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Author Archives: Brittany Dunn

Texas Housing Market Shows Signs of Stabilization in Q1 2010

The Texas housing market may be on the road to recovery. According to the latest Texas Quarterly Housing Report released Monday by the Texas Association of Realtors, both sales and prices for homes in the Lone Star State increased on a year-over-year basis in the first quarter of this year. Sales volume for existing single-family homes was 42,682 for the first three months of 2010, up 4 percent from the same period in 2009. In addition, the median home price jumped 3.13 percent from $137,200 in the first quarter of last year to $141,500 in the first quarter of this year.

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Risks Continue to Hinder Commercial Real Estate Investment Activity

As for commercial real estate, now is the time to invest. But according to a report from the CCIM Institute and the Real Estate Research Corporation, various risks are hindering commercial real estate investors from doing so. Their report says 2010 is ""a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity"" to snag key long-term investments, but market factors such as diminished demand for commercial space due to high unemployment and declining rents are holding some investors back.

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PMI’s Index Shows Decline in Risk of Home Prices Heading Lower

PMI Mortgage Insurance Co. released its second quarter 2010 U.S. Market Risk Index Monday, which showed that the likelihood home prices will take another dive is steadily diminishing. The company found that the risk of falling home prices increased in only one of the 384 metros in its study. According to PMI, a combination of factors led to declining risk in most geographic areas, including affordability, a general improvement in mortgage credit quality, decreasing foreclosure rates, and a drop in excess housing supply.

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a la mode Expands Its SureDocs e-Signature Service

a la mode, inc. recently announced that it has broadened its SureDocs e-Signature system to include market-specific versions for appraisers and real estate agents. The company said the deployment of appraiser and agent versions of SureDocs, shortly after FHA's confirmation that it now accepts electronic signatures on third party documents, is a huge step forward in truly creating paperless loans with all of the documents being ""first generation"" electronic files.

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Prudential Launches New Loan Program for Multifamily Properties

Prudential Mortgage Capital Company, a commercial and multifamily mortgage finance business based in Newark, New Jersey, announced Friday that it has launched the Agency Gateway program, a new short term loan program for multifamily property owners seeking to refinance or acquire properties that do not currently qualify for a Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac permanent loan.

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Fannie Mae Changes Standards for Purchase and Securitization of ARMs

In an announcement Friday, Fannie Mae said it is changing the eligibility criteria for purchasing and securitizing adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) products. For ARMs with an initial period of five years or less, Fannie Mae will require that borrowers be qualified at the greater of the note rate plus 2 percent or the fully indexed rate (index plus margin). The company said it created these new standards to protect homeowners from potentially dramatic payment increases and to help ensure that borrowers who hold these types of mortgages can sustain them beyond the initial interest rate period

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Seth Wheeler Resigns From the Treasury Department

After two-and-a-half years, Seth Wheeler is resigning from his post as senior advisor for the U.S. Treasury Department. Wheeler, originally hired under former Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, was a key architect in the administration's Home Affordable Modification Program.

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Bank of America Enhances Its Home Loan Guide

In an effort to further educate consumers about the home buying process, Calabasas, California-based Bank of America Home Loans has unveiled an enhanced online home loan guide that includes customized tools on budgeting, affordability, and choosing the right kind of loan. The enhanced site includes interactive tools and calculators, the ability to save worksheets and information for use at a later date, and a new local mortgage loan officer finder.

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Borrowers Continue to Spend Minimal Time Researching Home Loans

Despite the wide-spread impact the mortgage meltdown has had on the U.S. economy, today's borrowers continue to spend very little time researching their home loan, a recent Zillow survey found. The survey of 2,729 adults, conducted on Zillow's behalf by Harris Interactive, found that borrowers are spending no more time researching a home loan today than they did in 2008.

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California to Implement Four Programs With Hardest Hit Funding

In a proposal submitted to the Treasury Department, the California Housing Finance Agency (CalHFA) detailed how it plans to use $699.1 million in federal aid made available through the administration's Hardest Hit Fund. According to the proposal, CalHFA will use the funds to implement four distinct programs, three designed to help California homeowners remain in their homes and one intended to help underwater homeowners transition out of their homes into more affordable housing.

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