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Real Estate Today 9-20-2012


10 best states for first-time homebuyer help
MSN Real Estate | September 2012
Achieving the American dream has long been associated with owning a home. Yet for many of today’s would-be homebuyers, economic uncertainty has called that dream into question.  (OK experts, here is your chance to shine!  What great programs do we have available to first-time homebuyers in the Northwest? ~Anthony)

Some Markets See Inventories Cut Nearly in Half
RealtorMag | September 19, 2012
The number of homes for sale in the last year is falling the most in California, with eight of the top 10 biggest drops in inventories in the last year from metro areas in the Golden State. Many California metros are also seeing asking prices on the rise in the last year, too. (One NW area metro makes the list – which one is it?)

U.S. Banks on High Alert for Cyberattacks
Columbus Dispatch | September 19, 2012
A financial-services industry group warned banks yesterday to be on heightened alert for cyberattacks after Bank of America Corp. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. experienced unexplained outages on their public websites.

U.S. May Have Paid $1B in False Claims
The Washington Post | September 19, 2012
Report finds HUD may have paid hundreds of millions of dollars in mortgage aid to homeowners who did not qualify for the help.

Housing Recovery Nuanced at the Local Level
The Wall Street Journal | September 19, 2012
Today’s existing-home sales numbers from the National Association of Realtors, paired with today’s Census data on housing starts and a boost in builder confidence from earlier this week, paint a picture of housing on the mend.

Meet the New Boss: Big Data
The Wall Street Journal | September 20, 2012
At more and more companies, the hiring boss is an algorithm, as jobs that were once filled on the basis of work history and interviews are left to personality tests and data analysis.

Incomes Fell or Stagnated Last Year
The Wall Street Journal | September 19, 2012
The income of the typical U.S. family fell or was flat in almost every state last year, with the drop particularly steep in places where the economy has been hit hard by the housing bust.

Real Estate Investors Plan to Purchase More Homes in U.S.
BusinessWeek | September 20, 2012
Almost two-thirds of U.S. residential real estate investors plan to buy as many as or more homes in the next 12 months than they have in the past year even as prices rise, according to a survey released today.  

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Today I’d like to hear from real estate investors (or their agents):  What sectors provide the best opportunities?  What advice do you have for a prospective first-time investor?  What your personal market outlook for investment real estate?  (Both residential real estate and commercial real estate) 

  

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Posted by on September 20, 2012 in Real Estate news

 

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Real Estate Today 8-10-2012


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Q&A: House Flipping Still at Home on Reality TV
The Wall Street Journal | August 9, 2012
Boom or bust, flipping never really goes out of style, particularly on reality TV. (There are lots of risks involved in flipping houses.  I strongly recommend against it unless you have lots of experience AND lots of cash so you won’t need to borrow.  But if you believe everything you see on tv, the toughest thing a flipper might deal with is bees. ~Anthony)

In Real Estate Deal, Romney Made His Loss a Couple’s Gain
The Washington Post | August 9, 2012
Look closely and it is there, sandwiched between Goldman Sachs Hedge Fund Partners II and D3 Family Bulldog Fund: the mortgage on Timothy and Betty Stamps’s modest home on Gentle Bend Drive here.

Median Home Price Takes Biggest Jump Since 2006
The Wall Street Journal | August 9, 2012
Fewer deeply discounted foreclosures are being sold these days, and that means the median price of homes sold in the U.S. is on the rise.

LPS: Refinancing Surge for High-interest, Underwater Borrowers
HousingWire | August 9, 2012
High-interest borrowers in negative equity are refinancing – or prepaying out of their bonds – at a rate four times higher than at the end of last year, according to Lender Processing Services.

Paulson’s Latest Housing Bet: $17 Million of Las Vegas Land
The Wall Street Journal | August 9, 2012
John Paulson is betting on a U.S. housing industry recovery, and he just raised the stakes.

