Posts Tagged ‘California Association of REALTORS’

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December 4, 2013
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BUYING TRENDS: AMERICANS PREFER MIXED-USE, WALKABLE COMMUNITIES
New research by the National Association of Realtors® has consistently revealed that Americans prefer walkable, mixed-use neighborhoods and shorter commutes. According to NAR’s 2013 Community Preference Survey, 60% of respondents favor a neighborhood with a mix of houses, stores and other businesses that are within walking distance, over neighborhoods that require more driving between home, work and recreation.

Also, while the size of the property does matter to consumers, they are willing to compromise size for a preferred neighborhood and less commuting. For example, although 52% of those surveyed prefer a single-family house with a large yard,
78% responded that the neighborhood is more important to them than the size of the house
57% would forego a home with a larger yard if it meant a shorter commute to work
55% of respondents were willing to forego a home with a larger yard if it meant they could live within walking distance of schools, stores and restaurants

“Growth patterns, economic development and quality-of-life issues are inextricably linked to the success of communities and residents,” said NAR President Gary Thomas. “Realtors® build communities and care about improving those communities through smart growth initiatives. Although there is no one-size-fits-all approach, smart growth is typically characterized by mixed-use development, higher densities, and pedestrian-friendly streets that accommodate a wide diversity of transportation modes.”

The most popular choice among respondents? A suburban neighborhood with a mix of houses, shops and businesses. Least popular was a suburban neighborhood with just houses.

California REALTORS® Applaud New Law on Short Sales

July 27, 2011

By Leslie Berkman

RISMEDIA, July 26, 2011—(MCT)—Under a new state law, any lender who agrees to a short sale—which by definition will yield insufficient funds to cover the outstanding loans on a property—must accept it as payment in full for all loan balances. That is a good thing for upside-down homeowners who need to sell, says the California Association of REALTORS®.

In a prepared statement applauding Gov. Jerry Brown for signing SB 458 into law, the association observed that previously a first mortgage holder could accept an agreed-upon short sale payment as full payment for the first mortgage but a junior lien holder could still hound the seller for the full amount owned on the junior lien.

“The signing of this bill is a victory for California homeowners who have been forced to short sell their home only to find that the lender will pursue them after the short sale closes, and demand an additional payment to subsidize the difference,” says association President Beth L. Peerce.

“SB 458 brings closure and certainty to the short sale process and ensures that once a lender has agreed to accept a short sale payment on a property, all lien holders—those in first position and in junior positions—will consider the outstanding balance as paid in full and the homeowner will not be held responsible for any additional payments on the property,” she adds.

Those shopping for a home in the $500,000 to $1 million price range should not tarry. That is because they will probably face higher interest rates and more strict underwriting standards and will need to make a larger down payment later this year when conforming loan limits increase, cautions California Association of REALTORS® President Beth L. Peerce.

“Would-be buyers on the fence need to act well before Sept. 30, when the conforming loan limit is set to be lowered, to avoid a higher cost of homeownership,” Peerce said in a prepared statement.

Lowering the limits on mortgages eligible for purchase by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac could have a broader impact than on individual homebuyers, says Peerce. “As the housing market tries to gain a more solid footing, the decrease in conforming loan limits that is scheduled for later this year could adversely affect the market,” she says.

Copyright (c) 2011, The Press-Enterprise, Riverside, Calif.