Home >> Author Archives: Ryan Schuette (page 2)

Author Archives: Ryan Schuette

Ryan Schuette is a journalist, cartoonist, and social entrepreneur with several years of experience in real-estate news, international reporting, and business management. He currently lives in the Washington, D.C., area, where he freelances for DS News and MReport.

Romney Campaign Releases Housing Paper Amid Roundabout

With gaffes and down polls embroiling his campaign, Republican presidential nominee and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney unveiled a housing white paper on Friday to reposition his message and salvage his campaign. The document, titled ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├àÔÇ£Securing the American Dream and the Future of Housing,├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├é┬Ø prescribes several conservative policy must-haves. For starters, there├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós much ado about the return of private capital to the secondary mortgage market and devolution for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Oh, and jobs. Twelve million to be exact.

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Feds Crack Down on Discover Bank for Allegedly Deceptive Sales

Roughly 3.5 million consumers will get back $200 million in restitution from Discover Bank after federal agencies came down on the financial services institution on Monday for allegedly deceptive sales strategies. The FDIC and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau unveiled a public enforcement action to conclude their joint investigation that started last year. According to a release, Discover Bank will also fork over $14 million in civil penalties for masking financial products with fees as freebies, misleading consumers about charges, even processing orders without their consent in cases.

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Mortgage Firm Unveils Program to Help Brokers Help Vets

Presidential candidates often fall over themselves praising vets, but now a mortgage company aims to help brokers better help these wounded warriors find homes. Tucson, Arizona-based Fairway Independent Mortgage Corp. announced Thursday that it planned to set up a "Boot Camp" training program. Its mission: To teach Fairway mortgage brokers and employees about the challenges facing newly returned vets and the homeownership opportunities available to those who wear the uniform.

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FDIC Searches for Investors to Buy Up Bad Assets

The FDIC wants you to help it unload its bad assets - and by you, we mean only investors. And by investors, the agency is searching for women and minorities in particular. According to a recent release, the FDIC will conduct a number of workshops for interested investors on how to go about buying assets from failed banks. The agency will hold these to-dos in Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York across September and October. Workshops will touch on issues like structured sales transactions, pre-qualification processes, and details about the Small Investor Program and Investor Match Program.

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Keller Williams Realty Expands Overseas

Keller Williams Realty, Inc., unveiled that it recently expanded its international franchise into Indonesia and Southern Africa, helping add to the bottom line of one of the nation's largest real estate companies.

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Should Officials Do Away With Mortgage Interest Deduction?

Talking heads call the mortgage interest-rate deduction a sacrosanct giveaway for the tax code, a loophole as sacred for Americans as, say, Social Security or Medicare - and just as electric to politicians. But a new survey out from Zillow suggests that may not be the case anymore. According to Zillow - which notably conducted the survey with economists and real-estate experts instead of your average homeowners - 10 percent believe the mortgage interest-rate deduction should be thrown out as soon as possible, while 50 percent believe it ought to be phased out over time.

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Home Prices See First Sustained Recovery in Five Years

The picture gets rosier for housing as home prices continue their climb back to the top. One recent price index puts the July increase for prices at 0.9 percent, with prices achieving their first sustained recovery on a year-over-year basis since the market went bust in 2007. According to FNC, which recently released the Residential Price Index, property values also went up in July, securing gains for the fifth straight month. Figures for indices covering prices across the country and 40 metro areas revealed a sustained pickup.

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Mortgage Rates Set New Lows as Economy Tilts Here, There

A decline in interest by homebuyers shaved just 0.2 percent off mortgage applications last week, with refinance activity climbing. The Mortgage Bankers Association, which unveils the figures in a weekly survey, found application volume upward-bound by 24 percent on a seasonally unadjusted basis. Refinance applications started to swell last week. The Refinance Index went up 1 percent, with the refinance share of mortgage activity cresting at 81 percent of total applications, up from 80 percent last week.

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Survey: 24% of Loan Officers Consider Firm Leaders ‘Illogical’

Twenty-four percent of loan officers think their firm leaders lead with "unclear" and "illogical" visions, according to a recent survey. Hammerhouse, LLC, a recruiting and strategic growth firm for the financial services industry, recently released a survey it conducted with loan officers. The findings touched on leadership, culture, business, and technology for loan officers from around the residential mortgage lending industry. Thirty-two percent of mortgage industry professionals believe their firm's technology needs an upgrade.

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August Home Prices Rise 6.3% Year-Over-Year: RE/MAX

Home prices skimmed close to the bottom during July this year but climbed 6.3 percent year-over-year by August, according to RE/MAX. The real estate company revealed in its latest National Housing Report that median home prices ticked up from last year over the last seven straight months. Home sales jumped 8.5 percent year-over-year, continuing its ascent from over the last fourteen consecutive months, and 2.5 percent on a monthly basis in August. Home inventory dipped 29.7 percent below levels from August last year.

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