foreclosure

Economy
1:01 am
Thu September 13, 2012

Foreclosure numbers tumble again in Michigan (but a September spike is possible)

file photo
Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio

Michigan’s home foreclosure rate continues to trend lower, but a spike in foreclosure filings may be coming this month.

August marked 22  straight months that Michigan’s year over year foreclosure numbers declined.

In fact, the number of foreclosure filings in Michigan in August fell 41 percent compared to August a year ago.   Also, none of the 20 U.S. cities with the highest home foreclosure rates are located in Michigan.

But Daren Bloomquist with Realty Trac says there are signs that the trend may soon end.

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Economy
4:07 pm
Thu August 2, 2012

Business is brisk at local tax foreclosure auction in Michigan

What's your bid? Hundreds of people turned out for the auction of hundreds of Jackson County properties. The county is selling the properties to recover unpaid taxes.
Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio

There may be some good economic news in a place that's usually just about bad news: county tax foreclosure auctions.

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Politics & Government
5:24 pm
Mon July 9, 2012

Anti-foreclosure activists target Fannie Mae, federal lawmakers

Jennifer Britt talks to supporters outside the McNamara Federal Building in Detroit.
Sarah Cwiek Michigan Radio

A Detroit-based group of activists is working through the summer to help people facing foreclosure stay in their homes.

The Detroit Eviction Defense Coalition is affiliated with the Occupy Detroit movement. They held a rally Monday at the McNamara federal building to support Detroit homeowner Jennifer Britt, who faces eviction after a lengthy legal battle.

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Economy
2:46 pm
Tue July 3, 2012

Feds to auction Lafayette Towers in Detroit

Mies van der Rohe Residential District. The foreclosed Lafayette Towers, seen on the right, will be auctioned off later this month.
user Mikerussell Wikimedia Commons

The Detroit landmark Lafayette Towers has fallen into foreclosure and is set to be auctioned by federal authorities in two weeks.

The Detroit News says financial details were not immediately available in the notice posted by the U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development.

Successful bidders on the luxury high-rise will need to post more than $2.5 million in escrow for an estimated $10 million in repairs required to be completed in 18 months.

The apartment towers were constructed in the 1960s. The two 22-story, river-view buildings contain 584 units located on nearly 10 acres in the Mies van der Rohe Residential District.

The auction is set for 10 a.m. July 18 in the first floor of the Coleman A. Young Municipal Center.

Economy
1:01 am
Thu June 14, 2012

Michigan's home foreclosure rate declines for 19th straight month

Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio

Michigan’s home foreclosure rate continues to fall dramatically.

Realty Trac reports today foreclosure filings in Michigan fell another 6% last month and are down more than 40% compared to a year ago.

“We’re getting close to now 2 years of a long-term downward trend in Michigan foreclosure activity,” says Daren Bloomquist, who is a Realty Trac vice president.

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Auto/Economy
1:01 am
Thu April 26, 2012

Most Michigan cities see declining home foreclosure filings

(file photo)
(photo by Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio)

Most Michigan cities saw their home foreclosure rates tumble during the first quarter of the year. One analyst says that might signal a trend for the rest of 2012. 

Home foreclosure filings dropped between 20% and 30% in Detroit, Kalamazoo, Ann Arbor and Grand Rapids during the first three months of the year. That's compared to the first quarter of 2011, according to Realty Trac. 

Lansing was the only Michigan city on Realty Trac’s list to see an increase in home foreclosure filings between January and March. Daren Bloomquist is with Realty Trac.

He says Lansing’s foreclosure rate increase was tied to a big increase in final bank repossessions. "It seems like it’s more of a clearing out of the foreclosure pipeline rather than a lot a new foreclosures coming online and starting the process," says Bloomquist. 

Bloomquist expects other Michigan housing markets will see spikes in foreclosure filings as the year goes on, but he predicts the general trend will be fewer foreclosures in Michigan.

Newsmaker Interviews
5:23 pm
Tue April 17, 2012

Congressman Clarke says suspend foreclosures, keep homes occupied

Congressman Hansen Clarke represents Michigan's 13th Congressional District.

