Bank of America, Freddie Mac reach an agreement
Bank of America has reached a $404 million mortgage repurchase agreement with Freddie Mac on Monday morning, which covers outstanding as well as potential residential mortgage claims through the end of 2009 and will make-whole claims tied to loans sold to Freddie Mac between January 1, 2000 and December 31, 2009.
Additionally, the settlement outlines that Bank of America will compensate Freddie Mac for specific past loan losses and potential future losses tied to denials, rescissions, as well as cancellations of mortgage insurance.
This settlement agreement is another in the long line of agreements between banks and Fannie/Freddie surrounding loans that were illegal, fraudulent, or contained faulty origination documents, a substantial portion of which surrounds the robosignature debacle that poisoned the entire chain of title.
This closes a major chapter in BoA history
So will this hurt Bank of America? Of course not, and not because $404M is a drop in the bucket, but because this settlement is fully covered by existing legal reserves. In a statement, Bank of America notes this settlement resolves their outstanding issues between them and Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, also covering their liabilities for Countrywide which they acquired in 2008. This was the primary point made in their short statement, focusing on the resolution of “all outstanding and potential representations and warranties claims on whole loans sold by legacy Bank of America and Countrywide to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.”
“We are pleased to have reached this agreement with Bank of America, which now allows both companies to move forward,” Freddie Mac CEO Donald Layton said in a statement. “We continue to make very good progress in recovering funds that are due to the American taxpayer, as well as resolving Freddie Mac’s legacy repurchase issues.”
Austin tops the list of best places to buy a home
When looking to buy a home, taking the long view is important before making such a huge investment – where are the best places to make that commitment?
Looking at the bigger picture
(REALUOSO.COM) – Let us first express that although we are completely biased about Texas (we’re headquartered here, I personally grew up here), the data is not – Texas is the best. That’s a scientific fact. There’s a running joke in Austin that if there is a list of “best places to [anything],” we’re on it, and the joke causes eye rolls instead of humility (we’re sore winners and sore losers in this town).
That said, SelfStorage.com dug into the data and determined that the top 12 places to buy a home are currently Texas and North Carolina (and Portland, I guess you’re okay too or whatever).
They examined the nerdiest of numbers from the compound annual growth rate in inflation-adjusted GDP to cost premium, affordability, taxes, job growth, and housing availability.
“Buying a house is a big decision and a big commitment,” the company notes. “Although U.S. home prices have risen in the long term, the last decade has shown that path is sometimes full of twists, turns, dizzying heights and steep, abrupt falls. Today, home prices are stabilizing and increasing in most areas of the U.S.”
Average age of houses on the rise, so is it now better or worse to buy new?
With aging housing in America, are first-time buyers better off buying new or existing homes? The average age of a home is rising, as is the price of new housing, so a shift could be upon us.
The average home age is higher than ever
(REALUOSO.COM) – In a survey from the Department of Housing and Urban Development American Housing Survey (AHS), the median age of homes in the United States was 35 years old. In Texas, homes are a bit younger with the median age between 19 – 29 years. The northeast has the oldest homes, with the median age between 50 – 61 years. In 1985, the median age of a home was only 23 years.
With more houses around 40 years old, the National Association of Realtors asserts that homeowners will have to undertake remodeling and renovation projects before selling unless the home is sold as-is, in which case the buyer will be responsible to update their new residence. Even homeowners who aren’t selling will need to consider remodeling for structural and aesthetic reasons.
Prices of new homes on the rise
Newer homes cost more than they used to. The price differential between new homes and older homes has increased from 10 percent traditionally to around 37 percent in 2014. This is due to rising construction costs, scarcity of lots, and a low inventory of new homes that doesn’t meet the demand.
Are Realtors the real loser in the fight between Zillow Group and Move, Inc.?
The last year has been one of dramatic and rapid change in the real estate tech sector, but Realtors are vulnerable, and we’re worried.
Why Realtors are vulnerable to these rapid changes
(REALUOSO.COM) – Corporate warfare demands headlines in every industry, but in the real estate tech sector, a storm has been brewing for years, which in the last year has come to a head. Zillow Group and Move, Inc. (which is owned by News Corp. and operates ListHub, Realtor.com, TopProducer, and other brands) have been competing for a decade now, and the race has appeared to be an aggressive yet polite boxing match. Last year, the gloves came off, and now, they’ve drawn swords and appear to want blood.
Note: We’ll let you decide which company plays which role in the image above.
So how then, does any of this make Realtors the victims of this sword fight? Let’s get everyone up to speed, and then we’ll discuss.
1. Zillow poaches top talent, Move/NAR sues
It all started last year when the gloves came off – Move’s Chief Strategy Officer (who was also Realtor.com’s President), Errol Samuelson jumped ship and joined Zillow on the same day he phoned in his resignation without notice. He left under questionable circumstances, which has led to a lengthy legal battle (wherein Move and NAR have sued Zillow and Samuelson over allegations of breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, and misappropriation of trade secrets), with the most recent motion being for contempt, which a judge granted to Move/NAR after the mysterious “Samuelson Memo” surfaced.
Salt was added to the wound when Move awarded Samuelson’s job to Move veteran, Curt Beardsley, who days after Samuelson left, also defected to Zillow. This too led to a lawsuit, with allegations including breach of contract, violation of corporations code, illegal dumping of stocks, and Move has sought restitution. These charges are extremely serious, but demanded slightly less attention than the ongoing lawsuit against Samuelson.
2. Two major media brands emerge
Business Articles7 days ago
100+ inspirational quotes to motivate you to have prosperous new year
Business News5 days ago
80 reasons why you didn’t get the job interview or offer (brutally honest)
Business Marketing4 days ago
10 must-listen-to podcasts for business owners
Opinion Editorials1 week ago
Do these 3 things if you TRULY want to be an ally to women in tech
Opinion Editorials8 hours ago
Job listings are popping up left and right, so what exactly *is* UX writing?
Opinion Editorials2 weeks ago
How to excel in your next remote job interview
Opinion Editorials1 week ago
Does your creativity dwindle as you get older? Science says its possible
Business News2 weeks ago
Get what you want through negotiation and persuasion, sans aggression