Mortgages Blog

Wednesday, October 12, 2011 3:24 pm
By Judy Martel · Bankrate.com

As the housing crisis drags on, the government is seeking to ease out of the mortgage business and let the private sector take control. That worries some analysts who don’t want to see any more potential setbacks in a recovery. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the two largest mortgage companies, have had their troubles since

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Tuesday, October 11, 2011 10:45 am
By Polyana da Costa · Bankrate.com

The mortgage banking industry wants to win your trust back. Lenders and servicers realize their reputation is tainted but they say they are determined to reverse that. That was a common theme among lenders who spoke during the first day of the Mortgage Bankers Association, or MBA, annual meeting in Chicago. Many in the crowd of

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Monday, October 10, 2011 4:59 pm
By Judy Martel · Bankrate.com

Mortgage rates hit a new record low in last week’s Bankrate survey, but homeowners still aren’t biting, as proven by a drop in applications for new mortgages and refinance loans. Homebuyers are holding back, for sure, as home prices keep falling and lenders continue their reluctance to extend a mortgage to anyone without stellar credit

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Monday, October 10, 2011 9:00 am
By Jay MacDonald · Bankrate.com

A federal program to help unemployed homeowners avoid foreclosure has come to a disappointing end with less than half of its $1 billion spent and two-thirds of its anticipated recipients receiving nothing. The Emergency Homeowners’ Loan Program, which grew out of Wall Street reform legislation, was to provide forgivable HUD loans for an estimated 30,000

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Friday, October 7, 2011 10:28 am
By Polyana da Costa · Bankrate.com

The U.S. labor market has shown signs of improvement. Employers added 103,000 jobs in September. That’s substantially better than the 60,000 jobs many economists had predicted. Good for the economy. Not so good for mortgage rates. Revised figures for August and July also were welcome news. Instead of  the zero new jobs that had been

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Wednesday, October 5, 2011 4:03 pm
By Judy Martel · Bankrate.com

Last month I wrote about European villas for sale at reduced prices in popular vacation spots. Here in the U.S., it’s much the same story, as brokers report an uptick in interest from homebuyers in luxury enclaves like Palm Beach, Fla. And Vail, Colo. According to the Wall Street Journal, sales in Palm Beach were

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Monday, October 3, 2011 5:04 pm
By Judy Martel · Bankrate.com

It’s called a deficiency judgment and it’s a nightmare for former homeowners who thought they were free of a mortgage after the bank foreclosed on their property. Since foreclosed homes hardly ever sell for an amount that covers the outstanding loan, 41 states plus the District of Columbia allow lenders to sue the homeowners for

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Wednesday, September 28, 2011 4:53 pm
By Judy Martel · Bankrate.com

The deeper the banks go to uncover faulty or fraudulent mortgage transactions conducted during the housing boom, the uglier it gets. Accounts of mortgage fraud skyrocketed by 88 percent in the second quarter of this year, according to a report from the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network of the Treasury Department, the agency in charge of

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Wednesday, September 28, 2011 9:58 am
By Polyana da Costa · Bankrate.com

Mortgage rates have bounced back from their record lows last week. After the Fed announced plans last Wednesday to implement Operation Twist and buy $400 billion in long-term securities, many in the mortgage industry expected rates to fall. They tumbled. But the party was short-lived. The yields on 10-year Treasury notes and on Freddie Mac

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Tuesday, September 27, 2011 3:59 pm
By Polyana da Costa · Bankrate.com

Home prices increased 0.9 percent in July compared to June, according to the latest Standard & Poor’s Case-Shiller home price index. Try using that to cheer up a home seller whose house is worth about 30 percent to 50 percent less than in 2006.  While home prices have improved slightly for four months in a row, they

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