Black Friday sale at appliance store
Most people know Black Friday is a good day for deals, but September, October, and January are some of the best months to buy.
When it comes to landing bargains on major appliances, timing is everything. And the best time to buy home appliances is when stores need you more than you need a new home appliance.
Generally, that means you can get more value for your money:
September, October, and January when manufacturers roll out new home appliance models, and retailers are eager to move last year’s inventory. (Refrigerators are the exception. New models come out in the spring.)
Last days of the month when stores are desperate to meet quotas and are more likely to dicker over prices.
Thursday, the day before the weekend rush when aisles are less crowded.
Major holidays — Labor Day, Memorial Day, President’s Day, Black Thursday (Friday, Saturday) — when stores take advantage of your day off and slash prices.
Fall and winter are the best seasons to buy air conditioners and gas grills, because few buyers think about warm-weather appliances when leaves and snow cover the ground. Houselogic.
Despite low inventory conditions, existing-home sales bounced back in December and climbed above an annual pace of 5 million sales for the sixth time in seven months, according to the National Association of Realtors®. Median home prices for 2014 rose to their highest level since 2007, but total sales fell 3.1 percent from 2013.
For all of 2014, there were 4.93 million sales, a 3.1 percent decline from 2013 (5.09 million). The national median existing-home price was $208,500, the highest since 2007 ($219,000) and a 5.8 percent increase from 2013 ($197,100).
New Data Shows That Union Membership Continues To Decline
The rate of unionization among wage and salary workers went down in 2014, from 11.3 percent to 11.1 percent, according to annual data released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics today. The number of unionized workers, at 14.6 million, was unchanged from 2013.
From the national debate over how to address income inequality, to President Obama talking about “middle class economics” in his State of the Union address, unions are more important than ever. In CAP’s recent report on inclusive prosperity, one of the key recommendations was to expand worker voice by making procedures governing collective bargaining fast and fair and remove the atmosphere of conflict that can surround representation elections and bargaining over initial contracts.
Mortgage Interest Deduction
One of the neatest deductions itemizing homeowners can take advantage of is the mortgage interest deduction, which you claim on Schedule A. To get the mortgage interest deduction, your mortgage must be secured by your home — and your home can be a house, trailer, or boat, as long as you can sleep in it, cook in it, and it has a toilet.
Interest you pay on a mortgage of up to $1 million — or $500,000 if you’re married filing separately — is deductible when you use the loan to buy, build, or improve your home.
If you take on another mortgage (including a second mortgage, home equity loan, or home equity line of credit) to improve your home or to buy or build a second home, that counts towards the $1 million limit.
If you use loans secured by your home for other things — like sending your kid to college — you can still deduct the interest on loans up $100,000 ($50,000 for married filing separately) because your home secures the loan.
Read more: http://members.houselogic.com/articles/home-tax-deductions/preview/#ixzz3PbeetJh9
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The White House announced a few weeks ago plans to reduce government mortgage insurance premiums in an effort to make homeownership more affordable for low-income buyers. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julián Castro said the Federal Housing Administration would slash insurance fees by more than a third, from 1.35% of the loan amount down to .85 percent. The FHA had a 30% share of the mortgage insurance market in the third quarter of 2014, according to Bloomberg.
Mortgage insurance, required of FHA borrowers, is meant to protect the lenders in case of default by allowing them to recoup some of their losses. Over the next three years, the FHA projects the rate drop will allow 2 million borrowers to save an average of $900 a year when they purchase or refinance a home. The agency also estimates these savings will encourage 250,000 first-time buyers to enter the market.
The move marks a trend of recent policy changes meant to help low-income Americans get into the housing market. In December, mortgage providers Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac announced that certain first-time buyers could now qualify for a loan with a down payment of just 3 percent of the home’s value.
Taken together, today’s announcement and lower down payment requirements should make the housing market far friendlier for the economically disadvantaged. However, David Stevens, CEO of the Mortgage Bankers Association, told CNBC that the effect of the new policy may not spur an especially large increase in home buying.
“I think the marginal impact on sales will be small because potential buyers make the decision to purchase based on trigger events, such as a new job, marriage, kids, etc,” Stevens told the network. “Changes in affordability only impact how much home they can buy.”
While Democrats have been supportive of policies that aid low-income and new homebuyers, Republicans are concerned that lower insurance premiums could put the government at risk if borrowers once again default in large numbers. The FHA has previously required billions in taxpayer assistance, and while the agency is no longer losing money, its capital requirements will not meet the legal limit until 2016. Read more at : http://time.com/money/3659411/obama-cuts-mortgage-insurance-premiums/