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Mortgage Fundamentals and Research


Is 2014 Your Year to Refinance?

By James O'Brien. March 22, 2014 For homeowners looking to refinance, recent years have represented a remarkable run of low interest rates and special programs for leveraging new mortgage terms -- even if your home value plummeted during the recession. This year, in a new report, Freddie Mac predicts that borrowers who refinanced in 2013 will save a net of approximately $21 billion in interest during the first 12 months of their loans. Can you get a piece of those... more

Legal Issues in Real Estate Investments


The Institutional 1031 TIC Exchange

Since the 1920's savvy real estate investors have taken advantage of the evolving 1031 exchange rules promulgated by the IRS. Many of you are probably familiar with this concept, if not veterans of the procedure. The ability to defer capital gains and depreciation recapture taxes, as well as the opportunity to "trade up" to larger properties, has benefited property owners for decades. Recent conditions in the real estate market, however, have made it difficult to find good values on replacement... more

Buying or Selling a Home


7 Biggest Home Buying Mistakes

By Paula Pant. Whether you're a first-time buyer or youve been around the block a few times, there are certain home buying mistakes that trip people up time and time again. Before you sign on the dotted line to purchase your next home, take a look at these common mistakes to make sure you're not in danger of committing any of them. Falling in Love at First Sight Don't mistake your initial enthusiasm over a home as a sign that it's "the one" for you. You may be swooning over... more

Real Estate Investment


How to Hold Real Estate In a Self-Directed IRA or Qualified Plan - Part 2

Part II: Using Your IRA For many years now, people have been using non-directly owned real estate in their IRAs and other retirement plans. These intangibles are investments like REITs and real estate mutual funds. But most people did not know that they could use their retirement plans to purchase directly owned real estate such as raw land, commercial building, condos, residential properties, empty lots, trust deeds, or real estate contracts. In general, the internal revenue code... more