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Category: real estate

Permanent Foundations For Mobile Homes – HUD 7584 PFGMH Manufactured Home Inspections Guide

When you buy (or sell) a manufactured / mobile home, many times the loan involved in real estate transaction will either be an FHA or VA loan.  However, FHA and VA will only fund the loan if you can prove that the foundation under the home is a permanent foundation.

But what is a “permanent foundation” and where do I find it’s proper definition?  Well, in HUD Publication 7584, is where you will find its definition.  The definition is quite extensive and geared, mainly, towards professional engineers.  

The HUD 7584 publication is also called the HUD Permanent Foundation Guide for Manufactured Homes, or PFGMH.  It is published by the United States department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).  This 400 page manual is intended for new construction of manufactured home permanent foundations. If you have an existing foundation and are in need of a permanent foundation certification, then the existing permanent foundation shall meet the intent of the PFGMH.

A manufactured mobile home foundation that does not meet the intent of the PFGMH is considered non-compliant, and one that does meet the intent of the PFGMH is considered compliant.  Only a professional engineer licensed in the state of where the home is located can make this determination.

In its most simplistic definition, a permanent foundation will generally consist of a skirting to keep out vermin and water, footings and piers to support the home from gravity loads (such as snow and live loads), anchorage to resist lateral loads such as high winds or an earthquake, and other considerations.

The reason why a professional engineer is required to determine whether it is permanent or not, is because of the safety issues involved with a structure that houses people.  Professional engineers have the training and educational background to determine if the foundation is safe and habitable, and also “permanent” as defined by HUD.…

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Caret Bay St Thomas

There is a hidden jewel in St Thomas called Caret Bay. Caret Bay is located on the lush tropical rainforest section of St Thomas. It is only two bays over from Megans Bay and one bay away from beautiful Hull Bay. Most tourists are very unfamiliar with this area of St Thomas. They typically rush to see the things that most tourists do. They travel to Megahans Bay and downtown for shopping.

New homes are being built in East Caret Bay. These homes are going to be built on land that sells for 250,000 so cost to build a home will be in the millions. It is certainly a great area to be in. So far none of the lots are sold because the real estate market is somewhat down. But they will be a very good investment in a few years.

Caret Bay is home to many locals. Homes range from 200,000 to the multi millions. Most homes offer water front views and have been owned by the same families for many years. You will find the locals to be very friendly, courteous and helpful.

Wouldn’t it be great if tourists could see all of what St Thomas has to offer, including Caret Bay? You can rent some beautiful Caret Bay Villas on the North West section of the island. They include 14 luxury villa rentals and are waterfront property. There are 14 villa units varying in size. Some of the units are two bedrooms while others are four bedrooms. They all offer waterfront views and are very private.

What is great about the area of Caret Bay is the privacy and seclusion you get on the very busy Virgin Island. This is tough to come by on St Thomas as it is a very busy island. The population of the island is 50,000 but at any given day there could be two to seven cruise ships in. This increases the population of the island by up to one hundred percent. Most tourists do not even know that Caret Bay exists. Some of the local taxi cab drivers take many of the cruise ship tourists by cab up to the North side of the island because of its beauty. This is really nice because some people will get to see the beautiful side of Caret Bay.

Some other interesting things to do in Caret Bay are surfing. The waves come in from the north and can be quite large. Many locals will rush to the beaches when a North swell comes in. It is great fun just to watch them all riding in the waves. Some of them are really nice and will give you lessons while other surfers do not want you stealing their waves.

St Thomas is a small island of about forty two square miles. The roads are windy and very hilly. Driving to Caret Bay from the airport could take you minutes just to go a few miles. This is because the roads do not …

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Buying Parking Lots and Parking Garages: Finding the Most Profitable Locations

There are plenty of successful investors out there, but many work so hard that it’s hardly worth the money-because they’re never freed up to enjoy the fruits of their labor! It’s far more worth it to find an investment strategy that would allow you to make considerably more money and create more time to be able to reinvest, spend that money, travel, enjoy time with family, or have fun with that “Bucket List”.

