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October 2009

September 2009

Home prices in Case-Shiller index up for 3rd straight month ...

By Les Christie, staff writer On Tuesday September 29, 2009, 9:00 am EDT

There was another tick-up in home prices in July, a further indication that housing markets may be stabilizing, according to a report issued Tuesday.

Prices for the S&P Case-Shiller Home Price index of 20 cities rose 1.6% from a month earlier, the third consecutive month of gains. They went up 1.4% in June.

Prices were still down 13.3% compared with July 2008, but even that performance was better than expected. A panel of industry experts surveyed by had forecast a 14.2% loss.

"The rate of annual decline in home price values continues to decelerate and we now seem to be witnessing some sustained monthly increases across many of the markets" said David Blitzer, chairman of the Index Committee at Standard & Poor's.

The Case-Shiller index compares the sale price of a home to its price the last time it was sold, then factors in changes in prices over time.

That, ideally, yields a more accurate picture of home price fluctuations than simply calculating the median or average prices of all homes sold during the month. Those averages can be skewed by changes in the mix of homes sold during any one period.

Among the 20 cities, Minneapolis recorded the biggest gain during July; with prices up 4.6%. San Francisco, up 3.3%, and Chicago, 2.7% higher, also recorded sizable gains.

The only price declines occurred in Las Vegas, where they fell 1.1%, and Seattle, down 0.1%.

Local Monmouth County Halloween Events

Six Flags Great Adventure Halloween Tradition
Head to Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson, NJ where the entire park is transformed into a haunted Halloween party, Fridays (5-11 pm), Saturdays (10 am-11 pm) and Sundays plus Columbus Day (10 am-9 pm), from October 3 through November 2.  Six Flags’ Fright Fest is a series of haunted shows and attractions, costumed characters and themed rides, among which are Dead Man’s (dance) Party, Hayride To The Unknown, ‘Dee Snider Presents The Van Helsing’s Curse Fireworks Spectacular!, Hypnosteria, Bad Bob The Bone Butcher and more.  A Fright Fest Pet Parade and Costume Contest, October 18, will benefit Popcorn Park, the special zoo that rescues and rehabilitates abused, injured and abandoned animals. Contestants will be judged on originality of costumes (owners and animals) and presentation.  Call 732-928-1821 or visit their website:

DRACULA’S DOMAIN HAUNTED HAY RIDE, Jackson, NJ.  Haunted Hayride at Dracula’s Domain ,Route 537, Jackson NJ (right Next Great Adventure), every Friday, Saturday and Sunday the month of October and the first week of November.  For more info. goto our website: or call (732)-928-0393.  Come and take the hay ride, it may be your last!

Haunted Halloween Express
Allaire State Park
October Fri. & Sat. Oct 14, 15, 21, 22, 28 and 29th Haunted Halloween Express – NIGHTTIME RIDES! 
A spooky nighttime ride through the haunted woods of Allaire State Park. Hear the story of the wreck of the Old Pine Creek No. 96 and prepare for fright! 7:00 to 10:00 PM.

The Hay Ride Of Terror
Triple C Nurseries – C. Casalo Farms
489 County Rd 520
The hayride is a terrifying hay ride though the back woods of NJ where the Jersey Devil and other demons are waiting for you!! The Haunted Barn is a terrifying walk though the depths of hell where goons and goblins lurk in every corner just waiting for the next victim to come a long. This is the scariest Haunted Barn on the east coast.

Family Fun Day at The Hidden Valley Club, Vernon, NJ, Sussex, NJ (October 26,2008) -  Featuring children’s singer-songwriter, “Big Jeff” is happening in Sussex, New Jersey! Sunday, October 26th 11:30am-3:30pm (Rain or Shine) Free Admission, bring the whole family! 2 Performances: 12:15pm-1:00pm – Regular Show; 1:30pm-2:15pm – Halloween Routine. Live Music, Food & Fun. Petting Zoo, face painting, scarecrow making, sand art, costume parade, clown. Open to the public! Pre-register and be entered in drawings throughout the day to receive “Big Jeff” giveaways, gift certificates & more. (Must be present at time of drawings).  This event will take place in Sussex County on October 26,2008 at The Hidden Valley Club, 44 Breakneck Road, Vernon, NJ. To find out more information about this event, please visit the Family Fun Day at The Hidden Valley Club, Vernon, NJ website.

