Secure Your Home This Holiday Season

Written by Rasheedat Oduola on . Posted in Mortgage Economy and Market, Mortgage Services and Providers

home security
As the holiday season is upon us, so is the rate of petty crimes increase in our neighborhoods. It can sometime dampen our holiday spirit to come home to a burgled house, where our most treasured items are either destroyed or stolen. Here are some of the tips to prevent our property from unwelcomed guests except our dear Santa Clause

Make sure your home is secured and locked, it sounds pretty obvious, right? Yes it is, but forgetting to lock windows and doors as you eagerly leave for a party or event or forgetting to replace your locks or set up an home security system is a very red carpet invite for a thief to stroll into you home.

Become unpredictable by setting your holiday lights on automatic timer, even if you are travelling for the holidays, this prevents thieves from predicting your habits when you turn your lights off or on. Avoid making items in your home visible to the outside. You can either remove or replace them from visible areas or hang curtains to do the work.

Be careful of posting your holiday travel plans online, this is the same as tying a red bow on your property for thieves. Have your neighbor, trusted friend or family member empty out your mails, an unemptied mailbox give thieves the impression that you are not home. Have a trusted friend check on your house and empty out your mails.

Be careful of door-to-door solicitors, thieves sometimes use this method as a form of disguise to look into your home and survey if you have a dog or home security system. Do not post the gifts you received for holidays or birthdays online, also avoid leaving empty boxes in front of your door. This gives thieves a perfect picture of what you have in your home.

Also, ensure that the extension cords to your outdoor lighting are not preventing your windows from closing or latching completely. Most importantly, always remember not to compromise the security of your home. Have a wonderful holiday season!

Identifying a Professional Broker

Written by Rasheedat Oduola on . Posted in Mortgage Services and Providers

Broker’s Price Opinion are usually required by lenders or mortgage companies to determine the selling price of a real estate property instead of using appraisal which is relatively expensive and time consuming. BPO is usually ordered from a Real Estate Broker in which the broker will do a drive by BPO or an interior BPO.

Brokers are often everywhere. A click of the button on google will yield millions of results but how do you tell which broker you are supposed to hire. How do you sift the wheat from the shaft

A good broker is very knowledgeable about what they do and how to do it, They know the exact things expected of them and how to go about getting results. They possess experience in the field and have good work ethics. They are also often guided by code of conducts which reminds them to be on course at every point in time

A good Broker also has the necessary qualifications to practice. They possess the required qualifications and licenses. In order to be a broker there are licenses that are required at different levels. The broker is also registered with the appropriate association and has a good deal of experience alongside educational qualifications. It is worthy to note that not everyone who says they are versed in brokerage are indeed qualified as some could have read about it over the internet and others are just regular sales people or field agents.

Brokers are usually clear about their fees and do not mince words when it comes to how much they want to get paid for a job. They know exactly what he job entails and what is required of them. They will l also ensure the job is delivered as at when due because this tells on their professionalism and referrals.

Roles in A Real Estate Transaction

Written by Rasheedat Oduola on . Posted in Mortgage Economy and Market, Mortgage Services and Providers

Who plays what role in the purchase or sale of a property. What role does the real estate agent, the real estate broker or even the real estate attorney play. Each individual role is different and they do not overlap in any form or shape.

The real estate agent for example is a more like a sales person as they are usually working for a commission. They are a very good resource for both sellers and buyers in or outside the country as they help buyers to find the exact match for their homes in terms of location and price. They have direct communication with the buyers with regards to the exact property they are looking for and are always on the lookout until they find the appropriate property. The real estate agent is usually supervised by a broker.

The broker on the other hand is more like the real estate agent only that they have acquired more educational and license and as such they can work alone and have agents working under them. Brokers usually do not work directly with clients, the agent does but the commission got by the agent is paid to the broker who in turn gives it to the agent that was responsible for the sale of the property.

