David Saks was born in Memphis, Tennessee on August 1, 1952, early one Friday morning down in the blazing hot Mississippi Delta, where cotton grows and plowmen sing the blues.
He lives and works everyday in a crumbling, life-threatening, poverty-stricken Memphis neighborhood filled with illiteracy, hunger, blighted property, extreme violence, dangerous gangs, registered sex offenders, prostitution, racism, numerous ex-convicts with felony convictions, meth labs, drug addicts and illegal drugs of every kind, robbery, arson, burglary, auto theft, domestic assault, child abuse and neglect, high infant mortality rates, alcoholism, murder, foreclosure, high unemployment, bankrupted and poor families barely surviving on welfare, inadequate schools, bad cops, high taxes, corrupt government, and parents with shattered and hopeless dreams of a better life for their children.
David was appointed to serve the fair housing committee for the local real estate board in 2013.
He retired his license in October of 2014 because he believes that the National Association of Realtors, local and state NAR-affiliated real estate boards, and affinity-based groups are corrupt, restrict fair trade and violate the anti-trust laws of the United States.
One local NAR association unbelievably demands that their members use their MLS product, has done so for many years, and continues this practice, threatening the assessment of penalty if a member engages in the practice of residential real estate sales while refusing to use the association's mls product, even as competitive, less costly, alternative, and even free, products are made available to our nation's real estate professionals.
This unscrupulous NAR-affiliated board demands that any member that refuses to use the board's MLS, under penalty of assessment, must sign a document stating that the member agrees not to engage the practice of "showing, listing or co-listing residential property within the Association's jurisdiction".
David believes that this is an egregious attempt to allocate the local real estate market, and that they violate, and thumb their a nose at, our nations anti-trust laws in a flagrant and deplorably outrageous manner.
They continue to do so with disapproval, rebuke, and criticism from their current and former members.
Criticism that continues to remain disregarded and neglected by this nation's legislative assemblies.
There is nothing in the real estate laws of any state in this nation that would require any licensed real estate professional to become a Realtor or to sign such a document; a document which restricts their right to engage in their profession.
He leads efforts to eradicate blight-saturated blocks within decaying, crime-filled Memphis neighborhoods, addresses the challenges it creates for the inner-city, and has successfully helped reduce the number of blighted properties throughout Shelby County working closely with code enforcement officials, city and community leaders, environmental courts, neighborhood associations and local media with clearly defined goals to defeat a nefarious scourge that has left once thriving and beautiful neighborhoods in ruins and continues to destroy residential districts and property values.
He very aggressively encourages, supports and emphasizes the need for state-wide fair housing education for all people which, in turn, will benefact nationwide efforts to eliminate many problems, which include predatory lending and it's pandemic iniquity that has injured, and continues to injure, our nation's borrowers.
His resolute is determined when addressing the needs of fair housing.
He supports every cause which will advance the improvement and integrity of real estate professionals throughout the nation, researches the impact of real estate fraud on the community at-large and encourages industry-wide continuing education.
In recent times, many real estate professionals have been stalked, preyed upon, tragically assaulted, ruthlessly and remorselessly injured and murdered by very dangerous criminals throughout our nation.
David is a tough proponent for the safety and personal protection of all and encourages vigilance throughout the nationwide real estate community.
In 1990 and 1991, David, as pianist and composer, was honored by the government of the City of Memphis and the Memphis City Council when two of his songs, "In Memphis" and "One Last Bridge", were adopted as the "Official Songs of Memphis" in unanimous council resolutions.
David has demonstrated empathy and compassion for those less fortunate, has made special effort to assist in community endeavors for the physically challenged, and has supported their community service efforts.
He attended Rhodes College, including the Meeman College for continuing education, Kfar Chabad near Jerusalem, spent a summer at Harvard College, New York University, McGill in Toronto, Berkeley and the University of Memphis where he continues his affiliation with the College of Communication and Fine Arts.
