Archive for 'United States'

Foreclosure Funding is Available Up to 110%

Foreclosure Funding

Foreclosure Funding (Photo credit: niallkennedy)


It’s hard to open the newspaper or watch the news without hearing something almost daily about foreclosures. Maybe you’ve even looked at some of these properties either for your own use or as an investment property. If you have been looking than you’ve probably noticed that most of these houses need a lot of work, with roofs, kitchens, heating systems all seeing better days. Makes you wonder how all that work will get done, especially if you’re not all that handy. It just so happens that the Fed’s have a great program to cure what ails these rundown houses.

There are some great bargains right now in foreclosed homes but they often aren’t in the best of shape. Fortunately, the FHA’s 203(k) program allows you to both buy a house and fix it up with a single mortgage loan.

The FHA 203(k) mortgage is designed for fixer-uppers. You can borrow up to 110 percent of the expected value of the property after renovation to pay for both the purchase and home improvements. You can even do the work yourself, provided you’re qualified to do so, although the FHA will likely insist that you hire professionals for more demanding projects.

Many foreclosures need repairs

Foreclosed properties can be in poor condition for a number of reasons. To begin with, if the previous owners couldn’t make their mortgage payments, they probably didn’t keep up with routine maintenance either. Second, foreclosures often stand vacant for a long time before they are purchased, and may deteriorate during that time. Finally, homeowners facing foreclosure sometimes remove appliances and other items of value, or simply damage the property to spite the bank.

On the plus side, these are some of the reasons why foreclosures sell at a discount in the first place. Quite often, they can be purchased and put back into shape for considerably less than you would spend on a conventional home purchase with only minor upgrades needed.

Streamline option for basic improvements

There are two types of FHA 203(k) loan. If the home only needs modest improvements, like a new roof, new appliances, kitchen remodeling, repairs or upgrades to heating, electrical and plumbing system, floor repairs, basement refinishing and the like, you can apply for a streamlined 203(k), also called a modified 203(k). This will allow you to borrow up to $35,000 with more simplified application requirements than on the standard 203(k).

The standard FHA 203(k) is used for more extensive improvements, those costing more than $35,000 or involving structural work. This might include adding an addition, repairing structural damage, moving a load-bearing wall or any kind of work that involves detailed drawing or architectural exhibits.

Borrow up to 110 percent of improved value

In either event, the maximum you can borrow is either 1) the total of the purchase price and planned improvements, or 2) the estimated improved value of the home plus 10 percent (110 percent of the improved value), whichever is the lower of the two. In any event, you’ll need an appraisal done to calculate what the improved value will be.

In addition, you’ll need to prepare a work plan showing what you plan to do and the cost of the materials and labor. You can do the work yourself, but must show that you are qualified to do so. In addition, you must include a provision for the cost of the labor, so that you can pay to have the work completed by professionals if you are unable to do so in a timely manner – you’re allowed six months for do-it-yourself projects.

 Limited to owner-occupants

The FHA 203(k) loan program is limited to owner-occupants – you must live in the home once renovations are complete. However, the loans can be used to purchase and improve multiunit homes of up to four units, provided that you make one your residence. The loans can also be used to divide a single-unit home into multiple units, or turn a multiunit property into a single-family residence.

Not all FHA lenders deal in 203(k) loans, so you may have to do some looking around to find one who knows how to handle them. You can also expect a somewhat longer closing period than on a regular FHA mortgage, usually about 45-60 days.


So now you have no more excuses. Get out there and start making offers.

Credit Card Rates Drop at PenFed

Credit Card Rates Drop at PenFed

The lower and more competitive variable 9.99% purchase APR* is now available on the PenFed Premium Travel Rewards American Express® Card and Visa Platinum Cash Rewards Card.

 Staying true to course to bring every day value to its cardholders, Pentagon Federal Credit Union (PenFed) announced today that as of January 15, 2012, the PenFed Premium Travel Rewards American Express® Card and Visa Platinum Cash Card now feature a new, lower variable 9.99% purchase APR*.

