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Zillow has launched a Mortgage Marketplace “Code of Conduct” for all sides involved in the Real Estate industry.
The code encourages consumers to follow the rules, be honest in disclosing their income, credit and other material qualification datas, and be fair in their rating of originators.
Originators are also encouraged to also follow the rules, be upfront, stick to their real quotes as long as consumer facts don’t change from beginning to end, and to respect customers in the marketplace even if the consumer takes a long time to decide on things. Remaining composed throughout the process is very important.

On the other hand, Zillow’s role is to play ombudsman, a sort of judge/gatekeeper who will bounce originators and consumers alike who utilizes the marketplace in ways that are unacceptable to a harmonious environment.

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Planning is very important in any business and real estate is not excluded. You have to set your goals by listing down what you want to achieve then make a draft plan to get into your dream position.

Changes occur all the time in the real estate industry. The housing market might be booming this time and might reach its down point in the coming years.

Real estate experts advise beginners to make a wish list for your business. How much would you like to earn in the coming years? What do you want to achieve? Being optimistic invites positive vibes but be realistic. Dont aim too much if you think that its impossible for you to achieve it now.

Feb
12



HUD homes sales are very popular in the Miami real estate market. Investors are always looking for bargain prices when purchasing real estate. HUD homes Daily All Bidders list is the best way of buying HUD homes for investors. HUD is offering a lot of incentives in order to sell their Miami real estate inventory. The $100 down payment for owner-occupants is a very attractive FHA loan incentive. The FHA 203k program is a good way to obtain money for repairs. The 203k program allows the buyer to combine the cost of repairs and the mortgage. HUD is also giving sales allowances that allow the buyer to pay down the mortgage, pay closing costs, or make repairs. These incentives do not apply to investors.

Daily All Bidders – Investors are not allowed to purchase a HUD home in the initial bidding period. The investor must wait for the property to go into the Daily All Bidder status. When a Miami HUD home does not sell in the initial offer period it goes into a Daily bid list. This is when the investors come in and pick up the property at a discount. Investors try different bids usually starting low and moving up until their bid is accepted. The Daily bid is an excellent way for the investors and end users to buy a HUD home in the Miami real estate market without having to compete in the regular bid process. Investors do not want to get caught up in a bidding war which can raise the sales price. The first acceptable HUD bid is accepted in a daily manner. HUD will reject all offers that do not meet their guidelines and is considered too low.

HUD will not disclose the percentage they will take as the lowest bid. This percentage could be from 13% to 50% or less depending how long the property remains in the Miami real estate market. All Miami HUD homes used to sell on the initial offer period and for a lot more money than the starting bid. It was not uncommon for a property to sell for 50% over the list price with multiples bids offered for the same property. All of this has changed dramatically. Now most of the HUD properties do not sell in the initial period. Most of the Miami real estate inventory is sold in the Daily bids at discounted prices. The net to HUD is usually is now much lower than the original price.

Many investors study the bid results page so that they can determine the lowest percentage HUD will accept. The results also shows the selling office, date of sale, the offer accepted and the net to HUD. All HUD homes are sold in as is condition. An investor must make a bid through a registered real estate agent. There are now more HUD homes available for sale in the Daily bid list. The numbers of HUD homes will increase greatly due to the high number of FHA loans being originated. Investors must consider the Daily All Bidders when purchasing a HUD home in the Miami real estate area.

Feb
5

There is a lot to be done when one decides to sell a house. It is more than a matter of putting that ‘for sale’ yard on your lawn or porch for passersby to see. If you want to sell at the best possible price, you have to really look into ways of making your house the best possible buy.

There are some value adding tips a person can do to make his or her home more marketable. Some are expensive, require a budget and professional help and a lot of time. Some are not so expensive, can be done on your own, and can be done in advance or as close to a month before you decide to put your house up for sale.

One such tip in the latter group is painting. Painting your house will make it look brand new and can be a budget-friendly value adding tip. Done on the inside and outside, a good paint job’s effects can be seen until at least two years later. Take a look at this to help make your home more marketable.



Your ability to plan, set goals, and create action plans to accomplish your goals is the mark of someone who is truly successful. This skill to set goals is a life-long endeavor. It is a habit that must be cultivated daily for a lifetime. This single activity will have the greatest impact on your life over any other achievement skill.

