Updates

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Trends revealed in first six months of statewide data MINNEAPOLIS – July 26 , 2021 – The housing market was defined by three things during the first half of 2021 according to Minnesota Realtors (MNR). The group representing 22,000 Realtors across Minnesota is releasing data today from the first half of the year. The three overarching themes across the state are a lack of inventory, booming closed sales and rising prices. The information is outlined below, with a statewide look and a breakdown by region. “It’s still a seller’s market with only about a month’s worth of homes available for buyers across the state, and very little selection,” said T.J. ...
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By helping customers manage disappointments you can transform loss into life-long loyalty     As a Realtor®, you want to make the experience of buying or selling a home as joyful and pain free as possible. But the reality is that bad things may happen. Contracts fall through. Inspections and appraisals come back with deal-breaking news. A buyer withdraws an offer. Your offer to purchase gets rejected or another offer has been accepted.     When there is more inventory, it’s easier to move on after losing a bidding war because another comparable home is likely to come along quicker. But when there is less to choose from, buyers can be more disappointed ...
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What Are Your Funniest Real Estate Stories?    Yu Jie Chen - ReMax Results, Eden Prairie    It was a dark and cold evening. I opened the door and turned on the lights. My buyers were walking behind me. We walked upstairs and I saw three people. I screamed loudly and grabbed my buyer’s arms, twirled her around while screaming and she was screaming.      Then we stopped and realized we were looking at our own reflections. There was a mirror at the end of the hallway.       Tracie Fogelson - Counselor Realty, Rochester - ABR, GRI When the listing agent was delivering a key to my office for our final walk-through ...
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Predatory PACE Loans

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How MNR’s GA Team Stopped Them from Ripping Off Minnesota Homeowners Though it seems like old news by now, a recent episode of John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight featured an eye-opening segment on how PACE loans are exploiting and hurting unwitting homeowners in other states across the country. Fortunately, PACE loans aren’t a problem in Minnesota because Minnesota Realtors® (MNR) Government Affairs team, working with a diverse coalition of groups, successfully lobbied the Legislature to suspend residential PACE loans in 2017 until consumer protections for Minnesota homeowners could be developed and implemented. Those consumer protections were enacted in 2018.  ...
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Whether you go camping, visit grandma and grandpa, or explore new adventures, summertime is primetime for road trips.   And no trip would be complete without a pilgrimage to the array of larger-than-life, colorful characters and must-see stops Minnesota’s roads have sprinkled along the way.   Here are a few one-of-a-kind sights to take in on your next trip:   Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox - Bemidji, MN Is there anything more Minnesotan than Paul Bunyan? After all, Paul and his blue friend are purported to be responsible for creating our 10,000+ lakes! Visiting these two in Bemidji is as Minnesotan an activity as going to the state ...
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Since 2006, the Fargo-Moorhead Area Association of Realtors® (FMAAR) has hosted a yearly coffee fundraiser. Due to the pandemic, the FMAAR team had to reimagine their annual giving efforts and how they could best help the community. What was once a perennial fundraiser blossomed into monthly donation drives for nonprofits and groups in need.  FMAAR Realtors® have been busy this year helping folks around the Fargo-Moorhead area of all ages. They've collected puzzles for veterans, soup for the Meals on Wheels program, and winter items for Fargo Public Schools! Most recently, the association held a “Clean Start” effort, collecting cleaning supplies ...
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Fannie Mae limits financing. On Dec. 7, 2020, Fannie Mae modified existing rules for how it finances and invests in second homes and investment properties. Besides placing a 7% limit on Fannie’s acquisition of single-family mortgage loans secured by second-home and investment properties, the rules also restrict the kinds of projects that Fannie will invest in. For example, Fannie Mae announced it would not finance loans with a large number of short-term rentals. NAR has had ongoing discussions with Fannie Mae to understand the full impact of this policy change while conveying its concerns over its potential effect on members and the second-home market. NAR ...
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As closed sales rise and inventory shrinks, new listings can’t keep pace Competition for scarce housing stock defined Minnesota’s real estate market in June, pushing the median sales price to $325,000, up 18.9% above June 2020, according to Minnesota Realtors ® (MNR), the membership organization supporting all 22,000 Realtors in the state. Closed sales rose 12.9% over last year, and a surge of new listings brought 11,908 properties to the market, a 6.5% increase. In a key indicator of the frenzied sales activity, days on the market sank 45.7% to just 25 days—a historic low. Overall, the state’s number of homes for sale were down 40.8% compared to last ...
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As closed sales rise and inventory shrinks, new listings can’t keep pace Competition for scarce housing stock defined Minnesota’s real estate market in June, pushing the median sales price to $325,000, up 18.9% above June 2020, according to Minnesota Realtors ® (MNR), the membership organization supporting all 22,000 Realtors in the state. Closed sales rose 12.9% over last year, and a surge of new listings brought 11,908 properties to the market, a 6.5% increase. In a key indicator of the frenzied sales activity, days on the market sank 45.7% to just 25 days—a historic low. Overall, the state’s number of homes for sale were down 40.8% compared to last ...
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Back in April, NAR and The Memorial Foundation hosted a Facebook Live event, “ The Past, Present, and Future of Fair Housing ,” which was moderated by Soledad O’Brien and included other industry leaders. Society faces a pivotal moment in the road to equality. While racial homeownership gaps are stark, they’re expected to only get worse. Over the next 20 years, it’s forecasted that the national homeownership rate will drop 3%, more among African Americans. Changes to lending and financial systems are necessary now to stem some of the fallout. Other ideas for advancing equal opportunity in housing include:  Change mortgage broker compensation models so that ...
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Prospecting Tips

