Lenders pursue homeowners after foreclosure

cnnmoneyAs terrible as it is to lose your house to foreclosure, at least it’s a relief to put your biggest financial headache behind you, right?


Former homeowners may still be on the hook if there’s a difference between what they owed on their mortgage and what the bank could sell it for at auction. And these “deficiency judgments” are ticking time bombs that can explode years after borrowers lose their homes.

It can even happen to people who got their bank to approve them selling their home for less than it is worth.

………………………….( click on MONEY icon for more )…………………………But even when lenders are willing, many borrowers may not be aware that they have to ask for release. So, if you are pursuing a short sale, be sure your attorney asks the bank to release you from any further obligation………………

“Banks are pulling credit reports to see if it’s a strategic default,” he said. “If you’re behind on all your other payments, you’re okay. But if you’re not, they’ll come after you.”

If borrowers have any doubts about their risks, they should seek legal advice. Or, at least, call non-profit organizations such as NeighborWorks for advice. According to Doug Robinson, a NeighborWorks spokesman, its counselors always try to negotiate away deficiencies when they facilitate short sales or deeds-in-lieu……………………………………..Robinson himself knows what can happen. He paid off a deficiency after his own New Jersey house went through foreclosure 11 years ago.

Pricing a listing

by Paula Hathawaay Southampton, NY   Prudential Douglas Elliman Real Estate

How are you handling sellers who want you to over-price their homes? It may seem that the owner who insists on a couple of hundred thousand more in their asking price should be accomodated, especially if you are not the only broker on the hunt. But pricing properties properly should be priority #1

As we all know, if a seller wants to sell their property sooner rather than later, you are really doing them no favor if you are not totally straight with them—things are not like they used to be in real estate. Most sellers have an idea of how the recession has affected real estate prices; most however, still believe their house is the best house in the neighborhood and should get more money than the next guy’s. This is not the time to acquiesce just to get the listing.


This is where we come in as professionals; it is first and foremost the priority of all of us to price properties properly. If we don’t inform the seller that his price has to be the most sharply priced in order to sell before his competitors, we have not done our job. Sellers should review:

  • Your comp search .
  • Get out drive past recently sold properties.
  • Understand how an internet search is done by a buyer/agent. If a price is just a few thousand dollars over the available comps, they won’t come up in searches and they won’t get the potential buyers attention.

Now there is no way that an over-priced property will even get shown, much less get sold!My buyer was reluctant to bid on the property which was priced $2million over the market–but he went ahead and told me to put in his bid. I got was a small drop in price—this was last year. The property is still there, still over-priced! Deal is Done

PROPERLY PRICING A PROPERTY IS CRUCIAL TO GETTING IT SOLD!! This is no secret–This is no time to “test” the market, since almost everyone who is  buying now is looking for a good price and in most cases that is the only way deals are getting done!

5 Things Pro Investors Know

Those who consistently make money in real estate know the market. They know the location and the history. They investopedia_logo.jpgknow what new developments are planned. They know the transportation and the schools. They know everything about the area where they invest. They have to know it all.

Staying ahead of the competition in real estate investment means doing your homework. If you are new to the business, it can be daunting, but we’ll teach you five tricks that the old pros use to get ahead of the trends instead of chasing them……….

Some Housing Markets Hot Again

Some Housing Markets Hot Again, According to ZipRealty Q4 2009 “Home Hunter Report”marketwire
Phoenix Is Most Coveted City by Online Home Hunters in 2009

These are just some of the highlights revealed by ZipRealty’s report released today, which identifies where home sellers are fetching the highest offers compared to their asking prices among 33 markets the brokerage serves. Highlights from the ZipRealty Q4 2009 Home Hunter Report, which also identifies which cities nationwide are most highly searched online, include:…….https://i0.wp.com/weblogs.sun-sentinel.com/news/weather/hurricane/blog/hothouse_logo_2.jpg

Home sales rose in ’09 as prices plunged 12 pct.

, On Monday January 25, 2010, 3:26 pm AP - In this Jan. 5, 2010 photo, a home is seen advertised for sale in Alameda, Calif. Sales of ...

WASHINGTON (AP) — Sales of previously occupied homes rose in 2009 for the first time in four years, despite a December slump that was due to a tax credit that had caused many buyers to complete sales earlier.

