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Study Finds the Dream of African-American Homeownership Remains Unsteady

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While historical barriers that excluded Black America from the homeowner market for decades have crumbled, there are signs that emerging types of racial inequality are making homeownership an increasingly risky investment for African-American home seekers. A new study from sociologists at Rice University and Cornell University found that African-Americans are 45 percent more likely than Whites to switch from owning their homes to renting them.Click to continue

Existing Home Sales Climb 2.6 Percent in June

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Existing-home sales increased in June and reached an annual pace of five million sales for the first time since October 2013, while rising inventory continues to push overall supply towards a more balanced market, according to the National Association of RealtorsTotal existing-home sales, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, climbed 2.6 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.04 million in June from an upwardly-revised 4.91 mClick to continue

U.S. Home Prices Up 0.4 Percent in May

Home Block Wood/Credit: Phil Ashley

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) reported that U.S. house prices rose 0.4 percent in May from the previous month. The April index value has been revised to reflect a 0.1 percent monthly price increase, above the original estimate of no change.Click to continue

Illinois Home Sales See Slight Uptick in June

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Illinois home sales reversed course in June with statewide home sales experiencing a slight year-over-year gain for the first time this year. Home prices continued to climb and marked the 22nd consecutive month of annual increases, according to the Illinois Association of Realtors (IAR).Click to continue

What About Those Consumers Who Fall Outside of QM?

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Just a few months into the era of qualified mortgage (QM) lending and loan origination levels are lows last seen in 2008. Stories about consumers who seem like they should be able to qualify, but are unable to secure an approval, are on the rise. There has already been a hearing on Capitol Hill regarding the potential QM pitfalls and there are several entities looking at ways to approve more consumers without repeating previous mistakes that led to the very tight lending standards now in place.Click to continue

The Credit Conundrum

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American consumers with poor credit face quite a conundrum and most of them don’t even know it. Consumers all share one basic need: Good credit. As well all know, good credit allows consumers to obtain credit and loans at the best interest rates. That means a consumer with good credit can shop around for the best rates. They have choices.

Bad credit equates to fewer choices for the consumer. Most lenders prefer consumers with good credit and offer such consumers the best interest rates and lending terms.Click to continue

Zillow Forecasts Three More Years of Home Price Recession

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Home values in half of the nation's 100 largest metro areas will not reach their pre-recession peak levels again for another three-plus years, according to the second quarter Zillow Real Estate Market Reports, proof that the recovery is still very much in its middle stages.Click to continue

Putting Freedom and Motivation Back Into Retail Lending

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A few years ago, researchers from the Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand studied data from 63 countries over a 40-year period and determined that it’s actually true: Money really doesn’t make people happy. Having freedom and autonomy, on the other hand, is much more effective at putting people in a positive mental state. Sure makes sense to me. In fact, I see the truth behind this theory everywhere I look.Click to continue

June Foreclosure Activity Hits Lowest Point Since 2006

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RealtyTrac released its Midyear 2014 U.S. Foreclosure Market Report, which shows a total of 613,874 U.S. properties with foreclosure filings—default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions—in the first half of 2014, a 19 percent decrease from the previous six months and down 23 percent from the first half of 2013. The report also shows that 0.47 percent of all U.S. housing units (one in 214) had at least one foreclosure filing in the first six months of the year.Click to continue