Mortgages Blog

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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Monday, September 26, 2011 4:26 pm
By Judy Martel · Bankrate.com

Homebuying conditions look great on paper, but a bunch of factors is preventing traditional first-time buyers or those looking to trade up from getting into the game. Consequently, the new buyers are more often investors with cash or cautious buyers of spec homes. We’re currently enjoying “the best housing affordability conditions in a generation,” according

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Monday, September 26, 2011 9:00 am
By Jay MacDonald · Bankrate.com

This month marks the third anniversary of the end of America’s financial system as we know it. No one is celebrating. Everyone is outraged. And the aggrieved are lined up seeking unprecedented billions of dollars in compensation. The foreclosure mess that resulted from reckless subprime lending and the subsequent packaging of those patently unsound mortgage

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Friday, September 23, 2011 2:46 pm
By Polyana da Costa · Bankrate.com

Lower interest rates were not enough to spur home sales and refinances last year, shows a study by the Federal Reserve. Even though mortgage rates in 2010 were significantly lower than in 2009, lenders originated about one million fewer mortgages last year than they did in 2009, according a report released Thursday. Mortgage loan originations

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