Housing, the force that has lifted the economy from almost all previous recessions, now appears to have become the little engine that can’t, as the nation seeks to find another means of raising the U.S. from economic stagnation. One only has to look at the graphs (courtesy of Calculated Risk Blog) to see just how far . . . → Read More: The Little Engine That Can’t
Continued Struggles for Housing
As we wind up year four of the worst housing crisis since the Great Depression, the country still faces the issues of strategic default, principal forgiveness and the specter of moral hazards. It now seems obvious that waiting for an illusive housing recovery is an exercise in futility, for we’re no closer . . . → Read More: Strategic Default, Principal Forgiveness and the Specter of Moral Hazards
What if the housing market has already recovered? What if today’s sluggish market is the rate at which homes will be sold for ten years or longer? Could it be that the sales levels of the past decade were just an anomaly fueled by loose lending restrictions and the attraction to phantom “investment” opportunities? The bursting . . . → Read More: What if the Housing Market Has Already Recovered?
While HAMP, the administration’s foreclosure prevention program, has been a dismal failure, efforts in Pennsylvania demonstrate that government can create modification programs that work. And while the Pennsylvania program is dramatically more effective, it’s also much less costly to taxpayers and less of a hassle for lenders to administer.
What the Pennsylvania program demonstrates is that such . . . → Read More: Government Can Create Modification Programs That Work
Foreclosure Bargains in 2011
With the average foreclosed home in 2010 selling at a 28% discount from traditional sales, and with banks preparing to increase their sales of distressed properties, foreclosed homes will offer even greater bargains in 2011. Continuing sluggishness in the housing market, combined with high levels of inventory, should provide great buying opportunities . . . → Read More: Foreclosed Homes Will Offer Even Greater Bargains in 2011
In an interview today on Fox Business, Neil Barofsky, the special inspector general to the Troubled Assets Relief Program said that foreclosures are coming, millions of them. The TARP “watchdog” indicated that the government’s foreclosure relief program, HAMP isn’t working; and it now seems obvious to most that it was never expected to work. Citing uncooperative . . . → Read More: Foreclosures Are Coming, Millions of Them
With new rules from Treasury and pressure from investors, 2011 may be the year of the short sale. And while the Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternative, HAFA, was intended to speed up the short sale process, real estate agents and sellers know the program has been anything but speedy.
Speeding Short Sales
With millions of homeowners in serious . . . → Read More: 2011 May Be the Year of the Short Sale
An article in ProPublica describes how the foreclosure process has resumed, but that banks have added safeguards to counter issues of fraudulent or erroneous processing. However, a number of judges reviewing subsequent foreclosure cases have disagreed and threatened dismissal of any that are improperly filed.
Judges have also required that attorneys verify the accuracy of foreclosure documents . . . → Read More: Banks Add Safeguards to Counter Foreclosure Fraud
With all the hype over the foreclosure scandal and improperly signed foreclosure documents, perhaps we should expect banks to do robo-modifications. . . . → Read More: Why Shouldn’t Banks Try Robo-Modification?
With three years of struggle under our belts, are we ready to solve the housing crisis? Are we ready to accept a strategy that could help stabilize housing and begin to get the economy rolling again? Now that housing has become mired in yet another calamity (the the foreclosure scandal), are politicians, economists, pundits, and homeowners . . . → Read More: Are We Ready to Solve the Housing Crisis?