Nov 09

Meeting for November 9th, 2017 Where to find the Deals

Gina Prieskorn-Thomas, from Darkhorse Dynamics, Inc., will be the featured speaker at the November 9th ACRE Meeting. Her topic will be “Where to Find the Deals” Image may contain: 1 person, closeup

bio:

Gina Prieskorn-Thomas has 18 years of experience in real estate, with the past sixteen being the owner of Darkhorse Dynamics Inc. As a seasoned real estate expert, she buys and sells properties, though this simple description only tells part of the story. She frequently conducts research into the housing market to find the best deals on homes that have not been foreclosed, and she travels to auctions to purchase houses on the cheap.

As a dedicated and adept member of the real estate industry, Ms. Prieskorn-Thomas attributes her success to her hard work, networking skills, knowledge of her work and field, and ability to compromise and find solutions. She became involved in her profession after gaining experience as a real estate agent for 12 years. Through this experience, she saw the ways that the market inclined and declined, and she observed the first-time buyers program.  She also works for Guild Mortgage.

Ms. Prieskorn-Thomas received a bachelor’s degree in political science and pre-law from The University of New Mexico. In recognition of her talent and skill, she was named a Rookie of the Year, Entrepreneur Woman of the Year, and Woman of the Year, the latter distinction having been given by the Albuquerque Business Magazine. When she is not at work, she enjoys spending time with her grandchildren, tending her gardens, and volunteering at many different organizations. She is an avid Cowboys fan.

ALSO Jeannette Whittaker of the Law Offices of Jeannette M Whittaker, LLC a local Real Estate Attorney

The Law Office of Jeannette M. Whittaker LLC offers consultations, advice and legal representation to property owners, buyers, sellers, investors, lenders, lienholders, borrowers and brokers in all types of residential and commercial real estate matters, including  mortgage  foreclosures, mechanic’s lien foreclosures, ranch foreclosures, loan modifications, short sales, deed in lieu, settlement facilitation, redemptions, title curative actions,  lien priority disputes, easement disputes, boundary disputes, real estate litigation, quiet title, partition, condemnation, tax sales, seller non-disclosure issues, replevins, residential construction disputes, and evictions. Real Estate Attorney Jeannette M. Whittaker has represented institutional lenders for more than 16 years, and knows the policies, procedures and other factors driving lender behavior.  This insight has proven to be extremely valuable to the firm’s clients.  Clients have appreciated her ability to obtain results.  

The Law Office of Jeannette M. Whittaker LLC prepares and negotiates real estate purchase agreements, leases, and handles real estate closings.   The firm also provides document preparation services including deeds, real estate contracts,  mortgages, easement agreements, and joint venture agreements. 

         

 

Permanent link to this article: https://acrenm.com/wp/2017/11/meeting-for-november-9th-2017/

Aug 15

A Beginners Guide to Real Estate Owner Financing

A Beginners Guide to Real Estate Owner Financing

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Owner financing is a popular alternative to traditional bank financing. This is due to the fact that it offers a number of advantages for both the seller and the buyer. Read on to find out exactly what real estate owner financing is, it’s major benefits and how to ensure an equitable and legally compliant deal.

 

What Is Real Estate Owner Financing?

With real estate owner financing instead of the buyer obtaining a loan from a bank, the seller lends the purchase price to the buyer. A promissory note is then created with a set interest rate, repayment schedule and details of what will occur in the case of default.

Advantages of Owner Financing for Buyers

Avoids Credit Issues – The FHA recently tightened lending criteria for financial institutions. These new lending criteria mean that only borrowers with a minimum FICO score of 500 will qualify for a loan. In addition, borrowers with a FICO score of 580 or lower, will need to put down a minimum down payment of 10%. These new restrictions mean that it is becoming harder than ever before for many people to obtain traditional bank lending. Seller financing does not require credit checks meaning that it provides an alternative way for people to become home owners.

No Loan Costs – Loan costs including underwriting charges, credit reports, origination fees and other loan costs added onto the original loan by financial institutions are avoided when owner financing is used. This can make a less expensive option for financing a house purchase.