The lower purchase rate will be capped at 9.99% APR* on new purchases until June 30, 2014 and will apply to both existing rewards cardholders, as well as all new cardholders.

For all new cardholders, the 9.99% purchase APR became effective on January 15, 2012. For existing cardholders, the lower purchase rate will be “rolled out” by billing cycle, beginning with the January 15, 2012 effective date.

“PenFed is very proud of its diverse and dynamic credit card portfolio,” says Kevyn Myers,Executive Vice President, Collections and Card Services, PenFed. “Where other reward card programs have exorbitant APRs to fund their reward programs, PenFed’s do not. Our reward cards are packed with value, and the new, lower purchase rate is just one more reason why these cards should be a top of the wallet choice for our cardholders.”

PenFed was the first credit union in the U.S. to offer an American Express® Card to its membership. Since the Card’s launch in 2009, the PenFed Premium Travel Rewards American Express® Card has been recognized as one of the leading travel reward cards available today. Cardholders enjoy 5 points for every $1 spent on airfare, 1 point for every $1 spent on everything else*.

The PenFed Visa Platinum Cash Card has experienced continual, award-winning success as one of the best cash rewards cards available. Cardholders enjoy 5% cash back on all gas purchases made at the pump*, and since cash back rewards are automatically credited back to the statement each month; this card has become a “no-fuss” favorite for these cardholders.

Additional features such as no annual or foreign transaction fees, and no caps on the rewards cardholders can earn, make the PenFed Premium Travel Rewards American Express® Card and Visa Platinum Cash Card both highly competitive contenders when compared to other reward programs currently available in the industry.

For more information about PenFed membership, the PenFed Premium Travel Rewards American Express® Card and Visa Platinum Cash Card, or to apply for a credit card, visit or call 800-247-5626.

About Pentagon Federal Credit Union

Pentagon Federal Credit Union (PenFed) is the third largest credit union in the United States with over a million members, and more than $15 billion in assets. The credit union provides worldwide service to Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, Department of Defense, and Department of Homeland Security personnel, employees or volunteers of the American Red Cross and military associations, and many others in the defense community and their families.

  • *9.99% APR: Variable 9.99% introductory purchase and cash advance rate capped through June 30, 2014. During this time the rate can only decrease if the Prime Rate decreases. After June 30, 2014 the cap will be removed and the APR will increase or decrease with the Prime Rate. Balance Transfer Rate: 1.99% APR promotional rate for 24 months on transfers made between January 1, 2012 and March 31, 2012. After that, the APR for the unpaid balance and any new transfers will be 9.99% and will vary with the market based on the Prime Rate. This transaction is subject to credit approval. Fee is reduced to 1% (Min. $10 – Max. $250) per transaction for transfers made through March 31, 2012. The fee for balance transfers made after March 31, 2012 will return to 3% (Min. $10 – Max. $250) per transaction. How We Calculate Your Balance: We use a method called “average daily balance” (including new purchases). See PenFed’s account agreement for more details. Annual Percentage Rate (APR) on Purchases and Cash Advances: Your APR can change on January and July of each year. Terms, conditions and restrictions apply. Additional details will be provided upon card issuance. Loss of Balance Transfer APR: We may end your promotional Balance Transfer APR and apply the Penalty APR if we do not receive your payment within 60 days of the due date. PenFed Visa Platinum Cash Card: Rewards are available only for new monthly purchases made with the card: cash advances, checks drawn from the account, and balance transfers are excluded and do not earn credit toward rewards. Certain limitations apply to the Visa Platinum Rewards Program. Certain restrictions may apply. Visa USA determines which transactions are classified as paid at the pump. Fuel purchases for airplanes and boats receive 1.00% cash back. Note: As of February 1, 2012, the cash back on fuel purchases for airplanes and boats will decrease to 0.25%. PenFed Premium Travel Rewards American Express® Card: The PenFed Premium Travel Rewards American Express® Credit Card program is issued and administered by PenFed. American Express® is a federally registered Service mark of American Express® and is used by PenFed pursuant to a license. Rates: The information on this disclosure is current as of January 1, 2012, but is subject to change. To determine if any changes have occurred since this date, call 800-247-5626.

