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What if a printer could solve the housing crisis?

What if a printer could solve the housing crisis? 3D printing could be the silver bullet. ICON, a construction technologies company, designed a 3D printer to produce homes. A single-story home, with a total footprint measuring 600 to 800 square feet, can be printed in underserved communities in less than 24 hours. The cost? Just $4,000.

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber

 

Want to create wealth through homeownership? Build equity.

How to build your equity Here are six ways your home can create wealth for you. Some require time, money — or both. A lender can help you decide what works best for you. 1. Let your home appreciate Building equity through appreciation can take little time or a lot, depending on the market. With home prices going up like they have in recent years, appreciation has been a boon for many home owners. 2. Make a larger down payment You can do this but, as we’ve seen, waiting to save extra cash can go against your broader financial interests if you lose the chance to build equity through appreciation. Therefore, you must strike a balance among down payment, monthly budget and savings for other priorities. A good lender can provide rate and market insight to help you do this. 3. Use financial windfalls Take advantage of work bonuses, family gifts and inheritances to pay down your mortgage. If you do pay down in lump sums, see if your lender will recalculate (or “recast”) your payment based on the new, lower balance. 4. Make biweekly payments Make mortgage payments every two weeks instead of once a month. Over the course of a year, this will add up to 13 monthly payments instead of 12. You’ll build equity faster and shave five to six years off a 30-year mortgage. Just make sure your lender isn’t charging extra for processing semimonthly payments. 5. Cut your loan term in half Take out a 15-year mortgage instead of a 30-year mortgage, and you’ll build equity twice as fast. Two caveats here: You’ll have a significantly higher monthly payment and, because of that, you may have a tougher time qualifying. 6. Make home improvements New appliances or cosmetic features like paint are unlikely to increase value. Only big improvements like new kitchens, or additional bathrooms or other rooms will add meaningful value. Make sure the cost of such improvements will create the added value you’re looking for. How to use your equity You must borrow or sell your home to use your equity. The three most well-known ways to get to your equity through borrowing are a home equity line of credit (HELOC), home equity loan or cash-out refinance.  Rates are rising right now, so these borrowing options might cost more in the future. Talk to your lender to determine the best approach for you.

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber

 

Refresh Your Room

Pale blues and serene greens can really change the mood of a space. No need to break out the paintbrush or buy a new sofa to get those peaceful, chill Spring vibes. Instead, focus on layering colored accents into your existing decor—adding a blue frame or candle on a living room console, placing a porcelain glass vase full of fresh flowers artfully on a mantel, and showcasing crystal topped containers can all enhance your room's positive energy  

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber

 

Using inspiring natural pieces in home decor

“In interior design we're seeing a strong push toward eco-consciousness—looking toward items that are made of sustainable materials and have a natural feel to them,” says Ana Zuravliova, an interior designer at Roman Blinds Direct. “People care about the production, the history, and the story of their furniture more than they ever have before.”

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber

 

Mixing metals in home decor

5 Tips for Mixing Metals Choose a Dominant Metal: Choose a metal finish you love to be the most prominent in your home, and then select one or two metal accents to complete the look. ... Blend Warm and Cool Tones: ... Consider Your Palette: ... Use Lots of Texture: ... Keep it Subtle

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber

 

Fannie Mae Recognizes Innovative Ideas

Fannie Mae reports: “We received hundreds of proposals from across the U.S., and these ideas reflect the most innovative thinking on creative ways to increase opportunities for local residents,” said Maria Evans, Fannie Mae’s VP of Sustainable Communities Partnership and Innovation. “We look forward to working with the selected organizations and their community partners to make a difference in tackling the affordability crisis and supporting sustainable, healthy communities.” Fannie Mae whittled down the contenders in the first phase of its Sustainable Communities Innovation Challenge from hundreds to three, it announced. The chosen proposals hail from Florida, Ohio, and Colorado, with ideas aimed at advancing affordable housing development and onsite healthcare workforce training, gentrifying neighborhoods, and remaking vacant commercial properties into entrepreneurial co-housing in low-income communities

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber

 

Housing Market Trends

"Home prices continue to rise rapidly—48 percent over the past six years according to the National Association of Realtors. Mortgage rates have risen a full point over the last year. Want to know what homes are selling for in our area? Need to buy and have questions about locking in your rate? Now is the time to get all the facts and I am here to help!  

