Friday, August 16, 2019

Woodstock Days, Winestock, Groovestock top things to do this weekend with live music



 


Here are the best events in Stuart, Jensen Beach, Port Salerno, Fort Pierce, Port St. Lucie, Vero Beach and Sebastian.


Get ready for a groovy weekend on the Treasure Coast. Some of the best events and things to do in Martin, St. Lucie and Indian River counties celebrate the 50th anniversary of Woodstock. Here’s What To Do in 772.


Martin County

The Beach 2 Beach 5K starts at 7 p.m. Friday at Stuart Beach, 825 N.E. Ocean Blvd. Parking is available at the finish line at Jensen Sea Turtle Beach, 4191 N.E. Ocean Blvd. Transportation shuttles are available until 6:35 p.m. Walkers and strollers are welcome but should use the sidewalk. Awards begin at 8 p.m. or when most of the runners have finished. The cost is $40 each. For more information, go to facebook.com/beach2beach5k.


The Surfrider Foundation Treasure Coast Chapter’s Beach Cleanup at Jensen Sea Turtle Beach is 6-8 p.m. Friday at 4191 N.E. Ocean Blvd. Buckets for trash pickup are provided, as well as drinks. Bring bug spray. Play volleyball with other volunteers after the cleanup. For more information, go to facebook.com/surfridertreasurecoast.


The seventh annual Treasure Coast Bonito Blast is this weekend at Pirate’s Cove Resort & Marina, 4307 S.E. Bayview St., Port Salerno. The captain’s meeting starts at 6 p.m. Friday. The weigh-in on the dock is noon to 3 p.m. Saturday, followed by the awards party at 5 p.m. The event includes $2,500 in prize money, dinners, live music, auction items and a raffle for a paddleboard. Raffle entry is $5 per ticket, or $20 for 5 tickets, and benefits the Wounded Veterans Relief Fund. Registration is $125-$150, but anglers younger than 12 fish for free. For more information, go to treasurecoastbonitoblast.com.


Woodstock Days, celebrating the music festival’s 50th anniversary, are this weekend at Terra Fermata Tiki Bar, 26 S.E. Sixth St., Stuart. It features songs from Woodstock and that era, including Carlos Santana, Jimi Hendrix, Sly and the Family Stone, Joe Cocker, The Who, Janis Joplin and Crosby, Stills & Nash. Live music starts at 7 p.m. Saturday and 6 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $5 each day. Ages 21 and older only. For more information, call 772-286-5252 or go to facebook.com/terrafermata.


The Wave 92.7 Country Throwdown kicks off with preliminary rounds starting at 8 p.m. Saturday at Manatee Island Bar and Grill, 4817 S.E. Dixie Highway, Port Salerno. It continues Sept. 5 at Manatee Island’s location in Fort Pierce. The top 12 contestants from preliminary rounds move to the final round Sept. 21. For more information, go to facebook.com/wave927.


Elements of the Elliott Museum’s Summer of 1969 exhibit featuring the Woodstock Art & Music Festival, Apollo 11 walking on the moon, our Vietnam veterans, and the New York Mets Worlds Series win. The exhibit opens Thursday July 11 through September


Elements of the Elliott Museum’s Summer of 1969 exhibit featuring the Woodstock Art & Music Festival, Apollo 11 walking on the moon, our Vietnam veterans, and the New York Mets Worlds Series win. The exhibit opens Thursday July 11 through September 29. (Photo: ERIC HASERT/TCPALM)


 


St. Lucie County

The Operation Kidsafe Safety Event is 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at Bev Smith Toyota, 3350 U.S. 1, Fort Pierce. The event includes local first responders, a cookout, face painting and free backpacks while supplies last. Admission is free. For more information, call 772-464-8440 or go to bevsmithtoyota.com.


The Inshore Fishing Tournament to benefit Mission 22, which fights veteran suicide, has its weigh-in at 2 p.m. Saturday at Little Jim Bait & Tackle, 601 N. Causeway, Fort Pierce. The cost is $100 per boat. For more information, call 772-801-1530 or go to mission22.com.


