JCKC Realty

Real estate office located in Sturbridge, Massachusetts. Articles and blog posts located on the Internet.

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Ten Myths of Real Estate Investing


Even with all of the books and other materials on the market today that detail exactly how one goes about investing in real estate, there is still a great deal of mystique around the whole business. Mystique breeds fear. When people don’t understand a thing, whether that thing is a society from halfway around a planet, a species that doesn’t really resemble people or dogs or other animals they are accustomed to, or buying real estate, they become afraid. Sometimes they want to destroy a thing that frightens them. Sometimes they simply want to avoid it. Nine times out of 10, though, they will make up something about it. That’s why there are so many myths about real estate investing. Even intelligent, educated people believe these myths without so much as a second thought.

Let’s look at a few of those myths surrounding investment property, see if you have any swimming around in your head, and fish them out, shall we?


Myth No. 1: Only the disgustingly rich can get into real estate investing. Very popular assumption, but not true. In fact, a lot of disgustingly rich people got that way by investing in real estate. Rich Dad, Poor Dad guy Robert Kiyosaki said he was dirt poor when he started looking at investment property. There are things like bank loans and investors that can get you over the rough parts of buying real estate.


Myth No. 2: You have to be born into a family of real estate moguls to understand investing in real estate. Another falsehood. That’s like saying you have to be born into a family of brain surgeons to understand brain surgery. What you do have to do, in order to understand real estate investing, is study real estate. There are plenty of books and experts out there to help you along your way in buying real estate. Learn something about the business and then buy some investment property.


Myth No. 3: If you’re not extremely confident and smooth while buying real estate, people will see through you and you will fail. That may be true if you’re trying to manipulate them into believing something that isn’t true. But when investing in real estate, you are simply trying to look for a good deal. In real estate investing, you always have the power to walk away from a piece of investment property that doesn’t suit you. You can even stutter you way through the whole thing if you like.


Myth No. 4: In real estate investing, you have to know somebody to get your foot in the door. Not really. Of course, the more people you know, the more information about hot investment property will naturally come your way. It’s called networking. You can always meet people, just like you can always learn things.


Myth No. 5: You have to be a seasoned negotiator and a smooth operator to be successful investing in real estate. Seasoned negotiators are those who have been buying real estate for a long time. In order to have done something for 10 years, you have to first actually do something for 10 years. Which means that, for a while, you are a newbie at handling investment property. That is unavoidable. Everyone has to start somewhere. Practice real estate investing long enough and you will be a seasoned negotiator. You may even become a smooth operator.


Myth No. 6: You have to be a real estate investing expert. There is no way you are going to become an expert without first investing in real estate. You’ve heard of getting your feet wet? You have to just get in there and start buying real estate. It’s good to read a few books before starting, but there is no way you are going to be able to learn everything about investment property from books. Experience is the best teacher.


Myth No. 7: Investing in real estate is a big gamble. Sadly, people do approach real estate investing as though they were playing at the Roulette wheel in Vegas. These are the people who lose. When you start buying real estate, you need to learn as much as possible and plan your purchases to give yourself the best opportunity to succeed. Sure, some people will be better than others at finding great investment property. Those people will probably make more money. But they aren’t simply guessing. They are getting to know the markets and purchasing accordingly.


Myth No. 8: You can’t afford to make mistakes in real estate investing. Anyone who tells you that you can’t make a mistake isn’t being very realistic. It is human nature to make mistakes. It is inevitable. Try to minimize your mistakes when buying real estate, sure, but then use them to teach yourself how to approach investment property. Mistakes are your best teachers, and your most valuable assets.


Myth No. 9: One bad deal will sink you financially. If the deal is bad enough, sure. It could. But in learning how to approach investing in real estate, you should have learned not to sink everything you have into one deal when buying real estate. You should also learn that even a bad deal can make you some money. Aside from that, spend the money that you can actually afford to lose.


Myth No. 10: Real estate investing is just the latest get-rich-quick fad. If approached properly, investing in real estate isn’t a get-rich-quick anything. It is a methodical process of building your wealth. Ask Donald Trump.


Don’t let anyone feed you these myths. There is nothing mystical about investing in real estate. Buying real estate is simply a process, just like anything else. Investment property is big business, and it wouldn’t be if it were all a gamble.

