Convert a SWF File to Video

I had purchased a video convert program from another software company to convert SWF files to Video files for my real estate business. When creating the swf file, there is an option to use the audio from the swf file or to choose a file. I have audio in the swf file, so I check the box that say to use audio from the swf file. It worked fine for a little while. After a while  I ran the software to convert the file and noticed that there was no sound on the video. I could not understand why this was not working. I uninstalled the software and reinstalled the software and the results were the same. I decided to install the software on a different computer and try it. Again, there was no audio on the video. Now I decided to contact the company to find out why this was happening.  Since you can only contact the software company by email, response time was slow.  I had to send them the swf file and have them do testing to find out if it was something on my end or if it was a software issue. After weeks of investigating, they found out the reason why the audio from the swf file was not converting. They said, “ I’m sorry to have kept you waiting so long. We’ve tested your SWF file many times, and confirm that the problem you encountered was caused by the latest version of Flash. Currently, this product only support Flash 11.3 or below.”  This was not acceptable to me, especially when I paid for the software. I decided to see if there was another swf to video software converter program that will work correctly. I googled “swf to video converter software” and downloaded the trail of “Movavi To Video Converter”.  I figured I had nothing to lose at this time.  I installed the software then ran the program using the one of my swf files. It was so easy to do. However, the big question was the audio going to be converted. The answer is YES. It worked and the audio from the swf file converted. I had to admit that I was skeptical, but you came through with flying colors. For all you people out there looking to convert a swf file, look no further; do like I did and download the free 30 day trial and see for yourself. Go to for all your conversion needs.


Something you may not know about applying for a mortgage with less than perfect credit

Most buyers feel that if their credit is less than perfect, they will not be able to get a mortgage. Well, that may not always be the case according to Kevin Lacatena from Sun West Mortgage Company. According to Kevin, you can actually have a 620 credit score or lower and still be eligible for some mortgage programs. Although credit score is certainly a leading indicator when getting a mortgage, it’s not the only thing. There are other factors as well, particularly if the credit history indicates that the derogatory credit items causing the low score are a reasonable amount of time behind you, there is a plausible, documentable reason for the credit issue(s) and you’ve re-established and maintained good credit since then. Some of the other things that can help if you’re in this situation include:

*A 10% or more down payment
*The equivalent of 3 – 6 months worth of mortgage payments left over in your bank account after closing
*Minimal payment shock (the difference between what you currently pay for housing versus what the new
mortgage payment will be.
*A timely, properly documentable rental payment history.
*A low debt to income ratio

There are also situations where a strong co-borrower can help.

Before you get pre-qualified for a mortgage, have these ready for your loan officer:
1. Most recent 2 years tax returns(W2, 1099, 1040)
2. 1 Month pay stubs
3. 2 Months Bank Statements
4. A recent credit report

Kevin Lacatena is a loan officer I use as a resource as well as refer to my clients. He is always available when I need him, he knows the business, his rates are competitive and he is honest. He will let you know up front whether or not you are qualified for a mortgage. If you are not qualified at that time, he will suggest ways to potentially improve your situation in order to get qualified in the near future. Feel free to contact Kevin for your mortgage needs. I’m sure you will feel the same was as I do.

Kevin Lacatena
Sun West Mortgage
1 Indian Road
Denville, NJ 07834

There is such a thing as an honest auto mechanic!!

I don’t know about you but whenever I need service done to my car, I feel like I’m going to get ripped off or the mechanic will tell me I need something done when I really don’t.

I went to a local mechanic to get a slow leak fixed on my car. When I picked up my car, I was told I  needed front and rear brakes. I started to wonder whether or not I needed brakes.  I did have 50k miles so I figured I was due. When I went to the dealer, they said I needed front and rear pads as well as rotors. When I got the estimate from the dealer, it was almost as my monthly mortgage payment. I said, “Thanks, but no thanks”.

