December 2007

There are 17 blog entries for December 2007.

Yesterday, President Bush signed H.R. 3648, The Mortgage Forgiveness Act of 2007, into law, sparing homeowners the tax burden associated with canceled mortgage debt.

Prior to this action, forgiven mortgage debt due to foreclosure, short sale, or deed in lieu of foreclosure, was considered taxable income. The new law, however, temporarily waives these taxes for debts forgiven (as high as 35%) from the beginning of 2007 to the end of 2009. The bill also extends the tax deduction for mortgage insurance premiums through 2014.

"This is going to make a happy holiday for many homeowners," President Bush said yesterday before signing the bill in to law. During the press conference he added the following:

"When you're worried about making your payments,

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It appears that although for most of the decade University Circle’s big business has been booming with construction (to the tune of about $2billion), it’s surrounding areas have been struggling to survive. 


According to the Plain Dealer neighborhoods such as Hough, Fairfax, Glenville and Buckeye-Shaker, areas that are right down the street from the constant noise of Cleveland Clinic construction, have been devastated by blight, vacancy and foreclosure for some time now.


Fortunately, it appears someone is planning to actually DO something about it instead of simply TALKING about what should be done. 


The strategy has been dubbed The Greater University Circle Initiative.  It’s goals include taking steps to change this unfortunate

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Every day I am confronted by buyers and sellers who are conflicted about the decision to purchase or sell in what they have been told is a down market. Why not wait until things are better? Well my friends there are  a few things you should know:

1.       Real Estate is a Commodity

Not a day goes by that gold is not bought or sold, the only thing that changes is its value. Real estate is very similar. What you bought your home for yesterday has nothing to do with what you will sell it for tomorrow. Only the “market” can determine what you will receive for your home. Consider this example.

One purchases a gold coin for $200 last December, holds it for a year and decides they have to sell it today. If the market for that gold coin has dropped to $175…
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Villa De Leon, a Tom Struhs development, has released final renderings of the exterior and interior of its 23 unit luxury condo development on the Trinity Bluff Northeast of Downtown Fort Worth. The building offers a level of exclusivity that Fort Worth has not seen in condo developments thus far and amenities to match. Units start out at over $780,000 and go to just over $2,000,000. Pecan Place Condos is another development by Struhs that offers luxury condo living to a select 9 individuals. Re-sales are also available in the Pecan Place Condominiums. The advantage that buyers in Villa De Leon will enjoy is sharing their beautiful home with a limited number of residents sharing a similar demographic makeup. If you have visited…
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 Last week, long-term interest rates dropped to their lowest point in two-years.  According to the weekly report, applications filled out by consumers looking to obtain a mortgage to purchase a home surged by 22.5 percent!  Better yet, long-term interest rates have dropped to their lowest point since 2005, coupled with unprecedented deals and incentives being offered by homebuilders and home sellers, we could very well be seeing one of the best buyer’s markets in history.

Prices are leveling out and there’s no way the economy can sustain these low interest rates forever. The people who take advantage of this very favorable housing market could lock in the deal of a lifetime.  If you  are on the fence as to whether or not to buy, the time is now! 

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Published: December 03, 2007


By Teresa O'Dea Hein, Managing Editor

The end of a year is a natural time to reflect on the previous 12 months and plan for the upcoming ones. As everyone knows all too well, 2007 has been a tumultuous year with the subprime mortgage meltdown and its fallout, which led to major Wall Street firms reporting more than $20 billion in write-downs for the third quarter. Third-quarter results were also weak for Fannie Mae and, especially, Freddie Mac.

Oil prices topping $90 a barrel and gas prices speeding past $3.20 a gallon in many places have exacerbated economic woes, choking disposable income. Their impact on transportation costs favors the development of urban infill,

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With low temperatures come low rates. 30 Year fixed rates are hovering around 5.875%-6.0% No Points! The drop in rates is in anticipation of yet another fed rate reduction next week.

See the "getting pre-approved" section on the home page for Sean Hadley of Heritage Mortgage Services info.  I'm sure he would be happy to discuss your options if you would like to learn more about how this all works and how it can apply to you.  Just make sure you tell him that you were referred by!

-Jake Lohser

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It is a common misconception that the real estate market begins and ends with the weather.  Sure, it may slow a bit if you are looking at total volume but what people fail to realize is desperate times for sellers provide awesome opportunities for buyers.


This reality is often discussed among real estate professionals but I feel like it isn’t driven home to the general public.  It is true, some sellers have the luxury of waiting until the spring to list their property or are able to take it temporarily off the market when the weather begins to get cold.  This is absolutely not true, however, for a great number of sellers, who for one reason or another, need to sell ASAP.  As they begin to face the possibility of having their listing sit over the

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District 9  is Central East is mission bay, south of market, and south beach

District 8  is Northeast has downtown and the financial district

District 7 is North Pacific Heights

SF Sales 9/1/07 – 11/26/07


                                                Median Sold     Avg DOM         Avg Sold/List Price


Miraloma Park, 3 BR SFD          $885,000           42 days            103%

Central Sunset, 3 BR SFD            856,000           30                     104%

Dist 7, 3 BR SFD                      1,637,500          21                     109%

Noe Valley, 2 BR Condo            $870,000           33                     105%

South Beach, 2 BR Condo         1,030,000          49                   97%                


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coming soon:  fellow Boulevard chefs Pamela Mazzola and Ravi Kapur, and restaurant general manager Kathy King are signing papers and making plans for a new restaurant in the still-under-construction Infinity, a swanky South of Market condominium complex (300 Spear St., at Folsom) scheduled to open in mid-2009. At one time, Oakes talked of opening a lounge-style restaurant where patrons could sip cocktails and sample appetizer-size bites before moving into a small dining room for big plates. But it's unclear whether that's still the plan. The newly formed consortium is keeping mum until everything has been crossed and dotted.

This will be Oakes' third restaurant in San Francisco. Voted Best Chef California by the James Beard Foundation in 2001, Oakes

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