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Real Estate News Today 7-20-2012


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Fore Sale: The Golf Housing Bust
The Wall Street Journal | July 19, 2012
Prices at luxury private golf communities are crashing, done in by rampant overdevelopment, the economic downturn and waning national interest in the sport. Golf courses are being shrunk and some home lots are being sold for $1.

U.S. Banks Haunted by Mortgage Demons That Won’t Go Away
Reuters | July 19, 2012
Lenders like Bank of America Corp and Wells Fargo & Co say they are facing mounting pressure to buy back bad mortgages they sold to investors, signaling that banks’ home-loan headaches could continue for years.

Behind the Numbers: Home Sales Fall, Led By Cheapest Homes
The Wall Street Journal | July 19, 2012
Most of the housing news lately has been positive, so Thursday’s news of a 5.4% drop in June’s existing home sales was a bit of a surprise.

Zuckerberg is Not the Only One Who Can Get Super Low Mortgage Rates
CNBC | July 19, 2012
After seeing Mark Zuckerberg has scored a 1.05 percent mortgage rate on his $6 million California home, we have just two questions: Why does he need a mortgage? And where can I get one like that? (I would LOVE to hear a mortgage loan officer’s thoughts on this one. ~Anthony)

Are the Real Estate Bellwethers Finally Ringing? Check out the Numbers
Forbes | July 19, 2012
In case you’re still a nonbeliever that housing has finally crawled its way into recovery mode, ask yourself: What are the bellwether indicators of the early stages of a rebound? You can probably rattle them off.

U.S. Housing Poised to Boost Economy
Reuters | July 20, 2012
The U.S. housing sector is poised to boost economic growth. While existing home sales fell 5.4 percent in June from May, other indicators suggest a recovery is under way. A flip to a positive impact after dragging on GDP for five years will give lawmakers a chance to change distorting housing market policies.

Personal Information, Password Theft on the Rise
RealtorMag | July 19, 2012
Hacked personal information online, including stolen passwords, has soared 300 percent during the first four months of 2012, according to a study by Experian CreditExpert and Opinion Matters. 

Short sales more rewarding than REO: RealtyTrac
HousingWire | July 20 2012
The market is trending towards short sales as lenders lean more heavily on disposition methods that aid distressed homeowners while making it easier for lenders to resell homes that have spent less time in a state of distress, RealtyTrac vice president Daren Blomquist told HousingWire Thursday.
 

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 6-25-2012


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

Low Appraisals That Don’t Reflect Rising Markets are Ruining Deals
Los Angeles Times | June 24, 2012
Real estate professionals say appraisals sometimes come in thousands of dollars below the price that home buyers and sellers have agreed upon. (A timely article considering the appraisal discussion we’ve been having. ~Anthony)

Senate Set to Approve Flood Insurance Bill
The Hill | June 23, 2012
After years of delay, the problems plaguing a bill to reauthorize the National Flood Insurance Program are receding.

Housing Experts Offer Ideas on the New Normal in Wake of Downturn
Los Angeles Times | June 22, 2012
What’s considered normal in light of the housing downturn? Home price appreciation of 3% to 5%, 1.6 million household formations a year, and a 65% homeownership rate, according to three economists who offered their housing outlooks Friday at the annual National Assn. of Real Estate Editors conference.

Insight: Wells Fargo’s Mushrooming Mortgage Risk
Reuters | June 22, 2012
The new center of U.S. mortgage lending is a nondescript office building in the American heartland, far from the California subprime lenders and the New York investment banks that drove the housing market into a bust.

Can the Economy Get Healthy Without a Housing Recovery?
Time | June 25, 2012
This spring has been filled with disappointing economic news, but one bright spot has been the possible bottoming out of the housing market.

Tax Rules for Renting Out Your Vacation Home
The Wall Street Journal | June 23, 2012
The tax treatment of summer-home rental income is more complicated than you might expect. Here’s what you need to know. 

More Agents Encounter the Unexpected in Showings
RealtorMag | June 22, 2012
More real estate professionals say they are getting an unexpected surprise when they arrive at foreclosed homes: The homes aren’t really vacant. Squatters are living there and it’s led to some awkward — and even dangerous — encounters, they say. 

Small REO-to-rental investors need financing
HousingWire
In developing strategies for neighborhood stabilization, two issues predominate: the growing need for affordable rental housing and returning vacant foreclosed properties to productive use. At the confluence of these discussions are policy ideas such as REO-to-rental strategies that would convert the inventory of foreclosed properties into affordable rental housing.