To be disciplined in setting goals is to sit down with paper and pen and make a list of things you want to acquire, attract, or accomplish in the next several years. Earl Nightingale said, “The problem with people is not achieving the goals we set, it is actually the process of setting them in the first place.” We are all goal-seeking organisms. Your subconscious mind will work on the goal you give it until it is accomplished. However, you must first set this vast powerful computer in motion by setting the goal.

To achieve a well-rounded, joyous life, we need to be working toward our goals. When it comes to goals, the journey is almost better than the destination. Success was defined by Nightingale as the progressive realization of a worthy goal. You become successful once you set the goal and work toward it. Success is not found only at the attainment level but also in the striving for attainment level.

You need goals in all areas of your life. It is not good enough to set your sights on your business or commission earnings or transaction sides. You need goals in family, spiritual, physical, financial, and mental areas of your life. This is the only way to achieve balance.

Organize your goals in all areas based on priority. Put the most important ones on the top.

Our overall goal for our life should be to be a continuous goal setter. We need to become so focused and clear on what we desire that every hour and every day we are doing the things that are moving us in our direction of choice and toward our goals.

Studies have shown that you will save ten minutes in execution for every minute that you invest in planning or goal setting. What an incredible return on your investment of time. How often would you invest in an opportunity that allowed you to put in a dollar and got ten dollars back?

Seven Keys of Goal Setting

1. Your goals must be specific, detailed, and clear. You must invest the time to put them in written form. There is a direct link between your writing the goal, seeing it being written, and burning it into your subconscious mind. The goals you desire must be specific, not vague. To set a goal to be rich or be happy will not draw you to it. Well-written goals are like magnets – they will draw you to your desired result. Your goal must be concrete and tangible. Highly defined goals are attained – fuzzy goals are forgotten.

2. The goals you set must be measurable. How can one truly measure happiness? You have to be able to analyze and evaluate your progress and your results in a tangible way. Many people have a goal of being rich. You need to know specifically how much money rich is. Your need to know the specific time period you want to achieve it by. Now that’s a goal.

3. The best goals have deadlines. They have a time by which you need to accomplish them. They also have interim steps along the way that can be monitored. These sub-deadlines or schedules are critical to success. There are no unrealistic goals; there are merely unrealistic timeframes.

4. Goals need to challenge you to capacity or beyond. They will stretch you and mold you into a new person. Jim Rohn wisely said, “It’s not the money that makes the millionaire successful; it’s what he had to become (as a person) to earn a million dollars.” If you took the money away from that millionaire, he would make it back twice as fast as before, because he learned the skill to make it in the first place.

5. Your goals need to possess congruency with your values and beliefs. Your goals also have to be harmonious with each other. Let me give you an example: I want to lose 40 pounds, but I also want to eat Dreyer’s Rocky Road ice cream every night before I go to bed. One of these goals will need to give way to the other. They are not congruent with each other. There is no way I can achieve both at the same time. You cannot achieve goals that are actually contradictory.

6. Your goals must have balance between your personal life, family, financial, spiritual, physical, mental, and business goals. Just as a wheel needs balance to rotate properly, we need balance to get anywhere in life.

7. The largest most difficult goal in life is to define your purpose goal. We all have one goal that is at the core of our being. Our life moves to greatness when we decide upon a definite purpose or focus for our life.

I can speak from personal experience. When I determined my “core purpose” was to make meaningful impact in the lives of all the people I come in contact with, my perspective changed dramatically. My enjoyment of my day to day “work life” increased. Fortunately for me, I get to live my “core purpose” daily by helping people such as you reach their fullest potential and joy in life.



Fractional Real Estate is a fairly new concept in vacation homes and resort real estate. Unlike timeshare property, fractional ownership is deeded ownership to a house or condo type of property. These properties are usually furnished beautifully and are ready to occupy immediately.

To understand how fractional real estate transactions work, lets take a house and sell it to 4 different parties. Each party will own 25% ownership of the property. This entails each party to one weeks usage a month to use for themselves or to rent their week out. Typically there is an annual calendar that rotates the weeks so each owner will get a holiday week like Christmas every four years. You also have the option of switching weeks with another owner if the parties agree.

