The return of flipping, post office for sale, and buying a piece of South Dakota
The Atlantic highlights the growing reality of the emergence of two housing markets: ‘nice’ homes and ‘ugly’ homes. Buyers are finding that homes with everything on their wish lists – airy family room, updated kitchen, bedroom on the first floor – aren’t selling at much of a discount even as overall prices decline. What’s holding down a housing recovery are the ugly homes with bad floor plans, outdated appliances and major problems. Lack of new construction and remodeling is only exacerbating the problem. If a big enough price differential emerges, the author asserts, we may see the return of the flippers.
The US Postal Service is considering closing over 3,600 post office branches (including one in a building Ben Franklin once owned). Check to see if any of your neighborhood branches are on the list here.
We’re always excited to crow about recognition in the family. So we’re happy to report our sister consumer site, houselogic.com recently one an Interactive Media Award for Outstanding Achievement in both the real estate and lifestyle categories. Good job everyone!
It’s back to school season (where did the summer go?!) and time for the annual sales tax holiday. How can states still afford this? Check to see if your state or a neighboring one is participating this year.
Scenic, South Dakota, might not have much — a dance hall, a jail and a handful of out-buildings. But it’s a town. And most of it could be yours for $799,000. CNN reports on how you can buy yourself a town.
We have received a few inquiries in Information Central about foreclosure data. While the NAR does not collect or publish such data, we have a few resources to recommend. Let us know if you have any to add to this list!
This August 2011, the HUD launched a mapping tool that displays the geographic location of foreclosure properties owned by the FHA, Fannie Mae, and Freddie Mac.
Though this tool offers only an approximation based off data published by the Mortgage Bankers Association in 2007 and 2008, and from several federal agencies, it allows granular analysis of small areas and communities across the United States. Read the methodology paper to understand how the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) developed the data.
The MBA’s data is known to be reliable and allows granular research of mortgage delinquencies and foreclosures. The MBA offers a free map of delinquency rates by state. Other data, such as quarterly state foreclosure trends and totals, are available for purchase. Some public libraries may include MBA resources in their collections.
National Public Radio (NPR) has put together a visual representation of foreclosure, unemployment, and median household income rates by county, based off data from Realty Trac, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, and Nielsen Claritas.
Published as a part of the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2011 Statistical Abstract.
We offer field guides on a diversity of real estate topics in our Virtual Library. They provide an easy way to “get smart quick” on a topic, and are an excellent starting point for real estate research.
States Negotiate $26 Billion Agreement for Homeowners, (New York Times, Feb. 8, 2012).
Underwater homeowners become reluctant landlords, (Detroit Free Press, Jan. 1, 2012)
FHFA begins development of new REO pilot programs (HousingWire, Dec. 1, 2011)
Foreclosure Findings by State (Realty Trends, May 2011)
When Will REO Sales Finally Reach the Peak? (REALTOR® Magazine, Oct. 18, 2011)
Foreclosures News from the New York Times (updated regularly)
Homeowner Associations in Need of Cash Sue to Force Foreclosures, (Bloomberg, Aug. 23, 2011)
Delinquencies Rise, Foreclosures Fall in the Second Quarter, (Mortgage Bankers Association, Aug. 22, 2011)
The Home Affordable Refinance Program: What You Need to Know, (Washington Post, Oct. 24, 2011)
If you came across this post looking for mortgage assistance, check out these government programs:
Real Estate Groupon, the Recession, and open houses
Online coupons are all the rage. Though I wonder if they’re sustainable, Groupon, LivingSocial, etc. are the hot marketing tip of the moment. Have you thought about using them in your real estate business in some way? Before jumping in, make sure they don’t violate any state laws. The RealTrends blog urges caution when using online coupons.
The Obama administration is ramping up talks on how to revive the housing market, which is weighing on the economic recovery—and possibly the president’s re-election in 2012.
And while the administration and congress are looking for solutions, economists are still looking for the causes of the Great Recession. University of Chicago economist Amir Sufi argues the main factor responsible for both the severity of the recession and the subsequent weakness of the economic recovery is the deplorable condition of the U.S. household balance sheet. The bad news: a quick fix has yet to materialize.
Having a bad turnout at an open house can be disappointing. It can feel like wasted time and money. A down market changes the game when it comes to open houses. It’s time to get creative!
The list of the most-accessed Field Guides during the month of June was recently released:
- Field Guide to Working with FSBOs
- Field Guide to License Reciprocity / License Recognition
- Field Guide to Transfer of Development Rights
- Field Guide to Listing & Selling Luxury Properties
- Field Guide to Opening a Real Estate Brokerage
- Field Guide to Open Houses
- Field Guide to Commercial Broker Lien Laws
- Field Guide to Buying vs. Renting
- Field Guide to Strategic Planning for Associations
- Field Guide to Real Estate Office Manuals