By jharris | February 28, 2011
Then, start your search right from your computer!?? At HouseRebate.com’s website,?? www.houserebate.com, you can search for homes within your specified ideal setting for your lifestyle - giving a new meaning to location, location, location.?? Need to be close to work??? A particular elementary school? Day care??? Physical Therapist?
HouseRebate.com’s new search goes beyond selecting a particular city or zip code.?? The new search now includes a lifestyle option giving home buyers an opportunity to search for homes?? with neighborhood criteria such as??schools, dining, shopping,??places of worship, entertainment, health and medical, finance, transportation, and personal services such as fitness and child care.?? Home buyers even have the option to put in customized fields for their searches.
Home buyers can get more of what they need from HouseRebate.com’s new search without even getting into the car, saving them time and money.?? Try it the search for yourself:?? http://sandiego.houserebate.com/CommunityInfo.asp
And, of course, home buyers still receive a rebate of up to 1% of the home’s purchase price in cash at close of escrow by using a HouseRebate.com agent.
By jharris | December 23, 2010
Recently, President Obama signed new tax legislation for the upcoming 2011 year.?? Below is some helpful information about the changes and/or extensions for 2011 that will impact individuals.?? The information below should be considered strictly for informative purposes and guidelines only.?? Please consult a tax professional about how each of the below can or will impact you.
The current income tax rates will be retained for two years (2011 and 2012), with a top rate of 35% on ordinary income and 15% on qualified dividends and long-term capital gains.
Employees and self-employed workers will receive a reduction of two percentage points in Social Security payroll tax in 2011, bringing the rate down from 6.2% to 4.2% for employees, and from 12.4% to 10.4% for the self-employed.
A two-year AMT ???patch??? for 2010 and 2011 will keep the AMT exemption near current levels and allow personal credits to offset AMT. Without the patch, an estimated 21 million additional taxpayers would have owed AMT for 2010.
Key tax credits for working families that were enacted or expanded in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 will be retained. Specifically, the new law extends the $1,000 child tax credit and maintains its expanded refundability for two years, extends rules expanding the earned income credit for larger families and married couples, and extends the higher education tax credit (the American Opportunity tax credit) and its partial refundability for two years.
Many of the ???traditional??? tax extenders are extended for two years, retroactively to 2010 and through the end of 2011. Among many others, the extended provisions include the election to take an itemized deduction for state and local general sales taxes in lieu of the itemized deduction for state and local income taxes; the $250 above-the-line deduction for certain expenses of elementary and secondary school teachers; and the research credit.
After a one-year hiatus, the estate tax will be reinstated for 2011 and 2012, with a top rate of 35%. The exemption amount will be $5 million per individual in 2011 and will be indexed to inflation in following years. Estates of people who died in 2010 can choose to follow either 2010’s or 2011’s rules. Additionally, as of January 1, 2011, there will be a $5 million gift tax exclusion. This increased exclusion is available for two years; unless it is extended, the gift tax exclusion will revert to $1 million in 2013. This two year window may be a wonderful opportunity to make additional gifts in your lifetime free from gift tax liability and is something we will be happy to discuss with you further.
The provision that permits tax-free distributions to charity from an Individual Retirement Account (IRA) of up to $100,000 per taxpayer, per tax year was also extended. Individuals also will be allowed to make charitable transfers during January of 2011 and treat them as if made during 2010.
The new law extends for an additional year (i.e., through 2011) the rule allowing premiums for mortgage insurance to be deductible as qualified residence interest.
Source:?? RPR Partners, LLP eNewsAlert Dated 12/22/2010
Required IRS Disclosure: Please note that this written advice is not intended, or written by the practitioner to be used, and cannot be used by the taxpayer, for the purpose of avoiding penalties that may be imposed on the taxpayer. In addition, there is no limitation on disclosure of the tax treatment, or tax structure, of the transaction that is the subject of this written advice.
By jharris | December 16, 2010
Have concerns about deficiency judgments when doing a short-sale in California??? Put your mind at ease and read on…
Starting January 1, 2011, a new California law will prohibit a seller’s first trust deed lender from obtaining a deficiency judgment against the seller after a short sale.?? Providing written consent to a short sale shall obligate the first trust deed lender to accept the sales proceeds as full payment and discharge of the amount owed on the loan.?? This law will generally apply to first trust deeds secured by one-to-four residential units, but will not limit a lender seeking damages for fraud or waste by the borrower.?? Senate Bill 931
Please keep in mind when looking to do a short-sale.?? This California law is strictly for first-trust deeds.?? For more information about the law, please visit:?? http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/pub/09-10/bill/sen/sb_0901-0950/sb_931_bill_20100930_chaptered.html.?? For more information about short-sales in San Diego, please visit: http://sandiego.houserebate.com/shortsales/
By jharris | October 17, 2010
Starting January 1, 2011, a seller’s first trust deed lender cannot obtain a deficiency judgment against the seller after a short sale.?? Providing written consent to a short sale shall obligate the first trust deed lender to accept the sales proceeds as full payment and discharge of the remaining amount owed on the loan.?? This law applies to first trust deeds secured by one-to-four residential units, but does not limit the lender from seeking damages for fraud or waste by the borrower.?? Senate Bill 931.?? Governor Schwarzenegger vetoed Senate Bill 1178, our sponsored bill, which would have extended California’s anti-deficiency protection to refinance loans.
