Philadelphia Property Tax Overhaul Continues

Philadelphia Property Taxes

Philadelphia’s Office of Property Assessments (OPA) has mailed out all new tax assessments under the greatly anticipated Actual Value Initiative (AVI) earlier this month. The information mailed by OPA includes the new assessed value, and instructions on the opportunity to dispute the new assessments. It is still unknown how successful a homeowner will be in protesting their new assessment but it does seem that the city is providing easy explanation and instructions on how to protest. Appraisals, BPO’s, CMA’s and comps from local … [Read more...]

Philadelphia Property Taxes To Rise Again

Philadelphia Property Taxes Going Up Again

Philly property owners must brace themselves again for getting bombarded with a 3rd straight year of increased real estate taxes.  It doesn't seem that this reformation of the BPT is going to happen? I have a brilliant idea, provide an incentive to businesses to come to Philadelphia! Lower the business tax which will bring more workers and residents into the city. Yes this is sarcasm. The point-- can we really trust city council to use the revenues derived from more property taxes wisely. Philadelphia has had a hard time … [Read more...]

Philadelphia Title Insurance Rate Change

Philadelphia Title Insurance is set to change due to a Rate Simplification submitted by the Title Insurance Rating Bureau of Pennsylvania (TIRBOP) and approved by the PA Department of Insurance.  The new rates are effective July 1, 2012. There are no longer any rules regarding the length of time since the last insured transaction there is just one simple rate for refinances.  The same is true for Philadelphia title insurance pursuant to a Philadelphia home purchase, one single rate for a purchase. The simplified rate tables … [Read more...]

Nutter Claims Proposed Property Tax Hike Not True

Mayor Nutter Property Taxes

Today Philly.com posted a piece in regards to the recently made public budget of Gov. Corbett. The budget would inevitably decrease funds to much needed programs in the city. There was of course speculation that there could there be another property-tax hike on the horizon to deal with some of the cuts? “Your question is tremendously premature and we’ve had no discussion about that,” Mayor Nutter told the Daily News today. “We’ve been analyzing the governor’s budget which was introduced and we do not know at … [Read more...]

Philadelphia Records Department Announces Fee Increase

Philadelphia Recording Department

Philadelphia Records Department Announces Fee Increase Effective February 20, 2012 the Philadelphia Records Department will institute a new Fee Schedule.  Records Commissioner Joan Decker recently released the new fee breakdown.  Although the increase is not all that much it is important to note especially with the new GFE Rules for loan originators. For those consumers out there reading this please contact a Philadelphia Title Company with any questions.  Essentially your fees on line 1201 will be slightly increased for any … [Read more...]

Irene delaying Philadelphia Real Estate Transactions


Hurricane Irene created massive flooding throughout Philadelphia and the surrounding areas, property damage across delaware valley and power outages to many.  But wait Ms. Irene is not complete her damage. The aftermath of Irene may delay the funding of your or your clients new mortgage financing. Can you imagine showing up at the title insurance company for settlement only to learn that the proceeds from your loan will not be available until the property is re-inspected?  Oh boy! The problem is obvious.  The adoption of … [Read more...]

HUD Makes Amendments to RESPA

There were clarifying amendments made July 11th, 2011 to the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) sections involving “changed circumstances” and the “GFE Comparison-Page3”.  Both amendments are very relevant to all banks and mortgage professionals out there. Changed Circumstances The provision currently addresses changed circumstances affecting closing costs and that revisions to charges on the GFE may increase for services listed on the GFE but only to the extent that the changed circumstances actually … [Read more...]

Real Enforcement Coming? Via the CFPB

It seems to be well known that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) intends to be fully operational and hit the ground running on July 21, 2011. The CFPB revealed on April 11, 2011, that it has agreed on a Joint Statement of Principles with the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG) to govern their interactions in enforcing the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act and CFPB regulations. In a notice published by the US Dept of Treasury the CFPB seeks comments on its plans for collecting … [Read more...]

Private Transfer Fees Now Prohibited In Pennsylvania

Gov. Tom Corbett (center) signs HB 442 into law

Over the last 2 years there has been a strong push across the country to ban private transfer fees and finally this week Pennsylvania has joined the majority having banned such a covenant this past week.  PA has just become the 36th state to ban private transfer fees. Gov. Corbett signed HB 442 into law. Private transfer fees are much different from  locally enforced transfer taxes commonly used  to raise revenue for public services when properties change hands. In private transfer-fee arrangements, a developer or seller of … [Read more...]

More Bad Data: A Big Drop In Home Sales

And the news is bleak once again.  Home re-sales dropped a record 27.2% to an annual rate of 3.83 million in July, the National Association of Realtors said Tuesday.  Making things worse, inventories rose to 12.5 months from 8.9 months in June, pressuring already depressed home prices. Supply is now at its highest level in more than a decade. With rates still historically low, potential buyers are obviously staying on the side lines for other reasons.  Is it just a coincidence that mortgage applications and pending sales both … [Read more...]