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PA Unemployment Rates - 05/28/10 10:42 PM
According to the Centre for Workforce Information and Analysis for March 2010, Centre County is ranked the lowest in Pennsylvania for unemployment rates with a percentage of 6.7%. Meanwhile, Cameron County has the highest at 16.9% unemployment. However, in comparison with the entire United States, the state's average rate of 8.9% is still lower than the national average of 9.7%. (0 comments)
Motivation for a Dreary Monday - 05/24/10 10:40 AM
Well, its a dreary, rainy Monday in Central Pennsylvania. I hope this quote will help to motivate all of us (including me) to get moving today: Do not wait to strike till the iron is hot; but make it hot by striking.William B. Sprague (2 comments)
203(k) Loans: What Are They and How Do They work? - 05/24/10 10:33 AM
The Section 203(k) program is HUD's primary program for the rehabilitation and repair of single family properties. As such, it is an important tool for community and neighborhood revitalization and for expanding homeownership opportunities. The Federal Housing Administration (FHA), which is part of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), administers various single family mortgage insurance programs. These programs operate through FHA-approved lending institutions which submit applications to have the property appraised and have the buyer's credit approved. These lenders fund the mortgage loans which the Department insures. HUD does not make direct loans to help people buy homes. The (3 comments)
VA Loans- what are they and how do they work? - 05/21/10 09:39 AM
A VA Loan is one of the only loan programs that still allows the borrower to finance 100% of the home's value and purchase with $0 down. Now more than ever banks are requiring large down payments for conventional loans. In many cases they require 10-20% down, putting home ownership out of reach for many prospective buyers. Military families using a VA Loan offers two benefits that will substantially lower your monthly payment. PMI, or private mortgage insurance, is not required on a VA loan. PMI is an added monthly expense required for conventional loans where the borrower finances more than (1 comments)
Inspirational Quote - 05/20/10 09:41 AM
"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, in not an act but a habit." Aristotle
Happy Valley Homegrown Celebrities - 05/20/10 09:35 AM
Abhay Ashtekar - Professor of Physics at Penn State, famous for his contributions in General Relativity and Quantum Gravity Walter Bahr - Professional soccer player, National Soccer Hall of Fame inductee, Penn State soccer coach Jaime Beswick - Professional BMX Rider, X Games Gold Medalist Jesse Fritsch - professional skateboarder Harry Groves - legendary and oft-quoted track and field coach, and a USTCA Hall of Fame Inductee Larry Johnson - NFL running back for the Kansas City Chiefs, born in La Plata, Maryland Si Kahn - Folksinger, political activist Butch Leitzinger - professional racecar driver Joshua Leonard - film actor, (1 comments)
Happy Valley Facts and Figures - 05/18/10 04:44 PM
State College was ranked the second safest metropolitan area in 2008 and the #1 safest in 2009 by the CQ Press. The town evolved from a small village to serve the needs of the fledgling Pennsylvania State College, founded as the Farmers' High School of Pennsylvania in 1855. Renamed the Pennsylvania State University in 1953, it has since grown into a major university. The area received the nickname "Happy Valley" during the Great Depression when it was found that the town's economy was relatively stable due in large part to the university. Since then, State College has been seen to be "recession-proof." In a survey (0 comments)
The Basics of Home Mortgages - 05/18/10 04:27 PM
FHA, VA and conventional mortgages (loans underwritten to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac guidelines) permit the seller to pay a percentage of your closing and escrow costs. Your cash at closing consists of three components 1)down payment 2)closing costs 3)escrow and prepaid costs. The seller assist limit is based on the type of mortgage. For example, an FHA mortgage limits the "seller assist" to 6% of the sales price. The VA permits the seller to pay all closing costs and the escrow and prepaids up to 4% of the sales price. For a conventional loan, the seller is permitted to pay 3% (4 comments)
Inspirational Quote - 05/17/10 10:01 AM
I just recently watched the movie Robin Hood. One line in the movie really caught my attention, and I thought I'd share it: (it may not be an exact quote but it is close) "You can't answer good luck with bad grace. It invites darkness." Now of course this sounds much more charming with an English accent. But I hope that I always handle my life with grace and dignity, regardeless of the type of luck I'm having. But let's hope it good luck ;) (3 comments)
Freedom and the American Dream - 05/13/10 02:02 PM
What does the word freedom mean to you? I'm curious to hear from my peers. When I opened my branch of Freedom Mortgage Corporation, with its trademark Eagle emblem, it seemed totally in line with my idea of the connection between owning a home and the American Dream. Since America's inception we have been a people seeking our own land, whether it was a journey across the ocean or across the continent to the "wild west." We are a people who want to make our own way, and do it our own way. The various Homestead Acts throughout history have pushed people (1 comments)
Mortgage Approved- en Espanol! - 05/13/10 02:38 AM
It is always rewarding to help first-time homebuyers realize their dream of owning their own home. My recent experience was even more touching than normal because, not only were my clients ecstatic at the thought of achieving the American Dream, the entire transaction was conducted in Spanish from start to finish. While we began the pre-approval process in English, we both quickly realized that slipping into their native Spanish made it not only easier, but more comfortable for them to continue. Buying one's first home is exciting, but it can also be a scary and daunting proposal. I understand that it is a (2 comments)
Supoort to Extend the Homebuyer's Tax Credit gains Momentum - 05/13/10 02:06 AM
Pressure on lawmakers to extend and increase the federal tax credit for home buyers has intensified in recent weeks. Congressional committees are now weighing no fewer than seven housing tax credit-related bills. Prominent business groups have lent their support for such measures. And governors of several states have authorized their own tax credits or advances on the federal credit. So far, though, only lawmakers in California have indicated they'd like to see their state's largesse extend beyond this year. In Washington D.C., bills under consideration by House Ways and Means Committee and Senate Finance Committee are, in many respects, variations on (3 comments)
Disclaimer: ActiveRain Corp. does not necessarily endorse the real estate agents, loan officers and brokers listed on this site. These real estate profiles, blogs and blog entries are provided here as a courtesy to our visitors to help them make an informed decision when buying or selling a house. ActiveRain Corp. takes no responsibility for the content in these profiles, that are written by the members of this community.