How to Lose a Bidding War (but Also How to Win One)

As much as I enjoy writing blog content – I enjoy sharing articles that are well written and pertinent. Please enjoy this article – and I’ve added my two cents in

italics.

How to Lose a Bidding War (but Also How to Win One)

It’s prime home buying and selling season, and if you’re looking to buy in an area with low inventory and high demand, you’re probably going to run face-first into a bidding war. After the housing crunch of 2008, they certainly went away for a while, but now a recent study has found bidding wars are back in force.

 

So here’s the question for buyers: Do you know how to handle a bidding war, or are you going to let that dream home get away? Here are all the things you can do wrong—so you know how to do it right.

 

Fail to realize you’re in a bidding war

 

A surefire way to lose a bidding war is to not realize there’s going to be one. So, how do you know?

First thing’s first: Know where you’re shopping. If you’re in one of the following markets—some of the hottest in the country, viewed two to seven times more often on our site than the national average—chances are, there’s going to be a bidding war:

Even if you’re not in one of those regions, the housing market remains tight nationwide (too many buyers, not enough inventory). So, observe your surroundings. How many people are at the open house?

“If it feels as though you’re at Grand Central Station at rush hour, chances are there will be a multiple-offers situation,” says Victoria Vinokur, an estate broker at Halstead Property in New York City.

Finally, if you’ve made an offer and your agent tells you they’ve heard of higher bids, “you now know you have competition,” says Susan MacDonald of Daniel Gale Sotheby’s International Realty in Garden City, NY.

 

On the San Francisco Bay Area – we are experience a severe housing shortage coupled with high demand. You can bet your bottom dollar if you are trying to buy property right now – you will be up against multiple offers.

Be completely disorganized 

Sellers want your offer to come in a crisp, easy-to-read package, not in a mis-autocorrected Snapchat. When you know you’re in a bidding war, says Vinokur, get answers to these questions:

  • Is there a deadline to submit offers?
  • Is there a specific offer format the seller wants to see?
  • Are there any other factors that might be important to the seller? Do he want a quick closing or a delayed one? Noncontingent financing offers? Does the seller want to stay in or rent the home until he can find another home (also known as a rent-back agreement)?

 

Now this is where The Caton Team comes in. We are proactive Realtors. So once a client tells us they are interested in a property – we pick up the phone and call the Sellers Agent. I ask the above questions and more. When possible, I get the disclosure package so my buyers can read them before we write an offer and therefore write a stronger offer knowing the condition of the property. Price is important – do not get me wrong – however a great offers encompasses more than just price. So The Caton Team makes sure to find out the sellers’ needs and wants and how our clients can fulfill them and find a happy medium.

Not asking these questions is a good way to get your offer rejected. You also want to know what the seller is looking for and if it lines up with what you’re willing to do.

“Have a clean, correct, and easily legible offer packet, with a pre-approval letter or proof of funds,” said Sepehr Niakin, a broker who owns CondoBlackBook.com in Miami. Add a cover letter, and don’t be afraid to get personal.

“Write a letter to the owners stating why you love the home,” Vinokur said. Make no mistake: This should not be a lighthearted letter—it should be well-written and sincere.

An effective cover letter should include these things:

  • An introduction complimenting the seller’s property
  • A second paragraph describing what you’re like—your job (a good one, we hope!), your family, your interests.
  • The third paragraph should describe how you envision your future in the property. For example: “We hope you will accept us—we would love to raise our kids here.”

 

We call the Offer Letter part of our Home Buyer toolbox. And ask each buyer to write on for each home they offer on. The power of a personal letter can move mountains and sometimes make the difference between an accepted offer or an overlooked one.

Part of each offer we present, The Caton Team always ensures the offer is well written, properly completed (after all it is a legally binding contact), pre-approval letter, proof of funds and a letter from the buyer along with a letter from The Caton team is attached. When at all possible we present the offer directly to the Seller and their Realtor. However, these days most offers are emailed in – so we also write an email letter outlining the offer and our clients strengths.

 

Make a lowball offer that doesn’t stand out 

 

In a hot market, don’t lowball to see if the seller will entertain your offer (that’s for the off-season). When crafting your bid, make it a strong figure—and make it a number that might stand out.

