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Articles tagged with: Foreclosure

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[1 Jul 2013 | No Comment | 5,027 views]
Martha Shoffner is the least of our problems

Former Arkansas Treasurer Martha Shoffner made the news again last week when she pleaded innocent to federal bribery and extortion charges in U.S. district court. It seems the media will write something about Shoffner whenever she happens to walk near a courthouse, and we at First Arkansas News are as guilty as anyone about that. We, too, have had our fun with the sad, strange story of Shoffner at least a couple of times.
Shoffner’s tale is, after all, a fascinating one as we’re talking about a woman who allegedly sold …

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[5 Jun 2012 | No Comment | 4,479 views]
Foreclosure bottleneck easing in Arkansas?

Since September, foreclosures in Arkansas have been at record lows.
In the first quarter, the foreclosure rate feel around 79 percent from where it was a year ago in the Natural State. Why? Is the economy improving? Are people in dire financial straits suddenly able to pay their mortgages? Have banks resorted to simply giving people their homes for free?
The answers to all those questions is “no.” What did happen was a decision from the Eastern District of Arkansas, Jonesboro Division, put the brakes on foreclosures in the state. In the …

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[26 Apr 2012 | One Comment | 2,454 views]
National mortgage standards coming this summer

The United States Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) announced on April 9 that it will formally propose rules this summer establishing national mortgage servicing standards.
The CFPB plans to finalize those rules in January. To get an idea of the extent of those rules and what the CFPB hopes to achieve by implementing them, point your favorite Internet browser to tinyurl.com/7dgym6p.
A mortgage servicer, of course, collects payments from a borrower on behalf of the original owner of the loan. If you took out a mortgage at a local bank but make …

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[25 Mar 2012 | No Comment | 3,258 views]
Been through a foreclosure? You may be eligible for a review

If your home was tangled up in the foreclosure process in 2010 or 2011, you may be entitled to an independent review which will determine if you are entitled to compensation.
The clock is ticking on that process, however – people wanting a review must request one by the end of July.
In essence, the federal Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, the Office of Thrift Supervision and the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve investigated 14 major mortgage servicers accused of engaging in unfair foreclosure practices. The end result …

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[14 Mar 2012 | One Comment | 3,100 views]
Ever considered a short sale?

It’s a tale we’ve heard far too many times – a home owner gets sick or loses a job, falls behind on his mortgage payments and is looking at the very real prospect of losing a home through foreclosure.
When a home is foreclosed upon, no one involved in the process wins. The home owner loses the house he or she had planned on staying in for years and will have to deal with a bad credit score for a few years. The lender always loses money when a home is …

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[7 Feb 2012 | One Comment | 2,451 views]
Oh, Canada…

The Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions of Canada (OSFI) has raised concerns over lending practices similar to those that gave rise to the crash of the subprime mortgage market in the United States.
According to documents obtained by Bloomberg News, OFSI officials are concerned about increasingly lenders’ increasing liberal practices when it comes to writing mortgages and home equity credit lines. Those practices include not requiring proof of income for those big-ticket loans.
To put that all in context, subprime lending in the U.S. went from an historical rate of …

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[16 Jan 2012 | 4 Comments | 6,303 views]
Freddie Mac rolls out program for the unemployed

Here’s a newsflash – unemployment remains a concern.
In Arkansas, the unemployment rate was 8.2 percent in November – that’s down from 9.3 percent, but is still high for Arkansas. What that number means is that 106,500 people in the Natural State want jobs but don’t have them. That’s a large number, roughly equal to the population of Saline County.
That’s a major problem for the economy for the economy for a number of reasons, but we’ll just deal with one since this column focuses on real estate issues – how can …

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[24 Dec 2011 | One Comment | 2,105 views]
RealtyTrac reports foreclosures down 90 percent in Arkansas

RealtyTrac reports that the number of foreclosures in Arkansas dropped 90 percent in November compared to the same month a year ago.
Nationally, foreclosures dropped 14 percent. In Arkansas, RealtyTrac reports that there were 160 homes in foreclosure actions in November, down 90.1 percent from 1,610 houses in the same month last year.
Why was Arkansas so out of line with national trends? Michael Tilley of Fort Smith-based The City Wire reported the drop has a lot to do with a September bankruptcy decision from the Eastern Division of Arkansas that decision, …

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[18 Dec 2011 | One Comment | 2,846 views]
Mortgage delinquency rates to drop next year?

TransUnion – the third largest credit bureau in the United States – predicts that mortgage delinquency rates will fall in 2012.
The delinquency rate is defined as the number of borrowers that are 60 days or more behind on their mortgages. TransUnion predicts that rate will hit 6 percent in the first quarter of 2012 and then drop to around 5 percent by the end of the year. According to TransUnion, the delinquency rate peaked in the fourth quarter of 2009 at 6.89 percent.
While a falling delinquency rate comes as good …

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[27 Nov 2011 | No Comment | 2,595 views]
Geting ready for ‘HARP 2.0′

On Nov. 15, the Federal Housing Finance Agency, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac announced new guidelines for to the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) in hopes of helping more struggling homeowners take advantage of lower interest rates and secure affordable mortgage payments.
The so-called “HARP 2.0” is an extension and expansion of the program that is a little over two years old and hasn’t helped as many home owners as expected. Indeed, HARP has helped less than 1 million homeowners since it was launched and that, in large part, is due …