Categories: Mortgages

Which Lenders Made the Worst Home Loans?

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on October 21

The worst mortgage loans were made in 2006, according to research by data provider MDA DataQuick. And those loans are begining to blow up now. According to DataQuick’s numbers,...

California Bans Neg Am Loans

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on October 19

California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed a flurry of bills designed to reign in abuses in the mortgage market today. The new laws eliminate the use of negative amortization features...

Jumbo Loan Rates Dip Below 6%, Lowest In Four Years

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on October 12

Mortgage interest rates are trending steadily downward. The research firm HSH reports that jumbo loans—those for higher-priced homes—dipped below 6% for the first time since September of 2005. This...

Will Risky FHA Loans Prompt Another Big Bailout?

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on October 09

The excellent cover story last year by my colleagues Chad Terhune and Robert Berner laid out the fact that the nation’s housing market was becoming ever more dependent on...

U.S. Treasury Coming Out With New Rules For Short Sales

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on October 02

A story in this week’s magazine follows up on our blog posting from two weeks ago about banks getting tougher on folks looking to sell their homes for less...

Should You Buy Into A Distressed Debt Fund?

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on September 09

A slew of new REITs that will invest in troubled real estate loans are about to hit the market. Nicholas Einhorn, an analyst at Renaissance Capital, adds up 18 new...

Are We Still At Risk for Mortgage Armageddon?

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on September 01

While much of the recent housing news has been good there remains a hardy band of skeptics that don’t believe the mortgage crisis is over. In fact, they think...

Mortgage Application Fees Now Non-Refundable

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on August 03

I can remember being bombarded by mortgage refinancing offers from lenders during the boom. Many said they would waive their fees to get a deal. Now, slowly, the solicitations are...

Short Sales, Fascination and Frustration

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on July 31

With his permission, I'm reprinting some comments made by Florida businessman Felix Santiago on Activerain.com, the excellent networking site for real estate agents. Santiago is in the business of...

PennyMac Stock Has Poor Debut

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on July 30

It was an inauspicious debut for PennyMac Mortgage Investment Trust, the new mortgage REIT founded by former Countrywide Financial CEO Stanford Kurland. The mortgage industry veteran had originally hoped...

Banks Need to Hire More Loan Officers

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on June 26

Are banks overwhelmed and understaffed for all the work coming out of the housing bust? On June 24, Ciitgroup said it was temporarily suspending new loans brought to them...

Mortgage Bankers Assocation expects mortgage activity to slow

Posted by: Prashant Gopal on June 22

The Mortgage Bankers Association today significantly lowered its 2009 mortgage origination forecast to 2.03 trillion, a drop of $700 million below its March projection. The primary reason: higher interest rates....

Fico 780? 20% down on a $135,000 condo? No dice.

Posted by: Peter Coy on May 18

The credit crisis is still making lenders ridiculously cautious. Check out this story by Kevin Chiu on the HousingPredictor.com website. A Realtor in Auburn, Ala., home of the mighty...

Developers Lure Buyers with Teaser Rates

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on April 29

Remember when mortgage companies lured home buyers with low payment interest only, adjustable rate loans that spiked after a few years? Now condo developers are doing the same thing....

Small Biz Squeeze

Posted by: Prashant Gopal on April 28

Guest blog from BusinessWeek Banking Editor Mara Der Hovanesian: We highlighted the problems that some small businesses are having with paying their mortgages in a recent issue of the magazine....

A Letter to Barney Frank

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on April 27

Bank of America officially dropped the Countrywide name on April 27, but the problems of borrowers continue. Here’s a letter sent to us recently by a reader named Scott. April...

Do you qualify for a mortgage bailout?

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on February 18

President Obama and Tresury Secretary Geithner are spending $75 billion to help homeowners stay in their homes. Is there something in there for you? The quickest answer can be...

Mortgage Advice from an Ex-Con

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on February 18

Michael Sichenzia served four years in a New York State penitentiary for mortgage fraud. Today the founder of Deerfield Beach, Florida’s Dynamic Consulting Enterprises has positioned himself as an...

WaMu the Movie?

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on February 06

A reader named Bryan informed me of this Web site, apparently someone is making a movie of the downfall of Washington Mutual and collecting the stories of former employees...

