Spray foam insulation or crawl space encapsulation may void your termite insurance in Georgia

Georgia Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black recently stated that spray foam insulation in the crawl space of your home or business may void your current (or prevent future) termite protection coverage. But let me add this caveat….many homeowners are adding spray foam to their attics under their roofs and some are encapsulating their crawl spaces and conditioning that space to prevent mold, but are they covering up hidden active termite infestation?

If you currently (or are planning to) have termite protection from a Georgia licensed pest control company, be sure to:

(a) determine if and where you have any spray foam insulation,
(b) read your termite protection policy for its effect on coverage, and
(c) contact the pest control company to discuss effect on termite protection coverage of those areas covered (or to be covered) by the spray foam insulation.

It may result in termination or voiding your termite protection in its entirety.

Spray Foam Insulation Could Impact Ability to Protect from Termites.


If you need more information, you may contact your local county extension office at 1-800-ASK-UGA1, or the Georgia Department of Agriculture’s Structural Pest Control Division at 404-656-3641.

Source: Farmers and Consumers Market Bulletin, September 26, 2018, Page 1.

References to articles, sources, products, or services are not a specific endorsement and not guaranteed to be true or accurate, but the user must perform their due diligence and investigate whether the information provided is valid, or the product or service is right for them. I welcome any or all comments that would help others……Be careful – if it sounds too good, it probably is!

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Are you being duped into replacing your HVAC system instead of just changing refrigerant?

Do you have a choice of replacement for the R-22 Refrigerant in your HVAC system?

Yes…and here is a chart of alternatives:

First, I am not an HVAC expert and I didn’t sleep at a Holiday Inn last night, but are we being duped into replacing out HVAC systems in our homes instead of simply replacing the existing R-22 in our systems?

Second, aren’t HVAC systems supposed to be “closed systems”? This means that there “SHOULD NOT BE ANY LEAKS” in the refrigerant lines….so why are there…
LEAKS IN HVAC REFRIGERANT lines? They are normally copper lines which really shouldn’t leak…

I was told by an HVAC technician years ago that HVAC systems use different metals to connect the circulation system and over time, those metals interact to develop leaks. I can’t verify that statement, but several older systems, designed as “closed systems”, mysteriously develop leaks in copper tubing or at connection points within the system.

Watch this video: What is RS-44b ( R453a ) Refrigerant and Should You Use It?

RS-44b Refrigerant is an R22 Replacement.

Also, After many years of testing and investigation, R407C is recognized as a suitable alternative refrigerant for R22 in medium and high temperature applications such as residential and light commercial air conditioning.

RS-44b Refrigerant: RS-44b is a non-flammable HFC blend. It is compatible with both traditional mineral and synthetic lubricants so that a retrofit to a different refrigerant oil is not required. The small amount of hydrocarbons in RS-44b improve the oil return to the compressor to extend the life of the compressor. (Source: rs-44b-refrigerant-r22-replacement)

407C Refrigerant: R-407c is a mixture of hydrofluorocarbons used as a refrigerant. It is a zeotropic blend of difluoromethane, pentafluoroethane, and 1,1,1,2-tetrafluoroethane. Difluoromethane serves to provide the heat capacity, pentafluoroethane decreases flammability, tetrafluoroethane reduces pressure. R-407c cylinders are colored burnt orange. (Source: Wikipedia)

R422D, Another R22 Replacement.

So, are there alternatives to HVAC companies “scaring you” into selecting new HVAC systems and changing out your older system to a newer one? It appears so, but if you want a more efficient HVAC system in the future, you may need to replace your current system to achieve those benefits.

References to articles, sources, products, or services are not a specific endorsement and not guaranteed to be true or accurate, but the user must perform their due diligence and investigate whether the information provided is valid, or the product or service is right for them. I welcome any or all comments that would help others……Be careful – if it sounds too good, it probably is!

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What is a bedroom?

Does a bedroom consist of a room of any size upstairs? On main level? In basement?

Does a bedroom need a door, window, and closet only?

What “DOES qualify as a bedroom?

I think this description from the April 2018 Georgia Real Estate Commission – The Appraisers Page of their monthly newsletter will BLOW REALTORS’ or REAL ESTATE AGENTS’ (yes, they are different…but not what you think) MINDS and property descriptions:

Confused? I bet most real estate agents are as well….

Let me repeat that…

Let’s define a bedroom before we go any further. A bedroom is a room of “adequate size” – which is defined as no less than 100 square feet. It must have a closet, a window, and a door; it must be heat/cooled and finished to the same quality as the rest of the house. It must be ABOVE GRADE to be counted as a bedroom. And the most forgotten or unknown factor in defining a bedroom is that it must have ready access to a FULL bathroom. A full bathroom is one that has a shower or a tub as well as sink and toilet. Think about it: if you have a bonus room finished up over a garage, it may have a closet, window, door, heating/cooling, and is finished to the same quality as the rest of the house. If you have to go down the stairs and across the house to use the bathroom, though, the room cannot function on a long-term basis as a bedroom. Another common scenario is that you might have four “bedrooms” on the second floor of a house. Three of the bedrooms have private baths. How is someone in the fourth bedroom supposed to get to the bathroom? If you answered “by going through one of the other bedrooms”, you are incorrect. You aren’t incorrect. It just doesn’t count as a bedroom. That does not function on a long -term basis as a bedroom. We would instead call it a den or office. Probably the most common scenario is as follows: let’s take a traditional two-story house. On the first floor, you have a living room, dining room, kitchen, one half bathroom, laundry and a “bedroom”. The problem here is that the “bedroom” is only serviced by a half bath. Again, this does not function on a long-term basis as a bedroom. Here is where it is valuable to have an appraiser as a consultant during or prior to the construction process of a new house.

