nevada: FHFA nudges Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac into action on short sales - 04/23/12 02:01 AM
If there ever was a nightmare for Realtors in the last few years in the housing market it was the short sale. The psychology profession is still compiling data on how many man hours of sleep per night they lose during each short sale adventure but when the official figure comes out sometime soon it must be several. It has been that bad. The current real estate recession made the short sale famous, the talk of the micro brew pub crowd. It can take months for a real estate agent to navigate one of them through all the different-size hoops the nation’s mortgage … (14 comments)

nevada: Homeownership rate unchanged in 3rd quarter - 11/07/10 01:45 PM
According to Census Bureau statistics the U.S. homeownership rate remained at 66.9% in the 3rd quarter of this year. It is actually at the lowest point since the end of 1999, the decline predictably brought on by the severe real estate turbulence that continues to roil the market to this day. For the last year the drop has been 0.7%. Interestingly, the West had the lowest percentage at 61.3 while the Midwest exhibited the highest at 71.1%.  
It could lose more ground in the coming months since mortgage foreclosures seemingly are not abating, banks are still repossessing houses by the … (3 comments)

nevada: MERS in middle of new mortgage foreclosure mess - 10/18/10 11:28 AM
MERS is hardly a household name to many homeowners but the company now finds itself tossed right in the middle of the latest and rapidly-heating home loan challenge. It stands for Mortgage Electronic Registration System and the name pretty much says what it does. It records electronically, in proprietary software, mortgages that have been originated throughout the country, having currently over 65 million of them in its books, or better said in its servers.
The standard practice still is that local clerks record all mortgages and when ownership changes a new paper-based entry is created and notarized. Of course, all this … (10 comments)

nevada: Mortgage foreclosure errors could cloud titles for a long time - 10/02/10 08:25 AM
The wounded mortgage industry has been working as best it can to pick itself up from the canvas, with massive support and guidance from the government. It has instituted many internal policy changes, on one hand, to correct the grave underwriting, mortgage-backed security and other mistakes made in the not too distant past. On the other, Washington has come up with its own legislative cures to prevent another spectacular mortgage and real estate collapse from creeping up on the country again. Despite the continuing uncertainty and weakness in housing, cautious optimism is also entering into the mix. Maybe the worst is … (10 comments)

nevada: Foreclosure filings decline - short sales climb - mortgage distress hangs around - 07/19/10 10:31 AM
Real estate market observers have mixed feelings about RealtyTrac's Midyear 2010 Foreclosure Report. It says that 1,654,634 homeowners were sent at least one mortgage foreclosure filing from January through June. That translates to over 3,000,000 by the end of the year and RealtyTrac forecasts that over 1 million of them will eventually become repossessions, or REOs - real estate owned. The number by itself is of course alarming, but the current six month number actually is a drop of 5% from the second half of last year. Ordinarily in any housing enterprise that would be something to feel upbeat about.
On … (4 comments)

nevada: Southern Nevada June home sales up - median price lower - 07/14/10 09:41 AM
Las Vegas homeowners and real estate observers have been looking for clear direction the local housing market could be happy about but it's refusing to cooperate. It seems to have settled on a typically erratic path that markets display when they reach the bottom on a downward cycle - or are very near it -  and just can't decide how to shake the gloominess off and embark on a climb out for better days. Last month's real estate statistics reflect that rather well.
GLVAR, or Greater Las Vegas Association of Realtors, recounts for its rapt audience that 3,360 resale homes were … (7 comments)

nevada: Mortgage foreclosure assistance authorized for worst-hit states - 06/24/10 09:55 AM
As the housing sector kept sucking for more oxygen, Washington announced back in February the Hardest Hit Fund worth $1.5 billion that was designed to help states in serious housing peril and asked them at the time, as a condition to get a slice of the money, to submit creative programs that would lend a hand to homeowners struggling with mortgage payments. The plans from Arizona, California, Florida, Michigan and Nevada have now been okayed by the Treasury and the assigned funds are ready to begin flowing to the states' Housing Finance Agencies, or HFA, tasked to administer their use.
California … (8 comments)

nevada: 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)

nevada: Effective homeownership rate in Las Vegas perilously low, according to Fed study - 06/08/10 04:02 PM
Southern Nevada homeowners were dealt a hand in the real estate and mortgage tragedy for the ages that had very little chance of keeping them in the game for long. Severe price erosion has yanked tens of thousands way underwater – a suddenly everyday term in Sin City where the mortgage balance is higher than property value – that has pushed them to reconsider the merits of continuing to honor the original home loan agreement. Making payments on a, say, $400,000 mortgage when the house is only worth $200,000 is bothering increasingly many as something they probably should not be doing. … (8 comments)

nevada: 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)

