more in depth look and analysis of changes to the Georgia Association of Realtors (GAR) contracts. GAR contract forms are the standard used by the majority of real estate agents to write residential real estate contracts. Check out Maximum One Training videos and handouts - Training Videos & CE Classes & Handouts Summary of GAR Form Changes - summarizes changes to Brokerage Engagements, Purchase and Sale Agreement, Disclosures forms, etc.
January 07, 2022
Legislation to Modernize and Federalize Real Estate Appraisal Licensing System
PERLMUTTER, KUSTOFF INTRODUCE LEGISLATION TO MODERNIZE REAL ESTATE APPRAISAL LICENSING SYSTEM - bipartisan legislation to modernize the real estate appraisal licensing system. The Portal for Appraisal Licensing Act establishes a nationwide licensing system for real estate appraisers to improve the appraisal regulatory structure, reduce cost, and eliminate red tape.  “The Portal for Appraisal Licensing Act will eliminate red tape for appraisal licensing by creating a one-stop shop for renewing licenses and certifications,”  Appraisers struggle to keep up with demand in hot real estate market - Ryll said the number of appraisal companies in the Upstate has remained fairly steady in the past decade or so, and the fact that the certification process takes up to 18 months or more means new appraisers can’t enter the market quickly. “It’s difficult to add staff quickly in this business,” he said. “The training takes a long time, and licensed appraisers like myself simply don’t have the time to properly train people when we’re as busy as we are right now.” According to information from the state Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation, which oversees certification and licensing of real estate appraisers, the process for qualifying as an appraiser begins with three courses and completion of a supervisor/trainee course. Once that is completed, training continues under the supervision of a certified appraiser for six to 18 months, depending on the license being attained. During that time, trainees must take more appraiser courses and gain experience to upgrade to “licensed” or “certified.” The last step is the state exam. During the pandemic, many lenders allowed more desktop appraisals, which means an appraiser is not required to do an on-site inspection, but can accept photos and data from a real estate agent or home inspector to begin the appraisal process. He said appraisers were reluctant in the past to accept data from third parties not specifically trained to take those measurements because the appraiser was still liable for any mistakes made. But new language in federal lending guidelines has now passed that liability to the data collector, so certified appraisers have more protection in that regard. “Appraisers are reluctant to submit data on properties that can be stored indefinitely,” he said. “If enough of that data is kept, appraisers worry that it can reduce demand for their expertise and services.  
January 04, 2022
Real Estate Predictions for 2022 and Ex-sperts!
Hold onto your hat....all the Ex "sperts" are speaking... Hold onto your hat….all the Ex “sperts” (Ex = has been and sperts = drips under pressure) are speaking… Bottom Line: Roses are red, violets are blue, you paid dearly in 2021, and you'll do it again in 2022! Leading economists and analysts on the 4 things to look for in the housing market in 2022 Home Price Surge Will Slow Down, Economist Says - But this picture is certain to change when the calendar flips over to 2022. “Prices will slow down,” said Ken H. Johnson, Ph.D., an economist for FAU Executive Education within the College of Business at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, Fla. “You will no longer see double-digit price appreciation.” Housing Shortage Likely To Outlast Other Pandemic-Driven Scarcities - “Of all the shortages afflicting the US economy, the housing shortage might last the longest,” the economists, led by Goldman Sachs Chief Economist Jan Hatzius, said in the report earlier this month. “While the supply of homes for sale has increased modestly since the spring, it remains well below pre-pandemic levels and the outlook offers no quick fixes for the shortage.” National Association of Realtors Yun Says Housing Market Doing Well, May Normalize in 2022 As home prices cool, these are the nation’s 10 most overvalued housing markets U.S. Housing Supply to Remain a Major Challenge for Home Buyers in 2022 Guide To 2022 Housing Market Predictions And Forecasts
December 20, 2021
FinCen (Financial Crimes Enforcement Network) proposed Anti-Money Laundering Regulations for Real Estate Transactions
Anti-Money Laundering Regulations for Real Estate Transactions FinCEN, Advance notice of proposed rulemaking, RIN 1506-AB54 In addition to shell companies, FinCen may want to also consider monitoring Commercial real estate transactions and individuals as well. Bottom line:  More record keeping and paperwork ahead without much impact on catching money laundering least not the big fish. Update - 12-18-2021 - FinCEN Launches Rulemaking Process to Implement Reporting Requirements for Real Estate Sector
December 13, 2021
Covid delayed? Mortgage bailouts are expiring fast, but here’s why a foreclosure crisis is unlikely
This article explains it well - Extraordinarily high levels of home equity, thanks to the recent runup in home prices, has struggling borrowers in a far better position now than they were at the start of the pandemic. There are still 1.618 million borrowers in forbearance programs (down from roughly 5 million at the peak in May 2020), or 3.1% of all outstanding mortgages, representing an unpaid balance of $313 billion. But 98% of those troubled borrowers now have at least 10% equity in their homes, not counting their missed payments. Including those payments, 93% still have more than 10% equity. Given today’s tight housing market, the majority could easily sell and still pocket some profit. “Such strong equity positions should help limit the volume of distressed inflow into the real estate market as well as provide strong incentive for homeowners to return to making mortgage payments — even if needing to be reduced through modification,” said Ben Graboske, president of data and analytics for Black Knight.
December 10, 2021
U.S. Treasury wants more oversight of all-cash real estate deals - for real, bullshit , or real bullshit? (Updated: 12-10-21)
Treasury wants more oversight of all-cash real estate deals Top iBuyers Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew letter to Paul Ryan 5-5-2016 Proposed Bank Secrecy Act Language  Banks, money transmitters and even casinos must file SARs if they suspect their businesses are being used for illicit purposes. The real-estate sector, in contrast, has relatively few reporting requirements even though an estimated $2.3 billion was laundered through U.S. real-estate transactions from 2015 to 2020, according to an analysis cited by FinCEN.  Source: Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network  - Credit Union Times article Anti-Money Laundering Regulations for Real Estate Transactions 
December 07, 2021
Mechanics & Materialmen’s Liens on Real Property in Georgia?
Source:  How Long do Mechanics & Materialmen’s Liens Remain Valid in Georgia? A mechanic's lien guarantees payment to builders, contractors, or construction firms that build or repair structures and other stakeholders involved in a construction project in the event of a liquidation. Mechanic's liens are often necessary to secure construction help on a project. A type of lien that gives a security interest in property to someone who supplies materials used during work performed on that property. As is true in most areas of law, the short answer is “it depends.” In the simplest terms, Georgia requires that you must take two steps in order to keep your construction lien enforceable for longer than one year.  First, a lawsuit must be filed against the party who owes you money within one year of the date on which your lien was filed (“Lawsuit”). Second, within 30 days of filing your Lawsuit, you must file a document officially called a Notice of Filing of Action for Claim on Mechanics and Materialmen’s Liens (which we frequently refer to as a “Notice of Action”).
December 02, 2021
$400 million to be spent on affordable housing and jobs programs
No..not really but…it could be spent if EPA better managed the consolidation of laboratories over the next 30 years. office of inspector general stated Without improved management controls, the EPA risks continued cost overruns and delays in its laboratory consolidation efforts. Overruns and delays will reduce the Agency’s potential avoided costs and savings of approximately $409 million over 30 years. but don’t just take their word for it… Based on its March 2015 Synthesis Report of the US EPA Laboratory Enterprise Evaluation, the EPA concluded that it could realize approximately $409 million in avoided costs and savings over 30 years. The Synthesis Report included actions and options regarding which laboratory facilities to consolidate or co-locate. As the Agency’s central planner and coordinator, the Office of Mission Support’s Real Property Services Division is responsible for the oversight of laboratory consolidation efforts Report: EPA Needs to Improve Its Planning and Management of Laboratory Consolidation Efforts
November 30, 2021
Who owns nursing facilities and assisted living homes in the United States?
who is keeping track of number, ownership, and level of care exercised?  Georgia ombudsman program tries to manage, but do they have staff and funding?  What other organizations and agencies are watching?  Are your family members getting the care they need?  Is profit driving force for level of care? In 2019, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there are approximately 15,600 nursing homes in the United States with 1.7 million licensed beds, occupied by 1.4 million patients. ( About 70 percent of nursing homes are operated by for-profit corporations, 24 percent are not-for-profit, and 7 percent are government-owned, while 58 percent are operated by corporate chains. ( approximately 28,900 assisted living communities with nearly 1 million licensed beds in the United States today. ( welltower, ventas, omega healthcare and healthpeak are some of the largest REITs that lease facilities to senior care organizations.
