Will Rising Mortgage Rates Cool the Market?

Will Rising Mortgage Rates Cool the Market?

What a FANTASTIC question that Realtors and their clients are certainly thinking.ย  Please enjoy this article from the Daily Real Estate News.

A big jump in mortgage rates over the past two months may start to cool the rapid rise of home prices in the second half of the year, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Mortgage rates have shot up from lows of 3.59 percent in the beginning of May, to 4.58 percent during the last week of June, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association. Rates are at their highest levels in two years.

โ€œA rule of thumb holds that every one percentage point increase in interest rates reduces affordability by 10 percent, so the recent move in rates just made homes about 10 percent more expensive to buyers who need to finance their purchase,โ€ The Wall Street Journal reports.

Still, economists say mortgage rates at 4.5 percent or 5 percent is still very affordable by historical standards. Merrill Lynch analysts say that home prices would have to rise by 20 percent or mortgage rates would have to soar to around 6 percent to chip away at housingโ€™s affordability.

Some economists see rising mortgage rates as a positive. John Burns, chief executive of John Burns Real Estate Consulting, says that rising rates produce more sustainable price increases. โ€œI donโ€™t think itโ€™s the end of price increases, but I think theyโ€™re going to moderate significantly,โ€ Burns told The Wall Street Journal.

Source: โ€œWhy Home-Price Gains Will Slow Amid Higher Mortgage Rates,โ€ The Wall Street Journal (July 8, 2013)

ย 

I read this article at:ย  http://realtormag.realtor.org/daily-news/2013/07/09/will-rising-mortgage-rates-cool-market?om_rid=AACmlZ&om_mid=_BR3FkGB8zy7Id2&om_ntype=RMODaily

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Let’s Make Things Harder for the Bad Guys!

Easy ways to make it harder for burglars

Easy ways to make it harder for burglars

Youโ€™ve probably seen the clever TV ads featuring Professor Burke as he educates customers on the finer points of insurance and offers informative risk-prevention tips. In one ad, Burke asks:ย What if you didnโ€™t know that boxes by the curb make you a target for thieves? Burke and a customer walk by a home with expensive electronics boxes by the curb. The homeโ€™s door is open and we see a burglar walk out with an expensive flat screen TV followed by another wearing 3D glasses.

If youโ€™ve ever been burglarized however, you know what an awful feeling it is to have your home violated and to lose your personal property. Unfortunately, burglary is the crime of choice for many criminals but for a minimal investment, you may be able to make your home potentially less appealing to burglars.

  • Trim your shrubs โ€”ย Donโ€™t offer unwanted intruders a safe place to hide, albeit unwittingly. Make sure your homeโ€™s windows, porches and doors are visible to neighbors and passersby and not shrouded by vegetation.
  • Close the blinds, shutters or shades โ€”ย Burglary is often a crime of opportunity โ€” if you donโ€™t offer one, burglars will typically move on. Closing shades, blinds and the like may help to prevent burglars from window shopping at your place.
  • Install motion sensors and use them โ€”ย Dark or poorly illuminated areas make it easier for a burglar to move about unseen. Motion-sensing security lights are fairly inexpensive and readily available at home improvement stores. They are activated when motion is detected and the sudden change from darkness to bright light will typically startle intruders and may provide a visual alert to you and your neighbors.
  • Use indoor timers to control lighting โ€”ย Timers hooked up to indoor lights and TVs that switch on when it gets dark make it appear as if someone is home and may serve as a deterrent to thieves.
  • Install deadbolts โ€”ย Consider installing aย deadbolt on every exterior door; the bolt should have a throw of at least one inch.
  • Donโ€™t post your travel plans or whereabouts on social media sites โ€”ย Sharing your vacation plans and checking in can be fun, but doing so is a public declaration of your whereabouts and a potential invitation to thieves.

Use common sense
Always lock all your doors and windows whenever you leave your home โ€” even if youโ€™re just running out for a few minutes. Itโ€™s a simple and smart thing to do. At Farmers, we make you smarter about insurance โ€” because as Professor Burke will tell you, when it comes to insurance, what you donโ€™t knowcanย hurt you.

Thanks to my faithful Insurance Agent Gary Neely – I found this article on his newsletter. THANK YOU!

I read this article at: ย http://farmersinsuranceemail.com/ffv/201306/02.html

Got Questions? – The Caton Team is here to help.

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Thanks for reading – Sabrina

Hip Hip Hooray!!! Tax Relief Bill PASSES SENATE!

