Seeing green over mortgages

November 23, 2013 12:00 am • Kenneth R. Harney Washington Post Writers Group

For the growing numbers of home purchasers who care about energy efficiency, it’s the ultimate “green” goal: Lenders should recognize the net savings that energy improvements provide to property owners and take them into account when they underwrite and set the fees for mortgages. Appraisers should also recognize the added value.

The rationale: Owners of homes that reduce energy consumption pay lower utility bills than owners of energy guzzlers, so why not factor these out-of-pocket savings into calculations of household debt-to-income ratios and appraised valuations? This might permit larger mortgage amounts for energy-efficient homes and help qualify more first-time buyers who are now frequently rejected on debt ratio grounds.

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Phoenix being called one of America’s comeback cities

A new in-depth report from CNBC shows how Phoenix and Orlando, Fla. have rebounded strongly from the Great Recession, while other big cities continue to struggle.

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Benifits to Buying a Home during the Holidays

By Jeff MarshallSpecial for The Republic  |  azcentral.comThu Nov 14, 2013  5:44 PM

Holiday-season homebuyers benefit from a variety of market incentives that can shift the balance of power in price negotiations temporarily in their favor. One reason why is a significant drop in overall demand, leaving buyers with less competition for their dream house. Valley real-estate agents are well-aware of these time-sensitive incentives and do their best to share them with their clients.

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