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Mortgage Availability Remains a Real Concern: NAR

Mortgage Availability Remains a Real Concern: NAR

Mortgage Availability Remains a Real Concern: NAR-Image via Wikipedia

Realtors® stand ready to protect and defend opportunities for homeownership, and many of them have gathered here at the 2011 REALTORS® Conference & Expo to prepare for the challenges ahead.

During the opening session today at this week’s meetings, National Association of Realtors® President Ron Phipps outlined obstacles and opportunities facing the real estate industry.

“For the first time in generations, the American dream of homeownership is being threatened,” said Phipps, broker-president of Phipps Realty in Warwick, R.I. “We need to keep housing first on the nation’s public policy agenda, because housing and home ownership issues affect all Americans.”

NAR is actively advocating public policies that promote responsible, sustainable homeownership. Those include ensuring affordable, accessible financing; supporting tax policies that encourage homeownership; and helping more people stay in their homes or avoid foreclosure through streamlined short sales.

As Realtors® convene in California this week, conforming loan limits is one top-of-mind issue. On October 1, Congress allowed those limits to revert from 125 percent of the local area median home price to 115 percent of the local median home price. As a result, home buyers and sellers in 669 counties across 42 states and the District of Columbia have been affected. The lower limits mean that fewer people will have access to mortgage loans, and the loans that are available will be more expensive.

“Mortgage availability remains a real concern since the private market has yet to return,” said Phipps. “While the housing market is still in recovery, we firmly believe that lower loan limits will only further restrict liquidity in mortgage markets.”

NAR has urged Congress to reinstate the higher loan limits temporarily, and more than 200 members of Congress currently support efforts to reinstate these limits.

Session attendees also heard about the results of last month’s New Solutions for America’s Housing Crisis forum. The forum was hosted by the Progressive Policy Institute and Economic Policies for the 21st Century and brought together policy leaders, industry representatives, members of Congress, thought leaders and the media.

From this forum, NAR has endorsed a five-point housing solutions plan to help reenergize housing markets and spur the economic recovery.

“Many of the solutions that came out of this forum evolved from ideas that Realtors® have been advocating for several years,” said Phipps. “Realtors® and the families we work with, day in and day out, know that homeownership matters, and now, with our combined and continued efforts, we’re going to make sure that policymakers understand that, too.”

This year’s Realtors® Conference & Expo is expected to draw approximately 18,000 Realtors® and guests. More than 400 exhibitors are expected to participate in the Expo, which showcases the latest real estate products and innovations across various fields, including technology, data communications and financial programs and services.

The National Association of Realtors®, “The Voice for Real Estate,” is America’s largest trade association, representing 1.1 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.

CoreLogic (NYSE: CLGX), a leading provider of information, analytics and business services, today released its September Home Price Index (HPI®) which shows that home prices in the U.S. decreased 1.1 percent on a month-over-month basis, the second consecutive monthly decline. According to the CoreLogic HPI, national home prices, including distressed sales, also declined by 4.1 percent in September 2011 compared to September 2010.  This follows a decline of 4.4 percent* in August 2011 compared to August 2010.  Excluding distressed sales, year-over-year prices declined by 1.1 percent in September 2011 compared to September 2010 and by 2.2* percent in August 2011 compared to August 2010.  Distressed sales include short sales and real estate owned (REO) transactions.

“Even with low interest rates, demand for houses remains muted. Home sales are down in September and the inventory of homes for sale remains elevated. Home prices are adjusting to correct for the supply-demand imbalance and we expect declines to continue through the winter. Distressed sales remain a significant share of homes that do sell and are driving home prices overall,” said Mark Fleming, chief economist for CoreLogic.

Highlights as of September 2011

  • Including distressed sales, the five states with the highest appreciation were:  West Virginia (+7.0 percent), Wyoming (+3.8 percent), South Dakota (+3.6 percent), Maine (+3.5 percent), and North Dakota (+3.1 percent).
  • Including distressed sales, the five states with the greatest depreciation were: Nevada (-12.4 percent), Illinois (-9.2 percent), Arizona (-9.0 percent), Minnesota (-8.3 percent), and Georgia (-7.2 percent).
  • Excluding distressed sales, the five states with the highest appreciation were: West Virginia (+13.2 percent), Maine (+5.8 percent), Wyoming (+4.8 percent), Montana (+4.4 percent), and Kansas (+3.9 percent).
  • Excluding distressed sales, the five states with the greatest depreciation were: Nevada (-9.6 percent), Arizona (-7.7 percent), Minnesota (-5.9 percent), Michigan (-4.8 percent), and Delaware (-3.7 percent).
  • Including distressed transactions, the peak-to-current change in the national HPI (from April 2006 to September 2011) was -31.2 percent.  Excluding distressed transactions, the peak-to-current change in the HPI for the same period was -21.9 percent.
  • Of the top 100 Core Based Statistical Areas (CBSAs) measured by population, 82 are showing year-over-year declines in September, the same as in August.

