How a Notice of Interest Can Save Your Deals in Real Estate Investing

The letters NOI stand for Notice of Interest or sometimes incorrectly called a Memorandum of Contract or MOC. It is usually a one page document that stipulates that the person submitting the document for recording at the County Clerk’s Office has an equitable interest in a property because of a signed purchase and sale contract.

The NOI is most commonly used when an investor signs a purchase and sale contract with a homeowner/seller and wants to show anyone trying to make another offer on the property that he has a legal interest in the property. This is the case where someone else, usually another investor, comes along and offers the homeowner a higher price.

The practice by investors of up-bidding properties after they are under contract is getting more common in distressed markets but even happens in normal markets. The investors who regularly make statements to homeowners like, “Get your highest offer from those other guys and call me back, I’ll give you more money than any of them – I just need to see it in writing”. The ugly part of that statement is the term “in writing” because that usually means a contract had to be signed by the homeowner.

While I can’t blame the homeowner from wanting more money, what I have seen happen most often is a black-hat investor who is trying to steal the deal, actually gets to the closing table and re-negotiates the price to below what he had originally offered the trusting seller. How do I know? I have been on the other side of his offers and had to fight to keep my sellers.

So occasionally we have to fight for our closings and I have covered this in other articles about how to do this. The ironic part is that it is a criminal offense to “induce” someone to sign a contract when another contract is in place. The Attorney General’s Office will take these cases if you show proof and the seller cooperates – which is usually the case when the homeowner is threatened with a law suit or foreclosure.

So when we sign a contract with a seller, we almost always record a NOI in the public record which is effectively a lien against the property. I want to repeat this because the subtleties of this “lien” are very far reaching. This NOI now has to be released as a lien on the property before the title can be transferred unless there is a foreclosure action to extinguish it, or the lien holder (the original investor/buyer) starts a foreclosure action to take the property. If this sounds harsh, it is just a solution to a problem where one party to a contract won’t hold up his end of the contractual terms – just like a lender does to a homeowner.

The NOI does not need to be signed by the homeowner/seller so anyone can put a NOI on anyone’s property. Just remember, there is usually a sign in the Clerk’s Office that says something to the effect that “If you enter a lien that is not valid, it is a felony”, so think twice about what you are doing before you do it – don’t do it in anger or it could cost you a lot in attorney’s fees.

Having said that, the courts and sometimes the recording clerk treat NOI’s as unruly in-laws. They tolerate them probably for the fees, but they don’t like them much because of historical issues with the seller not knowing these liens have been filed. Many standard real estate contracts specifically forbid filing a notice of interest to be recorded in the public record. This prohibition can be overcome by striking this clause pertaining to it and having both seller and buyer initial it, or adding an over-riding clause or addendum to your contract.

Once a NOI is filed in the public record, the next time the title to the property is transferred, the title agent will have to have a Release of Lien for the NOI signed to write a title policy on the property or note it as an “exception” in the policy. If the NOI is not extinguished by a Release of Lien, the title has been “clouded” and needs to be cleared and a transfer to a new buyer may not properly take place.
This is where you come in to release the lien and it usually happens when you least expect it – just before you were planning on closing yourself! Sometimes the homeowner will call when he gets a copy of the recorded NOI from the Clerk’s Office and he didn’t expect it – either way, the seller is trying to renege on the transaction. Sometimes the seller changed his mind for a valid reason, most often it is not.

You have a couple of choices when the NOI “hits the fan” so to say:

1.) Release the NOI using a Release of Lien document and get paid to release the lien

2.) Honker down and fight the seller to come to closing or get paid to release the lien.

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Best Place to Invest in Thailand

Well it is a fact, Koh Samui is one of the most sought-after destinations in Thailand. The sun-soaked island attracts visitors and expats from all over the world, due to its stunning beaches, wide range of activities, cultural possibilities and growing real estate.

Thailand’s Ministry of Finance noted that in the first quarter of 2017 the economy grew by 1.3%, which was stronger than market estimates of a 1.2 percent growth.

These advantages, as well as many others, have helped to turn Samui into one of the best places in Thailand to make a property investment. So if you’ve been considering where the best place in Thailand would be to make a wise and profitable luxury property investment, then we would highly recommend Koh Samui.

The increasing number of tourists to the island and the growing business ventures undertaken are but two of the factors helping to boost the real estate market in Koh Samui.

It’s able to offer the perfect blend between unspoiled nature, relaxed beachside restaurants and extravagant accommodation, such as new luxury koh samui villas, new 5 star resorts such as The Ritz Calton Koh Samui, which is quickly turning it into the number-one chic destination in Thailand.

Koh Samui Property Investment Opportunities

Did you know? Samui attracts some of the highest rental yields in Thailand, with longer high seasons and less rainfall than other parts of Thailand. Investors can receive rental yields at approximately 8-10%, with some featured villa properties producing up to 30% yields per year!

Many other alternative destinations offer only 4-6% yields, mainly due to their rapid price increases, making Samui a competitive choice.

The new environmental building laws, infrastructure and mature market, means investing in real estate here is more secure than before. When purchasing Real Estate in Thailand, it is important to be aware there are different ownership options, so be careful to choose the most appropriate option to suit your personal buying needs, depending on your age, nationality, marital or family status or inheritance issues?

In all these ways, Samui presents an immense appeal to the international holiday-makers and an increasing new influx of affluent investors from Hong Kong, China, Australia & United Kingdom seeking a secure holiday investment and a relaxing lifestyle destination to repatriate or retire in paradise island.

What Is Luxury Real Estate?

