Don’t Miss This Home!!

October 11 2011

Single story 4 bedroom home with built in pool and spa on cul-de-sac. Fresh paint and new carpet throughout home. Kitchen has granite counters, lots of cabinet space, new appliances and opens to family room with fireplace and large windows over looking private patio and grass area. Master suite has sliding door to patio for easy access to pool and spa. There’s a ppossibility for RV/Boat access & the 3 car garage has cabinets/storgage space. Low mello roos & no HOA fees. Don’t miss this home!!


October 10 2011

1049 Rowan St. Roseville

Fair market sale, no waiting on short sales or banks.

1,981 SqFt. 4 bedroom and 2.5 bath home.  New appliances, carpet and interior paint. Landscaped front and rear with automatic sprinklers.  This home will be ready for it’s new owners, just move in and enjoy!

Investors Are Buying Houses with Cash!

February 28 2011

Cash Money

If you have the cash, which most investors do, then you are living life in the fast lane. With record numbers of foreclosures and short sales, now is the perfect opportunity to capitalize on the American Dream. However, in most cases, this is a dream that will not end soon.

Record numbers of investors and cash-buyers in January drove Sacramento County home sales to normal levels for the month but dragged down the median sales price to tie a 10-year low.

Sacramento County’s housing market kicked off the new year with 1,561 total sales – new and resale homes and condos – a 5.4 percent increase from the same month last year and just under the 1,584 home sales January has averaged over the past two decades, according to figures released Thursday by La Jolla-based researcher DataQuick Information Systems.

Of those home sales last month, 34.3 percent were to absentee owners. That’s the largest percentageof absentee buyers for any month since 2000 when DataQuick began tracking such data.

“The investors and others targeting lower-cost properties stayed busy during the holidays,” said Andrew Le- Page, a DataQuick analyst. “This is all about bargain hunting.”

Nearly 38 percent of sales in the county last month went to buyers paying cash – often the mark of an investor.

The median price in January was $160,000 – matching the median price in February 2009 as the lowest since December 2000, when the median was $159,000.

Distressed properties – short sales and foreclosures – continue to dominate the market, according to DataQuick.

In January, more than half of all resales were homes that had been foreclosed on some time during the prior year.

Conversely, January set a record low for sales of new homes. Only 40 new homes sold in Sacramento County last month.

Whether you are an investor, or a new family trying to take a piece of the pie, this is the perfect time to jump into the real estate market. Rates are still at historic lows, as well as the home prices. You may not see another opportunity like this in your life time.

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*Robert Lewis of Sacramento Bee contributed to this posting

US Mortgage Market Overhaul: The Winners and the Losers

February 17 2011

Everyday, I try to search the web for some useful information that I feel will make my audience smart to the mortgage industry. I always feel that a smarter boworrer is a stronger bowerer. So with that in mind, I found this article on CNBC and thought I would share it with you.

Published: Friday, 11 Feb 2011 | 3:44 PM ET By: Reuters

The Obama administration declared the death of the existing U.S. housing finance system on Friday, setting in motion an uncertain project that will take years and reshape the way Americans buy and own homes.

Following is a rundown of who stands to be the biggest winners and losers from the administration’s plan to wind down government-controlled mortgage buyers Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac:

The Winners

— Big banks that are willing to invest in mortgages

The proposed reforms will likely help the bank industry, especially larger firms, by allowing them to raise the prices that they charge consumers for mortgages, analyst Paul Miller of FBR Capital Markets said.

— Mortgage securitizers

Wall Street firms have said record low interest rates and government competition have been a major factor keeping them out of the mortgage credit market. But reducing the government’s role can be a “game changer,” Martin Hughes, chief executive officer of Redwood Trust, said at a securitization conference this week.


“Why isn’t the private sector up and running? It really is uber-government support for mortgage financing,” said Hughes, whose real estate investment trust profits by taking on the riskier parts of private securitizations.

