Archive for the ‘News’ Category

On Nation’s Building News Online they talk about the energy tax credit is back for home owners for 2009!


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Primaries Today!

The primaries are today-Go Vote!

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This morning President Bush signed one of the largest housing relief bills in recent history. This is a brief overview of what the bill will do.

From National Public Radio

A look at what the bill would do:

— Give the Treasury Department the power to extend Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac an unspecified line of credit and to buy their stock, if necessary, to prop up the mortgage companies. The two companies back or own $5 trillion in U.S. mortgages — nearly half the nation’s total.

— Allow qualified homeowners facing foreclosure to apply for lower fixed-rate, 30-year mortgages backed by loan guarantees from the Federal Housing Administration. The original lenders would have to agree to take a loss on their loans.

— Create an independent regulator to oversee Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The regulator could establish minimum capital requirements for the two companies and limits on their portfolios. It would also have approval power over the pay packages of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac executives.

— Provide $3.9 billion in grants to communities with the highest foreclosure rates to buy foreclosed and abandoned properties.

— Give about $15 billion in housing tax breaks, including a credit of up to $7,500 for first-time homebuyers who bought homes between April 9, 2008, and July 1, 2009.

— Put a cap of $625,500 on the loans Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac can buy in certain high-priced areas, and a cap in other areas of up to 15 percent above the median home price.

— Count any federal infusion for the mortgage giants under the debt limit, essentially capping how much the government could spend to stabilize the companies without further approval from Congress. As of Tuesday, the national debt that counts toward the limit stood at about $9.5 trillion, roughly $360 billion below the statutory ceiling.

Material from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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New MN Law goes into affect this week. Last year all new homes had to have carbon monoxide detectors within 10 feet of every bedroom. On August 1 all existing homes are required to have the detectors within 10 feet of every bedroom. Most detectors cost between $10-$30 and you can find them at most hardware stores. I know for sure that the big box stores have them.

Good luck!

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In today’s (Monday June 2) Business section of the Star Tribune the lead article details the changes in the mortgage industry with the on set of the tougher restrictions in the state of Minnesota.

More than 50 Minnesota mortgage brokers have surrendered their state licenses this year — double last year’s rate and not including those who have gone out of business without notifying the Minnesota Department of Commerce.

The state’s 1,319 active originators last week were down from more than 4,000 last year at this time. Many of them surrendered their licenses after new state laws aimed at making it tougher to be in the mortgage business were implemented last year. –Jim Butcha, Star Tribune June 2, 2008

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New Rule on Lead Paint

Reading through my newsletter from the National Association of Home Builders I found this article about updated rules on  remodeling and the risks of lead paint. The Environmental Protection Agency recently updated their guidelines for handling lead paint.  EPA Releases Lead Paint Rule.

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The Fed Update

The Fed Poised to Cut Rates Again

Listening to National Public Radio this morning they were talking about the anticipated interest rate cut and the theory is that if they lower the rate banks will be more likely to lend money. However it’s unlikely that this cut will have that affect on the banks. If you’re in the market for a mortgage get your ducks in a row. Check your credit score, get your bills paid, and don’t open any new credit cards or get a loan for anything else. I would recommend looking into getting pre-approved before you look at homes to know how much you qualify for. You can also watch the interest rate and lock in when it gets really low. There was a day when the rate went to 4.75% for 3 hours!

There is activity out there in the housing market. It’s not all doom and gloom. We have seen good traffic through our models now that’s it’s getting warmer out and people are talking about building again.

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