August 1st, 2014
Recent news about the state of the housing market is good, but not great. One big, positive takeaway, though, is the sharp decrease in foreclosures and, correspondingly, in “distressed” housing sales.
As recently as 2011, distressed sales made up a full 30 percent of all housing sales. By 2013, that number had been cut in half to 15 percent, and in the month of June it rested at just 11. While the steep decline in distressed sales has caused overall sales numbers to dip, traditional or non-distressed property sales have risen over the last year, marking a noticeable recovery in the market.
July 3rd, 2014
In honor of the start of summer, we decided to make the housing market the subject of our latest infographic. Check it out for details on average mortgage sizes and a glimpse at how widely the market can vary based on region.
June 12th, 2014
In the eyes of many economists, the housing and mortgage crisis of the late 2000s is in our national past. According to a recent survey by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, however, a large majority of Americans don’t feel the same.
June 6th, 2014
For the first time since the housing crisis, consumers are now more likely to miss payments on their credit cards than their mortgage.
June 12th, 2013
For many years, homeowners have likely heard the same financial advice: Pay down a mortgage as quickly as possible. But these days, many financial advisers are singing a different tune, telling clients that in some cases it makes sense not to pay off their mortgages early. After all, mortgage rates are hovering near historic lows at around 3.8 percent, and homeowners can get a tax deduction for having a mortgage. Here are six reasons savvy homeowners choose not to pay off their mortgages early.
May 6th, 2013
For one out of four Americans, “cash only” is a way of life. 17 million Americans lack access to any type of formal bank account and are classified as “unbanked.” In addition, 51 million Americans do access basic bank services such as a savings account, yet they still rely on alternative financial institutions as well. These individuals might frequent check-cashing joints, fall prey to payday lenders, and often incur exorbitant fees associated with such alternative banking methods.
September 10th, 2012
Personal finance theory is filled with mathematical formulas and calculations, but the successful pursuit of financial independence often requires picking a route that may conflict with what the numbers would initially suggest. Take our investment in housing for example. Naturally, we would hope for a gradual rise in real estate values after we purchase a home because after all, we want to make money in real estate just like the Jonses. Yet, the best scenario for many people is not a price rally. And this is true even if you are a homeowner. Let me illustrate my own situation, which is common in America today.
May 29th, 2012
It's no secret that housing prices have suffered over the past few years. In order to sell your home, you need every advantage you can get over your neighbors. If you are about to sell and want to receive your desired price, you will want to dedicate time to working on your home. Below are some tips to help you increase your homes value and sell faster.
September 9th, 2011
Ready to take the plunge into becoming a homeowner? Make sure your credit is in tip-top shape first! Check out these tips, from our Credit Advisor, Justine Rivero.