UPDATE ON SB 30

C.A.R.’S TAX RELIEF BILL PASSES SENATE

The state Senate today passed C.A.R.โ€™s tax relief bill without a single โ€œnoโ€ vote. SB 30, which provides tax relief to those who are selling a home in a short sale, will now be considered in the state Assembly.

In late May, the Senate Appropriations Committee linked SB 30 to SB 391, a C.A.R.-opposed bill that creates a recording tax. This link, in the form of an amendment, says that SB 30 cannot take effect unless SB 391 does as well. While we are troubled by this transparent political maneuver meant to force C.A.R. to support the recording tax, C.A.R. will continue to work toward the passage of SB 30 in the Assembly, the defeat of the recording tax, and the delinking of the two bills.

Thank you to the thousands of REALTORSยฎ who contacted their senators in support of SB 30 and in opposition to the recording tax.

Got Questions? – The Caton Team is here to help.

Email Sabrina & Susan at:ย  Info@TheCatonTeam.com

Visit our Website at:ย ย  http://thecatonteam.com/

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Please enjoy my personal journey through homeownership at:

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Thanks for reading – Sabrina

Where Are Interest Rates Headed?

One of my lenders, Melanie Flynn of First Priority Financial, sent us this newsletter that I just had to share.

Where Are Interest Rates Headed?

This isn’t easy to say, but it must be said – rates are NOT going back down (at least not significantly). Rates being quoted right now range from the 4.75% area to above 5%, based on lender, consumer profile (credit score, program, money down, etc), and the day. When I say “the day”, I’m not being flippant – there really is such nauseating volatility that we are seeing rates jump by as much as .25% in interest rate in a single day.

With the drastic and dramatic jump we’ve seen since May 3rd, consumers may have thrown the brakes on for looking at houses – waiting for rates to come back down. It is important that you remember I’m here to help you convince the consumer of two things:

1) Rates are NOT going back down into the 3’s, or probably much (if any) below 4.5%.
2) They must continue their search now before home prices continue to go up along with the higher rates, further eroding their buying power.

Interest Rates – when they rise – decreases a clients buying power. ย I can see the graph from economic class now. ย As Interest Rates Rise, the cost of buying rises – therefore the purchase price or the home will decrease for the buyer.

Got Questions? – The Caton Team is here to help.

Email Sabrina & Susan at:ย  Info@TheCatonTeam.com

Visit our Website at:ย ย  http://thecatonteam.com/

Visit us on Facebook: ย ย http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sabrina-Susan-The-Caton-Team-Realtors/294970377834

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Please enjoy my personal journey through homeownership at:

http://ajourneythroughhomeownership.wordpress.com

Thanks for reading – Sabrina

Renters May Grow by 6 Million in Next Decade – Interesting Article –

I read this onย DAILY REAL ESTATE NEWS and thought it was good to share.

Renters May Grow by 6 Million in Next Decade

Since the housing crash in 2008, the number of renting households has soared. Within the next decade,ย  5 to 6 million new renter households are expected to be formed, according to the National Association of REALTORSยฎ.

Much of that increase may occur in the next two years.ย  Within that time, the U.S. Census Bureau predicts that renter households will grow from 38 million to 41 million.

“In general, across the country there are more renters now than there were two or three years ago,” says Wally Charnoff, CEO of RentRange.

Property management companies are booming, too. Officials with Real Property Management say the company has doubled in size over the past two years. The company has 230 offices in 47 states and adds an average of eight new franchises per month.

“Profound changes in the housing market have created significant demand for property management companies like ours,” Kirk McGary, CEO of Real Property Management, told HousingWire. “And it doesn’t look like that’s changing anytime soon.”

Charnoff adds that location may be a big driver for renters. With a shortage of for-sale homes nowadays, some families are being driven to rent in order to be able to live in a specific neighborhood with good schools, he notes. โ€œInstitutional investors have provided a lot of readily available property,โ€ he says.

However, he adds that rising mortgage rates may prompt more on-the-fence renters to jump into home ownership before housing affordability moves lower.

 

What do you think this means for our real estate market? ย Share your thoughts!

I read this article at:ย  http://realtormag.realtor.org/daily-news/2013/06/13/renters-may-grow-6-million-in-next-decade?om_rid=AACmlZ&om_mid=_BRufS1B8zTgy7W&om_ntype=RMODaily

Got Questions? – The Caton Team is here to help.