Mortgage rates are reaching record lows, but it's not necessarily easy to refinance

Posted by: Prashant Gopal on January 16

I just wrote a story with fellow Hot Property blogger, Chris Palmeri, about the flood of mortgage refinancing applications loan officers are fielding as interest rates hit record lows. The...

Peter Schiff foresaw the housing bust way early

Posted by: Peter Coy on December 31

Credit where credit is due: Peter Schiff of brokerage Euro Pacific Capital saw this housing bust coming from a mile away. To prove his perspicacity, his brother (and p.r....

Acorn Calls for More Loan Modifications

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on December 30

The activist group ACORN got a bad rap during the recent presidential campaign when John McCain accused them of using paid solicitors to sign up bogus voters. Barack Obama had...

Mortgage brokers sue over HUD rule on disclosure of yield spread premiums

Posted by: Peter Coy on December 23

Guest blog from BusinessWeek Banking and Finance Editor Mara Der Hovanesian: The mortgage brokers and the government are at each other's throats again. As soon as the Department of Housing...

Bill Frey's radical ideas for how to fix the housing market

Posted by: Peter Coy on December 11

Guest blog from BusinessWeek Banking Editor Mara Der Hovanesian: Bill Frey, an avid investor in mortgage securities, seems to put his money where his mouth is. This summer, he vowed...

Modifying mortgages is just a band-aid

Posted by: Dean Foust on November 11

The flurry of announcements by the government and major banks that they are engaging in a massive campaign to modify mortgages that are in or are hurtling toward default and...

Countrywide Appraiser Lawsuit

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on October 16

A somewhat overlooked player in this whole mortgage meltdown is the appraiser who is supposed to offer up unbiased opinions on the worth of a property before a loan is...

The Run On the Banks

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on September 19

To some long term observers of the mortgage market, the rout on Wall Street isn’t just a shock, it’s absurb. Banks, hedge funds and other investors are dumping mortgage...

Subprime mortgages--good luck getting one

Posted by: Peter Coy on September 11

The Federal Reserve has just released its annual Home Mortgage Disclosure Act report, and you won't be shocked by its conclusion: It has become very, very hard for people with...

Behind Wamu's Stock Plunge

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on September 08

Normally when an unpopular ceo gets the boot, the company’s share price climbs in a massive sigh of relief. Kerry Killinger, ceo of troubled thrift Washington Mutual, officially got fired...

Latest prediction: California's housing market will hit bottom first

Posted by: Prashant Gopal on August 01

It’s easy to call a bottom to the housing slump. The tough part is getting the timing right. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson has made many such predictions. "All the signs...

Blacks and Hispanics twice as likely to get high-cost mortgages

Posted by: Prashant Gopal on July 31

A study by the National Community Reinvestment Coalition released today suggests that blacks and Hispanics are much more likely to have risky and poorly-underwritten loans. But interestingly, the disparity is...

An Indymac Borrower Speaks

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on July 16

I got a call from an Indymac borrower who asked that his name not be used. He and his wife bought a three bedroom townhouse in the Los Angeles suburb...

Son of Countrywide

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on July 15

Call it the Indymac massacre. It’s the second largest bank failure in US history. Many of the unfortunate souls who put their hard-earned dough in Indymac’s high-paying cds have...

The rate of option ARM delinquencies is already spiking

Posted by: Prashant Gopal on July 02

The next wave of foreclosures is expected to gather strength when the million or so option ARMs start resetting in large numbers next spring. But it seems that many of...

Pick-A-Pay Goes Away...

Posted by: Dean Foust on June 30

When Wachovia bought Golden West Financial two years ago, executives at the Charlotte-based bank gushed about how they could take the “Pick-A-Pay” mortgage that was Golden West’s signature product and...

Project Restart and the Wamulians

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on June 20

It’s been another tough week for Washington Mutual, the nation’s largest and perhaps most troubled thrift. The company announced a major new restructuring called Project Restart. Some 1,200 employees...

Find your mortgage-meltdown souvenirs on eBay

Posted by: Prashant Gopal on June 20

Looking for a gift for that special someone? How about a teddy bear, beach towel or football with the name of a recently-defunct Wall Street investment bank printed on...

Wamu's Wild Ride

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on June 10

It’s been a rollercoaster ride these days for Washington Mutual shareholders. Yesterday the stock fell 17% to a 16 year low as UBS analyst Eric E. Wasserstrom predicted losses...