CONTACT: Amy Doane, Direct: +1-541-225-6606, E-mail: Web Site:

The U. S. Navy has awarded General Dynamics Bath Iron Works, a subsidiary of General Dynamics (NYSE: GD), a $1.8 billion contract for the construction of DDG 1001 and DDG 1002, the next two ships in the Zumwalt-class program.  DDG 1001 is scheduled to be delivered in December 2015 and DDG 1002 is scheduled to be delivered in February 2018.

“This contract enables us to maintain a strong base of quality shipbuilding jobs in Maine and continue our contributions to sustaining the U.S. Navy fleet,” said Jeff Geiger, president of Bath Iron Works. “It provides Bath Iron Works with a healthy backlog of work and reflects the Navy’s continued commitment to the DDG-1000 program, as well as their confidence in our ability to build and deliver all three ships of this class.”

Geiger said, “Winning this work is a result of our commitment to operational excellence and to finding more efficient, affordable ways to operate in every part of our business.  It gives us the opportunity to continue introducing new and innovative ways to build capable ships for the Navy.”

“We appreciate all the support the Maine Congressional delegation has provided to this program.  Their commitment to national defense and their advocacy on behalf of the workers of Maine has been a crucial factor,” Geiger said.

The first ship in the class, DDG-1000, is over 50 percent complete and is scheduled to be delivered in 2014.  The DDG-1000 Zumwalt-class destroyer is the U.S. Navy’s next-generation, guided-missile naval destroyer, leading the way for a new generation of advanced multi-mission surface combat ships.  The ships will feature a low radar profile, an integrated power system and a total ship computing environment infrastructure. Armed with an array of weapons, the Zumwalt-class destroyers will provide offensive, distributed and precision fires in support of forces ashore.

Work is already underway at the Bath, Maine, shipyard on DDG 1001 and DDG 1002.  Congress previously approved funding for advanced procurement and initial construction of these ships.  Bath Iron Works is the lead designer and builder for the program which employs approximately 5,400 people.

More information about General Dynamics Bath Iron Works can be found at

More information about General Dynamics is available at

Amscot Financial, a leading provider of convenient, consumer-oriented financial services, has surpassed a major milestone with the opening of its 175th branch in Ocala.

Founded in 1989, Amscot Financial has grown into a dominant provider of financial services across Central Florida, covering now 16 counties lying roughly along the Interstate 4 corridor. Amscot Financial serves more than 2 million customers per month and will conduct this year more than $7 billion worth of financial transactions.

The new branch in Ocala is located at 2594 Southwest College Road. Like most Amscot branches, it is located at a high-traffic intersection, convenient to a multitude of other business locations in Ocala. Also like other Amscot branches, the Ocala location will be open seven days a week, 365 days year. The hours are 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday and on Saturdays. On Fridays, the store remains open until 10 p.m. On Sundays, the hours are 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

“We have found that our customers value convenience,” said Amscot founder Ian MacKechnie. “They want to be able to conduct their financial transactions quickly and at times and places convenient to them.”

Amscot’s new Ocala branch initially will create about 10 jobs, MacKechnie said. Depending on the location’s growth, it could generate as many as 20 total jobs for the Ocala area.

Amscot Financial is The Money Superstore™, offering an array of convenience-oriented financial services, including the cashing of personal checks, out-of-state checks and government checks. The company also offers small cash advances; Western Union wire transfers, notary services, pre-paid debit cards, free money orders and income tax preparation. Amscot Financial also allows customers to make bill payments to more than 200 different utilities, municipal governments, cable and telephone companies.

Amscot Financial employs more than 2,000 associates who work at the company’s 175 retail branches and at the company’s corporate headquarters in Tampa. The company currently operates retail locations in Hillsborough, Pinellas, Pasco, Hernando, Polk, Hardee, Highlands, Manatee, Sarasota, Orange, Osceola, Seminole, Lake, Volusia, Brevard and Marion counties.