The Italian American Club of the Treasure Coast’s Tombola Night, or Italian Bingo Night, is 6-9 p.m. Saturday at the local Disabled American Veterans chapter, 1150 S.W. California Blvd., Port St. Lucie. The cost, which includes dinner and dessert, is $12 for club members and $15 for guests. To get tickets, call 772-361-8603 or go to italianamericanclubtc.com.


Winestock: A Day of Peace, Music and Wine is 1-5 p.m. Sunday at Summer Crush Vineyard & Winery, 4200 Johnston Road, Fort Pierce. Enjoy live music, wear hippie clothes and eat at a Taco Dive food truck. Proceeds benefit Angels of Hope. For more information, call 772-460-0500 or go to summercrushwine.com.


 


Indian River County

The Sebastian River Area Chamber of Commerce’s ninth annual Grill Out Night is 5:30-8:30 p.m. Friday. The community-wide open house event with a 1960s theme features businesses staying open late with sales, activities, prizes and refreshments. To see a map of participating businesses, go to sebastianchamber.com.


The Coastal Cleanup at South Beach Park is 9-11 a.m. Saturday at 1706 Ocean Drive, Vero Beach. Meet under the pavilion by the beach access. Supplies are provided. For more information, go to facebook.com/coastalconnectionsinc.


Pareidolia Brewing Company’s Groovestock is 5-9 p.m. Saturday at 712 Cleveland St., Sebastian. More than a dozen musicians perform classic songs from Woodstock on an outdoor stage. Bring chairs. Plus, there are food and drink specials at the brewery. Admission is free, but donations are accepted for musicians. For more information, call 772-571-5693 or go to facebook.com/pareidoliabrewing.


The Modern-Day Pinup Magazine Release Party with The Parisian Hostess starts at 6 p.m. Saturday at American Icon Brewery, 1133 19th Place, Vero Beach. The party includes classic cars and pinup girls. Dress up in 1940s or ‘50s attire and walk the red carpet for photo opportunities. Admission is free. For more information, go to facebook.com/theparisianhostess.


Laurie K. Blandford is TCPalm’s entertainment reporter and columnist dedicated to finding the best things to do on the Treasure Coast. Read her weekly column, Laurie’s Stories, on TCPalm.com. Follow her on Twitter at @TCPalmLaurie or Facebook at faceboook.com/TCPalmLaurie.


Source: Woodstock Days, Winestock, Groovestock top things to do this weekend with live music



Thursday, August 15, 2019

How to Buy a New Home if Your Current Home Hasn't Sold Yet



 


Buying a new home doesn’t have to wait until you’ve sold your current house. You can move forward when a sale takes longer than you’d like.


Buying a new home while simultaneously selling your current home is like a well thought out, choreographed dance. Because many homeowners often have to use the sale proceeds from their current home to afford their new home, attempting a new home buy before your current one sells can leave you in financial limbo. And you may risk missing out on the new home you want to buy if the timing doesn’t line up just right.


In addition to financial concerns, timing is a challenge when trying to buy and sell at the same time. Relocating for work is a common reason why a homeowner would need to buy and sell at the same time, and when that’s the case, you often don’t have much time to get settled before your job starts. You might also have children or be in a situation where moving into temporary housing before settling into your new home might not be the most comfortable option.


Ideally, to avoid extra costs, timeline challenges, and carrying two mortgage payments, it’s often best to wait until your current home sells before buying a new one. But life can be complicated, and buying and selling concurrently may be your only option. If it is, here are a few ways you can get through it.


Buying with a sale and settlement contingency


Depending on the current market conditions where you’re selling and buying, you may opt to make an offer with a sale and settlement contingency. This means that your offer on a new home is contingent on selling and completing closing on your existing home.


With a contingent offer, you won’t have to worry about carrying two mortgages at once. That monthly debt will be gone by the time you close on your new mortgage.


