January 2011

Found 15 blog entries for January 2011.

From national and Santa Cruz County real estate to the U.S. economy, the predictions for 2011 are in.  Like any predictions, they vary from gloomy to cheery.  Overall, the U.S. forecasts for national and Santa Cruz County real estate are more positive than negative for 2011.

1. Real Estate Economy Watch predicts:  People are interested in buying a foreclosure.  Nearly half (49 percent) of U.S. adults are at least somewhat likely to consider purchasing a foreclosed property, up from 45 percent in May, 2010. Despite the rising interest in buying a foreclosed home, an increasing number of U.S. adults also recognize negative aspects to buying a foreclosure.

2. Bill Redfern, CEO of A Buyer’s Choice Home Inspections says:  Presale inspections are on the

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When you go through a Santa Cruz  foreclosure, your credit score drops considerably. The good news is that you can rebuild your credit.  Here are a few tips to help:

1. Create a budget. A budget lets you see exactly how much money you have to spend each month. It also helps you track where you spend your money. Put together a budget that fits your lifestyle and then stick to it.

2. Build an emergency fund. You never know when an emergency will happen. When you’re prepared for a financial emergency, you’re better protected from financial problems.

3. Repair your credit.  Review your credit reports from all three credit bureaus.  Dispute any errors you find.  Removing errors from your credit reports help improve your credit.

4. Establish new credit.

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FHA loans are mortgages issued by qualified lenders, including traditional lenders like Citigroup and Wells Fargo, and insured by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA).  The popularity of these loans are skyrocketing and for good reasons.  They feature low down payments, low closing costs and are easier to qualify for.

Despite this popularity, there are many misconceptions surrounding FHA loans.  Here are just a few myths and the facts behind them.

Myth #1: FHA only loans small amounts to buyers of Santa Cruz homes. 
Fact:  To help stabilize the real estate market, the government recently raised the maximum loan amount from its original cap of $362,790 to $793,750. The FHA loan amount a buyer can borrow varies by state and county.

Myth #2:  FHA

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One of the least understood aspects of Santa Cruz County home loans is the different types of lenders.  Many people assume they have to get a home loan from a traditional savings and loan.  Not so.  There are many different types of lenders.

Here are the main types of mortgage lenders and how they function:

1. Mortgage Bankers: Mortgage bankers are loan originators that operate with the sole objective to sell the loan they create to another source. Even though they will sell the loan they must have the ability to finance the loan in the first place and hold it until it is sold.

2. Mortgage Brokers: This type of lender does not originate loans for your Santa Cruz County home, they prepare the paperwork to submit to multiple lending institutions and get

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Picking up the phone book and letting it fall open to the real estate agency page is not the best way to find a great Santa Cruz County real estate agent.   Here are several other pitfalls to avoid when looking for a real estate agent:

• Impulse: Just because you walk into a busy, bright, and productive looking office doesn't mean all the agents who work there are also busy, bright and productive. Take the time to get to know the agents you’re considering working with.  Interview them, like you would any other professional you hire, to determine their abilities and knowledge of the community in which you want to live.

• Easy Agreement: If you finally find an agent who instantly agrees with everything you have to say about the selling price of your home

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