Category Archives: real estate

The Mortgage Market Melt-Up In Rates?

historical 10-year treasury yield chart

As the data below shows, courtesy of the Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Market Survey, the average 30-year fixed rate mortgage rate no longer has a 3-handle and instead is now 4! The good news is that the 4.04% number is below the 4.30% level in the survey back in March 2017, but not by much. This news […]

Title Insurance And Havoc In The New York Real Estate Market?

madison square garden photo

December 19, 2017: After Regulation 208 Went Into Effect On December 18th, The Following Day NYSDFS Issued A Stay Expiring February 2, 2018 That Will Allow One Specific Activity Eradicated By The Regulation To Continue… Candidly, of all the new directives in Regulation 208 that will impact title companies, a stay on this specific one is […]

Tax Reform And It’s Impact On New York, New Jersey And Connecticut Real Estate!

net migration by state

With the passage of the ‘Tax Cuts and Jobs Act’ (name subject to change) some aspects of the legislation are very clear and some things will take some time to play out such as real estate valuation! So what do we know concerning the tax bill? There are seven tax brackets as there were before, the standard […]

New Yorkers Feeling The Pinch Over The End Of SALT (State and Local Tax Deduction)

mining for salt photo

Tax Reform, Tax Cuts, Boon for the Middle Class and Tax Breaks for the Rich are but some of the names being applied to describe the tax legislation Congress is currently debating! The potential to rescind the state and local tax deduction, or SALT as it is commonly known, has many New Yorkers and residents of the other […]

“Option A is not available. so let’s just kick the s**t out of Option B.” Sheryl Sandberg

contingency photo

Imagine you’re a football coach and the game plan you drew-up is failing miserably or, at a minimum, just not getting the job done (think New York Jets and Giants)… Or maybe you’re the CEO of a business and, what you thought would be a phenomenal strategic plan, has for any number of reasons just not panned […]

Update: Treasury Department Disclosures (GTO) Required For All-Cash Real Estate Transactions Has Been Expanded!

money laundering photo

Money Laundering, All-Cash Residential Real Estate Transactions and the Department of the Treasury! In August 2016 Hallmark Abstract Service provided an overview of the Department of the Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) disclosure rules, designed to determine who the true underlying buyers were in certain all-cash real estate transactions around the country. These transactions would […]

Residential Real Estate Buyers: Beware Of Wire Fraud Scams!

Residential Real Estat photo

Phishing, spoofing, cyberfraud and spyware are all terms that relate to a third party’s desire to invade your computer and, in many instances, to compromise your non-public information! In other words these scams are designed in their most malicious form to steal a consumers personal information, whether birthdate, social security number or credit cards, and utilize them […]

Could Underfunded Public Pension Plans Pose A Risk To Real Estate Values?

retirement photo

Depending on the methodology that’s used to determine the underfunded position of state public pension plans, the number as of 2015 ranged from a staggering $1.7 trillion to an unfathomable $5.2 trillion! To put that into context, the national debt of the United States is currently about $20 trillion. But why is there such a great […]

Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Home Improvement!

home improvement questions and answers

For homeowners, embarking on a home improvement project of some kind has become increasingly common, with a 60% increase in money spent during 2016 over the 12 months prior! And that trend is not expected to end in 2017 with 63% of those surveyed planning on spending even more this year! This is according to HomeAdvisor that […]

How Can You Tell A Knockdown Home Versus A Renovation Project?

luxury living in New York

For prospective home buyers, gauging whether a potential home represents a knockdown and rebuild or a renovation project can often be an extremely personal decision! In other words, ‘one man’s trash is another man’s treasure!’ For some an existing home is ‘livable’ as-is by making some minor improvements such as new carpet and paint. For […]