Buying Real Estate Successfully in Phoenix, Arizona


If you want to purchase a home in the Phoenix area, a skillful Phoenix real estate agent can make your goal so much easier to achieve. A knowledgeable Phoenix realtor knows the steps to take to make sure that you are successful in buying Phoenix real estate.

The first thing to do is find a realtor who focuses solely on buying homes. With nothing else to distract him or her, your agent can focus on finding you the best home to meet your needs. You agent should consult with you to determine what you need and want in a home. Then your Phoenix realtor should help you with all of the different loan options that are available to you from your lender, and answer your questions. You will also expect your agent to position your offer for success, and thus he or she should assist in getting your loan pre-approved and obtaining a Loan Status Report, a required report for your Arizona Purchase Contract.


After your agent has determined what kind of house you would like and what the price range is, he or she can then begin to search for the perfect property. New properties are listed daily, and so you will want an agent who is on top of the search and daily checks the new listings, matching them to your desired criteria, in order to focus the search and find your dream home. Your real estate agent should also set up tours for you of prospective properties, and help save you time by previewing properties for you, reporting back to you often.


Finding a perfect home is only half the story. In order to live there, you need an experienced Phoenix realor who knows how to negotiate so that you can obtain the property. You need someone with a clear understanding of the Phoenix home market in the area where you want to buy, and can use this information to come up with a successful offer on the home. Your agent will then negotiate the offer with the seller. You want someone with your best interests in mind when it comes to this important stage in home buying, and an experienced agent you can trust is crucial.


Once your offer has been accepted, you want an agent who still stays in the game, because there is a lot that has to happen before closing. You want a realtor who will be there to make sure all of the inspections and repairs get done properly, and that the paperwork with the lender and the title company is proceeding smoothly, so that your interests are protected all the way through to closing and even beyond. A good realtor means successful home buying.

Domain Name Appraisals: How Valuable is Your Domain Name?


Fifteen years ago, your assets might have included your home, your beach house and even your office building, but not we’re talking about Internet real estate. Millions of people have registered domain names, many of which are growing in value every day. Just how valuable is your domain name? And how do you get a domain name appraisal?

Just because you have a valuable domain name doesn’t mean that you’ll be able to profit from it in the future. For one thing, we don’t know how the landscape of the Internet will change over the next decade or two, and for another, what’s valuable now might not be worth pennies in just six months. So don’t count on domain name purchases to make you rich, but guard your Internet real estate just in case. It might also be a good idea to get your domain name appraised every once in a while.


The first thing that is considered when appraising your domain name is the extension. A .com domain name is going to be decidedly more valuable than a domain name with a .net or .biz extension. Some people contend that .org and .net extensions are just as valuable as .com, but you’ll automatically make more money selling a .com name.


The next thing that helps determine the appraisal of your domain name is the commercial value of the name itself. For example, a domain name like StocksandBonds.com is going to be more commercially relevant than StockAdviceFromSteve.com. In the first example, the domain name is specific but can also be used by a wide variety of owners. In the second example, the domain wouldn’t make much sense unless someone named Steve was running and operating it.


The commercial aspect of your domain name appraisal should also involve the commercial appeal of the name. How many people are searching for the subject matter of your website each month? For instance, far more people search for information on weddings each day than on plumbing or Bermuda grass. Knowing this, a domain name having to do with weddings will be instantly more valuable than one about buying, selling or growing grass. It’s just common sense.


Another factor in domain name appraisals is the length of the domain name. It is much easier to remember a website with the URL Cars.com than it is to remember CarsAndTrucksAndVans.com. However, length should not be sacrificed for logic, as a domain name that doesn’t make sense isn’t worth it. You might be able to get rjfk.com fairly easily, but it won’t be valuable because the name doesn’t make sense. The same goes for domains with numbers; they are significantly less valuable than domains without numbers.


Hyphenation is another factor that you should consider when determining the value of your domain name. GreatBuys.com is going to fetch far more money than Great-Buys.com, simply because most people can’t remember the hyphen and will wind up at a competitor’s site.


