Memphis, TN Real Estate News

By David Saks
((retired))
I wanted to share a letter with you that George Washington sent to his stepson, J.P. Custis                                                                                  A moments reflection must convince you of two things: first, that lands are of permanent value; that there is scarcely a possibility of their falling in price, but almost a moral certainty of their rising exceedingly in value. And, secondly, that our paper currency is fluctuating, that it has depreciated considerably, and that no human foresight can, with precision, tell how low it may get, as the rise or fall of it depends upon contingencies which the utmost stretch of human sagacity can neither foresee nor prevent. By parting from your lands, you give a certainty for an uncertainty, because it is not the nominal pr...
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 Hepplewhite Side Cabinet                                                                                                                                    When the federal funds rate started to drop, and struck new lows in 2003, we were well into a strong and healthy stock market recovery. The federal funds rate stayed around 1% long enough to set off a boom in low-cost mortgages and in home prices. Home buyers soon discovered that their ordinary paychecks could now buy fabulous homes. People with cash in savings learned their money earned next to nothing. Interest rates on home mortgages dropped so fast that the National Association of Realtors' housing affordability index showed that almost anyone could buy a house somewhere in America, because borrowed money was practically free. I...
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By David Saks
((retired))
                                           I appreciate any discussion of Broker Price Opinion and how it may affect opinion of value as opposed or in colligation with an appraisal. I greatly value your thoughts. Before a property is sold at foreclosure, auction or tax sale I don't know whether or not an appraisal would be necessary in most cases. Please correct me if there are exceptions. Perhaps when financing a short sale the appraiser would step up to the plate because an appraisal, performed by a licensed appraiser, is an opinion of value for a subject property utilizing a concept of market which may rely on locality and other factors and principles which determine valuation such as supply and demand, competition, change, surplus inventory, usage and other factors including balance...
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By David Saks
((retired))
                                  We all know that RESPA prohibits the payment of anything considered a kickback. I suppose a kickback could be considered anything which is an unearned fee for any real estate settlement service as well. Basically, if no service is rendered there can't be any fee provided. 'Who actually performs the service' is the real question were looking to answer. In general, the payment for anything of value for a referral for settlement of any services provided by the entity providing the service such as an attorney, a surveyor, a title company or title searcher, a mortgage broker or lender, or an appraiser would be prohibited under RESPA. What are your experiences with RESPA regulations? Thanks to all for your comments.
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By David Saks
((retired))
                                                     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 Realtors®, as a collective body of honorable profe...
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By David Saks
((retired))
                                                                                                                    Megan's Law is federal legislation that promotes the establishment of any state registration system which maintains residential information on every person who has kidnapped, committed a sexual crime against a child, or has committed a sexually violent crime. Megan's law also affects a licensee's duty of disclosure. Some states may require that a licensee request that a customer sign a form indicating where the customer may obtain information about the sex offense registry. A licensee may also be required to disclose information regarding a released offender if the licensee is aware that officials have informed the public that a sex offender resides in a particular area. M...
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By David Saks
((retired))
                        I'd like to discover more, and hear more, about risks that may be associated with any loan progam that would invest the equity in your home to defer mortgage payments? Has anyone ever heard of such a thing before?  Seems that any financing arrangement that relies on investing equity would have some potential probability of being exposed to peril. On the other hand, if this is a venture undertaken without regard to possible loss or injury to the collateral or security pledged for the repayment of a loan there may be merits. I greatly appreciate and respect your feedback.
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By David Saks
((retired))
                                              I wanted to share a quote with you from the late Dr. Albert Schweitzer. Dr. Schweitzer defined ethics as follows: "Ethics is a name we give to our concern for good behavior. We feel an obligation to consider not only our own personal well-being but also that of others and of human society as a whole." There are always benefits to be derived from ethical behavior. When a customer or client believes that you have worked in a professional and honest manner in their behalf, and have protected their interests, they will refer others to you. We should all be proud to participate in a forum which promotes professionalism and must consider it a great honor and privilege to interact in such a manner. We have a responsibility to each other to behave e...
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By David Saks
((retired))
                                          As we all know, whenever a tenant breaches a lease or improperly retains leased premesis a landlord regains possession through legal action undertaking the exercise of the actual eviction. What about the responsible, innocent tenant? Once a foreclosure notice has been processed and the landord has constructive notice, I believe the landlord has an obligation to provide notice to the tenant of the notice of foreclosure. Perhaps the landlord could be held accountable if the tenant has not been notified in a timely manner and, in addition, the landlord would be assessed fines and penalties commenurate with relocation fees. I would like to see laws passed with a provision of this type benefiting a responsible tenant. It might also be considered that...