Owning a parking lot or parking garage is a great investment because they can offer you two things: free time and exponential amounts of income. Finding these gems is the hard part because most existing “cash cow” lots are sold before they are even listed. And most are purchased by other parking lot owners-they know what they have, and they want more. If you can find these potential parking lots and garages before anyone else, you can find these extremely rewarding profits too.

Think ahead

Most parking lot locations were never designed to be just that. Parking lots are built out of necessity, plain and simple. Someone would never build a parking lot and then proceed to build something that draws people who need to park; never! It sounds simple, but you need to be ahead of the building curve and search for land before it holds great value. You can do this by recalling where you would need to park a car. Think for a second: Where do people really need to park? Let’s brainstorm: shopping malls, schools, sporting events, entertainment districts, government centers…the list goes on.

Now let’s look at these ideas: malls will provide parking for customers because they want shoppers (so scratch that); schools do the same, but there always seems to be no parking at some schools (possibility here). Every time I see a concert, I end up paying to park; keeper. Last time I got a traffic ticket, it took me 30 minutes to find a parking place at the courthouse to fight that traffic ticket. Ding, ding, ding-got a good one here. Where have you needed to park? Where have you paid to park? I used the same thought process and search techniques you just practiced to purchase a one acre plot of seemingly worthless land across from a new 380 million dollar courthouse that was yet to be built. The property owner had the land for 30+ years and did nothing with it, including not reading any local newspaper that clearly highlighted the new courthouse: funding was approved, a date for the ground breaking ceremony had been set, and the severe lack of parking was already projected in the overly-crowded area!

Harness the power of Google

Seems so simple, right? After all, who has not Googled something? Google, the most popular search engine in the world, is a robust mechanism for quickly finding what you need on the web. Unfortunately, a standard Google search of “parking lot for sale” will currently return around 14.6 million results that are all …

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Free eBay Advertising With Bump Auctions

Do you want extra advertising for your eBay auctions? Do you want to increase your sales? Check out the free bump auction script. This article will outline how this simple and powerful online script can work for you.

How Does It Work A Website?

A “bump auction” is an online display of 100px x 100px images uploaded by eBay sellers. The “bump” refers to the way the auctions are bumped off the display when a new one is added. The auctions include an image and a title describing the item. When items are posted they are immediately added to the display. Besides the main bump on websites some of the featured bumps where you can post your auctions may include: adult, fur, real estate, classified, bike, Harley Davidson and jewelry.

More Traffic

eBay has millions of items for sale and competition is stiff. Smart sellers are turning to other sites to drive more traffic to their auctions. Using bump auction sites will drive more traffic to your items and help increase your sales. Many of the bump auction or auction bump websites are high traffic sites. You can find a list of these sites by searching for the Top 100 Bump Sites.

Free Advertising

Bump auction sites are eBay affiliates who receive commissions from sales. There is no cost for sellers to post their auctions on these websites. This is a win win situation for both the bump auction website and the eBay seller.

Tips

Most sites allow you to post up to three auctions at a time. Do not abuse this or you may get banned. All image formats are supported except bitmap. Use the title of you eBay auction for the description as well as for the image. Do not use special characters in your description only letters and numbers, otherwise the bump will not work properly and your posting could be removed. Try the bump…today!…

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Investing In Real Estate For Beginners: Apartment Complexes

Here is some advice for investing in real estate for beginners who are thinking about investing in apartment complexes. Many commercial property advisors with an opinion say that apartment complexes with over 150 units are the properties to buy, it’s not necessarily true. Multifamily units are indeed a solid investment. However, what you really want to invest in is where you can earn the most rent per unit. Often that is in multifamily complexes with less than 100 units.

When you are making a purchase bid for a large complex, you are often bidding against financial institutions with deep pockets. This creates two distinct disadvantages for you as a beginning investor.

