Archive for the 'Wasilla Real Estate News' Category
Valley MLS is GONE… August 13th, 2007
The vote was 81–59 to abolish the Valley Multiple Listing Service at the annual business meeting for the Valley Board of Realtors held at Evangelo’s in Wasilla. This action was taken primarily to save Realtors time and money.
Now there will be only one MLS system on which to advertise Mat-Su Valley listings. That will be the Alaska Multiple Listing Service. This is a broker owned system headquartered in Anchorage. The website is www.alaskarealestate.com .
For a month or so, the valley website will be up and running, but will likely be gone by Oct 1. In a short time www.matsumls.com will also be gone.
MATSMLS.COM On The Chopping Block August 3rd, 2007
The Valley Board of Realtors is about to make a momentous decision on August 11, 2007. The question will be whether to drop our Valley MLS system and join with Anchorage or not. It appears that the vote will be to merge the two systems.
Currently almost all real estate companies in the Mat-Su Valley are members of both the Alaska MLS and the Valley MLS. They input all their listings on both systems. The Valley MLS system has a public website here… www.matsumls.com . And Alaska MLS also has a public website here… www.alaskarealestate.com .
The matsumls.com website will go away but the Alaska MLS website will remain. It already has all the listings for the Kenai Peninsula, so it will be the go-to site for all of South Central Alaska.
The primary reason that the Valley Realtors want to do this is to save time and money. It takes extra time to input listings into both systems. It costs money to belong to both systems.
I’m not sure how this will affect the public. It may be a good thing because one site will provide complete coverage for the whole area.
Currently, matsumls.com seems to be a much faster site. With just a couple clicks you can almost instantaneously find all the residential listings in the Valley. It takes alaskarealestate.com much longer to find them, and then it is much slower to browse through them, BUT, the site has more detail for each listing.
Stay tuned, I will report on the results after the Valley Board or Realtors Convention on August 11.
How Much Does That Loan Cost? July 19th, 2007
Back in the early 90s when I first started in real estate someone thought it would be a great idea to train real estate agents as mortgage loan brokers as well. The thought was to have a one stop office. Lets just have them find a house and get their loan from the same person.
I was brand new in real estate and the obvious conflict of interest didn’t even occur to me so I signed up. I took the training and learned a lot about how mortgage brokers work and how they make money. It was the making money part that made me decide to step back out of it.
But I did help two friends refinance their home. They got unbeatable loans because I personally and purposefully didn’t make a dime on the deals. I did not charge them any loan fees and priced their loan at par, which was the lowest interest rate quoted to me by the company. Basically, they got the wholesale rate.
I learned that mortgage brokers have a lot of control over how much money they make on each loan. They can charge fees to the borrower that are shown on the good faith estimate and on the settlement statement AND they can make money on the “back side” of the loan that is not disclosed anywhere.
It is very possible that a mortgage broker could charge no up front fees at all on the loan and still make more money that another lender who charged a 1% loan origination fee. According to Karen George in Arizona it is possible to make as much as 5% on a conventional loan. In fact even more can be charged for a sub-prime loan. Most of the local lenders don’t make anything close to this amount, but they should still tell you how much they are charging.
Why is it important to know how much your lender is making? Because YOU are paying the bill. The money that is going into the lender’s pocket is coming out of yours even if you don’t know it. I think people should be paid for the work they do, and they should be paid fairly. But I think it’s fair that we know how much we are paying for a service.
Most but not all of the local lenders I talked with were very defensive when I asked them how much they made on their loans. Apparently most of the local mortgage officers, (as opposed to mortgage brokers), don’t have much control over how much they are paid. But they still didn’t like talking about it.
There were three people that did seem open about discussing this with their clients. These were Tara Murdoch-Barnes and Jo Oxentenko of Wells Fargo Home Mortgage,(376–2308), and Kirsten Forbess of Alaska USA Mortgage, (352–8306).
If you have read this far, it means you are interested in this subject. If so, check these two websites out that were recommended by a local loan officer friend:
Some may say ‘what’s good for the goose is good for the gander”, how much are real estate licensees paid? I’ve discussed that before in commissions. But there are some things most people don’t know about how Realtors are paid and that is a subject for tomorrow’s blog post.
Mat-Su Businesses July 12th, 2007
I thought I?d begin a new category about good businesses in the Matanuska Valley. I plan to only mention businesses that I use and like. This list will grow over time as I think of people I miss and add them. I also plan to post a special page about them as I have time.
Allstate Insurance, We have used Cindy Heal?s Office, ( 746?0505), and Stan Tebow?s Office, (746?6970). They are both located on the Palmer-Wasilla Highway
Joe Meyer, Finish Carpenter, Remodeler. When I can get him, I hire him for fix up work in houses.
Neil?s Lock and Safe, 373?0961 Locksmith services and Neil also sells gun safes.
