* Home Price Decline Could Make Matters Worst
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A decline in U.S. home prices is needed to attract buyers back and end the housing slump, but with no bottom in sight, more trouble lies ahead for an economy that may already be in recession.
* Is There and Eco-friendly Sealer for my Granite Countertops?
Question: It's time to seal the granite countertops in my kitchen. I am looking for a sealer that is eco-friendly, nontoxic, and effective. Do you have any suggestions?
* Hurdles for Jumbo Borrowers
If you’re shopping for a new home and plan on taking out a big mortgage to pay for, it there are a few things you should know.
* Homeowner Equity Below 50% For First Time Since 1945
Americans' percentage of equity in their homes fell below 50 percent for the first time on record since 1945, the Federal Reserve said Thursday.
* Luxury Homes Buck the Trend
The housing market might be down, but that isn't stopping movie stars, hedge fund managers, and corporate titans from paying mammoth prices for the most lavish real estate on the planet.
* Economic Stimulus' Biggest Real Estate Winners
There's some good news on the horizon for homeowners in cities like San Diego, Washington D.C. and Sacramento, Calif., where the real estate boom and bust has left those markets reeling from the effects of overbuilding, bad loans and foreclosures.
* Jumbo Conforming Loan Guidelines
Are here from Fannie Mae. I must say I am really surprised. This level of speed has "political pressure" written all over it.
* Banks are Still Fueling the Fire
God bless the account executives for banks that have put me on their rate sheet and promo distribution email lists without my permission.
* Viewpoint: FICO - The Late, Great Credit Score?
Is FICO still relevant to the mortgage industry? I can see it now: no matter how this question gets answered, it’s certain to elicit some response, which in fact, is the reason for the article.
* Foreclosures Hit Another Record High
The rate of mortgages entering foreclosure was at it highest level in the history of the MBA's quarterly national delinquency survey and the percent of loans somewhere in the foreclosure process also hit its highest level.
* Mortgage Market Needs $1 Trillion, FBR Estimates
SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) - Why are interest rates on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages rising even as the Federal Reserve slashes interest rates and yields on Treasury bonds fall? The answer is that the mortgage market is short of roughly $1 trillion in capital, according to Paul Miller, an analyst at Friedman, Billings, Ramsey.
* Blacklisting Hits Home Sellers
In the nation's worst-hit real-estate markets, home sellers are suffering a new blow: They are being blacklisted by lenders.
* Buying in a Rocky Housing Market
INDIFFERENT TO THE bleak real estate headlines, 26-year-old Michael Klauer and his fiancée recently bought a two-bedroom condo in the desirable Lake View neighborhood in Chicago. They weren't in a rush to buy, but when an opportunity presented itself only a month after they started looking, they jumped on it.
* Self-Help Often Best When Fixing Credit
Dear Dr. Don, Is there a person or corporation specializing in analysis of credit reports and mapping out specific actions to be taken to improve credit scores?
*Open Season for Bargain Hunters
Intrepid home shoppers are venturing back into some of the nation's hardest-hit real-estate markets, convinced they can cherry-pick good deals amid broad price declines.
REGIONAL NEWS: DC-MD-VA
* Tysons Taskforce on the Home Stretch
After scores of public meetings, several rounds of analysis and three years of disagreements and information sessions and legos stacked on table maps, the Tysons Land Use Taskforce's plan for thirty years of development in Tysons Corner is starting to take shape.
* Court Ruling Could Imperil Arlington's Transit Projects
Last week's action by the Virginia Supreme Court to invalidate much of the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority's power to tax local residents for transportation improvements could have a big impact in Arlington.
* Fairfax Tax Officials Will Take New Look at Land Values
The county government's Department of Tax Administration (DTA) has announced it will take “a second look” at the allocation of the assessed value between land and buildings for 2008 assessments.
* DC USA Opens Its Doors
With the opening of the District's first Target, DC USA's doors were officially open to the public today.
* Study: Mass Transit Saves Marylanders $346 M in Gas
BALTIMORE (Map, News) - Mass transit provides a big benefit to the environment and keeps millions of dollars in the pockets of its users, according to a new study released Thursday by the Maryland Public Interest Research Group.
* Builders Pull Out of Arundel Project
A national homebuilder has abandoned plans to raise what started as a 16-story condominium tower at the Annapolis Towne Centre at Parole, blaming an inability to finance the project amid the nationwide slump in the real estate industry, the developer of the $400 million center said yesterday.
* Buying? Here's What to Ask Agents
Would-be buyers in the market for an agent as well as a house should choose just as carefully as a seller.
* Students Take On Preservation of Historic Bladensburg Mansion
Prince George’s County (Map, News) - Architecture students at the University of Maryland have signed an agreement with the town of Bladensburg to preserve Bostwick, a 1746 mansion that is one of the oldest buildings in Prince George's County.
* Groundbreaking Due by Summer on $317 Million F.C. City Center
The biggest development project ever seen, much less enabled by government re-zoning and special exceptions, in the City of Falls Church was approved unanimously by its City Council last Thursday night, paving the way for the Atlantic Realty Company to spend $317 million building a new hotel, Class A office building, supermarket, blocks of retail, six-level parking deck, street, sidewalk and parkland improvements, and hundreds of residential condos, rental units, and townhouses.
* Developer Present Plans for Tenleytown Project
Three developers made their pitches to the Tenleytown community Thursday for the rights to expand Janney Elementary School, new housing and, possibly, a new Tenley-Friendship Heights neighborhood library.
* Don't Let Abusive Neighbors Ruin More Open Houses
Q: We listed our home for sale about a month ago, and our real estate agent has been conducting open houses. More than once, our next-door neighbor has made derogatory or rude remarks to the agent, potential buyers or other agents visiting.