Monday, April 13, 2020

Welcome to Pook's E-News!

Pook Bellini 
Arizona Best Real Estate
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Mobile: 480-628-7377
Pook's E-News contains up-to-date articles and information about real estate and other topics of interest. It is sent out as an email to those on my mailing list and then posted to this site.  If you would like to receive Pook's E-News and are not currently on my email list, please contact me. Also, please know that your feedback is both welcome and deeply appreciated!  Feel free to leave comments or email me directly.

Please note that you can search for previous postings at the ARCHIVE at the bottom of the left sidebar.  

You can also scroll down below to see previous postings, however, since there is a limit to how many postings appear on a page, you will need to click on "older posts" (lower right corner of each page) to see older posts.  There are lots of posts hiding there... don't miss them! 

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Even if You Don’t Qualify for a Standard Mortgage, There May Be Ways to Get a Loan

Source:  The Washington Post
Article by
October 3, 2014

Note:  “QM” refers to the federal Qualified Mortgage rules that are designed to foster safe lending.

Here’s some good news: A small but growing number of lenders has begun offering mortgages with more-flexible terms designed for borrowers like you.
Say you have solid credit scores and money in the bank but because of student loans or medical bills, your debt-to-income ratio exceeds the maximum that federal rules generally prescribe. Or maybe you are self-employed and find it difficult to assemble the documentation most lenders require on income, even though one glance at your bank statements would show that you earn enough to qualify. Perhaps you did a short sale on your underwater home a couple of years ago, too recently to meet the four-year minimum wait time prescribed by giant investor Fannie Mae before you are allowed to obtain a new mortgage.

Impac Mortgage, a New York Stock Exchange-traded company based in Irvine, Calif., has begun making loans nationwide — $30 million in the past couple of months — on what it calls “Alternative QM” mortgages to several categories of creditworthy borrowers with special needs:
Near-miss buyers, who don’t quite qualify under standard rules. Say they have solid credit scores and good jobs but have a debt-to-income ratio of 49 percent. They’re likely to have difficulty under Fannie Mae’s or Freddie Mac’s underwriting systems, but Impac may fund them after taking a hard look at their bank reserves and assets.
Self-employed professionals and business owners. They generally can’t show IRS W-2 forms and may have irregular income flows, complex tax situations and periodically high debt levels. Impac allows them to document their income using 12 months of recent bank statements and to have debt-to-income ratios as high as 50 percent.
Investors with multiple properties. Investors who own 10 or more rental homes or commercial properties and seek to refinance and pull money out are frequently turned down by conventional lenders. Impac evaluates borrowers’ incomes based on the properties’ cash flows, and it has no limit on total properties an applicant can own. 

Click HERE for complete article.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Cromford Report - Market Summary for the Beginning of October

Source:  The Cromford Report™ 
Michael J. Orr, Owner/Founder of The Cromford Report™ and Director of the and Center for Real Estate Theory and Practice at the WP Carey School of Business
Arizona State University

"The flow of new listings has remained very low and yet the weakness in demand is sufficient to cause active listings to rise. In the last four weeks we saw 10.2% fewer new listings than last year and 7.9% fewer than in 2012.

There is still no significant sign of an improvement in demand, although comparisons with 2013 are much easier now because the slump in demand started in August 2013.

Last month we expected to be in a very neutral market with demand and supply in almost exact balance. Although we saw a little improvement it was smaller than we expected and the trend turned a little more negative for sellers in the last two weeks.

Sales in September 2013 were unusually weak and at the time we blamed it on the government shutdown. Sales in September 2014 were slightly weaker than last year which reflects the lack of financing available to ordinary homeowners. Tight lending standards, especially for first time home buyers seem to be having a major negative effect on demand. If Ben Bernanke cannot successfully refinance his home based on current lending rules, what hope do the rest of us have?" 

Go the the CROMFORD REPORT page at the top of my website for the complete report.