Luxury homes are in a league of their own because the criteria that determine a home luxury changes and is largely influenced by the clients buying high-end homes at any given time. Luxury isn’t strictly based on price. It’s a moving target influenced by a number of factors and primarily, trends. For an example, the market once considered luxury homes to be spacious mansions equipped with their own theaters and skating rinks. How times have changed! De-mansionization is the movement of luxury homes becoming smaller, and smarter, but not less luxurious. This is only one way in which the market has changed its demands, and even this trend is not consistent.

Luxury is also influenced by its location in a big way. In Los Angeles where the weather is favorable all year, luxury would be a home that blurs the lines between indoor and outdoor space with large glass walls that open the home up entirely to the elements. Further North, however, being shielded from the elements would be ideal but with elements of design that bring nature inside with the use of skylights, 3 season spaces, and indoor landscaping and plant life. Socioeconomics of a city also matter. In a city so congested that cars aren’t utilized much, a home with a multiple stall garage will not be considered a luxury but instead, a smaller space closest to the city center. Luxury homes are thoughtful for this reason, designed around the environment and city they’re placed in.

So what qualities might you expect buyers to be looking for in the luxury real estate market?

1. Limited Locations with Grand Views

Luxury homes being developed up the slopes of surrounding mountains and high points of a city are prime real estate for those looking for a view of the entire city and/or the gorgeous natural landscape. Some buyers prefer to be in the middle of the action for the views and convenience of living in the center of the city. City centers are popular locations for luxury condos and can even be the highest valued properties in the area.

2. Smart House/Energy Efficiency

Energy efficiency and consciousness are growing in popularity, not only to save the homebuyer money but to leave the next generation’s planet in a better condition. Technology has come such a long way in a short time that older homes cower next to new homes in this regard. Energy efficiency goes hand in hand with the latest smart house technology, which includes: smart thermostats, advanced security systems, technology controlled by phone, smart fridges and other appliances, and more.

3. Gorgeous Outdoor Living Spaces

In recent years, a home’s outdoor space is prioritized almost as equally as its indoor space. As the world gets faster each and every day, homebuyers want to take advantage of the spare time they do have and feel as though they are on vacation in their backyards. Entertaining family and friends at the home is also what luxury home buyers have in mind when looking for accommodations.

4. Highest Quality Building Materials

At every glance and with every turn in a luxury home you will see magnificent upgrades; granite, hardware, stainless steel and other attractive metals, sophisticated light fixtures, touch screens and buttons, crown molding and tray ceilings, custom closets, and more.

Ways to Invest for Capital Gains

Ways to Make Capital Gains

There are basically two types of investment income. Capital Gains and Investment Income.

Investment income is income you receive from an asset, examples of investment income is interest on savings, rent from property, and dividends from shares.

Capital gains is the increased value of an asset; examples of capital gains is the increased value of property, shares, and other assets.

Some investments provide capital gains but no income; examples of these are precious metals such as gold, bitcoin, antiques and other collectable items.

Here are investments which provide Capital Gains:

The Sharemarket

The sharemarket offers excellent opportunities for capital gain. For most people, investing directly into the markets is not an option because the transaction fees once taken out for buying and selling shares make it not worth their while, however, there are plenty of managed funds investors with limited means can participate in. Sharesies in New Zealand is one. Investors can drip feed money into the markets with Sharesies and there is the option of investing in various funds or individual companies. Other similar types of platforms in New Zealand are Investnow, Kernelwealth, and Hatch. These are not the only ones though.

Your retirement scheme invests in managed (Mutual Funds) and they are also a form of Capital Gains. In New Zealand joining Kiwisaver is a no brainer. Kiwisaver is New Zealand’s retirement scheme.

Property

The property market has been a popular Captain Gains tool for a lot of investors using not only their money but other people’s money in the form of a loan. Income is gained from rents which pays for the mortgage. All related costs are the most popular form of capital gains and the easiest one for the novice investor to get their toe wet in the markets and learn as you go because there are several mutual funds which are available and the start-up costs are minimal. In New Zealand Sharesies only costs $1 to get into which gives you the chance to invest in managed funds or individual companies. It is a great way for tax-deductible. This type of investment can turn to custard such as wayward tenants. If you are prepared to take the risk then this investment may suit.

Your own home is a good source of Capital Gains if you intend to sell at some point.

Another way to get in on the property ladder is to purchase shares in property investment companies in the sharemarket. This can be done by investing in individual companies or managed funds which invest in property.

Compound Interest

You must have heard of compound interest; that is when you invest in fixed term accounts for x% interest. Instead of receiving your interest payments into your bank account you let them be added on to your principal and you earn interest on your principal and previous interest payments. This is called compounded interest.

The increase to your capital is called “Capital Gains.”

Interest rates are very low at present (2020); in some instances lower than the inflation rate which makes this kind of investing less attractive. It is important therefore to do your due-diligence and not be enticed by some finance company offering higher interest rates than normal, because with higher interest rates comes higher risk. These finance companies offering higher interest rates lend to higher risk types of borrowers.

I am not saying that you should not invest your money in these companies but rather do your due diligence and at least diversify your portfolio rather than investing all of your life savings into the one company.

Gold

This one is purely speculative but can be a good hedge against a downturn in the markets. The one drawback with gold is finding a place to store it. Another way to invest in gold is buying gold stocks in the sharemarket. Purchasing gold coins from auction sites such as eBay and Trademe is another option. As with other investments it pays to do your homework and read all you can about gold and other precious metals.

Crypto Currency

Crypto currency such as Bitcoin and the like should be treated as speculative investments, therefore, only invest money in this if you can afford to lose it. What I am saying is use your discretionary income to purchase crypto currency. This type of investing can be a rollercoaster but one piece of advice which may be useful is to not just purchase all your crypto currency in one transaction but to do on a weekly, fortnightly, or monthly basis so that there is a chance that you have made a purchase when the currency is low. It is called averaging.