May 28, 2009

Buying a home in Northern New Jersey Bergen County

Westwood NJ homes

Picture courtesy of Robert Hammerstein

I’ve been looking for a home for a few weeks now in Northern New Jersey and it is a daunting process especially in my target county, Bergen NJ. As soon as I find a home that my wife and I like, we try to put a bid in on it but there is too much red tape when getting approved for every bid based on home property taxes, down payment amount, and the homes listing price. Some of the homes that we have looked at in our price range are down right dilapidated.  By dilapidated I mean that no one took any effort to clean and the houses smelled (least we forget mold).  With interest rates on homes at about 4.5 to 5 percent with pretty good credit (700 or above and based on your middle credit score if you’re married) first time home buyers are ferociously putting in offers on any home that is not run down. Some are even paying the original asking price or over because of the low rates. Let’s also not forget the eight thousand dollars promised at the end of the year for first time home buyers.
Real estate owned (REO properties) seem like a good bet especially since banks are so eager to get rid of the properties they own. They aren’t in the Real Estate buying and selling business.  I know I’ll need to be prepared to pay any inspection fees (500 o 600 dollars) to make sure that the house works, and if it doesn’t, the bid may have to be retracted or then I’d have to back out of the deal if I still could. I saw an amazing to good to be true REO property in Hillsdale NJ that I was going to bid on but when I asked my Realtor to look it up, it was sold already. Go figure considering that it was listed at only $298,000 and had 6 rooms, 3 baths, and an extra kitchen in the basement (making it rentable to tenants easily which could pay the taxes – they were only 6,500-*note see for average tax tables in New Jersey).  Pre-foreclosures and foreclosures are a good option for investors, but for a first time home buyer with an August deadline, they aren’t the best choice. This is given that you usually can’t look inside a foreclosure until you own it. This is certainly an adventure if you don’t have the budget to fix up the property. Luckily there are experts on the matter who know what to look for in buying pre foreclosures and foreclosures.  As my home buying process continues, I fall deeper into the endless abyss of buyers and sellers duking it out bid by bid in a buyer’s market (if you have the money and or credit).

May 20, 2009

Essex county New Jersey Foreclosure rate is the Highest : New York Times-(Americanforeclosures data) Article

Filed under: Uncategorized — americanforeclosures @ 1:21 pm

New Jersey and the rest of the tri state area has been hit extremely hard by the foreclosure crisis. The problem has hit heaviest in the state’s urban areas — cities including Newark, Paterson, Elizabeth and Willingboro — where most residents are black or Hispanic, according to an analysis by The Times of data from American Foreclosures Inc., publishers of   Blacks Hispanics have at least tripled the foreclosure rate for whites in the same New Jersey area.  Subprime lending given to blacks and Hispanics melted down faster than white subprime loans. “It’s like people just walked away,” said Frank Perry, 65, who has lived on Grove Street for 25 years, moving here when the area was filled with working-class families.   See the full New Jersey area New York Times article here. article here
Many Newark owners “acquired properties in a nefarious manner,” the mayor said. Others, like his landlord, “saw in our city a place to invest, and got caught in the greatest modern scam and housing bubble.”

May 12, 2009

How do I save money to avoid a home foreclosure?

Filed under: Uncategorized — americanforeclosures @ 4:49 pm
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When faced with a foreclosure, sometimes having just a few thousand dollars in the bank can mean the difference between foreclosing and keeping your property. It is important to put your costs in order.  Doing this will let you know what is needed and also what your costs are that you can do without. Putting your costs in order can help you cut down on unnecessary costs.  Paying for home repairs in cash is a great way to get in a discount offer.  Avoid paying the full amount up front  and pay the full amount when finished (paying half before and half when finished is a good way to go about this).  Buying used items can help you save on the costs of buying them new.  Make sure that you choose your contractors wisely. Contractors that do their work based on a fixed price will avoid any unnecessary surprises in your repair bills. Saving as much money as you can will greatly help you to avoid a foreclosure.

May 6, 2009

Home owners facing foreclosure are leaving pets behind


Foreclosures and pre foreclosures are a hard fact of life in a market economy. This means that family pets are going to be left behind in the foreclosure process when forced to move into a space that does not allow them. About fifty percent of pets are left behind at shelters. Even more disturbing, not all of them are even dropped off at a shelter! Families facing foreclosure are often so distressed that they forget, and this is bad news for the pet. A pet left in a foreclosed house can only survive a few days without water. If you see a foreclosed home nearby in your neighborhood, stop by and look in the windows and backyard for pets. If you see one don’t hesitate to call your local humane society. If you feel uncomfortable going in, call your local foreclosure Real Estate agent to look for you or look through the windows that you have access to.

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