Foreclosures Pick Up in October

Lenders are starting to get their foreclosure machines moving again, according to the latest data from foreclosure listing firm RealtyTrac Inc. Total foreclosure filings rose 7 percent last month from September, to 230,678 filings in October. However, that number is still down almost 31 percent from the year before. Initial default notices were up significantly as well, rising 10 percent from the previous month to 77,733 properties. All foreclosure activity, including default notices, auctions, Read more [...]

Default Notices Spike in August

Default notices sent to U.S. households jumped 33 percent in August from the previous month, according to data from foreclosure data company RealtyTrac, a sign that banks are finally starting to get the foreclosure wheels turning again. 78,880 homes received a default notice for the first time last month, which was a nine-month high and the highest monthly increase in four years. Default notifications have risen particularly high since last fall in states where the 'robo-signing' documentation Read more [...]

PMI Benefits | PMI Will Pay Borrowers to Stay

In a bold move to keep more homeowners from strategic default, PMI Mortgage Insurance has joined forces with New-Jersey based Loan Value Group (LVG) to offer certain borrowers a cash reward for staying current on their mortgages. The program is call Responsible Homeowner Reward and it targets homeowners who are significantly underwater on their mortgages. These borrowers pay nothing to be included in the program, but they contractually promise to keep current with their loan payments for a period Read more [...]

Feds Sue JPMorgan Chase and RBS for Housing Bust Losses

The National Credit Union Administration, the regulator for the country's credit unions, filed a lawsuit against two major banks today, accusing them of partly causing the failure of several U.S. credit unions. They claim the big banks deceitfully sold them risky mortgage-backed bonds. The NCUA is seeking more than $800 million from both companies. The NCUA has had to take on the debts from five failed credit unions since the mortgage meltdown, and now must deal with offloading $50 billion of Read more [...]

Homeowners Trim Mortgage Debt Back to Pre-Bubble Levels

Total U.S. mortgage payments have reset to levels not seen in a decade, another sign that the housing market is still bottoming out. As of the first quarter of 2011, Americans hold $10.3 trillion in mortgage debt, a significant drop from the almost $11 trillion reported at the 2008 peak, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). Mortgage interest payments alone are down 11 percent, roughly $67 billion a year, since that time. So what's causing the tumble? It's a 3-way tie: defaults, Read more [...]

HAMP Outperforms Private Lender Modifications

There has been plenty of news coverage about the short comings of the government's mortgage modification program, but a recent report has found that the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) is actually doing better than private bank modification efforts, by a ratio of 2-to-1. According to the report from the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Office of Thrift Supervision (as documented on the CNN website), only about 11 percent of mortgages modified by the HAMP plan during Read more [...]

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on September 24th 2010 in Mortgage News

Fannie Survey: The Economy Stinks But Homeownership Is Still Safe

A recent survey from mortgage giant Fannie Mae made some interesting discoveries about the economy and homeownership, like the fact that 61 percent of respondents believe the economy is headed on the wrong track, but 82 percent believe their personal financial situation will either improve or stay the same in the near future. And even with all the foreclosures, Americans by and large still believe that owning a home is a safe investment, with a 70 percent majority. (That number is down though Read more [...]

News Flash: Foreclosure May Be Bad for Your Health

An extremely obvious and seemingly needless study by the Alameda County (California) Public Health Department has just reported that going into foreclosure can really affect your physical and mental health. Perhaps you'd never guess it, but this survey of the East and West Oakland neighborhoods found that foreclosure can cause all sorts of ailments -  like heightened stress, which can lead to anxiety attacks, weight gain or loss, skin problems, acid reflux and insomnia. Just take a look at these Read more [...]

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on September 3rd 2010 in Mortgage News

Fannie Mae Tries to Make Strategic Default More Painful

In the wake of recent reports showing how prevalent strategic mortgage default it these days, government-owned mortgage giant Fannie Mae is now tightening its rules, trying to discourage homeowners from walking away. "Walking away from a mortgage is bad for borrowers and bad for communities, and our approach is meant to deter the disturbing trend toward strategic defaulting," said Terence Edwards, Fannie's executive vice president for credit portfolio management, as quoted on the Baltimore Sun blog. Read more [...]

One in Five Defaults is ‘Strategic’

The latest report from credit reporting agency Experian as reported on the Wall Street Journal blog shows that 19 percent, or almost one in five of all mortgage defaults in the first half of 2009 were 'strategic,' meaning that borrowers who can still afford to make their payments choose not to. While that percentage is little changed from the last six months of 2008, it is up 53 percent over the first six months. The survey defines 'strategic default' as missing six months of mortgage payments Read more [...]