Full-month September 2011 national, state-level and top CBSA-level data can be found at http://www.corelogic.com/HPISeptember2011.

*August data was revised.  Revisions with public records data are standard, and to ensure accuracy, CoreLogic incorporates the newly released public data to provide updated results.

September HPI for the Country’s Largest Core Based Statistical Areas (CBSAs) by Population:

September 2011 12-Month HPI
CBSA Change by CBSA
Single Family Single Family  Excluding Distressed
Chicago-Joliet-Naperville, IL -9.7% -1.9%
Phoenix-Mesa-Glendale, AZ -8.0% -7.1%
Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta, GA -7.8% -3.9%
Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, CA -6.3% -4.0%
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale, CA -5.8% 0.2%
Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown, TX -4.3% 0.9%
Philadelphia, PA -0.3% -0.4%
Dallas-Plano-Irving, TX -0.1% 2.8%
Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV 1.0% 2.3%
New York-White Plains-Wayne, NY-NJ 2.2% 2.9%

Source: CoreLogic.

September HPI State and National Ranking:

September 2011 12-Month HPI
State Change by State
Single Family Single Family

Excluding Distressed

National -4.1% -1.1%
Nevada -12.4% -9.6%
Illinois -9.2% -2.5%
Arizona -9.0% -7.7%
Minnesota -8.3% -5.9%
Georgia -7.2% -3.6%
California -6.5% -1.6%
Ohio -6.0% 0.0%
Delaware -5.8% -3.7%
Washington -5.6% -1.9%
Idaho -5.1% 0.0%
Wisconsin -4.7% -3.3%
New Mexico -4.7% -2.5%
Alabama -4.6% 2.4%
Missouri -4.4% -1.6%
Oregon -4.3% -3.3%
Utah -4.3% -0.8%
Florida -3.8% -1.7%
Michigan -3.7% -4.8%
Connecticut -3.5% -3.6%
New Hampshire -3.2% -1.1%
Rhode Island -2.7% -0.7%
Massachusetts -2.2% -1.6%
Hawaii -2.0% 0.9%
Arkansas -1.8% -1.0%
Kentucky -1.7% 0.2%
Maryland -1.6% 0.1%
Colorado -1.5% -0.2%
Texas -1.4% 1.6%
New Jersey -1.2% -1.5%
Indiana -0.7% 0.7%
Louisiana -0.6% 2.2%
Vermont -0.6% 3.1%
North Carolina -0.5% 0.4%
Iowa -0.4% 0.3%
Montana -0.3% 4.4%
Virginia -0.2% 0.7%
Oklahoma -0.2% 0.4%
Pennsylvania -0.1% 0.6%
Mississippi 0.0% 0.6%
South Carolina 0.6% 2.1%
Tennessee 0.7% 0.1%
Alaska 0.8% 1.4%
Kansas 1.2% 3.9%
Nebraska 1.2% 0.8%
District of Columbia 1.4% 0.3%
New York 2.4% 2.5%
North Dakota 3.1% 3.4%
Maine 3.5% 5.8%
South Dakota 3.6% 1.2%
Wyoming 3.8% 4.8%
West Virginia 7.0% 13.2%

Source: CoreLogic.

Methodology

The CoreLogic HPI incorporates more than 30 years’ worth of repeat sales transactions, representing more than 65 million observations sourced from CoreLogic industry-leading property information and its securities and servicing databases. The CoreLogic HPI provides a multi-tier market evaluation based on price, time between sales, property type, loan type (conforming vs. nonconforming), and distressed sales. The CoreLogic HPI is a repeat-sales index that tracks increases and decreases in sales prices for the same homes over time, which provides a more accurate “constant-quality” view of pricing trends than basing analysis on all home sales. The CoreLogic HPI provides the most comprehensive set of monthly home price indices and median sales prices available covering 6,607 ZIP codes (58 percent of total U.S. population), 608 Core Based Statistical Areas (86 percent of total U.S. population) and 1,146 counties (84 percent of total U.S. population) located in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

About CoreLogic

CoreLogic (NYSE: CLGX) is a leading provider of consumer, financial and property information, analytics and services to business and government. The Company combines public, contributory and proprietary data to develop predictive decision analytics and provide business services that bring dynamic insight and transparency to the markets it serves. CoreLogic has built one of the largest and most comprehensive U.S. real estate, mortgage application, fraud, and loan performance databases and is a recognized leading provider of mortgage and automotive credit reporting, property tax, valuation, flood determination, and geospatial analytics and services. More than one million users rely on CoreLogic to assess risk, support underwriting, investment and marketing decisions, prevent fraud, and improve business performance in their daily operations. The Company, headquartered in Santa Ana, Calif., has more than 5,000 employees globally. For more information visit www.corelogic.com.

