Houston Real Estate Blogosphere
Houston Real Estate Blogosphere brings together all the blog posts of REALTORS from the Houston area in one place
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Mortgage & Finance

The most recently published posts in the Mortgage & Finance category
The Texas economy gained 381,600 nonagricultural jobs from August 2013 to August 2014, an annual growth rate of 3.4 percent compared with 1.8 percent for the United States.  According to the Real Estate Center’s latest Monthly Review of the Texas Economy, the state’s nongovernment sector added 347,200 jobs last month, an annual growth rate of 3.7 percent compared with ...
Read Post [Posted on 10/01/2014 By John Askins]
Rising student-loan debt is putting a dent in the housing market. A new report from John Burns Consulting estimates that 414,000 home sales — or 8 percent of all sales — won't happen this year because more buyers are strapped with too much student-loan debt. That will cost the housing industry an estimated $83 billion a year, according to the study.About 5.9 million households under the ag...
Read Post [Posted on 10/01/2014 By John Askins]
A home inspection is a buyer’s opportunity to see if any problems lurk that may prove expensive to fix later. Home inspections nearly always uncover something in a home to watch for or minor repairs needed. But what repairs should buyers especially be alarmed about that could possibly send them back to the negotiation table? Tom Kraeutler of The Money Pit, a nationally syndicated radio show on hom...
Read Post [Posted on 10/01/2014 By John Askins]
With a slew of energy-saving features and a price tag of less than $240,000, the Start.Home could be the green home of the future. Image: Stanford Solar DecathalonYou could say energy efficiency is a reigning obsession here at HouseLogic. Not only can it help homeowners save money by taking back their utility bills, it packs a clear-cut environmental benefit. The problem i...
Read Post [Posted on 09/29/2014 By Garrett McWhorter]
Tight credit and flat wage growth led to fewer homes going under contract in June 2014.After three consecutive months of solid gains, the number of homes under contract to sell slowed modestly in June, according to the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®. NAR’s Pending Home Sales Index, which measures the number of homes that are under contract to sell, where the deal hasn’t yet reached the clo...
Read Post [Posted on 09/29/2014 By Garrett McWhorter]
Though foreclosures have fallen nationwide, one housing sector has seen a big increase: ultra-high-end homes.  Foreclosure activity on homes valued at $5 million or more has soared in the past two years, RealtyTrac reports. Meanwhile, the overall national foreclosure rate for all housing types has fallen this past year.  Still, the number of $5 million-and-up homes facing foreclosure i...
Read Post [Posted on 09/28/2014 By John Askins]
Lending giants Bank of America Corp. and Citigroup reportedly will offer mortgages at discounted rates to stir more lending among low-income borrowers and those with subprime credit histories. The loans will be originated through a program by the Neighborhood Assistance Corp. of America, a national nonprofit group that primarily assists low-to moderate-income borrowers.Under the new prog...
Read Post [Posted on 09/27/2014 By John Askins]
Mark your calendars! Saturday, October 4th from 11 am to noon, I'll be hosting a First Time Home Buyer Seminar at Keller Williams Premier Realty in their Training Room. Seats will fill up fast, so you MUST email me at tiffanygwin@kw.com to receive a personal invitation. RSVPs will be required.I'll have a lender on hand to answer questions and pre-qualify buyers. STOP renting! Buying a home is more...
Read Post [Posted on 09/26/2014 By Tiffany Gwin]
A great article from one of my preferred lenders:Facts you should know:1.       Can you have more than one FHA loan at  a time? Yes- there are circumstances which do allow a borrower to take out an FHA loan even if they currently have one. Some of the circumstances would be a move more than 100 miles away from existing home, a divorce, if borrower co-signed ...
Read Post [Posted on 09/25/2014 By Maria Donaldson]
First-time homebuyers may face less competition in the fall housing market as investors retreated from the market in August, data from the NATIONAL ASSOCIATON OF REALTORS® show. Home sales activity in August 2014 remains stronger than earlier in the year, but fell last month as investors stepped away, says NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun.“There was a marked decline in all-cash sales from inv...
Read Post [Posted on 09/25/2014 By Garrett McWhorter]
Despite the pace of home sales and home price appreciation slowing, most Americans remain optimistic about the housing market. More than half of Americans – 53 percent -- recently surveyed say they believe home prices will continue to rise within the next 12 months, according to Bankrate’s September Financial Security Index, a survey of more than 1,000 adults about their personal financ...
Read Post [Posted on 09/25/2014 By John Askins]
For delinquent borrowers, the majority say they aren’t giving up on the American Dream, despite their recent struggles. A survey conducted by Fannie Mae finds that delinquent borrowers – those late on their mortgage payments and at risk of foreclosure – are still committed to the idea of home ownership, even if they are having some difficulties with it now.  Particularly in the past ye...
Read Post [Posted on 09/25/2014 By John Askins]
As lawmakers debate how to reform the secondary mortgage market, NAR President Gary Thomas testified on Capitol Hill to advocate for safe, affordable home mortgages guaranteed by the federal government. Image: David SimsChanges coming to the mortgage market in 2014 could hurt homeowners by reducing the availability of safe, affordable mortgages, NATIONAL ASSOCIATIONAL OF REALTORS® President Gary T...
Read Post [Posted on 09/24/2014 By Garrett McWhorter]
The Appraisal ProfessionWhat is an Appraisal?An appraisal is a professional appraiser’s opinion of value. The preparation of an appraisal involves research into appropriate market areas; the assembly and analysis of information pertinent to a property; and the knowledge, experience, and professional judgment of the appraiser. . Appraisals may be required for any type of property, including single-...
Read Post [Posted on 09/24/2014 By Garrett McWhorter]
The Federal Housing Administration’s rise in its mortgage insurance fees in recent years is pricing many “creditworthy Americans out of the market” and causing the number of first-time home buyers to reach new lows, housing analysts argue. First-time home purchases have fallen to historic lows. They account for about 28 percent of existing-home sales year-to-date – well below the long-t...
Read Post [Posted on 09/24/2014 By John Askins]
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