Foreclosures are boosting the supply of available properties and reducing prices, even as mortgage rates tumble to record lows. U.S. home prices dropped 3.3 percent in July from a year earlier, the eighth consecutive decline, the Federal Housing Finance Agency in Washington said in a Sept. 22 report.
Signs are increasingly pointing to a home building industry that is years away from recovering from the excesses of the housing boom. Even with a modest rise in construction last month, the pace of building would need to at least double to signal a healthy market and contribute in a meaningful way to job growth, according to most economists.
GMAC Mortgage is imposing a moratorium on many of its foreclosures as it tries to ensure they were done correctly. States where the moratorium is being carried out include New York, Connecticut, New Jersey, Illinois, Florida, and 18 others.
Interest rates on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages fell for the first time in three weeks, offering a glimmer of hope for a housing market that still faces plenty of obstacles. Interest rates are historically low, which may boost home loan refinancing activity and also makes homes more affordable, real estate website Zillow.com said on Tuesday.
Nevada continues to lead the nation for its share of homes with negative equity, with its negative equity rate of 68 percent significantly outpacing second-place Arizona's rate of 50 percent.
Future prices for lumber rose the maximum permitted by the Chicago Mercantile Exchange as a jump in U.S. housing starts revived prospects for construction materials. Lumber futures for November delivery rose the CME’s $10 daily limit, or 4.5 percent, to settle at $232 per 1,000 board feet at 1:10 p.m. in Chicago.
The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) released its Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending September 17, 2010. The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 1.4 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier.
Home builder confidence remains at multi-month lows, according to a new report by the National Association of Home Builders. The NAHB/Wells Fargo housing market index remained at 13 in September, tying the August reading for the worst showing since March 2009.
Almost three quarters of Americans give home buying the thumbs up, from 64 percent in a Fannie Mae survey conducted in January.
Lennar Corp, the third-biggest homebuilder in the United States, reported a higher-than-expected quarterly profit and a decline in orders that was less severe than Wall Street had feared.