Category Archives: Loan Modifications

Register Now for the 2014 San Francisco Housing Expo

Register Now for the 2014 San Francisco Housing Expo

Register Now for the 2014 San Francisco Housing Expo

SAN FRANCISCO HOMEOWNERSHIP RESOURCE FAIR

HomeowenershipSF presents their annual Housing Expo this coming June 14.

The expo will offer information and resources for both perspective home buyers and current homeowners.

Current home buyers will be able to get the latest information about down payment assistance programs, credit tools and special mortgage products. Buyers will also be able to tour affordable homes for sale. Be sure and book the tour early because last year the tour booked up quickly.

For current homeowners, the expo will offer counseling and on the spot loan modification services for those in distress or suffering a hardship. The program will also include updates from Keep Your Home CA as well as other programs such as the CA Homeowners Bill of Rights to help avoid foreclosure.

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under California, down payment assistance, Events, Foreclosure, Loan Modifications, Mortgages, San Francisco

Luxury Homes Foreclosure Trend

Luxury Homes Foreclosure Trend

Luxury Homes Foreclosure Trend

Luxury homes continue to foreclose at a record rate.

Even though pundits say that the economy continues to gain more traction and that the worst of the real estate crisis may be over, distressed properties continue to pop up in the Bay Area.

Inventory continues to be in short supply and experts say that we have 4-5 years (we’ve heard up to 10-12 years) left of REOs coming on the market. Unlike the past years, the upcoming REOs tend to skew toward the high end. Homes valued in the $1.5 million-plus range continue to climb in the foreclosure scene. For a couple of examples, a $2.5 million home recently foreclosed in Cow Hollow and likewise for a $1.8 million home in Hillsborough.

Folks over at RealtyTrac state that foreclosure activity on homes in the $5 million-plus value range jumped 61 percent from the same time period in 2012. During the real estate meltdown, high end homes certainly did see their share of REO casualties but banks often held off foreclosing because of the high losses. Instead the banks worked toward loan modifications, forbearances and short sales.

Now with values on the rise, many luxury homes have fallen into the foreclosure track. In the past, banks often hesitated at foreclosing due to possible high losses. Now, banks may take more chances to foreclose on the high ticket homes. With increased profits, banks with defaulting loans seem more willing to roll the dice on the luxury inventory. Such actions may end up signifying snake eyes for distressed high end homeowners.

Leave a comment

Filed under Banks, California, Foreclosure, Loan Modifications, short sales

Adjusting Loan Modifications Will Hit In 2014

Adjusting Loan Modifications Will Hit In 2014

Adjusting Loan Modifications Will Hit In 2014

Homeowners May Face Adjusting Loan Mod Rates Beginning In 2014

With distressed Bay Area properties going the way of affordable rent, and prices in most areas still on the rise (or at least steady) most homeowners and others interested in real estate think that we have seen the last wave of distressed properties in our collective rear view mirrors.

Like the mirrors in a funhouse, the real estate view may be slightly distorted or even downright scary. Despite the fact that the economy in the hilly city and as well as Silicon Valley, Marin, etc continues to display robust numbers, many people overlook the scary loan mod adjustment monster that looms on the horizon.

Those with short memories will need a refresher to remember that not only did the real estate crisis start about 2009 but so did the loan modification craze. While many homeowners received 30 or 40 year fixed loan mods, many homeowners received five year loan mods, meaning that they adjust after five years. These adjustments will mean that many homeowners will not be able to afford the adjusted monthly payment.

We have spoken with many homeowners who have these loan mods that will begin adjusting in 2014. Many of these homeowners can see the writing on the wall. Most will not be able to pay the adjusting amount which will put them in awkward positions. Either underwater or with equity, these homeowners may not be able to pay their new adjusted mortgage.

Re-modifying Adjusting Loans

Can homeowners return to the bank for another loan mod? Banks have not been in the habit of re-modifying loans so that may not be an option. Unfortunately, these homes may be future examples of distressed equity sales.

Some prognosticators think that we may be in store for 11 more years of short sales, foreclosures, loan mods and the distressed properties. That may be a bit of a stretch however it may likely continue for at least five years.