November 23, 2021
RealSure - the new ibuyer house flipper on the street
Housing market disruptor banks on help from Blackstone  Realogy Holdings Corp. and Home Partners of America, a single-family landlord that Blackstone acquired this year, are expanding a joint venture that competes with Zillow Group Inc., Opendoor Technologies Inc. and other companies seeking to simplify the process of selling a home. The venture, RealSure, named former Walmart Inc. executive Katie Finnegan as its first chief executive officer, signaling plans to accelerate growth. Realogy, the owner of Corcoran Group, Sotheby’s International Realty and others, teamed up with Home Partners to launch RealSure in late 2019 in an effort to keep up with a growing field of iBuyers—companies that use technology to make it easier for regular people to sell their homes. The iBuyers practice a new spin on home-flipping that uses price-estimating software to generate rapid offers. When owners accept, they acquire the property, make light repairs, and put the home back on the market. RealSure does that too, but offers sellers the option of listing the home with a traditional agent for 45 days. The idea is to assure sellers that they’re not leaving money on the table by taking the instant bid. The program is also designed to make sure agents earn a commission, whether RealSure buys the house or the seller chooses the traditional route. (With the guidance of a participating local real estate agent, list your home for 45 days to see if you can get an even stronger offer.) There’s a potential downside, too. If RealSure makes offers to set a low bar for Realogy’s agents to beat, sellers may seek richer deals from other online companies. Home Partners of America has capital and pricing expertise to help meet that challenge, according to Finnegan. The company, which provides renters a path to becoming buyers, also contributes expertise on renovations. Blackstone agreed in June to buy Home Partners in a deal that valued it at $6 billion. realsure website
November 18, 2021
Do you favor open or blind bidding on real estate?
Study supports blind bidding on real estate, but one realtor argues transparency better for homebuyers Based on the evidence, blind-bidding does not ultimately drive up home prices, and requiring open bidding in a hot real-estate market may lead to higher, rather than lower, home prices. (Smart Property Institute in Canada) This paper finds that the rules governing real estate bids likely do play a minor role in the average price of real estate. Ultimately, the major factor driving up real estate prices is supply not keeping up with demand, particularly demand driven by population growth. To ensure housing is available and attainable for all Canadians, the focus should be on relieving the bottlenecks preventing an adequate supply of family-friendly, climate-friendly homes from being built.
November 16, 2021
The final walkthrough before closing: Checklist and tips
The final walkthrough before closing: Checklist and tips The seller’s belongings have been fully moved out. • Any repairs that the seller promised would be done have been completed. • All appliances that the purchase agreement specified would remain are in proper working order. • The seller left copies of all manuals and instructions for appliances and fixtures. • Door and window locks are fully functioning. • The HVAC systems (furnace, air conditioning, etc.) are working properly. • All faucets are working, toilets flush properly and there are no plumbing leaks. • All walls, ceilings and doorways are structurally intact and not damaged from moving. • The yard is free of any debris or damage. • The seller left the garage door openers and keys in the home or with their agent. “Cleanliness, completion of repairs, any changes to the condition of the property from the time of the sales contract, presence of all items that are contractually included in the sale and removal of items not included in the sale should all be checked during your final walkthrough,” North advises. Summary:  Take time to observe all features and condisitons ouside and inside the home including roof, siding, foundation, landscaping, driveway....flooring, walls, ceilings, electrical, plumbing, HVAC and more to determine if anything needs attention before closing.
November 12, 2021
Real Estate and Mortgage Fraud - Who investigates it and is it on the rise or slowing down?
Which federal agencies are involved in the investigation of mortgage fraud? Federal & Government Mortgage Fraud Prevention Agencies Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) ... Federal Trade Commission (FTC) ... Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac. ... U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) ... U.S. Postal Inspection Service. ... U.S. Secret Service. ... Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) Secret Service: Real Estate Wire Fraud On The Rise - some have reported thousands of dollars going missing in a matter of mere seconds. According to a news report from News 6 ClickOrlando, one Central Florida resident lost the $50,000 down payment they planned to use on a home, while another lost upwards of $160,000, but how?  According to an alert issued by the Secret Service, cybercriminals will impersonate mortgage lenders and send either completely fictitious or altered mortgage payoff statements to title companies. From there, title companies follow the wiring instructions included in the scam emails and wire funds to accounts controlled by the cybercriminals. Wes Stricklen, a Volusia County realtor for 7 years, spoke to News Daytona Beach and said communication between sellers, banks, and lenders can help prevent most of these problems. “Communicate directly with the title company to get a secured email for the wiring instructions,” said Stricklen. “When it’s time to send the wire, go to their bank, have their banker call the title company, have the title company read the wiring instructions, and make sure it matches with what was in the email.” Similarly, double-check the email addresses that message you. Some email addresses may look legitimate, even using a name you may recognize, but the end of the address may be different. Wire Transfer Scheme Targets Mortgage Payoffs, Secret Service Warns -  The Secret Service provided the following tips to help prevent the fraud: Update policies and procedures to ensure proper verification of information before releasing funds. Independently obtain mortgage payoff statements and confirm with verified and trusted sources. Independently verify the authenticity of information included in correspondence and statement. Do not rely on third parties, such as mortgagors or other transaction participant, for information. Restrict wire transfers to known and previously verified accounts. Pay using checks when the information cannot be independently verified. Have a clear and detailed Incident Response Plan. ALTA has developed a Rapid Response Plan for Wire Fraud Incidents. Access the plan, as well as other wire fraud resources, here. Report financial crime by contacting a U.S. Secret Service Field Office.
November 08, 2021
We Buy Houses - Then Sell or Rent them back to you
We Buy Houses - Then Sell or Rent them back to you  Zillow Freezing iBuyer Program - What does this Mean for Real Estate? Divvy - Ribbon - Ribbon will only back single-family homes with sale prices between $100,000 and $600,000.  If there is a problem with the mortgage, such as the home not appraising high enough, Ribbon buys the home and allows the client to rent until they are able to purchase it. Ribbon will sell the home to the client at the same price it purchased it (i.e., provided they have the cash to pay the appraisal gap and pays the 2.95% Ribbon fee), “in case you need more time,” according to its website. It offers the consumer the opportunity to rent for up to a year. If the client chooses to rent but not buy, Ribbon charges 2.95 percent of the original purchase price.
November 03, 2021
Understanding the CMA – Comparative Market Analysis
Understanding the CMA – Comparative Market Analysis - The basic purpose is to determine the current value of the property that constantly varies based on local market activity. Many factors are taken into consideration with local market values having the greatest effect, but other influences do strongly impact the current value of a property.