About Amscot Financial

Headquartered in Tampa, Fla., Amscot Financial is a leading provider of income tax preparation and electronic filing services, refund anticipation loans, prepaid debit cards, check cashing services, cash advance services, bill payment services, money transfer services and money orders through its wholly owned division, Amscot International Money Order Company.  Amscot also offers the Amscot Card, a pre-paid debit card that allows owners to make purchases from any location that accepts MasterCard™. Amscot Financial currently operates 175 tax preparation offices and 175 retail financial service centers throughout Florida and employs more than 2,000 people. Amscot Financial has been recognized by the Tampa Bay Business Journal as one of Tampa Bay’s Best Places to Work for four consecutive years. For additional information, please visit the company’s Web site at

Balance Family Office program combines branded client portal, account aggregation, document storage, mobile apps and bill payment services with Balance’s high level of outsourced client support

Balance Financial, a financial software and services company, unveiled a new customer engagement offering for Registered Investment Advisors (RIAs). The new service is designed to help RIAs offer family office services to affluent clients in a high tech, low cost manner.

Balance combines a white-labeled client / advisor portal with account aggregation, document storage, CRM tools and the ability to work with Balance Certified Pro bookkeepers for additional custom reporting and bill payment services.

“RIAs operate in an increasingly competitive and commoditized industry. Engaging with customers and providing value added services and support is crucial to attracting and retaining clients. The problem has worsened due to recent increases in regulation and a diminished view of financial services overall by many consumers. Working with Balance gives RIAs a new service offering to attract and retain clients while improving operations, customer engagement and client reporting,” said Balance CEO Devin Miller.

The program has been in private beta for several months with RIAs from around the country. Balance is primarily targeting the 18,000 or so RIA firms in the US serving roughly 5.5 million affluent Americans. These firms typically offer asset management and long term financial planning services.

“Balance helps RIAs expand their current service offerings to include more day to day support of financial chores such as expense tracking, document storage, bill payment and other basic tasks. Advisors get a white-labeled family office portal that gives clients and advisors the ability to interact, store documents and review cash flow and expense reports. Clients can also choose to have a Balance Certified Bookkeeper assist with daily financial chores such as creating custom spending reports and bill payment,” said Miller.

Balance Family Office starts at $199 per month with additional fees for dedicated professional bookkeepers, custom reporting and bill payment. Advisors can either license Balance software to deliver services with in house staff or Balance can also provide every end client with a dedicated bookkeeper to manage financial chores for the client and the firm.

About Balance Financial

Balance ( is an affordable luxury service experience for individuals and families looking for an alternative for managing personal financial chores. Every client receives a dedicated Personal Bookkeeper who uses purpose built technology to manage your finances for you. Balance Personal Bookkeepers assist in managing client mail, bill pay services, a personal budget, expense tracking and filing, all to a client’s unique specifications using integrated personal finance software and process automation technology. Balance software is available to consumers and financial professionals in the U.S. in partnership with technology providers Wells Fargo, ORCC and Yodlee.

Media Contact:

Devin Miller
Balance Financial


Web Site:

Florida Homeowners Mired in Chinese Drywall Hell

The Chinese Drywall Complaint Center estimates there are at a minimum 100,000 US homeowners in Florida stuck in a toxic Chinese drywall home, along with their families, and or children. The group also estimates at a minimum there are another 100,000+ homeowners, and family members stuck in toxic Chinese drywall homes, or condominiums in Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Southeast Texas, and Virginia. The Chinese Drywall Complaint Center says, “President Obama’s catastrophic failure to lead on the imported toxic Chinese drywall disaster in Florida, and the US Gulf States is almost impossible to comprehend. We are coming up on an election year, and we are convinced the Republican Presidential Candidates, and the U.S. Voter will not have any problem understanding the costs of having a no show sitting U.S. President, or lack luster federal agencies, when it comes to what we consider to be the absolute worst environmental disaster for U.S. homeowners ever. These U.S. homeowners stuck in toxic Chinese drywall hell have children living in these homes as well, and a meaningful U.S. Federal Government response is long overdue.” http://ChineseDrywallComplaintCenter.Com