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Setting up your social media channels Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Snapchat are all effective ways to promote your business.  Personal branding is important. Set up business pages for each of these so that you can promote yourself, your properties, and your successes. Take a small ad budget, and promote your brand in the area. It may not turn into business right away, but your branding and exposure on social media can provide,  within any budget, an effective tool to get your presence in the marketplace. One caveat:  Plan your social media content in advance . Don’t spend too much time away from the most effective  dollar-productive activities that ...
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Honoring Outstanding Realtors®

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The nomination process is now open for the 2021 Minnesota Realtor® of the Year and the 2021 Ed Anderson Political Achievement Award. Minnesota Realtor® of the Year This annual honor recognizes a member whose outstanding work advanced the entire Minnesota real estate industry. The winner will receive $1,000 to offset expenses to attend the National Association of Realtors® (NAR) Convention this November, where the NAR will recognize our recipient along with Realtors® of the Year from other states. You can submit as many candidates as you feel are qualified. The MNR Management Team may also submit candidates. The criterion for the MNR Realtor® of the Year ...
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Summer Homeowner Checklist

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Staying Cool and Helping the Plane t 💦☀️🌍   Summertime is officially here! And while the summer months are great for ice cream and time at the lake, it’s also an important season to keep up with home maintenance.   Here are some tips for keeping your home cool, helping the planet, and saving money.   Staying Cool   Maintain the air conditioner Just as you maintain your heater in the winter, make sure your air conditioner is in tip-top shape for hot weather. Always remember to:   Change the filter in the air-to-air converter Change furnace filter for air conditioning Wash out the air conditioner ...
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For millennials, the happiness and well-being of their pets is a big factor when buying a home   Buying a home is an important life decision with many factors to consider throughout the process, including our furry, fuzzy, and feathered family members. According to the National Association of Realtors ® (NAR), 43% of households indicated they would be willing to move to better accommodate their pets, demonstrating that pets are a priority for many consumers as they look for homes.     Home is Where the Hound Is Though only 18% of Realtors ® said they were representing a client who was moving solely because of their animal, more ...
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The pandemic has proven the value of a yard. Outdoor projects are on the rise, and greenhouses are seeing record profits. A healthy wildlife population ensures healthier plants and a better balance in nature. Spending time in nature is a way to relax, clear your mind, de-stress, and meditate. The sounds of nature bring harmony, balance, and calm to our lives. No matter the size of your yard, you can easily attract birds and pollinators. Here are some tips: Bees Bees are one of the world’s most important pollinators – and with their numbers in decline, many people are trying to attract them to their flower beds. Here are some easy to maintain plants that ...
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The MN Realtors® Political Action Committee (MN-RPAC) is a bi-partisan Political Action Committee (PAC) that supports state and local candidates who advocate for homeowners and the real estate industry. It achieves this through campaign contributions and independent expenditures at election time. Any issue that impacts your bottom line is an MN-RPAC issue. MN-RPAC’s support of pro-real-estate candidates compliments Minnesota Realtors®' (MNR) advocacy work. When more RPAC-supported candidates are elected, MNR and its Government Affairs team have more allies as they lobby for issues important to our industry. This past year brought many challenges, and thanks ...
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Social media has changed how we communicate and interact with our friends, family, and even strangers. It’s an incredible tool that allows us to learn, laugh, and express ourselves! And while social media might seem like it’s merely for entertainment, it’s also an important tool for staying connected to current clients and reaching new ones. Over the last year, we’ve shared, posted, and retweeted some important advice on making the most of your channels, so here’s a roundup of our social media tips for Realtors®: Elevating Your Marketing Gam e 🚀 From live video to venturing into Instagram, we laid out must-have marketing tools in our March ...
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The Minnesota Realtors® DE&I Committee hosted The Pillsbury House + Theater’s Breaking Ice , a virtual performance that blends drama, music, and humor in a series of dynamic scenes to explore how systemic inequities, implicit bias, and common misperceptions show up in relationships; creating uncomfortable interactions that inhibit innovation, motivation, and productivity in the workplace. Following the performance, all attendees participated in an all-group discussion regarding the scenes, where theater moderators asked attendees if they felt any familiarity with any of the characters. The discussion was thought-provoking and eye-opening as participants ...
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1. Plan your social media strategy Pick your channels: Where does your target audience spend their time online — Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, etc.? Plan your content: Choose mediums that best suit your communication style: videos, podcasts, blogs, Pinterest posts, Instagram stories and posts, etc. Fill your feeds with checklists, tips, how-to guides, FAQs, newsletters, and other information that’s useful and relevant to your audience. Idea: Host a weekly live show: Live video has a massive reach and priority on social media. You can also re-purpose and boost recordings of live videos in the future. If you plan on ...
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Summer is just beginning, and Minnesota is already seeing a record drought season. Here are 5 things you can do to keep your home safe, should there be a wildfire in your area.   Home Ignition Zones - Limit the amount of vegetation in home ignition zones. Immediate Zone: 1-5 feet around the house Intermediate Zone: 5-30 feet around the house Extended Zone: 30-100 feet around the house Landscaping and Maintenance – Trim branches that overhang the home, porch, and deck and prune branches of large trees up to 6-10 feet from the ground. Use crushed stone or gravel instead of flammable mulches in the Immediate Zone. Roofing and Vents ...
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Meet a Member: Amy Ruzick

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Amy Ruzick - RE/MAX Results, Loring Park, Minneapolis     Hometown:  Eagan, MN   Years as a Realtor®:  19     How did you get into real estate?   “It was accidental. I had been working at US Bank as a programmer, and I was always looking at homes and duplexes in addition to renovating my second duplex. A coworker finally asked me one day “why aren’t you selling real estate?”. I had never thought of that before, and within about 6 months I had my license and was no longer at US Bank.”     Best way to stay positive   “Every day has the potential to share a laugh, have a connection, witness something beautiful, or ...
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Consult the   Code of Ethics (COE)  to define which Articles may have been violated Write a detailed narrative providing specific reasons for each violation Gather supporting documentation, including listing agreements, purchase agreements, representation contracts, or disclosure forms Complete the Minnesota Realtors® online   Ethics Complaint form You must file your complaint within 180 days of the date you discovered the facts constituting the violation or closing of the transaction, whichever is later. Incomplete Ethics Forms Will Be Delayed or Discarded You must complete all the information requested in the form. This includes: Filling ...
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2021 Forms Revisions

