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20 Most Miserable Places to Live and None are in Texas!!! - 02/28/10 08:58 PM
Forbes Magazine put out a list recently that listed the 20 most miserable places to live in the United States. The list is below and seems to mirror the places that have high unemployment and high crime. They all have high foreclosure rates to match. Many are in rust belt states such as Michigan, Illinois, Ohio, Missouri and Pennsylvania. Ohio had 5 cities on the list, California had 3, and Missouri, Michigan and Ilinois each had 2. I find it interesting that 14 of the most miserable places to live are in 5 states. 1. Cleveland, Ohio.2. Stockton, Calif.3. Memphis, Tenn.4. (19 comments)
Why HAFA Is NOT Good For Sellers And May Not Even Apply To You! - 02/27/10 08:10 PM
Great information!!! Via Kevin Kravcak (Envirian of Bucks County): The HAFA (Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives)Program is coming and will take effect on April 5, 2010. It is essential that you know why it is not a good program and why, if you are a seller, you should throw that agreement in the trash! (this is the PG version of what I really feel you should do with it!!) Before I go on, you need to know I have spent many hours in webinars and seminars which were ran by Wells Fargo, Bank of America, Freddie Mac and a few nationally recognized attorneys who specialize in (4 comments)
Who Negotiates the Deal? As you proceed with a transaction after a short-sale offer is submitted to the bank, do not contact the lender on the sellers' behalf. If you do, you can be viewed as negotiating the loan and modifying contract rights and remedies. The risk here is that you can potentially expose your clients to personal liability if the (0 comments)
Plagiarism Is Not An Acceptable Art Form - 02/23/10 08:37 AM
Very appropriate content via Matt! Via Matt Stigliano (RE/MAX Access - San Antonio Real Estate Rockstar): photo courtesy of fengergold Cut, copy, paste. I logged on this morning to read through the news (I'm trying to make a bit more effort to get back here more often) and was running through the featured articles, when I saw it. I was sure I was having a weird case of deja vú or something. I ran off to my Twitter account to check a recently favorited article on Inman news. My check only confirmed what I suspected. Word for word plagiarism. I'm still trying (1 comments)
It's Snowing in Leander, Texas - Now Pigs Can Fly - 02/23/10 08:21 AM
It is happening right now. It's snowing in Central Texas. Big fat snow flakes. It doesn't happen often. But when it does, things go crazy around here. It's a good day to stay home and avoid all the confusion on the roads. Central Texans do not handle snow well. Things will be crazy here today and there will be lots of cancellations. (10 comments)
Leander Heating and Cooling -512-215-4779 - Leander, Texas - 02/22/10 03:23 PM
Lee Ortiz, our favorite contractor finally did it, he branched out and opened his own business. It's called Leander Heating & Cooling and he can be reached at 512-215-4779. Lee has been servicing our systems for several years. He always calls back afterward to see if we are pleased with his service. I was delighted when he stopped by and gave me his new business card. Our air conditioner went on the fritz during a 110 degree heat wave last summer on the very day my daughter, son-in-law and baby were arriving from Illinois. We called Lee and he came (1 comments)
Leander Texas Loan Modification Success - Temporary Payment Stress - 02/21/10 12:19 PM
This week has been a very successful one for my loan modification clients. I had 3 that were approved. All three were facing what is called "Temporary Payment Stress. " What is that? Financial stress due to a temporary situation that has a beginning and an end. One client had a job loss, but succeeded in finding another job. One had an injury and was unable to work for several months. They were now back to work and trying to get over the hump. If you are experiencing a financial hardship in paying your mortgage, there is help out there. Here are some options (2 comments)
Loan Modifications and Short Sales in Austin Texas - 02/20/10 09:03 PM
Several weeks ago I listed a home that was less than 10 days from foreclosure. Texas has a streamlined foreclosure process. This is a non-judicial state and foreclosures happen on the first Tuesday of the month. So I got to work, rolled up my sleeves and threw everything I had at the wall. I sent in a loan modification package, called the trustee, the attorney and the mortgage company and managed to pull this home back from the brink 2 days before the sale. Hallelujah!!! Now what!!! We are 4 weeks into the listing, and have had one price reduction. Three days ago (4 comments)