Faster Closing – By avoiding traditional lenders closing can on the property can be completed faster and more seamlessly. Essentially, this is because a third party – the bank – is removed from the deal. Once the buyer and seller have agreed to terms closing can take place.

Advantages of Owner Financing For Sellers

Potential for higher returns – Owner financing offers the possibility of higher returns than they may otherwise be able to obtain. This is especially true given the long term, low interest rate environment. At the same time this return is relatively risk free for the owner as it is backed by the property. If the buyer defaults the owner can simply take back possession of the house that they sold.

Above market prices – Because the owner is providing the opportunity for buyers to purchase a home which they may not otherwise qualify, there is the potential to also to sell the property for above the market price that they would otherwise receive.

Sell the property faster – Finding a buyer, who will also be able to obtain traditional financing, can mean that a property can sit on the market for a lengthy period of time

How to Avoid Potential Problems with Owner Financing

Some sellers are wary of using owner financing because of concerns around clear title to the property or purchasing a property without utilities. These problems can be avoided by taking a few basic precautions.

It is recommended that buyers use the service of a title company to determine whether the seller has clear title to the property. If the buyer is purchasing from a subdivision the title company can check to make sure that the property conforms to the law. If the buyer purchases the property using the services of a real estate professional, the law requires that disclosure in regards to the utilities are made. Lastly a memorandum can be made at the county where the property is located so that there is a legal record of the transfer of title.

Owner financing can be a great way to get prospective buyers into a home that they may not otherwise be able to buy, and allow owners to sell a property on more advantageous terms. By taking a few basic precautions owner financing can be arranged on terms which are fair for both parties.

Permanent link to this article: https://acrenm.com/wp/2015/08/a-beginners-guide-real-estate-owner-financing/

Jul 25

New home sales fall nearly 7 percent in June

house imageNew home sales fall nearly 7 percent in June

 New home sales unexpectedly declined in June, bucking a trend of recent positive news in the housing sector. The Commerce Department said Friday that sales of new single-family homes fell 6.8 percent from May to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 482,000. Wall Street had expected sales to rise to a 548,500 annual rate, according to… Continue reading

Permanent link to this article: https://acrenm.com/wp/2015/07/new-home-sales-fall-nearly-7-percent-in-june/

Jul 16

Vacant Property Protection

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Have you just bought a property that you are going to fix up? Not sure how to protect your work, your tools, and your materials for your rehab. There have been a rash of burglaries in Albuquerque and Rio Rancho of vacant properties and it is always best to know ways of protecting your investment.

 

 

Here are some simple tips to make the property less of a target:

  • Get all broken windows and doors fixed. This makes it a bit harder for someone to break in and makes the place look cared for.
  • Put up blinds or curtains on all windows. This makes it harder for someone to look in and see that there is stuff to steal. Also it make it look occupied, no window coverings is a big red flag that a place is vacant.
  • Have timers on some lights inside the property to make it seem occupied.
  • If you have a lockbox for contractors put it in the back of the property. This way it is not readily visible to thieves and less likely to be broken into to get a key. Also if the box is in front, it signals that a person isn’t home all the time and is leaving a way for others to get in.
  • Have a neighbor or someone else look out for flyers and things someone might place on the door or driveway and have them picked up so it is not an indicator to thieves to hit this property.
  • Have a portable security system with door and motion sensors. This will report when someone has broken in and could save you from a lot of damage or theft since they would have a limited period of time to grab stuff.
  • Don’t have all your materials and tools on-site. Bring what you need when you need it. This way there is less to steal. An alternative if you need everything on site is a storage container with a lock that is hard to break.

Permanent link to this article: https://acrenm.com/wp/2015/07/vacant-property-protection/

Jul 14

Real Estate Q&A

Real estate Q&A: Does landlord need to provide heat?

