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New Home Sales Rise in September, but August Pace Cut

2014-10-24 10:12:00

Filed under: News, Buying, Economy Keith Srakocic/AP By Lucia Mutikani WASHINGTON -- Sales of new U.S. single-family homes rose to a six-year high in September, but a sharp downward revision to August's sales pace indicated that the housing recovery remains fragile. The Commerce Department said Friday that sales increased 0.2 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 467,000 units, the highest reading since July 2008. August's sales pace was revised down to 466,000 units from 504,000 units. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast new home sales at a 470,000-unit pace last month. New home sales, which account for about 8 percent of the housing market, tend to be volatile month to month and large revisions aren't unusual. Compared to September last year, sales were up 17 percent. Housing is slowly regaining its footing after activity stalled in the second half of 2013 as mortgage rates soared. With the 30-year fixed mortgage rate this week falling to its lowest level since June of last year, sales could pick up. Slow wage growth, however, remains a constraint. Data this week showed sales of previously owned homes touched a one-year high in September. Last month, new home sales fell 8.9 percent in the West, handing back some of August's 28.1 percent surge. In the populous South, sales rose 2 percent, while they increased 12.3 percent in the Midwest. Sales were flat in the Northeast. With sales rising modestly, the stock of new houses available on the market rose 1.5 percent to the highest level since July 2010. At September's sales pace it would take 5.3 months to clear the supply of houses on the market, unchanged from August. Six months' supply is normally considered a healthy balance between supply and demand. The median new home price fell 4 percent to $259,000 from a year ago.  Permalink | Email this | Comments

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New York Apartment Building Is Tallest in the Americas

2014-10-24 09:17:00

Filed under: News, Buying, Lifestyle, Inside Look DBOX for CIM Group & Macklowe PropertiesRendering of a master bathroom in a finished apartment at 432 Park Avenue. When the first residents of 432 Park Avenue say they're feeling on top of the world, they won't be speaking in metaphors. The 96-floor condo nearing completion stands 1,396 feet tall. It is, at the moment, not only the tallest residential building in Manhattan, or in the U.S., or in North America; developers CIM Group and Macklowe Properties claim the rooftop of 432 Park Avenue is the highest of any apartment building in the whole Western Hemisphere. Not only can you see the world from the top of 432 Park Avenue's, Rafael Viñoly-designed tower, but the world can see you. "It's almost like the Mona Lisa," said developer Harry B. Macklowe in a New York Times story. "Except instead of it looking at you, you're looking at it wherever you are. You can't escape it." The skyline-changing tower, which looks like a giant domino stretching to the clouds, includes apartments reportedly priced from $7 million to $95 million. But when it comes to living among the stars -- like, the actual stars -- money apparently is no object. Check out the developer's website to see what you could see at 558 feet to 1,271 feet. Besides views from the Bronx to Brooklyn, all of Central Park and part of the Atlantic Ocean, the new building between 56th and 57th streets, features: units with 12½-foot ceilings and 10-by-10-foot windows. private restaurant for residents and guests only. lounge. gym. billiards room. pool. massage therapy room. Like the fastest gun in the West, the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere will always have wannabes nipping at its heels. 432 Park Avenue has a formidable rival growing taller every day. By mid-2015, 225 West 57th is set to reach 1,479 ft. above street level, according to YIMBY. It could steal the title before the first residents of 432 Park Avenue move in next fall. Permalink | Email this | Comments

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8 Reputedly Haunted Homes Currently on the Market

2014-10-24 05:05:00

Filed under: News, Buying, LifestyleBy Catherine Sherman Is that the "Crying Lady Ghost" or the sound of old pipes? Now you can see for yourself. Some of America's oldest and most haunted homes are on the market. Take a stroll down eerie lane, but know this: You're on your own from here. There's no telling what's lurking behind these doors.  Read | Permalink | Email this | Comments

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Spooky-Looking Kentucky Mansion Sells for $1

