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Posts Tagged ‘escrow document’

The best time to sell your house

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

The best time to sell your hous

The best time to sell your house[/caption]

Sixty percent of real estate professionals advise their sellers to list a home during the holidays because it’s a good time to sell, according to a new survey conducted by

Why do people say that the holidays such a good time to sell? Seventy-nine percent of the agents surveyed said that more serious buyers come out during the holidays, and 61 percent say less competition from other properties make it a great time to sell. Plus, 17 percent of agents say the cold weather is actually a benefit, making homes feel more cozy. The more cozy your home is, the bigger chances of getting it sold.

But online listing photos become even more crucial during the holiday season, according to the survey. Slightly more than half of agents say that the photos are more important because sellers tend to offer less open houses around the holidays, and so the online photos help buyers decide the properties to see and which ones to possibly bypass.

The biggest hurdles sellers face during the holidays, however, are keeping a home ready to show (clean and staged) as well as winter weather conditions and buyers’ vacation schedules, the survey found.

Read the full article here:
Are the Holidays a Good Time to Sell?
Digital Paper Exchange

Official warn everyone about alarming mortgage fraud

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

Official warn everyone about alarming mortgage fraud

Official warn everyone about alarming mortgage fraud[/caption]

As we reported last week, Massachusetts’ attorney general is suing the top five U.S. banks, charging they foreclosed illegally on homes in the state and used deceptive loan servicing practices, including robo-signing.
In the video below, NBC News’ Lisa Myers meets with John O’Brien, register of deeds, in South Essex County, Mass., who says his department found 26,000 fraudulent mortgage documents following an investigation.
O’Brien say he is troubled that he can’t “look a constituent in the eye and tell them who owns their mortgage. That’s very sad.”
“(The banks) are filing fraudulent documents to take their homes away from them,” O’Brien said.

I can’t believe this post isn’t inundated with comments – it’s HUGE that an official in any capacity is saying this out loud, with proof in his hands, therefore standing with full integrity. I suspect that the fight against foreclosure has just worn everyone out and they are no longer seeking or expecting any help or reprieve, or even justice.

To homeowners, the limbo and the emotional toll is HUGE- what CEO’s say about caring about hteir customers is a lie and we’ve found that out to our harm. (How many homeowners were lured into looking into a modification and how did that turn out- not only for those who ‘won’ one, but those who were simply strung along?) A TOTAL SCAM meant to wipe us out!


Read the full article here:
Mass. official tells of pervasive mortgage fraud

Money and Life in Balance

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

Money and Life in Balance

Money and Life in Balance[/caption]

Title: “The Ultimate Financial Plan: Balancing Your Money and Life”
Author: Jim Stovall and Tim Maurer
Publisher: Wiley, 2011; 257 pages; $27.95

Financial planning books are nearly as numerous as people who need them. Unfortunately, making a plan lies near the very start of the path to a prosperous life; adhering to it is possibly more essential to reaching the objective, but is also much more difficult to do.

In “The Ultimate Financial Plan: Balancing Your Money and Life,” authors Jim Stovall and Tim Maurer argue that failure to set or understand a larger, personal purpose behind our financial plans is the death knell for most of our future-oriented financial plans and actions.

They propose that building such a purpose around the aim of balancing our personal values and vision with the influence money has in and on our lives is the solution, and sets us up for success at sticking to our financial programs.

These are just a sampling of the 16 “gifts” Stovall and Maurer bestow on readers. If you are wracking your brain for holiday gift ideas for yourself or someone you love, consider regifting these 16 gifts — they include time-tested truths, bite-sized action steps, and a powerful new perspective that puts personal purpose behind otherwise dry, empty and hard-to-stick-with financial plans.


Read the full article here:
Wellness and wealth go hand in hand

Loan modification sets trends for Real Estate

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

Loan modification sets trends for Real Estate

Loan modification sets trends for Real Estate[/caption]

“Will the rule that all mortgage servicers must designate one employee as a single point of contact for every borrower requesting a loan modification make the process easier for borrowers to navigate?”

The rule to which you refer was issued earlier this year by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC). It was part of a package of enforcement actions taken against eight of the largest national bank mortgage servicers for unsafe and unsound practices related to mortgage servicing.