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                                           Does the need for an appraisal exists in a foreclosure auction, tax sale or other lien or default associated consequence which brought the sale about? When would a foreclosure require an appraisal? Wouldn't a broker price opinion satisfy a basic need to determine a reserve price by narrowing comparative sales data? I understand that sales comparison, cost approach and income approach are all important and that the three approaches may serve as checks against each other. Since the condition of sale is affected because of foreclosure, which is a principal factor for making an adjustment in value under the sales comparison approach, why would the lender use an appraisal instead of a broker price opinion if financing is not a fundamental exponent o...
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  An appraisal, performed by a licensed appraiser, is an opinion of value for a subject property utilizing a concept of market which may rely on locality and other factors, and principles which determine valuation, such as supply and demand, competition, change, surplus inventory, usage and balance which examines the nature of the equalization of factors which either oppose each other or move together. Since the appraisers judgement and experience are relied upon in the process, an appraisal may be considered an opinion. Another expression used in the definition one must consider most important to the process is value. Since there are so many varieties and types of value, and since each type may possess an assortment of subclassifications, appraisals may represent a particularly deline...
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                                                                                                                                                          Could a blog become a "flog"? Many Real Estate Blogs are becoming on-line confessionals for heavily mortgaged investors, homeowners and agents tottering bankruptcy, foreclosure and financial ruin, facing quit-claim and court ordered dissolution of property from divorce proceedings or other litigation. Miles and miles of pseudo-intellectual banter, espoused in form through indiscriminate tongue-in-cheek contributors, most sounding like second year undergraduates, are taking up the cause, ideology, practice, and method of someone else and using it as their own to project a semblance of creative prowess divested in kind through the need t...
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By David Saks
((retired))
                  Why is it that the biggest losers are the categories of homes that start at around 160k (and up) while median home price (and below) sales levels are accelerating?  How can anyone assert that this is a "short term anomaly" while the market is still tumbling and hybrid loans and pay option arms are about to reset? The biggest gainers in our business, so it seems, today, at this moment, are low priced properties, which might be an indication of the strength of the residential purchasing activity of investors and home buyers who are taking advantage of the opportunities in the various sectors of a failed market, including the massive acceleration of default and the opportunities to cash-in on foreclosures and short sale opportunities. We are absolutely seeing the possibil...
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By David Saks
((retired))
                                                                            Here's some '07 vs '06 Memphis data under the microscope. Forget the phrase "local market". With the recent decline in sales fiqures there are some significant increases in the level of sales of lower priced properties. Here are some Memphis numbers: Home Price----'06 vs'07 sold  YTD Change=========================== 0-19k              64v119        +86%20-29k            51v43          -16%30-39k            43v54          +26%40-49k            38v32           -16%50-59k            37v49          +32%60-69k            59v67          +14%70-79k            58v63          +9%0-89k              76v39           -47%0-99k              49v45            -8%100-119k        111v93           -16%120-139k        123v118     ...
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                                                                              Does any assertion that "...buying a home continues to be one of the best investments a consumer can make" reflect the dismal implications of today's market? Many believe that it is, if you can crush the existing world of residential financing with good credit. How do you feel about this comment when you hear it? There is so much yet to be seen, and many conditions, both good and bad, moving the direction of the market. Stay wide eyed !
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By David Saks
((retired))
                                                                    I remember some bad news from Bear Stearns in July of last year. The Bear told their clients that two of their funds were close to being worth nothing. Then the big bad Bear roared in August and raised it's deadly claws, blocked withdrawals from these investment funds, and sold off the rest of the imploded funds in the Cayman Islands or elsewhere. The poor Bear was hungry. Now let's ask ourselves, just what did these funds aim to support...? You guessed it...subprime mortgages and mortgage backed securities. The Bear bank had to put up almost two billion dollars in rescue financing while bonds backed by mortgages were floating down the Hudson River. Sound familiar ? Wasn't it about the same time Bank of America tried to...
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By David Saks
((retired))
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 ti...
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I'm a 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've been Ray Bouder Real Estate Schools web master for five years, and have built many webpages for realtors and other businesses over the last ten years, most 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 for it than when I began to see the horrific greed and corruption perpetrated on the homeowners locally and nationally over the last decade. I'v...
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By David Saks
((retired))
  I had a fellow Realtor® comment to me: "The one thing the home ownership market does not need is government intervention". I respectfully disagree due to the fact that 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. Realistic cap rates should remain in place in order to make financing more realistic, 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 ...
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                                                                                 Property Taxpayers aren't facing a "double whammy"; they're facing a "triple whammy". The mayor's depressing prediction that an increase in the property tax rate next year is "almost inescapable" disregards the fact that 2009 is also a reassessment year for the Shelby County Assessor of Property. Along with the higher property taxes, that this mayor is proposing, comes the additional nauseating burden that property taxpayers will face an artificial increase in values of their property once again, both commercial and residential, increasing the tax liability even more. From 2002 to 2004, the nation's median price of a single-family home rose from $158,100 to $184,100, according to the National Association of...
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