Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!

Monthly Archives: May 2010

New Short Sale System to Quicken Process

For a financially struggling homeowner, the decision to pursue a short sale does not come easily. Homeowners who make that choice generally do so after months of searching and pleading for an alternative that would have kept them in the home.

Even when it goes smoothly, the short-sale process is painful for sellers. When it’s bumpy and slow, the pain is far worse. Far too many short sales have been plagued by false starts, confusion, delays and disappointments.

Short-sellers’ many encounters with insult upon injury stem from a combination of problems, including sellers’ lack of experience with the process and lenders’ initial reluctance to adopt on a mass scale what they had long considered an obscure means of resolving bad mortgage debts.

A Scottsdale resident, said one of the Larger Banks finally approved her short-sale application after 10 months of frustration and uncertainty. But the pain didn’t stop there. The sale finally went, but the bank reported the short sale as a foreclosure on the person’s credit reports, which is not easy to fix.

Big mortgage lenders such as Bank of America and Wells Fargo are still smoothing out the wrinkles in their respective solutions to making short sales faster and more reliable. But they are now taking short sales very seriously and have made many improvements, one bank representative said.

Just as the average homeowner never imagined losing a home to financial hardship, the average mortgage lender never dreamed the bank would have to set up an assembly line to churn out short-sale approvals.

Many banks after an overload of complaints has devised a new system.

Bank of America has implemented an automated system – the first of its kind – for tracking the progress of short sales and has reduced the average number of days it takes for a short-sale to be approved, from 90 days to just over 50 days.

The bank approved 18,000 short-sale applications in April, says a Bank representative.

Unfortunately, it received more than 50,000 short-sale applications that month.

“Our system was never designed to handle this kind of volume,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president and chief economist at RealtyTrac, based in Irvine, Calif., which collects and analyzes nationwide data on short-sales and foreclosures. “Short sales were never intended to be a mass-market product.”

So what can we do now? InvestorCompsOnline is dedicated to teaching real-estate professionals how to be more effective at negotiating short sales, how to create their business plan so that they can financially maintain their investments, and how to pick markets to wisely invest in.

I believe education is a major part to repairing the problem.

Understanding After Repair Value

In today’s real estate market, property investors look at specific ARV as the end-goal that their investment property must reach. However, in the last few years, it seems that this “ARV goal post” was in constant movement. How do you reach a goal when they keep moving the goal posts?

2008 and 2009 were frustrating years. As market values started to slide, the ARV that you’ve determined today could not hold by the time you acquire your property and had it rehabbed. That $120,000 ARV that you’ve correctly determined in December, could possibly not be valid “according to the bank” by the following March. In a matter of 2 to 3 months, when it was time to refinance or sell your property, the bank has determined that your ARV was actually now around $108,000 – a nice 10% drop! A constant frustration.

So, what is ARV? Well, it’s exactly what After Repair Value means, the value of your property after it’s been rehabbed and ready to be flipped or rented. That’s the number that will determine your return on investment – of course assuming that your other costs have been accurate.

Often we receive questions from investors that they have looked on various online real estate websites, such as Zillow and the value of the home they have is either too high or too low. Why they ask? Because Free data is worth just what you pay for it… NADA.

Well, it doesn’t matter what Zillow or willow or schmillow say the ARV is. What matters is WHAT DO THE COMPS IN THE AREA SHOW THE ARV IS. Pull the data from your InvestorCompsOnline account and analyze them with these top three things in mind: year built, square footage, and room count.

The typical comp parameters for real estate is at least three (3) sales of similar property as the subject home, within the past 6 months, within a mile of the subject property. If you can’t find 3 sales, then the parameters are expanded incrementally.

Make sure you are using the right numbers before you decide to get involved with a deal. Use your InvestorCompsOnline account and the support desk if you are having any difficulties.

Can Twitter Help You Sell Your Property?

At all of our InvestorCompsOnline conventions, boot camps, or seminars the issue of marketing comes up at least once if not a hundred times. Someone will mention Facebook (which is a whole different story) and this is always closely followed by a comment about Twitter. So, we at InvestorCompsOnline decided to do the research for you to determine is Twitter worth it? If it IS worth it, how can investors best use it for profitable results? First, let’s look at just what Twitter is and what it can do for your advertising efforts.

