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Business Outlook Archive


‘Zombie’ Foreclosures Down 23 Percent from Last Year, but Increase in 16 States

RealtyTrac® today released its Q3 2014 “Zombie” Foreclosure Report, which found that 117,298 homes actively in the foreclosure process had been vacated by the homeowners prior to a completed foreclosure, representing 18 percent of all active foreclosures. ...


Home Prices Rise in August

Home prices rose slightly at 0.2% in August, slower than the 0.6% rise in July, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller 20-city composite index released Tuesday. However, data through August 2014, released this week in the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, continue to show a deceleration ...


Short Sales and Foreclosure Sales Account for Lowest Sale Levels Since 2011

RealtyTrac® recently released its September and Q3 2014 Residential & Foreclosure Sales Report, which shows that U.S. residential properties, including single family homes, condominiums and townhomes, sold at an estimated annual pace of ...


Consumer Confidence Surges in October

The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index®, which had decreased in September, rebounded in October. The Index now stands at 94.5, up from 89.0 in September. The Present Situation Index edged up from 93.0 to 93.7, while the Expectations Index increased sharply to 95.0 from 86.4 in September. ...


Pending Home Sales Hold Steady in September

Pending home sales rose slightly in September and are now above year-over-year levels for the first time in 11 months, according to the National Association of Realtors®. ...


‘Seriously’ Underwater Properties at Lowest Level in Two Years

RealtyTrac®, a leading source for comprehensive housing data, today released its U.S. Home Equity & Underwater Report for the third quarter of 2014, which shows that 8.1 million U.S. residential properties were seriously underwater—where the combined loan amount secured by the property is ...


Housing Outlook in Face of Rising Rates

The second quarter GDP figures were highly encouraging, assuring that job creation continues. Jobs will become ever more important in what looks to be a sure rising interest-rate environment. Surprisingly, rates have barely moved this year. But sooner or later (by year end), ...


Final Mortgage Ruling Nixes 20-percent Down Payment Requirement

As reported by the AP, new rules adopted yesterday by six federal agencies include the removal of a big stumbling block for would-be borrowers: the 20 percent down payment if a lender didn’t hold at least 5 percent of the mortgage ...


Existing-Home Sales Rise 2.4% in September

After a modest decline last month, existing-home sales bounced back in September to their highest annual pace of the year, according to the National Association of Realtors®. All major regions except for the Midwest experienced gains in September. ...


Mortgage Rates Hit New 2014 Lows

Freddie Mac recently released the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey® (PMMS®), showing average fixed mortgage rates hitting new lows for the year as 10-year bond yields briefly dipped below 2 percent. At 3.97 percent the average 30-year fixed rate is at ...


U.S Regulators Ready for Relaxed Mortgage Rules

Later this week, after several years of back-and-forth debate, U.S. regulators are finally set to finalize a more relaxed set of mortgage standards. This new set of rules will be a win for the real estate industry, with the projected agreement much more ...


The Mortgage Professor: Introducing the Kosher HECM Reverse Mortgage

(MCT)—The kosher stamp on a food means that it has been certified as fit for human consumption. We need a comparable certification process for financial instruments sold to consumers, with the need most pronounced for the more complex instruments. ...


Zeroing in on Market Conditions

As the real estate industry continues along the road to recovery, enticing buyers and sellers back into the game, real estate professionals are pulling out all the stops when it comes to keeping their finger on the pulse of the market. For Jen ...


30-Year Fixed Mortgage Rates Plunge to Lowest Rate in 16 Months

The 30-year fixed mortgage rate on Zillow(R) Mortgages is currently 3.81 percent, down fifteen basis points from this time last week. The 30-year fixed mortgage rate dropped ...


Home Equity Loans Surge amid Record-low Rates

The housing market seems to be on the right track. The origination of home equity lines of credit (Helocs) hit a five-year high this year as a result of low interest rates, rising home prices, and increasing consumer confidence in the trajectory of the market.  But while it’s a great ...


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