Former Home Owners may get a “Second Chance”

Here is our  update information to share with you! Are you now starting to ask: When can we buy again? Were you foreclosed on or did a short sale due to circumstances like a job loss or illness? The wait may not be as long as they were once told! 

Many banks have guidelines that prevent them from issuing loans to people with a foreclosure or short sale in their credit history in some cases for as much as seven years. That also doesn’t factor in the damage foreclosures and short sales can do to a person’s credit score, and the work former home owners’ will need to do to repair it so they’ll have a better chance at qualifying for financing again in the future. Please contact a local lender that knows the new regulations and is recommended by your Realtor!  

The wait-time varies among lenders and government entities. For example, the Federal Housing Administration says former home owners with a foreclosure must wait three years before they can qualify, while Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac require a seven-year wait following a foreclosure. So clearify this with those helping you.  

As for short sales, sometimes these waits can be waived or drastically cut, depending on the borrower’s situation. FHA requires a three-year wait following a short sale, but it may waive that wait if the short sale was due to a job loss. 

Also, for borrowers who can come up with a higher down payment on their next home purchase, they may also not have as long to wait. For example, Fannie Mae will reduce the wait from seven years to two years for borrowers who come with a down payment of 20 percent or more. 

Source: “Lost Home to Foreclosure but Ready to Buy Again? Prepare to Wait in Lender ‘Penalty Box,’” Associated Press (Feb. 22, 2012)

Welcome the “Re-entry Home Buyers”

Three years ago Mark and Julie lost their home through foreclosure. Last week, they closed escrow on their newer, larger, nicer home in the same neighborhood. Their new home was about half the price as what they had paid for the home they lost. They are among a new category of buyers this year who are reentering the market after a two or three year respite.

Although thousands of families have left the region after losing their home to foreclosure, short sale or bankruptcy, many remained. Most have been rebuilding their credit, paying down debt and some have been saving to buy another home. After three years and in some cases less, mortgage financing is again available.

REOs and short sales will be the new normal. Two years ago, REO and short sales accounted for one-third of all the sales in El Dorado County, California. Of the 200 home sales during December, about half were shorts or REOs. This next year, distressed sales will account for the majority.

Portion of an article by Ken Calhoon, Placerville, California Real Estate Broker.

Investors See Bigger Profits from Rising Rents

Rental demand and prices continue to soar, and investors are cashing in. Rents are rising at a 5.17 percent annual rate — up from last year’s 4.72 percent rate. If rents continue to grow at their current pace, they won’t be too far behind the record-high reached in 2000 of 6.18 percent, according to Axiometrics Inc.

The rental market has added about 1.4 million new renters this year, some of whom were former home owners who faced foreclosure or a short sale. Renters are increasingly showing an appetite for single-family homes owned by investors. As Realtors in the Placerville, California region we believe both renters and investors benefit.

As such, the number of investors in the market is growing. Investors make up anywhere between 20 and 40 percent of monthly existing home sales, according to home-sale data. With home prices and interest rates low, more aspiring investors are jumping in. Nearly 60 percent of investors in a recent survey by considered themselves newcomers to real estate investing. 

“This is a long-term investment,” says Greg Rand, CEO of OwnAmerica. “Rents are a steady return on your investment through the years, leaving you with an attractive asset when prices improve. And they will. The best profits in real estate accrue to long-term investors who take a long-term view.”

Source: “Rising Rents Improve Investors’ Return,” RISMedia (Oct. 20, 2011)

“How Long Is the Wait” to Buy After Foreclosure?

A sluggish housing market has caused millions of home owners to lose their home to foreclosure, short sale, or deed in lieu of foreclosure. But once these former home owners get a better handle on their credit, how long do they have to sit on the sidelines until they can secure future financing to buy a home again?

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have a three-year waiting period following a foreclosure, and a two-year wait following a short sale, deed in lieu, or discharge or dismissal of bankruptcy. However, if borrowers can justify that the circumstance for the foreclosure or bankruptcy occurred because of an illness or job loss — or other “extenuating circumstance” — that may help reduce their wait. But with no such extenuating circumstances, these former home owners may have to wait longer, even up to seven years following a foreclosure or four years after bankruptcy, the article notes.

For loans insured by the Federal Housing Administration, borrowers with perfect credit afterwards also will, in general, have to wait three years after a foreclosure and two years after a bankruptcy is discharged, The New York Times notes.

Following a short sale, borrowers will have to wait three years to secure another FHA loan — however, there are plenty of exceptions. Borrowers will have to wait three years if they were in default at the time of the short sale and had no extenuating circumstances. However, if the borrowers were on time with all their payments a year prior to the short sale, they may have no wait at all and might even qualify for an FHA loan immediately.

Source: “The Post-Foreclosure Wait,” The New York Times (June 23, 2011) 

Other articles relating to the Sacramento and Placerville, California regions

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“Bank Of America” Leaves Mortgage Brokers and Buyers In The Dust

Bank of America announced that they will no longer be working with mortgage brokers. They are leaving the wholesale part of the loan business. They will no longer be working with mortgage brokers to do loans. They say that the broker part of their business was only 4% in the first 6 months of this year. 

President of Bank of America Loans- Barbara Desoer made this comment: ” By exiting the first mortgage wholesale channel, we can redirect critical operational resources to further enhance our capabilities in direct- to -consumer channels.” 

Hmmm, let’s see. I wonder if that will be any consolation to the buyers they let hang out to dry due to their lack of customer care and service. 

We had one of our short sale listings under contract. The buyer that wanted to buy this listing was represented by another agent. This buyer walked into her Bank of America branch office because that is where she banks. They took her application and told her no problem. She got us her pre- approval letter and then she got us her approval letter. The buyer’s agent even set up the closing date based on what BofA statements about the buyer getting her loan. The buyers had all their belongings in a moving van. The day before the closing our title company began to worry. Tina felt like BofA was stringing her along. They ordered the survey, the appraisal was done and the buyer had paid these outside of closing. 

The day of closing came and an hour before closing, BofA tells the buyer they were declining her loan. 

This of course was something that should have been decided months before the closing. There was nothing that had changed in this buyers application to warrant a change of decision. 

But in our experience this had been par for the course when it comes to buyers who walk into branch offices of Bank of America. 

We always cringe when we hear that the buyers just go into a branch office of a bank to get a loan for a house. Who is that loan employee of Bank of America working for? There is only a customer relationship not a client relationship. It is just the same reason you as a buyer need a buyers’ agent to represent you when you buy a home for a builder. The sales reps in the builder’s office are not working for you. They are working for the builder. 

This is just another step towards controlling the entire real estate transaction. You think they went away quietly after being defeated with trying to get into the real estate brokerage business? Yes, NAR was able to get a nice swift kick over the line- but they are not running off with their tails between their legs. They may have lost the fight but they plan to win the war. 

Interesting article by Nestor & Katerina Gasset  Wellington, FL

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