Lions – we need volunteers

DG Steve Picchi, 2013-14

Yosemite Rim Fire
Lions in Action & Help Request

Individuals, Clubs, District, State

International Director Larry Dicus


The Yosemite ‘Rim Fire’ continues to rage out of control. As of today, it is only 1% contained.  Since Monday area Lions led by Sonora Lions have been feeding evacuees and firefighters.  Lions Clubs International Foundation has sent disaster grant funds of $10,000 to help the Lions effort.  To date, volunteers from the following clubs have answered the call – working 3 shifts a day to assist Sonora Lions:


Chowchilla Lioness

Copperopolis Tullock Lake

Lodi MexAm


Modesto 500

San Andreas 49er


Yosemite Rim Fire


If you volunteered and your club is not listed, please forgive me!     


Good news:  The Lion volunteer schedule is staffed through Thursday of next week.


How can you help?


Lion volunteers are being staffed 3 shifts a day:  7 AM to Noon; Noon to 4 PM; 4 PM to 9 PM.   Priority is breakfast and dinner.  The primary need is cooks and servers.  

If you and fellow Lions or friends can volunteer starting next Friday, please call PDG Tom Panhallegon and/or Lion Bob Bader at (209) 694-5191.  Either one can provide you more information on how you can help.


The kitchen and shelter is located at the Sonora Fairgrounds which is accessible by Hwy 108 up from the valley, take the first Sonora exit.  


Again, if you can help the Sonora Lions and other area Lions starting next Friday please call. 


PLEASE DO NOT JUST SHOW UP!  CALL PDG Tom or Lion Bob (209) 694-5191 


Please be aware, the situation is very fluid, and needs may change. However, it would be very helpful to them to have next weekend scheduled ASAP!  They will need relief!


Find me on Facebook 

Yours in Service,

  Larry Dicus

                                                        International Director



Mortgage Update Courtesy of John Barrett jr.

  Send to a Friend

John Barrett Jr.
Sr. Loan Officer
WJ Bradley Mortgage Capital Corp
Phone: 650-295-0550
Fax: 877-272-8402
License: NMLS#326498
  In This Issue 

Last Week in Review: Positive economic data capped a rough week for Mortgage Bonds and home loan rates, despite tame inflation data.

Forecast for the Week: Housing news and the Fed meeting minutes highlight a quiet economic calendar.

View: Knowing the difference between action and activity can make a big difference in achieving your goals. The easy tips below can help.

  Last Week in Review 

“If you build it, they will come.” And while that line from the movie Field of Dreams may have referred to a baseball field, after last week’s news it could also apply to the housing market.

The housing sector continues to improve despite the recent rise in home loan rates, as Housing Starts rose 5.9 percent from June to July to 896,000 on an annualized basis. This was in line with estimates. Building Permits, a sign of future construction, were up 2.7 percent, coming in above expectations. In addition, the National Association of Home Builders Housing Market Index rose to 59 in August from the 57 recorded in July. This is the best level in nearly eight years.

Retails Sales for July were also positive, rising for the fourth straight month. When stripping out autos, sales surged by 0.5 percent, the fastest pace this year. And there was good news for the labor market, as Weekly Initial Jobless Claims fell to 320,000, a level not seen since October 2007. There were no apparent seasonal distortions in the numbers. In the manufacturing sector, Empire State Manufacturing came in above expectations, while the Philadelphia Fed Index came in just below expectations.

What does this mean for home loan rates? Remember that the Fed has been buying $85 billion of Bonds a month to help stimulate the economy and housing market. This includes Mortgage Bonds, to which home loan rates are tied, and these purchases have helped home loan rates remain attractive.

The Fed has said the rate of its purchases will continue to depend on economic data, and could be increased or decreased accordingly. Rest assured that the Fed was watching all the good economic reports from last week very closely. The data that continues to come in will be a key factor in whether the Fed begins tapering these purchases as early as its meeting in mid-September, or if it waits until later in the year or even 2014.

One thing that is also important to note–inflation at both the wholesale and consumer levels remains tame, as evidenced by the Producer and Consumer Price Indexes for July. This gives the Fed cover to continue its Bond purchases if economic data takes a turn for the worse.

The bottom line is that now remains a great time to consider a home purchase or refinance, as home loan rates remain attractive compared to historical levels. Let me know if I can answer any questions at all for you or your clients.

  Forecast for the Week 

The economic calendar is quiet this week, but the Fed meeting minutes could move the markets.

  • Housing data is front and center, with Existing Home Sales on Wednesday and New Homes Sales on Friday.
  • The only other report of significance is Thursday’s Weekly Initial Jobless Claims.