Builder confidence in older homeowners more than doubles
HousingWire | August 9, 2012
Builder confidence in the single-family housing market for mortgage borrowers aged 55 and older improved in the second quarter from a year ago, according to the National Association of Home Builders.  (We’d love your thoughts on how you think this demographic will affect your market area.  In Spokane, we have a higher percentage of retirees than the average American community. How will that affect new construction here, if at all? ~Anthony)

Entire Crounty’s Tax Foreclosures Bought Up
RealtorMag | August 9, 2012
The municipal government in Macomb County, Michigan, sold off its entire “inventory” of tax-foreclosed properties — 650 total — to a single buyer for $4.8 million.

Two great articles below on the “Eminent Domain” issue:

FHFA Pushes Back on Eminent Domain Policy in California
The MReport.com | August 9, 2012
FHFA issued a notice Wednesday to warn of the controversial use of eminent domain recently proposed in San Bernardino County.

Eminent domain, wrongly redefined
HousingWire | August 9, 2012
Eminent domain is supposed to be used for putting in a highway, building a bridge, benefiting everyone by promoting growth and driving jobs. In San Bernardino, they’re hoping that if they can just reset values, people will start paying taxes again and generate the revenue they need to pay civil servants. You don’t want to live where there is limited police, garbage collectors or firemen, trust me.

 
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Posted by on August 10, 2012 in Real Estate news

 

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Real Estate News Today 7-16-2012


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Zuckerberg’s Loan Gives New Meaning to the 1%
Bloomberg | July 14, 2012
Billionaire Mark Zuckerberg is giving new meaning to the term “the one percent.” The Facebook Inc. founder refinanced a $5.95 million mortgage on his Palo Alto, California, home with a 30-year adjustable-rate loan starting at 1.05 percent, according to public records for the property.

In the U.S. Housing Market, Recovery or Lost Decade?
Reuters | July 15, 2012
What some of Wall Street’s forecasts for a recovery may be underestimating are tectonic shifts in the U.S. economy that make the housing market a different place from a decade ago.

Here Comes the Catch in Home Equity Loans
The New York Times | July 14, 2012
The easy terms of many home equity lines of credit are about to end, as borrowers will have to start paying principal as well as interest.

Q&A: How the Credit Card Settlement Affects You
The Wall Street Journal | July 13, 2012
Merchants big and small settled litigation against Visa and MasterCard Friday. As a result, merchants will be able to tack on extra fees when shoppers pay with plastic.

Will Housing Rescue the U.S. Economy?
CBS News | July 15, 2012
There is now broad consensus that the housing market is bottoming, but it remains to be seen how strong the recovery will be and whether it can help boost the moribund economy from the spring-summer doldrums.

US Consumer Agency to Supervise Credit Reporting Companies
Reuters | July 16, 2012
The U.S. consumer watchdog agency said on Monday it will start closely supervising credit reporting companies in September, bringing the industry under strict federal supervision for the first time.

More Home Owners Gain Equity
RealtorMag | July 13, 2012
Rebounding home prices are lowering the number of home owners who are considered “underwater” on their mortgage, according to a new report by CoreLogic(We received some feedback from a reader last week in response to this increase in equity.  In summary he said:
“The fact that the tiny increase in values we’ve had so far pushes these 700,000 folks out from being underwater
 simply shows that there are no government programs needed to fix our housing crisis. 

All we need is for the economy to recover just a bit and that solves many of our problems.  We don’t need more principal write downs, more refinance programs, or eminent domain seizures of mortgages.  What we really need is certainty, which means the government leaving things alone long enough to allow the market to correct itself”.

He makes a good argument.  Thoughts or feedback? ~Anthony)

Anthony Carollo 2007 EMAIL  

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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
acarollo@stewart.com

Please remember to choose Stewart Title of Spokane on your next transaction!

www.StewartSpokane.com

 

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Real Estate News Today 7-6-2012


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I posted an article in my Today’s News on June 14 about a California mortgage company that was lobbying for municipalities to use of the powers of “Eminent Domain” to grab mortgage notes from investors.  The idea is that then the muni can “write down” the principal to make sure the homeowner stays in the property and/or it doens’t become blighted.  The idea has gained some traction in California among a couple of cities, but not everyone is in favor of the concept (see first article below).

Upside? The city or town could have more control over the property, more control over how it is maintained by forcing the owner’s hand, and even could foreclose on the property when they deem it desirable for other purposes if the owner is behind on payments.

