Tag Archives: Armonk Real Estate

Armonk Real Estate

Local Market Conditions Shape How Interest Rates Impact Prices | Armonk Real Estate

Local market conditions raging from supply and demand to local population growth have a substantial impact on how federal monetary policy affects home prices, according to new study to be published in the Journal of Housing Economics next month.

Motivated by the fact that the period of house price inflation prior to the economic downturn in 2008-9 was characterized by significant differences in inflation rates across markets, economists at the Swiss Institute of Banking and Finance and Middle Tennessee State University found that the vast differences in home price inflation rates experienced at the local level, especially before 2006, can be tied to differences in local demand and supply conditions that systematically and predictably cause monetary policy to different local consequences.

‘Why did we see so very different house price inflation rates across MSAs when all MSAs are subject to the same federal funds rate in a highly integrated financial market?2 The key point of this study is to show empirically that the vast differences in home price inflation rates experienced at the MSA level, especially prior to 2006, can be tied to differences in local demand and supply conditions that systematically and predictably cause monetary policy to have rather different consequences at the local level.3

Local population growth is a key demand side factor and the percentage of undevelopable land a primary supply side factor that determine how national monetary policy impacts house price inflation rates at the MSA level. the study found. MSAs with a high share of undevelopable land or strong population growth are far more prone to experience house price inflation from a reduction in the federal funds rate than MSAs without those characteristics.

A higher quality of life, by contrast, appears to moderate the impact of a change in the federal funds rate on house price inflation. For the larger set of MSAs contained in the FHFA data set, there is evidence that large values for land use restrictions and high income growth during the period before the house price crash in 2007-8 are also important to explain a strong response of MSAs to changes in monetary policy.

 

read more…

 

http://www.realestateeconomywatch.com/2016/02/local-market-conditions-shape-how-interest-rates-impact-prices/

Mortgage rates average 3.62% | Armonk Real Estate

Freddie Mac (OTCQB: FMCC) today released the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey® (PMMS®), showing fixed mortgage rates resuming their decline and aiding home buyer affordability amid a tight supply of for-sale homes in many markets.

News Facts

  • 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 3.62 percent with an average 0.6 point for the week ending February 25, 2016, down from last week when it averaged 3.65 percent. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 3.80 percent.
  • 15-year FRM this week averaged 2.93 percent with an average 0.5 point, down from last week when it averaged 2.95%. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 3.07 percent.
  • 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) averaged 2.79 percent this week with an average 0.5 point, down from last week when it averaged 2.85 percent. A year ago, the 5-year ARM averaged 2.99 percent.

Average commitment rates should be reported along with average fees and points to reflect the total upfront cost of obtaining the mortgage. Visit the following link for theDefinitions. Borrowers may still pay closing costs which are not included in the survey.

Quote
Attributed to Sean Becketti, chief economist, Freddie Mac.

“Yields on the 10-year Treasury continued their downward trend this week after a small rally the previous two weeks. The 30-year mortgage responded, falling 3 basis points to 3.62 percent. Since the beginning of 2016, 30-year rates have fallen almost 40 basis points helping housing markets sustain their momentum into this year. Earlier this week, the National Association of Realtors announced existing home-sales were up 4 percent month-over-month in January and up 11 percent from last year.”

Another housing crisis just around the corner | Armonk Real Estate

Movie sequels are rarely as good as the original films on which they’re based. The same dictum, it appears, holds for finance. The 2008 housing market collapse was bad enough, but it appears now that we’re on the verge of experiencing it all again. And the financial sequel, working from a similar script as its original version, could prove to be just as devastating to the American taxpayer.

The Federal National Mortgage Association (commonly referred to as Fannie Mae) plans a mortgage loan reboot, which could produce the same insane and predictable results as when the mortgage agency loaned so much money to people who had neither the income, nor credit history, to qualify for a traditional loan.

The Obama administration proposes the HomeReady program, a new mortgage program largely targeting high-risk immigrants, which, writes Investors.com, “for the first time lets lenders qualify borrowers by counting income from nonborrowers living in the household. What could go wrong?”

The question should answer itself.

The administration apparently believes that by changing the dirty words “subprime” to “alternative” mortgages, the process will be more palatable to the public. But, as Investor’s notes, instead of the name HomeReady, which will offer the mortgages, “It might as well be called DefaultReady, because it is just as risky as the subprime junk Fannie was peddling on the eve of the crisis.”

