Monday Morning Cup of Coffee takes a look at news crossing HousingWire's weekend desk, with more coverage to come on bigger issues.
RES.NET, a provider of software applications, now provides its REO Portal to Chicago-based Fay Servicing, a special servicer and mortgage originator, giving Fay’s clients access to an expansive agent network and vendors, as well as convenient, customizable operating tools to allow compliancy while maintaining efficiencies.
“We assessed several systems to manage our REO assets, and RES.NET proved the most robust and easy-to-use platform,” said Glenn Brooks, SVP at Fay Servicing. “The data points we capture through RES.NET allow us to seamlessly create detailed reporting for our clients as well as internally manage our aggressive timelines for the REO portfolio.”
Fay Servicing also benefits from enhanced, customizable fields within RES.NET’s REO Portal, which allow the company to capture specific data points at each stage of REO management.
“Under such tight regulatory oversight, more servicers like Fay are leaning on trusted industry partners to help manage their assets in a way that is efficient as well as transparent,” said Keith Guenther, CEO of USRES and RES.NET. “Our goal is to help our clients balance their business needs and compliance requirements with customizable solutions and completely programmable, tailored technology to ensure they can offer the best possible service.”
Speaking of big news, this morning, the Bipartisan Policy Center kicks off its 2014 Housing Summit in Washington, D.C.
The two-day event will feature leading housing policy and economic experts from around the country. The agenda can be viewed here.
HousingWire is the exclusive trade media partner for the Bipartisan Policy Center during the event and HousingWire staff will be providing up-to-the-minute coverage.
Paying off the mortgage isn’t the priority it once was, the New York Times reports. In fact, for some homeowners it isn’t even a possibility.
A new report from Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies reaffirms the common belief that retirees who own their homes outright are considerably better off than those carrying mortgages or paying rent.
The report, called “Housing America’s Older Adults,” focuses on the changes needed to supply sufficient affordable housing for the country’s 50-and-over population, which is projected to increase about 20% by 2030.
About a third of mortgaged households of people between the ages of 50 and 64 are moderately to severely burdened by housing costs, which include property taxes, insurance and utilities, the report said.
With new mortgage-form requirements going into effect in less than a year, and technology offering solutions to make loan paperwork simpler for consumers and lenders, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Richard Cordray took some time to address those issues this week, CUNA reports.
"The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has enjoyed a great relationship with credit unions. We see eye-to-eye on many things, most of all that we both aim to serve Americans who are not only your members but also the consumers we work so hard to protect," Cordray said.
The bureau's new mortgage disclosure forms will take effect Aug. 1, 2015, and Cordray provided some details of the program.
"These new forms will enable consumers more readily to spot crucial information that demands their focus, such as the interest rate, monthly payments and total closing costs, as well as any special risk factors that could lead to payment increases over time," Cordray said. "The underlying premise for both the loan estimate and the closing disclosure is that consumers will be better able to understand the mortgages they are buying and the costs they are paying."
American Thinker has a great piece on how housing needs to be honest about the symptoms and real causes of the great housing crash.
To cure both the housing industry and the congenitally weak economy requires an honesty and clarity which “will not cast redistributionist progressive actions in good light. It was, in fact, precisely progressive policy that caused this horrendous state of affairs.”
American Thinker contends that the prescriptions that have been written by the Obama Administration to date have failed to cure the problems; they will continue to fail because their diagnosis has been ideologically corrupted and politically prejudiced from the beginning.
Here's the reality, the publication contends.
“In addition to redistributing wealth and income (welfare) and redistributing outcomes (affirmative action), Democrats sought to redistribute home mortgage loans, which I call ‘affirmative credit’,” the publication says. “With the naming in 1999 of long-time Democrat operative Franklin Raines as its CEO, Democrats turned Fannie Mae into a campaign machine.They redistributed hundreds of billions in mortgage credits by undercutting traditional credit standards... reducing down payments to zero, weakening income and credit score requirements; creating Liar's Loans and No Docs. The goal was to make credit available to people who could never have qualified for a mortgage before, and it succeeded.”
This created a huge swell of new housing demand, which drove the housing market into the bubble we all recall. Weak borrowers, however, always create delinquencies, then foreclosures, which destroyed the mortgage derivatives those "Alt-A" and "Sub-Prime" loans underwrote, which in turn destroyed the financial institutions that held the derivatives.
It blew up in the Democrats' faces.
And unfortunately, there are plenty pushing for similar policies once again.
The market for luxury homes is booming, while the rest of the housing market seems to have stalled, as rising home prices, tougher mortgage rules, and low inventories putting the brakes on buying activity, the Motley Fool reports.
As more buyers rush to snap up multi-million dollar properties, these gems are spending much less time on the market, as well. Often, the higher the price, the more quickly the property sells.
The upward trend in home prices over the past two years appears to be slackening, and some analysts are calling the market overvalued. Many expect price gains to slow appreciably beginning next year, perhaps to the point where they do not rise at all.
This week will see the release of the National Association of Home Builders housing market index. The reading for August came in at a very solid 55, up two points from July for the best reading since January. All components improved, led by future sales, up two points to 65, and followed by present sales, also up two points to 58. Up three points is the lagging component of traffic which, at 42, shows its best reading since December.
Thursday will also see the release of the Census Bureau report on housing starts. Starts for July jumped to an annualized pace of 1.093 million units-up from 0.945 million units the prior month. July was up a sharp 15.7% monthly, after dipping 4% in June. July's pace was the highest level since November 2013.
The problem is, most all of the strength was led by the multifamily component which surged 28.9%. The single-family component showed health with an 8.3% rebound after falling 4.4% in June.
The FDIC reported no banks closed for the week ending Sept. 12, 2014.