Downside? The city or town could have more control over the property, more control over how it is maintained by forcing the owner’s hand, and even could foreclose on the property when they deem it desirable for other purposes if the owner is behind on payments. 

What if it were your house? Feedback is always welcome at acarollo@stewart.com

Cities in California Consider Using Eminent Domain To Seize Mortgages
New York Observer | July 5, 2012
Officials in San Bernardino County cities Ontario and Fontana, citing blighted neighborhoods and communities, propose using the state’s eminent domain power—most commonly used to seize land from homeowners and re-allot it for public use—to acquire underwater mortgages (loans that exceed current property value) and decrease the loan principle to match the current property value. (See also “Seizing mortgages via eminent domain profits few” from HousingWire. ~Anthony)

New Agency Plans to Make Over Mortgage Market
The New York Times | July 5, 2012
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, seeking to improve fairness and clarity for borrowers, is moving to establish its legitimacy and quiet its critics.

U.S. Hiring Seen Stuck in Low Gear in June
Reuters | July 5, 2012
U.S. employers likely quickened the pace of hiring last month but not enough to allay worries that Europe’s debt crisis is shifting the economy into low gear.

Some U.S. Metros ‘in the Clear’ of Housing Crisis
MSNBC | July 3, 2012
Nearly 30 cities have been designated “in the clear” of the housing downtown, according to a report today by Trulia, although real estate experts in some of those markets reacted to the apparently good news with conservative-sounding forecasts for their areas – or with downright skepticism.

To Play the Game To Win You Need to Know the Rules-
Why the Economic Recovery Continues to Stumble
Ted C Jones Blog | July 6, 2012
Last week I spoke in Las Vegas and thought of the myriad of games that people can play and hopefully win in the casinos.  Each game has a set of rules that the player needs to have full working knowledge of to optimize their potential outcome.  Without this full understanding of the rules, most people simply avoid those games.  

States use mortgage settlement funds to fill budget gaps
HousingWire | July 5, 2012
It’s a controversy that has been brewing in several states: Some state leaders are using funds from the $25 billion mortgage servicing settlement to fill gaps in their budgets, Bloomberg reported. (This seems similar to the tobacco settlement a few years back where very little of the money recieved by states actually went to helping folks that were impacted or harmed by the tobacco industry. Similarly, some states are using the mortgage settlement money to get them over a budget hump rather than helping homeowners stay in homes or helping those who were actually harmed. ~Anthony)  

Anthony Carollo 2007 EMAIL  

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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
acarollo@stewart.com

Please remember to choose Stewart Title of Spokane on your next transaction!

www.StewartSpokane.com

 

 

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Real Estate News Today 6-14-2012


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

Foreclosures Up for First Time in 27 Months
Reuters | June 14, 2012
Foreclosure starts rose year-over-year in May for the first time in more than two years – though they fell on a month-to-month basis – as banks resumed dealing with distressed properties after a mortgage abuse settlement earlier this year, data firm RealtyTrac said on Thursday.

Short-sale Fraud a Problem for Investors, Mortgage Servicer Says
HousingWire | June 13, 2012
More effort should be made to prevent short-sale fraud so that investor returns are maximized, said Gagan Sharma, chief executive of Titusville, Pa.-based servicer BSI Financial.

Housing Shows Glimmers of Hope
Chicago Tribune | June 14, 2012
Though some might consider it one of those “when pigs fly” moments, homebuilders have begun raising their prices.

Housing Recovery Seen; Will Credit Be The Spoiler?
NPR | June 13, 2012
Amid all the economic uncertainty over the credit crisis in Europe and slow job growth in the U.S., one sector may be looking up. The U.S. housing market is finally showing more signs of recovery, according to a report being released Thursday by Harvard University.

Americans See Biggest Home Equity Jump in 60 Years: Mortgages
Bloomberg | June 14, 2012
Home equity in the first quarter rose to the highest level since 2008 as homeowners taking advantage of record-low borrowing costs to refinance their loans brought cash to the table to pay down principal.

Housing Prices May Soon Start to Increase
The Boston Globe | June 13, 2012
Harvard center forecasts uptick across country.

