Category Archives for "Local News (Char-Meck)"

Local News Occurring in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Region

Charlotte, NC Real Estate Brokerage Uses Foreclosures to ‘Pay It Forward’

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Nancy Braun, Owner & Broker-In-Charge
704-889-5600
info@showcaserealty.net

Local Real Estate Brokerage Uses Foreclosures to ‘Pay It Forward’
Showcase Realty partners with the national REO4Kids effort to raise money for children’s charities through the sale of REO properties.

CHARLOTTE, NC (October 18, 2010) – Nancy Braun, Owner and Broker of Showcase Realty, LLC, has recently teamed up with REO4Kids to become one of the few brokerages across the US donating $100 to children’s charities per REO Asset she sells. In 2009 Nancy’s group donated over $200,000 and expects to donate more than $250,000 in 2010. Because foreclosures affect inner city kids more than anyone else, the group has elected to help the Boys and Girls Club of America as well as Make-a-Wish. Showcase also donates to No Paws Left Behind to help the animal victims of this foreclosure crisis.
The recent partnership of Showcase Realty with REO4Kids is not only raising money for deserving charities but also shining a positive light onto the unfortunate situation that is home foreclosure.
“This is a huge opportunity for Showcase Realty to ‘Pay it Forward’. We want to hold the torch and lead the way for other agents and brokerages to use real estate as a way to give back to their local communities as well as the larger national community in this time of economic need,” says Braun.
Braun, who has been a successful real estate agent for14 years, opened Showcase Realty in 2008. In addition to General Brokerage, the firm launched foreclosure and short sale divisions to address the surge of foreclosures, short sales and distressed properties in the real estate market.
Visit CharlotteREOBroker.com or REO4Kids.com for more information. To find out more about current REO homes Showcase Realty has to offer send an email to info@charlottereobroker.com

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Charlotte, NC Real Estate Broker Answers Tough Questions About the Foreclosure Freeze


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Nancy Braun, Owner & Broker-In-Charge
315 Main Street
Pineville, NC 28134
704-889-5600
info@showcaserealty.net

Local Real Estate Broker Answers Tough Questions about the Foreclosure Freeze
Nancy Braun of Showcase Realty, LLC gives relevant information for local homeowners about the recent foreclosure news.

CHARLOTTE, NC October 28, 2010 – Nancy Braun, owner and broker-in-charge of Showcase Realty, LLC, has set out to answer your questions regarding the very intimidating “Foreclosure Moratorium”. This issue has flooded the news headlines recently, but it is not a new problem. There have been foreclosure freezes before and they seem to be becoming a trend for the fourth quarter of each year since 2006. Being that Nancy has worked in real estate for 14 years specializing in foreclosures and distressed properties she has a well-rounded understanding of the issues at hand. She has also recently attended and spoke at the REOMAC Fall Summit where it was addressed in detail. The following are a few “Frequently Asked Questions” that Nancy feels could make the issue easier to understand and helpful to homeowners who have an unclear view of what the future could hold for their home and their families.

Q: What is a “Foreclosure Moratorium” (a.k.a. Foreclosure Freeze)
A: When a bank stops processing foreclosures and starts investigating previous filings. Currently, four of the largest banks in the US: Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase & Co., Ally Financial’s GMAC Mortgage unit and PNC Financial have foreclosure moratoriums placed in multiple states. Bank of America placed their moratorium on all fifty states, but has since lifted it to only include 23 currently. Foreclosure moratoriums are placed on a state-by-state basis, the federal government currently cannot place a blanket moratorium over all fifty states for all banks.

Q: Why is this happening?
A: With the rise in foreclosure filings, suspicions have risen regarding the amount of paperwork being signed in such a short amount of time. It is alleged that mistakes were made and some homes were foreclosed on that should not have been. In turn, there have been questions about the banks having one or more employees signing documents without reviewing them or “robo-signers”. The banks are stopping their current processing to go back and investigate previous paperwork.

Q: What does this mean for the future of my home?
A: If you have any doubts about your mortgage payment status and you are in a state which has activated foreclosure moratoriums, this means you have some time to catch up. Start helping yourself by saving, saving, saving. There is no telling when the moratorium will be lifted, though most of the time it lasts until the end of the first quarter of the following year, but you want to make sure you are ready when it does. Make payments and catch up – or proceed with the option of a Short Sale which can help you sell your home without being foreclosed on.

Q: What does this mean for the economy? Will it help or hurt?
A: There are mixed reviews on this. Some experts say it will only lengthen the recovery process by two years, others say it will lengthen it by five or more years. From past experiences with foreclosure moratoriums, it seems to only stall them then they shoot back up after it is lifted.

Q: Is there a way to get help before my home is foreclosed on?
A: Always – A short sale may be one option that could help. Also, speaking with an agent who specializes in foreclosures and distressed properties could help take some of the burden off of your shoulders and clarify many questions you may still have. Visit www.shortsaleadvisors.us to view market updates as well as tips when dealing with short sales.

23 States within Foreclosure Moratorium:
• Connecticut
• Florida
• Hawaii
• Illinois
• Indiana
• Iowa
• Kansas
• Kentucky
• Louisiana
• Maine
• Nebraska
• New Jersey
• New Mexico
• New York
• North Carolina
• North Dakota
• Ohio
• Oklahoma
• Pennsylvania
• South Carolina
• South Dakota
• Vermont
• Wisconsin

If you need more information or assistance regarding this issue, please visit Showcase Realty’s website www.CharlotteREOBroker.com. Feel free to contact Nancy Braun at 704-889-5600 or by email at info@charlottereobroker.com.
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Charlotte Home Prices Drop, US Existing Home Sales Jump

According to the Charlotte Business Journal, Charlotte-area home prices drop 3.4% and existing US home sales jump 10%.
The following are two excerpts from articles about each of these subjects:

Charlotte-area home prices drop 3.4%

“Homes prices in the Charlotte market fell 3.4 percent in August from a year earlier, according to the Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller Home Price Index. And August’s local prices dipped 0.4 percent from the July level, the report says.

