Today’s Real Estate News 7-20-2010

20 Jul

Today’s news that may be of interest to you:

Housing Starts in U.S. Decrease More Than Forecast
Bloomberg | July 20, 2010
Housing starts fell in June to the lowest level since October as a slump in sales following the expiration of a government tax incentive caused U.S. builders to cut back.

Need a Mortgage? Don’t Get Pregnant
The New York Times | July 19, 2010
Mortgage lenders are taking a harder look at prospective borrowers whose income has temporarily fallen while they are on leave, including new parents at home taking care of a baby. Even if a parent plans on returning to work within weeks, some lenders are balking at approving the loans.

Real Estate Doldrums on Gulf Coast Beaches
The New York Times | July 20, 2010
Nick Wilmott bent down on the beach near the high-tide mark and touched one of the reddish-brown pads of oil. It had washed up overnight from the BP spill off Louisiana and had yet to be cleaned up by the machines that sweep the beaches here every night.

FHA Raising FICO Floor, Reducing Seller Concessions
Inman News | July 20, 2010
FHA borrowers will soon need a 580 FICO score in order purchase a home with the minimum 3.5 percent downpayment, and won’t qualify for the program at all if they have a score below 500.

Why Housing Data Are Misleading: The Tax Credit Angle
The Wall Street Journal | July 20, 2010
There’s no question that the home-buyer tax credit juiced home sales over the past year. Since the credit expired at the end of April, we’ve seen new home sales plummet, prompting some to see the drop as one indicator of a double-dip recession.  (Anthony’s note: The commentator quoted in this article is, in my opinion, out of touch with the reality of the effect of the tax credit.  Whether you were for it or against it, there is no doubt in my mind that the tax credit stimulated home sales among folks that were not already planning to buy.)

Bank of America’s Dark Cloud: Wall Street Reform
CNNMoney | July 20, 2010
Bank of America’s fears about Wall Street reform are giving the whole banking industry a case of the jitters.

Consumer Post Prospect Has Democrats in Knots
The Wall Street Journal | July 20, 2010
Democrats agonized Monday over whether President Barack Obama should pick Harvard Law School Professor Elizabeth Warren to be the nation’s first consumer-finance regulator, an indication of the intense fight to come.

PMI Slashes Home Sales Forecast by More Than 50%
DSNews | July 19, 2010
Mortgage insurer PMI has cut its growth projections for 2010 home sales by more than half. The company’s analysts now expect sales of existing homes to rise a modest 2.9 percent for the year to 5.31 million units. That’s a sharp downgrade from a mere month ago, when they were predicting we’d see a 6.1 percent annual gain.

From the National Association of Realtors®:

New 1099 Rules Aimed at Curbing Tax Cheaters
Business owners will be required to file a lot more 1099s under new tax rules set to take effect in 2012.

A Light at the End of the Commercial Tunnel
A senior economist with the UCLA Anderson Forecast foresees non-residential construction increasing after the California commercial market bottoms out later this year.

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Anthony V. Carollo / President
Stewart Title of Spokane
606 W. 3rd Ave.
Spokane, WA  99201
Telephone: 509.328.7171
Direct Line: 509.321.3939
Direct Fax: 866.652.8834

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