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Archive for September, 2010

Notes from Tim Disbrow, VP for Wells Fargo

Wednesday, September 22nd, 2010

For those that missed Tim Disbrow, VP of Loans for AZ/NM for Wells Fargo, here are some highlights (specifically in reference to the email that became viral last week):

Joe O Hahn, SR VP of Wells Fargo Loss Mitigation had these statistics:

  • 91% of their loans in the valley are current
  • Nationwide – they service 1 out of every 6 loans – 9 million loans
  • 65% of loans serviced by Wells Fargo are FNMA, Freddie Mac, GNMA
  • 20% are owned by Wells Fargo
  • 15% are owned by private investors
  • 8% of wells loans nationwide are delinquent (which is a low number compared to BofA, Chase)
  • Said they have helped over 500,000 people do loan mods or workouts – only 13% throu HAMP – only about 19% of their Wells Fargo loans are HAMP eligible
  • They are doing some principal reduction if it’s a Pick & Pay loan (if the homeowner had a negative am loan)
  • FHA and VA loans are not HAMP qualified

Diana Stauffer, a VP, and Tracy King, with the Short Sale team for Arizona  (if the loans are Wells Fargo loans) had some numbers:

            Nationwide median sale prices:

  • $289,700 – non-distressed properties – spread out equally between all buying groups, investors, first time homebuyers, etc.
  • $213,900 – short sales – 46% are first time homebuyers with FHA financing
  • $184,900 – move-in condition REO properties – spread out equally across board
  • $113,900 – damaged REO’s – 57% are investor purchased – mostly cash

REGARDING E-MAIL that was sent out last week that became viral:

  • That e-mail was intended for just a very small select group of people whose short sales had already been postponed a number of times.  Each deal is different.  She said DELETE that e-mail!
  • Yes, they are trying to move forward with foreclosures in a more expedient manner – on their Wells Fargo portfolio loans, they will allow one 30-day postponement if there have not already been postponements, but they will be asking for documentation and want to make sure buyer’s loan is in place and that they’re ready to go
  • Wells Fargo is allowing loans for short sale sellers in just 2 years (also for deed in lieu – which they are going to be doing more of)

New CoreLogic Report Finds “More Distress with Distressed Home Sales”

Thursday, September 16th, 2010

by Carrie Bay

CoreLogic on Thursday announced the inaugural release of its U.S. Housing and Mortgage Trends report, a bi-monthly study of housing sales, valuation, negative equity, and foreclosure activity and trends.

The California-based research firm says its data indicates “more distress with distressed home sales.”

According to the report, distressed sales are at a seven-month low with the decline due primarily to tax credit-induced sales increases. However, now that this incentive has run its course, CoreLogic says the share of distressed sales is expected to rise in the fall.

The company defines distressed sales as REO and short sale transactions. In June, the distressed sale share fell to 24 percent of overall sales. According to CoreLogic, the decline was assisted by the increase in non-distressed sales as a

result of government-sponsored tax credits, and by a decline in REO sales, which fell to 16 percent.

The distressed sale share hit its peak of 35 percent back in early 2009.

As of June 2010, Las Vegas (61 percent) and Riverside (59 percent) continue to lead the nation in distressed sales for the largest 25 metropolitan markets.

Phoenix (53 percent), Sacramento (51 percent), and Orlando (50 percent) were the only other markets where distressed sales accounted for the majority of home sales activity.

At the other end of the spectrum, Nassau (5 percent) and New York City (8 percent) had the lowest distressed sale share, followed by Baltimore (18 percent), Seattle (19 percent), and Minneapolis (19 percent).

The report explains that with the expiration of the tax credit the distressed sale share is expected to rise moderately during the late summer and become more acute during the fall. Typically during the fall season, non-distressed seasonal rates begin to decline anyway. CoreLogic says the anticipated increased in distressed sales will serve to “further depress the market.”

CoreLogic adds that in addition to the post-tax-credit effects on sales, negative equity rates will also be a major factor slowing the housing recovery, with nearly one in four homeowners underwater and most of those borrowers unable to sell their homes.

Important Announcement

Wednesday, September 15th, 2010

To all of our partners in the real estate business,       

We wanted to thank all the individuals and entities that have helped the Scottsdale Law Group exponentially grow our business.  We appreciate your support and confidence, and look forward to continuing to provide excellent service and delivery of legal services now and into the future. 

Scottsdale Law Group has always strived to provide high quality legal services, and excellent customer service through the utilization of process management techniques coupled with technology.  Our affordable, value driven business model has been our mantra.  The ever changing dynamics in the short sale world and increased case complexity is forcing us to revise our current fee structure as it pertains to our consultations with potential homeowners facing a short sale.  We want to be fair to all parties involved, while assuring that Scottsdale Law Group has a sustainable business model that enables us to continue to perform at a level well above our competition in the pursuit of the client’s interests. 

