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Showing posts from November, 2008

Housing hints for President-elect Obama

By Marcie Geffner, INMAN NEWS
Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Dear President-elect Obama,

Strong housing markets and financially stable homeowners are crucial to the well-being of the U.S. economy. With that in mind, I hope you'll support policies that will strengthen the nation's housing markets and polish off the tarnish that clings to homeownership today.

Here are nine suggestions:

1. Create jobs. There is a plain and direct connection between employment and healthy housing markets. People who feel secure about their financial situation can form new households, get married, have children, buy homes and rent apartments. People who are out of work lose their homes and are forced to bunk in with their families and friends. The creation of more good high-paying jobs is the best way to strength the housing markets and national economy.

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Government offers Hope for Homeowners

New loan program allows homeowners to refinance mortgages
By Marcie Geffner -
November 2, 2008

The federal government has introduced a new mortgage program for homeowners who are having difficulty making their mortgage payments. The program, called “Hope for Homeowners,” is another option for struggling homeowners who want to refinance their mortgage into a fixed-rate loan that they can afford.

The Hope for Homeowners program might be a good choice for you if:

● Your home is your primary and only residence.
● You don't own any other residential property.
● You obtained your mortgage on or before Jan. 1, 2008.
● You've made at least six payments on your mortgage.
● You're financially unable to make any future mortgage payments without help.
● As of March 2008, your monthly mortgage payment (including principal, interest, property taxes and homeowner's insurance) was more than 31 percent of your monthly income.

If you qualified for the Hope for Homeowners program, y…

Buyers rule autumn housing markets

By Marcie Geffner, Cyberhomes Contributor
November 04, 2008

No one likes to negotiate from a position of weakness. Yet that’s the challenge most home sellers faced in U.S. housing markets in September: More homes were for sale, prices were lower and homes remained on the market for months at a stretch before they were sold.

Yet just as one condo owner’s ceiling is another condo owner’s floor, those same market conditions added up to good news for home buyers. Competition, pricing pressure and delay worked in their favor.

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Unemployment could knock out housing

By Marcie Geffner, Tuesday, October 28, 2008

First, subprime mortgages exploded and home prices crashed. Then, the financial markets fell apart. Will unemployment be the proverbial next shoe to drop on the already weakened U.S. housing markets? If so, the implications for real estate will be profound indeed.

Historically, employment and home sales have been inextricably linked: People who had good jobs with steady paychecks bought homes while people whose income wasn't reliable weren't given home loans. Strong employment was a good indicator of future home sales while rising unemployment was an equally sure sign of fewer home sales on the horizon.

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