However, contingent offers do have drawbacks for buyers. For starters, they aren’t as attractive to sellers as traditional, non-contingent offers, which many sellers see as more likely to close.


Some sellers won’t accept a contingent offer because other buyers might decide not to make a non-contingent offer on a home that’s “under contract” — costing the seller a backup buyer if the contingent offer falls through.


Even if a seller does accept your contingent offer, they can still consider other offers. If they get a new offer that they like, you’ll have a specified amount of time (generally 24-48 hours) to drop your contingency and agree to buy the home without conditions.


Bridge loans


If you’re looking for an option that’s specifically designed to help bridge the gap between the time it takes to sell and the time it takes to buy, you might want to consider exactly that: a bridge loan.


Bridge loans are short-term loans designed to temporarily finance your down payment while you’re waiting for your home to sell. This loan type is secured with your current home as collateral.


While bridge loans do offer flexibility for sellers, they do come with some risk. Not all lenders offer these types of loans, but if you do manage to get one, you’ll need to be prepared to repay it fairly quickly. Bridge loans are typically designed to be repaid in six months — quicker than many other traditional loan types. Lenders can extend it to about three years, though it’s not very common.


Plus, the repayment period can be further complicated by uncertainty around the loan terms. Depending on the bridge loan you get, the repayment terms can vary. You might have to make more traditional monthly payments or pay lump sum interest payments up front.


Perhaps what makes this loan type one of the riskiest are the potential repercussions if your home doesn’t sell. If the sale goes sour or the buyer backs out, you’ll still have to pay off the bridge loan according to its terms, and if you’re unable, the lender could foreclose on your home.


Aside from the risks associated with bridge loans, simply qualifying for one is a challenge. When comparing bridge loans vs. home equity loans as options for short-term borrowing, bridge loans generally have higher interest rates and fees than home equity loans. Lenders also want to see higher credit scores for applicants looking to get bridge loans, due to its high risk level.


And with bridge loans, you’ll have to qualify for the second mortgage and make both payments — plus the interest on the bridge loan. This can be a significant financial burden, especially if the home you’re selling isn’t getting offers.


Source: How to Buy a New Home if Your Current Home Hasn’t Sold Yet – Zillow



Wednesday, August 14, 2019

10 Tips to Improve Your Credit Scores!



The perks of having a perfect or even excellent credit score (think 750 or higher) are undeniable. It puts the ball completely in the corner of the consumer rather than the lender. You’ll often have lenders fighting for your business, and in nearly all instances, you’ll be offered the best interest rate by lenders, meaning you’ll have the lowest possible long-term mortgage and loan costs of any consumer.


 


So, what does it take to achieve this Holy Grail of credit scores? As one of the lucky 1-in-200 with a perfect credit score, I’d opine not all that much. Yes, it takes some dedication, but there’s no secret club or shortcuts to achieving credit score perfection.


 


Here are 10 credit tips I’ll share with you that should help in your pursuit of an 750 plus credit score.


 


  1. Pay your bills on time (and don’t be afraid to request a waiver if you’re late)

 


This probably goes without saying, but the most important factor of your FICO credit score is your payment history. Though FICO keeps its precise scoring formula a closely guarded secret, about 35% of your score is derived from your payment history. If you have a number of late payments and/or collections, your credit score will take it on the chin.


 


Yet, even if you have an occasional late payment, it’s often worthwhile to request that your lender forgive a late payment (assuming you’ve made your payment and are now current on your account).


 


Most people aren’t perfect and we miss payments from time to time. Many years back, I was a day late with a credit card payment, but I had at least five years of consecutive on-time payments with the lender in question. I asked that the late fee and adverse credit ding be forgiven and the lender obliged. For lenders, it’s often cheaper to bend a bit with customers they’d like to hang onto than spend a lot trying to acquire new ones.


