California Real Estate Headline Roundup

Posts Tagged ‘fraud’

By Bruce Norris .

The Norris Group Real Estate News Roundup 5/3/11

Tuesday, May 3rd, 2011

Today’s News Synopsis:

The federal government claims Deutsche Bank commited mortgage fraud, and is suing the bank. LPS said 500,000 borrowers became current on their loans in the first quarter. Michael Fratantoni of the MBA predicts a full housing recovery is 3 to 4 years away. The combined sales of all broker-run transactions fell $226 million year over year.

In The News:

The Washington Post“Federal government sues Deutsche Bank in NYC, alleging it committed mortgage fraud” (5-3-11)

“The federal government sued Deutsche Bank Tuesday, saying the bank committed fraud and padded its pockets with undeserved income as it repeatedly lied so it could benefit from a government program that insured mortgages.”

Wall Street Journal“Banks Are Lending, but Pace Falls Shy” (5-3-11)

“Big banks eased lending standards and businesses sought more loans in the first quarter of the year, the Federal Reserve said. In its quarterly Senior Loan Officer Opinion Survey released Monday, the Fed said the share of banks ‘that reported having become more willing to make consumer installment loans rose to its highest level since the first half of 1994.’”

Housing Wire“Half a million bad mortgages got better or foreclosed in first quarter” (5-3-11)

“Lender Processing Services (LPS: 28.60 +0.03%) said 500,000 ailing mortgage borrowers either came current on their payments or lost their home to foreclosure in the first quarter, according to a recent mortgage monitor from the Florida-based data provider.”

Housing Wire“Shadow inventory will keep housing recovery at bay for three to four years” (5-3-11)

“A full housing recovery is three to four years off as the nation grapples with a shadow housing inventory of 4.5 million distressed properties, according to Michael Fratantoni, vice president of research and economics for the Mortgage Bankers Association.”

Bloomberg - “Commercial Property Prices May Fall, Apollo’s Azrack Says” (5-3-11)

“U.S. commercial property prices may fall within a year as building owners attempt to refinance $1 trillion in mortgages, according to Joseph Azrack, head of real estate for Apollo Global Management LLC.”

Orange County Register“Home sales generating 7% less in 2011″ (5-3-11)

“The combined sales of all broker-run transactions fell by $226 million from the first quarter last year, when home sales generated a total of $3.35 billion – revenue divided between home sellers and their agents. During the first three months of this year, both sales and prices dropped from year-ago levels. The average price of an Orange County home sold through the MLS fell 2.8% in the first quarter to $540,856.”

For more information about The Norris Group’s California hard money loans or our California Trust Deed investments, visit the website or call our office at 951-780-5856 for more information. For upcoming California real estate investor training and events, visit The Norris Group website and our California investor calendar. You’ll also find our award-winning real estate radio show on KTIE 590am at 6pm on Saturdays or you can listen to over 170 podcasts in our free investor radio archive.

The Norris Group Real Estate News Roundup 4/26/11

Tuesday, April 26th, 2011

Today’s News Synopsis:

The Commerce Department reports new home sales increased 11% in March. A study shows that short sales and foreclosures equally damage FICO scores. A survey from Pew shows 81% of adults believe purchasing a home is the best long-term investment a person can make. Morgan Stanley believes home prices will fall 6-11% this year.

In The News:

Mortgage Bankers Association“Study Examines the Impact of Homebuyer Education and Counseling on Mortgage Performance” (4-26-11)

“Potential homeowners who participate in prepurchase education and counseling programs may be more likely to pay their mortgages on time, although the evidence on this point is not consistent and compelling, according to a study released today by the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA). The study also finds that those who participate in default counseling are more likely to have their loans modified.”

MSNBC - “Housing reality trumps dogma for some in GOP” (4-26-11)

“leading proponents of doing away with Fannie and Freddie aren’t predicting victory. As a precaution, they’re advancing eight bills taking bite-sized swipes at the issue. In the Democratic-led Senate, a sister measure by 2008 presidential candidate Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., faces long odds, and the Banking Committee’s top Democrat and Republican are wary of quickly reshaping the market for financing home purchases.”

CNN - “Home prices in ‘double dip’” (4-26-11)

“Home prices in February sank 3.3% to just above the post-crisis lows reached in April 2009. It was the seventh straight month of declines. Home values are down 32% from their peak set in May of 2006, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller index of home prices in 20 cities.”

Housing Wire“Harvard finds dwindling housing supply abolishes affordable rentals” (4-26-11)

“The Harvard University Joint Center for Housing Studies released a report Tuesday, analyzing conditions in the housing market from 1999 to 2010. The study found the price to rent a home is trending inversely to renters’ annual income, just one of many factors hindering growth in the rental space.”

