Author Archive

Understand the Aug. 1 Changes to HUD-1, Closing Process

The days of filling out the HUD-1 settlement form and getting a Good Faith Estimate (GFE) from the lender are winding down. On August 1, those two forms are going away. The Truth in Lending Act (TILA) disclosure form...
February 17, 2015

Commercial: Secondary Markets Gain Attraction

The dollar is strengthening, so you would expect institutional real estate investors from outside the U.S. to hesitate before buying here. But that’s not happening, because the relative stability of the U.S. economy and commercial real estate markets offsets...
February 6, 2015

REALTOR® Safety When Meeting Strangers: 12 Tips

It’s unfortunate, but as a real estate professional you put yourself at risk when you meet someone for the first time. That’s why you should always meet a new customer at the office, not at the property. It’s also...
December 24, 2014

Why QRM is Such a Big Win for Real Estate

Much of what NAR does in Washington is defensive: it works with Congress to prevent curbs to the mortgage interest deduction or to prevent elimination of federal backing of conforming mortgage loans. The qualified residential mortgage (QRM) rule that...
November 3, 2014

Marketing Agreements are Fine; Sham Ones are Not

The latest in a number of high-profile fines for illegal kickbacks in real estate was announced a few weeks ago. A title company had allegedly entered into agreements with real estate practitioners and others in the industry for marketing...
October 22, 2014

About News Corp’s Offer to buy Realtor.com

News Corp’s announced acquisition of Move Inc., which operates NAR’s consumer-facing website, realtor.com®, is about making listings and other REALTOR®-focused content easily accessible via the 500 million consumer page views that the media company generates every month, Move CEO...
October 7, 2014

About That FHA Prepayment Penalty . . .

News that FHA will eliminate a prepayment penalty starting next year has been widely reported. It’s a move NAR has been seeking for some time because it will relieve borrowers of a financial hit that’s entirely out of their...
September 11, 2014

Get That Revolving Balance Below 50 Percent

There’s a good chance the people you’re helping to buy a home will have a limited understanding of their credit score and whether they need to do anything with it before they enter the market. To help you advise...
September 10, 2014

NAR Looks at Future Real Estate Risks at Environmental Summit

Real estate represents a fifth of the U.S. economy, so there’s little that doesn’t impact what you do in some fashion, especially when it comes to environmental issues. Carbon levels in our air and water, how much rain we...
July 30, 2014

$500,000 RESPA Fine Top Story in First The Voice for Real Estate News Program

You might have missed it, but about three years ago enforcement of our country’s mortgage settlement laws switched to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) from HUD. The switch is more than just a bureaucratic footnote. Several weeks ago, CFPB...
July 2, 2014