 


 


  1. Set up as many automatic payments as possible

 


One of the best ways to reduce the possibility of a late payment and eliminate the “I forgot” excuse that proliferates throughout the industry is to set up as many automatic payments as possible for your credit accounts. Having your bills automatically deducted from your bank account on a specific date or charged to a credit card (assuming you pay it off monthly) ensures that you’re never late on your bills.


 


I’ve also found that paying bills through your bank online can be a particularly smart way to reduce your chances of being late with your payments. Not only do you avoid running the risk of your payment arriving and processing after the due date if you mail your bills in, but online banking is exceptionally quick and it makes record keeping very easy.


 


  1. Don’t carry a balance if you don’t have to

 


If you can, pay your credit cards off each and every month. One of the greatest misconceptions is that you need to carry a balance on your credit cards to improve your credit score, which just isn’t true. As long as you’re paying your bill on time each month, even if that bill is paid off in its entirety every month, then you’re going to see a long-term positive benefit in your credit score.


I’ve been paying my credit cards off in full for the past 12 years, which has helped reduce the overall cost of the goods and services I’ve bought since there’s no interest to be paid. It also helps keep your aggregate credit utilization down, which comprises about 30% of your FICO credit score.


 


  1. Don’t check your credit score each month

 


Another somewhat common misconception is that you need to stay on top of your credit score like a hawk. Your credit history is akin to a roadmap that lenders use to decide whether to loan you money, and if so, what interest rates you’ll qualify for. It takes a lot of data points to paint an accurate picture for lenders. This means that your credit score can take a long time to adjust upward, especially given that your length of credit history contributes to about 15% of your FICO credit score.


 


It took me 17 years to achieve an 850 credit score. While it’s certainly possible you could do so in fewer years, watching your credit score each month is probably going to drive you mad. Limit your credit score checks to between two and four times annually. This will give you a bigger-picture look at your progress.


 


  1. Don’t be afraid to increase your credit limit

 


It’s sometimes puzzling to me why consumers resist when lenders offer a credit limit increase, or why they fear asking for a higher credit limit. If you’re a compulsive spender, this fear would be justified. In all other cases, I’d suggest cardholders embrace the idea of higher credit limits.


 


The idea here is simple: The higher your credit limits, the less likely you are to use more than 30% of your aggregate credit, which is the line-in-the-sand point where your credit score could be dinged. Yes, increasing your credit limit will likely involve your lender taking a hard look at your credit report, and it may result in a temporary loss of a few points on your credit score. But over the long term it could help lower your credit utilization rate, which will have a considerably more positive impact on your credit score as long as you remain responsible with your spending.


 


 


  1. Ask your lender to lower your interest rate

 


Though this idea might sound insane, asking your lender for a lower interest rate tends to work more often than not. The thing is most cardholders don’t make this request because they are either afraid to do so or believe they’ll be told “no.”


As noted above, lenders spend far more money to bring in new customers than they do by caving in to a few concessions from those with excellent credit score. If you ask for an interest rate reduction, you just might get it, which means lower costs for you and possibly the ability to pay down your debt faster if you’re carrying a balance. Worst-case scenario, you’re told “no” — and there are far worse things on this planet than that.


 


  1. Keep good-standing accounts open and use them from time to time

 


One of the bigger errors consumers make is closing good-standing credit accounts because they believe credit card companies will view the action as “responsible.” In other words, consumers believe that by having fewer accounts, they’ll be demonstrating to lenders that they can responsibly manage their credit.


 


Unfortunately, that’s not how things work. The length of time your credit accounts are open comprises about 15% of your credit score. If your accounts are in good standing, leaving them open for an extended period of time will help your credit score. I’d suggest making an attempt to use your rarely used, good-standing accounts once or twice a year to ensure they stay open and aren’t closed by your lender.


 


 


  1. Only open accounts when it makes financial sense

 


An important factor in your march toward an 750 plus FICO credit score is to ensure that you only open new credit accounts when it makes the financial sense to do so.


