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Mayfield Heights morning links: Trick-or-treating; a workshop to avoid …

MAYFIELD HEIGHTS, Ohio — Here’s what’s happening today, and in days to come in Mayfield Heights.

ITEMS FOR AUCTION: If one takes a look at the city’s website, under the heading “News,” that person will see that there are some things for up for internet auction. They include a Nautilus abdominal machine and some file cabinets.
If you’re in the market, it might be worth it to check out this city property for sale.

To see it, click here.

TRICK-OR-TREAT:
It’s one of the great days of the year for kids and it’s here Thursday.

Halloween trick-or-treating will take place between 6-8 p.m. Thursday, so get the costumes ready and, mom and dad, get ready for a delightful walk with your chlldren.

AVOIDING FORECLOSURE: The Community Partnership on Aging is hosting at 12:30 p.m. today a foreclosure mediation workshop together with the Cuyhoga Court of Common Pleas.

Even though September was actually ‘Save Our Homes Month,’ it’s never too late to try and save a home. Well, maybe sometimes it is too late, but you know what we mean.

The workshop takes place at the Ross C. DeJohn Community Center, 6306 Marsol Road. Several mediators and housing counselors will be present.

To RSVP, contact Kameelah Muhammad at 216-291-3902, ext. 216, or at muhammadk@communitypartnershiponaging.org.

Article source: http://www.cleveland.com/hillcrest/index.ssf/2013/10/mayfield_heights_morning_links_5.html

$20M to NY homeowners to avoid foreclosure

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Article source: http://www.democratandchronicle.com/story/VoteUp/2013/10/23/20m-to-ny-homeowners-to-avoid-foreclosure/3172029/

Expanded state foreclosure mediation program ramping up

SALEM — Oregon’s newly expanded foreclosure mediation program is still ramping up, but the first 100 meetings between lenders and borrowers are booked.

The mediation program — created by the legislature in 2012 but largely ineffective until lawmakers revamped it this year — requires the state’s large lenders to offer a meeting with homeowners before they can foreclose. Lenders are scheduled to meet face-to-face with 76 homeowners in November, and 34 more so far in December, the program’s administrator told an advisory committee Tuesday.

Chase Bank is the largest mortgage servicer participating so far. It submitted more than 600 pending foreclosures in a single week to Mediation Case Manager, the contractor running the program for the state. Nationstar Mortgage has submitted more than 500 cases, and Mediation Case Manager officials said Wells Fargo, the state’s largest mortgage lender, is expected to submit a large batch of cases soon.

“We feel really good about working with the servicers,” said Jay Foster, president of Mediation Case Manager. “And they seem to be embracing the program, which is good.”

In all, lenders have referred more than 1,700 pending foreclosures to the program. The majority — more than 1,300 — were either just received by the program administrator or are in the 25-day period the homeowner has to respond.

Now Mediation Case Manager and the state turn to reaching homeowners who want to participate.

The program has struggled to reach some borrowers who left their homes and disconnected their phones. Others have simply declined to take part.

Of those reached by program administrators in August and September, 25-30 percent agreed to participate and submitted their part of a fee — $175, or $50 with an income-based waiver — to cover the program’s cost. They’re awaiting their meetings.

It’s too early to see whether the program has been successful in avoiding foreclosures or otherwise helping homeowners. Only four meetings had been held as of Oct. 23, and in each case the parties agreed to meet a second time.

“We’re just starting to see the volume of cases that we’re seeing the patterns and learning the lessons,” said Emily Reiman, who runs housing counseling programs for the Springfield-based Neighborhood Economic Development Corp. “It’s hard to draw a whole lot of conclusions right now.”

The program, meanwhile, has created a temporary bottleneck in the foreclosure process, leading to a steep decline in filings while lenders work through the first batch of cases under the new laws.

Under the program, large banks are required to offer homeowners the chance to meet before starting the foreclosure process. If the homeowner chooses to participate, they need to first meet with a housing counselor. Both the bank and the homeowner pay a fee to cover the cost of the session. The goal is avoid foreclosures where an alternative — like a mortgage modification, a sale, or handing over the keys without the credit hit of a foreclosure — is possible.

A year ago, the program only covered foreclosures initiated outside the courts under an administrative system created in the 1950s. But when it took effect, other legal changes at the same time sent most foreclosures to the courts, rendering the program moot.

The Legislature tweaked the program to include in-court foreclosures under an expansion that took effect in August. 

– Elliot Njus

Article source: http://www.oregonlive.com/front-porch/index.ssf/2013/10/expanded_state_foreclosure_med.html

Even with surge in foreclosures post-Sandy, real estate prices in Queens …

One year after Hurricane Sandy, New York area homeowners are drowning under a wave of foreclosure notices.

In a sign that Sandy victims can’t keep up with their mortgage payments or are choosing to abandon their battered homes, foreclosure activity in New York City and Long Island surged 33% in the first nine months of the year, compared with the same period last year, according to a special report from RealtyTrac.

“People whose homes were damaged are making the decision to walk away because it doesn’t make financial sense to keep making those mortgage payments,” RealtyTrac vice president Daren Blomquist told the Daily News.