“Most offers will be in round numbers, so stand out by going to the next highest number with a 1 or a 6 at the end of it,” says Brian Horan, a broker with Home Buyers Marketing II in Los Angeles.

 

A lowball offer in this market screams one thing – the buyer is not serious, not working in reality and is wasting everyone’s time (ok that’s three things – but you get my point). The Caton Team will prepare a Comparative Market Analysis before we write the offer – so our buying clients can write their strongest offer and know what to expect.

 

Don’t sweeten the pot

 

When you’re competing with multiple offers, you have to come prepared. If you can pay with cash, that’s a huge plus—our experts agree it’s one of the best ways to win. But not everyone can do that. Get pre-approved so the seller knows you’re serious. If that’s not enough, sweeten the pot.

“Pay with cash if possible; if not, consider increasing the amount of your down payment,” said Sharon Voss, president of the Orlando Regional Realtor® Association.

You can also put down some substantial earnest money—“1% or greater,” says Lera Lasater Lee, a Realtor® with Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s International Realty in Dallas.

If you’re still dead-set on getting that home, you can also offer to pay the seller’s closing costs.

 

Cash is king – but not all of us have cash. Don’t let this sway you. A well-written offer, with a solid down payment, strong / competitive terms and supporting documentation is hard pressed to be overlooked. If you can swing more than 20% down, this will set you apart. And we always encourage our buyers to write a 3% earnest money deposit (the maximum protected in the contract).  Offering to pay the closings costs helps too – and part of those fees are possible tax write-offs.  Not bad..

 

Lose sight of your limits

 

It’s a fine line to walk, though––sweetening the pot can be helpful, but be careful not to get caught up in a buying frenzy. If you overpay for the house, did you really win? Take a step back and figure out a limit on how much you want to pay for that property.

You can go about this in two ways:

  • Make your best offer upfront, pre-emptively assuming you won’t have a chance to make another, Voss says.
  • Go with an escalation clause, which details how much you’re willing to outbid another offer up to a certain limit, says Niakin. For example, you make an offer of $400,000 with a cap of $425,000, offering to outbid the last bidder by $5,000 increments until it reaches $425,000. (You’ll also want to get a lawyer to word the clause correctly.)

“This is only recommended if the buyer really wants the property and is willing to lay all their cards on a table when they know there will be multiple, very motivated buyers making offers,” Niakin said.

 

It is very important for a buyer to know their financial life before they start the buying process. Just because the bank has approved your for X – doesn’t mean X fits your lifestyle. So each buyer needs a budget and needs to know their maximum comfort level. 

Rarely is a buyer going to get a second chance in this market. So writing your best offer, with no chance of a counter is the best mindset. In regards to the escalation clause – we’ve seen this, we’ve done this – but always with a Real Estate attorney present. In Realtor jargon – these are known as sharp offers.

Put in a bid, then skip town

Now is not the time to head to the Bahamas. If you really want that home, you should stick around until you know whether your offer fell through or was accepted.

“Don’t go out of town or be otherwise inaccessible to your Realtor during a bidding war,” says Voss. “Be prepared to make decisions very quickly and respond very quickly to questions about your offer.”

 

If you are planning a vacation – let your Realtor know when and then plan on stepping out of the buyer ring until you return. There is very little time in the midst of real estate negotiations and you could lose out on a home if you are not available to respond quickly.

 

Drag your feet to the closing

 

Sellers like to close fast. When you’re in a multiple-offer situation, it’s best to make an offer with few contingencies. That can mean forgoing repairs or added appliances and furniture.

An appraisal contingency is debatable if you’re paying with cash—if you really know your area and are confident it will appraise right, you might decide to waive it—but be sure to ask your agent. One thing you don’t want to do is skip the inspection contingency.

No matter what, be quick about it.

“Tighten up your timelines,” Niakin said. “Instead of 15 days, make it seven or 10 days. If you run into some issue, you can always ask for an extension later.”

