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Charlotte, NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Bank of America - 01/22/09 09:41 AM
Bank of America Corp., reports a fourth-quarter net loss of $2.39 billion, or 48 cents per diluted share. The news comes on the same day the Charlotte-based bank says it will slash its dividend to one cent per share from 32 cents and accept an additional $20 billion in bailout money. The federal funds are in addition to the $25 billion BofA has already received under the Troubled Asset Relief Program, which is designed to unfreeze the credit markets and boost the economy. BofA earned $215 million, or 5 cents per diluted share, in the fourth quarter of 2007. The latest (0 comments)
Charlotte, NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Bank of America - 01/22/09 09:38 AM
An Italian court has acquitted Bank of America Corp. of charges related to events before April 2002 in a trial of five banks, Dow Jones Newswires reports. The case revolves around the collapse of Parmalat Finanziaria SpA, the Italian dairy conglomerate that collapsed in December 2003 in one of Europe's biggest financial scandals. An Italian judge ordered BofA to go to trial on allegations that it failed to prevent three former employees from market rigging in connection with Parmalat. The former employees faced charges for vetting a news release issued by Parmalat in 1999 that Italian regulators claim was misrepresentative. The (0 comments)
Charlotte, NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Charlotte Hotels Occupancy Falls - 01/22/09 09:32 AM
Occupancy at Charlotte-area hotel rooms fell to 49 percent in November, down 17 percent from a year earlier. According to data from the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority, local hotel occupancy fell 8.2 percent in the first 11 months of last year to 61.6 percent. By comparison, in the first 11 months of 2008, hotel occupancy fell 4 percent in the United States and 6.6 percent in North Carolina. The average room rate in the Charlotte area fell 1 percent to $81.40 in November. For the first 11 months in 2008, the average daily rate was $87.36, up 4.9 percent from the (0 comments)
Charlotte, NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Family Dollar Raises Dividend 8% - 01/22/09 09:30 AM
Family Dollar Stores Inc. has increased its quarterly dividend by 8 percent. The Matthews-based discount chain has declared a quarterly cash dividend on its common stock of 13.5 cents per share, payable April 15 to shareholders of record on March 13. The company's previous quarterly cash dividend was 12.5 cents per share. "Increasing our dividend for the 33rd consecutive year reflects our confidence in the long-term growth opportunity for Family Dollar," says Howard Levine, chief executive. Last week, the company reported a 14.1 percent increase in earnings for its first fiscal quarter ended Nov. 29. Family Dollar earned $59.3 million, or (0 comments)
Charlotte, NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - IKEA readies for Charlotte opening - 01/22/09 09:27 AM
Swedish home-furnishings giant Ikea is putting the final touches on its first Carolinas store, which opens in five weeks in the University area. The 356,000-square-foot store will be one of the chain's largest. It will feature three model homes and 49 room vignettes, including 17 kitchens. Shoppers will be able to buy more than 10,000 exclusively designed products - from furniture to art, tableware and even food. Ikea is known for low-priced furnishings that customers assemble at home. But it has expanded its offerings and services in recent years. For example, complete kitchen setups can be purchased from about $1,800 to (0 comments)
Charlotte, NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - B of A Stocks Plummets - 01/22/09 09:25 AM
Bank of America Corp.'s stock, which had already dropped more than 27 percent this month, fell another 18 percent in Thursday trading. BofA's stock, which has traded between $10.01 and $45.08 over the last year, closed at $8.32 per share Thursday, down from Wednesday's closing price of $10.20. The drop in value follows a report from The Wall Street Journal late Wednesday that the federal government may commit billions more in aid to BofA as it acquires Merrill Lynch & Co. Inc. According to the report, which cites individuals familiar with the situation, discussions over the funds began last month when (0 comments)
Charlotte, NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Charlotte DOT - 01/22/09 09:21 AM