Seaview’s Haunted Hallo-Weekend ~ Friday, October 31 12:00 p.m. ending on Saturday, Nov. 1 at 2:00 a.m. ~ Where: Seaview Resort & Spa, 401 South New York Road, Galloway, NJ 08205 ~ What: Looking for a spooky way to spend your Halloween weekend? Guests at Seaview Resort will be treated to a spectacular Haunted Hallo-weekend on Friday, Oct. 31 and Saturday, Nov. 1. The Hallo-Weekend kicks off Friday at noon with children’s activities including trick-or-treating, exciting games, and Halloween movies. At night the fright factor gets turned up with haunted hayrides, tours through the haunted annex and horror movies. Saturday’s festivities begin at 10 a.m. with a hayride to a pumpkin patch, where kids can pick the perfect pumpkin for a carving contest later in the day. Also highlighting the weekend will be specialty menus with delicious holiday-themed selections at both of Seaview’s restaurants. The finale of the weekend be Saturday night with a midnight showing of the classic thriller “The Shining.” Samantha Gilham, Mastro Communications, 165 Washington Valley Road, Warren, NJ 07059, (p) 732-469-5700, (f) 732-469-6733, [email protected]

Halloween stroller strides class and trick or treat Monmouth, NJ (October 31,2008) – kids in costume while mom gets fit! is happening in Monmouth, New Jersey! come to a FREE stroller strides class where mom can workout with her baby in the stroller. bring your kids in costume and they can “trick or treat” after class. bring healthy snacks for kids. and don’t forget your cameras!. This event will take place in Monmouth County on October 31,2008 at cross farm park, holmdel. To find out more information about this event, please visit the Halloween stroller strides class and trick or treat website.

Interested in adding your event? email [email protected]

Get The Facts...

Short Sales, Foreclosures & Loan Fraud

Due to the recent market correction, buyers can find homes at more affordable prices than at the height of the market. The foreclosure and short sale markets have also become more prevalent. Buyers interested in purchasing a short sale or foreclosed property are advised to work with a REALTOR® who will help in the step-by-step process. 

A REALTOR® can aid in negotiating with a lender on a price to purchase the property. Be prepared to provide proof of income and produce financial documentation in the mortgage pre-approval process. Lending standards now require more time and documentation. 

If your offer is accepted, there is a good chance the home will be sold "as is," which means home improvements become the buyers' responsibility. It is important to obtain a thorough home inspection to assess the condition of the property.  Read about Andrea and Donald's successful purchase of a foreclosed home in Linden.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) offers a program to finance the costs of rehabilitation and improvements made on the home. Rather than obtain separate mortgages to finance the purchase and rehabilitation of a home, the 203 (k) program offers buyers the opportunity to obtain a single mortgage from a Federal Housing Administration (FHA)-approved lender to finance the purchase and subsequent improvements that may need to be made to occupy the residence.

Facing Foreclosure?

If you are currently a mortgage holder and you are having difficulty making your payments, first consult your lender or loan officer to explore options other than foreclosure or selling your home through a short sale, such as forbearance or refinancing. There are loan modification programs and refinancing options being offered through the following organizations:

Fannie Mae

Freddie Mac

HOPE NOW - (888) 995-HOPE (4673) - a HUD-approved alliance that provides free foreclosure prevention assistance.

HOPE for Homeowners program, which allows distressed borrowers to refinance into affordable, government-back mortgages.

Contact a housing counselor in New Jersey.