References to articles, sources, products, or services are not a specific endorsement and not guaranteed to be true or accurate, but the user must perform their due diligence and investigate whether the information provided is valid, or the product or service is right for them. I welcome any or all comments that would help others……Be careful – if it sounds too good, it probably is!

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Home Equity Loan Tax Deductions Under 2017 Tax Law

Major question: How will “when the proceeds are used to substantially improve their residence” is defined in IRS guidelines?

One of the most misunderstood provisions in the new tax law expires in 2026 and prohibits the deduction of interest paid on home equity lines of credit and home equity loans except when the funds are used to substantially improve the taxpayer’s home. The IRS recently issued a statement clarifying that the deduction has not been removed, but is instead available under new home improvement restrictions:

“…despite newly-enacted restrictions on home mortgages, taxpayers can often still deduct interest on a home equity loan, home equity line of credit (HELOC) or second mortgage, regardless of how the loan is labelled,” according to an IRS release.

Source: IRS Clarifies Home Equity Loan Tax Deductions Under New Law

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Escalation Clause…no..not a Mortgage Clause…A Real Estate Contract Clause

For home buyers locked in a heated bidding war, there is one weapon that may help ensure victory:

an escalation clause.

Simply put, the prospective Buyer places a clause in the offer that if any other Buyer places a bid for the property, this Buyer will pay $XXXX higher than the highest offer.

Source: WSJ February 14, 2018.

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Millennials are “literally” full of crap!

Yes..they are..but no wonder…the crap that fills their brains is the direct result of too many real estate articles, blogs, and advertisements designed to make them feel bad about not buying a home…

Sometimes I hate the real estate industry, and I’m in it. Every day I see 2-3 articles warning Millennials that it’s…

Too late to buy…!

Home prices are rising so you better buy now…!

Hey, you’re strapped with student loan debt but there’s still a way to buy a house!

Interest rates are expected to rise so get off the fence…!

The Dirty Secret #1: The sole purpose of all these headlines and stories (i.e., hype) is designed to “push people off the fence” to buy a house and enable someone else make money…realtors…attorneys…insurance companies….warranty companies…sellers…Home Depot and Lowes (apppliances, sales of product to home improvement remodelers and contractors, and your home improvement projects) and other housing related contractors (painters, plumbers, electricians, HVAC services) etc,.

The Dirty Secret #2: Housing related spending (whether buying houses, fixing them up, or all the related household services supporting housing) drives anywhere from 15-20% of the US Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

Yes, they/we all want your money…

So my advice to millennials is to “release the crap and wipe away the leftover hype” before you make a mess. And make sure that when “you” are ready to buy a home, you’ve done the basic research of home values compared to what you get…and do the math, if it doesn’t pay YOU to buy a home – Don’t!

Oh, and I use the term “literally”, figuratively in this case….

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“Coming Soon” v. Stick the yard sign in yard

Fair or unfair?

Should the listing agent wait until the listing is ready to be posted for sale to plant a yard sign…or put the sign in advance of listing effective date to offer “more potential buyers” chance at the house?

These are unlisted properties that may or will be formally and contractually listed with a broker in the near future, but not currently and most often, not yet priced. These are “teasers” to gain interest once the property becomes listed.

Source: “Coming Soon” signs – Is it in the Seller’s Best Interest?.

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Home Buyer Summary Steps to Buying a Home

Hey, before you begin this nerve racking fun and worthwhile process – PLEASE be honest with yourself. Don’t swing for the fences and overpay for a house you can’t afford to furnish, maintain, or pay monthly mortgage.

Also, take a shoot from the hip 30% of your total gross income and try to stay near that amount for your total monthly mortgage payment. And don’t forget, your mortgage payment will include the following: principal loan; interest on loan; homeowner’s insurance; property taxes; and possibly some form of mortgage insurance…so don’t get a quote of Principal and Interest (called P&I) from a lender and think that’s all. And be sure to factor monthly expenses such as home maintenance, utilities, and emergency repairs into your budget…DON’T PAY TOO MUCH FOR A HOUSE and get strapped!!!

Step #1: Get familiar with the home buying process. Please review my summary of the Buying Process here. Don’t just think you go out and find a house, then go to a lender to get qualified. You will be way behind the curve. Also, don’t think the mortgage payment will be your only monthly expenditure.

Step #2: Review my summary of the steps of the Mortgage application process. Talk to several mortgage lenders within a 2-4 week period (only counted as one hit to your credit). Just don’t call lenders over several months…Use my questions to Ask Lenders worksheet for a sample of questions to ask each lender to keep track. Also, if you find one who explains things and sounds like you can work with them, great!

Step #3: Get your finances in order and get pre-approved….YES – preapproved, not just pre-qualified. This means to get your financial paperwork into the lender and let them run it through their analysis and underwriting to get approved. This weighs alot during your negotiations – you will be way ahead of the rest who just found the same house but weren’t even talking to lenders…

Step #4: Look online through several real estate websites including realtor.com, zillow.com, trulia.com, redfin.com, etc., to find homes in your price range. Are you finding any that look like possibilities? If so, that’s great….and you shouldn’t have difficulty finding a home to buy. If not, you may need to adjust something like price or desired features. You can always add features and updates once purchased.

