Should I Buy a Home In 2008?

Dreadful information about the slumping American housing market is all over TV news and in almost every paper. During this housing slump many potential first time home buyers often wonder, should i buy a house in 2008? While every persons situation is different the next few paragraphs will hopefully help you decide whether or not to buy a house in 2008

It is a fact that property values across north America have dropped, in some areas they have dropped drastically and others its just a slight dip. Buying a home when prices are at the lowest is the best way for buyers to get the most for their money, and many people are now taking advantage of the lower home prices.

The major factor for most people when buying a home is securing a affordable mortgage to purchase the home with. In today’s current market mortgage rates have also fallen to very low levels making financing a new home more affordable then one year ago. When low mortgage rates are combined with reduced asking prices your money suddenly is able to buy you much more home then you previously thought possible!

The only real roadblock to buying a home in 2008 is going to be actually qualifying for a mortgage. Even though mortgage rates are low the lenders have tightened up their lending guidelines since the housing slump began. Since many borrowers need 100% financing it makes things that much more difficult. To deal with stricter lending guidelines borrowers are going to need excellent credit or have down payments in the range of five to twenty percent to secure home financing.

With property values falling and mortgage rates at very low levels 2008 is a great time to buy a new home. Not only is there more selection on the market but you will also be buying when prices are low so when the next real estate boom starts you will make substantial money on your investment.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Source by Darin Sewell

How to Buy Belize Real Estate

Belize is a great place for property investment, with no capital gains tax to pay on any profits you make, and property prices increasing year on year. If you’re interested in buying a piece of land or a property in this beautiful country, there are some hoops you’ll need to jump through, as well as some regulations and costs that you should be aware of. But, overall, the process is reassuringly simple.

Here are the main aspects of buying real estate in Belize that you’ll want to consider.

What is the cost of property in Belize?

Property prices vary in Belize. You’ll notice that modern apartment developments can cost the same as something similar in the States, whereas buying up plots of land can yield a bargain. Property on the waterfront and in areas that are popular with tourists will usually make for the best investment and are likely to rent out quickly if you decide to go that route.

How can I find a property in Belize?

When you’re looking for property, it’s easy to be swept up in the excitement of a prospective new home or investment. But be sure to check the credentials of your real estate agent. They are probably legit, but it’s better to be safe than sorry, because – like everywhere – there are scammers operating.

The best ways to search for your dream property are:

– Check with reputable real estate agents about properties they currently have available.

– Use online property sites.

– Ask around – word of mouth can be a great way to learn about properties that are on the market.

Although you don’t need to be in Belize to close on a property, it’s recommended that you view it at least once before proceeding with the purchase.

What are the legal considerations of buying property in Belize?

There’s plenty of great news about buying property in Belize, and these are some of the reasons why Belize property is so popular with ex-pats.

For instance:

– As a foreigner, you’ll have the same rights to own property as a native Belizean.

– Purchasing property doesn’t require any complicated additional steps – it’s just as easy as buying property in the States.

– The documentation will all be in English because that’s Belize’s primary language.

– The land tax is only 1-1.5% of the property’s value, a bargain compared to many other countries.

However, you should make sure, before you complete the purchase of any property, that you:

– Budget for the Government Land Transfer Tax of 5% to 8% of the property’s value.

– Check that the person selling the property is the legal owner – otherwise, this can cause big problems down the line.

– Check the regulations on the development of any land you intend to purchase because Belize has very strict environmental laws.

– Pay for a property title check, to make sure there aren’t any legal disputes attached to it. This shouldn’t cost any more than USD$250.

– If you’re purchasing a condo, it will be subject to strata titling principles. This gives each unit a freehold title, which is purchased along with the condo.

– Although it will cost extra dollars, do use an accredited attorney and real estate agent to process your transaction, as they will be able to check all the documentation is legally watertight.

How long does it take to purchase property in Belize?

Once you’ve found your property and have instructed an attorney and real estate agent, the purchasing process shouldn’t take too long. Usually, 30 to 90 days is a good ballpark estimate.

And then – the job is done – welcome to property ownership in Belize!