First, most beginner commercial investors are forced to join a large consortium of other investors to get in on a multi-million dollar deal. This dilutes your ownership interest and the weight your opinion counts when issues arise such as when to sell.

Second, when you and your investors are bidding with the last dollars that you have to invest, the large institution can easily out bid you by several thousand more than you can raise. Going up against large institutional investors can be overwhelming.

There are many other reasons to invest in complexes with less than 125 units:

A. There is less upkeep and maintenance. You may be able to avoid the added expense of an on-site manager and full-time maintenance crew.

B. There are more medium-size complexes available at any given moment. That means less competition from other investors and more opportunity to find one with exceptional cash flow.

C. Cash on cash returns for medium complexes are frequently better than for large complexes as you are able to offer a wide variety of amenities and services.

D. You will not be dealing with a financial institution as the seller with a cumbersome sale policy. The seller will more likely be an individual or small partnership that can provide flexible sales terms if they choose.

E. They typically will require less equity to acquire. This means you can control the property as an individual or with a couple of partners. You thus own a higher percentage of the property and thus a bigger amount of the profits.

F. Often the less knowledgeable seller has avoided raising rents because they have become friendly with the tenants or they are afraid the vacancy rate will increase. By studying the local market rents and vacancy rates, you could find that you can immediately increase cash flow through rent increases.

There are some very good arguments to owning small apartment complexes in the 4 to 12 unit range. This can be a good start if you personally manage them and perform most of the maintenance. However, this size complex seldom generates enough income to leave a profit when a property management company is hired.

Investing for beginners can begin with small complexes and once the income is stabilized buy another. After a couple of years, you will have 3 or 4 small …

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Real Estate Expired And For Sale By Owner Letters

One of the most difficult things for real estate agents to do would be to put a pen to paper and create a letter that they can mail to homeowners that have an expired listing, or perhaps are selling on their own. Expired listings and for sale by owner (FSBO) is an essential part of becoming a successful real estate agent. So exactly what do you say within your letter which will spark the interest with the homeowner. Would it be the old worn-out line saying you have buyers for their house.

With that being said, would there be some additional interesting information for them? If not your letter goes into that famous circular file. All of your hard work, crumpled up and gone. Not only that, it is a well-known fact that one letter on its own will not produce any results. Homeowners are certainly not running for their phone to call you pleading, that you should come over and list their property.

Here Are Some Topic Ideas Of What Can Be Sent

  • So your house didn’t sell, but here’s how I can help you
  • I specialize in getting homes that have failed to sell
  • You shouldn’t Give Up
  • Pinpoint the reasons your house didn’t sell
  • I can put MORE money in your pocket than you could Selling on your own
  • Have many real estate agents been calling you?

It generally requires a number of letters in sequential order so you can get yourself recognized. Which means that now it’s more than one letter that you have to compose, it becomes a number of letters. This also means a number of good ideas that have to come together becoming a well thought out marketing campaign. Writing one letter is without a doubt hard enough, writing a series of letters is a struggle.

Try sitting down with a blank sheet of paper and begin a letter. Do you find yourself just staring at that blank sheet searching your mind for an idea? Just one good idea! Not so easy is it? Just how much time and effort are you going to have to put into getting all those letters written? Another task is proof reading all those letters. Possibly the worst thing you can do is send out a letter that is full of spelling and grammar errors. This is best done by another person or perhaps by a computer program. Do you have the time for all of this.

As soon as you start the composing process you will quickly conclude that the amount of time spent can cost you more money than actually buying letters. Well there’s some good news, you can buy letters by a professional and ready to go. There is a big advantage to purchasing real estate letters, they can cost a dollar or less per letter. A tremendous bargain if I may say so.

When you finish your letters you will have to do the mailing. It is best that you send them out …

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Wholesale House Flipping 65% Rule (The Big Myth)

This is my very first article. I am just now catching up to the internet world. I played professional golf most of my life, but have been an active real estate investor and wholesaler for around 22 years.

