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Choose the best way to sell your home at the best price

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As the housing market strengthens, consumer confidence in real estate increases. Along with a stronger home sale market comes the increase of for-sale-by-owners (FSBO). The obvious upside to selling a home on your own is to increase your net. And a study conducted in 2009 may support your FSBO yearnings.

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And now time for the ‘Greedy’ little home owner/seller

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When there is a buzz about home sellers being greedy, you know home sales are doing well. So, not surprisingly, along with last year’s record home sales came the reports of greedy home sellers. Are home sellers really greedy, or are they adjusting to the market where home prices are increasing?

Greed has developed a bad rap. Surely there is an evolutionary basis for greed. Many believe that early hominids promoted personal and group survival by being “greedy” (although disputed by some).

Those who hoarded food, so as to have more than enough, lived through difficult winters and droughts.

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Paying a premium is at a premium for premium location

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There is an ongoing debate about the value of paying a “premium” for a home site when buying a new home. Certainly, the home builder is seeking to increase their profit margin. But for a home buyer, there is a question of future value.

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Checking out your “Financial Soul” report

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One of the main reasons you’re likely to be declined for a mortgage is your credit report. More specifically, derogatory information contained therein. Unfortunately, many of us are still not proactive when it comes to our credit report. And for many, erroneous information that is foisted upon them without their knowledge affect their daily lives.

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Looking at the future of homeownership

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Homeownership wasn’t always part of the American Dream. The American Dream originated as a concept about increasing one’s quality of life, which was well established before our country’s independence from Britain. John Kenneth White and Sandra L. Hanson discussed the history of the American Dream in the introduction to their edited collection “The American Dream in the 21st Century” (2011; Temple University Press). They describe the American Dream as being fundamental to the Declaration of Independence. But the idiom “American Dream” was not in our lexicon until the 20th century. Although James Truslow Adams has been credited for the phrase “American Dream;” White and Hanson attribute its first use to Walter Lippmann, who used it in his 1914 book “Drift and Mastery.” Adams’ 1931 work “The Epic of America” was the first widely accepted promotion of the phrase “American Dream.”

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'Fake News' is well established in real estate

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“Fake news” is the cause du-jour that has energized many into a movement to stop the spreading of falsehoods. Ironically, the crusaders who point their finger at alleged sources of fake news may also be guilty of promoting it. Fake news accusations are sometimes used to promote misinformation and half-truths. Unfortunately, fake news has become a meme that is becoming trite and meaningless. The promotion of fake news may be found throughout history, but it is certainly well established in the real estate industry.

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Home sales and prices continue to go higher

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Back in January, I told you that the housing market of 2016 would be about home prices. And indeed, national home sale prices have appreciated considerably through the year. But who would have thought that home prices would once again approach the level reached during the peak market of 2006?

The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller National Home Price Index (spindices.com) reported in July that the index was within 3 percent of peak, with another month of 5 percent appreciation. And surprise! This week’s release of home price data indicated that the September’s S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller National Home Price Index exceeded the index that was recorded during the peak market that occurred July 2006! September’s year-over-year gains were due to a 5.5 percent gain to the National Index, while the 20-City composite remained unchanged at a 5.1 percent.

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The winter of discontent and real estate sales

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Winter is not usually a time of year when you would think of selling your home. After all, everyone gets into holiday and hibernation mode. Between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day, home sale inventory is usually trimmed by an average of 50 percent and contract activity is significantly reduced.

But this winter will be different. Rising interest rates and pent up demand could make the housing market very active this winter.

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Change is in the air and all around real estate

 

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Change is not always easy. Sometimes we choose to change and other times we are forced to change. The Great Recession forced massive change to many aspects of our lives – mostly financial. Many found themselves out of work because of the recession, and many home owners lost their homes to foreclosure; while the rest of us searched for ways to cope.

As a result, the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act was quickly pieced together and signed into law in 2010. “Dodd-Frank,” contained over 2000 pages of regulations and rules, many of which were to be created at a later time by many agencies and unelected bureaucrats. Dodd-Frank also created the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which took over RESPA, lending and consumer finance markets enforcement responsibilities. The CFPB created the “Qualified Residential Mortgage” and “Know Before You Owe” rules that significantly impacted the mortgage and housing industries.

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And sometimes it's all about giving back

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It was about one month ago when I received the call from a local public relations firm. The voice on the other end of the line wanted me to write a column about their real estate agent client. They wanted to draw attention to the fact that their client started a program where they will be donating a portion of their commission to a charity chosen by the home buyer or seller.

Although I was pushed to commit to write the piece as well as provide a publication date, it seemed (at least for the moment) that seeking publicity about one’s altruism was ironic. In the ensuing weeks, I received follow up calls to write the piece. But rather than saying “No,” I told them it would most likely be a piece that is generally about real estate agents’ charitability. After all, we’re headed into the holiday season, and the timing seems right about bringing attention to those who give something back.

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