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Government Triples Payout to Servicers for Principal Reduction Under Revamp of HAMP


The Obama Administration has announced additional enhancements to the Making Home Affordable Program, including the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP). The Obama Administration has made a commitment to support American homeowners by providing refinancing opportunities for responsible homeowners, transitioning foreclosed properties into rental housing to help reduce the overhang of unsold homes, and providing states hardest-hit by the foreclosure crisis with resources to develop relief programs that work for their communities.Click to continue

Study Finds Nearly One Fourth of All Residential Properties Are Underwater


CoreLogic has released its second quarter negative equity data showing that 10.9 million, or 22.5 percent, of all residential properties with a mortgage were in negative equity at the end of the second quarter of 2011, down very slightly from 22.7 percent in the first quarter. An additional 2.4 million borrowers had less than five percent equity, referred to as near-negative equity, in the second quarter.Click to continue

California Sen. Boxer Introduces Legislation to Reduce the Barriers to Refi


U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) has introduced the Helping Responsible Homeowners Act of 2011, which would remove barriers that are preventing non-delinquent borrowers from refinancing their mortgages and taking advantage of historically low interest rates. The legislation aims to help borrowers who continue to make their mortgage payments on time, but whose homes have lost value during the real estate crisis.Click to continue

Trend Spotter: The top four ways to get fence-sitters to … jump!

Home_Money/Credit: Comstock

It’s no secret that mortgage rates are at record lows. But many so-called “gurus” are discouraging consumers from taking action. Just recently, a report was widely circulated suggesting that a whopping 62 percent of homeowners would NOT benefit by refinancing in spite of mortgage rates being at all-time lows. Don’t let all of the guru noise or Internet-babble fool you or your clients. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to cut through all the noise and motivate people to get moving before it’s too late!Click to continue

Freddie Mac quarterly survey finds fixed-rate top product for refinances

House in Hands Pic

Freddie Mac has announced that in the first quarter of 2010, refinancing borrowers overwhelmingly chose fixed-rate loans, regardless of whether their original loan was an adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) or a fixed-rate, according to Freddie Mac’s quarterly Product Transition Report. While 30-year fixed-rate mortgages are still the most preferred product chosen for the new loan, 15-year fixed-rate mortgages gained favor among refinancers who previously held 30-year fixed-rate mortgages, balloon mortgages and ARMs.Click to continue

The decade of the first-time homebuyer

First Time Homebuyers/Credit: Brand X Pictures

Wayne Gretzky, the National Hockey League Hall of Famer, once told a reporter, “A good hockey player plays where the puck is. A great hockey player plays where the puck is going to be.” This philosophy should be no different for a mortgage loan originator, since we too must adapt to the market environment around us. Where do you think the puck is going to be over the course of the next year (or 10) and how have you positioned yourself to take advantage of it?Click to continue

Consumer Mortgage Audit Center launches fulfillment division


As dropping interest rates push more Americans to refinance their mortgages, and as the FHA announces enhanced refinance guidelines to assist homeowners facing foreclosure, the Consumer Mortgage Audit Center has launched a fulfillment division to help banks and lenders handle more loan modification and refinancing requests, while reducing operating costs.Click to continue

The secondary market overview: From bonds to production ... Low rates and fences

Secondary Column Artwork

We have ended our perspective on what happened in the secondary markets with regard to the financial crisis. It is time to take a look at what is happening now. The stock market and certain financial measures are telling us that we are in the early stage of a recovery. For example, the Standard & Poor’s (S&P) Index has rallied from below 700 to over 1,000 from the low hit this spring, a swing of over 50 percent.Click to continue