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Avoid Mortgage Fraud

Published On: March 9, 2010

1.  Always avoid offers to modify your mortgage in exchange for upfront fees. No one should expect payment for mortgage modification service other than  commission fees after the modification has been completed. POINT BLANK: Do not pay for the promise of results... pay for the results themselves.

2.  Be suspicious of anyone who guarantees you a motgage modification. Any legitimate agent or servicer should know that the mortgage modification process is complicated and dependant on many factors, and that to guarantee a successful modification is unrealtistic. Fraudulent parties will make this promise to falsely raise your hopes, making them appear as though they are providing a rare opportunity. As common sense suggests, if it sounds too good to be true, it usually is.

For More....... go to

www.strugglinghomeowner.com

 

 

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Spring Home Maintenance Tips

Published On: March 26, 2009

April showers bring May flowers so check your roof for leaks and get a head start on summer—have your A/C unit checked and cleaned.

1. Replace your furnace filter

2. Clean kitchen exhaust hood and air filter

3. Always have a multi-purpose fire extinguisher accessible.

4. Make sure the light bulbs in all your fixtures are the correct wattage

5. Review fire escape plan with your family

6. l Have a professional air conditioning contractor inspect and maintain your system as recommended by the  manufacturer

7. Check for damage to your roof

8. Repair all cracked, broken or uneven driveways and walks to help provide a level walking surface

9. Check all the fascia and trim for deterioration

10. Check your water heater for sediment build-up and temperature

11. Check the shutoff valve at each plumbing fixture to make sure they function

12. Clean clothes dryer exhaust duct, damper, and space under the dryer

13. Replace all extension cords that have become brittle, worn or damaged

14. Inspect and clean dust from the covers of your smoke and carbon monoxide alarms

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Realtors® Tell Congress Increased Housing Demand Will Stabilize the Market

Published On: November 19, 2008

Realtors® Tell Congress Increased Housing Demand Will Stabilize the Market

WASHINGTON, November 18, 2008

In a statement to the House Financial Services Committee today, the National Association of Realtors® recommended a four-point plan to stimulate home sales and stabilize housing valuations.

“The only way to overcome today’s economic turmoil is to motivate and encourage worried or cautious housing consumers to enter the marketplace,” said NAR President Charles McMillan, a broker with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage in Dallas-Fort Worth. “Stabilizing the housing market will lead to a quicker and greater economic recovery. Our goal is to ensure there is a healthy market and sufficient capital to support mortgage lending to qualified borrowers.”

NAR developed the plan for consideration by the current lame-duck session of Congress, and for the 111th Congress and the new administration. The four-point plan’s principles are consumer-driven to help foster a housing recovery to support an economic rebound. The plan calls for eliminating the repayment of the first-time home buyer tax credit that was passed in the February stimulus bill, and to expand the tax credit to include all home buyers. The plan also recommends making the increased FHA and conventional loan limits permanent to stimulate home sales and stabilize prices. In addition, the plan urges that the Troubled Asset Relief Program be put back on track by targeting the funds for mortgage relief through a mortgage interest rate buy-down. Finally, the plan recommends finalizing legislation to prohibit banks from entering into the business of real estate brokerage and property management.

“The federal government must ensure there is sufficient capital to support mortgage lending not only in strong markets but also in tumultuous ones,” said McMillan. “Realtors® are frustrated with the current mortgage lending environment that places a variety of barriers on families who wish to buy a home, impeding sales and price stabilization. We look forward to working with the Congress and the new administration to transition out of current instabilities and move toward strong and stable financial and housing markets.”

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Going Green At Home

Published On: June 30, 2008

Here are five ways you can “green” your new home.

1. Change your light bulbs. Compact fluorescent bulbs now come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Although these versions cost more than incandescent bulbs, they will
last longer and use 66 percent less electricity.

2. Choose appliances with the Energy Star label. This sticker indicates the machine exceeds federal standards for energy consumption or has energy saving features. Look for the label when purchasing washers, dryers, refrigerators, air conditioners, dish washers, etc.

3. Control your temperature. Installing a programmable thermostat helps you save money and conserve resources by better regulating your heating and cooling. 

4. Start a compost pile. Reduce the amount of trash in landfills by turning your own scraps into quality soil. Compost kits and boxes are available for purchase. It is an easy way to make difference.

5. Adopt a new attitude. Set the tone for your family that the environment is important. Following the slogan, “Reduce. Reuse. Recycle.” can really make in impact now and for future generations.

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Celebrate Air Conditioning Appreciation Days (July 3rd - August 15th)

Published On: June 30, 2008

Summer’s sticky, steamy weather is a reminder that July 3 through August 15 is designated “Air Conditioning Appreciation Days,” so don’t forget to give your cooling equipment some tender loving care to keep it in tip-top shape.

To keep cool this summer:

 Clean and replace the air conditioner’s filter frequently (monthly during heavy use).

 Central air conditioners and heat pumps should have annual equipment inspections by a certified technician who will check refrigerant fluid and mechanical operations.

 Consider a programmable thermostat to automatically increase or decrease temperatures during the day or night to suit your lifestyle and reduce energy cost.

 Raise the thermostat setting as much as you can without sacrificing comfort. For every degree you raise the setting, you can expect to cut your energy consumption by up to 3 to 5 percent.

 If you’re shopping for an air conditioner, look for the Energy Star and Energy Guide labels.

 Keep in mind that insulation and sealing air leaks will help your energy performance in the ummertime by keeping the cool air inside.

 Keep fallen leaves, grass clippings, foliage and other dirt and debris away from your outdoor  unit. Keep the air conditioner’s coils clean, following manufacturers’ instructions.

 Long-Term Savings Tip: If your air conditioner is old, consider purchasing a new, energy-efficient model. You could save up to 50% on your utility bill for cooling. Look for the ENERGY STAR and Energy Guide labels.

Visit www.ari.org and the U.S. Dept. of Energy for more information.

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