The next day, I was driving home from the gym and I passed Auto Tech on Washington Street in Boonton, NJ. I met with the owner Greg Kimball and asked him if I needed brakes. He looked at the front and back pads to see if they were low. He said the front pads were very low and the back pads were low as well. I asked Greg if I needed rotors. He said to go on the highway and bring the car to 70 miles per hour, then quickly bring the car down to 35 miles per hour. If the steering wheel shakes, then you need to replace the rotors. If not, you can get away with the ones you have. I did the test and didn’t feel any shaking.

Most auto mechanics probably would have said I needed rotors right from the start but Greg didn’t. He did the brakes the next day and when I went to pick up my car, he showed me how low the brake pads were. I felt relieved that I was able to find a mechanic I could trust.

So whether you have a domestic or foreign car or truck, you should stop at Auto Tech located on 117 Washington Street, Boonton and talk to Greg. The number is (973) 335-1120. Tell him Gary Nagurka recommended you. You won’t be disappointed!!!

Greg Kimball

Top 10 Public High Schools in Bergen County

Here are the top 10 public high schools in Bergen County for 2012 from New Jersey Monthly.

  1. Tenafly
  2. Glen Rock
  3. Park Ridge
  4. Ramapo(Oakland)
  5. Pascack Hills (Montvale)
  6. Northern Highlands Regional (Allendale)
  7. Ridgewood
  8. Cresskill
  9. Ramsey
  10. North Valley Regional (Demarest)

Next blog will be Bergen County public High Schools 11-20. If you want to know how your NJ Public High School ranked, email me the school and I will email you the rank.


Gary Nagurka
Prudential Adamo Realty

Do you like shellfish?


If you like shellfish and live in the Montville then you have to try Sharky’s West in Boonton. It’s located off Main Street on 108 Boonton Ave, Boonton, NJ. We have been there a few times for their Clam Bake which consists of  1 1/4 pound lobster, 1 pound of snow crab legs, 1/4 pound of large shrimp, mussles and steamers. There is enough food that you can really share it with someone. However, do NOT dress up unless you want to bring your clothes to the cleaners the next day. It can be messy with all the cracking of the shells. lol Also, there are coupons that you get in the mail where you can get the Clam Bake for $22.95(I believe) on Mondays and Tuesdays and on Wednesdays they have a Special price on it as well.

If you like wings, you will be in heaven. They must have a dozen different sauces and spices that will make it hard to decide. The Thai Chili is new and we really like it. They have specials on wings and drinks all the time.

If you have children, no need to worry. It’s kid friendly with games and a childrens menu.

Go check out their website at



Appraisers say new rules will cause confusion

New guidelines aimed at standardizing the way home appraisals are conducted will result in confusion, delays, and higher costs in an already vulnerable housing market, according to many home-appraisal professionals.

The changes, which take effect today, are being required by mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Under the new rules, appraisers must use a set of abbreviations to describe homes, and rate conditions through a system of numbers and letters. Some appraisers say the new format will be difficult for home buyers and sellers to understand.

Real estate agents also must provide more information to appraisers, including whether kitchens and bathrooms have been remodeled, and when the work was done.

Because most lenders eventually sell their mortgages to quasi-government mortgage agencies, primarily Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the new requirements will affect the majority of housing sales.

Stephen E. Sousa, executive vice president of the Dedham-based Massachusetts Board of Real Estate Appraisers, praised the effort to standardize the way appraisals are written, saying they are too often subjective and inconsistent. But Sousa said he is worried that there is too little public awareness about the changes as well as problems with computer software set up to collect the reports, which could cause havoc in the housing industry.

“The whole real estate profession is ill prepared for this,’’ said Sousa. “It is going to create a lot more confusion.’’

The Massachusetts association joined the National Association of Independent Fee Appraisers in Illinois in urging the Federal Housing Finance Agency – which regulates Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac – to postpone the implementation of the new guidelines until later this year. The Federal Housing Administration also is incorporating the changes, but won’t implement them until Jan. 1.

A Federal Housing Finance Agency official said yesterday that there were no plans to delay the new system, but that the agency would continue to offer assistance to anyone with questions about the changes.

Officials from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac declined to comment.

