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Kentucky REALTOR® News

Email scams and online fraud hitting the real estate industry
December 22, 2015

Criminals are hacking into the email accounts of real estate agents or other persons involved in a real estate transaction and using information gained from the hack to dupe a party into a fraudulent wire transfer. The hackers often send an email that appears to be from an individual legitimately involved in the transaction, informing the recipient, often the buyer, that there has been a last minute change to the wiring instructions. Find out how to spot the crime and what to do if you are targeted. Read More

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Funding bill passes, contains real estate provisions
December 21, 2015

The Omnibus Appropriations Bill, sweeping legislation of more than two-thousand pages to fund the Federal Government for Fiscal Year 2016, was signed into law. The new legislation will put an end to the series of stop-gap funding measures known as “Continuing Resolutions” that have funded the government since October 1, 2015. Read the various real estate related provisions included in the bill. Read More

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Fed raises interest rates for the first time in 9 years
December 16, 2015

The nation's recovery from the Great Recession reached a historic milestone Wednesday as the Federal Reserve raised interest rates for the first time in nearly a decade, ending an extraordinary era of easy-money policy.

The modest ¼ percentage point increase in the Fed's benchmark rate was widely expected and accompanied by signals that Fed policymakers intend to nudge up rates even more gradually than anticipated the next few years. That's a nod to inflation that remains unusually low and vestiges of the downturn that continue to thwart a more vibrant economy. Read More

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Drone registry starts December 21 with the FAA
December 14, 2015

Nearly all owners of remote-controlled aircraft across the country will have to register hundreds of thousands of drones with the Federal Aviation Administration starting Dec. 21.

The owner – whether it’s a new purchase or a drone that’s been flying for years – will have to register a name, a physical address and an email address with the FAA, the agency announced Monday. The decision follows a recommendation Nov. 21 by a task force of manufacturers, retailers, pilots and hobbyists. Existing owners will have to register by Feb. 19, 2016, and new buyers will have to register before their first flight. ​

The registry for drones weighing at least 9 ounces marks the latest balancing act for federal regulators who are trying to keep the skies safe as drones increasingly share airspace with passenger planes. Industry groups have estimated that hundreds of thousands have already been sold, with many more on the way as holiday gifts. Read More

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Remodeling Impact Report reveals benefits to homeowners
December 10, 2015

The first-ever "Remodeling Impact Report" looks at the resale value and customer satisfaction of 12 interior and 8 exterior projects. The projects range from upgrades (a new HVAC system) to full-scale remodels (a new master suite). Members of NARI reviewed specs and provided cost estimates for each project. REALTORS reported that 3 interior projects and 2 exterior projects - all estimated to cost under $10,000 - provide the greatest cost recovery at resale.

Download the report now

Read the press release with additional infographics
 

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More than half of US renters are 40 and older
December 10, 2015

The majority of U.S. renters are now 40 and older, a fundamental shift over the past decade that reflects the lasting damage of the housing crash and an aging population.

This finding in a report released Wednesday by Harvard University's Joint Center for Housing Studies overturns the assumption that the rental boom is only the result of twenty-somethings flocking to hip urban centers. Single-family houses are a growing share of rentals. And affordability problems are mounting as rents rise faster than wages, while apartment construction increasingly targets tenants with six-figure incomes.

Nearly 51 percent of renters have celebrated their 40th birthday, according to the report's analysis of Census Bureau data. That amounts to 22.4 million households.

A decade ago when the housing bubble peaked in 2005, 47 percent of renters — or 16.4 million households — were older than 40. Their share was 43 percent in 1995. Read More

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Kentucky foreclosures down from a year ago
December 9, 2015

Kentucky foreclosures were down 0.1% in October compared to the same period a year prior. Kentucky's foreclosure inventory rate of 1.2% was equal to the national rate, with 3,012 completed foreclosures in the previous 12 months within the state. The serious deliquency rate stood at 3.3% for Kentucky, which came in just shy of the national rate of 3.4%, according to CoreLogic.

"Improved economic conditions and more foreclosure completions have pushed the foreclosure rate lower. The national unemployment rate declined to 5.0% in October, the lowest since December 2007, and the CoreLogic national Home Price Index has risen 37% from its trough." Frank Nothaft, chief economist at CoreLogic.

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Realtor.com makes updates to search and SEO
November 21, 2015

There have been several new changes to the platform, many of which deal with the "Find Realtors" search and agent profiles. The biggest takeaway from the recent announcements is to claim your profile, include a photo and start gathering recommendations. Not only will these help on the realtor.com site but will also be great for your SEO.

"Find Realtors" Search - this feature uses a default setting for users to search agents who have uploaded a photo. Unless you have a photo attached to your profile, you will not be displayed with the default search. The feature also uses an algorithm to display search results based on listing and sales activity. If your MLS doesn't report the buy side of the transaction, an agent could possibly be left behind in the search.

Agent Profile - it is important for you to claim your profile ( www.realtor.com/agentprofile) so you can update your information and be found by potential clients. Once your profile is claimed, populate all the relevant information you can to make yours stand out. You can add contact information, bio, social media information, listing data, recommendations and more.

Recommendations and Reviews - these are very different features. Recommendations can be collected immediately from clients, friends and family - anyone who wants to put in a good word about you and your service. These can be loaded into the profile at any time. Reviews, however, are collected only from clients involved with a transaction. You either have to post all reviews or opt-out completely. These are aggregated from a variety of sources and added directly to your profile.

Agent Profile Guide

FAQ

Watch these brief videos for more information

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Kentucky ranked 28th by Forbes for Best States for Business & Careers
November 20, 2015

Kentucky has been ranked 28th in Forbes’ 10th annual Best States for Business & Careers, up five spots from last year. Kentucky was ranked No. 14 in business costs, No. 46 in labor supply, No. 32 in regulatory environment, No. 20 in economic climate, No. 23 in growth prospects and No. 23 in quality of life.

Forbes states, “Kentucky is best known for its horse racing, bourbon distilleries, automobile manufacturing, tobacco and college basketball. Horse racing is a $4 billion industry in the state and the Kentucky Derby Run for the Roses generates more than $400 million annually in economic impact for Kentucky. The state has 474 motor vehicle-related facilities that employ 86,672 workers. Kentucky produces the third most cars of any state in the U.S.” Read More

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Kentucky's jobless rate dips to 4.9 percent in October 2015
November 20, 2015

Kentucky’s preliminary October 2015 unemployment rate dipped to 4.9 percent from a seasonally adjusted 5 percent in September 2015, according to the Office of Employment and Training (OET), an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet. Kentucky’s jobless rate had not been that low since May 2001 when it was 4.9 percent.

The state rate in October 2015 was 0.7 percent below the 5.6 percent rate recorded in October 2014. The U.S. seasonally adjusted jobless rate was 5 percent in October 2015 compared to 5.1 percent in September 2015, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Read More

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