Another party that plays an important role is the attorney. Buyers often refuse to use their services because of their fees but it is advisable to involve a real estate attorney. An attorney is responsible for pointing out the details of a contract before it is signed. The attorney will also investigate the property’s owner background, survey, legal description etc. They ensure the buyer fully understands the terms of the contract and that proper title insurance is available. An attorney will ask the buyer not to close on the property if there is an issue affecting the ownership of such property.

Should you require full disclosure on a property, you might also want to consider the real estate attorney as they give unbiased judgment on a property because they get paid whether or not the deal closes unlike the real estate broker who only gets paid if the deal closes.

So, you might just want to consider that real estate attorney as it is always worth it.

What You Need To Know About Mortgage Fraud

Written by Rasheedat Oduola on . Posted in Home Buyers and Mortgagors, Mortgage Services and Providers

Mortgage fraud is a type of fraud committed by borrowers and professionals within the mortgage industry and it is usually committed for either profit or housing purpose. Mortgage fraud can be said to have been committed on a property when there is a misrepresentation, deception or omission with regards to the property to in order to insure a loan.

Professionals within the mortgage industry sometimes deliberately withhold or don’t give full information about their clients credit/debit, employment status, condition and value of their property in other to secure a loan for them and maximize profits on loan transactions. These details are intentionally omitted by the loan officer, title company, insurance agent, real estate agent, mortgage broker or appraiser with the aim of maximizing profits on that loan transaction and gaining extra sales commission.

Borrowers are also culpable in committing this fraud and it is done with the help of officers that are processing their loans. The main reason borrowers partake in this is to obtain or maintain real estate ownership. They omit the details of their income, credit/debit status with the knowledge of their loan officers.

The two most common fraud scams within the industry are the air loan and appraisal fraud . Loans sometimes can be obtained on a nonexistent property for a nonexistent borrower, this is called air loan. Professionals within the industry combine efforts to create a ‘ghost borrower’, nonexistent property and title on such property, fake employment verifications, phone numbers, mailboxes etc. All these are done in other to make everything appear legitimate. This fraud just puts cash in the hands of the scammers without selling or buying any property.

Appraisal fraud on the other hand is also perpetrated by the industry professionals such as the real estate agent, loan officer and loan officer joining forces to maximize a purchase price and loan amount in order to increase commission.

Government agencies are stepping up to combat mortgage fraud in all its ramifications by monitoring the real estate industry/market. Professionals within the industry are required to be properly licensed and improve their skills. In addition, the activities of companies within this industry is being monitored and audited on a regular basis to ensure adherence to guidelines and best practices.

In general the industry is being properly regulated with the hope of totally eradicating the fraud within the industry.

Banking gone Green

Written by Lynn Nunez on . Posted in Mortgage Economy and Market, Mortgage Services and Providers

green-worldThe survey, of U.S. Consumers which explored mobile trends and banking behaviors among adults across the country, found the need for constant connectivity also extends to banking.

The survey, which explored mobile trends and banking behaviors among adults across the country, found the need for constant connectivity also extends to banking. Of those respondents who said they use their phones for mobile banking, almost one-third (31 percent) say they log on at least once a day, and more than four out of five (82 percent) access their accounts at least once a week or more. Talk about staying abreast of your expenditures.

The report revealed further interesting insights into consumer mobile banking behaviors and preferences, including: • Mobile banking is on the rise. More than half (62 percent) of respondents have at least tried mobile banking, while an overwhelming majority (90 percent) are using online banking. When using their bank’s mobile app, U.S. consumers most commonly check their balance, transfer funds between accounts and pay bills.

• Consumers are using their mobile devices for more advanced transactions including check deposits. Nearly six in 10 (58 percent) respondents have used mobile check deposit, and 38 percent use it frequently.