 

Thankfully most sellers in the San Francisco Bay Area provide upfront disclosures packages that include a recent Home, Pest and Roof Inspection. In our market, we are seeing no contingencies. Which can be scary – but note – no property contingency doesn’t mean you cannot have your own inspections – you can!  However they are not contingent to the sale. Unless new material information is discovered (IE. Previously undisclosed defects arise.  You do have an opportunity to discuss this with the seller and have a short time frame to do so.)  Sound scary? That is why The Caton Team is by your side each step of the way. We will provide the disclosures to you, answer your questions and advise you how to tackle each offer.  Each home presents its own opportunities and issues – so each situation is different.  

Lose your sense of perspective 

 

Above all else, keep a clear head.

“Don’t be emotional; set a threshold price and don’t be upset if you lose,” Vinokur said.

“Get your ducks in a row before entering the home purchase process,” Lee echoed. “Don’t be afraid to walk away.”

 

This article had great advice that I do follow with my own clients. We always say – offer your best price and if you do not get the house – you know they other fella paid too much!

If you have any real estate questions or concerns or would like to share your two cents please feel free to email us, or comment below.

 

I read this article at: http://www.realtor.com/advice/how-to-win-a-bidding-war-on-your-dream-house/?identityID=9851214&MID=2015_0403_WeeklyNL&RID=353497822&cid=eml-2015-0403-WeeklyNL-blog_1_lose_bidding_war-RDC_buy

Remember to follow our Blog at: https://therealestatebeat.wordpress.com/

Got Questions? – The Caton Team is here to help.  

Email Sabrina & Susan at: Info@TheCatonTeam.com

Call us at: 650-568-5522

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Or Yelp me: http://www.yelp.com/user_details_thanx?userid=gpbsls-_RLpPiE9bv3Zygw

Connect with us professionally at LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=6588013&trk=tab_pro

Please enjoy my personal journey through homeownership at:

http://ajourneythroughhomeownership.wordpress.com

 

Thanks for reading – Sabrina

The Caton Team – Susan & Sabrina – A Family of Realtors

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices – Drysdale Properties

Sabrina BRE# 01413526 / Susan BRE #01238225 / Team BRE# 70000218/ Office BRE #01499008

 

It’s Official – San Carlos Drought Declaration – Effective 5/15/2015

It’s Official – San Carlos Drought Declaration – Effective 5/15/2015

 

As some of you San Carlos residence know – last year the City Council passed Ordinance 1479, which gave the City tools for the enforcement of water restrictions if/when a declaration of drought emergency is declared. This means that “non-essential” uses of water in San Carlos would become unlawful during the declaration period, and financial penalties would be enforced by the City.

 

On Monday, February 9, 2015, the City Council voted to declare a state of drought emergency in San Carlos.  The decision came down even though we saw ample rain in December 2014, and most recently just this past week.  But January 2015 was the driest and hottest year the Bay Area has ever recorded, and marks the fourth consecutive year of drought in California. According to the news release, local water storage is still only 58% of its maximum capacity.

 

The Penalty for Water Waste.

 

If you are caught wasting water after the commencement of the declaration period, which will take effect on 5/15/2015, it’s going to cost you some money. San Carlos Municipal Code Chapter 1.20 outlines the penalties for violations of Ordinance 1479:

  • $100 for the first violation;
  • $200 for the second violation within the same year;
  • $500 for each additional violation within the same year;
  • For each day a violator continues the unlawful action, he or she is guilty of a separate offense.

Curious about what you can and cannot do with water this summer?  You can read the ordinance and see a complete list of all nonessential water uses by clicking the following link:  San Carlos Ordinance 1479.

 

Remember to follow our Blog at: https://therealestatebeat.wordpress.com/

Got Questions? – The Caton Team is here to help.  

Email Sabrina & Susan at: Info@TheCatonTeam.com

Call us at: 650-568-5522

Want Real Estate Info on the Go? Download our FREE Real Estate App:  http://thecatonteam.com/mobileapp

Visit our Website at:   http://thecatonteam.com/

VISIT OUR NEW INSTAGRAM PAGE: http://instagram.com/thecatonteam

Visit us on Facebook:   http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sabrina-Susan-The-Caton-Team-Realtors/294970377834

Yelp us at: http://www.yelp.com/biz/the-caton-team-realtors-sabrina-caton-and-susan-caton-redwood-city

Or Yelp me: http://www.yelp.com/user_details_thanx?userid=gpbsls-_RLpPiE9bv3Zygw

Connect with us professionally at LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=6588013&trk=tab_pro

Please enjoy my personal journey through homeownership at:

http://ajourneythroughhomeownership.wordpress.com

Thanks for reading – Sabrina

The Caton Team – Susan & Sabrina – A Family of Realtors

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices – Drysdale Properties

Sabrina BRE# 01413526 / Susan BRE #01238225 / Team BRE# 70000218/ Office BRE #01499008

 

REAL EATS – The beat on where to eat! MY NEW FOOD BLOG

REAL EATS

The beat on where to eat!

