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New York State Launches Probe Into Hard Money Predatory Lenders

Scales of Justice/Credit: Thomas Northcut

Benjamin M. Lawsky, Superintendent of Financial Services, announced that the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS) is launching an investigation into possible predatory lending practices by companies that originate short-term, high-interest loans to New Yorkers secured by a borrower’s home or other real estate – a practice known as hard money lending.Click to continue

The Viability of GSE Recapitalization


During a recent National Housing Conference Annual Policy Symposium in Washington, D.C., Treasury Undersecretary Mary Miller discussed the uncertain future of the government-sponsored entities (GSEs). She also covered the basics of the post-economic disaster and its meager, slow-moving recovery.Click to continue

Illinois AG Madigan Files Suit Against Safeguard Properties for Improper Foreclosure Tactics


Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan has filed a lawsuit against Safeguard Properties LLC for illegally evicting struggling Illinois homeowners by breaking into their homes, changing locks to bar residents from re-entry, and shutting off utilities well before a foreclosure is finalized. Madigan filed her lawsuit in Cook County Circuit Court against Safeguard, a Delaware corporation based in Ohio.Click to continue

National Credit Default Rates Marginally Increase in July

Credit Cards Pic

Data through July 2013, released today by S&P Dow Jones Indices and Experian for the S&P/Experian Consumer Credit Default Indices, a comprehensive measure of changes in consumer credit defaults, showed increase in national default rates during the month. The national composite was 1.35 percent in July, up from 1.34 percent in June. The first mortgage was 1.25 percent in July, up from 1.23 percent posted last month. The second mortgage remained flat since last month at its historic low of 0.54 percent.Click to continue

Flagstar to Begin Outsourcing Mortgage Servicing


Flagstar Bancorp Inc. has announced its plan to shift the focus of its mortgage servicing business to performing servicing assets. Flagstar has made the decision to outsource its non-core default servicing business, which represents less than four percent of its overall servicing book, to a recognized servicer that specializes in this area. This is part of Flagstar's ongoing strategy to deliver improving performance while maintaining its commitment to its national mortgage business and community banking in Michigan.Click to continue

Wharton School Professor Pushes for Complete Dissolution of the FHA

Home Block Wood/Credit: Phil Ashley

Joseph Gyourko’s recent white paper, entitled “Rethinking The FHA” begins with a bold statement: “The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) has failed by any reasonable metric.” Click to continue

First Mortgage Default Rate Drops to 1.58 Percent in January, While Seconds Remain Unchanged

Home Atop Cash/Credit: Creatas

Data through January 2013, released by S&P Dow Jones Indices and Experian for the S&P/Experian Consumer Credit Default Indices, a comprehensive measure of changes in consumer credit defaults, showed a decrease in national default rates during the month. The national composite was 1.63 percent in January 2013, down from 1.72 percent in December 2012. The first mortgage default rate moved down to 1.58 percent in January, from 1.68 percent in December. The second mortgage rate was unchanged at 0.69 percent since December.Click to continue

Two LOs Indicted in Straw Buying Scheme

Courthouse/Credit: Photodisc

Two mortgage loan officers have been sentenced in federal court for recruiting straw buyers to purchase properties at inflated prices and then distributing the excess loan funds among themselves, the straw buyers, and others involved in the scheme. United States District Court Judge Joan N. Ericksen sentenced Chad Arthur Anderson and Troy Allen Huston, both of Chisago City, to federal prison terms of 60 months and 57 months, respectively, on one count of conspiracy to commit mortgage fraud through the use of interstate wires.Click to continue

Foreclosures Starts Drop to 71-Month Low

Foreclosure Dictionary Pic

RealtyTrac has released its U.S. Foreclosure Market Report for November 2012, which shows foreclosure filings—default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions—were reported on 180,817 U.S. properties in November, a decrease of three percent from October and down 19 percent from November 2011—marking the 26th consecutive month with an annual decrease in foreclosure activity. The report also shows one in every 728 U.S. housing units with a foreclosure filing during the month.Click to continue