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Author Archives: Krista Franks Brock

Krista Franks Brock is a professional writer and editor who has covered the mortgage banking and default servicing sectors since 2011. Previously, she served as managing editor of DS News and Southern Distinction, a regional lifestyle publication. Her work has appeared in a variety of print and online publications, including Consumers Digest, Dallas Style and Design, DS News and DSNews.com, MReport and theMReport.com. She holds degrees in journalism and art from the University of Georgia.

Bill Aimed at Helping Underwater Homeowners Gains Support

The Helping Responsible Homeowners Act, which aims to help underwater homeowners refinance their loans at historically low interest rates, is gaining support. Sen. Barbara Boxer of California says her bill, which was introduced in January, is now being co-sponsored by Sen. Johnny Isakson of Georgia, who previously ran one of the largest independent real estate brokerages in the country. The Helping Responsible Homeowners Act would eliminate barriers blocking millions of non-delinquent homeowners from refinancing.

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RE/MAX Reports Increase in Prices and Sales in June

June marks the fourth straight month of increasing home prices while also showing a rise in sales transactions, according to RE/MAX's National Housing Report for June 2011. While demonstrating a 4.9 percent drop in prices on a year-over-year basis, the drop was smaller than it has been the previous three months. Closed transactions in June rose 7.4 percent from May but showed a year-over-year decline of 10.6 percent. The median sales price in June 2011 was $193,791, while the June 2010 median was $203,887.

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Weekly Mortgage Rates Fall as Unemployment Rises

As unemployment increased, mortgage rates decreased for the week ending July 14, according to Freddie Mac's weekly report released Thursday. ""Long-term bond yields and mortgage rates fell this week following a weak employment report,"" said Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist, Freddie Mac. ""The economy added 18,000 jobs in June, well below the market consensus forecast, and the unemployment rate rose to 9.2 percent, the highest since December 2010,"" he added.

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Foreclosure Time Decreases in Three West-coast States in June

Despite a recent trend in increasing foreclosure times, the average time it took to foreclose properties in California, Arizona, and Nevada decreased in June 2011, according to ForeclosureRadar. While monthly numbers decreased in three states, year-over-year numbers still show an increase in the five West-coast states included in the firm's monthly report. ForeclosureRadar covers Arizona, California, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington. Foreclosure filings decreased in the five states in Foreclosure Radar's report.

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Foreclosure Rates Decline on Both Quarterly, Annual Basis

The number of foreclosure filings for the second quarter of this year was the lowest reported since the fourth quarter of 2007, according to RealtyTrac's Midyear 2011 Foreclosure Market Report released Thursday. All categories of foreclosures showed decreases on both a quarterly and annual basis. June marked the ninth consecutive month in which foreclosure activity declined on a year-over-year basis.

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Bank of America Settlement in Question

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is seeking client information from several companies as part of an investigation into Bank of America's recent proposed $8.5 million settlement. Schneiderman specifically asked for lists of clients affiliated with New York government agencies, public authorities, and nonprofit and charitable organizations. At the same time, Walnut Place LLC filed a petition contesting the proposed Bank of America settlement. The group expressed their concerns over the secrecy in which the proposed settlement was negotiated.

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Bankers Pessimistic About Future of Mortgage Delinquencies

FICO's second-quarter survey of bank risk professionals reveals pessimism in regards to expected mortgage delinquencies in the second half of 2011. While 46 percent of respondents expected mortgage delinquencies to rise over the next six months, 18 percent expected them to decline. The numbers were similar in regards to delinquencies on home equity lines of credit, where 46 percent of respondents expected delinquencies to rise, while 22 percent expect them to decline. Bankers were somewhat optimistic about consumer credit.

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Connecticut Senator Announces Investigation into Foreclosure Practices

Senator Richard Blumenthal, D-Connecticut, announced an investigation of mortgage servicers Monday. The investigation will be conducted through the Senate Judiciary Committee and will examine foreclosure policies and procedures at top mortgage servicers. ""The rate of foreclosure and families that struggle with their mortgage payments is one of the single largest barriers to economic recovery that we still see today,"" Blumenthal says.

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