Archive for July, 2009

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Tangipahoa Real Estate on the Rise

July 8, 2009

The real estate market is on the rise both here in Tangipahoa Parish and across the nation.  In Tangipahoa Parish, sales prices and activity are on the upswing and inventory is decreasing.  It looks like the bottom of the market has been reached and the Tangipahoa real estate market is on the road to a healthy recovery.

Financing is still a major factor which will influence our recovering market.  Loans are harder to get these days and large down payments are difficult for most.  FHA offers a 3.5% minimum down payment.  More realistically, the total funds need to purchase a home through FHA would be about 8-0% of the selling price.  Do keep in mind that the First-time Buyers Credit can be monetized when using FHA financing.  The Tax Credit can be used as an additional down payment and/or applied to closing costs.

USDA Rural Development still has 100% financing available to first-time buyers.  Buyers and property must meet certain guidelines, but this loan program is certainly one you will want to check out.

The Tax Credit, which will expire in a few months, is a real boon to first time buyers (anyone who has not owned a home in the past three years).  The tax credit does not have to be paid back and can be applied to 2008 or 2009 taxes.  In addition, if the first-time buyer does not monetized the full amount of the tax credit, the remaining balance can be applied when they file taxes.

To learn more about the First-time Tax Credit and new homeowners (no first-time buyer requirement) read my blog post:

First-Time Buyers Rejoice-Tax Credit and Tax Deductions Await

Yvonne Martin, The Martin Team, Let My Family Bring Your Family Home

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Practice Firework Safety in Tangipahoa Parish

July 1, 2009

Enjoy the fireworks displays all over Tangipahoa Parish this 4th of July weekend.Can you believe that it is the Fourth of July already?  That means that it is time for the great celebration of the birth of our country.  Today, I thought I would share with you some firework safety tips and where you can see great public fireworks displays in Tangipahoa Parish.

Home Firework Safety Tips:

    * Obey local firework laws and restrictions.  Fireworks are legal in Tangipahoa Parish.  However, they are not legal within Hammond city limits.
    * Do not alter the fireworks.  Read the directions printed on the fireworks label and follow them.
    * Do not place fireworks in any type of metal or glass containers.
    * Always have an adult supervise children.  It is recommended that no child under 12 should handle any type of fireworks.
    * Always have a hose nearby.  Place spent or misfired fireworks in a bucket of water immediately.  Let them soak before disposing in a trash can
    * Place fireworks on concrete when possible.  Fireworks should be placed on a smooth, hard surface.
    * Do not light fireworks while holding them.
    * Light only one at a time and remember to move away quickly after lighting.  Never try to relight a dud.
    * Do not throw fireworks or point them at people, animals, structures or cars.
    * Never point or throw fireworks at people, pets, cars or buildings.  Keep away from shrubs and brush.

Things To Remember:

    * You must be 15 years of age or older to purchase fireworks.
    * Fireworks and alcohol never mix.  If your celebration includes alcoholic beverages, have a designated shooter present.
    * Never carry fireworks in your pockets; the friction from your body and clothing can set them off.
    * Never allow children to pick up spent fireworks; they could still be “live”.
    * Sparklers burn hot, can cause third degree burns and can easily set clothing on fire.
    * Animals are sensitive to loud sounds. T he noise and brillance of fireworks can cause them extreme stress and frighten them.  Keep your pet indoors to ensure their safety.
    * There have been 173 wildfires in Louisiana in the month of June, so please use caution when igniting your fireworks.
    * You are responsible for any injuries to people or animals and damage to any property.  Parents are liable for their children’s misuse of fireworks, which causes injury or damage.

Tangipahoa Parish Public Firework Displays:

    * July 2: City of Hammond’s Light of the Sky

Zemurray Park, Hammond. Hours: 5:00 pm – 9:00 pm.
The firework display will begin at dark.
For more details call Rose at (985) 277-5630 or visit http://www.hammond.org/blog/index.php?id=116

    * July 2: Ponchatoula’s 9th Annual PARD Fireworks Show

Recreation District Park in Ponchatoula.  Hours: 5:00 pm – 9 pm
The firework display will begin at dusk.
For more details, call Cathy at (985)370-7273 or visit www.pard1.com.

Yvonne Martin, The Martin Team, your Tangipahoa real estate experts