Danny Pleasant has been named director of the Charlotte Department of Transportation. Pleasant became interim director after the retirement of Jim Humphrey in late 2007. He has worked in executive positions at the department for seven years. The department is responsible for Charlotte's road planning and operations. "Danny has proven to be an effective leader during his tenure as interim director, helping to position Charlotte as a national model for land-use and transportation choices," says City Manager Curt Walton. "His strategic planning and urban design expertise will help guide the city as we prepare for the future in terms of managing (0 comments)
Charlotte, NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Corporate tax cut - 01/22/09 09:19 AM
N.C. General Assembly lawmakers have authorized the drafting of legislation that would cut the state's corporate income tax rate and make fundamental changes to the incentives the state uses to lure companies to North Carolina. A 13-year-old system of tax credits - the William S. Lee program, which was revised into Article 3J in 2007 - essentially would be gutted. In its place, the state would pump more money into its largest cash-for-jobs grant program and shave the corporate income tax rate to 6.5 percent from 6.9 percent. The bill will be offered by the Joint House/Senate Incentives Committee, which has (0 comments)
Charlotte, NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Inflation Rate at Lowest in 50 years - 01/20/09 01:58 PM
The United States posted its lowest rate of inflation in more than 50 years in 2008, mainly because of a record plunge in gasoline prices. The U.S. Department of Labor says consumer prices dropped 0.7 percent in December, and rose just 0.1 percent for the year. The small uptick last year was much lower than the 4.1 percent gain in 2007, and the smallest year-over-year change since 1954, when consumer prices fell 0.7 percent. For December, gas prices fell 17.2 percent, the largest monthly decline in records that go back 71 years. Overall energy prices also dropped a record 8.3 percent (0 comments)
Charlotte, NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Mortgage Update - 01/20/09 01:52 PM
MMG Update + By The Numbers - Tuesday, January 20, 2009 10:19AM ET Current Trend Direction: Sideways Risks favor: Floating Current Price of FNMA 4.0% Bond: $100.06, -12bp Today marks the inauguration of Barack Obama, America's 44th president. President-Elect Obama has an arduous task ahead of him as he takes control of a nation that is in the midst of one of the worst economic downturns since the Great Depression. There are no economic reports due for release today - but that hasn't meant much lately as Mortgage Bonds have traded in volatile fashion without the spark of economic news...and today (0 comments)
Charlotte, NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - BBB Complaints up 5% - 01/19/09 01:23 PM
The Better Business Bureau of the Southern Piedmont says complaints against area businesses rose 5 percent last year to 14,972. In 2007 the bureau received 14,180 complaints, up 25 percent over 2006. "For the second year in a row, 85 percent of these complaints were closed satisfactorily, thanks to businesses and consumers who worked with the BBB to resolve their disputes," says Tom Bartholomy, chief executive of the BBB. The average length of time it took the BBB to close a complaint in 2008 was 17 days from the date that the complaint was filed, up from 16 days in 2007 (0 comments)
Charlotte, NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Market Watch - 01/19/09 01:20 PM
The average interest rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage fell below 5 percent last week, prompting many homeowners to investigate refinancing options, according to a report by real estate Web site Zillow.com. For the week ended Jan. 11, the average 30-year rate in the United States was 4.92 percent, down from 5.10 percent the week before, according to the Zillow Mortgage Rate Monitor. North Carolina experienced an almost identical drop, to 4.92 percent, from 5.09 percent. Arizona had the lowest average rate last week at 4.80 percent, and Michigan had the highest, at 5.05 percent. Seattle-based Zillow compiles rates quoted by (0 comments)
Charlotte, NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - General Information - 01/19/09 01:05 PM
GMAC Financial Services' interest in locating its corporate headquarters here has taken a turn toward uptown, according to sources familiar with the search. Former Bank of America Corp. Chairman Hugh McColl Jr. and others have taken an active role in pushing for the company to focus on center city as it considers a move of its headquarters here from Detroit. The company had considered a Ballantyne location, where GMAC has a 200-employee back-office operation. Uptown sites now seem to have the upper hand for the auto-finance giant. The early speculation about GMAC's plans were fueled, in part, by the fact that (0 comments)
