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Homeowners vs Investors: The Devil is in the Details

trustme

  Vacation Home Sales Soar to Record High in 2014, Investment Purchases Fall or Homes Sold to Owner-Occupants Drops to New Low in First Quarter, Smaller Investors Picking Up Slack Time for a quiz.  Which headline do YOU think is right?  The first, the second, both or neither? The right answer is that you should never believe a real estate ... Read More »

Take a Closer Look at the Spring Boomlet: It’s a Remarkable Start

Take a look

It’s official.  Early signs and forecasts of an extraordinary sales season are proving to be true.  NAR’s March existing home sales rocketed to their highest annual rate in 18 months. Total March sales increased 6.1 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.19 million in March from 4.89 million in February—the highest annual rate since September 2013 (also 5.19 ... Read More »

HELOC Resets? No Worries!

noworries

Perhaps you’ve seen the headlines crafted to conjure up fearful memories of Alt-A and Option ARM loan defaults during the depths of the housing depression. Tidal wave of HELOC resets about to hit! HELOC Resets Will Undermine Any Housing Recovery. Boom-Era HELOC Resets Raise Concerns. Not to worry.  Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC) resets are not going to cripple the housing ... Read More »

Is it Cold Feet or Just the Weather?

coldfeet

With the opening of the 2015 home selling season just a few weeks away, are sellers showing signs of getting cold feet?  Do many plan to sit out 2015 or are they just moving slowly because their toes are still numb from the latest winter wallop and all will be well with the first daffodils? Fannie Mae’s monthly National Housing ... Read More »

Case Shiller: Maybe They Just Don’t Like December

christmas

Which of the following statements were made today by Standard & Poor’s David Blitzer about the December Case Shiller price indices? “Gains are slowing from month-to-month and the strongest part of the recovery in home values may be over. Year-over-year values for the two monthly Composites weakened and the quarterly National Index barely improved. The seasonally adjusted data also exhibit ... Read More »

What’s Happening to the Most Important Homes in Real Estate?

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  What’s really happening with homes in the bottom price tiers? These are the most important homes in the entire real estate economy.  They are where the housing ladder begins: they are then entry point for new buyers, the starter homes that MUST be available and affordable for Millennials if the housing economy is to ever function again as it ... Read More »

Appraisers: Does CU Mean See You Later?

Things-not-to-say-to-an-appraiser

Will Fannie Mae’s roll out this year of Collateral Underwriter (CU), its proprietary automated appraisal risk assessment tool, reduce appraisers to be nothing more than servants of a computerized tool?  Or is it “just another tool that is reviewing appraisers just as other processes have all along.” as a Fannie spokesperson put it? Will it meld underwriting and appraisal into ... Read More »

Ready to Rumble in 2015?

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When home sales unexpectedly plummeted in November, the housing recovery entered the new year stuck in neutral.  Will sales switch gears and get revved up in the new year, regaining the roar of two years ago?  Or will they putt-putt along as they did in the pre-recovery years, every leap forward followed by a tire-burning skid? Economists making predictions for ... Read More »

Happier New Year?

2014

In an end of the year forecast, CoreLogic’s deputy chief economist came rang in a happy new year for the housing economy. Home sales will increase by 9 percent in 2015, housing starts are expected to grow 14 percent and home price growth is expected to moderate, predicted CoreLogic’s Sam Khater. “The lower-end home price category is growing faster than ... Read More »

Fannie Mae’s 3 Percent Solution

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By Steve Cook   Aint this a great nation? Not so long ago federal housing policies were judged by their ability to require lenders to put “skin in the game”—to require make a large enough down payment to discourage defaults. Now, the FHFA has decided Fannie Mae will accept a 3 percent down payment for highly qualified borrowers to help ... Read More »

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