In 1972, David was a guest in the Cambridge, Ma. home of Professor John Kenneth Galbraith ("The New Industrial State"), Department of Economics at Harvard University and United States' ambassador to India under President John F.Kennedy.
In 1974 he spent a college year working and studying in Israel along with students from Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Colgate, Baylor and Oxford Universities.
During the spring of 1975 he was a piano student of Art Bayer at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, and also a student of the late Dr. Herbert Hermann at the University of Memphis.
He has played in Steinway Hall in London and New York and is recognized in the Steinway Registry.
Some of his earliest music manuscripts are in the Library of Congress. View Here.
On August 16,1977 David was visiting with friends at Graceland, the home of Elvis Presley, and left shortly before Elvis was tragically found unconscious and taken to the hospital.
On January 8,1993, Elvis' 58th birthday, David was honored by Graceland and the United States Postal Service as the recipient of the very first officially cancelled Elvis Presley stamp and first day cover.
David was the orginal lobby pianist for the grand celebration and reopening in 1981 of The Peabody Hotel at the request of owner, prominent real estate leader and friend, Jack Belz.
As a matter of Memphis music trivia, David's friend, Elvis Presley's tailor and clothier, Bernard Lansky (1927-2012), of Lansky Brothers, provided David with two new tuxedos as a gift to perform in for the occasion. Bernard and his family have known David since he was born. Bernard was also David's great grandmother's neighbor.
David is also a regular contributor to the editorial and letters section of Memphis' most widely read and circulated daily newspaper, the Commercial Appeal.
He's been published in Realtor® magazine and has volunteered and assisted the construction of several Habitat homes.
As a broadcaster, David has raised money for area charities throughout his native Memphis and Shelby County.
He's participated in many events which assist the fund raising efforts of community service organizations to include:
Special Olympics, The Muscular Dystrophy Association United Way Jewish Family Service Young Womens Christian Association Avon School for the Disabled, Mid South Amateur Radio Association LeBonheur Children's Medical Center Sheltered Occupational Workshops for cerebrally and developmentally challenged Lions Club for the Blind Habitat For Humanity University of Memphis College of Communication and Fine Arts St. Jude Children's Research Hospital founded by Danny Thomas (January 6, 1912 - February 6, 1991), March of Dimes
David supports efforts to combat occupational fraud, predatory lending and abuse practices and reports on these issues in his real estate blog daily along with press releases provided by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, FBI.Gov .
He has a YouTube Channel filled with music, some comedy, satire, chat and other things.
He still plays the piano on occasion for friends, family and around town.
Being a part of ActiveRain brings any success story full circle.
In the last few years the associations, the education, the friendships, the interaction and motivation have proved to be invaluable.
The level of inspiration, the camaraderie and cooperation between colleagues and associates, and the opportunities to improve the quality of your professionalism all reside within this coveted social platform which has now become legacy for generations of real estate professionals to come.Developing your business philosophy builds a path to your future.
Your business philosophy is the groundwork that defines the standard of practice that supports you. A standard that defines the quality of your profession and the essential and distinguishing attribute that defines the apparent nature of your profession.ActiveRain's mission is to strengthen that foundation. To believe in you and encourage your success.
I believe in ActiveRain.
You become a real estate professional for a reason. That reason should be clear and stand out in your profession. This reason defines your business. It represents the way you practice your profession. This reason has an ethical and a moral foundation which gives you strength. And this same reason is determined to overcome your weaknesses.The people of this great nation want to do business with leaders.
If times are tough, if the market is declining, if you're honest about your problems, rather than try to cover up the reality of the economic conditions we're facing, you'll be seen in a positive light and your honesty revered by your clients. You'll prosper when the time comes.
People will conduct business with people that they can believe in.
ActiveRain encourages this philosophy.It's among the greatest honors to participate in such a forum as ActiveRain.The amount of information, and inspiration, that it provides real estate professionals throughout the nation, and the world, is incalculable.
