mountains edge: Las Vegas single-family house prices hang in there - sales slide in May - 06/10/10 09:51 AM
Southern Nevada real estate statistics continue on an unsteady path, as they’ve been for the past several months. One sector could show a bit of sunshine peeking through while anther struggles with a curve heading in the wrong direction. But anyhow, let’s go right to the cold, hard numbers.
The median price for a single-family house came in at $142,000 for May which equals the figure for the previous month, so reported GLVAR, or Greater Las Vegas Association of Realtors. When placed side by side with May of 2009 it’s up 1.4%, a tentative improvement but nothing much to trade hugs … (4 comments)

mountains edge: Mortgage foreclosure protection bill advances in California - Nevada keeps an eye on it - 06/06/10 03:24 PM
Homeowners in distress have encountered a myriad of challenges when trying to save their properties from foreclosure. Many have successfully navigated around all the different shoals and rocks strewn along the way. Others, far too many actually, have not. Mortgage lenders and servicers often lack the staff to handle the volume the housing meltdown has thrown at them, industry training of staff is suspect, their systems are in many cases inadequate and it’s also evident that their commitment has been at best lukewarm. The frustration level among struggling mortgage borrowers is understandably high.
California just introduced a fresh mortgage foreclosure protection … (4 comments)

mountains edge: Las Vegas regular home sales bring top dollar - REOs and short sales lag - 05/18/10 03:46 PM
The current real estate chaos has introduced even the timid to the exotic avenues of unloading a home. Before, the industry experts were usually the only ones well-versed on REOs and foreclosure and short sales and even auctions. This generation of mortgage borrowers and homeowners has been, whether they liked it or not, put through a crash course on various "creative" methods of selling a property. Some have been personally involved in the paperwork-laden processes when delinquency was knocking on the door, while others have followed from the sidelines through media the often hair-raising developments. It has been for everyone a unique … (8 comments)

mountains edge: Las Vegas real estate may not be as affordable today as it seems - 04/20/10 01:58 PM
The housing market bust in Southern Nevada - home to communities like Summerlin, Silverstone Ranch, Henderson, Mountains Edge, North Las Vegas and Rhodes Ranch - has taken down with it homeowners, mortgage lenders, real estate agents and builders, and a host of others closely tied to the industry. It has been as brutal a segment collapse as any in history. One of the most plundered victims has been the price. Homes in some of the newer subdivisions have lost as much as 60% of their value in just a few years.
To scores of once-happy and optimistic homeowners the word underwater … (4 comments)

mountains edge: Las Vegas real estate prices deemed stable by price-rent ratio - 04/04/10 09:23 AM
Price-rent ratio is one good way to gauge whether a particular housing market's values are stable or not. The popular ratio is figured by dividing a city's median home price by its median annual rent. A pretty basic calculation that will actually say a lot. The national historical average has been 15, according to Marcus & Millichap, a California commercial real estate brokerage. That's where it again stood at the end of the third quarter of 2009, having retreated there from almost 21 where it had soared to during the housing bubble's climax in 2005.
By many real estate yardsticks, a … (5 comments)

mountains edge: Las Vegas underwater homeowners to float by 2020? It's possible - 03/26/10 08:19 AM
Many Southern Nevada - including Mountains Edge, Summerlin, North Las Vegas, Henderson, Canyon Gate and Spanish Trail - mortgage borrowers are still dealing with the effects of the great real estate meltdown. Short sale has recently become a more acceptable avenue for home loan banks to address the lingering issue of delinquency, giving people a somewhat more palatable way out of a tight spot. Despite that, high mortgage foreclosure filings continue clouding the sandy landscape of Las Vegas valley. The once in a lifetime housing upheaval is by no means over and done with yet.
Sin City's homeowners have watched in … (13 comments)

mountains edge: HUD steps up mortgage modification scam enforcement - Las Vegas homeowners embrace initiative - 03/03/10 05:28 AM
Home loan scams are really part of the real estate landscape in any market, but generally speaking affecting only a small percentage of consumers. Now, however, things are very different. This housing and mortgage meltdown ranks right up there among the worst ever to sweep across from coast to coast. It brings with it some juicy opportunities for the con men among us and are they ever trying to take advantage of it.
Many have zeroed in on the mortgage loan modification programs heavily promoted by the government, but only tepidly adopted by the private sector. That has left a huge … (6 comments)