I have contracted over 200 homes in that period of time. Most of those homes I have flipped to other investors / rehabbers and made a very quick and fairly easy profit. I have also kept many homes to rehab and retail out and many of them I kept for rental property, to build long term wealth.

I have used several different exit strategies when I buy homes. Owner financing , lease options and rental property. This is the beauty of being a professional real estate wholesaler. It gives me many options on property that I have bought at big discounts. If I keep the property for rental, then I have a great piece of real estate that has huge equity and certainly is not as effected by downturns in the real estate market.

I rarely deal with foreclosure property. In most cases there is very little equity to work with. I don’t look for a paltry amount of cash flow from a home. Rental management is too much work. Too many people and legal problems to deal with. Now, if I have a house with 25 to 50 percent equity, I certainly don’t mind the hassle as much and I am not effected by the market. Besides, I can flip a contract on a house and make a profit greater than possibly 20 rental houses will make me. I might flip five houses in one month. That is a much better scenario than leaking faucets, broken hot water heaters, leaking roofs, etc.

I have spent over one and a half years working on my educational information that is available on the web.

I live in Dallas, Texas and do strong advertising for motivated sellers in our metroplex are of Dallas/Ft.Worth. I get calls everyday from many people that have nothing to do with selling their home. The calls are from people that have taken expensive Wholesaling courses from big gurus in the business. People with some knowledge, but no mentoring. People who have spent a fortune to learn my business. Most all of these people are still in the fog. They have no clue which way to go. They seem to know the basic structure of wholesaling, but just can’t put it all together. No experience or training in applying exit strategies They have been given plagiarized facts about the wholesaling business and no support. No mentoring. If they do get offered some type of mentoring, it will cost them a bunch more money. It seems like they get piecemealed to death.

All seem to have this mindset that a wholesale price for real estate is 65 percent of the retail value (After repair value) , minus repairs and minus their determined assignment fee. Then they are supposed to find an …

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How to Inventory and Assign Value to Estate Personal Property

There is an old saying that goes: What is the best way to eat an elephant? One bite at a time!

Personal property is the elephant of an estate. It is the responsibility that can take up most of your time, and it provides the estate with the least amount of money for the effort involved. But, dealing with the personal property cannot be avoided. The property must be inventoried, valued, distributed, or sold. Let us start our analysis by looking at what property we have (inventory); then we will determine what it is worth (valuation). In a future post, we will determine what to do with it (distribution/sale).

When you go to the courthouse, the clerk will provide you with the form you will need to fill out for the inventory. The form will ask you to provide general categories and a value for each category you have listed. For example, you would list: furniture, $1500; office equipment, $300, etc.. You will not have to list the items separately, such as sofa, $100; chair, $5; typewriter, $25. I suggest that you do keep a list of the individual items, though. Although you will not have to go into a lot of detail for the court, you will likely want a more detailed inventory for yourself. You will want this for two reasons: to track the sale of estate property, and to protect yourself against claims of heirs and/or creditors.

You do not have to get real fancy with with the inventory; pencil and paper will do. If you are so inclined, there are home inventory record books available at office supply stores, or you can purchase software online. There are also companies that specialize in taking home inventories.

You will need a helper. One person sorts and counts while the other writes. Start inside the house, and work your way from the top of the house to the bottom. Go room to room with a consistent pattern so that you do not miss anything: always clockwise or counter-clockwise around the room. Write down what is on the walls as well, not just what is on the floor. For small goods, write down identifiable groups of items such as 200 hardcover books, 100 paperback books, 42 nick-knacks, etc.. On your list, put a star next to any item that you think may be valuable. If the nick-knacks are porcelain and the books are first editions, they are valuable items. When you are finished, follow the same procedure for the outbuildings: the garage, shed, workshop, or whatever. If there is a rented self-storage unit, vacation home, recreational vehicle or boat, they will need to be inventoried as well.