(ARA) - Increasing costs have become evident in every aspect of our lives. In addition to daily expenses like gas and groceries, home improvement costs are escalating across the nation as well. The cost of construction materials has risen more than 10 percent during the past year, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports. In addition, the American General Contractors (AGC) of America find that construction costs have increased more than twice the overall consumer price. As the summer months rolled by, construction prices kept increasing. By the end of July, the cost of steel, a material widely used in home (0 comments)
Charlotte, NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Time Warner Cable to raise rates! - 01/13/09 10:46 AM
Time Warner Cable Inc. will raise its local cable rates next month. Under the new plan basic rates will increase to $12 from $11 per month, while standard service will rise to $54.95 from $51.95. The monthly cost of DigiPic 1000 will grow to $71.95 from $67.75. The company will raise the price of DigiPic 2000 to $89.95 from $85.75, with DigiPic 4000 going to $99.95 from $95.75. Company spokeswoman Melissa Buscher says more than 60 percent of local subscribers won't face an immediate increase as they have discounted bundle packages or other promotions. She says the price increases will offset (0 comments)
Charlotte, NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Mortgage Update - 01/13/09 10:29 AM
Weak economic data and strong demand for mortgage-backed securities (MBS) helped mortgage rates remain at historically low levels during the week. Refinancing activity has increased dramatically as borrowers have rushed to take advantage of low rates. As a result, backlogs have developed at almost every step in the origination process, extending the time necessary to close many loans.On November 25, the Fed announced a plan to purchase as much as $500 billion in MBS. On Monday, the Fed revealed that it had begun to actually purchase securities. The Fed reported that it bought $10.2 billion of a wide range of MBS. (0 comments)
Charlotte NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - U.S. loses 524,000 jobs in December - 01/11/09 01:43 PM
The United States lost more than half a million jobs last month and the unemployment rate soared to 7.2 percent. Unemployment stood at 4.9 percent in December 2007. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports a loss of 524,000 jobs between November and December. That continued a four-month streak, which saw 1.93 million jobs vanish between August and December. The national unemployment rate crossed the 7 percent mark in December, rising from 6.8 percent in November to 7.2 percent. The biggest decline occurred in the manufacturing sector, which lost 149,000 jobs in December. A total of 791,000 manufacturing jobs disappeared in (0 comments)
Charlotte NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Charlotte Sales Pummet 47.2% - 01/11/09 01:32 PM
The number of houses sold in the Charlotte market fell 47.2 percent last month, and the average closing price declined 8.3 percent, according to the Charlotte Regional Realtor Association. The number of closings dropped to 1,350 last month from 2,559 in December 2007. The average sales price declined to $200,226 from $218,399 a year earlier. The average number of days a home spent on the market before a sale was 147.5. The figures are for homes sold in Mecklenburg, Union, Iredell, Lincoln, Cabarrus, Gaston and Stanly counties. The Charlotte Regional Realtor Association operates the Carolina Multiple Listing Services Inc., which has (0 comments)
(ARA) - A few years ago you finished your basement. You put in all the hard work to make it a perfect retreat and lounge. But you haven't done a thing with it since. So often, people finish their basements and then forget about any upkeep. Though the basement is often viewed as a rugged recreational room, it still deserves the same decorative and functional attention as the rest of the home; and the winter months provide the perfect opportunity to tackle some of those projects. These simple tips will help renew and rejuvenate your basement by making it more (0 comments)
Charlotte NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Market Statistics - 01/09/09 11:10 AM
Hello Everyone! I just received my new statistics from the MLS board this afternoon so I wanted to send them over. These will be for October and November 2008 to show you how much of a decline we have had, and we are expecting December to be even worse.
October: Total homes sold = 1,848 Total homes on the market = 28,555
A total of 6.5% of homes listed actually sold.