Knowing this, then, how do you find out how valuable your domain name really is? One way is to put it up for auction and see how high the bids actually get. This is dangerous, however, because if you decide to auction your domain name, you’ll usually be bound to selling it to the highest bidder, even if no one wants to pay more than $20. Another way is to use one of the numerous domain name appraisal sites on the Internet. Here are a few examples:







You can usually get an estimated domain name appraisal for free, but if you want a scientific value, you’ll need to pay anywhere from $20 to $200. You might be surprised how much your domain is offered, however, which is definitely a plus. AssociatedContent.com, for example, is estimated to be valued at more than $833,000 by LeapFish.com.

Could You Have a House Loan Modification After Bankruptcy?


The newest real estate foreclosure trend was the reason why millions of American home owners scrambled for extra inexpensive terms for mortgage loans . Whether it is an increasing adjustable rate, failure of equity, diminished earnings, or simply a bad method to lend cash, people will need revising of loans. Sad to say , that there are only few people who capable to accomplish the loans using the usual method of refinancing the mortgage loan .


House loan modification occurs the mortgage company consents to switch the terms in agreement with demand of the debtor . Most of loan modifications come about once the borrower desires a decrease in payment and the minimization and loss division from the lender accept to the conditions . Loans modification turned out to be an important tool employed to avoid foreclosures .


Bankruptcy is an essential lawful action filed every time a customer will not be capable of give his/her monthly amortization. All civil procedures contrary to the defaulter while in insolvency is formally stopped by declaring bankruptcy . As stated from the Bankruptcy Law, lenders should suspend any law suit from the consumer which entails foreclosures. But the lender has still the alternative of filing exemption from instinctive stay. When the request is awarded the mortgage lender is approved to continue using the property foreclosures act.


Bankruptcy does not continuously delay or stop foreclosure. It does not essentially permit the homeowner to stay in possession of the house until they pay the debts payable for the lender. However, in most of cases, bankruptcy will deter the foreclosure.


Delinquency with your home loan can not be prevented particularly you suffer economic crisis in your life. The foreclosure break out has formed a notable power for homeowners considering that lending institutions do not desire for more houses. Liquidity started to be a serious matter with bank facilities; thus they are giving and settling for house loan modifications with lesser costs for homeowners. When you have filed bankruptcy, the lending bank will help you get the home loan modification and will also be given lower monthly obligations .


Do not get in despair after bankruptcy because home loan continue to be probable. Just try to find the best possible bank or any home loan company that can assist you that line of hope. Mortgage modification after bankruptcy is actually possible because there are plenty of finance companies that can help you with your problem .

Writing a Business Plan Free to Develop Real Estate Investing Success


Writing a business plan free is the first step in developing a successful real estate investing business. A variety of business plan tools are available at no cost via the Internet. Some focus specifically on the real estate industry while other programs provide templates that can be customized to suit the requirements of your business.

Writing a business plan free allows real estate investors the opportunity to establish business objectives. One of the primary objectives of any business plan is to develop a roadmap for success.


Strategic planning helps investors establish goals and develop a plan of action to achieve those goals. Real estate investors uncertain of their course can utilize strategy planning software to help determine the most profitable niche.


Most real estate software includes questionnaires about various types of real estate investments. Answering these questions can help investors determine if they are best suited for retail or commercial investments such as rental properties, wholesaling or house flipping.


Business plan software helps business owners stay focused on requirements of the business. For example, a startup company has different needs than an established enterprise.


Developing a real estate investing business plan requires time and commitment. This is of particular importance when establishing a plan to obtain startup capital or financing for expansion.


The average business plan consists of 20 to 30 written pages and includes financial projection charts and graphs. Most plans focus on seven topics including:


  1. The Executive Summary – The summary is a crucial element of any business plan. It is the first thing lenders, investors and potential business partners will review. The executive summary needs to be concise, while summarizing the overall plan. This section should include attention-grabbing information which entices the reader to review the remainder of the plan.


  1. Mission Statement – This section is reserved for presenting the focus of the business, what it stands for, the target market, and what sets this business apart from other real estate investing companies.


  1. Products and Services – Real estate investors should include detailed explanations of products and services offered. If you buy houses in a niche market, explain how these houses are purchased and the benefits offered to tenants or home buyers. If you specialize in helping homeowners facing hardships such as foreclosure or short sales, explain how your business solves their problem.


