Auburn, AL Real Estate News

By Chris McDonald
(WR Starkey Mortgage, LLP.)
We expected that the lead story of this week would be the Congressional testimony of Countrywide Mortgage CEO Angelo Mozilo and other mortgage company executives about their high levels of compensation which continue despite the enormous loses their companies have suffered in the subprime mortgage collapse. While we will report on that hearing before the House Committee on Government and Oversight, other news over the weekend has served to overshadow that sideshow.First, The Wall Street Journal reported that Countrywide Mortgage and Wells Fargo and Company were under investigation by the Attorney General of Illinois for having improperly steered minority borrowers into high-cost or inappropriate loans Attorney General Lisa Madigan subpoenaed units of the two investment giants asking for...
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By Chris McDonald
(WR Starkey Mortgage, LLP.)
The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) climbed 20 basis points from the average 6.04 rate a week earlier although fees and points declined from 0.6 to 0.5. One year ago the 30-year FRM averaged 6.18 percent.The average contract interest rate of the 15-year FRM was 5.72 percent with 0.5 point, up from the week before when it averaged 5.65 with 0.5 point. During the same week one year ago the average rate was 5.92 percent.Five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) averaged 5.43 percent with an average 0.4 point. The previous week it averaged 5.37 percent with 0.5 point and during the same week in 2007 the average was 5.93 percent.  One-year Treasury-indexed ARMS rose to 5.11 percent from 4.98 percent. Points and fees also rose from 0.6 to 0.7. One year ago the rate ...
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By Chris McDonald
(WR Starkey Mortgage, LLP.)
Yet another program to help homeowners who are delinquent on their mortgages was announced last week by Fannie Mae. HomeSaver Advance, a part of the corporations larger HomeStay initiative, is not for everyone and sort of feels like a finger in the dike attempt to stop the tide of foreclosures, but for some borrowers, especially those who have been derailed by temporary events such as a medical emergency, it could be an excellent solution.HomeSaver Advance is designed for the borrower who is otherwise capable of meeting his obligations and will be able to resume timely payments once the arrearage is brought current. Under the program Fannie Mae authorizes its servicers to offer an unsecured personal loan that will enable a qualified borrower to cure the payment default on a Fannie Mae o...
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By Chris McDonald
(WR Starkey Mortgage, LLP.)
U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Alphonso Jackson today announced that HUD's FHASecure product has helped 100,000 homeowners refinance their mortgages and avoid foreclosure.  Since September 2007, FHASecure has enabled tens of thousands of families - who are current on their home loans or past due because their teaser rates reset - to close on loans refinanced through HUD's Federal Housing Administration (FHA), which is backed by the full faith and credit of the government. The following is a statement by Secretary Jackson: "FHASecure has helped more than 100,000 families stay in their homes.  Homeowners are cutting their monthly mortgage payments by an average of $400 a month compared to their exotic subprime loans.  They no longer have anxiety about finding foreclosure not...
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By Chris McDonald
(WR Starkey Mortgage, LLP.)
If you have been looking for a manufactured home mortgage then you just connected with the regions #1 source for MH mortgage loans. Our company is 100% dedicated to serving people in this badly underserved market. I guess if it were easy then everone would be doing it, right? Manufactured home mortgage is pretty new considering that 95% of all manufactured paper were financed as  home only transactions and the investment vehicle used to secure them were ABS (asset backed securities) not MBS (mortgage backed securities). The number of companies that truly know the construction process from lot prep to final inspection, inspections needed for every different market & situation (and they are many), the sales and management process from meet & greet to FUNDED are very few. I am that person,...
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By Chris McDonald
(WR Starkey Mortgage, LLP.)
San Francisco - Tens of thousands of California families could benefit from affordable government-insured mortgages under a plan to be announced shortly that will temporarily increase home loan limits, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Alphonso Jackson said today. Highlighting the Bush Administration's plans to help Americans keep their homes, Jackson said the President's economic growth package, which became law last month with wide bipartisan support, could allow more than 30,000 California families to be eligible over the next several months for safe, affordable mortgages insured by HUD's Federal Housing Administration (FHA)."The plan raises FHA's loan limits, enabling more families to qualify for a safe, affordable FHA mortgage. This is critical for Californ...
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By Chris McDonald
(WR Starkey Mortgage, LLP.)
Half of the respondents have already moved back to New Orleans. Currently, there are 1,824 families living in a combination of rehabilitated and newly-constructed public housing units in New Orleans. There are another 253 units available for lease and another 790 units under repair. Former residents who are not living in public housing units are receiving housing assistance under the Disaster Voucher Program either in New Orleans or in another city. In addition to gauging the housing preferences of current and former HANO residents, the survey sought to explore when residents intend to return to New Orleans. Nearly 80 percent expressed a desire to return to New Orleans within six months. When asked what barriers, if any, might delay their return, many families indicated they needed tran...
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By Chris McDonald
(WR Starkey Mortgage, LLP.)
