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Is it time to repair or replace your old roof? Look for these red flags before calling a roofer.
Most homeowners figure they need a new roof after they spot a leak in their ceiling. This leak could be due to many different roofing problems. What factors really determine whether a roof repair will solve the problem or the house needs a roof replacement?

Play up the positive! We all have some features that don't help to show your property in the best light. Have a look at what you can do to focus on the postive.

Essential home selling tips are a great way to organize your property to get it ready to sell. Have a look at the complete list of tips.

Winter is normally a quiet time in the garden in Westchester and Putnam Counties NY, but it won't be long before Spring arrives and you will be caught up in the frenzy of seed sowing, growing and nurturing your garden as it comes to life. Getting your garden in order as it comes to life. Getting your garden in order early will make the Spring a little less hectic.

Many homeowners who need to move decide to sell their current home so they can have plenty of cash to buy their next digs. Still, though, some might wonder: Should I sell or rent out my house? It’s a good question. Owning rental property, after all, brings in predictable, long-term income. But make no mistake, backing into a landlord role comes with some hefty responsibilities—and no small amount of headaches. Here are some questions to ask yourself to help you decide which road is right for you.
Getting the keys to your first apartment is a rite of passage for first-time renters—especially if you’ve been living under Mom and Dad’s roof for too long. Ah, sweet independence! Time to cue the party playlist. But wait … let’s hit pause and rewind first. You really need to know the following seven things before renting your first apartment.
Use these 10 tips to whip your home into shape and wow potential buyers.


Improve your landscaping 
Curb appeal is crucial to a good first impression, so make sure your home's lawn is immaculate. Mow the lawn, prune the bushes, weed the garden and plant flowers.

Clean the outside 
A sloppy exterior will make buyers think you've slacked off on interior maintenance as well. Be sure to clean the gutters and pressure wash your home's siding.

Make repairs 
In a buyer's market, you want your home to be in the best condition possible. Take care of major defects like broken windows or a leaky roof that could discourage buyers.

Make the front door inviting 
A fresh coat of paint, especially in a color that contrasts with the home, will make the front door stand out. Replace faded house numbers so buyers can see them from the curb.

Buy a new welcome mat 
Let buyers know they're invited into your home.

Remove clutter and depersonalize
Buyers want to envision their belongings in your home. Clean up by renting a storage unit for knickknacks, photos, extra furniture and other personal items.

Organize closets and drawers
Messy closets give the appearance that your home doesn't have enough storage space.

Make every surface shine 
From ceiling fans to floors and everything in between, clean your home until it sparkles.

Take color down a notch 
You might like your lime-green bedroom, but it may sour buyers. Paint your walls a neutral color that will appeal to a wide range of buyers.

Eliminate bad odors 
Hide the litter box and spray air neutralizer throughout your home. When showing the home, fill it with inviting smells by putting out fresh flowers and baking a batch of cookies.





 You May Be Paying Too Much In Property Taxes

They are supposed to be based on current market values. When you buy a home in any of the Westchester County cities, towns and villages, the tax base resets at the value you paid, whether it is higher or lower than the previous owner's tax bill.

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Mortgage News Daily

  • MBS RECAP: Best Day of Gains Since Early Feb Stock Sell-Off

    Posted To: MBS Commentary

    Early in the month (Feb 5th), bonds had their best day of the year as they soaked up a mere fraction of the cash that was fleeing from equities markets and looking for a safe haven. There was no such rout in stocks today, but bonds managed to put in a rather respectable performance nonetheless. Granted, it was nowhere near the same scale as the Feb 5th rally, but it was the best day of the year apart from that. Early gains came courtesy of an ongoing rally in European bond markets. German Bunds are now back at yields not seen since late January . At that time, US 10yr yields were in the low 2.7s. The domestic session got a boost from NY Fed President Dudley, who not only refuted a just-released white paper labeling the Fed's bond buying as largely ineffective, but who also commented on...(read more)

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  • Best Week of 2018 For Rates (Not Quite as Cool as it Sounds)

    Posted To: Mortgage Rate Watch

    Mortgage rates fell again for the second straight day--something that has only happened a few other times so far this year. On an even brighter note, this was the first week of 2018 where the average lender ended the week offering rates that were at least as good as those seen at the end of the previous week. In most cases, today's rates are right in line with those seen last Friday. For the average lender, that means conventional 30yr fixed rates of 4.5 to 4.625% on top tier scenarios. The same scenarios were seeing quotes of 3.875-4.0% at the beginning of the year. As we discussed yesterday, "good days" for mortgage rates need some context at the moment. Yesterday was a good day too, but it happened to follow the worst day in more than 4 years (in terms of outright levels). In general, as...(read more)

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  • Foreclosures, Inventories Move Higher as Hurricane Moratorium Ends

    Posted To: MND NewsWire

    The effects of last summer's hurricanes, while fading from their early impact on loan performance stats, are still being felt. Black Knight reports, in its "First Look" at January data, that past due mortgages nationwide declined by 8.6 percent or 210,000 loans when compared to December but are still 1.3 percent higher than in January 2017. The U.S. delinquency rate in January was 4.41 percent including all past due loans not yet in foreclosure. Hurricanes Harvey and Irma are blamed for 146,000 loans that remain delinquent in Texas and Florida. Of those, 132,000 are now seriously delinquent, that is 90 or more days past due Puerto Rico is not usually included in national delinquency statistics, but Black Knight says 57,000 loans remain delinquent in the territory because of Hurricane Maria...(read more)

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  • Refinancing: Seasonal Pattern or Last Chance Surge?

