Judge In Real Estate? Who Pays For Him to Run This RE Business and His Secretary to Collect Rents and Represent Him? The Tax Payer?

A very troubling article on REALTOR Magazine's website.

Apparently  a judge in Philadelphia, a Willis W. Berry Jr. has been able to avoid prosecution for running a real estate business out of his chambers because the DA declined to prosecute.  Apparently Berry has been suspended and asked to resign but has declined.

Who exactly pays Berry; isn't it the tax payers, I don't think they are paying him to do real estate? And who pays for him to have a secretary, yep I think it is again taxpayers and I am sure the Pennsylvania taxpayers don't pay to have this person manage the judges real estate.

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Interested in Investing in Real Estate? Check out Lease Purchase, A Very Viable Option!

Want to invest in real estate, but strapped for cash? This article by James Kimmons He is a master of explaining the process and exit strategy. This is a very viable option especially today with so many properties in trouble.

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Citigroup Shows Some Compassion - At Least Until New Years

Citigroup suspends foreclosure evictions and foreclosure notices for 30 days on approximately 4000 customers. read the whole story here
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FHA and Tighter Lending Standards Could Negatively Impact The Storm Lake Iowa Real Estate Market

The FHA is looking into changing some of its lending standards for FHA backed loans in an effort to reduce the number of defaults and limit the risk to the FHA portfolia.  Some of these changes will include the amount of down payment required (currently set at 3.5%) and credit score a buyer will need, what percent of the closing costs the Sellers is allowed to pay and an increase in the annual mortgage insurance premium.  This is bad news for a lot of first time homebuyers. The FHA has become an important option for home buyers, insuring almost 30% of home purchases—more than 75% of which are to first-time home buyers—20% of mortgage refinancings. Just three years ago, the FHA’s share of the mortgage market was 3%. Read the full story by clicking on the link above.

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Congratulations Joan Ballantyne on Receiving the L. Martin Lee Political Involvement Award

Joan Ballantyne Congratulations on Receiving the L. Martin Lee Political Involvement Award

According to the IOWA REALTOR BENCHMARK, Joan Ballantyne was awarded the L. Martin Political Involvement Award at the Convention by L. Martin Lee himself. The article mentions Joan's extensive service to the Association in the local, state and national levels. I would personally like to thank Joan for all her work and advice as a member of the United Counties Board of Realtors. Joan is a resource for issues and provides ideas and answers to relatively new Broker Owners like myself and to seasoned ones alike.

Joan, discovering your wisdom, your way with people and your understandings of how things work was a well spring and encouragement for me personally as a Broker Owner and Realtor. I can't speak for the entire board but I am in debt to you and admire your ability and wisdom in dealing with people, helping organizations function to the benefit of all members and to your willingness to step up and step in and to stay the course in the storms.

Thank you Joan


Georgia A. Weaver

Broker Owner

Weaver LLC Realtors

113 Main St., Suite 3

Alta, Iowa 51002

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Storm Lake Multiple Listing Service Market Report Year to Date

12/7/09 Storm Lake and Alta Homes For Sale!

Market Snapshot - Year To Date

Single Family Residential in Storm Lake and Alta

Total Available - 266

Sold - 159

Active - 107

Days on Market (DOM) - time from first listed until closed

and %L/SP (Percentage of Listing Price Received)

0 -31 days    31-60 days    61-90 days    91-120 days    120+ days

  40                 32                     22                17                    48

25.16%        20.13%           13.84%         10.69%           30.19%

96.63%LP  95.92%LP   96.29%LP         93.9%LP       94.42%LP

A big take away is that there are a number of properties available for sale, 107 today with Alta and Storm Lake addresses. Just over 25% sell within the first 31 days and at only 3.37% less than listed price. However if the property goes over 120 days (and over 30% stay on the market more than 4 months) it will bring nearly 6% less than listed price PLUS have an additional 3 months in mortgage payment, taxes, utilities and maintenance costs added to the cost.

Example - A List at 100,000

Sells and closes in 30 days at $99,630

A's Owner pays one months mortgage, utilites, taxes, insurance and maintenance (lets say $1,200)

TOTAL Received - $98,430

Example - B Lists at 100,000

Sells and closes at 122 days at $94,420

B's Owner pays 3 additional months of mortgage, utitities, taxes, insurance and maintenance (lets say $3,600)

TOTAL Received - $90,800

A CMA (competitive market analysis) is a vital tool when you want to sell, we do them for both Sellers and Buyers. The CMA tells us the range the property should sell in according the the previous 12 months real estate market. It also tells buyers where they should begin to offer on a property.

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