FHA’s Donovan: Goodbye 580 FICO and $729k Max, RE Bottom?, 2% Japanese Mortgages, Mortgage Debt Shrinks, HPA,Wal-Mart BS, New FHA Loans, Florida (2), House Prices and Momentum, MHA and SPOC Improve, Mortgage Fraud, Housing Recovery?, $13B Mortgage Fraud, On Recoveries, LPS = FC Starts Drop

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Donovan reiterates desire to outsource FHA special servicing – Posted by cmlynski – Housingwire 
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(bye 580 FICO and $729k max?) HUD Chief: FHA FICO Minimum May Rise – … “We are looking at adjusting the FICO [score],” HUD secretary Shaun Donovan told the Senate Banking Committee Thursday morning. He also testified that he would like to go back to pre-2008 days when the maximum FHA loan limit was $363,000. Today, the maximum loan limit is $729,750. … – National Mortgage News 
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(really worth reading) Real Estate: Is the Bottom In, or Is This a Head-Fake? – … Expanding the pool of potential buyers has reached the upper limit – There are two ways to expand the pool of qualified home buyers, and they both rely on expanding leverage:  A) lower the down payment from 20% cash to 3- %, and B) lower the mortgage rate to 3.5%. Lowering the down payment increases the leverage from 4-to-1 to 33-to-1, a massive leap. … – Charles Hugh Smith – Of Two Minds 
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How low can mortgage rates go? The 30 year fixed is in the low 2’s in Japan – By murakami – Invite an expert to fact-check this http://housingloan.jp/?source=Patrick.net – I keep hearing that “US interest rates can’t go much lower.” really? Was just in Japan and a friend told me he’d just refi’d his house at 2.1% for a 30 year fixed. I checked and yep, rates are really that low. (Top right corner.) – Patrick.net 
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(g-fee disgrace) Fannie and Freddie Are Not Piggy Banks – By The Editors – What does a U.S. immigration program have to do with the housing market? Nothing. … Fannie and Freddie, it seems, have become Washington’s favorite piggy bank. – Bloomberg
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(3 great charts) Fed’s Q3 Flow of Funds: Household Mortgage Debt down $1.15 Trillion from Peak – by Bill McBride – Calculated Risk 
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Credit Suisse: Home price appreciation will move into 2013 – Posted by cmlynski –… The trend in home prices is expected to continue into 2013, with further home price appreciation of about 5%, according to Credit Suisse. … based on continuation of low mortgage rates, – Housingwire
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(total BS – Wal-Mart would have to originate to the same standards as everyone else) Wal-Mart mortgages could fuel the next bubble – Commentary: We want convenience, but what would it cost us? – By Al Lewis – MarketWatch  
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NY Times: FHA Relying on Newest Loans to Drive Financial Recovery – by Jason Oliva – Reverse Mortgage Daily 
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(this is a great read) Housing Recovery? Eric Johnson with the View from FL – Chris Whalen – the Insitiutional Risk Analyst
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South Florida home prices rebounding – By Paul Owers, Sun Sentinel
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(short, sweet, good chart) The 2012 Housing Market Recovery Gains Momentum – Mark J. Perry – Seeking Alpha 
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(MHA and SPOC improvement – has Dechert 3 page pdf summary) Treasury Reports Improvements in Residential Mortgage Servicing – by Dechert LLP – JD Supra

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CoreLogic: Mortgage Fraud to Reach $13 Billion by Year-End – BY: KRISTA FRANKS BROCK – … employment fraud taking the lead with a 50 percent increase. … Identity fraud … with a 44 percent increase year-over-year. Income fraud increased 35 percent; occupancy fraud rose by 25 percent … – The M Report 
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Radar Logic Questions Recovery’s Sustainability – BY: ESTHER CHO – … However, the increase in prices tracked by Radar Logic is not a result of “significant appreciation in household-owned homes,” the report stated.Instead, it is due to a decline in “motivated sales,” or sales of foreclosed homes and REOs, which are sold at significant discounts compared to non-foreclosures … – DS News

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LPS: Foreclosure starts drop 21.9% on mortgage servicing settlement – By Kerri Ann Panchuk – … One of those changes was a requirement that servicers give borrowers a 14-day notice in writing before referring a loan to foreclosure. Those letters were first mailed in September and the steep drop in foreclosure starts came soon after, according to LPS. With that in mind, LPS suggests the quick drop in foreclosure starts may be a temporary trend that is subject to change. … – Housingwire

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