The new rules will largely change appraisals from a narrative form to a list of codes. For instance, appraisers will be required to use abbreviations such as “AdjPrk’’ for “adjacent to park ’’ or “Wtr’’ for “water view.’’

Property conditions will be rated on a scale of 1 to 6, from new construction to buildings with “substantial damage’’ and defects. Quality also will be ranked from 1 to 6, with the top rating usually including architect-designed properties and the lowest level reserved for those lacking even plumbing or electrical outlets.


How Do Appraisers Determine The Value Of A Home?

    1. A home appraiser provides an unbiased determination of the value of your home. The appraiser needs to know certain things about the property in question, such as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, the square footage, the overall condition of the home, the layout of the property and the features and defects of the home. The appraiser will determine the value of your home by using as many as three different approaches: the cost approach, the sales-comparison approach and the income approach.

The Cost Approach

    1. The cost approach takes into consideration what it would cost to replace the home in its current location. Appraisers first determine the value of the lot the property stands on and then consults local building and labor costs to come to a per-square-foot value. This is done in part by using such publications as Marshall & Swift, an industry reference for building-cost data. The appraiser then depreciates the value of the existing home, considering the age and condition of the house and the appraiser’s own experiential knowledge.

The Sales-Comparison Approach

    1. The appraiser compares the property to the three most recently sold neighboring homes, or more if the property being sold is “unusual.” The appraiser should be familiar with the neighboring homes, so he should know if the home being appraised has amenities the neighboring homes don’t have and will consider such things in the appraisal. This method is considered the best indicator of value.

Income Approach

  1. Also known as income capitalization approach, this method is used primarily in the case of rental properties and communities. The appraiser estimates what an investor would pay based on what income she could expect to make from the property.
True story:
I had a client buying a condo in Hackensack for 183k. The appraiser took 3 comps, 2 were good comps. The 3rd comp he used was one that sold 3 months ago for 20k less than the price my client was paying. In the mean time,  there was another one that sold a month ago for the same amount as the one he was purchasing. This resulted in the appraised value coming in 6k below his purchase price. The only options was for him to put 6k more on his downpayment or the sellers come down 6k in their selling price. In the mean time, the sellers had already moved out of the condo into their new place. I told my client since the sellers had already moved out, they will have to either come down 6k in price or start from scratch and put the condo back on the market. So I told the listing agent that my client wasn’t going to pay over appraised value.  The sellers ended up coming down 6k in price. My client ended up getting the condo for 6k less than he expected.
“Why have your house sit, when I can get it SOLD”

What is Title Insurance?

What Is Title Insurance?

Title insurance is protection against loss arising from problems connected to the title to your property.

Before you purchased your home, it may have gone through several ownership changes, and the land on which it stands went through many more. There may be a weak link at any point in that chain that could emerge to cause trouble. For example, someone along the way may have forged a signature in transferring title. Or there may be unpaid real estate taxes or other liens. Title insurance covers the insured party for any claims and legal fees that arise out of such problems.

Is Purchasing Title Insurance Obligatory?

It is if you need a mortgage, because all mortgage lenders require such protection for an amount equal to the loan. It lasts until the loan is repaid. As with mortgage insurance, it protects the lender but you pay the premium, which is a single-payment made upfront.  When you are buying a home, title insurance premium amount is based on the higher exposure of the purchase price or the mortgage amount. In most cases, but not always, it would be the purchase price.

Does Title Insurance Do Anything For Me?

The required insurance protects the lender up to the amount of the mortgage, but it doesn’t protect your equity in the property. For that you need an owner’s title policy for the full value of the home. In many areas, sellers pay for owner policies as part of their obligation to deliver good title to the buyer. In other areas, borrowers must buy it as an add-on to the lender policy. It is advisable to do this because the additional cost above the cost of the lender policy is relatively small.

When Does Title Insurance Protection Begin and End?

With the exception noted later, title insurance only protects against losses from claims that arose prior to the date of the policy. Coverage ends on the day the policy is issued and extends backward in time for an indefinite period. This is in marked contrast to property or life insurance, which protect against losses resulting from events that occur after the policy is issued, for a specified period into the future.