I'm a retired broker and play the piano. Unlike Nero, who fiddled when Rome burned, I'm commandeering the fire truck and only have a bucket of water. Although I devote most of my energy to computer and internet related issues.
I was Ray Bouder Real Estate Schools web master for several years, and have built many webpages for realtors and other businesses over the last ten years, pro bono.
My father was a real estate agent with Marx and Bensdorf when I came into the world. My great uncle, Frank Romeo, was the president of the Memphis Homebuilders Association. The profession has always been a part of my life, and I never generated more enthusiasm to serve it than when I began to see the horrific greed and corruption perpetrated on the homeowners locally and nationally over the last decade.
I've given of my time and energy tirelessly to realtors and their concerns all over Memphis and the Mid South. I can get vocal about property tax and fair housing issues and I've faced some tough challenges and arguments with many real estate agents and others in the profession. Realtor political party concerns can be a sore spot with me, but in spite of it, my loyalty to this profession is for life.
Playing the piano is a great passion of mine.
I'm a pianist and a composer and I've received some fine honors from our local government, including the adoption of two songs I wrote as the Official Songs of Memphis in unanimous Memphis City Council resolution by proclamation.
It is my intention this day, and every day, to battle the greed that takes place in our housing industry as a whole. When I see local realtors at board meetings complaining because not enough people in our profession are contributing to support the legislation that the Realtor Political Action Committees are seeking I don't just see a local board reacting in support of it's own needs, I see a local board seeking the help of a local body supporting the need of a national body of Realtors.
When one Realtor, closing attorney, lender, appraiser or anyone else in the housing industry commits a disgusting act of greed or real estate fraud it affects everyone in the industry, not just the local market that some Realtor board leaders and lenders want to shroud with distinction apart from the body as a whole.
I'd analyze any situation before placing my name on a contract without absolute confidence and assurance that I'm working with someone of unquestionable integrity.
I have nothing to hide, and my past is in a glass house.
Regulation of financing is a necessity in view of the many callous and thoughtless misrepresentations that have occurred at the hands of unscrupulous and greed driven lending institutions.
When lenders exceed qualifying mortgage caps for their borrowers they knowingly place their clients at the risk of foreclosure. We now know that realistic rates should remain in place in order to make financing more affordable, not just for the borrower, but to lower the risk for the lender. If debt to income ratios exceed realistic limitations the outcome is predictable with almost certain accuracy.
This is especially true when qualifying a buyer for an adjustable rate mortgage of either a fixed or hybrid type, such as a loan with a teaser rate of 4 percent for two years that explodes to 8 percent or more when the introductory rate period expires. The ensuing payment shock inevitably decimates the borrower, increases the debt to income ratio, depletes their cash reserves, depletes escrow, creates negative amortization, and eliminates the possibility of refinancing because the debt exceeds the value of the home.
These are precisely the reasons why we need legislation such as HR3915, the Mortgage Reform and Anti-Predatory Lending Act of 2007, to protect our most valuable asset, our homes. Lenders should undergo rigorous training including continuing educational opportunities required by law and local and state financial regulatory boards.
Local, state and national governments should require greater levels of skill and attentiveness by lenders when excercising discretion and prudence when qualifying a borrower. It is the utmost responsibilty of our lenders and our banks to protect our borrowers, and to protect your "investment", which "is" their money until you receive a warranty deed and a satisfaction of mortgage document. I'm not blaming realtors, lenders or others in our profession for all of the problems.
I am suggesting that a forum such as this be used to address the problems facing the nation rather than camouflage the occasion with cheerleading the industry. If I had wanted to be more specific I could address the horrific issue of mortgage fraud and predatory lending of which hundreds have been indicted nationally for their roles, including recent real estate fraud indictments and sentencing of Memphis Realtors, including their closing attorneys, straw buyers, dozen of their affiliate agents, appraisers and mortgage brokers, who prepared false documents which defrauded our banks out of millions of dollars. I blame those who refuse to recognize the advancing financial horrors affecting the liquidity of investors all over the world.
