Jim Cramer Still Bullish on Florida Real Estate

by Rodney Forbes on July 6, 2009

Jim CramerAcouple of months ago I wrote an article that featured an interview with financial analyst and TV personality Jim Cramer. In the interview Jim firmly believed Florida to be recovering from the housing crisis, and could be one of the best places to buy real estate.

At the time I think I was the only person in the world to support his opinion. You can go back and see the original article and interview. Click here. Recently Jim wrote an update to his housing recovery opinion. It looks like he is still bullish on Florida real estate.

It’s not easy being the only guy on earth who believes that house price stabilization is upon us and that house price depreciation is in the past. Not easy at all. In fact, the belligerent press I get on it is only exceeded by everything else I say!

But let’s go over the data. The classic signal of a bottom requires two components: gigantic increases in sales and stabilization of price. Those are always the bottom and have been in every single housing cycle. Would it kill the opponents of my thesis to look into that fact?

Now, the worst four housing markets in the country — California, Florida, Arizona and Nevada — have all seen that exact combination, with Nevada being the latest in stats that came out yesterday. These four states represent 50% of the housing market. So, we have the definition of the cycle bottom — not appreciation but stabilization — in half the market, but more important, in the part of the market that caused the housing crisis.

When I made my prediction a year ago that we would bottom and house prices would stabilize at the end of this month, I made it clear that I was calling for the classic cycle bottom: drying-up of inventory because of a sales explosion coupled with price stabilization, and we are having that happen in the most problematic half of the market.

We keep getting more confirmatory data why. This morning Lennar (LEN) reported a really good quarter and commented that cancellations were down 15%. We have seen numbers in the $40s during the free fall. What does this mean? Buyers are finding ways to get credit rather than show remorse. They are using the $8,000 credit and taking advantage of rates that are a full point below last year’s rates.

I do not like the stock of Lennar. For all of the good news, they will not make anything on the houses they are selling because the foreclosed inventory, often in the exact same areas they are building, will keep their prices low.

That will only end when the foreclosed inventory runs out. But what I wonder is why do people think that these stats don’t matter? Are they all waiting for Shiller to call a bottom? What do they need to see happen?

As for me, I am a buyer of JPMorgan, Wells Fargo (WFC) and Bank of America (BAC) off this. They will be the big performers. They are the beneficiaries because they profit from the huge increase in sales. It is a double bonus: A huge increase in sales means end of sitting on foreclosed property and an end to the charges.

This trend is the most important trend in the economy today. Of course, if unemployment keeps ticking up and if rates shoot up, then the housing bottom will be nothing to write home about.

But right now I am the only one writing and it seems wrong. But I will keep doing it because the facts are the story.

Source: foreclosures.com

Uh, Jim, you must not be reading my blog again! I’ve been repeating the same message for months now about the Florida market, particularly the Palm Beach County area regarding foreclosures and short sales. But then again I don’t have a show on CNBC.

If you are interested in buying or selling a home in the Palm Beach County area, specifically Palm Beach Gardens, Jupiter and West Palm Beach, please visit my Forbes Realty website. For frequently updated information on foreclosures, short sales, real estate news and market conditions visit my South Florida Real Estate Report blog. There are many free reports as well as free access to MLS listed properties. You can also call 561-337-4810.

 

Rodney Forbes is a licensed Realtor®, certified short sale/REO specialist and broker for Forbes Realty of South Florida Inc. Rodney has co-authored the book “Should I Short Sale My Home?”. Get your FREE copy at www.SouthFloridaRealEstateReport.com

 

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Short Sale Myths and Facts…Part 2

by Rodney Forbes on July 1, 2009

chains

The topic of short sales and foreclosures seem to dominate the headlines everywhere. There has been a lot written about short sales and whether you should or shouldn’t short sale your home if you’re in this situation. This has led to many misconceptions about short selling your home.

