Lack of a “Foreclosure Wave” Determined By Banks

By: Friday November 30, 2012 6:13 am

Here’s a pretty jerky victory lap clearly planted by the mortgage lending industry, with the boastful title “Foreclosure Wave Averted as Doomsayers Defied.” Let’s hear this out for a second. When banks pulled back on foreclosures two years ago following a government investigation into allegations of faulty practices, market researchers, academics and Wall Street analysts [...]

The Lorraine Brown Case: Accountability for Fraudulent Document Preparers, Not the Banks Who Requested the Documents

By: Tuesday November 20, 2012 3:09 pm

The Justice Department has issued their formal press release in the plea arrangement with Lorraine Brown, the former President of fraudulent foreclosure document processor DocX, a division of LPS. Brown pleaded guilty to wire and mail fraud and faces five years in prison and up to $250,000 in fines, from what DoJ describes as “a [...]

Short Sales Continue to Dominate Consumer Relief in Foreclosure Fraud Settlement

By: Monday November 19, 2012 7:12 am

The second report from the Office of Mortgage Settlement Oversight has arrived, and it shows a continuation of one trend, tempered by the first batch of consumer relief in the form of actual principal reductions.

The True Story of the Housing Recovery, Cont’d

By: Tuesday October 23, 2012 11:38 am

Zillow, the housing website for some reason seen as a credible analyst of housing prices, reports today that US home values have increased by the most since 2006, the year before the housing collapse. This sounds like a breakthrough until you recognize that the price gain in the third quarter being lauded here is a [...]

CFPB Report on Student Loan Servicing Shows Same Predatory Tactics as Mortgage Servicing

By: Monday October 22, 2012 7:45 am

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau released an eye-opening report on student lending late last week that got me thinking about a simple truth I think I had overlooked previously. I’ve documented for well over a year the extent to which mortgage servicers make their profits almost entirely through ripping off their customers, adding on unnecessary [...]

In Year Six of Foreclosure Crisis, Depressingly Slow Moves Toward Solutions

By: Thursday October 4, 2012 8:45 am

Behind the scenes of last night’s debate – well behind – is a foreclosure crisis that has entered its sixth straight year. This is another fire that has not been put out. The only approach in the debate to even talking about this fire was a brief discussion by Gov. Romney about qualified residential mortgages, [...]

Katherine Porter’s Dogged Work Helps Get Servicing Standards Implemented in California

By: Wednesday October 3, 2012 7:11 am

Today is the first day that the servicing standards for the foreclosure fraud settlement go into effect. The standards, 304 in all, include large changes to the servicer business model, like banning robo-signing, mandating quick decision making on loan modification, providing borrowers with options to foreclosure, establishing a single point of contact and ending “dual [...]

Foreclosure Fraud Settlement Update: Checks to Victims, Servicing Standards, Ongoing Lawsuits

By: Thursday September 27, 2012 6:56 am

A number of states have announced that they are sending out claim forms to foreclosure victims who are eligible for a one-time cash payment under the foreclosure fraud settlement. $1.5 billion has been earmarked for roughly 750,000 homeowners (depending on takeup) who were foreclosed upon between Jan. 1, 2008, and Dec. 31, 2011, by one [...]

Stories from the Dysfunctional Mortgage Market

By: Monday September 17, 2012 8:29 am

I think today is the day for really horrible stories of market dysfunction amid ignorance or outright collusion by the authorities. This does not end with debt collectors on bad checks. It leads back to the mortgage market, where we’ve seen the most horror stories over the last several years. Most market analysts focus on [...]

Study Blames Banks for Poor HAMP Performance; Blame the Designers, Treasury, Instead

By: Wednesday September 12, 2012 12:19 pm

I’ve seen some buzz from, among other places, Pro Publica, about a new study blaming banks for the inadequacies of the Administration’s foreclosure mitigation program, HAMP. According to the study, if the banks were properly staffed and performed better under the program, HAMP would have produced 800,000 more modifications by the end of the year, [...]

House Without Mortgage Suffered Wells Fargo’s Breaking and Entering Twice

By: Tuesday September 11, 2012 8:15 am

Let me roll back to that story in the Inland Empire of California, where Wells Fargo broke into and destroyed the wrong house, one that didn’t even have a mortgage. Here’s a funny story: this was not the first time Wells’ contractors broke into that house. It was the second. Tom Goyda, vice president of [...]

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