Step #5: Talk to several real estate agents and select one. Don’t pick one because he’s cute (like me), or one of the HOT busy agents at the time since they will have little time for you. Ask questions of his/her past experience and how would they approach your buying situation.

Step #6: Once your agent knows the features, price range, and area you are looking to purchase, the agent can setup a portal of listings mailed to you daily and from all you have found interesting, can setup appointments for you to visit with your agent. They can also research features, details, and other information about the properties. Once you have a date and time to visit properties – go visit with your agent. Or, perhaps you want to perform a drive by to see what the house and area actually look like. Sometimes pictures lie and the house and area aren’t exactly what you wanted. You can visit open houses with or without the agent to see styles and layouts. But if you have already selected an agent, be sure they know you are visiting open houses and mention to the listing agent you are working with an agent and mention their name. It’s possible the open house agent will try to prevent you to use a Buyer’s Agent in some ways.

Step #7: Once the right house comes across your interest, you and your agent can sit down to draft a contract offer and start the buying process. Be sure you understand your responsibilities and your ability to exit the contract and not get stuck with the house. Normally there will be a period of time to perform inspections, negotiate any repairs, and if necessary, terminate the contract and still get your earnest money back. Also, don’t forget to negotiate the appraisal and financing contingencies of your offer.


  • There’s always another house if the deal goes south. It may not have “been the one”.
  • See at least 10-15 houses before making any decisions. The number isn’t as important as getting to see the inside of houses and helps you to evaluate the pros and cons of the features and layouts as a basis of comparison for your decision to purchase.
  • Evaluate each home after seeing it that day and try to pick the pros and cons of each. That way you’ll know what features to expect in your price range and once you see a home that pops, then it might “be the one”.
  • Try to minimize the number of homes to more than 10 and less than 50. Be honest after the first round of showings of what features you are of primary importance and which you are willing to reject. This will keep things fresh and not let the process drag on and both (1) discourage you and (2) lose out on better homes when you spend time on losers.

References to articles, sources, products, or services are not a specific endorsement and not guaranteed to be true or accurate, but the user must perform their due diligence and investigate whether the information provided is valid, or the product or service is right for them. I welcome any or all comments that would help others. Be careful – if it sounds too good, it probably is!

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Using Georgia Native Plants

I met the author – she is very dedicated to this effort – please consider using native Georgia plants in your yard…

Here’s an excerpt from her latest post…

“I’ve been writing this blog every week for over 7 years now – the first entry was October 14, 2010. The history is all there and, since plants don’t change much, some of the older January blogs are worth reading again – especially if you weren’t following back then. The pictures may not be as good, but the words are spot on. If you find any broken links, let me know in the comments and I’ll fix them (or remove them if they don’t exist).”

Source: Using Georgia Native Plants.

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Daily Real Estate News from Access Brokerage

References to articles, sources, products, or services are not a specific endorsement and not guaranteed to be true or accurate, but the user must perform their due diligence and investigate whether the information provided is valid, or the product or service is right for them. I welcome any or all comments that would help others……Be careful – if it sounds too good, it probably is!


How the government shutdown impacts real estate 

Basically limited processing by FHA of FHA mortgage loans and no new sales or renewal of flood insurance policies.

13 Things Real Estate Agents Don’t Want You to Know


This news story just needs repeating…and who’s looking for the next agent doing the same thing…because we all know this isn’t all the drug trade in the US.

Post #1:  Real Estate Tips: Essential Cybersecurity for Your Brokerage

  • Monitor your environment
  • Implement effective policies for the destruction and maintenance of data
  • Prevent account takeover and phishing
  • Review and update important financial processes
  • Never enter your login details on websites that don’t start with “https:”
  • Pay your attention to the language used in emails
  • Don’t click hyperlinks

Post #2:  Three Essential Lessons Anyone Starting Real Estate Brokerage Needs To Know – Strive For Balance is important…

Post #3;

Mortgage Strategies for Today’s Competitive Real Estate Market

“One option clients have taken advantage of is the J.P. Morgan Pledged Asset Mortgage” This mortgage strategy allows clients to pledge assets in their J.P. Morgan portfolios in lieu of a cash down payment. With the securities and home as collateral, borrowers may qualify for up to 100% financing. “We’re seeing a number of clients turn to the Pledged Asset Mortgage as part of their estate planning strategy,” adds Mr. Stewart.


Mortgage Rates Drop After Fed “Raises Rates”


Post #1: Real Estate Advice: What to know when buying a condo.

Post #2: Who usually represents who in a real estate transaction?.


Post #1: Mortgage Rates Flattening Out After Much-Needed Winning Streak.

Post #2: Housing Bubble Trouble Ahead? We Asked a DePaul Real Estate Scholar.


Top 10 states to make the most money from investing in real estate.


Post #1: IRS Regulations Give Green Light for Real Estate Investments in Opportunity Zones.

Post #2: Minneapolis is about to abolish single-family residential zoning.


Post #1: 2019 Real Estate Forecast: What Home Buyers, Sellers And Investors Can Expect.

Post #2: Mortgage Rates Lowest Since September After Jobs Report.