Q: We recently moved into a new rental with three window air conditioning units and no heater. We asked what we would do for heat this winter and were told that we would need to buy a portable heater. Isn’t that something the landlord must provide? —Rita A: The first step is to check your lease.… Continue reading

Permanent link to this article: https://acrenm.com/wp/2015/07/348/

Jul 11

Real estate Q&A: Mortgage changes could add weeks to closing process

Real estate Q&A: Mortgage changes could add weeks to closing process

Q: We are looking for a new home and just heard that the way we will get our mortgage is about to change. We heard that this will make it harder to get a loan and are now nervous. What is going on? — Jonny A: In response to the mortgage crisis, Congress passed the Dodd-Frank… Continue reading

Permanent link to this article: https://acrenm.com/wp/2015/07/343/

Jul 10

Real estate Q&A: Inspection key when buying renovated house

Q: I want to buy a property from an investor, who bought it at a foreclosure auction and then renovated the property. The seller accepted my offer price but wants me to sign a lengthy addendum, which essentially makes this an “as-is” sale and releases him from any responsibility for the renovations. Should I sign this?… Continue reading

Permanent link to this article: https://acrenm.com/wp/2015/07/real-estate-qa-inspection-key-when-buying-renovated-house/

May 24

Raising Private Money in New Mexico

Raising Private Money in New Mexico (1st in a 4 part Series)

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A few months ago we had Mr. Alan Cowgill give ACRE a webinar on Private Money. His area of expertise is the process of acquiring money from private individuals to fund real estate projects, from Federal and State registration to investor maintenance. His first topic was Federal and State regulation. In my blog series, I’d like to expand on this topic and provide a bit more information than was covered in his brief presentation. I have attended Mr. Cowgill’s 4-day boot camp on the subject, and have his materials. Keep in mind that I am not an Attorney, nor am I giving legal advice. You should always seek the advice of competent legal counsel before engaging in any activity relating to investing or soliciting investors.

Remember that Mr. Cowgill spoke about how in most States, there is no local regulation on these activities, with the exception of 13 States. Guess what? New Mexico is one of the 13! And, New Mexico has some of the most stringent State Regulation in the country. In this week’s blog, I will provide a brief overview of the Federal side, and in future blogs, I’ll touch on the SEC and New Mexico State regulations.

Federal Landscape –   The Federal agency that regulates investment activities and the advertising of investment activities is the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The SEC requires all companies to register the securities they issue. However, there are several exemptions to this requirement. When you “register” with the SEC, you will apply for one of these exceptions, according to the level of investment activity you intend to engage in. According to the research Mr. Cowgill has done, there are 2 tests to see if you need to register with the SEC.

  • Do you cross state lines?
  • Do you advertise to strangers (General Solicitation)?

In a nutshell, the former means that if you live and invest in New Mexico, and all of your investors live in New Mexico, you do not need to register with the SEC. However, if any of these activities cross State lines, you may have to register with the SEC.

The latter is a bit more involved. Believe it or not, the Federal Government has a very specific definition of “strangers”. According to them, a “stranger” is someone that is not a “Family, Friend, or Associate”. We all know that “Family” is someone that is blood related. So what does the government consider a “Friend” or “Associate”? Easy. A “Friend” or “Associate” is someone that you have known for a minimum of 30 days, and have had at least 3 personal contacts with. This is called the Three Touch Rule. It means that after 30 days, and 3 personal contacts, you can turn a “stranger” into a “Friend” or “Associate”. A personal contact is basically defined as a conversation. A face to face meeting, a phone conversation, or an email exchange (where an email is sent AND the other party responds) are all considered “personal contacts”. On day 31, and on the 4th contact, you can consider someone your “friend” or “associate” according to U. S. Government standards, and start to speak to them about investing in your Real Estate projects without registering with the SEC (as long as you don’t cross State lines!)

A point to remember – engaging in General Solicitation (advertising or talking to strangers about investing in your projects) without completing the proper Federal and/or State registration requirements is ILLEGAL! And even speaking to Friends, Family, & Associates is regulated in New Mexico, without registering in the State is ILLEGAL. Consult a Securities Attorney before you engage in any solicitation, whether you know the potential investors or not. In my next blog on the subject, I will give a brief overview of the Federal Laws, and in future blogs, I’ll give more information on the NM State laws.