 


In a given year, I’m offered somewhere in the neighborhood of 50 to 60 credit cards, and I haven’t opened a new account in at least four years. Opening a credit account makes sense when it’s an exceptionally large purchase, such as a house or car, or when it’s a large purchase that would strain your checking or savings account. In other words, avoid opening multiple new credit accounts just to save 10% on that $29 shirt you want.


 


  1. Focus on your revolving debts first

 


If you happen to carry a balance on your credit cards, it’s important for consumers to focus on paying off their revolving debts first.


 


Whether you realize it or not, FICO actually takes the types of debt you pay into account when calculating your score. These two types of debt are revolving and installment. Revolving debts typically have higher interest rates and your minimum payment is based on the amount you owe. Department store credit cards are a good example. Installment loans are fixed loans of a lengthy time period, such as a mortgage or car loan. Paying down your revolving debts first often means paying less in interest.


 


  1. Check your credit report annually

 


Last but certainly not least, make use of the fact that you can check your credit report once annually for free from each of the three credit bureaus. Far too many consumers fail to check their credit reports annually, and it’s more likely than you probably realize that one or more of the three credit-reporting bureaus has an error on your report. Head to AnnualCreditReport.com right now if you haven’t done so yet this year and ensure that your credit report is accurate.


 


 


 


 


Source:



Steve Altonian Credit Law Solutions~askthecreditcowboy.com

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Stress-Free Homes Are a Trending Niche



 


From family and jobs to finances and health, life can get complicated. “Zen is in demand,” as one real estate pro says. Learn how you can provide that.


Whether it’s a luxurious $45 million estate in California or a modest $250,000 two-bedroom house in Ohio, marketing a home’s stress-relieving qualities is a growing trend. Today, developers, builders, and interior designers are trying to make homes that offer that soft landing at the end of a day. And homeowners need it—about eight in 10 Americans say they frequently (44 percent) or sometimes (35 percent) encounter stress in their daily lives, according to a recent Gallup poll.


Helping clients find a soothing place to come home to can become a niche in the real estate world. And, understanding what stress-relieving designs are available can help you and your agents guide clients to a happy purchase.


Reaching Female Homebuyers

Since 2003, Design Basics Inc., in Omaha, has been gearing many of its residential blueprints toward easing stress because that is one of the four important elements women look for in a home’s design. Why women, you ask? Well, 91 percent of home purchases are influenced by women, according to the Harvard Business Review. Additionally, the National Association of REALTORS® 2018 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers found that the number of single female buyers continues to rise, and are currently the second largest buyer group at 18 percent behind married couples at 63 percent.


Paul Foresman, director of business development for Design Basics, says the company took data and research on female buyers of all ages and backgrounds and created the Woman-Centric Matters home design program. They discovered the four primary elements women are looking for in home design: entertainment, stress relief, storage, and flexible living. Foresman travels across the country talking to builders about the program.


“Everyone lives differently. But women tell us that they want to come into their home and feel like it is a place of respite. They look for homes that make their life easier, more convenient, more fun, and more inviting to others,” he adds.


Home designs by Greg Malin, CEO and founder of Troon Pacific in San Francisco, are adding amenities such as lap pools with underwater speakers that play music and art galleries with chaise lounges so you can take it all in.


“What’s the best luxury in life? My late wife would say it’s your health,” Malin says. So, he builds homes with his passion for sustainability and wellness in mind. Less stress in a person’s world can help with their health. For instance, cables in all bedrooms of his homes are shielded to mitigate electromagnetic field waves, which can cause the body to emit stress signals that can lead to high levels of adrenaline.


His company also uses biophilic design, which bridges a homeowner’s lifestyle with natural environment around them. “We’re trying to connect people to nature. One of our homes offers a yoga deck. Plus, each [development] project offers a wellness center with a sauna, steam room, a place to have a massage, meditation area, and outdoor shower,” he adds.


