Entries in Mortgage Loans (7)


Home Builders Hopeful for Housing Market Turnaround in 2012

Creatas/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- The housing market is still weak, but there's hope among home builders that it will get stronger in 2012.

As it stands, mortgage rates are currently cheaper than ever -- 30 year fixed rates average less than 3.9 percent.  While that sounds promising for borrowers, David Crowe of the National Association of Home Builders notes that getting a loan isn't that easy.

"They will continue to have some difficulty in getting mortgage credit; it's tighter than it used to be," he says.

Yet, banks have started to lend more, and despite a drop in December, more homes are being built -- trends that Crowe expects to see more of this year.

"We've been on a relatively steady but slow increase for the better half of 2011 and I expect that to continue in 2012," he says.

Another added bonus that may boost the housing market: the supply of new unsold homes has come down.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Number of Late Mortgage Payments Forecast to Drop in 2012

Hemera Technologies/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- More homeowners are paying their mortgages on time, according to TransUnion.

The credit reporting firm says just over 6 percent of borrowers are now at least 60 days behind on their mortgage payments, and that number is expected to drop.

"We're projecting that the number of people who are 60 plus days delinquent on their mortgage will drop from about 6 percent at the end of this year to about 5 percent at the end of next year," says Steve Chaouki with TransUnion.

Chaouki says the peak was reached during the worst of the recession two years ago.  Before then, the average late payment rate was under 2 percent.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Late Mortgage Payments Rise for First Time Since 2009

Hemera Technologies/Thinkstock(CHICAGO) -- Late mortgage payments are rising in the U.S. for the first time since the depths of the economic downturn.

The latest quarterly survey by the credit reporting firm TransUnion shows that the rate of borrowers who are 60 days or more past due rose to 5.88 percent -- up from 5.82 percent in the second quarter.

The third quarter figure marks the first time the national mortgage delinquency rate has increased since the last three months of 2009.

Despite "recent, relatively more conservative lending policies and the apparent stabilization of both home values and unemployment," Tim Martin, the group vice president of U.S. Housing in TransUnion's financial services business unit, says unexpected events led to this spike.

"[I]n the third quarter, the consumer was hit with several unanticipated shocks, including the U.S. credit rating downgrade, stock price declines, European debt concerns, stubbornly high unemployment, more downward pressure on home values and low consumer confidence.  All of this affects a borrower's net worth and desire, or ability, to continue making house payments -- especially if they are facing negative equity in their homes due to price depreciation," Martin wrote in a statement released Tuesday.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


US Government Suing Deutsche Bank for Mortgage Fraud

Sean Gallup/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- The U.S. government filed a lawsuit against Deutsche Bank on Tuesday, accusing the German-based bank of mortgage fraud.

According to the lawsuit, the bank repeatedly misrepresented the quality of its home loans in order to collect money from a government mortgage insurance program.

"This lawsuit sends them and other lenders the message that they cannot get away with lies and recklessness," said U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, who filed the civil lawsuit in federal court in Manhattan.  "They cannot casually assign the prospect of being caught to the cost of doing business."

The federal government now wants Deutsche Bank to pay back the money it had to pay in insurance claims when homeowners fell behind on their mortgage payments.  The total amount in damages could surpass $1 billion.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Cheap Prices Help Spike Home Sales; Mortgage Rates to Rise

Comstock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- After taking a beating, the housing market got a boost Wednesday when the latest report on existing home sales found that purchases for six out of the past eight months went up.

Relatively cheap prices are partially behind the upswing.

"Prices are at the highest affordability level that we've seen in the past decade," says Ken Shuman with, a homes sales wesbite.

Mortgage rates are also still very low but that soon may change, according to Shuman.

"As inflation begins to rise we'll see mortgage rates rise with that," he says.

"I think we'll see interest rates not only rise in the next two to three months but we'll see interest rates rise throughout the entire year actually," Shuman adds.

Despite the positive trend, home sales are still at depressed levels compared to a few years ago.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Delinquent Mortgage Loans, Foreclosure Inventory Down in Third Quarter

Photo Courtesy - ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- The Mortgage Bankers Association released new numbers Thursday showing that fewer Americans were late in paying their mortgages in the July to September time period, while the number of homes in the foreclosure process were down slightly as well.

Overall, roughly 88 percent of American homeowners are paying their mortgages on-time, according to the report.  The new data also shows that 9.13 percent of home loans were at least one payment late at the end of the quarter, down from 9.85 percent at the end of the second quarter.

In addition, 4.39 percent of home loans were in the foreclosure process at the end of September, down from 4.57 percent.  Foreclosure starts -- homes which received a notice to start foreclosure proceedings -- was up during the quarter at 1.34 percent to a record rate.

The MBA says the slight improvement in the national delinquency rate can be attributed to a slight improvement in the employment situation in the U.S.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio


Bank of America Could Face Investor Lawsuit Over Soured Mortgage Loans

Photo Courtesy - Bank of America(NEW YORK) -- A group of investors has started a legal process that could force Bank of America to take back some mortgages that have been bundled and sold.

While the lead lawyer on the case would not identify the investors, Bloomberg News reports PIMCO, Blackrock and the Federal Reserve Bank of New York are part of the action.  Bloomberg also reported that the investors are hoping to force Bank of America to buy back $47 billion in bad mortgages.

No suit has been filed yet, but the investors' lawyers have reached out to Bank of America as part of a 120-day-long process that could lead to a lawsuit.

A Bank of America spokesperson responded to the action by saying, "We believe Bank of America has complied fully with its obligations in regards to these securities."

As shoddy documentation practices at the mortgage divisions of several large banks became public, there have been concerns that these banks may be forced to reconsider some sales of mortgage securities.

Bank of America stock closed down more than four percent Tuesday.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

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