The survey counted all types of foreclosure notices: default notices – which come early on when homeowners skip payments – scheduled auctions, and bank repossessions.

RELATED: LEADERS ISSUE WARNING ON SANDY ANNIVERSARY

Not surprisingly, the two boroughs that got hit the worst, Queens and Staten Island, saw the biggest foreclosure notice surge. Activity was up 61% in Queens and 40% in Staten Island.

The number of homes hit with foreclosure papers in the Bronx rose 39%. The increase in Brooklyn was 28%.

“When there is a financial crisis, one of the first bills that doesn’t get paid is the mortgage,” Emmett Laffey, CEO of Laffey Fine Homes International, a real estate brokerage in Greenvale, L.I., told The News.

Manhattan was the only borough surveyed by RealtyTrac where foreclosure activity was down post-Sandy. Foreclosure notices fell by 21%, even though lower Manhattan saw significant flooding.

RELATED: SCAMMERS BUSTED FOR STEALING SANDY AID: AUTHORITIES

A mailbox with a lighthouse design sits on the porch of a burned out home in Breezy Point.

Mark Lennihan/AP

A mailbox with a lighthouse design sits on the porch of a burned out home in Breezy Point.

That implies that Sandy victims in Manhattan were more financially stable and those who couldn’t make their payments were able to find buyers for their homes.

“Manhattan has the best buyer pool in the U.S.,” Laffey said.

But even though Sandy has put more people at risk of losing their homes, the rise in foreclosures hasn’t been enough to put a dent in an overall strong local real estate market.

In fact, the median price of a home in September was up 16% in Queens and up 12% in Brooklyn compared with September 2012.

RELATED: BUYER BEWARE: SUPERSTORM SANDY STILL POSES A THREAT TO USED CAR BUYERS

The increases were smaller in Staten Island, where property values rose by 3% and in Nassau County, where they were up 1%.

Foreclosed homes sold by banks are going fast.

“There is a line of buyers to buy those homes because they are priced under the market,” Laffey said. “They are selling within a matter of days.”

A separate StreetEasy report showed that Manhattan neighborhoods hit by Sandy bounced back far more quickly than other parts of the city slapped by the storm.

The volume of closings in two Manhattan flood zones jumped 64% in the quarter immediately following the storm, compared with the year-ago period.

In contrast, closings in Brooklyn were down 22% during that period. They dropped 30% in Queens.

pfurman@nydailynews.com

Article source: http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/hurricane-sandy/foreclosures-surge-post-sandy-rises-rise-article-1.1500990

Mayoral challenger Hughes loses house to foreclosure; sheriff’s sale in December

Lone mayoral challenger Greg Hughes — whose campaign message has focused on what he says are the big spenders and heavy taxers at City Hall — is losing his house to foreclosure and a sheriff’s sale.

The home of Cedar Rapids Mayoral candidate Greg Hughes at 1202 36th St. SE, on Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2013, in southeast Cedar Rapids, Iowa. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)

The light blue-colored, two-story at 1202 36th St. SE, where Hughes has lived since boyhood, will be sold to satisfy debts at a Linn County Sheriff’s sale on Dec. 10. The foreclosure was finalized in Linn County District Court in July.

Notice of the sale, which was published in Tuesday’s legal notices in The Gazette, lists a debt judgment against the 56-year-old Hughes of $114,135.

Hughes on Tuesday called the move to let his house go a “strategic” one designed, in part, so he does not have to pay two people back to whom he owes money, he said.

He said he also intends to sue two different judges whom he said inappropriately shackled him with debts based on two loans that someone else should have paid off.

As for the possibility of a bank losing money on his house or his debts, Hughes said, “We don’t feel sorry for the banks. Look at the bailouts they got. … They have insurance for this kind of stuff.”

Hughes, who is a 38-year employee at the Quaker Co. plant in Cedar Rapids, said two divorces, the most recent a decade ago, have contributed to his financial problems. There’s been child support and college costs, said Hughes, who has been an advocate for fathers’ rights.

“It’s meant to break you,” he said of divorce when, like his second divorce, it involves a contested court case.

Hughes was granted a personal bankruptcy in October 2012 in U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Iowa, he said and court records confirmed.

He said his own financial story is not an uncommon one, and he said it won’t hurt his effort to unseat incumbent Mayor Ron Corbett at the polls next Tuesday.

“They’re tired of spending money (at City Hall),” he said voters tell him as he campaigns. “I think too many people are just upset.”

Hughes said he’s “not ashamed” of the foreclosure of his house now and of his bankruptcy a year ago.

“I just did what I had to do,” he said. “… Just like anybody else.”

Mayor Corbett on Tuesday didn’t disagree.

“A lot of people find themselves in financial hard times,” Corbett said. “Oftentimes, it’s no fault of their own. I just wish him the best luck as he tries to get back on his feet.”

Hughes said he’s likely to rent an apartment after the December sheriff’s sale of his house, which he said he’s lived in for 47 of his 56 years. The City Assessor’s Office values the house at $132,082.

“There’s a lot of memories there,” he said.

He said his longer-range plans, after he serves as mayor, include a move to Costa Rica.

