Looking for local facts and figures? Get them all free. It seems that many of us are fascinated by facts and figures. National news reports are filled with financial, economic and research statistics from a variety of sources. How did the financial markets perform? What does the average house, automobile or gallon of gasoline cost in this country? Most of these statistics are all readily available on the Internet with a few clicks of the mouse. But you may face a greater challenge if you’re looking for information on a local level.The good news is that even though many of these neighborhood facts – income, age, households, education, employment and more – are available on request in a single report that’s tailored to your own neighborhood. Neighborhood Reports include city, county and state facts. For public and private schools, information, such as enrollment, high school rankings, funding, Parent Education, income and more.Interested in housing? Find out about renting versus homeownership, local sales, price trends, current listings and more. Neighborhood Reports even include climate information such as average temperatures and precipitation. Ask your local real estate professional for a free, no-obligation Neighborhood Report – for any neighborhood in the U.S. These reports are great sources of information are completely customizable for you, and are a great way to learn more about your hometown or any town in the U.S. The sub-prime issue – what’s it all about? One year ago, most homeowners probably couldn’t tell you the difference between sub-prime lending and a submarine sandwich. Today, the term “sub-prime” generates heated controversy and is prominently featured in national news stories.According to mortgage expert Jack Guttentag, a sub-prime lender is one who provides mortgages to borrowers who do not qualify for loans from mainstream lenders. Sub-prime borrowers typically pay higher rates and fees than those with good credit scores. Sub-prime lenders must charge higher rates and fees to cover increased risk and higher costs.Why the controversy? Many U.S. homeowners are facing issues with their mortgages, including losing their homes, because of sub-prime lending, interest-only loans and other types of “creative financing.” Critics are pointing the finger squarely at sub-prime lenders for steering borrowers into unaffordable loans. Looking back, it’s become obvious that many lenders had lax standards and were careless about properly qualifying borrowers, many of whom are now struggling to make payments. In truth, compared with conventional loans, a higher percentage of sub-prime loans go into default.Mortgage industry professionals point out that not all sub-prime lenders are unscrupulous, and that many borrowers with poor or no credit are now homeowners because of sub-prime financing. The controversy is likely to continue, but the best advice to borrowers may be to work on improving their credit scores and heed the old “buyer beware” adage in any type of mortgage financing. Annual percentage rate is the cost of credit, expressed as a yearly rate. It is higher than the associated interest rate because it includes fees associated with borrowing in addition to interest.
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Ever since the Internet came of age in the mid 1990s, advertising deals have become extremely common. As we all know, companies advertise on the Internet through the usage of banners and through search engines such as Yahoo and Google in an effort to drive users to their websites. This article will analyze the key provisions usually found in Internet Advertising Agreements and will hopefully provide drafters of these agreements with guidance before they commence the difficult drafting process. For purposes of this article, the company purchasing the advertising shall be referred to as “purchaser” and the seller of the advertising shall be referred to as “advertiser.”1. DefinitionsThe first paragraph of an Internet advertising agreement should set forth the definitions of the key terms that the agreement will refer to frequently. Since the agreement will likely use the term “click-through”, this term should be defined, and is usually described as a “user presence on the advertising purchaser’s website that originated through the advertiser’s promotional advertisements or promotions as part of this Agreement.”2. TermThis paragraph should recite that the agreement will commence upon the effective date and shall last for a specified amount of time.3. PositioningThis paragraph should clarify how the advertising banners will be positioned on the advertiser’s website. This provision may simply refer to a positioning schedule attached as an exhibit. On the other hand, if the parties decided not to agree on a specific positioning schedule, the agreement might simply recite that the advertiser has sole discretion to control the positioning so long as it uses its reasonable best efforts to position the banners in such a way as to drive traffic to the purchaser’s website. The drafter for the advertiser may also recite that the advertiser shall not be liable for any claims relating to usage statistics.4. Click-throughsBefore a drafter of an advertising agreement can go to work, she must know whether her client will be paying