Wall Street investment firms have been rebuilding mortgage finance desks since 2009. Other non-bank entities such as PennyMac Mortgage Investment Trust asset manager BlackRock and private equity firm WL Ross & Co. have laid foundations for private lending in recent months.

But after the housing crisis, many investors are still reluctant to load up on mortgage-backed securities that don’t have a government guarantee linked to them. It could take years for faith in securitization to return to prior levels.

— Mortgage insurers

Private mortgage insurance backstops home loans where the buyers make a down payment smaller than 20 percent of the purchase price. Buyers pay for it but the insurance protects the lender’s interests.

Insurers collectively face potential claims on hundreds of thousands of delinquent mortgages from the last few years, but could be reinvigorated if they get the opportunity to write large amounts of new business in years to come.

The end of Fannie and Freddie is expected to bolster top industry players MGIC Investment, Radian Group, PMI Group and Genworth Financial. Shares of all four surged on Friday.

The Losers

— Homebuyers

The biggest losers in the Obama administration’s reform proposals will inevitably be people seeking to buy a home, or people that own homes.

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner conceded on Friday that mortgage costs will rise in coming years, as government support is withdrawn and the private sector takes on a bigger role.

The ultimate shape of the reforms is far from clear, however, and no one is able to say exactly how the changes will translate into bottom-line costs for homebuyers.

Credit Suisse speculated this week that rates on a basic 30-year fixed mortgage could rise as much as 2 percentage points if the government withdrew its backing of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

Higher mortgage rates could make homes less affordable for buyers, and could also weigh on home prices, hurting sellers.

— Banks that sell mortgages to investors rather than holding them

Mortgage Costs to Rise As Government Lessens RoleFannie/Freddie Reform: Reaction ReduxUS to Move Gradually on Mortgage Reform: GeithnerObama to Propose Insurance for Mortgage SecuritiesBig Changes Coming for Mortgage MarketStates with the Highest Foreclosure Rates
Smaller banks that have traditionally sold most of their mortgages to Fannie and Freddie have less ability to hold large mortgage portfolios on their balance sheets, and are more likely to suffer from the proposals, FBR’s Miller said.

Banks that operate as agents and have traditionally sold most of their mortgages to the GSEs or private investors, such as Bank of America are also expected to have to adjust their business models as a result of the proposals.

— Wall Street

In the near term, Fannie and Freddie’s demise could hurt the Wall Street firms that help sell their bonds and hedge their interest-rate risk. As two of the most regular issuers in the country, the government-sponsored enterprises were a steady source of fees for a roster of major investment banks.

In the long-term, these issues could be more than offset by the banks’ profits from securitization and higher mortgage rates, which is why many big banks for years have been lobbying for the government to decrease its support for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

Copyright 2011 Thomson Reuters. Click for restrictions.

A little hard work goes a long way…to the bank!

February 1 2011

Cover of "Curb Appeal"

Cover of Curb Appeal

Roll up your sleaves and get ready to add some curb appeal to your home. By remodeling your lawn and adding some appeal to it, you increase your chance for a quick sale, a sale with a potential higher revenue. Alot of ideas to add value to your lawn are very minimal in cost, but do take hard work and labor. Your end results can be very beneficial if you do it correctly.

The following is one of many examples of a successful remodeling of the landscape. Hopefully by watching this you may get a spark of inspiration and your creative juices ignite a drive in you in which ultimately brings you a higher sale price! If nothing else, it is a very entertaining video.

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Is this a great time to buy a home?

January 27 2011

Picture of the "Gingerbread House" i...
Image via Wikipedia

I found this article in the Wall Street Journal! Found this to be very interesting. Especially if you are hesitating to buy! Mr. Warren Buffet believes that the Real Estate market will bottom out this year. Make sure you are in a position to capitalize. Rates are historically low, and there is so much inventory from forecluseres and short-sales that every wise investor is taking advantage of these situations. The following is a brief article found in the Wall Street Journal:

The housing market still looks pretty bleak: There were a record one million foreclosures last year, home prices are still falling in many regions and the number of “underwater” properties is at a record high.

