Has the Housing Market Hit Bottom?

Many people are trying to call this the bottom of the housing market. While the loudest voices may be those with self-serving interests (namely, realtor groups), there is some real optimism creeping in.

The most recent Housing Opportunity Index – released by the National Association of Homebuilders and Wells Fargo Bank – shows that almost 73 percent of homes sold in the first quarter of this year were “affordable.” In order to qualify as “affordable,” the total costs of a home (mortgage, taxes, etc.) must not exceed 28 percent of the median family income (currently $64,000).

Retailers Reflect a Changing Economy

What is good for individuals and for the economy in general is not necessarily good for retailers. For example, it is a good thing when people stop using their home equity as an ATM machine. And it’s a good thing when they increase savings and pay down debt. But these...

The Time to Refinance Your Mortgage Is Now

Do you have a mortgage with a variable or high interest rate? If you do, it makes a lot of sense to refinance. Thirty-year fixed-rate mortgages are currently only about 5 percent – and you want to lock in a low rate now, because inflation is on the horizon.

What’s “The Point” In A Mortgage?

Loan-discount, or "buy-down," points are a one-time cost you may choose to pay your lender to reduce your interest rate. These points are usually optional. A point is equal to 1% of the size of the loan. So on a $100,000 mortgage, if you decide to pay a point up...

How To Have Rich Kids

Dear Early to Rise Reader, You can give your kids a huge advantage in life if you teach them, while they're young, good money habits. That's why we asked Justin Ford to write to you yesterday about the techniques he's using (from his program called Seeds of Wealth) to...

Money Matters

One of the most interesting things I learned from the individuals I knew who became billionaires is that they considered every dollar to be valuable. Money was a means to advance their goals – in particular, the goal to become wealthy. And you don’t become wealthy by being careless with any amount of money.

The Secret Code of Success

I had just gotten off the stage at a major marketing conference when the founder of a nationally known software company (you’ve seen their commercials on TV) came up and said something that stopped me in my tracks:

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