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Homing in on hotspots abroad
Financial Times - UK
A decade ago, purchasers of homes abroad were generally an unadventurous lot, with Europeans invariably cruising Spanish costas or the Côte d'Azur, and Americans bagging a bolthole in Canada or on a Caribbean island.

Today, however, buyers are beginning to focus on lesser known countries, including ones they've only recently been able to locate on a map. Such destinations can be gloriously exotic, not to mention affordable. But there are also hazards - infrequent, expensive flights, inept local tradesmen, poor infrastructure and difficult-to-learn languages. Venturing beyond established ex-pat areas is only fun if you've done extensive research.
Financial Times

First-time home buyers encounter unfamiliar real state terms
North Texas e-News - USA
Purchasing a home can be a complicated and confusing process, especially for first-time buyers. Throughout the process, first-time home buyers will encounter a variety of unfamiliar real state terms. There are several key terms associates with purchasing real estate that are helpful to learn.

For example, many buyers confuse the terms broker and salesperson. A broker is a properly licensed individual, or corporation, who serves as a special agent in the purchase and sale of real estate, a salesperson is an individual employed or associated by written agreement by the broker as an independent contractor. The salesperson facilitates the purchase or sale of real estate.
North Texas e-News

Protecting your property
Moneyweb - South Africa
Banks don't always insist that you take out a life assurance policy along with your home loan. However, few people would disagree that it's a necessary safeguard if you've got a family to look after.

The last thing you want to leave behind when you die is an enormous debt on your home that your family is unable to repay. Banks flog life cover, financial intermediaries sell life cover and, lately, mortgage originators have started offering life cover to take care of your mortgage if the worst happens to you.

Digital Map Products Teams with United Title Company to Deliver Interactive Maps
TMCnet - USA
Digital Map Products (DMP), a developer of high-performance Internet-hosted mapping applications, today announced it has teamed with United Title Co. to develop and deliver an extension to United's ClosingPoint(TM) Web-based transaction management platform. The new component, named Interactive Aerial Maps, provides powerful tools and aerial imagery to residential real estate sales and mortgage professionals.

Interactive Aerial Maps cost-effectively addresses the critical demands of real estate buyers and sellers to quickly access unique and accurate information about properties of interest.

Kimunya Challenged Over Title Deeds Remark
allAfrica.com - Kenya
The minister for land and housing, Mr Amos Kimunya has been challenged to clear the air about what categories of titles he claims to have cancelled. Immediate former Nyeri Town MP and a member of the Ndung'u Commission, Mr Wanyiri Kihoro, challenged the minister to publish the list of the "thousands" of titles he said he had cancelled to clear the air.

"It is not enough for the minister to use such generic terms as thousands of titles have been cancelled. Land is a far more important matter to be handled that casually. The minister is only issuing a general scare that makes the public question his motives," Mr Kihoro, a lawyer and land economist, said on telephone yesterday.

Building indicator continues to improve
Business Report - South Africa
The Medium-Term Forecasting Associates (MFA) leading indicator for the local building industry continued to climb during the fourth quarter of last year. According to Johan Snyman, the director of MFA, the index value was currently on 69, just short of the peak of 75 recorded during the gold boom of 1980.
Business Report

The next property trend
Moneyweb - South Africa
It may be too soon to say for sure whether this is a lasting and noteworthy trend in the property market. But, for the successful investor, who thinks ahead, the evidence is worth pursuing.

Property market analysts say they detect a gentle shift in buying interest, away from the space and peace of suburbia, towards the accessibility and convenience offered by homes near places of work. The trade-off centres around price: it costs to spend less time in traffic.

It remains to be seen whether home owners on a large scale are willing to pay a hefty premium to rid themselves of road rage, and whether property investors should be on the lookout for suitable properties in this category. The head of a major property sales group says he sees no such market moving trend on his books.

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