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Real Estate

Facebook Removes Ad Options After HUD Complaint

NAR Daily News Magazine - August 23, 2018 - 12:00am

The social media giant has taken down more than 5,000 ad targeting options to “help prevent misuse,” the company stated.

Categories: Real Estate

Experts Weigh In: Here’s When You Should Reach Key Financial Milestones

RisMedia - August 22, 2018 - 3:11pm

(TNS)—Maybe you have an idea of when you’d like to buy your first home or retire from the workforce—but just how realistic are your expectations?

We recently asked Americans to tell us the ideal ages for accomplishing certain financial goals. Then, we ran their responses by 10 certified financial planners living in different parts of the country.

Americans’ expectations overall were fairly realistic—but some experts argue that when it comes to hitting key milestones in life, age is arbitrary. What’s more important is whether you’re financially ready to make certain decisions, says Jennifer Faherty, founder of Financial Wealth-Being.

Getting Your First Credit Card
The ideal age to open a first credit card is 22, Americans say, but according to many financial planners, the sooner you start building credit, the better.

“I think 22 is a little late,” says Dana Twight, a certified financial planner based in Seattle. “I think you want to help your kids or your independent kids and support them in opening a card when they’re young enough to benefit from a parental safety net, if that’s possible.”

Parents who want to teach their children how to use credit cards responsibly at a young age can help them sign up for a secured credit card. These types of cards require you to make a cash deposit that becomes your credit line. With time, you should have the opportunity to trade in your secured card for a traditional, unsecured credit card.

Another option is to make a teenage child an authorized user on a parent’s account—but any mistakes that are made can impact the parent’s credit score.

Lucas Casarez, founder of Level Up Financial Planning in Fort Collins, Colo., used to help clients open their first credit cards when he worked at a credit union. Many of the people he helped were 18 and 19 years old. He sees nothing wrong with someone that age having a credit card, as long as they have someone showing them the right way to use it.

Quentara Costa has a different opinion. She’s seen too many college kids with credit cards getting themselves into trouble. Waiting until you’re 22 to open a credit card is a safer bet, says Costa, a certified financial planner in North Andover, Mass.

Waiting to Buy Your First Home
While there may be benefits to getting a credit card at a younger age, postponing the purchase of your first home may be advantageous.

Americans, on average, say 28 is the ideal age to become a homeowner, but many experts recommend waiting until you’re in your early 30s to take the plunge.

Once you graduate from college, Helen Ngo thinks it’s best to wait at least 10 years before buying a home. That way, you have a better idea of where you stand financially and whether you can take on a mortgage.

“At 28, to me that’s still a very young age,” says Ngo, CEO and founder of a financial planning practice in Atlanta. “I think those who are able to buy a home at 28 are married at that age and they have dual income to be able to afford a house at age 28.”

Unless you’re in a stable financial position and you have access to a lot of cash, it’s probably best to avoid buying a home until you’ve paid off your student loans, says John Piershale, a wealth adviser in Crystal Lake, Ill.

Homeownership Is a Long-Term Commitment
Generally, buying a home at any age isn’t a good idea if you’re not planning to stay there for at least five years. That’s particularly the case if your goal is to build home equity, Ngo says.

“If you’re purchasing a home, how much time are you going to live in there in order to get the actual equity value out of it? Unless you buy a fixer-upper and you put more money into it, and then you’re able to sell it real quick and you might make $100,000 extra out of it…but most people aren’t doing that,” Ngo says.

Even if homes seem affordable where you live, think beyond the cost of the mortgage when deciding whether to become a homeowner. Factor in the cost of property taxes, home repairs and unexpected expenses. Think about the costs involved with selling the home, too, like paying closing costs.

You’ll also want to consider market conditions. Percy Bolton, founder of a financial planning company in Pasadena, Calif., says he wouldn’t buy a home right now because it’s a seller’s market.

“You don’t ever buy in a market like this. You wait,” Bolton says. “If I was advising a client right now, it’s cheaper to rent.”