Real estate trouble: Reverse mortgages deplete FHA insurance reserves. The Federal Housing Administration’s 2018 audits revealed that losses from real estate reverse mortgages destroyed about a third of the taxpayer-guaranteed insurance reserves.

12-7-2018: Have a Blessed Pearl Harbor Day

Post #1: ‘Is the Real Estate Market Going to Crash?

Post #2: Real Estate Advice: Getting a mortgage after your retire.

Secrets to success as a new real estate agent.

    • Leverage the Internet
    • Capture Great Photos
    • Tell Stories
    • Go the Extra Mile
    • Don’t Forget Your Business Plan
    • Get


A Checklist for Home Inspections.


It’s Alive, It’s Alive! – Digital Mortgages Awaken a New Real Estate Market. This past Tuesday at the Mortgage Bankers Association Annual Meeting in Washington D.C., representatives from Wells Fargo and Bank of America spoke about their new digital mortgage application process that began in January.


Post #1: Home and Real Estate Weekly: What to negotiate when buying a house.

Post #2: Warning: Real Estate Development in Flood Zones Is Surging in Some States. Home buyers in search of a forever house should reconsider looking on the coast.


Post #1: Can Owning a Home Still Build Wealth? That statement summarizes the argument made recently by Daniel Hertz, senior fellow at City Observatory who contends that housing can’t be both affordable and a good investment. This observation runs contrary to conventional wisdom that homeownership is the most reliable pathway to household wealth.

Post #2: Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) announced Loan Limits Increase to $484,350.

Post #3: After years of declines, housing inventory is building.


Post #1: The best time of the year to buy a home.

Post #2: Real Estate Matters: this will be a home buyer’s Christmas.


Post #1: Property Disclosure and Liability . Agents should be aware of patent and latent defects…and also be aware their complete email, text, and phone conversations can be used in any investigationor due diligence with respect to lawsuits.

Post #2: How To Capture The Millennial Market As A Real Estate Agent.


After a Steady Run, Builder Confidence Finally Folds.


Online real estate Opens a New Window. company Zillow is offering a new way to sell a home. The Zillow Offers program launched this spring in Atlanta, Denver, Phoenix and Las Vegas, and plans to expand into North Carolina in the Charlotte and Raleigh markets this winter. It allows consumers to sell their home without hosting open houses or making repairs. The seller also controls the closing date.


Post #1: More Americans are using real estate agents than ever before.

Post #2: Real Estate Radio.

Post #3: Amazon HQ2 Will Have Gradual Effect on Home Values, Experts Say.


Fannie Mae Offering Relief Programs in Wildfire Areas.
Question: Are other lenders/secondary mortgage insurers (i.e., HUD and Freddie Mac, and others) instituting help with payment forbearance, waiving fess, etc?


Post #1: Is real estate development good or bad? . Emotion plays no part in location decisions, it is all about making the building efficient and effective for transportation, energy and employees.

Post #2: Questions to ask the real estate agent before home buying or selling process. . Have you sold property in this area before? In this question helps you to know what buyers want, what types of homes sold faster. If an agent has experience in your neighborhood, it’s a major advantage.


Post: 6 Must-Ask Questions to Identify Qualified Leads in Real Estate.

    • 1) What Do You Know About the Real Estate Market?
    • 2) Are You Financially Capable of Buying a Property?
    • 3) Are You Pre-Approved by a Lender?
    • 4) What Type of Property Are You Looking For?
    • 5) Are You Currently Working with Another Agent?
    6) Do You Have a Timeline?


Post #1: Realtors no longer simply show houses. Realtors also now play a large part in helping buyers integrate into the community. Comrie notes that buyers often ask for recommendations on painters, carpenters and other home service providers along with regional recommendations for shopping and schools.

Post #2: Is a Second Career in Real Estate Right for You? . A career in real estate can be challenging but rewarding if you are willing to put in the hours. According to the National Association of Realtors, 87 percent of agents leave the career within the first 5 years – so only 13 percent succeed. It also takes on average 9 months to make your first sale. Here are some tips to defy the odds and succeed.

11-12-2018: Veterans Day – Please thank a Veteran for their service…not just today but every day.

Post #1: Mortgage applications fall to 4-year low as homebuyers exit housing market.

Post #2: Housing Sentiment Continues to Sour as Economy Booms.

Post #3: How to protect yourself in a real estate transaction .


Post #1: ‘U.S News & World Report’ Partners With HomeLight To Boost Real Estate Coverage. Readers will gain info on about 7,000 cities nationwide, with USNews.com’s research on home improvement, financing, and buying and selling advice combined with HomeLight’s market statistics, list of top performing agents and demographic data.

Post #2: HUD riles housing discrimination complaint against Facebook.

Post #3: 3 must-have skills for new agents to succeed in real estate :

1. Learn your local area on a personal level
2. Pay attention to details
3. Network like a boss


Post #1: Five Things To Know Before Buying Your Home In A New Real Estate Development.

Post #2: What Are Real Estate Comps and Are They a Good Estimate of Value?

Post #3: Home and Real Estate Weekly: Which down payment strategy is right for you?. You must evaluate the pros of low amount you give up and saving your cash for emergency repairs v. higher monthly payment through monthly Private Mortgage Insurance premiums.


Post #1 Freddie Sees Home Sales Regaining Momentum in 2019.

Post #2: Real Estate: Is renting or buying a home the right choice for you?.