mountains edge: Upside down home loans keep on multiplying - Nevada mortgage borrowers lead the nation - 02/24/10 12:18 PM
Underwater - or upside down - home ownership got worse as the past year wound down. First American CoreLogic published a new research paper on the issue stating that over 11.3 million homes were upside down at the end of 2009, meaning that 24% of all residential real estate with mortgages was carrying that unwelcome label. At the end of the third quarter of 2009 there were 10.7 million houses underwater, so in three months about 600,000 additional properties got whacked.
To stay with the statistics, First American CoreLogic further reports that 2.3 million more homes were heading towards the famous … (11 comments)

mountains edge: Las Vegas mortgage borrowers get federal attention - 02/19/10 03:18 PM
The current mortgage and housing meltdown has been particularly brutal to property owners here in Southern Nevada, home to communities like Henderson, Silverstone Ranch, Anthem, Summerlin, Southern Highlands and Mountains Edge. Nevada has held the lead in most foreclosures by any state for months and that statistic is heavily influenced by Las Vegas valley, the most populous area in the state. Many of those who are still in their homes are often in some stage of the foreclosures process, trying to do a loan modification or have started a short sale campaign. Scores of others are hanging in there, but are … (4 comments)

mountains edge: Mortgage delinquencies just won't let up - 02/17/10 09:39 AM
Some national housing reports lately have been cautiously positive. Prices have stabilized a bit in scattered real estate markets, a good example of that is Las Vegas. Sales have gone up here and there, spurred on by affordable mortgage money and of course record-low price levels. All this is still short of kicking off a full-blown recovery, but at least it's something to work with.
Despite that, TransUnion, one of the big three credit bureaus, now says that mortgage delinquencies of 60 or more days climbed to a new high of 6.89% in the fourth quarter of 2009, translating into a … (6 comments)

mountains edge: Shared-appreciation mortgage new kid on the block - 02/14/10 02:11 PM
Home loan modifications have the potential to remedy the housing market swoon currently severely affecting most of the nation. They have to be done right for them to work, though. Thus far the government has been the driving force behind loan mods, urgently pushing the private mortgage sector to follow its lead. But the response has been disturbingly lukewarm, so far.
Innovation in the home loan business has been robust in the past but somehow now that new ideas are desperately needed there isn't much to write home about. Option ARMs, Alt-As, NINA products and many others flooded the real estate … (4 comments)

mountains edge: Las Vegas real estate statistics weaker in January - 02/09/10 01:54 PM
Southern Nevada - including Summerlin, Rhodes Ranch, Anthem, Southern Highlands, Mountains Edge and Spanish Trail - housing market has shown some stability over the last several months, essentially all through last fall and in December. The important numbers cautiously moved in the right direction, or at least didn't get much worse. Appealing mortgage rates continue to excite buyers, as do enticing prices especially in the lower half of the Las Vegas real estate spectrum. The new year started a little bit on an iffy note, though.
There were 2,608 existing single-family homes sold in January, 864 less than in December, adding … (6 comments)

mountains edge: Las Vegas housing market entertaining a rebound - 02/04/10 01:55 PM
In small steps real estate talk in Southern Nevada - with communities like Summerlin, Mountains Edge, Charleston Heights, Spanish Trail, Henderson and Anthem - is turning to recovery looming on the horizon. 2009 statistics showed that it does have a pulse as investors descended in droves on the scene to gobble up property for rentals in the lower half of the market. First-time home buyers were also active, enjoying low mortgage rates, nice tax benefits and attractive prices.
Prominent Las Vegas housing industry analyst, Home Builders Research, is cautiously optimistic about the market's direction this year. Resale home prices are to … (10 comments)