Source:  CoreLogic

The data provided is for use only by the primary recipient or the primary recipient’s publication or broadcast. This data may not be re-sold, republished or licensed to any other source, including publications and sources owned by the primary recipient’s parent company without prior written permission from CoreLogic.  Any CoreLogic data used for publication or broadcast, in whole or in part, must be sourced as coming from CoreLogic, a data and analytics company. For use with broadcast or web content, the citation must directly accompany first reference of the data.  If the data is illustrated with maps, charts, graphs or other visual elements, the CoreLogic logo must be included on screen or web site.  For questions, analysis or interpretation of the data, contact Lori Guyton at lguyton@cvic.com or Bill Campbell at bill@campbelllewis.com. Data provided may not be modified without the prior written permission of CoreLogic.  Do not use the data in any unlawful manner. This data is compiled from public records, contributory databases and proprietary analytics, and its accuracy is dependent upon these sources.

CORELOGIC, the stylized CoreLogic logo and HPI are registered trademarks owned by CoreLogic, Inc. and/or its subsidiaries. No trademark of CoreLogic shall be used without the express written consent of CoreLogic.

CONTACT: For real estate industry and trade media: Bill Campbell, +1-212-995-8057 (office), +1-917-328-6539 (mobile), bill@campbelllewis.com; For general news media: Lori Guyton, +1-901-277-6066, lguyton@crosbyvolmer.com

Web Site: http://www.corelogic.com

Americans continue to be pessimistic about home prices, the economy, and personal finances, according to results from Fannie Mae’s October National Housing Survey.  Findings show that consumers have experienced stagnant incomes over the past year and do not expect their personal financial situations to improve over the next twelve months.

“The October survey showed that consumers’ outlook for the housing market has remained downbeat, as they expect home prices to decline over the next year, extending the streak of negative outlooks to five consecutive months,” said Doug Duncan, vice president and chief economist of Fannie Mae. “More positive economic headlines over the past month failed to lift consumers’ moods.  While their views regarding their personal finances and the direction of the economy have not deteriorated further, it is discouraging to see the lack of appreciable improvement after overall sentiment took a hit during the debt ceiling debate in August.”

“The fact that sentiment appears to be in a holding pattern at depressed levels is a cause for concern for the development of the housing market and for the economy as a whole, as there will be no meaningful economic recovery without a housing recovery,” Duncan stated.

SURVEY HIGHLIGHTS

The Economy and Household Finances

  • An all-time high of 46 percent of consumers expect their personal financial situation to stay the same over the next 12 months.
  • An all-time high of 65 percent of consumers say their income is about the same as it was 12 months ago.
  • Seventy-seven percent say the economy is off on the wrong track (unchanged since September), while just 16 percent think the economy is on the right track, also unchanged since September and tying the all-time low number.
  • Thirty-six percent report significantly higher expenses compared to 12 months ago, (down 7 percentage points since last month).

Homeownership and Renting

  • For the fifth month in a row, Americans expect home prices to decline over the next 12 months. On average, respondents expect home prices to decline by 0.3 percent.
  • Just 19 percent of respondents expect home prices to increase over the next 12 months (up 1 percentage point since last month), while 23 percent say they expect home prices to decline (down by 2 percentage points since last month). Fifty-five percent say prices will stay the same, tying the all-time high number set last month.
  • Thirty-six percent of Americans say that mortgage rates will go up over the next 12 months (up 3 percentage points since last month).
  • While 69 percent of respondents say it is a good time to buy a home (up by 1 percentage point since last month), just 10 percent say it is a good time to sell (unchanged since last month).
  • On average, Americans expect home rental prices to increase by 3.3 percent over the next 12 months, unchanged since last month.
  • Thirty-one percent of Americans say they would rent their next home, while 66 percent say they would buy, (up by 3 percentage points since last month).

The most detailed consumer attitudinal survey of its kind, the Fannie Mae National Housing Survey polled 1,002 Americans via live telephone interview to assess their attitudes toward owning and renting a home, mortgage rates, homeownership distress, the economy, household finances, and overall consumer confidence. Homeowners and renters are asked more than 100 questions used to track attitudinal shifts (findings are compared to the same survey conducted monthly beginning June 2010). Fannie Mae conducts this survey and shares monthly and quarterly results so that we may help industry partners and market participants target our collective efforts to stabilize the housing market in the near-term, and provide support in the future.For detailed findings from the October 2011 survey, as well as technical notes on survey methodology and the questions asked of respondents associated with each monthly indicator, please visit the Fannie Mae Monthly National Housing Survey site.  Also available on the site are quarterly survey results, which provide a detailed assessment of combined data results from three monthly studies. The October 2011 Fannie Mae National Housing Survey was conducted between October 3, 2011 and October 26, 2011. Interviews were conducted by Penn Schoen Berland, in coordination with Fannie Mae.