And things don’t look much better in other areas of real estate. The number of construction jobs continues to decline, even as other parts of the economy have added jobs. And mortgage rates have moved higher as long-term Treasury yields have backed up during the past few months.

Basically, the real estate market remains a mess.

Real estate encompasses a wide range of markets – homes, apartments, hospitals, office buildings, strip malls, dormitories and other properties. But for our purposes, let’s focus on residential real estate, or homes. Here are four reasons to think residential real estate might represent a bargain – with one big caveat.

Everyone hates homes.

Homes are probably the most hated asset class in the country. That’s what happens when a bubble bursts. People avoid thinking about the value of their home. Sellers moan about no offers, buyers gripe about impossible lending requirements.

Hatred of an asset is often the precursor to contrarian interest, and being contrarian is at the heart of many investment strategies. To paraphrase Warren Buffett, be fearful when others are greedy and greedy when others are fearful. Mr. Buffett backed that idea when he invested in the stock market in the teeth of the financial crisis in late 2008 and early 2009.

Of course, being contrarian for its own sake isn’t wise investing. Gold was hated for years (“dead money”) before it recently became an attractive asset class. Still, a lot of smart ideas begin with the question: What does everyone hate?

Smart people are buying real estate.

This cohort is led by John Paulson, the hedge-fund manager who made $20 billion betting against the housing bubble. Last fall he said in a speech: “If you don’t own a home buy one. If you own one home, buy another one, and if you own two homes buy a third and lend your relatives the money to buy a home.”

Why is Mr. Paulson so adamant? Because he believes long-term interest rates are not going to get much lower. They have, in fact, risen since he gave that speech, but they remain remarkably low by historic standards. Low rates and the expectation that home prices will rise is his argument. For his part, Mr. Buffett has predicted the housing market will bottom this year.

Real estate performs well during inflation.

There’s no inflation these days, but when buying a home one should take a longer view. And the longer view shows that the economy has enjoyed a disinflationary period since the early 1980s. A number of folks think that cycle is slowly reversing itself.

If that’s the case, then convention would argue for holding assets that do well in an inflationary environment. That includes Treasury Inflation Protected Securities, commodities and real estate. Remember that during the stagflation nightmare of the 1970s, real estate had a strong run.

Inflation isn’t a significant issue in the U.S., but it’s a growing problem elsewhere. China and India have taken steps to fight inflation, the euro zone is getting flickers of inflation and the U.K. has had oddly higher prices (above 3%) for an extended period of time. If the cycle is slowly turning, real estate makes more sense.

Demand may be coming back.

Supply isn’t as out of whack as it used to be. At the end of November, home builders reported 197,000 new homes on the market, the lowest level since 1968, according to Yardeni Research. The National Association of Realtors reports that the inventory of existing homes for sale fell 4% to 3.71 million homes, which represents a 9.5-month supply at the current sales pace, down from a 10.5-month supply in October.

Those aren’t pretty numbers, of course, but they are moving in the correct direction. And that may be a reason that many home builder stocks, such as KB Home ( KBH: 15.28*, -0.26, -1.67% ) , Hovnanian ( HOV: 4.74*, -0.06, -1.25% ) , Pulte ( PHA: 23.97, +0.05, +0.20% ) and Toll Brothers ( TOL: 20.68*, -0.10, -0.48% ) , have come off their lows in the past several weeks.

It’s all comes down to jobs. There are a zillion caveats to any positive home thesis, but the big one is unemployment. If the economy is not creating jobs, the chance of a rebound in housing is diminished. It’s hard to buy a home without a job, and folks who aren’t working don’t want to take long-term risks.

The job market is still struggling and the debate is hot about when it will recover. Optimists see recovery this year. Pessimists see pain for several years ahead. How this X factor gets resolved will say a great deal about whether housing will rebound.