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber

 

Home Decor Tips

In general, keep the purpose of the room in mind when deciding where to display your prized possessions. Don’t just go by where you have available wall space; take time to find the right fit  

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber

 

How Will AI Change Loan Originations?

How Will AI Change Loan Originations? in Daily Dose, Featured, News, Technology June 5, 2018 0   On Monday, Black Knight Inc. announced the acquisition of HeavyWater, an artificial intelligence and machine learning (AI/ML) provider for the financial services industry, through its custom-solution called AIVA. The platform will be initially used to improve efficiencies in loan originations, though its capabilities c an be integrated for the servicing side too according to Black Knight. “We believe that AIVA will be an enterprise solution. Though we’re initially focusing on the origination side, we absolutely foresee AIVA being leveraged across our loan originations technology business, our servicing technology business, as well as our DNA group,” Rich Gagliano, President, Black Knight Originations Technologies Division, told MReport. Black Knight has already started rolling out the solution for its clients and plans to integrate AIVA over the next couple of months. The company has said that AIVA would be integrated into its premier solutions and it will also make the technology available to clients looking to deploy AI/ML within other parts of their organization to enhance efficiency, effectiveness, and accuracy. “With the cost of origination and servicing at, or near, all-time highs, AIVA is poised to help increase efficiencies for Black Knight clients,” said Anthony Jabbour, CEO, Black Knight. “AI/ML and neural network solutions are the future of delivering enhanced productivity and capabilities to our clients, and we are very excited about the potential HeavyWater has to offer.” HeavyWater’s AIVA solution leverages AI/ML to perform operational functions more efficiently and effectively than traditional methods, by reading, comprehending, and drawing conclusions based on context to mimic cognitive thinking. These functions are especially useful in improving the operational efficiencies of the loan origination process. “The focus of HeavyWater and their expertise in AI/ML is the ability to take more mundane operations and use machine learning to extract information and assist the operations of underwriters, loan processors, and closers to move those components of the loan processing task along significantly faster,” Gagliano said. The Philadelphia-based HeavyWater has been providing AIVA to help lenders with traditionally manual activities such as verifying income, assets, and insurance coverage. Black Knight said that clients benefited from the accelerated processes and reduced expenses as AIVA gained experience and manual routines were automated.   “Our focus has always been on pioneering research in machine learning and artificial intelligence and applying it to the financial services industry,” said Soofi Safavi, CEO of HeavyWater. “By using sophisticated neural networks and ‘contextual knowledge’ to continuously improve AIVA’s learning and performance, we’ve helped our clients save money, increase efficiencies, and reduce turn time.”     About Author: Radhika Ojha Radhika Ojha, Online Editor at the Five Star Institute, is a graduate of the University of Pune, India, where she received her B.A. in Commerce with a concentration in Accounting and Marketing and an M.A. in Mass Communication. Upon completion of her master’s degree, Ojha worked at a national English daily publication in India (The Indian Express) where she was a staff writer in the cultural and arts features section. Ojha also worked as Principal Correspondent at HT Media Ltd and at Honeywell as an executive in corporate communications. She and her husband currently reside in Dallas, Texas. You can contact her at Radhika.Ojha@theMRep

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber

 