Scottsdale Law Group’s flat retainer fee paid by the homeowner has been (and will remain) $1,000, however we find it necessary to reconfigure our complimentary consultation.  Effective October 1st, all new consultations will be charged a $200 fee and if the homeowner engages Scottsdale Law Group to represent them within 60 days of the consultation we will apply the $200 consultation fee to the $1,000 retainer. 

We are confident that this change will ultimately continue to provide an affordable value driven business model for our real estate partners who desire to limit their professional liability regarding the rendering of deficiency and taxation advice while providing excellent delivery of services and optimal outcomes to their clients. 

As always, we thank you for your continued support, and look forward to working hard to help our clients extract themselves from negative asset problems as these trying times continue into the future.

If you should have any questions or concerns please contact Kristi Collins at 480-478-0709 or


Arizona, cities gets $45.4 million in HUD funds for foreclosures

Wednesday, September 8th, 2010

The state of Arizona and several of its cities will get $45.4 million in grants from a U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development program to help combat the foreclosure crisis.

The money was part of $1 billion announced Wednesday through HUD’s Neighborhood Stabilization Program. It will provide funds for governments to buy and either redevelop or demolish foreclosed properties.

The funding was part of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, and follows two other funding rounds that put close to $6 billion into the U.S. real estate market to clean up foreclosures.

The city of Phoenix will receive the largest amount, more than $16 million, to help it battle foreclosure problems. The state will receive $5 million.

Other governments receiving money include:

• Avondale, $1.2 million

• Chandler, $1.3 million

• Glendale, $3.7 million

• Maricopa County, $4.2 million

• Mesa, $4 million

• Mohave County, $1.99 million

• Peoria, $1.2 million

• Pinal County, $3.2 million

• Surprise, $1.3 million

• Tucson, $2.1 million

Governments have several things they can do with the money. Those include buying or refurbishing foreclosed property, demolishing foreclosed property and offering to help pay for down payments.

Read more: Arizona, cities gets $45.4 million in HUD funds for foreclosures – Phoenix Business Journal

Lawmakers Challenge Fannie Mae’s New Policy on Strategic Defaulters

Saturday, September 4th, 2010

By: Carrie Bay

A faction of House Democrats have called on Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and the regulator of Fannie Mae, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) to suspend the GSE’s recently announced policy to sue homeowners who strategically default on their mortgage.

In late June, the mortgage giant issued a notice stating that defaulting borrowers who walk away when they had the capacity to pay, or who do not complete a workout alternative in good faith will be ineligible for a new Fannie Mae-backed mortgage for a period of seven years from the day of foreclosure.

In addition, Fannie Mae said it will take legal action to recoup the outstanding mortgage debt from borrowers who strategically default on their loans in jurisdictions that allow for deficiency judgments.

The group of lawmakers, led by Rep. John Conyers, Jr. (D-Michigan), called the policy “opaque, overbroad, and punitive,” and decried Fannie for using taxpayer dollars to penalize underwater homeowners.

Conyers and his colleagues sent a letter to Secretary Geithner this week, urging him and FHFA Acting Director Edward DeMarco to suspend the policy indefinitely until the administration and Congress have reviewed the implications and determined if it is in the best interest of the American people to have Fannie Mae pursue such a strategy.

“This policy is one of many which seems to run counter to the national need to stem the tide of foreclosures which are devastating communities across our nation,” the correspondence stated. “At a time of record deficits and a nation crying for the government to get its finances in order, it is also unclear why Fannie Mae is proposing to use taxpayer dollars to pursue legal judgments against individuals who will lose or have lost their homes, have wrecked their credit rating, and likely have little or no remaining monetary assets.”

The lawmakers went on to say, “Treasury has already invested $86 billion into Fannie Mae and considering Fannie Mae’s dependence on federal dollars to exist and operate, we think pursuing expensive litigation against a vulnerable population when there appears to be little to no economic incentive is questionable at best.”

The legislators also questioned what objective criteria Fannie would use to determine whether a default was truly strategic. The GSE has said it will rely on the reports of its servicers to determine borrower intent.

“We have great concern with putting such faith in the servicers,” the lawmakers wrote, citing feedback from their constituents and a number of congressional watchdog groups that call into question servicers’ performance in dealing with huge volumes of defaults and communicating effectively with borrowers.

In addition to Conyers, the letter was signed by Reps. Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio), Raúl Grijalva (D-Arizona), Steve Cohen (D-Tennessee), Barbara Lee (D-California), Zoe Lofgren (D-California), and Michael Honda (D-California).

Fannie Mae says its policy is designed to encourage borrowers to work with their servicers and pursue alternatives to foreclosure by imposing stiffer penalties for strategic defaulters.

According to the analysts at Moody’s Investors Service, the new rules will be difficult to implement and even harder to enforce. In fact, they warn that Fannie’s policy could potentially reignite private subprime lending.