I blame the government for starting this crisis which began in the late 1990's with the artificial inflation of property values so that the tax assessors could tap the higher equity in our homes for more tax money. It was easier for the government to do this, to increase our property values rather than our property taxes, rather than face more opposition from angry homeowners fighting higher property tax percentages divided between the city of Memphis, the Shelby County government, and many other cities and townships throughout America. The two tax rates imposed on Memphis homeowners have been a constant source of confusion and should be combined into one rate. I keep a vigilant eye on market conditions,
I have now for many years and I knew that the real estate crash was within a stones throw after record tax appeals in 2000 and 2001.
A realtor board member commented to me recently: "Maybe you should spend more time studying the market conditions and trends and you would realize that Memphis has been #1 in FHA foreclosures in the US for almost 20 years and that will continue with the education level we have in the Memphis Area. " I've always preferred gentle reasoning to strong arm logic.
Why not begin educating the community to reverse the alarming trend? I recently read the National Association of Realtor's price analysis for the Memphis Metropolitan Region. I was fully aware that sales activity was down during the crash and that the NAR is attributing this to an issue of confidence. I agree with this distinction in view of the state of the mortgage industry and the fact that closing attorneys, appraisers, straw buyers and lenders are being carted off to prison by the busloads.
Other factors such as crime, high property taxes and corrupt government may also play a role in reducing the confidence levels of the community. Ask anyone in my company that knows me and they'll probably tell you that I tirelessly research market data well into the night, many of them sleepless nights to have the edge I need to bring up shattered confidence levels. I receive daily reports from industry watchdogs all over America in addition to the treasury department financial crimes reports ( FINCEN reports).
I subscribe to many mortgage fraud reporting groups as well, and vigilantly pursue the information to determine the extent of the problem locally and nationally. My company will also tell you that only once did I ever miss a sales meeting and it was because I was sworn in as the grand jury foreman pro tempore for three months on the Shelby County Grand Jury and had to review cases on that day, which happened to be our Thanksgiving luncheon.
Another realtor comment to me recently is that: "The main lesson you should learn is that real estate markets are all local and whatever is happening in one city does not always apply to another."What I'm addressing is national in it's scope and impacts the nation, although there is great concern locally for solvency and liquidity in view of the recent tragic bankruptcies and foreclosures of many mid-south area homebuilders. Rapidly declining prices along with the increased housing inventory is reaching catastrophic proportion.
Many properties are still in the hands of the banks, bankruptcy trustees, state, local and county government and sit for months without interest and ignored. Enough negative stuff creating enough depression to fill up a psychology clinic. I wonder sometimes if psychologists found a windfall because of the real estate crash.
Real estate agents, attorneys and lenders must be prepared to answer questions about real estate financing, foreclosure, title theory, the RESPA, inspection issues, predatory lending matters, brokerage, deeds. property law, listings, agency and disclosure issues, real estate math, sales contracts, Tennessee real estate laws or the laws of your state, leases, appraisal issues, fair housing and the NAR code of ethics.
I've said this many times:"Owning a home should never have to be a "dream" for anyone. The responsibility of every legislator, real estate agent, lender, closing attorney, homebuilder or anyone in our great profession is to make home ownership a "right" & a "reality", in conformance with fairness, the principles of sound ethical judgement, justice & the laws of our nation."
It is my honor to welcome the Active Rain Community to the Great State of Tennessee !
It is my hope that in the days ahead many new friends will be made and that many great thoughts, ideas and interests will be shared. Here are some facts & trivia about my beautiful state for you:
Tennessee Facts & Trivia
The city of Kingston served asTennessee's state capital for one day (September 21, 1807) as a result of treaties negotiated with the Cherokee Indians. The two-hour legislative session passed two resolutions and adjourned back to Knoxville.
