Why Have Major Lenders Suspended Foreclosures – A New Chance to Get a Loan Modification Approved

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Why have 3 major lenders suspended foreclosures, and what does that mean for you?

Here’s the short story of why. It seems that banks were in such a hurry to foreclosure, they forgot to follow the rules. With all the work involved in taking all those homes, who would notice if they cut a few corners along the way? Well they got found out, and it turns out that many of the foreclosures they have already done or were about to do, may have no legal basis because they didn’t follow the rules.

Here’s what this means for homeowners.

If you have had a home taken by any one of these banks that include Bank of America, Chase and GMAC, contact an attorney immediately, because you may have a law suit on your hands with damages as big or bigger than the amount of your mortgage — with the possibility of rescission! What’s rescission? They may have to forgive your mortgage balance entirely, and give you your home back. Make sure the attorney you contact knows mortgage notes better than the lenders who wrote them.

If you have a foreclosure pending, or if you have received a notice of sale, and have a foreclosure auction date, the first thing to do is to call the sheriff or attorney that sent you that letter. Don’t assume anything.

Ask them if your sale is canceled. Just because you have a Bank of America loan, doesn’t mean YOUR sale is canceled unless the attorney or sheriff has actually received word that YOUR sale is canceled. In other words, they could be pulling a fast one on you. We just called about a Bank of America sale for next week and as of today it is not canceled.

In other words, you may want to still have a „Plan B“ in place. That could be having the preliminary documents so that you can file a chapter 13 bankruptcy and stop your sale on the spot. Have everything ready to go to the court house in case they are still going through with your sale. You can actually prepare these documents yourself without an attorney. That’s pretty cheap insurance (a couple of hours and the cost of some instructions).

If the foreclosure attorney hasn’t received notice of cancellation of your foreclosure sale, then call your lender. Don’t rely on them just „telling“ you. They probably won’t confirm anything. The only way to get confirmation is to establish an open channel with the foreclosure attorney who sent you the letter. Let them know you spoke with your lender who said the sale was canceled, and would they please confirm that. Then get something in writing from them. Remember that the foreclosure attorney has no authority to act on their own. They can only do what the lender has instructed them to do.

There is nothing stopping your lender from going back one mortgage at a time, and doing what is necessary to fix their compliance mistakes and shortcomings. In that case, they may be able to resume foreclose with confidence that they are in compliance.

So you may have less time than you thought.

And finally, take full advantage of the time you you have just been given. Now you may find yourself with time to get started or reapply for that loan modification. In one sentence, a loan modification changes your loan with lower payments, so you can afford your own home. This takes months, even when things go right. So DO NOT PUT THIS OFF! The more you know the less the chances are that you will do this wrong, and waste months of valuable time. Get educated, and get started!

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Source by Matt Silverman

Where to Find Repo RVs and How to Buy a Repo RV

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People all over America are excited about buying used RV repos. RVs are a great way to vacation and see America from the comforts of your own home. Unfortunately, taxes are going up and the economy may not be. People looking for ways to save money may benefit from recent economic down turns as the chance to find more great deals from desperate sellers, or foreclosed and repossessed RVs may be on the rise.

Most new RV are very overpriced. People know that when they drive that new RV off the lot, they automatically lose 30% of it’s value. Buying used or repossessed RVs is a good way to save you a bundle. To get a greatest deals I normally do not recommend a dealer. Instead we recommend finding great deals through private party sellers or buying Repo RVs from a bank.

The problem is that most repossessed RV never go to private party auction. They just get auctioned off to a dealers are they get turned over to an authorized dealer as part of a consignment agreement. Banks are not professional RV sales people. They do not have an advertising budget and they just want to sell as quickly as possible. Either way, you are still buying 3rd party when you buy a bank repo.

A good idea to find bank repo RVs is to contact your lender and asks them if they have any that they are selling or if they get any to contact you if they do. You may get lucky a few lenders may be helpful. One of the biggest sub prime RV lenders is American General Finance. You could also try contacting them. Most RV repos are sold as a silent auction. They may allow you to walk through before the auction or just after. All the sales are normally final and you buy the RV in As-Is condition.

The great part is that unlike foreclosed home, most repo RVs are in good condition. You can get and RV in good condition for a great price. Another benefit is it could come with a lot of upgrades, like satellite, Internet access and multiple slide out. You can get a lot more RV for your money.

When buying a repo RV at an auction it is important to be focused on what you want and to keep in mind a ceiling bid. Set this amount in your mid before you go to the auction to avoid a bidding war. This is the maximum you will allow your self to bid. The only real way to lose out at an auction is to become emotional and overbid.