November 01, 2021
BUILD BACK BETTER BILL (infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act): WHAT’S IN IT FOR REAL ESTATE? $90 Billion for Section 8 $80 Billion for Public Housing $10 Billion for First-Time Homebuyers $5.3 Billion for Rural Housing $4.3 Billion for the “Unlocking Possibilities Program” $4 Billion for Distressed Multifamily Housing $4 Billion for Flood Resilience $2.8 Billion for Minority-Owned Businesses The Build Back Better bill also includes significant money for transportation improvements, re-routing streets and removing lead paint from housing, all of which could have significant effects on real estate markets. Twenty-five billion is also going to the Small Business Administration including money for the popular 7(a) microloan program, which serves many real estate businesses. (Note: SBA inspector general suggests further evaluation of program.) Also notable is what the house bill did not end up including. The bill fails to close two tax loopholes—the so-called carried interest loophole and like-kind exchanges. The carried interest loophole allows taxpayers to pay a much lower rate on capital gains compared to straight income, and like-kind exchanges involve deferring taxes when exchanging investment properties. NAR has lobbied against changing these practices, which largely benefit very wealthy individuals, arguing that they are not loopholes and promote business growth, while some politicians on both sides of the aisle see them as contributing to massive wealth inequality.
October 27, 2021
Hundreds of Billion$ have been spent on affordable housing in the United States over past 30 years
no, not really…it was spent in Afghanistan - was it worth it? well, here are 10 bad examples of "waste, fraud, and abuse"…could have been spent on affordable housing and jobs programs. HUNDREDS OF BILLIONS WERE SPENT BY THE US IN AFGHANISTAN. HERE ARE 10 OF THE STARKEST EXAMPLES OF 'WASTE, FRAUD AND ABUSE' In addition to the $85 billion of military equipment and weapons left behind in are som less costly but inane expenditure of us taxpayer and government debt. Tarakhil power plant cost $335 million to build, and had an estimated annual fuel cost of $245 million. The most recent SIGAR assessment said at best it was used at just 2.2% capacity, as the Afghan government could not afford the fuel. Pentagon chose the G222 - Six years after the procurement was launched, the 16 aircraft delivered to Afghanistan were sold for scrap for $40,257. The cost of the project: $549 million. 64,000-square foot Marine HQ control center - It cost $36 million, was never used, and seems to have been later stripped by the Afghans, who also never appeared to use it. Uniforms camouflage pattern, "Spec4ce Forest" cost $28 million more than a more appropriate pattern. The US spent $1.5 million a day on counter-narcotics programs (from 2002 to 2018). Opium production was, according to the last SIGAR report, up in 2020 by 37% compared to the year before. This was the third-highest yield since records began in 1994. $249 million being handed out to contractors, but only 15% of the road being built An extensive hotel and apartment complex was commissioned next to the US Embassy in Kabul - "the $85 million in loans is gone, the buildings were never completed and are uninhabitable, and the U.S. Embassy is now forced to provide security for the site at additional cost to U.S. taxpayers." Task Force for Business and Stability Operations (TFBSO) expanded from Iraq to include Afghanistan in 2009, for whose operations in Afghanistan Congress set aside $823 million.  Over half the money actually spent by TFBSO -- $359 million of $675 million -- was "spent on indirect and support costs, not directly on projects in Afghanistan," SIGAR concluded in an audit. 510 projects they had been given coordinates for, did not exist in those locations.The audit said that USAID and the Afghan ministry of Public Health could only provide "oversight of these facilities [if they] know where they are." USAID declined to comment. SIGAR was able to review $63 billion of it -- nearly half. They concluded $19 billion of that -- almost a third -- was "lost to waste, fraud, and abuse."
October 25, 2021
What Is a Living Trust in Real Estate?
What Is a Living Trust in Real Estate? A living trust is a legal document that makes it easier for you to pass along property, accounts and other assets to your loved ones after you die. It allows your assets to pass along directly to your designated beneficiaries without needing to go through the courts, eliminating the costly and lengthy probate process. Even though the living trust holds these assets, you are still considered in possession of them while you’re alive (assuming that you named yourself the trustee). This means that you can move assets in and out of the trust as you see fit, and if you have a revocable trust, you can even cancel or change it at any time. A living trust is a beneficial financial product for many reasons.- bypass probate court, you remain control after death, and remains private. How a Living Trust Differs from a Will - living trust is considered “in effect” even while the grantor is still alive. A will, however, only goes into effect after the grantor passes away. A will goes through the probate courts, while a living trust skips the probate process altogether. During probate, your will is filed as public record. Your living trust and its contents, however, can be kept entirely private. Any assets without a named beneficiary (such as a life insurance policy) will pass through probate, even if you have a will. This process can take months or years, while your loved ones wait to receive their share of your estate. With a living trust, however, assets can be passed down immediately. Creating a will can be a cheap – or even free – process. Establishing a trust, however, is a bit more complex and can cost hundreds or even thousands of dollars. You can make requests and name stipulations in your will. However, your heirs don’t necessarily have to follow them after you’re gone (depending on the conditions and even your state). With a trust, you can dictate how and when assets are disbursed. You’ll also have a trustee around to manage the process. Making a Living Trust: Can You Do It Yourself?
October 22, 2021
Small Business Administration Microloan Program
Small Business Administration Microloan Program - Started by Congress in 1991, the Microloan program is designed to assist women, low-income, veteran, and minority entrepreneurs and small business owners by providing them small-scale loans for working capital or the acquisition of materials, supplies, or equipment. In FY2020, Microloan intermediaries provided 5,890 microloans totaling $85.0 million. The average Microloan was $14,434 and had a 6.5% interest rate. The program’s critics argue that it is expensive relative to alternative programs, duplicative of the SBA’s 7(a) loan guaranty program, and subject to administrative shortfalls. The program’s advocates argue that it assists many who are not served by the private sector and is an important source of capital and training assistance for low-income, women, and minority business owners. e Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), which, among other provisions, appropriated $17 billion to pay the principal, interest, and any associated fees that are owed on an existing 7(a), 504/CDC, or Microloan that is in a regular servicing status for a six-month period starting on the next payment due date. the Microloan program’s estimated borrower default rate is about 7%.  Microloans in FY2020 were most commonly used for working capital (80.3%), equipment (20.5%), materials (12.0%). Critics of the SBA’s Microloan program argue that it is duplicative of other available programs, expensive relative to alternative programs, and subject to administrative shortfalls. The program’s advocates argue that it provides assistance that “reaches many who otherwise would not be served.  Also, it is expensive relative to other SBA programs, with total administrative costs of about $7,517 per small business assisted in FY2019, compared to $1,986 per small business assisted in the SBA’s 7(a) loan guarantee program. 2017, the SBA’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) released an audit of the SBA’s administration of the Microloan program:  (1) SBA’s oversight poor - didn't watch how funds were spent unless loan defaulted; inadequate program staffing;  12% default rate; duplicate loans and those in excess of upper loan limits; and no measurement of output performance. 2019, GAO examined the Microloan program and recommended that the SBA: Better advanced planning to determine what data is needed to evaluate performance; Define terms and instructions are comprehensive enough to collect data; develop performance targets; and consider interagency collaboration and information sharing. Four SBA OIG recommendations: (1) continue efforts to improve the information system to include outcome-based performance measurements and ensure the data captured can be used to effectively monitor the Microloan Program compliance, performance, and integrity; (2) develop and implement a site visit plan to comprehensively monitor microloan portfolio performance and ensure program results can be evaluated program-wide; (3) update the Microloan program’s SOP 52 00 A to clarify requirements regarding evidence for use of proceeds and credit elsewhere; and (4) update the microloan reporting system manual to reflect current technology capabilities. Source:  Small Business Administration Microloan Program
October 20, 2021
What are my options if my new house turns out to be a lemon?
What are my options if my new house turns out to be a lemon?