Post #1: CEO in Real Estate Ponzi Scheme Fined $120 Million by SEC.

Post #2: Real Estate Roundup: U.S. Homebuyers Love Their Patios.

Post #3: Affordability Now Biggest Concern as Metro Home Prices Rise.


Post #1: Women in Real Estate Luncheon addresses challenges for women in a male-dominated industry .

Post #2: 7 Winter Home Prep Tasks You Haven’t Done Yet.

Post #3: The 17 Best Real Estate Podcasts Every Agent and Broker Should Be Listening To.


Post #1: As the housing market stagnates, American homeowners are staying put for the longest stretches ever.

Post #2: Home flippers are fleeing the market as their profits shrink.


Post #1: Baby Boomers Are Living at Home. That’s Bad News for Senior-Housing Developers. Occupancy rates for senior housing stood at 87.9% in both the second and third quarter—the lowest rate since 2011 when it reached 87.5%, according to NIC, which tracks market-rate properties. Occupancy levels for assisted-living facilities, a category of senior housing, are also at their lowest levels since reporting on this data began in 2006, NIC said.

Post #2: Does a real estate agent have to tell you a home is haunted?

10-31-2018 (Nothing really scary here):

Post #1: Zillow and Redfin Continue Their Decade-Long Quest to Disrupt Real Estate.

Post #2: Are Women Real Estate Agents Changing the Game? .

Post #3: Can you trust real estate agents to give you the full story on house prices?.


Post #1: Slower growth in US metro areas.

Post #2: What Real Estate Agents Should Know About Cryptocurrency and Blockchain.


Post #1: Angie’s List: DIY projects can increase a property’s real estate value.

Post #2: Why millennials don’t like real estate.

    • Risk appetite
    • Job opportunities
    • Lifestyle
    Unaffordable price


Post #1: Hiring A Real Estate Agent? Ask These 6 Questions First.

  • How many transactions have they done so far this year?
  • Do they seem to know the area?
  • Are they available when I need them?
  • Do they have experience with my type of transaction?
  • Do they seem to have my best interest in mind?
  • Do I have a good feeling about them?

Post #2: HUD Charges Minnesota Real-Estate Agent And Homeowners With Discrimination.


Post #1: The rate of foreclosures in the U.S. is actually down to 0.5 percent, according to CoreLogic — the lowest since 2006.

Post #2: New Home Sales Drop Sharply and other topics. Sales of newly constructed homes fell in September by 5.5 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 553,000. Even worse news, the August increase evaporated. Those sales were revised down from 629,000 to 585,000. With those losses, sales fell behind September 2017 by 13.2 percent and May remains the last month when sales increased. The median price of a home sold during the month was $320,000 and the average was $377,200. The sales prices in September 2017 were $331,500 and $379,300 respectively. At the end of the reporting period there were an estimated 327,000 new homes available for sale. This is a 7.1 month supply at the current rate of sales, up from 6.5 months in August. Marketing time for a completed home was a median of 2.9 months for the second month in a row.


Post #1: Real Estate Agents Answer: What’s The One Thing You Wish Sellers Knew?.

Post #2: The Uber of real estate is coming and once again, it’s millennials who are behind the disruption .


Post #1: Why do some real estate agents get such a bad rap?.

Post #2: 3 digital marketing tips for getting your own real estate leads:

1. Use hashtags
2. Use industry quotes
3. Come up with great blog ideas


Post #1: Mortgage rates retreat, but housing supply crunch won’t let up . So far this year, the 30-year-fixed has averaged 4.49%, up from 3.99% throughout 2017.

Post #2: Office of Inspector General (FHFA- OIG) for the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA or Agency) identifies four serious management and performance challenges facing the Agency for Fiscal Year (FY) 2019. Office of Inspector General (FHFA- OIG) for the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA or Agency) identifies four serious management and performance challenges facing the Agency for Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 and a management concern, and its assessment of those challenges and concern. Both FHFA and FHFA-OIG have acknowledged the difficulties resulting from the ongoing uncertainty regarding the future role of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (collectively, the Enterprises) in the housing finance system.

10-19-2018: (Word for today is…BLOCKCHAIN)

Post #1: Is it safe to buy and sell real estate on the blockchain? The most important value of the blockchain is that it gives traders the opportunity to directly share the database. With blockchain, power is decentralized and there is no central administrator or set of administrators.

Post #2: Is Blockchain In The Future Of Real Estate? .

Post #3: Real Estate and the Blockchain: A Transactional Perspective.

Post #4: PayPal Alum: How Blockchain Will Change Investing and Why Real Estate Will Be First.

Post #5: Nine Things To Keep In Mind About Blockchain In Real Estate.

1. Technology Will Enhance Security And Transparency
2. Blockchain Will Disrupt The Real Estate Title Industry
3. Relevant Information Is Available On Specific Sites
4. Education And State Approval Will Help Adoption
5. Blockchain Will Form A Secondary Market
6. Blockchain Should Be Integrated Into Entire Value Chain
7. Adoption Starts With Learning, Adaptability And Application
8. Blockchain Will Reshape How Data Is Exchanged
9. Blockchain Is Not Cryptocurrency


Post #1:4 Real Estate Investing Strategies: Which One is Right for You?

Post #2: 5 questions to ask before hiring a real estate agent to sell your home.


Post #1: Home Price Reductions Are Increasing, Especially at High End.

