Home Buying

Doing Your Own Drone Photography? There Are Risks

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The FAA has specific rules on drones used commercially, and there are additional real estate risks, including accidental damages to drones or property that most business insurance policies won’t cover. ORLANDO, Fla. – Many real estate agents include listing photos and videos taken by a drone – aerial scenes of a home that show nearby … Read more

What Happens if the Government Shuts Down?

WASHINGTON – The federal government has experienced 14 shutdowns since 1980. If Congress fails to pass a full-year spending bill or a stopgap “continuing resolution” (CR) to keep the government open, there could be another shutdown on Oct. 1. But what does this mean, and how does it impact everyday Americans and the economy? What … Read more

Vacation Home Demand Close to Seven-Year Low

Vacation-home buyers face the same headwinds as other buyers, plus pandemic demand ended, and many have return-to-the-office orders, with loan rate locks down 50%. SEATTLE – Vacation homes were hot during the pandemic as workers freed from the office look for places where they could spread out. But that pace may have cannibalized current demand … Read more

Fewer Apply for Mortgages Due to Higher Costs

MBA: Home loan applications fell 2.1% last week to the lowest level in 28 years, as low housing inventory and higher mortgage rates sidelined would-be buyers. LOS ANGELES (AP) – U.S. home loan applications are the lowest in decades as evidence mount that rising mortgage rates and home prices are shutting out many aspiring homeowners. … Read more

How Will Idalia Impact Fla.’s Property Insurance?

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It’s too early to know. Nine out of 10 people will file a claim within the first 30 days, experts say, which is reported to the Fla. Office of Insurance Regulation. TAMPA, Fla. – Florida’s already troubled property insurance market faces another challenge: Hurricane Idalia. Now that the floodwaters have receded, the question is could Idalia impact … Read more

U.S. Consumer Confidence Declined in August

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Americans’ confidence took two steps forward (June and July) and one step back. Higher prices had an impact along with less certainty about the job market. BOSTON – The August Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index declined in August to 106.1, from a downwardly revised 114.0 in July, reflecting a bit less optimism among Americans. The … Read more

What Do 7% Mortgage Rates Mean for Homebuyers?

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Some discouraged buyers should stop looking for their “forever home” and start looking for their “get my foot in the door to start building equity” home. NEW YORK – The average rate on the standard 30-year fixed mortgage rose to 7.09%, according to Freddie Mac’s latest weekly survey. Some experts say that’s close to an … Read more

Warren Buffet Believes in New-Home Market’s Future

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Buffet’s company spent $700M to buy DR Horton stock and lesser amounts for two other builders, suggesting the investment guru sees profits via the new-home industry. OMAHA, Neb. (AP) – Warren Buffett’s company appears to be betting on the housing market picking up because Berkshire Hathaway bought more than $700 million worth of homebuilder DR … Read more

Looking for a Search Engine Optimization Expert?

If 9 out of 10 buyers start by typing “How do I buy a home?” into a search engine, it’s worth spending money to make sure your agency’s name is near the top. NEW YORK – With 90% of house hunters using the internet as a starting point, it makes sense for realty professionals to … Read more

FHA 203(k) Loans: What They Are, How They Work

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Most buyers want move-in ready, but they’ll have a wider selection with fixer-uppers, and an FHA 203(k) loan can roll upgrade/repair costs into their first mortgage. NEW YORK – When you buy a home, there are usually a few repairs to pay for. Buyers who want to take on a real fixer-upper might be facing … Read more