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The following forms will be revised, effective August 1, 2021. Please note these forms won’t be available on TransactionDesk until August 1 st . Residential Forms: Addendum to Purchase Agreement:  Sale of Buyer’s Property Contingency Buyer Representation Contract:  Exclusive Buyer Representation Contract:  Nonexclusive Cancellation of Purchase Agreement Disclosure Statement:  Location Map Disclosure Statement: Meth Disclosure Statement:  Seller’s Disclosure Alternatives Disclosure Statement:  Seller’s Property Disclosure Statement Disclosure Statement:  Subsurface Sewage Treatment System Disclosure Statement:  Vacant Land Disclosure Statement:  Well Facilitator ...
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Buying a home is one of the biggest decisions people make in a lifetime, and it often feels like an emotional roller coaster. From house hunting to putting in an offer to moving in, the whole process can bring on a flurry of emotions and stress.   That’s why it’s critical to have an expert Realtor® to navigate the process and help ease worries.   Here are some tips for reducing home buying stress:   Use a Realtor ® Having an expert in pricing, negotiating, making offers, and handling all things real estate is especially critical during a hot market.   It's important to use a Realtor ® who adheres to a strict code of ethics, receives yearly ...
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The National Association of Realtors® has recently released its annual Profile of LGBTQ Home Buyers and Sellers . Below are some highlights: LGBTQ buyers were more likely than non-LGBTQ buyers to be first-time home buyers, but about equally likely to be first-time home sellers. LGBTQ buyers and sellers were slightly younger and earned slightly less than non-LGBTQ home buyers and sellers. LGBTQ buyers were less likely than non-LGBTQ to have purchased a multi-generational home. LGBTQ sellers were more likely than non-LGBTQ sellers to have sold a townhouse/row house or condo. LGBTQ buyers purchased older and smaller homes than non-LGBTQ buyers. ...
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2020 was a pivotal year. Civil unrest made Americans not only acknowledge social injustice but act on changes. The global pandemic has created a fundamental shift in the workplace, causing businesses to come to grips with the fact that “corporate structure” doesn’t create the productivity that working from home has proven. For decades, effective leadership has been defined by top-down, hierarchical approaches to driving business outcomes. But the workplace is changing — from the nature of work and how we accomplish it to the people doing the work itself. Profit-driven organizations focused on “what” and productivity are evolving into purpose-driven cultures ...
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2021 Spring Market Survey

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This spring, MNR asked you about the spring real estate market. We compiled the results on median over asking amounts, all-cash offers, and waiving inspection contingencies. VIEW RESULTS
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Although the nation’s LGBTQ+ community has come a long way since the first Pride march was held in New York City in June 1970, the march for fair treatment and equality continues. Even in Minnesota, a state lauded for its progressive attitudes, much work remains to ensure that people in the LGBTQ+ community are not discriminated against, especially in the housing market.     “We as humans will discriminate, even if we don’t think we are,” said Anthony Cardinal of RG Realty Group in Apple Valley. As a gay man, he has made it part of his mission to elevate colleagues’ awareness in the real estate business and help them understand the implicit biases that ...
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Anita Hill  GRI   St. Paul   I encourage first-time homebuyers to talk with several Realtors® to find one whose style and communication feels right and one they can trust to hear your dreams, wants, and needs. You’ll want a Realtor® with expertise, empathy, and candor to assist you each step of the journey: from lender pre-approval to negotiating, to closing to moving into your first home!     Dave Lanpher  ABR, AHWD, C2EX e-PRO, GRI, SFR   Fargo   One of the most important things for a buyer is having their financing in order. In a seller’s market that makes a difference. Buyers should also be ready to offer more than list ...
