Both the Georgia House and Georgia Senate created Resolutions to urge Congress to the repeal the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012. These resolutions seek to make flood insurance more affordable, eliminating the negative economic impact Biggert Waters has created on the state. The resolutions state that FEMA’s poor implementation of this act has led to unreasonable increases in flood insurance premiums nationwide and has devalued property investments. If left unmodified, local and state economies will be damaged. The House passed HR 1055 this week by a vote of 167-0. The Senate Insurance Committee Favorably Reported SR 747. Senate Resolution 747 is now available to be selected by the Senate Rules Committee for consideration by the entire Senate. GAR would like to thank Rep. Alex Atwood (Brunswick) and Senator William Ligon (St. Simons) for their efforts to communicate the importance of this issue
Walk or run with family and friends and at the same time help in the fight against hunger in our Atlanta community. Join the Temple Sinai Striders walk team and mark your calendars for Sunday, March 9th, 2014. The walk begins near Turner Field; registration is at 12pm, the walk/run starts at 2pm. Donate $25 and get a fabulous event t-shirt! All monies raised directly support programs aimed at ending hunger in Atlanta.
Microsoft plans to open its second metro Atlanta store at Perimeter Mall.
The tech giant said more details will be released soon. The Perimeter store joins one at Lenox Square Mall, which opened in May 2011.
Rival Apple Inc. has four stores in metro Atlanta.
Courtesy by Brian Berman
Tapering Signals Year-End Economic Strength – Indicators Point to Greater Recovery for 2014
The big “will-they or won’t they” ended last month with the Fed’s mid-December announcement that it would begin tapering its economic stimulus efforts. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s decision to scale back on Bond and Treasury purchases by $10 billion signaled that the economy has showed sufficient ability to play on its own, albeit, on a kid leash.
The Fed’s ambivalence towards tapering dominated central banking discussions and created market volatility for most of 2013. Janet Yellen, the Fed’s current vice chairman and President Barack Obama’s nominee to succeed Bernanke, voted in favor of the policy action, which was bolstered by promising figures in the labor and housing markets.
The Year in Housing
Housing gained traction in 2013 amid job gains and rising stock values. Residential construction starts soared in November to a five-year high, explaining why builder optimism last month matched its highest level since 2005.
Despite robust new construction, sales of previously-owned homes declined for the third consecutive month in November to the lowest level this year, as rising home loan rates and a limited supply of existing properties discouraged homebuyers. Rates could rise even further with Fed tapering.
Purchases overall dropped 4.3 percent to a 4.9 million annual rate, in a mid-December report from the National Association of Realtors. The report also showed that the median price of an existing home rose 9.4 percent to $196,300 from $179,400 one year ago. The group still projects 2013 will be the best year for the industry in seven years, with an estimated 5.1 million properties sold. Rising prices and borrowing costs may have put homes out of reach for many first-time buyers and the partial federal government shutdown in October may have delayed some purchase decisions.
The Year in Jobs
A five-year low in unemployment and a boost in job hirings helped prompt Fed tapering. In what was largely typical year-end activity, applications for U.S. unemployment benefits rose in early December to an almost nine-month high, according to the Labor Department. Gains in payrolls on the other hand lifted consumer confidence and prospects for retailers during the holidays. The U.S. Automotive industry is also hiring, with sales at their best pace since 2007, according to data from Ward Automotive Group.
All in all, home loan rates still remain attractive compared to historical levels. If you have any questions about your personal situation or would like to inquire about housing and home loans, please don’t hesitate to contact me.
It’s LUMINOCITY —celebrate the vitality of life at the Crossroads of the World! Catch the high-spirits and pulse-racing thrills of the World’s Greatest Circus Artists in one ring under our Big Top, where no seat is more than 50 feet from ringside! Watch rowdy pups perform amazing tricks, double trapeze artists soaring high above, a bashful clown, an irrepressible flimflam man, and a juggler extraordinaire; teeter-board acrobats flying through the air, a cavalcade of magnificent steeds, and a couple of amazing wire-walkers suspended in mid-air. The show runs two hours, including one intermission.
Murphey Candler Little League is a non-profit, all-volunteer baseball program for children aged 5-12.
Registration for our spring 2014 season is now open – register now!
Tentative Dates for the Spring 2014 Season
|Registration Closes||Sunday, January 26, 2014|
|All Payments Due||Monday, January 27, 2014|
|Evaluations Begin||Sunday, February 2, 2014|
|Last Day of Evaluations||Saturday, February 8, 2014|
|Teams Selected & Team Practices Begin||Monday, February 10, 2014|
|Opening Day||Saturday, March 1, 2014|
|All leagues will finish their seasons before Memorial Day weekend|