Real Estate News Stories By Category

Latest Stories

Concerns remain over mortgage interest deduction

Congress’ support for homeownership seemed to waver last year, though it appears more solid now. But NAR says the mortgage deduc

Home builders release forecast for 2013

The good: “Every measure andhellip; has been trending upward.” The bad: “tight mortgage lending andhellip; inaccurate appraisals

Fla. has nation’s top foreclosure rate in 2012

One in 32 Fla. housing units with a mortgage – 3.11% – received at least one foreclosure notice last year. Second-place Nev. saw

Foreclosure inventory falls 10% in one year

Lender Processing Services: November Mortgage Monitor report by Jacksonville-based LPS finds national foreclosure inventory drop

How does the new QM mortgage rule impact buyers?

NAR released a statement praising the QM released last week, saying it won’t disrupt the market. However, a few things will chan

Qualified mortgage (QM) rule announced

The QM (qualified mortgage) rule, which had the potential to disqualify more buyers seeking a mortgage, was released today – it’

Real estate pros expect good things in 2013

There’s no sure thing, but home prices are up, buyers searching, mortgage rates staying low and pending sales rising.

Zillow: Underwater mortgages declining but problem persists

The problem of underwater mortgages is subsiding but remains “a major factor” in the housing market, Zillow.

Floridians get average $75,949 in relief from mortgage settlement

The historic settlement involving the nation’s five largest mortgage lenders has so far helped nearly 102,000 struggling Florida

Obama eyes housing in State of the Union speech

Housing advocates noted some pro-housing comments, such as an easing of mortgage rules that make it hard for creditworthy borrow

Qualified Mortgage (QM) process outlined

The QM becomes effective in January 2014, tightening lenders’ mortgage approval standards. Government issued info on the impleme

Realtors: FHA plays vital role for homeowners

In testimony before a U.S. Senate committee last week, NAR encouraged lawmakers to retain the FHA mortgage program, saying it ai

200K homes no longer underwater in 4Q 2012

CoreLogic: Rising home values helped homeowners emerge from negative equity. Florida is No. 2 in nation with underwater mortgage

Cheaper to own than rent regardless of mortgage rate

Trulia: A home purchase in Miami, for example, could be 43% cheaper than renting, assuming a 30-year FRM, 20% down, seven-year s

Time to look at the FHA 203k mortgage program?

An FHA 203k mortgage allows buyers to finance and fix a home under a single loan. Downpayments of at least 3.5% are required, bu

TD Bank survey: How happy are buyers with the buying process?

TD Bank survey: Mortgage process causes stress, and many buyers don’t look back on the experience fondly. But many consider Real

Mortgage Fraud Index hits 5-year low

Fla. had a spike in fraud dollar volume in 4Q 2012, however. One quarter earlier, the state wasn’t even in the top five. In 4Q,

Florida Realtors, Chase donate home to wounded vet

At today’s “Rally for Homeownership,” Realtors presented an Iraq-wounded veteran and his family with a remodeled, mortgage-free

FHFA streamlines mortgage modifications July 1

No documentation needed for owners at least 90 days delinquent. Make payments for three months and modification permanent – incl

HGTV giving away home, car and $100K cash

Jacksonville-area buyers could avoid a mortgage altogether. “Smart Home” is 2,400-square feet and comes with a 2013 GMC Denali.

New mortgage rule could help, hurt homebuyers

New mortgage guidelines that take effect next year likely will benefit consumers even while keeping lending standards restrictiv

U.S. considers mortgage interest deduction change

Should the U.S. keep the home mortgage interest deduction in the tax code? A U.S. House committee took testimony yesterday from

Fla. decides how to spend $200M on housing relief

Fla. received $8.4B in nation’s mortgage settlement, and the part controlled by the Legislature could soon be disbursed, pending

HUD settles Fla. maternity discrimination claim

SunTrust Mortgage and HUD settled a complaint that the lender allegedly denied a mortgage to a Port St. Lucie couple because the

Many buyers confused about mortgage process

Survey: One in four thinks a preapproval commits them to that lender, and 34% think lenders must, by law, charge the same fee fo

Freddie Mac’s streamlined modification debuts early

Most borrowers 90 to 720 days late on a Freddie Mac-owned loan can get an easy mortgage modification. Pay on time for three mont

Is the mortgage interest tax deduction here to stay?

