News 

US 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage rate slips to 3.93 percent

“To calculate average mortgage rates, Freddie Mac surveys lenders across the country between Monday and Wednesday each week” reports foxbusiness.com. “The market had already priced in the rate hike, so long-term interest rates, including mortgage rates, hardly moved,” said Len Kiefer, a Freddie Mac economist.The rate on 30-year fixed-rate U.S. mortgages slipped to 3.93 percent this week.The average fee for a 30-year mortgage was unchanged at 0.5 point. Source: foxbusiness.com Share This:

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News Regulators 

How the Fed Rate Increase Affects Your Mortgage, Car Loan and Credit Card Bill

“Homeowners are not entirely shielded from the impact of a Fed rate increase” writes Tiffany Hsu for nytimes.com. Similar forces are at work for car owners, although the impact is far more muted than it is for credit card and student loan holders.The average American household that carries credit card debt has a balance of about $15,650, according to a recent analysis by the personal finance website Nerdwallet.The latest rate increase could make using plastic slightly pricier.If mortgage rates increase, Americans may be less inclined to buy homes. Source: nytimes.com Share…

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News 

Last time the GOP pulled this kind of trick with tax cuts it triggered a financial disaster

“And with the rise in real estate volumes and values came an enormous bubble in real estate backed debt, growing by 125% during the decade” writes Daniel Alpert for businessinsider.com. Many are also up there in terms of property tax levels, averaging 1.2% of assessed value per year on a similarly weighted basis.The U.S. economy ultimately fell into recession by 1990 and the real estate industry fell into depression-like conditions throughout the country by 1991.It was clear to most policymakers that the huge tax advantages enjoyed by the real estate…

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News 

Trump: Wells Fargo fines in mortgage cases ‘will not be dropped’ and could be hiked

“President Donald Trump rejected the notion Friday that Wells Fargo would skate on penalties associated with claims of mortgage lending abuse” writes Jeff Cox for cnbc.com. For its part, Wells Fargo has pledge to reimburse customers for any wrongful charges.But Trump asserted in a tweet that the CFPB will not be letting Wells Fargo off the hook and said the penalties actually could increase.Among them was a payout in the tens of millions of dollars regarding a practice in which Wells Fargo was charging borrowers fees to secure low mortgage…

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GBP News 

London housing transactions plummet 18% as Brexit, stamp duty, and mortgage rules bite

“Brexit uncertainty and concerns over growth and inflation, coupled with the changes to SDLT (stamp duty land tax) and mortgage interest deductibility, continue to impact the market.”” writes Finanzen Net Gmbh for businessinsider.com. Berkeley’s caution reflects wider concerns about the capital’s housing market, where decades of runaway price growth is seeing affordability stretched to breaking point.READ MORE: London house prices forecast to drop 2% next year despite rising nationally The firm said factors driving the slowdown in transactions included stamp duty hikes, uncertainty surrounding Brexit, and a tax change which…

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News 

Mortgage rates spike in the wake of bond sell-off

“The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.94% in the Dec. 7 week, up from 3.90% in the prior week” writes Andrea Riquier for marketwatch.com. Mortgage rates track the benchmark U.S. 10-year Treasury note TMUBMUSD10Y, +0.30%  , but lag behind by a few days.The 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage averaged 3.35%, up from 3.32%.The 15-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.36%, up six basis points during the week.With short-term rates seeing the biggest jump, the spread between the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage and the 5/1 hybrid adjustable-rate tightened sharply. “With a narrower spread between fixed…

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Markets News 

Rich homeowners in blue states are among the biggest losers in the GOP tax plan

“The House’s mortgage interest deduction cap applies only to new purchases, so existing homeowners may become reluctant to move” writes Akin Oyedele for businessinsider.com. It halves the mortgage interest deduction to the first $500,000 of a loan.First is the mortgage interest deduction, which helps homeowners lower their taxable income.Housing interest groups fear that scaling back tax incentives would slump home prices in the most expensive markets and discourage existing homeowners from moving.State income, local income, and real-estate taxes make up the bulk of the SALT deduction, according to the Tax…

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News 

While housing prices may be high in your area, they’re actually becoming more affordable overall

“Home price increases vary from one location to another, with only a handful of states seeing dramatic price increases” reports washingtonpost.com. If prices continue to rise and mortgage rates rise in 2018 as anticipated, affordability could be reduced further.But if mortgage rates rise higher or home prices rise more, more states will see their affordability rate decline by the end of 2018.Home price increases, estimated at 6.07 percent by the most recent S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price Index, are anticipated to continue in 2018.Yet a recent report from…

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