Post #2: Number of Real Estate Teams are Growing, NAR Survey Finds.

Post #3: Are We Entering Into A Buyer’s Market? – The National Real Estate Cafe.


Post #1: “Debt-to-Income” Now Biggest Player in Mortgage Denials . Poor credit used to be the primary reason but debt-to-income (DTI) ratio is now the primary reason for denial of mortgage.

Post #2: Real Estate Roundup: Millennials Prioritize Homeownership Over Marriage and Children.


The growth in home values slows as buyers become more apprehensive.


Post #1: California tax shelter saves children big bucks on inherited property.

Post #2: 6 cryptocurrency questions investors should ask real estate agents (and how to answer).


Post #1: Top Five Must-Listen Real Estate Podcasts.

Post #2: Mortgage fraud is getting worse as more people lie about their income to qualify for loans. Mortgage fraud risk jumped more than 12 percent year over year at the end of the second quarter, according to CoreLogic, which measures six fraud indicators: identity, income, occupancy, property, transaction and undisclosed real estate debt. The biggest jump in mortgage fraud risk was due to income reporting, up 22% annually.


Post #1: Real Estate Corner: 8 things I didn’t know about Realtors — until I became one! .

Post #2:
Homeowners are sitting on a record $6 trillion in equity. Why aren’t they using it?


Is your state the same as Pennsylvania is regarding property taxes under Democratic leadership?

Pennsylvania could eliminate property taxes this year.

Feel like you’re being taxed to death in Pa.? A new study confirms that you probably are | Opinion.


Post #1: Fannie Mae – preventing mortgage fraud.

Post #2: 4 ways real estate can turbocharge your retirement income.

1. Tapping equity in your home
3. Direct ownership
4. Crowdfunding

Post #3: IRS 20% business deduction brings good news to real estate agents.


Post #1: Housing tipping back to a buyer’s market as sellers cut prices.

Post #2: The overall weakening of housing conditions in the second quarter has moved Fannie Mae to lower its projections for originations of both purchase and refinancing mortgages.

Post #3: REAL ESTATE: Metro Atlanta home prices are rising very quickly.


Post #1: Why the housing industry should fear Amazon.

Post #2: 5 Mistakes Home Sellers Make .

Post #3: https://dsnews.com/daily-dose/09-19-2018/real-estate-vs-wire-fraud.


Post #1:Improvements are Needed for HUD’s Code Enforcement Program.

Post #2Jim Valentine: When real estate transactions don’t go as they should.

Post #3: 5 questions as lawmakers set to probe FHFA, GSE scandals. Specifically, the committee will examine FHFA’s policies and procedures used to supervise Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the FHFA’s structure and the need to reform the housing finance system in the United States…


Post #1: Solano Real Estate Scene: Are Realtors an endangered species?.

Post #2: How does depreciation add value to your investment? Put simply depreciation increases an investor’s cash return for residential and commercial property. One of the main challenges for investors is managing cash flow for their investment. Tax depreciation schedules assist in maximizing your cash return from an investment property. As a building gets older and items within it wear out they depreciate in value.


Post #1: Why should I research a Real Estate Agent before selling my home?

Post #2: Why Millennials Are Choosing Real Estate As A Career. Other than the push from his father, Mr. Geddie said being a real estate agent appeals because it has allowed him to “make money doing hard work with on-the-job training.”

Post #3: What are America’s fastest-growing (and shrinking) housing markets?.


Post #1: Many Enlist, but Flood Coverage Still Falls Short.The Urban Institute (UI) reports that the number of policies homeowners purchased through the National Flood Insurance Program (NIP) has declined over the last ten years and the total is now just over 5 million nationwide. There are also some private insurance policies, but nowhere near enough to cover the affected homes.

Post #2: Homeowners’ best, worst reasons to tap home equity.

Post #3: Home-price gains decelerate to 11-month low as housing market tries for a soft landing.


Post #1: Real Estate Slogans: 50+ Sure-Fire Ways To Craft A Better Brand With Examples And Ideas Of Catchy Taglines And Slogans.

Post #2: Home Buying Checklist: What Else Does ‘Location’ Mean? .


Post #1: What Not To Do When You Are Moving.

Post #2: Should a bank be allowed to use its own staff to value properties if it believes that there aren’t enough appraisers in its market to meet demand or that outside appraisals have become too costly?


Post #1: IRS 20% business deduction brings good news to real estate agents.

Post #2: FHA loans plummet in metro Phoenix, but that may be a good thing for Millennials.


6 Things to Know About Buying a Home Under New Tax Rules:

1. It may no longer make sense to deduct mortgage interest
2. You may not be able to deduct all your mortgage interest if you’re buying a more expensive home
3. Home equity loans aren’t deductible anymore
4. Forget about deducting mortgage interest on a second home
5. Your state and local taxes may no longer be fully deductible either
6. Capital-gains rules for home sales stayed the same


Post #1: Mortgage Fraud Risks Rise, Especially Income Fraud.
The risk of mortgage fraud jumped by 12.4 percent on an annual basis in the second quarter, the seventh consecutive quarter in which it has increased.

Post #2: HOA Board And Manager Authority .


Post #1: The Questions You Should Be Asking Your Real Estate Agent But Aren’t.

Post #2: Why the Best Real Estate Deals are not in the MLS .


Post #1: NY IG: Syracuse woman collected workers’ comp while working as real estate broker.

