Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Thinking outside the box “refinance or purchase”

August 17, 2009

My daily ritual, get up, get ready for the day, work, come home check the mail and hang with the family.  Usually, I sort my mail right at the recycle bin (as so much of what I get is junk mail and catalogues).  A few weeks ago, one letter caught my eye.  The front of the letter had the Bank of America logo on it and since I previously had a loan with them I felt I should look.  Like so many home owners I received that dreadful letter:  due to declining values we are freezing your equity line and as of this date you can no longer use it.  Great…now what?   The letter goes on to say that I can appeal the decision, but there is no guarantee anything would change.  I can refinance, but who is going to give me another equity line in this economy since I am self employed in Maryland and stated loans are no longer allowed.  I think about my options, I cannot get a Fannie or Freddie style loan since I do not fit the parameters.  I can’t go to a hard equity lender, it will cost me a fortune and probably not save that much money.  Where do I go?

In my case I go to two networking events, one at the new Legg Mason Tower in Baltimore and then to a Greater Baltimore Board of Realtor event.  I have a few drinks and talk with people in the real estate industry.  The GBBR networking event turned out to be the ticket.  As the event was winding down I was at the bar talking to a mortgage banker about my situation.  Next to him was a nice; quiet gentleman who listened to my story.  When I was thru he handed me his card and told me to call him.  He is the vice president of residential lending for Midstate Federal Saving & Loan Association.  His name is William Allen (Bill) and he told me that he could help me.  I met with Bill and he explained that his company has a loan committee that reviews loans and makes decisions a couple times a month.  How cool, this is really old style lending.  Obviously they look at the whole portfolio and other attributes.  After dealing with the processor she felt the loan would go thru.

Dealing with smaller banks can be a great option in this crazy lending market.  Just to make sure I was getting a good deal from Midstate I called a few small banks in Baltimore to see what they could offer.  After a few calls I realized I was getting a good deal on an investment property.  If you need a lender who thinks outside the box call William at 443-761-6301 or email him at wallen@midstatefed.com.

Remember your small community banks, many of them have been around for decades!  There is money out there for all types of deals you might just have to work harder to find them.  I am pleased to say that I am now dealing with Midstate Federal Savings & Loan. 

Stuart Berman

Co-founder

www.relify.com

Small Broker Growing in Tough Market

May 21, 2009

Every Wednesday I go to the Broker Opens.  This affords me the opportunity to see what is on in the market and to network with agents about my new website relify.com.  This past Wednesday I had the opportunity today to go to a different kind of open house.  This open house was for a new real estate office for a small real estate broker, Cummings & Co.  Up until now they had one location in the heart of Baltimore City in an area known as Canton.  In these times, I have witnessed some of the larger brokers close and consolidate their offices.  I have seen small brokers affiliate with other small brokers to keep their offices afloat.  When I heard about Cummings & Co. opening another office I was excited to hear about the success.

Here is a small broker going out on a limb to grow a business in a tough market.  With an office in the City and now in one in Baltimore County, Cummings & Co. offers the best of both worlds to their agents and clients.  I wish Dave Cummings and everyone at Cummings & Co. the best of luck with the new office. There are many great real estate companies in Baltimore with talented agents.  I am writing this blog because it is so nice to hear success stories in real estate and I wanted to share it!  You can locate and agent at Cummings & Co., or any other brokerage as well as going to www.relify.com and click locate an agent.    

Stuart Berman

Co-founder

www.relify.com search for your next home, locate an agent, contractor or mortgage broker at our comprehensive real estate website!

Feel Free to follow me on Twitter.  http://twitter.com/relify

Here is a link to a recent article about the company.  http://www.mddailyrecord.com/article.cfm?id=11310&type=UTTM

Givng Back to the Community

May 6, 2009

For me, being a real estate agent means more than just helping people buy and sell homes.  I work with friends, family, and the general public to assuage their stress during a financial and emotional change.  As many of us know it can take many, many man hours to locate the right property or eventually sell someone’s home.  I know that time is a precious commodity and as agents we tend to be ‘on call’ for our clients but I feel it is so important to also give back to my community.

I am affiliated with the Greater Baltimore Board of Realtors (GBBR) in Maryland.  They recently had a booth at the Towson Town Spring Festival and I had the opportunity to give two hours of my day to educate the general public about buying or selling a home.  This was one way I was able to give back to my community.  I feel proud to be a part of GBBR and volunteer when needed.  To learn more about GBBR and what they are about check out their website.  www.gbbr.org

And remember – www.relify.com a comprehensive real estate website.

Stuart Berman

Co-founder

Relify.com

Feel Free to follow me on Twitter.  http://twitter.com/relify

Here is a link to a recent article about the company.  http://www.mddailyrecord.com/article.cfm?id=11310&type=UTTM

Facebook

May 2, 2009

I have to say thank you to facebook, twitter and blogging.  Now when I can’t sleep instead of surfing the net or shopping online, I can chat with my “friends”.  I can write quick notes, IM and read up on people I haven’t seen in months.  This, of course being one of those nights.  I used to unwind with the tv or book and now it is the computer.  It seems to be the first thing I do in the morning (all related to relify) and then in the late evening when I am catching up with friends and family.  So thank you I am no longer alone in the middle of the night 🙂

First Video blog

April 30, 2009

Video blogging is one of the goals of my company, Relify.com. The idea of the video blog for Relify.com is to tell stories about what is going on in the real estate industry whether it is an agent or contractor or mortgage broker. We want to do mini interviews that would never be seen otherwise.
The website is designed with video capabilities so agents and anyone posting on the site can promote themselves as well as their product. We have developed a website which created a way for every listing to have its on mini commercial for your listings or company.
So today I am testing my first video blog and this is the start of exploring new ways to get out there. So I hope you like my first video blog giving you an idea of what Relify.com is all about. Stay tuned to more to come.
Stuart Berman
Co-founder
http://www.relify.com

Feel Free to follow me on Twitter. http://twitter.com/relify