Saving for Retirement
Americans say the ideal age to start saving for retirement is 22. According to the financial planners we polled, it’s best to start saving as early as possible. The average age the experts suggested was 21.

Costa says it’s important to start saving money at a young age, but starting to save for retirement as a teenager isn’t necessary.

“When you’re younger, you do need to save for things like a car and a down payment and college,” says Costa, founder of a company called Powwow. “I think there’s plenty of time to catch up. I’ve seen plenty of people turn the corner where they haven’t had much savings because they’ve had all these milestones and at 40 they’re finally able to get serious about retirement and they’re fine.”

Lauryn Williams, a four-time Olympian who founded her own financial planning company, says you can start saving as early as age 19 in a Roth IRA. The stereotype of the broke college student is misleading, she says. Even college kids have money that they could be saving.

“Once you get in college, that first year get settled, but then also get saving,” Williams says. “Automate that saving from the very beginning, create that habit and you’ll finish college with a little nest egg for yourself and a little nest egg for retirement.”

Another recent Bankrate survey found that millennials prefer cash over stocks, but when it comes to preparing for the future, having mostly cash investments will ultimately cost you.

“A far as long-term savings, that’s not a viable strategy to me,” says Donovan Brooks, a certified financial planner in Saint Joseph, Mo. “Based on probably the retirement lifestyle that they have in their mind, cash likely isn’t going to get them to where they need to be long-term, unless they have a large income and they’re putting away a ton of money and they envision a very minimal, inexpensive retirement lifestyle.”

The Ideal Age to Retire
Americans say the ideal retirement age is 61, but the financial planners we surveyed agreed that retiring at 61 wasn’t realistic for most people. What’s more, the way people think about retirement is changing.

“I think if you redefine what retirement means, you can retire at different stages in your life,” says Ngo, founder of Capital Benchmark Partners.

Ed Leach, a certified financial planner in Wayne, N.J., says he has clients who are executives and business owners. They sell their businesses and “semi-retire” by doing consulting work.

Other financial experts say their clients are retiring later by choice. Sixty percent of her clients would list 70 as their ideal retirement age, Williams says. If you love what you do, you don’t have to stop working.

Working until you’re 70 or 80 may be more possible today than in the past now that more people today have white-collar jobs, Leach says.

“As we become less of a manufacturing, production-type of country, and jobs transition into more of, ‘Hey, I can work from home and do computer coding,’ I can do that until I’m 80 years old if my mind allows me to do it.”

©2018 Bankrate.com
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC

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The post Experts Weigh In: Here’s When You Should Reach Key Financial Milestones appeared first on RISMedia.

Categories: Real Estate

End of Fannie, Freddie Rental Programs Good for Market

NAR Daily News Magazine - August 22, 2018 - 12:00am

The companies’ strategies to help institutional investors buy homes for rentals were exacerbating inventory shortages and affordability concerns, NAR says.

Categories: Real Estate

Study: Lots Near Power Lines Lose Nearly Half Their Value

NAR Daily News Magazine - August 22, 2018 - 12:00am

Health concerns and unattractive views drive the decrease in the value of land near high-voltage systems, researchers say.

Categories: Real Estate

Reports: Compass to Buy Pacific Union in Cali Expansion

NAR Daily News Magazine - August 22, 2018 - 12:00am

Combined, the brokerages could become the nation’s third-largest residential real estate firm based on transaction volume.

Categories: Real Estate

Existing-Home Sales Reach Slowest Pace in 2 Years

NAR Daily News Magazine - August 22, 2018 - 12:00am

Rising property prices are prompting would-be buyers to pull out of the market, says NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun.

Categories: Real Estate

Disruptor Roundup: Divvy Takes on Rent-to-Own

RisMedia Consumer News - August 21, 2018 - 3:23pm

Editor’s Note: The Disruptor Roundup analyzes companies implementing unconventional models.

Divvy
This tech-powered, rent-to-own platform was launched at the end of 2017, and provides consumers with the ability to transition from renting to homeownership with a three-year program that amasses a down payment within its required monthly payments. Currently available in Atlanta, Cleveland and Memphis, Divvy is looking to expand to other markets.