Out of the frying pan, into the Fannie Mae

Posted by: Peter Coy on May 06

Douglas Duncan, who was chief economist of the Mortgage Bankers Association, sent a blast email today to all his business contacts saying that it's his first day as chief...

Savor this one, borrowers: The Mortgage Bankers Association is feeling the credit crunch

Posted by: Peter Coy on April 10

Great article this past weekend in the Washington Post (maybe not as great as the six 2008 Pulitzer winners, but still great) about how the Mortgage Bankers Association is being...

'Hope Now' Hot Line Frustrates Borrowers Needing Help Now

Posted by: Prashant Gopal on March 14

A telephone hot line run by the Hope Now Alliance, a public-private partnership launched by the White House in October as a lifeline for homeowners facing foreclosure, appears to...

Ben Says It Like It Is

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on March 04

Fed Chief Ben Bernanke has been criticized for shifting course a bit too much, raising interest rates, then lowering them, and not moving swiftly to address the housing crisis....

Unintended consequences of regulating mortgage brokers

Posted by: Peter Coy on February 22

It's understandable why people want to increase regulation of mortgage brokers, since many of them contributed to the housing bubble and bust by acting unscrupulously. But economics teaches us to...

Credit scores: Flawed system...or Scapegoat?

Posted by: Dean Foust on February 20

I wrote a story recently in the print edition of BusinessWeek on a topic that I thought had been largely ignored in all of the coverage of the mortgage mess:...

Happy Valentine's Day--your ARM just reset

Posted by: Peter Coy on February 14

As usual, Dean Foust was ahead of me with the idea of linking to a podcast. Here's a link to a Minnesota Public Radio show I was on this...

NPR (and me) on the mortgage mess

Posted by: Dean Foust on February 12

I was invited to appear today on Talk of the Nation, the NPR call-in show hosted by Neal Conan (right). The topic was the mortgage mess, and who the winners...

Raising conforming loan limits won't make much difference

Posted by: Peter Coy on February 11

I'm republishing this item to fix an error that was pointed out to me by Alison Fitzgerald of Bloomberg. (Thanks, Alison.) My error was to say that the increase...

Suits and Severance at Countrywide

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on January 31

The Fed initiates another whopping rate cut. Too late to save Countrywide, whose deal to be acquired by Bank of America still looks like a go. The nation’s largest mortgage...

Who's Number One?

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on January 25

The newsletter Inside Mortgage Finance has come out with its annual ranking of the top mortgage lenders. Countrywide Financial once again topped the list--for the fourth year in a row....

Kerry you're Killing me

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on January 23

Noble guy that he is, Washington Mutual ceo Kerry Killinger has agreed to forgo his $1.2 million bonus for last year. Wamu is the nation's largest savings and loan, and...

One insider's view of Countrywide

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on January 17

Brian Koss spent four years as a senior regional vice president at Countrywide Financial where he ran 54 branches in New England and upstate New York. During that time...

Cleveland Rocked

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on January 16

The City of Cleveland's lawsuit from last Friday, filed against twenty big mortgage lenders and investment banks reveals some startling stats about the mortgage crisis and the havoc big financial...

Say Goodbye to Angelo

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on January 11

The long anticipated buyout of Countrywide Financial by Bank of America was the big story in mortgage land today. Mortgage brokers I spoke with say the deal is a good...

Nobody wants a mortgage

Posted by: Peter Coy on January 03

Demand for mortgages has been drying up. The Mortgage Bankers Association said today that the seasonally adjusted volume of applications in the week ended Dec. 28 was down 11.6% from...

Paying off your mortgage, one gift at a time

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on November 27

Countrywide staffers haven't had much to cheer about this holiday season, with the company struggling to right itself amidst the slumping the mortgage market, but the company announced some success...

Motor City Meltdown

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on November 01

Sometimes its the vultures who get eaten. General Motors was lucky to unload a majority stake in its finance subsidiary (GMAC) for $14 billion last year. The subsidiary, now 51%...

Introducing the latest risky derivative: the C-3PO

Posted by: Peter Coy on October 03

I'm looking for an investment bank to help me issue a security of my own devising, the C-3PO. This acronym stands for ... hmmm, let me see ... Constantly Collapsing Collateral, Payment Optional. Like its droid namesake from Star Wars, my C-3PO will be quite entertaining, although a bit fussy and unreliable. In other words, it will be a lot like other asset-backed innovations concocted during the past decade of financial wizardry.

