But you can legislate transparency, uniformity and integrity for consumers
Washington, DC (PRWEB) September 13, 2007
In 2005 Americas Watchdog called the real estate market "a train wreck waiting to happen". Since the beginning of 2007, thousands of mortgage bankers or brokers have shut their doors or are now unemployed. According to Americas Watchdog, " the 2008 national real estate market will make 2007 look like a walk in the park". Specifically, more mortgage lenders will go out of business, some national homebuilders along with scores of regional homebuilders will go bankrupt, commercial real estate investment trusts will get crushed and millions of US consumers will lose their homes to foreclosures.
So What Can Consumers Do To Protect Themselves? According to Americas Watchdog & its Homeowners Consumer Center, ( http://HomeownersConsumerCenter.Com ) "the average US homeowner/consumer should do the following:
1. If you currently have a "Pay Option Adjustable Rate Mortgage", get out of it if you can afford to. If you can't afford to get out, Americas Watchdog highly recommends that you contact your lender & demand a fixed rate product. If this does not work, the homeowner might want to consult with a bankruptcy attorney.
Contrary to the mortgage industry spin on "1% start rate mortgages; it was a lie". These were always suicidal mortgage products. The consumer was not really paying 1%. These mortgage products were a foreclosure waiting to happen. The same was true of "The 100% Financing Mortgage Binge" from 2002-2006. What does a homeowner with 100% financing do now, if their house has gone down in value 10% or more? Americas Watchdog is concerned that hundreds of thousands of US homeowners will simply walk away. The same thing happened in the S & L crisis in the 1980's.
2. If a homeowner is attempting to sell a home in many major US markets they will either have to lower their asking price, or they might be better off renting the home for at least three years.
3. If you are a buyer, wait if you can.
In the opinion of Americas Watchdog, 2008 will bring more real estate price reductions in the southwest, southeast and northeast. In some markets like California, reductions could be 15% or more.
4. If you are an existing homeowner with adjustable rate mortgage, refinance your mortgage into either a 30 year fixed rate mortgage, or get a five or seven year adjustable rate mortgage and stay put. If an existing homeowner has a good mortgage product---say put.
5. Individuals who are Veterans, homeowners/consumers who have average to even poor credit or first time homeowners, should strongly consider getting a FHA or VA Mortgage. FHA & VA mortgage products might be the absolute best mortgage products available in today's mortgage arena. Americas Watchdog encourages all homeowners or Veterans to learn about these mortgage products from the James B Nutter Company.Their web site is at http://www.jamesbnutter.com/. Homeowners or Consumers nationwide can call the James B Nutter Company at 1-800-798-3946. Americas Watchdog has endorsed the James B Nutter Company as the best company in the US to get a FHA, VA or Reverse Mortgage.
6. If a homeowner or consumer is looking for a A+ honest mortgage lender, Americas Watchdog has endorsed American Interbanc as the best priced conventional mortgage lender doing business in the US for individuals with good to excellent credit ("the mortgage lender bankers go to"). American Interbanc's web site is at Http://americaninterbanc.com and their toll free number is 1-800-724-0004.
7. Do not finance or refinance your home without the National Mortgage Complaint Center doing a thorough examination of your mortgage documents. On average the National Mortgage Complaint Center saves consumers $500 to $1000 on their mortgage fees. The cost of this inspection service is $65, or for a full mortgage review to see if a consumer was cheated the cost is $150. The National Mortgage Complaint Centers Web Site is located at Http://NationalMortgageComplaintCenter.Com. & their phone number is 1-866-714-6466.
8. Consumers should not fall for too good to be true "no cost" mortgages or Internet solicitations.
9. Consumers & homeowners should demand honest answers from elected officials. Americas Watchdog for years has been advocating that banks and mortgage bankers disclose the same fees that mortgage brokers must disclose. Specifically "yield spread premiums". A "yield spread premium" is a kick back mortgage lenders get for increasing a consumers interest rate/monthly mortgage payment. Mortgage Brokers have to disclose these fees, banks or mortgage bankers do not. Presidential hopeful & Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd should explain how this double standard works. Millions of Americans are going to lose their homes or have already lost their homes. US homeowners would never agree to a kick back that actually increases their monthly mortgage payment if they understood what it was. Again Banks or Mortgage Bankers have no disclosure requirement on the yield spread premium kick back even though they get them too.
Double standards on the part of banks or mortgage bankers, homebuilders inflating the value of their homes over the market & then selling the over priced loan to a pension fund or mutual fund combined with consumers who never should have purchased a home, or never should have used their home as an ATM have all played significant roles in this real estate disaster. Federal bail outs may not be possible because where do the bail outs start? With the consumer, the pension funds, the mutual funds? The price tag could be a trillion dollars or more. While a federal reserve rate cut may help, it will not reverse reality, or the decline of home valuations in many regions of the country. According to Americas Watchdog; "you cannot stop a train wreck once its started". "But you can legislate transparency, uniformity and integrity for consumers".
Americas Watchdog is all about consumer protection and corporate fair play.