Divvy purchases homes on behalf of consumers. There are, however, restrictions. Divvy cannot purchase and lease condos, non-bank approved short sales, auction properties, manufactured or mobile homes, undeveloped lots, homes in pre- or mid-construction or properties with problematic conditions that require extensive maintenance.

How does the program work? Applicants must first be preapproved and undergo a thorough underwriting process that requires photo identification, tax returns, recent bank statements and a credit check. This process typically takes between 24 hours and three business days, according to the Divvy website.

In addition to rent, Divvy also charges “equity credits,” which make up about 25 percent of the monthly payment and are used as down payment funds at the end of the leasing period. Additionally, 5 percent of the monthly payments go toward maintenance funds, to be used for any home repairs, which applicants must address themselves, as Divvy does not function as a traditional landlord.

The qualifications? Candidates must:

  1. Have been employed for the last 12 months
  2. Have an average monthly income of at least $2,300 per month
  3. Be able to comfortably afford a Divvy monthly payment (rent, equity credits, maintenance funds)
  4. Have a credit score of at least 550
  5. Have had any bankruptcies discharged at least 12 months prior to applying
  6. Have at least $1,300 saved for a down payment

The cons? First, Divvy customers may only use partnered agents, which highly limits buyers. How are these agents chosen? Divvy does not provide guidelines on its website, and was not available for comment.

Additionally, while this incentivizes homeownership for prospective buyers who have trouble building up a down payment, the leasing program is more of a forced savings program in which they risk losing out on funds if they break the lease and choose not to purchase the home. Divvy will only refund 50 percent of the total dollars of equity credit if the three-year lease is broken, and, at closing, deducts 1.5 percent of the applicant’s equity credits in order to cover its own selling costs.

Buyers might also be wary of Divvy’s static home value projection, which estimates how much the property will be worth in three years. It can be difficult to ascertain whether buyers are truly leasing to buy at fair market value three years prior to the actual time of purchase.

As Divvy does not provide mortgage services, buyers will still need to be approved for a loan at the end of the lease period, which brings up additional questions regarding the home’s value and appraisal conditions. Divvy can report on-time rental payments to the credit bureaus during the three-year lease in order to help applicants who wish to increase their credit score before purchasing, improving their chances of being able to qualify for a home loan.

Liz Dominguez is RISMedia’s associate content editor. Email her your real estate news ideas at ldominguez@rismedia.com. For the latest real estate news and trends, bookmark RISMedia.com.

The post Disruptor Roundup: Divvy Takes on Rent-to-Own appeared first on RISMedia.

Categories: Real Estate

Hospitals Invest in Housing for Healthier Communities

NAR Daily News Magazine - August 21, 2018 - 12:00am

Growing research points to a link between living in areas of concentrated poverty and health. That’s prompted some hospitals to invest in housing.

Categories: Real Estate

Study: Foreclosures Rising in 44% of Metros

NAR Daily News Magazine - August 21, 2018 - 12:00am

This marks the first annual increase in foreclosure starts nationwide after three years of declines.

Categories: Real Estate

Fewer Americans Are Willing to Move for a Job

NAR Daily News Magazine - August 21, 2018 - 12:00am

Will courting the relocation business be less lucrative? New data suggests so.

Categories: Real Estate

3 Biggest Blockchain Myths Debunked

NAR Daily News Magazine - August 21, 2018 - 12:00am

Find out why this new technology is probably safer than you think from an expert who’s dispelling misconceptions.

Categories: Real Estate

New Zealand Bans Foreigners From Buying Homes

NAR Daily News Magazine - August 20, 2018 - 12:00am

Lawmakers say the move is intended to combat soaring home prices and rising homelessness in the country.

Categories: Real Estate

Developer to Equip 25K Apartments With Smart-Home Tech

NAR Daily News Magazine - August 20, 2018 - 12:00am

Alliance Residential Company is partnering with technology leaders such as Google, Nest, and Dwelo to launch the initiative.