For How Long Is the Property Owner Purchasing Title Insurance Covered?

Indefinitely. The owner’s protection lasts as long as the owner or any heirs have an interest in or any obligation with regard to the property. When they sell, however, the lender will require the purchaser to obtain a new policy. That protects the lender against any liens or other claims against the property that may have arisen since the date of the previous policy.

For example, if the contractor you failed to pay for remodeling your kitchen places a lien on your home, you are not protected by your title policy; the lien was placed after the date of the policy. You will probably be required to get the lien removed before you can sell the property. But in the event the lien hasn’t been removed and a search has failed to uncover it, the new lender will be protected by a new policy.

Do You Need Title Insurance?

I spoke to James T. Kirk, President of Kingsbridge Title Agency in Westwood, New Jersey. Mr. Kirk said Title Insurance is required when you make any kind of Real Estate purchase if it is lender financed. Kingsbridge Title Agency handles industrial, commercial and residential title insurance matters.  James said “Whatever the assignment, you can rely on us for quality service, combining the latest in technology, superior vendors and highly competent personnel. Our experience and insight into the entire real estate and title process  are always focused on you and your lender’s requirements. “

Jim’s company doesn’t only do Title Insurance. If you are refinancing your home, Jim can close the transaction for you as well. To make it more convenient, Jim usually travels to clients homes in order to have the loan documents signed and notarized. Jim stated “I found that the husband and wife usually work, and many times children are involved or about to be picked for an activity.  People are busy, I understand that. Many people say, what a lifesaver you are coming to the house, last time we had to take a half day off from work and drive to Jersey City and wait for an attorney to do the closing.”  How many Title Agencies will do that for their clients?  Jim has provided Title and Title Insurance as well as closings for many clients of mine. If I needed title quickly, he always came through and went above and beyond to get the job done. I strongly recommend, Jim Kirk and Kingsbridge Title Agency. Kingsbridge Title Agency is located on 15 Charles Street, Westwood, NJ, just off Old Hook Road near Pascack Valley Hospital.. Their phone number is 201-383-0660.

What is a Realty Transfer Fee?

If you live in New Jersey and never sold a property before; you need to read this blog.

When you sell a property in New Jersey, you the owner have to pay the government a fee that is based on the sales price of  your property.

The Realty Transfer Fee is imposed upon the recording of deeds evidencing transfers of title to real property in the State of New Jersey. The Fee is required to be paid upon the recording of deeds conveying title to real property in New Jersey. The Realty Transfer Fee is calculated based on the amount of consideration recited in the deed or, in certain instances, the assessed valuation of the property conveyed divided by the Director’s Ratio. Payment of the Fee is a prerequisite for recording the deed. The R.T.F. is usually collected at the real estate closing by the legal representatives or title insurance agents responsible for recording the deed at the county registry offices. The Realty Transfer Fee replaced the expiring Federal Documentary Tax in 1968. The State of New Jersey and New Jersey’s twenty-one counties share Realty Transfer Fee proceeds. The County Treasurer’s Office remits Realty Transfer Fee revenues to the State Treasurer on the tenth day following the month of collection, using the official form RTF-2 that the Director of the Division of Taxation has prescribed. Property Administration personnel respond to questions on a daily basis that taxpayers, county recording officers, and title agencies ask about the Realty Transfer Fee, and how the Fee applies to individual transfers of real property.

To add insult to injury, if you buy a home over 1 million dollars, not only does the seller have to pay a fee but the BUYER has to pay the government 1% of the purchase price at closing. It’s called the Mansion Tax.

True Story: I sold a house in Franklin Lakes for 1.5 million dollars. The seller had to pay $15,625 for Real Estate Transfer Fee and the buyer had to pay $15,000 Mansion Tax as well. The government got paid $30,625 on this transaction.

Feel free to go to and click on the link to calculate your Realty Transfer Fee or click on the link below.

Real Estate 101 – Market Value

What is Market Value?
Market Value is the highest price a ready, willing and able buyer, not forced to buy, will pay to a ready, willing and able seller, not forced to sell, allowing a reasonable time for exposure in the open market.