This series is about the myths regarding short sales. Caveat: The rules regarding short sales are different for every lender and are changing all the time as the market changes. ALWAYS consult a real estate attorney and a CPA regarding the particulars of short selling.

Short Sale Myth #2:

Short sales are impossible and never get approved.

Fact:

Because of the current real estate market, short sales will be around for a long time. The fact that they may take longer to complete than a traditional sale doesn’t mean they’re impossible.

The most important thing to remember when you’re involved in a short sale transaction, as a buyer or a seller, is to make sure yu’re dealing with realtors who are experienced in short sale transactions. Having an experienced team to walk you through the process is essential.

As far as numbers go, for those who think that short sales are impossible and never close, in Palm Beach County, 656 short sale transactions have closed in the last 90 days!

If you are considering a short sale make sure you also consult with a licensed Realtor(r) who specializes in short sales. In the Palm Beach County area, especially in Palm Beach Gardens, West Palm Beach and Jupiter, Forbes Realty of South Florida is focused on short sales and helping homeowners through the process.

Rodney Forbes, broker for Forbes Realty, has also co-authored the book “Should I Short Sale My Home?”. Click her for your FREE copy.

Watch for the next article in the Short Sale Myths series. Or, just subscribe to the blog and they will be sent automatically.

If you are interested in buying or selling a home in the Palm Beach County area, specifically Palm Beach Gardens, Jupiter and West Palm Beach, please visit my Forbes Realty website. For frequently updated information on foreclosures, short sales, real estate news and market conditions visit my South Florida Real Estate Report blog. There are many free reports as well as free access to MLS listed properties. You can also call 561-337-4810.

 

Rodney Forbes is a licensed Realtor®, certified short sale/REO specialist and broker for Forbes Realty of South Florida Inc. Rodney has co-authored the book “Should I Short Sale My Home?”. Get your FREE copy at www.SouthFloridaRealEstateReport.com

 

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Another Boost to Florida Real Estate

by Rodney Forbes on June 30, 2009

uncle-samStarting July 1st, qualified first time home buyers will be able to use the federal tax credit of up to $8000 as part of their up front costs for buying a home.

Until now the tax credit could only be received after the buyers had closed on the home, and then filed their taxes. This upgrade will help many more potential home buyers with the ability to use the funds now.

The following is from the Orlando Sentinel

Starting Wednesday, Florida hopes to stoke its real-estate market by becoming one of the few states to offer $8,000 in down-payment assistance to qualified homebuyers so they can benefit upfront from a new federal tax credit.

Palm Beach County and surrounding counties have already seen an improvement in home sales due to the number of bank owned foreclosures and short sales available. This new stimulus will be an added boost to the local markets.

The state Legislature set aside $30 million to create the Florida Homebuyer Opportunity Program, aimed at first-time buyers and others who have not owned a home for at least the past three years. To qualify, an individual cannot earn more than $75,000 a year, while couples can’t earn more than $150,000.

“Here in Florida, rather than qualified buyers waiting to get the tax credit on the tail end of the process, in the form of a credit after they have filed the tax returns, it will allow them to get it upfront and let them use it for down-payment assistance and fees,” said David Hart, vice president of legislative and government affairs for the Florida Home Builders Association. He estimated that about five states are taking a similar approach.

The state’s program takes effect Wednesday, though the money isn’t expected to be available until later in July or August. The funds are being distributed through local government and nonprofit agencies that already provide down-payment help through the State Housing Initiatives Partnership, known as SHIP. Qualified homebuyers are entitled to $8,000 or 10percent of the property’s purchase price, whichever is less.

18 months to repay

Buyers who receive a down payment must file for the tax credit on their federal tax return next year and then repay the agency that lent them the assistance, according to the program, which was proposed by state Sen. Mike Fasano, R-New Port Richey. The program gives buyers who qualify and get funds 18 months in which to repay the state, which allows them plenty of time to realize the benefits of the tax credit, part of the federal government’s massive stimulus package, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

The state program is intended to boost Florida’s slumping housing market. While the number of existing-home sales locally and statewide have been up for months now compared with a year ago, prices continue to be down 30 percent or more year-over-year depending on the market, according to the Florida Association of Realtors.

