Sunday, February 28, 2010

As Deadline fast approaches Homebuyer Tax Credit comprises %50 of Sales

As Homebuyers Tax Credit 60 day deadline approaches, Credit Lures %50
House prices up for the month, down for the year

S&P/Case-Shiller composite index of house prices in 20 metropolitan areas rose 1.6 percent in July from June — more than triple the estimate of a 0.5 percent rise found in a recent Reuters poll. The monthly price increases helped the annual rates, with the yearly pace of declines in home prices slowing to a 12.8% drop in the 10-city index and 13.3% downturn in the 20-city index. “These figures continue to support an indication of stabilization in national real estate values, but we do need to be cautious in coming months to assess whether the housing market will weather the expiration of the Federal First-Time Buyer’s Tax Credit in November, anticipated higher unemployment rates and a possible increase in foreclosures,” said David Blitzer, chairman of the index committee at S&P. Despite the overall improvement, annual rates for all metro areas and the two composites remain in negative territory, with 14 of the 20 metro areas and both composites in double digits, S&P said.

Mortgage rates to rise?

The Fed has been buying mortgage-backed securities since late 2008. But next month it plans to finish its purchase of $1.25 trillion in mortgages, and that could be bad news. There is wide agreement that the removal of this support will mean higher mortgage rates, which could hit housing prices and sales hard. Some even worry that it could cause the broader economic recovery to stall. The program was the largest single injection of cash into the economy by the Fed during the financial crisis, and it will be the longest-lasting source of funds as well. Even though the Fed intends to stop buying mortgages, few people expect that the central bank will start selling them to private investors any time in the next few years. even if the Fed holds onto the mortgages it has already purchased, the act of no longer buying additional mortgages is likely to raise mortgage rates in the coming weeks.

Experts say a jump of at least a quarter to a half percentage point is likely. San Francisco Federal Reserve President Janet Yellen warned of higher rates in a speech Monday. Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke is likely to take questions about the Fed’s mortgage program when he testifies about economic conditions on Capitol Hill Wednesday and Thursday. The worries about the Fed pulling back support for housing are compounded by the end of up to $8,000 in tax credits for home buyers. To qualify, buyers face an April 30 deadline to sign a sales contract. Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, argues that the Fed’s program and tax credit for home buyers “ended the free fall in home prices.” But he thinks that the removal of this support could mean that home prices could start to drop by as much as 1% a month again. He also thinks mortgage rates could climb by as much as a percentage point in the coming months.

Fed raises discount rate

The Federal Reserve said yesterday it is raising the rate it charges banks that borrow from the central bank when they run short of funds by a quarter percentage point, or 25 basis points, to 0.75%. The central bank said in a statement it made the move in response to improving financial market conditions. Don’t everyone panic here, because the move is largely symbolic – banks do little borrowing at the discount window and the discount rate has no effect on the more widely watched federal funds rate, which measures the rate banks charge each other for overnight loans. That rate is expected to remain between 0% and 0.25% for the foreseeable future, given the slack in the labor market and the still fragile state of the economy. But raising the discount rate allows Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke to take another small step toward normal monetary policy, after the past two last years of financial firefight. The Fed also shortened the term of some discount window loans and raised the minimum bid in the term auction facilities it uses to supply overnight funds to banks. The central bank said Thursday’s increase should “encourage depository institutions to rely on private funding markets for short-term credit and to use the Federal Reserve’s primary credit facility only as a backup source of funds” and added that it will “assess over time whether further increases in the spread are appropriate.” It added: “The modifications are not expected to lead to tighter financial conditions for households and businesses and do not signal any change in the outlook for the economy or for monetary policy.”

Jobs bill passes

The Senate voted Monday to push forward a $15 billion jobs creation bill that would give businesses a tax break for hiring the unemployed. The 4-prong bill will: Exempt employers from Social Security payroll taxes on new hires who were unemployed; Fund highway and transit programs through 2010; Extend a tax break for business that spend money on capital investments like equipment purchases; and Expand the use of the Build America Bonds program, which helps states and municipalities fund capital construction projects. The final legislation is a scaled-down version of an $85 billion bipartisan draft bill that was crafted by Sens. Max Baucus, D-Mont., and Charles Grassley, R-Iowa. However, the bill does not extend the deadline to apply for unemployment benefits and the COBRA health insurance subsidy. Some 1.2 million people will run out of benefits after Feb. 28 if the deadline is not extended. Lawmakers are looking to pass a separate, 15-day extension to give them time to enact a longer fix. And unlike the House’s bill, the Senate measure does not provide additional assistance for states. Many governors, who are holding their annual meeting in Washington, want the Obama administration to send more federal dollars their way so they can cope with yawning budget gaps. Labor leaders and left-leaning think tanks all say the Senate must do more to spur job creation – as if the Senate can fabricate jobs out of thin air somehow.

