Mortgage loan

By Jon Anderson
Columnist

No, I didn’t dig this out of my 2008 file drawer.

According to RealtyTrac, March 2015 saw an 11 percent jump in foreclosures across the U.S. compared to February. That translates into 152,147 homes rocketing down the chute to foreclosure and the loss of people’s homes in the first quarter of 2015. In the nearly 8 years since the housing bubble popped, apmid a white hot market, people are still losing their homes to foreclosure at staggering levels.

And then there’s Detroit: actively depopulating its own city by issuing as many as 62,000 eviction notices this year to homeowners delinquent on their property taxes. It’s being called an eviction “conveyor belt” that will effect one-seventh of Detroit’s remaining population. This, after the 2008 tidal wave of 250,000 people forced out of the city, leaving behind tens of thousands of their homes. The news of Detroit’s rebirth may have been exaggerated.

These are people who managed to hang on to their home through the worst recession in 80-years, only to lose it now.

So what’s the National Association of Realtors’ response? Why to spend $7.7 million on lobbying in the first quarter of 2015 for the Mortgage Choice Act (and complain about rising flood insurance premiums). As benevolent as “Mortgage Choice” sounds, its goal is to weaken the regulatory “burdens” on residential mortgage lending.

Side note: Doesn’t every piece of legislation, PAC/SuperPAC, and fringe group sound benevolent these days no matter now evil it is?

The Mortgage Choice Act passed the House of Representatives on April 14. NAR is not alone in its support, the Mortgage Bankers Association, the National Association of Home Builders and the Real Estate Services Providers Council Inc. (shockingly, all groups who make money directly or indirectly from mortgages).

(more…)

Dallas Skyline

Holy crown moulding, Batman! Can you believe this? Bloomberg News just published a story saying that of the top 20 housing markets in the good ‘ol US of A, Dallas performs better than every single one of them!

Since the loud pop of the national housing bubble bursting, Dallas has recovered and gone on to thrive, the story says:

“We didn’t have a bubble in the first place, so there was no real collapse in prices,” said Mark Dotzour, chief economist at the real estate center at Texas A&M University in College Station,Texas. “I expect we’ll be in this seller’s market that’ll lead to higher appreciation than normal this year and next.”

Dallas is the Case-Shiller index’s only city in Texas, a state where the housing industry has flourished amid economic growth, few environmental constraints and abundant land. The Dallas-Fort Worth area added 104,900 non-farm jobs in April from a year earlier, the most after the New York City area’s 160,000 jobs and Houston’s 111,200, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

“Underpinning the housing sector’s gains is a broad-based expansion of the overall Texas economy,” according to a June 13 paper by D’Ann Petersen, a Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas economist, and Christina Daly, a research analyst. “Stronger-than-average employment growth and consistent in-migration should continue boosting demand for homes and apartments.”

Agents, are you having your best sales year ever? Tell us about it in the comments!

Dallas Skyline

Holy crown moulding, Batman! Can you believe this? Bloomberg News just published a story saying that of the top 20 housing markets in the good ‘ol US of A, Dallas performs better than every single one of them!

Since the loud pop of the national housing bubble bursting, Dallas has recovered and gone on to thrive, the story says:

“We didn’t have a bubble in the first place, so there was no real collapse in prices,” said Mark Dotzour, chief economist at the real estate center at Texas A&M University in College Station,Texas. “I expect we’ll be in this seller’s market that’ll lead to higher appreciation than normal this year and next.”

Dallas is the Case-Shiller index’s only city in Texas, a state where the housing industry has flourished amid economic growth, few environmental constraints and abundant land. The Dallas-Fort Worth area added 104,900 non-farm jobs in April from a year earlier, the most after the New York City area’s 160,000 jobs and Houston’s 111,200, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

“Underpinning the housing sector’s gains is a broad-based expansion of the overall Texas economy,” according to a June 13 paper by D’Ann Petersen, a Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas economist, and Christina Daly, a research analyst. “Stronger-than-average employment growth and consistent in-migration should continue boosting demand for homes and apartments.”

Agents, are you having your best sales year ever? Tell us about it in the comments!