Hello! Thank you for reading my first installment of REAL EATS, the beat on where to eat. I thought I’d combine my love of good food with my passion for Real Estate and blog about local restaurants. I mean, what better information for a Realtor to know than where the best restaurants are and if you can walk to them from your house!   I plan on sharing my favorite spots up and down the San Francisco Peninsula and beyond. I hope you have a chance to enjoy the amazing food our communities have to offer.

I’ve bookmarked all these restaurants (and more) on my yelp page, please feel free to visit: http://www.yelp.com/user_details_bookmarks?userid=gpbsls-_RLpPiE9bv3Zygw

Curious how much properties are going for 2 miles around The Refuge in San Carlos California – click: http://thecatonteam.com/RealtorWebPage?content=http://thecatonteam.com/Listings?operation=search%26ls=REIL%26predefined=2068109881

 

The Refuge – 963 Laurel Street, San Carlos

So for my first entry – I chose one close to my heart and soul for a couple of reasons. One – it’s silly – but the building was my former Karate DoJo. Oh the memories of testing for belts in the same space I am now sipping a beer and enjoying a fine sandwich – is a riot. I love watching communities grow, how buildings change and repurposed. Anyway – let’s get to the food!

When I first discovered that a restaurant in my favorite town – San Carlos – was featured on Diners-Drive-Ins-and-Dives – I was so excited. When I saw the episode, my husband and I couldn’t wait to head down there.  Let me tell you – we were not disappointed. On our first visit, hubby got the Ruben and I got the Toasted Slaw #19. Oh boy! The moment that plate hit the table, it smelled so good, I knew I was in for a treat. The bread was perfectly toasted, the sauerkraut on the Reuben and the Slaw on mine were well seasoned. Good cheese, great flavor… But the meat – the House Made pastrami – the lacquer – was spectacular! I am drooling just thinking about it. Needless to say – we’ve returned several times and enjoyed bringing new people to appreciate their treats. I even tried the grilled Cambozola Sandwich. Good Lord, the gooey blue cheese with caramelized onions, matched with the apple and lemon-tomato marmalade. Heaven. Delicious Heaven. Oh it comes with a salad too. And a side of guilt for eating something so decadent – hahah – but worth every bite!

I managed to snap two photos in my numerous visits. Seriously – the food is that good I forgot I want to take a picture; the camera doesn’t stand a change against my hunger. Oh, they also have a plethora of awesome beers from around the world. So truly a treat for every single one of your taste buds.

~*~

Head over to my Instagram page THECATONTEAM where I share some delicious photots! Instagram #onlyinsancarlos: https://instagram.com/thecatonteam

Find The Refuge on YELP: http://www.yelp.com/biz/the-refuge-san-carlos

My review of The Refuge on Yelp: http://www.yelp.com/biz/the-refuge-san-carlos?hrid=ngysaEXxUjixsTkyBcRtvQ

Real Estate around The Refuge:  http://thecatonteam.com/RealtorWebPage?content=http://thecatonteam.com/Listings?operation=search%26ls=REIL%26predefined=2068109881

 ~*~

Please to follow my Real Estate Blog – The Real BeatKeeping a Pulse on the SF Peninsula Market at: https://therealestatebeat.wordpress.com/

Got Questions – The Caton Team is here to help.

The Caton Team strives to be more than just Realtors – we are also your home resource. If you have any real estate questions, concerns, need a referral or some guidance – we are here. Contact us at your convenience – we are but a call, text or click away!

