– See more at: http://www.inman.com/2014/02/19/new-reports-point-to-housing-slowdown/#sthash.hGvhs6HV.dpuf
– See more at: http://www.inman.com/2014/02/19/new-reports-point-to-housing-slowdown/#sthash.hGvhs6HV.dpuf
Take a look at one of our local Basketball teams who just advanced in the State playoffs Grissom Tigers
Times of needing to have a formal dinning area may have come and gone, but having a space to dine and entertain hasn’t.
Years ago folks wanted to have a formal dinning room so they could have a nice gathering over a meal and entertain guests. Well, that hasn’t changed except where it is located. Today buyers are wanting a warm comfortable open kitchen design where they can entertain guests and still be where the action is- “The Kitchen”. Even with the influx of restaurants in local places folks still want to have guests over for entertaining.
Today’s buyers want an updated kitchen area, generally overlooking a dinning area or den area.
So there is something to think about when you are updating your house for a market analysis. Should you take down that wall or simply update the kitchen. My recommendation is, if you’re going to update the kitchen then probably go ahead and take out that wall and open things up. Otherwise, leave the kitchen to attract a different buyer wanting a fixer upper.
Call me if you would like a Pre-market analysis and or “on the market ready” analysis.
|Alabama A&M University: delayed until 10am Tuesday|
|Albertville City Schools: closed Tuesday|
|Arab City Schools: closed Tuesday|
|Athens City Schools: delayed 2 hours Tuesday|
|Athens State University: delayed until 10am Tuesday|
|Bethel Baptist School: delayed 3 hours Tuesday|
|Boaz City Schools: Closed Tuesday|
|Cherokee County Schools: closed Tuesday|
|Colbert County Schools: delayed until 10am Tuesday|
|Cornerstone Christian School: delayed 3 hours Tuesday|
|Country Day School: delayed until 10:30am Tuesday|
|Covenant Christian School: delayed until 10am Tuesday|
|Cullman City Schools: closed Tuesday|
|Cullman County Schools: closed Tuesday|
|DeKalb County Schools: delayed 3 hours Tuesday|
|Etowah County Schools: closed Tuesday|
|First Baptist Child Dev Center: opening 9am Tuesday|
|Florence City Schools: delayed 2 hours Tuesday|
|Franklin County Schools (AL): delayed 3 hours Tuesday|
|Ft Payne City Schools: closed Tuesday|
|Gadsden State Community College: All campuses closed Tuesday|
|Guntersville City Schools: closed Tuesday|
|Hartselle City Schools: delayed 3 hours Tuesday|
|Huntsville City Schools: Delayed 2 hours Tuesday|
|J. F. Drake State Technical College: opening 10am Tuesday|
|Jackson County Schools: closed Tuesday|
|Lauderdale County Schools: delayed until 10am Tuesday|
|Lawrence County Schools: delayed 2 hours Tuesday|
|Limestone County Schools: delayed 3 hours Tuesday|
|Madison Academy: delayed until 10am Tuesday|
|Madison City Schools: delayed 2 hours Tuesday|
|Madison County Schools: delayed 2 hours Tuesday|
|Mars Hill Bible School: delayed until 10am Tuesday|
|Marshall County Schools: closed Tuesday|
|Muscle Shoals City Schools: delayed 2 hours Tuesday|
|Northwest-Shoals: delayed 3 hours Tuesday|
|Oakwood Adventist Academy: delayed until 10am Tuesday|
|Russellville City Schools: delayed 3 hours Tuesday|
|Scottsboro City Schools: closed Tuesday|
|Sheffield City Schools: delayed until 10am Tuesday|
|Snead State Community College: closed Tuesday|
|St Bernard Prep School: closed Tuesday|
|Tuscumbia City Schools: delayed until 10am Tuesday|
|Virginia College: opening 10am Tuesday|
|Wallace State Community College: Closing at 3 p.m. Monday, evening classes cancelled|
HUNTSVILLE, Alabama — When Alabama Media Group moved its Huntsville hub downtown in October, one of the first things some of us noticed while walking around the corner for lunch was a nice downtown building on Clinton Avenue that was filled with mini-storage units.
What a waste of a prime downtown space, we thought.
Chad Emerson, the CEO of Downtown Huntsville Inc., must have had the same thought when he started his new job as downtown development guru in August. On Wednesday, Emerson announced The Clinton Avenue Project, something that’s apparently been in the works since just after Emerson arrived.
Downtown Huntsville Inc. will lease six of the ground floor storage units and sub-lease them to small business start-ups that need a place to get off the ground.
“It gives local, small business entrepreneurs an opportunity to test whether their retail concept can be successful in an urban, walkable setting like downtown,” Emerson told AL.com business writer Lucy Berry.
Here’s a sample of the small businesses that will incubate in the storage units: Anne Condit will open up Live Easy, a handcrafted art and goods store; Huntsville artist Christian Wegman will sell original paintings and prints; another unit will feature a rotating gallery for artists to sell their work for up to two weeks at a time; and John Whitman, a visiting University of Alabama in Huntsville professor and founder ofHuntsville Open Tech Coffee (HOTCoffee), will launch a new public service venture called Business Button in one of the units.
The city and organizations like DHI predecessor Big Spring Partners have been working for years, with some success, to revitalize a downtown that once was dominated by bail bond companies and lawyers offices.
