December 2013

Found 16 blog entries for December 2013.

Matthew S. Finberg, Attorney at Law

Boulder, Colorado

 Boulder County voters last November 5th turned down the County Commissioner supported proposal to form a special taxing district to collect taxes from property owners in subdivisions within unincorporated Boulder County for the repaving of roads leading from their homes to a Boulder County owned and paved road.  The Commissioners refused to take no for an answer and, just 3 weeks later, used their power and authority under State law to do so by resolution, creating The Subdivision Paving Local Improvement District (“LID”) assessing taxes for the funds they believe they need and imposing a perpetual lien for the special tax which has now been recorded in the land records.  The LID affects close

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Becoming a homeowner for the first time is one of the most fulfilling moments you may ever experience. Owning a home offers a myriad of benefits. However, it can also be costly, especially when you factor in maintenance and repairs over the lifetime of your home. To help reduce stress and costs, here are several tips for keeping up with home maintenance.

From the day you move in to the day you sell your home, there will always be something that will need to be repaired or remodeled.  Some changes will be simple; you may want to undertake certain updates simply to elevate your comfort level – like installing central air conditioning – or spruce up the home’s aesthetics, such as adding a few stained-glass windows. Others will be more critical, like

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We're seeing more and more evidence that the market had built in the increases from tapering as rates are holding on mortgages and the ten year treasury.

What's Happening?

It was a very rocky ride on a post taper announcement Thursday, as all the economic reports showed the economy being weaker than estimates and investors trying to figure out a trend after the Fed announced the start of the taper.  Thursday, the 10 year treasury jumped to a high of 2.96%, up from 2.83% prior to the Fed's announcement.  Then Friday, the ten year started moving lower and with the closing bell 30 minutes away, the bellwether is trading at 2.87%.  While many experts felt the market had factored in most of the pricing adjustments for the taper, the complete disregard

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We’ve been keeping an eye on and trying to craft the information into digestible blog posts that cover what, exactly, is in store for the mortgage industry. Jay Kalinski and Trevor Bellows have submitted their input, so here’s another opinion from Don Frommeyer, CRMS, President of NAMB (The Association of Mortgage Professionals).

2014 mortgage industry changes are set to include

Decrease in FHA Loan Limit: As Jay Kalinski covered earlier this month, the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) announced that starting the first of the year, mortgages will be limited to $625,000—as opposed to the previous $729,750 limit. Homebuyers looking to obtain a larger loan will have to apply for a jumbo loan, which will most likely require a higher down payment. “For

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After months and months of speculation, the Fed finally announced the start of its taper and guidelines for the future.  The market analysts love to "know" what to expect so with the future outlined, we're not seeing the dramatic price increase that was expected.

What's Happening

The Federal Reserve announced that they will decrease their purchases of mortgage backed securities and long term treasury bonds from $85 billion per month to $75 billion and the reduction will be evenly split between the two. They also established guidelines that will keep the fed funds rates near zero "well past the time" that the jobless rate "falls below 6.5%" (currently the jobless rate is 7%).  The Fed is estimating the jobless rate will fall to 6.3 - 6.6% during

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Though both home sales and inventory dropped year-over-year and month-over-month in November, Boulder-area real estate activity was consistent with recent trends as well as the expected slowing of the market that comes with the colder seasons.

“Every category of sales and inventory fell this month,” says Ken Hotard, senior vice president of public affairs for the Boulder Area Realtor® Association. “The market hasn’t changed dramatically the past several months other than the seasonal sales volume adjustment we typically anticipate."

Single-family home sales fell 12 percent compared with a year ago and attached unit sales dropped 4.5 percent. The inventory of homes on the market also fell 15.2 percent in the single-family category and 29.2 percent in

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Winter came to Colorado on time – if not a little early – this year and it came on hard. And while folks are still digging out from the snow and thawing from the frigid temperatures, they can take advantage of the weather to learn things about their homes that only snow and cold temperatures can reveal, according to MSN Real Estate.

For instance, does the snow melt from the roof rapidly and icicles form quickly without a thaw? That means heat is escaping from the house through the roof and the owners should consider adding more attic insulation, including to the attic floor, making sure it is distributed evenly with no gaps. Also, the vapor barrier side should face downward toward the living space and the insulation should be dry.

Here are many

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It’s been three months since the 100-year flood that affected Boulder County, among others, and officials are starting to get a handle on the extent of the damage to buildings.

According to Boulder County Assessor Jerry Roberts, the flood destroyed 327 structures on 313 parcels of land, valued at approximately $12 million. “Destroyed” structures were identified as those that, as a result of the flood, were:

• Moved off of their foundations;
• Suffered collapsed walls or roofs;
• Had an interior water level reaching above the door knob of the first floor; or
• Leaned at an unintended angle which would require a rebuild.

For those whose homes qualify for the destroyed designation, the assessor will prorate property taxes from Sept. 13 through the end

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The interest rate markets are somewhat unstable.  Rates are hanging on to 4.5% with a few investors but overwhelmingly the predominant rate is 4.625%.  

So What's Happening?

The 10 year treasury moved through its previous resistance level of 2.84% Thursday morning and has managed to stay there.  The support/resistance levels have re-set to 2.74% on the support level and 2.98% on the resistance.  The little bit of economic news that came out yesterday doesn't support increasing rates but right now the market is making up its own rules for increasing or decreasing rates.  All the focus is on whether the Fed will start its taper at next week's meeting.  Below is a summary of the few economic reports that came out the end of this week:

Jobless Claims

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As seen in The Daily Camera 

Steve Altermatt of RE/MAX of Boulder was curious to know how September’s flood would affect the Boulder County real estate market.  With 28 years of industry experience and 25 years as South Boulder’s #1 Realtor, Steve analyzed the affect past natural disasters have had on real estate markets throughout the country; the results were quite surprising.

Of the ten areas studied, nine experienced natural disasters and one—Westchester County, NY— was impacted by a terrorist attack; something Altermatt describes as a psychological disaster. The ten disaster areas studied were Joplin, MO (2011 tornado), Grand Forks, ND (1997 Flood), Westchester County, NY (9/11 Terrorist Attack), San Diego County, CA (2007 Wildfires), San

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