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Home Equity & Senior Housing

Bob Carlson’s ideas and strategies for managing home equity and choice of housing to maintain a budget

Found 126 Articles.
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tapping-real-estate-equity-part-2

Tapping Real Estate Equity, Part 2

December 1, 2004

The rapid real estate appreciation of recent years endowed many families with substantial real estate wealth but not enough cash. Real estate appreciation does not produce cash. But it does result in higher property taxes, and there are maintenance expenses to pay. Some families also are disappointed with having paper wealth that cannot be spent […]

estate planning

Tapping that New Real Estate Wealth for Estate Planning

November 1, 2004

Managing the equity in appreciated homes and second homes has become a pleasant and unexpected challenge for many. Especially on the coasts, residential real estate values soared the last five years. Suddenly owners, especially long-time owners, have properties that are more valuable than they imagined. For many families, real estate wealth exceeds the value of […]

real-estate-bubble-revisited

Real Estate Bubble Revisited

August 1, 2004

Residential home prices in many areas have skyrocketed. One estimate is that average prices nationally rose 40% over the last five years. In a number of areas, however, home prices increased 75% and more, especially on the coasts. In my area some neighborhoods have waiting lists for homes, and brokers say they have more buyers […]

cash-flow-from-your-home

Cash Flow from Your Home – Reverse Mortgages

July 1, 2004

The use of reverse mortgages is climbing as more seniors learn how to use them to raise cash from their home equity. The loans are not for every senior American, but they can be a valuable source of cash for strapped homeowners. Fewer than 20,000 reverse mortgages were originated in 2003. That’s a tiny part […]

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how-to-beat-higher-property-taxes

How to Beat Higher Property Taxes

May 1, 2004

Real estate values are climbing, and local property taxes are soaring with them. If the real estate tax rate stays the same and your home appreciates, your real estate tax bill rises at the same rate as the appreciation. In my recent trip to Naples, Fla., I learned that the prices of most residences there […]

the-right-mortgage-for-todays-market

The Right Mortgage for Today’s Market

May 1, 2004

Alan Greenspan recently pointed out that over the past decade homeowners would have saved a bundle by having adjustable rate mortgages (ARM) instead of conventional fixed rated home loans. Is an adjustable rate loan still the right decision today? A fixed rate mortgage definitely is more expensive in the short-term. Recently, the average interest rate […]

homeowners-hidden-tax-time-bomb

Homeowner’s Hidden Tax Time Bomb

May 1, 2004

Many older homeowners are facing a problem that a few years ago was considered unthinkable. These homeowners face taxable capital gains on the sale of their homes, despite the generous $500,000 exemption for married couples. The red hot real estate market of the last five years in many areas has pushed many longtime homeowners into […]

how-to-maximize-retirement-community-deductions

How to Maximize Retirement Community Deductions

April 1, 2004

A portion of long-term care expenses are deductible as medical expenses. The question taxpayers often ask is what portion of the fees paid to retiree communities, such as assisted living facilities or nursing homes, can be deducted. The Tax Court recently stepped into this issue and set some new rules. When someone enters a nursing […]

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