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The MNR Board of Directors met on Thursday, June 10 th from 10 AM to 12:30PM CT. Below is a recap of the highlights: 2021 MNR Leadership Team Emily Green, Treasurer Jason Miller, President-Elect TJ Simon, President Bob Clark, Past President Chris Galler, CEO Fiscal Year 2022 Strategic Plan Approval on 2021/2022 strategic pillars MNR Strategic Plan   2022 Leadership Appointment Approvals Emily Green for 2022 President-Elect David Lanpher for 2022 Treasurer Fiscal Year 2022 Budget Approvals   Board voted down an increase of dues by $5. The annual dues will remain at $185. No increase for the 3 rd year Approved forms monthly ...
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New listings falling short of market demand The Minnesota real estate market stayed strong with closed sales up +14.5% over last May, and pending sales increasing by +9.4% . However, demand continued to squeeze available inventory as new listings only inched above last May’s levels at +0.2%. The median price rose to $310,000, up +15.7% from 2020, an all-time high for sales price and a high-water mark for the year over year percentage increase. Days on market dropped by -37% to just 29 days, a historic low. Buyers are feeling the pressure and pursuing homes with multiple offers while houses come on and off the market very quickly. Properties were receiving ...
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New listings falling short of market demand The Minnesota real estate market stayed strong with closed sales up +14.5% over last May, and pending sales increasing by +9.4% . However, demand continued to squeeze available inventory as new listings only inched above last May’s levels at +0.2%. The median price rose to $310,000, up +15.7% from 2020, an all-time high for sales price and a high-water mark for the year over year percentage increase. Days on market dropped by -37% to just 29 days, a historic low. Buyers are feeling the pressure and pursuing homes with multiple offers while houses come on and off the market very quickly. Properties were receiving ...
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With the shortage of affordable housing and a rise in distressed hospitality and office space, some are starting to see both problems becoming solutions for each other. Even prior to the pandemic, retrofitting a hotel into residential housing was becoming a common practice. A 2018 purchase of a former Days Inn complex in Branson, MO is nearing completion for affordable studio and one-bedroom apartments. Converting hotels into studio or one-bedroom residential units is typically an easy task – most of the plumbing and living quarters are in place; it’s only a matter of expanding the kitchen area, and viola – new housing! But what about converting office space ...
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Osborne Strickland has a personal mission to help low-income Minnesotans achieve homeownership     F or too many Minnesotans, buying a first home is increasingly difficult. In today’s hot market, supply is short, and prices are rising. For low-income buyers struggling to work jobs, raise families, and pay the rent, scrimping together a downpayment can be overwhelming. Yet, thanks to an array of financial programs and community-based assistance, much-needed resources are available to many first-time buyers. Unfortunately, many renters are not aware they exist. But Osborne Strickland, broker at City of Lakes Community Realty in Minneapolis, is working ...
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Lou Thao, a Realtor ®  of Hmong heritage talks about real estate, success, and the fusion of her Asian and American identities   When Lou Thao’s family arrived in the United States from Laos in 1990, they were part of an exodus that had been going on since 1975. The Hmong, an ethnic people who lived in the mountains of Laos and other nations, had helped the U.S. during the Vietnam War. After the communists came to power in Laos, they were imperiled and began fleeing.     Making their home in Minnesota, Thao’s family joined many other Hmong people who had already settled in the Twin Cities. Only nine years old, Thao adapted rapidly, from learning ...
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Realtors® and Sustainability

