How Do we improve the air quality in our Homes?

 Usually the most effective way to improve indoor air quality is to eliminate individual sources of air pollution or to reduce their emissions. Some sources, like those that contain asbestos, can be sealed or enclosed; others, like gas stoves, can be adjusted to decrease the amount of emissions. In many cases, source control for air quality is also a more cost-efficient approach to protecting indoor air quality than increasing ventilation because increasing ventilation can increase energy costs.

Most home heating and cooling systems, including forced air heating systems, do not mechanically bring fresh air into the house. Opening windows and doors, operating window or attic fans, when the weather permits, or running a window air conditioner with the vent control open increases the outdoor ventilation rate and serves as a simple form of air cleaners. Local bathroom or kitchen fans that exhaust outdoors remove contaminants directly from the room where the fan is located and increase the outdoor air ventilation rate.

It is particularly important to take as many of these steps as possible while you are involved in short-term activities that can generate high levels of pollutants–for example, painting, paint stripping, heating with kerosene heaters, cooking, or engaging in maintenance and hobby activities such as welding, soldering, sanding, model making and gluing.

However, remember that for most indoor air quality problems in the home, source control is the most effective solution.

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Negative Equity continues being a Serious Concern Despite Year Over Year Decline!

Negative Equity continues being a Serious Concern Despite Year Over Year Decline!

HARP-Refinance

While the percentage of homes in the United States with negative equity has declined substantially since the fourth quarter of 2013, they experienced a slight increase quarter-over-quarter in Q4 2014, according to CoreLogic‘s Q4 2014 Equity Report released last Tuesday.

CoreLogic reported that 10.8 percent of all residential homes were underwater in Q4, this is about 5.4 million properties approximately, which was down from 13.3 percent  in the same quarter a year earlier. The Q4 total was up slightly from the 10.3 percent that was reported for Q3 2014 – an increase of 3.3 percent.

Despite the year-over-year decline in the percentage of underwater residential properties, negative equity remains a serious issue, according to Anand Nallathambi, president and CEO of CoreLogic. For the full year of 2014, 1.2 million borrowers regained equity – but nearly five and a half million properties remained in negative equity as of the end of the year after approximately 172,000 homes slipped into negative equity from the third quarter to the fourth quarter in 2014.

Approximately 10 million of the nearly 50 million residential properties with a mortgage in the United States, which is about 20 percent of these properties have less than 20 percent equity, a condition known as under-equitied.

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Keep Your Money Where It Is, if you’re planning on buying a home!

Keep Your Money Where It Is, if you’re planning on buying a home!

spend_less_money_save_moreIt’s not wise to make any huge purchases or move your money around three to six months before buying a home. You don’t want to take any big chances with your credit profile. Lenders need to see that you’re reliable and they want a complete paper trail so that they can get you the best loan possible.

If you open new credit cards, amass too much debt or buy a lot of big ticket items, you’re going to have a hard time getting a loan.

Are you better off fixing or buying a home?

Are you better off fixing or buying a home?

There is neither a specific answer nor one size fits all!  There are plenty of considerations to review. First of all, your financial ability and market demands are some of the factors to survey before deciding if it’s wiser to find a new dream home or fix your current home.Luxury Home Kitchen.

Before considering renovating your existing home, take an inventory of your home’s physical current condition, and deal with contractors for renovation costs. Major home renovations bring stress, unexpected complications and budget overruns. Depending on the age of your current home, you may also have to jump through additional hoops to meet newer building code requirements.

Purchasing a new home could actually cost you less monthly than renovating your home depending on its age, and types of renovations you’re considering. If you intend on financing renovation costs,  find out how much you will be adding to your existing mortgage, home equity loan or line of credit  versus obtaining a new home mortgage.

Keep in mind that even if you renovate your older home, in a future buyer’s eyes, it’s still an older home. It is a good idea to have a sense of the market activity in your neighborhood to consider trading up or renovating your current home. The main purpose of home renovations is primarily to increase your home’s enjoyment. While you may be able to recoup some or most of the costs during the home’s sale, there are no guarantees.

