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National Association of Realtors® Moves to Dismiss Antitrust Suits; Shows Lawsuits Are Self-Contradictory, Ignore Precedent and Lack Economic Sense
The National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) moved last week to dismiss the Moehrl v. NAR lawsuit and the copycat Sitzer v. NAR lawsuit because both amended complaints fail to show how NAR rules for the operation of Multiple Listing Services (MLSs) inhibit competition or cause the plaintiffs any harm.
Builder Confidence Trending Higher as Interest Rates Move Lower
Builder confidence in the market for newly-built single-family homes rose one point to 66 in August, according to the latest National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index released today. Sentiment levels have held at a solid 64-to-66 level for the past four months.
Single-Family Starts Continue Modest Improvement in July
Due to a decline in multifamily production, total housing starts fell 4 percent in July to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.19 million units from a downwardly revised reading in June, according to a report from the U.S. Housing and Urban Development and Commerce Department.
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July New Home Purchase Mortgage Applications Increased 31.2 Percent
The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) Builder Application Survey (BAS) data for July 2019 shows mortgage applications for new home purchases increased 31.2 percent compared from a year ago.
National Association of Realtors® Applauds Long-Awaited FHA Condo Rule
The National Association of Realtors® today commended the Department of Housing and Urban Development for finalizing new Federal Housing Administration condominium loan policies. The changes, many of which NAR has championed for over a decade, should yield thousands of new homeownership opportunities and help alleviate affordability restraints impacting markets across the country.
Mortgage Applications Increase in Latest MBA Weekly Survey
Mortgage applications increased 21.7 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association's (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending August 9, 2019.
FHA Issues New Condominium Approval Rule
In an effort to promote affordable and sustainable homeownership, especially among credit-worthy first-time buyers, the Federal Housing Administration today published a long-awaited final regulation, and policy implementation guidance, which establish a new condominium approval process.
Mortgage Delinquencies Rise in the Second Quarter of 2019
The delinquency rate for mortgage loans on one-to-four-unit residential properties increased to a seasonally adjusted rate of 4.53 percent of all loans outstanding at the end of the second quarter of 2019, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association's (MBA) National Delinquency Survey.
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Connecticut Amends Real Estate Closing Requirements
Connecticut recently enacted Senate Bill 320 (SB 320), effective on October 1, 2019, which requires most real estate closings to be conducted by a licensed attorney in Connecticut.

New York State Supreme Court Invalidates State Title Insurance Regulations
On August 2, 2019, the Manhattan Supreme Court invalidated as unconstitutional New York State Insurance Regulation 208-a sweeping regulation adopted in late 2017 by the New York State Department of Financial Services (DFS)-on First Amendment and due process grounds.

Why Lower Interest Rates are Not Boosting the Housing Market
The fact that home sales are not rising in response to lower mortgage interest rates is because rates are falling for the wrong reasons.

A Danish bank is offering mortgages at a 0.5% negative interest rate - meaning it is basically paying people to borrow money
Jyske Bank, Denmark's third-largest bank, said this week that customers would now be able to take out a 10-year fixed-rate mortgage with an interest rate of -0.5%, meaning customers will pay back less than the amount they borrowed.

Rates are low, and mortgages are cheap. So why aren't Americans buying more homes?
Interest rates are dropping and American mortgages are cheaper than they've been in years. The US economy is strong. That's a recipe for a booming housing market - but it isn't booming at all.

Zillow Is Buying And Selling Lots Of Homes And It's Almost Half Its Business Now
Zillow, the real estate search and advertising platform, has gotten into the house-flipping business in a big way. That means the company earned about 41.5% of its revenue from selling homes in the three months ending June 30, according to its most recent earnings report.


On the Blogs

True or False: Zillow is Taking Over Title Searches
Christopher Hoffer's Blog
2019/08/15
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