By: Michele B. Jackson

Permanent link to this article: https://acrenm.com/wp/2015/05/raising-private-money-new-mexico/

Apr 27

Searching for Information on Properties in Bernalillo County

Searching for Information on Properties in Bernalillo County

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For some of you, this will probably NOT be news, but there are ways to search for information on properties in Bernalillo County without paying a monthly fee to someone. If you don’t want to do the legwork yourself, fee based subscription services can be a great way to find out what properties are going to auction on the courthouse steps, etc. but if you just want to discover if there are any liens on a property or maybe just who owns the darn thing, this post is for you.

Let’s start with the fee based subscription services. When I was a newbie and wanted to find out about houses that were in foreclosure, I let myself be seduced into paying a monthly fee and signed up for realtytrac.com. It tells when and where the local auctions are as well as the supposed LTV (Loan-to-Value), whether or not there is a bankruptcy in the mix, and theoretically at least if there is any equity in the property – that sort of stuff. The problem, as I see it, is that it’s a lot of money for only semi-accurate information. If you hang out on the courthouse steps you will quickly discover that locals use a website called upthree.com, which is geared specifically to the Albuquerque market (Bernalillo County only). This article isn’t about redemption rights, so I won’t go into that here, but know that New Mexico does have a redemption period (not less than the usual 30 days per the terms of the mortgage although it was originally nine months), so do yourself a favor and don’t bid on anything there.

So, how do you look up if there are any liens on the property? Well, you should probably start by verifying who the owner is, which you can do by going to the assessors page on bernco.gov (http://www.bernco.gov/department_info.aspx?p_PageAlias=property-tax-search-disclaimer, you will first have to agree to their disclaimer).   Once there, you can put in the property address or parcel ID# if you have it. If you can’t find it right away, you may want to modify the search; sometimes the county records don’t include an ave or ct, for example. Also if you know a real estate professional who has access to the MLS, they can pull records from the http://swmls.crsdata.com database for Sandoval, Bernalillo, Santa Fe, Torrance and Valencia counties. This tool always allows for search via name, so if you do not have a Realtor on your team, this alone can be a good reason to add one.

Note: if a property has been sold on a Real Estate Contract, the original owners name will be on the tax records and the new owners name will appear as Owner #2 with a “%” symbol before the name. Even if the property has been returned to the original owner by way of Special Warranty Deed, the buyers name may continue to show up on the tax records for a while. Also, sometimes after a property has been foreclosed on the tax records may indicate the old owners. These records don’t always update in an extremely timely fashion.

Once you know the owner of the property, you can do a search for records on the county clerk’s page at the bernco.gov website (http://www.bernco.gov/document-search-22191/; again you will need to accept the disclaimer). Click on the Public Document Search. This will take you to the search page for the County Clerk where you can enter as much information as you know. This is where having searched through the assessor records can be useful because if you just put in a search for “doe john” (last name followed by first name, no commas) you will get too many results for the system to give you the list (it freaks out once the number exceeds 10,000). You will need to narrow it down. You can do a search for just the property, but you need to know the legal description (found from your search at the assessor’s office) by at the very least the subdivision, and preferably the block and lot, unless you want to weed through a lot of records. If you are looking for a company name, just put in the first couple of words (their company).

The County Clerk records are where you will see if there are any liens or court cases. So if, for example, a property is in some stage of foreclosure, you will find a lis pendens has been filed. To find out what is going on with that court case, you will want to go to nmcourts.gov to the online case lookup (https://caselookup.nmcourts.gov/caselookup/app, again you have to accept the terms; you will also have to do a captcha). Once there, you can put in the person’s name to do a search of cases. Note: you may want to limit your search to those in district court (where all foreclosures happen), for Bernalillo county, and perhaps filling dates, particularly when searching common names. Choose the case that looks like it has a mortgage company involved (you’ll also find divorces and such here). There you can see how the case is or isn’t proceeding. If there is no disposition date, then the case is still open.

