VI. Housing Foreclosure / Shadow Inventory Update A. Dr. Selma Hepp, NAR Economist
VII. Lender Housing Finance Progress Report A. Joe Rodgers, EVP, Wells Fargo Home Mortgage
VIII. REO / Bulk Sales Subgroup Report A. Amherst Securities Presentation B. Bulk Sales - REO Letter On February 27 the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) announced a pilot program to be operated by Fannie Mae to sell nearly 2500 foreclosed properties in six hard hit foreclosure states for the purpose of providing rental housing. This is the first pilot project to be offered in the Obama Administration’s plan to expedite the disposition of foreclosed properties held by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and FHA.
Applications for pre-qualification for investors began on February 1. The latest announcement begins a further round of qualification with potential bidders required to demonstrate financial capacity, management capabilities and other qualifications. Only fully qualified bidders will be allowed to bid on pools ranging from 99 properties in Chicago to more than 600 units in Riverside/San Bernardino/Los Angeles.
X. New Business / Updates A. Guarantee Fee Pay-For Opposition Letter Legislation signed into law by President Obama taxes housing to pay for the extension of the payroll tax, and maintain Medicare payments and unemployment benefits.
Despite REALTORS® strong opposition to the diversion of housing resources to pay for non-housing uses, increases in Guarantee Fees on Fannie/Freddie mortgages and premium charges for FHA loans are being used to pay for the extensions. These increases will translate into additional costs for homebuyers and will divert fees needed to minimize the loss exposure of the government-sponsored enterprises, investors, and ultimately, the taxpayer.
B. Helping Homeowners Refinance Support Letter In spite of changes to the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) which have greatly increased its usage by eligible homeowners, there are still some barriers to refinancing that responsible homeowners are unable to overcome. Senators Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Robert Menendez (D-NJ) will introduce the REALTORS® supported Responsible Homeowners Refinancing Act of 2012. This bill will add to the improvements already made under HARP 2.0 by:
• Extending the eligibility date an additional year through May 31, 2010, • Eliminating up-front fees completely on refinances, • Eliminating all appraisal costs, • Eliminating reps and warranties to improve competition, and • Penalizing second lien holders who do not re-subordinate.
C. Broad Qualified Mortgage (QM) definition Coalition Letter On August 1, 2011, C.A.R. commented on the proposed rule on risk retention, implementing section 941 of the Dodd-Frank Act. Section 941 requires lenders that securitize mortgage loans to retain a percentage of the risk unless the mortgage is a qualified residential mortgage (QRM) or is otherwise exempt. The proposal will define a QRM using excessively stringent underwriting standards that would have forced the majority of homebuyers, especially in high-cost states such as California, to pay more in spite of qualifying for a prime loan.
Proposed Definition of a QRM would: • Require an 80% LTV, which requires a 20% down payment, • Limit the mortgage payment to 28% of gross income and 36% of all debts, • Require that the borrower is not currently 30 or more days past due on any debt obligation, • Require the borrower must not have been 60 or more days past due on any debt obligation within the preceding 24 months, and • Require the borrower must not have, within the preceding 36 months, been through bankruptcy, foreclosed on, engaged in a short sale or deed-in-lieu of foreclosure, or been subject to a Federal or State judgment for collection of any unpaid debt.
D. FHFA Short Sales Directive The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) has announced new timelines for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac short sales. Starting in June, under the new rules servicers will be required to do the following:
• Review and respond to requests for short sales within 30 calendar days from receipt of a short sale offer and a complete borrower response package, • Provide weekly status updates to the borrower if the short sale offer is still under review after 30 calendar days, and • Make and communicate final decisions to the borrower within 60 calendar days of receipt of the offer and complete borrower response package.
XI. Announcements A. Annual Meeting: Orlando, FL, November 9, 2012, 1:30 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.