Copyright ?? 2010 CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS?? (C.A.R.)
By jharris | October 16, 2010
On September 30th, President Obama signed a resolution that included a provision extending through fiscal year 2011 the current conforming loan limit of $729,750 for high-cost areas, including many in California.?? The same limits will also be extended to loans insured by the Federal Housing Administration.
Without the extension, which was set to expire at year???s end, FHA loan limits would have dropped by as much as 50 percent in some areas, and the conforming loan limit would have dropped by about 40 percent.
This action effectively extends the higher conforming loan limits for Fannie, Freddie, and FHA loans through Sept. 30, 2011.
Copyright ?? 2010 CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS?? (C.A.R.)
CALHFA Offers a NEW 30 Year FHA Mortgage Program Aimed at Low-to-Moderate Income First-Time Homebuyers & Veterans
By jharris | September 16, 2010
The California Housing Finance Agency (CALHFA) and the Federal Housing Authority (FHA) are teaming up to offer home loans to low-to-moderate income households that feature below-market interest rates, affordable down payments, and other benefits. ????This program is specifically for first-time homebuyers or veterans.
In order to be considered a first-time homebuyer, borrower must not have owned and occupied a home within the last three years.?? Veterans who qualify under the ???Heroes Earnings Assistance & Relief Tax Act??? are also eligible for this loan program.
This loan product does include upfront mortgage insurance, but the borrowers are permitted to use the ???California Homebuyer???s Downpayment Assistance Program (CHDAP),??? which can provide up to 3% of the home???s purchase price or closing costs assistance for added assistance.
Borrowers must meet a number of eligibility requirements to qualify for this CalHFA program including:
?????????????????? CalHFA???s income limits, which vary by county and family size. For a family of four in San Diego County, for example, income must be less than $115,640 per year.
?????????????????? Purchasing homes that are within FHA???s loan limits and CalHFA???s sales price limits. Mortgage loans are limited to $417,000 under FHA guidelines. CalHFA???s sales price limits vary by county. ??For San Diego County, the limit is $627,750 for non-targeted and $767,250 for targeted areas.
?????????????????? Meeting the minimum credit score requirements with maximum debt-to-income ratios.
?????????????????? Completion of a HUD-approved homebuyer education program.
Of course, homebuyers are still eligible for a purchase rebate of up to 1% of the home???s purchase price using a HouseRebate.com REALTOR??
For further details on the CALHFA-FHA program, please visit:?? www.calhfa.ca.gov
Source:?? Central Valley Business Times, September 7, 2010
By jharris | July 27, 2010
The home buyer tax credit now has been extended with a closing deadline of September 30, 2010.?? Both the first-time home buyer credit of up to $8,000 and the “move-up buyer” credit of up to $6,500 have been extended.
Who is eligible for this deadline extension? If you are a first-time or “move-up” buyer who had a ratified contract in place as of April 30, 2010, but were unable to close by the previous June 30th deadline. To be considered a first-time homebuyer, you cannot?? have owned your own home in the last three years. The same income restrictions and rules apply for the extension as the initial tax credit guidelines.
By jharris | July 20, 2010
As your debts loom and your monthly mortgage falls behind, you might think that foreclosure is your only way out. Happily, that???s not the case for most homeowners. Depending upon your individual circumstances, you have plenty of other options, many of which are outlined below.
If you have enough equity in your home and your credit is still in good standing, you may be able to refinance your mortgage at a more favorable rate. Usually, this option is best for people who anticipate a decline in their income rather than those who???ve already fallen behind on their payments.
Forbearance or Repayment Plan
Let???s say you???re three months behind on your mortgage. In a forbearance or repayment plan, you would negotiate with your lender to repay the past due amount over a period of time. You still have to make your current payments, but this is a good solution for homeowners who have had a temporary hardship as banks would rather get their money than take your property.
