Archive for March, 2010

Monday, March 29th, 2010

Tips on finding the perfect home for you!

Finding the right home can be a challenge.  The basic requirements, such as budget, number of bedrooms and baths, pool, tennis, etc put the wheels in motion.  But time is precious and the inventory is vast.  Identifying your specific needs is the key to maximizing your efforts.

Below is a checklist to help you identify your specific needs:

-       Does anyone living in the house or potentially visiting, require a first floor en-suite bedroom?  (i.e. elderly parents)

-       Does a housekeeper/nanny require a room, set apart from the family, with egress separate from the main family living areas?

-       Is there a family room where children can play, separate from adults, on rainy days?

-       Is the pool fenced and child-proof, either for your children, or visitors with children?

-       Do you want a location where a nanny can walk with children without being dependent on a car?

-       Are there separate outdoor areas, where someone can relax in peace, while others are enjoying conversation or play?

-       What are the core elements of flow that will maximize your pleasure.  Do you like open-flow living areas or more traditionally defined spaces?

 

The above is simply a start to help you to “fine-tune” your search. Take some time to think about your life style and the flow of people in the house.  Share as much as possible with your real estate professional. The more information he/she has, the easier it will be for them to find a home that is perfect for you!

 

Linda Statam is an Associate Broker with the Southampton office of Town and Country Real Estate of the East End.  You can contact her on her mobile @ (631) 725-3510 or at <lstatam@1townandcountry.com>

Market Update

Monday, March 29th, 2010

Eve Robin Jarrett
MANAGING DIRECTOR
Senior Mortgage Consultant
Manhattan Mortgage
Office: 631-324-1555 x 25
Blackberry: 631-697-3366
e-Fax: 631-514-3654
Email: EJarrett@manhattanmortgage.com

For the week of Mar 29, 2010 // Vol. 8, Issue 13
In This Issue

Last Week in Review: Learn why March is going out like a lion instead of a lamb. Also, the latest on housing numbers…and more!

Forecast for the Week: The Fed’s Mortgage Backed Security buying program ends Wednesday…what will this mean for home loan rates? Plus – big economic releases on jobs and inflation could be market movers.

The View: Just one month left to take advantage of the Homebuyer Tax Credit, which could mean up to $8,000 in your pocket. Don’t miss the details…or pass them on to someone who could benefit!

Last Week in Review

THEY SAY THAT MARCH COMES IN LIKE A LION AND GOES OUT LIKE A LAMB… But this year, the exact reverse is true when it comes to home loan rates – for quite a few reasons, including the end of the Federal Reserve acting as a large buyer of Mortgage Backed Securities (MBS). The “demand” created by their fifteen-month program has helped Bond prices stay high and home loan rates stay low.

But the Fed’s MBS purchase program will end on March 31st. The Fed has confirmed this several times, including during last week’s testimony by Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke. What’s more, the Fed will likely change sides entirely, and actually become a seller of MBS, since their balance sheet hangs heavy with MBS holdings. However, once the Fed begins selling MBS and puts more supply into the market – at the same time as entirely removing their past demand as buyers – this will pressure Bond prices lower and push home loan rates higher.

If you or someone you know would like to learn more about how you can take advantage of today’s low-rate environment, or the Homebuyer Tax Credit which is due to expire on April 30 (see the below View article for more details), just call or email me. Additionally, consider forwarding this issue to a friend, family member, neighbor or coworker who might benefit from the information.

———————–
Chart: Gross Domestic Product

In other news, the final reading on 2009′s Fourth Quarter Gross Domestic Product (GDP) roared in at 5.6%. While this was the best quarterly performance in six years, the economy shrank 2.4% during 2009, the worst single-year performance since 1946.

However, last week’s housing news arrived with a bit of a whimper. While Existing Home Sales for February were reported in line with expectations, the inventory number swelled to the highest inventory level since last August. In addition, New Home Sales fell slightly in February – the fourth straight monthly drop – to yet another record low. On the new construction front – this may be due in part to buyers feeling a new home purchase may not close in time to take advantage of the Homebuyers Tax Credit before it expires on April 30th…but the bottom line is that the real fix for housing will depend on a stronger labor market.

Weak auction results and the approaching end of the Fed’s MBS purchase program contributed to a volatile week in the markets, causing Bonds to fall below important technical levels. As a result, Bonds and home loan rates ended the week worse than where they began.