October 18, 2021
Multiple topics - FHA loan limits increase - Zillow's new app - Highest title insurance profits ever - Curbio - Artificial Intelligence
FHA LOAN LIMITS INCREASED!  FHA increased loan limits on multi family housing another $8 billion per year on each enterprise Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac…totaling $156 billion/year in multi family properties.  And word is that the $412,850 FHA single family loan limit will go up substantially higher than this level.  Both actions are designed to increase housing affordability in low down payments and more homes which qualify for FHA. Zillow Is Bringing Artificial Intelligence to Real Estate - Zillow is working on called a floor plan generator, where they can take the images people upload and generate an actual floor plan with a house for you and find the house you're really looking for...combining that AI with their other AI algorithm (Zestimate). may result in making actual offers on homes.    Don't hold your breath. Q2 Title Insurance Premiums of $6.5 Billion Break Records - That's alot of cash corresponding to an approximate 3.5% payout ratio...or approximately $222 million - but for what - errors or overlooked issues that weren't corrected before closing?  Do we have full transparency in the title insurance industry with Billions of dollars collected and only millions in payouts? However, title insurance companies didn’t exactly lose during this period. During the first six months of 2021, the industry overall paid out $221.1 million in claims, down from $232.9 million from the same period a year prior.  Maybe we ought to consider modeling after Iowa’s title insurance which is far cheaper and requires title defects to be corrected prior to closing. Curbio will gift a First American home warranty to your clients who complete a Curbio project!. Curbio is the leading home improvement company for Realtors® and their selling clients in the US, with a fast and effortless process to repair and update those areas that will get the largest renovation ROI.  Tech Leaders Discuss Artificial Intelligence and its Impact on the Real Estate Industry - Chatbots and voice assistants are extremely popular right now as they allow real estate professionals to provide around-the-clock support that doesn't require a human," said Vin Vomero, CEO of Foxy AI. "Foxy AI's ‘Remodel It' uses computer vision to help consumers get instant and customizable home renovation estimates by analyzing the photos on listing websites by ZIP code. Some companies avoid using A.I. because of the perceived costs and resources required to use it, a lack of trust in A.I. products, the difficulty in explaining what it does behind the scenes and a fear of an A.I. takeover related to job displacement," said Julianne Heller, data scientist at NAR.
October 15, 2021
Federal agencies take 7 steps to improve affordable housing supply and reduce homelessness
Federal agencies take 7 steps to improve affordable housing supply and reduce homelessness Increasing the funding of low-income housing tax credit investments through Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to $852 million each annually. Sharing specific details about the HOME-American Rescue Plan so more than 600 eligible communities can start accessing funds designed to address local homelessness. Providing communities with five percent of their HOME-ARP grants upfront to support planning activities for local affordable housing projects. Restarting the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) Section 542(c) Housing Finance Agency Risk-Sharing Program with the Department of Treasury’s Federal Financing Bank. The program gives state housing finance agencies access to low-cost capital that aids in the building and development of affordable housing units where they are needed. Removing the dollar cap from the Section 542(c) program so the FHA can provide firm approval letters for HFA-underwritten mortgages that meet program standards. Making more single-family homes available to individuals, families and non-profit organizations by limiting the sale of FHA-insured and HUD-owned properties to large investors. Sharing HUD research on innovative strategies state and local governments use to remove regulatory barriers to affordable housing and increase housing supply.
October 14, 2021
Why are new home sale contracts being terminated by builders
Home Buyers Facing Higher Prices, Unexpected Cancelled Contracts in New Home Builds
October 12, 2021
Inflation forces homebuilders to take it slow, raise prices
Inflation forces homebuilders to take it slow, raise prices - Rising costs and shortages of building materials and labor are rippling across the homebuilding industry, which accounted for nearly 12% of all U.S. home sales in July. Construction delays are common, prompting many builders to pump the brakes on the number of new homes they put up for sale. As building a new home gets more expensive, some of those costs are passed along to buyers. Lumber futures jumped to an all-time high $1,670 per thousand board feet in May. They've since dropped to $634, about 10% higher than a year ago. (Have builders passed this lower cost onto buyers after raising their prices to compensate for the earlier limber price increases?) But wholesale prices for a category of homebuilding components that includes windows, roofing tiles, doors and steel, increased 22% over the last 12 months. (Question:  How much of that increase in price is reflected in the home price and will some be absorbed by builders, or all passed along to home buyers so GPM can be retained?) A chronic shortage of skilled construction workers has worsened during the pandemic, forcing builders to factor in higher labor costs. (Paying people not to work is one reason, then shortages of crews and sporadic building material deliveries require sudden needs to hire more temporary crews at higher costs to get homes completed.)
October 08, 2021
Tucker Carlson exposes real estate companies 'wrecking' America - Coming to your state?
Turcker Carlson on California Real Estate Laws destroying the fabric of Single Famly Homes - SB9 and SB10, that will abolish the suburbs in the state of California. The state that invented the suburbs. Those bills were endorsed by the California Building Industry Association 3 Zoning Changes That Make Residential Neighborhoods More Affordable - No more SFR Only - ADUs (Accessory dwelling units also known as granny flats, English basements, secondary suites, casitas, and ohana houses) - housing people not Cars A call to examine United Methodist real estate - My estimates are that the next several years will see the closing of as many as 100,000 houses of worship throughout the United States, up from an estimated 3,750 to 8,000 per year now. While it is easy to blame COVID-19 for the upcoming closings, most of the churches were on the brink of shuttering pre-pandemic.
October 06, 2021
Swimming pools - good or bad investment?
Do swimming pools add value to real estate?
October 04, 2021
CoreLogic - Where did it start and where is it now?
CoreLogic history on Wikipedia - Their fingers are in alot of places...and provide alot of data to real estate community.
October 01, 2021
Why is your flood insurance rising starting October 1st?
Starting Oct. 1, the federal government plans to start gradually reducing subsidies for its flood insurance programs, pushing up rates for homeowners, according to the New York Times. For the first time, the government will also take into account a home’s size, which means the owners of large beachfront properties are in for even larger rate hikes. FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) manages the creation and revision of flood maps across the United Stated. NFIP (National Flood Insurance program) is managed by FEMA that enables homeowners, business. owners and renters in participating communities to purchase federally backed flood. insurance as an insurance alternative to disaster assistance.  Along with this responsibility, FEMA has to use a formula or pricing strategy guideline for flood insurance. FEMA Risk Rating 2.0 is the new pricing methodology. This methodology leverages industry best practices and cutting-edge technology to enable FEMA to deliver rates that are actuarily sound, equitable, easier to understand and better reflect a property’s flood risk.   In 2012, Congress passed the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act to phase in full-risk prices for most NFIP policyholders over time. However, the act resulted in huge increases in premiums…some as high as $63,000.   Only an act of Congress can change these congressionally mandated statutory protections. Congress also strictly limits how much grandfathered rates can increase in a single year (generally no more than 18%) and how much coverage can be offered under an NFIP policy ($250,000 for a residential building), which will not change under Rate 2.0. Risk Rating 2.0 does not affect the grandfathered rates for newly mapped or pre-Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) properties or rate discounts under the Community Rating System (CRS). Only an act of Congress can change these congressionally mandated statutory protections. Congress also strictly limits how much grandfathered rates can increase in a single year (generally no more than 18%) and how much coverage can be offered under an NFIP policy ($250,000 for a residential building), which will not change under Rate 2.0. NAR’s recent townhall with FEMA regarding the National Flood Insurance program’s (NFIP) new pricing methodology Risk Rating 2.0. (Note: RR 2.0 only affects NFIP policies. However, there are a number of private flood policies that aren’t affected.) Risk Rating 2.0  Discussion from FEMA - Since the 1970s, rates have been predominantly based on relatively static measurements, emphasizing a property’s elevation within a zone on a Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM). FEMA is building on years of investment in flood hazard information by incorporating private sector data sets, catastrophe models and evolving actuarial science. Phase out of flood insurance subsidies could upend coastal real estate markets - Starting Oct. 1, the federal government plans to start gradually reducing subsidies for its flood insurance programs, pushing up rates for homeowners, according to the New York Times. New policies beginning Oct. 1, 2021 - All remaining policies renewing on or after April 1, 2022 Update: Reasons =
September 27, 2021
Where home prices are going next, according to forecast models
The weakest projection comes from real estate research firm CoreLogic, which is forecasting just a 2.7% appreciation in the coming 12 months. Meanwhile, John Burns Real Estate Consulting and Freddie Mac—which do calendar year forecasts—project home price growth of 4% and 5.3%, respectively, in 2022.