• Consumers prefer a mix of banking options. The survey found that 84 percent of respondents have visited a bank branch within the past six months. Most commonly, Americans make a trip to the bank to make a deposit, withdraw funds and speak with a banking associate.

• Consumers are comfortable with added security measures.
Courtesy of

This says a lot of how the economy is moving and how much it affected us, People are paying closer attention to their finances and incorporating the monitoring into their routines. This will help keep spending in control and staying within budget, because you know we all have one not to mention the faster you will notice any fraud activity.

Guide to Becoming a Successful Field Inspector

Written by Rasheedat Oduola on . Posted in Field Services, Mortgage Economy and Market, Mortgage Services and Providers

Field inspections also referred to as drive by inspections are completed in millions every year. Being a field inspector requires little or no training. It requires the inspector to have a car for easy movement, a computer with internet capabilities, digital camera which will be used for taking pictures and a smartphone.

Once you have all of these set, register and upload your information on websites that mainly cater to the real estate industry or field inspection companies .Always remember to include your area of coverage when putting out your information as this will ensure that you are always considered for jobs within your primary area of coverage.

Now that your information out, you may start to get emails or phone calls, so have your phone with you always as you are the one in need of jobs. Your cell phone should also have internet capabilities as you can respond instantly to emails when received. Your timely response and timely completion of jobs given to you will determine the number of jobs you get.

So If you are looking to make good and additional income, be that field inspector that completes jobs timely and also without error. Field inspection companies are always particular about having an error free report. It is also advisable to adhere to the inspection requirements and photo policy. Train yourself so you can get better at what you do as it is with all profession. You would also be doing yourself a good service to attend some of the webinars offered by field inspection companies.

Should you be in doubt or encounter any challenge while you are in the field, contact the inspection company . Make yourself what I call a “priority inspector” ;that inspector that will be considered first before any other inspector and before you know it, you are on your way to making this additional income regular.

Always remember Field Inspection Companies are in need of agents that can be relied on to complete their jobs timely and effectively.Now is the time to relax or perhaps work hard and enjoy your new money maker.

Got books?

Written by Lynn Nunez on . Posted in Field Services, Mortgage Closing Services, Mortgage Economy and Market

Are your accounting records up to date? Are they balanced? Are they understandable by anyone other than yourself? All of these are good questions to consider, especially when your record keeping is in question. Otherwise how will you know where you stand financially, economically? Accounting, which has been called the “language of business”, measures the results of an organization’s economic activities and conveys this information to a variety of users including investors, creditors, management, and regulators. Did you know, both the words accounting and accountancy were in use in Great Britain by the mid-1800s, and are derived from the words accompting and accountantship used in the 18th century. Yes even back thenuntitled they had accounts to balance. If this all seems like a foreign language to you, you could outsource this area of your business and then use it as a business write-off instead. Accountants and auditors prepare and examine financial records. They ensure that financial records are accurate and that taxes are paid properly and on time. Here is more to ponder and maybe need translation on. For the past two decades, fair value accounting—the practice of measuring assets and liabilities at estimates of their current value—has been on the ascent. This marks a major departure from the centuries-old tradition of keeping books at historical cost. It also has implications across the world of business, because the accounting basis—whether fair value or historical cost—affects investment choices and management decisions, with consequences for aggregate economic activity. SOMETIMES it seems as if our lives are dominated by financial crises and failed reforms. But how much do Americans even understand about finance? Few of us can do basic accounting and fewer still know what a balance sheet is. If we are going to get to the point where we can have a serious debate about financial accountability, we first need to learn some essentials.

What Determines the Value of a Property

Written by Rasheedat Oduola on . Posted in Field Services, Mortgage Closing Services, Mortgage Services and Providers

Sepropert value imagellers often want to know the value of their property on the market. Is it about how much home improvement that has been done or the purchase price of the property. Most sellers think remodeling the house before it is put up for sale alone would help increase its market value.

This is usually not the case as the value placed on a property is much more determined by other factors than remodeling, making home improvements and maintenance.