Joel Goodrich, agent at Colwell Banker Preview International in San Francisco, has shown Malin’s stress-free homes several times to clients. He also is a friend of Malin. “Perhaps, we are living in more stressful times than ever before. People are looking for their homes to be an oasis or retreat from life, the world, and business,” he says. “These homes are designed to feel like a retreat. Zen is in demand.”


Tips for Alleviating Stress at All Price Points

Most home buyers are looking for respite in a haven from everyday stress. The good news is not all stress-free homes have to be multimillion-dollar properties. Here are some of the stress-reducing designs and products being showcased in homes across the country.


Natural light, plus dimmers. “People always gravitate to the bright, sunny spaces in a home. So, anything we can to do enhance natural light is popular,” Foresman says. Malin adds that lights with dimmers can also help reduce harshness, especially in bedrooms, for a more relaxing ambiance.


Read More: The Ultimate Smart Home: Bedrooms


Automated shades. Shades programed to open at sunrise can be a calming way to wake up without an alarm. They can also be used to reduce sunlight for those not ready to rise, Goodrich says. In addition to setting times, homeowners can pair smart shades with a digital thermostat, so they automatically open and close based on temperature.


A water feature. “Water can be very calming,” Goodrich says. In one extreme example, an international architect put a waterfall in the middle of a living room design and branded it. But a simple fountain in a sun porch or patio can do wonders, too, he adds.


Pet centers. Many buyers nowadays are seeking pet-friendly abodes, so features such as cabinets with pullout drawers for dog food goes a long way. Some want a dog washing station or a room for the pet itself. Electronic doggie doors have also become popular, where the dog has a collar that automatically opens the door to go inside or out.


Nature’s beauty. The ability to see flowers or greenery outside your windows—even in a big city—helps create peacefulness. In Malin’s homes, he plants green rows of bamboo or cypress outside the main windows, even in the heart of the Bay Area.


Covered outdoor living space. Foresman says you don’t have to cancel your plans if it rains when you have a covered outdoor area, which eliminates worry. Plus, coffee on the patio can still happen on rainy mornings. A pergola cover or easy-to-assemble patio gazebo are cost-effective ways to accomplish this.


Work-in pantry. Taking the walk-in pantry to the next level, some buyers want a prep area, sink, dishwasher, and sometimes an oven in what’s dubbed the “work-in” pantry, Foresman says. This eliminates guests seeing any mess while keeping the heart of the gathering in the kitchen.


Relaxing sounds and white noise. Malin installs speakers in master bedrooms and bathrooms, allowing for the sounds of waterfalls, forests, or whatever keeps the homeowners tranquil. For existing homes without built-in speakers, try a Google Home or Amazon Echo—relaxing sounds at open houses may even entice buyers.


Shipping vestibule. This involves a door or cupboard that opens for delivery people. They can leave the package behind the door without entering the house, Foresman says. You don’t have to be home when the delivery is dropped off, and locks can used from your smartphone to avoid theft.


Dual owner suites. This newer building plan has quickly become Foresman’s top seller. It includes two suites on the main floor that can be used for older couples who don’t sleep in the same bed, multigenerational households, boomerang kids, friends who have purchased together, or live-in caregivers. “In many ways for all involved it’s a great stress reliever, with a private bathroom and enough storage,” he adds.


Source: Stress-Free Homes Are a Trending Niche



Thursday, August 8, 2019

Consumers agree: Buy now before home prices rise!



 


Home prices are getting bigger, but rates are dropping. Consumers are still optimistic about buying. What should you do as a prospective home buyer?


More people think it’s a good time to buy despite higher prices

It can be expensive to buy a home nowadays. Fortunately, rates remain low.


Plus, the national economy is strong, and employment is robust. Still, many buyers may be worried that they can’t afford a property today due to high home prices.


Actually, now may be a great time to purchase a home before home prices go even higher, many people believe. A new report from Fannie Mae suggests that Americans are more inclined to buy a home right now.


And, the Fed may cut interest rates this year.