THERE’S JUST ONE MONTH LEFT BEFORE THE HOMEBUYERS TAX CREDIT EXPIRES ON APRIL 30! CHECK OUT THIS WEEK’S MORTGAGE MARKET GUIDE VIEW FOR IMPORTANT DETAILS.

Forecast for the Week

March will certainly roar out with a big week of news, beginning with Monday’s Personal Income and Personal Spending Reports. We’ll also get a look at the Core Personal Consumption Expenditure (PCE), which is the Fed’s favorite gauge of inflation. Rest assured the Fed will be watching this report closely!

The Labor Market will also be in the spotlight, first with Thursday’s Initial Jobless Claims Report. Last week’s Initial Jobless Claims were reported lower than expectations and at the lowest reading in 6 weeks. The numbers show modest improvements and are somewhat encouraging.

Hopefully, Friday’s official Jobs Report from the Labor Department for March will also be encouraging. Last month’s report showed that 36,000 jobs were lost in February, which was better than the 68,000+ job losses that were expected. However, while the Unemployment Rate remained stable at 9.7%, a deeper look beyond the headlines of the report showed what many consider to be the Real Unemployment Rate to be near 17%…which includes discouraged workers who are no longer seeking employment, as well as “underemployed” folks who have taken part time or low paying jobs, just to be bringing some money in the door. The bottom line is that real improvement is needed in the labor market for our economy to continue to recover.

Remember: Weak economic news normally causes money to flow out of Stocks and into Bonds, helping Bonds and home loan rates improve, while strong economic news normally has the opposite result. And with the Fed MBS buying program ending…there will likely be more volatility for home loan rates in store.

HOME SALES REPORT UP 13.4%

Wednesday, March 24th, 2010

It may seem so confusing with home sale reports coming at you from all different sources with all different results.

So what is a seller and buyer to do?? As a Real Estate Broker who has been publishing Market Reports for many years,, the answer to that is.. #1- know your source #2- get specific! Your source should be someone working in the field for a minimum of 10-20 years with great success AND the reports you review should be specific to your area of interest. In our Town & Country Home Sales Reports for the Hamptons and the North Fork, in addition to consolidating the numbers, I break each report down to inspect different markets with in each market then monitor the number of home sales, the median home sale price, total sales volume AND the number of home sales within 6 different price catagories. Visit www.1TownandCountry.com/Reports to view Quarterly and Year End Reports.

While nationally, reports have indicated home sales were down, the National Association of Realtors just published a report indicating MLS statistics show Long Island realized a 13.4% jump in home sales in February 2010 compared with the same period one year earlier.

In fact all of Long Island was up 13% year over year.

Such information is crutial for both buyers & sellers when entering negotiations. Buyers reading national home sale reports may believe they are the ONLY buyer and lose the house due to inappropriate information…

I always reccomend buyers and sellers do their home work and confer with experienced knowlegable professionals… after all it is one of your greatest purchases in life.

Weekly Mortgage Update

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

Eve Robin Jarrett
MANAGING DIRECTOR
Senior Mortgage Consultant
Manhattan Mortgage
Office: 631-324-1555 x 25
Blackberry: 631-697-3366
e-Fax: 631-514-3654
Email: EJarrett@manhattanmortgage.com

For the week of Mar 22, 2010 // Vol. 8, Issue 12
Last Week in Review

“I WILL ACT NOW. I WILL ACT NOW. I WILL ACT NOW. ” Og Mandino. And wondering what kind of action will happen on Healthcare reform was certainly on everyone’s mind last week. But what does this mean for the markets and home loan rates?

Traders have been watching the debate closely, and it’s possible that passage of the Healthcare Bill could have a negative impact on the Stock market. If this is the case, there could in turn be a positive outcome for Bonds and home loan rates.

But that’s not the only action traders were keeping an eye on last week. Tuesday’s meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee offered little surprise, with no change to the Fed Funds Rate, which is the rate banks charge each other for lending overnight, or the language describing that the Fed Funds Rate would remain “exceptionally low for an extended period of time.”

While there is growing and well-warranted concern that continuing to keep rates low will lead to inflation down the road…and remember, inflation is the arch enemy of bonds and home loan rates…it does appear that inflation is subdued at present. Last week’s reports showed that the Producer Price Index (PPI), which gauges inflation at the wholesale level, was reported well below expectations and at the largest monthly decline since July 2009. Meanwhile, the Consumer Price Index (CPI), which measures inflation at the consumer level, came in just below expectations for February.

