Today Is A Good Day To Refinance

Mortgage rates are falling. Freddie Mac’s weekly mortgage rate survey reported 30-year fixed mortgages are averaging 4.1% for the last two weeks of August 2014, the lowest since October 2013. There may be a rush to refinance and you need a good real estate closing program like Easy HUD to help you with the spike in business.

Slow And Steady Doesn’t Always Win The Race

People love to quote Aesop as some kind of justification for doing things inefficiently. They feel like if they take their time filling out the HUD 1 settlement statement (actually the HUD 1a for refis) then they will do better than their competitors who rush through it. They will make fewer mistakes, which means they will have to issue fewer corrections and in the long run they will save time.

Yes it’s true that accuracy counts for more than speed when filling out government forms, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have both. The fact is the tortoise in the fable won the race not because he was slow but because the hare was lazy. Speed is an asset, and when combined with focus and determination it is a critical competitive edge.

Fast And Steady Is Better

Easy HUD software offers the speed of the hare and the steadiness of the tortoise. You can fill out the form quickly. The software automatically does the math for you so you save time that would normally be spent pounding on calculator keys. Our users report they can close up to 70% faster when using Easy HUD.

However you are also steady. Easy HUD calculations are not just fast; they are accurate. The form is already compliant with the latest RESPA requirements, and is automatically updated as HUD issues new rules. You also get the benefit of accurate tax tables for over 40 jurisdictions, automated GFE-HUD comparison sheet preparations, and a host of productivity tools to keep your business organized.

You don’t need to choose between the tortoise and the hare. Instead you can get the benefits of both with Easy HUD. You will be ready for the rush of clients who are even now headed for your business. The faster you process closings, the better your cash flow will be. Try Easy HUD free for 30 days to see how much easier it is to process refinances.

Posted by Rick Kabra on in HUD Software | Leave a comment

Great News: New York Court Defines The Word “The”

We’ll all breath a little easier now that the Appellate Division, First Department has weighed in on the meaning of the word “the”. Reminiscent of Bill Clinton debating the meaning of “is”, in this particular divorce case that little “the” was worth millions of dollars because it impacted how certain assets on the NY net worth statement were interpreted.

The Financial Impact Of One Word

The case was Babbio v. Babbio and the decision was handed down on July 17, 2014. The issue boiled down to a sentence in the couple’s premarital agreement that laid out two possible ways to divide assets. They would be divided equally unless either party contributed more than a million dollars to “the Marital Property”, in which case that contributor would get the contribution plus half of the remaining value.

The debate came from the meaning of “the”. By stating “the Marital Property”, did that mean each piece of property had the million-dollar provision, or did it refer to the aggregate property? The court decided that “the” meant each asset individually. In other words, it wasn’t enough that the husband contributed over a million to their joint assets. He would get the advantageous split only on assets he contributed more than a million to individually.

Adapting To Changing Conditions

How easily could you handle this kind of property settlement? Tracking each asset and determining how much if it belonged to the husband or wife could be a terrible task if done in a spreadsheet — or with pen and paper if you are really old school. Are you able to divide each asset and liability according to different rules with your current NY family law software?

With EzSupport-NY you can propose distribution by percentage or by amount, and you can set this on each asset and liability independently. So in the “the” case, you could set most assets to split 50/50 but on any asset where a spouse contributed beyond the threshold, you could enter the distribution amount that included the contribution.

You may not handle multi-million dollar divorces with complicated prenups every day, but even so-called simple divorces are often not so simple. Get EzSupport-NY, the NY divorce software with all the features you need.

Posted by Rick Kabra on in NY Family Law Software, Other | Comments Off

Are Marriage And Divorce Still Relevant In Today’s Economy?

Family law professors June Carbone and Naomi Cahn have written a book entitled “Marriage Markets” that examines marriage against the backdrop of today’s national economy. The depth of the book cannot be expressed in a short blog post, but one factor they discuss is how a couple’s financial status affects divorce and financial settlements.