Closed sales are down 31% from last year at this time.
Under $120k = 11.0% sold $120k-150k = 8.9% sold $150k-190k = 6.7% sold $190k-250k = 5.7% sold $250k-350k = 5.0% sold $350k-500k = 3.9% (0 comments)
Charlotte NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - HUD, FORECLOSURES, REO, AS IS - 01/09/09 10:20 AM
Someone asked two questions that I felt ALL buyers should be aware of when working with a Real Estate Agent. "Are foreclosures a good deal when presented by a real estate agent from the MLS and is it a hard process to buy???" Here is your answer to those questions: First of all, I would caution you against thinking something is a good deal simply because it is in foreclosure. There are a lot of people making that mistake. A deal is a deal is a deal regardless if it is in foreclosure or a straight up seller sale or something in between. What makes (0 comments)
Charlotte NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - RE/MAX - Finding the Right Agent - 01/08/09 11:53 AM
WHY MOST PEOPLE FAIL TO FIND THE RIGHT AGENT Selecting an agent is just as important as selecting the right home to buy or price to sell for. An agent will bring to the table the tools you need to get the job done efficiently. The lack of a sufficient agent will only lead to losses and issues. With the growth in the housing market being steady, the industry has taken on a lot of lack luster agents, so be sure to read this article and find out how to avoid inefficient agents and instead learn how to find a top (0 comments)
Charlotte, NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Mortgage Today - 01/08/09 10:09 AM
MMG Update - Thursday, January 8, 2008 10:14am ET Current Trend Direction: Higher Risks favor: Floating Current Price of FNMA 4.5% Bond: $102.69, +22bp Mortgage Bonds are trading higher and at historic levels. The Fed was likely active in the markets continuing their purchase program this morning. The results from the Fed's purchases are expected to be released sometime today. Initial Jobless Claims were 467,000, much better than the 550,000 expected and the lowest reading in 3 months. The news is being taken with a grain of salt as this report took place over a holiday week were people may have (0 comments)
Charlotte NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Taxes - 01/08/09 09:32 AM
Despite these difficult times in the economy how would you like to take home more money this year by paying less money in taxes? Of course you would. This is for everyone from the High-paid executive to the stay at home mom. There are two tax laws in this country. Most people automatically chime in at this point and chant "one for the rich and one for the poor!" But in reality there is a tax law for business owners and a tax law for employees! Please read the following article to learn how joining iLearningGlobal could pay for itself over (0 comments)
Charlotte NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Property Info - Planters Walk - 01/07/09 06:22 PM
Team Freeman is one of the fastest growing real estate teams in the Charlotte area. With their top notch negotiation skills and their long list of raving fans, their professional team of licensed agents plan to take their business to new heights in 2009. If you want to be represented by the best, you need to hire the best. If you are in the market of buying or selling real estate, contact a Team Freeman agent to help you reach your goals. Call 888-278-4935 or go to www.TeamFreemanRealEstate.com
Welcome to Planters Walk!Located on the southwest end of Charlotte, in Mecklenburg County, (0 comments)
Charlotte NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Community Info - The Palasades - 01/07/09 06:16 PM
Team Freeman is one of the hottest/fastest growing real estate teams in the Charlotte area. With their top notch negotiation skills and their long list of raving fans, their professional team of licensed agents plan to take their business to new heights in 2009. If you want to be represented by the best, you need to hire the best. If you are in the market of buying or selling real estate, contact a Team Freeman agent to help you reach your goals. Call 888-278-4935 or go to www.TeamFreemanRealEstate.com The Palisades Envision a serene 1,500-acre master planned community within a high woodland peninsula above (0 comments)
Charlotte NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Community Information - Berewick - 01/07/09 05:56 PM
Team Freeman is one of the hottest/fastest growing real estate teams in the Charlotte area. With their top notch negotiation skills and their long list of raving fans, their professional team of licensed agents plan to take their business to new heights in 2009. If you want to be represented by the best, you need to hire the best. If you are in the market of buying or selling real estate, contact a Team Freeman agent to help you reach your goals. Call 888-2784925 or go to www.TeamFreemanRealEstate.com
