FHA may loosen limits on condo mortgages Revisions could remove at

Document Sample
FHA may loosen limits on condo mortgages Revisions could remove at Powered By Docstoc
					       The New York Times

Speeding up short sales
Beginning June 15, the Federal Housing Finance Agency, which regulates Fannie Mae and
Freddie Mac, will require both agencies to give short-sale buyers a final decision within 60 days.

Making sense of the story

      Under this same guideline, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac also must respond to initial
       requests for a short sale within 30 days of receiving the buyer’s submission.

      According to one analyst, expedited sales as a result of the new directive will benefit the
       entire housing market. They could also remove some risks for buyers – many of whom
       previously had to wait months for a decision and then ended up not getting the house
       they wanted.

      Lenders favor short sales because they are less costly and more efficient than
       foreclosures. Yet the homeowners, trying to exit as gracefully as possible, never know
       how long the process will take or how badly their credit will be hurt.

      Although short sales have a reputation for being easier on credit scores than
       foreclosures, Experian says that is a “fairly common misperception.” If there is a
       difference in impact, according to Experian, it is slight.

      Both short sales and foreclosures remain on the credit report for seven years, but
       foreclosures don’t appear until the legal paperwork is filed, and that could take months.

      The effect was measured by an analysis by VantageScore, a provider of credit scores
       used by lenders. The higher the credit rating a consumer has, the more points he or she
       would lose in a short sale.

      If consumers started with an 830 score, they would most likely lose 100 to 110 points
       from a short sale, 120 to 130 points from a foreclosure. But a homeowner with a 625
       score, who is behind on his mortgage and some credit card payments, would lose 15 to
       25 points from a short sale and 10 to 20 points from a foreclosure.

Read the full story

May 31, 2012
In other news …

       The Wall Street Journal

Getting the best refinancing deal
There has never been a better time to refinance a mortgage. Rates are at record lows. The
government is devising new programs to help homeowners. The economy and job market are
improving, albeit slowly.

Read the full story


Home prices lowest since 2002
Average home prices were down 2.6 percent from 12 months earlier in March, according to the
S&P/Case-Shiller home price index of 20 major markets. Home prices have not been this low
since mid-2002.

Read the full story


Foreclosed Americans find way back to homeownership
Data is not available, but interviews with lenders, builders, REALTORS®, and consumers
suggest that a growing number of Americans are getting back into the housing market, even
though they went through a foreclosure, bankruptcy, or short sale in recent years.

Read the full story

       The Los Angeles Times

FHA may loosen limits on condo mortgages
Revisions could remove at least some of the obstacles that have dissuaded condo homeowner
association boards from seeking approval or recertification of their buildings for FHA loans.

Read the full story

May 31, 2012

Foreclosures made up 26 percent of U.S. home sales in first quarter
Distressed properties that were either in default, scheduled for auction, or bank-owned
accounted for 26 percent of all residential sales during the first quarter, up from 22 percent in
the previous quarter and 25 percent a year earlier, RealtyTrac reported.

Read the full story

       The Wall Street Journal

Negative equity more widespread than previously thought
Nearly 16 million U.S. homeowners, or 31.4 percent of all homeowners with a mortgage, were
under water in 2012, according to Zillow’s negative equity report.

Read the full story

       Inman News

Most buyers open to REOs
Nearly two-thirds of potential home buyers surveyed by this month say they are
likely to buy a home that’s been through the foreclosure process, compared with 25 percent in
October 2009.

Read the full story

       The Los Angeles Times

Consumer confidence dipped in May
The Conference Board said Monday that consumer confidence fell in May for the third straight

Read the full story

May 31, 2012
Market Snapshot

C.A.R.’s monthly Market Snapshot offers REALTORS® information about the current market
and provides consumer-friendly charts and graphs. Market Snapshot is formatted as a PDF,
which members can customize with their photo, contact information, and other useful

Note: Market Snapshot must be edited using Adobe Acrobat Professional to ensure updates,
such as contact information, are saved. Using Adobe Reader will not save any changes made
to the document. Market Snapshot can be found on at

This month’s Market Snapshot, “Price in California Up for 2 Months in a Row,” features:

      Prices beginning to turn heads: The statewide median price was at $308,050 in April, up
       almost 5 percent over last April. It was the first time the median price was above the
       $300,000 mark in nearly a year and a half.

      California’s housing market faces tight inventory conditions: Unsold inventory is used to
       measure approximately how many months it will take to deplete the supply of homes on
       the market at the current sales pace. Currently, California’s housing market is running at
       4.2 months of supply, as compared to the long-run average inventory level of about 7

May 31, 2012