After reading a story titled, “Local homeowners get the runaround on loan modifications” in my local paper this week, I decided to do a bit of snooping about the HAMP program. Fortunately the title company I use for my real estate deals has a very proactive website. It not only gives me the latest NOD and NOTS filings but has links to the latest real estate news. More about that in the snippets that follow.
In an article about the Home Affordable Modification Program by John Schoen, a person can read all about the flaws plaguing this particular program.
Getting back to the local homeowner for a moment, here is the response she got from Senator Harry Reid’s office when she was trying to get relief:
“Because they’re private companies and not federal agencies, we really can’t make them do anything.”
Mind you, HAMP is a federal program, so anyone looking to the feds for help according to Reid, is out of luck if the outfit isn’t a federal agency. The State of Nevada told this homeowner they couldn’t force the company to come to the bargaining table because the company isn’t licensed in Nevada.
I tell you this because it is important to have these details as they tell you the program is superficial at best and wasn’t really designed to help those in mortgage distress.
Apparently different rules exist for people who walk away from their mortgage. The deciding factor seems to be how wealthy or powerful you are. You can read the story at, “Duplicity in mother-of-all mortgage walkaways. Developer walks away from deal almost unscathed; Don’t try this at home.” Mind you, you might not like what you read but you will get the dirty low down first hand.
Anti-flipping 90 Day Rule Revised
Good news for investors – FHA revises anti-flipping 90 day rule. In short the rule said the FHA wouldn’t insure a mortgage on a house whose seller had owned it less than 90 days. The ban was a reaction to fraudulent quick flips of houses that inflated their values far beyond true market worth. Read the whole story from the LA times at FHA revises ‘anti-flipping’ rule.
The Next Big Bailout
The next big bail out and what it could mean to real estate investors and commercial property holders is located at Next in line for a bailout: Social Security.
This could become messy even more quickly in my opinion than the bank bailout and car industry disaster, simply because it involves every worker and senior citizen in this country. Never forget real estate is a big target for new and improved taxes. The government has put itself in between the dog and fire hydrant so keep your eyes open so you won’t be surprised.
OK, that’s it for snippet-ville. I hope the above helps you in your real estate endeavors.