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Source by Dwayne S Tomkewich

Listing Tips For Selling Jeans on eBay

Get Started Making Cash Now on eBay

Clothing is a great item to sell on eBay. Every day, regular people make quick cash by sourcing and selling top clothing brands on eBay. Start with brands you are already familiar with. Let’s take American Eagle for our listing example. You have a pair of their Skinny jeans in great condition that you want to sell. First, begin with some quick research. Go to and type American Eagle Skinny Jeans Size 6 into the search bar. Next, refine your search by selecting only Completed and Sold items. The items listed in green (for the price) are the sold items. Items listed in red did not sell. You want to ignore the Unsold Listings. Focus on the items that are most similar to yours and have sold recently. Check out the condition of those items. Is there visible wear? Any flaws? Worn cuffs? Also, write down relevant keywords the successful seller used in their title and description. If you are selling jeans, you need to know which style you’re selling. Are the jeans boot cut or skinny? Is the size Juniors or Women’s? Juniors sizes will be 00, 1, 3, 5, 7, 9,11. Women’s sizes are listed in even numbers. A size 6 is a Women’s size.

Familiarize yourself with popular clothing keywords such as Rise and Inseam. You also need to be able to accurately describe the color of the wash of the jeans. Light or dark? Some brands have the wash color written on the care label. Other brands use codes with numbers and dates. Buyers will be on the lookout for particular washes. Expect to get questions from buyers asking you to describe and name the wash.

Buyers may be trying to find a discontinued favorite style. Help them out and provide as many Item Specifics as you can.

Get Accurate Measurements for Your Items

Rise is the measurement from the crotch seam (4 way seam at the seat) to the top of the waistband above the zipper. Front rise is a critical measurement. Most listings do not include a back rise measurement. The inseam is measured along the inside of the leg going from the 4-way center seam intersection to the bottom of the cuff. A regular inseam is 32 inches long. Be sure to list the size on the item’s tag as well as your measurements. Always include your own measurements because between brands and within brands, sizes vary. A 30 waist from one brand may be only 28 inches. Give your buyers enough information to help them make a good decision as to whether the jeans will fit properly. Better to include lots of measurements than to leave out important details. The buyer cannot try items on before purchasing.

Using Terapeak and Auctiva for eBay Sales

Terapeak is an online tool which shows you the best time to start your listing, which keywords to use, and how much completed listings sold for. Try a free trial of Terapeak to check it out risk-free. The cost is relatively low, about ten dollars per month, and you will definitely boost your item sales and profits by using the information provided. Terapeak is just one online resource for eBay sales.

Auctiva gives you professional-looking templates for your items. There are a wide variety of themes and backgrounds to choose from. Templates are listing in categories and you can save your favorite templates, change item description and information and quickly list hundreds of items for sale. Auctiva offers a scrolling gallery of your featured items to appear at the bottom of your listing. This allows you to sell more items through cross-promotion. It’s a great way to boost your eBay sales.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Source by Heather E Walton

Overcapitalisation – Why Cost Does Not Equal Value?

If you are unaware of the real estate terminologies then you might be wondering what overcapitalisation is. Basically, overcapitalisation refers to an overspend on construction or renovation costs which means the actual cost of a construction/renovation of the property is superior to its real market value. Overcapitalisation is also considered as asset inflation. Confused? Let’s make it simple. For instance, Mr A is planning to renovate his house by remodeling the bathrooms, basement and kitchen; upgrading the living room and bedrooms; adding a porch and swimming pool; installing vinyl siding, fencing front entrance and extending the garden. Mr A decides to use upper end expensive quality materials in the renovation. While doing so, he forgot to consider the real market value and quality of the houses in this area, which was lower than the value of his upgraded house. This is overcapitalisation.

Now the next question is what should be done to avoid overcapitalisation? Simple! When renovators and home builders are planning for home improvements, they must keep in mind some factors which have greater impact on the overall value of the property. For instance, evaluating neighbour’s housing style, demographics of neighbourhood, streetscape, design trends of neighbouring property, and recent resale prices of the homes in the area.

Although generally improvements and renovations add value to a property, it will be wrong to say they will ALWAYS increase its value. The reason is that if renovations and improvements are overdone, without keeping in view the real value of the area where your property is located, you might be overcapitalising your property. This means that your property cost will not equal its market value.

Hence, it is rational that a renovator or home builder is aware of overcapitalisation, and increases the value of the property only to an extent that it can cope up with. Remember, you’ve got to be really careful about overcapitalisation when upgrading or renovating your property.

Often overcapilisation occurs when people are not rational and business minded in their approach. Typically home owners will spend more on fixtures and fittings with the aim to live in the property.

Some cultures often prefer to live in larger homes as status symbols and will opt to spend more on improvements than is the norm in the locaility.

