"We Have The Key To Your New Home"

The Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act and Debt Cancellation

“Requiring a homeowner to pay income tax on forgiven or canceled mortgage debt would make the National Mortgage Settlement much less effective,” the letter states. The Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act and Debt Cancellation

The act, which is set to expire December 31, 2012, allows taxpayers to be excluded from paying taxes on forgiven debt from a foreclosure, short sale, or loan modification… In a release, Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto explained the act is expiring at a time when homeowners are benefiting from the national mortgage settlement, which obligates five of the largest mortgage services to provide $20 billion in credited consumer relief.

http://www.dsnews.com/articles/forty-one-ags-sign-letter-urging-congress-to-extend-debt-relief-act-2012-11-20 RT #DSNEWS #WadkinsRealEstate

Read More

Buyers Will Save Money

A reduction in premiums for mortgages could save an average borrower $1,000 a year on a $200,000 loan. Read this article below by NAR


Steve Wadkins

Read More

The housing market is healthy again

The start of a new year brings excellent news for homeowners and homebuyers. The US housing market is finally on its feet again.

Over the last few years, the housing market recovered quickly. Home sale prices skyrocketed as foreclosures and short sales slowed, and millions of homeowners nationwide regained equity in their homes.

Today, we can finally say that the housing market is officially back. The vital signs of a healthy market are all there. From home prices to inventory, homebuyers and sellers are looking at a market full of opportunities.

If you’ve been waiting to sell your home, now may be the perfect time! Contact me today!


Steve Wadkins, Gerri Wadkins

Read More

13,808 Houses Sold Yesterday! Did Yours?

There are some homeowners that have been waiting for months to get a price they hoped for when they originally listed their house for sale. The only thing they might want to consider is… If it hasn’t sold yet, maybe it’s not priced properly.
After all 13,808 houses sold yesterday, 13,808 will sell today and 13,808 will sell tomorrow.

That is the average number of homes that sell each and every day in this country according to the National Association of Realtors’ (NAR) latest Existing Home Sales Report. NAR reported that sales are at an annual rate of 5.04 million. Divide that number by 365 (days in a year) and we can see that, on average, over 13,800 homes sell every day.
The report from NAR also revealed that there is currently only a 4.4 months supply of inventory available for sale, (6 months inventory is considered ‘historically normal’).
That means less competition for buyers who are out in the market now, but more houses will hit the market soon with spring right around the corner.

Bottom Line
We realize that you want to get the fair market value for your home. However, if it hasn’t sold in today’s active real estate market, perhaps you should reconsider your current asking price.

Read More

Can HAMP Borrowers Absorb Higher Payments When Mods Reset?

Approximately half a million homeowners who received a mortgage loan modification in 2010 through the government’s Home Affordable Modification Program, commonly known as HAMP, are due to reset in 2015 – and those homeowners will be facing slowly increasing monthly mortgage payments.
Will these homeowners be able to handle the payment increases, or will there be a massive wave of re-defaults?

The U.S Department of Treasury and Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) launched HAMP in 2009 as part of its Making Home Affordable initiative to provide relief for homeowners facing financial hardship by reducing monthly payments to affordable levels through lowered interest rates and modified loan terms. The goal of the modifications was to reduce monthly payments to about 31 percent of the homeowner’s income. According to Mark McArdle, Chief Homeownership Preservation Officer at Treasury, HAMP has saved distressed homeowners an average of about $547 per month (about 39 percent) on mortgage payments by lowering their interest rate in many cases to 2 percent.

There are some who are not sold on the effectiveness of HAMP. One of those is Bankrate.com Chief Financial Analyst Greg McBride, who said in 2009 that homeowners receiving a modification through HAMP were simply “kicking the can down the road” and now that we are in 2015, “we’re at the end of the road” because of all the HAMP mods due to reset this year. Furthermore, he said he thinks many homeowners will be “shocked” to find out that “permanent didn’t really mean permanent” and instead meant five years.
“What happens is that payment starts to normalize – that 2 percent increases by 1 percentage point per year,” McBride said. “So what’s going to happen is these homeowners are going to see their mortgage payments go up this year, next year, and in many cases, the year after that. That’s where the potential problem is. Household incomes have been stagnant and many homeowners don’t have the additional room in their budget to absorb higher payments. Even if they can absorb the first payment increase, the cumulative increase of payments in subsequent years could prove problematic.”

Just how problematic will the interest payment increases, known as “step-ups,” be? That remains to be seen, but even without the interest increases, re-default rates on HAMP mods have hovered around 40 percent for mods with a 2010 vintage.