September 24, 2021
Flyhomes wants to eliminate contingencies from real estate transactions
Flyhomes wants to eliminate contingencies from real estate transactions Unlike Knock and Ribbon, Flyhomes is a real estate brokerage with salaried agents. “They are salaried but also make money per-deal based on performance, so it’s a base pay but it’s variable,” he notes. Its cornerstone program, Flyhomes Cash Offer, fronts the funds to a homebuyer so they can become a cash buyer. “They can use this bridge loan and then refinance it out into their long-term loan. For a seller, it’s even better than a cash offer, because with a cash offer, there’s no guarantee that it will close,” says Garg. They also offer Buy Before You Sell, which allows buyers to buy and move into a new home before selling their old one. Flyhomes offers a short-term loan to the buyers, and the company get the old home ready to sell and, shortly after, list it. Flyhomes has already received three rounds of funding (in addition to seed funding in 2017). The latest, Series C funding for $150 million was in June 2021 and was co-led by Norwest Venture Partners and Battery Ventures. The company is part of a wave of venture-backed real estate brokerages with alternative financing models. The Flyhomes family of companies includes Flyhomes Brokerage, Flyhomes Mortgage, and Flyhomes Closing.
September 22, 2021
Americans cashing out their home equity - regardless of foreclosure or not!
Americans cashing out as home equity hits record $9.1 trillion - Inman report Black Knight’s data shows that most of the 1.75 million homeowners still in forbearance in mid-August had loans that were either backed by the FHA or VA (696,000), or made by portfolio or “private label” lenders (520,000). Loans guaranteed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (535,000) made up the balance. A new loss mitigation waterfall developed by FHA allowing eligible borrowers to reduce their monthly payments by 25 percent without providing income documentation, should “greatly improve the take-up rate and increase the number of successful modifications,” according to an analysis by the Urban Institute. Covid mortgage bailouts are expiring fast, but here’s why a foreclosure crisis is unlikely - Some 98% of those troubled borrowers have at least 10% equity in their homes, not counting their missed payments....with that much equity, and lenders working on modifications not foreclosures, we probably won't see a large foreclosure inventory over the next year.
September 15, 2021
What can the Homeowners' Association (HOA) charge for closing documents in Georgia?
Answer:  It all depends! And there is no limit as to what an HOA or Property Management company can charge for a "statement of account". Georgia limits the closing letter to $10, but doesn't limit the amount an HOA  can charge for producing a statement of account for the current owner(s). Texas passed a new law limiting the closing documents to $375 and also requires all documents, statements, agendas, minutes, etc, should be online and made available to all homeowners within the HOA.
September 08, 2021
Inspection disruption - Insuring mistakes made during home inspections
Inspectify and Hippo Insurance have a proposition for you. This may be a more comfortable route to approach errors by home inspectors, but Errors & Omissions Insurance usually would cover these occasions...unless your home inspector doesn't carry E&O insurance...but most usually do.
September 01, 2021
Random News - cameras - who’s watching you, higher property taxes, housing market - still hot or cooling off, time share for the wealthy, and other things
Use of cameras in homes that are for sale - Questions:  How many sellers actually use cameras to watch visitors when their homes are for sale?  Is it legal in your state to record video and audio? Will agents warn buyers to not say anything or choose not to reveal truths about the property while inside your home? Rising property taxes are disproportionate on areas of gentrification - Yes, as homes In poor communities get flipped into more expensive homes, other similar homes get inflated property values and in turn higher taxes which may create a “back-door” way of pushing more out of homes…but why the concern now?  In areas that, are predominantly wealthy, higher and higher property taxes weren’t a concern before…were they? Although Dwindling, Serious Delinquencies Still a Concern - 1.45 million of the 2.2 million delinquent mortgages (30 or more days delinquent) are seriously delinquent (however that is defined). But the majority of them (actual % isn’t disclosed in the article) are under forbearance plans.  (Note: In a forbearance plan/program, the loan owner ("lender") agrees to reduce or suspend your payments for a set amount of time.  It’s not a repayment plan, but could become one where lender raises monthly payment to compensate for missed payments and allow resident to remain in property. Wall Street is buying up family homes. The rent checks are too juicy to ignore Housing market 'no longer heating up,' new Redfin report shows - Signs of slowing down from Redfin. Nashville housing boom not expected to cool off this winter - Signs of continued heating Here & North Texas condo market.                      Colorado home prices are rising, but so is available inventory - Pace is slowing down a bit. Miami Herald says - Where's the ceiling? Miami-Dade home prices climbed last month  U.S. new home sales creep up; supply, prices remain constraints A Startup Is Turning Houses Into Corporations, And The Neighbors Are Fighting Back - Time share for the wealthy? - Pacaso uses a "fractional home ownership" model. They buy a house, lightly refurbish it, furnish it and then create an LLC for it. They then divvy up ownership...If you buy a share in a house, you can stay 44 nights/yr in increments that can't exceed 14 consecutive days per visit. You can also "gift" these stays to friends or family...
August 27, 2021
Title Insurance - What we know..what we don’t know?
Related to my 2015 BLOG post - Several different (14) types of insurance for real estate Stewart Title Information First American Title Information Atlanta's Seth Weissman's thoughts on Title Insurance American Land Title Association - Trade Association of Tittle Companies upholding standards for their members. Examples of what problems may happen during your ownership: Documents recorded during the time period between title examination and closing; Unrecorded documents that may give other individuals or entities an interest in the property; Encroachments by fences, driveways or other structures; Forged documents; Invalid or fraudulent probate of wills and estates; Improper foreclosure; Incorrect marital status of owner; Invalid or contested divorces; Liens filed by contractors or others who have not been paid for labor, materials or services provided on the property; Previously undisclosed heirs with claims to the property; Tax liens; Transfer of the property by a minor or mental incompetent; Property line disagreement; and or Mistakes in the public records. The Best Title Companies and Tips for Choosing Yours Top Ten Claims in the Title Industry The number one claims category in 2017 and every year since 2010, in Virginia and nationally, is search and exam.  Title companies paid on average 25% of all claims dollars on search and exam issues. 8-11-2021:  Does this mean title insurance cost will be lower for borrowers? First American Title Opens Clear2Go® Automated Title Decision Engine to Title Agents 8-26-2021:  At least one closing attorney provides link for Title Insurance Quotes:  Sherman & Phalen
August 04, 2021
Water bill nightmares in Dekalb County Georgia
Dekalb and Fulton Counties in Georgia continue to be mismanaged...especially the water systems. So what happens when you open your mail email or snail mail, and find a water bill for $20,000 for last months water bill? The Facebook page entitled:   unbelievable Dekalb water bills –  DeKalb County lifting unpaid water-bill moratorium starting July 1 
July 28, 2021
How accurate are online home price estimates?
Selling your home? Here's how accurate online estimates are You can now immediately update your Zestimate Don't believe them... Can you change what they publish?  Maybe... Use them for firepit chats, make you feel good, or just impress your guests with what you don't know about them.
July 08, 2021
Seller Property Disclosures in Georgia
Not legally required...not required in a GAR Purchase and Sale Agreement unless all parties agree to include it. There are 14 categories of disclosures on the GAR Sellers Property Disclosure Statement. Trust (the information on disclosures), but verify all disclosures (with evaluation, observation, and inspections).
June 18, 2021
How Do Mortgage Lenders Make Money?