Before bidding make sure to thoroughly inspect the unit (when possible). Anything that needs to be fixed need to be deducted from the price you would otherwise be willing to pay. If it is not possible to inspect the motorhome beforehand, factor in a contingency factor of 5-15% to fix likely minor repairs. Make sure you are not obligated to buy if the unit has any major problems. Some times they will give you 24 hours or 3 days to have the unit inspected and this is usually more than worth the cost. Use a basic guide book to determine the approximate value of the repossessed RV. If you use the NADA guide keep in mind that you are not buying at private party price, but probably at or below the trade in value. If you do not have access to this value, call a dealer and ask them what the trade in value is. In most cases, they will be glad to help you. This will allow you to get the best deal on repo RVs.

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Source by Spencer Arnold

10 Power Selling Tips for Making Door-To-Door Sales

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Door-to-Door sales is a profession that dates back as early as the late 1800’s when companies like Avon built empires through the use of direct sales to consumers. Today, door-to-door sales remain one of the most powerful sales channels for a whole host of industries.

I’ve spent years in the door-to-door sales business and have made thousands of sales to customers at the door. Below are 10 tips I’ve garnered from my years of experience that will help anyone selling door-to-door regardless of their experience. These tips are in no particular order of importance, but if I were you, I would start with numbers eight, nine and ten. Then start over from number one, just so you can get eight, nine and ten…one more time!!

1. Present a smooth and natural body language. You must come across as having a purpose for knocking on the customer’s door. The customer has to know upfront that you are comfortable with why you are standing at their door. Use body language to reinforce the responses you are looking for. Pointing, waving of the hand, breaking eye contact at the right moments are all keys to smooth and natural body language.

2. Stand with a slight angle to the door. This gives the customer a feeling of comfort and non-aggressiveness. „You don’t want to be right in the customer’s face.“

3. Act official and look busy. Remember, your time is valuable as well. You are at this customer’s home to provide good customer service. The impression that your time is as valuable as the customer’s gives the customer comfort that you are there in an official capacity, and they need to listen attentively to what you have to say.

4. Speak with a flat, relaxed voice and SMILE!! The smile will set the tone, and people naturally respond favorably to a smile. Ensure that tone of your voice is not too excitable or aggressive, but rather matter of fact. Work to give the customer a feeling of comfort so they will listen to your message.

5. Know your pitch, own your pitch.The customer has to immediately believe you know what you are talking about. You have 30 seconds to break down a barrier, build a rapport and ask for a desired response. You have to be trusted immediately.

6. Overcome objections and use proper rebuttals. When faced with an objection, agree by relating sincerely to break down resistance. Turn the objection around using a logical response or counter argument (you may want to practice these and think through your answers to common rejections in advance). Recap the program, product or company you are pitching. Then close with the assumption that you’ve overcome the objection, and you are ready to complete the transaction.

7. Name dropping. Use neighbor’s names to give customer comfort that they are not alone and „everyone is doing it.“ Do as the Jones‘ do!!

8. Listen!

9. Listen!

10. Listen! There’s one simple rule that the best sales people follow. Listen to what the customer is telling you. Let me be more blunt. SHUT UP AND LISTEN!! The customer is directing you to exactly what you should say or do next. If you shut up and listen to what they are telling you, you will know exactly what to do next. Many salespeople blur right over customer buying signs because „they’ve got something important to say.“ So they miss the most important signs. The buying signs. Shut up, listen and always be closing!!

Happy selling!!

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Source by Jeff Haarmann

Real Estate Deposit vs Down Payment

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When you’re selling your home, you have to be familiar with related real-estate lingo. You have to know the difference between a canopy and an awning; a mortgage and a loan; and most importantly, the difference between a deposit and a down payment.

Believe it or not, there are a lot of home sellers who think that deposits and down payments are one and the same, when in reality they are not.

A deposit is the money given or handed over to the owner when a buyer indicates a sincere desire to purchase the property being sold. It is a token amount that could be as small as a few hundred dollars, or as big as 5% of the total purchase price. The deposit can be returned when the transaction does not fall through for reasons beyond the control of the buyer, and can also be forfeited in favour of the seller. When the purchase pushes through, the deposit is credited to the buyer and forms part of his down payment.

A down payment or equity, on the other hand, can be considered as an initial payment on the property itself. It is given when the buyer has decided to actually purchase the house (unlike in deposit, where it is given when the buyer indicates a desire to buy the unit). The down payment is the total amount of money a buyer can give as a partial payment and is generally of a bigger value (10% of the total property cost, or more) than regular deposits.

It’s fairly easy to differentiate. Just remember that a deposit is smaller and, once the transaction pushes through, becomes part of the down payment. The total of these two, plus any outstanding balance, should be the agreed upon purchase price of the property.