Although Michigan’s foreclosure activity declined in the first quarter of 2012, Michigan still has the 7th highest foreclosure rate in the country.

Democratic Congressman Hansen Clarke represents Michigan’s 13th district. This week he's in Washington D. C. and hopes to introduce a bill that would suspend home foreclosures nationally for up to three years.

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Auto/Economy
4:17 pm
Fri April 6, 2012

Michigan homeowners will have to wait to get their share of a national foreclosure settlement

(file photo)
(photo by Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio)

Michiganders hard hit by the foreclosure crisis might get some help thanks to a national settlement approved this week by a federal judge.     But that help won’t be coming immediately.

The $26 billion settlement involves 49 states, the District of Columbia and five of the largest mortgage lenders in the United States:  Bank of America, Wells Fargo, J.P. Morgan Chase, Citibank and Ally Financial. 

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Economy
1:05 pm
Tue March 27, 2012

Fannie and Freddie might have to cough up millions to Michigan

Oakland County Treasurer Andrew Meisner says homes like this one, sold in foreclosure by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, are costing the state and county millions in lost tax revenues.
Sarah Hulett Michigan Radio

Oakland County Treasurer Andrew Meisner filed a lawsuit against federally backed mortgage companies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac last year.

He claimed they were dodging taxes.

And he won.

The result could mean millions of dollars in revenue - provided the case wins an expected appeal from the mortgage companies.

It's an appeal that's expected since other counties and states around the country are watching this case, and would love to line up and take their share of tax revenue from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

So what taxes are they dodging?

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Politics
11:51 pm
Thu March 8, 2012

"Occupy" group takes aim at Chase bank, foreclosures

A group of anti-foreclosure activists says Chase bank continues to wrongly foreclose on people’s homes.

And as part of the “Occupy our Homes” movement, they plan to fight for eight Metro Detroit homeowners they say are victims.

Chase bank and other mortgage lenders signed a consent agreement with the federal government in the wake of the national foreclosure crisis.

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Politics
7:01 pm
Mon February 20, 2012

Kalamazoo County Commission takes up 'homeless' tax

(GothamGazette)

The Kalamazoo County Commission Tuesday will discuss taxing home owners to help others avoid homelessness.

A coalition of groups wants the commission to agree to let voters decide later this year on a proposal to add a one-tenth mil increase on their property tax bills.    The  added property tax would raise about $800 thousand  over four years.

The money would fund programs to prevent evictions, as well as provide vouchers for short-term and long-term housing.

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Politics
6:37 pm
Tue February 14, 2012

"Occupy" group tries to prevent another eviction

Members of UAW Local 600 say they'll protect Fred Shrum's house from eviction.
Sarah Cwiek Michigan Radio

The “Occupy our Homes” movement has taken up the cause of Fred Shrum, another homeowner facing foreclosure in Metro Detroit.

The group is a coalition of anti-foreclosure groups, organized labor, and other activists with the Detroit “Occupy” movement.

So far, their protests on behalf of people facing foreclosure have helped keep four Metro Detroit families in their homes—including one case where protesters blocked a dumpster that came to clear out the house.

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Economy
5:43 pm
Tue February 7, 2012

Michigan to share in mortgage industry settlement of foreclosure complaints

(photo by Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio)

 The state of Michigan is expected to reap a half billion dollars from a settlement between 40 states and five of the nation’s largest mortgage lenders.  

Michigan has been among the hardest hit states in the foreclosure crisis. The settlement will help homeowners who were in foreclosure between 2008 and 2011.

Bank of America, Ally Financial,  Wells Fargo, J.P. Morgan Chase and Citigroup are the banks in the settlement.   The deal will settle complaints the mortgage lenders wrongly foreclosed on borrowers and forged documents.

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Economy
9:42 am
Thu January 26, 2012

Sale prices for foreclosed homes in Michigan are rising

(photo by Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio)

 The prices home buyers are paying for repossessed homes are rising in Michigan.    One analyst says it might be a sign that the real estate market may finally have hit bottom.    

Formerly foreclosed homes have saturated the market in Michigan since the recession hit a few years ago.   The high percentage of foreclosed homes on the market has been blamed for real estate prices crashing to levels not seen in Michigan since the 1990’s.

