Read the latest news about mortgages, foreclosures, servicers, loan modifications, HAMP, Dodd-Frank, Qualified Residential Mortgage (QRM), mortgage brokers and more.
- JPMorgan's $13 Billion Settlement to Include Deadline for Assisting Homeowners
Washington Post 19 Nov 2013
As part of a tentative $13 billion settlement, sources say the U.S. government is set to impose a deadline for JPMorgan Chase to deliver consumer relief.
- Democrats Call on Regulators to Report on Foreclosure Review
American Banker 19 Nov 2013
Democratic legislators are prodding federal regulators to give details from an independent audit of millions of borrowers who faced foreclosure, even though the review process ended prematurely.
- Lawrence Co. Fined $240K for Predatory Lending
Banker & Tradesman 19 Nov 2013
Pinnacle Financial Consulting, based in Lawrence, Mass., and its owner, Robert Burton, have been fined $240,000 by a Suffolk Superior court for violating an order to stop its predatory lending practices. The office of Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley filed charges against the firm in March.
- HOPE NOW: Foreclosure Starts Down 42 Percent Compared to Last Year
MortgageOrb.com 19 Nov 2013
Lenders initiated an estimated 290,000 foreclosure proceedings in the third quarter, reports mortgage industry alliance HOPE NOW. The number is down more than 10 percent from 323,000 foreclosure starts in the previous three-month period and down about 42 percent from 499,000 in the 2012 third quarter.
- US CFPB Penalizes Republic Mortgage Insurance Over Illegal Kickbacks Practices
Insurance Business Review 18 Nov 2013
Republic Mortgage Insurance Corp. (RMIC) has drawn a $100,000 fine for allegedly feeding illegal kickbacks to home lenders under an arrangement that had gone on for more than 10 years.
- Homeowner Tax Benefits Seem Unlikely to Get Congress's Attention Before They Expire
Washington Post 16 Nov 2013
For the second consecutive year, key federal tax breaks for homeowners are about to expire; but little effort is being made to extend mortgage-forgiveness debt relief and deductions for mortgage insurance payments and home energy-efficiency retrofits beyond Dec. 31.
- More Cities Consider Using Eminent Domain to Halt Foreclosures
The New York Times 16 Nov 2013
Cities hard hit by the housing crash are showing interest in using eminent domain to halt foreclosure activity locally. Yonkers, near New York City, is expected to soon take up a resolution to study the use of eminent domain to reduce debt. Meanwhile, support for the practice is growing in Newark, N.J., and in the California markets of Oakland and Pomona.
- Fewer US Homes Repossessed by Lenders in October
Associated Press 15 Nov 2013
New data from RealtyTrac Inc. shows that fewer U.S. homes are completing the foreclosure process and being seized by banks. The main reason is because investors increasingly are snapping up such residences when they go on the public auction block.
- IRS Clarifies Short Sale Debt Forgiveness
Riverside Press-Enterprise 15 Nov 2013
Californians who underwent a short sale of their homes will not be charged a tax penalty for debt that has been forgiven as part of the deal, the Internal Revenue Service has confirmed.
- U.S. Consumer Borrowing Increases
Wall Street Journal 15 Nov 2013
Americans increased their borrowing in the third quarter -- a trend that could boost the economy -- while at the same time the nation's student loan tab also surpassed $1 trillion.
- Satisfaction With Mortgage Lenders Hits 7-Year High
Chicago Tribune 14 Nov 2013
Customer satisfaction with mortgage lenders increased to its highest level in seven years as companies eagerly competed for first-time homebuyers and other new clients, according to a new survey.
- Late-Payment Rate on Mortgages Down in 3Q
Associated Press 12 Nov 2013
Property price appreciation, favorable interest rates, and steady employment gains are helping more U.S. homeowners stay on top of their mortgage payments, reports TransUnion.
- Mortgage-Credit Availability Rises for First Time in Three Months
MarketWatch 12 Nov 2013
The Mortgage Bankers Association said that, in October, its index of mortgage credit availability registered the first improvement in three months.
- CFPB Launches Tool to Match Consumers With Reverse Mortgage Counselors
Reverse Mortgage Daily 11 Nov 2013
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) recently launched a tool to help people find local housing counseling agencies, including those that offer reverse mortgage counseling. The resource was released ahead of the January 2014 effective dates for the bureau’s new mortgage rules.
- Home Equity Lines Due for Reset May Be Looming Financial Disaster
Los Angeles Times 10 Nov 2013
A growing number of mortgage professionals are concerned that billions of dollars in home equity credit lines that were extended during the housing boom now could be on the brink of default. That is because the credit lines -- essentially second mortgages with floating rates and flexible withdrawal terms -- feature mandatory "resets" that require borrowers to begin paying both principal and interest on their balances after paying only interest for the first 10 years.
- Mortgage Delinquencies Hit Five-Year Low
Wall Street Journal 08 Nov 2013
Some 5.7 percent of residential mortgages were 90 days or more past due or in the foreclosure process in the third quarter, down from 7 percent a year ago, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.
- Foreclosure Mitigation Programs Assist 1.8M Homeowners
Housing Wire 08 Nov 2013
The White House's foreclosure mitigation programs continue to help millions of U.S. homeowners amid a robust residential real estate industry. Since it launched four years ago, the Making Home Affordable Program has helped more than 1.8 million Americans
- Utah Mortgage Lender Fined for Steering Customers Into Costlier Loans
Denver Post 07 Nov 2013
Utah-based Castle & Cooke Mortgage, which has a presence in nearly two dozen states, is accused of handing out 1,100 quarterly bonuses to 215 loan officers as a reward for signing customers up for more expensive loans, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) announced on Nov. 7.
- MortgageIT to Pay $12.1 Million in Mortgage Discrimination Settlement
American Banker 06 Nov 2013
MortgageIT, a former Deutsche Bank unit, has reached a $12.1 million settlement to resolve claims that it discriminated against African-American and Hispanic home loan applicants. The Department of Housing and Urban Development alleged that MortgageIT charged black and Hispanic borrowers higher interest rates and fees, while also rejecting a disproportionate number of their mortgage applications -- a violation of the Fair Housing Act.
- Owner of AZ Mortgage Firm Settles Fraud Cause With AG's Office
Phoenix Business Journal 06 Nov 2013
Stan Nii-Addo Allotey Jr., the owner of Arizona-based Mortgage Relief Group, has settled a consumer fraud case with Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne for $90,000. Under the terms of the agreement, he has been barred from conducting related business operations. Allotey and Mortgage Relief allegedly misled consumers into paying loan-modification service fees that ranged from $995 to $3,245, as well as upfront fees, by misrepresenting the ability to prevent foreclosure.