Nature, Trails, & Park Life Mix nature and fun and you have (0 comments)
Charlotte, NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Construction Loans - 01/07/09 05:38 PM
Let me start by saying that your accountant, lender, banker or mortgage broker is going to be the best resource for what type of loan program best fits your financial goals. All builders are not created equal in regards to what type of financing you can choose for building a new home. Some builders may want to carry the loan during the building process. This type of scenario is considered an end loan. An end loan is just that, the home owner does not start paying until the end of the building process once the closing takes place. With this product (0 comments)
Charlotte NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Hiring an Inspector for New Construction Homes - 01/07/09 05:33 PM
Most builders will leave this decision up to the customer. The builder will more than likely discuss the fact that they have their own onsite inspections along with local municipality inspectors and building codes that they must adhere to. Some builders will require customers 3rd party home inspector carries minimum amounts of insurance. For instance, the builder may require the 3rd party home inspector to carry workman's compensation, liability insurance and to be bonded and fully insured through reputable insurance companies and governing parties at a specified dollar amount. This will protect the customer and the builder if the inspector becomes (0 comments)
How do I choose a builder??? - 01/07/09 05:22 PM
Simply research the builders back ground. Check with the BBB (Better Business Bureau), local Home Builders Association or the National Association of Home Builders and hire a qualified Realtor® like Team Freeman, who is an expert in the home building industry and how to research the builders back ground. Also, ask the builder to provide a list of past customers that had good experiences and bad experiences. For the customers that did not have the best experience find out if builder came back and took care of their problems after the fact. Find out what type of warranty program they carry. (0 comments)
Charlotte NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Market Predictions - 01/06/09 04:09 PM
Early 2009 could very well mark the lowest rates that we will see for the rest of our lives. Think about that. More importantly, your customers should be thinking about that too. We expect interest rates to stay in a range of 4.5 - 5.5%, with the potential to see rates moving toward the higher part of the range later in the year. The forecast for the beginning of the year is important of course, but count on us at Mortgage Market Guide to keep informing and advising you throughout the coming year. With so many of your competitors having dropped (0 comments)
In a region with tens of thousands of newcomers a year, if you're a transplant, the answer is you.My job is to write about newcomers - what brought them here, why they chose Charlotte, how they're adjusting, what they like and don't like - and answer their questions about living here. I do that in my Living Here columns in the Observer and New Around Town blog on www.charlotteobserver.com/livinghere.My loose definition of a newcomer is someone who moved here in the last two years. But as a relative newcomer wrapping up my fifth year in Charlotte, I (0 comments)
When native Charlotteans show off their city, they point to the skyline: modern, glimmering and, in a historical sense, built almost overnight.The Charlotte Chamber gives it a boost each year with a skyline photo contest.And millions of TV viewers catch a glimpse when the Panthers play at Bank of America Stadium.But what they and many newcomers don't realize is that the skyline looks like that today primarily because of Bank of America, Wachovia and their predecessor institutions. Now, those institutions are changing, with Wachovia being acquired this week and Bank of America continuing (0 comments)
Charlotte NC - Team Freeman Real Estate - Mortgage/Finance Update - 01/05/09 10:56 AM
Conforming mortgage rates ended 2008 at the lowest levels in decades. One reason is that inflation is not a concern right now due to the current economic weakness and the decline in energy prices. In addition, the Fed has begun to purchase mortgage-backed securities (MBS), increasing the demand. Mortgage rates are generally determined by the price of MBS. On November 25, the Fed announced a plan to purchase as much as $500 billion in MBS, and mortgage rates have dropped significantly since the announcement. Low inflation and Fed purchases of MBS are expected to continue in coming months.Along with low mortgage (0 comments)
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