Another note, a lis pendens will name all parties that the lending institute believes could possibly have an interest in the property so that no liens will extend beyond the foreclosure proceedings; so even if a property that was sold on a real estate contract has been returned to the original owners, the 2nd owner names will likely still show up on court documents. The bank is just covering their ass.

Well, there you have it, the basics. Obviously there is a lot more that can be looked up, and you can always go down to district court to the records department and look through the records for say recent lis pendens filings if you are interested in trying to secure such properties. But hopefully, this gives you an idea of where to start. Good luck and happy searching!

Permanent link to this article: https://acrenm.com/wp/2015/04/searching-for-information-on-properties-in-bernalillo-county/

Mar 31

Apartment or House Rentals

Apartment or House Rentals

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Apartment or house rentals can be an excellent investment. Through ownership of rental units, you can contribute toward your retirement; create a monthly income, or perhaps both, because any tenant who wishes to live there will indeed pay every month for the privilege.

 

Naturally there are common problems associated with being a landlord, such as taxes, toilets, and tenants. Many of these problems can be avoided by hiring an office manager and/or property manager. It might be worthwhile to invest in an apartment complex; then the office staff (which can be only one person) could work with daily routine like advertisements, renting, improvements, etc. while your handyman takes care of minor repairs and general maintenance. In this scenario, you would only deal with the big picture. This would include financial issues such as funding the payment of bills, and major decisions like renovations and remodeling.

Housing rentals carry the potential for a long-term influx of funds in return for a relatively small effort.

Permanent link to this article: https://acrenm.com/wp/2015/03/rentals/

Mar 23

Insurance

Insurance

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Insurance is one of those things that real estate investors may not think a lot about but should. Having one person sue you or having an accident at the property could cost you the property and your savings. There are different types of insurance and they cover different things.

 

There is business insurance which can provide liability protection for you and your company if something goes wrong. This helps to protect you and your company if anyone sues you, since the insurance typically will be enough to cover most payouts. It is not a matter of if you will be sued but when. This coverage may cover business property if stolen or vandalized.   This helps to protect you and your company and keep you going.

 

There is property insurance which covers the property itself. This can be tricky since different companies cover different things. Some will not cover theft if the property is vacant. Some have separate vacant riders that you would want to look into if the property will be vacant for > 30 days. Also if it is a rental property you would want to look into rental replacement coverage. This is coverage that will pay you the rents that were charged if a covered claim is filed and the property is uninhabitable for a period of time.

Since insurance may not cover theft of items at the property you may want to invest in other security measures. For example, get to know the neighbors there and have them watching for anything suspicious, or you can invest in security systems to secure the property when you are not there. This will alert you and the cops if anything happens to minimize losses and is also a deterrent to thieves if they know they will have limited time to get anything from the property.

For more information on the different types of coverage and what will suit your needs be sure to talk to your insurance agent to get the most up to date information for your situations, since everybody’s specific needs will differ.

Permanent link to this article: https://acrenm.com/wp/2015/03/insurance/

Mar 10

Market Analysis for Multi-Family Investing

Market Analysis for Multi-Family Investing

Building wealth in Real Estate takes time as you implement strategies to generate cash flow, long term equity and sustainable profits year over year.  One strategy that can gain 10 times cash flow than investing in single-family homes and with less risk is investing in multi-family homes.  When you have decided that investing in multi-family properties is right for you, you will need to analyze profitable markets and execute your strategy in them.

When looking for Markets, find those that have positive long-term outlook for employments and economic growth, rent trends, and appreciations, i.e., forced and market appreciation.  Stay clear from markets where job growth is declining significantly and local industry that are impacted by corporations that are in a downward cycle for the long-term.

Build your strategy by determining your investment criteria.  It’s important to note that not all markets is right for multi-family real estate.  Therefore focus in areas that will support your strategy.  Your strategy is what pushes the markets you go into.  Begin doing in depth research on the following key areas:

  • Population Trends
  • Demographic Profile
  • Employment
  • Comparative Advantages
  • Local Governments
  • Market Fundamentals
  • Vacancy and Rent Growth

While you research these areas to determine if the market is right for your strategy, keep in mind the following key points:

  • It does not have to be the “hottest” market to invest in
  • Look where you live, invest where it makes sense
  • Not everyone can invest in their own backyard
  • Any market you decide on need to have positive fundamentals

In a future blog, I will elaborate on researching the key areas as identified above.