The Chinese Drywall Complaint Center says, “After two and a half years of urging President Obama, and numerous federal agencies to get involved, and President Obama not mentioning the imported toxic Chinese drywall disaster one time in public, we are formally inviting Governors Romney, Perry, and other Republican Presidential Candidates to come to Florida, before their September Florida Presidential Debates to see for themselves. Fort Myers, Miami-Dade, and or Cape Coral would all be great places to start, with respect to subdivision, after half empty subdivision loaded with toxic Chinese drywall, abandoned homes, and some remaining U.S. homeowners, and their families scared to death as to what might be the long term health consequences. Tragically, these poor U.S. citizens are stuck because they have no other place to go. For the record President Obama did visit Miami in mid June. Unfortunately, it was not to address the toxic Chinese drywall disaster for 100,000+ Florida homeowners, and their families, he was there to raise money for his Presidential Campaign from his rich friends in Miami? http://ChineseDrywallComplaintCenter.Com

So What Are The Vital Issues Related To Homeowners Stuck In Toxic Chinese Drywall Hell In Florida & Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Southeast Texas, And Virginia.

  • The Chinese Drywall Complaint Center says, “Homeowners living in toxic Chinese drywall hell in Florida, and the Gulf States need immediate federal disaster relief, from the U.S. Federal Government, that includes mortgage relief from their lenders, and a sensible disaster program that will allow these homeowners to remediate their homes, so the homes are safe to live in.”
  • The US EPA needs to set standards for home remediation’s, and what to do with the toxic Chinese drywall after it is removed from the home.
  • The Chinese Drywall Complaint Center says, “We are extremely worried about the long term health effects for homeowners, and their children stuck in toxic Chinese drywall hell, in places like Florida, Virginia, or the U.S. Gulf States. If toxic Chinese drywall in a Florida home will turn electrical wires black, or cause copper air conditioning coils to turn black, and leak, what is it doing to the health of the homeowner, and their children?”
  • President Obama has yet to mention the toxic Chinese drywall disaster one time in public, and there has yet to have been any meaningful federal response?

The Chinese Drywall Complaint Center says, “Everyday we get calls from desperate Florida, or Gulf States homeowners, or their families about what to do, and or what help is available, and tragically we have no answer. We simply tell them President Obama has yet to mention the toxic Chinese drywall disaster one time in public, federal agencies mandated to care are no shows, and we will simply continue to try to get a meaningful federal response. We are tired of asking for a Federal Disaster Response for homeowners stuck in toxic Chinese hell, and we are baffled as to how President Obama gets a free pass with respect to not mentioning the toxic Chinese drywall disaster one time in public?” The group is now saying, “We are now demanding a federal response to the toxic Chinese drywall disaster, and we think it is vital Republican Presidential Candidates like Governors Romney, Perry, former Speaker Gingrich, and the rest come to Florida, and see for themselves. Please bring the National Press with you as well, as they have yet to adequately cover the story.” http://ChineseDrywallComplaintCenter.Com


Home Sales in Pittsburg Area Heating Up

Home Sales in Pittsburg Area Heating Up

Home Sales in Pittsburg Area Heating Up-Image by y0himba via Flickr

West Penn Multi-List, Inc., the Pittsburgh area’s definitive source for real estate information, today released its August 2011 statistics.

“We’re pleased to announce that residential homes placed under agreement in August 2011 were up 23.25 percent over August 2010,” said Ronald Croushore, current president of the West Penn Multi-List, Inc. and president/owner of Prudential Preferred Realty. “This increase was due in part to the attractive financing options and extremely low interest rates.”

These numbers represent the 13-county area serviced by the West Penn Multi-List, Inc. (Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Washington, Westmoreland, Fayette, Greene, Clarion, Lawrence, Mercer, Somerset and Indiana Counties).

The Allegheny County real estate market showed marked improvements, with homes placed under agreement up 25.26 percent, and closings up 26.41 percent over August 2010.  The time on market for those homes that sold only escalated 6.17 percent, which means that it took only five days longer for a home to sell in August 2011 versus August 2010.