2014-10-24 04:35:00

Filed under: Design, News, SellingBy Lauren Matthews 'Tis the season for haunted houses, and this house -- which recently sold for the whopping sum of $1 -- at least looks downright spine-tingling, even if no ghosts actually reside there. Also see: 10 Beautiful Historic Houses for Sale Under $100,000 Permalink | Email this | Comments

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Mark Zuckerberg Reportedly Buys Hawaii Beach and Plantation

2014-10-23 13:59:00

Filed under: News, Celebrity Homes Kicka Witte via Getty ImagesMark Zuckerberg reportedly bought Pila'a Beach, an almost 400-acre parcel including a white sand beach. APMark Zuckerberg Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook's billionaire 30-year-old, has purchased two large and adjacent parcels of land on Kauai's North Shore for about $100 million, according to a Forbes report. Zuckerberg reportedly bought Pila'a Beach, an almost 400-acre parcel including a white sand beach, and the adjacent Kahu'aina Plantation, a former sugarcane plantation. The plantation features 2,500 feet of oceanfront and a working organic farm, Forbes says. Zuckerberg apparently has a fancy for Hawaiian real estate. In January, 2013, Pacific Business News reported that Facebook's chairman and CEO "is buying" several units in a 23-story luxury condo under development in Honolulu. Permalink | Email this | Comments

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Jennifer Lawrence Buys Jessica Simpson's Former House

2014-10-23 12:33:00

Filed under: News, Celebrity Homes TruliaThis Beverly Hills house that Jennifer Lawrence reportedly just bought has been home to several celebrities. ShutterstockJennifer Lawrence Jennifer Lawrence just took a cue from Jessica Simpson and purchased a gorgeous Beverly Hills house for $7 million. According to E! News, Lawrence bought the place from an unknown buyer who bought it from Simpson in October 2013 for $6.4 million. Lawrence isn't just buying a new bachelorette pad, she's buying a home with quite the Hollywood pedigree. Prior to Simpson and her family living here, Paul Hogan, Tom and Kathy Freston, Ellen DeGeneres, and Rick Yorn all called this gorgeous Beverly Hills property home. When Simpson sold, she and her family moved to the $11 million dollar Hidden Hills mansion she bought from Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne. She originally paid $5,275,000 for the five-bedroom, six bathroom, 5,500 square-foot in December 2005, right after she announced to the world that she and husband Nick Lachey were divorcing. Now that the stunning home belongs to Lawrence, she can settle in to the idyllic estate and weather the rigors of being a young, beautiful, A-list star. Built in 1991, the custom home is evocative of the stylish real estate found in the Hamptons and is located in one of the most private, guarded celebrity enclaves. The property is walled and gated, with a stone courtyard that leads to a koi pond. Inside, high ceilings punctuate the formal living room and dining room. A family-friendly, restaurant-style, gourmet kitchen leads to the breakfast room then out to the stone courtyard. The media/family room opens out to the serene, private and secure park-like grounds and swimming pool. Nestled in the heart of Beverly Hills in a private community, Lawrence also has some famous neighbors: Mila Kunis, Ashton Kutcher and their new daughter Wyatt recently moved in down the street. Talk about an A-list avenue! Permalink | Email this | Comments

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Mortgage Rates Continue Slide for Fifth Straight Week