Before the 2008 housing bubble burst, one’s mortgage fitness was supposed to be based on the income of the borrower, the person whose name would be on the deed and who was responsible for making timely monthly payments. Under this new scheme — and scheme is what it is — the combined income of everyone living in the house will be considered for a conventional home loan backed by Fannie. One may even claim income from people not living in the home, such as the borrower’s parents.

If, or as recent history proves, when the approved borrower defaults, who will pay? Taxpayers, of course, not the politicians and certainly not those associated with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, whose leaders made out like the bandits they were during the last mortgage go-round. As CNNMoney reported in 2011, “Mortgage finance giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac received the biggest federal bailout of the financial crisis. And nearly $100 million of those tax dollars went to lucrative pay packages for top executives, filings show.”

In case further reminders are needed of the outrageous behavior of financial institutions that contributed to the housing market collapse and a recession whose pain is still being felt by many, Goldman Sachs has agreed to a civil settlement of up to $5 billion for its role associated with the marketing and selling of faulty mortgage securities to investors.

Go see the film “The Big Short” to be reminded of the cynicism of many in the financial industry. It follows on the heels of the HBO film “Too Big to Fail,” which revealed how politicians and banks were part of the scam that harmed just about everyone but themselves. According to The New York Times, only one top banker, Kareem Serageldin, went to prison for concealing hundreds of millions in losses in Credit Suisse’s mortgage-backed securities portfolio. Many more should have joined him.

Under the latest mortgage proposal, it’s no credit, no problem. An immigrant can qualify with a credit score as low as 620. That’s subprime. And the borrower has only to put 3 percent down.

Investor’s reports, “Fannie says that 1 in 4 Hispanic households share dwellings — and finances — with extended families. It says this is a large ‘underserved’ market.”

 

read more…

 

http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2016/01/19/is-another-housing-crisis-just-around-corner.html

Are FICO scores becoming a thing of the past? | Armonk Real Estate

While most people can agree that the current credit score system needs work, not everyone can agree on the proper solution.

Take a look at San Francisco-based SoFi as an example. The company operates like a young tech garage in Silicon Valley except it’s a a disrupter in the mortgage industry, pushing the limits by doing things like choosing to not use FICO scores when evaluating applicants.

Here’s a clip from the lender’s blog explaining the reason behind that decision:

The idea of assigning a score based on your dealings with debt makes sense in theory, but in practice there are a few flaws.

The FICO score calculation doesn’t consider things like your savings, your cash flow, your ability to pay non-credit bills like water and electric or your future earnings (for example, if you just landed a job with excellent pay). Plus there’s the fact that a growing number of millennials are forgoing credit cards entirely, which is reflected negatively in their credit scores – even though they may be perfectly able to pay off a loan. All of these factors can have a major impact on your creditworthiness, but your FICO score doesn’t take them into account.

Because of these gaps, SoFi has chosen to not use FICO scores when evaluating the financial wherewithal of applicants. We still consider your track record of meeting financial obligations, but we also look at a more complete picture of your financial situation than what your credit score can provide.

Whether you agree or disagree with this method, SoFi seems to be doing well in its endeavors.

The lender only recently ventured into the mortgage industry, expanding past the world of student loans where it got its start.

Toward the end of 2015, SoFi announced that it had not only officially surpassed $4 billion in funded loans across mortgages, personal loans and student loan refinancing, but it alsoannounced $1 billion in Series E funding shortly after.

“SoFi continues to redefine consumer expectations in financial services. This funding will dramatically advance expansion of our disruptive products and experiences, and in turn, meaningfully benefit financially responsible individuals.  Our trajectory is clear: we are well on our way to becoming the most trusted financial services partner in the U.S.,” Mike Cagney, SoFi CEO and co-founder, said at the time.

It’s not just mortgage lenders questioning the credit scoring model — the government isn’t too fond of the current credit system either.

In December, a bill was introduced in the House of Representatives that would allowFannie Mae and Freddie Mac to consider alternative credit-scoring models beyond the FICO credit score the government-sponsored enterprises currently use when determining what loans to purchase.

The bill, which is entitled the “Credit Score Competition Act of 2015,” was introduced by Rep. Ed Royce, R-CA., and Rep. Terri Sewell, D-AL.

In Royce and Sewell’s view, lower-to-middle income Americans who are qualified to buy a home but are unable to do so because of their FICO score or lack thereof will “specifically benefit from the GSEs using other credit scoring models.”

