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The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit ruled July 16 that the Federal Housing Finance Agency's leadership structure is unconstitutional, HousingWire reported. The court found that the FHFA is too "isolated," and ruled that its director's possible removal only for cause violates the U.S. Constitution's separation of powers.
The Trump administration on July 10 said the Federal Housing Administration will scale back its use of the False Claims Act so that banks that previously shied away from offering FHA loans due to concerns about violations and settlements are more certain about offering those types of loans, HousingWire reported.
Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner on July 13 signed Public Act 100-0604 (enacted as SB 2617), legislation that amends Appraisal Management Company Registration Act requirements for AMC registration and oversight. It also authorizes the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation to participate in a multistate appraiser licensing and renewal system.
Freddie Mac announced June 28 that consumers who purchase a condo or refinance an existing condo mortgage might be eligible for its automated collateral evaluation appraisal waiver. The ACE program, which launched in 2017 for single-family homes, gives eligible borrowers the opportunity to forgo a traditional appraisal.
Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf on June 29 signed HB 863, legislation that allows the state’s real estate brokers, associate brokers and salespeople to provide broker price opinions. The law takes effect Aug. 28 and places significant restrictions on those allowed to perform BPOs and limits the situations under which they may be performed.
Fraud and misrepresentation in mortgage loan applications dropped 2.4 percent between April and May, and was down 3.6 percent from the same point last year, according to the Loan Application Defect Index released July 2 by settlement services firm First American Financial Corp., MBA NewsLink reported.
The Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois (Chancery Division) on June 20 ruled that attorneys who referenced comparable property valuations and market values based on an income approach as part of tax appeal proceedings were simply engaged in the traditional practice of law and not in appraisal practice.
It's getting easier to secure construction loans for commercial real estate as banks are starting to compete for new customers, according to commercial real estate firm CBRE, National Real Estate Investor reported June 19. However, loan amounts are relatively small compared to total development project costs.
Seattle is the top metro for commercial real estate investment while New York is the worst, according to the Metro Investment Rankings Index from real estate advisory firm Situs, MBA NewsLink reported June 21. The index surveyed investors about the price/value of CRE assets for different markets and property types.
The Federal Reserve on June 13 increased interest rates a quarter of a percentage point, indicating it would tolerate inflation above 2 percent and was dropping crisis-era guidance, Reuters reported. Low unemployment and inflation were key factors in the decision.
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