nevada: Summerlin catapulted Las Vegas to big leagues in master-planned communities - 06/04/10 12:19 PM
Howard Hughes tinkered in a lot things in his lifetime, aided by his canny vision of where opportunities to make an impact lie. One of them was the future of a dusty desert gambling hub known for sweltering, dry summer days sitting in the southern tip of Nevada. In the 1950's the bold entrepreneur bought 25,000 acres of sand and shrub way out in nowhere northwest of the Las Vegas Strip. The only living creatures dwelling there those days were rattlers and scorpions, sometimes challenged for space by roving coyotes. He paid $3 per acre, that's right $3, a bargain price … (4 comments)

nevada: Las Vegas CityCenter condominiums tough sell - 05/30/10 02:22 PM
Southern Nevada condo market still wallows in the Lehman moment, especially the high-rise luxury segment that occupies choice space for the most part on and around the Strip. Units are hard to sell because mortgage financing has dried up, sharp value declines have scared would-be buyers to sit and wait and the glut of vacant inventory gives no one enough confidence to commit to anything. Las Vegas luxury condominium developers had a totally different vision in mind when they started their projects a few years ago, when the thinking was that if you build it they'll come. Well, they did build … (6 comments)

nevada: Southern Nevada land prices anemic, and then some - 05/23/10 03:44 PM
Land in the Las Vegas valley used to be a piping-hot commodity a few years ago, when the growth here easily topped all the other metropolitan areas in the country. The thirst for tracts of sand was such that prices zoomed higher year after year to reach a record $939,400 per acre - that is for land outside the Strip - in the fourth quarter of 2007, according to Applied Analysis, a local research shop. Housing prices closely followed the frenzied upward trend, median averages casually blowing past benchmarks that few real estate observers thought would be breached so soon.
That … (7 comments)

nevada: 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)

nevada: Southern Nevada resale statistics all over the map in April - 05/11/10 01:32 PM
If the median price of a single-family house is used as a sole indicator for the health of a real estate market, then Sin City would be hailed as being on the mend. According to GLVAR, or Greater Las Vegas Association of Realtors, Las Vegas median price grew to $142,000 in April, a strong 4.4% improvement from March. Not only that, it also is 0.2% higher from the same month last year, for the first time the year-over-year number is positive since 2007. Single-family house prices peaked in Las Vegas in February of 2007 at $310,000. The slide without a doubt … (6 comments)

nevada: Housing starts could double by next year - 05/10/10 12:40 PM
New home construction has had it very tough over the last few years, despite appealing mortgage financing and first-time and move-up buyer tax incentives. The sector simply hasn't been able to compete much with the existing real estate market because of vast price differences. Values, for instance, have sunk up to 60% in Las Vegas that basically gives new construction little chance to generate any meaningful demand. Housing starts nationwide reached 554,000 units last year, a surprisingly high number considering the malaise still hovering over the residential real estate landscape, while at the top of the bubble in 2005 they were … (8 comments)

nevada: Freddie Mac's mortgage delinquencies drop a notch - 05/06/10 10:08 AM
Freddie Mac has been pummeled thoroughly in the eye of the real estate meltdown, so much so that the government finally had to take over its operations due to heavy mortgage losses. In the recent past its matters seemed to be settling down a bit but now it needs another $10 billion from Washington to cover its 1st quarter setbacks. Besides that, it also has some good news to release.
For the first time since April of 2007 Freddie Mac can report that delinquencies for single-family home loans it guarantees slipped to 4.13% in March, from 4.20% in February. Although it … (6 comments)

nevada: Mortgage fraud on the rise despite new HVCC rules - Nevada way down sin list - 05/04/10 02:51 PM
When the real estate chaos engulfed the nation one of the alleged causes to it was how mortgage brokers were pushing appraisers around to "hit the number." Home loan professionals were smooth-talking them - in some cases supposedly being even rather loud about it - to value a property at what their contract said it should be. In those go-go years it commonly meant many appraisals came in high. This practice, in some shape or form fraud, had to be put under a large microscope the big mortgage banks were telling everybody who would listen and eventually were able to convince … (10 comments)

nevada: Private mortgage insurance firms changing direction - 04/28/10 10:22 AM
PMI, or private mortgage insurance, played a large role in yesterday's real estate boom, allowing buyers acquire property without putting a penny down. That was a tempting prospect indeed. 100% financing actually became quite popular those days as values kept galloping up on a steady pace that quickly generated equity no borrower in his right mind would dare turn down. The standard rule required a PMI if the down payment was less than 20%. These insurers were making money hand over fist, like just about all the other housing market participants did.
The real estate market's collapse changed everything in a … (6 comments)

nevada: High housing inventory could further delay expected market turnaround - 04/26/10 12:20 PM
The residential real estate market is on a turbo-charged roller coaster ride. One day the news is encouraging in the form of increased existing home sales over previous months. Or that housing prices are beginning to stabilize across the country. Pieces like that will get mortgage and housing industry observers and homeowners from Las Vegas to Miami all perked up and dreaming of a brighter tomorrow. And then out of nowhere all that good feeling and improved adrenalin flow is coldly shattered by another report saying that it's not over until it's over. And it may get worse before getting better.
(4 comments)

 
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Esko Kiuru

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