Hey...not critical of lenders making money, but just FYI and "aren't we all in this together?" Source:  Investopedia summary of lender income sources
May 26, 2021
Violent Crimes against Real Estate Agents
Violent Crimes Against Real Estate Agents This podcast and blog post above is dedicated to those in the real estate industry who, while performing their real estate duties, were either killed or severely injured by worthless human beings. May they rest in peace and their families be comforted with their memories. Real estate is sometimes a dangerous occupation…especially if you are alone in a model home in a new subdivision or showing properties to unknown prospects. Given the wrong circumstances at the wrong time, it can be downright deadly. So don't meet someone alone, try to bring someone with you... Be careful out there!
May 19, 2021
Real Estate crimes and other scumbags
Does real estate crime pay? all depends on whether they all get caught and prosecuted. Yes...many unscrupulous people try to squeeze a buck out of breaking the law...and many get caught...eventually. Here are a few sources of criminals and what happened. Be careful and don't trust anyone until you veariy! Access Brokerage Blog Post:  Real Estate Crimes including Mortgage Fraud and other Scumbags Fraud cases reported by HUD IG:  HUD Press releases on Fraud, Waste and Abuse FBI Website for Fraud - Financial Institution/Mortgage Fraud CFPB (Consumer Finance Protection Bureau) - Exposes violations and mortgage fraud
May 14, 2021
How do you win a competitive bid on residential real estate?
Price Terms & Conditions Offer Optics Creative Options Prayer
May 07, 2021
Who owns the house next door?
Cash investor v. the first time homebuyer...when will it become equal? It all depends. Invitation Homes owns over 80,000 homes in the US By 2017, two major players, Invitation Homes and American Homes 4 Rent, controlled nearly 60% of the rsingle family ental housing market. As of 2018, Invitation Homes (majority controlled by the Blackstone Group - investment group) appears to be the largest single-family rental housing owner. after recent mergers (Invitation Homes Inc. and Starwood Waypoint Homes completed their $11 billion merger, creating the largest single-family rental landlord in the U.S.) with 82,000 properties.  Its next largest competitor American Homes 4 Rent (As of December 31, 2020, the company) owned 53,584, homes.  American Homes 4 Rent is a real estate investment trust based in Calabasas, California that invests in single-family rental homes. Cerberus created FirstKey Homes (owns more than 20,000 homes); and GI Partners owns over 15,000 multifamily & single family residential real estate units. Update: 8-29-2021 - Home Partners owns 17,000 homes nationwide. On  calls with investors, those two companies touted their cost-cutting  measures, which often involved pushing responsibilities onto tenants. In  2016, Jack Corrigan, the chief operating officer of American Homes 4  Rent, told investors that the company hoped to reduce spending on  repairs, maintenance, and “turn costs” Interesting side notes:  NMHC 50 Largest Apartment Owners own approximately 2.3 million housing units and most are hedge funds. Sources:  Various internet searches, including but not limited to: Redfin Now in 22 states - all cash offers More Americans are selling their homes online  to real-estate companies like Zillow, who make an offer in 2 days and  can close in a week Update 5-31-2021:  Fast-cash house flippers flood poor neighborhoods in U.S. update:  Blackstone to buy Home Partners of America in $6 bln deal (17,000 homes) 7-29-2021:  Real estate giant snaps up dozens of local properties within months 8-7-221:  Why do companies want to buy your house?
April 30, 2021
Eliminate the 1031 tax exchange and you solve the affordable housing problem
What is a 1031 tax exchange?: According to the Internal Revenue Service, whenever you sell business or investment real estate property and you have a gain, you generally have to pay tax on the gain at the time of sale. IRC Section 1031 provides an exception and allows you to postpone paying tax on the gain if you reinvest the proceeds in similar property as part of a qualifying like-kind exchange. Gain deferred in a like-kind exchange under IRC Section 1031 is tax-deferred, but it is not tax-free.  The exchange can include like-kind property exclusively or it can include like-kind property along with cash, liabilities and property that are not like-kind. Both properties must be similar enough to qualify as "like-kind." Like-kind property is property of the same nature, character or class. Quality or grade does not matter. Most real estate will be like-kind to other real estate. Many large real estate residential property owners buy and sell large portfolios of units don't paying any taxes on the gain and wind up merging portfolios and defering taxes indefinitely. So, do you think this tax law will ever be eliminated?  Probably not. Reasons:  This probably will never will be done for two basic reasons: (1) hedge funds and other large multi-family and single-family ownership interests pay alot of money to both Democrat and Republican politicians' campaigns, and (2) these same groups have heavy lobbying efforts to put pressure on Congress to continue the tax deferment incentive to "avoid de-stabilization of rental housing in the US" and some other valid investment reasons. Solution:  Through presidential executive order,  immediately eliminate any current or immediately preceding 1031 tax exchange deferment of capital gains for those owners (with a controlling interest of at least 25%) of real estate with more than 100 units of either multi family or single family residential units....unless...within 90 days they offer 20% of their inventory and within 180 days maintain at least 90% of that offered inventory as “workforce housing” for those whose income falls at or below US median household income (not the prevailing rate of their individual market).  For example, a multi-family complex of 250 apartments must open up 50 of those apartments within 90 days of law as "affordable housing" options and lease at least 45 (i.e., 90%) within 180 days of effective date of law. What may this action accomplish? (1) It will immediately open tens of thousands of residence up to those who can least afford it. (2) it will stop the games that hedge funds and large property owners have of constantly trading higher and higher priced residential units tax free through the 1031 tax exchange "loophole". (3) Tax revenue from those institutions who don't comply will fund subsidies to the affordable housing efforts in cities and states. (4) Modify the total ROI on portfolios in the short run, but over the long run, portfolio managers will compensate through streamlined property maintenance and higher rental rates for those 80% who don't qualify for affordable housing. Update (5-4-2021 - How Biden’s real estate tax plan may hit smaller property investors Update (5-4-2021 - Biden Targets $41 Billion Tax Break for Rich Real Estate Investors
April 26, 2021
Buyer Love Letters - Are Buyers, Sellers, and Agents Committing Federal Fair Housing Violations without knowing it?
Love Letters or Liability Letters? Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968 is commonly referred to as the Fair Housing Act of 1968. Since 1968 its protections have been expanded significantly by amendment. Under current, updated law, the  Fair Housing Act prohibits this discrimination because of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, familial status, and disability. Writing a letter to seller to express enjoyment of home including any of this information "violates" fair housing laws. Sponsored: Pre-emptive purchase offers could lead to Fair Housing Act questions:   Careless seller representation is a leading cause of post-sale litigation. "An acceptance of a pre-emptive offer could easily be a setting for a Fair Housing violation. For example, the sellers and their seller’s agent are Caucasians. Their house sells after receiving a pre-emptive offer on Wednesday. The buyers are a childless white couple. However, over the previous five days, the seller’s agent had told families of color, a gay couple, a disabled person and a single mother wearing a hijab, “No offers until Friday at 4 p.m.” Guest column: Local Realtors embrace fair housing efforts:  "In one case just a few weeks ago, an agent in my office was helping a Black buyer find a home to purchase when she got repeated calls from a seller’s agent asking if the buyer really had the money to buy and what he did for a living. The insinuation was clearly that the seller’s agent suspected the buyer might be earning money illegally. Even after we sent proof of funds and a letter of qualification from the buyers’ lender, the questions kept coming — and the other agent started asking the lender the same questions." In another case, involving a friend of mine in the San Fernando Valley a couple of years ago — pre-COVID — the discrimination was even more shocking. My friend, a Black agent, accompanied a white couple to inspect a home for sale, but when they got there the owner said the prospective buyers could come in, but the agent could not. The couple, to their credit, said if she can’t come in, we aren’t going to either. But when my friend contacted the seller’s agent, he stood up for his client and refused to educate them about what the law requires. Update 5-10-2021:  Family photos, handwritten notes: Buying a home in area's real estate market is tough - Violation of Fair Housing Laws? Update 5-20-2021:  Home buyers should think twice before sending a 'pick me' letter to the seller Update 5-22-2021:  Buyers resort to 'sympathy' letters in competitive housing market Update 5-28-2021:  'Love letters' among popular real estate tools for hungry house buyers
April 23, 2021
Is Residential Real Estate heading for another Bubble?