How to Use a Self-Directed IRA to Buy Real Estate
Fox Business | May 8, 2012
Difficult economic times have spurred non-traditional methods to save for retirement, and many people are using a self-directed IRA to purchase non-traded assets like real estate. (If you have buyers who would like to buy investment property using their IRA but are not sure how to put it together, this article is a good start. ~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 6-13-2012


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

New Mortgages 20% More Likely to Default than Those from the ’90s
DSNews.com | June 12, 2012
Investors and lenders should expect loans currently originated to have a 20 percent higher chance of default than those originated in the ’90s due to current economic conditions, according to the University Financial Associates (UFA). (Keeping in mind that this is only one firm’s position, it does seem to me that the US homebuyer’s mindset has turned a corner. It used to be that foreclosure normally only happened to those folks that couldn’t afford their house payment.  ‘Strategic default’ is a now socially acceptable option if things get tight. This adds a whole new segment of consumers who will be foreclosed upon in the future.  ~Anthony)

Shortage of homes for sale creates fierce competition
Los Angeles Times | June 10, 2012
The newest problem for the slowly improving housing market isn’t a shortage of serious buyers, it’s a shortage of good homes.

Landlords Cash in on Higher Demand
RealtorMag | June 12, 2012
Taking advantage of an increase in home owners-turned-tenants, apartment landlords are raising their rents and expect to continue to do so.

Rental Market Still Tightening: Moody’s
DSNews.com | June 12, 2012
With vacancies declining and rental prices rising, the climate in the housing industry is clearly warming up to rental properties.

Wells Fargo to limit FHA Streamline participation
HousingWire | June 12, 2012
Wells Fargo will only accept new streamlined refinancing on Federal Housing Administration mortgages serviced in-house beginning June 19, according to an alert sent to lenders Tuesday.

US GDP – Not As Pretty As Otherwise Indicated
Ted C. Jones Blog | June 11, 2012
If you looked at the basic U.S. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) numbers, you would conclude that the U.S. is gaining economic ground. 

Trade Group to Call for CFPB Official to Resign After Remarks
DSNews.com | June 12, 2012
Sparking indignation in the mortgage broker community, Raj Date, deputy director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau laid the bulk of the blame for the housing crisis on brokers during a speaking engagement Monday. His statements have led at least one industry trade group to call for his resignation. (I know lots of really good and honest mortgage brokers who helped many, many of consumers. Like many industries, there was a segment that took advantage of some consumers and gave the others a bad name. ~Anthony)

Endless QE? $6 Trillion and Counting
Reuters | June 13, 2012
Many more years of money printing from the world’s big four central banks now looks destined to add to the $6 trillion already created since 2008 and may transform the relationship between the once fiercely-independent banks and governments.
 

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 13, 2012 in Real Estate news

 

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Real Estate News Today 5-4-2012


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

That New Foreclosure Tsunami? Still Waiting
The Wall Street Journal | May 3, 2012
For at least the last six months or so, a lot of people were talking about a “new wave” of foreclosures threatening to smother the U.S. housing market in gloom once again.

Is this Market ‘Bottom’ a True One that Will Stick?
DSNews | May 3, 2012
During a CoreLogic economic webinar Thursday, the company’s chief economist, Mark Fleming, Ph. D., was asked if the housing market has hit bottom and will it stick, as reports seem to be speculating. (This is very well written and agrees with something I’ve been telling folks for a while now.  Is the market recovering?  Yes.  Will it continue?  Probably, but that’s barring any new unforseen disasters.  Consider what we’ve seen just since 9/11 that have all had economic impact: An incredible oil spill, tsunamis in Japan and the Indian Ocean, the subsequent Japanese nuclear disaster, Hurricane Katrina, economic fragility in Europe, this list goes on.  None of us knows the future. ~Anthony)

Commercial Real Estate Hindered by Tight Credit, Realtors Say
Bloomberg | May 3, 2012
A “major portion” of small commercial-property deals in the U.S. have fallen through because of stricter lending standards, according to a National Association of Realtors survey.

When to Refinance Again
The New York Times | May 3, 2012
Those who refinanced their mortgages a year or so ago, when interest rates averaged just below 5 percent for a 30-year fixed-rate loan, may be wondering whether it’s time to refinance yet again, now that rates are at least a full percentage point lower.

The Danger of Social Profiling
The Washington Post | May 3, 2012
Should employers and stores be allowed to discriminate based on your social graph?