Still, prices plunged more than 12 percent last year — the sharpest fall since the Great Depression. The price drop for 2009 — to a median of $173,500 — showed the housing market remains too weak to help fuel a sustained economic recovery. Total sales for 2009 were nearly 5.2 million, up about 5 percent from 2008  


10 Cheap Ways to Boost Your Sales Price

Luke Mullins, USNews.com

Jan 13th, 2010 https://i0.wp.com/www.real-estate-australia.com.au/www2/agts/6849/Image/sellingtips_img.jpg

As the temperature drops and the snow piles up, it’s easy to forget that spring is quickly approaching. And after more than three years of a painful housing swoon, real estate experts predict that lower prices, attractive mortgage rates, and a tax perk from Uncle Sam will create the most vibrant spring home selling season in some time. “This is going to be probably the most pleasant experience for a home seller in the last four or five years,” says Mike Larson of Weiss Research. “If you have been beating your head against a wall, this is going to feel a lot better.” But even if the market does perk up, buyers are likely to retain the upper hand throughout 2010. So to help property owners get the best selling price they can–without burying themselves in expenses–U.S. News has created a list of 10 cheap ways to boost a home’s sales price by spring:  read here

Homebuyer Tax Credit — Revised November 2009

Note: I highly recommend you discuss this with a qualified tax professional BEFORE entering into a listing, sales, or purchase agreement,

Here’s the basics:

Tax Credit Updatehttp://backyardwealth.files.wordpress.com/2009/10/8000_tax_credit.jpg

The Extended and Expanded Tax Credit agreement includes the following provisions:

Amount:  $8,000
Who:  First -time homebuyers-same definition as current law

Amount:  $6500
Who:  Repeat purchasers.  Must have used previous home as a principal residence for 5 of the 8 previous years.
Income Limits:  $125,000 for single filers/$225,000 for joint filers.  Same for both first-time and repeat/move up buyers.

Limitation on cost purchased home:  $800,000

Time Frame:  November 6, 2009 to April 30, 2010 (As reported by the Federal Housing Tax Credit Website)

Click here for more information and updates.

For a simplified pdf chart click here.

Is an open house a waste of time?

  (© MacGregor & Gordon/Workbook Stock) Agents admit that few sales traditionally come from open houses. And now the Internet is making them even less valuable.

By Melinda Fulmer of MSN Real Estate

Los Angeles real estate agent Liz Johnson loves open houses, but not because they move her properties. The real reason Johnson holds them is because they bring her more business.

Prospective home buyers walk through and ask what other listings she has. “They’ve always been better for agents than sellers,” she says.

The proliferation of Internet listings and other online real estate information is quickly making open houses more of an option, rather than a requirement for selling a home. In 1995, just 2% of home buyers used the Internet to look for a home, according to the National Association of Realtors. Last year, 77% of home buyers shopped online.

Indeed, only 2% to 4% of Johnson’s listings sell from open houses. “It’s not a necessity,” she says.

Click to enlarge picture

Home prices rise again in October

AP - FILE - In this Dec. 22, 2009 file photo, a sign proclaiming the house sold is seen in ...NEW YORK (AP) — Home prices rose for the fifth month in a row in October, but the recovery is shaky with only 11 of the 20 metro areas tracked showing gains.

The Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller home price index released Tuesday edged up 0.4 percent to a seasonally adjusted reading of 145.36 in October from September. Without adjusting for seasonal factors the index was flat.   more

November home sales soar 7.4 percent

Home sales up 7.4 percent in November as federal aid spurs sales


, On Tuesday December 22, 2009, 1:16 pm

WASHINGTON (AP) — Home resales surged last month to the highest level in nearly three years, reflecting an extraordinary level of federal support that has pulled the housing market back from the worst downturn since the Great Depression.

Buyers were racing to complete their sales before the original expiration date of a tax credit for first-time buyers that was scheduled to expire Nov. 30. Last month, Congress decided to extend and expand the credit to ensure the housing market could sustain its recovery.

“Things are stabilizing,” said Pete Flint, chief executive of real estate Web site Trulia.com. “There is a significant amount of buyer interest out there.”

