Stimulus Package the Answer? Not by a long shot!

Powered by FeedBurnerIs anyone else out there concerned that we (Americans) are rewarding unscrupulous business practices. We are paying to keep banks afloat that simply made very poor, greed motivated loans to thousands of consumers that also made very poor greed motivated decisions? Not to mention the Golden parachutes or the other upper management compensation packages the average Joe is paying for.
I don't think the American public (Tax Payers) should be bailing out banks - depositor's yes, but the owners of the banks who are in a big part responsible for this mess, no. Let the banks fail, the depositor's can get their money through the FDIC. If these poorly managed and obviously poorly or not at all supervised banks fail - guess what - there will be new business opportunities for new banks to form. Hopefully, the "new" banks will have learned from the current banks mistakes and greed. I believe the banks that perpetrated these bad loans and didn't check borrowers credentials should go under, if we reward them and keep the in business, it will happen again. In fact, take a look back in history when a lot of savings and loans did fail, what was that the 70's? What is going to happen to those who didn't make bad greed based decisions - they will pay for the others who did. How, higher interest rates for home mortgages, higher taxes, inflation - sounds a little like socialism to me.
I may be mistaken but I always thought the strength of our country was in part based on the fact that competition made businesses and our economy stronger and benefited the consumer.
The auto industry is another HUGE failure, why did it take the Toyota Prius to get the the American auto makers off their butts. I guess I am suppose to believe that our auto makers aren't as smart or innovative as the auto makers in other countries, Or maybe it has something to do with ties to big oil. I know we have and have had for some time the ability to produce autos that get great gas mileage, are less expensive, are better for the environment and run on various fuels or are electric. Why should I pay to help a dinosaur stay in business when that dinosaur has already demonstrated it is not committed to be a viable business and industry? It pays to know history, if we ignore history all we will do is repeat it until the Great Country of America utterly fails. I say the Great Country of America with a lot of reverence, I love our country but it breaks my heart and really makes me angry to see the mass destruction and decay that has occurred just in my short life time.

National Association of Realtors Site - Tax Credit Chart

Interested in the NAR's take on the First-Time Home buyers Tax Credit, click the title to go to the chart that includes current changes. Many home buyers will qualify, if you purchased a home after April 9, 2008 check out the terms to see if you qualify for the credit.


Do You Know Your Mortgage Terms? 1 in 4 don't!

Home owners are getting better at understanding mortgage terms, but according to a GfK Roper random survey of homeowners and others, 26% still don't know if they have a fixed rate, ARM or other kind of home mortgage. Still, the numbers are better than last year where 34% didn't know.
What kind do you have; are you sure?

I recently helped a client who wanted to purchase a duplex, the client insisted on using a particular lender because the lender "took care of everything last time", and they had already talked to this lender and the lender had told them this new property would be no problem.
I like to shop my buyer's good faith estimates around to our local financial institutions just making sure they get the best deal. Why, because as the survey above points out, people don't get mortgages often, they don't understand terms, and additionally as a Realtor I believe it is a service I can and should provide. The mortgage on the previous duplex had some red flags, the payment didn't match the "terms" the client said they had (payment amount too low to pay off the loan in the stated time period, loan was a fixed rate).
They brought the mortgage documents in to my office and guess what - it has a balloon! They were not happy, and once they understood they were barely paying on the principle they started looking for a local lender to refinance. But, they had obviously signed the documents- so what happened. Had they just forgotten; I don't think so but it is possible. What is more probable however is that they were intimidated by the jargon and the paperwork and just signed and initialed where they were told to.

Maybe you should pull out that paperwork and take a good look at it again, and if you are thinking about buying go on line and learn, learn, learn. Also, ask a person who should be very familiar with the various mortgage products and programs - your Realtor.

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