Who determines Market Value?
The pool of prospective BUYERS determines a  property’s value, based on:

  • Location, design, amenities and condition
  • Avalability of competing properties
  • Economic conditions

The hard fact:
It is a buyer’s market, inventory is high, mortgage rates are low, and this translates into reduced prices all around. It is proven that properties priced within market value range generate more showings and offers, and sell in a shorter period of time!

True Story:
I have a townhouse listed in Montville at “Montville Chase”. It’s a 2 bedroom, 2.5 bath townhouse with many upgrades such as an updated kitchen with granite countertops, gas fireplace with mantle, jetted tub, central air, central vacuum and security system. There are(or were) 4 other similar 2 bedroom townhomes in the same development asking 40k to 85k more than my listing. After suggesting to my client to reduce the townhouse and explaining my reasons why, she agreed. Guess what? We got a contract the next week and are closing in mid-December. The other 4 over priced listings are sitting there waiting to expire or have been taken off the market.

So, if you want to get your house “sold” and not “sit“, contact me for a complimentary Market Analysis of your home and I will provide you with a suggested price range and explain why and how I came up with that range. This way you will get your house sold at the highest price and  not end up like all the others.

What adds/decreases value to a house?

20 Things That Can Alter the Value of Your Home

Here are 10 features that can add value to your home, and another 10 that could reduce the sales price.

Increase home’s value

1. An updated kitchen

2. Modern bathrooms

3. A well-appointed master suite

4. Natural materials

5. Curb appeal

6. A light, airy spacious feel

7. Good windows

8. Landscaping

9. Lots of storage

10. Basement

1. An updated kitchen. “Kitchens are critical,” says Robert Irwin, author of “Home Buyer’s Checklist.” “Today, people like a big kitchen with a lot of workspace.”

They look for solid surface counters and high-quality flooring, such as wood, laminate, tile or stone. And they want newer appliances in working order.

Even if it’s not huge, it should have “countertops that are servicable, that aren’t going to have to be replaced soon and cabinetry in good condition,” says Alan Hummel, past president of the Appraisal Institute. “It has to be well-appointed and large enough to fit your needs.”

It also doesn’t hurt if it opens onto another room. “A lot of families are looking for that openness,” says Hummel.

It helps to have a window over the sink, says Don Strong, a remodeler with Brothers Strong Inc., a Houston remodeling firm.

Be wary if renovations are out of character with the community, such as granite countertops in a subdivision where plastic laminate is the norm.

“Will you sell faster? Yes,” says Hummel, CEO of Iowa Residential Appraisal Co., in Des Moines. “Will it sell for more? Not if the appointments you’ve done are significantly higher quality than the rest of the neighborhood.”

2. Modern bathrooms. Buyers are looking for “master baths that give a little room to roam,” says Hummel.

A big asset is a spa or a whirlpool tub. “I’m always entertained by the people who have them in the master bath and don’t use them,” says Ron Phipps, principal broker with Phipps Realty & Relocation Services in Warwick, R.I. “But it’s a big feature.”

Some other features buyers are seeking are separate showers with steam and/or multiple jets, a double sink, and a separate room for the toilet.

And make sure the plumbing and water heater can handle the job. The pipes have to be large enough to carry an adequate volume of water and the water heater has to be big enough to accommodate it. “You need a bare minimum of a 75-gallon hot water heater and most of my customers have 100 to 150,” says Chicago-based home inspector Kurt Mitenbuler.

“You don’t want to see that false economy of a $30,000 bathroom but nobody spent a few thousand dollars to upgrade the pipes,” he says.

3. A well-appointed master suite. “People are really excited about master suites,” says Hummel. The wish list: A luxurious bathroom, lounging areas and walk-in closets.

4. Natural materials. “People like natural materials,” says Phipps. “Ceramic tile, hardwood floors, granite. We’ve gone back to a real appreciation for historically true materials. And simulated works as well. The look is very popular.”

