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Consumer News and Advice Archive


Negative Equity Falls in Third Quarter, Home Values Show Short-Term Stabilization

RISMEDIA, November 14, 2009—The percent of American single-family homes with mortgages in negative equity fell to 21% in the third quarter, down from 23% in the second, as home values stabilized in the short term and more underwater homeowners lost their homes to foreclosure, according to the third quarter Zillow Real ...


Stage Your Home for Under $1,000

RISMEDIA, November 6, 2009—(MCT)—Staging a home for sale can set it apart from the competition and make it inviting to the greatest number of buyers. Kiplinger's Personal Finance has these suggestions for staging your home for less than $1,000:  ...


Consumers Would Rather Make Their Homes Prettier than Energy-Efficient, According to Energy Pulse Survey

RISMEDIA, November 4, 2009—A new national survey recently released finds Americans once again prefer aesthetic home improvements–a refinished kitchen or bathroom–over money-saving improvements, such as energy-efficient windows or a high-efficiency furnace.  ...


Coming Together to Rebuild and Restore – How Two Companies are Bringing Hope to America’s Home Buyers

RISMEDIA, November 3, 2009—We’ve heard a lot about the ‘perfect storm’ over the past year—appreciating home prices, plus loans gone bad, plus unemployment equals a devastating downturn for real estate. But there’s another perfect storm you should know about: distressed ...


In Tough Economic Times, More Homeowners Look to Roommates to Help Make Ends Meet

RISMEDIA, November 3, 2009—(MCT)—Last year, Lori Gordon lost half her nest egg but gained a new friend about half her age. That would be Brooke Thalacker, the teacher and aspiring school counselor who now rents part of Gordon's home.  ...


Homebuyer Tax Credit Extension Crucial, Say Local Real Estate Professionals

RISMEDIA, November 2, 2009—(MCT)—Local real estate professionals hear a clock ticking, and they're sure it's wired to the economy. The federal government's first-time homebuyer tax credit is scheduled to expire Nov. 30. The credit, part of the Obama administration-backed economic stimulus package, rewards Americans for buying a home by cutting them ...


CAR Reports September Home Sales Increased 2.1 Percent; Median Home Price Declined 7.3 Percent

RISMEDIA, November 2, 2009—Home sales increased 2.1% in September 2009 in California compared with the same period a year ago, while the median price of an existing home declined 7.3%, the California Association of Realtors® (C.A.R.) recently reported.  ...


Administration Calls on Congress to Approve Key Housing Measures

RISMEDIA, October 31, 2009—Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner and HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan called on Congress to approve three important measures to improve housing and the housing market for Americans: extension of the First-Time Homebuyer Tax Credit for a limited period, extension of higher loan limits for home mortgages, and secure funding ...


Social Security 101 – Make Your Choice Wisely

RISMEDIA, October 31, 2009—(MCT)—Many Americans take Social Security early, at age 62, because they really need it. They're in poor health or unemployed or both. Others take benefits early because they're worried they'll lose out on what's rightfully theirs if benefits are reduced. But few people try to figure out the ...


Op-ed: Stimulus Aids Strong Economic Rebound – U.S. Economy Expands 3.5 Percent

RISMEDIA, October 30, 2009—There is light at the end of the tunnel, and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act got the economic engine closer to that light. The economy grew at an annual inflation-adjusted rate of 3.5% in the third quarter of 2009, the Bureau of Economic Analysis recently reported. This ...


Most Landlords Willing to Discount Rent to Aid Cash-Strapped Tenants

RISMEDIA, October 30, 2009—More than two-thirds (69%) of smaller, independent landlords will reduce rents to help tenants remain in their homes, according to The National Association of Independent Landlords.  ...


Significantly More Seniors Researching Reverse Mortgages

RISMEDIA, November 2, 2009—Golden Gateway Financial, a comprehensive financial resource for seniors and retirees recently released new usage data from its online Reverse Mortgage Calculator that showed falling home values continue to negatively impact the amount of money available to older Americans through a reverse mortgage. At the same time, ...


Roth Rules to Ease in 2010, But Decision Shouldn’t be Automatic

RISMEDIA, October 29, 2009—(MCT)-Since its creation more than a decade ago, the Roth IRA has been one of the best tax breaks around, but it's been closed off to higher-earning taxpayers. That will change next year.  ...


As Some Top Metro Foreclosure Activity Rates Decrease, New Foreclosure Hot Spots Emerge in Q3 2009

RISMEDIA, October 28, 2009—RealtyTrac, one of the leading online marketplaces for foreclosure properties released its Q3 2009 Metropolitan Foreclosure Market Report, which shows that cities in California, Florida and Nevada accounted for the 10 highest foreclosure rates in the third quarter among metro areas with a population of 200,000 or ...


Regional Spotlight: Florida’s Existing Home, Condo Sales Up in September 2009

RISMEDIA, October 28, 2009—Florida’s existing home sales rose in September 2009, which marks more than a year (13 months) that sales activity has increased in the year-to-year comparison, according to the latest housing data released by Florida Realtors. September’s statewide sales also increased over sales activity in August in both ...


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