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Source by Gloria Smith

Defeat Your Homeowner Association

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First, this article is written from the viewpoint of a California resident. Much of the information presented here is relevant to other states, but you should check your own state’s laws to make sure they are the same or similar.

For most people buying a new home in today’s America there is usually a mandatory membership to a homeowner association, referred to as an „HOA.“ These organizations are essentially mini governments that posses the power to make and enforce laws, including the right to foreclose on a family’s home, townhouse or condominium.

The original intention in the creation of the HOA envisioned an active participation by all of the members; a tight knit community where common problems were dealt with by the community members through the offices of the HOA.

The reality is nothing like the vision.

Today, in most cases an HOA is a very small number of people who actively keep the authority of the HOA in their hands, and their hands alone. Usually these circumstances are brought about by a lack of participation by the majority of the HOA members.

The lack of member participation creates a certain rational for the Board of Directors, who interpret the other member’s disinterest as the reason they must keep the HOA’s authority to themselves. The community becomes divided between those who control the Board of Directors, and everybody else.

For everybody else, an HOA is typically not easy to deal with. They wield the authority to foreclose homes, levy steep fines, and often control aspects of the community members‘ lives that typical Americans believe are a precious homeowner’s private right, like what your kids are allowed to do while playing in their own backyard.

Homeowners often find themselves in a contest with their HOA over these rights. Can I park my car in my driveway? No, says the HOA because we few active members passed a law that says you can’t park a car in your own driveway unless you use the car every day.

Can my kids play basketball in our own backyard? No, says the HOA, because we few active members passed a law that says no basketball courts are permitted that can be seen from the street. And, by the way, you are not allowed to cover that open fence to limit our visibility into your backyard because we few active members have passed a law that says we have the right to see into your backyard.

Can I tint my windows? No, says the HOA, because… Well, you get the picture.

Now the part you have been reading to find. How do you defeat your HOA?

First, you must make sure you continue to pay your HOA dues. Most homeowners who get into a fight with their HOA over issues like a rule restricting backyard activities, use of your own driveway and garage, and denials of your planned home improvement projects, often get angry and stop paying dues.

This is a mistake. Pay your dues. However, you can usually omit paying those late fees and fines. In California, an HOA cannot foreclose your home based on accumulated late fees, fines, and other expenses like the ‚cost of collecting‘ your unpaid late fees and fines.

They can sue you in small claims, or even in the limited jurisdiction of the Superior Court because then they will get attorney fees, which will be huge. The resulting judgment, however, is far more difficult to use to foreclose on your home because it has no priority over existing liens, meaning the HOA would need to pay off your mortgage to get your home using a lawsuit judgment. (In California, the moment you lose such a lawsuit, go the State Bar and demand Fee Mediation – HOA lawyers charge you like they are first class lawyers, but charge their clients like they are 1st year noobs.)

But, let’s not let it get that far, OK? Here are a few basic rules to live by when dealing with your HOA.

HOAs typically don’t have a properly elected Board of Directors. As soon as you receive that annoying letter telling you to stop your kids from playing in the backyard, send a letter back asking to have a copy of all the Governing Documents.

Hopefully, the HOA will ignore or deny this request.

They are not allowed to deny or ignore a request for copies of the Governing Documents.

Obtain a copy of all your Governing Documents and read them to see what constitutes a properly elected Board of Directors. In those communities where member participation has been limited to just those few who want to be Board Members, there typically has never been a „quorum“ attained to properly elect the Board.

The Board, therefore, is usually sitting by default.

Default Board’s are limited in the scope of their authority, and in some cases have no authority at all.

In all your correspondence, constantly remind the Board that they are not properly elected.

Follow these basic steps;

1. Demand a ‚meet and confer‘ with a Board Member to discuss the issues. The HOA is not permitted to deny your request to meet and confer. Record the meeting on video.

2. Demand a hearing before the Board. Record the meeting on video.

3. Appeal the Board’s decision. Record the Appeal Hearing on video.

4. Demand Mediation after the Board affirms their previous decision at the Appeal.

Typically, HOA Board of Director members are not well versed in the laws governing the operation of an HOA. many will be passingly familiar with the portions of the relevant foreclose laws, and of course they will know the HOA’s rules and regulations by heart.

However, I have found that often the Board of Directors are not familiar with the requirement to meet and confer in good faith. Therefore, it is common that the Board of Directors member who appears to meet and confer, will meet but not confer. There is a good faith requirement that renders inappropriate the kind of responses the typical HOA Board of Directors member will offer in response to your questions.

For instance; you have received a letter saying you must move you 1966 Ford Mustang from your driveway because it is not driven every day. OK, you say, „what proof do you have that its not driven every day?“

„We have an anonymous tip from another homeowner“ replies the HOA Board member.