Divorce By Economic Class

According to the authors, people living in poverty rarely get married because they can’t afford it. Family law revolves around determining the paternity of children born to single mothers, and trying to get child support from men ill-equipped to provide it. Marriage happens in the middle class but divorce is financially difficult on both parties so couples tend to stay married even if they live apart. Only among the wealthy is marriage seen as financially advantageous, and only the wealthy have enough assets to be worth fighting over in a divorce.

What this means is today’s family law practices have to find creative and flexible ways to handle divorce, particularly among middle class clients who may not be able to afford to split up.

Creative Divorce Settlements

As sad as divorce can be, it is often the best solution for people who have grown apart. It is a preferable solution for children, who are typically better off than they would be living in a home haunted by a toxic marriage. However what about those couples who don’t have the income or the savings to split up?

Family law attorneys are seeing more clients today who need innovative divorce settlements. These practices need divorce financial software that does more than simply divide the assets by two, and plug a few numbers into alimony and child support equations. They need to be able to explore all kinds of property and support scenarios and compare them to find out which would be best for the couple.

Divorce Financials is an ideal tool for those kinds of creative settlements. Attorneys can quickly total up all assets and liabilities and consider multiple property settlement scenarios. They can try different support scenarios, and then compare them side by side and optimize them to minimize the tax impact.

As circumstances change, businesses have to change with them. The growing income inequality in this country is shaping the future of marriage and divorce. Your firm needs the foresight to adapt, and divorce settlement software like Divorce Financials that can transform as your practice does.

Posted by Rick Kabra on in Divorce Financials | Comments Off

How New York Divorce Software Helps With Difficult Clients

How crazy do you have to be to get in the middle of a fight between divorcing spouses? As crazy as a family law attorney apparently! Divorce lawyers have to deal with difficult situations, often acting as the voice of reason to get their clients to accept fair settlements. Unfortunately some clients won’t listen to that voice.

Getting Rational Decisions from Irrational Clients

New Yorkis a no fault state. That means that, in theory, a divorce is an unemotional, unbiased financial transaction. You fill out the NY net worth statement; crunch some numbers, present equitable property settlement and support figures and move on to the next case. Right?

Yeah, uh, no.

Real divorce is emotional. Family law attorneys use the financial statements to reduce the negotiations to cold numbers and that helps some clients make objective choices. Unfortunately other clients refuse to let go of the negativity. They try to drag their attorneys into their rage, make unreasonable decisions that jeopardize the case, lie about assets to keep a bigger portion of the pie, and overall make life harder for everyone. What is a hard-working lawyer to do with these hot-headed clients?

Minimize Contact

Family law attorneys have to carefully balance showing clients a little emotional support vs. becoming the client’s new best pal. This is harder with irrational clients. The best option can be to make contact more impersonal: email over phone calls, phone calls over face-to-face visits. People complain that technology makes society impersonal, but sometimes that’s what the situation warrants.

NY AutoFill is a secure web portal attorneys can use to gather information for import into EzSupport-NY, Easy Soft’s NY family law software. The client provides all the information from home without needing to meet with the attorney. The attorney imports the information and most of the work is done. EzSupport-NY generates a host of forms and correspondence, all of which can be emailed to the client from right within the program. This helps the attorney maintain a professional distance from a clingy client.

Document Everything

Some clients are so mad at the world that they end up taking it out on their attorneys. Even if you get your client a great settlement, some people aren’t satisfied with anything less than 100%. Suddenly you have a client complaining that you didn’t do your job, and maybe even filing a complaint with your state bar association.

EzSupport-NY allows you to add documentation to the case so you have more than just a Statement of Net Worth to show for it. Add case notes, link to electronic documents and back up your New York State spousal support and child support offers with worksheets and analysis statements. You can prove to anyone that you provided due diligence to the case and did everything you could to get your client a fair deal.

Even crazy clients deserve legal representation but don’t make your job harder than it needs to be. Use legal practice management software to protect yourself and your practice, as well as finding the best deals for your clients.

