Monday, January 31, 2011

90 Day Flip Rule Takes a Vacation...

Recently the feds overturned the 90 day flip rule that requires sellers to "hold" onto a property for 90 days after the initial seller purchase regardless of whether they can sell the property in a shorter time period.

This move was pushed by the need to get the existing inventory of foreclosures reduced, therefore allowing potential investors to buy properties, do needed improvements and immediately put the property back on the market to sell. Over the past several years, this has not been possible, causing investors to hold back purchasing investment property because hanging onto the properties for 90+ days was just not financially reasonable.

Another consequence the 90 day rule was the impact of contractors losing work as a result of investors not needing projects on distressed properties. These jobs are part of the fuel for a healthy real estate economy.

There may be a glut of homes on the market but the majority need updates or minor repairs, something an investor can certainly handle with cash on hand. Unfortunately, the 90 day rule halted these small improvements in their tracks. Small projects can take less than a week and investors used to be able to get the home back on the market and sold quickly. Repairs and updates such as carpet, paint and minor cosmetics can help a property sell and keeps the buyers from having to come out of pocket with hard-to-get cash since down payment requirements are now larger and there are limitations on seller contributions. The ability for a seller to make these improvements on a recent purchase also helps to steady declining housing values.

All in all, the break will hopefully encourage investment, put contractors back on the job and remove the glut of foreclosures and distressed homes on the market.

Read the waiver from HUD

Want to get in on the action? Give me a call 336-817-3598 or shoot an email to me at There are some great opportunities out there and we look forward to assisting you in your real estate needs!


Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Why Twitter?

Was that an appropriate tweet? Huh? Why tweet? Why blog for that matter? Why use social media at all and if you do, how do you make it work for you? Will anyone read what you post? Recently Constant Contact, the provider of my e-newsletter came out with a nice brochure on the benefits and recommendations for various modes of social media. Here's what they have to say about Twitter, which is probably one of the more mysterious ones to me.

*Tweets are good for quick message and links to photos, articles and other short online content

*You can monitor other "dashboards" that allow you to monitor sites of interest and other social media feeds so that you don't have to keep track of thousands of friends, fans and followers.

*Experts recommend not tweeting more than 5-6 times per day

*Use a scheduling tool to send out tweets on holidays and weekends so that you can take a break from regular tweeting

*Using # tags (hashtags) in front of words that others might search for or reference

*Keep track of handles (people's twitter names with @ signs) you mention you or retweet your content. They can influence their networks.

*Use it to publicize "deals" or mass purchasing coupons like you find on Groupons or Buy Local.

Constant Contact recommends tools that you can use with Twitter such as NutShellMail, HootSuite, your blog, email newsletters and Facebook

Here at Brooke Cashion and Associates we are working to integrate these technologies so that you can access our information from your favorite and most convenient form of social media. Have suggestions on how we can better your experience? Post your comments here! Have a great day!


Friday, January 21, 2011

Check Those Receipts! Those Mistakes Add Up!

A quick post today but important nonetheless...

Last Monday while on our way back from Raleigh, Jake, Maddie and I stopped by a couple of stores in order to allow Maddie to spend some of her Christmas cash on some items she had her eyes on.

First stop, a local sporting goods store where she was looking for a new water bottle to carry to school. As we cruised the endless supply of bottles, she finally laid hands on a great metal bottle that changed colors with varying temperatures (think Hypercolor). After waiting an inordinately long period of time in line, we finally reached the register. Maddie took out her "wad" of cash and began peeling off the 23 bills, all the while figuring in tax on the bottle that had a tag for $19.99. I was a proud mama! Keep in mind the line was still quite long and people were becoming impatient with waiting and Maddie was also feeling the pressure. The cashier informed us that $23.00 wasn't going to cut it and the total was $24 and some odd change...seemed a bit much on a $20 bottle but she whipped out two more ones, collected her change and moved on.

I gave her a thumbs up on the way out and reminded her that no matter how long the line is, count back your change and make sure you have the correct amount. Once in the car and back on I40, Maddie pipes up that she's been robbed. I am thinking that the purse of cash is now gone, but no, Maddie was charged two dollars more for her bottle than what was on the label attached. I informed her we would go back and make it right which was why it was important to take our time when at the register. Great learning lesson-right!

Fast forward to the early evening, when on the way home from Davie county, picking up the dog, we stopped at a grocery to buy plates for Maddie's chorus party the next day. Lesson learned mom or not! I bought the plates which were on sale for $2.77 with your rewards card (which I had and presented), when I hit the road I realized that I was charged $3 and some change for each pack.

