ARE WE ON THE RIGHT TRACK?

ARE WE ON THE RIGHT TRACK?

foreclosure-montageEight national banks,  Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Citibank, HSBC, OneWest Bank, PNC, U.S. Bank, and Wells Fargo  saw the performance of their first-lien mortgages improved in the fourth quarter of 2014, while the delinquency rate on those mortgages and the foreclosure activity continued to decline, according to a quarterly report on mortgage performance by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) released Friday.

The mortgages covered in the report comprised about 45 percent of all outstanding residential mortgages in the United States – about 23.1 million mortgages with principal balances totaling about $3.9 trillion as of December 31, 2014.

Foreclosure inventory dropped by 39.7 percent year-over-year in Q4 down to 315,022, and Home retention actions, which included modifications, trial period plans, and shorter-term payment plans, totaled 195,577 in Q4, a decline of 19.5 percent year over year.

What do you think…

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House Price Index Up 0.3 Percent in January

House Price Index Up 0.3 Percent in January

Prices-going-up-graphic-2U.S. house prices rose in January, up 0.3 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from the previous month, according to the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) monthly House Price Index (HPI). The previously reported 0.8 percent change in December was revised downward to a 0.7 percent change.

The FHFA HPI is calculated using home sales price information from mortgages sold to or guaranteed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. From January 2014 to January 2015, house prices were up 5.1 percent. The U.S. index is 3.5 percent below its March 2007 peak and is roughly the same as the December 2005 index level.

Existing home sales slightly rebound

Existing home sales slightly rebound

Why this is a great time to sell your home?

 This is a great time to sell your home!

Total existing-home sales, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, rose 1.2% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.88 million in February from 4.82 million in January. Sales are 4.7% higher than a year ago and above year-over-year totals for the fifth consecutive month.

Mortgage Rates plummeted today after Fed’s announcement

While the average improvement of 0.10% might not look like much at face value, it’s the biggest Finding-a-refinance-rate-for-your-homeone-day drop we’ve had in 2015, and in a league with very few other players historically.

With today’s improvement, the most prevalently-quoted conventional 30yr fixed loan for top tier borrowers falls back to 3.75%.   Some lenders will remain at 3.875% today, but many feel that  those lenders held back from passing on the full effect of the market movement not an uncommon occurrence after a volatile swing like today’s.

Why Borrowers Pay For Mortgage Insurance…

Why Borrowers Pay For Mortgage Insurance…

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Because of the risk on default and loss of the loan. Lenders require private mortgage insurance known as PMI on mortgages with down payments less than 20% from the purchase price.

If lenders paid for mortgage insurance and passed on the cost to borrowers as a higher interest rate, they might have bumped up against those ceilings. If the borrower paid the premium, this potential roadblock is avoided.

Generally, the larger the loan amount, the more risky it is to the lender. Private mortgage insurance is protection for the lender against a borrower defaulting on the loan. If the borrower can’t pay back the loan, the lender has a way to get its money back.

$4.5 Billion on Delinquent Debt ready to Hit the Market

$4.5 Billion on Delinquent Debt ready to Hit the Market

Three of the nation’s largest mortgage lenders have put sizable packages of nonperforming and reperforming mortgage loans on the realestatehousemoneymi600-resize-600x338 market for investors to buy, according to New York Mission Capital Advisors.

Bank of America has put up approximately $2.56 billion worth of delinquent debt for sale, including nonperforming loans, reperforming mortgages (those in which the borrower was 90 days or more behind but has resumed making payments), and home equity lines of credit (HELOCs), according to Mission Capital.

Citigroup has put up $1.8 billion worth of reperforming mortgages for sale, and JPMorgan Chase is looking for a buyer for $143 million worth of nonperforming mortgage loans, Mission Capital said. Last month, Freddie Mac announced that it intended to sell $410 million worth of delinquent mortgage loans. But there has been so much of a demand that the suppliers cannot keep up, Mission Capital said.

Two new regulations affecting Homeowners will increase energy efficiency standards.

Energy Efficiency

Every year, much of the energy the U.S. consumes is wasted through transmission, heat loss and inefficient technology costing American families and businesses money, and leading to increased carbon pollution.   Energy efficiency is one of the easiest and most cost-effective ways to combat climate change, clean the air we breathe, improve the competitiveness of our businesses and reduce energy costs for consumers.

The Department of Energy is working with universities, businesses and the National Labs to develop new, energy-efficient technologies while boosting the efficiency of current technologies on the market.

Increasing energy efficiency has been a long-awaited mission for The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). This year the DOE launched two new regulations involving air conditioning equipment and water heaters that will increase energy efficiency finally accomplishing these goals.

1.  The first change involves raising efficiency standards for Air Conditioning equipment.

Two-thirds of all homes in the United States have air conditioners. Air conditioners use about 5% of all the electricity produced in the United States, at an annual cost of more than $11 billion to homeowners. As a result, roughly 100 million tons of carbon dioxide are released into the air each year, an average of about two tons for each home with an air conditioner.

Beginning January 1, 2015, new Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) standards will increase from 13 to 14. The higher the SEER rating, the more energy efficient a unit is. For those not familiar with the term, SEER is calculated by dividing how much a unit cools by how much energy it uses during a typical cooling season.