We just won a medal with a bloodhound on it

Posted by: Peter Coy on September 24

It is a special thing to be awarded a medal that prominently features a bloodhound, that paragon of lachrymose canine loyalty. It's the weekly Odysseus Medal from BloodhoundBlog and we...

Believe it or not, the 'optimal' mortgage is an option ARM

Posted by: Peter Coy on September 21

If you had to name the most toxic, dangerous, foolhardy kind of mortgage loan that exists, you'd very likely pick a pay-option ARM .... Guess what? The worst is actually the best.

Bloodbath At Countrywide

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on September 07

Countrywide, the nation's largest and recently most-embattled mortgage lender, announced it was laying off as many as 12,000 people today, roughly one-fifth of its 61,000-strong workforce. In a letter to...

Chris Dodd wants to ban the yield spread premium

Posted by: Peter Coy on September 06

Last May I wrote a blog item called The Yield Spread Premium: A Dirty Not-So-Secret in Real Estate. Now, presidential candidate Christopher Dodd is proposing legislation that would severely restrict...

Just Say No to Jumbo

Posted by: Maya Roney on August 30

Jumbo mortgages are facing higher rates and getting harder to obtain. What’s a luxury-home buyer to do? Timothy Speiss, a partner at wealth management firm Eisner LLP, has been advising...

Good read on changes in lending standards

Posted by: Dean Foust on August 20

If you're one of the few who are actually looking to buy a house, and are wondering how amid all the turmoil credit standards are changing, real-estate columnist Kenneth Harney...

That Won't Play In Motown

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on August 10

Cerberus Capital Management, the big hedge fund named after the mythical three-headed beast that guards the gates of Hell, generated a lot of headlines earlier this week when it picked...

Mortgages for illegal immigrants

Posted by: Dean Foust on July 30

Bank of America kicked up a stink when it came to light several months ago that it had been quietly testing a credit card in California that didn't require an...

Applying for Mortgages Is Like Applying to Colleges

Posted by: Peter Coy on July 26

Ambitious high school students routinely apply to 10 or more colleges these days, in part because applications are standardized so it's not so much work to fire off lots of...

Did the Media Get the Story Wrong?

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on July 25

Some more nuggets from Countrywide Financial’s three hour long conference call with investors yesterday. The company says the recent spike in loan losses is not--as widely expected--due to adjustable rate...

The Blame Game at Countrywide

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on July 24

Angelo Mozilo usually doesn’t mince words. But the billionaire founder of Countrywide Financial certainly is trying to deflect criticism as his company reported its worst earnings results in years. Countrywide...

A multi-vitamin where a flu shot is needed

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on July 06

The nation’s leading financial regulators, including the Federal Reserve and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp, released their long-debated guidance on sub-prime mortgage lending on June 28. You can read the...

These Fed hearings should be interesting...

Posted by: Dean Foust on May 30

In response to the firestorm of controversy over subprime loans – namely, that millions of financially unsophisticated borrowers were put into mortgages they didn’t understand and couldn’t afford – the...

Jimmy Stewart? Or used car salesmen?

Posted by: Dean Foust on May 25

Don’t know if you caught this, but the heads of two of the largest real-estate interest groups traded barbs this week – over the question of “Who’s to Blame?” For...

The mortgage mess of ... 2012

Posted by: Dean Foust on May 25

I've got a prediction of what will be the mortgage disaster five years out: Reverse mortgages. Why would I say that? Because of these comments from top mortgage industry officials,...

A New Way to Tap Your Home's Equity

Posted by: Peter Coy on May 17

A San Francisco-based company called REX & Co. Inc. is offering a new way to tap your home's equity that doesn't involve a loan. REX gives you money now in...

Where Angels Fear to Tread?

Posted by: Peter Coy on May 16

As dozens of mortgage lenders close or shed jobs, Countrywide Financial Corp. CEO Angelo Mozilo is staffing up to seize market share. The chief of the biggest home lender announced...

The Yield Spread Premium: A Dirty Not-So-Secret In Real Estate

Posted by: Peter Coy on May 10

Today we received the kind of reader comment that I love to see: A smart and fearlessly stated position on an industry issue that really matters. It was written by...

WaMu's New Loan: A Home Equity Line Is Built In

Posted by: Peter Coy on April 28

Overall, I have to say I like Washington Mutual's WaMu Mortgage Plus, a loan that was introduced nationwide yesterday. It has a home equity line of credit wrapped in, so...

