Clever Uses for Common Household Items

March 25th, 2014

 Clever Uses for Common Household Items

Save money and reduce waste with these handy ideas for using (and re-using) everyday items around your home.

It can’t be beat for firing up the outdoor grill, but did you know that charcoal is also a great do-it-yourself odor eater? Place a few pieces in a bowl of perforated plastic bag, and put it by the cat litter box or in any musty room to absorb odors. It’s also a great moisture absorber—put it in your toolbox to prevent tools from rusting.Vinegar. 
White vinegar can be used to bring sticky old nylon paintbrushes back to life. Heat up some vinegar and soak a dirty brush for a half hour to soften the bristles, then rinse in hot soapy water. A soak in vinegar can also help remove corrosion and rust from metal—just the ticket for loosening frozen nuts and bolts.

Packing peanuts. 
Don’t throw out those foam packing peanuts! They’re great to use in potted plants as filler beneath the soil. They improve drainage and reduce weight. You can also cut them in pieces and attach them to the back of framed pictures as padding to protect walls.

Vertical blinds. 
The next time you replace an old or broken vertical blind, save a few of the old slats. They come in handy when painting around corners and trim to help keep paint lines clean, in places where painter’s tape won’t fit.


#realtor #ericgreid #realestate #Gwinnett

Mortgage Default Risk Falls ..again

March 25th, 2014


Where is the Housing marker heading next

Housing Market

Housing trend for 2014

Mortgage  default risk falls as measured by the American Enterprise Institute’s (AEI) International Center on Housing Riskfell slightly from January to February, though certain market segments continue to see a rise in potential problem loans.

AEI’s National Mortgage Risk Index (NMRI), a measure of loans’ default risk under stressful conditions, retreated to 11.6 percent last month from January’s reading of 11.8 percent. To gauge where February’s index lies historically, 1990 vintage loans would have an estimated index value of 6 percent, while riskier 2007 loans would be up at 19 percent.

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac inched up one-tenth of a percentage point to 5.9 percent, while the Federal Housing Administration’s (FHA) risk index moved up the same amount to 24.5 percent.

An index value of less than 6 is “indicative of conditions conducive to a stable market,” AEI says.

At the local level, all states registered index values above the 6 percent line, with only Hawaii coming in below 7 percent. Most states have a composite index between 9.5 and 13 percent, AEI reports, though a few at the high end of the spectrum—such as Mississippi—remain in the mid-teens.

“Most of this variation is really a result of whether a state has a high or a low concentration of FHA loans,” said Stephen Oliner, resident scholar for AEI and also co-director of the Center on Housing Risk. Oliner offers as an example California and Texas, the two states with the largest FHA markets and which each have risk indices above 10 percent.


#MortgageDefault #RealEstate #Gwinnett #Lawrenceville #EricGReid #kellerWilliams

Which Home Renovations Pay Back When I Sell

March 5th, 2014

Which Home Renovations Pay Back When I Sell

Which Renovations Make Cents

I get so many questions asking what remodeling projects pay back the best .

Here is a great answer

Cost vs. Value Report: Which Renovations Make Cents
Photo: © Artazum Shiyan – Shutterstock

Home Renovations

Home Renovations ROI

Remodeling Magazine’s Cost vs. Value Report is out, and it’s good news for sellers. For the second year in a row, all 35 projects listed in the report recouped more money upon resale than the previous year. The boon is caused in part by rising existing-home sales and home prices. Between 2012 and 2013, existing-home sales rose 9.1 percent and home prices increased 11.5 percent. And as more homes are sold for more money, those sellers can expect to see greater returns on their investments.

First Impressions Count
For the second year in a row, a steel door entryway upgrade topped the list. This quick and affordable update to a home recouped 96.6 percent of its remodeling cost at resale. Buyers notice curb appeal first, and an upgraded front door makes a good first impression.

Stormy Weather
This past year’s record storms – and the power outages they caused – are in home buyers’ thoughts. As such, more and more homeowners are installing backup power generators. In past Cost vs. Value Reports, this renovation languished near the bottom of the list, but it now ranks 25 out of 35; install a backup power generator, and you’ll recoup 67.5 percent of its cost.

Space to Roam
Square footage is high on the list of buyers’ demands, but most are not willing to pay a premium for the extra space. Major home additions will recoup some of their initial costs, but the renovations that pay off the most are ones that convert existing square footage into usable space. Attic bedroom remodels rose in the report from eighth place to fourth; a homeowner who converts their dusty attic into sleeping quarters can recoup 84.3 percent of its remodeling costs at resale. Basement remodels also saw an improvement of 10.4 percent over last year; one will recoup 77.6 percent of its cost at resale.

