Real Estate Information

Phoenix Arizona Real Estate Blog

The Russo Team

Blog

Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 248

3 Things You Need to Know about the Home Affordable Modification Program

by The Russo Team

3 Things You Need to Know about the Home Affordable Modification Program

Have you or someone you know had problems making your mortgage payments? Have you modified your home loan to help keep your property out of foreclosure? The Treasury and Housing and Urban Development departments recently announced that homeowners whose mortgages were modified to stop foreclosure could receive an additional $5,000 reduction in their loans from the government next year via the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP). Here are 3 things you need to know about the Home Affordable Modification Program and how it could affect you next year.

1.) The additional $5,000 reduction in home loans could impact roughly one million borrowers who received reduced mortgage rates through the HAMP during the Great Recession. The discounted two percent mortgage rates are scheduled to rise by a percentage point for many of these borrowers entering the sixth year of the program. That would increase monthly payments for those who might still be struggling to find work or additional income.

2.) The new plan is designed to soften the shock from higher interest rates — and thus higher monthly payments — on HAMP borrowers. Nearly two-thirds of the program's borrowers have less than twenty percent equity or owe more on their mortgages than their homes are worth, causing underwater mortgages that are putting them in a fragile financial situation.

3.) This latest principal reduction would be in addition to the $5,000 in government payments made during the first five years of the loan modification. Because of the combined $10,000 in principal reduction, qualifying borrowers would have the option of adjusting their mortgage terms to pay on average of fifty dollars less a month. Otherwise, those borrowers could repay their mortgages ahead of schedule.

For more information about the HAMP program changes, visit www.makinghomeaffordable.gov.  If you have concerns about the home loan payment reduction or would like to know if you are eligible to qualify for this program, please contact the Russo Team today. - Frank

www.RussoTeam.com
602-864-1200

Search the MLS Now!

Join us on Facebook and Twitter

Top 3 Holiday Home Safety Tips

by The Russo Team

Top 3 Holiday Home Safety Tips

Whether you’ve enjoyed lit jack-o-lanterns on Halloween, the smell of fresh roasted turkey and stuffing on Thanksgiving, or the twinkle of tinsel from Christmas decorations, the holidays are abound with the sights, sounds, and smells of the season. This is a whimsical time that brings with it family, friends, and gatherings. So here are the top 3 holiday home safety tips to remember so you can enjoy your season’s greetings to the fullest.

1.) Feast Safely: One of the best parts of the holidays is all the delicious meals and goodies, so food safety is essential in truly enjoying the festivities. No one wants to spend the occasion hugging their toilet bowl in agony. Be sure to fully cook meats thoroughly to ward off bacteria, and always wash raw veggies and fruits. Because cold and flu season can run rampant this time of year, frequent hand washing is a must for all ages, especially around food. And to prevent scalding, burns and cuts, keep hot liquids, foods and carving knives away from the edges of counters and tables.

2.) Light the way: Who doesn’t love festive holiday decorations? Whether it’s soft candle light or sparkling Christmas lights, there’s an air of peace that comes from the charming twinkle. But there are also fire hazards that come with the charm, so take extra precaution with your lighting! Outdoor lights should be fastened securely to trees, exterior walls, or other firm supports to prevent damage. And though we love the glow of lights in our home at night, turn off all lighted decorations before you go to bed or leave the house, as the lights could short out and start a fire.

3.) Oh Christmas Tree: Whether you enjoy the ease of artificial trees or are a purist whom prefers live trees, caution is still an essential part of holiday safety. Artificial trees should be marked with a “Fire Resistant” label. Live trees should be checked for freshness as well as have a few inches cut off the trunk to expose the fresh wood for better water absorption. This helps keep your tree from drying out and becoming a fire hazard. And regardless of if your tree is alive or artificial; it should be placed away from lit candles, radiators, or fireplaces. Also, avoid sharp of breakable decorations which could be choking hazards for young children or pets.

Wanting a “White Christmas” shouldn’t involve the white walls of the emergency room, so remember these top 3 holiday home safety tips, and keep yourself and those you care about protected this holiday season. – Frank

www.RussoTeam.com
602-864-1200

Search the MLS Now!

Join us on Facebook and Twitter

PJ’s in the Park Event in Downtown Phoenix

by The Russo Team

PJ’s in the Park Event in Downtown Phoenix

Now that the holidays are here, Downtown Phoenix is alight with new life and tons of holiday activities for young and old alike. And thanks to the public transit system near the Signs of Downtown Phoenix area, there’s never a reason to miss the holiday nightlife, trendy urban restaurants, or shop the holiday art markets.