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Economy
12:30 am
Thu January 12, 2012

Mortgage lenders plan to speed up the foreclosure process in Michigan in 2012

(photo by Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio)

According to Realty Trac, the number of home foreclosures in Michigan last year dropped to the lowest level since 2007. The actual number of foreclosure filings dropped 26% compared to 2010.   

The decline is partly due to a slowdown in the paperwork process. The average time between the first foreclosure filing and final repossession of a home in Michigan took 283 days last year. That’s a 46% increase over the number of days it took in 2010.  

Daren Bloomquist is with Realty Trac. He says mortgage lenders will be speeding up the pace of home foreclosures this year.  

"We’re past the peak of the foreclosure crisis in Michigan… but the numbers in 2011 were artificially lower than they should have been," says Bloomquist.  

Michigan had the sixth highest home foreclosure rate in the nation last year with one in every 45 homes receiving a foreclosure notice.

Economy
1:01 am
Mon January 9, 2012

Michigan home prices predicted to largely stabilize in 2012

Sold (but for how much?)
(photo by Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio)

A new report predicts home prices in Detroit will continue to decline. But the report also finds Michigan home prices overall are stabilizing.   

Real estate industry analysts at Clear Capital predict nationally, average home sale prices will remain relatively unchanged in 2012. Prices nationally have been falling since the housing market crash of a few years ago.   

Detroit’s home sale prices have been declining faster than the nationally average and Clear Capital predicts another 5 percent drop this year.    

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2011
12:00 pm
Thu December 22, 2011

A look back: Michigan Radio's coverage of the economy and housing

Image by John Klein Wilson Michigan Radio

As 2011 comes to an end, we look back at some of the economic and housing stories we covered in the last year. The housing slide slowed in the last year, but Michigan was still near the top of the home foreclosure list. The decrease in home values continued to have grave implications for local governments reliant on property taxes (One caller described the fall in housing prices in his six-word story, "$80,000 to $11,000, Northwest Detroit").

In six words or less, here's how people categorized their housing experiences in Michigan:

And here's a small sampling of Michigan Radio stories about the economy and housing:

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Homelessness
1:17 pm
Sun December 18, 2011

Big rise in Michigan kids with no permanent roof

A young homeless person from NY
Flickr/Elvert Barnes

A newspaper says there were more than 31,000 homeless students in Michigan schools last year, an increase of more than 300 percent since 2007. Experts tell the Detroit Free Press that the reason appears to be home foreclosures across the state. In the past, schools typically heard different reasons, such as fire or domestic abuse.

Kids with no permanent address are living with relatives or friends or at shelters and motels. Nicole Larabee and her 14-year-old son have bounced from house to house in Livonia, including one with fleas. She had a $12-an-hour job but quit in 2010 for another job that fell through.

Larabee and 14-year-old son Matt are living in a friend's basement. Matt says it's hard to relax "unless you have your own place."

Detroit
10:44 am
Tue December 13, 2011

Bank announces $1.1M in grants for nonprofits

DETROIT (AP) - Detroit nonprofits are getting $1.1 million in grants to help improve neighborhoods, encourage small businesses and train workers.

The funding was announced Tuesday by Chase, the U.S. consumer and commercial banking brand of JPMorgan Chase & Co.

Chase says the two largest grants are $245,000 to Southwest Solutions and $230,000 to Vanguard Community Development Corp.

Those grants aim to help Detroit neighborhoods and improve foreclosure counseling efforts.

Auto/Economy
7:22 pm
Tue December 6, 2011

Southgate couple plans to defy eviction, "occupy" their home

Robert and Debbie Henry
via Occupy Detroit

A Metro Detroit family says they’ll stay in their home, despite threats of eviction. Their action is part of a new initiative coordinated by the national “Occupy” movement.

Rob and Debbie Henry live in the Detroit suburb of Southgate. They got a mortgage loan modification after Debbie had a stroke and lost her job.

The Henrys thought they were following the terms of that process. But a confusing series of events ensued that included their loan being sold to Fannie Mae without their knowledge.

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