„OK, you had a complaint. But, what proof do you have that the Mustang is not driven every day? A mere complaint is not proof and does not rise to the level of a violation. You are supposed to investigate to determine whether the complaint was fact or mere opinion. So, what proof do you have?“

There is a very large probability that the „complaining member“ was none other than the Board of Directors themselves who merely discussed your Mustang at their last meeting. So, no proof exists.

Write a summary of the meet and confer. State that the Board Member did not have any proof of the violation, and therefore no violation exits.

When the HOA sends you its next letter, usually a threat to move the Mustang or face steep fines, you send a letter denying that any violation exists. Remind them they are not properly elected, and that the results of the meet and confer were favorable to you, not the HOA.

The HOA is supposed to set a hearing where evidence of your violation is presented, and then rule on the evidence and testimony provided at the hearing. Make sure you demand such a hearing, and make sure you attend. It’s a good idea to record the meeting by video.

Not surprisingly, the HOA will rule in its favor, even when you have evidence that proves no violation existed, or they had no evidence that proves a violation existed.

Demand an appeal. Make sure you attend, and yes, record it on video. At the Appeal Hearing, point out that the Board Members are not properly elected and did not have facts to support their previous ruling.

When the Board affirms their prior ruling, demand mediation.

At the mediation, point out to the mediator that the Board is not properly elected, failed to meet and confer in good faith, called a disciplinary hearing without any proof that a violation existed, ruled against you without any proof that a violation existed, and affirmed their ruling despite a lack of evidence and/or evidence to the contrary.

Mediators will only want to split the matter in two; if you have been fined $1000, they will encourage you to offer $500.

Refuse.

Your next step is the most crucial. The HOA will expect you to pay, or in the most unlikely situation, to file a Superior Court action to enforce the Governing Documents.

Instead, you file what is called a „Writ of Mandate.“ This is the proper venue to appeal the Board’s ruling.

While this will cost you some attorney fees, it is the winning move. HOA’s and their lawyers typically are not familiar with this particular judicial option and will be totally out of their depth when confronted with a Writ of Mandate.

The Writ Court will, however, entertain you because you are appealing an administrative body who has the obligation to accept and rule according to the evidence and testimony presented. And, then they fail to rule according to the evidence, they can be reversed by the next higher court. In California, the next higher court above the Appeal Hearing of an HOA is the Superior Court’s Writ Judge.

If you have carefully compiled the evidence indicated above, you are highly likely to prevail. The fines will be reversed, the late fees etc will be voided, and your attorney will be paid by the HOA.

Thereafter, the HOA is likely to turn a blind eye on your Mustang, or your kid’s backyard basketball court, and look for easier victims.

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Source by James D Stone

Flipping Real Estate or Flipping Paper?

Immobilie bewerten, Immobilie Wert, Immobilienrechner, Verkaufsrechner, Immobilienwertermittlung Tel: 06227-399170 Handy: 0176-2116-9990 eMail: info@heidelbergerwohnen.de Internet: www.heidelbergerwohnen.de

Flipping real estate properties is not for everybody but it is the fastest way to make a buck in the real estate business. Most everybody has heard of someone buying a „run down“ house for a good price well below market value, fixing it up and selling it at a fair market price. Flipping a „fixer-upper“ is definitely one way to turn a reasonably quick profit. I know some people who do it this way but they are more into the contractor and renovation business than they are of the investor mindset.

Some of these „fixer-upper“ properties are in need of extensive repair and will involve electrical work, carpentry work, etc. If the investor gets involved and does some or all of this work then there could be enough profit there but if the investor farms out the required labour, profits could get eaten up quickly. For these types of flipping real estate investments, the purchase price needs to be at a huge discount and normally would be found somewhere in the foreclosure stage.

For the person that is in the mindset of investing rather than being in the renovation business then flipping real estate will only involve flipping the paper contract of the property without even taking possession of it. You can flip by entering an agreement to buy a property then sell the contract to another investor before close of escrow.

Using this technique won’t even require you to put your name on the title. Profits will generally be less than the fixer-upper investor but involves much less work and the whole process is much quicker. A fixer-upper investor would not be happy in making a profit of a few thousand dollars for a few months work on renovations but an investor that can just flip a contract for a few hours or days work would be.

Avoid disclosure of your profits to the new buyer by using a double closing.

After making a sweet deal and flipping a contract involving a juicy profit you may not want all these details to be revealed to your buyer. The solution is a double closing, transferring the property to you initially and then reselling immediately at the same lawyer’s office just an hour later to your buyer.

There is a drawback here and that is a double set of closing costs so you would have to weigh it out to see if it’s worth it to your particular situation or not. Further, you can use a title insurance company for the actual closings. For the issuance of the title insurance policy, the title insurance company will prepare the closing documents and close the transaction usually without an addition charge.