Two times in one day! We'd been robbed! Seriously, just a reminder that it's easy to get caught up in tight time schedules and rushed errands, but in the course of one day our family lost at least two if not three dollars--easily a cup of coffee! In this day and time of computers, scanning and all sorts of other technology it is easy to think that because human error has been mitigated to a certain extent we can let down our guard on monitoring our charges! Not so! Now I know why my parents are so adamant about saving every receipt and still balancing their checkbook and credit card statements the old fashioned way--by paper! Maybe next time I'll learn my lesson!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Industry Update January 12, 2010

In addition to my personal real estate and social blog posts, I am going to start including industry updates from various, reliable sources for your enjoyment and convenience. Enjoy and please sign up to receive regular updates through your email and don't forget to share my blog with friends, family and co-workers! And as always, I love to hear your feedback and comments!

Real Estate

Home Buying and Selling Predictions for 2011


Can you get insurance if you rent your home?


Additional incentives for banks to approve short sales

Monday, January 10, 2011

Bats In Your Belfry?

Occasionally in my field we will obtain an inspection report that shows evidence of some sort of "guest" living in the attic. Sometimes, it's a bird that has nested in the exterior overhang, a bat that has decided that just inside the ridge vent is the place to raise a family, or most often that not it's some sort of mouse-like creature that has taken up residence out of the elements. I have seen "extremes" such as squirrels that had chewed through, yes through, Sheetrock in the ceiling of a media room of a foreclosed home and have heard of raccoons having their young inside of the walls of a home.

Nothing unusual about our animal friends wanting to take up residence in a warm, safe environment, but when it's your home, it's difficult to be hospitable to additional visitors.

In the case of most small rodents, the dangers of having them present in your home can range from unsanitary conditions due to their "droppings" to the more damaging, such as actual deterioration of wood, Sheetrock, insulation and other personal items that you may be storing. If bats have nested, it can be more serious, as their guano or "poop" is toxic and must be removed by a professional. Not to mention bats are considered "protected" and elimination of the bat is not an option, but removal is. Once the bat is removed, it is critical to find the point of entry and seal it with wire or something similar to prevent further problems. As stated above, the larger animals typically do more damage, such as squirrels or raccoons, but the sheer annoyance of these critters as they move about in your walls and above your head is enough to drive anyone, "through the roof". Certainly, owners should be cautious when trying to deal with wild animals in their home, as rabies and other diseases can be transferred to humans if contact is made.

Now that I have you on edge about every little creak and scrape that you hear at night, keep in mind there are ways to prevent and/or remove your new found furry friends. Certainly, keeping an eye on overhanging tree branches, which provide a nice, convenient walkway for your pals is a place to start. Beyond that close up any entry points at vents, roof overhangs, etc. with wire, wood or a netting and keep gutters clean because sometimes small rodents like mice, squirrels or voles like to set up shop in these areas and can make quite a racket.

If the problem persists, call a pest control company that specializes in animal removal and prevention. This may cost a little bit out of your pocket but definitely less expensive than nights spent awake wondering if the little party animals are going to join you later for a nightcap.

Need names of folks who do remove animals or want to share a story about animal guests in a home?...Don't forget to share because I love your posts! You can also share with friends and family and keep in mind you can sign up to receive all new posts by subscribing to the blog at the top of the page~

Enjoy the snow and stay safe!


Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Is FSBO right for you?


*MAKE SURE YOUR HOME IS PRICED RIGHT- Pricing is the biggest mistake homeowners make when selling their homes. Over or under pricing can cost thousands of dollars, not only off the price but in months of paid mortgages, insurance, taxes, etc. Make sure that you know what homes LIKE yours in your area have SOLD for in the past year.

*CONSIDER YOUR FAMILY'S SAFETY- FSBO's are targets for folks who are criminally motivated to view your home with one of your family members. These folks have been known to take keys to make copies of, break-in when you are at work or school and harm family members who show the house. Agents are trained to pre-qualify buyers and use specific methods to reduce risks in your home, please do the same.

*SHOWING YOUR HOME- Serious buyers take very few days to look at homes, especially when a decision is needed as a result of relocation. Most buyers have been looking with their agent on websites and have identified homes they want to see when they come to town…how will they make an appointment to see yours? Make sure someone can show your home during the day, when most buyers are looking.

*ADVERTISING- Make sure your advertising includes numbers that you can be reached at and that they are visible on your sign (consider preprinted stickers).

*NEGOTIATING- Have a plan for negotiations, be prepared for a buyer to ask for closing cost assistance or other concessions. Be prepared to back up your reasoning for pricing your home as you have.

*ASSISTANCE- Be wary of companies that offer to help you market your home for sale by owner for reduced fees. Remember they are charging you up front for very limited services and little detail work. You have to pay them whether you sell or not! Agents do not charge you until you CLOSE and often times save you money by eliminating time on the market.

**These are just a few items to consider while selling your home, please contact us if you would like additional information on these topics or if we can be of service to you in any other way**

"When details matter, experience counts!"