Lions and Lambs

07 Mar
March 7, 2009 You've heard the expression "March comes in like a lion and out like a lamb". Well, March certainly came in like a lion blanketing the northeast with a major snowstorm. So, if the expression holds true it will go out like a lamb bringing us warm springtime weather. In the real estate world there's another expression that the spring market really begins in late January or early February. But it's not too late if you are thinking of putting your house on the market. Housing inventory is finally beginning to decrease for the first time in several years. When the glut of foreclosures and short sales inundated the market, private sellers could seldom compete with the low prices being accepted by Read more [...]

70 Degrees and Sunny

07 Mar
March 7, 2009 Wow! What a day! 70 degrees out and sunny, a great time to be out looking at homes! Everything I am reading/hearing/seeing is telling me that we are seeing substantive signs of recovery in our local Real Estate market. Even the Washington Post had an article in the Real Estate section today that chronicled how buyers who have been sitting on the fence for the last couple of years are now beginning to move on properties because market conditions, prices, and interest rates have created an attractive home purchase proposition for many. In my opinion, once the media begins to pick up on trends (either positive or negative), industry is already well into the early stages of a new business cycle. It's Read more [...]

Obama's Plan to Fix Foreclosures

04 Mar
March 4, 2009 This morning, federal officials released details of the Obama $75 Billion loan modification and refinancing plan for foreclosure prevention. This plan follows the $8000 first-time homebuyer tax credit initiative unveiled in late February. It is clear is that the Obama administration is dead serious about allocating financial resources (and taxpayer money) to stimulate the economy through investment in finance, banking, and home-ownership. Because these subsets of our economy are to a large degree interdependent, it is imperative to stabilize all of these sectors simultaneously to effectively begin to stem losses and boost confidence. Will these initiatives serve as a catalyst for growth? Read more [...]

How do I know if this is the right time to buy a home?

03 Mar
March 3, 2009 Based upon the plethora of news articles about the general economy and the dire straights of the housing market that inundate the potential home buyer on a daily basis, it's surprising all of us don't head for the hills and hunker down for the long haul.  The reality is that people are making decisions and buying homes every day, and the pace is beginning to pick up.  Trying to outguess the market, either at the top or the bottom, is always a difficult task. Generally speaking, I have always believed if you wait until someone tells you the market is at the bottom, or top for that matter, you will have waited too long.  Markets always move faster than the collection and analysis of data Read more [...]

LoCo in MocCo! How to handle the plunging real estate market in Montgomery County, MD

03 Mar
March 3, 2009 Montgomery County has plunging home prices, but that doesn't mean that a buyer should not act now to seize some golden properties for future capital gains Read more [...]

Own a Home but Need to Move? Consider Turning your Home into a Rental to Ease the Burden

03 Mar
March 3, 2009 In the last 2-3 years, the Real Estate world has been focused on foreclosures that have flooded the market, and rightfully so. These foreclosures have impacted our local market significantly, causing home values in many neighborhoods in Maryland, DC and Virginia to drop significantly. Even though prices have finally begun to stabilize a bit in some local markets, the significant drop in home values has affected all homeowners in our region - especially those who are looking to make a move but are burdened with a home that has seen a significant drop in value. However, this situation is not untenable. Many homeowners who are in this situation need not feel trapped by this market - looking to Read more [...]

Interest Rate Deduction and the Obama Budget Proposal

27 Feb
February 27, 2009 If you are following the news that is beginning to leak out about President Obama's budget proposal you may be aware of a small section of the budget plan that may affect all homeowners, or potential homeowners.  As the plan is currently drafted the plan changes the Mortgage Interest Deduction by reducing the amount of mortgage deductibility on families earning over $250,000.   This begins to chip away at the most substantial deduction most taxpayers have, and could conceivably lead to further erosion of home values.  Expressing your opinion directly to representatives in Congress might be a worthwhile few minutes of your time. Search for Homes: www.averyhess.com Read more [...]

Why 2009 is the best time in 5 years to Purchase Real Estate

27 Feb
February 27, 2009 So, you ask, why now? What makes 2009 different than 2008? What has changed? Why should I invest in a home? Interest rates are at ALL TIME lows. NEVER have we seen 30 year fixed mortgages obtainable in the low 4% range. With our without continued government assistance, these are truly remarkable interest rates. Lenders are protecting buyers. No longer are lenders relying on the borrower to tell them what they can afford. Lenders are qualifying  buyers based on facts, and putting them into mortgages they can afford, now and for the future. If you are qualified, we have loans and money available. As David Bach (Noted financial guru and author of multiple books on creating personal wealth) Read more [...]

A Mortgage Banker's Take on the $8000 Tax Credit

27 Feb
February 27, 2009 There has been a lot of interpretation and paraphrasing on the new Tax Credit. Below, for your information, is the mortgage bankers take. A couple points of interest: Iit is NOT a loan, and cannot be used for down payment money. It DOES have a limit, based on the sales price of the property. Typically (but not always), in this area the maximum will be available. It DOES have an income limit for full availability. Limits on both single and married buyers. It does phase out the more your earn. It CAN be accelerated for use in 2008, or 2009 taxes. There IS a "first time homebuyer" requirement, defined as 72 months (3 full years) of non-home ownership. There ARE stipulations on the future Read more [...]

The Housing Industry will lead our Economic Recovery

25 Feb
February 25, 2009 President Obama gave his first official address to a joint session of Congress last night. I, much like many others, blocked aside time to watch President Obama address the nation, and more specifically, address the state of the overall health of our economy in general. President Obama understandably focused the majority of his speech on the economy—the issue that is on the minds of every citizen of this great country. He laid out an economic recovery plan that was large in scope and complex in nature; an aggressive plan that has the hopes of a nation riding on it. After listening to his speech and subsequent rebuttal by Gov. Bobby Jindal (R), I am fairly certain of one thing- I firmly believe Read more [...]