House Democrats Call for Principal Reduction, but Tax Time Bomb Would Make That Damaging for Borrowers

By: Wednesday December 12, 2012 10:00 am

Here’s a case of just not understanding what’s going on. Yesterday, Elijah Cummings and 18 House Democrats wrote a letter to the President and lead Congressional negotiators on the fiscal slope, urging them to include “provisions that will provide assistance to homeowners who are currently underwater on their mortgages” in the final deal. This sounds [...]

Administration Looking to Replace Ed DeMarco at FHFA – Could His Lawsuits Against Banks Be the Reason?

By: Monday December 10, 2012 11:06 am

The Wall Street Journal reports that the White House will finally nominate a successor to Ed DeMarco at the Federal Housing Finance Agency for the first time since January 2011, incredibly enough. The FHFA’s current director, Edward DeMarco, took the job more than three years ago in an “acting,” or interim, capacity. He has remained [...]

FHFA’s Christmastime Moral Relativism and the New New Housing Market

By: Wednesday December 5, 2012 6:19 am

FHFA has situational ethics here. They rail against states with long foreclosure timelines, even increasing their guarantee fees. But when faced with headlines about foreclosures during Christmas, they become beneficent, and act to increase foreclosure timelines.

Fannie and Freddie Offer Breaks to Homeowners in Path of Superstorm Sandy, After Pushing to Foreclose Faster on Same Areas

By: Wednesday October 31, 2012 10:00 am

Well, now we know what it will take to put a stop to the foreclosure crisis – a massive storm affecting the entire Eastern seaboard. For homes in that area at risk of foreclosure, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will offer a small bit of mortgage relief: The government-controlled mortgage finance giants said Tuesday that [...]

Freddie Mac Resisted Mass Refinancing Programs

By: Monday October 29, 2012 12:27 pm

I’m glad Jesse Eisinger went back and examined why one of the GSEs failed to offer mass refinancing for years, until the federal government basically insisted. But I think this is a story that attempts to set up a binary ideological dynamic where Occam’s razor suggests a lot of bipartisanship in neglecting homeowners. To start, [...]

White House Promises to Dump Ed DeMarco If They Only Get the Chance in a Second Term

By: Wednesday October 24, 2012 10:50 am

In one of the more cynical campaign promises I’ve seen in a while, the Obama Administration has apparently been running around to housing advocates telling them they will fire Ed DeMarco as head of the Federal Housing Finance Agency… after the election. In 2010, Senate Republicans opposed Mr Obama’s choice to replace Mr DeMarco and [...]

Big Banks Whining That Fannie and Freddie Won’t Accept Their Toxic Loans Blindly Anymore

By: Friday October 5, 2012 10:26 am

Mitt Romney’s comments attributing the difficulty of getting a mortgage to Dodd-Frank QRM rules was really way off base. The rule is on track to be completed by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on the timeline set out in Dodd-Frank, by 2013. As it’s not in place now, it places no penalty on lenders to [...]

Investor Purchases of Foreclosed Properties Continue

By: Wednesday October 3, 2012 11:00 am

Yestreday, Fannie Mae sold off another chunk of its foreclosed properties as part of a pilot program to process bulk sales to investors who will rent them out in the short term. The beneficiary was a private equity firm. The Cogsville Group, a New York-based firm led by former professional soccer player Donald Cogsville, reached [...]

FHFA Bullying States into Making Foreclosures Faster

By: Friday September 21, 2012 7:43 am

The Federal Housing Finance Agency has decided to raise guarantee fees from Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac on mortgages in states that respect the rule of law. Really, that’s about the size of it. As Shahien Nasiripour points out today, the g-fees will go up in five states that have slowed the foreclosure process by [...]

The Path for Housing Is Dangerous

By: Thursday September 13, 2012 12:59 pm

The other channel of a potential economic recovery would be housing. This was the channel that got Paul Krugman so jazzed last week. I should note that the Federal Reserve’s economic projections show basically no difference from their last ones in June, and Bernanke said specifically that housing is “a piston that has not fired” [...]

Fannie and Freddie Overseer Announces New Repurchase Process

By: Tuesday September 11, 2012 1:01 pm

The Federal Housing Finance Agency has made a key change for new loans that the entities it oversees, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, will purchase or guarantee. Under the new plan, FHFA will identify and reject faulty loans earlier in the process, rather than after the fact, once the loans sour. By “faulty loans,” they [...]

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