Healthy economy image via Shutterstock. US economy no longer fragile and accident-prone

US economy no longer fragile and accident-prone

Markets are moving in dramatic fashion, obscuring the improving U.S. economy. Or vice versa. Our 10-year T-note fell to 2.08 percent today, mortgages attempting to crack 4 percent. The German 10-year is at a new all-time low of 0.627 percent ......
By Lou Barnes | Friday, December 12, 2014
fanniefreddie3percent_select Fannie, Freddie taking loans with 3 percent down again

Fannie, Freddie taking loans with 3 percent down again

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are ready to ramp up purchases and guarantees of mortgages in which borrowers put just 3 percent down, and first-time homebuyers will be able to apply for the loans as early as next week, Federal ......
By Brittany Morris | Monday, December 8, 2014
American Spirit / Shutterstock.com Look for Fed to tighten before it sees the whites of inflation’s eyes

Look for Fed to tighten before it sees the whites of inflation’s eyes

Surprise, surprise: November employment data released today were off-the-chart strong. Estimates for November payrolls had called for a gain a little over 200,000 jobs, but at 6:30 a.m. New York time, screens all over the world flashed NOV PAYROLLS P...
By Lou Barnes | Friday, December 5, 2014
Solutionstar is set to acquire title insurance and settlement services provider Title365 Portal that has its sights set on Zillow acquires Title365 for $36 million

Portal that has its sights set on Zillow acquires Title365 for $36 million

In another step in its quest  to build an end-to-end real estate marketplace that will outdo top real estate portals Zillow, Trulia and realtor.com, HomeSearch.com operator Solutionstar is set to acquire title insurance and settlement services provi...
By Andrea V. Brambila | Wednesday, November 26, 2014
Calendar image via Shutterstock. Modified. 'First Look' window for Fannie, Freddie REOs could stay open longer

'First Look' window for Fannie, Freddie REOs could stay open longer

Two prominent Democrats on the Senate Banking Committee are pushing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s regulator to prolong the time period during which first-time homebuyers and other owner-occupants get a “First Look” at purchasing home...
By Inman | Tuesday, November 25, 2014
FHA_select FHA is back in the black, but premium rollbacks unlikely

FHA is back in the black, but premium rollbacks unlikely

The Federal Housing Administration’s mutual mortgage insurance fund is unlikely to need another taxpayer bailout, but that doesn’t mean homebuyers looking to finance purchases with an FHA-backed home loan will get a break on their premium...
By Brittany Morris | Friday, November 21, 2014
fedreserveseal_select Think the Fed is standing pat? Think again

Think the Fed is standing pat? Think again

Mortgage rates have been stable near 4 percent, held there by the 10-year T-note moving hardly at all in the last month, 2.31 percent-2.38 percent since Halloween. Such stability is most unusual, best understood as a market gathering tension for ......
By Lou Barnes | Friday, November 21, 2014
U.S. Capitol image via Shutterstock. NAR won big in the elections. That doesn't mean Realtors will get their way.

NAR won big in the elections. That doesn't mean Realtors will get their way.

With a little help from the National Association of Realtors, Republicans regained control of the Senate and increased their majority in the House of Representatives in last week’s elections. But Realtors attending the trade group’s annua...
By Inman | Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Vault image via Shutterstock. Regulators promise thaw in mortgage credit

Regulators promise thaw in mortgage credit

Regulators who oversee Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the Federal Housing Administration are telling mortgage lenders that they’re ready to cut them some slack, and mortgage lenders say they’re ready to run with the ball. Speaking at the Mor...
By Inman | Monday, October 20, 2014
Growth image via Shutterstock. Mortgage lending startup gets $1.5M boost from investors

Mortgage lending startup gets $1.5M boost from investors

Mortgage lending startup Lenda has raised $1.54 million in seed funding the company says it will use to expand into new markets. The San Francisco-based firm launched a platform in July to allow borrowers to complete the home loan process online .....
By Inman | Monday, October 20, 2014
Money spigot image via Shutterstock. Time to redesign our system of mortgage lending

Time to redesign our system of mortgage lending

Long-term rates have stabilized, mortgages just under 4.5 percent, but markets are rattled and it’s hard to tell exactly who or what is doing the shaking. The Fed has everybody uneasy, simultaneously saying it may raise the cost of money ......
By Lou Barnes | Friday, September 26, 2014
Blogging image via Shutterstock. Over 300 real estate blogging and video ideas to last the rest of your career

Over 300 real estate blogging and video ideas to last the rest of your career

Writing is a passion for me, but, as a novelist, my blogging seems to have taken a back seat. A friend and I have been meeting to discuss how we're going to get back to blogging and doing videos regularly ......
By ActiveRain | Wednesday, September 17, 2014
Container ships loading and unloading in Singapore. Banana Republic images / Shutterstock.com. Good news about the economy is bad news for mortgage rates

Good news about the economy is bad news for mortgage rates

In the backwards world of bonds and mortgages, in which good news is bad, good news pushed up long-term rates this week. U.S. data may encourage the Fed to accelerate the end of ZIRP (zero interest rate policy) at its ......
By Lou Barnes | Friday, September 12, 2014
MRIS Close It! closing disclosure on iPad MLS arms agents with app that calculates closing costs

MLS arms agents with app that calculates closing costs

Mid-Atlantic multiple listing service Metropolitan Regional Information Systems Inc. and settlement services firm Federal Title & Escrow Co. have launched a desktop and mobile app to offer closing cost estimates to MRIS’ 44,000 members. Th...
By Inman | Wednesday, September 10, 2014
Vault image via Shutterstock. What Realtors need to know about credit scores

What Realtors need to know about credit scores

Realtors often first direct their clients to get approved for a loan amount through their favorite lender. However, many of these clients feel betrayed, cheated and at times embarrassed to learn that the credit scores they counted on, in some cases ...
By Nabil Captan | Wednesday, September 3, 2014
Matt Morris (left) and Patrick Stone talk about streamlining the closing process at Real Estate Connect San Francisco. How to streamline the closing process for your buyers and sellers

How to streamline the closing process for your buyers and sellers

Hear what title insurers and settlement services providers are doing to streamline the closing process for homebuyers and sellers from Matt Morris, CEO of Stewart Information Services Corp., and Patrick Stone, president and CEO, Williston Financial G...
By Inman | Thursday, August 21, 2014
Screen shot of Planwise's home page. Soon any website will be able to prequalify homebuyers for a mortgage

Soon any website will be able to prequalify homebuyers for a mortgage

A partnership between real estate startup Planwise and Informa Research Services Inc. will give smaller players in real estate search a plug-and-play tool that allows them to compete with the mortgage options that tech titans like Zillow, Trulia and ...
By Paul Hagey | Wednesday, August 13, 2014
Flight to quality image via Shutterstock. 'Flight to quality' amid global unrest not helping mortgage rates

'Flight to quality' amid global unrest not helping mortgage rates

When the world is scared it wants sovereign IOUs, not mortgage-backed securities, even if government guaranteed. Unless the sovereign looks like it’s in trouble itself ......
By Lou Barnes | Friday, August 8, 2014