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Consumer News and Advice Archive


Act Now to Take Advantage of the $8,000 First-Time Buyer Tax Credit

RISMEDIA, September 1, 2009-Since Congress passed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act earlier this year, many have seized the opportunity offered by the $8,000 tax credit for first-time home buyers. When you factor in today's historically low interest rates and housing affordability with the financial incentive from the government, ...


Refinancing Borrowers Choose Shorter-Term Fixed-Rate Loans

RISMEDIA, August 18, 2009-Freddie Mac recently announced that in the second quarter of 2009, refinancing borrowers overwhelmingly chose fixed-rate loans, regardless of whether their original loan was an adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) or fixed. ...


Regional Spotlight: Arizona Foreclosures Surge; Third in Nation: July Numbers up 17% from June, 48% from Last July

RISMEDIA, August 17, 2009-(MCT)-Thousands of homeowners across Arizona moved closer to losing their homes last month. ...


Bankrate: Mortgage Rates Post Mixed Results

RISMEDIA, August 17, 2009-The average 30-year fixed mortgage rate inched higher to 5.67 percent this week, according to Bankrate.com's weekly national survey. The average 30-year fixed mortgage has an average of 0.36 discount and origination points. ...


Florida’s Existing Home, Condo Sales Rise in 2Q 2009

RISMEDIA, August 14, 2009-Sales of existing single-family homes in Florida rose 23 percent in second quarter 2009 compared to the same period a year earlier, according to the latest housing statistics from the Florida Association of Realtors® (FAR). A total of 43,125 existing homes sold statewide in 2Q 2009; during the ...


HUD Secretary Donovan Announces $132 Million in Recovery Act Funds to Improve Native American and Alaskan Housing, Spur Economic Development

RISMEDIA, August 13, 2009-During a visit to an Anchorage, Alaska community today, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan announced that HUD is awarding 61 grants, totaling $132 million, to Native American and Native Alaskan communities across the country to improve housing and stimulate community development (see ...


Is the Foreclosure Panic the Y2K of Our Decade?

RISMEDIA, August 11, 2009-Just 10 years ago we were approaching the new millennium not with wonder and anticipation but with fear and loathing. Seems someone forgot to tell the computers how to change their clocks and right at the stroke of midnight the modern world as we know it would end, ...


Builders Call on Congress to Extend and Enhance Home Buyer Tax Credit

RISMEDIA, August 11, 2009-To help create jobs and set the stage for a strong recovery, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) yesterday called on Congress to extend and enhance the $8,000 first-time home buyer tax credit due to expire on December 1. ...


Technology Credit Union Offers a Helping Hand to Distressed Homeowners

RISMEDIA, August 11, 2009-Technology Credit Union has announced it has modified more than $10 million in mortgage loans for homeowners since accelerating its effort two years ago to provide assistance to members facing financial difficulty. As part of its efforts, Tech CU implemented a variety of payment relief options ...


Few Americans Buying Into Consumer-Led Recovery

RISMEDIA, August 10, 2009-(MCT)-Personal spending rose in June, but incomes fell, exposing the weak underbelly of the economy. ...


What Would You Do for $8,000?

RISMEDIA, August 10, 2009-Even as the National Association of Realtors® recently reported that first-time homebuyers make up a third of the market, there's still a sizable group of homebuyers who have never heard of the government tax credit that could give them up to $8,000 to buy their first home. ...


Remodeling Market Activity Builds Momentum

RISMEDIA, August 10, 2009-Residential remodeling showed modest gains during the second quarter of 2009 with increases in all indicators, according to the latest National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Remodeling Market Index (RMI). The current market conditions measure grew to 38.1 from 34.5 in the first quarter. Future expectations rose ...


Economic Recovery Likely to Be Slower and Less Vigorous If Consumer Spending Doesn’t Increase

RISMEDIA, August 6, 2009-(MCT)-The U.S. economy has suffered its biggest shock since the Great Depression. Trillions of dollars in wealth has vanished. Businesses are struggling, and state and local governments grapple with huge and painful shortfalls. ...


Back to Work – Half of Workers Laid Off in Last Three Months Have Found New Jobs

RISMEDIA, August 6, 2009-Laid off workers continue to be resilient, even as the economy is slow to improve. According to a new survey by CareerBuilder completed in June, 48% of workers who were laid off from full-time jobs in the last three months have found new full-time positions; up from 41% ...


Making Home Affordable Program on Track to Help Millions of Homeowners

RISMEDIA, August 5, 2009-The Obama Administration recently released its first monthly Servicer Performance Report detailing the progress to date of the Making Home Affordable (MHA) loan modification program. The purpose of the report is to document the number of struggling homeowners already helped under the program, provide information on servicer performance ...


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