Published January 18, 2011

Read more: 4 Reasons to Buy a Home Now –

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Short Sale Process

January 17 2011

Half million dollar house in Salinas, Californ...
Image via Wikipedia

Short Sale Process
Short sales are becoming even more common due to the huge increase in the number of foreclosures which are having an effect on home values across the nation. Due to the current subprime and anticipation of the more ARM resets, many people are considering short sales but are not clear on the short sale process and how it can be used to avoid foreclosure. A Short sale is basically a process which allows the borrower to sell the home for less than what is owed on the mortgage loan and allows the seller to avoid having their credit score hit with a foreclosure penalty. Although, there is still a penalty given for short sales, the time to buy a home is shortened with a short sale versus a foreclosure home. A foreclosure can stay on your credit report for up to 10 years while a short sale can range 3 to 5 years. Depending on when you plan to get short sale completed, the IRS may consider your debt forgiveness as taxable income.

The Short Sale Process for Sellers:

1.Contact the lender to discuss the chance of a short sale of the mortgaged property and determine the lender’s process for completing a short sale, successfully.
2.The borrower is to send a lender of hardship to the lender. The letter is to include all financial difficulties, in which the lender can research to validate the seller’s financial situation. Additional documents are to be included with the letter, including bank statements, investment accounts, paystubs and other financial records.
3.A lender will review the settlement package and consider forgiving the remaining loan balance and all expenses (property taxes, etc.), real estate commissions and other expenses associated when closing.
4.A BPO will be ordered by the mortgage lender to determine a Broker Priced Opinion (BPO) to examine the prices of the home in the market by looking at comparables.
5.The lender then will review the purchase agreement and determine if the real estate commission is acceptable.
Short sales can be quite lengthly and need a good real estate agent, a lender willing to work with you on the loan and a buyer.

Success Rate? Success rate can range from 6% to 50% depending on the lender holding the loan, how many loans are on the house and the Realtor’s experience. There are many factors involved in making a successful short sale. The Realtor has be prepared and present to the bank all the required documents to prove to the bank that the owner can no longer afford the house and also prove the home is worth less than the surrounding market.


•Be ready for anything. A short sale can be finalized with the bank in 2 weeks or take as long as 5 months.
•If time is an issue. Stay away from short sales, they are unpredictable.
•Be aware that the owner is still living in the home and depending on their situation, they may take things from the home prior to closing. Make sure your realtor is on your side.
•Find out how many loan the borrower has on the home and how much they owe.
•Continue to take additional offers while the bank is reviewing an accepted offer to keep your options opened. The buyer may have an addendum that allows them to back out at any time.
•Consult an accountant, lawyer or real estate with your important decision in deciding on a short sale.
Short Sale Buyers
The Short Sale Process for Buyers:

1.Hire a Realtor to protect your best interests, especially when dealing with short sales.
2.Search for Short Sale Propeties
3.Make an offer on a short sale property and include a Short Sale Addendum which allows you to back out prior to and after a lender has sent written approval of the short sale. This way you can continue looking at homes if the short sale is taking too long or you can back out at any time if something better comes onto the the MLS.
4.Make escrow to start AFTER the lender has submitted written approval to your agent before getting your earnest money tied up in possibly many months into a limbo account.
5.Get an appraisal and home inspection AFTER the lender has approved your offer.

•Many short sales fail because the mortgage company is unfamiliar with the local market. Don’t expect a quick answer as they research the comparable home sales.
•The lender may request the real estate agents reduce their commissions to minimize costs.
•The lender may demand the seller to sign a promissory note to pay back the short sale. If the seller refuses, it may sour the deal.
•The mortgage company does not want to own the property, that’s the last thing they want to do.
•Make sure to include an escape provision if the process takes longer than you want or a better property comes along.

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Home Owners are Less Likely to Default on Mortgage Loans from Local Lenders.

