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The Move-Up Juggling Act In a hot market it's often a deal killer to include in your offer to buy a new home, a contingency to sell your existing home. Sellers will simply take their pick of offers not burdened by such a contingency. On the other hand, if you sell your existing home first without signing for a new one, then you could wind up temporarily homeless or spending exorbitant amounts on hotel rooms or other high-priced temporary quarters. You do have some alternatives. The best-case buy-and-sell scenario is for those who can afford to own two homes -- if only temporarily. Those who
Mortgage Rates U.S. averages as of November 24, 2004:30 yr. fixed: 5.72%15 yr. fixed: 5.15%1 yr. adj: 4.27%30 yr. jumbo: 6.98%-->
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are able to put market cycles to work for them and actually reap a financial return in the process. Buy-low, sell-high: Most markets have up and down seasonal cycles when
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NAR Sees AnotherBig Year Ahead Some people call it a boom. Others say it is a runaway housing market that cannot be sustained. David Lereah prefers to describe the current cycle as a "good, healthy real estate expansion." And he believes it will "continue into the foreseeable future." "We're not at the end, we're at the middle," the chief economist of the National Association of Realtors said last month at the group's annual convention in Orlando. "We can take it into the next decade if the economy and interest rates cooperate." Actually, Lereah sees several other potential stumbling blocks that could short-circuit the current expansion: An aggressive tax reform effort that wipes away the write-off for mortgage interest. Reforms that alter the housing mission of the government-sponsored enterprises which keep the capital flowing into the mortgage market. Oil prices that, if they go through the roof, slow big-ticket sales.
Don't Let A House PartyRuin Your Holiday Eat, drink, but be wary during the fall and winter seasons of celebrations. Holiday house parties can be hazardous to your financial health and your guests' safety. If you are likely to host a holiday party this year, you probably don't know how risky it can be or if your homeowners insurance policy covers that risk. Alexandria, VA-based Independent Insurance Agents and Brokers of America found in a survey last year of 1,000 party hosts, more than two thirds of them mistakenly believed they were not liable for alcohol related crimes. The survey also found that most of those who believed they were not liable were in households with incomes of more than $75,000 a year -- households most likely to host a holiday party. Party hosts indeed can be liable under local "social host" laws if someone drinks too much and is involved in an auto accident on the way home -- at which time the party is really over. Nearly three dozen states have laws that hold social alcohol servers liable as a third party to drunken driving crimes and the laws apply. These laws apply to residential party hosts who both own and rent their homes. Holiday parties can range from small family gatherings to larger shindigs and business parties in
Are We Returning ToStraight Mortgages? My grandfather was always proud of the way he financed his home. Family lore says he bought a row house on a dirt road -- in Brooklyn! It was an immigrant's dream, financed with an interest-only "term" mortgage that lasted three to five years. At the end of the term you either paid off the loan or, more likely, signed up for another few years. Term -- or "straight" financing -- pretty much came to an end in the 1930s because as homes and farms lost value during the Great Depression, loans could neither be paid off nor renewed. One result was the movement toward long-term, self-amortizing mortgages which offered more security to borrowers during hard times. Today self-amortizing loans, mortgages in which the entire principal is paid off during the loan term, are a given -- but term loans are making a comeback.
CONTINUED >>>Local Market Conditions
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Bonnie Fagoh E-mail: email@example.comWeb: http://www.tampacoastalhomes.com/ Cell: 813-390-7606
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