As of the end of Q3 2014, the latest data available, HAMP has helped about 1.4 million distressed homeowners receive permanent loan modifications. Of the approximately 60,000 permanent modifications completed in 2009, the first year of HAMP, about 42 percent of those modifications were 90 or more days delinquent 42 months after the modification became permanent. Of the nearly 511,000 HAMP modifications with a vintage of 2010, that percentage was about the same for those with a 2009 vintage – about 41 percent. That is double the percentage of overall 90-day delinquency rate of all HAMP mods completed through the second quarter of 2013, which is 20 percent. McArdle said one of the main reasons why re-defaults on HAMP mods with a 2009 or 2010 vintage is because servicers did not start adapting to the the framework that HAMP created until 2011 and 2012. Also, prior to June 2010, verification of income was not required for a HAMP mod.
Treasury has been considering the possibility of re-defaults on HAMP mods and has ways of helping those borrowers for years. McArdle said they currently have a comprhensive response plan and have tools available to help borrowers handle the step-ups and avoid re-defaulting. He said the median increase for the first step-up after the five-year HAMP mod expires is about $95 per month nationwide, varying sometimes greatly from state to state. The median increase for the second step-up could be as much as $200, he said, although more than 90 percent of HAMP borrowers will still have an interest rate below 5 percent after three step-ups and therefore still have a lower monthly payment than they had before they received the HAMP mod.
“While re-default remains an unfortunate outcome for some borrowers, clearly without HAMP, national foreclosures rates would have been much higher and many borrowers would not have received the assistance they needed,” McArdle wrote. “HAMP continues to be the strongest available program for mortgage modifications. Receiving assistance through HAMP gives homeowners a valuable opportunity to strengthen their financial footing and stay in their homes.”

McArdle said that only a small percentage of borrowers who re-default on HAMP mods actually go into foreclosure. Many who re-default are later able to find solutions to avoid foreclosure. He said Treasury has really pushed its short sale program, increasing the incentive from $3,000 up to $10,000. Another program Treasury has touted lately for HAMP is the Pay for Performance Incentive, which allows qualifying HAMP borrowers to receive up to $10,000 in principal reduction on the life of the mortgage loan after the five-year mod expires.
“Of those homeowners who have not been able to keep up with their modified payments under HAMP, the majority have received other forms of assistance or reinstated or paid off their mortgage loans,” McArdle wrote. “HAMP requires servicers to reach out to any homeowner who falls behind on a modification to review all other assistance options, before the servicer starts foreclosure proceedings.”

McArdle is scheduled to be a panelist on the “Modifying Modifcation” panel at the upcoming Five Star Government Forum in Washington, D.C. on March 18. This panel will assess HAMP and its effect on stabilizing the housing market and assisting distressed homeowners.
With regard to the possibility of re-default, McArdle said Treasury is ready. One of the services offered is post-mod counseling for those that are at risk of re-default. Also, homeowners are notified 120 days prior to the first reset and 60 days before the first step-up.

“Treasury will maintain its oversight of participating servicers,” McArdle said in a note to servicers last March. “We will monitor the interest rate resets to ensure that if signs of homeowner distress arise, servicers are ready and able to help by providing loss mitigation options and alternatives to foreclosures.”
McBride said although a certain amount of HAMP re-defaults is unavoidable; it will likely not trigger a housing bust similar to the one the country experienced seven years ago.
“The numbers aren’t that big relative to what we saw during the housing bust and it’s spread out over a period of several years, so it’s not coming all at once,” McBride said. Compliments of DSNEWS

Read More

Buyers-The Difference Between A Home’s Cost vs. Price

As a seller, you will be most concerned about ‘short term price’ – where home values are headed over the next six months. As either a first time or repeat buyer, you must not be concerned only about price but also about the ‘long term cost’ of the home.
Let us explain.

There are many factors that influence the ‘cost’ of a home. Two of the major ones are the home’s appreciation over time, and the interest rate at which a buyer can borrow the funds necessary to purchase their home. The rate at which these two factors can change is often referred to as “The Cost of Waiting”.
What will happen in 2015?

A nationwide panel of over one hundred economists, real estate experts and investment & market strategists project that home values will appreciate by almost 4% by the end of 2015.
Additionally, Freddie Mac’s most recent Economic Commentary & Projections Table predicts that the 30-year fixed mortgage rate will appreciate to 4.5% by the end of 2015.
What Does This Mean to a Buyer?