Hughes ran without major party affiliation in 2012 for Congress and in 2010 for governor. In both races he won only a tiny percentage of the vote.

Article source: http://thegazette.com/2013/10/29/mayoral-challenger-hughes-loses-house-to-foreclosure-sheriffs-sale-in-december/

Free counseling to avoid foreclosure

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Updated: Tuesday, October 29 2013, 11:11 AM CDT

Thousands of people in Florida are dealing with foreclosure–but there is help.

Community Enterprise Investments offers a free service. $10 million was allocated to Florida housing, to put this program together. They provide counseling to help you become financially stable.They will asses your personal situation and together you can create a plan of action.

“It’s not good for the people who are involved and it’s not good for neighborhoods. So the government is realizing this is a big problem that needs to be dealt with and so they’re putting some money out there to help people.”

For more information on foreclosure prevention counseling call 595-6234. Free counseling to avoid foreclosure


Article source: http://www.weartv.com/news/features/top-stories/stories/free-counseling-avoid-foreclosure-37614.shtml

14 American Housing Markets Drowning In Foreclosures

chicago skyline

REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

One in every 998 U.S. homes received a foreclosure filing in the third quarter, according to the latest foreclosure data from RealtyTrac.

Foreclosure filings were down 27% from a year ago, but up 2% from the second quarter.

National foreclosure activity fell to the lowest level since Q2 2007, but pockets of America continued to struggle with foreclosures.

We drew on RealtyTrac‘s report to highlight the 14 metros with the highest foreclosure rate.

Note: The metros are ranked by foreclosure rate i.e. 1 in every X homes received a foreclosure filing.

Article source: http://www.businessinsider.com/us-cities-with-most-foreclosures-in-q3-2013-10

foreclosure settlement rules tweaked

But homeowners, housing counselors and state attorneys general have complained that the banks are not complying with many of the 304 standards they agreed to as part of the pact with the Justice Department, state attorneys general and the five companies.

Those standards “were supposed to eliminate headaches for borrowers, but homeowners continue to report problems,” said Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan, whose office is a member of the settlement’s monitoring committee.

The changes announced Tuesday night by the committee, many of which were agreed to only by Bank of America and Wells Fargo, seek to correct those issues.

Under the new procedures announced Tuesday night, all five banks will give homeowners 60 days, instead of 30, to submit additional documents that might help them secure a loan modification before the home goes into foreclosure or moves toward a foreclosure-related sale. The banks also have promised to do a better job of overseeing employees who work with borrowers.

Two servicers, Bank of America and Wells Fargo, also agreed to adopt other policies, such as being more specific about what missing information they need from homeowners. Currently, if a borrower sends in a document but forgets to sign it, the servicer may send a letter saying the document is missing, rather than just telling the homeowner that they forgot to sign it.

Those two companies also agreed to escalate loan modification applications when a customer is being asked repeatedly for more documents. And they will use an online portal to submit documents and create a direct contact for the housing counseling agencies working with struggling homeowners.

The committee continues to discuss additional service improvements with the three other banks, according to Natalie Bauer, a Madigan spokeswoman.

In May, Madigan said she saw an “alarming” pattern of potential violations of loan modification servicing standards. Among them: In 60 percent of files reviewed by her office, servicers did not notify borrowers within the required five days that their applications for a loan modification were missing documents.  And in 45 percent of the files reviewed, servicers asked homeowners for documents multiple times.

In his June report on the settlement’s progress, independent monitor Joseph A. Smith Jr., said four of the five banks were failing to comply with the servicing aspects of the settlement. At the time, Shaun Donovan, secretary of the  Department of Housing and Urban Development said the “deep and pervasive problems” in mortgage servicing were unacceptable.

mepodmolik@tribune.com |  Twitter@mepodmolik

Article source: http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2013-10-01/business/chi-national-foreclosure-settlement-20131001_1_servicers-loan-modification-ally-gmac

Fewer US Homes Entered Foreclosure Track in 3Q

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Article source: http://abcnews.go.com/Business/wireStory/fewer-us-homes-entered-foreclosure-track-3q-20525931

OJ Simpson’s Kendall Home to be Auctioned After Foreclosure


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The South Florida home of imprisoned former NFL star O.J. Simpson will be auctioned Tuesday, a Miami-Dade Clerk of Courts official said.

The sale is part of a bank foreclosure proceeding issued by a judge in August for JPMorgan Chase Bank.

The 4,233-square-foot home near Miami has been in foreclosure proceedings for about two years. The home is expected to appear in the online auction Tuesday.

Simpson was convicted in 2008 in Nevada of the kidnapping and armed robbery of two sports memorabilia dealers in Las Vegas. Simpson was acquitted in 1995 of killing his ex-wife and her friend.

Court documents show Simpson owes more than $796,000 in principal and interest on the Florida property. There’s also nearly $42,000 in unpaid property taxes and insurance premiums of about $43,000.

The property is located on 9450 Southwest 112 Street in Kendall.
 

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Article source: http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/OJ-Simpsons-Kendall-Home-to-be-Auctioned-After-Foreclosure--229579691.html