Archives for September 2010

Homes Selling Broadly Cheaper as Foreclosures

By Kevin Chiu Homes that had already been foreclosed represented nearly 1 in 4 sold during the second quarter of the year selling at broadly cheaper prices, according to RealtyTrac. Properties sold in some stage of foreclosure at more than 26% below average prices. Ohio residential foreclosures sold for an average discount of almost 43% in the quarter, the largest discount of any state. Deeply discounted foreclosure prices may drive … [Read more...]

Rentals Winning Out

In the face of the financial crisis, attitudes over renting versus buying a home are changing, according to numerous public opinion polls, including  a survey of  more than 2,700 website visitors by Apartments.com. “We are seeing vacancy rates drop, which means the rental market is improving,” said Chris Brown,  Apartments.com  vice president of product management. “Renting is becoming more popular, somewhat due to economic factors, but also … [Read more...]

Mortgage Rates Tie Record Low

By Kevin Chiu The rate on a 30-year fixed rate mortgage dropped to tie its all-time low averaging 4.32% for the week, according to Freddie Mac. But the rate on its companion 15-year fixed rate mortgage hit another record low. A 15-year mortgage can now be had for a record low of 3.75% with an average 0.7 point down from 3.82% last week. The Treasury indexed 5-year adjustable rate mortgage averaged 3.52% for the week, a .02 drop from last … [Read more...]

Mortgage Applications Drop as Interest Rates Decline

Applications to refinance mortgages declined for the fourth straight week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association. Mortgage applications on new home purchases also fell slightly, despite an increase in government purchase applications. The share of refinancing composed the majority of applications, 80.7% as mortgage rates decreased to 4.38% on 30 year fixed rate mortgage on contracts that were approved for financing. The rate hit a new … [Read more...]

TV Real Estate Guru Makes Investors Rich

The collapse in the housing market has created a new way of thinking among real estate investors. Money is no longer just being made by investors. It’s being shared among a new breed of entrepreneurs coached by the man whose book and motto is “Think a little different.” "I do everything I need to do at home,” said Carol Stinson, who joined TV real estate guru Dean Graziosi investor’s school to learn how to make a profit on homes. “Working … [Read more...]

Illegal Foreclosures Charged in Investigation

Members of Congress are fed up with bankers and Fannie Mae and they’re letting them know it. In a letter signed by three Democrats, including the leader of the banking over-sight committee chairman Barney Frank, lawmakers complained to Fannie Mae for retaining lawyers who run “foreclosure mills” that are being investigated for illegally foreclosing on the homes of hundreds of thousands of mortgage holders. Attorney generals in at least three … [Read more...]

Poll Respondents Expect More Housing Price Deflation

As fears over the financial crisis rise just weeks before mid-term U.S. elections, three out of 4 respondents surveyed feel that the housing market will decline in value as much as nearly half from its current levels, according to the latest Housing Predictor opinion poll. The finding clearly shows that Americans are extremely concerned about the nation’s economy and the housing market as the foreclosure crisis peaks hitting levels that have … [Read more...]

Initiative Would Keep Real Estate Tax Free

Only 13 states are without a tax on real estate sales and transfers. In these troubled economic times two of the remaining states have consumer driven campaigns to keep it that way, Missouri and Montana. An initiative outlawing such fees will appear on ballots in both states later this year. Consumers usually vote against tax issues, especially in times of economic stress. A coalition, headed by the Montana Association of Realtors is working … [Read more...]

Fannie Mae Will Pay Closing Costs

By Mike Colpitts Plagued by a record number of foreclosures, one of the nation’s giant mortgage lenders is offering to pay closing costs for home buyers in an effort to speed up home sales and get them off the troubled mortgage lender's books. Fearing political fallout, the government lender won’t help millions of Americans losing their homes to foreclosure, but Fannie Mae is now paying real estate agents and brokers extra bonuses to sell … [Read more...]

Low Rate Mortgages Unchanged

Mortgage rates remained mostly unchanged for the week, especially on a 30-year fixed rate loan, which averaged 4.37% nationally, the same as last week, according to Freddie Mac. It was the first time in months that rates remained unchanged. The rate on a 15-year fixed rate mortgage also remained unchanged for the week at 3.82%. A year ago the same mortgage averaged 4.46%. The near record low rates drove an increase in home sales during the … [Read more...]