Fannie Mae exists to expand affordable housing and bring global capital to local communities in order to serve the U.S. housing market. Fannie Mae has a federal charter and operates in America’s secondary mortgage market to enhance the liquidity of the mortgage market by providing funds to mortgage bankers and other lenders so that they may lend to home buyers. Our job is to help those who house America.

Follow us on Twitter: http://twitter.com/FannieMae .

CONTACT: Pete Bakel, +1-202-752-2034

Web Site: http://www.fanniemae.com

Google Enters the Mortgage Loan Business

Google Enters the Mortgage Loan Business

Google Enters the Mortgage Loan Business-Image by James Marvin Phelps via Flickr

LoanSifter, Inc. (www.LoanSifter.com), provider of the mortgage industry’s most complete and intuitive product and real-time pricing platform, announced today a strategic relationship with Google Inc. that gives consumers access to mortgage loan products and real-time pricing based on LoanSifter’s technology, including side-by-side comparisons of mortgage loan products from multiple lenders through Google’s Comparison Ads.

Google’s Comparison Ads help consumers shop for mortgages online by retrieving quotes based on the borrower’s specific loan criteria.  Through a strategic relationship between both companies, Google will leverage LoanSifter’s industry-leading technology – which automates pricing for lenders using the largest real-time database of investor pricing and eligibility content available in the mortgage industry — to provide Google users with information on mortgage products and pricing from the lenders using LoanSifter.  When Google users get these rates, LoanSifter’s lenders will receive qualified online leads.

Greg Ulrich, production manager at Fairway Independent Mortgage Corporation in Colleyville, Texas, believes that Google’s popularity provides a great opportunity as another channel for borrowers to reach the company, without substantial investment costs.  “This saves us money, allowing us to pass a greater savings to the consumer,” Ulrich said.

“We chose LoanSifter for our Google auto-quoting because it enables us to customize our pricing more accurately and effectively,” Ulrich added.  “Other vendors require manual supervision, which would have been problematic in keeping up with market shifts.”

Consumers who search for popular mortgage-related terms or phrases on Google are drawn to Google’s proprietary mortgage Comparison Ads, where they can anonymously provide details such as their desired loan amounts and credit scores.  Google will then retrieve multiple reliable offers from dependable lenders, placed side-by-side so the borrower can compare them.  After investigating different scenarios and choosing a lender, the borrower is then able to contact the lender by phone or e-mail.  Borrowers do not have to fill out lengthy forms or click through walls of advertisements in order to access up-to-the-minute loan products and rates, and the leads generated to lenders are anonymous, so that borrowers can protect their private information until they are ready to move forward in the mortgage process.

“Our relationship with Google will be of tremendous benefit to both lenders and consumers,” LoanSifter President Bruce Backer said.  “A growing number of borrowers are using the Internet to find the best possible mortgage deals, and Google’s immense popularity makes it a first stop for many.  Borrowers benefit from the side-by-side comparison in an open marketplace, while lenders benefit from LoanSifter’s ability to accurately price mortgage scenarios on their behalf.”

About LoanSifter

LoanSifter, Inc. provides the banking industry’s most comprehensive tools for mortgage bankers, loan officers and secondary departments to price, market and manage loans. The company’s flagship technology solution is an accurate, web-based product and pricing solution providing bankers with advanced tools to improve their service levels and increase profits. LoanSifter boasts the most comprehensive investor database in the industry with over 160 correspondent and wholesale investors. LoanSifter is also the leader in delivering point-of-sale (POS) and marketing tools to lenders and loan officers, including its eOriginations suite solution, offering highly customizable website utilities (automated consumer-facing pricing search), automated email campaigns, automated quoting for Zillow and LendingTree, scenario-specific rate monitoring alerts, and automated marketing materials. Founded in 2004, LoanSifter is headquartered in Appleton, Wisconsin.  For more information about LoanSifter, call 920.268.4770 or visit www.LoanSifter.com.

PRESS CONTACT:  
Warren Lutz
Strategic Vantage Marketing & Public Relations
(925) 270-3941
PR@StrategicVantage.com

Web Site: http://www.loansifter.com

Home Loan Originations Increase 22%

Home Loan Originations Increase 22%

Home Loan Originations Increase 22%-Image by Getty Images via @daylife

Strong refinance activity helped residential lenders lift third-quarter loan production, and the elevated originations have continued into the current quarter.

U.S. lenders originated around $354 billion in home loans during the third quarter based on an analysis by MortgageDaily.com. Business jumped roughly 22 percent from the second quarter’s revised $289 billion.

