Archive | February, 2010

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Freddie Mac foresees large wave of foreclosures

Posted on 25 February 2010 by Aaron Hofmann

Freddie Mac, one of the two big mortgage finance companies taken over by the government, announced earnings today. It reported a net loss of $6.5 billion, which is great compared to a net loss of $23.9 billion in the same quarter a year ago, but a loss is a loss. So we’re talking semantics when a $6.5 billion loss is an improvement.

For the full year, Freddie Mac posted a $21.6 billion loss, less than half the $50.1 billion in lost in 2008.

Freddie Mac (NYSE: FRE) says it ended the quarter with a net worth of $4.5 billion and, as a result, did not require additional funding from the Treasury Department. It was the third straight quarter Freddie Mac did not need to tap the Treasury Department’s lifeline.

But all may not be well in Smallville. Freddie Mac CEO Charles Haldeman Jr. pointed out the risk of a potential large wave of foreclosures on the horizon.

The likelilhood of a rise in foreclosures is a very real issue and as loan modifications continue to have almost no impact, the only likely solution will be more short sales. If you find yourself in need of assistance, our team of Certified Distressed Property Experts are here to assist you. Be sure to contact us for assistance. This is a very real problem and we’re here to help.

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Short Sales Expected to Increase Significantly

Posted on 15 February 2010 by Aaron Hofmann

Federal and mortgage industry officials are increasingly looking for ways to get distressed borrowers to leave their homes voluntarily, without going through the expensive foreclosure process or a messy eviction.

Citigroup, for instance, plans to announce a pilot program on Thursday that would allow delinquent borrowers who don’t qualify for or decline mortgage relief the opportunity to stay in their homes without making payments for up to six months before turning over the keys, in return for keeping the property in good condition.

Other initiatives have also emerged for borrowers likely to lose their homes. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the mortgage financing companies, developed programs allowing former homeowners to become renters after a foreclosure or other proceedings.

As part of its federal foreclosure prevention program, known as Making Home Affordable, the Treasury Department announced late last year that lenders would be eligible for $1,000 in exchange for allowing borrowers to sell their home in a short sale.

In such deals, the borrower sells the home for less than the outstanding mortgage, and the lender forgives the difference.

Moody’s Economy.com has forecast that the number of short sales and transactions in which borrowers surrender their deed in lieu of foreclosure will increase more than 50 percent, to about 490,000, this year. That is just a fraction of the 1.9 million homeowners Moody’s has forecast will lose their homes to foreclosure this year, up from 1.7 million last year.

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Foreclosure Filings Down, Expected to Surge

Posted on 12 February 2010 by Aaron Hofmann

Forecasts are coming in, that despite mortgage foreclosure filings in the country dropping in January, projecting  a surge in foreclosures due to the ongoing impact from unemployment rates and uncertainty over the economy.

One in every 409 U.S. housing units received a foreclosure filing in January, Irvine, California-based RealtyTrac said in its January 2010 U.S. Foreclosure Market Report.

Foreclosures are definitely the biggest threat U.S. housing market recovery.

Many lawmakers, advocacy groups and housing experts say the government’s Home Affordable Modification Program, or HAMP, has fallen short because of its failure to adequately address negative equity, or “underwater” mortgages.

Negative equity has been one of the biggest banes of many homeowners, making many unqualified for home loan refinancing and preventing some from selling their homes. Borrowers in negative equity are more prone to defaults and foreclosures.

Slowing the foreclosure rate is a key step in the recovery of the real estate market and the overall economy. The foreclosure crisis forced the federal government and several states to come up with plans to prevent or delay the process to help delinquent borrowers.

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