And there were additional headlines last week on other possible action that could impact Bonds and home loan rates negatively. Both Fitch Ratings and Moody’s have stated that the US has moved substantially closer to losing its AAA credit rating. This would be a very bad turn of events, as it would cost the US a lot more money in interest payments, by way of higher rates, to attract new investors to buy our Bonds. And higher rates on Treasuries would influence home loan rates higher as well.

If you or someone you know would like to learn more about how you can take advantage of today’s low-rate environment, or the Homebuyer’s Tax Credit which is due to expire on April 30, give me a call.

Bonds were able to improve above important technical levels in the middle of the week, but were unable to hang on to these improvements. As a result, Bonds and home loan rates ended the week about the same as where they began.

SPRING IS IN THE AIR, WHICH MEANS IT’S TIME TO TAKE SOME CLEANING ACTION! CHECK OUT THIS WEEK’S MORTGAGE MARKET GUIDE VIEW FOR SOME SAFE AND HEALTHY SPRING CLEANING TIPS.

Forecast for the Week

The action during Sunday’s healthcare vote will almost certainly impact the markets in the coming week, and there is also a full slate of economic reports to watch for. First up, there will be a double-dose of housing news with Tuesday’s Existing Home Sales Report and Wednesday’s New Home Sales Report.

Also, on Wednesday we’ll get a read on the health of the economy with the Durable Goods Report, which gives us an update on consumer and business buying behavior on big ticket items that last for an extended period of time. Friday will bring another read on the economy with the Gross Domestic Product Report, which is the broadest measure of economic activity.

Not to be missed will be Thursday’s weekly Initial Jobless Claims Report. While last week’s initial claims were essentially inline with expectations, the ugly component of the report was the 5,888,048 people collecting EUC (Emergency Unemployment Compensation) benefits. This is a whopping 360,000 person increase from the prior week. Unfortunately, the labor market continues to be very weak.

Remember: Weak economic news normally causes money to flow out of Stocks and into Bonds, helping Bonds and home loan rates improve, while strong economic news normally has the opposite result.

As you can see in the chart below, despite midweek volatility, Bonds and home loan rates ended the week very near where they began. With all the action in store, I’ll be watching closely to see in what direction the markets and rates move this week. As always, please feel free to call or email to get more information on what the current rate climate means to you.

Chart: Fannie Mae 4.5%% Mortgage Bond (Friday Mar 19, 2010)

The Mortgage Market View…

Safe Spring Cleaning for Your Home and Family

Many parts of the country are already warming up to spring…and that means spring cleaning. But have you ever considered what you’re using to clean your home…and if it’s really safe for your family? The problem with cleaning products is that there is very little regulation and virtually no labeling requirements.

“A lot of cleaning products contain toxic ingredients that aren’t properly regulated, disclosed, or in some cases even tested,” said Sara Mohs, co-founder of simplyneutral™, a company that promotes sustainable living through non-toxic cleaners.

In fact, most household cleaners are produced using a petroleum-based formula. That’s right, petroleum! In addition, they typically include chemicals, fragrances, and dyes that can be irritating to your eyes, skin, and respiratory tract.

In light of last week’s Poison Prevention Week, here’s a list of natural alternatives that work great and are probably already in your pantry:

Baking soda – We all know that baking soda absorbs odors, especially in refrigerators, but did you know it’s also a simple and effective cleaner? Just mix baking soda with warm water for an inexpensive cleaner comparable to commercial “abrasive” cleaners.

Vinegar – White vinegar is actually a deodorizer and a disinfectant…making it a great all-purpose cleaner. Avoid using vinegar solutions on marble or grout, but it’s perfect for all of the other surfaces in the kitchen and bathroom.

Lemon juice – Use lemon juice on hard-water stains, soap scum, even rust stains in the shower, tub, and toilet. Mix lemon juice with salt to remove stubborn stains from coffee pots. Or you can mix lemon juice with baking soda for a softer, paste-like cleaning solution. Add a little to olive oil for an effective wood polish. Blend it with water to make a potent air freshener.

Cornstarch – Cornstarch makes an effective glass and surface cleaner. Plus, you can combine 2 tbsp of cornstarch with 3/4 cup of baking soda for an inexpensive carpet freshener.

