Solar Leases Hamper Home Sales

Solar has been going big for quite a while now. Because of exponential growth more than 600,000 homes and businesses now have solar electric power in the U.S., according to the Solar Energy Industries Association. http://www.seia.org/research-resources/solar-industry-data Improving design and manufacturing techniques and economies of scale due to the surging business are driving the cost of...

7 Home Maintenance Hacks

Now for something a little different.  I get many “click-teaser” articles every day, and most of them leave me wishing I had my time back.  This one didn’t.  Courtesy of the National Association of Realtors via House Logic, Dierdre Sullivan shares some home maintenance hacks, most of which I would not have thought of. 1. ...

Right-Sizing – Do You Need a Different Sized Home?

Homeowners are moving less frequently than they used to. This is an interesting trend, with significant implications. So significant, that we want to hear your thoughts about it – This coming Saturday, March 21, at 10:00 am in fact. The “rule of thumb” quoted for years by most of us in the real estate industry...

Latest Real Estate Scam is a Doozy

From the trenches comes a story of a new real estate scam that is worth reading.  This was passed on to me by Grace Rudawski and Eric Rudawski, a mother-and-son real estate team with Intero in San Jose.  (www.YouAskGrace.com) In Silicon Valley real estate is expensive, with a median price of over $800,000.  The typical...

Really, What Caused the Financial Meltdown?

There has been much finger-pointing over the years about who and what caused the financial meltdown in 2008.  The big banks and Wall Street did an incredibly effective job of selling the idea that it was over-regulation on them and political pressure on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to lend to unqualified borrowers that did...

Can You Lose Your Good Faith Deposit?

If you put down a good faith deposit on a new home and then are turned down for the loan, can you lose your good faith deposit? When you decide to purchase a new home from a developer the home builder is very likely to encourage you to use their in-house lender. This encouragement might...

How to Avoid Mortgage Insurance (Not)

I heard a very compelling ad on the radio yesterday. A large, very well-known national lender came up with a new program where you can avoid mortgage insurance – because the lender pays it for you! An offer this generous will, of course, make the phones ring off the hook. The cynics among you, however,...

FHA Loans Safer Than Thought – FHA Is Back in the Black

Much wringing of hands and tearing of flesh has occurred over the last few years over government-backed loans, particularly FHA loans. Some would have the government completely back out of the mortgage market, and let the free market take over the risk of making mortgages. Since the government now backs – in one form or...

Who Buys Homes? Homeownership by Profession

Here’s an interesting article. In today’s Marketwatch column Amy Hoak explores which professions are more likely to own homes. So, who buys homes? At first glance the list is a little surprising. While you would think that income level would be the primary driver of homeownership rates, that isn’t the case. In fact, a factor...

Rent vs. Own –Comparing ROI

We know from my post of October 2nd that we can calculate (using a few reasonable assumptions) when you will spend more on your annual housing cost if you purchase a home, compared to renting, and about what the difference will be over your lifetime. But in our analysis of rent vs. own, how does...