TxHomePrograms.com Offers State-Wide Affordable Housing Programs in Leander, Texas - 02/20/10 04:44 PM
As part of an NAR pilot program, first time buyer's can check out the website www.TxHomePrograms.com The website has a glossary, gives information about the homebuying process and offers a continuously updated database of state-wide affordable housing programs. Information is available about predatory lending and other consumer issues. The website is sponsored by the Texas Association of Realtors. Leander homebuyers can check this out. (0 comments)
Texas Monthly Cover Contest - 02/20/10 12:22 PM
My favorite magazine Texas Monthly is having a contest. I've used it to put myself on the cover. You can too by going to the following web address www.texasmonthly.com/cvercontest Make yourself look like this If you know of anyone who is having mortgage problems in the Austin Texas area, please have them give me a call. I'm here to help
OneWest Bank Releases Their First Year Profit Statement $1.6 Billion- You Won't Believe This One! - 02/19/10 11:02 PM
More information about OneWest Bank and their shenanigans. Via Robert G Hertzog (Summit Home Consultants): OneWest Bank Releases Their First Year Profit Statement $1.6 Billion- You Won't Believe This One! Kudos to Scott Reckard with the LA Times. He wrote an article today that is sure to open some eyes. The article, titled "OneWest Bank Profit: $1.6 Billion" does an excellent job of pointing out some very interesting observations. According to the article, OneWest paid the FDIC $1.55 Billion for the failed IndyMac Bank, and turned a profit of $1.57 Billion in it's first year. The article specifically addresses the shared-loss agreement that (1 comments)
Behind on your house payments in Cedar Park, Texas? - 02/19/10 06:46 PM
If you are having trouble making the payments on your home in Cedar Park, Texas, the Texas Association of Realtors in partnership with the National Association of Realtors has launched a website to help. You will find all the resources in one location at www.KeepMyTexasHome.org The site explains the foreclosure process in Texas and provides advice and resources for Texas who may be facing foreclosure. Links are provided on the site to additional sites for further help. If you are a distressed homeowner facing tough times, there is help available. The resources are provided free. If you are considering a short sale, (4 comments)
Is The FDIC Killing Indymac OneWest Bank Short Sales? - 02/17/10 01:25 PM
Great information. Pass it on! Via Robert G Hertzog (Summit Home Consultants): Is The FDIC Killing Indymac OneWest Bank Short Sales? As some of you may already know, I specialize in helping homeowners avoid foreclosure through the use of short sales. Recently, I dealt with a very interesting case involving Indymac/OneWest Bank, that I felt needed to be brought to the attention of all American taxpayers. Basically, IndyMac Bank (now OneWest Bank), is holding one of my clients hostage, demanding a $75k promissory note, or they will proceed to foreclosure. For the life of me, I couldn't figure out why they were (0 comments)
Austin Bergstrom International Airport - Number 1 in North America - 02/17/10 12:32 PM
I've always thought it was kind of magical to fly into Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. You are weary, you've been crammed into a sardine can for several hours and you finally get off the jetway at Austin Bergstrom International Airport and voila!!! Live Music!!! For those of you who don't know, Austin is the Live Music Capital of the World. It definitely rocks to hear it. Monday thru Friday from 1:00 PM to 5:30 PM. you can get a taste of what it is like to live here. Here is a link to the schedule http://www.ci.austin.tx.us/austinairport/musicartstours.htm I try to plan my trips so I arrive (2 comments)
Home Values Have Remained Unchanged - 02/14/10 07:56 PM
Great post I thougth I would share. Via John Mulkey, Housing Guru (TheHousingGuru.com): With all the news about the declines in residential real estate, I thought it would be good to remember that home values have remained unchanged, and, in fact, haven’t changed in decades. In the midst of a recession, and with real estate prices plummeting across the country, how can that be?