mountains edge: Principal cutbacks gaining ground - Las Vegas mortgage borrowers sure could use them - 01/29/10 07:15 AM
Mortgage lenders and servicers have been reluctantly doing loan modifications mainly by paring back interest rates and stretching terms, thereby managing to reduce borrowers' monthly payments to some degree. But obviously that strategy is not working as well as many had hoped for. Restructured home loans keep defaulting at an alarming rate.
DBRS, a debt rating agency, now figures that more than half of them are two or more months behind or sink into foreclosure inside six months from the mortgage modification. Clearly, that's hardly the way to resolve the home loan mess. To get to the core of the problem … (4 comments)

mountains edge: FHA mortgages in Las Vegas soon to cover wider range - 01/17/10 03:18 PM
Southern Nevada - with communities like Henderson, North Las Vegas, Mountains Edge, Rhodes Ranch, Summerlin and Anthem - real estate purchases have recently been financed increasingly with FHA products that offer mortgage applicants more considerate underwriting guidelines and lower down payments than the conventional ones. Without FHA it is hard to imagine what a darker place Las Vegas housing market would otherwise be in right now. And things are going to get even better soon.
HUD just announced an adjustment to the FHA home loan program. Presently, with some exceptions, FHA outlaws insuring a mortgage on a property owned by the … (6 comments)

mountains edge: Southern Nevada existing home sales trend up in December - 01/11/10 02:01 PM
Las Vegas area - with communities like Henderson, Summerlin, Mesquite, Mountains Edge, Silverstone Ranch, Anthem and Spanish Trail - real estate market closed the door on 2009 on a cautiously positive note. Low mortgage rates continue to draw buyers' attention, as do rock-bottom prices. And the first-time home buyer tax credit extension, spiced with the inclusion of a similar move-up buyer credit, stirred the scene even more. Those incentives are hard to ignore even in this shaky economic environment.
As usual, GLVAR, or Greater Las Vegas Association of Realtors, is behind the stats that follow. Altogether real estate agents closed 3,472 … (11 comments)

mountains edge: Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to get further Treasury support - mortgage borrowers in Las Vegas to benefit? - 01/05/10 02:57 PM
The giant GSEs - or Government-sponsored Enterprises - have been mandated to provide liquidity to the mortgage marketplace and over the years they have fulfilled that role very successfully. They grew to dominate the conventional conforming home loan segment. But when the world-famous housing bubble began gathering steam Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac somehow got caught in its frenzy, were thoroughly ill-treated when it burst and eventually ended up being put into a government conservatorship. Their total failure was not an option.
These mortgage companies are still reeling, absorbing heavy blows as the battered real estate market spawns more foreclosures.
The … (4 comments)

mountains edge: Home ownership sliding according to New York Fed report - Las Vegas housing taking flak - 12/27/09 01:29 PM
The mortgage and real estate markets are in the midst of a major overhaul on the heels of the current housing embarrassment. The home loan sector has already seen major regulatory changes, some needed and some of dubious value. And in this climate of political gamesmanship and Wall Street lobbying more is conceivably on the way to favor large financial institutions. Mortgage lenders have also tightened considerably underwriting standards to align their operations to better handle the new market realities.
The economically significant housing sector is absorbing changes unimagined just a few years ago. One of them is the fact that … (12 comments)

mountains edge: Real estate jam helps cure marital troubles - 12/21/09 03:06 PM
The housing market is a mess. The home loan industry is limping along. The economy is on an IV drip. Bernanke makes Time magazine's Man of the Year. Tiger, well, nuff said.
But there are also some goods news sprinkled in somewhere there. Here's one.
The real estate meltdown is now credited with bringing down the U.S. divorce rate. That's right. The National Marriage Project just reported that last year this important statistic dropped 4%. See, couples on the ropes in the past used to quarrel over who gets to stay in the house and how to split the accumulated equity. … (13 comments)

mountains edge: Mortgage overload attracts new remedy - Las Vegas homeowners take notice - 12/17/09 04:01 PM
The home loan mess is a tough customer to bring under control. Everyone agrees with that. The government and the private sector have tried all sorts of cures to change its course, with very little so far to show for their labors. Mortgage foreclosures are going to continue by some reliable estimates at least at the current pace well into the new year.
There is, however, a new creative initiative afoot to help restore the tattered mortgage market to health.
Behind the effort is a man called Lewie Ranieri, who is largely credited with crafting the mortgage-backed securities in the 1980s.These … (3 comments)

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