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In March 2021, NAR surveyed its members pertaining to sustainability issues facing the industry. The findings are as follows: 36% of respondents reported their MLS has green data fields, and respondents typically used the green data fields to promote green features and energy information. 65% said energy efficiency promotion in listings was very or somewhat valuable. 55% of respondents found clients were at least somewhat interested in sustainability. 40% of homes with green certifications spent neither more or less time on the market. Download the Report Here
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“Land: How the Hunger for Ownership Shaped the Modern World” Author: Simon Winchester   Under all is the land. Upon its wise utilization and widely allocated ownership depend the survival and growth of free institutions and of our civilization.   From the Preamble to NAR’s Code of Ethics   If you’ve ever wondered how land ownership became a pillar of civilization and foundation of the global economy—not to mention bread and butter of the real estate industry—Simon Winchester’s sweeping history transforms this  terra incognita  into familiar ground. Winchester explores the ancient origins of property and considers how its evolution has ...
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It’s World Bicycle Day - a time to celebrate the joy and simplicity of this easy and environmentally friendly mode of exercise and transportation.   And what better way to embrace this day than jumping on your bike and exploring our beautiful state? Whether you’re a casual rider seeking easy paved trails and plenty of places to stop for ice cream, or a dirt-riding, single-track warrior on a quest to bag the toughest terrain, Minnesota’s got a trail to suit every ambition and skill level.   Grand Rounds - Minneapolis Take in the breathtaking views of lakes, rivers, and some of the city's most iconic spots from this 50-mile trail that encircles ...
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In 2020, Minnesota Realtors® partnered with the Minnesota Homeownership Center to launch the Minnesota Downpayment Assistance Research Project. Our goals were to identify ways we can remove barriers facing homebuyers with limited savings and make progress on reducing the racial homeownership gap. Ultimately this research is intended to help us explore opportunities for improving policies and programs for downpayment assistance (DPA).   Quantifying the need for downpayment assistance Summary from the Rosen Consulting Group research report Low and moderate income (LMI) households and communities of color face many roadblocks on the path to homeownership. ...
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Realtors with MRP certifications are educated advocates for veterans    In 1944, as the nation prepared for millions of soldiers to return from the battlefields of World War II, the VA home loan program was created by the federal government to help veterans into homes of their own. Since then, countless veterans and their families have benefitted from the program. In 2020, veterans received nearly half a million loans for home purchase, and more than 800,000 for refinancing.       Yet in today’s tight housing market, vets have a hard time competing against conventional loan products and the increasing number of cash offers. Making a winning bid ...
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