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Distressed Properties Contribute to Low Average Market Time

The May 2017 Existing Home Sales Index was released Tuesday, showing that even though inventory is slightly on the rise compared to April 2017, median home prices are still increasing as well. Existing, unsold properties are coming off the market at record times, and foreclosures and short sales are contributing factors. Some industry professionals, however, wonder how long this trend will last.

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Risk of Default Jumps in Q1, Q2

Overall default risk is up, according to an index released on Tuesday. Up 25 points over fall 2016’s numbers, risk of default is rising that’s to higher mortgage rates and tightening monetary conditions. The risk will likely continue its upward climb too, especially if the Federal Reserve raises rates again—as expected—later on in the year. According to the report, investors and lenders can expect today’s loans to hold a 6 percent higher risk of default than loans of the 1990s.

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FHFA Drops Optimistic 2016 Report to Congress

The Federal Housing Finance Agency released recently its exhaustive annual 2016 Report to Congress, where it highlights actions it has taken over the year to support and maintain the nation’s housing industry. The 120 page report covers, amongst others: a report of the annual examination of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (The Enterprises), reports of annual examinations of the Federal Home Loan Banks, the results of stress tests under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Consumer Protection Act. You can find some of the report’s highlights here.

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NMSA Sets Sights on Solving Vacant and Abandoned Property Issues

The National Mortgage Servicing Association (NMSA) announced the appointment of Jim Taylor, SVP of Property Preservation with Wells Fargo Home Mortgage Asset Management, to lead the organization’s effort to mitigate the threat that vacant and abandoned properties pose to homeowners and communities. Taylor, a 30-year industry veteran, leads asset management and preservation of Wells Fargo’s residential servicing portfolio while caring for the interests of the communities it serves. His first order of business will be partnering with his peers and regulatory agencies to develop a comprehensive national definition for what constitutes a vacant and abandoned property and honing a strategy for the harmonization of procedure for their treatment.

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Supreme Court: Secondary Markets Not Subject to FDCPA Regulations

On Monday, a unanimous Supreme Court decision could have vast implications for the mortgage and loan industry, particularly the secondary market, unless the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act is amended by Congress. The petitioners brought their case in front of the Supreme Court in an appeal of the 4th Circuit Court ruling in favor of the respondent. Justice Neil Gorsuch delivered his first opinion since his conferral to the Court.

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Fannie Mae Sheds 3,400 Delinquent Loans in NPL Sale

After nearly a month of marketing, Fannie Mae has sold off more nonperforming loans totaling $581 million in unpaid principal balance. This is the company’s 10th nonperforming loan sale to date. In a continued effort to reduce the number of delinquent loans in its portfolio, the lender has unloaded about 3,400 notes.

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Underwater Mortgages Drop by 3 Percent

According to new data, both the number of underwater mortgages and the total value of those mortgages have dropped significantly over the last year. Value of negative equity fell by $283 billion during Q1 2017 and more than 7 percent since the start of 2016. Underwater mortgages now account for just 6 percent of all loans—a sharp drop from its peak of 26 percent reached in 2009. Subsequently, bout 9 million borrowers have regained equity since 2017, and 91,000 have regained equity in 2017 alone.

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First-time Foreclosure Starts Hit All-time Low

According to new data, both overall foreclosure starts and first-time foreclosure starts recently hit record lows, with first-time starts hitting their lowest point on record at just 24,200. Foreclosure pre-sale inventory also dropped steeply for the month, falling 3.47 percent. The states with the highest share of delinquent loans were Mississippi, Louisiana, Alabama, West Virginia, and Maine. Mississippi had the most seriously delinquent loans.

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FHFA Sells Over 72,000 NPLs at a Gain of $14.2 Billion

The Federal Housing Finance Agency on Thursday released its third Enterprise Non-Performing Loan Sales Report, which lists all the sales of all non-performing loans from Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae to the private sector through December 31, 2016. The report tracks total loan sales, total number delinquent assents unloaded, and time of delinquency. It also strives to track borrower outcomes and measure how many properties were foreclosed on, how many avoided foreclosure, and the difference between homes that were sold to third parties and benchmark NPLs.

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The Fight Against Blight in Maryland

Thursday, a fast-track foreclosure law expediting the foreclosure process was signed by Maryland Governor Larry Hogan. With the intent to reduce community blight, this bill was signed in the footsteps of a similar bill in Ohio. Industry experts provide commentary on the impact this bill may have, including being the push for other states to move forward with their own fast track foreclosure bills.

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