House prices up for the month, down for the year

S&P/Case-Shiller composite index of house prices in 20 metropolitan areas rose 1.6 percent in July from June — more than triple the estimate of a 0.5 percent rise found in a recent Reuters poll. The monthly price increases helped the annual rates, with the yearly pace of declines in home prices slowing to a 12.8% drop in the 10-city index and 13.3% downturn in the 20-city index. “These figures continue to support an indication of stabilization in national real estate values, but we do need to be cautious in coming months to assess whether the housing market will weather the expiration of the Federal First-Time Buyer’s Tax Credit in November, anticipated higher unemployment rates and a possible increase in foreclosures,” said David Blitzer, chairman of the index committee at S&P. Despite the overall improvement, annual rates for all metro areas and the two composites remain in negative territory, with 14 of the 20 metro areas and both composites in double digits, S&P said.
Tax credit lures nearly half of all first-time buyers

According to a survey conducted by Harris Interactive on behalf of Zillow.com, 18% of prospective first-time homebuyers said extending the credit from Dec. 1, 2009 to Nov. 30, 2010 would be the “primary influence” in their decision to purchase a home. An additional 25% said it would be a “significant influence,” 27% said it would have “some influence,” and 31% said it would have “no influence.” Zillow projects 1.86m homebuyers stand to take advantage of the program if it is extended, and if all potential buyers took the full tax credit, extending the program could cost $14.86bn. Zillow.com chief economist Stan Humphries said of all homebuyers expected under the 12-month extension through 2010, only one in five homebuyers will enter the market specifically because of the extended tax credit. In other words, 334,000 mortgages will open because of the tax credit extension. “While 334,000 may seem like a small number relative to the total number of homebuyers who would claim the credit, their addition to the market next year could make the difference between a robust annual increase in home sales next year and a flat or negative change in home sales relative to this year,” Humphries said.
Tampa Coastal
Tampa Coastal Homes

Thursday, February 18, 2010


Annual Spring Tampa Bay tradition: pitchers and catchers report to spring training baseball camps

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

World Class Waterfront Living on Tampa Bays Gulf Coast

World Class Waterfront Living

Enjoy Bella Sol Luxury Villas at Apollo Beach on Tampa Bay In Florida Call me to arrange your no obligation Free Boat Tour of the Area with world class sunsets, fishing and year round sports.


As a testament to the fantastic waterfront coastal living at Bella Sol Luxury Villas, Despite global market conditions, savvy customers have voted with their hard $$ Dollars in 2009 making this Realtor top 10 in the region out of 4,000 agents from Tampa, Orlando to the Georgia State line Thank you!


Reaching Centurion production is no small feat, especially in this market, and I owe thanks to those of you with the vision to see that NOW is the TIME TO BUY in Florida! Historically, December has been a "slow" month in real estate, but it was definitely NOT slow at beautiful BellaSol Luxury Waterfront Villas in Apollo Beach, FL. We put two more condo/villas under contract in late December and 2 more are to go under contract in January. The developer will be releasing some pre-construction luxury villa homes as soon as we complete Phase 2. Two new buildings with the exterior complete just need to be completed on the interior.

For those who don't feel BellaSol is a perfect fit, there are many other areas with desirable condos, townhomes and single family homes from which to choose in the Tampa Bay and surrounding areas. One of my clients wanted to be closer to the beach, so I helped them find a home just 10 minutes from the gulf for under $200k!

Buy BellaSol as your retirement home, vacation home, or just to enjoy maintenance free living! You will have more time to enjoy the water while someone else takes care of the lawn, pool, and all exterior maintenance!


For those needing to sell, please call me to go over your options. We have a system that works for those who need to do a short sale and we can offer a FREE consultation with a lawyer so you can find out what is best for you so you can make an informed decision.So to sum it up....great inventory, low prices, low interest rates, and fantastic weather make it the best time to BUY Florida Real Estate!!

Call Bonnie at (813) 390-7606 and schedule your complimentary boat tour of the Apollo Beach area. Come see why the dolphin and manatee love it here! Experience the waterfront lifestyle in this laid back community that is only a short 20 minute boat or car ride to the city of Tampa or 30 minutes to St Petersburg. Find out why the Tampa Sailing Squadron keeps their boats right here in Apollo Beach! We have a great central location with easy access to the Gulf of Mexico, Sarasota, Fantastic Pro-Golf, NFL Football, Even Pro Hockey and Baseball!! Yes you can have it all only 76 miles from Walt Disney World in Orlando and the Space Coast!

Buy BellaSol as your retirement home, vacation home, or just to enjoy maintenance free living! You will have more time to enjoy the water while someone else takes care of the lawn, pool, and all exterior maintenance!

Search all Tampa Bay properties at www.TampaCoastalHomes.com or better yet,
call me for a FREE boat tour! Bonnie (813) 390-7606

ZIP Code: 33572 Location Characteristics: Apollo Beach is a growing community centrally located between Tampa (20 min), Sarasota (30 min) and St Petersburg (20 min). There are 55 MILES of canals leading to Tampa Bay for those of you who enjoy water sports. Southshore Commons, a major "open air" mall is planned for 2011 with shopping, restaurants, movie theatre and office buildings.Bonnie Fagoh
Tampa Coastal Homes

Saturday, February 6, 2010