To receive the state’s down-payment assistance, the buyer must close on a property by the end of November. Housing agencies are still working out the details of how to distribute the funds, and state officials caution that four or five months is a relatively short time in which to qualify, find a home, obtain a mortgage, close on the property — and use the money. Qualified buyers who do not take advantage of the state program may still take the federal tax credit, which is currently set to expire in December.

Thanks to Mary Shanklin

If you are interested in buying or selling a home in the Palm Beach County area, specifically Palm Beach Gardens, Jupiter and West Palm Beach, please visit my Forbes Realty website. For frequently updated information on foreclosures, short sales, real estate news and market conditions visit my South Florida Real Estate Report blog. There are many free reports as well as free access to MLS listed properties. You can also call 561-337-4810.

 

Rodney Forbes is a licensed Realtor®, certified short sale/REO specialist and broker for Forbes Realty of South Florida Inc. Rodney has co-authored the book “Should I Short Sale My Home?”. Get your FREE copy at www.SouthFloridaRealEstateReport.com

 

 

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$8000 Home Buyer Tax Credit Explained

by Rodney Forbes on June 30, 2009

1st-time-buyerI get asked questions every day about the $8,000 First Time Home Buyer Tax Credit. Who qualifies, what’s the income limit, when do I get the money, what can I use it for.

The following article excerpt explains most of the details pretty well.

According to Keystone Custom Homes, first-time buyers need to be aware that the tax credit is only available now until Dec. 1, 2009 on a closed home purchase. There are other aspects of the tax credit that are important to first-time home buyers, including:

— The tax credit is not a deduction. “It’s much better than that,” says Wisdom. With a deduction, you can only write off the deduction against your total income. So if you make $60,000, you can only reduce your total income by the amount of the deduction, which really isn’t that much savings. For instance, if you have an $8,000 deduction and earn $60,000, you still have pay taxes on $52,000. That’s not much of a savings. But the $8,000 First-Time home buyer tax credit is dollar for dollar. “So you actually reduce your tax payment by the amount of the credit. For instance, if next year, you go to file your taxes and learn that you owe nothing to the IRS, you will receive a check back for $8,000!” says Wisdom.

— First-time home buyers can receive a short-term loan to use the tax credit toward a down payment. In late May 2009, the Federal Housing Administration announced that it will allow eligible first-time home buyers to apply the $8,000 first-time home buyer tax credit to a down payment on a home. This can be done through no-interest loans now available through FHA-approved lenders in the Commonwealth. The loans must be paid back using the tax credit, which is applied to a home buyer’s 2009 tax return. First time home buyers can learn more about this opportunity by talking to their FHA-approved lender or mortgage broker.

Every state is treating the upfront use of the tax credit differently. It appears as if the tax credit will be administered through the Florida SHIP program. The program is supposed to take effect July 1st.

— The first-time home buyer tax credit is available even if you make good money. The tax credit is available to single first-time home buyers who make less than $75,000 a year or couples who make less than $150,000 a year. “That income covers a lot of Americans,” says Wisdom. “And it’s also based on adjusted gross income. So if you make more than those limits, but deductions reduce your income to those limits, you still might be eligible for the tax credit or a good portion of it.”

— There are ways to receive your tax credit now without applying for a loan. First-time home buyers in essence can gain the benefit of the up to $8,000 tax credit this year by reducing their income withholdings to the amount of the credit. This will allow you to see more cash in your take home pay. And that’s money can then be used toward a down payment or for moving and other costs related to owning a brand new home.

“Obviously, a first-time home buyer should check with their accountant before making any assumptions,” says Wisdom. “But right now, we are seeing record traffic at many of our 24 communities, and much of their interest is due to exceptionally low prices coupled with the Federal Tax credit. Add that to the fact that interest rates, while beginning to rise, are still at near-historic lows, and the combination of these factors makes it the best time in generations to buy a first home.”