Housing Wire“FHFA: 30-year fixed-rate mortgage passes 5%” (4-26-11)

“The average interest rate on a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage reached 5.06% in March, an increase of 9 basis points from the previous month, according the Federal Housing Finance Agency.”

Housing Wire“Study finds recent housing counseling cuts made in the dark” (4-26-11)

“Republicans and Democrats struck a late-hour deal in April on how to continue funding the U.S. government. But among the cuts, was $88 million used to fund nonprofit counseling groups approved by the Department of Housing and Urban Development.”

Housing Wire“Freddie Mac mortgage purchases plummet 31%” (4-26-11)

“The amount of monthly mortgages purchased for securitization by Freddie Mac fell nearly 31% in March to $26.9 billion. The government-sponsored enterprise reported its total mortgage portfolio decreased at an annualized rate of 4.7% during the month to $2.14 trillion.”

Los Angeles Times - “New home sales rose in March after weak winter” (4-25-11)

“New-home sales rose 11 percent last month from February to a seasonally adjusted rate of 300,000 homes, the Commerce Department said Monday. That follows three straight monthly declines. Still, the pace remains far below the 700,000 homes a year that economists view as healthy.”

New York Times“Stimulus by Fed Is Disappointing, Economists Say” (4-24-11)

“Mr. Bernanke and his supporters say that the purchases have improved economic conditions, all but erasing fears of deflation, a pattern of falling prices that can delay purchases and stall growth. Inflation, which is beneficial in moderation, has climbed closer to healthy levels since the Fed started buying bonds.”

Housing Wire“Short sales and foreclosures equally degrade FICO scores” (4-25-11)

“homeowners that entered short-sales found themselves with FICO scores in the 575-to-595 range — the same range reported for parties with foreclosures on their records.”

Housing Wire“Homeownership still considered best long-term investment: Pew” (4-25-11)

“The housing crash seems to have had little impact on consumer confidence, as 81% of adults believe buying a home is the best long-term investment a person can make”

Housing Wire“Distressed property index rises in March: Campbell/Inside Mortgage Finance”
(4-25-11)

“A distressed property index rose to 48.6% in March – the second highest level in the past 12 months while owner-occupant home purchases slowed during the same time period according to another index.”

Housing Wire“Wells economist: Foreclosure supply points to ‘long, arduous’ recovery” (4-25-11)

“Despite better-than-expected new home sales in March, a Wells Fargo (WFC: 28.56 +0.07%) economist said builders will continue to struggle until the foreclosure wave begins to recede.”

Bloomberg - “U.S. Home Prices May Decrease 6% to 11% This Year, Morgan Stanley Says” (4-25-11)

“U.S. home prices will fall 6 percent to 11 percent this year, more than previously forecast, as mortgages become harder to obtain and distressed sales drive down values, according to Morgan Stanley. ”

Bloomberg - “Fed Officials Count on Untested Tool to Hold Off Inflation” (4-25-11)

“Raising the rate, currently at 0.25 percent, is intended to entice banks to keep their money on deposit at the Fed instead of loaning it out and stoking inflation.”

Bloomberg - “Sales of New U.S. Homes Probably Rose From Record Low as Market Struggled” (4-25-11)

“New-home sales, tabulated when contracts are signed, climbed 12 percent to a 280,000 annual pace last month, according to the median estimate in a Bloomberg News survey of 64 economists. Purchases slumped 17 percent in February to a 250,000 rate, the weakest in data going back to 1963.”

Looking Back:

One year ago, the CIRB reported that permits were pulled for 3,714 total California housing units in March. Commercial mortgage delinquencies fell to 0.63% in Q1 of 2010. The MARI saw a 50 percent increase in appraisal fraud in 2009. Homeownership rates in Q1 of 2010 decreased to the lowest levels since 2000.

For more information about The Norris Group’s California hard money loans or our California Trust Deed investments, visit the website or call our office at 951-780-5856 for more information. For upcoming California real estate investor training and events, visit The Norris Group website and our California investor calendar. You’ll also find our award-winning real estate radio show on KTIE 590am at 6pm on Saturdays or you can listen to over 170 podcasts in our free investor radio archive.

221-TNG Radio – FBI – Richard Ryan 4-16-11

Friday, April 15th, 2011

FBI Mortgage Fraud

Richard Ryan

Supervisory Special Agent for the FBI


(Full Bio)

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This week Bruce is joined by Supervisory Special Agent Richard Ryan with the FBI. Ryan supervises a cadre of special agents and detectives from various law enforcement agencies throughout Southern California. Mr. Ryan oversees white collar crime in Los Angeles, which includes financial institution fraud, money laundering, and identity theft. During his career, he successfully worked major frauds, counter terrorism, gangs and criminal enterprises, and narcotics. In 2009, Ryan was deployed to Haiti for the search and rescue of U.S. citizens being held hostage for ransom.