Borax – Also known as sodium borate, borax is best known as a hard-water laundry soap, but it also cleans wallpaper, painted walls, and other painted surfaces.

In addition to these natural ingredients, there are also a number of non-toxic cleaners that can be bought in stores. But make sure you consider a couple of points before making your purchase.

First, read the label carefully. “Although a cleaner may contain natural ingredients, it may also include dyes, fragrances, or synthetic preservatives,” Mohs said. “For example, if the label says fragrances are added, it may contain up to 150 synthetic chemicals.”

Second, you may want to take a quick look at the company itself to see if it is serious about producing natural cleaners that are safe for your family, your home, and the environment.

For more information and tips about non-toxic cleaning, visit www.simplyneutral.com.

The Week’s Economic Indicator Calendar

Remember, as a general rule, weaker than expected economic data is good for rates, while positive data causes rates to rise.

Economic Calendar for the Week of March 22 – March 26
Date ET Economic Report For Estimate Actual Prior Impact
Tue. March 23 10:00 Existing Home Sales Feb 5.00M 5.05M Moderate
Wed. March 24 08:30 Durable Goods Orders Feb 0.5% 2.6% Moderate
Wed. March 24 10:00 New Home Sales Feb 315K 309K Moderate
Wed. March 24 10:30 Crude Inventories 3/20 NA 1.01M Moderate
Thu. March 25 08:30 Jobless Claims (Initial) 3/20 450K 457K Moderate
Fri. March 26 08:30 Gross Domestic Product (GDP) Q4 5.9% 5.9% Moderate
Fri. March 26 08:30 GDP Chain Deflator Q4 0.4% 0.4% Moderate
Fri. March 26 10:00 Consumer Sentiment Index (UoM) Mar 73.0 72.5 Moderate

The material contained in this newsletter is provided by a third party to real estate, financial services and other professionals only for their use and the use of their clients. The material provided is for informational and educational purposes only and should not be construed as investment and/or mortgage advice. Although the material is deemed to be accurate and reliable, we do not make any representations as to its accuracy or completeness and as a result, there is no guarantee it is not without errors.

As your trusted advisor, I am sending you the Manhattan Mortgage Company Mortgage Weekly Update because I am committed to keeping you updated on the economic events that impact interest rates and how they may affect you.

In the unlikely event that you no longer wish to receive these valuable market updates, please USE THIS LINK or email: ejarrett@manhattanmortgage.com

If you prefer to send your removal request by mail the address is:

Eve Robin Jarrett
Manhattan Mortgage
75 Main Street, 2nd Floor
East Hampton, NY 11937
The Manhattan Mortgage Company is the copyright owner or licensee of the content and/or information in this email, unless otherwise indicated. The Manhattan Mortgage Company does not grant to you a license to any content, features or materials in this email. You may not distribute, download, or save a copy of any of the content or screens except as otherwise provided in our Terms and Conditions of Membership, for any purpose.

Weekly Mortgage Update

Monday, March 15th, 2010

If you can’t see the newsletter, or would like to view it online, use this link If you have received this newsletter indirectly and would like to be added to our weekly distribution list, use this link
Eve Robin Jarrett
MANAGING DIRECTOR
Senior Mortgage Consultant
Manhattan Mortgage
Office: 631-324-1555 x 25
Blackberry: 631-697-3366
e-Fax: 631-514-3654
Email: EJarrett@manhattanmortgage.com

For the week of Mar 15, 2010 // Vol. 8, Issue 11
Last Week in Review

“IF WE HAD NO WINTER…THE SPRING WOULD NOT BE SO PLEASANT.” 17th-Century poet Anne Bradstreet’s words ring true not only for the seasons, but also for last week’s Retail Sales numbers. Just days before Sunday’s “spring forward” into Daylight Savings Time, the retail sector looked to be unfreezing and showing at least a little spring in its step.

As you can see in the chart below, Retail Sales for February were reported last Friday at 0.3%, which was better than the previous month’s reading and much better than the -0.2% expected. Despite the good news, however, we need to keep in mind that it will be subject to future revisions – just like we saw in Friday’s report, in which last month’s decent 0.5% reading was revised sharply lower to just 0.1%.

———————–
Chart: Retail Sales (Month-Over-Month)

The better-than-expected Retail Sales was good news for the economy, but it could also lead to inflation trouble ahead. Remember, inflation is the archenemy of Bonds. Just last week, fears of inflation in China pressured Bonds around the globe. And here in the US, a number of Fed members have already mentioned inflation as an increasing concern.