It’s all a matter of understanding value and the difference between value and price. While home prices have dropped, home values have remained unchanged. Home prices are determined by the market; home values, by the family residing there. (0 comments)
!2th Annual Landing Zone Training Safety Training Class- Austin Texas - 02/13/10 09:22 PM
Today I attended a class on how to set up a landing zone for a helicopter. As part of the training, both the Austin Police Department and PHI STAT Air brought in helicopters and demonstrated the property techniques to doing it safely. Travis County Search and Rescue was proud to be in attendance. This morning's thick fog hampered the landings until after 10:00 a.m.
The consumer left her email address, so I am hoping to hear from her later. I did respond to her questions. How is that for success on Active Rain? It pays to hang out here!!!
Carol Pease earns CDPE - Certified Distressed Property Designation - 02/12/10 02:04 PM
Carol Pease with Keller Williams Realty, Cedar Park / Leander Market Center has earned the prestigious Certified Distressed Property Expert(CDPE) designation, having completed extensive training in foreclosure avoidance and short sales. A Certified Distressed Property Expert(CDPE) is a real estate professional with specific understanding of the complex issues confronting the real estate industry, and the foreclosure avoidance options available to homeowners. Through comprehensive training and experience, CDPEs are able to provide solutions for homeowners facing hardships in today's market, specifically short sales. A short sale can allow the cash-strapped seller to repay the mortgage at the price that the home sells for, even if it's (6 comments)
Shhhhh!!! If you are coming to Austin for SXSW there will be a ReBarCamp in Austin on March 11, 2010 at the Third Base Sports Bar Downtown, 1717 West 6th Street; Austin, Texas. The time is from 12 noon to 7:00 pm. As of this afternoon there are 277 spots left. To register click http://rebarcamp.com/austin/?page_id=3 This is a free event where the movers and the shakers in our industry show up and share information and ideas about the latest in technology. There will be wireless for your computer. I've attended virtuallly but have not made a live session. (6 comments)
I am pleased to announce that as of today I am officially an SFR. SFR is the newest Certification sponsored by NAR which is for Short Sale and Foreclosure Resources. I have been successfully completing short sale transactions for over 10 years but it is always good to have more education. Knowing how to handle the complexities of short sales has aided in my career. Having the credentials to back up that knowledge is the icing on the cake. More information about the course can be found at www.realtorsfr.org (5 comments)
Form 90045 - It pays to read the form - Pre-foreclosure Sale Procedure - 02/10/10 05:08 PM
Last week I got a Form 90045 from Citibank for one of my short-sale clients. After submitting a short sale package to the lender on an FHA short sale I got an approval for my short sale as long as it meets the HUD guidelines. Specifically, I now know the appraised value of the property and what my HUD-1 needs to net for an approval. I had my client sign the form and emailed it to my negotiator. As I was doing so, I happened to read the Acceptable Terms of Sale which give you specific dates that the net amount (4 comments)
Using the REALTOR® Membership Mark - Guidelines and Information - 02/05/10 05:13 PM
Good information that all of us need to be aware of!!! Thanks Brad. Via Brad Andersohn ~ Community Manager (ActiveRain): Guidelines and Information Regarding Use and Misuse of REALTOR® How are you using the registered membership mark REALTOR®? A few folks have contacted me recently asking how they can change their ActiveRain Profile user name, their Blog name, and their Outside Blog domain names? The reason? Because they had used the registered membership mark REALTOR® within their URL. It is very important that you understand and know how, when, and where you can use REALTOR®. Just yesterday, I was contact by an AR (0 comments)
A (Tongue-In-Cheek) Common Man's Dictionary to Real Estate Advertising - 02/05/10 05:12 PM
I thought this was too funny so I thought I would share it with my readers. Via Clint Miller (Real Estate Client Referrals, LLC (RECR)): Let me start of by saying that this is satire. And this should be read with that idea in mind. It is intended to be humorous. Nothing more. Ok? As long as we understand one another, you can keep reading... If not, please push ALT + F4 now. :-)
Common Man's Dictionary to Real Estate Advertising 1 car garage: Sure, you can drive your Ford Escort into the garage but there is no room to open (3 comments)
Local School District Links - Austin Texas and Surrounding Areas. - 02/05/10 02:05 PM
If you are considering moving to the Austin Texas area, the school your children will attend should be very important to you. Here are links to all the local school districts in the area. By law, Texs students must pass a state assessment in order to be promoted at certain grade levels. Those tests are called TAKS or Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills. Local school districts can provide you with information about how their students did on those tests.
