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Author Archives: Aly J. Yale

Aly J. Yale is a longtime writer and editor from Texas. Her resume boasts positions with The Dallas Morning News, NBC, PBS, and various other regional and national publications. She has also worked with both the Five Star Institute and REO Red Book, as well as various other mortgage industry clients on content strategy, blogging, marketing, and more.

Detroit Tops Single-Family Investments List

According to Q1 data, Detroit offers investors the highest gross yield when it comes to single-family properties. The city came in No. 1 out of the nation’s top 25 metros, with a 17 percent average gross yield for the quarter. Cleveland and Milwaukee came in at No. 2 and No. 3, respectively. Detroit also had the highest number of investor purchases over the last year, indicating increasing interest in the market.

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New Professional Requirements, Tech Could Improve Appraisals

The real estate appraisal process has long been bemoaned as slow, inefficient, and more advantageous to cash buyers, but according to appraisal experts at a recent panel discussion, there are ways to change that. Among them? Streamlining the process, reevaluating professional requirements, and adopting new technologies. Data shows that the number of licensed appraisers has dropped significantly over the last decade, due to volatility in the industry. Changing up licensing requirements could alleviate this issue.

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First-time Foreclosure Starts Hit All-time Low

According to new data, both overall foreclosure starts and first-time foreclosure starts recently hit record lows, with first-time starts hitting their lowest point on record at just 24,200. Foreclosure pre-sale inventory also dropped steeply for the month, falling 3.47 percent. The states with the highest share of delinquent loans were Mississippi, Louisiana, Alabama, West Virginia, and Maine. Mississippi had the most seriously delinquent loans.

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Ocwen Ratings to Remain Despite Sale

Fitch Ratings has opted to keep Ocwen Financial Corporation’s ratings as-is—both on its servicing and its bonds—despite the servicer’s recent MSR sale. Announced last month, Ocwen will sell its mortgage servicing rights, along with $117 billion in unpaid principal balance, and become a sub-servicer of New Residential Investment Corporation. Regardless of the sale, Fitch has announced Ocwen will keep its “Negative” residential primary servicer rating.

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Secretary Carson Makes Rounds During Homeownership Month

HUD Secretary Ben Carson is preparing for a big June as he kicks off the newly proclaimed National Homeownership Month with a forum at his own agency today. He’ll also go before Congress next week to discuss potential HUD budget cuts via Trump’s recent 2018 budget blueprint, which slashes the agency’ funding by more than $6 billion. The cuts will also significantly reduce HUD’s rental assistance program, which Carson recently discussed in a Sirius XM radio interview.

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Industry Group Takes Step Toward Diversity

Thanks to one of REO’s biggest professional groups, the mortgage industry has taken a significant step in diversity and inclusion. The Federation of REO Certified Experts announced the launch of its Diversity Council on Wednesday, a group that aims to “advance conversations on diversity and inclusion.” The group is made up of six committees, including ones for Latino, African American, women, LGBT, veteran, and Asian REO professionals.

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Appeals Court Dismisses LA Case v. BofA, Wells

Suits claiming Bank of America and Wells Fargo engaged in discriminatory lending practices in the city of Los Angeles were dismissed this week by an appellate panel in New York. Filed by the city of LA, the suits alleged the two banks targeted minority buyers with more expensive and riskier loans than white borrowers. The appellate panel ultimately sided with the original district court rulings, which stated the city failed to establish a strong enough link between the bank’s policies and any racial disparity in local homeownership.

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Reverse Mortgage Complaints Common for Older Americans

The latest CFPB Monthly Complaint Report shows older Americans face a unique set of financial difficulties compared to their younger counterparts. The group regularly cites reverse mortgage concerns—specifically servicing issues and difficult changing loan terms—when lodging complaints with the CFPB. Older Americans also cite financial scams, confusion around deferred- and zero-interest credit cards, and being charged unauthorized add-on products as frequent financial complaints.

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Defects on the Rise, Highest in North Dakota

Loan application defects are on the rise across the country, particularly in North Dakota, Montana, and Vermont. According to an expert economist, it’s riskier lending practices—both on purchases and refinances—that are to blame. McAllen, Texas, and Knoxville, Tennessee, came in the with highest frequency of defaults in terms of metro markets.

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Carson: The Right Mindset Can Overcome

According to HUD Secretary Ben Carson, with “the right mindset,” many of the low-income citizens using his department’s services could cease to need them. Carson said as much in a recent radio interview, when he talked poverty, housing, and the role the government should play in both. The interview comes on the back of President Trump’s recent 2018 budget blueprint, which includes more than $6 billion in cuts to the HUD budget.

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