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Consumer News and Advice Archive


It’s Harder, but Still Possible, to Get a Loan

RISMEDIA, February 19, 2009-(MCT)-The freewheeling days of doling out cars and homes to just anyone are over. With the nation facing a deepening financial crisis, banks have tightened their credit standards. Yet, lenders say it's still possible for the average person to qualify. ...


Will the Stimulus Benefit Homeowners and Buyers?

RISMEDIA, February 18, 2009-"There are four primary sections of the economic stimulus plan that will benefit home owners and buyers," said Gibran Nicholas, chairman of the CMPS Institute, an organization that certifies mortgage bankers and brokers. According to Nicholas, these include: ...


How to Avoid Getting Hooked by Debt-Reduction Schemes

RISMEDIA, February 18, 2009-(MCT)-Get rid of debt fast and easy, for pennies on the dollar. If the deal sounds too good to be true ... well ... you know the drill. ...


How Not to Get Soaked When Buying That Dishwasher

RISMEDIA, February 17, 2009-(MCT)-For as long as there have been plates and forks and hungry folk who have polished off a meal, there's been the art-nay, chore-of doing dishes. As recently as 1970, 8 out of 10 American households got the job done the old-fashioned way: scrubbing with soap and ...


Tax Time in a Taxing Time: Seven Tips to Help You Keep More Money in Your Pocket Now and in the Future

RISMEDIA, February 16, 2009-Question: What three words do people least want to hear in the middle of a recession? (Besides "You're laid off," that is.) Answer: "It's tax time!" Yes, by now you should have your W-2 in hand, and you're already dreading having to file. Tax season isn't all ...


How Long Does a Loan Modification Take?

RISMEDIA, February 13, 2009-Understandably, homeowners who apply for a loan modification tend to get a little antsy and perhaps even annoyed when they apply for a loan modification and then fail to hear anything for several weeks, especially if they continue to receive late payment notices and nasty phone calls ...


Foreclosure Activity Decreases 10 Percent in January According to RealtyTrac U.S. Foreclosure Market Report

RISMEDIA, February 13, 2009-RealtyTrac®, a leading online marketplace for foreclosure properties, has released its January 2009 U.S. Foreclosure Market ReportTM, which shows foreclosure filings - default notices, auction sale notices and bank repossessions - were reported on 274,399 U.S. properties during the month, a 10 percent decrease from the previous ...


Bankruptcies Expected in Coming Months for Some of the Nation’s Biggest Homebuilders

RISMEDIA, February 12, 2009-Based on a review of the 33 U.S. homebuilders with more than $10M in revenue, more than 30 percent are in financial distress and in danger of filing for bankruptcy, according to an analysis by Grant Thornton Corporate Advisory and Restructuring Services. ...


The Washington Post and Trulia Announce Real Estate Partnership

Residential Real Estate Site to Power Local Listings Search on washingtonpost.com ...


Senate Passes Stimulus Bill, Real Estate Industry Reacts

NAHB estimates that the $15,000 tax credit would boost home sales by almost 500,000 ...


What Can a Half Century of Housing Inventory Data and Past Recessions Tell Us?

RISMEDIA, February 11, 2009-Like any other market, housing runs on supply and demand. Factors manipulate supply and demand like interest rates, employment, Wall Street, the government, and consumer confidence to name a few. But do we always have to accept what ...


Simple Tweaks to Ready Listings for the Next Wave in Online Search

RISMEDIA, February 11, 2009-Occasionally, changes in technology occur that greatly impact the real estate industry. In a webinar presented to EXIT Realty associates recently, Tom Emmendorfer, co-founder of the company behind EXIT e-Listings said, "I see two major changes occurring that will impact your real estate business as much as ...


Small Businesses More Easily Adapt

RISMEDIA, February 10, 2009-(MCT)-As one man's trash is another's treasure, one entrepreneur's failure is another's opportunity. I thought of these cliches last week when I noticed an advertisement from Allied Kitchen and Bath in Fort Lauderdale in The Miami Herald. In the ad, Allied was soliciting customers from the failed ...


Economic Woes Freeze Remodeling Market

RISMEDIA, February 9, 2009-The residential remodeling market declined further during the final quarter of 2008, according to the latest National Association of Home Builders' (NAHB) Remodeling Market Index (RMI). The current market conditions indicator slid to 27.7, from 33.5 in the previous quarter. Future expectations of remodeling work plummeted to ...


Real estate Q&A – Condo Buying & Understanding the Codes, Covenants and Restrictions

RISMEDIA, February 9, 2009-(MCT)-Q. My wife and I helped our daughter, financially, with the purchase of a condominium in October. We were given the Codes, Covenants and Restrictions for the homeowner's association prior to the close of escrow, and it indicated that the complex had 12 guest parking spaces. The ...


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