Guest Blog: Banks Thrive While Borrowers Dive

Posted by: Peter Coy on April 24

Here's a guest blog from Mara Der Hovanesian, BW's banking and finance editor, who has written frequently about the housing mess. She wrote last year's cover story, "How Toxic Is...

Help for Subprime Borrowers?

Posted by: Peter Coy on March 22

At first glance, helping out subprime borrowers who are in a pinch seems like a no-brainer. How can the government stand by while people get thrown out on the street...

Guess Which Stock Is Soaring? Subprime Biggie New Century

Posted by: Peter Coy on March 16

The stock market is a strange jungle. Proof: One of the best-performing stocks of the past two days has been New Century Financial Corp., which until very recently was the...

Mortgage Bankers' Economist: 'The Market Is Working'

Posted by: Peter Coy on March 14

I wasn't too surprised yesterday to hear the chief economist of the Mortgage Bankers Association say--in reference to the subprime meltdown--that "the market is working." There is a school of...

Is Your Mortgage Choking You?

Posted by: Peter Coy on February 23

For an article in BW, I'm looking to interview people who have subprime ARM mortgages and are feeling squeezed by resets. Please write to me ASAP at peter_coy@businessweek.com. Thanks....

Should you pay points? The CV is wrong...

Posted by: Dean Foust on February 05

The conventional wisdom in recent years is that borrowers shouldn't pay points to buy down an interest rate when they take out a mortgage. That was the conclusion of an...

The Mighty Mortgage Machine

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on January 25

A recent report from Standard & Poors, the debt rating agency owned by BusinessWeek's parent company McGraw-Hill, shows the shifting nature of the mortgage market. Higher interest rates and...

Lenders scrambling from subprime

Posted by: Dean Foust on January 03

Who thinks that the subprime market is a tinder box ready to blow? Apparently, some of the Wall Street lenders are starting to worry that that's the case. This article...

In Mortgage Lending, Big Is Better

Posted by: Peter Coy on December 20

J.D. Power and Associates, a sister unit of BusinessWeek in The McGraw-Hill Companies, came out last week with a report on overall customer satisfaction with primary mortgage lenders. Here are...

Foreclosure: How Big a Risk?

Posted by: Peter Coy on December 19

A study out today from the Center for Responsible Lending predicts that subprime borrowers are going to lose their homes to foreclosure on a massive scale. Looking at more than...

Reports of Mortgage Fraud Are Way Up

Posted by: Peter Coy on November 07

The Treasury Dept.'s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network recently announced that "suspected mortgage loan fraud in the United States continues to rise, and has risen 35 percent in the past year."...

Credit Where Credit Is Due

Posted by: Peter Coy on October 30

The banking system is stacked against mortgage applicants who have scanty formal credit history--”thin files,” in banker lingo. They might have done fine if they got a normal loan. But...

Be Nice to Your Friendly Neighborhood Mortgage Banker ...

Posted by: Peter Coy on October 10

... because your friendly neighborhood mortgage banker is making a lot less money these days. That's according to a recently released study by the Mortgage Bankers Association. High points: --In...

How Toxic Is Your Mortgage?

Posted by: Peter Coy on September 06

Banking Editor Mara Der Hovanesian wrote the powerful cover story in the current (Sept. 11) issue of BusinessWeek, "How Toxic Is Your Mortgage? Deceptive loans. Phantom profits. And coming soon:...

50-year mortgages?

Posted by: Dean Foust on August 25

There's an intriguing item that I found on the web site of a Florida newspaper that talks about efforts within the real estate industry to develop a 50-year mortgage (don't...

The FHA Wants to Make Zero-Down Loans. Is This a Good Idea?

Posted by: Peter Coy on August 03

When the FHA was started in the Depression to insure mortgage loans and thus help people of modest means buy homes, it required a minimum downpayment of 20%. That hefty...

Struggling to keep up with your mortgage?

Posted by: Peter Coy on July 31

My BusinessWeek colleague Mara Der Hovanesian would like to speak with people who are struggling to keep up with their mortgage payments now that teaser rates are expiring and ARMs...

Are 'Liars' Loans' Bad for America?

Posted by: Peter Coy on July 07

Comptroller of the Currency Barbara Grunkemeyer (pictured) has been in the forefront of the fight against so-called "liars' loans"--that is, loans that don't require documentation of income. The biggest victims...