However if you are an investor or builder, it is important to get the mix right as this will result in higher profit margins. Getting it wrong can often mean longer selling periods and discounted prices. Do your due diligence to avoid disappointment.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Source by Keith P

How To Sell Your House on The Internet

Did you know that over 88% of all house buyers search for their house by looking on the internet? The internet has become the primary medium for potential buyers to search for a house. Using the internet to market your house is a comprehensive mass marketing approach to selling a house. And when selling your house on your own you need to take an all out approach so you can distribute the message that your house is for sale to the masses. You also need the message to be loud, clear and appealing. There are many websites that can assist you in selling your house, though some are more effective than others, and these websites will get you as much exposure as any real estate agent will get you. Regardless of what website you do choose to use, make sure you have great pictures and a great virtual tour to upload to the website. Great photos and virtual tours sell houses.

Since 88% or more of potential buyers will use the internet to search for their next house, it is clear you need to focus your attention to internet marketing and make sure you are marketing in all the right places. So where do you market on the internet? Don’t waste your time marketing in places where your house listing will get mediocre or zero exposure. Based on years of experience we recommend you only market on effective internet websites that have been proven to get mass exposure and successfully sell houses. We have many websites to recommend, but there are a few that stand out. Most of which are FREE.

The first place to market your house is Craigslist, which has become an excellent online classified resource used to sell real estate. Make sure your headlines and ads sparkle and the content of the classified is clear and detailed. Make sure you respond quickly to inquiries since internet prospects will continue to look for houses to see what else is around the bend.

The second website is Facebook, which now has over 140 million unique visitors in the U.S. and can give you incredible trustworthy exposure. You can share your listing with your friends or create a separate new page specifically for your house.

The third effective internet resource to market your house is Postlets, which is a website service that automatically posts your house listing on many other online websites. It’s easy to use and gives you great exposure to the masses.

The fourth are for sale by owner websites, also known as „FSBO“ websites. FSBO Websites are the Do-It-Yourself option that allows you to market your house listing through the Multiple Listing Service („MLS“) system, which was once a place exclusive to real estate agents alone. Marketing through a FSBO website will give you the same exposure 99% of real estate agents have. And if you combine that exposure with the other places we’ve touched upon, you will outshine most real estate agents‘ marketing efforts.

Now of course there are other great places to market your house, but the ones listed will get you pointed in the right direction.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Source by Louis J. DeMedici

Understanding (and Fixing) Property Tax Assessment

Imagine, if you will, Tinyville, a community of only ten houses. All ten houses were the same size and style, built at the same time on similarly-sized lots, using similar architectural drawings and building materials, each with comparable views and amenities, and each sold to its initial owner for the same price, $250,000. Assuming the fair market value of each of these houses was $250,000, (because after a reasonable amount of time that’s the price at which the sellers and buyers had meetings of the minds, neither being under duress,) Tinyville’s tax assessor valued each property at $250,000, resulting in an underlying total property value of $2.5M for all of Tinyville.

Like any municipality, Tinyville has expenses: police & fire departments, schools & libraries, water & sewer, sanitation workers, judges & clerks, engineers & inspectors, tax assessors & collectors, officials, and secretaries. To keep the math simple, let’s imagine that Tinyville’s annual budget is a mere $100,000, and that it has no other sources of revenue (such as parking meters, local sales or income taxes, or hunting/fishing permits). In order to meet its annual expenses, Tinyville’s tax assessor divides its $100,000 of budgeted expenses (known as a total tax levy) by each property’s proportionate share of the $2.5M total assessed value of the community. Dividing $250,000 by $2.5M means that each house is responsible for 10% of Tinyville’s property tax levy. Each homeowner (or their mortgage bank) gets a tax bill for $10,000.

For years, everyone is happy in Tinyville. The families each have kids in Tinyville’s schools, they march in Tinyville’s parades, and compete in Tinyville’s pie-eating contests. In the natural course of events, two of the original families were more prosperous than others and moved into better digs in Mediumville, one retired to Southville, one got transferred to his company’s office in Westville, and one died in a tragic car accident, but their heirs in Bigville didn’t want to move back to their family homestead. Anyway, five of the homes went on the market and because the market had been doing well for the past several years, four were sold for $300,000… except the one belonging to the heirs of the deceased couple – they let the house fall into disrepair, stopped mowing the lawn, and eventually squatters moved in and started trashing the place. When they finally sold it as a „handyman special,“ they got $150,000 for it.

