Friday, October 19, 2012

How Does the 3.8% ObamaCare Tax Affect Real Estate?

In an effort to keep everyone who has an interest in real estate informed, here are a couple of links to information about the Health Care Reform Act (aka ObamaCare) tax that a lot of people are talking, and have misconceptions, about. It is opposed by the National Association of Realtors. It was added  into the health care law at the last minute and was never considered in hearings. The tax will no doubt be debated during the upcoming tax reform debates in 2013..

This is a video of NAR's director of tax policy, Linda Goold, who does a great job of explaining how the tax will affect real estate sales.

Here is the Ten Top Things You Need to Know About the 3.8% Tax

Basically it will not affect 98% of real estate transactions. It may affect people who have rental income and gains from the sale of investments if they have an adjusted gross income of over $200,000 ($250,000 if married).


Wednesday, October 03, 2012

FHA Softens Condominium Lending Guidelines, But Barriers Remain

Condo Sales May Get Slight Boost, But Financing Rules Remain Tight
Responding to lender, condominium association and consumer outcry that the existing FHA condominium lending guidelines are too strict, the Federal Home Administration (FHA) on September 13, 2012 announced a round of changes which will hopefully make it easier for borrowers to qualify for FHA condo loans. The full FHA announcement can be found here.
While some of the changes are a step in the right direction, I think overall they are a mixed bag, as FHA left some of the most onerous provisions intact. I’m skeptical that these new changes will have a major impact on condominium sales, but of course, any loosening of the strict requirements is a good thing.
Condo Fee Delinquency Rule Increased to 60 Days Overdue
FHA is softening its stance on delinquent monthly condo fees and home owner association (HOA) dues. FHA is now allowing up to 15% of a project’s units to be 60-days delinquent on condo fees, up from just 30 days delinquent under the prior rule. This change acknowledges the depressed economy which has caused many condo unit owners to have trouble paying their condo fees. This is definitely a good change.
Expanded Investor Purchasing Allowed
Under the new rules, investors can come in and buy more units in a project than they could previously. They can now buy up to 50% of the project units, up from just 10% before, but with an important caveat:  the developer must convey at least 50% of the units to individual owners or be under contract as owner-occupied.
See the rest of the article here: FHA Softens Condominium Lending Guidelines, But Barriers Remain