Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Best Cities to Retire on a Budget

With nest eggs under attack by the declining economy, Forbes magazine ranked the best large metropolitan area to retire on a budget.

Forbes considered housing affordability, inflationary pressures, and job prospects for the 20 percent of those older than 65 who are still employed. Also, the magazine considered: physicians per capita and the number of people in the area who rely on Medicare.

The magazine's top 10 choices were:

  1. Columbus, Ohio
  2. Dallas
  3. Minneapolis
  4. Houston
  5. Salt Lake City
  6. Indianapolis
  7. Denver
  8. St. Louis, Mo.
  9. Atlanta
  10. Nashville

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Forum Invite: Local Real Estate Crashing... Or Window of Opportunity

A Real Estate Forum entitled “St. Charles Real Estate…Crashing or Window of Opportunity?” moderated by local lending expert Robert Rutledge and Real Estate Broker Merle Schneider, Chartered Financial Consultant will be presented Monday, October 27th at 7pm. The Forum is slated to be held at the St. Peters City Hall, Salon A, One St. Peters Centre. The Presentation will provide insight into today’s marketplace by highlighting historical aspects of real estate in contrast to current conditions and is orchestrated to give current property owners, prospective buyers and sellers answers to an assortment of issues now being faced by us all.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Best Place to Live

Exactly what is happening in your neighborhood and your county? With the
Grant Hickman Team Market SnapShot, you can know exactly what is happening
in your neighborhood. And, according to MLS, St. Charles County dipped by
just 103 fewer homes sold this year than in 2007 in September. In contrast,
more homes were sold in the cities of O'Fallon and Wentzville this year in
September than last year during the same time.

In fact St. Peters, St. Charles, and O'Fallon, Missouri were all chosen by
Money Magazine's Best Places to Live 2008. O'Fallon was also chosen as one
of Relocate-America's Top 100 Places to Live in 2008.

Help from Washington DC

In September, the House of Representatives and Senate created a rescue plan
for homeowners and buyers. In October the House and Senate passed a bailout
plan for the economy. With all of this "help" from Washington D.C. you might
begin to wonder how it is helping you.

Most recently, Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 has been
grabbing headlines. In a letter to members of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF
REALTORS, NAR President Dick Gaylord was quick to share "A failure to act,"
he said, "would have pushed consumers into more dire circumstances."

"The market should regain some confidence, and since markets are built
mainly on confidence, that's no small thing," says Gary Keller, head of
national residential real estate franchiser Keller Williams in Austin,
Texas. "In fact it's a huge thing and it's imperative for the market to move
forward. But beyond that, we have to wait and see."

Real estate experts say the bill will give the market a much-needed boost,
but that substantial recovery of credit markets will probably take time. The
Grant Hickman Team, your local real estate experts, have outlined how
Washington D.C. is impacting you. Read the tip below to see how the
St. Charles County market was in September.

Throughout September, The Grant Hickman Team featured some of the benefits
and impacts homeowners will face with the American Housing Rescue and
Foreclosure Prevention Act. Current homeowners should call us now ((314)
265-1531) to know what actions you should take in this market. Some changes
go into effect as early as January 1, 2009!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

MORTGAGE NEWS – 100% financing still available!!!!

Last month I told you about the free down payment money available to first time homebuyers from the Missouri Housing Development Commission (MHDC). Well now you don’t have to be a first-time homebuyer to qualify for this money!!

The recently-enacted “Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008” includes a provision that expands MHDC’s authority to fund mortgages in counties that have received a presidential disaster declaration. This includes St. Charles, St. Louis, Franklin, Lincoln and Jefferson County along with 44 other counties in the State of Missouri.

This expanded authority enables MHDC to fund loans for repeat homebuyers in addition to first time homebuyers and also increases the program’s household income and purchase price limits. Homebuyers earning up to $79,800 depending on household size can now use the program. The law also increases the amount of tax-exempt bonding authority available for housing.

Combining this down payment money along with seller paid closing costs essentially will provide home buyers with not only 100% financing, but the opportunity to get into a new home with out any money out of pocket.

For more information on the recent changes with MHDC or any other financing; please contact me via phone or email.

30 Year Fixed 6.25% with 0 points
MHDC (CAP) FHA 30 Year Fixed 6.700 with 0 points
MHDC (non-cap) FHA 30 Year Fixed 6.25% with 0 points

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Around St. Charles County

  • Saturdays and Sundays Maize Quest at Boschert Family Farm, 5118 Blase Station Rd., 10am - 6pm ADMISSION
  • October 4: August Bottoms Beer Festival, Augusta Winery, 12-5pm.
  • October 4: National Fire Safety Event, Home Depot at MidRivers, 9am - 12 pm, FREE
  • October 11: Great Pumpkin Event Craft for kids 5-12, Michaels 10am - 3 pm, $5
  • October 11: O’Fallon Fall Festival, Civic Park O’Fallon, 9am - 4pm, FREE
  • October 18: Life is Good Festival, Frontier Park St. Charles, FREE
  • October 25: Campfire Storytelling Fetival, Defiance at Daniel Boone’s Home, 5:30 pm - 10 pm, Admission
  • Mondays: All You Can Eat Pasta, Rich and Charlie’s, 5 - 10 pm