The Norris Group Real Estate News Roundup 6/8/10

Today’s News Synopsis:

A survey from the NFCC shows that only 23 percent of Americans consider strategic default to be acceptable when underwater on a mortgage. Starting today, Real Estate Disposition is auctioning more than 350 bank-owned foreclosures in California. According to IAS, national home prices were up 0.9% in April from March. An executive from RealtyTrac believes U.S. foreclosure activity will not stabilize until late 2011.

In The News:

Inman “Builders’ incentives to buyers under scrutiny” (6-8-10)

“Federal regulators are once again scrutinizing incentives tied to the use of homebuilders’ affiliated mortgage and title companies, looking for evidence that they cost consumers more than they’re worth, help inflate appraisals, and lower underwriting standards. The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in 2008 proposed a ban on such incentives, but backed down last year after homebuilders sued over the proposed rule change”

Housing Wire“Strike Strategic Default: Survey Finds Mortgage Payments Remain Borrower Priority” (6-8-10)

“Less than one-quarter, or 23%, of consumers recently polled indicated that opting for foreclosure is justifiable when a borrower is underwater, owing more on a home than its worth, according to the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC). This idea of strategic default, when a borrower with the ability to pay chooses not to remain current on payments, was unacceptable to another 15% of survey respondents who said no circumstances justify walking away from the financial obligation.”

Housing Wire“CoreLogic Adds Foreclosure Data to Distressed Property-Listing Web Site” (6-8-10)

“Data analytics provider CoreLogic (CLGX: 19.68 -1.01%), recently spun off by First American Financial (FAF: 13.51 -0.44%), will provide foreclosure data and property information to the Yahoo! Real Estate foreclosure service, the company said. The partnership adds listings of various stages of foreclosure and real-estate-owned (REO) properties to Yahoo! Real Estate’s online database of distressed properties including foreclosure and pre-foreclosure listings.”

Housing Wire “REDC to Auction 350 Bank-Owned Foreclosures” (6-8-10)

“Beginning today, Real Estate Disposition (REDC) is auctioning more than 350 bank-owned foreclosures in Northern and Southern California, including 76 properties. Through June 12, REDC will auction more than 70 Northern California properties, including 34 occupied homes. An online-only auction, the offering ends at noon Central.”

Housing Wire“Despite Narrow Monthly Gain, House Prices Fall 2.8% from 2009: IAS” (6-8-10)

“National house prices were up 0.9% in April from March, narrowed from the previous monthly gain of 1.1%, according to the latest data from Integrated Asset Services (IAS). The IAS house price index remains 2.8% below levels seen in the same time last year — widened from the 1.9% yearly depreciation in March. Additionally, the index is down 23.9% from its July 2007 peak.”

Bloomberg “Four Seasons Sees Rates Returning to Peak Levels in Some Areas” (6-8-10)

“Four Seasons Hotels Inc. expects nightly rates at some of its properties will climb to the peak levels of 2008 by the end of this year as demand for luxury accommodation picks up, President Kathleen Taylor said.”

Orange County Register“Foreclosures to be high for 18 more months” (6-8-10)

“Foreclosure activity in America won’t stabilize until late 2011, an executive for Irvine-based Realty Trac told a group of real estate writers. And with only three out of eight bank-owned homes on the market, and two-thirds of those under-valued homes yet to hit, the U.S. housing market still faces years of low prices.”

Orange County Register “Where housing zip lives: Aliso to Yorba” (6-8-10)

“Newport Beach communities had the most housing ZIP in the first quarter. Santa Ana neighborhoods the least homebuying momentum. Our Zippy rankings weigh pricing and sales momentum — plus foreclosure frequency — as measured by DataQuick stats.”

Orange County Register“3 charged in foreclosure ‘rescue’ case” (6-8-10)

“Gregory Flores, who managed All Fund Mortgage branches in Anaheim Hills and Murietta, was arrested in Roswell, N.M. last week. Also facing wire fraud charges charges in the case are Sheri Gale, who was a loan officer for All Fund, and Amy Hall, a former loan processor for the company. They have not been arrested but are expected to turn themselves in shortly, Assistant U.S. Attorney Sean Lokey says.”

Realty Times“Mortgage Rates Touched New Low Friday” (6-8-10)

“The decline in mortgage rates stemmed from a big increase in mortgage-backed securities prices Friday. MBS prices, which drive mortgage rates in the opposite direction, gained +21/32 (FNMA 30-yr 4.5 at 102.23) on less than spectacular jobs numbers and more European debt concerns, this time in Hungary. Typically when we see significant declines in stocks as we have lately, mortgage rates improve.”

Wall Street Journal“Baker: Turn Fannie, Freddie Into Government-Owned Corporations” (6-8-10)

“Want an easy, simple solution to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac? Take the mortgage-finance giants, which have been effectively nationalized, and turn them into government-owned corporations, says Dean Baker, the co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, a liberal think tank. In an op-ed in USA Today, Mr. Baker makes the case that nationalizing Fannie and Freddie isn’t as radical as it sounds. For one, both companies are effectively owned and operated by the government today.”

Looking Back:

One year ago, an AP test showed that recession “stress” decreased 5 percent from March to April. Robert Shiller estimated that home prices would likely continue to decline for years to come. JP Morgan estimated that U.S. home foreclosures would probably total 6.4 million by mid-2011.

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.

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