• Heating bills may burn through wallets. Consumers may be enjoying some relief at the gasoline pump, but another energy shock likely is just around the corner. Winter bills for heating oil, natural gas and electricity are expected to soar to records,
  • When cutting home price, take one big bite. Cutting the price to get your home sold isn't quite as simple as it seems. When to cut? How much to cut? One big reduction or gradual discounts? Price high and negotiate down? Price low
  • FDIC throws IndyMac homeowners a lifeline. Federal regulators yesterday announced a plan to systematically modify the loans of at least 25,000 homeowners with mortgages held by failed lender IndyMac in an attempt to create an industry model for assisting troubled borrowers. Throwing
  • Keeping the IRS in check. Nina E. Olson, the official appointed to speak out on behalf of U.S. taxpayers, has a few major gripes about the Internal Revenue Service. Among them, she believes the agency needs to better protect
  • Property tax reduced for Bay Area homeowners (Chinese). 【明報專訊】樓市泡沫過後,物業業主承受著房價下跌、供樓負擔上升的艱苦過渡期,灣區業主向地方估值官辦公室,申請重估物業稅求助個案驟增。上周五為重估物業估值申請截止期限,有地方估值官辦公室預測,今年有超過3萬個物業單位可獲扣減物業稅。 在經濟不景及次貸危機陰霾籠罩下,不少物業業主苦不堪言,供樓負擔令生活百上加斤,地方政府能提供的協助,最直接的相信是提供審核物業估值免費服務,倘符合資格可調低業主應繳付地稅,算是紓解燃眉之急的一途。除了與銀行商討重整貸款或債務,業主不妨向地方估值官辦公室申請調減物業稅之審核,或有助紓緩個人或家庭財務壓力。
  • "Préstamos mentirosos". En la industria hipotecaria, se les llama "préstamos mentirosos" - hipotecas aprobadas sin requerir prueba de los bienes e ingresos del solicitante. El vapuleado mercado de viviendas en Estados Unidos, ahogado ya en ejecuciones
  • Insurers avoid getting soaked in subprime storm. The one financial industry that seems to be dodging the subprime bullet is insurance. Only a handful of companies have had their safety ratings knocked down because of an excessive exposure to Wall Street's toxic
  • Before you take the housing credit. Part of the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 authorizes a tax credit of up to $7,500 for qualified first-time home buyers. Based on the questions I'm getting from readers, many people are ready to jump
  • Fannie, Freddie will raise some fees, lower others. The two biggest sources of mortgages for American home buyers plan to raise their base fees to counter what they see as continuing "adverse conditions" in the real estate marketplace. At the same time, however,
  • Less than golden years. Even before the housing bubble, the country was facing a retirement crisis, with most Americans saving too little, if anything, for their post-working years. The housing bubble — and subsequent bust — have made that bad situation
  • Think of tax credit as 15-year loan. Lots of folks have been asking me whether the much-touted first-time homebuyer tax credit is worth taking. "I'd like to see you write a follow-up on who should take advantage of this credit," wrote Liz
  • Mortgage insurers' losses mount. Large mortgage insurers have reported $2.6 billion in losses so far this year, sparking concerns that rising foreclosure rates could force the industry into a money crunch and ultimately make the home-buying process even more difficult.
  • El robo de identidad para trabajar. El robo de identidad es uno de los crímenes de mayor crecimiento en Estados Unidos durante los últimos años y los hispanos no sólo no son ajenos al problema, sino que lo
  • The next wave of mortgage defaults. Prime mortgages are starting to default at disturbingly high rates - a development that threatens to slow any potential housing recovery. The delinquency rate for prime mortgages worth less than $417,000 was 2.44% in May, compared with 1.38%
  • Cash strapped states quicker to grab unclaimed funds. Faced with swelling budget deficits, a growing number of states are taking control of unclaimed property — such as bank accounts and traveler's checks — sooner. Generally, states can seize abandoned property if the owners fail to
  • Los bancos restringen el crédito. Los bancos de EU están restringiendo desde abril la concesión de créditos a empresas y particulares, al tiempo que están subiendo las ejecuciones hipotecarias y las cesaciones de pago, indicó la
  • Credit card industry faces reforms. Stricter regulation of the credit card industry will probably be approved by the end of the year, consumer advocates, members of Congress and banking officials said as the comment period on the Federal Reserve's proposed
  • Help for seniors with reverse mortgages. There's a lot to digest in the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008. I've addressed a few provisions of the new law already, and over the next several weeks I'll continue to comment on various
  • The case for a new national frugality. Oil prices are plunging and the stocks in your 401(k) retirement account are rebounding. Time to fire up the SUV, head to the mall and whip out that credit card? That's what automakers, retailers, restaurateurs

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