Maybe. Maybe not. Lawmakers kept the popular IRS deduction that saves homeowners money, but it could be in the crosshairs again

NAR: Housing and economic forecast solidifying

Growth in home sales and prices is helping to strengthen the economy; but easing credit restrictions and keeping the mortgage in

Housing opportunities abound but challenges remain

Will new mortgage rules make it challenging to buy a home? Are Americans still waiting to list or buy a home? Undefined variable

Almost 112,000 Floridians benefit from lender settlement

About $8.7 billion has been distributed through mortgage modifications, principal forgiveness, second lien cancellations, refina

Floridians get so far more than $8.6B from mortgage settlement

The historic settlement involving the nation’s five largest mortgage lenders has so far helped nearly 112,000 struggling Florida

Feds tinker with QM rule’s ability-to-repay

The federal government’s Consumer Financial Protection Bureau created guidelines for a qualified mortgage (QM), but it eased a f

Ask a real estate pro: Lender drags feet even after settling case

Q: I was having trouble making my mortgage payments and agreed to give the deed back to the lender in lieu of foreclosure.

IRA can help a retiree qualify for a mortgage

A policy revision at Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae allows seniors to include money in their individual retirement account (IRA) or

72,000 Floridians to get $1,480 check this month

Fla. Attorney General Pam Bondi said the money is foreclosed-upon ex-homeowners’ share of the $25 billion national mortgage sett

Fannie Mae: Economic growth on the road to ‘normal’

The housing market is pushing the economy forward, but steady economic growth is still a way off, according to the mortgage gian

Homebuyers race to line up mortgage financing

Leisurely looking for a mortgage is a luxury South Florida homebuyers can’t afford anymore.

Fla. loses status of top state for mortgage fraud

Index bumps Fla. to second place while Calif. moves up in 1Q 2013. Nationwide, however, the index of mortgage fraud moved a bit

NAR testifies to U.S. House about mortgage rules

NAR president tells committee: Redefine ability-to-pay rules, citing current method hurts title companies, smaller lenders and b

What happens when interest rates rise?

Freddie Mac: While refinancings will slow, mortgage rates would have to hit 7% for a median-income family to be locked out of a

30-year FRM has highest one-day increase on record

Last week’s Freddie Mac survey, which wraps on Wed., found a slight decline. But after Thur. and Fri., Mortgage News Daily calle

NAR: Pending home sales surge to six-year high

The number of signed contracts in May increased 6.7% in one month and 12.1% year-to-year. The rise in mortgage rates may have nu

30-year mortgages zoom up to 4.46% , steepest jump in 26 years

Thirty-year fixed home loans jumped more than half a percentage point in a week  to an average 4.

May sees big drop in mortgage delinquencies

Jacksonville-based LPS: The number of at-risk mortgages dropped 15% since Dec. 2012, and is now at its lowest level in 11 years

Mortgage rates keep going up, now 30-year loans averaging 4.51%

Mortgage interest rates keep trending up — average 30-year fixed loans  now are at 4.

Even with good credit scores, subprime borrowers often denied help

Travis Armstrong, a long-haul trucker, has made his mortgage payments for six years.

Mortgage closing costs up 6% over past year study: Fla. closing costs increased year-to-year more than most states. A $160K mortgage costs $2,517. Only eight o

Obama backs 30-year mortgage, more private funding

President wants to wind down gov’t-owned Fannie and Freddie with more private money funding mortgages – but only if buyers still

Coral Springs firm accused of running mortgage relief scam

Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi’s office has sued a Coral Springs company for allegedly preying on distressed homeowners in a

First-time homebuyer workshop scheduled for Saturday

A workshop this weekend will give first-time homebuyers the latest information on how to find a place, qualify for a mortgage an

HUD charges Fifth Third Bank with discriminating

Under Fair Housing Act, people with disabilities don’t have to meet higher mortgage qualification standards if they rely on disa

Mortgage rates jump on Fed concerns

Worries about the Federal Reserve’s plan to alter its monetary policy pushed mortgage rates over the 4.

