There are open houses for this awesome new subdivision almost every weekend, put on by Keller Williams Realty, specifically by Lyndsay Jones with Jones Realty.Alcova Richmond is proud to be the preferred lender for these homes.  

Boxwood Manor is located in the heart of Midlothian. The maturity of the landscape within the subdivision is combined with easy access to all amenities to ensure the success of the development. Access to the development is both simple and convenient, being located less than a minute drive from Midlothian Turnpike while also being a 5 minute drive from the peaceful serenity of Providence Golf Course. Chippenham Pkwy and Powhite Pkwy are only minutes away directly connecting you with I95. 
Downtown Richmond is an easy commute as is access to the Richmond International Airport via Chippenham Pkwy and Rt 895. I64 is also easily accessible from Powhite and RT 195.
This local builder has designed and built these homes to suit every lifestyle and with the highest level of construction. There are 12 Lots on a cul-de-sac, ranging from 1/4 to 3/4 acre. Boxwood is located in James River High School district.

Contact Lyndsay and check out the website for more details! 

http://www.boxwoodmanorva.com

What is the Velocity of Money and How Does it Impact Home Loan Rates?

By Eric Craig, Branch Partner

Alcova Mortgage- Richmond

RICHMOND, VA – If you’ve been watching the economic news, you’ve probably noticed that market experts and traders have been keeping a close eye on the Commerce Department’s Personal Spending and Personal Income reports. Obviously, those reports provide insight into the health of our economy, but did you know they also influence home loan rates? That’s right, personal spending can actually influence the interest rates that are available when you purchase or refinance a home.

Here’s why. It has to do with something called the velocity of money. Even though the government keeps pumping money into the system, nothing happens until that money is spent or lent – and passes from one hand to another or one business to another. The speed at which this money passes between parties is called the velocity of money.

With the job market still very sluggish, consumers aren’t spending much money these days, and businesses are still reluctant to spend money to make investments in their business. With the present velocity at low levels, inflation remains subdued and that’s good for home loan rates. That’s because rates are tied to Mortgage Bonds and inflation is the archenemy of Bonds, so low inflation is good for Bonds and rates. However, once velocity increases, the excess money in the system will cause inflation – which is bad for rates, since even the slightest scent of inflation can cause home loan rates to worsen.

While we certainly want to see better economic recovery news in the near future, we have to remember that there’s an inverse relationship between good economic news and Bonds and home loan rates. Weak economic news normally causes money to flow out of Stocks and into Bonds, which helps Bonds and home loan rates improve. Strong economic news, on the other hand, normally has the opposite result.

Currently, home loan rates are at a low level, but that situation won’t last forever. That means now is an ideal time to purchase a home or refinance before the velocity of money – and rates – change. If you or anyone you know would like to learn more about the current economic situation and how to take advantage of historically low home loan rates, then please contact me.

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reuters:

HEATWAVE: the northeastern United States sweltered in a summer heat wave, complete with stagnant, sticky air and no winds for relief. Even in a summer already filled with stretches of very hot weather, this week will be stubbornly brutal, with no relief in sight until the weekend brings thunderstorms to the region.
Gallery: heat wave in the USA
The thunderstorms predicted for Friday and Saturday are likely to be severe, forecasters warned. The National Weather Service issued heat advisories for dozens of northeastern cities and surrounding areas in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, upstate New York and Long Island. A heat advisory is issued if the heat index - a measure of how hot it feels when humidity is factored in with air temperature - reaches 100 to 104 degrees Fahrenheit (38 to 40 degrees Centigrade).

reuters:

HEATWAVE: the northeastern United States sweltered in a summer heat wave, complete with stagnant, sticky air and no winds for relief. Even in a summer already filled with stretches of very hot weather, this week will be stubbornly brutal, with no relief in sight until the weekend brings thunderstorms to the region.

Gallery: heat wave in the USA

The thunderstorms predicted for Friday and Saturday are likely to be severe, forecasters warned. The National Weather Service issued heat advisories for dozens of northeastern cities and surrounding areas in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, upstate New York and Long Island. A heat advisory is issued if the heat index - a measure of how hot it feels when humidity is factored in with air temperature - reaches 100 to 104 degrees Fahrenheit (38 to 40 degrees Centigrade).

