Xchanging Partners With Deutsche Bank

Category: National Mortgage News
Published: Friday, 17 October 2014
Written by Admin


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Social Media Pays Off

Category: National Mortgage News
Published: Friday, 17 October 2014
Written by Admin

In the following interview, John O'Reilly of Base Camp Realty of Richmond lets us know the winning methods behind his madness, from social media to education and time management.

John O'Reilly
Base Camp Realty of Richmond
Years in real estate: 16
Region Served: Greater Richmond, Va.
Average sales price in your market: $225,000
Average market time: 45 days

How are you operating your business more efficiently--where have you cut back and where have you invested?
We have cut back on print advertising and invested in social media and lead generation. We do a lot with Facebook and LinkedIn. But our biggest growth percentage-wise has been through Twitter. We weren't paying attention to it and then last March, we began using it in earnest and it has been a remarkable avenue of growth for us.

How does your membership in Top 5 help generate social media ROI?
Top 5 has really helped us solidify our communications. We push the articles and the newsletters they provide us through Google+ and Twitter, and our growth has been off the charts. We are up about 900 percent. Our clients want to know what's going on and we're able to educate them with our Top 5 content.

How are you using social media to ramp up your marketing efforts?
We just started making YouTube commercials, which I believe will have a very positive effect on how consumers see us. These commercials show how we're able to effectively span all worlds--how we cater to everyone from 21-year-olds to 71-year-oldsand beyond.

How do you most effectively communicate with clients?
I'm a little old school, so I still like to talk to people face to face. But I know that there is a fast-growing segment of the market that only wants to communicate digitally and I am fine with that, too. Basically, I connect with my clients however they like to be communicated with. We have clients who are 71 who like to be called on the telephone to be updated. We also have 21-year-old clients who only want to be emailed or sent text messages. We embrace it all.

How are you staying educated and informed about market conditions?
We use industry information sources like RISMedia, who provides us with great content and articles. We also stay up to date on market conditions through publications, such as National Mortgage News. Then, through our Twitter account, we get alerts all the time about the market. Lastly, I sit on local boards like the YMCA and stay tuned in that way as well.

What's one of the current challenges in your market and how are you tackling it?
Inventory has been a challenge. But I find the harder I work, the luckier I get. If you're a door knocker, knock on more doors asking for business.

How do you approach time management?
Being good in sales means you're sometimes not so good at time management. So the key has been my team. I have a great team and I let them do their jobs, which makes it easier for me to do mine.

How do you stay successful and happy in real estate?
It's all about balance. Family first, and when you work, work hard and effectively. Like the title of that great book advises, "eat the frog first."

For more information, visit http://www.basecamprealty.com.

FHA Pushes Loans to Lower-Credit-Score Borrowers

Category: National Mortgage News
Published: Thursday, 16 October 2014
Written by Admin

The Federal Housing Administration is pressing banks to make more home mortgage loans to borrowers with lower credit scores, National Mortgage News reports:

The FHA expects 75% of the loans it insures from now on will be made to borrowers with FICO scores of 680 or below, an FHA official told a group of risk managers Monday. ...He said he is far more concerned that the share of FHA borrowers with credit scores between 640 and 680 is half the size of what it used to be. Lenders have essentially retreated from lending to that segment of the market, resulting in the loss of a borrower class over the last 10 years, he said...In 2007, at the beginning of the financial crisis, 55% of FHA-insured loans went to borrowers with FICO scores below 640. Moreover, 30% of those loans were to borrowers with scores below 580, which ultimately hit the agency with a massive wave of defaults.

That was way too far on the risk spectrum, Vetrano admitted. Were shooting for a happy medium between those two.

The FHA now expects 25% of the loans it insures will be to borrowers with FICO scores of 640 or below. Another 50% will go to those in the middle ground of 640 to 680. The remaining 25% will be to those borrowers with scores above 680.

This is an example of the detail the government goes into in telling banks how to operate. If these loans go bad in some future housing downturn, who will get the blame for the ensuing forclosures and economic downturn -- the banks and bankers, the FHA, or both?

