Posted in home improvement loans

Students begin ‘contagious and uplifting’ home rehab in Marion

MARION — Rather than building a new house and offering it for sale as they have for years, high school students in the Marion area this year are renovating a home for a low- to middle-income family.

The project, called Marion Community Build, is part of a class the students are taking. Through the class, they learn trade skills and work hands-on with tasks that go into rehabilitating a home.

The effort is a partnership among the city of Marion, Marion Independent School District and the Linn-Mar Community School District.

“This is a true community partnership,” said Nick Glew, president of the Marion Economic Development Corp. or MEDCO.

“Our organization was initially involved in this because of our Community Promise program, connecting our youth with high-demand jobs in our community. Sometimes they don’t understand there are opportunities right in their backyard.”

For 30 years, students have built brand-new homes to

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2 home-buying mistakes I’ve seen during the pandemic

Personal Finance Insider writes about products, strategies, and tips to help you make smart decisions with your money. We may receive a small commission from our partners, like American Express, but our reporting and recommendations are always independent and objective.

In 2008, the housing industry was spiraling out of control in the wake of the financial crisis that led to the Great Recession. For me, it doesn’t feel like very long ago that US housing prices were down 30% or more from their peaks, and more than 20% of homeowners were underwater on their mortgages. 

But what a difference a bull market makes! Fast-forward to 2019, and we know the housing market didn’t just rebound; it looked stronger than ever last year. Although some feared it would only take one triggering event to derail the market again, in 2020 we’ve seen that even a global pandemic that caused havoc elsewhere

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Coronavirus latest: Students in England will be allowed home for Christmas

Andy Bounds in Huddersfield

The leaders of three of northern England’s biggest cities have called for the government to relax coronavirus restrictions it has imposed on them, which they say are wrecking the region’s economy.

The letter from Liverpool, Leeds and Manchester councils increases pressure on the government, whose own MPs are pressing for looser measures.

In a letter to health secretary Matt Hancock and business secretary Alok Sharma, the leaders and chief executives of the cities in northern England say that hotel occupancy is at around 30 per cent normal levels and footfall has dropped by more than two-thirds during local lockdown measures.

Because of higher coronavirus transmission rates, the three northern cities – which are major urban hubs in the government’s northern powerhouse plan – have to follow stricter coronavirus rules than in London.

They all, for example, have had bans on households mixing with each other in

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Posted in home improvement loans

Home price growth accelerated in July as buyers competed for listings, Case-Shiller index shows

The numbers: Home-price appreciation maintained a fast pace in July as buyers flooded the market only to find few homes for sale, according to a major price barometer released Tuesday.

The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller 20-city price index posted a 3.9% year-over-year gain in July, up from 3.5% the previous month. On a monthly basis, the index increased 0.6% between June and July.

What happened: The separate national index released with the report noted a 4.8% increase in home prices across the U.S. over the past year.

Phoenix once again lead all other markets nationwide with a 9.2% annual price gain in July, followed by Seattle with a 7% increase and Charlotte, N.C., with 6% growth.

“Prices were particularly strong in the Southeast and West regions, and comparatively weak in the Midwest and Northeast,” Craig Lazzara, managing director and global head of index investment strategy at S&P Dow Jones Indices, wrote

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UK mortgage approvals hit 13-year high, as firms warn of tough times – business live | Business

A Greggs bakers store in Cardiff, south Wales, at the start of the lockdown

A Greggs bakers store in Cardiff, south Wales, at the start of the lockdown Photograph: Geoff Caddick/AFP via Getty Images

Good morning, and welcome to our rolling coverage of the world economy, the financial markets, the eurozone and business.

A swathe of UK companies are reporting today that Covid-19 continues to hurt their businesses, more than six months after the UK first imposed restrictions to battle the pandemic.

High street baker Greggs has warned that staff faced reduced hours, and potentially job cuts, as it tries to cut its employment costs.

Greggs, famous for its steak bakes, sausage rolls and new vegan offerings, reports that like-for-like sales in September are only 76.1% of the 2019 levels (an improvement on a ‘slow’ August).

