Archive for October 31, 2015

Rupert Domestic Violence Shelter Struggles to Reorganize after Funding Loss

RUPERT | The domestic violence center and safe house in Rupert lost its major source of funding at the first of the year and since then, officials have struggled to restructure the center.

Mark Burgess, president-elect of the Mini-Cassia Shelter Inc., also known as Haven of Hope, said the center’s former director left for medical reasons last year, and the center’s board of directors turned over 75 percent of its members in the same time frame. That caused a series of failures in meeting state requirements.

The center provides a safe house for victims of domestic violence, advocates for victims and refers them to community resources, helps provide transportation to court, doctors and attorney appointments. The shelter also offers public education on domestic violence.

“We have become a place where people turn to in their time of need,” Burgess said.

The center provides emergency services to an average of 10 victims a month and it serves 170 families each month through the Mobile Idaho Food Bank. The shelter also provides about 25 food boxes for families in need each month.

The center used to rely on a $50,000 a year grant from the Idaho Coalition against Sexual and Domestic Violence.

“When we lost that money, we lost the lion’s share of our funding,” Burgess said.

The loss of funding was due to the failure to meet several changes in state regulations, he said. Due to the changes in leadership, “things didn’t get done,” Burgess said.

The center has completed a clean audit and no money was misappropriated, he said.

Some of the failed state requirements were structural changes in the building, which belongs to the city and required staff training, which there was no funding for.

In February, the state performed an unannounced visit, “and pulled the plug,” Burgess said.

The shelter has to completely reorganize, including applying for a new tax exempt status. It can reapply for the grant in 2016.

Financial planning wasn’t her original plan

WALL Old Bridge native Vicky Tomaro is the first to admit that her now 35-year tenure in the financial field was unexpected.

“I got married in 1974 and my husband’s brother was in the business of life insurance and investments and introduced me to the industry,” she said. “I became licensed for insurance equities in 1977 and then started my own group in 1980, V. Tomaro amp; Associates,” a name which she would eventually change to Tomaro Financial Group.

“When I first got into this field, I thought I was learning a job,” she said, “but it ended up becoming a career that I love and enjoy.”

Over three decades later, Tomaro and her handful of associates have become well-known for offering a full range of financial services.  “We review our clients’ entire financial situation – everything from their debt to their investments, savings, life insurance, mortgages and more – essentially looking at what they’re currently doing and what they could be doing to achieve their goals,” she said.

According to Tomaro, this type of personalized approach was very new to the industry when she first started out. “I always felt that I wasn’t selling, but rather educating people on better choices they could be making,” she said. “I may not make them millionaires, but I’ll show them how to have more than they would have had.”

Resitrader Announces Whole Loan Mortgage Trading Platform

In a seller-controlled auction format, the online platform will enable sellers of mini-bulk or specified pools of loans to structure offers while buyers either respond directly or build their own pools based on investment criteria. The system allows multiple buyers and sellers to offer, bid and transact simultaneously, and includes an easy-to-use trade settlement process. The Resitrader platform will initially emphasize Community Reinvestment Act-eligible loans but expects to quickly expand into other types of loans.

With the rise of mini-bulk transactions and active price negotiation taking such a prominent role in todays market, a platform like Resitrader is long overdue, and not just for CRA-eligible loans, said Bill Dallas, CEO of Skyline Home Loans. Long-term, this might transform the way loans are priced with real-time market data.

Were starting with CRA as that seems like a natural first step, given their geographic emphasis, said John Ardy, CEO of Resitrader. Buyers can search by census tract, income or other criteria to meet their investment needs. Resitrader provides the perfect context for offering, finding and purchasing loans needed to meet CRA audit findings.

Were also seeing jumbo and expanded criteria loans loading onto the platform, so we know the process will work for those loan products as well, he added.

Resitrader is partnering with a national technology service provider to launch the trading platform.

Our national partners will accelerate our growth as we strive to become the industry utility for whole loan mortgage trading, said Chris Saitta, strategic advisor to Resitrader. We are excited about the growth of purchase lending and innovative lending products that are sure to evolve in the next few years.

About Resitrader

Resitrader, Inc. is a Calabasas, California-based provider of whole loan mortgage trade management software. Its online whole loan marketplace enables loan originators, banks, servicers, brokers and financial advisors to exchange loan data, documents and pricing information in order to buy and sell whole loans. The system enables multiple buyers and sellers to offer, bid and transact simultaneously, and includes an easy-to-use trade settlement process. For more information, visit

George Yacik
Strategic Vantage Marketing amp; Public Relations
(203) 378-5187

SOURCE Resitrader, Inc.