Email Sabrina & Susan at: Info@TheCatonTeam.com

Call us at: 650-568-5522 Office: 650-365-9200

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Visit us at:  Our Blog * TheCatonTeam.com * Facebook *Yelp Us * My Yelp * Instagram * HomeSnap* Pintrest * LinkedIN Sabrina * LinkedIN Susan

 

Thanks for reading – Sabrina

 

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices – Drysdale Properties

Sabrina BRE# 01413526 / Susan BRE #01238225 / Team BRE# 70000218/ Office BRE #01499008

The Caton Team does not receive compensation for any posts.  Information is deemed reliable but not guaranteed. Third party information not verified.

All restaurant reviews are unsolicited and unpaid.  Photos of dishes are my own snaps.

 

FHA mortgage insurance premiums – going down

Earlier this year, President Obama announced that HUD will lower its FHA mortgage insurance premiums by 50 basis points, from 1.35 percent to .85 percent, effective Jan. 26.  This move will make it easier for hundreds of thousands of home buyers to get a mortgage and provide greater access to homeownership for historically underserved groups and credit-worthy families.  On a $300,000 loan, that could mean a savings of $1,500 a year.

 

The annual mortgage insurance premium for most FHA transactions has been reduced. What does this mean for you?

· Monthly savings: borrowers can purchase a home with the lowest possible total monthly mortgage payment. For those with an LTV greater than 95% or high credit scores, FHA financing will provide a lower total monthly mortgage payment than conventional loans with private mortgage insurance.

· Repeat homebuyers are eligible for high LTV financing: conventional loans with private mortgage insurance restrict LTVs greater than 95% to first-time homebuyers. Alternatively, FHA financing is available for first-time homebuyers and repeat principal-residence purchasers with LTVs up to 96.5%.

· Qualify more buyers : A lower total monthly mortgage payment results in a lower DTI ratio, potentially allowing more borrowers to qualify for mortgage financing.

· Afford more home: You may be able to purchase a more expensive property without increasing their total monthly mortgage payment.

· Refinance savings: Clients who have recently purchased a home with FHA financing may be eligible to refinance their mortgage and lower their total monthly mortgage payment for immediate savings.

 

This is great news for homebuyers!   Call us for more information!

 

Remember to follow our Blog at: https://therealestatebeat.wordpress.com/

Got Questions? – The Caton Team is here to help.  

Email Sabrina & Susan at: Info@TheCatonTeam.com

Call us at: 650-568-5522

Want Real Estate Info on the Go? Download our FREE Real Estate App:  http://thecatonteam.com/mobileapp

Visit our Website at:   http://thecatonteam.com/

VISIT OUR NEW INSTAGRAM PAGE: http://instagram.com/thecatonteam

Visit us on Facebook:   http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sabrina-Susan-The-Caton-Team-Realtors/294970377834

Yelp us at: http://www.yelp.com/biz/the-caton-team-realtors-sabrina-caton-and-susan-caton-redwood-city

Or Yelp me: http://www.yelp.com/user_details_thanx?userid=gpbsls-_RLpPiE9bv3Zygw

Connect with us professionally at LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=6588013&trk=tab_pro

Please enjoy my personal journey through homeownership at:

http://ajourneythroughhomeownership.wordpress.com

Thanks for reading – Sabrina

The Caton Team – Susan & Sabrina – A Family of Realtors

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices – Drysdale Properties

Sabrina BRE# 01413526 / Susan BRE #01238225 / Team BRE# 70000218/ Office BRE #01499008

 

California Homebuyer’s Rejoice as Mortgage Rates Continue to Drop

California Homebuyer’s Rejoice as Mortgage Rates Continue to Drop in February

 

Though many experts once predicted mortgage rates around 5% at the beginning of 2015, these forecasts have once again been defied this month. Thanks to concerns over slowing foreign economies, among other economic factors, mortgage rates have continued to drop – an encouraging change for buyers and the newest indication that business will continue to blossom in 2015.

According to the latest report from Freddie Mac, the average fixed rate on a 30-year loan dropped to 3.58% in the first week of February, marking the first time since May 23, 2013 that the average rate for a 30-year fixed loan reached below 3.6%.

Similarly, the fixed rate on a 15-year loan dropped to 2.92% – down from 2.98% the week before. Likewise, the starting rate on a hybrid loan – those that become adjustable after five years – dropped the same week.