 

read more…

 

http://www.housingwire.com/blogs/1-rewired/post/36017-are-fico-scores-becoming-a-thing-of-the-past?eid=311691494&bid=1278399

Canada Housing Starts fall | Armonk Real Estate

Housing starts in Canada decreased to a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of 172,965 units in December of 2015 from an upwardly revised 212,028 units in November and well below market expectations of 200,000 units. Urban starts dropped 19.1 percent to 159,007 units. The multi-unit segment shrank 27 percent to 101,264 units while the single-detached segment held steady at 57,743 units. In December, urban starts decreased in the Prairies, Ontario, and Atlantic Canada, but increased in British Columbia and Québec. Rural starts were estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 13,958 units. Housing Starts in Canada averaged 183.42 Thousand from 1977 until 2015, reaching an all time high of 291.60 Thousand in March of 1978 and a record low of 90.70 Thousand in August of 1982. Housing Starts in Canada is reported by the Canada Mortgage And Housing Corporation.

Canada Housing Starts
read more…
http://www.tradingeconomics.com/canada/housing-starts

 

Are appraisals all wrong? | Armonk Real Estate

A study by a company that analyzes appraisals to reduce lender risk found that 39 percent of more than 300,000 appraisals contained property quality or condition ratings that conflicted with previous ratings of the same property.

Conflicting property condition and quality ratings cause delays that generally range from one day to several days—a costly and risky setback for lenders concerned with rate locks, and deadline-oriented guidelines and regulations. They can result from a number of factors, such as human error, appraiser subjectivity, actual changes in the property’s condition or quality, or even possible appraisal fraud, which has been cited by the GSEs as the top origination fraud scheme trend in 2014.

“More than one in three appraisals contain inconsistencies in property ratings,” said Phil Huff, president and CEO of Platinum Data Solutions. “Causes aren’t easy to determine, so they need to be investigated. Doing this after UCDP submission opens lenders up to numerous issues. Costly delays are just one of them.”

Fannie Mae’s new Collateral Underwriter (CU) identifies rating inconsistencies on loans submitted through the Uniform Collateral Data Portal (UCDP) by comparing the appraisal’s data with its own proprietary data, and flags the appraisal for comments or corrections.

Despite Platinum Data Solutions’ findings, the Treasury Financial Crimes Enforcement Network reported that loans with appraisal or valuation fraud fell to15% or 2,033 incidents in 2014 from 7,641 in 2013, a 50% improvement in 3 years.

 

read more…

 

http://www.realestateeconomywatch.com/2015/10/are-39-percent-of-appraisals-wrong/

CoreLogic: Foreclosures down more than 25% since August 2014 | Armonk Real Estate

The national foreclosure inventory declined by 25.2% and completed foreclosures declined by 20.1% compared with August 2014, according to the latest report fromCoreLogic.

The number of foreclosures nationwide decreased year over year from 46,000 in August 2014 to 36,000 in August 2015, representing a decrease of 68.9% from the peak of 117,357 completed foreclosures in September 2010.

“Mortgage performance continues to improve, however there is a dichotomy between the performance of recently originated loans and legacy loans. Newly delinquent loans are at the lowest rates during the last two decades. That reflects the tight underwriting and improved economy during the last few years,” said Frank Nothaft, chief economist for CoreLogic. “However, the foreclosure pipeline of legacy loans remains elevated. Over the last 12 months, there have been 500,000 completed foreclosures, more than double the number during normal periods.”

Click to enlarge

(Source: CoreLogic)

Completed foreclosures reflect the total number of homes lost to foreclosure. Since the financial crisis began in September 2008, there have been approximately 5.9 million completed foreclosures across the country, and since homeownership rates peaked in the second quarter of 2004, there have been nearly 8 million homes lost to foreclosure.

As of August 2015, the national foreclosure inventory included approximately 470,000, or 1.2%, of all homes with a mortgage compared with 629,000 homes, or 1.6%, in August 2014.

CoreLogic also reports that the number of mortgages in serious delinquency (defined as 90 days or more past due, including those loans in foreclosure or REO) declined by 20.7% from August 2014 to August 2015 with 1.3 million mortgages, or 3.5%, in this category. This is the lowest serious delinquency rate since January 2008. The foreclosure rate (defined as the share of all loans in the foreclosure process) was at 1.2% as of August 2015, which is back to January 2008 levels.

“In August, the housing market experienced solid and steady increases in sales, prices and performance and our preview data indicates those trends will continue in September,” said Anand Nallathambi, president and CEO of CoreLogic. “Longer term, the recent increase in household formations and rapidly improving labor market for millennials will provide a demographic tailwind to the housing market and keep demand firm.”