Finishes Matter
Overall, homeowners will get the biggest returns by upgrading worn elements of their homes. But the size of the return often depends on the type of finish they choose. Take siding: the most expensive option, foam-backed vinyl, recouped 78.1 percent, while the cheapest option on the list – vinyl – recouped 78.2 percent. The cost of fiber-cement siding falls between the two, but it proved to be the biggest earner, recouping 87 percent of its cost at resale. Unlike siding, buyers seemed to have little preference when it came to windows, as both vinyl and wood saw similar returns on investment, recouping 76.6 percent and 74 percent, respectively. However, the choice of building material mattered when it came to decks. A wood deck installed for under $10,000 recouped 87.4 percent, while a composite deck that costs around $35,000 only recouped 65.1 percent.

The Heart of the Home
Three types of kitchen remodels were analyzed in the report. A major kitchen remodel costing over $100,000 recouped 63.6 percent, while a midrange remodel costing just half that recouped 74.2 percent. A more affordable $20,000 update of a kitchen saw a return of 82.7 percent of the initial investment – proving that sometimes, you don’t have to spend a lot to make a lot.

2014 Housing Market .. whats next

March 5th, 2014


2014 Housing Market

I was reading this great report on whats next in the market and wanted to share it with you. I caution you remember that all real estate in local and national trends to effect the local market. However the local market responses to its on local issues. So seek the advice of you Local Realtor (like me) that has Experience in your area (like me)and that understands that to be the best you have to be working and learning everyday (ok yep you got it me)

If greater Gwinnett we have had a dramatic fall of in inventor Buyer are become frustrated with limited inventor and making multiple offers only to “lose out” on the home of thier dream, causing them to move into rental situation which in some cases locks them out of the buying market for 1-2 years. If past trends of  for sale signs popping up like spring tulips repeats it self like years past, seller could find them selfs without buyers and this could lead to a decrease in pricing which would only encourage buyers to wait longer to see if prices continue to fall.

Long and Short .. Buyers Sign short term rental agreements when possible with easy exit conditions and Future home Sellers ..the Future is now, get your home list with a Realtor (me).

Houseing Market 2014

Houseing Market 2014



Author: Rick Sharga March 4, 2014

We can expect to see the U.S. housing market cool off as we move into 2014 for a number of reasons–some economic, some specific to the housing market itself. And the implications are significant for companies in the default services industry.

First, demand is relatively weak:

  • The recovery is too weak to stimulate demand from traditional homebuyers–labor force participation rates are too low (the unemployment numbers are a mirage), too many workers are in low paying and/or part time jobs to be able to afford to buy a home, and wages have been stagnant, and falling, in the middle class.
  • The first time homebuyer market, which fuels the whole ecosystem, is at historically low numbers–the 25-35-year-old cohort is staying home with mom and dad in record numbers and their unemployment rates are stubbornly high; many can’t afford to buy, many can’t meet the new requirements for loans; some have just decided not to buy right now.
  • Institutional investor activity, which drove a lot of the 2013 price increases, is beginning to weaken a little bit, and the focus has shifted into lower-priced markets, where investors can buy properties in the $85,000 – $150,000 range in order to rent them out profitably.

Second, credit is tight:

  • The new regulations that went in place on January 10, 2014 will make it more difficult for the average borrower to get a loan. Even the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) acknowledges that 8 percent of the loans issued in 2013 wouldn’t qualify this year–that works out to between 300,000 to 400,000 fewer eligible borrowers. And it’s likely that lenders will tighten up further until they’re comfortable operating within the new rules. Eventually, non-bank lenders will re-enter the market with non-agency loans, opening up lending to a wider audience. But this won’t happen until private capital comes back to the secondary market.
  • Fannie and Freddie are likely to drop their loan limits sometime this year, which will mean borrowers in higher priced markets will have to qualify for jumbo loans; they’re available, but the down payment requirements and qualifications are going to be too steep for many borrowers.
  • Loans are more expensive–FHA raised its premiums, which has a huge impact on the first time homebuyer segment, and interest rates will continue to go up this year, which makes affordability an issue.