In addition, the minutes from the Fed’s latest Federal Open Market Committee meeting will be released on Wednesday at 2:00 p.m. ET. If the minutes hint that the Fed may start tapering its Bond purchases after its September meeting, this could cause volatility to ramp up to an extremely high level.

Remember: Weak economic news normally causes money to flow out of Stocks and into Bonds, helping Bonds and home loan rates improve, while strong economic news normally has the opposite result. The chart below shows Mortgage Backed Securities (MBS), which are the type of Bond that home loan rates are based on. 

When you see these Bond prices moving higher, it means home loan rates are improving — and when they are moving lower, home loan rates are getting worse.

To go one step further — a red “candle” means that MBS worsened during the day, while a green “candle” means MBS improved during the day. Depending on how dramatic the changes were on any given day, this can cause rate changes throughout the day, as well as on the rate sheets we start with each morning.

As you can see in the chart below, last week was a rough one for Mortgage Bonds and home loan rates. I’ll be watching the news closely to see if economic reports continue to be positive…and if there is more talk of the Fed’s tapering its Bond purchases in September.

Chart: Fannie Mae 3.5% Mortgage Bond (Friday Aug 16, 2013)

Japanese Candlestick Chart
  The Mortgage Market Guide View… 

Activity or Action
Do You Know the Difference?

The words activity and action sound similar, and are sometimes used as synonyms. To a casual observer, there may not be any visual difference between one person’s activity and another’saction. Yet when it comes to reaching goals in business or life, activity and action are two very different things.

So what’s the difference? 
Activity is ‘doing’, it has no destination, it is an expense of energy. Action is ‘accomplishing’, it is based on a plan, it builds its own momentum. Here are a few examples to help clarify:

Activity: Making a New Year’s resolution. Action: Stop smoking.

Activity: Planning a newsletter to clients. Action: Send a newsletter to clients.

Activity: Researching gym memberships. Action: Exercise.

Activity: Reading diet books. Action: Eat healthy.

Is activity bad? 
Absolutely not. We need to plan, and activity is an essential step in the process. This is the appropriate place to prepare, research, study, set goals, or create a vision. Still, it’s a preliminary step, and that’s where people tend to get stuck. (Did you ever notice how busy you feel when you’re procrastinating?)

In reality, activity is only preparation for the actions that will make a difference in your life and career.

How to take more action:
If activity has become your preferred form of procrastination, here’s what to do:

Schedule it. Schedule everything from working out, to writing prospecting emails, to sending newsletters. Remember, don’t use this time for planning goals, use it for taking actions that move your goals ahead.

Pick a date. For larger scale goals or projects requiring more planning, it’s good to put your deadline in your calendar. Schedule all the pieces as they come up, but stick to your deadline.

Tell somebody. Always try to build accountability into taking action. Make both your goals and your deadlines public by telling a close friend, a mentor, posting it on Facebook, or even enlisting as many people as you can. There’s pressure, but it’s the good kind!

Don’t forget to pass these helpful tips along to your clients and colleagues.

Economic Calendar for the Week of August 19 – August 23

Economic Report
Wed. August 21
Existing Home Sales
Wed. August 21
FOMC Minutes
Thu. August 22
Jobless Claims (Initial)
Fri. August 23
New Home Sales


The material contained in this newsletter has been prepared by an independent third-party provider. The content is provided for use by real estate, financial services and other professionals only and is not intended for consumer distribution. The material provided is for informational and educational purposes only and should not be construed as investment and/or mortgage advice. Although the material is deemed to be accurate and reliable, there is no guarantee it is without errors.

As your mortgage professional, I am sending you the MMG WEEKLY because I am committed to keeping you updated on the economic events that impact interest rates and how they may affect you.

Mortgage Market Guide, LLC is the copyright owner or licensee of the content and/or information in this email, unless otherwise indicated.   Mortgage Market Guide, LLC does not grant to you a license to any content, features or materials in this email.   You may not distribute, download, or save a copy of any of the content or screens except as otherwise provided in our Terms and Conditions of Membership, for any purpose.

You received this email as a result of your ongoing business relationship with John Barrett Jr.. While beneficial to a wide audience, this information is also commercial in nature and it may contain advertising materials.

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Copyright 2013. PlatinumPro Marketing.

Seniors info re reverse mortgages

This info has been sent from a local Mortgage Broker and is valuable to clients who are considering reverse mortgages.

Oct 1st : “Means Testing” for Reverse Mortgages Begins

Reverse Mortgage Info for Seniors
President Obama has signed legislation granting HUD the authority to make “reverse mortgage’ (HECM) program changes via a mortgagee letter,rather than going through a lengthy rulemaking process.

According to the Washington Post the changes appear to be scheduled for Oct 1st 2013.