Post #2: Do I really need a mortgage broker? Hint: Mortgage brokers work for you, not the lender.


Post #1: Fannie and Freddie End Funding of Single-Family Rentals.

Post #2: How to speed up the home buying process.

Post #3: Is Amazon responsible for Seattle’s housing cooldown? Real estate experts weigh in.


Post #1: Are Home Prices Finally Pumping the Brakes?

Post #2: iBuyer Apps are Changing the Market.

Post #3: Home Makers: Renovation, real estate and media-savvy couple are on the rise .


Post #1: Rockwood police help residents fight back against increased IRS phone, email scams .

Post #2: NAR Sees Overheated Housing Market Starting to Cool.

Post #3: This Week in Atlanta Real Estate: Atlanta tops for affordable homes, new luxury townhome options and more.


Post #1: Three Creative Ways Real Estate Agents Can Market To Millennials .


Post #1: The tight labor market, soaring real-estate prices and new technology make moving for a better job less desirable.

Post #2: The housing recovery isn’t over, it just feels like it is.

Post #3: What Everyone Should Know Before Investing In Real Estate .


Post #1: Reverse Mortgages Draining FHA Resources, Overhaul Needed. Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) program the program is an economic drain…the most recent showed the program with an economic value of negative $14.5 billion

Post #2: What You Really Need To Know Before You Pick A Real Estate Agent.

  • Real estate is local ― hyper-local, actually. Your agent should be, too.
  • Your friend or relative may not be the best agent for the job.
  • The best listing agent is not the one who tells you what you want to hear.
  • Go with the agent who actually closes deals.


Post #1: Real Estate Advice: Do your homework when searching for a home.

Post #2: 22 Secrets Your Real Estate Agent Isn’t Telling You.


Post #1: Millennials prefer cash over real estate as investment strategy. Hampered by student loan debt and escalating home prices, millennials prefer stowing away money in savings accounts and certificates of deposit over real estate or stock investments, according to a new survey published Wednesday.

Post #2: Moving? Avoid Making These Mistakes :

1. Hiring a shady mover.
2. Messing up the quotes.
3. Packing too much stuff.
4. Failing to schedule your move well in advance.
5. Ignoring the need to pack ahead of time.

Post #3: Is Blockchain In The Future Of Real Estate? .


Post #1: What To Expect When Getting A New Roof.

Post #2: What Do New Home Buyers Want? The Surprising Results.

Post #3: Maintaining Your Hot Water Heater.


Post #1: Why long-term renters are buying homes in cities they’ll never live in.

Post #2: The Importance of Fences in Adverse Possession.

Post #3: SEC going after brokers for peddling shares in $1.2 billion real estate Ponzi scheme.


Post #1: U.S. home prices up at greatest rate in 12 years.

Post #2: Developers could make bank from rollback of Dodd-Frank. The bill, which Trump signed Thursday, reduces some regulatory burdens for community and regional banks. These banks have long argued that Dodd-Frank has been too costly and unfairly burdensome, maintaining that it was Wall Street and major banks that were responsible for the toxic lending that led to the financial crisis, not smaller lenders.

Post #3: Banks are working to woo new doctors into home mortgages .


Post #1: Wire Fraud Creeps Through Real Estate Industry.

Post #2: How to Prepare a Property for Sale.

Clean, clean, then clean some more
Don’t Forget Outside
To Stage or not to Stage?
What to do on the Day


Post #1: Real Estate Agents Answer: What’s The Biggest Mistake That Buyers Make?.

Relying too much on the advice of family and friends:
Waiting for the ‘perfect’ home to arrive:
Biting off more than they can chew, financially:
Going on a ‘shopping spree’ after applying for a mortgage:

Post #2: Mortgage Broker Q&A.


Post #1: 7 real estate scripts that stand the test of time.

Post #2: Beware of “Fake” Real Estate News.

Post #3: There are Different Kinds of Community Associations . Homeowner Associations: the main difference between a condo and a homeowner association (HOA) is that the HOA owner owns his/her house — including the front and back lawn — but there are covenants (rules recorded in the land records) which must be followed by each owner.

Cooperative Housing
Homeowner Associations


Post #1: Affordability at 10-Year Low, .

Post #2: Redfin CEO warns of slowing national real estate market, as frustrated buyers are sitting out.

Post #3: The Realtors’ Last Hurrah.


11 things real estate agents could get in legal trouble for:

1. Breach of contract
2. Breach of duty
3. Failure to disclose flaws
4. Misleading clients
5. Fair housing issues
6. Data security
7. Giving legal advice
8. Failing to advise inspections
9. Negligence
10. Antitrust misconduct
11. Working outside your comfort zone


Post #1: Millennials Turn To Crowdfunding For Mortgage Down Payments.

Post #2: All Things Real Estate: Interview Realtors to find one you’re comfortable with their advice.

Post #3: 5 Things Every Buyer Absolutely Needs To Know About the Market.


Post #1: The number of consumers going without real estate agents is rising: Study.

Post #2: Why foreign buyers are pulling back from US housing market at record rate. “The [discussion of a] trade war or just the rhetoric against foreigners may have dampened some of the enthusiasm to buy property in the U.S.,” NAR chief economist Lawrence Yun told the Journal. Higher home prices and a strong dollar are other key factors NAR economists pointed to as drivers behind the plummeting interest from overseas.