And it isn’t just Fed officials who have been warning against inflation; investors around the globe are having increased doubts. Massive debt and massive balance sheet expansion – combined with near zero interest rates for a long period of time – will no doubt conjure a recipe for inflation.

The question is this: Once inflation rears its ugly head…will the Fed have the courage and the will to kill the monster by tightening policy, amidst enormous political pressure not to do so? As you’ll see in the Forecast section below, the next Fed meeting is taking place this week, and the Policy Statement released on Tuesday will garner intense scrutiny.

WHILE THE ECONOMY HAS BEEN SHOWING SOME SIGNS OF RECOVERY LATELY, MANY FOLKS STILL NEED HELP IMPROVING THEIR OWN FINANCIAL PICTURES. CHECK OUT THE MORTGAGE MARKET GUIDE VIEW ARTICLE BELOW FOR A VIDEO FEATURING FIVE WAYS TO GET OUT DEBT FASTER.

Forecast for the Week

There’s a lot of news on tap for this week, starting off right away Monday with the Empire State Index, Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization. These reports will give us a look at the manufacturing sector – and any bad news could certainly shake up the markets.

We’ll also see an update on the health of the new construction sector of the housing market, with reports on Building Permits and Housing Starts coming on Tuesday.

Perhaps the biggest news of the week will be the inflation news carried in the Producer Price Index on Wednesday and the Consumer Price Index on Thursday. As stated above and in the chart below, hints of inflation fears have the potential to negatively impact the markets – and can quickly drive Bond prices lower and home loan rates higher. The news from these reports will be even more interesting, since they come just after the Fed’s Monetary Policy and Fed Funds Rate decision on Tuesday…and many members of the Fed have lately been expressing their growing concerns about inflation. The Policy Statement following the Fed meeting is always dissected carefully – but with the rising fears of the inflation genie escaping the bottle, this Statement takes on even more significance.

Remember: Overall, weak economic news normally causes money to flow out of Stocks and into Bonds, helping Bonds and home loan rates improve, while strong economic news normally has the opposite result.

As you can see in the chart below, inflation fears pushed Mortgage Bonds below two key technical levels last week…and those levels now may become “ceilings of resistance” for Bonds, making it harder for them to improve.

Chart: Fannie Mae 4.5%% Mortgage Bond (Friday Mar 12, 2010)

The Mortgage Market View…

5 Ways to Get Out of Debt Faster

Making smart choices with your money is always a good idea, but it’s especially important if you are working to become debt free. Check out this video from www.Kiplinger.com for 5 ways to get out of debt faster.

The Week’s Economic Indicator Calendar

Remember, as a general rule, weaker than expected economic data is good for rates, while positive data causes rates to rise.

Economic Calendar for the Week of March 15 – March 19
Date ET Economic Report For Estimate Actual Prior Impact
Mon. March 15 08:30 Empire State Index Mar 23.45 24.91 Moderate
Mon. March 15 09:15 Capacity Utilization Feb 72.3% 72.6% Moderate
Mon. March 15 09:15 Industrial Production Feb 0.0% 0.9% Moderate
Tue. March 16 08:30 Building Permits Feb 602K 622K Moderate
Tue. March 16 08:30 Housing Starts Feb 570K 591K Moderate
Tue. March 16 02:15 FOMC Meeting .25% .25% HIGH
Wed. March 17 10:30 Crude Inventories 3/13 NA 1.43M Moderate
Wed. March 17 08:30 Producer Price Index (PPI) Feb -0.2% 1.4% Moderate
Wed. March 17 08:30 Core Producer Price Index (PPI) Feb 0.1% 0.3% Moderate
Thu. March 18 08:30 Core Consumer Price Index (CPI) Feb 0.1% 0.2% HIGH
Thu. March 18 08:15 Consumer Price Index (CPI) Feb 0.1% 0.2% Moderate
Thu. March 18 08:30 Jobless Claims (Initial) 3/13 450K 462K Moderate
Thu. March 18 10:00 Index of Leading Econ Ind (LEI) Feb 0.2% 0.3% Low
Thu. March 18 10:00 Philadelphia Fed Index Mar 18.0 17.6 HIGH

The material contained in this newsletter is provided by a third party to real estate, financial services and other professionals only for their use and the use of their clients. The material provided is for informational and educational purposes only and should not be construed as investment and/or mortgage advice. Although the material is deemed to be accurate and reliable, we do not make any representations as to its accuracy or completeness and as a result, there is no guarantee it is not without errors.