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Source by Johnny Ferreira

What Makes Your Property Unmortgageable

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Within this guide we cover all the pitfalls that can result in your property becoming unmortgageable. Sellers make innocent mistakes without the knowledge that their house will become unmortgageable.

So, What makes a property unmortgageable?

  • Properties that have been neglected for years, as they may not be suitable for human habitation. People can find themselves in this situation when buying a property to refurbish. Running out of funds or change in circumstances can affect your project.
  • That don’t have kitchens and bathrooms or ones that are very dated are deemed unusable.
  • Believe it or not, a property with two kitchens. Why? Lenders assume that you could sub-let part of the property having bought it using a residential mortgage.
  • That are valued below £50,000, you will require a reliable cash buyer.
  • Apartments or Houses with leases less than 70 years. The freeholder has the right to take possession of the property after the lease expires.
  • Properties with structural issues, evident from cracks in ceilings and walls. These properties will require underpinning and remedial work carried out. Such properties remain unmortgageable and uninsured for five years or more following all work.
  • Subsidence occurs due to the soil surrounding the foundations shrinking or swelling. This causes the foundation, which supports the walls to move. Evidence of subsidence can be uneven floors, cracks within external walls and cracking above window openings. Even when fixed subsidence and structural issues are a stigma on a property. You will be required to disclose any of these issues to a buyer.
  • Properties that are close to mining works, areas of landfill or history of flooding are unmortgageable.
  • Properties with sitting tenants or regulated tenancies are unmortgageable. If tenants moved in before 15th January 1989, you have sitting tenants.
  • Properties with a defective lease are unmortgageable. An example of a defective lease is a block of flats and maintenance of a shared roof are unclear.
  • Properties with damp, dry or wet rot, wall ties or damaged floor joists are unmortgageable.
  • Properties with boundary disputes
  • Buildings in severe disrepair or dangerous
  • Illegal extensions without permission from the local councils planning and building control departments
  • Properties with non-standard construction, such as per-fabricated concrete
  • Properties that are next to commercial premises or apartments above food takeaways or shops
  • Properties within a close proximity to Japanese Knot-weed.
  • Properties with flying freehold
  • Fire damaged properties
  • Derelict agriculture buildings

This is not an exhaustive list. If any of the above points apply to you or you know your property is unmortgageable, there are many real estate companies that can buy your property at best costs.

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Makler Heidelberg


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Source by Saddat Abid

How to Get Rid of Sour House Smell

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You should start with the basics first; chances are, if you’ve reached the point of looking for help in terms of getting rid of sour house smells on the Internet, then you need to do some serious cleaning. Set aside a day, or a weekend, specifically for cleaning.

If you don’t want to or you can’t do it alone, enlist the help of those you live with. Perhaps you can also ask for your friends‘ help. Bribe them with pizza and beer or brochettes and wine if you have to. Afterwards, use the following suggestions to get rid of your house smell, and maintain a fresh, aromatic or at least breathable living space.

Sour House Smell Removal

* Dry out the living quarters first, and then clean out your basement so it is empty of anything that can hold moisture and run it down there as well. Remove cardboard boxes.

* If you have a forced air heating and cooling system with ducts on your home, get the ducts checked. Decades-old houses can have mold, lots of built-up of dirt and other nasty stuff that can cause a foul odor. Your ducts can also be rusting now, so you may need to have them changed.

The newer ducts available on the market today are much more energy efficient. You’ll save air conditioning costs this summer by getting new ducts. You can also hire a company that cleans ducts to inspect the ducts you have right now. Some have a camera that can show you what is in your ducts. Be careful who you get! Use a reputable company and check with the Better Business Bureau. Ask them for references. Some only clean a short way and spray a deodorizer. The estimate to get your ducts cleaned can be hundreds of dollars less than getting new ones.

* Check your carpets. Sometimes carpets are steam cleaned unprofessionally and a lot of water remains. This causes mildewing and a related musty odor.

Remove your carpets and put in hardwood or similar type flooring, with area rugs that can be cleaned outside of the home and dried before returning to the area. If your carpets are ten years old, it doesn’t hurt to remove them.

* You may have a mold of some sort growing in your carpet or behind your wallpaper. Create a bleach solution (1:10 to start, then up to 1:4 if it does not work) and gently wash down all of your walls and mop boards. Rent a hot water carpet cleaner and put a bleach solution into the reservoir rather than the soap they try to sell you. Add a drop or two of dish soap, but add no more. It is the water that cleans, not the soap. Adding too much soap will actually make your carpet dirty because it does not rinse out of the carpet and soap bonds with dirt.