Homeowners with soon to be adjusting loan modifications (2014, 2015) take note. Be proactive. Create a game plan for your home or investment property instead of waiting until the loan modification adjusts. Doing so will allow you to look yourself in the mirror and know that you did the right thing.

Anyone with question about how to approach their adjusting loan mod can feel free to contact me at keith@resourcerock.com.

Leave a comment

Filed under Banks, California, Loan Modifications, Mortgages, San Francisco

CA Homeowners Have More Power Against Banks Thanks To Homeowner Bill Of Rights

CA Homeowners Have More Power Against Banks Thanks To Homeowners Bill Of Rights

CA Homeowners Have More Power Against Banks Thanks To Homeowners Bill Of Rights

Homeowner Take On Banks In Court For Dual Tracking And Foreclosing

When the California Homeowner Bill of Rights came into effect in January of this year, many advocates cheered, and of course the banks were not so pleased. Even though the law took effect few people saw any immediate effects. We heard from several non-profit counselors and homeowners that banks continued to dual track homeowners, offer multiple points of contact and break the terms of the law.

The California Homeowner Bill of Rights offers protection for the homeowners but what options do homeowners have if the banks don’t comply? Take it to the courts. In the past, homeowners didn’t have many options if banks dual tracked then foreclosed. Even if you could find an attorney to take the case, many judges would throw the case out. One of our attorney colleagues mentioned recently that in the past Contra Costa judges had been particularly reticent to halt foreclosures or entertain dual tracking cases but with the new law things have changed.

One story (see link) tells the story of a San Luis Obispo County couple who came out victorious in a million-dollar-plus settlement against OneWest Bank, IndyMac Mortgage Services, U.S. Bank and GSR Loan Mortgage Trust after the servicer foreclosed on their home and a rental property while the couple negotiated a loan settlement with the servicer. People often refer to this practice as “dual tracking”.

Attorney Specializing in CA Homeowner Bill of Rights Will Speak at the San Francisco Housing Expo

This case and a few others will now doubt offer homeowners a better opportunity to take on the banks for wrongdoings as part of the Homeowner Bill of Rights.

One attorney specializing in the California Homeowner Bill of Rights will be speaking at the San Francisco Housing Expo October 26.

1 Comment

Filed under Banks, California, Events, Foreclosure, Loan Modifications, San Francisco

2013 San Francisco Housing Expo Coming In October

housing sf flyer-1For anyone out there who thinks:

A: It’s impossible to buy a home in San Francisco unless you work at Google or Facebook or

B: That foreclosures and foreclosure prevention does not exist anymore in San Francisco,

might consider attending the HomeownershipSF FREE RESOURCE FAIR FOR CURRENT AND FUTURE HOME BUYERS

For those wishing to purchase a home in San Francisco we have listed a number of items that will be included in the free event

Find out about down-payment assistance programs

Tour available Below Market Rate (BMR) properties

Learn about special products and services for Veterans, persons with disabilities, and Union members

For CURRENT HOMEOWNERS who may be having difficulty dealing with their servicer, making mortgage payments, trying to save their home or finding out of the box solutions may wish to attend as well.

The expo will include:

Negotiate directly with servicers to modify your home loan

Meet with a certified Keep Your Home CA counselor

Find out about grants and low interest loans for needed home repairs

Connect with resources to support your financial well being

Those wishing info before the event can feel free to contact us for assistance and information.

Leave a comment

Filed under Banks, California, Events, Foreclosure, Loan Modifications, Mortgages, pre-foreclosure, San Francisco

Mortgage Debt Forgiveness Relief Act Set To Expire December 31, 2013

Mortgage Debt Forgiveness Relief Act Set To Expire December 31, 2013

Mortgage Debt Forgiveness Relief Act Set To Expire December 31, 2013

 

Homeowners On The Fence About A Short Sale Should Consider The Year End Expiration Of Tax Break

It seemed like just yesterday that underwater homeowners faced a conundrum to either short sale or wait things out to see if the market would improve. For many homeowners the market improved so much that they now sit right side up with actual equity in their home. Short sales have become equity (or what many people refer to as “normal”) sales.