If you decide to buy a home, you’re certainly not alone according to a new report.


Source: Consumers agree: Buy now before home prices rise | Mortgage Rates, Mortgage News and Strategy : The Mortgage Reports



Wednesday, August 7, 2019

America's Best Drivers: PSL #14



The Allstate America’s Best Drivers Report® is our annual report that identifies which of the 200 largest U.S. cities have the safest drivers. In the Report’s milestone 15th year, we’re also sharing the Risky Roads in the 15 bottom-ranked cities where collisions are most common.


To see the full article, click HERE



Monday, August 5, 2019

Here's some good news if you're buying a home: cash is no longer king



All-cash home purchases have waned in popularity. The reasons include fading bidding wars, falling mortgage rates and rising prices.


Just a few years ago, more than a third of home buyers didn’t blink at throwing down cold hard cash to make their purchases.


But the share of all-cash home buyers has trended down since 2014 and the decline has accelerated in recent months. In June, just 16% of home buyers paid in cash, down from 23% in February, according to the National Association of Realtors. The rest bought the old-fashioned way – by taking out a mortgage. Applications for home loans jumped 9.5% last month from a year earlier, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.


The shift can be traced to several factors, including a less competitive, more buyer-friendly market and tumbling mortgage rates.


The trend could be good news for a sluggish housing market in which  existing home sales fell 4.2% the first half of the year compared with the same period in 2018, according to NAR figures.


he slowdown may partly reflect a drop in cash deals and the rise in purchases of homes using mortgage, says Ian Shepherdson, chief economist of Pantheon Macroeconomics, an economic research firm.. Since mortgage applications can take a couple of months to process, the lag could mean there will be a surge in home sales this fall, painting a brighter housing picture, he says.


Here are some reasons cash sales have lost favor:


Bidding wars have faded


 When competitive bidding was the rage, “People were cashing in their savings, such as 401(k) plans…in order to beat out” rival bidders who needed mortgages, says Jessica Reinhardt, a broker at RE/MAX Alliance in Denver. Sellers loved cash offers because they meant quick purchases with few hassles.


In many cases, parents gave cash gifts to their kids to buy homes. And some real estate brokers even put up cash for their clients, says Jessie Culbert, a Redfin agent in Seattle. “You needed cash to stand out,” she says.


Often, she says, the buyers then took out loans to quickly repay whoever provided the funds.


But the market has cooled as home prices climbed beyond the reach of many buyers. Last month, just 12% of purchase offers handled by Redfin faced competitive bids, down from 51.7% a year earlier. As a result, shoppers who would have come with cash a year or two ago were taking out mortgages.


Investors have pulled back


Fifty-seven percent of investors — who buy homes to rent them out or make repairs and then sell for a big profit – pay in cash, NAR says. Yet the share of home purchases made by investors has declined from 11.3% in 2018 to 11.1% so far this year, according to a housing research firm CoreLogic.


Many are less eager to buy homes than they were a few years ago on fears that prices may have peaked. Nationally, average home prices have risen 55.2% from their 2012 bottom and are 12.6% above their pre-housing crash peak, according to the S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller home price index.


“Investors naturally have become more cautious,” says Lawrence Yun, chief economist of the National Association of Realtors.


Also, foreign purchases of American homes fell 36% in the 12 months ending in March compared to the prior 12-month period, partly because of a sluggish global economy and tighter capital controls by China, according to the National Association of Realtors.


Falling borrowing costs


Mortgage rates have decreased sharply since last year, which makes home loans more affordable. The average 30-year fixed mortgage rate was at 3.75%, down from 4.54% a year earlier, according to Freddie Mac. That has led many buyers who might have put up cash — whether investors or owners who plan to live in their units – to obtain mortgages instead, Shepherdson says.



Source: Here’s some good news if you’re buying a home: cash is no longer king



Thursday, August 1, 2019

August Events in PSL!



Talent show, national night out against crime and other things to do this month in PSL!


 


To see the full calendar click HERE