U.S, economic outlook darkens ahead of vote
Reuters | June 13, 2012
The U.S. elections in November will be contested against the backdrop of an economy growing more slowly and creating fewer jobs than thought only a month ago, a Reuters poll of economists suggests.

Can Eminent Domain be Used to Take Over Mortgages
RealtorMag | June 13, 2012
In a controversial move, a mortgage firm on the West Coast is pushing lawmakers in California and other states to use eminent domain to take over underwater mortgages. Eminent domain is a power that can be used by government to get a court order to seize property — not loans — for the public’s interest, like to extend a highway or construct a school. (One can only imagine the repercussions if this were to be allowed. ~Anthony)

Inventory of For-Sale Homes Falls 20% From Year Ago
RealtorMag | June 13, 2012
The number of homes on the market continues to become a shrinking pool. Inventory of for-sale single-family homes, condos, townhomes, and co-ops dropped 20 percent in May compared to year-ago levels, according to data from REALTOR.com of 146 markets.

Realtors: Where’s the data?  Is our local inventory up or down?  Listing prices?  Closed sales prices?  What is YOUR market doing?

 Anthony Carollo 2007 EMAIL  


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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
acarollo@stewart.com

Please remember to choose Stewart Title of Spokane on your next transaction!

www.StewartSpokane.com

 
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Posted by on June 14, 2012 in Real Estate news

 

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Real Estate News Today 12-13-2011


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

Mortgage Default Risk Edging Toward ‘Normalcy’
DSNews | December 12, 2011
Lenders and investors should expect defaults on mortgage loans currently being originated to be 31 percent higher than the average of loans originated in the 1990s, according to a new report from University Financial Associates (UFA).

FHFA Sues City of Chicago over Vacant Property Ordinance
DSNews | December 12, 2011
The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) filed a lawsuit in federal court Monday against the city of Chicago contesting a local ordinance that makes lenders liable for the upkeep of vacant homes before they take possession of the title.

Getting Escrow Funds Released No Easy Deed
New Jersey Business | December 12, 2011
A homeowner recently sold his home but the buyer’s attorney is holding funds in escrow. Why? Because a previous mortgage was never paid off. Read on find out how the homeowner was protected because he had title insurance.

Surging Student Loan Debt Threatens Homeownership
HousingWire | December 12, 2011
College graduates may not be able get onto the property ladder as soon as they’d like due to the costs associated with funding higher education.

Congress Edges Toward a Compromise on Spending
The Washington Post | December 12, 2011
It appears exceedingly unlikely that lawmakers will let the government close down at the end of this week.

Principal Reduction Outpaces Short Sales Under HAMP
HousingWire | December 12, 2011
A borrower is more likely to get a principal reduction than a short sale or deed-in-lieu of foreclosure under the Home Affordable Modification Program.

Washington Prepares to Use Fannie and Freddie as a Gift Card
HousingWire | December 12, 2011
Congressional leaders want to use the government-sponsored enterprises as a gift card for the taxpayers.

U.S Home Buyers Beware – This Is Not Your Father’s Housing Market
International Business Times | December 11, 2011
It’s a cliche’, but it’s also a truism: there’s nothing like owning a home. Home ownership provides many advantages and, at least since World War II, owning a home has become part of the American dream.

Federal Reserve Report: Home Flipping Drove Housing Bubble in Nevada, California, Other States
The Washington Post | December 12, 2011
A new federal report shows that speculative real estate investors played a larger role than originally thought in driving the housing bubble that led to record foreclosures and sent economies plummeting in Nevada, California, Arizona, Florida and other states.

From the National Association of Realtors®:

More Contracts Come With a Contingency
More contingency agreements are popping up that give buyers more time to try to sell their home first before they close on the house they want, real estate agents are reporting.

Banks, GSEs Spend More Money to Spruce Up REOs
In some cities, foreclosed homes have been found to shave up to $17,000 off nearby property values. But more banks and GSEs are spending money to better maintain REOs so they don’t hamper values as much.

Anthony Carollo 2007 EMAIL  

 

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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
acarollo@stewart.com

 

Please remember to choose Stewart Title of Spokane on your next transaction!

 

www.StewartSpokane.com

 

 

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