2014-10-23 10:29:00

Filed under: News, Buying, Financing, Refinancing Keith Srakocic/AP WASHINGTON -- Average U.S. long-term mortgage rates continued to slide this week, raising prospects of a wave of consumers refinancing their loans. The 30-year mortgage fell further below 4 percent. Mortgage company Freddie Mac said Thursday that the nationwide average for a 30-year loan declined to 3.92 percent from 3.97 percent last week - the lowest level since June 2013. It stood at 4.53 percent back in January. The average for a 15-year mortgage, a popular choice for people who are refinancing, fell to 3.08 percent from 3.18 percent. It was the fifth straight week that mortgage rates retreated. The possibility of locking in a mortgage rate below 4 percent can be tantalizing for consumers. Across the country last week, homeowners and would-be homeowners eager for a bargain rate fired off inquiries to lenders. Before last week, many bankers, lenders and borrowers had assumed that mortgage rates would soon start rising closer to a two-decade average of 6 percent. That was based on expectations that the Federal Reserve would start raising its key short-term rate next year - a move that likely would lead to higher mortgage rates. But that assumption fell suddenly into doubt as stocks plunged last Monday and Wednesday amid fears about global economic weaknesses, the spread of Ebola and the threat of the Islamic State militia group in the Middle East. Seeking safety, investors poured money into U.S. Treasurys. Higher demand drives up prices for those government bonds and causes their yields to drop. The yield on the 10-year note traded as low as 1.91 percent last Wednesday. This week the yield on the benchmark Treasury note recovered to 2.22 percent Wednesday. It traded at 2.26 percent Thursday morning. To calculate average mortgage rates, Freddie Mac surveys lenders across the country between Monday and Wednesday each week. The average doesn't include extra fees, known as points, which most borrowers must pay to get the lowest rates. One point equals 1 percent of the loan amount. The average fee for a 30-year mortgage was unchanged from last week at 0.5 point. The fee for a 15-year mortgage also remained at 0.5 point. The average rate on a five-year adjustable-rate mortgage slipped to 2.91 percent from 2.92 percent. The fee was steady at 0.5 point. For a one-year ARM, the average rate rose to 2.41 percent from 2.38 percent. The fee held at 0.4 point.  Permalink | Email this | Comments

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Jennifer Lopez Reportedly Buying $22.25 Million NY Penthouse

2014-10-22 19:01:00

Filed under: News, Celebrity Homes Douglas Elliman Real Estate via ZillowJennifer Lopez reportedly is in contract to buy this spacious penthouse in a prime Manhattan location. APJennifer Lopez By Catherine Sherman Jennifer Lopez may be signing a deal to perform regularly in Las Vegas, but she's putting down new roots in her hometown -- the Big Apple. "Jenny from the Block" is in contract to buy a $22.25 million Manhattan penthouse, according to New York's Daily News. When it comes to location, it doesn't get much better. The singer's new digs are on the top floor of The Whitman, a pre-war boutique condominium overlooking Madison Square Park. The building is also home to Chelsea Clinton, who purchased the second floor for $10 million last year. Lopez's last reported real estate purchase was a 3-acre Hamptons property. She bought it for $10 million after touring the place several times with her twins and then-boyfriend Casper Smart. Now unattached, the singer is making real estate moves of her own -- and The Whitman penthouse looks to be her most luxurious home yet. The interior spans 6,500 square feet with four bedrooms, six full bathrooms and two half-baths. The residence also has four terraces totaling over 3,000 square feet. The listing states that the sprawling home features exquisite finishes, an Arclinea chef's kitchen and ceiling heights up to 12 feet, 4 inches. Melanie Lazenby of Douglas Elliman Real Estate is handling the sale, which is currently in contract.  Read | Permalink | Email this | Comments

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SJP Does Some Shoe Business on Perry Street Steps

2014-10-22 14:57:00

Filed under: News, Celebrity Homes, Lifestyle, Selling InstagramWith this photo shoot, Sarah Jessica Parker reportedly rekindled the ire of residents at a "Sex and the City" location. Sarah Jessica Parker reportedly has annoyed the folks who live at 66 Perry Street, the West Village townhouse better known as Carrie Bradshaw's single gal pad in "Sex and the City." InstagramDid Parker defy the sign to sell shoes? The New York Post reports that Parker used the steps of the Perry Street building to display her new shoe collection for Nordstorm without the permission of the building's owner. Residents, who constantly put up with masses of "SATC" fans taking selfies in front of the building, reportedly are none too happy that SJ defied the "Do NOT go on the staircase please" sign and chain, and lined up her new shoes for a photo shoot. Pictures of the shoot are posted on the "sjpcollection" Instagram page. Gerald Banu, president of the Perry Street Association, reportedly told The Post's Page Six, "I heard about the shoot. They didn't get the permission from the owner. The situation with 'SATC' visitors is still very intense. People who live here get upset that the sidewalks are constantly jammed." SJ reportedly has not responded to questions about shoegate. Meanwhile, there may be some good news on the horizon for the Greenwich Village townhouse that SJ and husband Matthew Broderick have been trying to sell for $22 million. Broderick, who recently appeared on Bravo's "Watch What Happens Live," told host Andy Cohen and rapper T.I., "We're getting ready pretty much to hand it over for a good price." T.I. then tried to poach the listing by saying he'd represent the property for "25 percent." Don't worry, Fredrik Eklund, the Bravo star of "Million Dollar Listing New York," whose team is representing the property on 20 East 10th Street. T.I. was just funning. Permalink | Email this | Comments