Source: Market Watch

Palm Beach County and surrounding counties have seen many buyers who may have waited to buy now taking advantage of the current market conditions, coupled with the tax credit, to get into an affordable home of their own.

If you are interested in buying or selling a home in the Palm Beach County area, specifically Palm Beach Gardens, Jupiter and West Palm Beach, please visit my Forbes Realty website. For frequently updated information on foreclosures, short sales, real estate news and market conditions visit my South Florida Real Estate Report blog. There are many free reports as well as free access to MLS listed properties. You can also call 561-337-4810.

 

Rodney Forbes is a licensed Realtor®, certified short sale/REO specialist and broker for Forbes Realty of South Florida Inc. Rodney has co-authored the book “Should I Short Sale My Home?”. Get your FREE copy at www.SouthFloridaRealEstateReport.com

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Down Payment Assistance Nobody Knows About

by Rodney Forbes on June 29, 2009

Uncle SamWith the real estate market in south Florida still trying to recover, so much attention has been given to the $8000 First Time Home Buyer Tax Credit. It certainly has helped with getting many buyers off the fence to take advantage of affordable home prices and low interest rates.

So much attention has been given to the Federal tax credit that it seems no one know about the Florida Down Payment Assistance Loan. This program is designed to help low to middle income families with the down payment to purchase a home.

It is a Florida bond program and is based entirely on income. For example, a family of 4 in Palm Beach County must make less than $75,400.

There are restrictions, but you don’t have to be a first time home buyer under certain circumstances. The money doesn’t need to be paid back if you stay in the home for the term of the loan or until the loan is satisfied.

You can get more information on the program from The Florida Housing Finance Corporation.

Prices have been kept low due to the flood of bank owned foreclosure and short sales. But with homes sales incresing in many areas, particularly in Palm Beach and St. Lucie counties, this could be the perfect time to buy.

Before you make a move, be sure to investigate all forms of home buyer assistance.

If you are interested in buying or selling a home in the Palm Beach County area, specifically Palm Beach Gardens, Jupiter and West Palm Beach, please visit my Forbes Realty website. For frequently updated information on foreclosures, short sales, real estate news and market conditions visit my South Florida Real Estate Report blog. There are many free reports as well as free access to MLS listed properties. You can also call 561-337-4810.

 

Rodney Forbes is a licensed Realtor®, certified short sale/REO specialist and broker for Forbes Realty of South Florida Inc. Rodney has co-authored the book “Should I Short Sale My Home?”. Get your FREE copy at www.SouthFloridaRealEstateReport.com

 

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Short Sale Myths and Facts…Part 1

by Rodney Forbes on June 3, 2009

short-sale-pictureAs real estate values have dropped over the last couple of years, drastically in some places, thousands of home owners have found themselves either upside down on their mortgage, unable to afford their payments, or both.

The topic of short sales and foreclosures seem to dominate the headlines everywhere. There has been a lot written about short sales and whether you should or shouldn’t short sale your home if you’re in this situation. This has led to many misconceptions about short selling your home.

This series is about the myths regarding short sales. Caveat: The rules regarding short sales are different for every lender and are changing all the time as the market changes. ALWAYS consult a real estate attorney and a CPA regarding the particulars of short selling.

Short sale Myth #1:

You need to be behind in your payments before the lender with consider a short sale.

Fact:

This may have true in the past, but today the key phrase is hardship. Certainly being behind in payments is the most common type of hardship. But hardship could also be caused by job loss, death in the family, divorce, adjustable rate mortgage hike, loss of property value (especially in places like California, Arizona, Nevada and Florida).

If you are considering a short sale make sure you also consult with a licensed Realtor(r) who specializes in short sales. In the Palm Beach County area, especially in Palm Beach Gardens, West Palm Beach and Jupiter, Forbes Realty of South Florida is focused on short sales and helping homeowners through the process.