  1. Market Analysis – This section focuses on present and future real estate trends and should describe how the business will capitalize on those trends. Graphs and charts can be included to emphasize market analysis.


  1. Strategy and Implementation – Use this section to explain investment strategies and steps required to achieve them.


  1. Management Team – Whether your real estate business will be established as a sole proprietor, partnership, corporation or limited liability corporation, it is important to include a resume of each management team member; even if you are the only manager. Include each management team member’s qualifications, experience, and duties they will perform.


  1. Financial Projections – Since real estate is an unpredictable market, making financial projections can be challenging. Use information provided in previous sections to project future financials. If the business plan is used to obtain financing, include sales projections for a minimum of three years.


Writing a business plan can seem like a daunting task. Experts suggest working on one section at a time to make writing the plan more manageable. Real estate business plans are intended to provide insight for creating and expanding your business. They are not written in stone and should be reviewed on a regular basis to ensure you stay on track.

Interest Rates: Home Equity Lines of Credit No Longer Simple


Not long ago economists were recommending that homeowners should tap their equity to buy stocks. This is not a very good practice because if you risked your house before the dotcom crash you may have lost your home. For most everyone our home is our biggest cash reserve. It is like piggy bank and dipping into made financial sense when interest rates were at historic lows and home values were appreciating at double digit rates. This appreciation refilled the piggy bank. Now the market is soft and interest rates are up. With that being said is there any reason to dip into home equity?

Home equity lines of credit or HELOC is no longer cheap money. Rates may drop this year but recently the interest rate on this type of loan has been going up. At the avg. rate of 8.7% the interest only monthly payment on a $100,000 dollar HELOC loan is $725 vs. $387 when rates hit their lowest point almost 3 years ago.


You may end up owing more than you own. Lenders have made it possible for you to borrow 100% of your homes value. For example, during the housing boom home buyers that were stretching to afford a home financed the down payment with a HELOC. If you do this today and prices fall, your home loan could add up to more than what your home is worth. What happens if you have to sell for some reason? For starters you will have to pay a realtor 6% unless you are one yourself or a FSBO (for sale by owner). Then you will have to pay the difference out of pocket.


During the housing boom, homeowners financed luxurious upgrades with HELOC loans. Borrowers were confident that the run-up in their home’s value would outstrip the cost of upgrades. Now that appreciation has returned to normal or single digit appreciation you may not recoup everything you put into your home. You’re paying nearly 9% to make an investment that is not a sure thing.


Even though these facts are present you may want to tap your equity for the right reasons. It is simple to do and interest on any loan that is as much as $100,000 is tax deductible. If you are during renovations on a home you plan on staying in for a while or indefinitely then a HELOC loan is good. If you want to costs of high interest credit cards then again a HELOC isn’t bad.


Don’t be pressured by a lender or mortgage broker who says that waiting to take out a loan or line of credit will hinder you from borrowing as much.


Be a smart shopper. You can eliminate rate worries by locking in a fixed rate. Rates on old fashioned home equity loans are lower than what HELOC rates are today; 8.1% on average.

If you prefer the flexibility of a HELOC then take advantage of all competition among lenders. If you get HELOC payments debited from your checking account then this can lower payments by lowering the interest rate by half to a full percentage point.




First Person: The Pros and Cons of ‘Strategic Foreclosure’


*Note: This was written by a Yahoo! contributor. Do you have a real estate story that you’d like to share? Sign up with the Yahoo! Contributor Network to start publishing your own finance articles.

“Strategic foreclosure” is a term you’re likely to hear a lot about in the coming months. If reports are true that housing prices will continue to fall throughout the year, chances are homeowners will elect to walk away from their underwater mortgage even if they have enough money to pay loan installments.


Strategic foreclosure has been a hot topic of conversation within the real estate networks I participate in. It’s a controversial subject and responsible for plenty of forum flame wars. Some investors feel it is a brilliant financial strategy. Others think it is financial suicide, immoral, and unethical.


Until recently, strategic default has been used primarily by homeowners and investors with stellar credit who are fully capable of paying their mortgage. Instead of continuing to pay on real estate that is no longer worth the paper it’s written on they choose to stop making payments and force the bank to provide options. Banks aren’t willing to work with homeowners who can afford their payments. You can’t just call up the bank and say, “Hey, my house is worth $50,000 less than I owe you. Will you write that off and reduce my payments?” Instead, you have to stop paying before the bank will negotiate.


