“Boomerang” buyers may not provide the “oomph” some housing market analysts have been predicting. A recent study by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) identifies several obstacles likely to prevent formerly distressed buyers, who lost their homes during the downturn, from re-entering the market. The NAR studied the records of nearly 9.3 million owners who… Read More »

Continuing their efforts to reform the title insurance industry New York state regulators recently cut title insurance premium rates on refinance transactions. “We are pleased the title insurance industry is doing the right thing here and appreciate their cooperation with us to cut these rates,” Benjamin Lawsky, superintendent of the New York Department of Financial… Read More »

Although appreciation rates have moderated over the past year, home prices are still rising. The S&P Case-Shiller 10-city index increased by 4.8 percent in February (vs.4.3 percent in January) and the 20-city index was up by 5 percent, compared with a 4.5 percent annual increase the previous month. Rising prices are something of a double-edged… Read More »

Employers added 223,000 positions to their payrolls in April, falling a little short of the consensus, but beating many more pessimistic forecasts and rebounding strongly from the March Department of Labor report, which was revised downward from a dismal 126,000 to an even more dismal 85,000. The Federal Reserve, which has been inching closer to… Read More »

A legislative committee in Colorado has approved a measure that would create a commission to help oversee the title insurance industry and strengthen consumer protections in that state. The gap between what sellers think their homes are worth and their appraised values is widening. American Banker reports that CFPB officials have acknowledged privately that the… Read More »

Republicans and Democrats, who have been unable to agree on much of anything in recent memory, have no trouble agreeing that cybersecurity is a major concern. The House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved a measure that would prod private companies to share information about cyber-threats with each other and with federal government investigators. The Obama Administration,… Read More »

Real estate ads tend to feature new home buyers smiling broadly as they stand in the doorway of their newly purchased homes. More realistic images would show at least some of these buyers looking nervously and even a bit unhappily over their shoulders. Nearly 40 percent of the first-time homebuyers responding to a recent Chase… Read More »

Perhaps the most interesting feature of the new home sales statistics was the way – or ways – in which they were reported. The statistics indicated that March sales took a giant step backward, falling 11.4 percent behind February’s upwardly revised annual pace of 543,000 units – the strongest showing in seven years. On a… Read More »

The House of Representatives has given resounding (401-2) approval to a measure demanding more transparency from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). Sponsored by Randy Neugebauer (R-TX) and Andy Barr (R-KY), the measure would require all CFPB advisory and subcommittees to hold open meetings. “This bill ensures that we, as an American family, can see… Read More »

To: Settlement Agents With less than three months to go until the August 1, 2015 implementation of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s (CFPB) Integrated Mortgage Disclosures rule, the industry has seen a flurry of activity as lenders, real estate professionals, and settlement service providers continue to prepare. Bank of America has experienced a notable increase… Read More »