The best style …

The best style is the style you don’t notice. — Somerset Maugham


Designing Women

A list of designing women

Infamous Gold diggerHeather Mills  ***  Anna Nicole Smith  ***  Kendra Wilkinson  ***  David Furnish …

But this is a blog about real estate, so obviously I digress.  Momentarily.  Just for the fun of it.  But seriously, doesn’t the photo make you gag, just slightly?

So you’ve bought your grand new house and want to make it a reflection of you.  OR

You want to sell your house and need to make it as show-ready as possible to obtain maximum return on your equity.  OR

You have a house which you’ve owned for a while, have no intention of selling and just want to change the décor.

Who are you going to call?  The answer, obviously is not Ghostbusters, unless your color scheme ideal is green slime.  Surprisingly, because this could be a post about the merits of yours truly, the answer is resoundingly, not me either. Continue reading “Designing Women”

Tough Love

My buyer told me that he lived in the same house for 10 years.  When I checked, I found out he’d still be there today if the Governor hadn’t pardoned him.

New agents, and those desperate for clients as well, have been known to make a common mistake.  They will work with anyone that comes along.  And work with, and work with, and work with …..

Everyone has a story about the homebuying couple who dragged you out every weekend and frequently during the week as well, looking at homes when in fact the husband and wife couldn’t even agree on what the basic parameters of their search were.

  • He wants a good bargain, she won’t contemplate anything if it is older than 3 years.
  • She wants a house with good bones which she can decorate to make special, he’s unwilling to take on any remodeling.
  • They can’t qualify for [maximum loan level for their income], but are unhappy with everything in that price range.
  • They have reasonable expectations for their ability to buy, but can’t seem to ever get a preapproval letter from the bank so you can submit an offer.
  • They’re really great to work with, but you didn’t realize their invisible relatives were actually the ones with the most input.
  • They have magnificent plans to make money with real estate investing and are pretty sure they have all their ducks in a row, but find it difficult to pull the trigger. Continue reading “Tough Love”

Crazy random conspiracy theory

The news this morning said the Fed is spending $40 billion/month (yes, per month) buying mortgage backed securities in what it says will nurse the housing market back to health.  That’s $4.8 trillion per year, on top of an already huge debt level.  To do what?  Relieve the pressure on banks holding bad notes so the banks can lighten up on lending requirements?

Might I suggest a more insidious thought?  This may be another form of helping not the homeowners or the housing market, but the banks.

Let’s say bank ABCF (American Bank of Chasing Fargo) services a NOTE which has been broken and sold as a Mortgage Backed Security (MBS).  Parts of the note are owned by hedge funds no longer existent.  While this is a win for the bank as they have nowhere to send those funds and can just put them aside for when the NOTE owners turn up, it becomes problematic if the bank needs to foreclose.

Increasingly, homeowners who have fallen on hard times are seeking legal counsel about their properties.  Savvy attorneys are asking for the documentation about who is legally entitled to foreclose, and it’s putting the banks in a precarious position.  It is difficult to obtain foreclosure directives from a non-existent entity.

If the Fed were to buy those mortgage backed securities ($40 billion/month), when John Doe’s attorney asks who owns the MBS, the answer is increasingly, the Fed.

This is a win for the bank, who can foreclose and satisfy investors, retaining the property and reselling for a profit.  It is a win for the Fed because as one of the investors, it receives payout.  It is an additional win for the Fed if some of the previous investors no longer existed, they receive more of the payoff.

The only one who doesn’t win is the homeowner, who once again has the system gamed against him or her.

WA Supreme Court says no to shortcut

The Washington State Supreme Court, in a unanimous decision, declared MERS may not foreclose on properties.  The ruling does not mean people who have MERS notes don’t have to pay, it clarifies that in WA state, only the note holder may foreclose on a property.  This is very good news for homeowners.

It also affects people who wish to make a claim of wrongful foreclosure.  Use the contact page (navigation menu at the top) if you would like a referral to an attorney group already deep in the pursuit of justice for homeowners.

One other thing which will happen, at least in the short term — housing prices will continue to rise as the inventory of foreclosures takes another temporary hit.  If you’re a seller, that’s good news.

Ahead of the game

Looking for a home in the Somerset area?  I know of two houses about to go on the market because I am neighbors with them.  Neither is bank owned or a short sale!

I’m not the listing agent, but if you want to get ahead of the game and avoid the bidding war which is the market currently, use the contact page to get hold of me!

How does the Supreme Court ruling affect your house?

Striped awning luxuryIt was about healthcare, right?  Regardless of your feelings about the legislation and the subsequent challenge by the states, the intent of the bill was to alter how Americans have access to healthcare.

Ah, but there is the funding.  First the individual mandate, which was ruled unconstitutional, but allowed to exist as a tax.  A tax is something which the government is allowed to impose.

More interesting to property owners is the capital gains tax imbedded in the law.  It now becomes less about your health and more about what you do for income. Continue reading “How does the Supreme Court ruling affect your house?”

Check your crime statistics

Buyers of foreclosed homes, or anywhere you are not able to obtain a seller disclosure, make sure you check with the police in the jurisdiction where the home is located.  Even with seller disclosure, this is probably a good idea anyway; the previous owners may have unexplained illnesses, but never discovered the possible reason.