There are many other alternatives that provide cooling with less energy use. You might also consider fans, evaporative coolers, or heat pumps as your primary means of cooling. In addition, a combination of proper insulation, energy-efficient windows and doors, day lighting, shading, and ventilation will usually keep homes cool with a low amount of energy use in all but the hottest climates. Although ventilation is not an effective cooling strategy in hot, humid climates, the other approaches can significantly reduce the need to use air conditioning.

2.  The second big change involves water heater replacements. This is an amendment to the  National Appliance Energy Conservation Act known as the 2015 DOE      Final Rule.

When the amendment takes effect on April 16, 2015, the DOE will require higher energy factor ratings on virtually all residential gas, electric, oil and tankless gas water heaters.

Hot water has become essential to our daily lives — from washing hands to cleaning dishes to showering — and quickly adds up to higher energy bills. It comes as no surprise that water heaters account for nearly 17 percent of a home’s energy use, consuming more energy than all other household appliances combined.

We are all guilty of using a little too much hot water in our daily lives — whether it is spending an extra two minutes in the shower, leaving the water running while washing dishes or washing clothes on hot water instead of cold. Taken together, these habits of wasting water add up. So it is no surprise that the average household spends $400-$600 a year on water heating — accounting for 14-18 percent of homeowners’ utility bills.

Homeowners need to be familiar with these new regulations to benefit from them, and avoid difficult and costly decisions in the future regarding energy efficiency standards.

 

Are you better off fixing or buying a home?

Are you better off fixing or buying a home?

There is neither a specific answer nor one size fits all!  There are plenty of considerations to review. First of all, your financial ability and market demands are some of the factors to survey before deciding if it’s wiser to find a new dream home or fix your current home.Luxury Home Kitchen.

Before considering renovating your existing home, take an inventory of your home’s physical current condition, and deal with contractors for renovation costs. Major home renovations bring stress, unexpected complications and budget overruns. Depending on the age of your current home, you may also have to jump through additional hoops to meet newer building code requirements.

Purchasing a new home could actually cost you less monthly than renovating your home depending on its age, and types of renovations you’re considering. If you intend on financing renovation costs,  find out how much you will be adding to your existing mortgage, home equity loan or line of credit  versus obtaining a new home mortgage.

Keep in mind that even if you renovate your older home, in a future buyer’s eyes, it’s still an older home. It is a good idea to have a sense of the market activity in your neighborhood to consider trading up or renovating your current home. The main purpose of home renovations is primarily to increase your home’s enjoyment. While you may be able to recoup some or most of the costs during the home’s sale, there are no guarantees.

Abriendo Puertas para la compra de tu Casa Propia!

Abriendo Puertas para la compra de tu Casa Propia!

Los Reguladores Federales anunciaron  el martes la promulgación de nuevas reglas bajo la QRM  para promover el financiamiento hipotecario.  Estas promulgaciones  permitirán la elegibilidad  y asequibilidad de más compradores de casas, para que así puedas  hacer realidad el sueño de la Casa Propia!

Tu Casa Propia!

Tu Casa Propia!

Nos referimos a los tan esperados cambios bajo las Reglas de Hipotecas Calificadas, QRM (Qualified Residential Mortgage). Estas reglas  proporciona un conjunto de requisitos necesarios que un préstamo debe cumplir para ser considerado elegible y poder ser vendido   en el mercado secundario.

La regla QM provee estándares de habilidad para pagar los seguros de préstamos y la asequibilidad de los mismos.  Bajo la regla QRM, los préstamos se consideran generalmente calificados si la relación de deuda a los ingresos del prestatario es 43 por ciento, y con una cuota inicial  de solo 3 por ciento, a comparación del Programa del Gobierno FHA que requiere un mínima cuota inicial del 3.5 por ciento, entre otras cosas.

Los prestamistas ya están trabajando en sus sistemas para actualizar todos estos cambios, que se reflejara en una ampliación, y disponibilidad de crédito a los compradores de Casa que hasta ahora ha sido uno de los principales obstáculos para incrementar la compra y venta de propiedades.

Bienvenidos los cambios de la QRM!

Opening Doors for Homebuyers!

Opening Doors for Homebuyers!

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation is the first of six financial regulators to release the final version of the long-awaited qualified residential mortgage (QRM) rule. The National Association of Realtors applauds this action because it will make possible to incorporate rules that include a broad definition for Qualified Mortgage standards implemented earlier this year.

Got your House?

Got your House?

Under the QRM rule, loans are generally considered qualified if the borrower’s debt-to-income ratio is 43 percent, among other things and there is not onerous down payment requirement, as regulators had originally proposed.

The NAR strongly opposed earlier versions of the rule that included 20 and 30 percent down payment requirements, which would have denied millions of Americans access to the lowest-cost and safest mortgages

For lenders, having these two rules in alignment provides the clarity they’ve long been asking for, widening and deepening loan eligibility and availability, which has been one of the main stumbling blocks to increased home sales.

Homebuyers will have now more credit availability reflecting an increase in home purchases, and refis. Way to go!