In floor coverings — especially bathrooms or kitchens — look for ceramic tile or wood rather than linoleum, which can tear, says Strong.

In the rest of the house, wood or laminate products are a plus over wall-to-wall, says Gary Eldred, author of “The 106 Common Mistakes Homebuyers Make (and How to Avoid Them).”

But if you have carpet, it should be a good product and well-maintained so that “a person doesn’t have to walk in and think, ‘I’m going to have to spend five grand right off the bat,” says Strong.

5. Curb appeal. First impressions are everything. A house that appears tidy and well-cared-for will sell more quickly and for more money. A good first appearance can add as much as 10 percent to the value of the home.

6. A light, airy, spacious feel. “People buy space and light,” says Myra Zollinger, owner/broker with Coldwell Banker Realty Center in Chapel Hill, N.C. “I have yet to have anybody walk into a really dark house and say, ‘I love this.'”

Richard “Dick” Gaylord, president-elect of the National Association of Realtors, agrees. “That’s a very big feature,” he says. “I haven’t sold many homes that aren’t bright and airy.”

7. Good windows. “People are looking at exposures and windows,” says Phipps. “It’s been a cold winter for most of the country and energy efficiency is very important.”

Insulated windows are always a plus, says Strong. “Typically, they pay for themselves in five years,” he says. The cost for an average 2,600-square-foot home is estimated at about $10,000 for new windows, he says.

Well-placed skylights are also a good touch to add value, says Phipps.

8. Landscaping. Mature trees “are worth $1,000,” says Strong.

And having outdoor spaces with touches such as pergolas and Victorian garden swings “can be very helpful,” says Phipps.

Appraiser John Bredemeyer remembers one $250,000 home in Omaha that had no landscaping at all. “It was stark,” says Bredemeyer, former national chair of government relations for the Appraisal Institute, a professional group for real estate appraisers. “It just stood out as unappealing.”

Conversely, you don’t have to spend a fortune on plants, either. Just keep it “typical with the neighborhood,” he says.

9. Lots of storage. Nothing beats an oversized garage, some attic space and plenty of closets. “If you have a two-car garage, do you have extra space for those things we all have — bicycles, lawn mower, snow blower?” says Hummel. “Space is important.”

A nice plus in the master suite? “His and hers walk-in closets,” says Irwin.

10. Basement. “If it’s dry, it’s a plus,” says Kenneth Austin, co-author of “The Home Buyer’s Inspection Guide.” “But it’s a negative if it has water problems.”

A finished basement adds even more value. “Ten years ago, nobody cared,” says Mittenbuler. “Now everybody wants them.”

Decrease home’s value

1. A pool

2. No garage or small garage

3. Garbled floor plan

4. Outmoded appliances or systems

5. Stale or overly personal decor

6. A bad roof

7. Bad location

8. Poor maintenance

9. Environmental hazards

10. A long list of needed home improvements

1. A pool. Forget what you might have heard. An in-ground pool in most parts of the country doesn’t automatically raise the value of your home. “I would stay away from pools if you can at all avoid it,” says Irwin.

Having a swimming pool will automatically limit your market when it comes time to sell, he says. “It’s constant upkeep, they get cracks, when the equipment goes down it’s expensive to replace and the liability is high.”

Others consider it a mixed blessing. “For the people who want the pool, they’re willing to pay for it,” says Austin. “But there are an awful lot of people who don’t want a pool.”

Consider your home value and location. In a million-dollar house, not having a pool is a detraction, says Irwin. “But they won’t give you much more” if you do have one.

2. No garage or small garage. Unless you’re living in a condo, a retirement community, or historical or in-town neighborhood most buyers will look for at least a two-car garage. “If you don’t have a garage, it’s a real negative,” says Austin. “If you have a one-car garage, that’s a problem, too.”

3. Garbled floor plan. Small rooms and bathrooms, an inconvenient floor plan or a layout that requires you to access bedrooms or bathrooms through other rooms will detract value from your home.

4. Outmoded appliances or systems. Who wants an electrical system or plumbing system incapable of handling modern conveniences? Would you buy a home if the appliances were worn or broken?