Mortgage fraud is much more complex than a homeowner trying to get out from underneath their home, or someone looking to prey on another person’s equity.

There is a difference between fraud for ownership and fraud for profit. Mortgage and bank fraud involves profit. Homeownership or dehomeownership fraud often involves getting away from an underwater mortgage. Many people are trying to get away from their properties because of unemployment, having a bad loan, or having a fraudulently obtained loan. Many fraudulently obtained loans occurred while lenders were using no documentation loans.

Foreclosure rescue and loan modification schemes are a big problem right now. There are some companies honestly working with people to save their homes, but most of these companies are sponsored by the government. You should be cautious of foreclosure rescue companies that make you pay up front. Legitimate companies are more likely to bill you after they have completed their service.

Bruce heard a radio advertisement that said, “If you are trying to do a loan modification, without us assisting you in preparing your financial statement to look correct, you will probably not get your loan modification.” Ryan says that is completely false. That company is preying upon the emotions of people who are already desperate. They are pretending that their company is the only company that can help with loan modifications.

Many people are currently attempting to make their financial status look worse than it truly is to get a loan modification.

Fraudulently under-evaluating a property allows someone to flip it at a later point with a higher appraised value. This type of fraud involves a conspiracy of a homeowner and an appraiser. The appraiser gives an undervalued appraisal, and then encourages the bank to accept less than what it owed on the property. The property is then bought by the conspirators and sold for a price near market value.

There are many people who buy damaged properties with low values, fix them, and sell them at a higher value. The FBI encourages people to do this, because it is not manipulative, and not only does it provide a profit to the investor, but it helps raise the value of the entire neighborhood. There are perfectly legitimate reasons for buying a property at a low value and selling it at a higher one.

Sometimes there are conspirators in a short sale that are not going to receive any money. Occasionally, a homeowner will have a need to sell his home so he will personally ask a certain company to buy the property at a specific price. The conspiring homeowner will then have the opportunity to buy back the same property at a later date for a lower price. This is not considered a fair deal for the bank, and it is considered fraud.

Fraud occurs when skirting of reporting requirements occurs. Fraud occurs if you are not putting legitimate information on a loan application. It occurs if you are providing kick backs for a benefit to someone such as an appraiser or a notary.

Fraud evolves based on the conditions and environment of the day. We did not have short sales when people were making double digit profits every month in 2006. The banks were handing loans out prevalently. We are currently seeing a lot of foreclosures, short sales and vacancies. Ryan has also noticed a “squatting” trend developing in the world of fraud. Squatting is finding vacant properties, breaking into them, changing the locks, live in them without rent, and demanding the bank to give them $25,000 to leave.

Bruce says that owner occupants are not being punished when they allow their mortgage to become seriously delinquent and then destroy the property they are losing. Quite often, these people will dismantle things such as the cabinets, and decide that those cabinets should be theirs, even after they have lost the property. If someone is in bankruptcy and they strip the house for a profit they have committed fraud.

200 banks went into FDIC receivership last year. Many of these banks closed down because of their loan process. The FDIC is also a federal investigation agency that can detect loan fraud.

Insider fraud involves participants in the management of the bank who do perform certain actions to help themselves. Insider fraud can also involve a bank’s underwrite or loan processor.

The FBI has seen almost every kind of fraud. Bruce has people come to him with investment ideas, and their ideas sometimes involve fraud. Richard Ryan understands what a straw buyer is. There are some individuals who purchase homes but never make a payment. When the FBI interviews these people, the FBI discovers that these people had no idea that they were on title. They may have been told that they would receive $10,000 just to use their name to obtain a loan, and that their name would not be attached to the loan. Ryan has spoken to people who owned 30 properties without knowing it. These people are known as straw buyers.

Organized crime is very prevalent in mortgage fraud and bank fraud. Companies have purchased hundreds of homes underneath the names of the unknowing owners. Ryan met a person who owned his home outright, but had his home placed on the market without his knowledge, and had bids placed on the home. The real homeowner had no idea while the fraudulent homeowner was taking money from escrow and attempting to sell the house.

The FBI tries to conduct its investigations covertly. They do not want criminals to run and hide. The nice thing about mortgage fraud is that criminals cannot change their paper trail. You cannot unfile mortgage documents, and once those documents are filed there is a trail to follow.

The FBI has about 300 special agents dedicated to mortgage and bank fraud. Millions of schemes have been attempted, so the FBI is not well staffed to handle all these problems. However, if you do commit fraud, the FBI will come for you eventually.

There are currently around 3000 fraud investigations. California, Florida, Nevada and Arizona are the top places for mortgage fraud. The properties under investigation in California are typically much more valuable than the properties under investigation in Oklahoma.

