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Consumer News and Advice Archive


Regional Spotlight: New York’s November 2009 Home Sales up 34% Compared to Last Year

RISMEDIA, December 24, 2009—Statewide sales of existing single-family homes in New York State jumped 34% in November 2009, compared to November 2008, according to preliminary existing single-family sales data accumulated by the New York State Association of Realtors® (NYSAR). The statewide median sales price rose by 3% compared to November ...


Volunteers Encourage Neighbors to Seek Trial Loan Modifications

RISMEDIA, December 31, 2009—(MCT)—Standing on the front stoop of neighborhood homes, Betty Gutierrez sees her community from a different vantage point than she has in the 25 years she has lived in West Lawn, Ill. ...


HUD Issues Booklet to Help Consumers Shop for Home Loans

RISMEDIA, December 24, 2009—The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) recently released a new settlement cost booklet to help consumers shop for the best mortgage to meet their needs. This booklet will help borrowers become familiar with the various stages of the home buying process, including deciding whether ...


Virtual Staging Technique Helps Realtors and Home Owners Sell Vacant Properties

RISMEDIA, December 23, 2009—Realtors and Homeowners are raving about www.virtualstagingsolutions.com, a low-cost, innovative, home staging site that's helping them sell vacant properties faster than ever before with a new technique that virtually displays the properties furnished in order to show its potential. ...


First-Time Home Buyers Active in New Jersey Real Estate Market

RISMEDIA, December 23, 2009—According to the 2009 Profile of New Jersey Home Buyers and Sellers, first-time buyers account for a larger portion of the housing market than in previous years, largely due to the impact of the federal home buyer tax credit. The survey results released by the New Jersey ...


Home for the Holidays

RISMEDIA, December 22, 2009—That is a phrase that stirs deep emotions. The very idea of spending the most precious time of the year in a warm safe place surrounded by friends and family is the very essence of the perfect Christmas. ...


Tips for Homeowners: How to Budget for Home Maintenance

RISMEDIA, December 22, 2009—While buying a home is a huge financial expenditure, homeowners need to keep in mind that the spending doesn’t stop once the home is purchased. Whether you are moving into a new or old home, homeowners need to be aware of the ongoing maintenance that any home ...


New Home Energy-Efficiency Incentives Could Boost Recovery

RISMEDIA, December 21, 2009—The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) recently commended President Barack Obama as he proposed a new initiative to create jobs and make today’s homes more energy efficient. ...


Has the Housing Industry Hit Bottom? As Demand Disappears, Builders Say 2009 Marks Housing’s Bottom

RISMEDIA, December 18, 2009—Despite significantly lower traffic and sales this month, Southern California retained pricing strength and the majority of surveyed builders expect revenues to increase in 2010, according to John Burns Real Estate Consulting's December survey of home builders. ...


What You Need to Know about the Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives Program

RISMEDIA, December 17, 2009—The Treasury Department recently released guidelines and forms for its new Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives Program (HAFA). HAFA is part of the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) and provides incentives in connection with a short sale or a deed-in-lieu of foreclosure (DIL) used to avoid foreclosure on ...


Help for Homeowners – Understanding the Making Home Affordable Program

RISMEDIA, December 16, 2009—(MCT)—Michelle had lived in her southeast Wichita home for 15 years, but when she emerged from a bankruptcy in January, her bank informed her that she had missed $9,000 in house payments in recent years. ...


A Holiday Letter to the President

RISMEDIA, December 15, 2009—Merry Christmas to you and your beautiful family. This is a difficult time to be the leader of the free world, and here at home expectations have been so high that you cannot really blame people for being a little disappointed in the results. ...


Ending the Housing Crisis One Short Sale at a Time – How One Company Provides Security to the Process

RISMEDIA, December 14, 2009—Short sales and home warranties seem to go hand in hand, especially considering the realities of today’s real estate market. ...


Making Home Affordable Modification Program Moving Slowly – Just 4% of Mortgage Modifications are Permanent

RISMEDIA, December 14, 2009—(MCT)—Just 4% of delinquent borrowers who started trial mortgage modifications under the Obama administration's housing plan have had those more affordable loan terms made permanent, the Treasury Department recently reported. ...


HomeGain Releases Results of Fourth Quarter Home Prices Survey

RISMEDIA, December 11, 2009—HomeGain, one of the first websites to provide free, instant home values, has announced the results of its fourth quarter Home Prices Survey of Realtors based on the responses of 928 U.S. real estate agents and brokers across the United States. ...


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