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Commonwealth Bank compensation scheme for victims of financial planning …

A Senate inquiry has heard explosive evidence from a whistleblower who has accused the Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) of continuing to deny justice to victims of its financial planning scandal.

Former assessment manager Russell Phillips described the banks compensation program as a joke and said he was put on a hit list and sacked after complaining about clients not being properly compensated.

Free financial planning event set for Saturday

Free financial planning advice will be available to residents of the Milwaukee area Saturday.

The event, known as Milwaukee Financial Planning Day, will be held from 10 am until 5 pm Saturday at Destiny Youth Plaza, 7210 North 76th Street in Milwaukee.

The event was originally scheduled to be held at Darryl Lynn Hines Academy, located at 7151 N. 86th St. in Milwaukee, but has been moved because of a large funeral planned for Saturday at that location.

The event will feature certified financial planning professionals volunteering their time to meet one-on-one with people to answer questions on various issues, such as getting out of debt, retirement planning, mortgages and foreclosures, and income taxes.

The event, which is also expected to feature classroom-style educational workshops, is being organized by the City of Milwaukee and the Financial Planning Association of Southern Wisconsin.

Free registration for the event is available online here, or by calling toll free at (877) 861-7826. Organizers said walk-ins are also welcome.

Best places to live: Buying a vintage home on Long Island

When Joy Lewis bought the Sag Harbor home of a 19th century whaling ship agent, one of her favorite architectural details had originally been a mistake. The trim, the millwork in the entrance hall . . . looks like its been sliced in half, says Lewis, 85.

She learned from an architectural historian that the irregularity was likely the work of ship carpenters, who were known to forget to factor in the dimensions of interior walls when building a house instead of a ship.

Millennials better off buying a home than renting

Houston topped a list of cities where buying a home beats renting for millennials, according to a report by real estate listing firm Trulia.

Trulia’s Rent vs. Buy report found that buying a house is 23 percent cheaper than renting nationwide for young households. It’s an even better deal in Houston, where it’s 46 percent cheaper to buy than rent.

The Houston calculations are based on a median home price of $162,784 in September, and median rent of $1,550 per month.

Trulia crunch the numbers for millennials using the Census’ 2014 American Community Survey and a Trulia consumer poll. The calculations are based on households ages 25-34, who tend to move every five years, a 10 percent down payment, a 3.87 percent mortgage rate on a 30-year loan. The potential buyers itemize their federal tax deductions and are in a 25 percent tax bracket.

The study found that buying is cheaper than renting in 98 of the nation’s top 100 markets. The rent versus buy gap varies by metro because home prices, rents, property taxes, and home-price appreciation are specific to each market.

Here’s how other cities stack up, based on the median price, rent and cost of buying versus renting percentage:

  1. Houston, $162,784, $1,550, -46%
  2. Baton Rouge, $154,940, $1,395, -45%
  3. Syracuse, NY, $118,999, $1,375, -44%
  4. Fort Lauderdale, Fla., $200,734, $1,750, -44%
  5. Miami, Fla., $241,740, $1,955, -43%,
  6. New Orleans, $169,688, $1,500, -43%
  7. Tampa, Fla, $151,974, $1,300, -42%
  8. Oklahoma City, $130,095, $1,195, -42%
  9. Detroit, $60,465, $850, -42%
  10. San Antonio, $141,907, $1,295, -42%

Here’s where renting beats buying, and “where it’s a tough call”.

  1. Honolulu, $612,642, $2,500, 5%
  2. San Jose, Calif., $907,806, $3,500, 2%
  3. Orange County, $639,129, $2,800, -5%
  4. San Francisco, $1,100,000, $4,400, -7%
  5. Oakland, Calif., $617,357, $2,800, -7%,
  6. Sacramento, Calif., $326,910, $1,650, -8%
  7. Newark, $326,045, $2,200, -10%
  8. San Diego, $488,959, $2,325, -10%
  9. Ventura County, Calif., $514,053, $2,500, -11%
  10. New York, $437,834. $2,350, -11%

Privateers Student-Athletes Learn Financial Planning in Seminar

NEW ORLEANS, La. – Privateers student-athletes recently had the opportunity to learn more about financial management and basic budgeting skills at a seminar organized by Director of Student-Athlete Enrichment, Butler Benton.
The seminar started with all freshmen who met to discuss budgeting, checking and savings accounts, and basic steps to start building a strong credit history. Following was an online interactive course called Capital One Fiscal administered by Benton which served to display everyday financial scenarios.  Jonathan Orr from Athlete Transition Services was the guest speaker at the event.
It is great for our freshman to learn the basic information needed to begin building a strong financial foundation for themselves. This information will be useful to them for the rest of their lives, said Benton.
All upperclassmen followed and they went over tools to help transition to the next step of their life. They learned how to utilize the knowledge acquired as a student-athlete to begin preparing for a career, took a self-assessment on transferable skills, and brainstormed how to utilize those skills to put a future game plan in place.
The next season workshop was very important for the upperclassmen, many former athletes struggle with the transition once their athletic career has ended. We try to equip them with the tools and knowledge to make a smooth transition and excel in the next chapter of their lives.
From track and field student-athlete, Federico Machado: I think the seminar was very insightful for our growth as athletes, students and professionals. I learned that our skills as athletes can be directly transferred into a professional setting. We also learned that setting specific attainable goals will motivate us and keep us focused as we advance in our studies, careers and life. We must be professional on the field and off the field.
To keep up with all Privateers initiatives, visit 