For more information about The Norris Group’s California hard money loans or our California Trust Deed investments, visit the website or call our office at 951-780-5856 for more information. For upcoming California real estate investor training and events, visit The Norris Group website and our California investor calendar. You’ll also find our award-winning real estate radio show on KTIE 590am at 6pm on Saturdays or you can listen to over 170 podcasts in our free investor radio archive.

The Norris Group Real Estate News Roundup 4/4/11

Monday, April 4th, 2011

Today’s News Synopsis:

Ed Haldeman said less than 4% of Freddie Mac’s single family loans are delinquent. The government dismissed two counts of wire fraud in the case against the former CEO of Taylor, Bean and Whitaker. Treasury Secretary Geithner warned that severe economic hardship could impact the United States when the nation reaches its debt limit.

In The News:

NAR - “NAR Study Finds Americans Prefer Smart Growth Communities” (4-4-11)

“Americans favor walkable, mixed-use neighborhoods, with 56 percent of respondents preferring smart growth neighborhoods over neighborhoods that require more driving between home, work and recreation.”

Daily News“Greg Wilcox: Realtors’ website focuses on short sales” (4-3-11)

“SHORT sales are complicated transactions and account for a big part of the real-estate market. Now the California Association of Realtors hopes to bring some clarity to the process. The Los Angeles-based trade association has launched shortsalescalifornia.org, which will provide resources, news and tips about homes that are valued at less than what is owed.”

Housing Wire“Less than 4% of single-family loans are delinquent: Freddie CEO” (4-4-11)

“Freddie Mac Chief Executive Officer Ed Haldeman said less than 4% of the government-sponsored enterprise’s single-family home loans are at least three payments behind or heading into foreclosure.”

Housing Wire“U.S. dismisses two wire fraud counts to speed up Taylor, Bean and Whitaker trial” (4-4-11)

“U.S. government prosecutors dismissed two counts of wire fraud in the case against Lee Farkas, the former CEO of failed mortgage lender Taylor, Bean and Whitaker.”

Housing Wire“House Committee to vote on Republican bills for GSE wind down” (4-4-11)

“One bill in particular introduced by Rep. Scott Garrett (R-N.J.) hits a hot button issue on whether or not Fannie and Freddie should be exempt from the risk-retention standards of a qualified residential mortgage. According to Garrett’s bill, H.R. 1223 or the GSE Credit Risk Equitable Treatment Act, GSE securities would not be exempt from the risk-retention requirements of Dodd-Frank.”

Housing Wire“Geithner warns of economic hardship unless U.S. debt ceiling is raised” (4-4-11)

“Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner sent a letter to U.S. Sen. Harry Reid Monday warning the lawmaker that severe economic hardship could impact the United States when the nation reaches its debt limit on May 16.”

Orange County Register“Demand for O.C. homes jumps 22%” (4-4-11)

“Homes listed for under a million bucks have a market time of 2.85 months vs. 8.24 months for homes listed for more than $1 million.”

Orange County Register“O.C. rent hikes run half U.S. increases” (4-4-11)

“MPF found Orange County’s effective rents for new tenants — the asking rates minus concessions — as of March rising 1.5 percent in a year — vs. 3.3 percent nationwide. From the fourth quarter, Orange County effective rent was up 0.8 percent vs. 1.1 percent nationwide.”

For more information about The Norris Group’s California hard money loans or our California Trust Deed investments, visit the website or call our office at 951-780-5856 for more information. For upcoming California real estate investor training and events, visit The Norris Group website and our California investor calendar. You’ll also find our award-winning real estate radio show on KTIE 590am at 6pm on Saturdays or you can listen to over 170 podcasts in our free investor radio archive.

The Norris Group Real Estate News Roundup 3/28/11

Monday, March 28th, 2011

Today’s News Synopsis:

Pending home sales increased by 2.1%, according to the NAR. Interthinx claims California’s fraud risk decreased last year. A cash for keys program was recently proposed to Congress members, but has been strongly ridiculed. California had the largest gain in construction jobs in the nation during February.

In The News:

NAR - “February Pending Home Sales Rise” (3-28-11)

“The Pending Home Sales Index,* a forward-looking indicator, rose 2.1 percent to 90.8, based on contracts signed in February, from 88.9 in January. The index is 8.2 percent below 98.9 recorded in February 2010.”

DSNews - “Fraud Criminals Migrate to Hardest Hit Areas” (3-28-11)

“California’s overall risk index value actually decreased to 180 points, from 222 in 2009. According to California-based Interthinx, this can be explained by a migration of fraudulent criminals to more vulnerable areas, such as Nevada, which saw its overall risk index value increase more than 30 points last years.”

Housing Wire“Monday Morning Cup of Coffee” (3-28-11)

“The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. is expected to unveil suggested guidelines for the new qualified residential mortgage rule on Tuesday.”