This particular action required the servicers to provide each applicant with the name of a single point of contact (SPOC) along with “one or more direct means of communication with the contact.” Shortly thereafter, Treasury announced that SPOC would be the rule for all servicers participating in the Making Home Affordable Program.

Since poor communication between servicers and borrowers has been a core problem bedeviling the mortgage modifications problem, the SPOC seems like a sensible idea. In fact, SPOC will not improve communication with borrowers.

All such communications are time-stamped and remain in the portal as a transparent record of borrower/servicer exchanges. As an important side benefit, the portal provides all the means for establishing the accountability of servicers for results.


Read the full article here:
Loan mod portals a win-win for real estate

Bring Out The Best From Your Mobile Phone!

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

Bring Out The Best From Your Mobile Phone!

Bring Out The Best From Your Mobile Phone![/caption]

Amy Chorew and Ginger Wilcox led a great session at this year’s National Association of Realtors Conference & Expo on how to capitalize on the latest apps and strategies for your mobile real estate presence. If you have a case of “shiny app syndrome,” here are some great tools and strategies to add to your app toolbox for 2012.

As more people acquire smartphones, it’s time for Realtors to give serious thought to how their listings, blogs and websites display not only online, but specifically on mobile devices. If you want to convert more leads from the next generation of mobile buyers and sellers, here are some of the basic guidelines to follow as well as some great apps to help you get there.

1. Rules of the road
The first generation of Web marketing (Web 1.0) relied primarily on long paragraphs. The next generation of websites used Flash and other fancy “bling” to make sites more attractive. Unfortunately, these features often slowed load time to a painful crawl.

This Google initiative gives you a quick check on how well your website or blog displays on mobile devices. It also provides suggestions on how you can improve your site’s appearance to provide a more mobile-friendly presence. Important points to evaluate include determining whether your page is visible without zooming or scrolling, whether the links and buttons are big enough that they can be clicked with a thumb, and whether your site is searchable.

3. Real Alert
This app is great if you find yourself in a risky situation. Designed by Michelle Jones, Real Alert gives you five different options if you find yourself in a dangerous situation. You can sound an alarm or dial 911 with a single click. You can also notify your friends that you are in a risky situation while simultaneously triggering your phone to provide your GPS location.

Read the full article here:
7 tips for a better mobile experience

75% of Today’s smartphone market share came from Android, iPhone

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

75% of Today's smartphone market share came from Android, iPhone

75% of Today's smartphone market share came from Android, iPhone[/caption]

According to the latest monthly report of metrics company, comScore Inc., the conception of Smartphone owners are increased day by day. Whether it be Google’s Android platform or Apple’s iPhone platform. The report shows there was a 10% increase in mobile subscribers in the three months ending in October.

Overall smartphone ownership among U.S. mobile subscribers 13 and up rose 10 percent in the three months ending in October, to 90 million people. That’s 38.5 percent of all U.S. mobile subscribers. It seems like subscribers are getting younger and younger each year.

“The Android platform increased its lead in market share to 46.3 percent in the three months ending in October, a 4.4-percentage-point rise from the three months ending in July. The iPhone platform increased its market share by 1 percentage point, to 28.1 percent. Combined, the two had a market share of 74.4 percent.

As in last month’s report, every other platform like Nokia, Samsung, Alcatel, Cherry Mobile, etc. saw its market share drop. Research In Motion’s BlackBerry saw its market share decline by 4.5 percentage points, to 17.2 percent.

Microsoft and Symbian each saw their market share decrease by 0.3 percentage points, to 5.4 percent and 1.6 percent, respectively.”

Read the full article here:
Android, iPhone make up nearly 75% of smartphone market share

Does Gender really affect mortgage rates?

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

Does Gender really affect mortgage rates?

Does Gender really affect mortgage rates?[/caption]

From all indications, according to recent studies, women get worse mortgage rates than men, however, this has nothing to do with gender discrimination, but lack of financial savvy. According to the study, most women fail to shop around for rates and instead, rely on information passed on to them by friends, who may not always know where to find the best deals.

