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Survey: Nearly 30 Percent of Title Agencies Offering Versions of Digital Closings During COVID-19 Pandemic
The American Land Title Association (ALTA), the national trade association of the land title insurance industry, announced results of a survey that showed title and settlement companies across the country have implemented new processes including digital closings to help consumers complete their real estate and mortgage transactions.
Builder Confidence Posts Solid Gain Following Last Month's Historic Drop
In a signal that the housing market is showing signs of stabilizing and gradually moving forward in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, builder confidence in the market for newly-built single-family homes increased seven points to 37 in May, according to the latest National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI) released today.
Real Title Services
NotaryCam Offers Free RON Services for Current, Retired Military Members over Memorial Day for Its "Help a Hero" Initiative
NotaryCam®, the pioneering leader in online notarization and original provider of mortgage eClosing solutions, today announced that it would once again offer free remote online notarization (RON) sessions to United States veterans and current service members over the Memorial Day holiday weekend as part of its semi-annual “Help a Hero” initiative.
AccuSearch Company
Existing-Home Sales Wane 17.8% in April
Existing-home sales dropped in April, continuing what is now a two-month skid in sales brought on by the coronavirus pandemic, according to the National Association of Realtors®.
COVID-19 Pandemic Concerns Cause Weakening in Multifamily Builder and Developer Confidence in First Quarter
Confidence in the market for new multifamily housing weakened significantly in the first quarter of 2020, according to results from the Multifamily Market Survey released today by the National Association of Home Builders.
Simplifile Adds E-recording in 55 Eastern and Southern U.S. Jurisdictions
Intercontinental Exchange, Inc., a leading operator of global exchanges and clearing houses and provider of data and listings services, today announced that 55 recording jurisdictions in the eastern and southern U.S. have joined Simplifile’s e-recording network.
Mortgage Applications Decrease in Latest MBA Weekly Survey
Mortgage applications decreased 2.6 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association's (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending May 15, 2020.
MBA Statement on FHFA's Announcement on Refinance and Home Purchase Eligibility for Homeowners in Forbearance
MBA President and CEO Robert D. Broeksmit, CMB, released the following statement regarding the Federal Housing Finance Agency's (FHFA) announcement on refinance and home purchase eligibility for borrowers in forbearance.
Broad Declines for Home Construction in April
In a sign of the growing economic toll from the coronavirus pandemic, total housing starts decreased 30.2 percent in April to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 891,000 units, according to a report from the U.S. Housing and Urban Development and Commerce Department.
Share of Mortgage Loans in Forbearance Increases to 8.16%
The Mortgage Bankers Association's (MBA) latest Forbearance and Call Volume Surveyrevealed that the total number of loans now in forbearance increased from 7.91% of servicers' portfolio volume in the prior week to 8.16% as of May 10, 2020.
Quick Links
These 30 US cities may be on the verge of a coronavirus pandemic-driven housing crisis
Areas where housing costs are high relative to income and where recent spikes in demand may have created local housing price bubbles may be at a greater risk of a COVID-19-driven crisis, as would areas that were already struggling prior to the coronavirus outbreak.

There's a real chance that coronavirus could bring inflation to home prices and mortgage rates
A rise in inflation would lead to higher mortgage rates, along with lower rates of homeownership and fewer home sales, Yun says.

Mortgage delinquencies surge by 1.6M in April, the biggest monthly jump ever
Delinquencies among borrowers for past-due mortgages are soaring, a sign that Americans are struggling to pay their bills amid a wave of layoffs and lost income from the coronavirus pandemic.

Low Mortgage Rates Benefit Home Buyers But Not Without Housing Market Repercussions
In a coronavirus-created environment of severe inventory shortages and rising prices, home shoppers do have one advantage in the form of extremely low interest rates. Yet, while propitious today, the latter bear repercussions for the U.S. housing market for years to come.

More than 4 million homeowners skip mortgage payments amid coronavirus crisis
Fewer Americans are calling their mortgage servicers to ask for relief from mortgage payments, but the housing industry isn't out of the woods yet.

Counties file brief with U.S. Supreme Court case against governor
It called the classification "arbitrary and irrational" because a real estate agent "would be perfectly capable of carrying on a real estate practice with very limited client contact," such as "one to two customers visiting or viewing a vacant piece of real estate, while maintaining a six-foot distance, while wearing a mask, and while not touching. "On the contrary, a title insurance company, closing a real estate transaction on the same type of property that the (agent) is prohibited from showing," is legally permitted to have people congregating in offices and coming into close contact with others, to finalize a real estate transaction.

States Title raises $123 million to digitize real estate closings
States Title, which has quickly grown into one of the nation's largest title insurance and settlement services companies, announced Thursday that it has raised $123 million to continue digitizing real estate closings.

Closings Go High and Low
Title companies are pulling out all the stops to get deals closed during the COVID-19 pandemic. But they say the best way to close - not just during the outbreak, but moving forward - is electronically. Specifically, title firms are backing what they call remote online notarization - RON, for short.


On the Blogs

How You Can Conduct a Closing in Your Office
Michele Blanco's Blog
2020/05/11
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