Behind the stellar performance was an increase in refinance volume as the 30-year mortgage fell from an average of 4.740 percent at the end of May to 4.351 percent at the end of August based on the U.S. Mortgage Market Index report from Mortech Inc. and MortgageDaily.com.

Driven by the Greek sovereign debt crisis and the Federal Reserve’s disclosure in September that it plans to extend the maturities of its Treasury investments and reinvest principal payments from agency debt and mortgage-backed securities investments into more agency MBS, mortgage rates have fallen even further. The improvement has kept refinance activity elevated and potentially could have fourth-quarter production even higher.

The Federal Housing Administration endorsed $49.7 billion in mortgages during the third quarter, leaving it with a market share of around 14 percent. FHA market share fell from a revised 18 percent in the second quarter.

Wells Fargo & Co. retained its No. 1 title during the third quarter. But Bank of America Corp. slipped to third place behind JPMorgan Chase & Co., and Ally Financial Inc. also moved down a notch.

Originations

Rank Q3 2011 Q2 2011 Q3 2010
1 Wells Wells Wells
2 Chase BofA BofA
3 BofA Chase Chase
4 Citi Ally Ally
5 Ally Citi Citi

 

Nearly half of all residential production was generated by the top four lenders.

Citigroup Inc., Quicken Loans Inc. and Flagstar Bancorp Inc. each increased volume by at least half compared to the second quarter. But BofA saw new business tumble 18 percent — the worst performance of the biggest lenders.

Compared to the third-quarter 2010, MetLife Home Loans turned in the strongest performance with an increase of 16 percent.

Mortgage Lender Ranking at:
http://www.MortgageDaily.com/MortgageLenderRanking.asp?spcode=pr

Mortgage origination news at:
http://www.mortgagedaily.com/Fundings.asp?spcode=pr

Quarterly mortgage production by the top lenders at:
http://www.mortgagedaily.com/FundingsConforming.asp?spcode=pr

About MortgageDaily.com
Founded in 1998, MortgageDaily.com is a dominant online source of mortgage news, statistics and analysis for the mortgage industry. Visit us online at www.MortgageDaily.com.

CONTACT:
Holly Himelright
NewsAlert@MortgageDaily.com
3811-700 Turtle Creek Blvd.
Dallas, TX 75219

Major Real Estate Investor Sets Sights on Texas

Major Real Estate Investor Sets Sights on Texas

Memphis Invest, GP has grown into the largest seller of private property, single family homes in West Tennessee and now has their sights on becoming a major player in the Dallas/Ft. Worth investment real estate market.

“We lived in the Dallas metro-plex for almost 30 years and still have major business and family ties to the area,” stated Kent Clothier when announcing the company’s decision to expand to a second market. Dallas was chosen due to the Clothier family’s familiarity with the area and the ability to quickly place the needed employees and partners into the market.

Memphis Invest has built a reputation as a national leader in providing passive real estate investors with the needed expertise and service to be comfortable investing in out-of-area markets. Having developed into the largest seller of single-family homes in West Tennessee, the Clothier family knew it was time to help their clients expand and diversify their portfolios.

“We have been looking at other markets for the last couple of years, but never really felt like the timing was right or the market was ready and now we know that Dallas is exactly where we need to expand,” said Brett Clothier, who along with Kent Clothier, Sr. will make the final call on all properties purchased. “We are sticking with a price point that provides ease of entry for both domestic and foreign buyers, but also provides a stable and consistent return to protect their investment.”

Memphis Invest plans to use their expertise and knowledge of the investment real estate market to help guide their existing leadership team as they develop the Dallas market and the new partnerships they have put in place. With one eye toward developing a second market and the other toward continuing to provide the outstanding service their clients have come to expect, the Clothiers are planning for a very good 2012 for them and their clients.

“We are not going into anything blind or quickly. We have been very deliberate in developing a plan for our clients. They have asked us many times to diversify into other markets and this is the first step in doing that for them,” stated Kent. “We have other plans we will announce soon and have plans to continue to grow beyond the 300 investment properties sold this year in Memphis. But we will always keep tight control over the quality of the investments and the customer service our clients receive. I think the real estate investors who trust us with their portfolios would expect nothing less.”

Memphis Invest, GP is the largest privately owned home seller in Memphis, Tennessee and provides real estate investors with a passive alternative to investing. For more information please visit the MemphisInvest.com website at http://www.memphisinvest.com or you can reach them at 1-877-773-9998.

CONTACT: Chris Clothier, +1-901-751-7191, chris@memphisinvest.com

Web Site: http://www.memphisinvest.com

Home Buyers Still in the Dark About Buying Process

Home Buyers Still in the Dark About Buying Process-Image by Getty Images via @daylife

Despite widespread volatility within the housing market and five consecutive years of home value declines, more than two in five (42 percent) of polled prospective home buyers believe home values typically appreciate by 7 percent a year, according to a recent survey by leading real estate information marketplace Zillow (NASDAQ: Z).