Thanks to reader-participant-community member-watchdog-content co-creator A. for sending the tip.

by Editor | Sep 11, 2014 at 10:43 am Related Topics: Banking, Housing receive the latest by email: subscribe to the free futureofcapitalism.com mailing list

Aging parents find a home through remodeling

Category: National Mortgage News
Published: Thursday, 16 October 2014
Written by Admin

This column recently focused on the rising number of senior housing projects to satisfy the demand by the increasing number of seniors. Today we look at another rising trend to satisfy the housing needs of seniors.

Many homeowners are remodeling their homes to create in-law suites for aging parents, with features to make them accessible and safe while providing plenty of space and privacy, it was reported by the National Association of Realtors.

AARP senior policy adviser Rodney Harrell says demand for in-law suites is on the rise as baby boomers age. And with the cost of caregiving facilities and services soaring, it may be more affordable for parents to move in with their children, it was noted in the NAR report.

These suites often are located on the first floor to eliminate stairs and feature flush thresholds; large bedroom and living areas; showers with ramp entries, built-in benches, and grab bars; and wide doorways -- giving parents their own space but keeping them close enough to interact with their children and grandchildren.

Moss Building and Designs Jason Hampel says homeowners should plan for the long term when designing in-law suites, assuming they can accommodate other uses and will add resale value.

In-law suites generally are integrated into the home and are intended for older or disabled relatives. This means they are not considered separate or accessory dwelling units that require special permits and are difficult to build under strict zoning rules.

In some jurisdictions, in-law suites can have a bedroom, sitting area, bathroom and a couple of appliances, but adding a stove or full kitchen could require special permits.

Questions from readers

Question: Whats the difference between a mortgage prequalification and preapproval?

Answer: On the Consumer Financial Protection Bureaus website, the regulator gives its answer to the question, Whats the difference between being prequalified and preapproved for a mortgage?

Today, some banks have made the decision to not issue pre-approval letters due to the cumbersome regulatory environment, so they may call their letter a pre-qualification. Lenders licensed as mortgage brokers cant issue a pre-approval letter because they arent licensed to approve loans, it was reported by National Mortgage News.

Some lenders issue letters based on a simple conversation with the borrower and call them pre-approvals; some lenders have borrowers submit information though a website that churns pre-approval letters without any lender review. Some lenders issue letters only after a thorough investigative process.

Q: What factors are being considered in determining how much to increase g-fees?

A: The Federal Housing Finance Agency is now considering a proposed increase in fees charged by the GSEs (Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac) to provide guarantees on mortgage-backed securities. A new report from the Urban Institute suggests the agency faces a more difficult task than one might assume.

Breaking down information released by FHFA in a request for public input, the team at the Urban Institute determined there are three crucial assumptions the agency must make when calculating an appropriate number for g-fees, it was reported by DS News.

Factors being considered are whether or not to count future g-fee premiums as capital, what return on equity to assume, and what kind of capital buffer Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac need beyond what is required to cover expected losses in a stress scenario.

Q: Can poor credit result in higher insurance premiums?

A: Yes, a low credit score can be quite costly. Those with poor credit pay 91 percent more than people with excellent credit, while those with median credit pay 29 percent more, according to InsuranceQuotes.com, a part of Bankrate Insurance. Quadrant Information Service conducted the study in July for InsuranceQuotes.com

This is another example of why credit is such an important part of your financial life, said Laura Adams, a senior analyst with InsuranceQuotes.com in a press release. Maintaining a good credit history suggests that youre a less risky customer and can lead to several hundred dollars in annual homeowners insurance savings.

Q: Why do so many young adults still live with their parents?

A: Many reasons could be cited, but one factor was revealed in a recent survey. Experts have surveyed the young generation again and again as to why they are staying with their parents.

Now Fannie Mae has completed a survey of the parents they live with. As it turns out, more than half of them dont mind their children living at home.