Austin ISD http://www.austin.isd.tenet.edu Bastrop ISD - http://www.bastrop.isd.tenet.edu Del Valle ISD - http://www.del-valle.k12.tx.us Dripping Springs ISD http://www.dripping-springs.k12.tx.us Eanes (2 comments)
Leander Texas - A great place to live - 02/05/10 12:58 PM
We moved to Leander Texas several years ago and have not looked back. We love it here and though I am not a native Texan, I got here as quick as I could. Why did we choose Leander? It's home to over 22,000 people according to the city signs. It is on the edge of Texas Hill Country which means a winery is not far away! It's close to Austin which means that we can hear music any time we want just by going downtown. It is affordable, has an excellent school system, and close to all the major employers in the area. (3 comments)
Short Sale Buyer's Agents - Don't Shoot the Messenger - 02/04/10 11:23 PM
Today did not turn out to be a pleasant experience. One of my short sale contracts came apart. That in itself is not unusual, but the buyer's agents reaction to what happened was over the top. I received a Form 90045 on this listing which means that we now know what the bank must net on an offer. Therefore the short sale is pre-approved if it complies with the conditions stated on the form. The offer on the table did not generate the required net on this property. I explained that to the buyer's agent and he came unglued. Tonight he threatened (12 comments)
Form 90045 - Pre-Foreclosure Sale Procedure- Cedar Park- Leander Texas - 02/04/10 06:13 PM
If you are a distressed homeowner in the Cedar Park, Leander or Round Rock area of Texas, there is help out there. When you've think that you have exhausted your resources to keep your home and you've come to the conclusion that you have to sell, there are things that you can do. One of them is a Short Sale. First you have to qualify for a Short Sale. How do you qualify? First you have to have a financial hardship. That is a change in your financial condition from the day you mortgage was signed and today that affects your (1 comments)
Fannie Mae Announces 3.5 Percent Seller Assistance .......... - 02/03/10 01:15 AM
I thought this was useful information. Via Roy T Robinette (the Real Estate Firm): ........................ on HomePath® PropertiesIncentive Part of Ongoing Effort to Stabilize Neighborhoods WASHINGTON, DC - Fannie Mae (FNM/NYSE) announced today that people purchasing a Fannie Mae-owned HomePath® property will receive up to 3.5 percent of the final sales price to be used toward closing cost assistance or their choice of appliances. The offer is available to any owner-occupant who closes on the purchase of a property listed on HomePath.com before May 1, 2010. "Attracting qualified buyers to the market and reducing the inventory of vacant homes is critical to stabilizing neighborhoods (2 comments)
I HATE TO SAY "I TOLD YOU SO", but. . . . . . . "OBAMA TO LIMIT MORTGAGE INTEREST DEDUCTION!" - 02/02/10 09:34 PM
This would not be good for business! Thank you Lenn! Via Lenn Harley, Homefinders.com, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate: LIMITS ON MORTGAGE INTEREST DEDUCTION was once a "sacred cow" of tax law. No more. The American home owner is square in the sights of the budget released today. On October 25, 2008, a bolt of lightening struck me and I realized that there is no income protection safe from the government's zeal to play chess with the American tax payer's assets. An article published by the Wall Street Journal, back in Oct. 2008, discussed the government's need for cash to fund programs that (1 comments)
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