Changing of the Guard – Fall Colors Arrive in North Texas

“Changing of the Guard”

Fall colors arrive in North Texas. Photographed on November 10, 2012 in Ridgeview Ranch, Plano, Texas.

Photo Copyright 2012 – Tom Branch

S. 2250 The Mortgage Forgiveness Tax Relief Act

Historically, debt cancelled or forgiven as part of a mortgage restructuring, default, or foreclosure proceeding is treated as taxable income.  In 2007, Congress enacted legislation providing a temporary tax exclusion of up to $2 million for income derived from forgiven mortgage debt.  After a subsequent extension, this tax exclusion is set to expire at the end of 2012.  S. 2250 was introduced by Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) to extend the tax exclusion for forgiven mortgage debt through the end of 2014.In recent years, Congress has passed a number of legislative packages known as “tax extenders” to extend expired or expiring tax provisions that are used by businesses and individuals alike.  On August 2, 2012, the Senate Committee on Finance approved the Family and Business Tax Certainty Act of 2012, which included a number of these tax extenders, including a one year extension of the tax exclusion for forgiven mortgage debt through 2013.

It is not presently clear whether Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) will put either S. 2250 or the broader package of tax extenders on the Senate calendar during the upcoming lame duck session.

It’s time to be writing to our elected officials. If S. 2250 or something similar is not passed by the end of the year, any debt forgiven in a short sale will become taxable income for the seller.

Photo licensed from iStockPhoto | Source: Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison

HUD Seeks Bailout

Interesting video blog about the HUD’s reserve funds and their request for a Federal bailout.

HUD Requests Bailout

Source: TBWS Daily Show

What is the White Pipe in the Front Yard?

We recently received a phone call from one of our first-time home buyers. He had closed earlier in the month and while he was cleaning out the landscaping in front of the home, he had found an open PVC pipe. He was really concerned that there was a problem.

The good news is that pipe is nothing more than a clean-out for the homes sewer system. If there is ever a problem with the sewer system, a plumber can use the clean-out to diagnose the problem. Many plumbers have a snake with lights and a camera on the end so they can find clogs or breaks in the sewer lines.

The bad news is that it should be covered. However, it was an easy fix. We took him down to our local hardware store and purchased a rubber cap and a large clamp. We went back to the home and had him fixed up and ready to go in 20 minutes.

Need professional help? Click here to find a plumber in our Business Directory.

Photo Copyright 2012 Imaged2Sell 

629 Mossycup Oak Plano Texas Home For Sale

629 Mossycup Oak Plano Texas Home For Sale

4 Bedrooms | 3 Baths | 3554 Square Feet Per Tax | 4 Living | 2 Dining

Well-kept one-owner home in the golf community of Chase Oaks.  Great curb appeal with lush landscaping and flagstone.

629 Mossycup Oak Entryway

You’re greeted with extensive hardwood flooring and a beautiful spiral staircase.

629 Mossycup Oak Kitchen

The updated island kitchen has granite counters, gas cook top, breakfast bar, and stainless steel Kitchen Aid appliances.

 629 Mossycup Oak Study

The handsome two-story library has a wall of bookshelves and stairs leading to the spacious master suite and oversized sitting area.

629 Mossycup Oak Master Bath

Huge master suite with separate sitting room. Master bath has a jetted tub, separate shower, and dual sinks.

Virtual Tour

629 Mossycup Oak Virtual Tour

Additional Information

Click here for more photos, information, pricing, and current status.

Click here to see all homes for sale in Chase Oaks in Plano Texas.

Photos Copyright 2012 Imaged2Sell

1045 Arches Park Allen TX Home For Sale

5 Bedrooms | 4 Baths | 5044 Square Feet per Tax | Built in 2008

Fabulous Drees executive home in Waterford Park. Located across from the greenbelt, this large home has it all! Inside the oak front door is a grand foyer with a spiral staircase. The home has extensive oak hardwood flooring.

The island kitchen is a chef’s dream with a commercial 8-burner gas range, dual gas ovens, an electric convection oven, granite counter tops, and a tumbled marble back splash.

The great room has soaring ceilings and a wood-burning fireplace fitted with gas logs, a floor-to-ceiling oak fireplace mantel and a bar area with built-ins, ice maker, and a sink. The great room overlooks the covered patio and pool-size back yard.

The massive master suite has a bow window and overlooks the back yard while the master bath has a jetted tub, separate shower, dual vanities, and a walk-in closet.

Upstairs you’ll find game and media rooms along with 3 additional bedrooms.

Virtual Tour

Virtual Tour - 1045 Arches Park Allen TX

Additional Information

Click here for more photos, information, pricing, and current status.

Click here to see all homes for sale in Waterford Park Allen Texas.

Photos licensed from Shoot2Sell

Ryan Sparks Joins The Branch Team

Ryan is not a native born Texan but after he moved out of Texas, it only took him a few years to find his way back. Ryan was born and raised in Oklahoma and completed his first year of college at the University of North Texas. He felt like there was more of the world to see and moved to the Chicago suburbs to finish his degree at Northern Illinois University.

Soon after purchasing his first home, Ryan made it a priority to stay educated and involved in the ever-changing real estate market.

Before joining the Branch Team, Ryan dabbled in the field of law and also taught high school and middle school English. On top of teaching and real estate, Ryan is currently earning his MBA with an emphasis in business economics. In his limited free time, Ryan enjoys spending time with his two Labrador Retrievers Will and Grace, traveling, cruising and enjoying good wine.

Ryan met Tom in late 2011 while searching for a new home in the north Dallas suburbs. It was not long after their meeting that Tom’s expertise and skills quickly groomed Ryan’s passion for real estate into a true craft. The Branch Team’s extensive knowledge and professionalism made them the only choice.

Ryan’s personality, people skills and dedication to get the job done are truly unparalleled. Ryan is a professional committed to taking care of your real estate needs.