* Though chlorinated bleach is very notorious in discoloring a lot of things, you may risk using that for really heavy-smelling jobs, even on dark carpets. If you’re still wary, there’s always oxygen bleach. It kills „everything“ that may be causing an odor and the hot water cleaning really helps allergies as well.

Keep babies off the rugs as breathing chemicals of any sort is especially bad for them. If the smell comes back more quickly than you think it should, get a dehumidifier.

* Never run a dehumidifier where you have an open window or you will dry out the immediate atmosphere of your home. An air conditioner actually works even better because of the filtering system in it, but if it is too cold where you live to still be using one, then stick with the dehumidifier.

* To rid your linoleum or hardwood floors of that not-so-fresh-smell, simply mix a 3:1 solution of warm water and white vinegar in your mop bucket and get to work. Remember to crack a window or two. Vinegar has a good clean smell, but it’s a strong one.

Sour House Smell Removing Products

* Buy a large pump of Febreze since it works on everything. Smelly hampers, sticky cars, sleeping bags that reek of camp fire… you name the smell, Febreze can quell. You can get it at most supermarkets.

Another idea is to use a citrus odor neutralizing spray; it’s so effective that beauticians actually use this at salons to get rid of perm smell.

* An Ozone Generator or Air-born Hydrogen Peroxide Device can also work, but they tend to be expensive and may not get to the root of the problem. Covering or filtering odors is always more costly than eliminating their source.

* If you want something a little cheaper, you can try Ozium Air Freshener-it’s the best way to keep the air in your home or work space clean and smelling fresh. Ozium does not cover up the odors associated with sour smelling houses – it eliminates them!

Ozium, the original air purifier, is a chemical agent that actually eliminates unpleasant odors and reduces airborne bacteria. Ozium actually cleanses the air through glycolized action. The Ozium glycolized formula acts directly on odor causing particles in the air.

* Electrostatic Air Filters are good for getting rid of dust buildup, but can be bad if they don’t operate properly. Electrostatic air filters work by ionizing the air that passes through the filter, collecting dust from the air by creating an electrostatic field, like a comb collects particles after being run through dry hair quickly enough.

Why are electrostatic dust collectors be bad for you? If they don’t operate properly, they can produce ozone, which is a respiratory irritant. So make sure you do your research before investing in one of these air filters.

* Try Renuzit, in any scent. If you can, try to find the Super Odor Killer scent. The fragrance in SOK (introduced in 1972) is not readily identifiable, because SOK uses a blend of perfumes left over when fragrance manufacturers produced a little too much for another company’s orders.

This blend is not only good at masking a variety of odors, it can slightly be used at higher fragrance levels without overwhelming the user. The popular and more readily available Country Kitchen scent will also suffice.

* Fresh Wave has an array of all natural, non-toxic and earth friendly products for laundry, upholstery, floors and ventilation that are designed to attract, capture and neutralize sour house odors.

Sour House Smell Prevention

* The best way to stop sour house smell from building up is to clean as you go. Put things away as soon as you’re done using them. Throw things away as soon you know you won’t use them. Everyday maintenance is the key to a breathable, livable home.

Have a presence of mind when it comes to cleanliness. Create a small space for things to be donated and recycled and clear it out as soon as it gets full. Limit your storage space and „junk“ drawers so you don’t have the opportunity to just toss clutter in a closet and forget about it.

* People will tell you that the best way to get rid of mold – one of the main contributors of bad house odor – is to use an ionizing air purifier to help pull the pollutants and mold spores out of the air. Well, they’re half right.

An air purifier isn’t a bad idea for preventing mold growth, but those ionized air filters can cause health problems if they’re not constructed properly. Sometimes if an ionizing air filter isn’t built right, it will spit out ozone which, as scientists will tell you, is good for the atmosphere and bad for your lungs.

Serious complications can arise if you’re using the wrong air purifier. Choose wisely and make sure you buy from a reputable company.

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Source by Fen Malayan

How to Start a Home Photography Business in North Carolina

Immobilie bewerten, Immobilie Wert, Immobilienrechner, Verkaufsrechner, Immobilienwertermittlung Tel: 06227-399170 Handy: 0176-2116-9990 eMail: info@heidelbergerwohnen.de Internet: www.heidelbergerwohnen.de

After years of pursuing photography as an avid amateur photographer, I decided to finally take the plunge and become a professional. I already owned all the necessary camera bodies, lenses, flashes and other assorted equipment, and having my own business meant future photography purchases would be tax-deductible. A smart decision, right?

The short answer, for me at least, was „yes.“ The long answer, however, was, „It depends on how much time you want to spend running around and researching the requirements.“

Fortunately for you, I’ve done it already in North Carolina and am willing to share the results (for this state, at least!).