Fla.: Temporary injunction in mortgage relief scam

Attorney General Bondi: Broward-based firms charged up-front fees and falsely guaranteed that defendants would have their home e

Underwater mortgages decline across South Florida

Higher home prices are slowly reducing the number of underwater mortgages across Broward and Palm Beach counties.

CoreLogic: 2.5M more U.S. homeowners not underwater

Fla. ranked second for number of homes underwater – 31.5% of those with a mortgage – compared to 14.5% of all U.S. homes. But it

Fla. still tops for mortgage fraud – but improving

LexisNexis report: In originations just in 2012, however, Fla. ranks No. 4 for fraud – an improvement from its No. 1 status in 2

Underwater mortgages still a drag on housing market

Even with recent price increases, many owners still have lots of ground to make up


NAR: Obama’s on the right track

President’s goals jibe with NAR’s goals, association said in a statement: mortgage interest deduction, family foreclosure help,

Trulia: Buying S. Fla. home is cheaper than renting

It’s still much cheaper to buy a home than rent, despite rising prices and mortgage rates, a new report shows.

State program to reduce underwater mortgage balances

Florida housing officials on Friday announced a $350 million program that will help reduce the mortgage balances for “underwater

Program for underwater borrowers begins Wednesday

Homeowners whose houses are worth less than the balance of their mortgages could soon get some much needed help.

Fraud Risk in mortgage apps down 5.6% in 2Q 2013

CoreLogic: More people lied about their income to qualify for a mortgage – the number rose 13.3% year-over-year. But false prope

Floridians stampede for new mortgage-reduction aid

Nearly 10,000 Floridians with “underwater” homes bombarded the state with applications on the first day of a program that offers

National pending home sales decline in August

NAR: Tight inventory, restrictive mortgage credit, and higher interest rates and home prices led to a 1.6% month-to-month drop i

Mortgage aid program has fewer than 3,000 slots left

As of Monday morning, fewer than 3,000 slots remain for a $350 million state program designed to help underwater borrowers.

HUD proposes ‘qualified mortgage’ definition

FHA issued its own qualified mortgage (QM) standard today. An ability-to-repay rule limits points and fees. Small number of futu

State mortgage aid program stops accepting applications

A $350 million program meant to help homeowners pay down underwater mortgages stopped accepting applications Wednesday after rea

3 out of 10 Americans don’t qualify for a mortgage

Online mortgage applicants with credit scores of 620 or less failed to get even one offer – and almost one-third of Americans ha

S. Fla. counties driving mortgage relief numbers

Broward and Palm Beach counties, two of the most heavily populated areas in Florida, also rank among the county leaders for appl

Fla. applications for new homes rose in Sept.

Mortgage Bankers: Month-to-month applications for new homes rose 1.6% in Fla.; year-to-year, they rose 10.7%. Nationally, applic

Fannie Mae changes mortgage loan restrictions

On Nov. 16, Fannie Mae’s minimum loan downpayment goes from 3% to 5% and loans top out at 30 years – but, unlike FHA, it doesn’t

FHA to real estate: Expect a few delays

While most mortgage-funding functions weren’t impacted by the shutdown, FHA says it still has a “considerable backlog of work” a

Appraisal Institute: Expect continued growth

Survey: Residential appraisers top areas of anticipated growth include mortgage lending, reviews, REO/foreclosures/short sales a

White paper: New mortgage rules are reasonable

Proposed qualified mortgage rules “limit the risk of default without excluding large numbers of creditworthy borrowers,” says ad

Survey shows lingering impact of tight credit

NAR’s 2013 Home Buyers and Sellers Survey: Tight mortgage-lending standards blocking some from homeownership, notably singles an

HUD settles with BofA over lending discrimination

HUD alleged that Bank of America refused two mortgage applications because a woman was pregnant, which violates the Fair Housing

Top lenders forecast housing market gains

New ability-to-repay rules start in Jan. While tighter lending may hurt marginal buyers and cut down on some mortgage amounts, i

‘Tis the season for economic real estate predictions

According to Zillow, home values will rise 3% in 2014, mortgages will be easier to get, mortgage rates will hit 5%, and two Fla.

