Regulators defend Idaho's nursing home inspection system
NAMPA, Idaho (AP) — State and federal health officials are defending their regulation of long-term care facilities after a Nampa nursing home recently came under fire for mistreating its residents. Steven Chickering, a regional administrator with the ...
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Student loan debt and high rent prices continue to burden the homeownership outlook, according to data from the fourth annual housing survey from NeighborWorks America. The national telephone survey found nearly one-third (30 percent) of Americans know someone who has delayed the purchase of a home because of student loan debt, up from 28 percent in 2015 and just 24 percent in 2014. More than half (53 percent) of potential homebuyers with student loan debt said the debt was somewhat or very much an obstacle to buying a home, down slightly from 57 percent in 2015, but above the 49 percent rate in 2014. Meanwhile, 56 percent of people said that rents are too high where they live to save enough to purchase a home.
Rising home prices and rents are especially affecting student loan holders who want to be homeowners. When asked about their next housing choice given current market conditions, 29 percent of people with student debt said they expect to rent again, while only 17 percent of people without student debt said their next move would be to rent.
Nearly 60 percent of renters wish that their next housing move would be into homeownership.
Housing affordability weighs on homeownership
Americans are split on housing affordability in their own neighborhoods. Forty-five percent of those polled agree that homes in their market are unaffordable to first time homebuyers, while 50 percent say that homes are affordable. But while there is nearly an even split about affordability, rental costs clearly are an obstacle to homeownership. Fifty-six percent of people agree that rents in their area are too high for a person to save for a future home, and just 37 percent disagree.
Better awareness of down payment assistance programs and student loan debt counseling could help affordability. For example, the survey found that 71 percent of Americans are not aware of or unsure about the down payment assistance open to middle class homebuyers, up slightly from 67 percent in 2015. In addition, 77 percent of those with student debt never heard of or are not familiar with loan counseling programs from nonprofits.
These programs could help a consumer manage their student debt and provide information about down-payment assistance programs that could increase the possibility of qualifying and obtaining affordable and sustainable homeownership.
Source: NeighborWorks America
At RISMedia’s September 2016 Real Estate CEO Exchange, an impromptu auction led by CEO John Featherston raised $2,400 for Easter Seals, a nonprofit that assists more than one million children, adults and veterans with disabilities and special needs.
The item auctioned to two CEO attendees was a signed copy of “Jacob’s War,” written by CEO Exchange opening keynote speaker Alex Perriello, president and chief executive officer of the Realogy Franchise Group and member of NAR’s Executive Committee.
While “Jacob’s War” has nothing to do with real estate, it does have to do with another topic close to many real estate professionals hearts: veterans. A unique Revolutionary War story set in New Jersey, 100 percent of the profits from the sale of the book are being donated to the Easter Seals Military and Veteran Services.
At the end of the CEO Exchange’s opening session, Featherston auctioned off two copies of the book for $600 each, promising to match this contribution himself, raising a total of $2,400 for the nonprofit.
“Reading Alex Perriello’s compelling novel ’Jacob’s War,’ I found myself consumed by Lieutenant Jacob Von Etten’s journey and the cause that changed his and our lives, the Revolutionary War,” says Featherston.
“It was an easy decision to bid in support of raising funds for Easter Seals,” says Jim Pfirrmann, CEO of Better Homes and Gardens Bradfield Properties and one of the two winning bidders. “Alex’s service to the members of the Easter Seals community as a member of the national board is important to the culture of our brokerage. Better Homes and Gardens Bradfield Properties had already donated over $8,000 to Easter Seals of Central Texas this year and we wanted to do more to support ‘Jacob’s War’”
“At the RISMedia conferences, we are a group of real estate leaders,” explains Morgan Carey of Real Estate Webmasters Inc, who took home the second signed copy of “Jacob’s War”. “As such, it is up to us to set an example for our companies and teams and to represent our industry in the best light possible. This includes many important aspects, but there are none so important as giving back whenever we can. Personally and for all the staff at Real Estate Webmasters Inc., providing help for those less fortunate is a very important part of our culture.”
“Easter Seals helps so many families dealing with challenges,” says Pfirrmann, “whether it’s a child with Autism and a family struggling to understand how to deal with this newfound information or a veteran returning home needing to find a new vocation due to injury or a grandmother who winds up in a wheelchair and now needs housing modification to stay in her home. Easter Seals provides vital assistance for any age group and any disability.”
The Easter Seals mission resonates with Carey, as well. “I am a father of two and I grew up with a single mother with disabilities – I understand intimately both aspects of the Easter Seals mission. Easter Seals works to help ease this stress on families and provides access to important services that improve the quality of life for these very special families. It’s a great organization and I am always thrilled to support its mission.”
Jacob’s War can be purchased on Amazon. One hundred percent of the book’s profits will go to Easter Seals.
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Home Inspection News
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