If you’re looking for something especially cozy and festive to do this week, you definitely don’t want to miss the PJ’s in the Park event in Downtown Phoenix. On Friday, December 5th from 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm, guests of all ages are invited to dress in your favorite pajamas, spread out your picnic blanket, fluff a few pillows, and settle into a movie night on the grassy lawn at the Civic Space Park on Central and Van Buren

You can board Downtown Phoenix’s own Urban Polar Express – the METRO Light Rail - for a double feature holiday movie showing under the stars. Grab your friends and family for a viewing of “Polar Express” and “Elf.” This event is free and also features free hot chocolate, holiday treats and a special visit from Santa to make it a night to remember. Signs of Downtown Phoenix residents and residents’ valley wide are welcome to this whimsical and magical event like no other. For more information click here or call 602-262-4734.

For more details about upcoming Signs of Downtown Phoenix events please contact the Russo Team. -Frank

www.RussoTeam.com
602-864-1200

Search the MLS Now!

Join us on Facebook and Twitter

More Than a Day: Happy Thanksgiving!

by The Russo Team

More Than a Day: Happy Thanksgiving!

More Than a Day

As Thanksgiving Day rolls around,
It brings up some facts, quite profound.
We may think that we're poor,
Feel like bums, insecure,

But in truth, our riches astound.

We have friends and family we love;
We have guidance from heaven above.
We have so much more
Than they sell in a store,

We're wealthy, when push comes to shove.

So add up your blessings, I say;
Make Thanksgiving last more than a day.
Enjoy what you've got;
Realize it's a lot,

And you'll make all your cares go away.

-By Karl Fuchs

 

May your day of thanks be filled with the riches of family, feast, and gratitude. Happy Thanksgiving from the Russo Team! –Frank

www.RussoTeam.com
602-864-1200

Search the MLS Now!

Join us on Facebook and Twitter

November National Housing Report

by The Russo Team

November National Housing Report

It’s good to see that even with the holidays right around the corner that the normal fall seasonal trend for the real estate market is still on track. The RE/MAX November National Housing Report marks October as the second consecutive month in 2014 with home sales higher than one year ago. In fact, October 2014 home sales were 2.6 percent higher than the level of sales in October 2013, and the Median Sales Price of all homes sold in the fifty-three major metro areas was 7.4 percent higher than October of last year. Home prices in October followed the 2014 pattern of steady growth, but at a slower rate than the double-digit increases seen in 2013.

“Home sales in 2014 started the year slowly and then rose to equal the strong sales in 2013. They’ve now surpassed last year’s levels for two months in a row. Following usual seasonal trends and with prices rising at a reasonable rate, the market appears to be settling into a more sustainable growth pattern.”

Margaret Kelly, RE/MAX, LLC CEO

For more information, click here to download a copy of the November National Housing Report.

If you’re looking to sell your Arizona home or to purchase an Arizona home, please contact the Russo Team today and receive a complimentary analysis of your home’s approximate present value on the market today. Your complete satisfaction with our service and representation is always our number one priority. -Frank

www.RussoTeam.com
602-864-1200

Search the MLS Now!

Join us on Facebook and Twitter

Super Bowl Returns to Phoenix in 2015

by The Russo Team

Super Bowl Returns to Phoenix in 2015

Arizona football fans valley-wide are in a buzz over the great news. Because the Super Bowl returns to Phoenix in 2015! That’s right, Super Bowl XLIX (49), one of the highest grossing annual sporting events in the United States, will be played right on our home turf.

More than one million people are expected to flock to downtown Phoenix for Super Bowl festivities next year, generating over a half-billion dollars in economic impact. No doubt the return of the Super Bowl to the valley will be a major touchdown for our Arizona economy. The NFL championship game will be played February 1, 2015 at University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, AZ. For those who have never been, the University of Phoenix Stadium is a state-of-the-art facility and is the home of the Arizona Cardinals.

The game will be televised around the world and has not been in Arizona since 2008. Super Bowl XLIX will be the third Super Bowl event held in the valley, with the first one being Super Bowl XXX back 1996 at A.S.U.'s Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe, AZ. For more details about the upcoming 2015 Arizona Super Bowl, click here.

Stay connected with the Russo Team blog and follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more updates regarding accommodations, traffic, and more details on the return of the Super Bowl to Arizona in 2015. -Frank

www.RussoTeam.com
602-864-1200

Search the MLS Now!

Join us on Facebook and Twitter

Russo Team Newsletter - November/December 2014

by The Russo Team

Russo Team Newsletter - November/December 2014

Breaking News for the Real Estate Market

by The Russo Team

Breaking News for the Real Estate Market

Breaking news for the real estate market has recently reported, and the news reflects much anticipated positive changes for homebuyers in the months to come.