Modifying your mortgage may make all the difference in your ability to keep your home. The government recognizes this and has initiated a program called ???Making Home Affordable??? with options like HAMP, HAFA, UP and HARP (see the link below for more information).?? Typically, a mortgage modification will involve a reduction in your interest rate or the principal balance of the loan, a change in the length of the loan, or a combination of these options. The goal is to lower your monthly payment to a number that you can afford.
Deed in Lieu of Foreclosure
Also known as a friendly foreclosure, a deed in lieu allows you to return the property to the lender rather than go through the foreclosure process. Lender approval is required for this option and you must vacate the property.
Service members Civil Relief Act (military personnel only)
If you are a member of the military and are in financial trouble due to your deployment or the deployment of a family member, you may qualify for relief under the Service members Civil Relief Act. The American Bar Association has a network of attorneys that can help service members to qualify for this relief.
Sell the Property
If you have sufficient equity in your home, you can list their property with a qualified agent who understands the market conditions and foreclosure process in your area. HouseRebate???s agents are experts in selling distressed properties and stand ready to help.
If you owe more on your home than it is currently worth, hiring an experienced real estate agent to market and sell your property is a great solution. Your HouseRebate agent will negotiate with your lender to get the best possible terms for you. You must be able to demonstrate financial hardship to qualify for a short sale. Short sales are also covered under the new government program, HAFA.
For more about Short Sales, click here.
Learn about government programs to help distressed homeowners here.
By jharris | July 19, 2010
Some homeowners who are behind on their mortgage simply pack their things and leave. As a result, lenders have no choice but to foreclose upon abandoned properties. Foreclosure, however it may occur, can be damaging to your credit and reputation.?? Instead, working with your bank or lender to approve a short sale will have much less impact on your future.?? Read about the pros of short sales and the cons of foreclosure below.
Your Credit Score:
Next to bankruptcy, foreclosure has the biggest negative impact on your credit score.
vs. with a short sale, only late payments will show and those payments will be reported as paid as soon as your home sells.
Your Credit History:
Foreclosure will stay on your credit history as a matter of public record for up to 10 years.
vs. with a short sale, other than your history of late mortgage payments, your loan will appear as ???settled??? or ???paid in full???.
Future Mortgage Loan:
There is a question on every standard loan form asking ???have you had property foreclosed upon???in the last seven years???? Your affirmative answer will affect your ability to get a mortgage as well as loan rates.
vs. there are generally no questions about short sales on mortgage questionnaires.
Many employers regularly check their employees??? credit and most potential employers run a credit check before hiring a new employee. In most cases, foreclosure is grounds for termination or reassignment. As foreclosure is one of the most detrimental items on credit report, a majority of employers will not even consider hiring someone with a history of foreclosure, no matter how well qualified.
vs. again, your mortgage loan will appear as settled or paid in full on your credit report after a short sale.
Other than a felony conviction, foreclosure poses the greatest challenge to a security clearance. If you are a police officer, serve in the military, work in private security, work for a government agency or contractor or any other position that requires a security clearance, in nearly all cases clearance will be revoked and you may be terminated vs. a short sale on its own usually does not challenge security clearances.here.
Learn about government programs to help distressed homeowners
By jharris | July 8, 2010
If you need to sell your home and owe more to your lender than your home is worth, a short sale may be your best choice. In the past, it was rare for a bank or lender to accept a short sale. However, with the current downturn in our real estate market, banks and lenders are willing to consider these transactions and HouseRebate can help you sell your home quickly and easily for top market value.
In a short sale, the lender accepts a price that’s less than the amount you owe on the property. As part of this arrangement, your bank or lender typically agrees to forgive the rest of the loan. As a result, you avoid foreclosure, the buyer gets the property at a discount, and the lender avoids taking on the burden of selling the property.
To qualify for a short sale, you must prove that you are in circumstances that make it impossible for you to afford your mortgage. The banks call this ???financial hardship???. You will need to show the bank that you have a monthly income shortfall, or not enough money to cover your expenses including your mortgage. Acceptable hardships include but are not limited to mortgage payment increase, job loss, divorce, excessive debt, forced or unplanned relocation, and more. Finally, your lender will ensure that you do not have significant liquid assets that you could use to pay your mortgage. Liquid assets include cash, stocks, bonds, IRAs, CDs and other securities. While ???financial hardship??? may sound bad, a short sale is far less harmful to your credit than a foreclosure.
Short sales require great negotiation skills and knowledge of procedures and paperwork. You should select a highly competent agent to represent your interests with your bank or lender and with the potential buyer of your property.?? HouseRebate has experienced short sale professionals available to help you, as well as interested, cash-ready buyers who are looking for properties like yours.?? Our goal is to make the short sale process quick, painless and hassle-free.
Learn about the benefits of a Short Sale vs. Foreclosure here.
Learn about government programs to help distressed homeowners here.« Previous Entries