The changes will greatly reduce access for seniors to the equity of their home.

If you clients family or friends considering a reverse mortgage, have them begin now as there is a 5 to 7 day lead time for counseling and application with another 5-7 days for the appraisal process.

Proposed changes include:

a) Limiting the “upfront draw” (i.e., the amount of funds available to the borrower in a lump sum).

b) Establishing tax and insurance impounds.

c) Minimum credit scores

d) Residual income and cash-flow analysis

“Residual income” is the amount of money left over each month after deducting a borrower’s housing expenses and installment debt from gross monthly income.

The test will certainly be modeled after the VA guidelines and which has additional criteria:

1) the number of household members

2) where the property is located

3) monthly debt service obligations

4) size of household

The major problem facing the program: a 10% default rate resulting from the borrower’s non-payment of property taxes, HOA and insurance.

The National Council on Aging and AARP spoke in support of the changes, noting the importance of
funding and resources.

Sen. Robert Menendez (D-New Jersey) and Jerry Moran (R-Kansas) are the two U.S. Senators heading up
the committee.

For expert advice on reverse mortgages contact: christine beard for referral info 650 888 2806

In Service, cb

What you need to know when buying a home

What you need to know when buying a home

This year stands to be a very good year buying a home.  It’s going to take a self directed effort and commitment on the part of all home buyers and their Realtors. By working as a team home ownership can be a reality for those who want it.

chia house 150x150 What you need to know when buying a home

Don’t make an offer if you don’t want it.

The number one challenge facing home buyers and Realtor I believe is getting back into the market the buyers who seemed to have abandoned.  Why are there so few buyers?  There are a ton of reasons.  It can be boiled down to one main underlining theme though…FEAR.

FEAR, as my friend Joe Stumpf would say, is False Expectations Appearing Real. This mean the cause of buyer’s fears are unfounded and false.  It is going to be the job of the Realtor and/or Lender to show to buyers how beneficial home ownership is to them.

A list I have put together may be of help to those Realtors who want to be pro-active in bring business to their table by helping future homeowners see why they should purchase the biggest investment they more than likely will ever make.

Here’s my list.  Can you add to it?

  1. Shelter.  First and foremost a home is a basic human need…shelter
  2. Tax Shelter. There are tax saving due to homeowner interest tax write-offs. That number should be discussed with each offer you give on any home you are thinking about buying.
  3. Stability. In my market place rents went up over 12% in 2011.  2012 rents are expected to rise another 10%. Future rents are not expected to go down either. When a 30 year fixed mortgage home buyers are assured a fixed cost for the next 30 years!
  4. Self Worth. When I ask a client what is most important about buying a home it usually gets down to self-worth or being loved and appreciated.  And isn’t that what we all want?  To be loved and appreciated?

That is my list of topics I will have this year with my buyer clients to help them gain clarity on what is in there best interest.  Not only for them but their family too.

I urge everyone  who is thinking of purchasing a home to allow yourself to rid themselves of the silent killer of peace of mind…FEAR.  At your next IRS Tax filing you will be glad you did.

Now start the process of finding your new home by clicking on the orange button to the right. This will allow you to search for homes in communities you want to live in with the feature you want in your new home. I am available for your private consultation if you want to contact me via any of the methods provided below in my signature. I am an easy guy to get a hold of but know I will always tell you the truth. It may not be what you want to hear but it will be the truth.

As always there isn’t any obligation or costs involved with talking with me or my team. We are here to help you and will NEVER “hard sell” you on anything. If you’re happy we’ll be happy.

The America’s Cup August 10, 2013

Style and Speed!

Style and Speed!

Great day on the San Francisco Bay enjoying the America’s Cup Race, we are so lucky to live in the Bay Area!

Italy’s Luna Rossa ended Artemis Racing’s emotional attempt to advance in the America’s Cup trials, finishing a four-race sweep in the challenger semifinals Saturday when the Swedish-backed boat made too many errors.

Luna Rossa benefited from three penalties against Artemis Racing, including a big one just before the start, and sailed its high-performance, 72-foot catamaran to a victory of 2 minutes, 11 seconds on San Francisco Bay.


Belmont Lions Meeting Vivace Restaurant 12/4/12

Come join The Belmont Lions as a guest on Tuesday Dec 4, 2012; have a great lunch and find out what The Belmont Lions are up to.

Follow the link to meetup to rsvp

Christine Beard 

           Today/Sothebys International Realty

                1250 San Carlos Avenue 101,   San Carlos, CA 94070

                mobile phone: 650 888-2806               

                office phone:   650 598-8135


Belmont Lion Christine Beard/Membership Chair            

                  cel:  650 888-2806           


                Lion’s website: