Archive for January, 2013

“If you can’t figure out the answer to a thing, you must be looking at it wrong way round.”

January 25th, 2013
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Agatha Christie, mystery novel author, once said, “If you can’t figure out the answer to a thing, you must be looking at it wrong way round.”  

As has been true for decades, many of today’s buyers are NOT YET buyers because they haven’t been able to pull together enough cash for the down payment on a new home.  Many sellers can’t sell because they would have to come to the table with cash.   The housing downturn may just have a silver lining that benefits both buyer and seller.

The FHA Assumable Mortgage

One of the disclosures that we have every FHA borrower sign is that they are taking out a mortgage where their loan is fully assumable by a qualified buyer.  I doubt many people remember this when they get ready to sell their home 5-10 years down the road. Read the rest of this entry »

It’s about that time of the year again….

January 18th, 2013
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Sunday, February 3 is Super Bowl Sunday to sports fans but those of us in the business of selling real estate and mortgages know that it presages something else for us.  When the game is over, the selling season starts.  If you’ve slogged through the last 6 years and are in it to win it, this is the year you’ve been waiting for!

Steve Harney, in his January edition of  Keeping Current Matters, provided solid support for what is shaping up to be our best year since 2006.  According to his report: Read the rest of this entry »

You’d have to be a mortgage lender to pick up on what I consider to be one of today’s top stories.

January 14th, 2013
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It was buried on about page 11 of the local paper.   Back in 2010, the Dodd Frank Act made banks and mortgage lenders legally responsible for determining that a borrower had the ability to repay the loan for which they were approved.  It did not immediately spell out exactly what was required by the lender in order to be compliant. Read the rest of this entry »

Congress did manage the passage of The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012.

January 7th, 2013
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It was a nail biter, but at the 11th hour Congress did manage the passage of  The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012.  It offers some certainty to all of us as to what our tax bill will be in 2013. The President signed it into law electronically from his vacation spot in Hawaii, bringing to an end the so called “payroll tax holiday”.  Everyone who earns money will pay 2% more in Social Security Tax withholding as the rate returns to 6.2% on the first $113,700 of income earned in 2013. 

The stock market reacted to the certainty of a deal with euphoria causing interest rates to rise slightly off of historic lows.  The hangover is coming. While the passage of the Act addressed the revenue side of our budgetary crisis, it did not address deficit reduction.  The US reached our legal debt ceiling on New Year’s Eve.  The automatic debt sequestration was merely postponed until March 1.   I would predict that in the coming weeks, we’ll see a lot more drama in Washington and on Wall Street as the haggling begins anew around deficit reduction in exchange for an increase in the government’s credit line.  Read the rest of this entry »