Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Saturday, December 27, 2008
This new program should help what IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman calls "financially distressed homeowners". It does not forgive the taxes due, however.
To read the IRS tax briefing, and to get more information, go here
Thursday, December 25, 2008
As of December, 24th, Bankrate.com reports that "The benchmark 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rose 42 basis points, to 5.84 percent ... One year ago, the mortgage index was 6.31 percent; four weeks ago, it was 5.97 percent."
The favorable mortgage rates have spurred an increase in refinances. Bankrate.com also references the Mortgage Bankers Association, stating "Almost no one is getting an ARM nowadays. Adjustable-rate mortgages accounted for 1 in 125 loan applications last week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association."
So - we went to the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) website and found their press release here. The MBA reports that "The refinance share of mortgage activity increased to 83.2 percent of total applications from 76.9 percent the previous week. The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity decreased to 0.8 percent from 1.1 percent of total applications from the previous week."
To read the Bankrate.com article, go here
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
Today we get a report from the National Association of Realtors® (N.A.R.) regarding existing home sales for November, 2008 across the United States. Not surprisingly, NAR reports that the number of existing (not new) home sales has declined "... 8.6 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate¹ of 4.49 million units in November from a downwardly revised level of 4.91 million in October, and are 10.6 percent below the 5.02 million-unit pace in November 2007."
As for prices, the National Association of Realtors reports that "The national median existing-home price³ for all housing types was $181,300 in November, down 13.2 percent from November 2007 when the median was $208,800."
To read the entire press release, go here
Monday, December 22, 2008
The report cites an increase in the number of sales,a decrease in prices and a statistic that one out of five escrows cancelled during the year.
The C.A.R. is predicting that the median home price in California will decline in 2009, and that the California real estate market will level off in 2009.
We think you will find the report very interesting. To read the press release: C.A.R. 2008-2009 Housing Market report.
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
According to Dataquick, the median sale price of a Southern California home " ... was $285,000, down 5 percent from October and down a record 34.5 percent from November 2007. Last month's median was the lowest since it was $298,000 in April 2003, which was the last time the median was below $300,000. November's median stood 43.6 percent below the peak $505,000 median reached in spring and summer of last year."
What's moving the Southern California real estate market? Foreclosures, which accounted for over half of November's sales. The greatest concentration of foreclosures in Southern California is in Riverside County and San Bernardino County.
To read the press release, go here DQNews.com December 16, 2008 press release
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Have they ever announced a "target range"?
Read the press release here: Dec 16, 2008 press release
Friday, December 12, 2008
Remember that as you apply for a refinance of your current mortgage, you will have to qualify for the new loan, and the property will likely have to be appraised. You may want to have your local realtor review the market value comparables with you so that you understand the current market value of your property in preparation for the refinance application. We do know of people who are trying to refinance their loan, only to have a problem because the property did not appraise at the value necessary for the refinance loan.
Tuesday, December 09, 2008
For more information: Los Angeles County Tax Assessor
Monday, December 08, 2008
The mobile version of The Real Estate Blog is very readible, and loads quickly on your mobile device. It's familiar - you'll recognize the color scheme!
Would you like to get mobile updates? Then, click here: The Real Estate Blog - mobile version
Friday, December 05, 2008
What's "smudging" you ask? It's a Native American ritual used to cleanse spaces, clear the "energy".
There are many reference to smudging online.
About.com calls it "spiritual house cleaning".
In today's real estate market, home sellers and real estate agents are looking for new ways to market a home, and for ways to "re-energize" their marketing efforts.
While not a traditional marketing method, perhaps "old ways are best" applies in this case, and you might want to try smudging to give your home a fresh energy and spirit.
Have you tried smudging or any other interesting way to market a home? Let us know! Send us an email with your experience, and we will post the responses on our Blog.
Wednesday, December 03, 2008
4318 Bel Aire Drive, La Canada Flintridge
Open Sunday,December 7 from 2 to 4 pm
Offered for sale at $1,495,000
This four bedroom home has been remodeled, with gourmet kitchen, hardwood floors, and amenities galore! Great yard with pool and spa. Prepare to fall in love!
For additional information, including photos and a virtual tour, please go here