The year-over-year price drop was the third-largest among the 10 U.S. cities that posted declines. The local downward trend runs counter to S&P/Case-Shiller’s overall national index of 20 cities, which saw a 1.7 percent price increase in August from a year ago.”

Read more: Charlotte-area home prices drop 3.4%

Existing-home sales jump 10%
“Sales of existing homes in the United States jumped in September, though they remained lower than year-ago levels.

The National Association of Realtors says sales of existing single-family houses, townhomes, condos and co-ops rose 10 percent from August to September — the biggest monthly gain in nearly 28 years.

But compared with a year ago, existing-home sales nationwide were down 19.1 percent in September.

Still, the Realtors’ group says the housing market is in the early stages of recovery.

“A housing recovery is taking place but will be choppy at times depending on the duration and impact of a foreclosure moratorium,” says Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist. “But the overall direction should be a gradual rising trend in home sales with buyers responding to historically low mortgage interest rates and very favorable affordability conditions.”

Distressed-home sales accounted for 35 percent of all sales in September, up from 34 percent in August.

Sales in the South rose 10.6 percent in September. That region includes the Carolinas but also stretches from Delaware to Florida, under the association’s reporting system.”

Read more: Existing-home sales jump 10%

For more information regarding buying or selling homes in Charlotte Metro and surrounding areas, click here.

What You Need to Know About HUD Homes -AND- Why They Are So Affordable

Showcase Realty has recently acquired the honor of being one of the few brokerages able to list HUD Homes in the Charlotte, NC Metro and surrounding areas. The following is a quick helpful explanation of HUD Homes from the US Dept. of Housing and Urban Development:

What is a HUD Home?
A HUD Home may be a single-family house, a townhome, condominium or other type of residence. The properties were deeded to HUD/FHA by mortgage companies who had foreclosed on FHA-insured mortgage loans. Now HUD must sell these homes – as quickly as possible at market value – in order to obtain the maximum financial return on its mortgage insurance funds.

Who can buy a HUD Home?
Anyone who has the money or can qualify for the necessary amount of mortgage financing can purchase a HUD Home. You do not have to be low-incomeor meet any other auch limitations.

Can I get a HUD Home for free, or for one dollar?
No. HUD acquires its properties through the foreclosure of FHA insured mortgages. One of HUD’s many missions is to maximize return to the FHA insurance fund, which it does by selling the properties at fair market value.

How do I buy a HUD Home?
HUD’s policy is to market acquired properties on a competitive basis with offers being submitted through any participating licensed real estate broker. Local brokers will assist you in the transaction. They can show the property to prospective buyers, as well as answer questions and provide information on the location of parks, schools, shopping and employment centers.

Are HUD Homes meant for low income people?
HUD Homes come in a variety of price ranges, though most are affordably priced, making them accessible to low and moderate income Americans.

What are the income requirements?
If you make a cash purchase, there are no income requirements. Otherwise, you must be able to qualify for a particular type of mortgage financing based on established mortgage lending criteria.

How does HUD decide how much to charge for a HUD Home?
THe listing price of a HUD property is a price based on the appraised value.

Can investors purchase HUD Homes?
Yes. However, HUD offers its properties to owner/occupants for a period before making them available to investors.

What happens if I can’t close the sale within the time permitted by HUD?
You’ll probably have to pay fees for an extension of time, usually in increments of 15 days.

Is there any way for me to get advanced notice about homes that will be coming up for sale?
No. HUD Homes are listed for sale in the local multilple listing service (MLS), the Internet at www.hud.gov or ask your broker.

Since the partnership is still very new, Showcase Realty’s HUD Homes have not become available on MLS yet – but will be very soon. Keep checking back to see when they will be listed or keep an eye on our website.

Excerpt from “10 Great Cities For Young Adults”

Earlier today, Yahoo.com published an article regarding the 10 Greatest Cities for Young Adults and Charlotte, NC was included! Feel free to read the excerpt below:

“Free from ties to kids or a mortgage, young adults can settle virtually anywhere they choose. So which place is best for you when the world is your oyster?

Here are 10 cities in the U.S. that offer exceptional opportunities for those starting out in life. We began our search using the criteria we used to select our overall list of Best Cities for the Next Decade: healthy economies fueling new job growth. We fine-tuned our search using other youth-friendly factors such as large percentages of people under 35, cost of living and rental costs, culture, nightlife, and the time you’re likely to spend in traffic. Take a look – and tell us what you think.

Charlotte, N.C.

Metro population: 1,745,524
Cost-of-living index: 94
Median monthly rent: $803 (average is $819)
Average annual wage: $41,190
Unemployment rate: 10.9%
Percentage of Gen Y residents: 21.7%
Top employers: Carolinas Healthcare System, Wells Fargo/Wachovia Corp., Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, Bank of America, Wal-Mart Stores, Presbyterian Regional Healthcare, Delhaize America

Charlotte has seen explosive growth over the last 20 years, and is now the second-largest banking center in the country (after New York). The city took it on the chin in the 2008-2009 meltdown, but it should offer lots of entry-level jobs for college graduates as the financial sector recovers. Despite the towering new skyscrapers, and a vibrant Uptown district, it’s still possible to live comfortably here on a tight budget.

PROS: A cost of living that skews well below the national average, reasonable rents, a bustling downtown still being developed, high-paying advancement opportunities in the financial sector

CONS: Hot, humid summers, smog alerts, high (but falling) crime rates, you’ll need a car (average commute lasts 24 minutes)”