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Miami’s Future Archipelago of Floating Houses

A team of Dutch developers would like to bring a little bit of Atlantis to Miami. Earlier this month, Dutch Docklands submitted a letter of intent and request for zoning variance to the City of North Miami Beach in order to...more

9/2/2014 - Foreign Investment Letter of Intent Real Estate Development Real Estate Investments

Zillow Acquires Trulia

This Monday, online real estate listing company Zillow announced that it will acquire its biggest competitor, Trulia, in a stock-for-stock purchase transaction. The acquisition has already raised the stock values of both...more

8/4/2014 - Acquisitions Real Estate Market Stock-for-Stock Merger

Big Banks Argue that Shorter Limitations Period Should Apply to MBS Claims

Recently, the defendants in FDIC as Receiver for Colonial Bank v. Chase Mortgage Finance Group, et al (Civ No. 1:12-cv-06166) filed a motion for judgment on the pleadings, asking the court to dismiss as time-barred the...more

7/15/2014 - Banks Extender Statutes FDIC Limitation Periods Securities Fraud

Donald Trump Sanctioned for Failure to Disclose Insurance Policy In Ft. Lauderdale Condo-Hotel Case

Last week, Judge Kathleen Williams of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida granted plaintiffs’ motion for sanctions against Donald Trump for his initial failure to disclose a relevant insurance policy...more

6/27/2014 - Condominiums Discovery Donald Trump Hotels Property Insurance Sanctions

Massachusetts Sues Fannie and Freddie for Blocking Home Buybacks

Earlier this month, Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley initiated an action against Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the Federal Housing Finance Agency for allegedly illegally impeding non-profit foreclosure buyback...more

6/13/2014 - Buyback Programs Fannie Mae Foreclosure Freddie Mac Mortgages

Young Adults Underrepresented Among Homebuyers

As the housing market springs back to life, one demographic remains underrepresented among homebuyers. U.S. census data shows that the rate of homeownership for adults under the age of 35 has declined by almost 8% in the last...more

5/22/2014 - Census FHFA First Time Homebuyers

Can Fannie and Freddie Cope Under Pressure?

Last week, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) put Freddie and Fannie to the test, and the results were grim. Dodd-Frank mandated “stress tests,” designed to evaluate a financial institution’s ability to withstand an...more

5/7/2014 - Bailout Dodd-Frank Fannie Mae FHFA Freddie Mac Senate Banking Committee Stress Tests U.S. Treasury

“Tiny Houses:” A Panacea For Social And Environmental Ills?

Could the answers to crushing mortgage debt, homelessness and ecological degradation be one and the same? Across the globe, a ‘tiny’ movement is taking root....more

4/28/2014 - Energy Efficiency Housing Market

Judge Denied Bank of America’s Motion to Dismiss $850M Mortgage Fraud Case

Last week, Magistrate Judge David S. Cayer of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina denied Bank of America’s motion to dismiss the Security and Exchange Commission’s claims against it in SEC v....more

4/14/2014 - Bank of America Disclosure High-Risk Mortgages RMBS SEC Securities Fraud

Wells Fargo Employee Admits Role in $40.8 Million Straw Buyer Scheme

Last Friday, a former Wells Fargo branch manager, sales manager and loan officer, Robert Serao, pled guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud. The charge stems from Serao’s involvement in a $40.8 million mortgage fraud...more

3/19/2014 - Bank Fraud Mortgages Wells Fargo Wire Fraud

Court Of Appeal Reaffirms Ruling Making Condominium Association Foreclosures More Costly

Last week, the Florida Third District Court of Appeal dealt the final blow to an often-used strategy by condominium associations. In the second iteration of Aventura Management, LLC v. Spiaggia Ocean Condominium Association,...more

3/14/2014

Wells Fargo Gives Subprime Borrowers Another Chance

Wells Fargo has announced that it plans to begin originating FHA-backed loans for borrowers with credit scores as low as 600. This new cut-off is 40 points below Wells Fargo’s current floor, and 20 points below what has...more

2/19/2014 - Banking Sector FHA Housing Market Subprime Mortgages Wells Fargo

Dodd Frank Act: The Arrival of the ‘Ability to Repay’ Lending Restrictions

The days of exotic mortgage programs like “no doc” and balloon loans may be over. Earlier this month, the long awaited (and by many lenders and experts, dreaded), lending restrictions codified in the Dodd Frank Act...more

1/21/2014 - Ability-to-Repay CFPB Dodd-Frank Mortgages

FHA Announces Plans to Lower Mortgage Insurance Policy Caps

Last Friday, the Federal Housing Administration announced that it will reduce the maximum threshold for the high-price mortgages it is willing to insure. This change was called for by the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of...more

12/13/2013 - Bailout FHA Housing Market Mortgage Insurance Fund Mortgages Policy Limits

Proposed Legislation Would Curb JP Morgan’s Potential Multi-Billion Dollar Tax Windfall

Late last month, we commented on JP Morgan Chase’s $5.1 billion settlement with the Fair Housing Financing Agency (FHFA), as conservator of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The Wall Street Journal has since reported that JP Morgan...more

11/19/2013 - Banks Fannie Mae FHFA Freddie Mac JPMorgan Chase

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