Before any year’s tax assessment becomes „final,“ it is sent to each homeowner to review. Each homeowner has an opportunity to dispute the assessment. The five original homeowners continued to be assessed at a rate commensurate with their $250,000 property value, and knowing that many of their neighbors sold their comparable homes for $300,000, they silently accepted this assessment. The four new owners who paid $300,000 each are also assessed at $250,000. Strangely, it is illegal for a municipality to perform a „spot assessment“ of individual properties so although the „fair market value“ of those four homes has increased by 20% since last appraised, they continue to be assessed at $250,000 each. The tenth home, purchased by the handyman for $150,000, is also assessed at $250,000, but he disputes his assessment. He argues that the fair market value of his home should be based on his recent purchase price, and through the various legal methods at his disposal, he has the house reassessed at $150,000.

Assuming the total tax levy is unchanged at $100,000, what happens to each homeowner’s property taxes? Nine of the ten houses are still assessed at $250,000 each, but the last is now assessed at only $150,000. One might quickly (and incorrectly) guess that the houses with unchanged assessed values would have no change in their $10,000 property tax bill, and that the tenth house would pay just $6,000, but that doesn’t add up correctly; Tinyville needs to collect $100,000 in taxes to balance its budget, and this formula only adds up to $96,000. What actually happens is that the denominator changes, too. Tinyville’s total assessed property value is recalculated based on each property’s assessed value, and now adds up to just $2.4M. That means that each of the $250,000 houses now accounts for just over 10.4% of the total, and is now responsible for that percentage of the $100,000 levy, increasing each of their assessments to $10,417. The handyman’s $150,000 assessed value accounts for 6.25% of the total, so he’s now responsible for just $6,250 of Tinyville’s tax levy.

Some (including the handyman) would argue that the handyman’s house is worth less, and consequently, he should pay less tax than his neighbors. Others (including his neighbors) would argue that his house is the same size and shape, takes up as much land, and places the same demand on Tinyville’s police, fire, schools, libraries, sewers, and other services, and that he should pay the same amount as the other houses. Some (including the original five families) would argue that the resold houses should be assessed at their new, higher market values, and that the new owners should pay proportionally more taxes. Others (including the four new owners) would argue that the fair market values of their homes (as evidenced by their sale prices) are indicative of the actual fair market value of the five unsold homes, despite the fact that those homes haven’t recently changed hands. These are the sort of issues that confound homeowners and plague tax assessors, assessment review boards, and courts in every municipality, every year.

In a perfect world, when the handyman files for building permits to repair and restore his home’s value, the new value he creates by the work he does should bring his tax assessment back in line with the other comparable houses, thereby reducing his neighbors‘ percentage of the total tax, accordingly. Unfortunately, not everyone applies for building permits, and not every project even requires building permits. Upgrading your kitchen appliances improves the value of your home without requiring building permits. Many municipalities don’t require a building permit to add a new layer to your roof or to retile your bathrooms. Of course, there are also homeowners who build bedrooms in attics or lofts over their garages without permits, and not every new home buyer is savvy enough to realize that they are paying for such unpermitted improvements. If you complain to the tax assessor that your neighbor has an unpermitted finished basement, the tax assessor doesn’t have the same authority as a building inspector to knock and demand to see that basement so as to tax them appropriately… and not every building department inspector is willing to perform inspections on an anonymous tip, so you may have to go on record as the guy who ratted out his neighbor. Consequently, a lot of home improvements are not reflected on the tax assessment rolls.

Since buying a home in a market downturn gives you the ability to grieve your tax assessment based on its new apparent fair market value, other home owners can actually use your new „fair market value“ to argue that their house is comparable to yours, and that their assessment should be lowered, too. This creates added burden on the assessors as they try to determine new values of homes that haven’t recently sold based on evidence created by comparable homes that did. As more and more homeowners grieve their assessments, it reduces the denominator in the municipality’s total assessed value, increasing the actual tax bills for houses for which assessments haven’t been grieved. Naturally, that reinforces the process, inciting more and more homeowners to grieve their taxes, creating more and more work for assessors. However, taken to the unimaginable extreme, in a community where home values have fallen, it may take a few years for all of the homeowners to realize that they are being unfairly assessed (as compared to their neighbors), but ultimately, when the last of them finally grieves his taxes, everyone’s proportion to the new denominator should be comparable to their proportion to the original denominator, meaning that they’ll all on average, eventually pay just about as much tax as they did before. In the intervening years, the ones who got onboard first and had the largest and earliest reductions in their assessed home values will reap the greatest short-term benefits. Some would go so far as to argue that this is fair, like so many other instances in life when the early bird gets the proverbial worm.