Homeownership: A Few Stats and Quotes

Courtesy of Keep Current Matters/the KCM Blog
Posted: 29 Sep 2014 04:00 AM PDT

2014 American Express Spending & Saving Tracker

“About two-thirds (65%) of homeowners say they are confident they would get the asking price for their home if they were to put it on the market today (up from 40% in 2010).”

Financial Security Index Survey

“Eighty nine percent of Americans feel that buying a home is an important part of achieving the American Dream.”

“How America Views Homeownership” Survey

“Sixty eight percent of Americans feel that now is a good time to buy a home.”

Housing Confidence Index

“A two-thirds majority of renter households said that owning a home someday is a specific goal that they are determined to reach, or something that they think about a lot."

Fannie Mae

“Homes have accounted for 23.5% of American’s wealth on average since 1959. That’s nearly double the proportion U.S. households and nonprofits have invested in stocks.”

Wall Street Journal

“A measure of owners' equity as a share of the value of real-estate holdings hit 53.6% in the second quarter, up from 53.2% in the first quarter and below 50% a year earlier. For most Americans, a home is their biggest asset, so the growing level of home equity suggests improvements in the economy are now reaching more Americans.”

Monday, September 15, 2014

Randy Johnson Lists Paradise Valley Home for $25 Million

Source:  AZ CENTRAL/The Arizona Republic
Article by:  Catherine Reagor, The Republic 2:36 p.m. MST August 31, 2014

Below is a link to a recent ARIZONA CENTRAL article about retired former Diamondback star Randy Johnson's PV home that is listed at $25,000,000.  Johnson retired in 2010 as a 10-time All Star and five-time Cy Young Award winner with a career record of 303-166 with the Montreal Expos, Seattle Mariners, Houston Astros, Arizona Diamondbacks, New York Yankees and San Francisco Giants.

Johnson's beautiful 25,000+ square foot Tuscsan-style mansion is located on 5+ acres near Mummy Mountain in Paradise Valley.



Sunday, September 14, 2014

200th Annivwersary of the Star-Spangled Banner

Here's a link to the Smithsonian's excellent page about the Star-Spangled Banner:

In honor of the 200th anniversary of our national anthem, here is one of the all-time great renditions done by Whitney Houston at Super Bowl XXV in 1991.  It was re-released after the terrorist attacks on 9/11...

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Phoenix Area Flooding and Flood Insurance Information

Flooding in Mesa, 

Sept. 9, 2014.(Photo: The Republic)

This week the Phoenix metro area received record-breaking rainfall and many areas experienced severe flooding. Initial news reports were calling it the "hundred year flood." Later reports on local news stations were calling it the "500 year flood" and one even called it a possible "1,000 year flood." As some areas still remain under water and some folks are dealing with the aftermath of extensive flooding, many people are discovering that their homeowner's insurance does not cover this type of water damage.

With this in mind, it is important that all homeowners review their insurance coverage, take the time to check out FEMA flood maps,  and give serious consideration to getting flood insurance.  Flood maps can change, so even if you've checked area maps previously, it's a good idea to review your area flood map again. (See links below.)

According to a recent ArizonaCentral article, "Flood insurance has a 30-day delay before coverage starts. But there's no waiting period for sewer and drain backup coverage, which can be added as an endorsement to standard policies.

Because public infrastructure such as sewer systems often takes a beating during heavy storms, this can be a wise purchase and typically doesn't cost much."

Below are links to FEMA Flood map information and to the Maricopa County Flood Control District.  Take a few minutes to check them out.

The FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) Flood Map Service Center (MSC) is the official public source for flood hazard information produced in support of the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). Use the MSC to find your official flood map, access a range of other flood hazard products, and take advantage of tools for better understanding flood risk.

For the most current information for your area, go to the FEMA Map Service Center (MSC) website: 

The Maricopa County Flood Control District:  Click HERE