Wednesday, February 22, 2012

How the Mortgage Settlement Affects Housing

In a previous post we addressed the National Mortgage Settlement that involves 5 banks (Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Ally, Wells Fargo, and Citigroup) and gave a summary of where the money was going to be allocated to. In this post, we will take a look at how the settlement will affect the current housing market.

There are many different thoughts on how this settlement will actually impact the market. Some think that this may be a little too late. IHS Global Insights states, “Like many previous plans to stem foreclosures, this agreement will help at the edges. The problem is too big for it to have a large impact, however…This agreement will help the housing market move ahead in 2012 in a small way. But it is hardly a game changer.” But how does this impact houses currently in the midst of the foreclosure processs? "The settlement helps the housing market in the long run because it allows banks to proceed with millions of foreclosures that have been stalled. Many lenders have refrained from foreclosing on homes as they awaited the settlement.” says Mark Vitner, a senior economist at Wells Fargo.

Oh course both IHS Global Insights and Mark Vitner are looking at this from a National standpoint where some states are seeing drops in housing prices as much as 11.3% (Illinois) over the past 12 months whereas New York state is seeing an increase of 1.7%. What are your thoughts on how this will affect Western New York or even the state as a whole?

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