If losing your home is in the foreseeable future, consider a short sale.
A short sale* is a transaction for the sale and purchase of real property where the purchase price is less than the amount required to pay off the liens on the real property, such as mortgages, judgments, taxes, homeowner or condominium association fees, assessments, as well as closing costs including but not limited to brokerage commissions, realty transfer fee, and attorney’s fees.

It is recommended that homeowners contact a knowledgeable REALTOR® to help navigate a short sale transaction and market the property to potential buyers.  Look for a REALTOR® in your area.

Read more about the difference between a short sale and foreclosure.

Beware of foreclosure recovery scams, or fraudulent companies that target borrowers at risk for losing their home.  Read the warning signs to protect yourself from becoming a victim. Only consult trustworthy resources from state and local government agencies aimed at helping you to avoid foreclosure. 

Resources for Improving Credit & Avoiding Scams

Foreclosure Mediation from the N.J. Judiciary
Making Home Affordable from the U.S. Department of Treasury
Mortgage Tips from the Federal Reserve Board
HOPE NOW - (888) 995-HOPE (4673) - a HUD-approved alliance that provides free foreclosure prevention assistance.
How You Can Avoid Foreclosure and Keep Your Home, from HUD
HOPE for Homeowners program, which allows distressed borrowers to refinance into affordable, government-back mortgages.
Credit Repair: How to Help Yourself from the Federal Trade Commission
Foreclosure Resources from the Federal Reserve
My Money, My Home, My Future toolkit from HUD to help "get your financial house in order."
NJ Home Ownership Preservation Effort

Predatory Lending and Short Sale/Foreclosure resources for consumers from NJAR®

Brochures are also available from the U.S. Department of the Treasury (Consumer Tips for Avoiding Mortgage Modification Scams and Mortgage Rescue Scams) and the Office of Thrift Supervision (Foreclosure Rescue Scams/How to Avoid Becoming a Victim).

*Short sales can have serious legal, credit and tax implications. Navigating through these long and often-confusing transactions can be difficult. It is advised that you work with a knowledgeable REALTOR® and consult an attorney or tax professional with regard to potential short sales whenever possible. 

The Clock is TICKING! 44 Days left to claim the first time home buyer credit!

Thinking of buying your first home? You may be eligible for an $8,000 tax credit that does not have to be repaid! In order to qualify for the federal first-time home buyer tax credit, the transaction must close before 11:59 p.m. on November 30, 2009, or if the home is a new construction, you must be occupying the home by November 30. Income limits do apply. The full credit is only available to individuals with an adjusted gross income of less than $75,000, or married couples with incomes of less than $150,000. Maximize your purchasing power in this unique market before the tax credit expires. For more details on how to claim the credit and to read real world examples from consumers who've had success, visit

Call To ACTION Extend and Expand the Homebuyer Tax Credit

What's At Stake?

Extend and Expand the Homebuyer Tax Credit

The $8000 first-time homebuyer tax credit expires as of December 1, 2009.  But the usefulness of the credit diminishes daily if the credit is not extended well before that date.

A homebuyer is eligible for the tax credit only if the home is “purchased” before December 1, 2009.  That means that buyers have to find a house, complete a contract, satisfy any contingencies, secure financing and go to closing by November 30.  Accomplishing those tasks by November 30 will become more difficult with every passing day.  In today’s market, it generally takes between 45 and 60 days to go from contract to closing.

Without Congressional action NOW, the market may freeze again – possibly as soon as October.

The tax credit has been effective.  NAR research suggests that as many as 350,000 sales this year can be directly attributed to the availability of the credit. 

The tax credit stimulated market activity.  The volume of housing sales has improved steadily every month since the credit was enacted.  The credit pulled people from the sidelines and created some momentum that had been absent.

The housing market remains fragile.  The market has improved and prices have stabilized in many areas, but the market has not fully corrected.  Retaining the credit sustains that recovery.

