Home >> Author Archives: Ryan Schuette (page 3)

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.

Mortgage Rates Slip as Markets React to Fed’s Stimulus


Financial markets reacted to the Federal Reserve's announced stimulus last week, with investors dumping their money in more safe-haven Treasury debt, lowering mortgage rates accordingly. According to real estate website Zillow, which releases weekly surveys on the subject, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage fell from 3.38 percent to 3.34 percent last week. Rates for the 15-year home loan slid to 2.71 percent, while those for 5-year and 1-year adjustable-rate mortgages inched down to 2.45 percent.

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Home Prices Gain in 19 Major U.S. Markets: Redfin

Beating summer expectations, August home prices ticked up 5 percent across 19 major U.S. markets in what real estate broker Redfin called an "indicator of a housing market getting stronger." According to the broker, home sales went up 1.4 percent year-over-year, eclipsing a 2.5 percent decline in July. Home sales increased from 26.7 percent to 27.6 percent last month. Of major U.S. cities, prices in Phoenix went up by 31 percent year-over-year. Home prices meanwhile fell 4 percent from August last year.

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Could Economic Malaise Spell Just One Term for Obama?

When he ran for the presidency in 1980, Ronald Reagan, then Republican governor of California, struck at then-President Jimmy Carter over the strength of the economy. His question for Americans: "Are you better off now than you were four years ago?" That's the question Paul Ashworth and Paul Dales, senior analysts with Capital Economics, offered to answer in a report released by the consultancy on Friday. The report breaks down recent economic trends, including GDP, home sales, and median income.

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Valuation Vision Director Joins Five Star Panelists to Talk Appraisals

Before the Five Star Conference went into full swing last week, one firm, Valuation Vision, announced the participation of one of its members at one of the industry event├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós noteworthy academic courses. The Oceanside, California-based valuation products company, a subsidiary of The Kirchmeyer Group, revealed that Bill Mohler, director of product development, would join other distinguished panelists in the class titled ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├àÔÇ£Opposing Values: BPO vs. Appraisals vs. Desktops vs. AVMs.├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├é┬Ø

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Mortgage Applications Soar as Interest Rates Fall

Mortgage applications shot up 11.1 percent from the week before, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association. The trade group found that mortgage loan volume fell by 12 percent on a seasonally unadjusted basis from the week before. According to their indices, refinance volume and purchases went up 12 percent and 8 percent, respectively. Purchases fell more than 15 percent on an unadjusted basis, although it stayed 7 percent higher than figures seen at the same time last year.

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Fixed-Rate Mortgages Climb Higher This Week: Zillow

Interest rates for home loans climbed higher this week, just as the European Central Bank intervened to shore up the struggling economy overseas with more euro bonds and a weak jobs report quieted investors abroad. Real estate website Zillow reported that the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage ticked up to 3.38 percent, up two basis points from 3.36 last week. The benchmark home loan had fallen and hovered somewhere between 3.36 percent and 3.41 percent over the weekend. Interest rates for the 15-year fixed-rate mortgage went up to 2.75 percent.

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Lawmakers Introduce Bill to Expand Refi Opportunities

Lawmakers introduced a new bill on Monday with plans to once more revamp the Home Affordable Refinance Program for current borrowers with eligible loans with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Sens. Barbara Boxer and Robert Menendez, among others, drafted the Responsible Homeowner Refinancing Act to increase lender competition, open up refinance opportunities to all current borrowers with government-backed mortgages, and strike through appraisal costs and upfront fees on home loans. If the bill passes the House, lenders will begin to compete more often with other lenders.

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Home Prices Climb 0.9% Year-Over-Year: LPS

Home prices ticked up by 0.9 percent year-over-year, according to Lender Processing Services. The Florida-based analytics and technology provider revealed that prices also rose by 0.7 percent month-over-month. Home values climbed by $203,000 on average, reflecting a 0.7-percent uptick from $202,000 last year. By state, California saw home prices ratchet up by 0.7 percent, with Texas dipping by 0.1 percent. Florida, New York, and New Jersey all saw increases by 1.3 percent, 1.7 percent, and 1.2 percent, respectively.

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NAHB: Is Multifamily Housing (Finally) on the Mend?

Multifamily housing continues to improve ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┼ô at least by some appearances. The National Association of Home Builders recently registered 54 on an index that measures multifamily production. On a scale of zero to 100, the trade group found the index doing well for the eighth straight quarter, marking a high not seen in seven years. The Multifamily Production Index noted the rise from 51 for an index that tallies up homebuilder and developer sentiment about the state of the apartment and condo market.

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While Candidates Avoid Housing, Five Star Speakers Engage It

Taking the stage on Thursday, speakers at the ninth annual Five Star Conference, currently underway at the Hilton Anatole in Dallas, tackled the issue most politicians evade: When and where should government intervene in the housing market? Not often, according to speakers like Jack Konyk, executive director of government affairs with Weiner Brodsky Sidman Kider, and Edward Kramer, EVP of regulatory affairs with Wolters Kluwer Financial Services. The Dodd-Frank Act took center-stage during the debate, and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau along with it.

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