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CHICAGO HOMES-FOR-SALE INVENTORY, PRICES DECLINE, But High Unemployment Likely To Keep Market Here Sluggish!
PRICES CONTINUE TO FALL, BUT CHICAGO IL UNEMPLOYMENT STILL TOPS NATIONAL AVERAGE, AND FORECLOSURES LIKELY TO ESCALATE, THROUGH 2010! Here's the good news . . . and the bad news! The Level of For-Sale Inventory in the Chicago Metro Area fell by 6.9% Read More...
HOME AFFORDABLE MORTGAGE PROGRAM WOES - Can Loan Modification Process Be Effectively Streamlined?
OF OVER 7.5 MILLION UNDERWATER HOME OWNERS, ONLY A SMALL PERCENTAGE APPLY FOR LOAN MODS, AND FEW ACTUALLY RECEIVE THEM! Going back not more than 4 years or so on the North Side of Chicago , strong, annual, unabated appreciation for homes and condos seemed Read More...
NEW FHA RULES WILL INCREASE FEES, REQUIRED DOWN PAYMENTS, AND AVAILABLE FUNDS FOR CONDO PURCHASES!
TIMING OF CHANGES CAN LIMIT PURCHASE OPTIONS, INCREASE COSTS IN A STILL-TROUBLED REAL ESTATE MARKET! It wasn't that long ago that low-down payment home borrowers, as well as those with less-than-perfect credit, had a number of places to go for their Read More...
CHICAGO HOME SALES UP IN DECEMBER, Countering National Trend!
ACROSS CHICAGO AREA, FOR 2009, HOME SALES DOWN ONLY SLIGHTLY VERSUS 2008! Is the Chicago Area Real Estate Market beginning to show signs of stabilizing? Improving numbers for year-over-year Units Sold - the aggregate for sold condos and single-family Read More...
MORTGAGE-BACKED SECURITIES: Likely, They are the Key to Keeping Rates On Home Loans Modest! Should Fed Program End?
REVIEW OF NOTES FROM FEDERAL RESERVE MEETING OF MID-DECEMBER REVEALS MIXED OPINIONS AMONG BOARD MEMBERS! Beginning early in 2009, The Fed began to purchase billions, no TRILLIONS of securities backed by privately-issued mortgages. Indeed, it is projected Read More...
IN CHICAGO, Discount Real Estate Brokers Have All But Disappeared - Average RE Fees Up!
AVERAGE SALES FEES - "COMMISSIONS" - EDGE UP FOR FOURTH STRAIGHT YEAR ACROSS U.S.! In Chicago , and in many other areas of the U.S., median home prices have fallen over the last few years. Units sold have dropped, and many of those single-family Read More...
PRIME-TIME HOME-SELLING SEASON - When Does It Really Begin?
MANY SAY "AFTER THE SUPER BOWL!" HERE IN CHICAGO, THAT HAS NOT ALWAYS HELD TRUE! It's an old question, here in Chicago and across the U.S. "When does the Real Estate Market heat up again after its usual seasonal slowdown between Halloween Read More...
FED CHIEF - Strong Regulation, But Then Pre-Emptive Interest Rate Increases, Could Prevent Another Economic Bubble!
BEN BERNANKE - PRO-ACTIVITY IS NECESSARY TO PREVENT ANOTHER ECONOMIC MELTDOWN - REMARKS TO AMERICAN ECONOMIC ASSOCIATION! How to prevent another financial and real estate market calamity like the one we're still feeling the effects of? Federal Reserve Read More...
FED RECOVERY EFFORTS - Are We Ready to Pull the Plug on Them?
TREASURY TO BUY FEWER MORTGAGE BACKED SECURITIES, LIKELY RESULTING IN HIGHER INTEREST RATES, IN 2010! All things, as they say, must come to an end! The good things end - the incredible Bull Real Estate Market , which, day by day, becomes a more distant Read More...
MAJOR REVISIONS TO IL REAL ESTATE LICENSE ACT NOW IN PLACE! Will Public Now be Better Served?
NEW LAW SOON TO STRENGTHEN BROKER EDUCATIONAL REQUIREMENTS, DISCLOSURE IMPROVED IMMEDIATELY! Ask the average consumer about the amount of required education and training an IL Real Estate Practitioner is required to complete before they earn their Real Read More...
NEW RESPA RULES EFFECTIVE JANUARY 1, 2010 - Lower Closing Costs, Better Buyer Protection? Time Will Tell!
NEW YEAR BRINGS NEW RESPA RULES TO REAL ESTATE CLOSINGS, AND BIG CHANGE AS TO HOW CLOSING FUNDS MAY BE PAID IN IL! Often times, change, in virtually any form, is tough for some to take. Some constituencies always complain! Civil Rights Legislation! Fair Read More...
LOAN MODIFICATION MAY BE WORKING - Fewer Homeowners Defaulting On Their Modified Mortgage Loans!
SOME RE-WORKED BORROWERS DO DEFAULT AGAIN, BUT THOSE DEFAULTING DOWN NEARLY 38% VERSUS LATE 2008/EARLY 2009! Many have criticized President Obama's Home Affordable Mortgage Program for failing to bring Mortgage Loan Modifications to enough distressed Read More...
U.S. HOME SALES REBOUND! But What Happens After Fed Incentives End?
SALES OF EXISTING HOMES SURGE 7.4% IN NOVEMBER - FAR MORE THAN EXPECTED. HIGHEST LEVEL IN NEARLY THREE YEARS! Happy Days! Are they here again for the Housing Market, here in Chicago , and elsewhere across the U.S.? Or, will purchase fall back to earth Read More...
SOME MINIMUM MORTGAGE DOWN PAYMENTS EASED - Positive Sign for Housing Market Recovery?
SOME LENDERS LOWER MINIMUM DOWN PAYMENT TO 5% - HOPE TO COMPETE WITH FHA LOANS! Is increased lender confidence - key to a housing market turnaround, in Chicago and elsewhere - returning? In some markets across the U.S., that seems to be the case. Until Read More...
ANOTHER CASH INFUSION FOR FANNIE MAE, FREDDIE MAC? With What Consequences?
INCREASING CURRENT $400 BILLION BAILOUT COMMITMENT BEFORE DECEMBER 31ST LIKELY EASIER, FASTER THAN WAITING UNTIL 2010! When the U.S. Credit Crisis gained steam in September, 2008 , it became clear that Giant Mortgage Investors and Guarantors Fannie Mae Read More...