While mortgage rates have reached their lowest point in over 20 months, it should be noted that these rates are far below their historic levels. In February of 1982, for example, rates were as high as 17.6% for a 30-year fixed loan, according to Freddie Mac. In February 2007 – the beginning of the subprime mortgage meltdown – the average rate on a 30-year fixed loan was at 6.29%

According to Len Keifer, Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist, buyers or those trying to refinance their home need not worry about rates rapidly increasing, as recent economic reports have indicated the economy is still not strong enough to trigger inflation.

“Pending home sales were weaker than expected,” he said. “Moreover, real [economic] growth for the fourth quarter was 2.6% and the Institute for Supply Management reported slower growth in manufacturing last month, both missing market consensus forecasts.”

I read this article at: http://re-insider.com/2015/02/12/california-homebuyers-rejoice-as-mortgage-rates-continue-to-drop-in-february/

Remember to follow our Blog at: https://therealestatebeat.wordpress.com/

Got Questions? – The Caton Team is here to help.  

Email Sabrina & Susan at: Info@TheCatonTeam.com

Call us at: 650-568-5522

Want Real Estate Info on the Go? Download our FREE Real Estate App:  http://thecatonteam.com/mobileapp

Visit our Website at:   http://thecatonteam.com/

VISIT OUR NEW INSTAGRAM PAGE: http://instagram.com/thecatonteam

Visit us on Facebook:   http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sabrina-Susan-The-Caton-Team-Realtors/294970377834

Yelp us at: http://www.yelp.com/biz/the-caton-team-realtors-sabrina-caton-and-susan-caton-redwood-city

Or Yelp me: http://www.yelp.com/user_details_thanx?userid=gpbsls-_RLpPiE9bv3Zygw

Connect with us professionally at LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=6588013&trk=tab_pro

Please enjoy my personal journey through homeownership at:

http://ajourneythroughhomeownership.wordpress.com

 

Thanks for reading – Sabrina

The Caton Team – Susan & Sabrina – A Family of Realtors

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices – Drysdale Properties

Sabrina BRE# 01413526 / Susan BRE #01238225 / Team BRE# 70000218/ Office BRE #01499008

 

 

Economic Momentum Drives Consumers’ Optimism Toward Housing Market

Though I am posting this article in March – I am sitting here reading it in February and I have to say I more than agree.  The holiday season is always a slow time of the market – however this January I was surprised at the volume of buyers out there house hunting and in droves!  Our listings all received multiples offers and sold for well over list price.  The open houses in January were packed and they have’t slowed down through February either.  I don’t expect demand to slow down in the Bay Area through the Spring.  So if you are thinking about buying Real Estate this year – give us a call or an email so we can educate you on what it takes to buy on the San Francisco Peninsula.  If you are thinking of selling your home this year – call us ASAP to be ready to take advantage of the best time to come on the market. – Sabrina 650-568-5522 /sabrina_caton@yahoo.com

 

Economic Momentum Drives Consumers’ Optimism Toward Housing Market

Author: Tory Barringer

After suffering a setback in December, American attitudes toward the housing market recovered last month, with more consumers saying it is a good time to get off the sidelines.

Sixty-seven percent of American adults responding to Fannie Mae’s January National Housing Survey said now is a good time to buy a home, the company reported Monday, while 44 percent said now is a good time to sell. Both figures are up from December, when positive responses were at 64 percent and 40 percent, respectively.

Doug Duncan, SVP and chief economist at Fannie Mae, said the country’s current economic momentum played a role in January’s more upbeat views of the housing market.

“Consumers are as positive about their personal finances at the start of 2015 as they have been since we launched the National Housing Survey in 2010, and this optimism seems to be spilling over into housing market attitudes,” Duncan said. “Consumers are more optimistic about the environment both for buying and for selling a home today, and the share who plan to own on their next move has jumped back up, reversing a three-month trend toward renting.”

The share of respondents in Fannie Mae’s survey who said their household income is “significantly higher” than it was a year ago climbed 4 percentage points to a survey high of 29 percent, the company reported. Looking ahead, 48 percent said they expect their finances to improve in the next year, also a survey high.

