HAFA Programs From Fannie Mae and Freddy Mac

Everyone understands that we are in the midst of a difficult recession and  struggling economy and it is effecting people all over the country. The unemployment rate is steadily on the rise and has an astounding effect on the real estate market.  

Thousands of  home owners are feeling the pinch and struggling to make their monthly mortgage and many owe more than their home is worth.  A home owner in this situation usually finds that their best option is to do a  “short sale,” in which their lender agrees to accept less than a full payoff to release the mortgage. Short sales is a solid option to foreclosure, it alleviates financial and emotional strain for all involved

There are programs designed to help,  HAFA is a Federally sponsored program that provides incentives to lenders that agree to short sales. Because short sales typically are a lengthy process, HAFA is hoping to streamline and standardize the short sale process. Unfortunately not all home owners will be eligible and not all lenders that participate in the program.

Recently both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac announced they will implement their own type of  HAFA Program and will be very similar to the original HAFA program. Their programs will work like this: distressed homeowners will need to apply for a mortgage modification under the federal HAMP program and the programs will then offer incentives to homeowners and lenders to complete a short sale such as  $3,000 in “relocation assistance” offered to homeowners for completing a short sale.


The Housing “Crisis”

For most of us, it’s been virtually impossible to ignore the alarming real estate headlines.  Everyday, we see newspapers and news programs that scream “Home Prices Plummeting!  Foreclosures Soaring!”  But is the housing “crisis” just a slight problem that has been blown out of proportion?


CNBC’s Dennis Kneale crunched the numbers, and has come to the conclusion that the word “crisis” is a bit of an overstatement as much of what is happening in today’s Madison real estate market (as well as nationally) is not as bad as it may seem when you really analyze the numbers.  He also believes much of what is happening is just a necessary market correction after years of rising prices and easy lending.  I would encourage you to watch this video posted last Friday to the CNBC site. You can see it by clicking here.   


What do you think about the Madison real estate market?  The national one?  I’d love to hear your opinions and comments.

The Dane County Farmer’s Market – Madison – It doesn’t Get Much Better!

It is impossible to list all the amazing things about the Farmer’s Market in Madison.  Being a realtor in Madison I see what kind of pull and attraction it has for Madison homeowners, residents and prospective real estate purchasers.  It is one of the largest Farmer’s Markets in the country and just filled with such incredible treats, produce, and “Madison atmosphere.”    Although it is open year round, it truly is something to see in the months when it is warm enough to be held outside; which is NOW!!

A few things that stick out about the Madison Farmer’s Market as well as all the others across the country.

  1.  It is green! Less gas getting products to market place is better for the environment and on our pockets since food that travels far tends to be higher in price!
  2.  Supporting our local farmers and economy. This is good for our Madison community and our Madison real estate market.
  3.  Less preservation and chemicals needed on our food since we can buy fresh from the local farms. That is good for our health and our environment.

So the big points for me on the Madison Farmer’s Market.  It is green and good for our community and Madison real estate market.

You can find more details on the Dane  County Farmer’s Market here.

Madison Home Builders Going Green

The Madison real estate market has been going through a number of changes as it begins to re-stabilize itself into a more normal market. Middleton and Madison home buyers have more inventories to select from and a bit more time to consider their decisions. This is really great for Madison area buyers, despite the headlines that continue to haunt of a real estate crash. This is not the only the change that we are seeing in Madison real estate though. A new series of projects has recently begun in an attempt to transform some of Madison’s homes into more energy efficient living spaces. Some of our local builders are going green and providing Green Built Home Makeovers that will make homes 50 to 75 percent more energy efficient. Recently, a $100,000 remodel was done as a donation on the east side of Madison. The group is planning to do one donation project a year in the Madison area in an attempt to raise awareness of this important cause. Some of the modifications made were hybrid heat pump systems, modern electrical systems, rooftop solar panels, and energy efficient appliances. The donation project was organized by Project Home which is a non-profit organization that works towards bettering housing for low to moderate income residents in Madison and surrounding areas. They mostly concentrate in the Dane and Green counties. If this causes a chain reaction, this great cause could truly change the face of Madison area real estate.