For the purposes of this article, I’m assuming the following things are true:

1. You will be operating this business in the state of North Carolina.

2. You already have the photography expertise to qualify as a professional photographer (that’s another article all by itself).

3. You’ve done the necessary research to determine whether you have the time, energy, potential customer base, and business plan to ensure your new venture succeeds (again, this topic is another article on its own).

The first step was determining what kind of business entity to be. After doing much research online, I was a bit confused, until a CPA explained it to me: there is a difference between your LEGAL status and your TAX status. She recommended that my photography business be an LLC (limited liability company), but file taxes as a sole proprietor.

As with all the different options, there are positives and negatives to each option. LLC status would protect me from personal liability in the event of a lawsuit, which was important to me. The paperwork is very easy to prepare and submit, which is also good because I wanted to take care of everything myself.

Filing taxes as a sole proprietor would be very simple: just attach a Schedule C to my personal tax return each year. Although this filing status is easy enough, sole proprietors pay a slightly higher tax rate than S-Corporations.

Filing as an S-Corp, however, means more paperwork and filing quarterly taxes instead of a Schedule C with my annual return. I wasn’t interested in that much paperwork, so sole proprietor status is fine with me. If and when my business starts making so much money that I’m interested in a lower tax rate, I can always change my status to an S-Corp.

Now that I’ve determined my legal status and tax status, I had to file for my LLC with the state of North Carolina. This involves sending a check for $125 to the Secretary of State, along with Articles of Organization, which can be downloaded and filled out from their web page.

It takes about 7-10 days for your status to come back confirmed, although if you include a note and your e-mail address, they will e-mail it to you which will save a few days.

The state of North Carolina considers photographers to be one of those lucky professions that require a State Privilege License. This is an annual license granted to the person, not the business, so if you end up working for a different photography business in the future, you don’t need to get a second license that year. A privilege license is $200, from the North Carolina Revenue Office. This must be done in person, but the Revenue Department has offices all over the state, so there’s probably one in a city near you.

While I was there, I also received a State Tax ID. This is (fortunately) free, and it will come in handy because armed with this important number, I will no longer need to pay sales tax when purchasing items for my business (assuming I’m purchasing from a North Carolina vendor; obviously you don’t pay sales tax at all when purchasing from an out-of-state vendor, such as when I buy lenses online).

The friendly and helpful NC revenue employee explained to me that two forms will need to be mailed into the NC Revenue Office each quarter. One is a form explaining what your revenues for the quarter were and how much tax you charged your clients. You will need to include a check for the tax amount. The other form shows what equipment you purchased for your business that quarter and didn’t pay tax on. You will need to include a check for 1% of the total (hey, at least it’s lower than paying the full retail tax on your purchases). This includes everything from cameras and lenses to printers, computers, paper, ink cartridges, etc.

Charging my clients sales tax is a bit confusing in North Carolina. The law is not clear, and lawsuits that have been argued in state court have conflicting results. It appears that you do not need to charge sales tax on services such as session fees, UNLESS the client ends up purchasing prints from the session. Of course you always hope and assume the client will purchase prints, but you never know for sure. To be safe, you should go ahead and charge them sales tax on the session fees up front, assuming they will buy prints.

You always need to charge sales tax for tangible goods sold. So any prints, albums, or other products that you sell to your clients must always include sales tax.

The tax rate that applies depends on where the client took possession of the goods. If the client lives in Gaston County and asks me to mail her the prints, the Gaston County rate applies. If the bride decides to swing by my house in Charlotte to pick them up personally, the Mecklenburg County rate applies.

Tax was by far the most complicated part of the business-formation process. Fortunately the employees at the NC revenue office were very helpful, and gave me several „cheat sheets,“ sample forms, and (best of all) their phone numbers for me to call with questions.

If you want your NC State Tax ID to be in your business‘ name, instead of your own name, you will need a Employer Identification Number from the IRS. I was initially confused by this, because I wasn’t planning on employing anyone other than myself, but as it turns out, the Employer Identification Number has nothing to do with employing anyone. Luckily it was free and handled easily over the phone while I waited in the lobby of the state revenue office.

Now there’s the matter of where you live. I’m a resident of Charlotte, so I’m in Mecklenburg County. Fortunately, Mecklenburg County recognizes the State Privilege License, so I wasn’t required to get an additional County business license.

I was, however, required to get a Customary Home Occupation Permit from the Zoning Office. This is a one-time permit that allows me to work from home. This is a lifetime permit; however, it only applies to this particular address. If I decided to move to a different house in a few years, I will have to get a new permit. It cost $125.