10 Expenses To Consider On The Rookie Home Buying Checklist

Be Aware and Prevent Unexpected Costs
After years of saving, you are finally ready to buy a house — but have you really saved enough to buy the house that you want? There are more expenses to consider than just the price of the home, and first-time home-buyers can be caught by surprise at the number and size of the auxiliary expenses. Dont let this happen to you. Review this checklist to make sure you understand the total costs before you decide on the size of home to buy.

  • Down Payment – A standard down payment is 20% of the purchase price, but other offers may be available depending on your credit status and eligibility for programs. A lower down payment is not always desirable — keep in mind that a lower down payment equates to greater interest costs over the course of the loan. You always have the option of scaling to a smaller home so you can afford to pay 20% down.
  • Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) – PMI is another side effect of a low down payment or other risky loan terms. Generally, with a lower down payment, PMI will be required by the lender to accommodate the higher risk. PMI is often included in the monthly mortgage payments, but could be included as an up-front charge depending on the level of risk you pose.
  • Homeowners Insurance – You will need proof of homeowners insurance and typically have deposited money for the first few payments before your home purchase can be completed. Aside from just being a smart idea, insurance is required by the bank to show you intend to take care of the home and are thus a good bet to repay the loan.
  • Taxes – Check the property tax rate for the new home. Local rates vary significantly depending on school and fire district levies. You may owe the previous homeowner for some portion of fees already paid. Also, consider other specific neighborhood fees such as homeowners association fees and maintenance fees for neighborhood amenities like pools and landscaping.
  • Earnest Money – Earnest money is placed in escrow along with an offer to show serious intent to purchase the home. Typically, it is a few percent of the cost of the home. While this is not a separate expense — it will be applied to a down payment or closing costs and you will get it back if the sale doesnt go through — it is important to remember this expense for cash flow purposes.
  • Maintenance Costs – First-time homeowners often forget how all the little things add up with home maintenance, especially at the beginning when you may need to purchase things like lawn care equipment and household tools. You can easily spend 1-2% of your homes purchase price in the first year.
  • Appliances/Furnishings – Milk crates and a mattress on the floor were fine in the early days, but now you have a home that you need to fill with furnishings and possibly new appliances. Starter homes often have older appliances and dated dÃcor that need replacement. It is easy to underestimate the costs without making a list and pricing individual items or projects. You may be shocked at the final number.
  • Closing Costs – A bewildering variety of fees show up at or near closing, including appraisal fees, survey costs, title insurance, home inspection, attorneys fees, recording fees, and any points (an upfront payment that lowers your interest rate). Fortunately, the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau (CFPB) has mandated that closing documents more clearly outline the individual costs. An online example may be found at the CFPB website.
  • Moving Expenses – Depending on how far you are moving and how much stuff you have to move, moving expenses can be significant. Any time you have to hire professionals you need to carve out room in the budget, and you will probably have to buy at least your friends snacks and meals if you are moving on the cheap.
  • Monthly Bills – Do not forget about the monthly bills of electricity, gas, water, and any fixed telephone or cable TV/Internet connections. There are likely to be setup installation charges that can cause temporary cash flow problems.
    It may seem overwhelming, but there are plenty of resources available to you as a new homeowner, both online and in person. Take advantage of these resources, plan your purchase, and familiarize yourself with the typical costs, and you can enjoy a smooth transition into home ownership — at least as smooth of a transition as possible.

More From Moneytips
10 Terms Every Mortgage Shopper Should Understand
Your Mortgage Down Payment
The Truth Behind No-Closing-Cost Loans

Photo Â Futcher

Avoid missteps that make credit problems worse

Fortunately, there are good guides to avoiding credit pitfalls. I recommend Robin Leonards book Credit Repair (12th edition, NOLO), which comprehensively covers credit reports, negotiating with creditors and debt collectors, selecting a good credit-counseling organization, rebuilding credit, effective use of credit cards and avoiding or dealing with identity theft.

The key to making good decisions is knowing what your options are. The following advice can help you avoid costly mistakes.