Housing Affairs Letter

Homeownership

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RESPA Mortgage Rule Under Review

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is taking a new look at its mortgage servicing rules devised under the umbrella of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act in 2013. Those rules were amended at the time, delaying their enforcement for a year.

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GOP Recoils At Lower FHA Premiums

Following weeks of anticipation that the Obama administration would lower the bar for poor families seeking homeownership, HUD Secretary Julian Castro reduces the annual premiums homebuyers must pay on their FHA-insured mortgages by a quarter of a percent.

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Housing Counselor Rules Toughened

Housing counselors will have to go to school to be certified as capable to work in a HUD-approved housing counseling agency.

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Foreclosure Filings Reach New Low

Latest data from real estate analyst RealtyTrac show the home foreclosure crisis is all but over 10 years after the housing market began showing some of the distress that led to its 2008 collapse.

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Homeowner Relief In Tax Extender Bill

Harried homeowners would get some relief in the tax extenders legislation paralleling the legislative path of the FY 2016 Omnibus spending bill. The legislation likely will be incorporated into the Omnibus bill before it is sent to the White House.

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Pressure On FHA To Ease Condo Rules

A Federal Housing Administration policy that stunts insurance coverage for FHA-insured loans on condominiums is about to bite the dust. The issue now has the full attention of HUD Secretary Julian Castro

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Study Decries Homeownership Plunge

Homeownership rates reached a 20-year low in 2014, resulting in a spiraling demand for rental housing followed by escalating rents and record numbers of families required to spend an inordinate amount of their income for rent, the latest study of the housing market by the Harvard

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Consumer Housing Confidence Dim

The share of consumers believing the economy is heading in the right direction is up by 5% to 41%. Those saying the economy is weak and showing little sign of improvement dropped to 51%, the fifth monthly decline.

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HUD Ups Mortgage Rescue Ante

Facing a prospect of losing thousands of modified mortgages to default, HUD and the Treasury Department craft yet another overhaul of the Making Home Affordable (MHA) program designed to coax more troubled homeowners into the program, and retain those already in it.

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Groups Demand HUD Halt Bulk Sales

Community groups protesting HUD’s Distressed Asset Stabilization Program (DASP) ask the department to halt bulk sales of delinquent home loans to investors until changes are initiated to vet potential investors rather than selling loans to the highest bidders without qualifiers in place. HUD has so far conducted five bulk sales over two years.

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