Check out my Access Brokerage, Inc. blog post for more details and analysis: YES....for the next 2 years....don't see a repeat of 2007 crash...maybe some form of adjustment...different conditions altogether. A price bubble is a speculative mania situation in which asset prices appear to be based on implausible or inconsistent views about the future. How high can local home prices go?  Who knows, but they will stop some day...and flatten out...probably after the hyper-inflation of printing money at the federal government level. No, we are not in another housing bubble Credit-worthy borrowers - look at the credit scores for mortgage originations. Housing supply - The supply of existing home sales on the market is as low as its ever been U.S. consumer is in better shape than they’ve ever been coming out of a recession. Yes, Real estate investor who shorted subprime mortgages says this housing boom is in a bubble, too Recently, Google searches for “When is the housing market going to crash?” have spiked dramatically. When Will the Housing Market Correct?  In Canada, the price-to-income ratio is at a 40-year high. The  average house price is seven times greater than the average household  income. How is it in the United States? If you’re wondering when the housing market will correct, it may be time to cut your exposure to residential real estate. America’s Housing Market Is Officially Over-Heating Everywhere. How Long Will It Last? “Prices can’t keep going up forever,” says Redfin’s Marr, “Even when the  fundamentals are sustainable like they are now. Strong increases in  mortgage rates, which are likely coming soon, will inevitably cool home  appreciation and bring prices back in line with wages.” So...what's the answer? What did I say in my earlier podcasts...IT ALL DEPENDS! Financial experts and real estate analysts often use a simple rule  of thumb to decide if real estate is overvalued: the price-to-income ratio. Put simply, the average price of a house in your city should not  exceed four times the average income. If it does, the property market is  overvalued. Ordinary families may struggle to pay their mortgage if the  ratio is too high.  Home Price to Median Household Income Ratio (US) 4-27-2021 update:  When will the real estate bubble burst? It won't, says veteran real estate appraiser 5-2-2021 update:  Is the US headed toward a new housing bubble?
April 19, 2021
Appraisals and Bankruptcy - Any relationship?
I didn't sleep at a Holiday Inn, I'm not a licensed appraiser, nor am I a bankruptcy attorney, but...they might have something in common in the near future. Hot housing market puts pressure on appraisers in Northwest Florida
April 13, 2021
General topics of the past week from my blog:
Feel free to contact me about any of your residential real estate needs in or questions about the Metro Atlanta area.
April 09, 2021
Who visits your home when it's listed for sale?
Can a real estate agent use your listed home to stage photos for their own self advertising during a scheduled showing, or do you grant permission if you let them show it? (This is the article that prompted me to ask: Do you watch who roams your house and what they talk about? Do you think home shoppers are scoping out your home for future burglaries?
April 05, 2021
Problems with PEX Plumbing
Link to my blog post about the subject: Sources of Inspiration for Podcast...the Polybutelene Plumbing class action lawsuits; someone I know who survived the Texas freeze; and...
March 24, 2021
Several different (14) types of insurance for real estate
A link to my blogpost on this subject:
March 17, 2021
Housing Market in Atlanta, Georgia to Keep Climbing into 2020
The local economy is currently strong, with fairly high employment. Thirty-year mortgage rates are expected to remain low going into 2020. Forecasters predict that home prices in the area will continue to climb. Population growth expected to continue and they need a place to live.
October 31, 2019
Real estate scams
The main real estate scams I'm familiar with are as follows: (...and be sure to catch my blog post at Real estate scams): Ponzi scams email closing funds scam real estate agent review scam filing fraudulent deeds scam rental home scam
October 26, 2019
Residential Home Warranties
One of the 14 different types of insurance available for a home...Home Warranty Companies "issue" home warranty policies. These specialized "insurers" charge an annual fee for the "coverage", and offer service call "deductibles" where authorized, screened contractors are dispatched to resolve household maintenance issues upon your request. Each company offers at least one type of coverage that normally offers repairs for HVAC, water heaters, electrical or plumbing issues.
October 20, 2019
Real Estate News in 2019 from Access Brokerage
Topics and links to articles I've posted throughout 2019 that are of interest to several parties (buyers, sellers, realtors, lenders, closing attorneys, and other organizations)  in the real estate market.
October 16, 2019
Real estate transfer taxes - taxes on residential home sales transactions by state and local governments
My most recent blog post on this topic:  Real estate transfer taxes – taxes on residential home sales transactions by state and local governments is a renewed topic based on my previous 2013 blog post on Transfer Taxes and the a more recent article: Opinion The emergence of local real estate transfer taxes.    Bottom Line:  States, as well as federal and local government authorities are constantly looking for ways they can increase tax revenue to fund operations…the question is, will the proceeds collected cover the directly related expenses that authority expends to administer or enforce related real estate activities, or be just another hidden tax?
October 10, 2019
Office of Georgia Insurance & Safety Fire Commissioner
Many interesting and informative news and insurance related matters affecting consumers like insurance fraud you need to be aware of happening in Georgia that you may be faced with if you're not aware.  Other topics are posted at - the website of the Georgia Insurance and Safety Fie Commissioner.  Pay attention to my blog post:   Office of Georgia Insurance & Safety Fire Commissioner    that identifies the link to file a consumer complaint related to insurance companies.
October 05, 2019
Things Real Estate Agents Don't Want You to Know
Source Of podcast inspiration is a December 2018 Motley Fool article:  13 Things Real Estate Agents Don't Want You to Know
October 01, 2019
Residential Real Estate Contract for Used (Resale) homes in Georgia
Beware of your Responsibilities:  I am summarizing some points of interest you may need to be aware of from each page  of the most current version of the Georgia Association of Realtors (GAR) Residential Purchase and Sale Agreement.  Make sure your agent addresses some of your major responsibilities in the contract. but as soon as possible, read the contract to understand it.  I know, sometimes it's a rush to get an offer into the seller and buyers may focus only on Page 1 details of price, closing costs, closing date, etc...but other provisions in the contract are not so obvious.
September 26, 2019
Should anyone profit from real estate?
Thanks to Bernie Sanders, this topic is pretty interesting.  His question:  Should People Profit From Housing? I would expect such a question from a  millionaire socialist like Bernie Sanders, but let's dig a little deeper into what he's suggesting.
September 21, 2019
iBuyers - the good, the bad, and the ugly
Visit my blog post on the subject:  iBuyers - the good, bad, and ugly of their disruption of residential real estate markets Bottom line in brief:   iBuyers (now a multi-billion $ industry from Chinese investors to US  venture capitalists) will offer you cash often based on similar or  lower/older comparable sales, then charge a 6-10% fee, require you to  also pay the total realtor sales commissions (anywhere from 4-8% in  general), deduct costs for repairs/updates "they" (not you) demand to be  performed by their contractors; won't disclose anything about the house  whether they know it or not; and require you to sign a document at  closing that makes the property an "as-is" sale without any recourse or  warranties of workmanship on any work performed in the home. And the iBuyers advertise you can close in X # of days or "pick your own closing date", which is basically what Buyers and Sellers do now...most regular real estate transactions close within 30 days.
September 16, 2019
Real Estate Wire Fraud
Basically - in 25 words or less.... if homebuyers send closing funds to the wrong bank account, you get screwed!  Don't believe everything in writing.  Pick up the phone and call. The scam:  The homebuyer receives an email from criminals pretending to be real estate agent, the closing attorney, or title agency involved in the transaction. The  fraudulent email contains wire transfer payment instructions usually  regarding the down payment or closing costs. Unwittingly, the homebuyer sends the wire transfer payment to the criminal’s account. Homebuyers can exercise some steps to protect themselves from this fraud.... Steps the real estate agent may take to protect their clients.... See details in my blog post:  Real Estate Wire Fraud ACCESS BROKERAGE, INC. Broker - Jim Parker 770-265-7293
September 11, 2019
Do 10 Year US Treasury Note yields have an Influence on Mortgage Interest Rates?