Third, a lot of the price increases we saw in 2013 were due to circumstances that won’t be repeated:

  • Investors accelerated home price appreciation, particularly in hard-hit markets, by gobbling up most of the available inventory of foreclosed and distressed homes. This segment had the highest increase in prices last year, and probably inflated the overall numbers (said another way–non-distressed home prices didn’t go up nearly as dramatically as distressed home prices did). There’s fewer of these properties coming to market, and the ones that do come to market will have last year’s price increases built in, so we won’t see as big an increase as last year.
  • We’ve probably seen most of the “rebound” effect that we’re likely to see: Markets that had the biggest price increases in 2013 were the markets that had the biggest price decreases in the bust; most of them have recovered to where they’re more or less at “normal” levels now.
  • Much of the price increase in 2013 was due to extremely limited inventory in all three categories of homes (new homes, existing homes and distressed homes); inventory levels, while still somewhat lower than normal, are all starting to tick up a bit, which will take some of the pressure off.

So 2013 was clearly a seller’s market, and probably the last time we’ll see the combination of historically low interest rates and lower-than-normal home prices for a while. In 2014, we’ll probably see about the same volume of sales (about 4.9 to 5 million existing homes, and between 400,000 to 450,000 new homes) and much more moderate price increases–probably somewhere between 3-5 percent.

In the meanwhile, on a positive note for the housing market (but a mixed blessing for companies in the default services industry), delinquency and default rates continue to decline. Foreclosure starts are at the lowest levels since 2007. And most of the loans entering foreclosure are seriously delinquent—with borrowers often not having made a payment in two years or more.

With about 340,000 REO properties, slightly under 1 million homes in foreclosure, and another 1.5 million to 2 million loans seriously delinquent—but virtually no loans from the last three years going into default—it will take another 18-24 months to work through the backlog of distressed loans and get back to more or less normal levels.

Considering all of this, it’s incumbent upon servicers, asset managers and the professional service firms that support them need to re-think their value propositions and business models, and prepare to shift their focus as the housing market makes its way down the long, slow road to recovery.

Sales of New Homes…

March 4th, 2014

Sales of New Homes… hit a 5 1/2 year high

 Homes Sales

Homes Sales

Sales of newly built homes , new homes, hit a five-and-a-half-year high in January, with completed transactions of new single-family homes hitting an annual rate of 468,000, the Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development reported last week. January’s sales marked a healthy 9.6 percent climb from December’s revised rate of 427,000, and were 2.2 percent higher than January 2013’s pace of 458,000.

Looking at price and inventory, the median price of new homes sold in January rang in at $260,100, and the average sales price was $322,800. The estimated number of new homes for sale at the end of January was 184,000, which represented a supply of 4.7 months at January’s sales rate.
It’s important to note that new home sales can become volatile, and comprise a smaller portion of the real estate market than existing home sales. That said, housing market watchers are expecting overall growth for the real estate market through 2014.

“Despite higher mortgage rates, the fundamentals for new-home sales and residential construction are solid,” PNC Financial Services Group chief economist Stuart Hoffman told the Washington Post last week. “The economy is adding jobs and incomes are growing, making households more confident.”

#New Homes #Real Estate  #Lawrenceville #ericgreid #Realtor

Will New Housing Construction help or hurt the market ?

March 4th, 2014

Will New Construction be a good thing in todays recovering market ? cash-money-300x198

If Spending is a good thing and increasing inventor in an inventor lacking  market is also a good thing and buyers ability to buy / barrow is a good thing then New Construction is a good thing to the power of 3

Author: Tory Barringer March 3, 2014 0

Construction spending saw an unexpected—albeit slight—uptick in January, according to monthly data released by the Census Bureau.

The government’s latest report shows spending on all construction projects was up 0.1 percent from December, coming to an estimated seasonally adjusted annual rate of $943.1 billion. That figure is 9.3 percent ahead of January 2013’s estimate of $863.1 billion.

Economists polled by Reuters had expected a 0.5 percent decline in spending to follow December’s originally reported 0.1 percent improvement.

Private construction spending led the way, gaining 0.5 percent month-over-month to an annual adjusted rate of $670.8 billion. Spending on private homebuilding projects was at a rate of $359.9 billion, 1.1 percent above December’s revised estimate.

Breaking down the numbers, spending on new single-family construction was at a rate of $186.0 billion, up 2.3 percent month-over-month, while multifamily spending came to $36.3 billion, up just 1.0 percent.

On the public side, spending was down 0.8 percent to an adjusted rate of $272.3 billion, with residential projects contributing about $4.5 billion (down 13.4 percent compared to December).

Is The Housing Recovery Over?

