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Mortgage News Daily , Thursday, July 21, 2016
(RECAP: Sales of existing homes increased in June for the fourth consecutive month. The National Association of Realtors® (NAR) said it was encouraged to see the month also bring a modest increase in the percentage of first-time homebuyers. Sales of existing single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums, and cooperative apartments rose 1.1 percent from May to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.57 million units. Sales in May were at a rate of 5.51 million, a downward revision from the 5.530 million originally reported. Sales were up 3.0 percent from the June 2015 rate of 5.41 million units. Last month's sales were at the highest annual pace of any month since February 2007.)
Realtor.com, Wednesday, July 20, 2016
(RECAP: When people say they own their home, it’s usually a half-truth at best. Often, a bank owns the home they live in — most of it, anyway. Still, Americans have a lot of real money tied up in their homes — on average, $150,506, according to a new report by the Urban Institute called “How Much House Do Americans Really Own? Measuring America’s Accessible Housing Wealth by Geography and Age.” “Homeownership is important to building wealth,” said report author Laurie Goodman. “This can be seen by the fact that housing wealth, while inequitably distributed, is still more equitably distributed than other types of wealth.”)
WVIR NBC29, Wednesday, July 20, 2016
(RECAP: A Charlottesville group focused on making housing more affordable has some recommendations. A report put together by Robert Charles Lesser & Co. Real Estate Advisors concludes Charlottesville has a major lack of affordable housing. A subcommittee tasked with coming up with some viable recommendations to that problem met at the Neighborhood Development Services conference room Wednesday. Members of that subcommittee discussed the possibility of offering incentives to developers who provide low-income housing in their developments, as well as other options. The group also talked about enacting some new zoning policies which would require developers to make a percentage of housing affordable to those of a certain income level.)
WVIR NBC29, Wednesday, July 20, 2016
(RECAP: Governor Terry McAuliffe today announced that overall homelessness in the commonwealth declined 10.5 percent in 2016 versus 2015, with a 17 percent decrease in family homelessness in the same period. In addition, more than $14.7 million was recently awarded in Virginia Homeless Solutions Program (VHSP) grants to combat homelessness in Virginia. The new preliminary numbers originate from annual point in time data collected by local Continuum of Care groups across Virginia in January each year and compiled by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development.)
Freddie Mac, Tuesday, July 19, 2016
(RECAP: Freddie Mac released today its monthly Insight for July with further insights on the perceptions and plans of 55+ homeowners and the impact they'll have on the broader housing market for years to come based on the results from the Freddie Mac 55+ Survey. "With the possible exception of Gen X, people are ignoring the conventional wisdom. Millennials are taking longer to marry, start families and buy their first homes. And the 55+ population are working longer, aging in place or buying an additional home (or two) rather than winding down. Furthermore, they expect to be an active part of our housing economy for quite a while longer," Sean Becketti, Chief Economist, Freddie Mac.)
Bloomberg, Tuesday, July 19, 2016
(RECAP: The Fed needs to remember that how they got into this policy stance may offer a lesson for how to get out. Policy makers cut rates to zero and then instituted quantitative easing. Now they should consider selling assets before raising rates. Or, at a minimum, utilizing a mixed strategy of rate hikes and asset sales. The objective of meeting the Fed's mandate in the context of maintaining financial stability may be unattainable using the interest rate tool and associated forward guidance alone. Unfortunately, the Fed does not appear to be debating the policy mix — at least not in public. They remain focused on interest rates, delaying balance sheet policy to a later date. On the current trajectory, however, that later date may never come.)
Augusta Free Press , Tuesday, July 19, 2016
(RECAP: The Humanities Foundation has been awarded three developments in Virginia with a combined cost of more than $47 million. It is the most that the Foundation has been awarded in any single year. The deals were funded via Low Income Housing Tax Credits administered by VHDA. Humanities received the most tax credits of any developer in Virginia. “Once these developments are completed, we will have 11 affordable communities in Virginia. This represents a tipping point for us; we will start experiencing economies of scale and property management will become more efficient,” said Tracy Doran, president of Humanities Foundation. The three awarded deals are: Glenwood Ridge, an 82-unit community for families in Richmond; Keswick Senior Apartments, a 100-unit development for seniors in Fredericksburg and Keswick Apartments, a 120-unit community for families that is also located in Fredericksburg.)
HousingWire , Tuesday, July 19, 2016
(RECAP: The FHA will soon begin insuring mortgages that also carry liens created by energy retrofit programs, as long as the energy lien remains subordinate to the mortgage, HUD announced Tuesday. HUD laid the groundwork for this move last year, when it announced its intentions to issue guidance that would preserve the priority status of FHA loans over loans created by the Property Assessed Clean Energy program, also called PACE. Through the PACE program, homeowners can obtain financing to make improvements to their homes to increase the home’s energy efficiency. Under the new guidelines, the FHA will now approve purchase and refinance mortgage applications in states that treat PACE obligations as special assessments similar to property taxes. In accordance with existing guidance, HUD said that lenders will be responsible for escrowing PACE payments as they would property taxes.)
Multi-Housing News, Tuesday, July 19, 2016
(RECAP: The Preserve at Westfields, a newly rezoned site located in the 1,100-acre Westfields International Center at Dulles office park, will be transformed into a major mixed-use community that will bring residences to the well-located park. Akridge successfully rezoned the 55 acres of land from office to residential use and just sold the site to Northwood Ravin and Elm Street Development, two developers who will carry out the vision for the site just south of the Dulles International Airport in Fairfax County. Specific plans for the development include 155 townhomes, up to 650 multifamily units and up to 15,000 square feet of retail. Construction on the first phase of the multifamily units is expected to start in late summer 2017, with delivery of the first residences and retail in late 2018.)
Reuters, Monday, July 18, 2016
(RECAP: Just as mortgage bankers were preparing for the end of a historic boom driven by low interest rates, borrowers have begun knocking at their doors again. In earnings reports last week, JPMorgan Chase & Co, Wells Fargo & Co and Citigroup Inc. said they originated $94 billion worth of new mortgages during the second quarter in their core mortgage operations, an increase of $23 billion, or 31 percent, over the first quarter. The reason for the sudden burst of business? Mortgage rates have dropped to lows not seen since 2013 after the U.S. Federal Reserve dashed expectations for near-term rate hikes. That has led existing borrowers to try and lock in better rates. New borrowers, meanwhile, have been enticed by low borrowing costs and low down payment offers.)
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