The benefits of fractional ownership give you the opportunity to own and use a million dollar home for a $250,000 initial purchase price. You get a luxury furnished property that is ready to use for a price that was unaffordable in the past. As the property appreciates, your quarter share gains in value also. This type of arrangement works great for people that only use their vacation homes part time. In addition, if you can’t use it for your designated week you can rent that week and get income from the property.

Like all real estate transactions, a quarter share agreement should be a written agreement between the co-owners to share expenses and use of the property. This agreement specifies that title is to be in the name of the individual owners. Holding title in a corporate, Limited Liability Company or joint tenancy could create tax problems and prevent an owner from obtaining financing. Resort Lenders are now doing fractional real estate loans. If the property is a condo or townhouse, it’s advisable to read the existing condo documents to make sure fractional ownership is allowed. In most cases it will be allowed.

Financing is the primary pit fall of fractional ownership. Many lenders don’t understand the concept and if the seller of the property has a mortgage, this mortgage must be paid off in full to transfer ownership. Many times buyers of fractional real estate must wait until at least 3 shares are under contract before closing on their transaction to facilitate a complete release of the sellers existing mortgage. This is usually done with a reservation and deposit. When a person buys a fractional with other parties and decides to sell a few years later, any fractional mortgage can be immediately released at the closing.

The final issues to be worked out are provisions for first right of refusals, holding over, default for non-payment, remedies and prohibitions on further “division” of an interest. Also, use of the property, the budget, calendar, furnishings, pets, smoking, rentals, cleaning, property management, and personal storage are items that tend to be property specific. Each group of owners must make their own arrangements and agree on these items.

AnyFractional ownership agreements should be drafted by a knowledgeable attorney since no two are exactly the same.

For more information on fractional real estate please visit this page in my website:



The foreclosure market is very hot at the moment. Almost every bank owned foreclosure that is available is getting multiple offers. The reason that they are in such high demand has a lot to do with the time it takes to buy a short sale. Although the amount of short sale homes on the market is much higher than the amount of bank owned property, there is much higher demand for bank owned homes. The main reason for this is the fact that it usually takes a lot longer to get a short sale deal to close. A lot of the time it can take around six to nine months for a bank to respond to a short sale offer. Many buyers do not wan to wait that long to buy a piece of property. When purchasing a short sale buyers need to to come to an agreement with the seller and with the bank that has the loan on the home. Once the buyers offer has been accepted by the seller then it goes out for approval from the bank. Waiting for approval from the bank is usually what takes a long time. The banks can also decide to reject the offer, even if the seller agreed to it.

There is a shortage of available foreclosures now, but it seems as though that is all going to change. The amount of homes that are in the foreclosure process at the moment is staggering. According to an internet foreclosure tracker, there are a lot of homes in that are currently in the foreclosure process. Most of these homes are not going to get cured because the economy is bad and most people are not going to be able to make up the back payments. On top of the borrowers who are in foreclosure at the moment, there are almost as many home owners that are in the pre-foreclosure process as well. Most of these home owners are also going to loose their homes. What this means is that there is going to be a huge flood of bank owned homes in that are going to hit the market. If the banks try to sell all the homes that are being taken back, then the market is going to be effected.

If all these homes that are being foreclosed on are put up for sale it seems like the demand is not going to be able to keep up with the supply. At the moment prices are rising because of the low supply and high demand. Homes are being bid up above their asking price because of the amount of people who are making offers on them. There are not many homes available so the ones that are get bid up. It seems like this is going to change as soon as the supply starts to increase. If the supply increases to the point where all the buyers are satisfied, then the market will probably remain stable and still increase modestly. If every home that is in the foreclosure process right now is put up for sale, it is more than likely that the supply of homes is going to be so great that the market will have to drop. Most people think that there is no way that the market is going to drop again any time soon. It just seems that with so many homes that are going to be available that the demand is not going to hold up.

The banks might be trying to figure a way not to flood the market and cause the market to drop. Even now many banks are holding off on selling a lot of the homes that they have taken back. They are selling some of them but are not putting many up for sale. Nobody is quite sure why this is happening. It is however keeping inventory down and keeping prices up. Many borrowers can live in their homes that they have lost for up to a year or so before the bank decides to evict them and put the property up for sale. This is not always the case, sometimes the bank will sell the properties as soon as they get them. It just seems that eventually the banks are going to have to get rid of all the homes that they have taken back. Maybe they will try to only sell a few at a time so the market keeps rising. Regardless of which way it goes, there is still going to be a lot more bank owned foreclosures available. Hopefully there will be enough inventory to meet the demand, and not so much that the property prices start to drop.