Wells Fargo’s Mortgage Dominance Worries Regulators and Investors
Los Angeles Times | May 3, 2012
Wells Fargo & Co. has become so dominant in the mortgage business that major investors and federal regulators are worried that a financial hiccup at the giant bank could roil the already beleaguered real estate market.

5 New ‘Rules’ to Home Buying
RealtorMag | May 3, 2012
With signs of a housing turnaround getting stronger, housing experts say buyers are finding several recent changes when they go to put in an offer on a home. A recent article at U.S. News & World Report highlights some of these changing “rules” for your home buyer clients.  (Realistically these are not new rules, they are old rules.  They are great reminders however. ~Anthony)

Make Sure Your House is Appealing from the Curb
FOXBusiness | May 4, 2012
Whether you’re prepping your home for sale, or just want it to look good, don’t forget about the exterior — especially the front yard and door!  Here are some great tips from home stagers and curb appeal experts on how to best showcase your home’s first impression.  (This is an excellent resource if you are listing your home.  In today’s market it has to outshine the others, they are your competition! ~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 5-3-2012


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

The Perfect Loan File
Forbes | March 9, 2012
The media has it all wrong – securing mortgage approval and satisfying credit underwriting guidelines are not the difficulties plaguing mortgage consumers.  (One of my Linkedin connections shared this yesterday, great article about the mindset of the borrower and how we can help them prepare. ~Anthony)

Wells Fargo’s Market Share of U.S. Mortgages Tops 33%
Bloomberg | May 2, 2012
Wells Fargo & Co. (WFC), already the largest U.S. home lender, widened its lead in the first quarter by originating a third of all residential mortgages in the nation as some of its biggest rivals retreated. (Is this a problem or concern or not at all?  Like anything else, I guess it depends on your perspective.  That’s a greater market share than Countrywide ever had, I think CW was at 20% at their peak, correct me if I’m wrong.  ~Anthony)

Retirement, Slipping Farther and Farther Away
The New York Times | May 2, 2012
Over the last decade and a half, Americans’ expected retirement age has slowly risen to 67 from 60, according to a new Gallup survey.

Getting Away—but Not Too Far
The Wall Street Journal | May 2, 2012
Sales of vacation homes are picking up as low prices pull buyers off the fence. But with travel costs rising and consumers still uncertain about the economy, many buyers are snapping up properties closer to home.

Another Big Name Exits Reverse-Mortgage Lending
The New York Times | May 2, 2012
MetLife said recently that it would stop making reverse mortgages, as part of a general exit of the banking industry.

Instability of Shadow Banking Still Plagues Investors
Forbes | May 2, 2012
There are still major vulnerabilities in the US financial system, especially in areas of “shadow banking”, which are inadequately regulated– and in the overhaul of the mortgage finance infrastructure. Too big to fail institutions that are of global systemic importance could still fail and have negative consequences for the entire financial system.

Beazer Books Surge in Home Sales
The Wall Street Journal | May 2, 2012
Beazer Homes reported a narrower fiscal-second-quarter loss Wednesday as the builder recorded a surge in home closings and sounded a hopeful note for the months ahead.

I’ve already had a call from our IT Dept. this morning because we have a server down.  In honor of you wonderful IT people everywhere I offer this great memo from The New Yorker.  I love it!
Please Read: Important Procedure Change For Contacting I.T. Department
The New Yorker | May 2, 2012
When contacting the I.T. department, it is essential that the user states the priority level of the request. Make sure to specify one of the following levels.

And last but not least, another new low:
Mortgage Rates hit all-time low
HousingWire | May 3, 2012
Fixed mortgage rates hit new all-time lows this week as anemic economic growth and inflation took rates to unheard depths.
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 5-2-2012


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

Mortgage Purchase Applications Rose Last Week
CNBC | May 2, 2012
The Mortgage Bankers Association said its seasonally adjusted index of mortgage application activity, which includes both refinancing and home purchase demand, rose 0.1 percent in the week ended April 27. (Perhaps more importatly, 30 year fixed rates declined to 3.69% which is a decline from  3.72% the previous week.  See Thirty-Year Fixed Rate Mortgage Hits 3.69%: Zillow  from The MReport.com ~Anthony)

Ability-to-Repay Rule for Mortgages Nears CFPB Approval
Bloomberg | May 1, 2012
The director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is aiming to discourage lenders from making home loans with risky features and outlining steps they must take to verify borrowers’ finances, as part of the “qualified mortgage” or QM regulation.