Rodney Forbes, broker for Forbes Realty, has also co-authored the book “Should I Short Sale My Home?”. Click her for your FREE copy.

Watch for the next article in the Short Sale Myths series. Or, just subscribe to the blog and they will be sent automatically.

If you are interested in buying or selling a home in the Palm Beach County area, specifically Palm Beach Gardens, Jupiter and West Palm Beach, please visit my Forbes Realty website. For frequently updated information on foreclosures, short sales, real estate news and market conditions visit my South Florida Real Estate Report blog. There are many free reports as well as free access to MLS listed properties. You can also call 561-337-4810.

 

Rodney Forbes is a licensed Realtor®, certified short sale/REO specialist and broker for Forbes Realty of South Florida Inc. Rodney has co-authored the book “Should I Short Sale My Home?”. Get your FREE copy at www.SouthFloridaRealEstateReport.com

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Mortgage Crisis Spreads to “Safe Borrowers”

by Rodney Forbes on June 2, 2009

house-of-cardsUntil now most people considered the problem with foreclosures and short sales to be limited to certain areas and mostly “sub-prime” loans. With layoffs and bankruptcy in big companies like the auto industry, the mortgage problem is spreading to (up ’till now) safe borrowers.

The mortgage crisis is spreading and hitting new heights: Borrowers with good credit now make up the largest share of foreclosures as job losses and pay cuts exact their toll.

A record 12 percent of homeowners with a mortgage were behind on their payments in the first quarter, the Mortgage Bankers Association reported Thursday. And the trend is predicted to continue until the end of next year, about six months after unemployment is expected to peak.

The genesis of the recession — risky adjustable-rate loans made to borrowers with bad credit — remains a significant factor in foreclosures. Today, almost half of all subprime ARMs are past due or in foreclosure. In Florida, New Jersey and New York the number is above 55 percent.

When those borrowers started defaulting in droves in late 2006, it forced dozens of lenders out of business and sparked a credit crisis in the summer of 2007. Businesses nationwide couldn’t get short-term loans to finance new orders or even cover their payrolls. Economic production began shrinking at the end of 2007 in what has become the longest recession in the United States since World War II.

The impact has now filtered out, consuming homeowners who until recently had a good track record of paying their bills on time. Nearly 6 percent of these prime borrowers with fixed-rate mortgages were past due or in foreclosure, nearly doubling in the past year.

“These (borrowers) are the best of the best out there,” said real estate analyst Mike Larson with Weiss Research in Jupiter, Fla. “Clearly, borrowers far and wide are getting hit by this.”

The worst of the trouble continues to be focused in California, Nevada, Arizona and Florida, which accounted for 46 percent of new foreclosures in the country and reported the worst delinquency and foreclosure rates on prime fixed-rate loans. The four have suffered massive job cuts in the housing industry. There were no signs of improvement.

But experts expect the pain to spread throughout the country as job losses mount. MBA’s chief economist Jay Brinkmann estimates the unemployment rate will top out in mid-2010 and foreclosures will abate about six months afterward.

The number of newly laid off people requesting jobless benefits fell last week, the government reported Thursday, but the number of people receiving unemployment benefits reached 6.78 million in mid-May, the highest on record.

The continuing rise in unemployment, which economists say could reach double digits, means more trouble for the ailing financial system and the economy. Lower incomes and lost jobs are the No. 1 reason people lose their homes through foreclosure. Higher unemployment also means people have less money to spend on basic necessities, let alone luxuries.

And borrowers without jobs are harder for lenders to help with loan modifications.

Nadine Harris in Bakersfield is hoping to modify her 30-year fixed-rate mortgage under President Barack Obama’s loan modification and refinancing program introduced earlier this year.