When you file the inventory at the courthouse, you will need to state a value for the personal property. For run-of-the-mill household items, a good resource for determining the value is the software program It’s Deductible that comes bundled with the income tax program Turbo Tax. It’s Deductible can also be purchased separately. …

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Making the Transition From an Apartment to Your First Home

Between myself and my real estate team, we have worked with several first time home buyers we have had several times where a first time homebuyer was moving from an apartment complex and into their first home.

We found that this transition in real terms is not that big of a deal, however it is the sentimental, emotional, and financial part of the transition that can have the biggest effect on a first time homebuyer. In other words, first time homebuyers that have been renting in the years leading up to the purchase of their first home have, on average, moved a half dozen times before the move into their first new home. The average age of a homebuyer is 32, and i can remember making at least 5 times before planting down in my first place. Point being, its not the actual move that causes the fear or the challenge in the moving transition; we have found that its all inside the buyer’s head.

With that said, the biggest change for a first time homebuyer will be the emotional and financial changes that occur through the process of buying one’s first home. Most notably, in most cases, a buyer’s monthly payment will go up compared to the rent that they were paying. Also, renters are used to calling the landlord when something breaks in the place that they are renting. For a first time homebuyer, something we do with our initial consultation is set expectations and try to ease the “sticker shock” for a first time homebuyer. We do this by encouraging the buyer to “pretend” to make his or her would-be payments so that they can get a feel for it and not get all stressed out the first month they move in. I’ve found that this fear of a higher monthly payment is all inside your head. Many buyers initially fear the higher payment, and sometimes it is a deterrent from buying a home in the first place, but I’ve found that all buyers get used to their new payment and make it a part of their lives and adapt and adjust their finances accordingly. A buyer gets qualified for a home loan, so the bank is taking a statistical bet that the buyer will be able to handle the payments, and i tend to agree with them on this as well.

However, a buyer can get over this financial concern by making the “pretend” payment; for example, if rent is $1500 a month, but the new mortgage is going to be around $2200 a month, then make the rental payment, and throw $700 into a savings account every month leading up to your home purchase. For some buyers who are buying a short sale, this may entail more than a few months of saving, which is even better and directly addresses the second most common concern about the home-purchase transition for a new buyer which is maintaining and taking care of the home they just bought.…

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Buying a Second Home in the Florida Keys – Don’t Rent Your Vacation Home, Buy It!

With Florida Keys real estate prices down to 2003 levels, there are lots of opportunities to buy a second home at a great price in this paradise of islands. The Florida Keys has long been a big draw for people who visit often enough to see the advantages of owning their own vacation home instead of paying rental fees every year – not to mention costly hotel rates.

A Monroe County ordinance restricting short term rentals makes it tough to find properties that can be rented for less than one month, but in incorporated communities such as Key Colony Beach, there are plenty of properties with short term rental licenses. Buying a home like this may allow you to rent your home when you’re not using it.

Here are two listings in Key Colony Beach that already have rental histories.

A half duplex on open water (MLS#541138) is offered at $745,000. This two bedroom, two bath stilt home faces east on Bonefish Bay and offers the boating enthusiast a deep draft, 30 foot finger dock that can accommodate a boat up to 50 feet. The home comes fully furnished and has tiled floors, central AC/heat, accordion storm shutters, washer dryer a fish cleaning table and outside shower.

Another KCB half duplex (MLS#546837) listed at $399,000 offers a lovely deck on a wide 100 foot canal, thirty feet of canal front with a cement bulkhead and a wood step down dock. There is even a designer (D’Asign Source) cement fish cleaning station. The property is nicely landscaped and fenced, and outdoor furnishings include a gas grill and patio set. The cozy two bedroom, two bath home has central air with heat, tile and carpeted floors and a fully equipped kitchen including dishwasher. All rooms are furnished; it’s move in ready with a rental history and future rentals in place.

Key Colony Beach offers all the delights of the middle Florida Keys — excellent boating, fishing and diving, plus the amenities of a beach club. The neighboring island of Marathon offers a golf course, restaurants and night life and an international airport.

Find some tips on buying a second home from MSN Money. Details on the homes described above in the resource box below.…

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