Even with the hot sellers market, some Bay Area homeowners remain underwater. Because we passed the halfway point in 2013, homeowners have that same decision as before. With the Mortgage Debt Forgiveness Relief Act set to expire at the end of this year, homeowners on the fence must choose whether to short sale and take advantage of the tax break or try another option.

What would those other options be?

1- Although banks have been downplaying the loan modification option for some time, homeowners can still apply for either a HAMP (government guidelines) or one of the in-house lender modification programs. Usually the banks mirror the HAMP guidelines but some differences often exist. Either way, those choosing this option should consider using a non-profit counselor to advocate on your behalf, instead of dealing directly with the bank.

2- Refinance through HARP (Home Affordable Refinance Program). Homeowners with no late payments in the past 12 months who are underwater may be eligible to refinance through the HARP loan. Many guidelines exist including that the loan be owned by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. Those interested might consider working with a knowledgeable loan officer who doesn’t necessarily need to work with your current servicer.

3- If the above options don’t work, then a short sale may be the best bet. A short sale, handled correctly, will allow the seller to exit the home without any debts. The short sale can be particularly handy for homeowners with multiple liens and/or HOA liens. Depending on the status of your loans, a foreclosure may leave homeowners open to financial liabilities, while a short sale many times allows a cleaner break.

The Importance Of the Mortgage Debt Forgiveness Relief Act

In a short sale, the Mortgage Debt Forgiveness Relief Act plays an important part of the loan forgiveness. The bank essentially “pays” the delinquent borrower the amount of debt forgiven, which is why creditors send Form 1099-C to the borrow showing the amount of “income” that he or she received as forgiven debt.

We conferred with CPA Robert Caplan about the Mortgage Debt Forgiveness Relief Act.
Mr. Caplan mentioned, “Homeowners should keep in mind that they can only apply this provision if it was to purchase or improve the property. The advantage is particularly important if they have not re-financed the hell out the house.”

If considering a short sale, a homeowner might worry about being a target for an audit but Mr. Caplan mentioned, “It appears that there is not a lot of auditing for relief indebtedness if you do your tax planning carefully.

To many people, it would seem logical to once again extend the Act but with the Congress scoring a 14 percent approval rating who knows if they will use logic to extend this program.

This sellers market will not last forever. Interest rates should climb. At some point, real estate inventory will probably rise. Those on the fence should consult with their financial planner, accountant or other professional who can look at the big picture to decide if now if the time to hold on or sell and take advantage of the Mortgage Debt Forgiveness Relief Act.

Leave a comment

Filed under Banks, California, Foreclosure, Loan Modifications, Mortgages, San Francisco, short sales, Tax Credits

Bank of America Lied to Homeowners and Rewarded Foreclosures Says Former Employees

Bank of America Lied to Homeowners and Rewarded Foreclosures Says Former Employees

Bank of America Lied to Homeowners and Rewarded Foreclosures Says Former Employees

Homeowners Denied HAMP Loan Modifications

In the midst of an improving real estate market and a downturn in distressed homeowners, Bank of America received another black eye in its handling of distressed homeowner files.

According to several former Bank of America employees, Bank of America employees regularly lied to homeowners seeking loan modifications, denied applications for made-up reasons and received rewards including bonuses and gift cards for sending homeowners to foreclosure.

The former employees, who ranged from customer service to managers, gave statements as part of a class action lawsuit brought on behalf of homeowners who sought to avoid foreclosure through the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) but were purposely bungled by B of A employees.

Bank of America issued statements denying the statements and stated that the truth would come out in the court trial.

An Onslaught Of Loan Modifications In 2009

When the HAMP program debuted in 2009, Bank of America had significantly more eligible homeowners than the next largest bank. As a result of this onslaught of loan modification requests, the former employees mentioned that the bank often misled them and denied applications for bogus reasons.

One recent study reported that about 800,000 homeowners would have qualified for HAMP if Bank of America and the other largest servicers had done an adequate job of handling homeowner applications.

Read the former employee statements at ProPublica.org.

Leave a comment

Filed under Banks, Foreclosure, Loan Modifications