A significant majority of public housing residents displaced by Hurricane Katrina do not want to return to public housing in New Orleans, according to an independent survey commissioned by the Housing Authority of New Orleans (HANO). Conducted by the University of Texas at Arlington (UTA), the representative unbiased sampling of more than 2,100 current and former public housing residents found that while 71.6 percent want to return to New Orleans, only 35 percent preferred to return to public housing in New Orleans. When asked what form of housing they prefer, only 20.3 percent of respondents wanted to return to their former public housing units. A closer examination of families who resided in the C.J. Peete, B.W. Cooper, St. Bernard, and Lafitte developments ("the Big 4") found that ev...
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By Chris McDonald
(WR Starkey Mortgage, LLP.)
Friday's bond market opened is trading in positive territory after this morning's employment figures added more fuel to the economic recession debate. The stock markets opened in negative territory before moving into positive ground. However, those gains were short-lived as the major indexes are now well into negative territory. The Dow is currently down 97 points while the Nasdaq has fallen 8 points. The bond market, which also has seen plenty of volatility this morning, is currently up 9/32. But, despite those gains I am expecting to see an increase in this morning's mortgage rates of approximately .250 of a discount point compared to yesterday's morning rates due to severe weakness late yesterday.The Labor Department said early this morning that the U.S. unemployment rate slipped to ...
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By Chris McDonald
(WR Starkey Mortgage, LLP.)
FHA Mortgage Limits List - FHA Forward Message:   MORTGAGE LIMITS SUCCESSFULLY COMPLETED Mortgage maximums as of Friday March 07, 2008(1 records were selected, 1 records displayed.) MSA Name MSA Code Division County Name CountyCodeStateOne-FamilyTwo-FamilyThree-FamilyFour-FamilyLast RevisedAUBURN-OPELIKA, AL (MSA) 12220  LEE081 AL$271,050$347,000$419,400$521,25003/05/2008Selection criteria Sorted by:County State:ALCounty:LeeCounty Code:MSA Name:MSA Code:Limit Type:FHA ForwardLast Revised:  The current basic standard mortgage limits for FHA insured loans are:    One-family Two-family Three-family Four-family  FHA Forward $271,050.00 $347,000.00 $419,400.00 $521,250.00  HECM $200,160.00    Fannie/Freddie $417,000.00 $533,850.00 $645,300.00 $801,950.00 High cost area limits are subject to ...
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By Chris McDonald
(WR Starkey Mortgage, LLP.)
The Federal Reserve on Thursday announced that, in 2007, American ownership in their homes as measured by equity fell below 50 percent for the first time since records were first kept in 1945.During the 2nd quarter of 2007 the central bank reported that homeowners' equity slipped to a downwardly revised 49.6 percent and slipped further to 47.9 percent in the fourth quarter. This was the third straight quarter that equity was under 50 percent.Home equity is a measure of the market value of the home minus the mortgage-related debt. Because Americans have repeatedly cashed out the equity in their homes through cash out refinancing, home equity loans and high loan to value mortgages, equity has steadily declined even in the midst of the surging prices of the housing bubble. The total value ...
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By Chris McDonald
(WR Starkey Mortgage, LLP.)
Tuesday's bond market has opened relatively flat with no relevant economic news scheduled for release today. The stock markets showing losses with the Dow down 150 points and Nasdaq down 26 points. The bond market is currently up 4/32, but we will likely still see an increase in this morning's mortgage rates of approximately .250 of a discount point due to weakness late yesterday.With no relevant economic news being posted today, the stock markets are in the forefront and the biggest influence on bond trading this morning. If the major stock indexes continue to slide, we may see finds move back into bonds. However, I don't believe that we will see much of an improvement in mortgage rates today.There are two reports scheduled for release tomorrow morning for the markets to watch. The fir...
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By Chris McDonald
(WR Starkey Mortgage, LLP.)
Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae may have gotten good news from their regulator which lifted the corporations' portfolio caps, but their earnings reports for the year just ended were pretty devastating.Fannie Mae released its 2007 earnings on Wednesday and Freddie Mac followed suit on Thursday morning. Both reported huge losses, the bulk of which occurred in the last quarter of 2007.Fannie Mae reported a net loss of $2.1 billion or $2.63 per diluted share for 2007 compared to net income of $4.1 billion or $3.65 per diluted share in 2006. Losses in the fourth quarter of 2007 totaled $3.6 billion. The corporation reported derivative fair value losses of $3.2 billion in the fourth quarter and $4.1 billion for the year largely due to the impact of declining yields on interest rate swaps used to h...
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By Chris McDonald
(WR Starkey Mortgage, LLP.)
The Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight (OFHEO) announced Wednesday that it would be lifting the caps it had imposed several years ago to limit growth of Freddie Mac's and Fannie Mae's owned portfolios.The caps had been instituted after both of the huge government sponsored enterprises (GSEs) had run into a lot of trouble over their rather creative accounting standards, their inability to file audited financial statements in a timely manner, and concerns over the two corporation's capital reserves.OFHEO director James Lockhart made the announcement after Fannie Mae filed its 2007 financial statements on time and Freddie Mac said it would file its 3007 reports on Thursday. The caps will be removed effective March 1.There has been considerable pressure from the mortgage industr...