Permanent link to this article: https://acrenm.com/wp/2015/03/market-analysis-multi-family-investing/

Feb 22

Where to Find the Real Estate Deals

Where to Find the Real Estate Deals

tablet computerHello everyone – introductions first…. My name is Rita. I am new to investing and new to the Board of ACRE NM. I have an accounting background of about 35+ years. I am getting involved with investing/fixing and flipping so that I can get out of the corporate day to day routine.

This week I want to talk about “Where to Find the Real Estate Deals”. Just to let you all know, I am not an expert on this topic, and very new at investing, but willing to learn from everyone else’s knowledge and experiences. I can tell you my experiences so far and mostly what I have found that does not work.

 

 

For most of us, we have gotten involved by paying large sums of monies for lots of training on ALL sorts of ways to do ALL aspects of investing in properties, either for wholesaling, fixing and flipping or fixing and keeping for future monthly income by renting. My first training was about finding a Realtor and use the MLS system. My downfall with this is – most properties that are on the MLS have already been picked over for the great deals by the Realtors that saw/heard about them before they hit the system or like REO’s – the banks are wanting way too much and are overpriced for the condition, making them not a good deal after using your formula’s for your offer price. I have nothing against Realtors, and you will need them to do CMA’s, close deals and sometimes a GREAT one will let you know when there might be a GREAT deal getting ready to come on the market, before everyone else sees it.

My new thinking is drive your neighborhood, see houses that look empty (weeds/yard unkempt, no cars, dark at hours when most have at least one light on etc.). Then get as much info as you can on the property and it’s owners. This is where your Realtor can come in handy. Ask them to see if their log ins have any info on the property and possible status. Also if here in Bernalillo County, go to Bernco.gov, go to the A-Z section, go to the P’s for Property Search. This is where all the information about Property Taxes are, which includes the owners information. Just put in the street # and street name (no quadrant) and see what info is available. You can write a letter, try to find a phone # (a little harder these days, being no-one has landlines linked to homes) or knock on a neighbors door and see if they know anything about the owners or the situation of the property. Remember to NOT do this alone. Always be with someone for safety reasons. Don’t forget when talking with the neighbors to give them your cards/information – future leads…   to be continued Rita

Permanent link to this article: https://acrenm.com/wp/2015/02/where-to-find-the-deals-2/

Feb 22

My Thoughts on the Jim Banks Seminar

My Thoughts on the Jim Banks Seminar

I went to our January meeting to hear Jim Banks speak on finding houses through probate. A potentially boring topic, right? Not with Jim Banks. He brought humor, interest and exciting facts on money making to what could have been a very dry topic. He also expanded the talk to include changes in the economy due to changes wrought by different generations, ie., the way younger people view real estate vs. the baby-boomers. Younger people prefer to rent property while the boomers want to own it.

He went on to talk about the huge advantages of buying properties through probate. There is a never-ending pool of properties, over 6 million in this country alone, privacy because they’re not advertised on the MLS, etc., and thus lack of competition for the same reason. In addition, there’s no possibility of redemption rights to be dealt with as in foreclosures. He also talked about the bonuses that can be had working estate deals, sometimes just for cleaning them out of the property, such as antiques, antique vehicles, valuable artwork, gold coins, etc. You get the picture. There’s more than one way to make money.

After listening to his talk, I couldn’t find any down side to his business. He also offered a course on the subject, which we had negotiated down to $697 from the usual price of $1997 listed on his website and includes 3 months of personal mentoring by Jim Banks. The price of the course can be split between two people to make it more affordable. ACRE has two of these courses still available at this price for a limited time. If you’re interested, please contact Michelle Jackson at 505-231-8214 or Lifreeinvest@gmail.com. We will be shipping them back to him after the February meeting.

Permanent link to this article: https://acrenm.com/wp/2015/02/my-thoughts-on-the-jim-banks-seminar/

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