Today’s Real Estate News 4-1-2011

01 Apr

I’m really curious to hear what you think:  If there were ONE thing you could change about our current real estate environment/economy, what would it be?  Job creation?  Regulations?  Underwriting criteria?  Consumer confidence?  The list of hurdles we face is daunting, I know, but I’d love to hear your perspective either by email at or on my blog.

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

ALTA News Alert: Federal Appeals Court Suspends Loan Officer Compensation Rule
TitleNews Online | April 1, 2011
Pending further review, the U.S. Court of Appeals suspended implementation of the new Loan Officer Compensation Rule set to go into effect today (April 1), the American Land Title Association has learned.

Three States Move to Ban Foreclosure Sales from Appraisal Values
DSNews | March 30, 2011
With foreclosure sales steadily rising, four states are concerned that the use of the foreclosure sale prices in appraisals of neighboring homes is distorting the market.  Legislators in Illinois, Nevada, and Missouri have all proposed separate bills that would exclude or restrict foreclosure sales from being used as comparisons to determine the value of homes around them.

National Unemployment Rate Drops to 8.8%
DSNews | April 1, 2011
Employers added 216,000 jobs to their payrolls in March, according to figures released this morning by the U.S. Department of Labor. The national unemployment rate dropped to 8.8 percent, down from 8.9 percent in February.

Commercial and Multifamily Mortgage Originations up 88%
HousingWire | April 1, 2011
Commercial and multifamily mortgage originations grew 88% in the fourth quarter of 2010 when compared to 4Q 2009, the Mortgage Bankers Association said in its Fourth Quarter Commercial Real Estate-Multifamily Finance Quarterly Report.

Housing Market Attracting Bargain-hunters
Reuters | March 31, 2011
Well-heeled North Americans are starting to look more closely at an asset class that until recently was the pariah of the investment world: residential real estate in the United States.

Why New Homes Don’t Sell
The Wall Street Journal | April 1, 2011
While the real estate market has struggled across the board, new homes have been hit harder than ever before.

Documents Shed Light on Fed Lending Practices
The Washington Post | April 1, 2011
The Federal Reserve lent vast sums of money to a long list of banks during the financial crisis, according to newly released documents, supporting institutions gigantic and minuscule, and those based throughout United States and from many corners of the globe.

Senate Panel Advances Bankruptcy Foreclosure Mediation Bill
DSNews | April 1, 2011
The Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday approved legislation that would give bankruptcy courts the authority to order face-to-face meetings between homeowners and their lenders for foreclosure mediation.

Seriously Delinquent Mortgage Volume Hits Two-year Low
HousingWire | April 1, 2011
The percentage of mortgages classified as seriously delinquent within the portfolios of large banks and thrifts fell in all four quarters of 2010, the Office of the Comptroller of Currency and the Office of Thrift Supervision said Thursday.

Report Criticizes High Pay at Fannie and Freddie
The New York Times | March 31, 2011
Regulators have approved generous executive compensation at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the taxpayer-backed mortgage finance giants, with little scrutiny or analysis, according to a report published Thursday by the inspector general of the Federal Housing Finance Agency.

From the National Association of Realtors®:

Housing Shortage on the Horizon?
The CEO of Metrostudy, which tracks the nation’s inventory of new homes, says the country is heading to a dramatic recovery in residential real estate because of a looming housing shortage.

REITs Make About-Face
Recent global turmoil seems to have spooked investors on real estate investment trusts (REITs).

Large Monkey 

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Anthony V. Carollo / President
Stewart Title of Spokane
606 W. 3rd Ave.
Spokane, WA  99201
Telephone: 509.328.7171
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4 responses to “Today’s Real Estate News 4-1-2011

  1. avcarollospok

    April 1, 2011 at 10:12 am

    From Pat: The non confident consumer is just not a buyer, and that is what we need more of right now!

    From Chris: Availability of funds … CRE lenders have really made no changes to their underwriting in the last 18 months. Until they start making loans on investment stuff again, we are going to flounder.

    From Mike: Re: Appraisals and foreclosure – the stupidity of our legislators is amazing! Of course foreclosures should be valid comps. They probably have no idea that in “good”markets appraisers just ignored the 1 or 2 foreclosures because they had other comps they could use.

  2. Tim Cornwell

    April 1, 2011 at 10:48 am

    In response to your comment about improving the economy…my thoughts…Gov’t needs to pull back on regulations that hurt businesses and drives companies to go across our borders and take the jobs with them. I think many companies don’t take the risks to grow their businesses because of past experience with never ending gov’t regulations, fees, taxes, etc. So, they stay as small as possible and look for ways to provide their service/product from global providers. How cool would it be if business owners felt the gov’t had their back and was supportive of the success of the business. The other factor that limits companies willingness to expand and try new things is fear…fear of being sued. Between government interference and fear of frivolous lawsuits, the entreprenueral spirit of today’s small business owner has been dimished. I still believe in America and that we live in the best country on earth…it’s just a bummer because we could be so much better!

  3. Michael Mullin

    April 1, 2011 at 11:57 am

    RE: One change. Can I have two?

    From the perspective of stabilizing real estate prices we need employment growth. If consumers are confident they have a job, they’ll spend money.

    From my perspective as a lender – the government regulations are really becoming a burden. I have never personally felt the effects of over regulation like I am now. I have no issues with the spirit and intent of the regulations but I can tell you for fact the cost to the consumer of obtaining a mortgage has gone up due to the resources mortgage companies and banks have had to throw into compliance, legal, and human resources to comply.

  4. Ken Garceau

    April 1, 2011 at 1:53 pm

    545 elected people out of 308,745,538 are directly, legally, morally and individually responsible for the domestic problems that plague this country today; 435 Congressmen, 100 Senators, 9 Supreme Court Justices and one President.

    In Washington State; 156 elected out of 6,724,540 are directly, legally, morally and individually responsible for the current problems that exist in this state today; 98 Representatives, 48 Senators, 9 Supreme Court Justices and one Governor.

    These human beings spend most of their time and energy convincing you what they did is not their fault. Regardless of which party, they all cooperate with this con job.

    The U.S. is broke the State of Washington is broke. Cities and Counties are broke. You know it and I know it!

    The state of Washington, the counties and cities by law have to have a balanced budget; still they continue to spend more than they take in, while the federal government continues to borrow and print more money.

    The Constitution which is the supreme law of the land is being trampled on a daily basis by the same people who swore to uphold it.

    When you fully grasp the plain truth that every single domestic problem is directly traceable to these people who hold and exercise the power of government, then it must follow that what exists is what they want to exist. Have you wondered; if the politicians are against inflation, high taxes and deficits then why do we have inflation, high taxes and deficits? It is because they want inflation, high taxes and deficits.

    What can you do? Keep up the pressure! They really believe if they don’t hear from you there is not any reason for concern and will continue their dithering. Tell them what you really think; they don’t deserve any special treatment. They asked for the responsibility and should do what is right. Period!


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