The intervening chaos and disparity, however, causes more work, thereby costing municipalities more in assessments, review boards, and grievance hearings. In the worst cases, when grievance processes fail and are left for courts to decide, municipalities have to pay unanticipated refunds to vindicated homeowners, which reduces their immediate coffers and further increases tax levies in subsequent years to make up for those losses. For scholars of economic theory, Keynes would argue that these machinations are a necessary and productive part of the system, and that they employ lawyers who otherwise would earn less; these lawyers rent offices, hire staff, and buy office supplies, and in effect, keep the economy’s wheel turning. Hayek would retort that these legal costs do not so much enrich the system, as they do redirect capital that would have been employed elsewhere, such as the tax savings permitting the homeowners to buy new furniture, hire a gardener, or take a vacation. He would consider these inefficiencies in the tax assessment process an unnecessary cost that allocated resources in a less-than-optimal manner… and I’d tend to agree with him. I don’t know what the solution is, but I know that we should try to come up with a better one.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Source by Brian Blum

How to Choose a Realtor – 7 Questions to Ask Your Real Estate Agent

Buying or selling real estate is probably the most significant transaction you’ll ever make in your life. That’s why it’s important to choose the best Realtor to help you achieve this goal. But before you hire the services of a real estate agent, there are important factors to consider.

Many people have the perception that all real estate agents are the same. Some sign with the first one that comes along. Unfortunately, they realize later on that they should have been more selective before signing an agreement. To guide you in choosing the best Realtor for your needs, below are seven questions to ask your prospective real estate agent.

1) What is your experience in real estate?

The first thing you need to ask a real estate agent is how long they’ve been in the real estate business. It doesn’t mean that you cannot enlist the services of newly licensed real estate agents. Just keep in mind that those who have years of experience under their belts are probably more knowledgeable on what to do, from listing to closing. Aside from the number of years in the business, ask them what segment of real estate they focus on – residential, commercial, luxury, etc. Find out if he/she is primarily a listing agent or a buyer’s agent (or both). Familiarity with the market is also essential, so ask what geographic areas the agent usually covers. You can even dig deeper by asking if the agent has received any awards for outstanding performance.

2) How many and what types of properties have you listed and sold in the past year?

It’s one of the most important questions you should ask a real estate agent. The number of properties he or she has listed and sold in the past year is a valuable indicator how good a real estate professional is in getting the job done. Take note that this question consists of two parts: properties listed and properties sold. Agents may demonstrate their ability to list homes; however, the more important thing is the sales part – the ability to close deals. If they have many properties listed and sold in the past year, it shows that whatever strategy the agent is using, it’s certainly working.

3) What was the average sales price for the properties you’ve sold over the last year?

Asking this will give you an idea in what kind of market the agent specializes. Find out if the real estate professional has experience selling properties in the price range you’re listing at. If a majority of properties sold falls on the low-end market segment, it might take longer for the agent to sell if yours is a higher-end home. Although agents can sell any property regardless of price range, it’s likely that they will have better success in the market and price segments in which they have the most experience.

4) What is your average sale to list price ratio?

The sale to list price ratio (sometimes called the sale-to-list or list-to-sale ratio) is the final sales price divided by the listing price, expressed as a percentage. If it is 100%, it means the sales price was equal to the list price. You can view this ratio in two ways. A skilled listing agent can negotiate sales prices that are equal or close to the list price, and sometimes even greater in a very competitive market. So ideally, listing agents should have sale to list price ratios closer to 100%. On the other side of the coin, a good buyer’s agent can often negotiate a sales price that is lower than the list price. Therefore, buyer’s agent ratios ideally should be lower than 99%.

5) What marketing strategies will you use?

Deciding on what strategies to use can spell the difference between success and failure. A poor marketing strategy will diminish the chances for success. Do your own due diligence by asking how the agent will sell your property. There are lots of options – staging, open houses, joint marketing, print advertising, and of course, online marketing. Whatever approaches are used, they should be designed to bring in the highest number of qualified potential buyers. Higher end properties can also often benefit from professional staging. In any case, your agent should advise you on how to best prepare the property to make it the most attractive to potential buyers.

