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Author Archives: Tory Barringer

Tory Barringer began his journalism career in early 2011, working as a writer for the University of Texas at Arlington's student newspaper before joining the DS News team in 2012. In addition to contributing to DSNews.com, he is also the online editor for DS News' sister publication, MReport, which focuses on mortgage banking news.

Industry Professionals Weigh In On Ocwen Settlement

On Monday, the Atlanta-based firm—one of the biggest mortgage servicers in the nation and the largest subprime servicer—announced it had agreed to pay $150 million for homeowner relief over allegations it conducted improper foreclosure procedures, used outdated and conflicting systems in managing its portfolio, and was involved in transactions with related companies that constituted conflicts of interest.

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Freddie Mac’s Mortgage Portfolio Expands For Third Straight Month

After slipping in October, purchase and issuance activity picked up again, coming to $29.5 billion, Freddie Mac reported. That was offset by an increase in sales and liquidations, which whittled the portfolio's monthly increase to about $614 million. In other monthly changes, the unpaid principal balance (UPB) of Freddie Mac's mortgage-related investments portfolio fell by approximately $4.7 billion last month, a negative annualized growth rate of 14.0 percent.

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NeighborWorks America’s Board Chooses New CEO

NeighborWorks America announced the appointment of a new president and CEO, naming a longtime leader in the housing and community development field to the role. Effective January 20, Paul Weech will take the reins at the organization, allowing Chuck Wehrwein, current acting president and CEO, to return to his position as COO.

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Survey: Most Investors Would Rather Rent Homes Than Flip Them

The majority of investors who bought homes at auction last month intend to hold onto them as a source of rental income, according to a report from real estate marketplace Auction.com. Isolating online buyers, Auction.com found a preference in the group toward renting rather than flipping, though responses differed by region: Renting was easily was preferred choice for properties in the Midwest and South, barely edged out flipping in the West, and was less popular than flipping in the Northeast.

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Fed Announces Slow Approach to Interest Rate Increases in 2015

The Federal Reserve announced Wednesday that it intends to take a slow approach to raising interest rates in the coming year, even as the economy continues to strengthen. Given the current climate, the committee hinted that it will take steps to raise short-term interest rates in 2015, though it still would not commit to a timeframe, saying only that "it will likely be appropriate to maintain ... the [current] federal funds rate for a considerable period of time."

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MCS Valuations Announces Management Changes

Nationwide property preservation/inspection/REO property maintenance provider MCS Valuations (MCSV), LLC, has strengthened its management team to emphasize the company's focus on quality assurance and compliance, according to an announcement.

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Monitor Expresses Doubts About Servicer’s Internal Review Group for Settlement

Smith said his team launched an investigation in May after hearing from an employee about "serious deficiencies in Ocwen's internal review group process." The investigation included interviews with nine company executives and employees and a review of thousands of documents, he said. The monitor also said that he has taken steps to strengthen the review process of all servicers' review groups, including adding employee interviews, additional reviews at various steps in the testing process, and the establishment of an ethics hotline so that whistleblowers can easily and anonymously report concerns.

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