Housing Wire“Electronic mortages: There is a way, but not enough will, tech panel finds” (3-28-11)

“Moving mortgage documents onto entirely electronic platforms provides numerous cost and operating efficiencies. It also doesn’t help that the industry is slow to adopt the necessary technology, experts say.”

Housing Wire“‘Dreamed up’ cash for keys proposal draws heavy criticism” (3-28-11)

“Sources are downplaying discussions over a mandatory cash-for-keys program that would pay a reported $21,000 to a delinquent borrower, with one prominent Republican quickly shooting down the idea.”

Bloomberg - “Fed Should Weigh Curtailing $600 Billion in Bond Purchases, Bullard Says” (3-28-11)

“St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank President James Bullard said policy makers should review whether to curtail a plan to buy $600 billion in Treasury securities, noting that the U.S. recovery may not need that much stimulus.”

Housing Wire“ALTA reports increases in FY, Q4 2010 title insurance premiums” (3-28-11)

“According to ALTA’s preliminary 2010 year-end market share analysis, the title insurance industry generated $9.61 billion in title insurance premiums in 2010 — up 0.2% from 2009.”

Orange County Register“Calif. tops in new construction jobs” (3-28-11)

“California had the largest construction gain in the nation in February — adding 15,500 jobs, or 2.7 percent, from January, says an Associated General Contractors of America analysis of state employment data from the U.S. Labor Department.”

For more information about The Norris Group’s California hard money loans or our California Trust Deed investments, visit the website or call our office at 951-780-5856 for more information. For upcoming California real estate investor training and events, visit The Norris Group website and our California investor calendar. You’ll also find our award-winning real estate radio show on KTIE 590am at 6pm on Saturdays or you can listen to over 170 podcasts in our free investor radio archive.

The Norris Group Real Estate News Roundup 3/24/11

Thursday, March 24th, 2011

Today’s News Synopsis:

Freddie Mac said mortgage rates increased to 4.81% last week. The Federal Bureau of Economic Analysis reports California income levels rose 2.5% in 2010. Jobless claims fell 1.3% last week, according to the Labor Department. Freddie Mac told servicers managing its loans to stop foreclosing in MERS’ name.

In The News:

San Francisco Chronicle“Rate on 30-year fixed mortgage rises to 4.81 pct.” (3-24-11)

“Freddie Mac said Thursday the average rate on the 30-year fixed mortgage rose to 4.81 percent from 4.76 percent the previous week. It hit a 40-year low of 4.17 percent in November.”

The Sacramento Bee“California incomes rose 2.5% in 2010″ (3-24-11)

“Californias’ incomes rose 2.5 percent in 2010, a year after the state’s first year-to-year decline in personal income since World War II, the federal Bureau of Economic Analysis reported Wednesday. The bureau said 2010 income statewide was more than $1.6 trillion, up from 2009′s $1.56 trillion and a return to 2008 levels.”

Bloomberg - “Wells Fargo Chief Sees Home-Equity Losses as Top Concern, Bernstein Says” (3-24-11)

“Wells Fargo & Co. (WFC) Chief Executive Officer John Stumpf said home-equity losses remain his ‘top concern’ because unemployment in the U.S. is still high, according to Sanford C. Bernstein & Co.”

Orange County Register“FBI informant charged in Lennar stock scam” (3-24-11)

“An ex-con turned fraud crusader accused of defaming homebuilder Lennar Corp. and its chief Orange County-based executive was accused in federal court Thursday of using his status as an FBI informant to get insider information used in his stock trades.”

Housing Wire“New CoreLogic tool automates the decision-making in loan mods” (3-24-11)

“CoreLogic says the tool allows servicers to bypass manual loan modification calculations by submitting borrower profiles through IntelliMods, which is designed to determine a borrower’s loan modification eligibility.”

Housing Wire“Jobless claims fall for second week in a row” (3-24-11)

“The number of initial jobless claims filed by unemployed Americans fell 1.3% last week to 382,000 claims submitted on a seasonally adjusted basis, the Labor Department said Thursday morning.”

Housing Wire“Freddie Mac tells servicers not to foreclose in MERS name” (3-24-11)

“Freddie Mac told servicers managing its loans this week that they can no longer foreclose in the name of Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems.”

Looking Back:

One year ago, CBIA reported that 3,404 building permits were pulled in February. Governor Schwarzenegger is expected to sign the $10,000 home buyer tax credit bill soon. According to the Commerce Department, home sales fell 2.2 percent last month. UCLA does not expect to see a second dip in economic performance.

For more information about The Norris Group’s California hard money loans or our California Trust Deed investments, visit the website or call our office at 951-780-5856 for more information. For upcoming California real estate investor training and events, visit The Norris Group website and our California investor calendar. You’ll also find our award-winning real estate radio show on KTIE 590am at 6pm on Saturdays or you can listen to over 170 podcasts in our free investor radio archive.

