SIMPLE CHANGES CAN IMPACT HOW QUICKLY YOUR PROPERTY SELLS AND AT WHAT PRICE
Many cosmetic changes can be made with minimal time and expense. Buyers will be comparing your property to competing properties. So here are a few practical tips to help yours stand out above the rest.
Eliminating clutter will make your property feel larger and brighter. If your property is uncluttered and neutral, prospective buyers can explore it comfortably and envision it with their own personal touches.
Making certain repairs will present your property in a more positive light to prospective buyers, and can also add to Read more
by Bruce-Michael Gelbert
On January 11, the Metropolitan Opera revived Giuseppe Verdi’s “Stiffelio” (1850) and Plácido Domingo, protagonist of the 1993 Met premiere and 1998 revival, this time presided in the pit. For the work, Verdi set the then contemporary tale of a German protestant minister, Stiffelio (Stiffelius), also called Rodolfo Müller, whose wife, Lina, has an affair with Raffaele von Leuthold, a young nobleman, in her spouse’s absence. Lina’s father, Count Stankar, avenges the family ‘honor’ by killing Raffaele Read more
There are many reasons why it is a good idea to invest in New York City real estate, for instance, unlike in many other areas of the country where properties have devaluated as much as 40%, NYC has depreciated only approximately 25% (when compared to cities like Los Angels or San Francisco) according to an article from TheStreet.com. The real estate industry remains very active, the volume of the transactions have increased, there is a large foreign investor interest, and the supply remains low compared Read more
Interest rates are likely to rise to 6 percent by the end of 2010, predicted Amy Crews Cutts, deputy chief economist at Freddie Mac.
The end of the Federal Reserve program that buys mortgage-backed securities will drive rates higher because private buyers will demand more return than the Fed.
“Extraordinary resources have been put into keeping the rates down and supporting the mortgage markets and it’s hard to imagine that the rates can go much lower than they are,” Crews Cutts said. “Anything we get at or below 5 percent is a gift at this point.”
Source: Washington Post, Dina ElBoghdady
:: Week-to-week mortgage applications rise 14.3%: MBA (Marketwatch.com)
:: More homeowners get long-term help (CNNMoney.com)
:: Five Key Housing Issues to Watch in 2010 (WSJ.com)
:: Will bonuses save the day for Manhattan real estate? (CNNMoney.com)
Mortgage application volume increased 9.1 percent last week compared to the previous week on a seasonally adjusted basis, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.
On an unadjusted basis, the index rose 10.4 percent, but was down 52.3 percent compared with the same week a year ago.
Much of the decline compared to the previous year pertained to refinances. The unadjusted purchases index increased 9.8 percent compared to the previous week and was down 19.1 percent from a year ago.
Interest rates decreased last week:
30-year fixed-rate mortgages decreased to 5.00 percent from 5.13 percent.
15-year fixed-rate mortgages decreased to 4.33 percent from 4.45 percent.
1-year ARMs decreased to 6.72 percent from 6.83 percent.
Source: Mortgage Bankers Association
Caught in the maze of buying an apartment in New York.City?
The rules are different in New York City than in other parts of the country!
For the inexperienced some of the differences may be perplexing, however, we can guarantee that if you do your homework and keep this guide handy, the process will flow much more smoothly. Our job at Douglas Elliman is to help you determine which type of apartment is suitable for you, to assist in neighborhood selection, to educate you regarding real estate prices, and to pair Read more
By Bruce-Michael Gelbert
For the second time this season, the Metropolitan Opera has replaced a large-scale Franco Zeffirelli production of a repertory standard with a lower-key restudied version. The Luc Bondi-Richard Peduzzi “Tosca,” which opened the season and weds gratuitous sensationalism to drab trappings, has been justly condemned as an unworthy successor to Zeffirellli’s monumental “Tosca.” The new “Carmen,” which succeeds Zeffirelli’s busy one, makes for a much more satisfying reconsideration, save for one grievous miscalculation at the climax, than the Read more
The Federal Housing Administration will raise the minimum down payment for its least credit-worthy borrowers, agency announced Tuesday.
Borrowers with credit-rating scores below 580 will be required to put down at least 10 percent. Those with a credit score above 580 will be able to continue to put down only 3.5 percent. The changes are intended to shore up the agency’s finances.
The FHA also will increase its upfront mortgage insurance premium from 1.75 percent to 2.25 percent. The agency is expected to seek congressional approval to raise annual mortgage insurance premiums, paid by borrowers over the life of the loan, above the current 0.55 percent maximum. The amount it will seek has yet been announced.
Source: Reuters News, Corbett B. Daly
In order to qualify for the tax credit which applies to a principal residence, you have little time left. The deadline is set for April 30th, and to qualify you have to buy your new home by that date and you must close on the deal by June 30th of 2010.
1. For the most part, homebuyers can’t use the tax credit as an automatic down payment on a new property. Sometimes, in some cases, it can be used for a down payment or to pay for closing costs provided that the loan is handled through the FHA.
2. You receive the tax credit when you file your taxes, you don’t get a check when closing, as is assumed by many homebuyers.
3. The reality is that the top tax credit for homes purchases is $8,000 and you don’t always get the full credit. If you Read more