Emerson and his one employee, Director of Communications and Branding Macy Chapman, along with a dedicated board of local business and “thought leaders” such as Chairman Evans Quinlivan and Vice Chair Scott Averbuch, are taking it quickly to the next level.
The accomplishments in just six months are almost too many to list, but here are some highlights.
• The fun and creative “Pop-up Parks” competition brought people downtown in November to play Twister, visit outdoor coffee bars and Zen gardens built overnight in parking spaces around the courthouse square.
• Tapping into the nationwide food truck craze, Downtown Huntsville Inc., sponsored astreet food gatheringdowntown that was wildly successful. The City Council has helped take advantage of the phenomenon by amending an ordinance to let food trucks serve downtown seven days a week.
• In January, Emerson and DHIpresented awards for Downtown Development of the Year (Belk-Hudson Lofts); Downtown Advocate of the Year (city planner Marie Bostick); and Downtown Event of the Year (Greene Street Market).
• On Feb. 9, DHI brings the “Retro Winter Games” downtown, complete with dodgeball, capture the flag and foursquare.
• There are plans in the works for a downtown putt-putt golf challenge sometime in the spring.
There are also bigger, more permanent projects in the works that the city and DHI are working together on, including a redevelopment of the old Holiday Inn property and a new convention hotel across from the Von Braun Center.
Emerson also has announced a “Blue Sky Idea” project to generate even more new and eclectic events and projects, even if they are dreams – like a downtown tram system — of what could be if we had millions to invest.
In such a short time here, Emerson, who came from a similar position in Montgomery, has become a trusted adviser to the mayor and local business leaders, and brought much-needed energy to the job of promoting and building a vibrant downtown.
In Emerson’s words: “The early success is evidence of the pent-up demand for unique, interesting, and walkable experiences. This downtown has so many assets that there’s no reason it shouldn’t become one of the best among peer cities.”
Written by Director of Community News Shelly Haskins for the Alabama Media Group editorial board in Huntsville
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New mortgage rules that took effect last week could further hamper small lenders’ ability to issue loans, The Wall Street Journal reports.
Under the new rules, lenders must ensure that borrowers can pay back their loans. Loans that meet“qualified mortgage” standards will provide a safe harbor to lenders from future lawsuits, while loans issued outside of QM standards will carry more legal risk.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau defines “qualified mortgages” as loans that meet the ability-to-repay rule and in which borrowers spend no more than 43 percent of their income on debt. Furthermore, fees and other charges may make up no more than 3 percent of the loan.
Small lenders reportedly will tread cautiously in the new lending environment because they are worried about the legal risk of making loans that don’t meet new standards, according to The Wall Street Journal.
“We’re going to be very conservative just to make sure that we’re in compliance and don’t get into trouble,” says Mark Walker, chief executive of Michigan Mutual Inc., a lender with 300 employees based in Port Huron, Mich. “There are going to be loans that we did in 2013 that we are not going to be able to do in 2014.”
Any lender who falls outside of the new rules may be unable to sell the loan to investors such as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Large lenders—such as Wells Fargo and Bank of America—already have said they plan to continue issuing loans outside of CFPB’s Qualified Mortgage standards and will hold those loans on their own books.
But smaller lenders will likely think twice. Non-bank lenders will be particularly cautious since they often don’t use their own investment portfolios to hold the loans on their books, The Wall Street Journal reports.
For example, Linda Sweet, president and CEO of Big Valley Federal Credit Union in Sacramento, Calif., says her credit union will mostly stop making mortgage loans in 2014. Her credit union made about 30 mortgage loans in 2013.
“The burden of trying to comply with the regulation is just overwhelmingly costly for a small financial institution,” Sweet says.
CFPB announced it is monitoring the new rule’s impact closely on loan availability to see if any tweaks need to be made.
“I think we got the rule right,” says Peter Carroll, CFPB’s assistant director for mortgage markets. But he adds that “we don’t want to see credit get unduly cut for people, where there are responsible loans being made.”
Source: “Small Lenders Wary as Mortgage-Lending Rules Take Effect,” The Wall Street Journal (Jan. 10, 2014)
You hear it all the time in the late months, “It’s just too cold today to look for a house”. I agree it does get soo cold. Today for instance it will only get to 20°! Makes me shiver a bit talking about it. It is hard to get yourself moving when your bones and muscles are screaming to get back in the heat.
I say get a warm shower or bath to wake up your body and bundle up. Get up the car and go find a house. It’s kinda like guys not wanting to go to the mall on black Friday. There is no way in hell they are going to fight the crowds when they can procrastinate and get just as good a deal. So think about it. When does everyone want to look for new houses or go to open houses?, when it’s warm out. Everyone wants to look at the same time, so you have to jockey for the right house and possibly have to get in a bidding war. Don’t get into a bid war. Get up, get out and find the perfect house that you don’t have to fight anyone for. It’s your house, claim it.muscles are frozen and not wanting to acknowledge what you need to do.
We all get caught up in what everyone else is doing, you know like everyone wants to go to the beach on Memorial day. It’s so much easier going on a different weekend, not to mention more affordable. Wait a couple of weekends and see the difference.
If you dig that sort of thing then by all means do it. If you want to get the best deal possible then try getting those bones in motion when it’s colder than Pluto outside and see what you can do.
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