Se vence el pago de la primera cuota del Impuesto a su Propiedad

Se vence el pago de la primera cuota del Impuesto a su Propiedad

 El 1ro. De Noviembre es el Pago de la Primera cuota del Impuesto  a su Propiedad. Todos los dueños de propiedad en California deben pagar los impuestos sobre la propiedad que se basan en el valor de sus viviendas o propiedades comerciales. Property Taxes Due Now copy

Estos Impuestos se pagan en dos plazos. Las Primeras facturas de impuestos sobre la propiedad del año fiscal son enviadas en octubre; y el primer pago  es el  1 de noviembre y se considera moroso  el 10 de diciembre.  El pago de la segunda cuota es el 1ro. De Febrero, y se considera moroso el 10 de Abril y penalidades de hasta un 10% podrían añadirse a su cuenta.

Para muchos de los contribuyentes de California, la ley de impuestos sobre la propiedad es uno de los mayores pagos de impuestos que se realizan cada año. Para muchos  de los gobiernos locales en California, las escuelas K-12, colegios comunitarios, ciudades, condados y distritos especiales representan la base esencial de sus ingresos.

Los impuestos sobre la propiedad en California incluyen una variedad de diferentes cargos fiscales. Entre estos  están  la tasa de 1 por ciento establecida por la Proposición 13 en 1978.  Bajo la Proposición 13, los impuestos a la propiedad no podrán  superar el 1 por ciento del valor tasado de su propiedad y no puede elevarse a una cantidad superior a la tasa de inflación medida por el índice de precios al consumidor, con un 2% limite al año.  También incluyen otros impuestos aprobados por los votantes, evaluaciones de Propiedad efectuadas por los condados, impuestos  llamados  Mello Roos e Impuestos de Parcelas.

Abriendo Puertas para la compra de tu Casa Propia!

Abriendo Puertas para la compra de tu Casa Propia!

Los Reguladores Federales anunciaron  el martes la promulgación de nuevas reglas bajo la QRM  para promover el financiamiento hipotecario.  Estas promulgaciones  permitirán la elegibilidad  y asequibilidad de más compradores de casas, para que así puedas  hacer realidad el sueño de la Casa Propia!

Tu Casa Propia!

Tu Casa Propia!

Nos referimos a los tan esperados cambios bajo las Reglas de Hipotecas Calificadas, QRM (Qualified Residential Mortgage). Estas reglas  proporciona un conjunto de requisitos necesarios que un préstamo debe cumplir para ser considerado elegible y poder ser vendido   en el mercado secundario.

La regla QM provee estándares de habilidad para pagar los seguros de préstamos y la asequibilidad de los mismos.  Bajo la regla QRM, los préstamos se consideran generalmente calificados si la relación de deuda a los ingresos del prestatario es 43 por ciento, y con una cuota inicial  de solo 3 por ciento, a comparación del Programa del Gobierno FHA que requiere un mínima cuota inicial del 3.5 por ciento, entre otras cosas.

Los prestamistas ya están trabajando en sus sistemas para actualizar todos estos cambios, que se reflejara en una ampliación, y disponibilidad de crédito a los compradores de Casa que hasta ahora ha sido uno de los principales obstáculos para incrementar la compra y venta de propiedades.

Bienvenidos los cambios de la QRM!

Opening Doors for Homebuyers!

Opening Doors for Homebuyers!

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation is the first of six financial regulators to release the final version of the long-awaited qualified residential mortgage (QRM) rule. The National Association of Realtors applauds this action because it will make possible to incorporate rules that include a broad definition for Qualified Mortgage standards implemented earlier this year.

Got your House?

Got your House?

Under the QRM rule, loans are generally considered qualified if the borrower’s debt-to-income ratio is 43 percent, among other things and there is not onerous down payment requirement, as regulators had originally proposed.

The NAR strongly opposed earlier versions of the rule that included 20 and 30 percent down payment requirements, which would have denied millions of Americans access to the lowest-cost and safest mortgages

For lenders, having these two rules in alignment provides the clarity they’ve long been asking for, widening and deepening loan eligibility and availability, which has been one of the main stumbling blocks to increased home sales.