This is an unrealistic expectation as, historically, home values in a normal market tend to appreciate by 2-5 percent a year. (1)

Zillow, with Ipsos®, surveyed prospective home buyers (2), asking basic questions about the home buying process.

Despite the unrealistic expectations about home value appreciation, prospective home buyer respondents seem fairly knowledgeable about the home buying process, answering questions correctly more than half the time (65 percent). However, several important parts of the process confused them.  Two in five (41 percent) buyers think they are required to buy private mortgage insurance (PMI) regardless of the amount of their down payment.  In fact, lenders typically require PMI only when buyers are putting down less than 20 percent of the home’s purchase price.

Additionally, more than half of prospective home buyers who were polled confuse appraisals and inspections.  Fifty-six percent said the purpose of an appraisal was to determine if the home is in good condition, when in fact that is the purpose of an inspection.

“It’s troubling that we’re still in the midst of one of the worst housing recessions in history, and yet prospective buyers continue to have such high expectations for home value appreciation,” said Dr. Stan Humphries, chief economist at Zillow. “It’s great that buyers seem to have a fairly solid grasp of the home-buying process, but since this is one of the biggest financial decisions of most people’s lives, it’s even more important that they understand how that investment will appreciate after they sign the papers. Over-estimation of the appreciation potential will lead many to buy real estate when the time in which they plan to live in the house may make renting a better strategy.”

Additional Survey Findings

  • More than one-third (37 percent) of prospective home buyer respondents believe buying homeowner’s insurance is optional.  In reality, lenders require that borrowers purchase homeowner’s insurance. This insurance protects the lender. If catastrophe strikes, the mortgage will be repaid from the insurance proceeds.
  • Nearly half of polled prospective home buyers in the study do not understand when they will actually own the home they intend to buy. Forty-seven percent said a prospective buyer owns a home after the purchase contract is signed.  The purchase and sales agreement merely kicks off the closing phase, which can be a lengthy process.
  • The majority (87 percent) of polled prospective home buyers know that closing costs are negotiable and can vary by bank and lender. Lender fees, like loan-origination fees, administrative costs and other clerical fees, are typically the most negotiable in the home buying process.

 

Interactive Online Quiz and Resources Available

An online version of the Zillow survey, the “Buyer IQ Quiz,” is available at http://www.zillow.com/mortgage-rates/buyer-iq-quiz/ and contains the correct answers. Following the quiz, participants are given a score and resources to learn more about the home-buying process.

About Zillow, Inc.

Zillow (NASDAQ: Z) is the leading real estate information marketplace, providing vital information about homes, real estate listings and mortgages through its website and mobile applications, enabling homeowners, buyers, sellers and renters to connect with real estate and mortgage professionals best suited to meet their needs. More than 24 million unique users visited Zillow’s websites and mobile applications in September 2011. Zillow, Inc. operates Zillow.com®, Zillow Mortgage Marketplace, Zillow Mobile and Postlets®. The company is headquartered in Seattle.

Zillow, Zillow.com and Postlets are registered trademarks of Zillow, Inc.

Ipsos is a registered trademark of Ipsos S.A.

(1)Over the period from 1890 to 2006, the average annual growth in home values was 3.7%.  Source: Irrational Exuberance by Robert Shiller (Princeton University Press 2000, Broadway Books 2001, 2nd edition, 2005)

(2) These are some of the findings of an Ipsos poll conducted August 31-September 1, 2011.  For the survey, a national sample of 1,012 adults aged 18 and over residing in the U.S. was interviewed via Ipsos’ U.S. online omnibus.  Among them, 177 reported that they plan to buy a home within the next 3 years, which qualifies them as “prospective home buyers.”  A survey with an unweighted probability sample of 1,012 and a 100% response rate would have an estimated margin of error of +/-3.1 percentage points 19 times out of 20, of what the results would have been had the entire population of adults in the U.S. been polled.  The margin of error for a subgrouping of the survey population of 177 individuals would be +/-7.4.  These data were weighted to ensure the sample’s regional and age/gender composition reflects that of the actual U.S. population according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau and to provide results intended to approximate the sample universe.  All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error.

CONTACT: Jill Simmons, Zillow.com, +1-206-757-2794, press@zillow.com

Web Site: http://www.Zillow.com

Secondary Mortgage Market Bill Supported by NAR

Secondary Mortgage Market Bill Supported by NAR

Secondary Mortgage Market Bill Supported by NAR-Image by Getty Images via @daylife

Owning a home has had long-standing government support in the U.S. because homeownership benefits individuals and families, strengthens communities, and is integral to the nation’s economy, the National Association of Realtors® said in testimony today.

