8 Kasım 2007 Perşembe

Topics in the Wash Post Real Estate Section

Saturday is my favorite newspaper day because the Washington Post has the Real Estate Section on Saturdays (and they do a couple articles in the Business section on Sunday). For those of you who don't get the Post here are the articles in today's section:
--Ways to get a down payment when you don't have the cash saved up. This is a fairly informative piece about who is/isn't offering 100% loans anymore and how much a buyer can expect to put down (5% for convention and 10% for Jumbo). They also mention the usual ways of scraping together the cash (gifts, 401K, selling stocks, and downpayment assistance programs).
--Internet sites that offer consumers with lousy credit a FICO boost "piggybacking" off someone else's good credit score -- that isn't illegal?!
--Some generic things about Household How-Tos (getting out toilet stains, building a shed, having a rooftop garden, etc.).
--An article on New Urbanism in Kentlands. Personally, I feel "new urbanism" is a fancy builder marketing ploy to justify building as densely as possible (getting as many homes into a square acre as zoning will allow) and selling the zero yard concept to the public as "new urbanization" even to the point of saying it cuts down on commuting time thus making a dent in global warming (not kidding, I was actually told this by a builder's sales rep with a straight face).
--Housing Counselors and Foreclosure Strain. About those wonderful folks who help people work with the banks to keep their homes and not have to face a foreclosure.
--Q&A (the Dear Abby of real estate) by a local lawyer. These are always interesting and he's mostly, but not always nice to Realtors.
--An upbeat bit about the upcoming development coming in to yet another historic town in Montgomery County This time it's Laytonsville (which has always struck me as a few blocks of pleasantly quaint colonial homes against a backdrop of McMansions looming in the fields nearby ---looks like they'll soon be moving in next door.
--An illluminating aricle by Jack Guttentag (who tells it like it is) about a loan predator you may not have thought about: THE LOAN SERVICER (cue: leftover spooky Halloween music -- "Tocatta and Fugue" would do nicely).
If the muse strikes me, I'll try to post more about some of these topics, particularly the scoop on loan servicers who don't always play nice.

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