Inventory may remain unusually high.  The waves of foreclosures attributable to subprime and other improper lending practices are working themselves through the system.  Presently, high unemployment rates pose a threat to homeowners and could set another round of foreclosures in motion.  If foreclosure rates were to spike again, inventories could become bloated again.  Incentives are still needed to keep the market moving.

Home sales continue to stimulate economic activity.  The economy will never fully recover until housing markets fully recover.  Thus, the stimulus the credit provides is still needed.  NAR estimates that every sale generates approximately $60,000 of additional economic activity. And expanding the credit beyond first-time homebuyers would give the economy a much needed kick.

We will continue to need the homebuyer credit.  Congress must act NOW to be sure that the credit is available through 2010.

from njar call to action

Waterfront, Waterview Condos along the Jersey Shore Starting with Long Branch NJ


 I am constantly asked by prospective buyers looking to purchase a condo with "absolute ocean views" or a "waterfront condo" or a "condo on the ocean" oh yes and it must be under $200,000. Well that just does not happen and then they get very disappointed. So I decided to start writing about the different condos, townhouses that are specifically in Long Branch along the ocean and on ocean ave. For ease of use I am doing it alphabetically and will include address as well as map for visual aid.

Please feel free to contact me any time with questions you may have on these condos in Long Branch or other towns.

The picture below is of the southern most part of Long Branch


Beach House Water front, Water View Condos 480 Ocean Ave Long Branch NJ

Beach House Condo Information

Beach house map

Come and get away at the Beach House condos, located at 448 Ocean ave.! Enjoy beachfront sunrises from your private balcony or stroll down to the new pool overlooking the beach and boardwalk. A perfect escape from the hustle of the city. Completely remodeled exterior. Premier location beach side and short walks to West End or Pier Village.

These lovely two story units with ocean views offer kitchen/dining room combinations that leads to a raised two story living room. Also, sliding glass doors with transom windows open to a balcony with views of ocean and beautiful in-ground pool. Beach House condos are modern and tastefully decorated, and include pool access!

Beach House maintenance fee includes: common area, exterior maintenance, snow removal, trash removal, water, sewer, management fee, fire liability.

Condo Association:  Sage One 732-517-1250

Search For Beach House Condos

Last SOLD Price in Beach House  $320,000


Beach House General Info:

Incredible view of the Atlantic Ocean

Minutes from Garden State Parkway

Available to buy or rent

Beach House Recreation:

Recreation room, exercise room and pool.

Boating, fishing, and all water activities

Boardwalk along water

Beach House Living Features:

Extra large dimensions

Two story ceilings

Private Balconies with water front views

Anchorage Water front, Water views Condos in Long Branch

 the Anchorage Waterfront Waterview Condos

Anchorage map

Come and get away at the Anchorage, located 480 Ocean Ave., in one of the most up and coming  towns on the Jersey Shore! This ocean front high rise building in the section known as west end offers comfortable living at a great price. Also a perfect escape from the hustle of the city, just step out your door and you're on the beach!

Get cozy in a one or two spacious bedroom unit here at Anchorage. Relax on the balcony and enjoy direct water views, side views of water or wake to glorious sunrises from the large bedroom windows. Wind down with the re-modeled in-ground pool, exercise room, sauna and clubhouse. Literally steps to the ocean, this high rise is ready for your occupancy!

As with many condos along the Jersey Shore this is a no pets condo.

Anchorage maintenance fee  includes common area, exterior maintenance, snow removal, trash removal, sewer, water management fee.  

2008 SOLD price range for a 1 bedroom   206,000 - $310,000  

prices are affected by floor level and water views as well as updates if any were made

Nothing has sold yet in 2009,

Search for Anchorage Condos

Anchorage General Info:

Incredible views of the Atlantic Ocean

Walking distance to Pier Village

Minutes from Garden State Parkway

Anchorage Recreation:

Recreation room, exercise room and pool

Boating, fishing, and all water activities

Boardwalk along water

Anchorage Living Features:

Reserved parking

Laundry room on every floor