Rock Ridge Services, 357?1556, Full service landscaping. They can handle it all. I believe they also do snow removal in the winter.
Schuetter Trucking and Excavating. 746?4133. If I need any digging done, or topsoil hauled, I call Schuetter Trucking.
Diversified Tire, 376?2700. I have been bringing my car to Dave and Judy Snyder since they started with a one man one woman shop. They do all kinds of tire work and also mechanic work.
Lazy Mountain Enterprises. 745?3068. I take my cars to him for repairs. He is honest and fair.
Mr Lube. 373-4645. I get my oil changes and sometimes some minor repair done here.
Slacks Sugar Shack, Great Bakery in Palmer. Nedra Slack makes the bread I deliver every Thanksgiving.
That doesn?t mean there aren?t other good businesses in the valley, it just means that I have used these businesses and like them. If I?ve used your business and didn?t include you drop me an email.
Carnival of Real Estate #49 July 8th, 2007
There were about 40 entries for this week’s Carnival of Real Estate. That may be a normal amount for all I know but there was a lot of good writing to sort through. I feel a little inadequate after reading some of these great articles.
I sorted them into four categories: Real Estate Agents, Mortgages, Technology and Other.
Real Estate Agent Category… I had to give Broker Bryant first place. He had my whole family in stitches.
Lead Or Prospect, Are You Buying? by Broker Bryant at BrokerBryant.com
Market Your Home Like A Rock Star by Brian Miller of RealEstateEntropy.com
Top 100 Reasons To Use A Real Estate Agent by Michael Krotchie at michaelkrotchie.com
Salesperson or Consultant by Sandy Kaduce at northsoundpropertynews.blogspot.com
Just Because Compensation for a Loan Isn’t Disclosed Doesn’t Mean It’s Free by Dan Melson at searchlightcrusade.net
The 3.6 Million Dollar Mortgage by Tim Abbott at abettermortgage.typepad.com
How The I-Phone Can Revolutionize Real Estate by Oliver Muoto at vflyerblog.com
To Map or NOT to MAP – That is the question? from realtorgenius.com
Other Real Estate Related
5 Things Buyers Should Never See in Your Listings by Kimbely Wester on Active Rain
Building an audience: Using blogging, social networks, email newsletters and viral marketing instead of SEO by Brian Brady on Bloodhoundblog
Does Size Matter: How Small A House Are You Willing To Live In? from thedigeratilife.com
Housing and the age of Affluence from drhousingbubble.com
Transparent Honest Negotiating by Christopher Smith at EquityScout.com
I felt that everyone who contributed should be listed, so here are all the other blog posts. Some of these are likely as good or better than the ones I chose. It depends on your perspective.
Check them out:
Seven Ways to Tackle The Garage by Jennifer Steck at centraldenverblog.com
Motivated Seller, Come Back Next Year by Aaron Dickinson of Aaronsold.com
Home Pricing Strategies by Ben Kinney on Active Rain
These Ladies Mean Business by Dr. John Yacenda at renorealestatevoice.com
Why Real Estate Is Bubble Proof by Tonja Demoff at TonjaDemoff.com
Condo-Hotel Concept Is It Worth Checking Out? from Plus6.com
10 Mistakes Everyone Makes When Buying-Selling Real Estate by Ant at TheBeefJerkyBlog.com
Exploring A Slice Of Subprime Space by Niki Scevak at blog.fortiusone.com
Time To Buy Or To Buy Time by Matt Johnson at zillowblog.com
Why Build a Custom Home by Mark Donovan at homeadditionplus.com
Does a Bi-Weekly payment plan save me enough money to make it worthwhile? by John Barker at barkerblog.com
7 Steps To Buying A Home by Doug Trudeau at tucsonrealestateblogs.com
What Housing Derivatives Really Mean For You by Fritz Siebel at housingderivatives.typepad.com
Stocks Versus Real Estate Investments by David at ww-success.com
Almost Debt Free: How to Save for a Down Payment on a Home by John at queercents.com
Is George Washington Selling Your House by Toby Boyce at delawareohrealestate.com
Ask The Agents: Where Are The Good Neighborhoods? by Jay Thompson at pheonixrealestateguy.com
How Much Is Your Home Worth? by Andy of moneywalks.com
How Much Should Your Monthly Mortgage Be by Tushar at residentalien.blogspot.com
Why Redfin Will Succeed by Lani Anglin at realtorwives.blogspot.com
Real Estate Search Marketing, A VC’s Take by Cliff Jacobson at webhomeusablog.com
If You Were Designing The Real Estate Industry From Scratch, Would It Look More Like Coldwell Banker Or Redfin? by Kevin Boer at 3oceansrealestate.com
Inspire Me! 2 Tips and a Website by Shaun McLane at poshd.com
Marty Van Diest, Tele 907.232.7900 / marty[at]valleymarket[dot]com
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