Andrew Johnson held every elective office at the local, state, and federal level, including President of the United States. He was elected alderman, mayor, state representative, and state senator from Greeneville. He served as governor and military governor of Tennessee and United States congressman, senator, and vice president, becoming President of the United States following the assassination of Abraham Lincoln.
Iroquois, bred at Nashville's Belle Meade Plantation, was the first American winner of the English Derby in 1881. Such modern thoroughbreds as Secretariat trace their bloodlines to Iroquois.
Actress-singer Polly Bergen, from Knoxville, is the first woman to serve on the Board of Directors of the Singer Sewing Machine Company.
Tennessee won its nickname as The Volunteer State during the War of 1812 when volunteer soldiers from Tennessee displayed marked valor in the Battle of New Orleans.
The Copper Basin is so different from the surrounding area it has been seen and is recognizable by American astronauts. The stark landscape was caused by 19th-century mining practices.
There were more National Guard soldiers deployed from the state for the Gulf War effort than any other state.
There are more horses per capita in Shelby County than any other county in the United States.
The only person in American history to be both an Admiral in the Navy and a General in the Army was Samuel Powhatan Carter who was born in Elizabethton.
Greeneville has the only monument in the United States honoring both the Union and Confederate armies. It is located on the lawn of the Green County Courthouse.
The city of Murfreesboro lies in the exact geographical center of the state.
Grinders Switch, entertainer Minnie Pearl's fictitious hometown, is now an entertainment complex in her real hometown of Centerville.
Conifer forests similar to those in Canada are found in the higher elevations of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
Hattie Caraway (1878-1950) born in Bakersville became the first woman United States Senator.
Davy Crockett was not born on a mountaintop in Tennessee, as the song says. He was born on the banks of Limestone Creek near Greeneville, where a replica of the Crockett's log cabin stands today.
The Tennessee Aquarium is the largest facility of its kind to focus on fresh water habitat. It features 7,000 animals and 300 species of fish, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and mammals.
The largest earthquake in American history, the New Madrid Earthquake occurred in the winter of 1811-12 in northwestern Tennessee. Reelfoot Lake located in Obion and Lake Counties was formed during this earthquake. Reputed "Turtle Capital of the World," Reelfoot Lake also features thousands of sliders, stinkpots, mud and map turtles.
Nashville's Grand Ole Opry is the longest continuously running live radio program in the world. It has broadcast every Friday and Saturday night since 1925.
The legendary railroad engineer Casey Jones, who was killed when his train crashed on April 30, 1900, lived in Jackson.
Oak Ridge was instrumental in the development of the atomic bomb. Today, because of constant energy research, it is known as the Energy Capital of the World.
Tennessee has more than 3,800 documented caves.
The Alex Haley boyhood home in Henning is the first state-owned historic site devoted to African Americans in Tennessee.
Bristol is known as the Birthplace of Country Music.
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the most visited national park in the United States. The park was named for the smoke-like bluish haze that often envelops these fabled mountains.
Elvis Presley's home called Graceland is located in Memphis. Graceland is the second most visited house in the country.
Knoxville was home to the 1982 World's Fair. Attendance was recorded at 11,127,786 visitors.
Tennessee was the last state to secede from the Union during the Civil War and the first state to be readmitted after the war.
The nation's oldest African-American architectural firm, McKissack and McKissack, is located in Nashville.
The nation's oldest African-American financial institution, Citizens Savings Bank and Trust Company, is located in Nashville.
Robert R. Church, Sr. of Memphis is purported to be the South's first African-American millionaire.
The National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis is at the Lorraine Motel where Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was slain in 1968. The museum preserves the motel and tells the history of the American Civil Rights Movement.
A replica of The Parthenon, the famous ancient Greek building in Athens, Greece, stands in Nashville's Centennial Park.
The "Guinness Book of World Records" lists the Lost Sea in Sweetwater as the largest underground lake in the United States.
The Cherokee silversmith, Sequoyah, was the only known man in the history of the world to single-handedly develop an alphabet. His syllabus for the Cherokee Nation resulted in the first written language for a Native American people. The Sequoyah Birthplace Museum in Vonore tells his story and is dedicated to the history and culture of Native Americans.