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Expect Low-Down-Payment Mortgages to Require Good Credit

2014-10-22 12:08:00

Filed under: News, Buying, Financing, Credit ShutterstockGuidelines are said to be coming on a plan to offer low-down-payment home loans to borrowers with limited funds. By Christine DiGangi Mel Watt, director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, announced Monday plans to increase mortgage access to borrowers with good credit but limited funds available for a down payment. In a speech at the Mortgage Bankers Association annual convention in Las Vegas, Watt said the FHFA would issue guidelines for making lending to consumers who can afford only 3 percent to 5 percent down payments, according to a transcript of his remarks. He mentioned the low-down-payment loans once, saying details are forthcoming, but the idea is part of a broader message to lenders that tight credit restrictions have prevented creditworthy borrowers from becoming homeowners. For low- and middle-income Americans to have access to affordable mortgages, lenders need to feel comfortable extending credit -- that they won't suffer the massive With some of the changes Watt mentioned, consumers with good credit could access government-backed home loans with little money down and better interest rates than are available under current loan programs. losses they did after the housing bust several years ago. In his speech, Watt sought to reassure lenders that this is the case, as the FHFA refines and clarifies the relationship between lenders and Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Traditionally, consumers should plan to save 20 percent of their future home's value for a down payment, but that amounts to tens of thousands of dollars, which many consumers may not have at their disposal especially after other homebuying expenses like closing costs. Home prices have gone up, student loan debt has grown, but wages have remained stagnant, further complicating access to homeownership. With some of the changes Watt mentioned, consumers with good credit could access government-backed home loans with little money down and better interest rates than are available under current loan programs. Interest rates and down payments have a significant impact on how much you pay for a home or whether you can buy one at all. You can calculate how much home you can afford by playing around with these figures, which will help you figure out a plan for becoming a homeowner in the future. Something to highlight from Watt's speech: He repeatedly refers to "creditworthy borrowers," so while lowering credit standards is a part of the plan, consumers will still need to exhibit a positive credit history when applying for home loans. If you're not sure where you stand or think you need to improve your credit before shopping for a home, make a habit of checking your credit reports and scores regularly. (You can get two of your credit scores for free on Credit.com.) Permalink | Email this | Comments

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Charles Bianco

Licensed Real Estate Salesperson

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Home Office: Oceanside/RVC Agency Office: Massapequa
  

Business Cell: 516-444-5341 Contact: 516-515-7255 NASSAU / QUEENS / SUFFOLK

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Monica Duarte

Licensed Real Estate Salesperson

Operating Out Of:

Home Office: Oceanside Agency Office: Massapequa
  

Business Cell: 516-444-1221 Contact: 516-515-7255 NASSAU / QUEENS / SUFFOLK

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EXIT Realty Premier

4900 Merrick Road
Massapequa Park  NY 11762

Office: 516-795-1000

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Information Deemed Reliable, but Not Guaranteed. The property information being provided is for consumers’ personal, non-commercial use and may not be used for any purpose other than to identify prospective properties consumers may be interested in purchasing. The data relating to real estate for sale on this web site comes in part from the participating Brokers.

Last updated on Oct 24, 2014.

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