Free Online/Hotline Mortgage-Assistance Program in Sacramento

December 10th through December 12th 2013, from 8 am to 8 pm, homeowners can visit event.hopenow.com or call (888) 845-0418 “to connect with housing counselors and mortgage servicers who can access required documents for loan modifications, short sales and other mortgage options,” according to SacBee.com.

Homeowners will also have the opportunity to apply for the Keep Your Home California program, which is a “$2 billion state managed, federally funded foreclosure prevention program.”

Vendors scheduled to participate:

  • Chase
  • Citi
  • HSBC
  • Nationstar
  • Ocwen
  • PNC
  • Select Portfolio Servicing
  • Seterus
  • Sun Trust
  • Wells Fargo

If your mortgage is not held by any of the above vendors, you can still speak with a housing counselor. The program ends tomorrow so give them a call today.

Please read “Event aims to help at-risk homeowners in Sacramento area and throughout Central Valley” for details.

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Is the US experiencing another housing bubble?

According to Fortune Magazine, along with China, Australia, Brazil and New Zealand the US is one of the housing bubbles to keep an eye on. Although it appears as if things are recovering from the market crash of 2007, “higher prices in some parts of the U.S. have led one top Federal Reserve official to admit he is seeing fresh signs of a housing bubble,” as reported by CNNMoney.

“I’m beginning to see signs not just in my district but across the country that we are entering, once again, a housing bubble,” Dallas Fed President Richard Fisher told reporters last month after a speech in New York. “So that leads me … to be very cautious about our mortgage-backed securities purchase program.” (From CNNMoney) 

With the price of single-family homes on rise, and the “Fed’s easy money policies” keeping mortgage rates low, asset prices can see inflation, according to Fisher.

Please read “5 Housing Bubbles to Watch” for details on the housing bubbles in China, Australia, Brazil, and New Zealand.

 

Remodeling in Sacramento on the rise

According to recent reports at Sacbee.com, homeowners are feeling more comfortable with “growing confidence in the economy, rising home equity and low interest rates.”

“In the city of Sacramento, permits for residential remodels and additions in excess of $50,000 increased from 97 in 2012 to 113 so far this year, said Ryan DeVore, the city’s chief building officer. The numbers were much higher in 2002 and 2003, during the first part of the housing boom last decade, when home equity was rising steeply. After a long drop-off, DeVore said his department is busier than it has been in years processing permits and performing inspections for all types of jobs.”

Please read “Remodels ramping up again in Sacramento area” for the full story.

 

Bay Area home prices drop and San Joaquin Valley home prices rise

SFOBBnight

As we read news about the flooding of San Joaquin Valley by those intrigued by its attractive home-sale prices, Mercurynews.com reported this morning a decrease in Bay Area home sales, and prices.

The drop was just under 2 percent, bringing median home prices from $540,000 in August to $530,000 in September, with three main contributing factors according to DataQuick’s release report.

“The frenzied pace of the housing market was tempered by high interest rates, increase numbers of homes for sale and fewer of the investor purchases that have pushed prices up all year,” according to Mercury News reporter Pete Carey.

San Joaquin Valley home prices seem to be on the up and up as a growing number of Bay Area homebuyers are looking to escape the comparably expensive costs of living in the Bay. San Joaquin Valley is currently experiencing heavier investor activity, “record low mortgage rates,” and a tight inventory.

Please read “Bay Area home sales, prices drop in September,” for story details.

A LLC and Your Commercial Real Estate Investment

Is a limited liability company (LLC) the right choice for you? In considering the protection of personal assets, “more real property investors are now using [LLCs]… The LLC is a newer form of business entity and it has benefits that corporations and partnerships lack,” according to Huffington Post blogger Phil Jemmett, CEO of Breakwater Equity Partners.

“Limited Liability”

  • “Liabilities of the members of an LLC can be limited to their financial investment,” said Jack Rose, Chief Strategist at Breakwater Equity Partners.”

“Pass-through Taxation”

  • “…an LLC member is not required to pay taxes at the business level. The “pass-through” taxation allows the LLC member to report the company’s profits or losses on individual tax returns at a lower rate,” according to Jemmett.

“Key Features”

  • “…simpler and faster than forming and maintaining a corporation, according to the State California Franchise Tax Board.”
  • “LLCs do not issue stock and are not required to hold annual meetings or keep written minutes; however, a corporation must complete those tasks in order to preserve the liability shields for its owners.”

“Management Structure”

  • “…has fewer restrictions than a corporation.”
  • “LLCs can be established in any organizational structure agreed upon by the company owners.”
  • Can be managed by owners, managers, or members, “while corporations must have a board of directors that oversees the major business decisions of the company and officers who manage the day-to-day affairs.”

“Who can form an LLC?”

  • “… Now LLCs are becoming the primary choice for all types and sizes of businesses.”
  • Those with significant assets, capital, inventory, or service offering “can benefit financially from an LLC.”

Jemmett concludes that “the articles of organization, including the name and registered agent, and the operating agreement simply have to be filed with the state in which the LLC is created, However, complications can arise when creating an LLC. Many commercial real estate and investors seek out professional help for the creation of their LLC entity and assistance can be found at most commercial real estate advisory firms.

Please read Phil Jemmett’s full blog post “Is an LLC the Right Choice for my Commercial Real Estate Investment?”

Struggling with your mortgage? There’s a gov program for that.

The NAACP has collaborated with the National Association of Real Estate Brokers-Investment Division Inc., Housing Counseling Agency (NID-HCA) to participate in the MHA Outreach and Intake Project, which will assist homeowners in avoiding foreclosures, according to Dedrick Muhammad, Senior Director of Economic Programs, NAACP, for Huffingtonpost.com.

According to Muhammad, the MHA Outreach and Intake Project is a “nationwide effort to help families struggling with their mortgage payments apply for assistance from the federal government’s Making Home Affordable Program (MHA).

Created in 2009 by the Obama administration to help families avoid foreclosure and to strengthen the housing market, MHA has helped more than “one million homeowners nationwide.”

MHA offers several options including:

  • Modifying or refinancing a mortgage loan to make monthly payments more affordable
  • Deferred mortgage payments for those struggling from unemployment
  • Targeted principal reduction in certain circumstances
  • Transition out of the property with a short sale or deed-in-lieu foreclosure

“Homeowners in need of mortgage help and at risk of foreclosure are invited to contact NID-HCA. They will screen homeowners for eligibility for available MHA foreclosure prevention assistance programs and work with eligible homeowners to submit mortgage assistance applications to servicers,” according to the article.

Contact NID-HCA toll free at 877-670-7360 or visit online at www.nidonline.org for further information and assistance.

Please read “Government Offers Aid for Homeowners Struggling to Pay Mortgages” for further details.