6) Can you give me some references?

Reputation is important in this line of business. Whether you’re buying or selling a property, you should ask for references (past clients). If possible, call a few and ask them about their experiences with the agent. Were they pleased with the service provided? Also ask if they are in any way related to the agent. A list of references made up of friends or relatives generally won’t provide an objective assessment of the agent’s qualifications.

7) Do you offer any type of guarantee, and will you let me out of my contract early if I am not satisfied with your service?

You can’t say with certainty how things will go, even if you did your due diligence. For this reason, you should ensure that you’re prepared for any eventuality. If you sign a contract and later find that you’re not satisfied with the service, will the agent allow you to cancel the agreement? If things don’t work out the way they’re supposed to, you should have the freedom to choose another agent who can deliver better results.

As you can see, there are many things to consider when choosing a real estate agent. Finding and interviewing Realtors can be a very time-consuming and laborious task. However, now armed with these seven questions, you are on your way in choosing the best Realtor for your needs.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Source by Charles A. Kush III

Real Estate Foreclosure Listings

Anyone looking to buy their first home or invest in real estate should consider buying a foreclosure. Foreclosure listings provide detailed information on homes and buildings that are either in pre-foreclosure and foreclosure status. These listings usually include foreclosures from all sources such as banks and even the government. All listings are not made the same. There are companies that are charging people for foreclosure listings that are not accurate or up-to-date. To ensure that you are receiving the most current foreclosure listings there are a variety of resources you should consider.

One of the best places to find current accurate information on local foreclosures is through your local county clerk’s office. The recording of a foreclosure is public record and can be assessed by simply going to your local county court house. When you get there be prepared to do some searching. It may help you to look for Notice of Defaults. This will narrow your search for foreclosed homes giving you something to search by. This is one of the most accurate ways to get information on foreclosed properties. In addition, if you are willing to invest some time and effort you will be able to collect as much information on foreclosed properties all for free.

Another avenue to pursue when buying a foreclosure is through your local newspaper or an online classified. Many local newspapers post information on foreclosed homes in the real estate or classified section of the newspapers. Usually the weekend printings of most newspapers have the most foreclosures listings. On the auctions page there is a through listing of upcoming property auctions in the area. Sometimes pictures of the properties are even included. When viewing these newspaper foreclosure listings it is best to read the fine print and there is almost always fine print. The fine print will basically provide information on the time, date and place of the property auction. In addition, there will be important details on how much is needed as a down payment on the property and how soon the remaining balance will need to be paid either in cash or through personal financing. Your local newspaper is an excellent reliable source for foreclosure listings.

Finally, you may want to seek the counsel of a realtor when looking for foreclosed properties. Realtors are trained to look for the types of homes that an individual wants. You should do some research either on line or by contacting a national organization such as the National Association of Realtors to locate a realtor that specializes in locating and selling foreclosed properties. There are realtors who do this and they can be a great asset if you are unsure how to navigate through the purchasing of a foreclosed property. The only stipulation about using a realtor is that this is always a fee of some sort but paying this fee may be very worthwhile if you can find the property you desire.

If you’re considering buying a foreclosure, there are a number of reliable resources that you can use to search for foreclosed properties. By searching proactively, looking online, etc., you’ll have the advantage over everyone else who wants to take advantage of the market. You just might be able to score the property deal of a lifetime!

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Source by Mark Alison

The Countrywide Foreclosure List – Finding Secret Bank Owned Properties

The Countrywide foreclosure list offers thousands of nationwide bank owned properties; many of which are sold at deeply discounted prices. Once the nation’s largest independent mortgage lender, Countrywide was bought out by Bank of America in 2008 for a whopping $4.1 billion. BOA assumed a massive portfolio of ‚toxic assets‘ consisting of preforeclosure and foreclosed properties.

Today, the Countrywide foreclosure list is available to the public through the Bank of America website. Real estate investors and prospective buyers can use the list to locate single and multi-family homes, commercial real estate, vacant land and newly constructed houses.

Countrywide / Bank of America properties for sale include bank owned properties, foreclosure homes and short sale real estate. Buyers can locate a wealth of discounted properties and cheap homes for sale. Properties listed through the foreclosure list are sold through an independent real estate agent or directly thorough BOA’s loss mitigation division.