About 2 million homebuyers have taken advantage of the credit so far, the National Association of Realtors said Tuesday. The group forecasts that another 2.4 million will use it by the middle of next year. First-time buyers made up about half of all transactions last month, driving sales up 44 percent above last year’s levels, a record jump.

Confessions of an Underwater Homeowner

provided by

One in four borrowers is underwater on a mortgage in the U.S.

Count me among them.

Confessions of an 'underwater' homeowner (Getty Images)

My family’s modest, suburban New Jersey house is now worth about $30,000 less than our current balance. We never dreamed of walking away, but the idea of “strategically defaulting,” is something we had to at least consider. …………

We’re not home flippers or boom-era borrowers who opted for an exotic loan with no documentation. In buying our house, we believed we were making a life decision.

More from WSJ.com:

Green Builders Await Green

We started thinking about buying in 2004, when my wife and I found out that we were having a baby. We were thrilled. Shortly after that, we learned we were having multiple babies, we were equally thrilled–and terrified. We’re going to need a bigger place, we thought.


World’s Most Expensive Cities to Live In

Top Places to Cash In on Real Estate Deals

America’s Most Wallet-Friendly Places to Live

Finish this read: http://finance.yahoo.com/real-estate/article/108431/confessions-of-an-underwater-homeowner?mod=realestate-buy

10 Housing Markets Where Prices Have Gone Up

The ten metro areas that enjoyed the greatest home-price increases over the past year (through June 30, 2009) largely missed the housing boom and didn’t indulge in subprime-lending excesses.

With no boom, these cities had no need to bust. Instead, their housing markets have plugged along at 4% annual price appreciation, below the national average of 6% annually between 1968 and 2008, according to the National Association of Realtors. Most of these areas are relatively small, with populations less than 200,000.


Where U.S. Homes Are Most Overpriced

Properties in these cities stay on the market longest, and sell for less than asking price.

Prospective buyers eying real estate deals in foreclosure-ridden Florida, where home prices have plummeted and unsold properties clog the market, might find fewer bargains than they’d expected. That’s because sellers in Orlando, Miami, Jacksonville and Tampa are likely to put their properties on the market for more than what they’re worth.

Full List: Where U.S. Homes Are Most Overpricedhomes2_419x98.jpgThey’re not alone. In these markets and elsewhere across the country, homeowners still have an inflated sense of what their properties will fetch. Only 49% of U.S. homeowners believe their home’s value has decreased in the past year, whereas prices have plunged for 72% of homes

America’s Top 5 Most Overpriced Markets

1. OrlandoKissimmee, FL Metro Area

2. Miami-Fort LauderdalePompano Beach, FL Metro Area

3. Jacksonville, FL Metro Area

4. BaltimoreTowson, MD Metro Area

5. ChicagoNapervilleJoliet, IL-IN-WI Metro Area

full story

House Flipping Makes a Comeback


Four years after the collapse of the U.S. housing bubble, flipping homes is back in fashion.

Jon Mirmelli, a Phoenix real–estate investor, learned late in the morning of Sept. 28 that a never–occupied custom house on the northern fringes of this Phoenix suburb was going up for auction around noon the same day. The six–bedroom home, built on a three–acre desert plot, has a kitchen with two dishwashers, four ovens, “antibacterial” copper sinks, and a master “spa” bathroom with space for a flat–screen TV visible from the tub.


The minimum bid, as set by a unit of Citigroup Inc., which had a $1.3 million mortgage on the home, was $379,900. After several minutes of bidding among investors and their representatives, some wearing shorts and flip–flops, Mr. Mirmelli won the home for $486,300. A week later, he agreed to sell it for $690,000 to a woman who moved in this month.           more A lot of good content


Not all flippers come out on top. Mr. Goodman says one of his legal clients, bidding on his own, unwittingly bought a house that was still subject to a first–lien mortgage. To gain control of the property, the client had to pay off the first mortgage. As a result, says Mr. Goodman, the client, who declined to be named, is likely to have at least a small loss on the deal.

Last summer, Phoenix investor Greg Thielen bought a home at an auction and later found that the former owner had stripped out air–conditioning units, granite countertops and kitchen cabinets, and uprooted palm trees from the lawn. Repair costs came to about $30,000, leaving Mr. Thielen with a small loss on the purchase. “It’s not as easy as people think,” says Mr. Thielen.   …………….