Only One Household In Seventeen (??) Will See Their Mortgage Rates Reset In 2006

Posted by: Peter Coy on June 13

Let me preface this blog item by saying it has gone through several permutations. First the headline said one in 20. Then it said one in 24. Now it says...

Exotic or Toxic? New Mortgage Report

Posted by: Peter Coy on May 24

Check out a just-released report by the Consumer Federation of America that says low-income people are signing up for risky mortgages that could land them in big trouble....

Beware of Mortgage Rescue Firms

Posted by: Peter Coy on May 18

People who fall behind on their mortgages can fall prey to "rescue" firms that take over their houses and then eventually evict them. Here's a heartbreaking story on the topic...

How to Opt Out from Credit Offers

Posted by: Peter Coy on April 12

Thanks to David Porter at Pacesetter Mortgage in Michigan for explaining how you can get your name taken off the list for getting unsolicited loan offers. Here's a link to...

Is Your Privacy Being Invaded By Lenders?

Posted by: Peter Coy on April 11

When you apply for a mortgage, or even quietly ask for a rate quote, don't be surprised if that sensitive information almost immediately gets into the hands of other lenders,...

Farewell to ARMs

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on March 28

Two news releases popped up in my email recently that suggest lenders are tightening credit standards and avoiding riskier loans, moves that will likely impact housing prices. DataQuick Information Systems,...

Mortgage Delinquencies Up

Posted by: Peter Coy on March 17

Not sky-high yet, but mortgage delinquencies are edging upward and for all the reasons you'd expect: high energy prices, rising interest rates, lots of subprime and ARM loans, and the...

Kind-Hearted Mortgage Bankers? Looks That Way

Posted by: Peter Coy on March 15

Right about now you'd be expecting a tidal wave of foreclosures in New Orleans, but it hasn't happened. The simple reason is that mortgage bankers are giving people a break,...

Hunting Down The Predators

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on February 23

The non-profit Center for Responsible Lending http://www.responsiblelending.org has been an aggressive crusader to stop predatory mortage brokers who prey upon poor, unsophisticated borrowers. The Durham, North Carolina-based group has successfully...

Un-Armed

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on February 09

It had been one of the biggest drivers of housing prices, the unbelievable attractiveness of adjustable rate loans. But all those Fed rate increases have really taken the muscle out...

Help for Cash-Poor, House-Rich Senior Citizens

Posted by: Peter Coy on February 03

It didn't get a lot of attention, but last December the House of Representatives passed a bill that should enable more senior citizens to get reverse mortgages. A reverse mortgage...

The Mortgage-backed Bond Bonanza

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on January 24

Standard & Poors, which like BusinessWeek shares the same corporate parent, The McGraw-Hill Cos., just reported its 2005 stats on the mortgage-backed securities market. These are the pools of home...

Are Mortgage Lenders on Thin Ice?

Posted by: Peter Coy on December 13

You know what gets me nervous? When people who usually say calming things seem to be getting a little nervous. Standard & Poor's, which like BusinessWeek is owned by the...

A conservative banker

Posted by: Chris Palmeri on November 08

Doreen Woo Ho, chief of Wells Fargo's home equity loan business, stopped by the office yesterday. Wells is the largest home equity lender in the nation with some $71 billion...

More Option ARMs and Alt-A Loans

Posted by: Peter Coy on October 25

Yo, yo, yo. Americans' mortgage choices are getting riskier and riskier. A few minutes ago the Mortgage Bankers Association announced the results of a survey of borrowers from the first...

"The Home Equity Trap"

Posted by: Peter Coy on October 18

How's this for a scary scenario? On paper, you're reasonably well off. You don't own many stocks or bonds, but your house is worth a lot more than you paid...

About

BusinessWeek editors Chris Palmeri, Prashant Gopal and Peter Coy chronicle the highs and lows of the housing and mortgage markets on their Hot Property blog. In print and online, the Hot Property team first wrote about the potential downside of lenders pushing riskier, "option ARM" mortgages and the rise in mortgage fraud back in 2005—well ahead of many other media outlets. In 2008, Hot Property bloggers finished #1 in a ranking of the world's top 100 "most powerful property people" by the British real estate website Global edge. Hot Property was named among the 25 most influential real estate blogs of 2007 by Inman News.

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