NAR President-Elect Moe Veissi outlined the association’s recommendations for housing finance reform before the House Financial Services Subcommittee on International Monetary Policy and Trade.

“We must be better stewards of the U.S. housing finance system if it is to thrive and effectively serve American home buyers and mortgage investors into the future,” said Veissi, broker-owner of Veissi & Associates Inc., in Miami. “Repairs to our current housing finance structure must be made, but we must be careful that changes to the system do not come at the expense of homeownership opportunities for middle- and lower income Americans.”

Toward that end, NAR supports H.R. 2413, the “Secondary Market Facility for Residential Mortgage Act of 2011,” introduced by Reps. Gary Miller, R-Calif., and Carolyn McCarthy, D-N.Y.

“H.R. 2413 offers a comprehensive strategy for reforming the secondary mortgage market and gives the federal government a continued role to ensure a consistent flow of mortgage credit in all markets and all economic conditions,” said Veissi. “Moreover, it supports the use of long-term fixed-rate mortgage products.”

Veissi testified that full privatization of the secondary mortgage market would all but eliminate products like the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage and that mortgage interest rates would be unnecessarily higher and unaffordable for many Americans, shutting otherwise qualified buyers out of the market.

“The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is the bedrock of the U.S housing finance system, and without government support, there’s no evidence that this type of mortgage would continue to exist,” said Veissi. “Private firms’ business strategies would focus on optimizing their profits, creating mortgage products that are more aligned with the goals of their business than in the best interests of the nation’s housing policy or consumers.”

Veissi said that while the size of the government’s participation in housing finance should decrease if private capital is to return to the market and function properly, the federal government must have a continued role in the secondary mortgage market to avoid losing long-term, fixed-rate mortgage products and keep borrowing costs affordable for consumers.

“Continuing government participation in the secondary mortgage market is critical to ensuring that qualified home buyers can obtain safe and sound mortgage financing products even during market downturns, when private entities have historically pulled back,” Veissi said.

Recent reductions to the conforming loan limits by the federal government are already having an impact on mortgage liquidity according to early data from an NAR survey, which found that consumers who are now above the new lower conventional conforming loan limit are experiencing significantly higher interest rates and the need for substantially larger down payments.

Veissi said that the housing and economic recoveries have been slow and that activities that force economic activity to be constricted further should be resisted.

“For hundreds of years, this country has understood the value of homeownership because it helps families build wealth, supports community stability and contributes to our economy. We need to make sure that future housing policies continue to reinforce our long-standing value of homeownership, for the future of our families and our country,” said Veissi.

The National Association of Realtors®, “The Voice for Real Estate,” is America’s largest trade association, representing 1.1 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries.

Foreclosure Crisis Black Magic Report Released

Foreclosure Crisis Black Magic Report Released

Foreclosure Crisis Black Magic Report Released-Image via Wikipedia

Occupy Wall Street adds another exhibit to the Wall Street Hall of Shame and call it Deconstructing the Black Magic of Securitized Trusts by Oppenheim Law’s foreclosure defense team Roy Oppenheim and Jacquelyn Trask-Rahn.

The banks must be held accountable for their conduct on all levels

The Black Magic article will be published in Stetson Law Review’s Spring 2012 issue and is posted on OppenheimLaw.com. In the article the attorneys analyze the continued failure of the banks to follow the rules, and how their fraudulent documentation involving millions of foreclosures opened the door on an even larger scandal regarding the improper securitization of “mortgage-backed” securities, that were never mortgage-backed. The article chastises a court system that has become a private collection agency for the banks, and which has seen the practice of “lore” rather than law as rules of evidence and civil procedure are blatantly disregarded in order to promote expediency rather than protecting the due process and property rights of homeowners.

The article calls for members of the legal community and implores them to protect the integrity of the judicial system through the foreclosure epidemic: “The judicial system was never meant to be evaluated by how swift justice could be dispensed or by how quickly a particular judge could dispose of cases on his or her docket. As officers of the court, both judges and attorneys are responsible for protecting the integrity of the system, ensuring that the system is never compromised solely for financial expediency.”

Going viral with corporate greed and systematic fraud

Legal documents don’t typically go viral, but this article caught the attention of highly influential consumer advocates and bloggers such as April Charney and Neil Garfield, who both commented on the article.

“Exceptionally well written and I am looking forward to these authors going forward to tackle the negotiable/non-negotiable debate raging right now …,” consumer advocate and attorney April Charney said in an email to legal peers.

Charney is an attorney with Jacksonville Area Legal Aid and has been called the “Angel of Foreclosure Defense.” She has been at the forefront of the legal fight against home foreclosures in America.

