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Tag Archives: Foreclosure Prevention

YouWalkAway Explores Politics of Strategic Default

A foreclosure agency says borrowers may be encouraged to strategically default because they expect housing policies won't change over the next four years. In a survey of YouWalkAway.com customers, 47 percent said they believe the Obama administration had no effect on the foreclosure crisis. Due to the perception that housing issues are not a priority for the current administration, YouWalkAway says underwater homeowners who were previously undecided about strategically defaulting are choosing to do so given the election results.

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Trulia: Housing Recovery Nears Halfway Mark

The housing recovery is nearly halfway complete, according to Trulia's Housing Barometer, which in October posted its largest increase since it began tracking recovery 18 months ago. Trulia monitors delinquency and foreclosure rates, existing home sales, and construction starts and compares them with their worst points during the housing crisis and their normal pre-bubble levels. All three indicators showed improvement in October. Combining them, Trulia suggests the housing market is now 47 percent back to normal.

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Rising Prices Could Lift 3.5M Homeowners Out of Negative Equity

While almost one-quarter of homeowners remain underwater, rising home prices over the past year have some economists hopeful negative equity could begin to diminish in coming months. Negative equity is still crippling many homeowners and the wider economy, Capital Economics stated in a report. But, if home prices continue to rise, the global research firm sees the potential for 3.5 million homeowners to move out of negative equity positions over the next 12 months.

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FHA Revises Loss Mitigation Program

The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) announced revisions to parts of its loss mitigation program last week in order to expand the number of borrowers who can receive assistance. Through changes to the Loss Mitigation Home Retention Options, more homeowners in distress should be able to qualify for FHA foreclosure prevention efforts and the level of assistance available should also increase.

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October Marks 12 Months of Home Value Increases

October marks the 12th consecutive month of monthly home value increases, according to Zillow, which reported a 1.1 percent increase over the month. Home values were up even higher on an annual basis, climbing 4.7 percent over the year and representing the greatest increase since September 2006. Chicago was the only one of the 30 largest metro areas Zillow measures to experience a monthly decline in home values in October.

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Treasuy Report Outlines Evolution of SPOC

Since 2011 when Treasury required the largest servicers to develop a single point of contact (SPOC) for all homeowners working through loss mitigation as part of the Making Home Affordable program, servicers have begun to implement the new standard in various ways. The Treasury noted in a recent report the nine largest servicers participating in the program have implemented three different SPOC models. In total, the nine servicers Treasury observed have increased staffing and now have 12,000 SPOCs working to communicate with homeowners.

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Servicers Provide $26.1B in Mortgage Relief Through Settlement

Five mortgage servicers--Bank of America, Chase, Citi, Wells Fargo, and Ally--have provided over 300,000 borrowers with some form of mortgage relief as part of a settlement agreement, according to a report from settlement monitor Joseph A. Smith, Jr. As of September 30, 2012, the banks reported they have provided $26.1 billion in actual consumer relief. Short sales accounted for $13.13 billion of that amount. Part of the settlement agreement requires the banks to provide $20 billion in relief, but the servicers are not always credited on a dollar-for-dollar basis.

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New York AG Says Wells Fargo Policy ‘Likely’ Violates Settlement

In a letter, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman accused Wells Fargo of using Hurricane Sandy to evade obligations under the national mortgage settlement. According to the AG's letter, a law firm representing Wells Fargo released a letter stating the bank will suspend ""all Home Preservation reviews and decisions"" as a result of Hurricane Sandy. Schneiderman's letter was addressed to the CEO of Wells Fargo and demands that the bank ""immediately rescind"" the policy.

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Threat of Shadow Inventory Fades as Delinquencies, Foreclosures Decline

The foreclosure inventory rate fell to 4.07 percent in Q3 to the lowest level since the first quarter of 2009, according to the latest delinquency survey from the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA). In addition, the national delinquency declined to 7.40 percent, and the serious delinquency rate fell to 7.03 percent. In a commentary, Capital Economics suggested the combination of fewer homes in foreclosure and seriously delinquent loans points to a decline in shadow inventory.

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BofA Reaches $15.8B in Mortgage Relief Under Settlement Terms

Bank of America announced it's on track to fulfill consumer relief requirements as part of the national mortgage settlement within the first year of the three-year agreement. So far, the bank has completed or approved $15.8 billion in consumer relief for about 164,000 homeowners as of September 30. One form of consumer relief offered through the settlement is first-lien principal forgiveness, which BofA has offered to 30,000 customers, leading to $4.75 billion in principal reductions.

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