Here is a simple demonstration of what impact these projected changes would have on the mortgage payment of a home selling for approximately $250,000 today:
Buyers-The Difference Between A Home’s Cost vs. Price by Steve & Gerri Wadkins
As a seller, you will be most concerned about ‘short term price’ – where home values are headed over the next six months. As either a first time or repeat buyer, you must not be concerned only about price but also about the ‘long term cost’ of the home.

Let us explain.
There are many factors that influence the ‘cost’ of a home. Two of the major ones are the home’s appreciation over time, and the interest rate at which a buyer can borrow the funds necessary to purchase their home. The rate at which these two factors can change is often referred to as “The Cost of Waiting”.
What will happen in 2015?

A nationwide panel of over one hundred economists, real estate experts and investment & market strategists project that home values will appreciate by almost 4% by the end of 2015.
Additionally, Freddie Mac’s most recent Economic Commentary & Projections Table predicts that the 30-year fixed mortgage rate will appreciate to 4.5% by the end of 2015.

Read More


  • WE have a total commitment to providing excellent service throughout the real estate transaction.
  • WE have worked as Full Time Real Estate Advisors 8; TOP Negotiators since 1999 which means you will have OUR full support throughout your real estate transaction.
  • WE have exceptional knowledge of the local Real Estate Market being NATIVE Las Vegans.
  • WE are Accredited Buyer’s Representative (ABR) WE are Certified Residential Specialist (CRS)
  • WE are Ranked #8 Real Estate Advisors the last four years
  • WE have Commercial Real Estate Experience
  • WE know the legal implications and technical aspects of buying and selling a home in Las Vegas.
  • With a 1031 Tax Exchange, I can help you when selling or purchasing any investment property.
  • WE have assembled a professional Real Estate Service Group to make your transaction a smooth one.
  • WE are able to aggressively market or locate property on your behalf.
  • WE will utilize technology to better meet your specific real estate needs, whether you are buying or selling.
  • WE engage in all types of internet websites and Social Media for the purpose of marketing. In an effort to make sure that your home gets as much exposure as possible if you are a Seller and that you find the perfect home if you are a Buyer.
  • WE will assist you in finding the related services that are necessary to buy or sell a home or other property.
  • WE will keep you apprised of current local real estate market conditions that can impact the purchase or sale of your home.
  • WE as real estate professionals, WE will be committed to negotiating on your behalf to help meet your specific goals and objectives.
  • WE will respect your time and will work with you so your busy schedule is not interrupted.
  • WE will uphold the highest moral and ethical standards throughout any real estate transaction WE are involved in.
  • WE will communicate with you and follow your transaction to a successful completion with diligence.
  • WE guarantee YOU will be completely Satisfied With US

Read More

5 Financial Reasons to Buy – Attaining the American Dream

Many people have their sights set on buying a home.

The personal reasons differ for each buyer, with many basic similarities.

Eric Belsky, the Managing Director of the Joint Center of Housing Studies at Harvard University expanded on the top 5 financial benefits of homeownership his paper – The Dream Lives On: the Future of Homeownership in America. http://jchs.harvard.edu/sites/jchs.harvard.edu/files/w13-1_belsky_0.pdf

Here are the five reasons, each followed by an excerpt from the study:

1.) Housing is typically the one leveraged investment available.


“Few households are interested in borrowing money to buy stocks and bonds and few lenders are willing to lend them the money. As a result, homeownership allows households to amplify any appreciation on the value of their homes by a leverage factor. Even a hefty 20 percent down payment results in a leverage factor of five so that every percentage point rise in the value of the home is a 5 percent return on their equity. With many buyers putting 10 percent or less down, their leverage factor is 10 or more.”

2.) You’re paying for housing whether you own or rent.


“Homeowners pay debt service to pay down their own principal while households that rent pay down the principal of a landlord.”

3.) Owning is usually a form of “forced savings”.


“Since many people have trouble saving and have to make a housing payment one way or the other, owning a home can overcome people’s tendency to defer savings to another day.”

4.) There are substantial tax benefits to owning.


“Homeowners are able to deduct mortgage interest and property taxes from income…On top of all this, capital gains up to $250,000 are excluded from income for single filers and up to $500,000 for married couples if they sell their homes for a gain.”

5.) Owning is a hedge against inflation.


“Housing costs and rents have tended over most time periods to go up at or higher than the rate of inflation, making owning an attractive proposition.”

Bottom Line

We realize that home-ownership makes sense for many Americans for an assortment of social and family reasons. It also makes sense financially.

Read More

5 Demands to Make on Your Real Estate Agent

Are you thinking of selling your house?

Are you dreading having to deal with strangers walking through the house? Are you concerned about getting the paperwork correct? Hiring a professional real estate agent can take away most of the challenges of selling. A great agent is always worth more than the commission they charge just like a great doctor or great accountant.

