Thursday, July 1, 2010

Back Home Again

I started my real estate career in 1995 with Long Realty. In 2003, I moved to Realty Executives, and thought I would stay there forever. In March this year, the local Realty Executives franchise became Keller Williams. In the following weeks, about 70 of the agents from the old Realty Executives moved to a new Realty Executives franchise in Tucson. Along with 230 of the old Realty Executives agents, I transferred my real estate license to Keller Williams, because I could stay with my mentors from the old Realty Executives, and I wouldn't have to leave my sweet private office on River Road.

After four months with Keller Williams, I concluded it wasn't a good fit for me. Amazingly enough, the new Realty Executives signed a lease on an office building at 2251 E Grant Road last week. I called just minutes after the lease was signed to inquire about a private office, so I had my pick. Serendipity! This is a beautiful Southwestern style building in a great Central Tucson location. Bookman's! Ragin' Sage!

You walk past the white stuccoed walls with their vigas and rusted gates into a pleasant, leafy court yard. My office has French doors going out to another court yard. Needless to say, I am thrilled to be home and to have lucked into this wonderful office.

NFIP and New Home Buyer Tax Credit Extended

Buyers, sellers, real estate agents and mortgage loan officers have had a frantic few weeks. The $8,000 tax credit for first time home buyers was scheduled to expire June 30. Buyers had to have their home purchases in escrow by April 30 to qualify. Everyone worked feverishly to meet the June 30 deadline to close escrow. It is estimated that without the extension of the deadline, 220,000 sales would not qualify for the tax credit.

Also, as noted in my blog on June 25, Congress failed to reauthorize the National Flood Insurance Program, leaving buyers of houses in FEMA-designated flood plains unable to get mortgages.

Not a moment too soon, Congress awoke from its slumber.

The House and Senate have passed H.R. 5623, the "Homebuyer Assistance and Improvement Act," extending the first-time homebuyer tax credit to October 1, 2010 for any borrowers who've entered a binding contract by April 30, 2010.

Also, the Senate approved House-passed H.R. 5569, the "National Flood Insurance Program Extension Act," extending the NFIP through September 30, 2010 and reauthorizing the program retroactive to May 31, 2010.

President Obama is expected to sign both pieces of legislation into law today.