April 25th, 2011
Will April flowers bring May showers for Florida real estate sales? While some U.S. economists are still singing doom and gloom when it comes to the real estate market, TODAY show contributor and real estate mogul Barbara Corcoran sees some positive signs for prospective buyers and sellers, South Florida Law Blog shares this optimistic outlook.
During a recent appearance on the Today Show, Corcoran talked about her optimism, and why she thinks the spring season could be a great time to buy that dream home.
She sternly disagrees with some economists opinions that real estate prices will fall another 15 to 20 percent. Well, the jury is still out on that one, but let’s look at her glass half full.
“I think they’re dead wrong,” she told host Matt Lauer, “If you actually look at all the major markets in the U.S., more than half have already come off the bottom and prices are rising.”
For buyers who are thinking of playing the waiting game hoping for lower home prices, Corcoran says don’t. While interest rates are below 5% now, she feels with the anticipated demise of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, they won’t stay that low for long.
The reality is, prices will likely not increase for years considering about nine months of shadow inventory that the banks must still unload! In fact, if the banks did not manage the inventory prices would indeed still be dropping.
Tips for buying and selling in today’s competitive spring market
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April 23rd, 2011
In a review of the largest mortgage servicers in the country, The Federal Reserve is finally getting a clue as to the shoddy lending practices that South Florida Law Blog has been discussing for years:
● Insufficient oversight,
● Poor corporate governance,
● Improper affidavit and notarization practices, and
● Poor quality control.
While The Fed concedes this might have resulted in wrongful Florida foreclosures, Oppenheim Law knows that countless foreclosures were filed when they should never have been.
The good news? The Fed is now pursuing formal enforcement actions against the 14 servicers they reviewed. The bad news: it will likely take years before these servicers have to pay for their fraud. Knowing the way the government usually operates, the servicers may never have to pay for their crimes. Perhaps this is the biggest outrage: the government has proven that these servicers perpetrated a massive fraud that has damaged the entire economy and kicked out homeowners who never should have been forced to leave their homes. Yet, the servicers are still operating and making billions!
While we’ve previously implored to Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke to “do your job!”, we don’t hold out much hope that all mortgage servicers will get the dressing-down they deserve. Nevertheless, we’ll continue to fight for the homeowner, from the trenches.
April 20th, 2011
South Florida voted, and Oppenheim Law’s South Florida Law Blog came out on top in the category of Best Business and Technology Blog in the 2nd Annual Sun-Sentinel Best of Blogs Awards.
Discussing topics like Florida foreclosure defense, homeowners’ rights, real estate tips and trends, and the economy, Oppenheim Law’s foreclosure defense attorneys interpret the latest news and translate what it all means to today’s homeowner.
Recent headlines include fresh topics like “Deficiency Judgments Haunting Return, Jason Lives Once Again,” “Budgetary Hardball Almost Forces Court Closures: Courts’ Reliance On Foreclosure Fees Exposed” and “Foreclosure Auctions are not eBay or Child’s Play. Novice Investors Beware!”
Over the past year, The South Florida Law Blog has broken down issues like South Florida home sales, national mortgage fraud, America’s job markets, and all the developments in foreclosure defense and short sales to help homeowners take advantage of these trends in areas the banks and the government clearly cannot.
“Homeowners need to be aware of how all of these trends can impact their greatest investment,” Oppenheim said. “We look forward to continuing to provide legal insight and practical analysis into these topics that greatly affect South Florida.”
Oppenheim Law is one of the leading Florida real estate and foreclosure defense law firms, founded in 1989. The firm has a 9.6 out of 10 rating from AVVO, the world’s largest legal directory, as well as the highest rating (A-V) conferred by Martindale Hubbell Law Directory, the most respected directory of lawyers and law firms in the U.S.
April 19th, 2011
Florida foreclosures and good news all in one story? Yes, it is true.
A new federally funded program is now accepting applications for mortgage assistance payments in Florida. The Florida Hardest-Hit program pays an applicant’s mortgage for up to six months to help them to focus on finding a job. There is a maximum, however, of $12,000. Also, the program will pay out up to $6,000 to bring loans current. If this seems meager, it is. Governor Scott gutted the program and stripped it of all effectiveness by changing the terms from 18 months of assistance to six. Ostensibly, this was done to open the program to more people. The problem with such a change is that the assistance provided will do little good to the people that need it most, those who bought houses during the height of the bubble and thus are extremely underwater. Additionally, loans that only need $6,000 to be current are hardly the loans that merit special federal assistance.
Oppenheim Law encourages homeowners to participate! The lack of effectiveness is not stopping homeowners from applying, nor should it. Any help is better than no help at all. Yesterday, the first day of the program, saw many more applications than were expected. However, an official tally for the state won’t be available until the end of the week.