Other counties basked in the under contract cycle with Butler County up 29.15 percent, Washington County up 47.39 percent, and Westmoreland County up 17.68 percent.

“The really good news for homeowners is that properties that actually closed were up 18.77 percent versus August of last year, and the average sale price of homes that sold was up 3.79 percent,” Croushore said.

The “average days on market” was up slightly by 9.88 percent, which translates to roughly eight days from the date the home was placed on the market until it went under agreement.

This is more good news for home buyers and sellers in Southwestern Pennsylvania.  “The real estate market has prospered in this area during the advantageous mortgage rate cycle,” Croushore said. “Interested home buyers should seriously consider taking advantage of the low rates, and prospective sellers should contact a real estate agent to prepare their homes for the active real estate market.”

The West Penn Multi-List, Inc. is committed to providing the most innovative and cost effective multiple listing services to its broker subscribers. The West Penn Multi-List, Inc. provides state of the art programs for the benefit of the brokers and their agents. These programs are offered to stay current with advancing technology and enhance the professionalism of the brokers and their agents, which results in unparalleled service to their customers. The West Penn Multi-List, Inc. strives to protect the integrity of the data while recognizing that the data is the exclusive property of the broker. For more information, visit

Small Business Loans for Commercial Real Estate Don't Get Any Cheaper

Small Business Loans for Commercial Real Estate Don't Get Any Cheaper-Image via Wikipedia

The Small Business Administration’s (SBA) 504 loan program is providing long-term, fixed rate financing for commercial real estate and the purchase of long-term capital assets at the lowest interest rates since the program’s inception.  The SBA’s lending partners, Certified Development Companies (CDCs) are busy working with small business borrowers who are taking advantage of these great rates to finally purchase or build their own facilities or acquire long term capital assets such as equipment and machinery.

NADCO, the trade association for the nation’s Certified Development Companies (CDCs) reports that the interest rates for both the 20-year SBA 504 loan and the 10-year SBA 504 loan have hit record lows for projects funded in September 2011.

The debentures that funded this month’s 20-year 504 loans were sold to investors at an interest rate of 2.85 % falling below the previous low of 3.88 % in June of 2010.  The 10-year loan debentures were sold at an interest rate of 1.53 % which eclipses the previous low of 1.81 % in November 2010.

The official interest rates should be published by September 12, but it is expected that the low rates for the debenture sales this month will result in estimated effective interest rates for small business borrowers – including servicing fees – of only 4.69 % for a 20-year loan.  For a 10-year loan the estimated effective interest rate is a low 3.75 % for September.

Chris Crawford, NADCO President commented, “This is an incredible rate for a 20-year, fixed rate commercial loan, especially when you consider down payments can be as little as 10%.  For those small businesses that have been considering investing in their own facilities or upgrading their equipment, there has never been a better time to take advantage of these record low interest rates.  Also with commercial properties plentiful and the 20-year interest rate sitting at roughly 4.69 %, the 504 loan is an extremely attractive financing option right now.

The Small Business Administration’s (SBA) 504 loan program provides long-term, fixed rate financing for small business owners nationwide. Since the program’s inception 504 loans have funded over $62 billion in loans to over 130,000 small businesses.  In turn, those small businesses have created or retained over 2.1 million jobs for our national economy.   Certified Development Companies (CDCs) continue to work with small business owners who are taking advantage of these record low interest rates to purchase, build and expand their facilities or purchase capital intensive machinery and equipment.

SBA 504 loans are designed to cover up to 40 % of a project’s costs with a maximum of $5 million in funding, however, the CDC partners with a bank that provides 50% of the project financing and the borrower typically puts in 10% as a down payment.   SBA 504 loans can go as high as $5.5 million for manufacturing projects and most green projects.  In fact, more and more small businesses are seeing the benefit of retrofitting existing properties or building new facilities with energy savings technologies.  SBA 504 loans can fund up to $5.5 million on these projects.   When you add in the bank loan and the small business contribution, total project costs can sometimes go as high as $15 million if the bank decides to fund more than 50%.

