Wells Fargo Hit With Another $ Billion+ Settlement

You might think that I revel in the woes of Big Banks too much, but… Oh heck I admit it. But this is fun. Wells Fargo announced today that they have agreed to pay $1.2 Billion to resolve claims against it related to wrongdoing leading up to and during the mortgage crisis. They were accused...

$124 mm in Mortgage Settlement Money Disappears in Texas

When the “too big to fail” banks were caught red-handed cheating consumers out of billions through intentionally bad underwriting, forging documents, foreclosing while telling consumers they were in the process of modifying their mortgages and robo-signing (among other malfeasance) the CFPB fined them billions of dollars collectively. Most of the mortgage settlement money was earmarked...

Will Home Prices Jump in Five Years?

It’s not too hard to guess at the general direction of home prices in the near term. In the San Francisco Bay Area, for instance, with low inventory, a huge surplus of buyers with great salaries and stock options, and multiple bids on almost every property, it’s safe to say home prices are still going...

How Many More Bad Loans Are There?

We’re done with getting rid of all the underwater home owners with bad loans, right? Not by a long shot.  Today’s Mortgage Servicing News reports that non-performing loans are down significantly from the peak in 2010, but still three times higher than the pre-crisis level.  In other words, still quite high. According to Jackie Stewart,...

Wells Fargo Sued by Oakland for Predatory Lending

I’m beating a dead horse, I know, and I’ve beat this horse in the past.  But one of the worst practices that caused the financial crisis (and one of the reasons we are facing such enormous regulatory pressure in our industry today) was lenders selling sub-prime loans to uninformed borrowers who should have gotten prime...

Risks of Buying Foreclosed Properties Includes Prison

This is a departure from my normal fare, but I found it interesting. A close friend and colleague was buying foreclosed properties at auction a few years ago and found it difficult to compete with a clique of buyers at the auction who seemed to be (gasp) colluding with each other. It turns out he...

Did Condo Financing Just Become Impossible?

This one’s a little arcane, but important.  Yesterday the Nevada Supreme Court issued a ruling that just might make lenders pull completely out of the condo market in many states.  Hopefully this will be pushed to the U.S. Supreme Court, but in the meantime lending becomes VERY murky. From Rob Chrisman, one of the best...

What is Your Mortgage Worth?

This isn’t something most folks think about. When an investor (say Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, for example) buys your mortgage, how much are they willing to pay for it, and why? If you have a $100,000 mortgage you would think the lender would pay $100,000, right? It turns out that isn’t so. Here’s why...

Guess Which State Has the Most Foreclosures!

Surprisingly, it isn’t California. From Marketwatch today: The recovery in the U.S. housing market is slowly reaching more parts of the country, but some states are experiencing a healthier recovery than others. There were 47,000 completed foreclosures nationally in May, down from 52,000 a year ago, which is a drop of 9.4%. But if you...

Kickstarting the Market

Home values are up – home sales are down. And the buzz within the industry is all about “Why is this happening, and what can we do about it?” I read articles every day saying that the best minds keep trying to figure out why folks aren’t buying homes. Recently a number of analysts have...