Great coffee infographic! Do you all rely on this stuff as much as we do??

ashelam:

hehe funny!

laughingsquid:

Types of Coffee, An Illustrated Guide by Pleated-Jeans

Is Your Estate Plan in Order? These Updates Should Help

law-news:

image

Why do you need an estate plan? Many reasons, for sure, but one sticks out: estate planning gives you an opportunity to say how you want your estate – investments, insurance policies, personal property, retirement plans, and more – to be handled once you’re gone. 

Even if you already have a plan, however, it likely needs an update: laws, families, even your wishes change over time. 

So whether you’re just getting started or revising your plan for the umpteenth time, these recent updates will help:

Estate Planning Considerations: Documentation and Peace of Mind (Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz, PC):

“In addition to the ‘bare minimum’ estate planning documents … and other instruments (such as a Revocable Trust) your attorney may draft for you, be aware that your estate plan also includes documents your attorney did not necessarily draft, such as the beneficiary designations on life insurance policies and retirement accounts.” Read on»

Unfortunate Reminder of the Need for Powers of Attorney (Davis Brown Law Firm): 

“When most people think of estate planning, they think of drafting a will or trust to say what happens to property after death. Arguably more important is what happens when you are alive but unable to make decisions following an unforeseen and unfortunate event.” Read on»

To Will or Not to Will (Law Offices of Adrian H. Altshuler & Associates):

“You have a will in place. You think that you have fully protected your family when you die. You may be surprised to discover exactly how many things wills can’t do. While wills are useful and inexpensive legal documents for many people seeking a quick and easy way to do their estate planning, they are often ineffective in many respects.” Read on»

Are Your Children Prepared to Handle Your Wealth? in The Estate Planner (Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick, LLP):

“Stories of ‘trust fund babies’ who’ve squandered the wealth their parents carefully set aside for them to ensure their financial well being are all too common. If you’ve built up a large estate and are eager to share your wealth with your children, you may be concerned about their ability to handle it. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to help ensure they won’t blow through their inheritance at a young age.” Read on»

Separated But Not Divorced: Don’t Wait To Update Your Estate Plan (Bean, Kinney & Korman, PC):

“Many people have the misconception that they cannot update their estate plan or even prepare a new Will if they are separated but not yet divorced from their spouse.  This is not true.  An estate plan can be updated at any time so long as the person has mental capacity and is over the age of 18. The fact that someone is separated from their spouse does not bar them from changing their estate plan, but there are points that must be taken into consideration.” Read on»

Make a New Year’s Resolution to Review Your Estate Plan in 2013 (Partridge Snow & Hahn LLP):

“Your estate plan takes into account the size and nature of your assets at the time you executed it. Have your assets changed significantly, such as conversion of real estate or a business interest, or through inheritance of additional assets? If so, you may wish to review your estate plan to make sure these changes have been taken into consideration.” Read on»

Estate Planning After The American Taxpayer Relief Act Of 2012 (Leonard, Street and Deinard)

“The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (ATRA) was signed into law on January 2, 2013, ending twelve years of uncertainty concerning the federal estate, gift and generation-skipping tax rates and exemptions. With the passage of ATRA, the estate, gift and generation-skipping tax exemption amounts remain fixed at $5 million per person (indexed annually for inflation to a 2013 amount of $5.25 million per person).” Read on»

Estate Planning Implications of American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (Wendel, Rosen, Black & Dean LLP) 

“The Act made ‘portability’ of a deceased spouse’s unused estate tax exemption amount permanent.  Thus, if a proper portability election is made at the death of the deceased spouse, the surviving spouse may use the deceased spouse’s unused estate tax exemption for gift tax purposes and the surviving spouse’s personal representative may use it for estate tax purposes.” Read on»

2013 Estate Planning Update (McCarter & English, LLP):

“As 2012 drew to a close, your estate planning attorney’s attention was diverted from the ball drop in Times Square to whether Congress would drop the ball with respect to the fiscal cliff.  Congress, however, passed the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012, which became law on January 2, 2013… So was it worth the scramble to make gifts in 2012 now that the higher exemptions have been made permanent? Absolutely. It always makes sense to make gifts during one’s lifetime (assuming one can afford to make the gifts).” Read on»