There are still deals to be made on commercial properties that are currently on the market at very attractive prices.  If a small business has been considering investing in a building, now is a great time to act.  “With these historical low rates, and no up-front fees, business owners should act now. Our CDC members are working diligently with our bank partners, and we have money available for sound small business projects,” Crawford said.

Crawford went on to say, “There is just no better deal available today for the purchase of real estate or for expansion of existing facilities. I urge any business owner who is seeking financing for commercial real estate or equipment purchases to call their banker or contact the NADCO offices at 703-748-2575 to find a CDC in their area.  A CDC can promptly answer any and all questions and let business owners know if their projects will work for an SBA 504 loan.”

About the National Association of Development Companies (NADCO)

Created in 1981, the National Association of Development Companies is the trade association for America’s Certified Development Companies (CDCs). Certified by the U.S. Small Business Administration, CDCs are community-based economic development organizations that serve their local communities and states, and are dedicated to the promotion of small business expansion and job creation through SBA’s 504 Loan Program. In addition to the 504 program, many CDCs also provide small businesses with access to other Federal, state and local economic development loan programs.

Based in the suburbs of Washington, D.C., NADCO provides legislative and regulatory support for the 504 Loan Program on behalf of CDCs, the program’s lending partners (including first mortgage lenders, attorneys and others allied to the industry), and 504 small business borrowers. For more information, please call Merril Levesque (703) 748-2575 or visit

Behringer Harvard announced today its acquisition of a 537-unit self-storage facility at 6366 Babcock Road in San Antonio. The 3.2-acre site is north of Loop 410 and approximately five miles south of the University of Texas at San Antonio. Behringer Harvard Opportunity REIT II, Inc. acquired an 85 percent ownership interest in the property through a joint venture with Watson & Taylor Management, Inc., an operator of more than 34 self-storage facilities in Texas, Massachusetts and Tennessee, and with an investment group represented by Kennedy Wilson Austin, Inc.

Now operating as Noah’s Ark Self Storage, the Babcock Road facility comprises 10 one-story storage buildings, constructed in 2000, providing a total of 56,275 rentable square feet. As a result of the joint venture’s acquisition, the property will be rebranded as a Watson & Taylor facility. Kennedy Wilson Austin will provide the venture with partnership asset management and back-office support services. The acquisition is the first in a self-storage acquisition program planned by the joint venture partners.

“We’re pleased to pursue this venture with Watson & Taylor Management, a respected industry leader in the self-storage property sector,” said Mr. Samuel A. Gillespie, Chief Operating Officer of Behringer Harvard Opportunity REIT II, Inc. “The Babcock Road facility represents the type of self-storage acquisition opportunities we plan to target as we build a portfolio through future joint ventures with Watson & Taylor and Kennedy Wilson Austin.”

With a population of 1.3 million, San Antonio is the second-largest city in Texas and the seventh-largest city in the United States, according to the 2010 U.S. Census. San Antonio’s diversified economy focuses on financial services, government, health care and tourism. South Texas Medical Center, a vibrant complex of hospitals, clinics and 45 medical-related institutions that employ 27,000 professionals, is approximately five miles south of 6366 Babcock Road. Self-storage facilities have traditionally experienced strong demand from the students and medical professionals who are attracted to the area.

About Behringer Harvard

Behringer Harvard creates and manages global institutional-quality investment programs for individual and institutional investors through its real estate investment trusts, joint ventures and proprietary program structures. The company also offers strategic advisory, asset management and capital market solutions. Programs sponsored and managed by the Behringer Harvard group of companies have attracted equity of more than $5 billion and investments into more than $11 billion in assets. For more information, contact our U.S. headquarters toll-free at 866.655.3600 or our European headquarters at 011 49 40 34 9999 90, or visit us online at

This release contains forward-looking statements relating to the business and financial outlook of Behringer Harvard Opportunity REIT II, Inc. that are based on our current expectations, estimates, forecasts and projections and are not guarantees of future performance. Actual results may differ materially from those expressed in these forward-looking statements, and you should not place undue reliance on any such statements. A number of important factors could cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements contained in this release. Such factors include those described in the Risk Factors sections of the offering documents for the offering of shares of Behringer Harvard Opportunity REIT II, Inc. Forward-looking statements in this document speak only as of the date on which such statements were made, and we undertake no obligation to update any such statements that may become untrue because of subsequent events. We claim the safe harbor protection for forward-looking statements contained in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.