January 5 2011

Mortgage debt
Image via Wikipedia

New research from Ohio State University suggests that homeowners who obtain home loans from local mortgage lenders are less likely to default than those who borrow from more distant banks.

The researchers noted that even if two similar homeowners received the same type of mortgage with the same interest rate, the borrower who went with the local bank might be better off.

“The door you walk into when you’re looking for a loan matters a lot,” said Stephanie Moulton, assistant professor in the John Glenn School of Public Affairs at Ohio State University, in a statement.

“Local banks seem to offer some protection to homebuyers, particularly those with low incomes who may be seen as risky borrowers.”

Moulton attributed the phenomenon to more prudent underwriting at local banks, who tend to look at income and employment history more closely to ensure borrowers can actually make their mortgage payments.

“Many mortgage brokers base their decisions on whether to offer a mortgage on one or more key numbers, such as a credit score,” she added.

“In other words, if your credit score is above a certain level, and you meet other criteria, the broker will offer the loan. The same may be true of large, non-local banks.”

But local banks and lenders typically have established relationships with their borrowers, including checking/savings accounts, so they know more about those being extended home loans.

Many of these local banks also get their borrowers to set-up automatic mortgage payments, which could lead to a lower default rate.

All that said, you should always shop around to find the best mortgage rates!

If you are new to the area and need recommendations on a bank, give me a call. I will be glad to help. You may also call my loan officer Roland Benson at 916-768-1578 for any questions you may have in regards to your qualifications and your home loan options.

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December 29 2010

A moving truck operated by Piedmont Moving Sys...

Are you planning to move to a new location, if so you’ll need to find out a lot of information before moving to the new area.

You will want to obtain some newspapers from that area first of all and read about the area to see if it is the area you want to bring your family to relocate. Call the local Chamber of Commerce and get them to mail you relocating information, this will really be of assistance as you will be able to know a little about the town and also the surrounding area.

You’ll want to contact a few local real estate offices to see if they can find out information on housing availabities in that area, such as the medium pricing on homes in the area. If you are thinking of renting a house or an apartment in the area you’ll want to check the properties available and also the prices to see if you might have income to qualify. If you plan to be in the new area for even a visit you will want to have appointments to see properties to decide on what you might like for your family and also what is in your income range.

You will certainly want to check out the schools in the are if you still have children in the school system, both public and private schools and also determine the quality of the schools also.

Check with the local utility companies in the new area to see what their rates are for electricity, gas, water and telephone and don’t forget cable television service.

If you visit the town you might want to check out the grocery stores in your area, to see what the prices are in that area, walk along the aisles and compare the prices so that when you do move to the new town you’ll know already about where you might like to shop. Ask about double coupons also, if they are ever available and what days their sales start and end.

Call a moving company and see what the rates are to move your furnishings and belongings to the new area and then call the u-haul it yourself companies and compare the prices and see what is best for you.

When you call or visit the schools be sure to inquire as to what information will be required for your children to transfer as smoothly as possible to the new school. Then visit perhaps a church of your religious order to see if you

would like to attend church there and to also meet some of the new people in the area.

All in all, there are many things you might do before making a long distance move, but try to think of all that you need to inquire about as I have only listed a few, and good luck on this new move, may be life be very happy in the new area.

If you are planning on moving to the Placer County Area, please do not hesitate to call me, 916-580-5400. It will be my pleasure to assist you with anything that you need, or answer any queations that you may have.

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How an Appraiser Determines Value

December 27 2010

Former home of Joaquin Miller (poet), Wash., D...
Image by The Library of Congress via Flickr

Here is a video that I found that helps explains the ever so tricky task of determining your homes value through an appraiser. This is one of the most important factors when it comes to selling or purchasing your home. Most appraisers are independant contractors and are contracted through the banks to assist in determining true value of the home.

If you are in the process of selling or purchasing a home, then you have or will go through this process. Be sure that the appraiser you have is a licensed appraiser and is approved with your lender.

Real Estate Appraisal Explanation

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