The Summer Homes program was first implemented on the Zigzag Ranger District about 1914. At that time the Forest Service felt that recreation use on National Forest lands could be encouraged by laying out a number of 1/4 to 1/2 acre lots and offering the public the opportunity to build small cabins on these lots. People who wished to build were issued a Special-Use Permit and charged an annual fee. This program continued until the early 1960's when concern began to develop that allowing individuals exclusive use of National Forest lands was not an appropriate use of public lands. As a result, a new policy was formulated which recognized that the existing Special-Use Permits could continue until there was a specific need to put that land to a better and higher use. Also from this time onward, no new permits for previously undeveloped lots were to be issued.
The process of buying a home can be overwhelming–from the growing paperwork to the house-hunting search for a home, buyers sometimes feel a little intimidated.
But today, searching for your perfect home is easier than ever. There are many real estate agents to choose from, a large inventory of homes in many areas, and technology that makes checking out a home as easy as clicking on a few Internet sites. Of course, that's just for a quick look. Getting in the car with an agent and exploring the properties in person will give you better ideas of what you want and, perhaps more importantly, what you don't want.
Now, there are even apps designed to help you keep track of the homes you visit. And there are many to choose from. Take for instance, CrumbTracks, a free app designed by a husband-wife team (Bobby and Eileen Beckmann). It's an iPhone app aimed at helping you stay organized while viewing many different homes. The couple built the app based on their own need to keep information all in one place while house hunting.
I can hear the sound of gasps as those on bated breath begin to breathe again. This year may be “the end of the housing crash!”, according to The Wall Street Journal, (WSJ).
It seems that housing is again affordable and the bad news is, well, not so bad anymore. According to Simon Constable in the WSJ, the S&P/Case-Shiller home-price index, which tracks 20 markets, dropped 1% in December ... and that is the fifth consecutive decline.
The drum is beating loudly and the tune is “houses are a good deal”. In fact, experts at Mood’s Analytic’s, where income and housing prices are studied, claim houses are more affordable than in decades.
It's a good time to buy a home or invest in a property.
With so many distressed properties on the market, housing affordability has jumped to levels not seen in 20 years.
The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Opportunity Index (HOI) for the fourth quarter 2010, reveals that 73.9 percent of all new and existing homes sold were affordable to families earning the national median income of $64,400.
That record-setting level beat the last record high of 72.5 percent set during the first quarter of 2009. It was also the eighth consecutive quarter that the index has been above 70 percent. Until 2009, the HOI rarely topped 65 percent and never reached 70 percent.
The housing market continues to keep experts and analysts on their toes.
While existing-home sales rose again in January and are outpacing year-ago levels, we are still seeing a drop in home prices across much the country.
Existing-home sales increased 2.7 percent in January and are 5.3 percent above January of 2010.
Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, sees the rise as positive, but with room for improvement. "The uptrend in home sales is consistent with improvements in the economy and jobs, which are helping boost consumer confidence," Yun said. "The extremely favorable housing affordability conditions are a big factor, but buyers have been constrained by unnecessarily tight credit. As a result, there are abnormally high levels of all-cash purchases, along with rising investor activity."
Qualifying and being approved for a mortgage are only part of the financial responsibility of buying a home. There's also a host of closing costs that, as a buyer, you should expect. Affordability is a topic on the minds of today's buyers, so researching each of the following costs, large and small, is important.
1. Down Payment. This amount ranges widely depending on the dollar price of your home, but many financial experts recommend a down payment be at least 20 percent of the total cost of the house.
2. Credit Report and Score: Before you even think about buying a home, you need to verify the accuracy of your credit report and score. You may access your credit report three times a year for free at annualcreditreport.com, but you generally must pay to view your credit score. This costs around $10 - $20.
Have you ever wondered what makes up your credit score? The three major credit reporting agencies, Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax, use a number of factors to calculate your score.
Credit scores range from 300 to 850 and are a buyer's key to attaining loans. From cars and homes to everything in-between, if you need a loan, you need good credit. The way it works is simple. A high score is a door to lower interest rates and larger sums of credit. The higher your score, the less of a risk your pose to a lender, and therefore the more likely they'll be to approve you for a loan.
The score is compiled by analyzing the following:
1. Length of Credit History: The longer you've had credit the better. The agencies will be looking at the time that's passed since accounts were opened, the time since account activity, and then the time passed since accounts were opened based on what type of accounts (myfico.com).
As spring rolls in, many people start listing their home for sale. The weather warms up and buyers, having recovered from the holidays, begin to house hunt.
Many buyers will go it alone. They hit the Internet for their first line of attack in house hunting. They peruse magazines and open houses. But they miss an important key player in their house-hunting mission–the real estate agent.
The real estate agent is not a go-between paper shuffler. Your real estate agent is the connection to the inside world of real estate. Yes, the Internet can provide you with lots of information, but it can't replace a knowledgeable real estate agent.
Finding the best agent who meets your needs is like finding a good friend. I'm not kidding. Having to work with an agent that doesn't understand your needs for housing can result in endless headaches, but working with an expert in the industry takes away the worry and stress, and streamlines the process.
Today's market has created an environment where it is a great time to be a buyer. Interest rates are still at historical lows, the job market is improving, and affordability is near generational highs.
Those with growing families and steady jobs may be asking themselves if now is the time to "move up". To answer this question, consider these points:
1. Finances: Is your job steady and secure? Moving up can mean taking on the responsibility of a bigger monthly mortgage payment, along with higher property taxes. And any buying process will involve fees and costs that add up quickly. If you have steady income and at least eight months of emergency fund saved up, then now could be a great time to move on up.
First comes love, then comes marriage - or does the house come after love? More and more frequently, couples are moving in together and purchasing real estate without imminent plans to get married (or, with same sex couples, without a clear understanding of how their out-of-state marriage may affect property ownership). When a married couple gets divorced, the distribution of their marital property is governed by Domestic Relations law. But, what happens if unmarried property owners call it quits?
The answer depends on two things. The first is how the couple takes title to the property; the second is whether or not those couples have a written agreement regarding their rights and obligations in the event of a break-up. To understand the issues that such an agreement should address, it is necessary to understand the differences between the various types of co-tenancies.