Email Sabrina & Susan at:ย  Info@TheCatonTeam.com

Visit our Website at:ย ย  http://thecatonteam.com/

Visit us on Facebook: ย ย http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sabrina-Susan-The-Caton-Team-Realtors/294970377834

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Please enjoy my personal journey through homeownership at:

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Thanks for reading – Sabrina

FOR SALE – Gorgeous Home in the El Granada Highlands – 3 Bedrooms 3 Bath plus Bonus Rooms

For more information and photos – please visit our website at:

http://thecatonteam.com/PropertyDetails?fl_hook=1713296615&show_description=yes&show_address=yes&presented_by=&show_virtual_tour=yes

OPEN TODAY – SATURDAY 6/15 from 1-4pm

WELCOME COME TO EL GRANADA

Nestled in beautiful El Granada just north of Half Moon Bay, a lovely setting on the gorgeous California coastline.

This spacious home features a reverse floor plan, with one bedroom and bath located on the main level and one master bedroom and one bedroom with private baths downstairs along with an additional bonus room.

The top floor features cathedral ceilings for a light and airy feel with walls of windows in the living room overlooking the trees and peekaboo views of the ocean, inviting you to cozy up by the stone fireplace and enjoy the views. The kitchen, with green house window shares this light and bright feeling and spills into the family / dining room. Enjoy the deck that connects the main floor living room with the down stairs bedrooms. Skylights stud the home with additional sunshine.

Downstairs the master suite mirrors the living room with walls of windows and another cozy fireplace to enjoy. There is a second bedroom downstairs along with a large bonus room and spacious finished basement with extra storage. The deck on this level allows for private outdoor relaxation.

This lovely home has a dehumidifier โ€“ great for the coast โ€“ along with a professionally encapsulated crawl space by Bay Area Moisture Control to add ample additional storage. The finished basement, accessed through he laundry room, has more storage and a second bonus room that could be used as an office with a separate entrance. The two car attached garage has a workbench, wrap-around custom cabinets to eliminate clutter and easy access to holiday decoration or those Costco hauls.

In addition to a functioning well, with water softener and 1000-gallon storage tank โ€“ the homeowners won the City Water Lottery and paid approximately $20,000 to tap into City Water. The owners have also installed drainage around the property and automatic sprinklers in the front and back gardens. For convenience a built-in vacuum for cleaning ease.

To truly appreciate this home, you have to take a look for yourself. Please contact Susan or Sabrina Caton โ€“ The Caton Team Realtors for a private viewing. 650-568-5539 or Info@TheCatonTeam.com

For photos โ€“ visit our Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151619904857835&set=a.10151619904572835.1073741825.294970377834&type=1&theater

Email Sabrina & Susan at: Info@TheCatonTeam.com

Visit our Website at: http://thecatonteam.com/

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Please enjoy my personal journey through homeownership at:

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Thanks for reading – Sabrina

Top 10 Scams of 2012 – had to share this….

Had to share this!

Top 10 Scams of 2012ย The Better Business Bureau releases its annual list of the worst schemes that aimed to steal people’s money or identity.

Each year the Better Business Bureau investigates thousands of scams, from new schemes that take advantage of current events to old ploys used time and again to bilk people. The BBB uses its data, along with reports from federal agencies and other sources, to compile an annual list of the top scams — not necessarily the biggest as far as the number of people affected or amount of money stolen but rather the most egregious, says Carrie Hurt, president and CEO of the Council of Better Business Bureaus.

Below you’ll find the BBB’s list of the top scams from the past year in nine categories, plus the “Scam of the Year.”

Top Fake Check Scam: Car Ads โ€“ The Internet Crime Complaint Center, a partnership between the FBI and the National White Collar Crime Center, received many complaints in 2012 about online ads promising to pay people $400 or more a week for driving around with company logos on their car. People would be sent a check and asked to deposit in their account and wire part of the payment to a graphic designer who would customize the ad for their vehicle. There was no graphic designer or ad, though, and the check would bounce โ€“ usually after people had wired money to the scammers.

Top Emergency Scam: Grandparent Scam โ€“ This scam that’s been around a long time involves a grandchild or other relative who is traveling abroad and asks for money to be wired to him right away because he was mugged or hurt (and says, “Please don’t tell Mom and Dad.”). According to the BBB, the FBI reports that it’s easier for scammers to tell a more plausible story because they can use information the “supposed” victim posts on Facebook or Twitter. The BBB says that you never should wire money without trying to contact the supposed victim at his or her regular phone number or checking with family members to see if that person really is traveling.