Is There Life After Death for Your Digital Assets? (Field Law):

“Do you have digital (electronic) assets? Do you have electronic property that has value? ‘Value’ is a subjective question. It may mean monetary value (such as a vast digital music library, or a four-digit PayPal seller account)… Electronic accounts that contain information of a personal or sensitive nature may also be ‘valuable’ to the extent that it is vital to you to either prohibit or restrict access to such information on your death.” Read on»

Non-Tax Reasons For Creating An Estate Plan (Varnum LLP)

“The non-tax reasons for creating an estate plan … are often more important than the tax reasons for creating an estate plan. It is time to get ‘back to the basics’ with estate planning!” Read on»

Transferring home ownership to your children (Adler Pollock & Sheehan P.C.):

“If you’re considering giving your home to your children, talk to your estate planning advisor first to make sure you do it the best way for your situation. Many people mistakenly believe they can transfer their home to their children while retaining the right to continue living in it for the rest of their life, and remove a substantial portion of the home’s value from their taxable estate. It’s a simple, inexpensive way — they reason — to avoid probate and reduce estate taxes.” Read on»

U.S. Estate Planning For Expatriates (Charles ‘Chuck’ Rubin)

“Code §2801 imposes U.S. transfer taxes on transfers by former U.S. persons who have expatriated if the transfer is to a U.S. person. This tax is imposed on the U.S. recipient. A recent article … points out several planning considerations for such expatriates if they have U.S. persons who will be recipients of gifts or testamentary transfers.” Read on»

Estate Planning Pitfall: You’ve named a minor as beneficiary of your life insurance policy or retirement plan (Adler Pollock & Sheehan P.C.):

A common estate planning mistake is to designate a minor as beneficiary — or contingent beneficiary — of a life insurance policy or retirement plan. Insurance companies and financial institutions won’t pay large sums of money directly to a minor. Instead, they’ll require costly court proceedings to appoint a guardian to manage the child’s inheritance. And there’s no guarantee the guardian will be the person you’d choose.” Read on»

Should you donate life insurance to charity? (Adler Pollock & Sheehan P.C.)

“For the philanthropic minded, donating a life insurance policy to a favorite charity should rank high on their list of possible giving strategies. Why? Because doing so is an excellent opportunity to make a larger donation than may otherwise be affordable. However, donating life insurance isn’t right for everyone.” Read on»

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Find additional Estate Planning updates at JD Supra Law News»

Today in History- RIP Baroness Margaret Thatcher

todaysdocument:

The “Iron Lady:” Baroness Margaret Thatcher, Former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, October 13, 1925 - April 8, 2013

  1. Photograph of President Reagan walking with Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher at Camp David, 11/06/1986. ARC Identifier 198578
  2. Jimmy Carter with Margaret Thatcher, 09/13/1977. ARC Identifier 176181
  3. President Bush Presents the Presidential Medal of Freedom to Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, 03/07/1991. ARC Identifier 672821

Are Your Digital Ass(ets) Covered? Estate Planning in the 21st Century

Great article… what are your digital assets?

law-news:

image

“Most people understand the need to protect, and assign, their assets after their death. They know who will care for their children or pets, who will receive the family heirloom brooch, and who will inherit their financial assets. In this day and age, however, there is a new category of assets to consider: digital assets.” (Janet Brewer

It’s 2013 – do you know what your digital assets are? And more importantly: do you know what will happen to your Facebook page, online bank account, cloud storage of childhood photos, etc. when you’re gone? 

How to plan for the transfer of your digital property? The first step is figuring out what you’ve got, writes Lisa Statt Foy of Field Law:

“Do you have electronic property that has value? ‘Value’ is a subjective question. It may mean monetary value. However, it can also mean sentimental value. Electronic accounts that contain information of a personal or sensitive nature may also be ‘valuable’ to the extent that it is vital to you to either prohibit or restrict access to such information on your death.” 