The Norris Group Real Estate News Roundup 3/4/11

Friday, March 4th, 2011

 

Home Sales Set to Drop 2.3 percent this year: Reuters poll

Mortgage Applications Decrease in Latest MBA Weekly Survey

California Housing Production Dips in January, CBIA Announces

Pending Sales of U.S. Existing Homes Decline by 2.8%, More than Forecast 

Obama plan would accelerate sale of unneeded federal real estate

HSBC Suspends All U.S. Foreclosures

Short sales still take too long on average, report says

House committee votes to end FHA Short Refi program

California lawmakers revive bill that would kill dual-track foreclosures

Today’s News Synopsis:

Capital One Home Loans has chosen not to foreclose on any California mortgages. The government applauded TALF for netting $600 million in income. According to S&P, lenders need 13 months on average to foreclose in a judicial state. Altos Research claims home prices decreased 2% in February.

In The News:

Washington Post - “Obama officials, attorneys general closer to possible deal with banks in foreclosure mess” (3-4-11)

“Senior Obama administration officials, newly joined by state attorneys general, were on the brink Thursday of finalizing major elements of a possible settlement with large U.S. banks accused of flawed and fraudulent foreclosure practices, sources familiar with the discussions said.”

Housing Wire“Capital One slows foreclosures to a trickle in California” (3-4-11)

“Capital One Home Loans is determined to not foreclose on any of the mortgages it services in California, according to sources inside the company.”

Housing Wire - “Pending home sales down everywhere, except the South: S&P” (3-4-11)

“Pending home sales nationwide are down for the second consecutive month, except for in the South where sales rose 1.4% between the months of December and January, according to a new report from Standard & Poor’s.”

Housing Wire“Fed touts TALF for generating $600 million in income” (3-4-11)

“Government officials testifying before Congress Friday applauded the Term Asset-Backed Securities Loan Facility program, known as TALF, for netting $600 million in income.”

Housing Wire - “S&P: Foreclosures take twice as long in judicial states” (3-4-11)

“Lenders need 13 months on average to foreclose in a judicial state, more than twice the six months it takes in a nonjudicial state, according to research from Standard & Poor’s.”

Housing Wire“Altos Research shows February home prices down 2%” (3-4-11)

“Home prices fell another 2% in February with declines in all 27 markets tracked by Altos Research. The company said prices are slowly improving and housing inventory is up 3.75% nationwide as the market moves into a much-anticipated spring selling season.”

Econoday - “Employment Situation” (3-4-11)

“Overall payroll employment in February grew by 192,000, following a revised 63,000 rise in January and a 152,000 gain in December. The February advance came in marginally lower than the updated consensus forecast for a 200,000 gain”

Looking Back:

One year ago, Bruce Norris claimed the government’s aid would not be enough to prevent the U.S. economy from sliding back into recession. The NAR reported that national pending home sales decreased by 7.6 percent in January. Commercial real estate delinquencies decreased in February. The delinquency rate for Fannie Mae loans increased to 5.38% in February.

For more information about The Norris Group’s California hard money loans or our California Trust Deed investments, visit the website or call our office at 951-780-5856 for more information. For upcoming California real estate investor training and events, visit The Norris Group website and our California investor calendar. You’ll also find our award-winning real estate radio show on KTIE 590am at 6pm on Saturdays or you can listen to over 170 podcasts in our free investor radio archive.

The Norris Group Real Estate News Roundup 2/18/11

Friday, February 18th, 2011

  

Home Construction Rises in January

January Sales and Price Report

Majority of Freddie Mac borrowers refinanced to fixed-rate loans in 4Q 

West Coast Foreclosure Sales Clime to Pre-Robo-Signing Levels 

FHA to increase mortgage insurance premiums one quarter of one point

Short-term Delinquencies Fall to Pre-Recession Levels, Loans in Foreclosure Tie All-Time Record in Latest MBA National Delinquency Survey

Testimony of John Walsh Acting Compcontroller of the Currency Before the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs

Big Banks Face Fines on Role of Servicers

MERS

Today’s News Synopsis:

The Federal Reserve will require borrowers who get their mortgages through a broker to receive the lowest  possible interest rate. LPS claims the national delinquency rate increased to 8.9% in January. A lawyer was held in contempt of court for helping his clients break back into their house after the foreclosure was ruled legitimate. RadarLogic said national home prices decreased 1.6% in December.

In The News:

New York Times“New Fed Rule for Mortgage Brokers” (2-17-11)

“STARTING April 1, under a new compensation rule from the Federal Reserve, borrowers who get their mortgages through brokers will most likely pay less for their services and must be offered the lowest possible interest rate and fees for which they qualify.”

