Mortgage Refinance Doesn’t Belong in the Settlement Talks
By Felix Salmon, Reuters, Oct. 18, 2011
The WSJ has the latest mortgage-settlement trial balloon, and it’s pretty weak tea: under the terms of the deal, if (a) you’re underwater on your mortgage, and (b) you’re current on your mortgage payments, and (c) your mortgage is owned by the bank outright, rather than having been securitized, then you would be given the opportunity to refinance your mortgage at prevailing market rates.
Fannie and Freddie, Still the Socialites
By Gretchen Morgenson, New York Times, Oct. 15, 2011
The mortgage business is moribund. New loans are down. New foreclosures are up. But why let a little sorry news get in the way of a good party? Last week, almost 3,000 people descended on the Hyatt Regency in Chicago for the 98th annual convention of the Mortgage Bankers Association. The price of admission: about $1,000 a head.
Short Sales Rise in ‘Dramatic Shift’ That May Boost U.S. House Prices
By Kathleen M. Howley, Bloomberg, Oct. 17, 2011
U.S. home prices may get a boost from an unlikely source: a pickup in sales of properties in default before they reach the stage where they are repossessed by the bank and sold.
It's Time To Finalize The Robo-Signing Settlement
By Todd Zywicki, Forbes, Oct. 17, 2011
After months of wrangling, a multi-state settlement of the mortgage foreclosure “robo-signing” fiasco finally appears to be at hand that will punish banks for these seemingly-careless foreclosure practices, and break the litigation logjam that continues to drag down a housing market recovery. \
Vast Shadow Inventory Threatens Miami's Real Estate Recovery
By The Real Deal, Oct. 17, 2011
While Miami sales activity has been improving, there's a shadow lurking behind the residential real estate recovery, the Miami Herald reported. Specifically, more than 200,000 homes are either owned by lenders or headed for foreclosure in Miami compared to a current inventory of about 30,000 listed on the active market.