Twitter.com is a site where an investor can create a profile and become a “micro-blogger” Twitter is like a typical blog (aka web-log) in that it lets you say anything you want to say to anyone and everyone who will view it – with one exception. Twitter only allows a subscriber to express themselves 140 characters at a time. So it’s a kind of like using you cell phone to send the world a brief text message. When you locate a profile of someone whose “tweets” you are interested in, you can “follow” them – whenever they post anything new, it will be visible on your Twitter home page. If anyone finds YOUR profile and follows YOU, then you will be alerted that someone is “following” you. Now that you are aware of the basics, let’s discuss making this a powerful and PROFITABLE tool for you.

Because the old saying “Out of sight, out of mind” is absolutely true, you’ll need to remain active with your “tweeting”. InvestorCompsOnline suggest you should be posting at a minimum, once a day. Find something to “tweet” specific to real estate – something that your “followers” will find useful. If you just start sending info about homes you have for sale, it probably will not get you as far as you planned. Think about it this way – when was the last time you opened and really read an email from someone attempting to sell you something?

If you give your followers information they can use or information they find interesting (even if it ISN’T about real estate) then you’ll have an opportunity to keep their attention. When you gain their trust, they’ll be more willing to consider what you have to say when you do offer them a property you have listed.

Twitter, like other social networking sites, is a wonderful way to network and connect with people – just keep in mind that they are real people and desire to be respected and treated like real people. They aren’t dollar signs. So connect when someone follows you, send them a short personal “tweet” letting them feel you appreciate them.

Remember that being real with others and giving thoughtful content is what Twitter is made for – the profit will follow if you treat people like people and post routinely so that your Twitter marketing is constantly on the radar! The more you “Tweet”, the larger your following will become – and the larger your following, the better your opportunities of communicating with a person who is interested in making a deal – which, of course, means a greater opportunity for you to profit!

All States Are NOT Created Equal

InvestorCompsOnline has provided our members with extensive training into non-disclosure states. As we continue to search the nation and educate ourselves we consistently update our members on the new data and research we find.

During a routine research, we have discovered some non-disclosure states that do not provide mortgage information. Typically, we can extrapolate the value of a property using the mortgage data. But, what do you do when it’s not available? Well, InvestorCompsOnline has taken the time to research with county appraisers and assessors to get insight into how to valuate property in these markets. True “appraiser secrets for the investor”.

For example, Montana is a complete non-disclosure state. All the details of a sale are private, including the mortgage data. However, InvestorCompsOnline has discovered that it is an “ad valorem” state; which means it is taxed based on the true market value of the property. The local appraisers must analyze actual HUD’s, recorded deeds, and talk to home buyers to determine closed sales price. This information is not readily available on the local MLS. So, where does that leave the local investor to do?

InvestorCompsOnline has done some of this preliminary research for you. We have determined, after research with the Montana state government assessors and local appraisers, that the taxable values are within a variance of approximately ten percent. Now this isn’t hard and fast, but it is a great start for helping these local investors determine market value of their deals.

This is just an example of the hard work, knowledge, and training InvestorCompsOnline provides to our members to keep them up to date on opportunities in their markets and training them to build the most successful real estate business they can.

Real Estate Phrases That Went BUST!

The way we talk about Real Estate today is vastly different than a few years ago. This week we are discussing the common phrases we previously used and why they are obsolete today.

“You don’t need a down payment.”
Traditionally, the purpose of a down payment is to reduce the bank’s lending risk. It shows that the borrower has enough self-discipline to save up 20% of the purchase price of a home.

More importantly, it means that the borrower is likely to keep making his mortgage payments even when times are tough because he has already put a lot of his own money into the house.

When banks started giving people mortgages that didn’t require a down payment, buying a home started to feel more like leasing an apartment. Even owners with fixed-rate mortgages had little home equity since most of the mortgage payment for the first few years is interest.

When housing prices dropped, owners started sending jingle mail to their lenders. So what if they could still afford the monthly payments? It didn’t make logical sense to keep paying for a depreciating asset that they owned so little of, borrowers reasoned. The sting of a credit score ruined by foreclosure wouldn’t last as long as the burn of paying $500,000 for a $300,000 home.

The lack of down payment is also one reason why so many homeowners ended up underwater. If you purchase a home for $200,000 with no down payment and the market value of your house drops to $160,000, you can’t sell the house because you can’t pay off the mortgage (unless you have $40,000 sitting in the bank). If you purchase a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment and the market value drops to $160,000, you still have the option to sell at a loss. Most people who didn’t make down payments didn’t have money in the bank, though, and when they needed to get out of their homes, they were forced into credit-damaging short sales and foreclosures instead of having the option to sell.

Tomorrow let’s talk about refinancing and does it really work?!