Women aren’t getting the best mortgage rate when getting a loan compared to men, but it’s not because of gender discrimination. It’s because women aren’t doing enough shopping when it comes to mortgage rates, a new study published in the Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics finds.

Women tend to rely on recommendations from their friends when it comes to mortgage rates, while men are more likely to shop around and talk to several lenders in finding the best rate, the researchers note.

Researchers aimed to shed light on why a 2006 study found that women are 32 percent more likely to get a subprime mortgage than men.

Researchers suggest that “gender disparity in mortgage rates may be addressed by policies aimed at improving women’s financial literacy and search skills.”


Read the full article here:
Study: Women Get Worse Mortgage Rates Than Men

Concerns of First-time Home Buyers

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

Concerns of First-time Home Buyers

Concerns of First-time Home Buyers  [/caption]

Potential first time home buyers aren’t buying, even though real estate prices have dropped. Right now, several factors, including job security, poor credit scores, and higher down payments are putting a great deal of buying on hold. In more urban areas, the down payment for a family home has risen some 18% in the last 9 years, going from 4% in 2002 to the current rate of 22%.

First-time home buyers used to account for about half of all housing sales, but over the past year, they’ve made up only about a third of buyers, according to a recent New York Times article.

Higher downpayment requirements, job insecurity, and tougher credit standards may all be holding back first-time home buyers — which tend to be dominated by young professionals. The median down payment for a single-family home in 2002 was 4 percent in nine major metro areas, but now stands at 22 percent, according to

What’s more, while mortgage rates are hovering at record lows, fewer buyers are able to qualify. About one-third of households have credit scores that aren’t good enough to qualify for a mortgage. The median required credit score from FICO Inc. has increased from 720 in 2007 to 760 currently, according to The New York Times article.


Read the full article here:
First-time Home Buyers Scared Off?

Good Samaritans’ plea for Stop Foreclosures

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

Good Samaritans' plea for Stop Foreclosures

Good Samaritans' plea for Stop Foreclosures [/caption]

A 103 year old Atlanta woman and her 83 year old daughter are still in their home of 53 years after police and a moving company refused to comply with an eviction notice. This is one of many instances where citizens stepped in to thwart foreclosures, and help prolong evictions. In the case of the elderly women, JP Morgan Chase announced that they would work out the situation so that the ladies could remain in their home.

The incident was one of several in the last few weeks in which good samaritans prevent what they view as wrongful foreclosures, AOL Real Estate News reports. In another recent occurence, a disabled veteran injured in Afghanistan was to be evicted from his Costa Mesa, Calif., home due to a foreclosure, but the case sparked a wave of donations from the community to prevent the foreclosure. In yet another instance, a vet was able to get his foreclosure stopped when more than 14,000 signatures from the community protested the foreclosure proceedings against him.

In the most recent case, JPMorgan Chase officials said it would do a work out deal with the 103-year-old woman and her daughter so that they could remain in the home. The property was foreclosed upon in March 2009, but the women have lived in the home as they fought the foreclosure in courts.


Read the full article here:
Good Samaritans Step Up to Stop Foreclosures

Open House Thieves arrested

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

Open House Thieves arrested

Open House Thieves arrested[/caption]

A series of thefts at open houses in Kent County, Ohio lead to the arrests of two men. Items such as prescription medication and electronics were reported stolen, causing the Grand Rapids Association of realtors to issue warnings about the thefts. The men hit a number of houses before they were captured, and the stolen property returned.

The recent thefts sparked the Grand Rapids Association of REALTORS® to issue a warning to its real estate members to be careful when holding open houses and urge clients to lock up all valuables, particularly prescription medication, loose cash, electronics, and jewelry.

In most of the thefts, the agents reported that one man would talk to the agent as a distraction while another man went around the home placing things in his pocket, police say.

“With the colder weather, people wear heavy overcoats and can put items in them,” says Sarah Williams, spokesperson for the Grand Rapids Association of REALTORS®. “That makes it easier to steal things.”

Police were able to recover the stolen property. The two suspects, while in custody, have acknowledged taking part in other crimes as well as business burglaries in the area, police say.


Read the full article here:
Police Arrest 2 Men in Ohio Open House Thefts

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