Ocwen Borrower Outreach Focused on Foreclosure Avoidance

Ocwen Borrower Outreach Focused on Foreclosure Avoidance   Ocwen Financial Corporation, a Florida-based financial services holding company, is partnering with New York-based charitable organizations to host a trio of borrower outreach events beginning Wednesday, June 6. Ocwen previously participated in numerous similar events during 2018, meeting with more than 550 Ocwen customers and working to help New York area borrowers and homeowners who were struggling to make their mortgage payments. Ocwen currently services more than 68,000 loans in New York. For this round of June borrower outreach events, Ocwen is joining forces with three local organizations: Neighborhood Housing Services of New York City, Inc.; Community Housing Innovations; and Neighborhood Housing Services of Brooklyn. The announced June events kick off Wednesday morning, and include the following: Wednesday, June 6, 11:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m. ET, at NHS Brooklyn, located at 2806 Church Avenue, Brooklyn, New York. For more information call 718.469.4679. Thursday, June 7, from 11:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m. ET, at the Crowne Plaza, located at 66 Hale Ave., White Plains, New York. For more information visit the event webpage. Saturday, June 9, from 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. ET, at 2475 Westchester Ave., Bronx, New York. For more information call 929.268.3790. Attendees will be able to meet with Ocwen Home Retention Agents as well as HUD-approved counseling agencies to learn about their options that could help lower their mortgage payments and help get them back on more stable financial footing. “Despite a better economic environment, the high attendance rate at our previous New York events demonstrates that many borrowers still have difficulty meeting their mortgage payments,” said Jill Showell, SVP of Government and Community Relations at Ocwen. “Working closely with seasoned non-profit housing counselors, Ocwen’s goal is to meet in-person with as many borrowers as possible to find responsible solutions to help families remain in their homes and part of their communities.” During Ocwen’s Q1 2018 earnings report, the servicer spotlighted its initiatives to help borrowers avoid foreclosure. According to Ocwen, the servicer reported 11,598 loan modifications during Q1, 17 percent of which included debt forgiveness totaling $59 million. Ocwen also reported a decrease in loan delinquencies from 9.3 percent as of December 31, 2017, to 9.0 percent as of March 31, 2018. Ocwen said this decrease was “primarily driven by loss mitigation efforts.” The servicer has also seen some significant personnel changes in recent months. In April, Ocwen announced that Glen Messina would take over as the company’s President after Ron Faris announced his retirement. Only last week, Ocwen EVP and CFO Michael Bourque also announced his impending retirement, having accepted a position with another financial services company. Ocwen reported at the time that they had begun a search for qualified internal and external candidates to fill the CFO position. To learn more about Ocwen’s borrower outreach events, you can click here.   About Author: David Wharton David Wharton, Online Editor at the Five Star Institute, is a graduate of the University of Texas at Arlington, where he received his B.A. in English and minored in Journalism. Wharton has over 15 years of experience in journalism and previously worked at Thomson Reuters, a multinational mass media and information firm, as Associate Content Editor, focusing on producing media content related to tax and accounting principles and government rules and regulations for accounting professionals. Wharton has an extensive and diversified portfolio of freelance material, with published contributions in both online and print media publications. Wharton and his family currently reside in Arlington, Texas. He can be reached at David.Wharton@DSNews.com.

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber

 