Purchasing Countrywide properties isn’t any different than purchasing real estate through realtors. Buyers are required to undergo the same home loan financing process as anyone else. However, individuals wanting to purchase bank owned properties through BOA are required to obtain lending prequalification to determine how much house they can afford.

Buyers of Countrywide foreclosure real estate may qualify for first time home buyer programs and tax credits. The home buyer tax credit was recently extended through June 30, 2010. First time home buyers are eligible for an $8000 tax deduction. Homeowners who have resided in their primary residence for five years or more are eligible for a $6500 tax credit when they purchase a more expensive home.

It is important to understand that bank owned real estate consists of foreclosure properties which did not sell through action. Also referred to as real estate owned or REO properties, these houses are sold „as is“ and generally require some type of repair. Buyers must conduct due diligence and obtain a home inspection to verify the house is worth the listing price.

The primary difference between foreclosed and bank owned homes is once lenders take possession attached liens and judgments are removed and the house is sold with a clean title. This is especially beneficial for first time home buyers and those unfamiliar with the required process for purchasing foreclosure real estate.

Repossessed homes often make for good investment property that can be used as a rental or vacation home. Buying foreclosure property located in a popular tourist destination can provide the opportunity to generate positive cash flow.

Investors who utilize the Countrywide foreclosure list to scout out rental homes should take time to investigate the area where properties are located. Tenants with school-aged children generally are looking for high ranking schools. Others might desire easy access to interstate systems or shopping districts. Becoming familiar with the area and what it offers allows investors to find appropriate REO houses to attract the type of tenant they are seeking.

Buying repo homes does not always equal significant savings. Banks have already incurred a loss through the process of foreclosing on the property. Bank owned properties listed on the Countrywide foreclosure list have little room for price negotiation.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Source by Simon Volkov

Work The Law of Large Numbers But Remember It Only Takes One to Succeed!

The Law of Large Numbers is a pivotal success secret inasmuch as it says:

(1) Do enough of anything and you’ll succeed;

(2) Do more and you’ll prosper, and outdo even that amount and

(3) You’ll become a legend.

We’ve seen how this operates in all walks of life.

As with so many success principles, the LLN seems particularly apt in sports. Just yesterday, I read this quote from mighty basketball great, Michael Jordan:

„I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.“

If you don’t try, you can’t win. Try more and more and even more than that and you’ll become a performer whose feats are celebrated forever.

Having said this let me temper The Law of Large Numbers with this admonition:


This is a critical corollary to the LLN. Yes, you have to make many attempts, but if you sink that final shot at the buzzer, JUST THAT ONE SHOT, you’ll come up a game winner.

The key is to stay in contention long enough to be competitive, to spot your opening when it occurs and to seize the chance-these things position you for victory.

Let’s say you’re a salesperson and you’ve gone for days, weeks or months without closing a deal. This happens, by the way, more often than you might think, especially in the course of long careers.

You’re in a slump, period.

How do you dig your way out? You do it with repeated efforts, a LLN campaign, as I’ve pointed out elsewhere. But what do you tell yourself to overcome the inevitable obstacles and future rejections that you’ll encounter on the road to recovery?

Repeat this phrase:


Sure, you daydream about having so many deals that you’re beset with an embarrassment of riches. Or, you have the recurring nightmare that you’re so far in the hole that you have to step up to the plate and hit a succession of non-stop grand slam homers, simply to get back into the game.

These grandiose images will only stymie your success. They’ll make it seem that you have to achieve gargantuan, world beating results merely to rate at all.

And that’s absolutely false and destructive thinking.

All you need is to get onto the board with one score at a time to climb out of the hole.

I found myself in a downdraft in my consulting and training business about seven years ago.

I had just published a series of books, six in a matter of four years, and none of them was instantly hitting big. The typical after-market I expect from writing, people calling me to help them to improve their business results, was virtually nonexistent.

And then, one day without any involvement on my part, the co-owner of a successful business on the east coast walked into her local bookstore and bought one of my current releases.

She read it, wondered if I could help her team to improve, and she contacted me.

We started with a very modest initial program, consisting of a single day, but that beginning led to a relationship that found me flying back and forth from coast to coast every other week for two years, investing hundreds of billable days together.

In fact, I was just recalled to the firm to update their skills.

All it took to bust that slump was ONE book reader out of thousands who was sufficiently impressed with its contents to reach out for assistance.

The practical challenge, of course, is FINDING or ATTRACTING THE ONE.