Next, I needed a business checking account. I went straight to Wachovia, since they already handle our personal bank accounts and I wanted everything in one place for convenience. Wachovia needed copies of my privilege license, my EIN, and my state tax ID, as well as the normal documents for a new account like my driver’s license. In about a week, I had received my check card and checks for the account. This is highly recommended by the CPA I visited, in order to keep business and personal expenses separate.

The final thing I needed was business insurance. This is recommended in addition to any homeowner or umbrella liability coverage you may already have. It’s not too expensive (less than $200 per year) so go ahead and get it. Any insurance agent will be able to go over the options with you. Business insurance will not only cover your equipment in the event any of those expensive lenses or cameras get damaged, but will also help in case a guest trips over one of your lightstands at a wedding, for example.

A few side notes: if your business is an LLC, you are legally required to have the initials „LLC“ or the words „Limited Liability Company“ in your business name. This makes it clear to all customers and potential customers that you are an LLC. Also, if you do not keep your business and personal expenses separate, you lose the protection of an LLC (meaning your personal assets are vulnerable in the event of a lawsuit). DO NOT RISK THIS — keep everything well documented and separate!

Best of luck with your new business venture! I recommend visiting the North Carolina State business development website and calling their hotline; they gave me a lot of tips the CPA didn’t mention, and it was free to boot! Fortunately there is a lot of support out there for people starting their own businesses. It’s free, and these people know what they’re talking about — please take advantage of it!

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Source by Elizabeth Morrison

How Soon Can You Be Evicted After The Foreclosure Sheriff Sale?

Immobilie bewerten, Immobilie Wert, Immobilienrechner, Verkaufsrechner, Immobilienwertermittlung Tel: 06227-399170 Handy: 0176-2116-9990 eMail: info@heidelbergerwohnen.de Internet: www.heidelbergerwohnen.de

Homeowners in foreclosure are rightfully worried about not being able to save their homes and how quickly they will be evicted after the sheriff sale. Although the lender and various „experts“ will threaten them with the sheriff showing up the next day to violently kick them out of the house, this is just not the case in foreclosure situation. The county sheriff and the eviction crew will not show up the next day after the sheriff sale, and homeowners should ignore the fear-mongering that threatens this possibility.

Owners should be aware of the implications of the foreclosure auction, though. The sheriff sale will transfer ownership of the property, and the foreclosure victims will not own the house after this point. But this does not mean that the eviction process will happen automatically right after the house is auctioned, as there are more steps that will need to be taken by the new owner.

The high bidder at the auction will most likely have to have the sheriff sale confirmed (this is not a specifically detailed step in every state). This can take from a few days to a couple of weeks after the auction, depending on how quickly the courts and new owner act. But this is generally just a simple step in the foreclosure process after the sale that involves the sheriff and judge confirming the auction was for a legal amount and that the deed has now been awarded to the new owner.

The new owner will most likely be the original foreclosing bank that the homeowners had been dealing with in the first place to stop foreclosure. About 95% of foreclosures end up being purchased by the lender, rather than a third party.

In order to evict former homeowners, the lender will have to request the court grant it possession of the property and order the county sheriff to evict any remaining people or personal items and change the locks. This is a legal process, though. Homeowners should not fear that a bunch of government thugs with badges and guns will show up at their house the day after the sheriff sale to kick them out. Of course, this is exactly what happens, but at a later date if the foreclosure victims do not move out in time.

But the entire eviction process can take up to a month after the sale; throwing people out of their homes is not a simple process before or after a county auction. The court will have no problem ordering the eviction (unless the former owners go and try to contest the sale, eviction order, etc.), but the sheriff’s department will have to give notice of the impending removal. This can be as little as posting a piece of paper on the property with three days notice to move. Thus, after the sheriff sale, former homeowners better be prepared to leave on their own or work out another solution.

People facing foreclosure should not be overly concerned about being kicked out of a house with little notice. The sheriff will not just show up the next day or a few hours after the sheriff sale, as there is still a legal process that must be followed for a bank to take back possession of a foreclosed property. Homeowners probably have at least two weeks to a month after the sheriff sale date to arrange for a new place to move into.

In any event, homeowners are always encouraged to call the sheriff’s department to ask them when then eviction will take place. Even more promising, they can also usually ask for a few extra days or a week in order to move everything out and give up the house peacefully. There is still a chance to negotiate with the local government for more time (courts and sheriff) so that the former owners are not taken by surprise by the eviction.

Thus, the banks and government officials will not evict foreclosure victims right away after the auction, but there is no time to spare, either. Having a couple of weeks to move out can give people a chance to find a place and move in at their own pace, but even a month-long eviction process will go by very quickly. If in doubt, homeowners should contact their local government officials and ask about the eviction — the courts or sheriff will be able to inform them of the date and try to work out the most reasonable solution. They want as little trouble after foreclosure as the former homeowners do.

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Source by Nick Heeringa