Best Housing Rental Investment Markets for 2018

Best Housing Rental Investment Markets for 2018 According to CoreLogic Chief Economist Dr. Frank Nothaft, single-family rental stock has been booming in recent years, with CoreLogic reporting an increase by more than one-third over the past decade. But like the old saying goes, rental investment is all about location, location, location. So what are the best housing investment markets for 2018? Forbes recently partnered with Local Market Monitor, which tracks more than 300 housing markets, to spotlight the 20 bests markets for rental investment in 2018. In each case, the cities in question feature growth amongst population, jobs, and home prices. As Forbes explains, “These are not necessarily the places where prices will grow the most in the near future. … Rather, these are the places where that growth appears most sustainable over the medium to long term.” Orlando, Florida, tops the list, with an average home price of $247,550, a three-year population growth of 7.6 percent, and a three-year price growth forecast of 35 percent. Orlando home prices increased 9 percent in 2017. “Orlando has recovered in the sense that job growth has been strong and home prices are moving up along with income at a healthy pace," said Local Market Monitor CEO Ingo Winzer. "Home prices are still below the peak of the bubble, so in that narrow sense they haven't recovered." Rounding out the top 10, Forbes and Local Market Monitor’s picks for best U.S. metros for rental investment in 2018 are: Provo-Orem, Utah—Three-year price growth forecast: 31 percent Jacksonville, Florida—Three-year price growth forecast: 20 percent Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina—Three-year price growth forecast: 26 percent Ogden-Clearfield, Utah—Three-year price growth forecast: 29 percent Nashville-Davidson-Murfreesboro, Tennessee—Three-year price growth forecast: 27 percent Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta, Georgia—Three-year price growth forecast: 24 percent Springfield, Missouri—Three-year price growth forecast: 14 percent Fort Worth-Arlington, Texas—Three-year price growth forecast: 26 percent Sacramento-Arden-Arcade-Roseville, California—Three-year price growth forecast: 33 percent “High-growth markets are always attractive,” said Winzer. However, “in a few years today's growth markets may be in over-priced territory. Markets with medium growth can also be a better bet for investors because there's less competition for choice properties and they can buy at a more favorable price.” America’s Rental Housing 2017, a report compiled by Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies, reported last year that renter households are trending older, wealthier, and are more likely to be parents. The abundant prospects of the rental market will be one of the hot topics to be discussed at this year’s Single-Family Rental Summit, happening March 19-21 at the Renaissance Nashville Hotel in Nashville, Tennessee.   About Author: David Wharton          

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber

 

Real Estate Crowdfunding Earns $10 Million in First Week

Real Estate Crowdfunding Earns $10 Million in First Week Atlanta-based real estate mogul Jay Morrison recently launched a new real estate crowdfundingprogram, and it’s finding some strong early success, having raised nearly $10 million in its first week. The Tulsa Real Estate Fund is described as “the first African-American owned Regulation A+ Tier II crowdfund designed to revitalize urban communities across the U.S.” According to the group’s press release, the Tulsa Real Estate Fund “allows both accredited and non-accredited investors to collectively invest and own real estate projects around the country that are unique, diversified, and yield a reasonable rate of return.” The Fund is seeking to raise as much as $50 million in equity capital during its initial public offering, which launched on June 1 and raised $8 million in its first weekend alone. By the end of the first full week, that number hit $9.6 million. "Tulsa Real Estate Fund was created for the sole purpose of the revitalization of urban communities across America, as well as a means for working class people to own shares and equity in a portfolio of real estate assets that will combat gentrification," said Jay Morrison, CEO and Manager of the Tulsa Real Estate Fund. As described in the press release, the Fund will work to “perform comprehensive redevelopment of both people and real estate in key urban areas” and allow for “socially conscious individuals and financial institutions the opportunity to invest in the people and real estate in local communities that matter most to them.” Projects will include single-family, multifamily, commercial, and agricultural projects. "Tulsa Real Estate Fund is the perfect economic vehicle for the urban community to collectively pool its more than $1.3 trillion in spending power to effectively control and revitalize our neighborhoods," Morrison continued. "With the current tone in Washington, D.C., urban neighborhoods across the country will not have control of their dollars, real estate, or small businesses for the foreseeable future. As a result, urban neighborhoods across the country are being redeveloped by individuals who do not have the best interests of the community in mind, which often leads to the displacement of longtime residents due to increased property values, thus making the cost of housing in our communities unaffordable. We believe Tulsa Real Estate Fund is the solution to this rapidly growing problem." You can view a short video explaining the Fund below. https://youtu.be/UgD1jj8e-Bs About Author: David Wharton David Wharton, Online Editor at the Five Star Institute, is a graduate of the University of Texas at Arlington, where he received his B.A. in English and minored in Journalism. Wharton has over 15 years of experience in journalism and previously worked at Thomson Reuters, a multinational mass media and information firm, as Associate Content Editor, focusing on producing media content related to tax and accounting principles and government rules and regulations for accounting professionals. Wharton has an extensive and diversified portfolio of freelance material, with published contributions in both online and print media publications. Wharton and his family currently reside in Arlington, Texas. He can be reached at David.Wharton@DSNews.com.