The answer:  YES and NO  Yes, US Treasury Notes have been an influence in recent years because they more accurately reflect demographic shifts in home ownership and are a very comparable relatively safe investment choice backed by the US Government than a little riskier than the secondary mortgage loan market like Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae.  But first a little history and then some current events.... Answer = YES:  Over the past 20 or so years, yields on the 10 year US Treasury notes have moved in direction comparable to the fixed rate conventional mortgage rates. Based on this article from The Balance: How Treasury Notes Affect Mortgage Rates.  U.S. Treasury bills, bonds, and notes directly affect the interest rates on fixed-rate mortgages. How? When Treasury yields rise, so do interest rates. That's because investors who want a steady and safe return compare interest rates of all fixed-income products. They compared yields on short-term Treasurys to certificates of deposit and money market funds. They compare yields on long-term Treasurys to home loans and corporate bonds. All bond yields are affected by Treasury yields since they compete for the same type of investor. Answer = NO:  Based on Mortgage Daily News articles:  Yes, Mortgage Rates are Lower and 10yr Yields are Higher Today & No, Mortgage Rates Aren't Based on 10yr Treasury Yields...True, US Treasuries set the tone for almost any interest rate in the US. - it's their yield that runs point for most other comparative investments. Over the past 20 years, fewer people remained in their homes over a 20-30 year period.  In fact, more households were moving on average every 7 years.  Now,  due to housing crisis fears of mid 2000's and other factors, that demographic  as changed a little to people wanting to stay in their homes for at least 10 years. Therefore, it is common belief that the 10 Year Treasury yield  more accurately predicts the movement of fixed rate 15 and 30 year mortgage loan rates. So for now, I lean to the side of common thought that YES, 10 year  treasury note yields DO predict or influence mortgage interest rates and  the current marketplace factors is an anomaly.
September 06, 2019
Is the traditional residential real estate industry collapsing?
If you search for residential real estate mergers and acquisitions in your favorite internet search portal, you’ll see many mergers are occurring. We are seeing a drop on volume of “available” residential properties that agents can list for sale. This “shortage” of available properties that “Listing” agents can make available to purchase also hurts the “Buyer’s” agent on the other side of the transaction which severely limits the properties available for their “buyer” clients to purchase. I believe every market across the US is experiencing this problem. Note: In case you’re asking, more than 95% of the transactions I’ve researched on the multiple listing services involve separate agents for both sides of each real estate transaction. The growing threat of (a) iBuyers (ie, “instant” cash buyers / investors) scooping up thousands of homes before they hit the normal buyer market; (b) people using Airbnb and other rental services to rent their properties for monthly income and not listing them for sale; (c) vast number of millenniels with massive student loan debt, no desire to settle down, and lower paying salaries than they expected; and (d) many homeowners who have simply realized that if they sell their homes for a high price, they would just have to find another home for a higher price in today’s market….are all signals to the residential real estate brokerage companies that change and adaptation is in the wind. My Blog post: Is the traditional residential real estate industry collapsing?  Jim Parker - Broker at ACCESS BROKERAGE INC. - 770-265-7293 -
September 02, 2019
Mortgages & Mortgage Rates; New Homes in Atlanta; and iBuyers in the Atlanta Real Estate Marketplace
I am Jim Parker, Exclusive Buyer Agent in the Atlanta Metro marketplace...770-265-7293 - Mortgage Rates - I cover a few of the basics and tips, but here's a general discussion and relationship to the 10 year treasury notes.  The Treasury Department sells all bills, notes, and bonds at auction with a fixed interest rate. When demand is high, bidders will pay more than the face value to receive the fixed rate. When demand is low, they pay less.  The Treasury Department pays the interest rate every six months.  The yield is the total return over the life of the bond. Since Treasurys are sold at auction, their yields change every week. If demand is low, notes are sold below face value. The discount is like getting them on sale. As a result, the yield is high. Buyers pay less for the fixed interest rate, so they get more for their money. When demand is high, they are sold at auction above face value. As a result, the yield is low. The buyers had to pay more for the same interest rate, so they get less return for their money.  If Treasury yields increase, then the interest paid on these riskier investments must increase in lock-step.   And don't miss my Steps to the Mortgage Process tips on my website or New Homes and Builders in Metro Atlanta - Great source to find new home developments in the Metro Atlanta area - Don't hesitate to give them my contact information so I can help you with any one of the new homes listed in this website. -  iBuyers: Is The Convenience Worth The Cost? ... The “i” stands for “instant”.  This is happening across the country...Zillow,  Opendoor, Knock, OfferPad, etc...are some of many "cash" investors offering people a quick way to sell their homes in generally good condition without agents, normally at a discount for repairs/upgrades and a fee.  They capture those sellers interested in just getting out of a property ownership and may not want to take time to market their homes for sale (i.e., don't like the inconvenience of the process) or have the resources to spend for those repairs/updates to get their properties ready for the current market quality and conditions demands.  Each company has a slightly different profit model, but according to this Forbes article,  the iBuyer will typically charge a full commission, plus build in a  discount to fair value to compensate for the risk they take by  providing you with “instant” liquidity.  Some estimate that these costs can add up to more than 10% of the fair  market value of a home compared to 5-6% in commissions with a  traditional agent. References to products and services are not a specific endorsement, but the user must perform their due diligence and investigate whether the product or service is right for them. I welcome any or all comments that would help others.  Also, consult legal expertise in any of these areas and do not rely strictly on information presented here is this podcast.
August 28, 2019
Open Houses in Georgia,Amazon and Zillow turf war in real estate; Rules fo Homebuyers; and more
I am Jim Parker, Exclusive Buyer Agent in the Atlanta Metro marketplace...770-265-7293 - Topics for today...thanks for listening.  How do you find open houses in Georgia?  Amazon and Zillow are real estate disrupters?  Amazon is not selling real estate, but it will, thanks to its enormous reach, funnel potential buyers into Realogy.  Zillow is not only offering to buy homes in Florida, but will turn and sell them to investors for flipping...Zillow Offers, which allows homeowners to  sell their home to Zillow for a cash offer within just a few days' time.  Zillow then turns around and attempts to sell the home at a premium,and  keep the profits. Rules for Home Buyers Working With Real Estate Agents California Real estate market, insurance policies affected by increasing wildfire incidents...How does this apply to Georgia residents? 4 Reasons Why Property Management Businesses Are Thriving:  Rates; occupancy; vacation rentals; and technology. Real estate: Builders design homes with roommates in mind...Homes that are built with full bathrooms off every bedroom also could be used by retired individuals to live together and cut living expenses, but local zoning laws could prohibit the number of unrelated persons living in a dwelling. Complaints about or crimes by real estate agents - legitimate or reflection on client poor choices? Chinese buyers pull back from U.S. housing market, hurting home sales Can you transfer home ownership with back taxes due? Will lower interest rates push home prices up?   Summary wrap up of today's podcast and final thoughts. References to products and services are not a specific endorsement, but the user must perform their due diligence and investigate whether the product or service is right for them. I welcome any or all comments that would help others.  Also, consult legal expertise in any of these areas and do not rely strictly on information presented here is this podcast.  
August 27, 2019
Real Estate News in Metro Atlanta and beyond
Be's my trial run to introduce my Podcast "Solutions". I am Jim Parker, Exclusive Buyer Agent in the Atlanta Metro marketplace...770-265-7293 - I have a blog -  - that I attempt to update several topics about real estate each day. Hey, I may even throw in a few other stories or news flashes on these podcasts about society or life in general to spice it up and make you think... This podcast series attempts to broadcast some of those news and stories, and offer some answers to your real estate questions.
August 22, 2019