As your trusted advisor, I am sending you the Manhattan Mortgage Company Mortgage Weekly Update because I am committed to keeping you updated on the economic events that impact interest rates and how they may affect you.

In the unlikely event that you no longer wish to receive these valuable market updates, please USE THIS LINK or email: ejarrett@manhattanmortgage.com

If you prefer to send your removal request by mail the address is:

Eve Robin Jarrett
Manhattan Mortgage
75 Main Street, 2nd Floor
East Hampton, NY 11937
The Manhattan Mortgage Company is the copyright owner or licensee of the content and/or information in this email, unless otherwise indicated. The Manhattan Mortgage Company does not grant to you a license to any content, features or materials in this email. You may not distribute, download, or save a copy of any of the content or screens except as otherwise provided in our Terms and Conditions of Membership, for any purpose.

LUXURY REAL ESTATE BACK IN THE GAME

Wednesday, March 10th, 2010

WEEKLY MORGAGE MARKET UPDATE

Monday, March 1st, 2010

MORTGAGE MARKET WEEKLY

Monday, March 1st, 2010

you can’t see the newsletter, or would like to view it online, use this link If you have received this newsletter indirectly and would like to be added to our weekly distribution list, use this link
Eve Robin Jarrett
MANAGING DIRECTOR
Senior Mortgage Consultant
Manhattan Mortgage
Office: 631-324-1555 x 25
Blackberry: 631-697-3366
e-Fax: 631-514-3654
Email: EJarrett@manhattanmortgage.com

For the week of Mar 01, 2010 // Vol. 8, Issue 9
Last Week in Review

“LIKE SLUGGISH WATERS THROUGH A MARSH…” The poet Sir Walter Scott wasn’t talking about the economic recovery, but his words paint a pretty vivid picture…and after last week’s economic reports, perhaps a pretty accurate one on the state of the recovery.

Last week’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) report showed that the economy grew 5.9% in the 4th quarter of 2009, which was in line with expectations and the best GDP reading in more than 6 years – which on the surface, sounds like a great number. However, the gains came from rebuilding of inventory and very modest business spending – not from consumer spending. The biggest component of GDP is consumer spending and the revised number on that front came in lower than expected, and far worse than the 3rd Quarter of 2009, when the government’s Cash for Clunkers program temporarily boosted sales.

On the housing front, Existing Home Sales for January were reported at 5.05 Million units, which was less than expectation of 5.44 Million. As you can see from the chart below, Existing Home Sales have now declined for two consecutive months. New Home Sales for January were also reported below expectations last week.

Odds are that inclement weather affected the housing market negatively in January – since people are less likely to go house hunting in the midst of snowstorms and freezing temperatures. But in any case, last week’s data demonstrated that the housing market remains a bit lethargic.

The good news is that today’s affordable home prices and amount of supply on the market – not to mention low rates and the government’s Homebuyers Tax Credit – present tremendous opportunities for homebuyers who are looking for a great deal.

———————–
Chart: Existing Home Sales (By Month)

So how do consumers feel about the economy? Last week, we got a look at two different reports…and both indicated that consumers don’t share the rosy outlook of politicians and the media. Consumer Confidence was reported at 46.0, which was much lower than expectations of 55.0. In addition, the University of Michigan reported that Consumer Sentiment also fell in February. Both reports pointed to ongoing concerns over employment as a major reason for the drop in consumer attitudes about the economy.

To help make ends meet during the recession, some consumers have turned to earning cash as a landlord. If you or someone you know is considering doing the same, read the view article below for important advice to help make sure you’re successful!

Forecast for the Week

This will be a big week of news, starting off right away Monday morning with reports on Personal Income and Personal Spending. We’ll also get a look at the Core Personal Consumption Expenditure (PCE), which is the Fed’s favorite gauge of inflation.

As if that weren’t enough news for one day, we’ll also see the Institute for Supply Management Index on Monday. This is the king of all manufacturing indices and is considered the single best snapshot of the factory sector, so the markets will be paying attention to this report.

Toward the end of the week, we’ll get another look at employment and housing with the reports on Initial Jobless Claims and Pending Home Sales on Thursday.