The Watauga Association at Sycamore Shoals near Elizabethton drafted the first constitution ever written by white men in America in 1772. It was patterned after the constitution of the Iroquois League of Nations, a federal system of government developed 200 years earlier for five eastern Native American tribes.
Gary Cooper won the Oscar for Best Actor for his portrayal of Tennessee war hero Alvin York in the 1941 hit movie, Sergeant York. World War I hero Sgt. Alvin C. York was born in Pall Mall.
When Tennessee became a state in 1796, the total population was 77,000. The capitol building was designed by noted architect William Strickland, who died during its construction and is buried within its walls.
Tennessee ranks number one among other states in the total number of soldiers who fought in the War Between the States.
Tennesseeans are sometimes referred to as Butternuts, a tag which was first applied to Tennessee soldiers during the Civil War because of the tan color of their uniforms.
The Ocoee River in southeastern Tennessee is rated among the top white water recreational rivers in the nation and was the site for the Olympic white water canoe/kayak competition in the 1996 Olympics.
The name "Tennessee" originated from the old Yuchi Indian word, "Tana-see," meaning "The Meeting Place."
Jubilee Singers of Fisk University in Nashville introduced to the world the plaintive beauty and tradition of the Negro spiritual, which became the basis for other genres of African-American music. It was because of their successful tours to raise funds for the university during the 1870s that Nashville first became known for its music.
Tennessee ties with Missouri as the most neighborly state in the union. It is bordered by 8 states.
Dolly Parton is a native of Sevierville. A major highway, the Dolly Parton Parkway, takes visitors traveling to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
The world's largest artificial skiing surface is located at the Ober Gatlinburg Ski Resort in Gatlinburg. There a 5-acre artificial ski surface permits skiing in any type of weather.
Coca-Cola was first bottled in 1899 at a plant on Patten Parkway in downtown Chattanooga after two local attorneys purchased the bottling rights to the drink for $l.00.
Cumberland University, located in Lebanon, lost a football game to Georgia Tech on October 7, 1916 by a score of 222 to 0. The Georgia Tech coach was George Heisman for whom the Heisman Trophy is named.
Cotton made Memphis a major port on the Mississippi River. The Memphis Cotton Exchange still handles approximately one-third of the entire American cotton crop each year.
Thanks to all for being here ! ==================
Some music for my friends. -David-
The chart below is a record of David's required real estate education history, including continuing and mandatory, as required by the Tennessee Real Estate Commission.
Some recent courses may not be included at this time, but will be at a later date.
You may also verify licensing and education requirements for David, or any agent or broker in the State of Tennessee, by visiting http://verify.tn.gov/ and using the convenient search engine provided.
Is a brokerage just the business of bringing people together in a real estate transcaction, or is it more like a business characterized by a high degree of intensity which combines the components of a multi-platformed community into one full service entity?
Seems that the larger a brokerage is the more important training and retaining becomes.
What is the process of becoming a better brokerage?
I think it's understanding the business and all of the intricate processes, some sophisticated, some simple, that are the foundation of it's very existence.
"I'm very proud that I was born in Memphis, and I'm equally proud to be from the great State of Tennessee.
I retired in October of 2014. I understand the complexities of real estate sales, service and practice very well, pass referrals, and delight, when requested, in offering recommendations and assisting others in the process, and retain a healthy sense of neutrality if the need for arbitration ever arises.
I refer listings frequently and always without fee, continue to serve as real estate technology manager and consultant for my colleagues, and work pro bono.
I've passed many referrals along to agents and have never accepted a payment for a referral.
I've referred hundreds of students to real estate schools throughout Tennessee of which I am extremely proud to have done, and I continue to do so at every opportunity that arises.
The many challenges of today's real estate profession are highly sophisticated and becoming more complicated with the dramatic changes affecting the economic climate of the nation.