Post #3: Housing market has hit a ‘significant slowdown’ in recent weeks, Redfin CEO says.


Post #1: Real Estate Agents Answer: What’s The One Thing You Wish All First-Time Homebuyers Knew?.

Post #2: How Irresponsible Mortgage Lenders Created A Second Housing Bubble.

Post #3: Don’t Be Afraid Of The Seller’s Disclosure .


Post #1: The Best Time to Sell Your House, Based on Real Estate Market Data . If you need to put your home on the market now, you’re in luck. Nationwide housing market data shows August as the best time to list a house in order to get the highest sale price. August was the best time to list overall from 2014 – 2017. Real estate transactions often take a few months to close, which means that homes listed in August will most likely close in November. Homes that closed in November over 2014 – 2017 sold for 4.04% higher than the national average.

Post #2: 5 Reasons to Hire a Real Estate Professional Before Entering the Market!

Post #3: Agents: Real estate TV shows skewing home buying expectation .


Post #1: Millennials prefer cash over real estate as investment strategy . Among respondents of all ages, 32% viewed the stock market as the best investment, while only 24% chose cash instruments such as a savings account as the most lucrative option. Real estate clocked in at third, with just 22% of respondents describing it as an ideal investment.

Post #2: Homeownership Keeps Climbing. More and more renters say they aren’t interested in buying a home because of financial reasons, according to a semiannual survey released by mortgage company Freddie Mac earlier this year.

Post #3: Housing market is showing signs of cracking: ‘Anything-goes list-price strategy is no longer working’.


Post #1: CFPB Enforcement Is Back—With a Softer Touch.

Post #2: Are Real Estate Agents Still Relevant In The Age Of Tech?.

Post #3: 6 Tips on Choosing The Right Real Estate Agency For You .
1. They Have Proven Themselves Over the Years
2. They Provide Great Customer Service
3. They Demonstrate Their Expertise
4. They Give Back to the Community
5. They Uphold the National Association of Realtors® Code of Ethics
6. They Do It Right


Post #1: Why Buying A Home Is Not A Good Investment (It’s A Service).

Post #2: 7 Tips To Make Moving Stress-free When Buying a Home:

Preparation / Start Early
Yard Sale
Change of Address
Moving / Packing Supplies
Ask for Help
Sort and Organize your Belongings
Clean the Empty House Before Moving In

Post #3: Realtors no longer simply show houses.


Why Buying A Home Is Not A Good Investment (It’s A Service)


Are teams good news or bad for real estate brokerages?.


Post #1: Home sellers want to spy on buyers, real estate agents.

Post #2: Dear Monty: A sad real estate story. This also happened to me that a major realtor in the local market failed to submit bids to the seller…unfortunately, she was a “Realtor” without Ethical morals.

Post #3: Drilling down, Cushman & Wakefield found that MARTA drives about $1.4 billion in economic activity each year and supports almost 25,000 jobs (but is it all good news and how much economic benefit did other alternatives support w/o MARTA)?


Post #1: U.K. Proposes Prison For Real-Estate Money Launderers.

Post #2: Why Are Emotional-Support Pets Allowed in My Pet-Free Building?

Post #3: Is Real Estate Crowdfunding Right For You?


Post #1 : Home-sellers continue legal battle against Zillow, appeal judge’s decision to toss Zestimate lawsuit.

Post #2: Zillow hit with patent infringement lawsuit over ‘real estate information search’ apps.

Post #3: Real estate business botches: The truth about fixer-uppers.



Post #2: Real Estate and the Blockchain: A Transactional Perspective.

Post #3: 9 things not to say in your real estate listing.


Post #1: You’ve got your real estate license — 4 tips on what’s next.

Post #2: How to Find a Real Estate Agent .

Post #3: Why First Time Buyers Flock To The FHA Loan Program .


Post #1: Ex-township leader to pay restitution for real estate fraud.

Post #2: What A Real Estate Agent Really Does — And How To Find The Right One For You.

Post #3: New homeowners makes surprise discovery of tenant already living there.


Post #1: Millennials Still Aren’t Home Alone.

Post #2: Six Reasons You Shouldn’t Become A Real Estate Investor.

  • 1. You can’t find the right property.
  • 2. You don’t have the cash.
  • 3. You don’t have a go-to list of contractors.
  • 4. Rehabbing for profit and for personal taste are two different things.
  • 5. Becoming a landlord is a full-time job that few want.
  • 6. There are expenses you never thought of that will drain you dry if you don’t budget for them.

Post #3: How would a more conservative Supreme Court impact real estate?.


Post #1: How weather affects real estate, and why spring is not the best time to sell your house.

Post #2: How do interest rate increases really impact real estate decisions?. “When you look at the numbers and the incentives, you’ve created a system where many homes are more valuable to an investor than to an owner-occupied homeowner. If you see a continuation of the same tax policy and continued wage stagnation, I see a trend toward more renters and less ownership.”

Post #3: Meet the Inman Innovator Finalists: Most Innovative Real Estate Technology part 2.

Post #4: 17 essential real estate terms you should know.


RE agents caught in the crossfire as wealthy homeowners battle new flight paths.

Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac privatization would affect many real estate portfolios. The largest 1,000 U.S. retirement plans had a combined $315.8 billion in real estate assets as of Sept. 30, Pensions & Investments’ latest annual survey found.

Real Estate Agents Answer: What Makes A Winning Offer?

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