Top Employment Scam: Mystery Shopping โ€“ Legitimate companies do use mystery shoppers to provide feedback on customer service, merchandise quality and other quality-control metrics. However, there are plenty of illegitimate offers for this sort of work. Scammers often tell prospective mystery shoppers that evaluating a wire-service company is part of the job and that they need to deposit a check and send back part of the money (and, of course, the victim finds out that the check has bounced after the money’s been wired). According to the BBB, the Mystery Shopping Providers Association says its members don’t prepay shoppers. To find a legitimate gig, visit www.mysteryshop.org.

Top Advance Fee/Prepayment Scam: Nonexistent Loans โ€“ Loan scams tend to be advertised online and promise things such as no credit check or easy repayment. However, you have to make the first payment upfront, buy an “insurance policy” or pay some other fee to secure the loan. This past year, there was a new twist on this loan scam: Consumers were threatened with lawsuits and law enforcement action if they didn’t pay back loans they said they had never even taken out in the first place. According to the BBB, some victims were called at their workplace, or their relatives were called. The embarrassment of being thought of as a delinquent caused some victims to pay even when they knew they didn’t owe the money, the BBB says.

Top Phishing Scam: President Obama Will Pay Your Utility Bills โ€“ I actually wrote about this scam last year. Thousands of people became victims of scammers who called, sent text messages, showed up at homes or used social media to tout a federal assistance program that would pay up to $1,000 on utility or credit-card bills โ€“ but there was no such program. Consumers were asked to give their Social Security numbers and other personal information to access what actually was a phony bank account and routing number to use when paying their bills online. To avoid such scams, never give personal information out over the phone unless you initiated the contact.

Top Sweepstakes Scam: Jamaican Phone Lottery โ€“ In this old scam that resurfaced last year, the calls come from Jamaica (area code 876) but the person claims to represent BBB, FBI or other trusted group and tells the victim that he’s won a large cash prize or government grant. The catch: You have to pay a fee to collect your winnings. If you get a call like this, hang up and report it to the BBB.

Top Identity Theft Scam: Fake Facebook Videos โ€“ Scammers used Twitter to send people direct messages claiming that there was an embarrassing video of them on Facebook, with a link. When people clicked on the link, they got an error message that said they needed to download a new version of Flash or other video player. The file was actually a virus or malware that could steal personal information from the computers or smart phones of people who downloaded it. Twitter recommends reporting such violations, changing your password and revoking connections to third-party applications that you don’t recognize.

Top Home Improvement Scam: Sandy Storm Repair โ€“ Scam artists took advantage of the damage caused by Hurricane Sandy by promising homeowners to make repairs. They asked to be paid in advance and never did the work. The BBB recommends always asking contractors for references, checking credentials and using BBB.org to find trusted contractors.

Top Sales Scam: Fake Olympics Goods โ€“ Scammers took advantage of the London Olympics to set up Web sites offering merchandise that didn’t exist. People who tried to purchase items simply lost their money. And counterfeit sports memorabilia also was common year-round. The BBB recommends buying directly from team stores and sites, or from legitimate retailers โ€“ not from people hawking wares on the street or outside stadiums. You’ll pay a little more, but it will be the real deal.

Scam of the Year: Newtown Charity Scams โ€“ Social media pages dedicated to the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting appeared with hours of the tragedy in Newtown, Conn. Some were created by scammers asking for money. According to the BBB, the FBI has already arrested one woman for posing as the aunt of one of the children killed, and state and federal agencies are investigating other possible fraudulent and misleading solicitations. “Although the number of people defrauded and the total dollars stolen is most likely low, the cynicism and sheer audacity of these scams merits our selecting it as the Top Scam of 2012,” the BBB says.

By Cameron Huddleston, Kiplinger.com

I read this article at: The Kiplinger Washington Editors. Kiplinger.com.

Got Questions? – The Caton Team is here to help.

Email Sabrina & Susan at:ย  Info@TheCatonTeam.com

Visit our Website at:ย ย  http://thecatonteam.com/

Visit us on Facebook: ย ย http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sabrina-Susan-The-Caton-Team-Realtors/294970377834

Yelp us at: http://www.yelp.com/biz/the-caton-team-realtors-sabrina-caton-and-susan-caton-redwood-city

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Please enjoy my personal journey through homeownership at:

http://ajourneythroughhomeownership.wordpress.com

Thanks for reading – Sabrina