Smack in the middle of the darkest days of our national real estate meltdown I wanted to sell an office property I owned. So, I did what any reasonably prudent person in my position would do.

I interviewed Realtor after Realtor, asking them for proposals. And guess what I amassed?

At the end of my research I had several proposals that were so completely identical that they could have been photocopies of the top one on the pile. They all said I should list my property within a very narrow range of dollars.

How did they arrive at such a uniform prescription? They did market analyses that showed the most recent properties of its type that were sold in the city. These are, as you may know, called „comparables.“

But „comps“ are fundamentally flawed. Unless you have a LARGE NUMBER of them that have been bought recently, and there are even more available on the market now, you won’t have a suitable supply for comparison.

Moreover, every real property is unique. It will appeal more to some buyers than to others. And where there is more desire, there is a higher demand and price people are willing to pay.

So, the question becomes: „To what SINGLE BUYER, or type of buyer, is this property MOST valuable?“ Then you need to inject most of your time and energy into marketing to that person or to that niche.

But if you look at AVERAGES, which is where comps will take you, the BEST type of buyer won’t appear on your radar, just the TYPICAL ones, and they’ll only be willing to pay the same as the lowest common denominator pays.

IT ONLY TAKES ONE thinking, or IOTO thinking as I’ll term it, assures you’ll pursue the best avenues to reach your targets.

So, what did I do?

I performed my own analysis, believing that the sales prices I was urged to use were too low, that my land and building were worth far more.

From inside of my building, I looked to my neighbour on the left. He had built his property out to its limits, and he was unlikely to buy my parcel.

But the fellow on the right had room to grow. Combined, our two properties would enable him to exploit the commercial possibilities much more than either of us could do as individuals, so I determined he was: THE ONE.

If I wanted a premium it would have to come from him, because by virtue of his positioning, at least in theory he could and would pay far more than the average buyer. So, I put all of the Realtors on hold and devised a personal marketing campaign aimed EXCLUSIVELY AT HIM.

I realized I needed to have a LARGE NUMBER of contacts with him within a short time frame to motivate him to make a generous offer.

I found every excuse I could to bump into him to say hello, and one day I leaned into his car in the driveway and said, „You know, I’m thinking of selling. Before I list it with a Realtor, let me know if you’d like to make an offer.“

Within 90 days, he was the proud owner of side-by-side properties and I had been cashed out.

Overall, I got a premium price:

(1) It was 25% to 33% higher than the proposals suggested I list the property;

(2) I sold it myself, without a Realtor, saving another 6% of the purchase price;

(3) I sold it earlier than I would have done if I had it on the open market;

(4) I got the price I wanted; and

(5) I didn’t have to invest a dime in repairs or upgrades before transferring title.

Exactly, how much better did I do by melding a Law of Large Numbers approach with an It Only Takes One approach?

I believe I netted minimally, 45% more than I would have received had I gone the traditional route, and in real money terms, it was a lot more that I would have obtained, otherwise.

Perhaps the most striking example of marrying the Law of Large Numbers to It Only Takes One thinking is in dating and mating. Unless you’re a committed single who absolutely adores playing the field, you’re going to settle down with one person, at least for a while.

As any matchmaker can attest, FINDING THE ONE is the challenge. This involves the Three E’s: obtaining Exposure, Encounters, and Exclusivity.

The LLN gives you exposure, puts you into those situations where you will be „in play,“ available to see and be seen. This could be through computer dating sites, volunteer work, going to alumni events at alma mater, or hosting barbecues.

To arrange encounters, you need to work on your „approach skills,“ learning to get the attention of the specific people you want to know better as well as practicing ways to start and sustain conversations.

To gain exclusivity, you need to showcase your uniqueness and develop a plan for enticing the people who interest you to spending one-on-one time together.

The LLN, almost without exception, leads to IOTO opportunities.

The two, working together, create symbiosis, and the results we’re all looking for, by combining quantity and quality.

I am a firm believer in The Law of Large Numbers, and thankfully, a large number of folks who have purchased my audio seminar bearing this title agree with its premise.

But committing to doing LARGE NUMBERS CAMPAIGNS can seem daunting, because it’s easy to forget that success is inevitable from our massive ministrations.

That’s why it’s so important to wed the LLN with It Only Takes One Thinking. The realization that success may be just ONE smile, ONE sale, ONE phone call away, keeps us happily choo-chooing along on the train, that can, that will, and that is destined to succeed.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Source by Dr. Gary S. Goodman

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