You want to deal with one of the best agents in your marketplace. To do this, you must be able to distinguish the average agent from the great one.

Here are the top 5 demands to make of your Real Estate Agent when selling your house:

1. Tell the truth about the price

Too many agents just take the listing at any price and then try to the ‘work the seller’ for a price correction later. Demand that the agent prove to you that they have a belief in the price they are suggesting. Make them show you their plan to sell the house at that price – TWICE! Every house in today’s market must be sold two times – first to a buyer and then to the bank.

Every house in today’s market must be sold twice: 1st to the buyer, then to the bank.

The second sale may be more difficult than the first. The residential appraisal process has gotten tougher. A recent survey showed that there was a challenge with the appraisal on 24% of all residential real estate transactions. It has become more difficult to get the banks to agree on the contract price. A red flag should be raised if your agent is not discussing this with you at the time of the listing.

2. Understand the timetable with which your family is dealing

You will be moving your family to a new home. Whether the move revolves around the start of a new school year or the start of a new job, you will be trying to put the move to a plan.

This can be very emotionally draining. Demand from your agent an appreciation for the timetables you are setting. Your agent cannot pick the exact date of your move, but they should exert any influence they can, to make it work.

3. Remove as many of the challenges as possible

It is imperative that your agent knows how to handle the challenges that will arise. An agent’s ability to negotiate is critical in this market.

Remember: If you have an agent who was weak negotiating with you on the parts of the listing contract that were most important to them and their family (commission, length, etc.), don’t expect them to turn into Super hero when they are negotiating for you and your family with your buyer.

4. Help with the relocation

If you haven’t yet picked your new home, make sure the agent is capable and willing to help you. The coordination of the move is crucial. You don’t want to be without a roof over your head the night of the closing. Likewise, you don’t want to end up paying two housing expenses (whether it is rent or mortgage). You should, in most cases, be able to close on your current home and immediately move into your new residence.

5. Get the house SOLD!

There is a reason you are putting yourself and your family through the process of moving.

You are moving on with your life in some way. The reason is important or you wouldn’t be dealing with the headaches and challenges that come along with selling. Do not allow your agent to forget these motivations. Constantly remind them that selling the house is why you hired them. Make sure that they don’t worry about your feelings more than they worry about your family. If they discover something needs to be done to attain your goal (i.e. price correction, repair, removing clutter), insist they have the courage to inform you.

Good agents know how to deliver good news. Great agents know how to deliver tough news. In today’s market, YOU NEED A GREAT AGENT!

Who Are Great Agents? Great Negotiators? That Have Your Best Interest? Full Time Agents? Native Vegans?

Glad You KNOW

Read More

3 Questions To Ask Before Buying A Las Vegas Home

If you are thinking about purchasing a home right now, you are surely getting a lot of advice.

Though your friends and family have your best interests at heart, they may not be fully aware of your needs and what is currently happening in real estate. Let’s look at whether or not now is actually a good time for you to buy a home.

There are three questions you should ask before purchasing in today’s market:

1. Why am I buying a home in the first place?

This truly is the most important question to answer. Forget the finances for a minute. Why did you even begin to consider purchasing a home? For most, the reason has nothing to do with finances.

A study by the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University reveals that the four major reasons people buy a home have nothing to do with money:

• A good place to raise children and for them to get a good education
• A place where you and your family feel safe
• More space for you and your family
• Control of the space

What non-financial benefits will you and your family derive from owning a home? The answer to that question should be the biggest reason you decide to purchase or not.

2. Where are home values headed?

When looking at future housing values, Home Price Expectation Survey provides a fair assessment. Every quarter, Pulsenomics surveys a nationwide panel of over one hundred economists, real estate experts and investment & market strategists about where prices are headed over the next five years. They then average the projections of all 100+ experts into a single number.

Here is what the experts projected in the latest survey:

• Home values will appreciate by 4% in 2015.
• The cumulative appreciation will be 23.5% by 2019.
• Even the experts making up the most bearish quartile of the survey still are projecting a cumulative appreciation of over 15.1% by 2019.

3. Where are mortgage interest rates headed?

A buyer must be concerned about more than just prices. The ‘long term cost’ of a home can be dramatically impacted by an increase in mortgage rates.

The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA), the National Association of Realtors, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have all projected that mortgage interest rates will increase by approximately one full percentage over the next twelve months.

Bottom Line

Only you and your family can know for certain the right time to purchase a home. Answering these questions will help you make that decision.

Read More