Homebuyers will have now more credit availability reflecting an increase in home purchases, and refis. Way to go!

Got Refi?   Rates…better than ever

Got Refi? Rates…better than ever

 

Finding-a-refinance-rate-for-your-homeFalling interest rates precipitated a major refinancing rally  according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA’s) Refinance Index.  The MBA’s Refinance Index is a weekly measurement put together by the Mortgage Bankers Association, and the National Real Estate Finance Industry Association.

Strong job growth, coupled with  low mortgage rates, should reflect now the increase in home sales and purchase originations. Great time for purchases but even better for refinancing.

 

 

 

Sales of Existing Homes Increase, however not enough

Sales of Existing Homes Increase, however not enough

Sales of previously owned homes rose in September to the highest level in a year, adding to signs that residential real estate will be a plus for the economy.

National Association of Realtors reported today in Washington that closings on home sales advanced 2.4 % to 5.17 annual rate, and purchases rose 1.9% from the same month last year before adjusting for seasonal patterns.

Why this is a great time to sell your home?

Why this is a great time to sell your home?

On the way, easier lending standards and faster wage gains would attract even more buyers, including those making their first entrance to homeownership.

Sales of existing single-family homes increased 2% to an annual rate of 4.56 million in September from the prior month, also the fastest pace in a year. Purchases of multifamily properties including condominiums rose 5.2% to a 610,000 pace.

Of all purchases, cash transactions accounted for about 24%, down from 33% 12 months earlier, Investors, 63% of whom paid cash 14% of the market last month, in September 2013, they accounted for 19%. And First-time buyers accounted for 29% of the market for a third month in September. Distressed sales, accounted for 10% of the total

We are aware that residential real estate market has definitely gotten better; however it has not fully recovered. There is a lot more to be done!

Cambios alentadores en el Mercado Hipotecario

Cambios alentadores en el Mercado Hipotecario

 La Agencia Federal de Financiación de la Vivienda – FHFA ha estado trabajando hacia un plan para ampliar lo que muchos vemos como regulaciones y estándares crediticios  demasiado restrictivos.

Los gigantes hipotecarios Fannie Mae y Freddie Mac, el FHFA regulador y los prestamistas están cerca de un acuerdo que ampliaría notablemente el crédito hipotecario al mismo tiempo que permite  a los prestamistas protegerse de  cargos de  préstamos incobrables.  Si el acuerdo se materializa, los prestamistas van a tener más disponibilidad de prestar a aquellos  prestatarios con bajo puntaje de crédito  y mínimas cuotas iniciales para la compra de una casa.

La Casa Propia más  cerca que nunca!

La Casa Propia más cerca que nunca!

Ahora que los prestamistas comenzaron  a eliminar algunas de las restricciones de crédito, es un excelente momento para  mejorar  el crecimiento de la vivienda en el país.  Esperamos  que el FHFA nos informe de los pasos siguientes  y apoyar el retorno del producto a las GSE, Fannie Mae y Freddie Mac de 97% LTV.

Fannie Mae y Freddie Mac han recuperado decenas de miles de millones de dólares en multas de los prestamistas en los últimos años sobre irregularidades que los prestamistas cometieron  en la venta de préstamos a estos gigantes hipotecarios.  Sin embargo, los prestamistas han culpado las sanciones a las condiciones de crédito extremadamente rigurosas  y permitir hacer préstamos solo a prestatarios con créditos impecables.

Esperamos que estas iniciativas tengan un impacto significativo sobre el mercado hipotecario, y podamos ver cambios positivos en la dirección del mercado hipotecario después de años de   exageradas regulaciones de crédito.   El próximo Martes se hará público el informe de Ventas de Casas  existentes  correspondiente al  mes de Septiembre, el Jueves el índice de Compra en la Vivienda solo en  FHFA, y el Viernes el  reporte  de las Ventas de Viviendas nuevas.