Posted by Rick Kabra on in NY Family Law Software | Comments Off

Stop Wasting Time in Your Real Estate Practice

Drowning In a Sea Of Documents

Real estate transactions involve a seemingly unending stream of paperwork. You file the HUD-1 form. You send out the 1099-S statement. You print up buying and leasing contracts. You mail correspondence to buyers, sellers, lenders, inspectors, surveyors and a crowd of other people. To stay on schedule you check off items on a to-do list. Even though much of today’s “paperwork” is electronic, it is still a big part of real estate sales.

You can’t get away from the documentation when handling real estate matters but you can speed things up. Real estate agents and attorneys use HUD settlement statement software to automate their practices and can, in theory, cut closing time by as much at 70% — but only if they take full advantage of all the software’s features. The software can’t save you time if you are still doing things the old fashioned way.

Fast Software Can’t Overcome Slow Processes

An office that uses procedures rooted in the past may be bottlenecking the software without realizing it. For example let’s look at the problem of maintaining contacts. Every real estate practice has a host of names, addresses and phone numbers. These contacts include parties that may appear on the HUD 1 settlement sheet such as clients and lenders, as well as employees, vendors and other parties.

Keeping a paper contact list simply isn’t going to work in the modern world. Real estate professionals typically need to be mobile and can’t depend on being able to get to the rolodex at work to look up a client’s phone number. It’s a waste of resources if each person in a large office has to keep a separate contact file, and entering the contact manually into the real estate title software increases the chance of typographical errors.

You Have A Computer; Use It!

Wouldn’t it make more sense to keep your contact database on the same computer than runs your HUD program? Wouldn’t it make even more sense to keep it in the same application?

A built-in contact database simplifies this process by creating a central resource for the entire practice. You don’t need duplicate lists of contacts throughout the office. All forms, correspondence and agreements generated pull from this database so contact information is consistent and correct. Cloud software gives authorized users access to this database from anywhere with an internet connection. Agents don’t have miss a lead because a phone number was left back at the office.

It’s not all about contacts and paperwork. Real estate transactions often involve escrow finds so you need real estate software that integrates with a trust management application. When you use tools that are designed to work in concert then you are less likely to make innocent mistakes that could open your practice to ethics violations.

Our software is only one step in the process you use to handle real estate closings. Check out our library of training videos to find out about more features of our real estate and law practice management software so you know you are getting everything you need from Easy Soft products.

Posted by Rick Kabra on in HUD Software | Comments Off

Housing Market Set To Surge — Are You Ready?

A recent article at realtor.com points out why now is a great time to buy a house: interest rates are about to jump, inventories are high, prices are rising, rents are skyrocketing and the job market is producing hundreds of thousands of new jobs very month. Ten markets in particular are set for a rush of home sales. When it’s a great time for buyers, it’s a great time for real estate professionals as well. You need HUD software like Easy HUD to take advantage of the pending boom in sales.

Act Now Or Regret Later

Real estate professionals can’t afford to sit around waiting for opportunity. They need to actively seek new clients and sales in order to keep the cash flowing. Although the market is much better than it was a few years ago, homebuyers are leery and may be taking longer to decide on a home purchase. That means you need to act now in order to generate income down the road.

Are you ready to handle the rush of business? If you end up spending hours poring over HUD forms then you are missing opportunities to acquire new clients. You got into this business to help people find their dream homes, not to fill out stacks of government paper. You need to not only know your market and have enough contacts — lenders, inspectors and so on — to facilitate the sale, but you also need the tools to help you close a sale quickly.

Get The Edge With Real Estate Settlement Software

While other real estate professionals are struggling to fill out forms by hand or working with unsuitable or outdated tools, you can get an advantage by arming yourself with the latest in real estate software, Easy HUD.

Easy HUD has been designed exclusively to meet the needs of today’s real estate market, with features such as RESPA-complaint HUD preparation, simple GFE-HUD comparison and built-in productivity tools. Additional modules allow you to produce an array of documents populated with information from the HUD form, generate ledgers, file 1099-S forms and print specialized transaction sheets.

If you aren’t using Easy HUD already, download a demo to see how easy the HUD settlement statement can be. Faster closing means more business and happier clients, as well as a healthy cash flow for your business.

Posted by Rick Kabra on in HUD Software | Comments Off