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber

 

The Week Ahead: FOMC Meeting to Announce Rate Hike?

The Federal Open Market Committee will meet again this week, with the group's Forecasts scheduled for release on Wednesday, June 6, at 2 p.m. ET, and Fed Chair Jerome Powell's press conference scheduled thereafter at 2:30 p.m. ET on Wednesday. While the FOMC could always surprise us, many industry experts expect the Fed to announce another short-term interest rate hike. The May meeting of the FOMC left interest rates unchanged, after having increased them previously in March. “In view of realized and expected labor market conditions and inflation, the Committee decided to maintain the target range for the federal funds rate at 1-1/2 to 1-3/4 percent,” the Fed said in a statement after the meeting. “The stance of monetary policy remains accommodative, thereby supporting strong labor market conditions and a sustained return to 2 percent inflation.” The Central Bank had stated that it was targeting an inflation rate of 2 percent at the beginning of the year, and after the meeting, it said: “On a 12-month basis, both overall inflation and inflation for items other than food and energy have moved close to 2 percent.” The FOMC forecast report covers GDP, the PCE price index, the unemployment rate, and forecasts of the next change in the Fed funds rate and the expected rate at the end of the next two years. The FOMC forecasts are compiled based on individual outlooks from each Fed governor and District president. About Author: David Wharton David Wharton, Online Editor at the Five Star Institute, is a graduate of the University of Texas at Arlington, where he received his B.A. in English and minored in Journalism. Wharton has over 15 years of experience in journalism and previously worked at Thomson Reuters, a multinational mass media and information firm, as Associate Content Editor, focusing on producing media content related to tax and accounting principles and government rules and regulations for accounting professionals. Wharton has an extensive and diversified portfolio of freelance material, with published contributions in both online and print media publications. Wharton and his family currently reside in Arlington, Texas. He can be reached at David.Wharton@DSNews.com.

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber

 

6 Creative Ways to Fund Your Home Renovations

Whether you’ve lived in your home for decades or are just about to start your journey as a homeowner, the idea of customizing your home to fit your style and preferences, as well as necessary repairs to aging homes, can be both exciting and daunting. The exciting part comes without question, but the daunting components often revolve around money.   1. Refinance Your Mortgage Refinancing your home is one way you can stash away extra cash every month to pay for home renovations. Depending on your current interest rate, you might be able to refinance at a lower interest rate and/or for a longer loan term, which would lower your monthly mortgage payment. So, you could set aside the difference until you’re ready to jump into renovations. 2. Get a Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC) If you already have a low rate on your first mortgage, or you’ve already paid off your loan, refinancing may not make sense for you. 3. Take Out a Home Equity Loan A home equity loan is another option for homeowners to tap into their equity to pay for renovations without refinancing their entire mortgage. Unlike a HELOC, which is a line of credit that you can borrow against as needed, this type of loan requires you to take out all the cash at one time. But since it is a fixed rate loan, the interest rate on a home equity loan is typically higher than an adjustable rate of a HELOC. Home equity loans are also commonly called “second mortgages” because many homeowners get them in addition to their first mortgage. However, you don’t need a first mortgage to get a home equity loan.   4. Crowdsource Particularly if you’re just getting married, try asking your guests for cash towards your remodel as wedding gift instead of something from a registry. 5. Get Creative with Earning More Cash Although it might not be ideal for some, having a side hustle in addition to your regular 9 to 5 could help you save more money faster. The good news is, there are many ways you can get creative with earning more money.   6. Get Serious About Saving Although it can take some time, saving up the old-fashioned way is still one of the most common ways people are funding their home improvements. If you’re able to cut costs elsewhere or spend less money on nonessentials and actually set money away in a home improvement fund, you might find that it adds up quicker than you think!  

Brandon Farber

Brandon Farber

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