    Posted To: MND NewsWire

    Although the company said it was regular January phenomenon, last month's surge in refinancing also feels a little like borrowers "headed for the last roundup." Ellie Mae's Origination Insight Report noted that the share of refinancing originations shot up by 5 percentage points in January, accounting for 45 percent of all closed loans. The surge coincided with a jump in the average interest rate of closed loans, from 4.28 percent in December to 4.33 percent, making for a 13-basis point increase since October. It was the highest share for refinancing, which dipped to less than a third of closed loans in early summer, since January. The December 2016 to January 2017 increase was 1 point. "As we ring in 2018, we see refinances rise as a percent of overall loan volume, something that we have seen...(read more)

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  • Reverse Mortgage and USDA/Rural News; Economics and Rates

    Posted To: Pipeline Press

    Are you an LO interested in receiving a $5 Amazon Gift Card for your participation in a short survey? Tobe Agency, a digital marketing agency focused on the mortgage vertical is trying to understand the challenges that LOs face in their jobs through a 5-7 minute survey. “Ultimately we’d like to understand what content LOs might find valuable to address these challenges. You can take the survey here and as a thank you, we’ll send you a $5 Amazon Gift card. If you’re interested in learning the results of the survey, please contact Andrew Hong directly!” Reverse Mortgage News Moody’s reports that RMBS ( reverse mortgage backed security ) issuance volume increased in Q4 2017, up 9% from Q3 2017 and approximately 64% from Q4 2016. Finance of America Reverse LLC...(read more)

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  • MBS Day Ahead: Is Europe Back On US Bond Market Radar?

    Posted To: MBS Commentary

    In 2010 and 2011, the early phases of the European financial crisis caused movement in US bond markets that puzzled a majority of domestic investors. 2012 (the apex of the monetary contagion concerns) and 2014 (the inception of the long road to ECB QE) took that theme to another level. If we then conclude that it was Brexit that was primarily responsible for US yields being able to reach new all-time lows in June 2016, that means Europe has had an exceptionally heavy influence for years. But things changed in 2017. News and risks in the Eurozone quickly became boring after Brexit. Markets largely moved on to trading the new and unexpected realities of the Trump administration--a theme that's arguably dominated most of the big picture bond market momentum since election night in late 2016...(read more)

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  • MBS RECAP: One Of Those Calm Days That Almost Makes You Wonder

    Posted To: MBS Commentary

    MBS gained a quarter of a point today and 10yr yields fell more than 3bps despite stock market gains (albeit from yesterday's weak closing levels) and ample corporate bond market issuance. That might lead to some small amount of optimism or relief were it not for the fact that yesterday saw bond markets close at the weakest levels in more than 4 years. In other words, today was just another one of those "good" days that we're bound to encounter as the broader trend toward higher rates forges on. Will the forging stop at some point? Yes, of course, but nothing about today suggests it will be any time soon. Could it still be some time soon? Yes, that's always POSSIBLE, but if such a thing were to happen, it stands a far greater chance of being a temporary correction in the...(read more)

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  • Mortgage Rates Just Slightly Lower

    Posted To: Mortgage Rate Watch

    Mortgage rates fell modestly today as underlying bond markets experienced a rare absence of volatility. Rather than view this as some sort of turning point for what has been a fairly relentless march to higher ground, these days are best seen as periodic corrections/consolidations to the prevailing trend. They are normal features of such trends and they've all been "false positives" so far in 2018 when it comes to identifying an opportunity to get more optimistic about rates moving lower. Bottom line: today is merely the day after hitting the highest rates in more than 4 years. We'd need to see a whole lot more than one day of modest gains before anything other than a defensive, lock-biased stance makes sense for prospective mortgage borrowers. Loan Originator Perspective Rates improved slightly...(read more)

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  • MBS Day Ahead: 2 Charts That Help Explain the Big Picture

    Posted To: MBS Commentary

    There's nothing significant on the econ calendar today, and bonds are starting out by retreating (in a good way) back into the center of the ongoing uptrend. On days like today, bond analysis has to look to the bigger picture (because there's not much to say about today). If you didn't catch the last big-picture explanation on why things are the way they are, the best recent example is probably THIS ONE about short-term rates driving long term rates. I revisited that topic in yesterday's Day Ahead to some extent ( here ) as well. Today's first chart speaks to the same sort of phenomenon whereby the shorter end of the yield curve is pushing longer-term rates reluctantly higher. I say "reluctantly" because long term rates really want to see more evidence of rising...(read more)

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  • Training and Resources; Economy Continues to Move Rates Higher

    Posted To: Pipeline Press

    Jobs & housing drive the economy, and yesterday we learned that Existing Home Sales fell 3.2% in January, according to NAR . Lawrence Yun, NAR's Chief Economist said: “The utter lack of sufficient housing supply and its influence on higher home prices muted overall sales activity in much of the U.S. last month.” Buyer traffic is strong, but sales have lagged last January’s pace. “It’s very clear that too many markets right now are becoming less affordable and desperately need more new listings to calm the speedy price growth.” Industry observers ask, “Baby Boomers are going to move… where?” Mark W. observed, “The MBA tells us that refis are still 44% of all new loan apps. That is fascinating to me since it should be closer to...(read more)

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Bonnie Koff  |  Licensed Associate Real Estate Broker  |  William Raveis Legends Realty Group  | Tarrytown Office 
914-332-6300  |  37 Main Street, Tarrytown, New York 10591  |  Email