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By Mara Hawks, Inactive-2012 REALTOR - Homes for Sale Auburn Real Estate, AL
(First Realty Auburn )
PAUMEanyone? Did you know that paume, the French work for palm, was a court* game in 12th century France, whereby a ball was volleyed back and forth, using the palm of the hand? As the game grew in polularity, so did the name, which became jeu de paume, and rackets were introduced. This game, beginning as paume, evolved centuries later to the contemporary game of TENNIS, now a worldwide and olympic game of skill and strength, recreation and fun. Bring your game to Auburn, Alabama. You'll love the new, 10-acre Tennis Center, located on Richland Road. Come out and play! Comment d'un jeu de tennis? *courtyards were the main, social gathering places back then, around the castles and in village centers. © This posting and the contents written above are the property of Mara Hawks, All Rights ...
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By Chris McDonald
(WR Starkey Mortgage, LLP.)
The foreclosure process varies in every state and it's imperative that homeowners understand this process. One this is for sure, time is NOT on your side. But, an educated consumer is always an informed consumer who can make a "good" decision based on facts. Learn everything you can because this will affect you in every which way and it is something that should not be taken lightly.The first thing you will need to do is understand the foreclosure timeline. Day 1 - Borrower misses first payment by a day. No penalties assessed at this timeDay 16-30 - A late charge is assessed to the borrower's payment.The lender or mortgage servicer will attempt to make contact with the borrower for an explanation.Day 45-60 - The servicer sends "demand" or "breach" letter to the borrower stating the mortg...
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By Mara Hawks, Inactive-2012 REALTOR - Homes for Sale Auburn Real Estate, AL
(First Realty Auburn )
As Auburn continues to grow its population and expand its city limits, the north section is seeing a good measure of exciting developments. 2007 saw the long-awaited completion of Richland Road (August), whereby a narrow, low access road was transformed into a 35-foot wide city street, with curbs, gutters, and 8-foot sidewalks. From Shug Jordan Parkway, the road extends over a mile, and, according to proposed city planning, is expected to ultimately connect to an Auburn Outer Loop, connecting the I-85 and the 280. Traffic lights are currently being installed at the intersection of Shug Jordan and Richland Road. The construction of the road was instigated by the planned development of THE COTSWOLDS Home For Sale at THE COTWOLDS in Auburn. Alabama - Auburn, AL real estate, a place to live...
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By Jay Knorr, Auburn Al Properties
(Prudential Preferred Real Estate)
My son has been enrolled at the Auburn Academy of Martial Arts for a few months now. Wow! What an improvement. You can see the confidence in his face, his walk, his talk, and his general persona. It is a Tae Kwon Do school which is a Korean form of karate. I love this logo!Tae kwon do is more on the mind, body, exercise and defense as opposed to more offensive forms or karate. We go twice per week to the school which is located at 323 Airport Road, in Auburn. I wish we had the time to attend more! My son speaks to every adult now with a clear and concise, "yes sir" or "yes ma'am." And though I tried and failed before, he has learned to respect adults as well as his peers from Patrick Baeder, the owner/instructor (that's him in the picture) for the Auburn Academy of Martial Arts. We've b...
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By Chris McDonald
(WR Starkey Mortgage, LLP.)
Monday's bond market has opened in negative territory following early stock gains and stronger than expected housing news. The Dow is currently up 94 points while the Nasdaq has gained 15 points. The bond market is currently down 18/32, which will likely push this morning's mortgage rates higher by approximately .250 of a discount point.The only economic data released this morning was January's Existing Home Sales report. The National Association of Realtors releases this data that tracks home resales in the U.S. It showed a slight drop in sales, but not nearly as much of a drop that analysts had expected. With this being today's only news, it has had a moderate impact on today's bond trading and mortgage rates.The first big report of the week will be released early tomorrow morning wh...
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By Mara Hawks, Inactive-2012 REALTOR - Homes for Sale Auburn Real Estate, AL
(First Realty Auburn )
The JULE COLLINS SMITH MUSEUM opened in Auburn in 2003. The modern architectural style proclaims a 40,000 square foot building. I get motivated to visit because I also like their gift shop and delicious menu and urban ambiance at the cafe, seating you alongside a wall of windows, bordering the terrace that overlooks the 3-acre lake & fountain. The menu is prepared by URSULA, a local, favorite caterer. ABSOLUTELY OUTSTANDINGLY DELICIOUS! There is a lower level that you need permission for. It has a study room for research and writing, a vault system, a carpentry shop and the staff and security offices. The building is surrounded by approximately 15 acres of botanical gardens. It's lovely and refreshing!The MUSEUM is currently hosting an exhibit of Alabama Folk Pottery. I've always loved ...
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