Overall, 44 percent of Americans said they believe the economy is on the right track, an increase of 3 percentage points and only five points less than those saying the economy is headed the wrong way (49 percent).

That optimism spurred 66 percent of those surveyed to say they would buy a home if they had to move, a jump from 61 percent at the end of 2014. The share of those who would rent, meanwhile, slipped after three months of gains, falling to 29 percent.

“Overall, these are good signs to start off 2015 and are consistent with our expectation that strengthening employment and economic activity will boost the speed of the housing recovery,” Duncan said.

 

I read this article at: http://dsnews.com/news/02-09-2015/economic-momentum-drives-consumers-optimism-toward-housing-market?utm_source=DS+Weekly&utm_campaign=a98b7ac983-DS_Weekly&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_cc3ebd2b74-a98b7ac983-175410313

Remember to follow our Blog at: https://therealestatebeat.wordpress.com/

Got Questions? – The Caton Team is here to help.  

Email Sabrina & Susan at: Info@TheCatonTeam.com

Call us at: 650-568-5522

Want Real Estate Info on the Go? Download our FREE Real Estate App:  http://thecatonteam.com/mobileapp

Visit our Website at:   http://thecatonteam.com/

VISIT OUR NEW INSTAGRAM PAGE: http://instagram.com/thecatonteam

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Report: DOJ Pushing to Charge Individuals for Roles in Mortgage Meltdown

This is a hot topic –  I thought I would repost this article.  I don’t have an answer but I am curious as to you, my readers opinions.  Please comment or email me!

 

Report: DOJ Pushing to Charge Individuals for Roles in Mortgage Meltdown

Author: Tory Barringer

 

Attorney General Eric Holder has given U.S. attorneys across the country 90 days to judge whether or not they want to bring cases against specific individuals for their alleged roles in 2008’s mortgage crisis, according to reports.

Speaking at a National Press Club event on Tuesday, Holder said federal prosecutors who have previously brought charges against firms for selling toxic mortgage-backed securities will be given an opportunity to investigate individual employees for potential charges, Reuters reported.

Holder reportedly told the assembled press that prosecutors will have 90 days to report back on “whether they think they are going to successfully bring criminal or civil cases against those individuals.”

The announcement marks a policy shift for Holder, whose department has taken criticism from consumers and politicians with its failure to go after bank executives and some institutions following the crash. In early 2013, he famously remarked at a Senate committee hearing that the size of some institutions makes it difficult to prosecute them without impacting the economy.

He walked those comments back later, saying, “If we find a bank or financial institution that has done something wrong, if we can prove it beyond a reasonable doubt, those cases will be brought.”

The timing of the attorney general’s announcement is also bound to raise questions: With Holder on his way out, the ultimate decision to prosecute would be made by his replacement, who right now is slated to be Loretta Lynch.

“Once again, it appears as though the Administration is looking to bully the mortgage banks, or should I say bankers, instead of restoring faith and confidence into the mortgage banking system,” said Ed Delgado, President and CEO of the Five Star Institute.  “Despite hundreds of billions paid in fines and penalties, it’s not enough.   Today’s announcement from U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to seek action against mortgage bankers, just as he is about to leave office, is nothing more than one last attempt to impugn and embarrass an already beleaguered industry.

“Now names and people’s lives have to be destroyed, but to what end? To satisfy what agenda? It begs the question: will a single family benefit from this action? Will a foreclosure be reversed? Or has the matter of seeking justice become politicized to the point, where unless a mortgage executives name and face appear on the cover of the New York Times, charged with some criminal act, there simply will be no measure of satisfaction in the eyes of the government.  It’s a shame that taxpayer money is being spent to further a cause without a means to an end.”

A message left with the department’s Office of Public Affairs was not immediately returned.

 

I read this article at: http://dsnews.com/news/02-17-2015/report-doj-pushing-charge-individuals-roles-mortgage-meltdown

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Thanks for reading – Sabrina

The Caton Team – Susan & Sabrina – A Family of Realtors

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices – Drysdale Properties

Sabrina BRE# 01413526 / Susan BRE #01238225 / Team BRE# 70000218/ Office BRE #01499008