JC Reindl Detroit Free Press Published 6:00 AM EDT Sep 13, 2018 A recent for-rent listing asking $2,500 per month for a small, three-bedroom house in Berkley provoked a range of emotions from neighbors, beginning with shock: "Omg! 2500 really?" "WAY too much for a small rental." "Price is way too steep. By like almost a grand." But skepticism turned into astonishment once the property's owner, who posted the listing on the Berkley community Facebook page, said the furnished, 900-square-foot house is currently occupied by a tenant who has actually been paying that amount. "This just made me want to move to the country and rent my house to pay both mortgages," one commenter remarked. "Time for me to quit my job and become a landlord," another said. Asking rents for rental homes in some southeast Oakland County cities have made sizable jumps in the past two years, driven by strong demand to live in those Woodward … [Read more...] about Houses for rent in Oakland County: Prices soar
Making 2 extra mortgage payments a year
Sean Pyles NerdWallet Published 3:38 p.m. UTC Jul 16, 2018 American consumer debt has rebounded to pre-recession levels, and the category that includes credit cards hit a record $1.02 trillion this summer. Maybe your credit card debt has crept up, too, setting your own personal record. It makes sense to pay particular attention to your credit cards, because their interest rates are typically higher than other types of debt, like student loans or a mortgage. Carrying balances on this more costly debt may derail goals such as building a retirement fund. If your other types of debt are manageable, but your credit cards feel out of hand, you need to assess your situation first. Then you can choose a way to handle that debt, whether it’s a self-guided payoff strategy or some type of debt relief, perhaps even bankruptcy. Find starting point First, take stock by: ■Making a list of all your credit card balances. Note the interest rate and minimum payment for each. … [Read more...] about Different ways to zap your debt: Which is for you?
Nathan Bomey and John Gallagher Detroit Free Press Published 5:43 p.m. UTC May 24, 2018 Originally published Sept. 15, 2013 Detroit is broke, but it didn’t have to be. An in-depth Free Press analysis of the city’s financial history back to the 1950s shows that its elected officials and others charged with managing its finances repeatedly failed — or refused — to make the tough economic and political decisions that might have saved the city from financial ruin. Instead, amid a huge exodus of residents, plummeting tax revenues and skyrocketing home abandonment, Detroit’s leaders engaged in a billion-dollar borrowing binge, created new taxes and failed to cut expenses when they needed to. Simultaneously, they gifted workers and retirees with generous bonuses. And under pressure from unions and, sometimes, arbitrators, they failed to cut health care benefits — saddling the city with staggering costs that today threaten the safety and quality of … [Read more...] about How Detroit went broke: The answers may surprise you — and don’t blame Coleman Young
Baltimore's arcane system of ground rents, widely viewed as a harmless vestige of colonial law, is increasingly being used by some investors to seize homes or extract large fees from people who often are ignorant of the loosely regulated process, an investigation by The Sun has found. Tens of thousands of Baltimore homeowners must pay rent twice a year on the land under their houses. If they fall behind on the payments, the ground rent holders can sue to seize the houses-- and have done so nearly 4,000 times in the past six years, sometimes over back rent as little as $24, The Sun found. More than half of the ground rent suits filed in the past six years were brought by entities associated with four groups of individuals and families, court records show. Most ground rent holders insist that home ownership is rarely put in peril. But Baltimore judges awarded houses to ground rent holders at least 521 times between 2000 and the end of March 2006, The Sun found, analyzing court computer … [Read more...] about On shaky ground
On June 19, 2015, Bronx resident Carlos Guerrero-Roa went to an auto dealer in Brooklyn to purchase a 2005 Lexus RX that was being advertised online for $6,900. Guerrero-Roa left with the car that day, only after it was financed with a loan that, according to a lawsuit he later filed, carried an interest rate “well over” 25 percent—a threshold that New York state law deems a felony. But thanks to a loophole in the statute, Guerrero-Roa and countless others in New York end up with auto loans that have high, and possibly illegal, interest rates. When Guerrero-Roa arrived at the dealer that day, his goal was to buy the Lexus with cash at the advertised price. But the dealer, CarsBuck, claimed that wasn’t possible due to his low credit score—something that should never have been a factor on a cash purchase, the suit said. An employee told him the car could only be acquired “by way of a one-year financing plan,” according to the complaint. In need … [Read more...] about The Devastating Loophole That Sticks Car Buyers With Interest Rates That Would Be Otherwise Illegal