This generation of real estate professional must be properly prepared to meet these extremely tough, demanding new challenges which include combating the nefarious temptations inducing real estate practitioners to commit fraud.
I enjoy the challenges of real estate analysis and, each day, examine the educational standards, philosophy, psychology, rules, moral and ethical values of a profession which has enriched my life and of which I'm very proud to be a member.
Success has meant waking up and getting out of bed each day to meet the turbulent challenges of the world around us. There's a lot to be thankful for. "
"And then there's the philosophy of objection to process.
What is objection?
Do we open ourselves up to objection voluntarily if we engage in the commercial promotion, sale, or distribution of anything ?
We've all had the feeling that when we speak up or criticize some level of professionalism, or otherwise, in our companies that we're at risk of being ostracized or shunned by our colleagues. There's the pervasive, lingering paranoia of a vote against, a refusal to endorse, or the refusal to assent.
Objection comes in all shapes, sizes, colors, towns, provinces and communities. And we've all been privileged to some exclusive group that has a beef with some other privileged group; even if it was just the other bowling team. I believe, that as real estate experts, as a collective body of honorable professionals, we have a responsibility to shape the landscape, not just sell it. How do you deal with objection?
I listen to my neighbors, friends, family, clients, customers and colleagues first. Then seek their approval."
Listening to your client or customer shouldn't be difficult.
I know that it can be.
It's hard for me at times.
I sometimes fail to hear what's embedded in the meaning of the language that's being transmitted to me.
Sometimes I can jump ahead and predict what someone is going to say next, like a bad movie script.
We ignore their body language and get sidetracked.
Tolerating what they're saying is important.
If what they're conveying to you is unclouded and lucid then it makes listening a great experience.
Look for clarity.
It's substance that's free from obscurity and easy to understand; the comprehensibility of clear expression.
What does real estate counseling invlove?
Do you provide your clients with competent adivce? Does your advice reflect sound, professional judgement?
How can we counsel our clients to choose among the many alternatives they face?
What do we have to furnish our clients with to make informed decisions?
Many of our homeowners whose residences are in foreclosure have been subjected to fraud, deception and unfair dealing by home equity purchasers, savings banks, commercial banks, mortgage companies, credit unions, savings and loan associations, mortgage brokers, realtors, appraisers, closing attorneys and other unprincipled in the housing financing sector working under deceitful pretenses. The recent rapid escalation of home values, particularly in urban areas, has resulted in a significant increase in home equities, which are usually the greatest financial asset held by homeowners in this state or any other state. Homes are being foreclosed in Memphis at a rate unprecedented in the history of our city. The daily notices of trustee's sale are now in the hundreds. During the period of time between the commencement of a foreclosure proceeeding and a scheduled foreclosure sale date, homeowners in financial distress, especially the poor, elderly and financially unsophisticated are vulnerable to the importunities of equity purchasers who induce homeowners to sell their homes for a small fraction of their fair market values through the use of schemes which often involve oral and written misrepresentations, deceit, intimidation and other unreasonable commercial practices.
Although the problem of predatory lending is generally associated with the subprime lending market, there are many criminals who profit by deliberately making loans with burdensome terms to homebuyers who are likely to be unable to repay them. These fraudulent practices include fee packing (a predatory loan practice where a lender charges processing fees or percentage points for loan origination that are higher than usual and not justified by the services that they provide), predatory steering practices targeting minorities, equity stripping (a crooked loan practice that allows the lender to charge high fees for refinancing that eats the homeowners equity), disregarding a buyers ability to pay, creating and requiring payments that are unaffordable, issuing loans in excess of value along with phony appraisal documentation which fraudulently inflates property value, and all with intent to target persons who aren't able to understand the transactions they're entering into. By making a loan based only on a properties value, without considering the borrower's ability to afford the loan payments, the borrower will default and the lender will profit from the foreclosure.