A great factor that determines the value of a property is the fair market price. The fair market price is the price a buyer is willing to pay for the purchase of the property and the price the seller is willing to accept for the sale of the same property.

Determining the fair market price involves finding the values of properties in the same subdivision which are very similar to the property being put up for sale. This similarity  could be in terms of the property type, condition, number of floors, property square footage etc. These very similar properties are called comparables.
There are some cases where the exact comparables are not found for the property. In such instances, sales of properties which are similar but not exact can also be used as comparables.

In other to be able to compare this comparable sale to the property and bring them to the same level, net adjustments for differences are calculated in terms of the factors that affect the value which could range from difference in square footage , floors, amenities, house condition and view of the property.

Whether you are the buyer or the seller of a property, it is always advisable to seek the services of a professional to help determine the asking or the selling price unless you are versatile in that field and have carried out proper research.

Mistakes That Can Lead To Claims

Written by Debrisha French on . Posted in Mortgage Closing Services

Failing To Require Personal Appearance By A Signer: Experts all agreed that failing to require a signer to physically appear before you is the most common mistake that lands Notaries in serious legal hot water. Notarizing without a signer’s personal appearance is violation of law in every state and territory, and can result in major financial and legal penalties.  The Notary admitted that she had done notarizations in the past where she spoke with signers by telephone to ask if they signed documents. The Notary’s commission was suspended.

Failing To Properly Record Notarial Acts: Too many Notaries fail to keep a record of their notarial acts, especially in states that do not require it. But that’s a problem because a properly maintained journal is your best protection if someone makes a claim against you. In essence, your journal is a record that you did everything right. Without the journal, you could find yourself trying to remember a notarization that might have happened years earlier. In addition, a poorly kept journal record can convince courts that you were sloppy and didn’t take the job seriously.

Failing To Obtain Satisfactory Proof Of Identity From A Signer: “Unless the signer personally appears and presents a valid ID, the Notary just cannot do the notarization. Period.” Busch said. “Otherwise, they will likely end up being sued, since more than likely there is a fraud being perpetrated.” Mistakes

Engaging In The Unauthorized Practice Of Law: While most Notaries would never walk into a courtroom pretending to be a lawyer, many don’t realize something as simple as telling a signer what notarization to choose or answering questions about a document is the unauthorized practice of law, which could lead to a lawsuit and other legal problems for the Notary.  Non-attorney Notaries should never prepare, complete or answer questions about a signer’s documents.  

Business slowing down?

Written by Lynn Nunez on . Posted in Field Services, Mortgage Closing Services, Mortgage Services and Providers

Now that business is slowing down, what do you do? How do you keep moving forward? Do you sit at home and just wait for the business to come to you?

Something you can tackle now with the business slowing is office politics. How things are running in the office, you know the place where your desk is located. No, not the one at home covered with stacks of papers but the one located off site and probably covered in dust. Well if this scenario describes your office, I would suggest beginning there, or maybe having the cleaning staff stop by a day before to get you started.

Now that the desk is cleared up, how are things in the office? Employee reviews up to date? Now would be a good time to catch up and touch base. Are all the departments running smoothly? Now may be a good time to hire new staff and complete training. Have them prepared for when things pick back up. How about a strategizing meeting with the staff to get things started. Marketing ideas, new product ideas or increasing coverage areas. Is the holiday season approaching? How about vacation times? Plan on some training and review of current policies. Look for areas that need improvement and then you should take small, common sense steps daily toward achieving those goals. Don’t try to tackle everything all at once, think small steps.

Woman looks up

Now would also be a good time to review stock. Such as paper stock, pens, ink, coffee and all other items that keep the office running smoothly. Recently a friend of mine told me her office incorporated a lunch service for all staff, maybe this is something to consider or even a potluck once a week would be fun and team building.

What ever you do, do something. That is why you’re here.