Many of the real estate investors I know are using this strategy to force banks into short sales, deed in lieu of foreclosure, or mortgage principal reduction. This can be a risky proposition, so those who elect to go down this path need to hope for the best and prepare for the worst.


While it may seem logical to voluntarily default on an underwater mortgage, take time to calculate the true costs. If it works and the bank offers a foreclosure prevention strategy that either allows you to short sale, return it using deed in lieu, or reduce the principal balance it might be a smart move. However, if the bank calls your bluff and commences with foreclosure it will tarnish your credit for quite some time. Anyone who has engaged in credit repair will tell you it’s a painfully slow process to boost FICO scores. Not only will you be unable to buy a house for at least a few years, you’ll pay through the nose when you do qualify for credit.


Lenders assess interest rates based on credit scores. The lower the score, the higher the interest. FICO scores can plummet by 100 points or more once foreclosure is reported to credit bureaus. Chances are insurance premiums will rise. Interest rates on credit cards will go up and credit limits reduced. It might be challenging to find a landlord willing to rent unless you pay first, last, and security deposit.


Subprime lending is a major player in the foreclosure fiasco, so banks have tightened lending criteria. In fact, a mortgage standards reform proposal is in the works that will make qualifying for a home loan even more difficult in the near future. While reduced FICO scores might not seem like an overwhelming challenge, they can become a mountain if your mortgage lender holds you responsible for monetary deficiencies. Most banks require homeowners to pay the difference between their loan balance and sale price. If you owe $200,000 and the house sells at auction for $170,000 you might be holding the bag for thirty grand.


When banks issue deficiency judgments they can take action to collect the debt. Usually this in the form of garnished wages. At minimum, the judgment remains on credit reports for up to 10 years after the debt is paid. Judgments can reduce credit scores that won’t rebound until removed.


A final consideration of strategic default is that of morals. Even when it makes perfect sense to go forward, most homeowners feel an ethical obligation to make good on their promise. They understood when they bought the property it carried risk. So, they are willing to ride it out and hope the market eventually turns around.


Only you can decide if strategic foreclosure is in your best interest. It may provide the mortgage relief required, but not without financial consequences. If you can afford the payments, you’ll have to search your moral database to decide if you can walk away guilt-free.


More from this contributor:

Is the Las Vegas Real Estate Market the Greatest Sin of All?

Improper Foreclosure Could Cripple Major Banks

ForeclosureGate: The Fed Investigates Wrongful Foreclosure


How to Reach Chinese Investors in Canada & United States?


Chinese speaking investors are the fastest growing investor communities in Canada  amp; United States. Increasing number of companies such as fund managers, real estate companies and mining companies are interested in reaching these communities.


You can observe this by looking at how many financial services companies are adding a Chinese language website as a way to attract customers. This ranges from HSBC, Scotiabank, Royal Bank of Canada to organizations like Toronto Stock Exchange and Nasdaq.


How do you reach Chinese investors in these markets?


Newspapers ‘” The main challenge for newspapers is duration. Advertisements can only last for a very short period of time, but advertorials can sometimes generate good level of interest on particular products.


Banners ‘” It may work sometimes, but usually only have limited exposure period, it is good for branding, but may not be the best way to promote certain investment opportunities.


Google Ad word ‘” Google Adword did not work well in the Chinese market, but in the English market.


Articles Marketing ‘” This is definitely the most active web marketing technique, we send out regular company updates, articles and this has generated significant number of responses; you can reach Chinese investors by posting on various Chinese language websites and forums based in North America.


Blogs ‘” This is also very cost-effective, I now write daily or at least weekly diaries ‘” and publish them on Chinese website, this has generated consistent traffic ‘” you may not get instant hits, but it will build up loyal subscribers over time. If you combine with Blog marketing, you can post articles on related financial blogs, and add comments on financial blogs. We had implemented this for some mutual funds and IPOs, and it has increased their traffic by more than 10 times in some cases.


Videos and Audios ‘” These are also very effective ways especially if you are conducting webinars or specific courses like investment strategies. One way to maximize this tool is to upload them on popular Chinese language news websites. You should also produce videos  amp; audios in Chinese language instead of having them in English.