The builders in Memphis are still creating valleys of architectural masterpieces that are more like large, vacant museum pieces in communities that few if any can afford to live in, as though we didn't have enough homes already existing on the open market. This sad scenario is also contributing to economic demise. It's rumored that honorable real estate agents, long-standing in the business, are retiring their licenses because homes are on the market for unendurable extended periods. Massive reductions in market value are forced and distressed sales are everywhere.
It is the responsibility of our leaders to insure that those who would become victims of fraud are made aware of better alternatives.
The recent collapse of much of the subprime mortgage industry because of rampant fraud is probably the worst economic disaster that we will face in our lifetimes. As we all know from so much negative press, it has the potential to "cripple the nation". It began in the late 1990's when the property assessors all over the country began indiscriminately inflating the values of properties in order to tap the increased equity for more property taxes. State and local government, which should have done the math, started it. We need leaders who can stop it and correct the books. Things'll get better and we can pour the sauce on and rock and roll once more.
Often, when we hear others talking about real estate, and even considering a career, what do they think about?
Do they think about becoming a broker and running their own brokerage?
Do they think about becoming a salesperson and working for a brokerage?
Do they think about becoming an appraiser, mortgage broker or banker, title agent, real estate attorney or what of many other options available allowing them to specialize within our profession?
What is the real estate business to you?
Is it a world revolving around negotiation and transaction all the time?
Is it commercial leasing?
Is it working with families to help them find a home, making a home a reality rather than just a clouded state of the imagination, something unobtainable or unrealistic?
Or is it just business - complex and full of challenges, at times riddled with anxiety?
We depend on each other daily to share our respective skills and knowledge to make the real estate profession, or any profession, great through consideration, confidence and other thoughtful measures.
If a real estate tax is levied for a current calendar year payable during that year or in the coming year, the period from January 1st to the date of closing, or the day before closing if you're in a state which excludes the sale date, we're dealing with what is known as the accrued portion.
Just what is the accrued portion and how do we deal with the math?
If the current tax bill "ain't in the mail" the parties at closing have to agree on a fiqure which is estimated based on last years bill. That doesn't relieve you of the obligation to know if there have been any changes in the assessment rate for the current year if you happen to be in a reassessment calendar year, like we have coming up here in good old Memphis in 2009.
Here's a nifty little example, so let's get our pencil sharpened and a clean piece of paper to scribble on, and here we go:
The sale is gonna close on September 17 this year and the current real estate taxes amounting to 1200 bucks have to be prorated. Let's use the 360 day year, or the good old bankers year, for this example. The accrued portion is 8 months and seventeen days. What we have to do first is prorate the real estate tax based on the number of months and the days :
$1200 / 12 months = $100 per month
$100 / 30 days = $3.333 a day.
Now ladies and gentlemen we can multiply these numbers by the accrued period, add the numbers we got from our calculations and come up with the figure we call the prorated real estate tax.
$100 x 8 months = $800
$3.333 x 17 days = $56.661
$800 + $56.661 = $856.661
So you see, the accrued real estate tax for 8 months and 17 days is equal to a grand total of of $856.66 which we have rounded off so the seller won't have to break a dollar bill for one thousandth of a cent.
We call this figure the sellers accrued earned tax and it is a credit to the buyer a debit to the seller when they take it to the closing table.
Wasn't that fun ?
Songs "One Last Bridge" and "In Memphis" adopted by Memphis City Council as
"The Official Songs of Memphis"
|John "Bad Dog" McCormack|
|If I had to describe David with one word I'd pick "genius".|
|Dr. Joseph Krisak - Family and Child Psychology|
|"In the years that I have known David he has been an excellent role model for his friends and family. He demonstrates extreme patience in most any project. He has given much of his time supporting efforts to raise money for projects such as Saint Jude Children's Research Hospital. I feel these attributes demonstrate someone with an exceptional character."|
Housing discrimination is a crime. You can prevent it. If you believe that your housing rights were violated or that you're a victim of fraud please notify HUD or the FBI.