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Home | News (page 10)

New Professional Requirements, Tech Could Improve Appraisals

The real estate appraisal process has long been bemoaned as slow, inefficient, and more advantageous to cash buyers, but according to appraisal experts at a recent panel discussion, there are ways to change that. Among them? Streamlining the process, reevaluating professional requirements, and adopting new technologies. Data shows that the number of licensed appraisers has dropped significantly over the last decade, due to volatility in the industry. Changing up licensing requirements could alleviate this issue.

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CFPB Gets a Win in Ocwen Case

Ocwen Financial Corporation sued the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in late April claiming Ocwen had failed borrowers in every stage of the mortgage servicing process. Though the two went back and forth about getting the ruling on the CFPB’s constitutionality expedited, ultimately the request was denied. Ocwen's bid to test the constitutionality of the CFPB has now been delayed.

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Carson Speaks: Clarifies State of Mind Comments

Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Ben Carson, in an interview with NPR, has attempted to clarify last month’s controversial comment that “poverty is a state of mind.” Carson has received extensive criticism from housing advocates and the media for his comment in what has been deemed insensitive in light of proposed budget cuts to the Secretary’s department. Carson defended his position by stating that while he did say that the way a person thinks is a factor in getting out of poverty, he did not say it was the only factor, or that simply wishing away poverty was enough to get a person out of it.

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BlackRock Seeks $3B in Damages from HSBC

BlackRock Inc., along with 23 other investors of residential mortgage-backed securities, petitioned New York federal Judge Lorna G. Schofield to hear oral arguments to advance their case to class status as they seek to collect over $3 billion in lost assets from HSBC. The initial suit claims that HSBC did not do its due diligence in protecting certificate holders, and that they failed to ensure the home loans being sold from mortgage originators and sponsors to the trust were only selling debt from credit-worthy borrowers. The plaintiff’s claim that HSBC’s direct neglect was the cause of loses when default rates hit their peak during the housing crisis.

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Industry Group Appoints REO Leadership

The Federation of REO Certified Experts—or FORCE, for short—has appointed new leaders to its Advisory Council. Among those named were Hugh Morrow of RE/MAX Preferred in Birmingham, Alabama; Tara Nagelhout of Emerald Valley Real Estate in Eugene, Oregon; Steve Pagano of Coldwell Banker in Huntington Station, New York; Terry Rasner-Yacenda of Reno Tahoe Realty Group in Reno, Nevada; and Dick Thackston of R.H. Thackston & Company in Winchester, New Hampshire. Nancy Braun of Showcase Realty was named Chairperson.

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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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The Week Ahead: Reform to Dodd-Frank

The House will vote on the Financial CHOICE Act, a Dodd-Frank “off-ramp”, this coming Wednesday. Republicans proposed this reform to the financial system in mid-April to free the U.S. from government micromanagement when it comes to excessive regulations on the financial system. See what else will take place in the upcoming week here.

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Lehman’s Brothers Holdings: 2.4 Billion Bankruptcy Offer Accepted

Fourteen investors announced Friday that trustees accepted the settlement offer from the Plan Administrator for Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc., a global financial services firm that declared bankruptcy in 2008. The announcement is said to be an important step in resolving the Lehman RMBS claims. The settlement will payout a minimum of $2.4 billion, subject to a judges approval.

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