Firstly, the final qualified residential mortgage, or QRM, rule eliminates the highly controversial requirement of a specific down payment amount, bringing the rule in line with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s qualified mortgage, or QM, rule. The latter was created to protect borrowers from predatory lending practices.

Secondly, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are releasing new guidelines that will allow borrowers with lackluster credit profiles to obtain loans with a down payment as low as three percent by considering “compensating factors.” Additionally, Fannie and Freddie also plan to loosen demands on lenders to buy back defaulted mortgages, creating more stability, confidence and clarity for the lending industry.

“This is great news for our industry, and it’s a welcomed change we’ve been advocating at RE/MAX. Taking a measured but less stringent approach to lending creates more stable housing conditions and, most importantly, opens the doors to homeownership for qualified, willing homebuyers who’ve been sidelined in the wake of the downturn.” - Margaret Kelly, RE/MAX CEO

The breaking news from these real estate industry changes has been well received by many. These government plans are designed to help first-time homebuyers, as well as those who earn lower incomes, to more easily obtain government-backed loans. For more information about the upcoming housing industry modifications or to find out about qualifying for a home loan in the Phoenix area, please contact the Russo Team today. –Frank

www.RussoTeam.com
602-864-1200

Search the MLS Now!

Join us on Facebook and Twitter

This communication is provided to you for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon by you. RE/MAX Professionals is not a mortgage lender and so you should contact a qualified mortgage consultant directly to learn more about its mortgage products and your eligibility for such products.

3 Halloween Home Safety Tips for a “Spooktacular” and Safe Night

by The Russo Team

3 Halloween Home Safety Tips for a “Spooktacular” and Safe Night

Halloween is a time for little ghosts and goblins to rule the night seeking tricks and treats throughout the neighborhood. It’s even a time that adults can enjoy as well. Because of this increase of traffic on October 31st, it’s important to take precautions so that you and yours can enjoy the evening without anyone getting hurt. Here are 3 Halloween home safety tips for a “spook-tacular” and safe night.

1.) Light the way for trick or treaters: Passing out candy this year? Be sure your front yard and walkway are free and clear to avoid tripping hazards. Having your porch light on or well-lit decorations will help it so that every little boy and ghoul can make it to your front door hazard free. And if you’re planning n using real candles inside a jack-o-lantern or to light your walk-way consider safer options. The National Fire Protection Association warns this type of lighting causes a fire hazard to your home. Instead of real candles, opt for LED tea lights or wind a string of orange lights around your front porch.

2.) Protect your pets and partiers: Got a furry friend who normally loves company? On a night filled with masked arrivers and excessive doorbell ringing, all the noise and activity could frighten your favorite feline or Fido and causing them to get underfoot or worse, accidently bite a trick or treater. It’s best to keep your pets safely locked up to keep them and your guests safe.

3.) Indoor safety isn’t scary: If you’re hosting a party or an open haunted house, be sure to check your fire alarms to make sure they’re operating effectively. Also, keep decorations like crepe paper away from carved pumpkins and open flames. The U.S. Fire Administration also recommends making sure any decorative lights you plan to use have sockets, wires and connectors that are in good working order before use.

Have more safety tips? Please feel free to share them on our Facebook page. The Russo Team wishes you and safe and spook-tacular Happy Halloween! – Frank

www.RussoTeam.com
602-864-1200

Search the MLS Now!

Join us on Facebook and Twitter

Move to the Engaging Encanto Manor Historical Neighborhood

by The Russo Team

Move to the Engaging Encanto Manor Historical Neighborhood

Taking a single stroll or a drive on a sunny day through the Encanto Manor neighborhood will instantly charm you. The vast front lawns that hold well-loved historical homes paint a picture of pride and beauty that makes it clear as to why so many want to move to the engaging Encanto Manor Historical Neighborhood.

There are countless reasons as to why so many fall in love with the Encanto Manor Neighborhood at first sight. Some love it for the beautifully maintained Encanto Nine Golf Course at the heart of the city. Some love the rich stories that the walls of these post WWII subdivisions could tell. And others are enchanted by the 1940’s and 1950’s ranch style architecture many of which feature solid red brick homes, shutters, and large lush lawns that are as pretty as a postcard.

The Encanto Manor Historic District resides just south of Thomas Road between 7th and 15th Avenue. There are eighty-three homes that average 2,000 square feet and feature large lots with ample front yards that rival that of homes in the east coast. The neighborhood’s amazing location in downtown phoenix is near many city amenities, dining, shopping, and cultural venues.

Want to make your move to the engaging Encanto Manor Historical Neighborhood? Contact the Russo team today to receive a complimentary copy of the Real Estate Market Update for Encanto Manor Historic District each month.

www.RussoTeam.com
602-864-1200

Search the MLS Now!

Join us on Facebook and Twitter

Displaying blog entries 1-10 of 248