Tag Archives: homeowners

Wells Fargo Accused Of Fabricating Foreclosure Documents

Wells Fargo Accused Of Fabricating Foreclosure Documents

Wells Fargo Accused Of Fabricating Foreclosure Documents

Will Someone Go To Jail This Time?

With foreclosures not exactly making front page news anymore, a recent internal report states the Justice Department massively overstated its successes in targeting mortgage fraud while in fact ranking it as a low priority for investigation. Sound familiar? Our government overstating successes?

And talk about mortgage fraud, this report comes at a time when a recently revealed internal Wells Fargo document appears to guide lawyers step by step on how to fabricate missing documents to foreclose on homeowners. Wasn’t it bad enough to falsify signatures with robosigning? Imagine a bank creating missing documents in order to foreclose on homeowners.

The Justice Department’s inspector general says despite playing a key role in the nation’s financial crisis, mortgage fraud was deemed either a low priority or not a priority at all.

Sounds Like An Inside Job

This attitude seems eerily familiar to what documentary filmmakers Charles Ferguson highlighted in the Academy Award winning documentary Inside Job. He spotlighted how during and after the serious mortgage scandal and meltdown that no one lending executive has gone to jail.

Now with this recent Wells Fargo scandal we shall see is that fact remains true.

For those who wish to read the whole report and transcript then click on the link –



Leave a comment

Filed under Banks, Foreclosure

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


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.

Leave a comment

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

California Short Sellers No Longer Need To Worry About Federal Income Tax

California Short Sellers No Longer Need To Worry About Phantom Income

California Short Sellers No Longer Need To Worry About Phantom Income

With the surging San Francisco and Bay Area real estate market, shorts sales and foreclosures have seen a steep decline. Even so, they still exist in San Francisco, San Mateo County as well as neighboring counties and cities.

Thanks to California Senator Barbara Boxer who pushed this issue with the IRS and got this letter  as clarification about the Mortgage Debt Forgiveness Act.

“The IRS has clarified in a letter that California’s troubled homeowners who sell their homes in a short sale are not subject to federal income tax liability on “phantom income” they never received.”

Homeowners in California involved in short sales have been concerned with “phantom income” which refers to the amount of debt that is forgiven when a lender is willing to accept less than the full amount owed (as in a short sale). If you owed $500,000 on your mortgage, and the lender allowed a short sale for $450,000, you would have “received” $50,000 in phantom income.

In 2012, Congress extended the Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act. The California version expired at the end of 2012. The Federal provision expired at the end of 2013. This year instead of waiting for Congress to pass (or not) the Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act, the IRS and the Franchise Tax Board (California’s version of the IRS) eliminated the phantom income tax. In short, California short sellers of residential properties (1 – 4 units) will continue to be protected from taxation on the “phantom income” received in a short sale.

With so many issues nipping at the heels of still underwater homeowners at least the fact that Uncle Sam and his California cousin will not have their hands out at the end of any short sale transaction ready to collect phantom income will make things slightly easier for still distressed property owners.

Mortgage Debt Forgiveness: 10 Key Points

Leave a comment

Filed under California, San Francisco, San Mateo county, short sales, Tax Credits

San Francisco Earthquake Retrofit Fair

San Francisco  Earthquake Retrofit Fair

San Francisco Earthquake Retrofit Fair

Most scientists will tell you that it is a matter of when not if?

What are we talking about?

Another recession?

Real estate bubble bursting again?

We’re talking about an earthquake. Besides humans needing to be prepared so to do buildings especially in San Francisco. With that in mind San Francisco presents Earthquake Retrofit Fair today (January 28, 2014) 3 PM – 7 PM at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium.

Questions about retrofitting your property?
Have to comply with the new Mandatory Soft Story Ordinance?
Need to select a design professional, lenders, or contractor?
Are you a property owner looking to make your building safer?


  • Wood frame construction (Type V), and
  • Application of permit for original construction was prior to January 1, 1978, and
  • Five or more residential units, and
  • Two or more stories over a basement or underfloor area that has any portion extending above grade, and
  • A soft story condition that has not been seismically strengthened to the standards set forth in the ordinance.


All San Francisco buildings that are wood-framed, permitted for construction prior to 1978, contain five or more residential dwelling units and are three or more stories or two stories over a basement or underfloor area that have any portion extending above grade, and have not yet been seismically strengthened.


We will be at the event but if you are not able to attend then contact us and we can refer qualified engineers.

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia

Leave a comment

Filed under California, Events, 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

Money For Underwater Homeowners Languishing In Bank Accounts – TV Interview

Keith Rockmael of Bay Area Resource

Keith Rockmael of Bay Area Resource

Tom Vacar, KTVU/Fox 2’s Consumer Editor, interviewed Keith Rockmael one one of the Bay Area Resource coalition members.

See link for video which aired yesterday on the 5 o’clock news here in the San Francisco Bay Area.


Leave a comment

October 30, 2013 · 7:43 pm