Phipps remembers walking into one house with clients who casually opened the oven door — and it fell off.

5. Stale or overly personal decor. Sure, red is the hot wall color right now, “but for how long?” says Hummel.

“We’ve gone into houses where they’ve had purple or electric green walls,” says Austin. “It’s a turn-off to many people.”

6. A bad roof. Roofs are expensive to replace, and a good roof is considered standard equipment in a house. If your roof has problems, expect to take a hit in the price.

7. Bad location. Phipps remembers one neighborhood with a significant difference in value between the even- and odd-numbered houses. The reason? The odd numbered ones backed on an interstate highway, as well as some ugly utility lines.

As a result, “the even-numbered houses were worth about 10 percent more than the odd-numbered homes,” he says.

8. Poor maintenance. “If you’ve got an old roof and outdated paint, I don’t care if you’ve updated the kitchen, you won’t even get the buyer out of the car,” says Bredemeyer.

“If you know you’ve got to have something fixed, fix it,” says Zollinger. Otherwise, people “will subtract the cost or not make an offer on the house. And if people think the house hasn’t been taken care of, they will wonder what else they’re not seeing.”

9. Environmental hazards. Besides being a danger to human health, lead, mold or asbestos can kill home value.

10. A laundry list of needed improvements. “It detracts if you have to do work,” says Gaylord. “A house that you can move in today — and it’s livable — is fine.”

But a list of must-dos just to conduct everyday life will scare off a lot of potential home buyers. “Especially with first-time buyers,” he says. “Most of them are (already) scraping just to get in.”

Real Estate Market Update

Now that we’ve gotten the Q3 reports from Fannie, Freddie and the FHA, the picture of housing’s future is  becoming ever clearer.

The combined Real Estate Owned (REO) inventory of the three rose 24 percent quarter to quarter and 93 percent year over year.

In real numbers, at the end of Q3 there were a record 293,171 REO’s sitting on their books. This of course doesn’t count REO held by the banks and private label securities. That’s up from 153,007 at the end of Q3 2009.

Granted, the GSE’s and FHA have disposed of (sold) an awful lot of properties. In the first 9 months of this year they’ve sold over 200,000, but that still leaves us, net, with the above numbers, which are also rising at a fast clip.

There is still alot of inventory out there and prices of homes are still on the decline.

Interest rates are still at historic low rates. However, guidelines for the lenders are getting more strict.

Appraisals can be brutal, to say the least. Sometimes the appraisers are not using fair comps. With the new rules, the banks can not even talk to the appraisers and the appraisers will not talk to the Realtors, which makes it even more difficult. For example, my client was buying a house in “Smoke Rise” in Kinnelon. The house they were buying had a full finished walk-out basement with a large family room with fireplace, wet bar, bedroom and full bathroom. The backyard had a large patio with a pond. When the appraisal report came back, it appraised for 50k less than the purchase price. When I looked at the recent sold comps on the report, the sold comps didn’t even have basements, they only had crawl spaces! The appraiser didn’t take that into consideration in his price. Now my client felt that they are over paying 50k for this house in a down market. The buyers attorney, Scott Itzkowitz in Parsippany came to the rescue. Scott had to work things out with the sellers attorney, who just happened to be the owner. Scott was able to get the price adjusted and resolve all inspection issues in order to save the deal. I will be interviewing Scott on issues and resolutions in regards to Real Estate in a future blog.

And people think Realtors have it easy!!


Current Interest Rates.

Hello World. This is my first blog and I’m very excited to get started. If anyone can provide me with any suggestions, please do so since this is all new to me.

Interest rates are at all time lows so if you plan on buying property, now is the time to take advantage of it. I can help you get started by providing you with current listings in the areas you want in North Jersey. All I need is basic information on what you are looking for such as the town(s), minimun number of bedrooms and bathrooms, price range, basement, garage, etc. 

Once you have all the criteria, email it to me along with your name and phone number and I will provide you with all the rest. It’s that simple! In the mean time, if you have any questions, feel free the post them. My email is gnagurka@yahoo and my personal website is