 

read more…

 

http://www.housingwire.com/articles/35329-corelogic-foreclosures-down-more-than-25-since-august-2014?eid=311691494&bid=1202967

Move up Buyers Move the Housing Markets | Armonk Real Estate

Purchases by current homeowners helped bolster home prices in August, according to results from the latest Campbell/Inside Mortgage Finance HousingPulse Tracking Survey.

“Current homeowner purchases are supporting the housing market,” said Tom Popik, research director for Campbell Surveys. “Metrics such as the sales-to-list price ratio show a strong housing market, particularly in western states. Nonetheless, forward-looking commentary from real estate agents may indicate some softening in the future.”

The market share for current homebuyers surged in the summer while the first-time homebuyer share declined. Current homeowners accounted for 49.3% of purchases in August, based on a three-month moving average after hitting a 12-month low of 44.9% in March.

The first-time homebuyer share was 38.3% in May – a level not seen since 2010. But higher home prices and seasonal patterns combined to push the first-time buyer share down to 36.4% in August. The investor share of home purchases has also fallen from 18.7% in March to 14.4% in August. NAR’s Realtor Confidence Index reported a 32 percent share for first-timers in August, up from 28 percent in July.

2015-09-25_10-10-31Source: NAR’s Realtor Confidence Report, August 2015

The sales-to-list price ratio for non-distressed properties declined modestly in August (to 98.3%) compared with the previous month (98.5%) but remained above the level seen in August 2014 (97.5%). All three states on the west coast maintained sales-to-list price ratios above 100% in August, led by California at 102.2%.

The median existing–home price for all housing types in August was $228,700, which is 4.7 percent above August 2014 ($218,400). August’s price increase marks the 42nd consecutive month of year–over–year gains.

The average time on market for non-distressed properties continued to decline in August, hitting 7.9 weeks compared with an average of 8.2 weeks the previous month and 8.6 weeks in August 2014. Non-distressed properties sold in the Pacific Northwest in August were on the market for an average of 4.5 weeks. NAR reported that properties typically stayed on the market for 47 days in August, an increase from 42 days in July but below the 53 days in August 2014. Forty percent of homes sold in August were on the market for less than a month.

 

read more…

 

http://www.realestateeconomywatch.com/2015/09/move-up-buyers-move-the-housing-markets/

Babe Ruth’s NYC apartment for sale | Armonk Real Estate

The home that Ruth built is for sale for just under $1.6 million on the Upper West Side.

Babe Ruth’s former two-bedroom, three-bathroom co-op at 345 W. 88th St. — where he lived at the end of his historic New York career — drew about 50 prospective buyers to its open house Sunday.

“My fondest memories [of the apartment] are of me and Father listening to ‘The Green Hornet’ on the radio and looking out to Riverside Park,’’ the Yankees legend’s daughter, Julia Ruth Stevens, 98, told The Post from her home in Conway, New Hampshire.
“Mom and Dad loved to entertain there,’’ Stevens said. “We had a maid and cook, and Dad would always invite Yankees who had been traded and were in town with other teams. He knew they wanted a home-cooked meal [while on the road].”
The Douglas Elliman listing touts the home’s location and amenities such as a live-in super and storage space. But, amazingly, the fact that Ruth once called it home is the last sentence of the pitch.

“Well run, pet friendly. Has a part-time doorman, live-in super, bike room and storage bins. In a terrific UWS location. Babe Ruth lived in this very apartment,” the listing reads.
But for those thinking that the pad’s $1.595 million price is a complete steal, there is also a $2,864-a-month fee for maintenance and common charges.

A plaque outside the building notes that the Sultan of Swat moved into the apartment in 1929 and resided there “for several years.”

The Bambino, his second wife, Claire Merritt Ruth, and their daughter lived in the home from 1929 to 1940, Stevens said.
Ruth’s 15-season career in New York, from 1920 to 1934, marked the beginning of the Yankee Dynasty. Ruth’s Yankees won the franchises’ first seven American League pennants and four World Series titles.

Ruth, widely regarded as the greatest Yankee ever, was just 53 when he died in 1948.

During their time on 88th Street, the Ruths had the entire 11-room seventh floor before it was divided into two units at some point after they moved to 173 Riverside Drive. The apartment currently up for grabs is one of those units.

 

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/babe-ruths-apartment-for-sale-for-16-million-2015-09-01