Subject: Foreclosure & Financial Crisis

  • Financial Destruction in Detroit

    On Friday, Detroit’s emergency manager, Kevyn Orr, filed a lawsuit on behalf of the city challenging the legitimacy of interest-rate swap contracts which were costing the city tens of millions of dollars per year. Swaps contracts come in many forms…

  • NeighborWorks Asks: Do you Get By With a Little Help From Your Friends?

    It’s been five years since the full force of the Great Recession hit the United States, with a combination of risky mortgages and declining housing prices forcing approximately 4.6 million families into foreclosure. While more than 13 million households are…

  • Eminent Domain to Save Homes?

    They're back. Mortgage Resolution Partners has joined with another California city, Richmond this time, pushing a plan to use eminent domain to save homeowners who have underwater mortgages. PBS News Hour covered the controversy over this plan in a fascinating…

  • Manufacturing May Be Coming Back, But It Won’t Bring Jobs

    I finally got to see Detropia last week, the acclaimed documentary filmed in Detroit that’s been making the rounds of the film festivals and the indie houses. As someone who’s pretty deeply involved with Detroit, I’d been looking forward to…

  • The Racial Wealth Gap and the Great Recession

    In 2005, according to the U.S. Census Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP), the median Asian American household had a net worth of over $150,000. This was compared to a median household net worth of approximately $130,000 for Non-Hispanic…

  • Reactions to the President’s Housing Address

    Yesterday, President Barack Obama gave a housing policy speech in Phoenix, Ariz., and this afternoon he answered questions submitted via social media on a live web chat with the CEO of Zillow. In the speech and the questions, the President…

  • Detroit: Exception or Rule?

    The bankruptcy of Detroit (the legal filing is currently on hold) has prompted a sudden flood of interest in the city. Pundits have breezily explained the event by blaming public sector unions, a corrupt and ineffective politics, or simply by…

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    Too Big To Jail Redux: It’s Worse Than You Suspected

    Anyone who worked with homeowners seeking mortgage modifications over the past years has made or heard some joke about the supposedly "lost" documents that their clients had to resubmit over and over. We're going to find closets and closets stuffed…

  • Rep. Watt Can Save the American Dream

    Change is coming to the most important government agency, one that most Americans have never heard of.  For many months, a broad coalition of housing, consumer protection, and civil rights groups has been calling on President Obama to replace Edward…

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    Could “Loft Home” Conversions Make Rust Belt Rehab Pencil Out?

    A few weeks ago, Alan Mallach wrote on Rooflines about the mismatch between the buildings built for families of another era and the needs of today's potential city dwellers.  It's a common problem in poor neighborhoods affected by high foreclosure…

  • Protestor Who Disrupted DeMarco Hearing, In His Own Words

    You've probably heard that several underwater homeowners were arrested for disrupting Tuesday's House Financial Services Committee hearing at which acting director Edward DeMarco was the sole witness. (You can see the video here if you haven't.) I got the chance…

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    Progress and Peril for Home Opportunity

    David Sassaroli contributed reporting for this article Home Opportunity is at a crossroads, and with it the American economy. Misconduct by banks, inadequate rules, and lax enforcement have cost 4 million families their homes since the financial crisis began, devastated…

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    Breaking: DeMarco May Go

    This just in from NCRC: "Word is that President Obama has asked, get this, Rep. Mel Watt (D-NC), to step into the position of FHFA Director! Mel is a longtime ally on the House Financial Services Committee and has demonstrated…

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    Is a New Bubble Forming?

      [Cue the Darth Vader music]. Are we slipping into a new housing bubble? (Or is it racing into?) S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices track housing price changes in 20 metros nationwide. Their latest report shows an overall gain of a…

  • Elizabeth Warren Embarrasses Bank Regulators

      If you haven't watched this yet, you probably want to. Here's the Huffington Post synopsis. How do you think Elizabeth Warren's presence on the Senate banking committee is going to change the tone of bank regulation going forward? more

  • A Different Approach to the Recent Mortgage Settlement

    A central feature of the recent $8.5 billion national mortgage settlement is a "throw up the hands and send some checks" approach as a solution to thousands and thousands of homeowners damaged over the last several years of the mortgage…

  • Links Roundup: Independent Foreclosure Review Scrapped for New Settlement

    The Independent Foreclosure Review has been scrapped for a new $8.5 billion settlement with the banks. These articles describe the reasons: Foreclosure Review Insiders Portray Massive Failure, Doomed From The Start, Huffington Post Bank Deal Ends Flawed Reviews of Foreclosures,…

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    The Federal Housing Administration: Unsung Hero of the Housing Market

    The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) is one of the unsung heroes of the housing market. Despite helping to save the housing market following the mortgage crisis in 2007, the FHA is continuously attacked, erroneously, for its commitment to encourage lending…

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    DeMarco Must Go

    It’s time for President Obama to fire and quickly replace the Acting Director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), Edward DeMarco, with a Director who will uphold the Agency’s mission to “support housing finance and affordable housing, and support…

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    The First-Time Homebuyers Tax Credit Helped Sink the FHA

    The NYT had an article on a new study by Edward Pinto at the American Enterprise Institute which found that a high percentage of the loans the FHA insured in 2009-2010 were high risk loans that are likely to end…

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