Stanley NC Real Estate and Homes

For sale

Prior to the famous California gold rush, Stanley, North Carolina was populated with these seekers of quick fortune. Gold was discovered in a creek that feeds the Catawba River and the rush was on. These miners where the first to claim Stanley, NC properties in hopes of striking it rich. The gathering of these residents began the small Stanley’s Creek Community. The coming of the railroad cemented the settlers upon their Stanley real estate. With the rails comes prosperity. Despite the fact that the gold has “played out”, 3000 residents still reside in Stanley, NC homes.

Stanley, North Carolina homes for sale are still rich with history and stories of the past. One such event that placed Stanley on the map happened when France sent a famous botanist, Andre Michaux, to the area during the late 1700’s. During Michaux’s repeated visits he discovered and named the large leafed Magnolia tree, which has the largest leaves and flowers of any native Magnolia tree in North America. The leaves reach three feet long and one foot wide, and the flowers can be 18 inches in diameter. While searching through Stanley, NC homes for sale, ask if you have one of these rare beauties in your yard!


Stanley, North Carolina real estate was also home to the first man to fly an airplane at supersonic speed. Hubert Henry Hoover was the first to pilot the prototype Bell X-1 supersonic airplane, before Chuck Yeager was awarded with this achievement. Another famous moment in Stanley history came when a young girl was televised having open-heart surgery – in 1960! A Charlotte television station was experimenting with the early concept of reality TV and filmed and aired the procedure. Stanley, NC homes have been the residences of some amazing people. These and other stories can be experienced at the Brevard Station Museum where a collection of Stanley artifacts, photos and memorabilia are housed.


This small town in the southwestern part of the state has a varied geography of rolling hills typical of the Piedmont of North Carolina. Your Stanley real estate agent can match you with just the setting you are looking for from the available Stanley, NC listings. If you enjoy living in town and walking to the library or the café for lunch, there are Stanley houses that fit the bill. If you would like to try your hand at farming or gardening the fertile soil on the outskirts, Stanley homes for sale have this option. Regardless of your choice, you are sure to feel welcome in this friendly community rich with the history of its past.

Hickory NC Real Estate and Homes


The wood of the grand hickory tree is prized for its strength and flexibility. It has been the choice of wood for centuries in the making of tool handles, bows, wheel spokes and sporting equipment. It the premier choice for burning in fireplaces and wood stoves due to its high energy content, and is the favorite flavoring for smoking food. What has this to do with Hickory, North Carolina, you ask? The parallels are clear! This town is one of great strength of character and flexibility of spirit. The residents of Hickory properties display versatility and adaptability in their homes and community. They apply “high energy” toward the preservation and celebration of the Hickory real estate.

The remarkable and attractive town of Hickory, NC real estate is a feast for the eyes of those desiring the beauty of historic preservation. There are structures and landscapes dating back to the 1700’s. There are Empire, Federal and Victorian style homes standing as proudly today as they did over a hundred years ago. Contact your Hickory, NC real estate agent about touring the Waldensian Trail of Faith fortress, Murray’s Mill, Quaker Meadows and Bunker Hill Covered Bridge. The latter is the only remaining covered bridge in the world with the General Herman Haupt truss design. There is a very active Historical Association that is always looking for volunteers!


Among the Hickory, North Carolina homes in 1944, a miracle occurred. The deadly disease of polio had found its way into the town, and escalated to one of worse outbreaks ever recorded. The Hickory residents demonstrated their strength of character by building, staffing and equipping a children’s hospital in the short space of 54 hours! The residents occupying Hickory properties did not hide in their homes – they faced the problem head on with the community spirit that stills resides in the town today.


Interestingly, the wood found in Hickory (the town) plays an important role in the commerce. For centuries, the finest furniture makers and cabinetmakers have resided in Hickory, NC homes. One of the oldest and most respected furniture makers in the country, founded in 1902, still operates there today. The Hickory, North Carolina region produces an astounding 60% of the furniture made in the US. Also, 40% of the fiber optic cable production for the US comes from this region. From practical uses to artistic design, Hickory, NC homes for sale offer you the chance to be a part of this amazing town!