Mortgage Applications Continue to Slide

By Luciana Lopez – Applications for U.S. home mortgages fell in the latest week as both purchase and refinancing applications slipped, an industry group said on Wednesday. The Mortgage Bankers Association said its seasonally adjusted index of mortgage application activity, which includes both refinancing and home purchase demand, fell 2 percent to 397.2 in the week…

Wintry Blast Crimps December Pending Homes Sales

  By Margaret Chadbourn –  Contracts to buy previously owned U.S. homes fell sharply in December to a more than two-year low due in part to unusually cold weather across the country, pointing to signs of a slowdown in the housing market. The National Association of Realtors said Thursday its Pending Home Sales Index, based…

New Home Sales Not So Merry in December

  By Lucia Mutikani – WASHINGTON — Sales of new U.S. single-family homes fell more than expected in December, but lean inventories and steady price gains suggested sufficient strength in the housing market to support the economy. Other data released Monday showed that the private sector maintained its growth pace in January. The Commerce Department said…

Mortgages: New Snags for the Self-Employed

  By LISA PREVOST – Borrowers who are self-employed may have a tougher time obtaining a mortgage under new federal regulations requiring lenders to verify applicants’€™ ability to repay. Effective this month, the rules, created by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau as part of the Dodd-Frank lending reforms, set up standards for “€œqualified mortgages,”€ or mortgages…

HUD Releases New Rules on Mortgages

  By Sarah N. Lynch –  New mortgage rules designed to prevent a repeat of the 2007-2009 financial crisis, when foreclosures spiked because of risky bank practices, were finalized by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development on Wednesday. The agency said the changes are based on work by the U.S. Consumer Financial Protection…