Tag Archives: real estate

Obamacare worked so well some Senators want to do the same for the real estate industry.

Obamacare worked so well some Senators want to do the same thing for the real estate industry.

Top Senate Banking Committee members released plans this week to wind down mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and replace them with a complicated apparatus disturbingly similar to Obamacare. While the proposal by Senators Tim Johnson (D-SD), the chairman, and Mike Crapo (R-ID), the ranking member, was announced with great fanfare, it simply follows the outlines of another bipartisan bill, offered last year by Sens. Bob Corker (R-TN) and Mark Warner (D-VA). The idea is to get rid of the two government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) that provide mortgage financing today for most American homes and replace them with a system of private lending with securities explicitly backed by the federal government.

In going through contortions to reinvent the housing finance system, the senators have avoided the obvious solution: keep the basic platform that has generally served American homeowners well but reform it to reduce risks. Instead, Johnson and the others have come up with a contraption that resembles the Affordable Care Act in its convolutions and its potential for unintended consequences.

The real estate crash: We’ve only just begun

A real estate industry group today announced that there was a nine percent jump in foreclosures during the month of May.

RealtyTrac reported that 205,990 U.S. properties received filings last month, including default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions, marking the first monthly increase since January. Bank repossessions climbed steeply, up 7% to 54,844, after hitting a four-year low in April.

The report also noted that foreclosures made up 26% of U.S. home sales in first quarter and that more than 30% of mortgage borrowers were still underwater.

As someone who just moved to Tucson and spent more than six months searching for and finally purchasing a home, I can add a bit of personal experience to these dry statistics. And my perspective is sadly not encouraging.
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