HUD releases its qualified mortgage (QM) definition

Its rule mirrors other agencies’ versions of the qualified mortgage (QM) rule and covers all loans insured, guaranteed or admini

FHA finances improve

Annual audit finds a more stable FHA. While agency added some rules and changed fees for buyers seeking a mortgage, audit finds

CoreLogic: 791K homes get positive equity in 3Q

Fla. No. 2 after Nevada, however, with 28.8% of mortgaged homes still in negative equity. By metros, Orlando (32.3%) and Tampa (

Mortgage tax forgiveness expires on Jan. 1

But Congress could retroactively extend the tax break – a move NAR calls “likely” – for ex-homeowners who had part of their prin

U.S.: How do we make mortgage closing less painful?

The U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau wants a “more streamlined, efficient” closing process, and it’s accepting suggesti

Will it be easier or harder to get a mortgage?

The qualified mortgage ruled kicks in on Friday, but a handful of experts say many banks with tighter standards could ease up. N

RealtyTrac: 34% of Fla. homes ‘deeply underwater’

19% of U.S. owners with a mortgage are ‘deeply underwater.’ Fla. ranks second to Nev., with city-by-city comparison putting Orla

Commercial lending to grow in 2014

Mortgage Bankers Assoc. says banks’ desire to lend money will outpace commercial borrowers’ demand. A full 91% of top firms expe

RealtyTrac: Homes in foreclosure drop 26% in 2013

But Fla. still tops with 25% of all U.S. homes in the foreclosure process, and 3.01% of Fla. mortgaged homes in foreclosure. Ave

Clients of closed mortgage relief firm get settlement

Clients who paid about $20 million in fees to a now-closed Fort Lauderdale mortgage relief company and its affiliates are likely

HUD Secretary to appear at town hall meeting

HUD’s Shaun Donovan will answer questions about minority access to housing and mortgages tomorrow, Jan. 22, at 1 p.m. EST in a l

5 ways buying a house just changed

New mortgage standards tightened the application process, but they also added rules lenders must follow when serving mortgage lo

1,700 foreclosed Floridians to receive $2.5M

National Mortgage Settlement checks go out next week, according to Florida’s attorney general. Each ex-owner should receive $1,4

Report: Seriously delinquent mortgages persist in South Florida

South Florida’s seriously delinquent mortgage rate has declined over the past four years but still remains the highest of

Most consumers now think they qualify for a mortgage

Recovery milestone: The number of Americans (52%) who think it would be easy to get a mortgage is greater than the number who do

New home purchases up sharply in Jan. 2014

Mortgage bankers say new home sales skyrocketed, rising 35% month-to-month. Sales rose so much that MBA went out of its way to a

Has the stricter QM mortgage rule slowed lending?

Some experts predicted tighter mortgage rules would slow the rebound, but others remained optimistic. NAR lender survey attempts

Ask a real estate pro: Lender requires auction on short sale

Q: We are no longer able to pay our mortgage due to a hardship.

CWCapital Sees Better than Expected Results in Completes $3.4 Billion Bulk Loan Sale

CWCapital Asset Management LLC has sold the bulk of a portfolio of 134 real estate and commercial mortgage loan assets with an u

Mortgage casualties fall on fewer bank failures

Another positive sign of the U.S. economic rebound: Fewer bank failures. In 2013, 62 failed; in 2012, it was 83; in 2009, 235 ba

Rule tweak could allow more down payment help

The U.S. tightened mortgage requirements, but a proposal could ease those rules a bit for nonprofit lenders serving lower-income

A top reason buyers aren’t buying? Fear of rejection

Survey: 46% of potential buyers think they won’t qualify for a mortgage, so they don’t try; and 43% incorrectly believe it’s har

RealtyTrac: Fla. still No. 1 in foreclosure rates

One in every 407 Fla. homes with a mortgage is in some stage of foreclosure, and eight Fla. cities (200,000-plus population) are

Mortgage Bankers: Commercial lending up in 2013

Report: The dollar volume for commercial and multifamily mortgages closed in 2013, $358.5 billion, was 47% higher than in 2012.

First look: New TILA-RESPA compliance guide

On Aug. 1, 2015, mortgage loans become easier for consumers to understand but not easier for lenders to create. U.S. consumer ag

Freddie: No more record-low mortgage rates

While 4.3% rates remain historically low, it’s unlikely they’ll flirt with the 3.31% record set in Nov. 2012 – but 1981’s hist

Connect With Us