Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Todays News Synopsis:
A recent report shows that 2 out of 5 working-age Californians are unemployed. The Treasury expects to spend over 45 billion dollars in bail out money for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac by September 30th. U.S. regulations are making it considerably more difficult to obtain home loans. Aliso Viejo has been named Orange County's "hottest" home market.

New York Times - "They Left Fannie Mae, but We Got the Legal Bills" (9-5-09)

"PRECISELY one year ago, we lucky taxpayers took over Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the mortgage finance giants that contributed mightily to the wild and crazy home-loan-boom-turned-bust. In that rescue operation, the Treasury agreed to pony up as much as $200 billion to keep Fannie in the black, coughing up cash whenever its liabilities exceed its assets. According to the company’s most recent quarterly financial statement, the Treasury will, by Sept. 30, have handed over $45 billion to shore up the company’s net worth."

Washington Post - "Mortgage Market Bound by Major U.S. Role" (9-7-09)

"Nearly one-third of those who obtained home loans during the boom years of 2005 and 2006 couldn't get one today, according to mortgage industry analysts. Many of these borrowers were never really able to afford their homes and should not have gotten loans. But many others could, and borrowers like them are now running into tougher government standards."

Sacramento Bee - "Backlash against banks growing over mortgage modifications" (9-6-09)

"The eight-county Sacramento region has counted more than 42,000 foreclosures since the start of 2007. Many area neighborhoods are scarred by vacant repos and dead lawns that pull down property values of other homeowners. Statewide, the foreclosure tally has passed 410,000, and it's believed thousands more are inevitable."

Los Angeles Times - "We all want a deal -- that's what's scary" (9-5-09)\

"When a 20-something friend of mine recently told me she was looking for an apartment to rent in Los Angeles, I had only one bit of advice for her: Don't accept any advertised rent -- haggle with the landlord to get the price down, and demand concessions on anything and everything. The housing crash and the recession have made this a renter's market. The cost of apartments and homes for rent can only decline. Just look at the number of 'for lease' signs in every L.A. neighborhood."

San Francisco Chronicle - "Study: 2 out of 5 working-age Californians jobless" (9-6-09)

"A report released Sunday says two of five working-age Californians do not have a job, underscoring the challenges in one of the toughest job markets in decades. A new study has found that the last time employment levels among this group were this low was February 1977."

Bloomberg - "Missing Lehman Lesson of Shakeout Means Too Big Banks May Fail" (9-6-09)

"Rather than break up institutions such as Bank of America Corp. and Citigroup Inc., or limit their expansion, the U.S. has given them billions of dollars in tax incentives and loan guarantees that enabled them to grow even bigger. To protect against a bank collapse touching off another freefall, President Barack Obama has proposed regulatory changes that rely on the wisdom of bankers and government overseers -- the same people who created the conditions that led to Lehman’s bankruptcy and were unable to foresee its consequences."

Orange County Register - "Where do homes sell in less than a month?" (9-8-09)

"The hardest place in Orange County to find a home to buy — or the 'hottest' O.C. market — in terms of 'market time' (supply of homes for sale vs. new purchase deals inked in past month) is Aliso Viejo. It takes 0.9 months"

Orange County Register - "Distressed inventory slippery in south coast cities" (9-8-09)

"The number of active short sales and foreclosures has risen in two beach cities that previously saw their distressed inventory shrink, according to a biweekly report by Steven Thomas of Altera Real Estate."

Inman - "Title industry steps up lobbying" (9-8-09)

"As it steps up its lobbying efforts, the American Land Title Association has decided charge an annual licensing fee of $195 license to non-members who use the trade association's uniform title insurance policy forms to help generate revenue to cover those and other expenses. ALTA is granting free memberships for the remainder of 2009, but companies must choose to either continue their ALTA membership or pay the annual licensing fee if they want to continue using ALTA's uniform title insurance policy forms in 2010, the group said."

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