The 55-year-old was laid off two years ago by Sears after working there 34 years. Harris found another job, but she makes $20,000 less a year. The $925 she takes home every two weeks doesn’t cover her $1,522 mortgage and other living expenses. She’s used all her savings to stay current on her payments, but next month the reserves will run dry.

“I’ll have to scrimp to make up the payment in June,” she said.

Jodi Woodsmith, a housing counselor at Self-Help Enterprises in Visalia said that in the last eight weeks she’s seen more and more homeowners with similar stories walk through her door.

“Those who had savings, they’ve exhausted their savings hoping they could ride it out,” she said.

Woodsmith said a recent change to the president’s program allows borrowers to use unemployment benefits as a source of income for a loan modification. Income from spouses who are not on the mortgage also is taken into account.

Though the plan might stem some foreclosures, it might not be enough to significantly alter the crisis.

“It may be too much to say that the numbers will fall because of the plan,” Brinkmann said. “It’s more correct to say that the numbers won’t be as high.”

Source: Tim and Julie Harris

As the problems continue, expect the government to expand tax payer incentives to buy home as well as keeping interest rates low. Along with already low home prices, this can continue to be a good time to buy for the long term.

If you are interested in buying or selling a home in the Palm Beach County area, specifically Palm Beach Gardens, Jupiter and West Palm Beach, please visit my Forbes Realty website. For frequently updated information on foreclosures, short sales, real estate news and market conditions visit my South Florida Real Estate Report blog. There are many free reports as well as free access to MLS listed properties. You can also call 561-337-4810.

 

Rodney Forbes is a licensed Realtor®, certified short sale/REO specialist and broker for Forbes Realty of South Florida Inc. Rodney has co-authored the book “Should I Short Sale My Home?”. Get your FREE copy at www.SouthFloridaRealEstateReport.com

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Falling Property Values Could Mean Tax Hikes

by Rodney Forbes on June 1, 2009

Just when you thought it was difficult enough to deal with falling real estate property values for the last couple of years, now the local governments are having to figure what to do about the fall in tax revenues from property taxes.

Palm Beach County’s property values plummeted about 13.5 percent this year, creating a tighter budget squeeze for local governments already considering tax increases to cover costs.

New estimates released Friday likely translate to layoffs for government employees, cuts to services and potential increases in property taxes and fees to head off budget shortfalls.

The still-struggling real estate market took the blame for taxable property values dropping more than the 12 percent anticipated just a month ago, according to Property Appraiser Gary Nikolits.

It was the biggest drop in taxable property value since the Great Depression in 1929, Nikolits said. After back-to-back years of countywide property value declines, Nikolits expects the numbers to continue spiraling down in 2010.

“It’s the collapse of the housing market. That is the driving force here,” Nikolits said. “I’m hoping we are not going to see much more of a slide.”

He estimates the countywide 2009 taxable property value will be about $138 billion, down from about $160 billion last year.

For Palm Beach County, the declines could mean an even larger property tax rate increase than what the county proposed on Thursday.

“We don’t have a lot of resources to bring to a lot of problems,” County Commission Chairman Jeff Koons said. “It is just really frustrating.”

Cities saw property value declines from about 2 percent to 24 percent.

Boynton Beach’s taxable property values would go down about 19 percent, to $5 billion. Delray Beach can expect a 15 percent decline, down to about $7 billion, while Boca Raton would drop about 10 percent to $18 billion, according to the estimates.

Local governments this summer will use Nikolits’ projections to craft budgets and set property tax rates. Nikolits provides an updated estimate in July.

Budget problems are worsened by local governments failing to control spending during South Florida’s housing boom, Nikolits said.

“Their job is exacerbated by the fact that they went on a spending spree when times were good,” Nikolits said. “This is what happens when the market turns south.”

Source: Sun Sentinel

You don’t think the officials at the city, county and state level could think of spending less instead of raising taxes at the worst possible time, do you?

I don’t either.