February 26th, 2014

This recent article found in DSNEWS provides great insight into the current and future housing market

Currently we are seeing an increase days on market an early indicator of a slowing market. This trend is occurring in multiple local and national markets.

Now is the time to get your home on the market and sold before the spring inventory increases, which could drive down demand and prices


Is the Strongest Part of the Housing Recovery Over?

Many of the nation’s major metros reported slowdowns—and even retreats—in home prices last quarter, but those weren’t enough to keep 2013 from being the strongest year for house prices in nearly a decade.

S&P Dow Jones Indices released Tuesday its S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices for December, showing national prices up 11.3 percent as of year-end, a slight pickup over the previous quarter’s annual improvement of 11.2 percent. The national index covers all nine U.S. census divisions.

While prices were strong in Q4 compared to the previous year, they were down relative to Q3, dropping 0.3 percent.

“The S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index ended its best year since 2005,” said David M. Blitzer, chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices. “However, gains are slowing from month-to-month and the strongest part of the recovery in home values may be over.”

Blitzer also pointed out there are other factors to consider when looking at the big picture.

“Recent economic reports suggest a bleaker picture for housing,” he said, citing weak numbers in existing-home sales and new construction. “Some of the weakness reflects the cold weather in much of the country. However, higher home prices and mortgage rates are taking a toll on affordability.”

For just December, the smaller 10- and 20-city composites were little changed, with only the 20-city index showing a minor decline.

Year-over-year, the 10- and 20-city indices posted gains of 13.6 percent and 13.4 percent, respectively, approximately 30 basis points lower than their November increases.

As of December, average home prices across the United States were back to mid-2004 levels, remaining down about 20 percent from their peaks in summer of 2006.

A few cities stood out in the most recent report. According to Dow Jones Indices, Chicago posted its highest annual return since December 1988, while Dallas posted climbed to another new peak with its largest annual gain since its inception in 2000.

Denver, which set an all-time high as recently as last September, reported a 0.1 percent monthly drop in home prices, bringing it down 0.7 percent from its peak. Phoenix, coming off of more than two years of consecutive monthly gains, posted a 0.3 percent price drop, its largest since March 2011.

Year-over-year, all 20 cities tracked showed positive growth. Las Vegas, Los Angeles, and San Francisco all posted improvements of more than 20 percent, though they also showed lower annual rates compared to November.

At the same time, most of the cities ranked at the bottom in terms of annual growth—including Denver, Washington, D.C., and New York—experienced acceleration in home prices.



Housing Inventory Continues Fall in January

February 17th, 2014

Time and time again I am being asked these days  “hows the housing market “. My response for the last several months has been  the same – Houses  are selling fast Low Inventory and Low Mortgage Rates adding in High Buyer  makes for a Seller Market. The following article outlines the current market trend


Housing Inventory Continues Fall in January

Author: Krista Franks-Brock February 14, 2014

Housing Market

Housing trend for 2014

Housing inventory declined more than 9 percent over the month of January in the 19 markets in which online real estate brokerage Redfin has a presence, according to the company’s Real-Time Price Tracker for January. The decline marks the fourth consecutive monthly drop in inventory, according to Redfin.

“A year ago, we didn’t think inventory could go any lower, yet we’re beginning 2014 with another disappointment,” Redfin stated in its January report.

With the caveat that “it is too soon to tell,” the brokerage did offer some optimism regarding inventory in coming months, revealing “Redfin agents report that most of their home selling clients are planning to list between March and May.”

Sellers say they believe they will receive better offers during spring home buying season, and they believe when they do list their homes, they will sell easily and quickly.

The report also indicates the market is in somewhat of a catch-22: Sellers are reluctant to list their homes for sale while inventory is so low, as they are unsure they will be able to find and afford a new home, according to Redfin.

Home sales declined closely in line with inventory, falling almost 10 percent in January. However, Redfin explains this is no surprise, as January’s home sales result from offers made during the holiday season, often “the lowest point of the year.”

Home prices in Redfin’s 19 markets increased 14.3 percent year-over-year in January, similar to last January’s 14 percent year-over-year increase. Price appreciation, which accelerated over the first half of the year, slowed in the second half but ticked up again in December and January, according to Redfin’s data. In April, prices rose 18.7 percent over the year. In October, price appreciation was down to 12.6 percent.

West Coast markets experienced the greatest price appreciation in January, according to Redfin’s observation of its markets. Prices rose most in Las Vegas, Nevada (24.6 percent); Ventura, California (21.1 percent); and Riverside, California (21 percent).

