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5th November 2009

Home Buyers Tax Credit Extended

Both the Senate and the House have officially passed the extension of the Home Buyers Tax credit today.  The extension includes existing home owners for up to $6500 credit.  Up next President Obama.  More news to come.

posted in Home Buying, Real Estate Market, economy | 3 Comments

23rd February 2009

First Time Home Buyers Tax Credit 2009

new home

So far I like what I’ve seen from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) signed by President Obama last Tuesday.   From a Tax perspective it appears to contain some very good relief for the average American citizen.  Some of the highlights from the new plan include a new refundable credit of up to $800 for lower and middle income America.  Unless you make more than 95k single or 190K MFJ, you should qualify for this credit.

 Also included in the ARRA economic stimulus plan is an expanded Hope Credit. The new credit is called the American Opportunity Tax Credit.  The new credit can be taken for all 4 years of college instead of the first two and has been increased to a maximum of $2500.   The best part of this credit may be that up to 40% of the credit is refundable.  This means that it can be added to your refund or perhaps even result in a refund even when the taxpayer would have otherwise owed.  Also parents with Section 529 plans for their kid’s college will be happy to know that computers and Internet access are now considered qualified higher education expenses for purposes of the section 529 distributions.

Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Home Buying, Real Estate Market | 0 Comments

28th January 2009

Is the 2009 Housing Market Getting Any Better?

We’ve all heard the news that existing home sales in December 2009 surprisingly increased.  Previously owned homes in the US increased 6.5% to a 4.74-million-unit annual sales rate, according to the National Association of Realtors. This was very surprising considering most analysts had predicted sales at a 4.40 million unit pace.  Some analysts say that this could be a sign that the bottom is near., although the spark was mostly due to distressed foreclosure sales in states like California and Florida. 

Not everyone agrees that the housing market is anywhere near the bottom.   According to James R. Hagerty of the Wall Street Journal, economic indicators show that the housing market is not looking any better for spring 2009.    Dave Johnson and James Boyce of the Huffington Post believes that there is another entirely new bubble on the horizon that they refer to as the double bubble. 

It seems for every analyst predicting an upswing there is an antagonist waiting in the wings to disagree.   Heck!   That’s a 50/50 chance that it could swing either way.  Those odds are a lot better than at this time last year.

posted in Real Estate Market, economy | 0 Comments

14th January 2009

Bankruptcy Law a Culprit in Mortgage Meltdown

According to three researches at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, the 2005 bankruptcy law is another contributor to our economy in crisis.  The article states that prior to the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005, homeowners were able to file Chapter 7 liquidation.  This allowed them to continue to pay their mortgages while freeing themselves of unsecured (not asset backed) debt.  You can red the rest of the article here.

posted in Mortgages, Real Estate Market, economy | 0 Comments

9th January 2009

Can’t we blame Irresponsible Borrowers for this economy?

 By now we all should know how our country got into this economic depression.  Anyone who doesn’t know isn’t paying attention.  Yes I did call it a depression just like I called it a recession before it was official.  It’s not just me either.  However, if you don’t know how it happened, here is my condensed list:

  • Lenders
  • Mortgage Brokers
  • Regulators
  • Mortgage Secondary Market
  • Investment bankers
  • Bernie Maydoff (yes he gets his own category)
  • The Feds
  • White House
  • Congress
  • Past Presidents
  • New Home Builders
  • Real Estate Investors
  • Hedge Fund Managers
  • Media Outlets

Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Financing, Mortgages, Real Estate Market | 0 Comments

7th January 2009

Pending Home Sales Worsen

Sales of pending US homes dropped to a new low in November.  According to the National Association Of Realtors (NAR), signed contracts in November dropped 4.0 percent to 82.3.  This is the lowest level since 2001. Economists expected a 0.1 percent drop, so that should tell you just how far off the mark they are.

posted in Real Estate Market | 0 Comments

6th August 2008

Buy or Rent a Home in 2008?

I still believe that this is the best time to get into the real estate investing business.  However, the strategy used in this market may be the key to your success.  I’m not so sure that all of the creative strategies taught buy the self proclaimed gurus will work in this current market.  The differences in the strategies can make or break you as an investor.  For example, if you are looking for short term investments in which you control or own the property for less than 4 months, i.e. house flipping, this market should scare you some.  No one knows where the bottom is, including the gurus and even at a 20 percent discount (in today’s market) you could still be over priced in three months.  Wholesaling (house flipping on speed) may be a safer route to take since in most cases, you only control the property for a very short time frame.  The down side is you run the risk of not finding a buyer and potentially loosing deposits or down payments.  Don’t get me wrong I am still a proponent of house flipping, however only as one car in your freight train to wealth.

Read the rest of this entry »

posted in House Flipping, Landlord, Real Estate Investing, Real Estate Market, Renting | 0 Comments

4th August 2008

Negotiating Real Estate Agent Fees

Hand ShakeAs a house flipper a lot of your profit goes into real estate agent fees.  Finding a good real agent is a huge advantage in this business for several reasons.  First you want an agent that is constantly building relationships.  These relationships should be with buyers, sellers, other agents/brokers, investors, etc.  They should be full time real estate agents and willing to work for a lower commission.  Any agent that specializes in working with real estate investors will negotiate their commission.  Many of them are offering 3 percent to investors and I’ve even come across a few that offer the same to any seller, although I doubt that the latter will last after the market rebounds. 

Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Business, House Flipping, Real Estate Market | 2 Comments

18th June 2008

Hot Real Estate Markets in 2008 and Beyond

As we all should know by now real estate is local.  Even in the midst of this bubble/crash or whatever they are calling it these days, there are still hot markets around the country.   Thanks to the military, some area markets are drawing tens of thousands of new residents and in turn real estate investments.  Why thanks the military you ask?  Well if you haven’t heard about the defense base realignments and BRAC, I suggest that you look it up.

Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Real Estate Investing, Real Estate Market | 1 Comment

23rd May 2008

House Flipping in a Down Market - Lease Purchase

There are many ways to buy and sell real estate.   The main objective for a real estate investor is to make money.  In a down market like the one we are in now, many house flippers are jumping ship.  This opens the gate for the ones that choose to continue and whether the storm.   The question still remains.   How can I make money investing in a down market?  Much of what we see on the house flipping television shows and what we read in house flipping books says that houses should be flipped quickly.  The longer we hold them the more they cost.  While this may be true if you are carrying the note without a tenant, it does not mean that you cannot make just as much if not more by holding the house over a longer period of time.  Many houses are sitting on the market for a year and counting.  This is where the lease purchase exit strategy can pay big dividends. 

Read the rest of this entry »

posted in House Flipping, Real Estate Investing, Real Estate Market, Rent To Own | 2 Comments

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