Wells Fargo Doubles Down on Housing
HousingWire | May 1, 2012
Wells Fargo has thrown caution to the wind and is aggressively writing new business in both residential and commercial real estate loans.

Renters Really Prefer Owning, Builder Survey Says
The Wall Street Journal | May 1, 2012
A survey from PulteGroup — one of the nation’s largest home builders — has found a surprising result: Many renters want to buy homes.

Bad Models Mistook Housing Bust for Dot-Com Bubble
Bloomberg | May 1, 2012
In a speech last month about the financial crisis, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke trenchantly noted that the initial losses from the dot-com bust were about the same size as those from the housing meltdown — yet the two episodes had very different economic consequences.

Foreclosures Held Steady in March
Los Angeles Times | May 1, 2012
The number of U.S. homes struggling through foreclosure held steady in March but fell from a year earlier, new data show, indicating that the huge wave of foreclosures that some housing experts keep predicting isn’t even a whitecap yet.

Jobs Growth Seen Rebounding in April
Reuters | May 1, 2012
Hiring by U.S. employers likely rebounded in April, which could ease worries the economy has stumbled into a soft patch.

What Smart Buyers Should Know About Time Shares
USA Today | May 1, 2012
Timeshares may sound like an inexpensive way to live a little large once a year, but they will cost you for years to come unless you find someone to buy it.

Attacks Against Real Estate Professionals Surge
RealtorMag | May 1, 2012
The number of assaults against real estate professionals is on the rise, with the nature of attacks becoming more violent and sometimes deadly.  (There are some eye-popping numbers in here that should make us all a little more cautious.  One item of note is that the category includes landlords, appraisers, etc. It didn’t say anything about title/escrow people.  ~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 4-20-2012


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

Voters in Spokane County appear to have passed Measure 1 to expand the Convention Center and the Spokane Arena seating.  Check out the Measure 1 website to see what the Convention Center will look like when done.

Multifamily Building to Beef Up 30% in 2012
HousingWire | April 19, 2012
Fannie expects multifamily housing starts to jump 30% from 178,000 in 2011 to 231,000 in 2012. And then to 278,000 the following year.

Mortgage-Tax Break Curbed by Housing Slump
Bloomberg | April 19, 2012
The cost of one of the country’s most expensive individual tax breaks is shrinking as the number of Americans who own homes declines and mortgage rates hover near historic lows.

Bank of America Leads Banks in Short Sales of U.S. Homes
Bloomberg | April 19, 2012
The Charlotte, North Carolina-based bank approved 5,276 short sales in January, topping JPMorgan Chase & Co., with 2,976, and Wells Fargo & Co., the biggest home-loan originator, with 2,788, according to a report today by RealtyTrac Inc. (I’m not harping on BofA since they in fact did the most, but these numbers they give us for short sales still seem incredibly low.  I would have thought the number of short sales approved in a month would be 10x as high. ~Anthony)

Fears Rise That Economic Recovery May Falter in Spring
The New York Times | April 19, 2012
Global finance leaders are meeting in Washington to discuss oil prices, unemployment and other issues putting a cloud over the global economic picture.

Cities With Least Realistic Home Prices
The Wall Street Journal | April 19, 2012
Home sales are down, Thursday’s data shows. Oddly, sellers seem to be raising their asking prices. (This is interesting in that they determined the most realistic asking prices based soley on the gap between the median list prices and the median sales prices for the market.  Is that the right measure? I suppose it’s as good as any? ~Anthony) 

Chicago Loosens Vacant Property Restrictions on Banks
HousingWire | April 19, 2012
City officials in Chicago, with an ear to mortgage lenders and servicers, decided that maybe its pre-foreclosure requirements for vacant buildings were a bit too strict.

New Figures Stoke the Home Inequity Debate
The New York Times | April 19, 2012
A little more light is being shed on a type of loan that has been stinking up bank balance sheets.

Big Banks: Now Even Too Bigger to Fail
BusinessWeek | April 19, 2012
Two years after President Barack Obama vowed to eliminate the danger of financial institutions that are too big to fail, the nation’s largest banks are bigger than they were before the financial meltdown.

Short Sales Start to Outpace Foreclosures
Realtor Magazine | April 19, 2012
Banks are agreeing to more short sales, and for the first time,  short sale transactions are exceeding foreclosure deals, according to the most recent housing data from Lender Processing Services (LPS) Inc. (Check out this quote from the article:  “Banks are realizing that short sale transactions usually sell for higher prices than foreclosures.”  No kidding?  Who knew? ~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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