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Americans Strongly Support Government Housing Initiatives: Survey

Americans remain strongly committed to federal support for homebuyers, and many believe the government should provide more protection against foreclosure, according to the results of a recent survey published by the National Association of Home Builders. Thirty-three percent of those surveyed say they are planning to buy a home in the near future. Personal financial concerns, as well as weakness in the housing market itself, were cited as reasons this statistic wasn't higher.

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U.S. Treasury Advisors Join The Cypress Group

One of the first senior-level officials to leave the Treasury Department since President Obama took office is headed to The Cypress Group as a congressional lobbyist. Damon Munchus, who served as the deputy assistant secretary for banking and finance, will open the Cypress Group's New York office as a managing director. The firm is also opening an office in Dallas headed by Jeb Mason, managing director. Mason served as the Treasury's deputy assistant secretary for business affairs under former Secretary Henry M. Paulson, Jr.

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DepotPoint and AssetPlanUSA Partner to Enable Short Sales

The U.S. government is encouraging short sales as a solution to the nation's still-growing foreclosure crisis, but insight from industry players indicates that borrowers and lenders alike are having trouble executing short sale transactions. To help lenders and servicers educate troubled borrowers on the benefits of opting for a short sale, DepotPoint and AssetPlanUSA have joined forces.

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Florida’s Home, Condo Sales Skyrocket in January

On a year-over-year basis, both existing-home and condo sales in the Sunshine State notably increased in January, according to the latest housing data released by Florida Realtors. Existing-home sales surged 24 percent, and existing-condo sales soared 81 percent.

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Illinois’ Home Sales Surge 14 Percent in January

It's still a buyers' market in Illinois. According to a recent report by the Illinois Association of Realtors (IAR), January marked the fifth consecutive month of growth in year-over-year home sales, while the statewide median price logged its first move upward since September 2007.

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FDIC Selling $610M in Seized Loans

The FDIC is preparing to auction off a portfolio of loans it acquired from 19 failed bank takeovers. According to a preliminary announcement regarding the sale, the portfolio consists primarily of residential real estate acquisition, development, and construction loans with unpaid principal balances totaling approximately $610 million. About 80 percent of the loans are past due and classified as nonperforming.

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Wachovia Awarded $10.5 Million in Foreclosure Judgment

Charlotte-based Wachovia Corp., the No. 1 bank in Raleigh-Durham market share, recently won a $10.5 million foreclosure judgment against a Homestead, Florida trailer park owner who planned to build an apartment complex on the property, Triangle Business Journal reported Monday.

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Administration’s Refinance Program Gets One-Year Extension

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) is extending the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) through June 30, 2011. HARP is a key component of the Obama administration's foreclosure prevention efforts. It provides mortgage refinancing to borrowers whose homes have lost value and now find themselves owing more than the home is worth. Several industry groups have been lobbying FHFA to extend the program, arguing that it keeps creditworthy, performing borrowers out of unnecessary foreclosure.

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RealtyTrac Partners with Social Networking Forum

Irvine, California-based RealtyTrac, an online marketplace for foreclosure properties, recently announced a strategic partnership with Atlanta-based RealtyJoin, a new social networking site that allows real estate investors to connect with agents, brokers, and other real estate professionals.

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