FHA Trims Waiting Period for Borrowers Who Experienced Foreclosure

 

The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) is allowing borrowers who went through a bankruptcy, foreclosure, deed-in-lieu, or short sale to reenter the market in as little as 12 months, according to a mortgage letter released Friday.

 

Borrowers who experienced a foreclosure must wait at least three years before getting a chance to get approved for an FHA loan, but with the new guideline, certain borrowers who lost their home as a result of an economic hardship may be considered even earlier.

 

For borrowers who went through a recession-related financial event, FHA stated it realizes “their credit histories may not fully reflect their true ability or propensity to repay a mortgage.”

 

In order to be eligible for the more lenient approval process, provided documents must show “certain credit impairments” were from loss of employment or loss of income that was beyond the borrower’s control. The lender also needs to verify the income loss was at least 20 percent for a period lasting for at least six months.

 

Additionally, borrowers must demonstrate they have fully recovered from the event that caused the hardship and complete housing counseling.

 

According to the letter, recovery from an economic event involves reestablishing “satisfactory credit” for at least 12 months. Criteria for satisfactory credit include 12 months of good payment history on payments such as a mortgage, rent, or credit account.

 

The new guidance is for case numbers assigned on or after August 15, 2013, and is effective through September 30

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Fiscal Cliff and Real Estate

Late in the evening of Tuesday, January 1st Congress reached a settlement in the “fiscal cliff” negotiations, and President Obama signed the legislation January 2nd.  As a result, the Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act was extended another year.  The measure will continue to exempt from taxation mortgage debt that is forgiven when homeowners and their mortgage lenders negotiate a short sale, loan modification (including principal reduction), or foreclosure.
The same provision also expired in California, but Senator Ron Calderon (D-Montebello) introduced SB 30, which would waive the potential tax bill for Californians for all of 2013.  C.A.R. already signed on as the bill’s sponsor, and the two hope to fast track the bill through the Legislature.

Also under the fiscal cliff agreement, the so called “Pease Limitations” that reduce the value of itemized deductions are permanently repealed for most taxpayers but will be reinstituted for high income filers.  These limitations will only apply to individuals earning more than $250,000 and joint filers earning above $300,000.  The thresholds have been increased and are indexed for inflation so will rise over time.  Under the formula, filers gradually lose the value of their total itemized deductions up to a total of a 20 percent deduction.  The reinstitution of these limits has far less impact on the mortgage interest deduction (MID) than a hard dollar deduction cap, percentage deduction cap, or reduction of the amount of MID that can be claimed.

Capital gains rates on the sale of principal residences will remain unchanged and continues to exclude the first $250,000 for single taxpayers and $500,000 for married couples.

REALTORS® should encourage their clients to consult with their own tax advisers about their own individual tax situation.

Information provided by Sacramento Association of Realtors.

 

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August Foreclosure Statistics

Foreclosure filings rose in August, as more homeowners fell behind on their mortgage payments.  

Filing were up 7% compared to July, but were still 33% lower than a year ago. 

According to Realty Tract’s report, 228,098 homes in the US received some kind of foreclosure filing in August.  Foreclosure auctions and bank repossessions, which come later in the process, both fell slightly. 

The increased in default notices may signal that lenders are starting to finally push through foreclosure paperwork that was previously delayed by “robo-signing”. 

The good news is that bank repossessions have been falling.  Lenders repossessed 64,813 homes in August, a six-month low and a 37% decline after they hit a peak in September last year. 

Meanwhile, foreclosure auctions were scheduled for 84,405 homes, the lowest number in more than three years. 

Nevada, California and Arizona housing markets are the hardest hit by foreclosures. 

Information from CNNMoney.com

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Bank Owned Properties on the Decrease?

Mortgage defaults in California have fallen to their lowest level in three years, market researcher MDA DataQuick said Wednesday.   In the Sacramento region, home defaults have dropped 38 percent in the past year. 
 
Some of the drop-off may reflect an increase in short sales, in which troubled homeowners sidestep the foreclosure process but still lose their homes. But experts said it’s also a sign of a housing market that’s genuinely improving.

Read more: http://www.sacbee.com/2010/07/22/2907031/mortgage-defaults-fall-as-short.html#ixzz0uRshD0Rm

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Taking advantage of today’s low Sacramento interest rates

Ranch style home in North Salinas, California
Image via Wikipedia

In the past 32 years working in the real estate industry, I have not experienced a 4-1/2 % interest rate on a 30-year fixed rate loan.   It is time to give a lot of thought to purchasing a  home in this market. 

Are you concerned that  home values may decline?   

Sure, it is possible but will you ever see 4-1/2% again?   That equates to $450 for every $100,000 in the purchase price of your home.  Can you rent for that monthly payment?  I doubt it.  Lets also not forget the tax benefits of owning your own home and the freedom of making your house a home for you and family.

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