HUD Press Release
WASHINGTON - For the second time this year, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) will sell thousands of severely delinquent mortgage loans insured by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) as part of a broader effort to address the housing market's shadow inventory and to target relief to areas experiencing high foreclosure activity. This summer, HUD will sell approximately 20,000 distressed loans through its expanded Distressed Asset Stabilization Program (DASP) to increase recoveries to FHA's Mutual Mortgage Insurance (MMI) Fund from non-performing FHA-insured loans, while contributing to stabilization and recovery in some of the nation's communities hit hardest by the housing crisis.
WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and Enterprise Community Partners (Enterprise) showcased Native American communities' use of sustainable design and construction strategies today at the National Museum of the American Indian. The event is part of HUD's and Enterprise's continuous effort to promote sustainable construction techniques in Indian Country.
WASHINGTON - U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Shaun Donovan today announced a second round of grants for more than 500 local homeless housing and service programs across the U.S, provided through HUD's Continuum of Care Program. This year, HUD challenged local communities to reexamine their response to homelessness and give greater weight to proven strategies, from providing 'rapid re-housing' for homeless families to permanent supportive housing for those experiencing chronic homelessness (see attached chart).
HUD and the U.S. Dept. of the Treasury have released the June edition of the Obama Administration’s Housing Scorecard, which shows some promising signs of stability, though the overall outlook remains mixed.
Home equity rose $457.1 billion in the first quarter of 2012, a 7.4 percent increase from the previous quarter and its highest level since the second quarter of 2010. Sales of previously owned homes posted sharp gains in May of 9.6 percent compared with a year ago and new home sales in May recorded their highest level in more than 2 years. However, foreclosure starts and completions turned up in May, underscoring continued fragility in the housing market.
The June Housing Scorecard features key data on the health of the housing market and the impact of the Administration’s foreclosure prevention programs, including:
- More than 5.3 million modification arrangements were started between April 2009 and the end of May 2012 – including nearly 1.2 million homeowner assistance actions through the Making Home Affordable Program and more than 1.3 million FHA loss mitigation and early delinquency interventions.
- As of May, more than one million homeowners have received a permanent HAMP modification, saving approximately $536 on their mortgage payments each month, and an estimated $13.3 billion to date.
- Eighty-six percent of homeowners entering the program in the last 23 months have received a permanent modification, with an average trial period of 3.5 months.
- More than 83,000 homeowners have had their principal reduced as part of their HAMP permanent modification, and nearly 84,000 second lien modifications have been completed through the Second Lien Modification Program.
California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law yesterday the Homeowner Bill of Rights to help struggling Californians keep their homes. This law aims to avoid foreclosure where possible to help stabilize California's housing market and prevent the other negative effects of foreclosures on families, communities, and the economy. The new law will generally prohibit lenders from engaging in dual tracking, require a single point of contact for borrowers seeking foreclosure prevention alternatives, provide borrowers with certain safeguards during the foreclosure process, and provide borrowers with the right to sue lenders for material violations of this law.
Making sense of the story
- The Bill of Rights prohibits “dual track” foreclosures that occur when a mortgage servicer continues foreclosure while also reviewing a homeowner’s application for a loan modification.
- Under the new law, homeowners must be provided with a single point of contact when negotiating a loan modification.
- It expands notice requirements that must be provided to a borrower before taking action on a loan modification application or pursuing foreclosure.
- Additionally, the bill allows injunctions against foreclosure until violations are corrected and permits civil penalties against servicers that file multiple, inaccurate mortgage documents or commit reckless or willful violations of law.
- These new laws make California the first state in the nation to take provisions in the National Mortgage Settlement, which covered the nation’s five largest mortgage loan servicers, and apply those rules to all mortgage servicers.
- The law will go into effect January 1, 2013.
Home Prices are Lowest in Years
National Association of Realtors reports that: “weak sales and rise in foreclosures pushed home prices down to their lowest level in nearly 9 years. Nearly 40 percent of the sales last month were either foreclosures or short sales, when the seller accepts less than they owe on the mortgage”
You Are in Control
- With 3.77 million homes on the market, you have more options to choose from and more leverage while negotiating.
With prices so low and homeowners desperate to sell, now is the best time to buy a home.
Individual markets, though, will start diverging from the downtrend by summer. About one-quarter of the nation's 384 metro areas should see higher prices by year-end, and half will see drops of less than 3%. (Get your local forecast at with our pricing tool.)
Certainly, conditions will favor anyone in the market to buy a new home -- or homeowners looking to refinance. Today's record low mortgage rates, averaging 4.2% for a 30-year fixed term, are expected to remain low at least through the first half of the year.
Even if the economy picks up steam in the latter half of 2011, rates are unlikely to climb higher than 5%, says Amy Crews Cutts, deputy chief economist at Freddie Mac.