Saturday, January 16, 2010

15 Lenders Subpoenaed

15 Lenders were recently served suboenas due to high FHA-backed default rates on mortgage loans. Kenneth Donahue, HUD's Inspector General, plans to get to the bottom of why these lenders in particular had such high default rates.

Mortgage Bankers Association's CEO, John Courson, was pleased with the news: "We're concerned about the viability of the program and we want to make sure that the bad apples and the bad players, frankly, are eliminated," he said.

The list of subpoenaed companies includes:

1. First Tennessee Bank N.A, Memphis, Tenn.
2. Alethese LLC, of Lakeway, Texas
3. Security Atlantic Mortgage Co., of Edison, N.J.
4. Pine State Mortgage Corp., of Atlanta
5. Birmingham Bancorp Mortgage Corp., of West Bloomfield, Mich.
6. Alacrity Financial Services LLC, of Southlake, Texas
7. Assurity Financial Services LLC, of Englewood, Colo.
8. D and R Mortgage Corp., of Farmington, Mich.
9. Webster Bank, of Cheshire, Conn.
10. Mac-Clair Mortgage Corp., of Flint, Mich.
11. Americare Investment Group Inc., of Arlington, Texas
12. 1st Advantage Mortgage, of Lombard, Ill.
13. American Sterling Bank, of Independence, Mo.
14. Sterling National Mortgage Co., Inc., of Great Neck, N.Y.
15. Dell Franklin Financial LLC, of Columbia, Md

Source: The Associated Press, Alan Zibel (01/12/2010)

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

More Sellers Refuse to Lower List Prices

According to, more sellers are holding firm on their asking price. The number of home owners reducing their list price at least once was down to only 21% as of January 1st. That percentage was 22% in December and 25.6% in November. In addition the number of cities reporting average price cuts of 30% or more was down by 50% this month, with the average price reduction nationally hovering around 11%.

What does this mean? Is enough finally enough? Are prices finally bottoming out? We're not out of the woods yet, but it's my humble opinion that we are definitely on our way.

Source: National Association of Realtors

Monday, January 11, 2010

Garner - A "Fabulous" Location

A mere 8 miles south of downtown Raleigh, Garner is a town with all the conveniences afforded to Raleigh residents, and then some! In fact the 26,000 residents of Garner live closer to downtown Raleigh than the majority of Raleigh residents! And with over 350 acres of park land, plenty of shopping, and tons of local events and activities, Garner has no shortgage of "stuff to do".

The list of Garner's parks is quite long. That 350 acres of park land is taken up with 11 parks in total. One of the most popular on that list is Lake Benson Park. Lake Benson Park has 4 picnic shelters (all of which can be reserved for private functions by calling 919.772.4688), a 1.8 mile walking trail, and a children's play area. During the summer months, you can also fish and rent boats at the Lake Benson Boathouse located at 975 Buffaloe Rd. We'll discuss other parks in Garner in the posts to come.
Not only is Garner close to all the shopping in Raleigh, but if you're looking for something close to home - Garner has no shortage of shopping establishments. White Oak Crossing is probably Garner's most well-known shopping center. There you'll find it all - with popular stores like TJ Maxx, Target, Staples, Ross, Dick's Sporting Goods, and Kohl's. Great restaurants are featured too with a Chili's, Logan's Roadhouse, TGI Fridays and more!

Garner residents have a passion for togetherness and their diverse community calendar is proof. It's loaded with activities the entire family can enjoy with their friends and neighbors. From the Fireman's Day Celebration to the "Music on Main" after-work concert series, there are tons of great events happening throughout the year in Garner.

So check out this great town! If you're looking for a great place to live, and "fabulous location" tops your list of necessary housing characteristics, look no further - Garner is your new town!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Wake Forest Named Tops For Growth

Wake Forest was recently named a "Top Growth" city by the Gadberry Group - an Arkansas based firm that compiles statistical data. Gadberry group named Wake Forest and 8 other cities in their "9 from 2009" report on the U.S. cities with top growth. Wake Forest is beautiful town with tons of great neighborhoods. It's also the only North Carolina city to make the cut.

See the original article HERE.

Want to buy a house in Wake Forest? Email me!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Pending Home Sales Higher Than Last Year

More good news for the housing market! According to the Pending Home Sales Index (a popular index for predicting the housing market) pending sales have increased since this same time last year.

The Run-Down:

1. Northeast up 14.7%
2. Midwest up 9.2%
3. South up 14.7%
4. West up 21.4%

Pretty interesting stats. Not out of the woods yet, but things are definitely looking up!


Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Raleigh 6th in Recovery!

According to Forbes Magazine, Raleigh has the 6th fastest housing marketing recovery out of the 100 largest metropolitan statistical areas. This is wonderful news for our City of Oaks. Let's turn the corner into 2010 and leave that dismal recession behind us, shall we?

Here is the top ten list out of that 100:

1. Harrisburg-Carlisle, Pa.
2. Austin-Round Rock, Texas
3. Ogden-Clearfield, Utah
4. Buffalo, N.Y.
5. Knoxville, Tenn.
6. Raleigh, N.C.
7. San Antonio, Texas
8. Syracuse, N.Y.
9. Salt Lake City, Utah(Tied)
10. Moline, Ill.
10. St. Louis10. Wichita, Kan.
10. Rochester, N.Y.

Source: Forbes, Francesca Levy (12/09/2009)

Friday, January 1, 2010

Low Rates to Continue?

Bernanke was recently quoted that rates would stay low for "an extended period of time". That's good news for consumers, but it should also be noted that Bernanke is hoping for a second term.