If you are interested in buying or selling a home in the Palm Beach County area, specifically Palm Beach Gardens, Jupiter and West Palm Beach, please visit my Forbes Realty website. For frequently updated information on foreclosures, short sales, real estate news and market conditions visit my South Florida Real Estate Report blog. There are many free reports as well as free access to MLS listed properties. You can also call 561-337-4810.

 

Rodney Forbes is a licensed Realtor®, certified short sale/REO specialist and broker for Forbes Realty of South Florida Inc.

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First Time Home Buyer Tips

by Rodney Forbes on May 30, 2009

With all the talk of first time home buyers, tax credits, low interest rates, low home prices, etc., many people are asking if it’s time for them to make the move and finally buy.

With uncertainty in the economy and housing market, it’s smart to ask some important questions as to whether it’s really time to buy.

1. Check the selling prices of comparable homes in your area. You can do a quick search of MLS listings in your area.

2. See what you can afford. Find out what you would have to pay on your mortgage.

3. Find out what your total monthly housing cost would be, including taxes and homeowners insurance. In some areas, what you’ll pay for your taxes and insurance can almost double your mortgage payment. To get an idea of what you’ll pay in insurance, pick a property in the area where you want to live and make a call to a local insurance agent for an estimate. You won’t be obligated to get the insurance, but you’ll have a good idea of what you’ll pay if you buy.

4. Find out how much you’ll likely pay in closing costs. The upfront cost of settling on your home shouldn’t be overlooked. Closing costs include origination fees charged by the lender, title and settlement fees, taxes and prepaid items such as homeowners insurance or homeowner’s association fees.

5. Look at your budget and determine how a house fits into it.

6. Talk to reputable real-estate agents in your area about the real-estate climate. Do they believe prices will continue falling or do they think your area has hit bottom or will rise soon?

7. Remember to look at the big picture. While buying a house is a great way to build wealth, maintaining your investment can be labor-intensive and expensive. When unexpected costs for new appliances, roof repairs and plumbing problems crop up, there’s no landlord to turn to, and these costs can drain your bank account.

Source: wciv.com

If you are interested in buying or selling a home in the Palm Beach County area, specifically Palm Beach Gardens, Jupiter and West Palm Beach, please visit my Forbes Realty website. For frequently updated information on foreclosures, short sales, real estate news and market conditions visit my South Florida Real Estate Report blog. There are many free reports as well as free access to MLS listed properties. You can also call 561-337-4810.

 

Rodney Forbes is a licensed Realtor®, certified short sale/REO specialist and broker for Forbes Realty of South Florida Inc.

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First Time Buyers….Read This!

by Rodney Forbes on May 30, 2009

If you’re a first time home buyer you need to read this. I’ve been predicting for some time now the federal government would allow the First Time Home Buyer Tax Credit to be applied for up front costs.

The Federal Housing Administration rolled out details of its policy Friday that will let first-time home buyers apply an $8,000 tax credit to fund home purchases.

Until now, home buyers were only able to get that money after they bought a home, by applying for the credit–10% of the home’s price up to $8,000–on their tax returns.

The policy change means home buyers, who use FHA-backed financing, can get a short-term loan to help buy a home. The loan is repaid a few months later, after the buyer files an amended tax return and receives the credit.

A few important notes:

This is only for FHA loans, which require a minimum 3.5% down payment.

Borrowers must first come up with the minimum 3.5% themselves. The bridge loan would cover a larger down payment.

Borrowers can still use loans from certain non-profits and state and local housing finance agencies to fund the 3.5% down payment.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

If you are interested in buying or selling a home in the Palm Beach County area, specifically Palm Beach Gardens, Jupiter and West Palm Beach, please visit my Forbes Realty website. For frequently updated information on foreclosures, short sales, real estate news and market conditions visit my South Florida Real Estate Report blog. There are many free reports as well as free access to MLS listed properties. You can also call 561-337-4810.

 

Rodney Forbes is a licensed Realtor®, certified short sale/REO specialist and broker for Forbes Realty of South Florida Inc.

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