With the government’s furlough scheme wrapping up in a month (replaced by a less generous wage subsidy package), Greggs says it must make cuts:


With business activity levels

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Gloom before boom for home prices

“Yet there will be locations where distress selling could be more significant and the spectre of negative equity weighs heavily on households. Given Australia’s high household debt and lower population growth, house prices will struggle over the coming years.”

Although Macquarie senior economist Justin Fabo expects national house prices to fall by up to 5 per cent, he says the pace of decline could be ebbing in Sydney and prices are starting to lift in several capital cities and in regional areas.

According to CoreLogic, home values rose in Hobart, Darwin and Canberra in August. Prices also rose in regional NSW.

“The true test of resilience will be next year when some of the fiscal support tapers and support from lenders is wound back,” Mr Fabo said.

“We see a good chance of very modest dwelling price growth next year, supported by some improvement in the economy but, most importantly,

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Will the low rates continue?

If you’re looking to buy a home or refinance your current one, expect mortgage rates to remain low into 2021. However, the possibility of rates falling to 2.5 percent or lower has faded as the U.S. economy has rebounded.



skynesher/Getty Images


© skynesher/Getty Images
skynesher/Getty Images

The average 30-year fixed mortgage rate reached an all-time low of 3.09 percent in September 2020, according to Bankrate’s weekly survey of large lenders. The uncertainty caused by the coronavirus pandemic has also created uncertainty around where rates will go by mid-2021.

Some rate watchers say rates could fall further, setting new record lows. Others expect it to edge back toward 3.5 percent. The wild card, of course, is how the U.S. economy recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic, an economic shock without precedent for at least the past century.



a sign in front of a house: suburban home


© Steve Nehf/Denver Post/Getty Images
suburban home

Here’s how a range of experts predicts mortgage rates will

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Just Approved: Cheap money to access from home equity

Published


Mortgage adviser: Liz Bayer, ProMortgage.

Property type: Single-family home in Berkeley.

Appraised value: $1.215 million.

Loan amount: $449,000.

Loan type: 30-year fixed.

Rate: 2.625%.

APR: 2.841%.

Backstory: I have a number of clients taking advantage of historically low rates and historically high home equity to get a cash out refinance. Past clients of mine had decided that they plan to live out their days in their home but wanted to tap into their equity to make home improvements to provide features that will benefit them as they age.


What was great is that even though they had a good rate from a previous transaction, it made all the sense in the world for them to refinance rather their mortgage taking out more than $100,000 with a new rate — which was lower than

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US existing home sales approach 14-year high; prices scale record peak

WASHINGTON: US home sales surged to their highest level in nearly 14 years in August as the housing market continued to outperform the overall economy, but record high home prices could squeeze first-time buyers out of the market.

The report from the National Association of Realtors confirmed home sales had recovered after slumping when the economy almost ground to a halt as businesses were shuttered in mid-March in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Demand for housing is being fuelled by record-low mortgage rates and a pandemic-fuelled migration to suburbs and low-density areas in search of more spacious accommodation as many people work from home. Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell told a congressional panel on Tuesday that the economy has shown “marked improvement” since plunging into recession in February, though the path ahead remains uncertain.

“The housing market has continued its remarkable recovery amidst an otherwise

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Is an algorithm less racist than a home loan officer?

In 2015, Melany Anderson’s 6-year-old daughter came home from a play date and asked her mother a heartbreaking question: Why did all her friends have their own bedrooms?

Anderson, 41, a pharmaceutical benefits consultant, was recently divorced, living with her parents in West Orange, New Jersey, and sharing a room with her daughter. She longed to buy a home, but the divorce had emptied her bank account and wrecked her credit. She was working hard to improve her financial profile, but she couldn’t imagine submitting herself to the scrutiny of a mortgage broker.

“I found the idea of going to a bank completely intimidating and impossible,” she said. “I was a divorced woman and a Black woman. And also being a contractor — I know it’s frowned upon, because it’s looked at as unstable. There were so many negatives against me.”

Then, last year, Anderson was checking her credit score

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