“Explicitly articulates the basic problem with foreclosures today as well as providing insight into the changing mortgage approval process,” noted Garfield on his highly trafficked website Livinglies. “The authors clearly explain how the system was rigged to provide the appearance of passive entities to avoid tax consequences and in so doing ignored basic requirements of substantive law.” Garfield stated that the article “is balanced and … should be used as an authoritative treatise in memos to the Court.”

Are banks too large to be governed and too big to be caught?

In fact, the article has gone viral due in large part to the notion by a growing segment of the population that the banks have become too large for government to control. “We pinpoint how securitized trusts are emblematic of the problems inherent in the whole system, ranging from robo-signers to fraud-closure,” said award-winning blogger and real estate attorney Oppenheim.

Homeowners finally have a fighting chance in court

The other reason that the article has gone viral is that the court system is finally paying attention to the fact that there are real defenses available to homeowners. Homeowners are now in a better position to bring a defense and fight the banks rather than just walking away. Further, when they fight, they become part of the overall protest movement.

When Oppenheim was asked what should be done with the conclusions drawn from the article, he said, “It’s simple! Like all people the banks must be held accountable for their conduct on all levels. Management must go and the owners and bondholders must be responsible for allowing management to run amuck. Finally, the banks have proven to be too big and powerful to be adequately regulated and governed, taking on the illusion of being a fourth branch of our government. To restore true capitalism and democracy, they must be broken up. It’s just plain common sense!

For a copy of the executive summary or full article submitted to Stetson Law Review, the online versions of the full article are available on OppenheimLaw.com or the Executive Summary on the South Florida Law Blog at http://southfloridalawblog.com/2011/10/25/executive-summary-deconstructing-the-black-magic-of-securitized-trusts/

Oppenheim Law
2500 Weston Rd Ste 404
Weston FL 33331
954-384-6114

Contact:

Lisa Buyer
954-354-1411 x 14

Web Site: http://www.oppenheimlaw.com

Foreclosure Rate Climbs Again

Lender Processing Services, Inc. (NYSE: LPS), a leading provider of integrated technology, data and analytics to the mortgage and real estate industries, reports the following “first look” at September 2011 month-end mortgage performance statistics derived from its loan-level database of nearly 40 million mortgage loans.

Total U.S. loan delinquency rate (loans 30 or more days past due, but not in foreclosure): 8.09%
        Month-over-month change in delinquency rate: -0.5%
        Year-over-year change in delinquency rate: -12.7%
Total U.S. foreclosure pre-sale inventory rate: 4.18%
         Month-over-month change in foreclosure presale inventory rate: 1.7%
         Year-over-year change in foreclosure presale inventory rate: 8.9%
Number of properties that are 30 or more days past due, but not in foreclosure: (A) 4,202,000
Number of properties that are 90 or more days delinquent, but not in foreclosure: 1,844,000
Number of properties in foreclosure pre-sale inventory: (B) 2,172,000
Number of properties that are 30 or more days delinquent or in foreclosure:  (A+B) 6,373,000
States with highest percentage of non-current* loans: FL, MS, NV, NJ, IL
States with the lowest percentage of non-current* loans: MT, AK, WY, SD, ND

 

*Non-current totals combine foreclosures and delinquencies as a percent of active loans in that state.

Notes:

(1)  Totals are extrapolated based on LPS Applied Analytics’ loan-level database of mortgage assets

(2)  All whole numbers are rounded to the nearest thousand

The company will provide a more in-depth review of this data in its monthly Mortgage Monitor report, which includes an analysis of data supplemented by in-depth charts and graphs that reflect trend and point-in-time observations. The Mortgage Monitor report will be available on LPS’ Web site, http://www.lpsvcs.com/NEWSROOM/INDUSTRYDATA/Pages/default.aspx, on October 27, 2011.

For more information about gaining access to LPS’ loan-level database, please send an e-mail to LPSAAsales@lpsvcs.com.

About Lender Processing Services

Lender Processing Services, Inc. (LPS) is a leading provider of integrated technology, services and mortgage performance data and analytics to the mortgage and real estate industries. LPS offers solutions that span the mortgage continuum, including lead generation, origination, servicing, workflow automation (Desktop®), portfolio retention and default, augmented by the company’s award-winning customer support and professional services. Approximately 50 percent of all U.S. mortgages by dollar volume are serviced using LPS’ Mortgage Servicing Package (MSP). LPS also offers proprietary mortgage and real estate data and analytics for the mortgage and capital markets industries. For more information about LPS, visit www.lpsvcs.com.

CONTACT: Media, Michelle Kersch, +1-904-854-5043, Michelle.kersch@lpsvcs.com, or Investor, LPS Investor Relations, +1-904-854-5086, investor@lpsvcs.com

Web Site: http://www.lpsvcs.com

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