Then follow these three rules of thumb to incorporate digital assets into your estate plan:

1. Make your wishes known:

“[A] plan might include a comprehensive inventory of such assets, and the relevant login credentials. It would also document your wishes with respect to specific assets, and explore the logistics by which your Executor can secure such assets and fulfill your wishes. For example, you may wish to instruct your Executor to delete your email accounts without reading or publishing the contents, or direct your Executor to access your Facebook account and obtain a download of all of the account contents for the interest and records of your family (currently Facebook accounts cannot be continued on death of the holder).” (Field Law

2. Don’t force your heirs to rely on an incomplete paper trail:

“… consider the number of accounts you may have for which you have no paper records. As we become more environmentally friendly and try to eliminate paper, we are often eliminating many important records which were once accessible. Would your personal representative know of online banking accounts for which you don’t have a debit card or checks (ie, no paper evidence)?” (Davis Brown

3. Consider outsourcing management of your passwords:

“In recent years, several companies have established Web-based services that store user names, passwords and other digital assets and make them available to your loved ones according to your instructions. For example, a service might release your information after two or more trusted ‘verifiers’ confirm that you’ve died or become incapacitated.” (Shumaker, Loop & Kendrick

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The updates:

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Related reading: 

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Find additional updates on Digital Assets at JD Supra Law News»

ashelam:

rvanews:

Virginia has $1.2 billion of people’s unclaimed money. Find out how you can check to see if any of it belongs to you.

Hells Yeah

Great article… Claim your money!

ashelam:

rvanews:

Virginia has $1.2 billion of people’s unclaimed money. Find out how you can check to see if any of it belongs to you.

Hells Yeah

Great article… Claim your money!

5 Income Tax Filing Dos and Don’ts

Great Tax Tips!!!

law-news:

image

Working on your 2012 taxes? Here are five “dos and don’ts” to help get the job done right:

1. Don’t blame the computer:

“The so-called ‘TurboTax defense’ is raised by taxpayers to avoid penalties – they claim reasonable cause for their tax return errors because they used TurboTax or similar return preparation software to prepare the erroneous tax return. That is what Brenda Bartlett claimed when she was penalized for not reporting all her income on her tax return…The Tax Court rejected her defense, since the problem was that Brenda entered the information incorrectly into the program – not that the program made a mistake.” (Charles “Chuck” Rubin

2. Do get proof of donations: 

“Contributions by cash or check of less than $250 must be substantiated by a bank record, such as a cancelled check or a written communication from the donee organization, noting the organization’s name and address, and the date and amount of the contribution. A contribution log is insufficient.” (Duane Morris

3. Don’t overstate your home-office deduction:

“For years, taxpayers have viewed the home office deduction—which allows you to deduct a portion of your rent, mortgage payment, real estate taxes and utilities—as an easy way to reduce their tax bill. But the IRS takes a firm position on what does and does not qualify as a home office. Before you deduct your home office, read the rules carefully to ensure that yours qualifies.” (Lawyers.com

4. Do consider a gift tax return to record transfers of wealth:

“Some transfers require a return even if you don’t owe tax. And, in some cases, it’s desirable to file a return even if it’s not required. Generally, you’ll need to file a gift tax return for 2012 if, during the tax year, you … [m]ade gifts that exceeded the $13,000-per-recipient gift tax annual exclusion (other than gifts to your spouse that qualify for the marital deduction)…” (Adler Pollock & Sheehan

5. Don’t hide offshore assets:

“[T]axpayers [who] do not come forward now, will face the IRS with the presumption that there conduct in avoiding disclosure was ‘willful’ and they will likely face the worst case civil penalty assessments if not criminal prosecution. The maximum civil assessment under the FBAR rules (as part of the Bank Secrecy Act) is a civil penalty of 50% of the highest account balance per year or $100,000 whichever is greater. Under the IRC the willful (civil fraud) penalty for not reporting taxable income is 75% of the unreported income per year, plus interest.” (Sanford Millar

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The updates:

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Find additional Tax Law updates at JD Supra»

Today in History
rvanews:

On March 13th, 1863 a deadly explosion rocked Brown’s Island.

Today in History

rvanews:

On March 13th, 1863 a deadly explosion rocked Brown’s Island.

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