CONTACT: Barbara Marler, Behringer Harvard, +1-469-341-2312,; or Nicole Traycoff of Richards Partners, +1-214-891-5751,, for Behringer Harvard

Real Estate Group Calls for Reinstituting Federal Tax Credit

Real Estate Group Calls for Reinstituting Federal Tax Credit-Image via Wikipedia

The National Mortgage Complaint Center is warning of further US residential real estate valuation declines, based on new information related to US foreclosures. The group worries if the US residential real estate markets do not soon stop their declines, a second recession might be a optimistic thing. The group has called President Obama’s, or former House Speaker Pelosi’s attempts to help homeowners in foreclosures, or loan modifications, an utter failure, and a waste of taxpayer money. The group says, “We desperately need to stabilize the US residential real estate markets, and we think restoring the Federal Tax Credit for a home purchase would a huge step in the right direction. However, this time the Congressional Federal Tax Credit should be increased to $15,000, and it should be inclusive of not just first time home buyers, it should apply to every qualified home buyer, including investors.” The National Mortgage Complaint Center says, “With the enormous devaluations we have seen in most US residential markets, we need to stop the hemorrhaging, and do something meaningful to stabilize one of the most vital aspects to the US economy-our residential real estate markets.” http://NationalMortgageComplaintCenter.Com

The National Mortgage Complaint Center is urging US House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner to introduce immediate legislation that restores the Federal Tax Incentive Plan for home buyers. However, the group says, “the Federal Tax Incentive Home Purchase Program should not be limited to first time home buyers only. We believe a more robust federal tax incentive plan is called for, to include not just first time home buyers, but all qualified home buyers, including investors. Someone needs to step up to the plate to rescue the US residential real estate markets, and leadership is needed-now.” http://NationalMortgageComplaintCenter.Com

The National Mortgage Complaint Center is now warning, “If someone in the federal government does not exert some leadership immediately, it might be too late for the US residential real estate markets, and our economy. We appreciate the concept of free enterprise, and or risk, and return is lost on President Obama, but someone in DC had better start thinking outside of the box now, or it could be too late to do anything about the sinking US residential real estate markets.” The National Mortgage Complaint Center is also warning, “Now would not be a time for the US Congress to allow President Obama, and former House Speaker Pelosi to make an Economic Social Statement, with another insane program that allows individuals not qualified to buy a home, to get one. Now is the time to let the free enterprise system work, for qualified buyers, with tax credits being the incentive for participation.” http://NationalMortgageComplaintCenter.Com

The National Mortgage Complaint Center says, “On the topic of the US Federal Government, mortgages, and failure, we have a gigantic problem in Florida, and the extreme US Southeast involving imported toxic Chinese drywall, and probably 200,000+ homes. Typically these homes turn into foreclosures, because of homeowner fears about health effects to themselves, or their children. These fears are not unfounded. In a typical Florida home, or condominium, that contains toxic Chinese drywall, the electrical wires turn black, and copper tubes, or pipes also turn black, get pitted, and leak. The astonishing thing to us is in many to most cases US Taxpayer owned Fannie Mae gets the house as a foreclosure, and simply resells it to a new home buyer, with the only disclosure being As Is. As soon as the Florida, or Gulf States foreclosure buyer discovers the home contains toxic Chinese drywall, the home becomes a foreclosure all over again. And President Obama is contemplating getting the US Federal Government into the mortgage business? Has everyone in Washington, DC lost their minds? President Obama has yet to mention the toxic Chinese drywall disaster in Florida, or US Gulf States one time in public, after nearly three years in office?” http://NatonalMortgageComplaintCenter.Com

For more information about the imported toxic Chinese drywall disaster please visit http://ChineseDrywallComplaintCenter.Com


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