per banner ad or per click-through. One “click-through” means that a user has clicked on the banner or the link to the purchaser’s website. If the agreement is for a certain amount of click-throughs per month, this provision of the agreement must clearly describe the commitments promised by the advertiser. Let’s say that the advertiser is promising 1,000 click-throughs per month. The agreement could thus read “Advertiser shall deliver no less than 1,000 click-throughs per month, and purchaser shall pay to advertiser the monthly amounts according to the payment schedule set forth in exhibit A.”This “click-through” provision may also want to address what happens if the advertiser cannot make good on these click-through commitments. For instance, it may recite that “if advertiser misses any monthly target, advertiser shall “make good” the difference within two months. If advertiser does not make good the click-through difference within two months (60 days), purchaser may suspend that portion of its monthly payments that represent the percentage of click-throughs missed by advertiser until advertiser delivers such make goods.”5. ExclusivityIf the deal points include an exclusivity provision, the agreement must reflect this intention. The agreement should be drafted to recite something to the effect of “no competitor of purchaser shall be permitted to place or purchase from advertiser, banner or promotional advertising as defined in Exhibit B, and advertiser agrees to use reasonable efforts to prevent third parties that are entitled to place ads on advertiser’s site from placing any banner or promotional ads of purchaser’s competitors.”These are the most important provisions of an Internet Advertising Agreement. Other provisions covering Cancellation and Termination Limitation of Advertiser’s Liability, Indemnification, and Advertiser’s Right to Reject Advertising may also be included. In all, it is critical for the drafter of the agreement to know the deal points backwards and forwards and to carefully draft the agreement accordingly.
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When you’re in the market for a home finance loan, you’re likely going to want to find the best interest rate and most flexible repayment terms that you can so that you’ll be able to get the most out of your money.Finding the right home finance loan for you isn’t always easy, however… sometimes it requires you to put some time aside to search for a variety of different lenders and compare their loan offerings based upon interest rates, loan terms, closing costs, and several other factors.Home FinancingOnce you’ve decided that it’s time to buy a new house, you’re going to need to begin thinking about where to find the best home finance loan for your money. Ideally, you’ll be able to find a lender who isn’t going to charge you too much in interest or fees; unfortunately, there’s no guarantee that the loan you get will be the best loan that you’re eligible for. In order to maximize your chances of getting your best home finance loan, you’re going to need to shop around and compare different lenders.Searching for LendersBegin your search for home finance loan lenders in your local area… check with banks, mortgage lenders, finance companies, and any other lenders that might offer loans for purchasing the house that you want. Request loan quotes that detail the interest rates, loan terms, and any fees associated with the loan, then go online and search for some online mortgage lenders so you can request quotes from them as well. Once you’ve compiled a number of quotes, you should begin sorting them in order of interest rates so that you’ll be able to begin the comparison from there.Interest RatesThe interest that you’re charged on a home finance loan will likely vary from one lender to the next; though the base rates are set at the national level, the local economy and the lender itself can drastically alter the rates that you receive. Be wary of introductory rates, since the regular rate after the introductory period ends can be much higher than the rates offered by other lenders. Take the time to determine which lenders are offering you the best rates over time, and make note of whether those rates are fixed meaning they won’t change) or variable (meaning that they’ll change in reaction to national rate changes.Loan TermsOnce you’ve decided which home finance loans offer you the best interest rates, you should begin looking at the other terms of the loan offers just to make sure that you’re not going to get into a loan agreement that isn’t in your best interest. Watch out for loans that require very specific payment arrangements or that have any terms that don’t seem right to you. You should also check to make sure whether or not there is a balloon payment (a payment of the remainder owed on the loan after regular payments have been made for a set number of years) due at the end of the loan.Closing Costs and FeesAnother consideration that you should have for your home finance loan is the amount of closing costs and other fees that are associated with the loan. Most loans of this type will have some fees associated with them, though some lenders charge more fees than others. Take the time to make sure that you’re not paying more than you have to for your loan.