Finally, the week ends with a bang when the official Jobs Report is released. This report includes the latest government data on job losses and the unemployment rate, as well as the average work week and hourly earnings. With the ongoing concerns over the struggling job market, it will be important to get a current read on the situation.

Remember: Weak economic news normally causes money to flow out of Stocks and into Bonds, helping Bonds and home loan rates improve, while strong economic news normally has the opposite result.

As you can see in the chart below, Mortgage Bonds were able to rally last week on weak housing numbers and the struggling jobs market, resulting in improved home loan rates. I’ll be watching carefully in the week ahead to see if Bonds and home loan rates can build on their positive momentum.

Chart: Fannie Mae 4.5%% Mortgage Bond (Friday Feb 26, 2010)

The Mortgage Market View…

Being a Successful Landlord

These days, some homeowners are choosing to rent out all or part of their home to help pay for their mortgage costs. But being a successful landlord is more than just sitting back and collecting the rent. Here are some tips to help if you ever choose to become a landlord.

Charge a Fair Price: All real estate is local, and the best and quickest way to success is to know your marketplace and what you can expect to charge for a fair rent in your area. Some things you can do to determine a fair price include studying local classified ads, scouring the Internet, and finding out what neighbors are charging for rent.

Write the Right Ad: Getting the right tenant is even more important than picking the right price to charge. Attract the right tenants with ad phrases such as “good credit and references,” “no pets,” “no smokers,” etc.

Create a Thorough Application Process: Be sure to require proof of identity, past addresses and landlord contact information, employment information, and references. Also, ask questions like how many people will be living with the applicant and how long they plan to rent.

Check References EVERY Time: Call their previous landlords and ask if the rent was paid on time. Find out how the property was left when they vacated. Were the tenants loud and troublesome? Did they complain a lot? Did they report small repairs in a timely manner? It’s easier to avoid a bad tenant now than to try and evict one later.

A Final Creative Idea: Before signing the deal, make an unexpected visit to your prospective tenants’ current apartment or residence. You will get a good look at how they keep their home as it is likely to be the way they keep yours.

And Always Ask the Experts: Be sure to check with your tax professional to make sure you file your taxes correctly and to see if there are any rebates or other benefits you qualify for.

Some people choose to be landlords, while others have it thrust upon them due to market conditions. Either way, taking the steps mentioned here will help make the experience more successful for everyone involved.

The Week’s Economic Indicator Calendar

Remember, as a general rule, weaker than expected economic data is good for rates, while positive data causes rates to rise.

Economic Calendar for the Week of March 01 – March 05
Date ET Economic Report For Estimate Actual Prior Impact
Mon. March 01 01:00 Personal Income Jan 0.4% 0.4% Moderate
Mon. March 01 01:00 Personal Spending Jan 0.4% 0.2% Moderate
Mon. March 01 01:00 Personal Consumption Expenditures and Core PCE Jan 0.1% 0.1% HIGH
Mon. March 01 01:00 Personal Consumption Expenditures and Core PCE YOY NA 1.5% HIGH
Mon. March 01 10:00 ISM Index Feb 58.0 58.4 HIGH
Wed. March 03 08:15 ADP National Employment Report Feb -35K -22k HIGH
Wed. March 03 02:00 Beige Book Moderate
Wed. March 03 10:00 ISM Services Index Feb 51.0 50.5 Moderate
Thu. March 04 08:30 Productivity Q4 6.2% 6.2% Moderate
Thu. March 04 10:00 Pending Home Sales Jan 1.7% 1.0% Moderate
Thu. March 04 08:30 Jobless Claims (Initial) 2/27 NA 496K Moderate
Fri. March 05 08:30 Unemployment Rate Feb 9.8% 9.7% HIGH
Fri. March 05 08:30 Hourly Earnings Feb 0.2% 0.2% HIGH
Fri. March 05 08:30 Non-farm Payrolls Feb -20K -20K HIGH
Fri. March 05 08:30 Average Work Week Feb 33.7 33.9 HIGH

The material contained in this newsletter is provided by a third party to real estate, financial services and other professionals only for their use and the use of their clients. The material provided is for informational and educational purposes only and should not be construed as investment and/or mortgage advice. Although the material is deemed to be accurate and reliable, we do not make any representations as to its accuracy or completeness and as a result, there is no guarantee it is not without errors.

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Eve Robin Jarrett
Manhattan Mortgage
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East Hampton, NY 11937
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