Categories: Real Estate

Survey: Consumers Lose Sleep Over Housing Costs

NAR Daily News Magazine - August 20, 2018 - 12:00am

More than one in 10 adults—or about 29 million Americans—say they have restless nights, worrying about their ability to pay the mortgage or rent.

Categories: Real Estate

Should Listing Photos Be Removed After the Sale?

NAR Daily News Magazine - August 20, 2018 - 12:00am

Some home buyers express concern that photos of their properties continue to live on real estate websites after they’ve closed on the purchase, and they’re asking real estate professionals to help take them down.

Categories: Real Estate

HUD: Facebook’s Ad Platform Is Discriminatory

NAR Daily News Magazine - August 20, 2018 - 12:00am

In a formal complaint, the Department of Housing and Urban Development says the social network lets landlords and sellers improperly exclude certain demographics in advertising.

Categories: Real Estate

Ask the Expert: How Can I Assist My Buyers in a Seller’s Market?

RisMedia - August 19, 2018 - 12:02pm

Today’s Ask the Expert column features Dan Steward, president of Pillar To Post Home Inspectors.

Q: When guiding clients through the real estate process, how can I ensure that they’re prepared to find success when in the midst of a seller’s market?

A: Pillar To Post Home Inspectors® enjoys a leading position in its category. As such, we have nearly 600 franchisees performing thousands of home inspections, and we gather a myriad of great tips from them. Here are some of their best tips for making sure your buyers are prepared—and positioned to be the most attractive bidder in a competitive seller’s market.

  • If your client isn’t going to be a cash buyer, make sure they get a pre-approval for a mortgage before looking for homes in their price range.
  • When putting together an offer, it helps if there are no contingencies involved, such as waiting for the client’s home to sell first. In the event that multiple offers are involved, it pays to be flexible in many areas, including—but not limited to—move-in date.
  • Work with your client to determine what they really need in a home versus what they really want. If inventory is tight, they may need to compromise.
  • Show your client that you’re committed to being in their corner and take the time to educate them in regard to everything they need to know as they make their way through the process.
  • Encourage your client to act quickly, as they’re bound to run into others who will not hesitate to make a move in a competitive market.
  • Be sure your client has all their documentation ready in case of a quick close. It’s also important to make sure they know exactly what they need to have in order, should they encounter a tight timeline.
  • Line your client up with the most reputable home inspector you can find so that they’re ready for the inspection. While there’s typically a period that ranges from 7-10 days to complete the inspection, be sure to remind your client that the tighter market may have sellers expecting an even quicker turnaround.
  • A home inspection is a prospective buyer’s most powerful negotiation tool, as well as the most valuable insurance one can ever get on a property, which is why the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) requires a special form entitled “For Your Protection: Get a Home Inspection” with every contract. More often than not, there won’t be much to see on the inspection report, but if your client happens to write an offer on a home with an issue that needs to be addressed, you may save both yourself—and your client—a lot of heartache with this simple report.

For more information, please visit www.pillartopost.com.

For the latest real estate news and trends, bookmark RISMedia.com.

The post Ask the Expert: How Can I Assist My Buyers in a Seller’s Market? appeared first on RISMedia.

Categories: Real Estate

Mortgage Rates Ease for Second Consecutive Week

NAR Daily News Magazine - August 17, 2018 - 12:00am

The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rate dipped again, relieving some borrowers.

Categories: Real Estate

Economists: Builders Add More Inventory, But Not Enough

NAR Daily News Magazine - August 17, 2018 - 12:00am

“Given the chronic lack of affordable housing and rapidly escalating home prices, it is worrisome that the country is producing new single-family housing stock at a rate that is similar to the trough of a typical recession,” Freddie Mac’s chief economist says.

Categories: Real Estate

Hot Midwest Markets Are Winning More Buyers

NAR Daily News Magazine - August 17, 2018 - 12:00am

The region dominates in realtor.com®’s latest hottest housing market list.

Categories: Real Estate