Housing Wire“Fort Myers attorney indicted in mortgage fraud scheme” (2-18-11)

“A disbarred Florida attorney is facing three decades behind bars for lying on a mortgage application as part of a much larger $4.2 million scheme.”

Housing Wire“Homeowner attorney found in contempt for breaking into foreclosed home” (2-18-11)

“The Ventura County Superior Court in California found attorney Michael T. Pines in contempt of court Wednesday for helping his clients Jim and Danielle Earl break back into their home after the foreclosure was ruled legitimate.”

Housing Wire“January delinquencies decline over year-ago period: LPS” (2-18-11)

“The national delinquency rate stood at 8.9% in January, up 0.8% from the month prior, but down 18.8% over the year-ago period, according to the ‘First Look’ report from Lender Processing Services (LPS: 33.37 +0.30%).”

Housing Wire“RE/MAX: US home sales returned to positive territory in January” (2-18-11)

“the RE/MAX National Housing Report also reported a 3.6% month-over-month drop in housing inventory and a 5.6% decline in inventory on a year-over-year basis.”

Housing Wire“Critics say MERS foreclosure halt shows broken business model” (2-18-11)

“He said a New York bankruptcy judge already held that MERS cannot assign a mortgage, so Pennell explains, if they can’t make the assignment, they are not going to be able to legally assign the mortgage out of MERS and back to servicers as part of this recent change, he said.”

Housing Wire“RadarLogic home prices revert downward” (2-18-11)

“For December, RadarLogic reported a 1.6% decrease compared to the month prior, as well as a 3.6% drop compared to 2009.”

Bloomberg - “Apartment Construction Climbs in U.S. as Switch to Renting Crimps Supply” (2-18-11)

“‘There will be a spike in rents over the next one to three years,’ Parker said in an interview at the company’s U.S. headquarters in Seattle.”

Bloomberg - “Lennar Bets on Ex-Officer Housing `Party’ as Calif. Rebounds” (2-18-11)

“Emile Haddad, a former Lennar Corp. executive, sold 12,000 acres in California for a $277 million profit at the housing market’s peak four years ago. He and his partners then reacquired it at half the price in 2009. Now, Haddad says, it’s time to build.”

Looking Back:

One year ago, Freddie Mac’s weekly survey showed that mortgage rates dropped this week. 4,853 new and resale houses and condos closed escrow within a month in the Bay Area. The U.S. Treasury claimed that its foreclosure prevention program had cut mortgage payments for approximately 947,000 homeowners. S&P estimated there were approximately 947,000 houses in shadow inventory, which would take nearly 3 years to sell.

For more information about The Norris Group’s California hard money loans or our California Trust Deed investments, visit the website or call our office at 951-780-5856 for more information. For upcoming California real estate investor training and events, visit The Norris Group website and our California investor calendar. You’ll also find our award-winning real estate radio show on KTIE 590am at 6pm on Saturdays or you can listen to over 170 podcasts in our free investor radio archive.

The Norris Group Real Estate News Roundup 2/11/11

Monday, February 14th, 2011

Today’s News Synopsis:

Million dollar home sales in California increased by 21%, according to MDA DataQuick. Freddie Mac reports mortgage rates increased over 5% this week. The Treasury said half of all renters spend over 33% of their income on housing.

In The news:

DQNews - “First Gain in Golden State Million-Dollar Home Sales Since ’05″ (2-11-11)

“Last year 22,529 Golden State homes sold for $1 million or more. That was up 21.0 percent from 18,621 in 2009 and the highest since 2008, when 24,436 homes sold for $1 million-plus, according to San Diego-based DataQuick Information Systems. Million-dollar sales peaked in 2005 at 54,773, after which they declined each year through 2009.”

Los Angeles Times“Obama administration releases plan for overhauling mortgage market, calls for phasing out Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac” (2-11-11)

“The 32-page plan calls for phasing in an increase in the down payment requirement for loans guaranteed by Fannie and Freddie to 10%, while reducing the maximum size of mortgages they can back — a move that would affect Southern California and other high-cost areas.”

CNN - “Mortgage rates break 5%” (2-11-11)

“The national average interest for a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage surpassed 5% for the first time since May 2010, according to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey.”

Housing Wire“Treasury report advocates slashing GSE jumbo loan ceiling” (2-11-11)

“Reducing conforming loan limits at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will help reduce the GSEs’ dominance in the mortgage market by driving jumbo mortgage financing back to the private sector for financing, the U.S. Treasury said in its ‘Reforming America’s Housing Finance Market’ report on Friday.”

Housing Wire“FHA could replace Fannie, Freddie in rental housing market” (2-11-11)

“Half of all renters spend more than one-third of their income on housing, and 25% spend more than half of their income. For every 100 extremely low-income American families, 32 adequate rental homes are affordable for them, according to the Treasury white paper.”