Once you have chosen your dream home, the most important thing is to ensure a smooth closing. Most home buyers and sellers count on their Real Estate Professional to guide them through this process. As an escrow professional, I know home buyers and sellers are often nervous about the process. If a Realtor wants to truly market themselves as an expert in their field, they should learn the settlement procedures inside and out.

A knowledgeable real estate agent must be familiar with the mortgage lending process, even if they are primarily working with sellers. The sellers will become reliant upon the buyers mortgage lender to ensure timely closing and disbursement of funds. If the Real Estate Agent is going to represent buyers, this is vital to ensure a smooth closing. Most of the larger lenders will offer seminars to help inform Real Estate Agents on typical lending practices.

Another important part of the settlement process is the title insurance or lien search. The Realtor must be prepared to explain to their client the ins and outs if a defect on title were to arise. The Agent must also be familiar with the typical charges associated with searching and insuring a clear title. These cost vary from state to state, and the responsibility of the buyer or seller to pay for these charges also vary by region.

Lastly, it is an absolute necessity for the Realtor to be knowledgeable of the HUD-1 settlement statement. This document explains to the client in detail all the charges associated with the transaction. The HUD-1 will provide the buyer and seller with their bottom line. An informed Real Estate Agent will be able to catch any mistakes or incorrect charges to their client. Knowing what is being charged and why is vital to provide excellent representation of the buyer or seller in the transaction.

The settlement process can be overwhelming to a buyer or seller, especially if this is their first or second transaction. The client has obtained a Real Estate Agent to guide them through the purchase or sale of the property. Representing the client is so much more than showing them properties or putting up a sign and finding a buyer for their property. If a Realtor can properly inform their client of each step towards the settlement and disbursement of the transaction, they are truly representing them.



The real estate market can be visualized as a massive pyramid. There are very few multi-million dollar properties at the top of the pyramid, and a large number of relatively inexpensive entry-level properties forming the base. Like any structure, if the foundation is weakened, the structure may collapse. In the same way, housing markets collapse from the bottom up due to problems with affordability.

The foundation of a residential real estate market is the entry-level buyer. Entry-level buyers are generally young people starting to form new households. When homeowners want to sell their house and move up to a nicer one, someone needs to buy their house. If you follow this chain of move-ups backward, eventually you come to an entry level buyer. If there are no entry level buyers pushing the sequence of move ups, the entire real estate market ceases to function.

The entry level market was initially boosted the moment 100% financing became available because many more people were enabled to purchase; however, it was imperiled at the same time because of the change in savings incentives. This market was subsequently destroyed the moment 100% financing was eliminated because few entry-level buyers had a downpayment and very few people were in the process of saving to get one.

In the past, people would rent and save money until they had the requisite downpayment to acquire a house. The barrier to home ownership was not the ability to make payments; it was having the necessary downpayment money. When downpayment requirements go up, the number of people capable of buying a house declines considerably, particularly for entry-level buyers who must save this money rather than transfer it from a previous sale. Since few potential entry-level buyers were saving money during the rally, sales volumes suffered dramatically in the wake of the bursting real estate bubble.

The weakness in the base of the housing market is going to serve as a drag on sales and pricing for many years to come. The government will likely come up with some artificial stimulus to encourage sales, but once the stimulus wears off, the same underlying problems will resurface. We must rebuild the base of the housing market through savings and stable financing. This will take time because the bad incentives and practices of the housing bubble.

Jan
1

FBI warns real estate buyers and investors about the highly increasing frauds in mortgage. Complaints about these mortgage frauds have been piling up and would almost certainly break the record of last years reports. For the first six months of this year, suspicious activity reports have risen to an alarming 33,359. This amount would most likely reach and even surpass the total of the entire previous year of 46,717, projecting to a shocking 70,000 according to the FBI.  Investigations also include potential crimes which are suspected on corporate entities. The FBI released their final report on the frauds during the year of 2007 showing that the investigated frauds rose by 47%.

by: Vii