Here’s the good news: In its 2012 report on the National Mover Rate, the Census Bureau found that 1.4 million more people moved in 2012 than did in 2011.
Here’s the bad news: That’s only a 0.4 percent increase.
Here’s the good news: It’s still an increase, and the 2011 rate was a record low. Heck, 12 percent of Americans moved in 2012.
So think of it as yet another small sign of the housing rebound.
Who were the biggest movers?
The House of Representatives has been talking a lot about avoiding the fiscal cliff by reducing or eliminating tax deductions, and you know what’s going to be high on the list: the mortgage interest deduction.
That’s why NAR has put out a Call for Action — write to your representatives and tell them not to mess with the MID.
NAR’s position is that the mortgage interest deduction is vital to the stability of the American housing market and economy and we will remain vigilant in opposing any future plan that modifies or excludes the deductibility of mortgage interest.
If you have clients thinking about an FHA loan, you should tell them to act quickly. Not only is FHA going to be raising the cost of its required mortgage insurance, it’s also going to require that the insurance be kept for the life of the loan.
Today, once a home’s loan-to-value gets below 78%, mortgage insurance isn’t required; that takes 10 years or so. A homeowner will typically pay several hundred dollars a month for mortgage insurance — a cost that, soon, won’t go away.
When will this happen? FHA hasn’t said, only that it will happen.
Freddie Mac reported a net income of $2.9 billion in the third quarter, and will pay back $1.8 billion to the Treasury.
Fannie Mae reported a net income of $1.8 billion for the third quarter of this year, compared to a $5.1 billion loss in the third quarter of 2011.
Both companies still owe a sizeable amount to U.S. taxpayers, but both have been paying that back in recent months, thanks to continued profits and a rebounding housing market.
Forbes has a column from Trulia’s chief economist, Jed Kolko, “What Obama’s Re-Election Means for Housing.” Interesting reading, but if you’re lazy here are the main points:
1. More opportunities for refinancing as the Obama Administration is expected to expand programs such as HAMP to more underwater homeowners.
2. New mortgage regulations because Dodd-Frank isn’t going away. We’re still waiting to see how the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will define “qualified mortgage” and “qualified residential mortgage” — and what effect that will have on lenders.
It's easy to jump on eminent domain as a black-and-white issue; no one wants the government to be able to seize property just because someone else thinks they can do something better with it. That's what property rights are all about, and here at VAR we're big on property rights.
That said, most people realize that there are cases where eminent domain is important — for purely public works like roads or schools, for example. (Not all the time, of course. Those are just examples.) It's when we get into the use of eminent domain to take private property for private use that our collective hackles are — rightly — raised. Taking someone's home to build a shopping center in the name of "economic development" goes against our ideas of fair play.
It’s easy to jump on eminent domain as a black-and-white issue; no one wants the government to be able to seize property just because someone else thinks they can do something better with it. That’s what property rights are all about, and here at VAR we’re big on property rights.
That said, most people realize that there are cases where eminent domain is important — for purely public works like roads or schools, for example. (Not all the time, of course. Those are just examples.) It’s when we get into the use of eminent domain to take private property for private use that our collective hackles are — rightly — raised. Taking someone’s home to build a shopping center in the name of “economic development” goes against our ideas of fair play.
If a lender reduces a homeowner’s principal — via a short sale or write-down, for example — the homeowner would normally have to pay income tax on the amount. But Congress passed what’s called “mortgage cancellation tax relief,” so they don’t have to.
Unfortunately, the law that exempts people from paying those taxes will expire on December 31. That means if you have a seller working on a short sale, and that sale isn’t finished till next year, he’s going to have to pay income tax on the amount that was “forgiven.”
Unless, that is, Congress extends the law.
A mortgage loan is a loan secured by real property through the use of a mortgage note which evidences the existence of the loan and the encumbrance of that realty through the granting of a mortgage which secures the loan. However, the word mortgage alone, in everyday usage, is most often used to mean mortgage loan.
The USDA offers a no-down-payment loan for rural homes, but 17 areas of Virginia are set to be removed from the list of eligible locations unless Congress acts.
The USDA Rural Development Single Family Housing Guaranteed Loan Program — sometimes referred to as the “Rural Housing Service Section 502 Program” — is one of the few places consumers can get a loan without a down payment. It was designed to help people move to rural areas, and every 10 years the Agriculture Department looks at the Census data and determines which areas are “rural.”
The newest changes are set to take place this month March 27, 2013, and 17 sections of Virginia will be cut from the list.