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Tag Archives: Investors

Stats Indicate Strong Prices, Steady Demand Going into 2014

Despite the numerous challenges that sprang up throughout 2013, the housing market still managed to finish the year in a healthier position than in 2012, according to the latest figures from Realtor.com. The site's statistics for December indicate the median national list price ended 2013 at $194,500, up 8.1 percent compared to the end of 2012. Relative to November, however, prices were down 1.6 percent--marking the late arrival of the "usual seasonal winter slow down," Realtor.com says.

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New Index Reveals Market at Risk

The American Enterprise Institute (AEI) has launched a new initiative designed to mitigate the damage of housing's boom-and-bust cycles. Designed by AEI fellows Edward Pinto and Stephen Oliner, the newly unveiled Mortgage Risk Index measures the safety of lending the United States by gauging how mortgage loans would perform under stress (as defined by the experience of loans originated in 2007). According to the index, mortgage risk today is high compared to the "sound lending practices in place in 1990."

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Inventory Shortage Drives Unseasonable December Growth

Homebuyers hoping for more inventory and greater variety in December didn't get their wish, online brokerage Redfin reported in its latest Real-Time Price Tracker. According to the company's data, the total number of for-sale homes dropped to just below 200,000 in the final month of 2013--a monthly drop of 14.1 percent. While declines are normal for the season, December's decrease was the steepest since at least 2008, says Redfin analyst Tommy Unger.

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Price Appreciation Projected for 90% of Nation’s Top Markets

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In its latest forecast, analytics firm Veros Real Estate Solutions predicts home prices will rise on average 5.1 percent for the nation's top 100 metro areas. The company's previous 2014 projections, released last quarter, called for 4.8 percent growth. "The future HPI [Home Price Index] forecast continues to show good appreciation, but the markets appear to be topping out for now," said Eric Fox, Veros' VP of statistical and economic modeling and author of the company's VeroFORECAST.

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CFPB Targets Missouri Lender over Alleged Kickbacks

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) last week ordered a Missouri-based mortgage lender and its president to pay more than $80,000 for funneling illegal kickbacks in exchange for real estate referrals. According to CFPB's complaint, filed in mid-January, Fidelity Financial Mortgage Corporation (FFMC) in 2010 entered into an agreement with a Missouri bank in which Fidelity would lease an office at the bank in exchange for business referrals.

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