Of the 19 markets, inventory dropped most in Boston, Massachusetts (-31.8 percent); Chicago, Illinois (-25.6 percent); and Portland, Oregon (-24.4 percent).

Buyers, Sellers Will Jump Off the Fence This Year – the trend for 2014

February 13th, 2014

Great information of what to expect in the housing market for 2014.

I think the following sums it up perfectly “Normalcy is returning to residential real estate,” says Lee. “People are seeking homes for all the right reasons: to gain shelter and security, raise a family, and generate long-term wealth.”

The more I meet with both sellers and buyers i am hearing less concern about value and more questions regarding “life style and life style needs”

the 2014 houseing market

the 2014 houseing market

 Buyers, Sellers Will Jump Off the Fence This Year


Consumers are more committed to buying or selling this year, according to Prudential Real Estate’s fourth quarter Consumer Outlook Survey. Of the 2,500 consumers surveyed, 78 percent held a favorable view of real estate, a five-point jump from the previous quarter and 15 points higher than at the end of 2012. Sixty-three percent said they were more committed to buying and selling in 2014.

One generation in particular has a favorable perception of real estate right now: Millennials. The generation peaked at 87 percent with a favorable perception of real estate in the latest survey.

“Consumers understand that the U.S. economy and residential real estate continue moving in positive directions,” says Earl Lee, CEO of HSF Affiliates LLC. “Accordingly, they’re feeling much better about their personal situations and want to take advantage of attractive home prices in many markets and interest rates that remain low by historical standards.”

However, two events in 2013 — the government sequestration and rising interest rates — have influenced their personal finance decisions, consumers say.

And while they’re optimistic, consumers are also realistic, believing that the rate of appreciation of U.S. home values will slow after a strong run in 2013. They say their No. 1 concern about the housing market is “decreasing home values,” followed by “saving enough for a down payment.” Respondents to the survey also say that tight housing inventories would likely impact their home-buying decisions this year, and 67 percent expect to face more buyer competition.

“Normalcy is returning to residential real estate,” says Lee. “People are seeking homes for all the right reasons: to gain shelter and security, raise a family, and generate long-term wealth.”

Other findings from the survey:

  • 96 percent say owning a home is important.
  • 78 percent say that home ownership is an important part of the American dream.
  • 72 percent say that finding the right home and community are key to their family’s happiness.
  • 64 percent say a good real estate agent can help them make the right choices about the type of home and community they want.
  • 62 percent say a good agent can help maximize home ownership investment.

—By REALTOR® Magazine

Owners Targeted in Deed Scams

February 13th, 2014
Real Estate Scam Alert

Real Estate Scam Alert


 New Home Owners Targeted in Deed Scams

Wanted to share this article  with my clients and friends as I have seen this occurring in Gwinnett County more and more

Undersatnd that deed / titles are available for free at the Gwinnett Co Court House for free also most closing attorneys provide title / deeds within 90 days of closing. SO DONT BUY ONE no matter how official the documents looks


Scammers are approaching new home owners and trying to trick them into paying $83 for unnecessary property records — including deeds that are available for a few bucks at county government offices or are already supplied at the end of a real estate transaction, the Milwaukee Sentinel Journal reports.

Fake companies reportedly are soliciting customers with a formal-looking letter that resembles a government bill. The companies are using multiple names for their business, such as Record Transfer Services, Property Transfer Services, Conveyance Transfer Services, Record Retrieval Department, and National Deed Service. They often use a similar phone number: 888-874-4669.

In a recent case in Wisconsin, new home owners were asked for an $83 “document fee” for a deed and “real property records” by a certain deadline.

“Some people don’t even call and ask the question,” says Sherieda Wilder, a records clerk with the Milwaukee County register of deeds office. “They just automatically send [the money]. They’re just excited they get their house.”

Graig Goldman, a real estate broker with RE/MAX Lakeside Realty in Milwaukee, first alerted the Sentinel about the scam after two of his clients approached him separately within two months of purchasing a house to ask why they had received another bill.

At the bottom of the letter was a disclaimer: “The company Record Transfer Services is not affiliated with the State of WI or the County Recorder. … This offer serves as a solicitation for services and [is] not to be interpreted as a bill due.”

“For people who don’t understand the real estate process or that a deed exists, they think they have to pay this,” says Cori Lamont, director of regulatory affairs with the Wisconsin REALTORS® Association.