Housing Wire“Higher GSE guarantee fees may increase cost of homeownership” (2-11-11)

“The GSEs currently provide 95% of housing finance in the U.S.; any reductions of their involvement in supporting mortgages mean interest rates will have to go up to induce private lending”

Housing Wire“SEC brings fraud charges against three former IndyMac executives” (2-11-11)

“The Securities and Exchange Commission charged three former IndyMac senior executives with securities fraud Friday.”\

Looking Back:

According to the NAR, home sales increased in 32 states from the 3rd quarter of 2009. Statistics from the CBIA show that the construction industry currently provides only one sixth of the jobs it provided in 2005. Some speculate that Fannie and Freddie’s purchasing of debt could get rid of all mortgage debt within a year. RealtyTrac reports that foreclosure filings increased by 15 percent from last year.

For more information about The Norris Group’s California hard money loans or our California Trust Deed investments, visit the website or call our office at 951-780-5856 for more information. For upcoming California real estate investor training and events, visit The Norris Group website and our California investor calendar. You’ll also find our award-winning real estate radio show on KTIE 590am at 6pm on Saturdays or you can listen to over 170 podcasts in our free investor radio archive.

The Norris Group Real Estate News Roundup 1/20/11

Thursday, January 20th, 2011

Today’s News Synopsis:

Statistics from MDA DataQuick show 7,178 new and resale houses and condos were sold in the Bay Area last month, and a total of 36,215 were sold statewide. The NAR reports existing home sales increased 12.3% in December. Fannie Mae announced a 45 day delay on foreclosures for borrowers receiving aid from the Hardest Hit Fund.

In The News:

MDA DataQuick“Bay Area Housing Ends Year With Many Looking but Not Buying” (1-20-11)

“A total of 7,178 new and resale houses and condos were sold in the nine-county Bay Area last month. That was up 17.5 percent from 6,111 in November and down 8.3 percent from 7,828 in December 2009, according to San Diego-based DataQuick Information Systems.”

MDA DataQuick“California December Home Sales” (1-20-11)

“An estimated 36,215 new and resale houses and condos were sold statewide last month. That was up 15.3 percent from 31,403 in November, and down 13.4 percent from 41,837 for December 2009. California sales for the month of December have varied from a low of 25,585 in 2007 to a high of 66,503 in 2003, while the average is 44,338. DataQuick’s statistics go back to 1988.”

NAR - “December Existing-Home Sales Jump” (1-20-11)

“Existing-home sales1, which are completed transactions that include single-family, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, rose 12.3 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.28 million in December from an upwardly revised 4.70 million in November, but remain 2.9 percent below the 5.44 million pace in December 2009.”

Yahoo - “Rate on 30-year fixed mortgage rises to 4.74 pct.” (1-20-11)

“The average rate rose to 4.74 percent this week from 4.71 percent the previous week, Freddie Mac said Thursday. The average rate on the 15-year loan, a popular refinance option, slipped to 4.05 percent from 4.08 percent.”

Housing Wire“Fannie Mae delays foreclosures 45 days for Hardest Hit Fund programs” (1-20-11)

“Fannie Mae directed its mortgage servicers to delay scheduled foreclosure sales 45 days for borrowers that have been approved for assistance through the Hardest Hit Fund.”

Housing Wire“Class-action federal securities fraud cases on the rise” (1-20-11)

“Federal securities fraud class-action cases rose in the second half of 2010, according to a report prepared by the Stanford Law School in cooperation with Cornerstone Research. The report shows 104 class-action cases alleging federal securities fraud were filed in the second half of the year, up from 72 filings in the first six months of the year.”

Housing Wire“Jobless claims drop 8.4% to 404,000″ (1-20-11)

“After rising for a few weeks, initial jobless claims fell nearly 8.4% last week to 404,000, well below analysts’ estimates and the largest decline since February.”

Bloomberg - “Sales of U.S. Existing Homes Probably Rose as Demand Struggled to Rebound” (1-20-11)

“Purchases increased 4.1 percent from the prior month to a 4.87 million annual rate, according to the median forecast of 72 economists surveyed by Bloomberg News. Other reports may show a gauge of the economy’s direction grew for a sixth month, and manufacturing expanded in the Philadelphia region in January.”

Looking Back:

One year ago, the MBA’s Market Composite Index showed that loan application volume increased by 9.1 percent. HUD reported that housing starts declined 4% in December. Regional housing inflation rose 0.2% in Southern California.

For more information about The Norris Group’s California hard money loans or our California Trust Deed investments, visit the website or call our office at 951-780-5856 for more information. For upcoming California real estate investor training and events, visit The Norris Group website and our California investor calendar. You’ll also find our award-winning real estate radio show on KTIE 590am at 6pm on Saturdays or you can listen to over 170 podcasts in our free investor radio archive.