Blog - Archive for September, 2011

B of A Pushes Forth with Default Notices

September 25th, 2011

There is light at the end of the tunnel for the home buyer waiting on the new flood of foreclosures. Bank Of America is pushing forth with issuance of Default Notices and releasing their REO, Real Estate Owned (Bank Owned) Inventory. On June 29 a $8.5 billion settlement with a group of large investors claimed the bank had sold them poor quality investments based on faulty mortgages. A key part of the terms of the settlement are that B of A clear the backlog of foreclosures and defaulted loans on its books.  They need to reduce the number of risky mortgage loans and find third-party companies that can help speed up the process. They also need to help homeowners modify loans or herd defaulted loans into foreclosure sales.

If you plan on starting a home search but have no idea of what you can afford it’s time to sit with your lender. However, be prepared to contend with new stricter lending guidelines.

Whether you are in the market to Buy or Sell L.A. Metro Home is your resource in navigating through todays Real Estate Market. Contact us today today.

Paul Cruz, LMH Team, L.A. Metro Home

L.A. Metro Home Hot Pick – Windsor Village

September 24th, 2011

Looking for a fixer opportunity, you are reading the right Blog. At L.A. Metro Home we comb the city for the best buys in the city’s hot spots and today we invite you to 915 S Victoria Ave. Los Angeles Ca 90019 priced at $679,000. 00. It is a gem waiting to be polished.

This 3 bedroom 3 bath house with studio over the garage large yard and pool sits on an 8599 sq. ft lot East of Crenshaw North of Olympic in the Hancock Park adjacent neighborhood of Windsor Village. The two story main house has all bedrooms upstairs with spacious living room, formal dining room and separate sitting room down stairs. Located on a wide palm tree lined street, rubbing shoulders with homes with asking prices of near and over one million dollars. Windsor Village has a rich history dating back to before the 1920’s when this house was built. Its proximity to the University of Southern California and home to The Ebell Theatre and the Ruskin Art Club made it an attractive location for the areas socially active citizens and educators of the time. It has been noted that at one time Victoria Ave. was known as “Professors Row” for its high concentration of USC professors and their families. You can read more about Windsor Village at . The house is in HOPZ, Historic Preservation Overlay Zone.  For more information on this and other properties contact L.A Metro Home, Paul Cruz, LMH Team


The Time Is Now

September 21st, 2011

The message is simple:

1. According to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac the average 30-year fixed interest rate is at 4.15%.

2. Due to Bank of Americas push on the West coast there is an increase in foreclosure activity.

3. There has also been an increase in pre-foreclosure activity (notice of default being sent.)

4. Winter is around the corner and home values have taken another dip since Spring when values and sales volume are typically higher.

So what this equates to is low cost of money, increased inventory and value, less competition from other buyers, and lets not forget that B of A is finally addressing their back log of REO and properties in default, equals Real Estate recovery.  Now, of course, a key player in the recovery is getting people back to work and ensuring there is no increase in current mortgages falling behind.

In short, it is a great time to buy and if you want or need to sell take advantage of the low rates that buyers have access to. As a seller, in most cases, you will be competing with distressed property, however, many buyers are out looking for quality homes with upgrades so price your home competitively and increase you chances of getting your it sold.

Paul Cruz, LMH | L.A. Metro Home Team,


Real Estate Loan Ten Commandments

September 18th, 2011

Getting a Real Estate loan today is more challenging then ever. By following the tips below you’ll make the process a little easier for yourself.  For more buyer and seller tips contact L.A. Metro Home, . Paul Cruz, LMH Team

The Ten Commandments When Applying for a Real Estate Loan


1.              Thou shalt not change jobs, become self-employed or quit your job.

2.              Thou shalt not buy a car, truck or van.

3.              Thou shalt not use charge cards excessively, let your accounts fall behind, or close accounts.

4.              Thou shalt not spend money you have set aside for closing.

5.              Thou shalt not omit debts or liabilities from your loan application.

6.              Thou shalt not buy furniture or other large ticket item.

7.              Thou shalt not originate any inquiries into your credit.

8.              Thou shalt not make large deposits without first checking with your loan officer.

9.              Thou shalt not change bank accounts.

10.          Thou shalt not co-sign a loan for anyone.




Foreclosure Radar update in California

September 15th, 2011

Foreclosure starts jumped by double digits from July to August in four out of five Western states tracked by Foreclosure Radar, reversing what had been a declining trend over the past several months, the company said. The increase in foreclosure starts seen in Arizona, California, Nevada, Oregon and Washington appeared to be driven primarily by Bank of America and related companies, which boosted notice of default and notice of trustee sale filings by 116 percent from July to August. Wells Fargo and US Bank also ramped up foreclosure start filings, Foreclosure Radar said, while filings by JP Morgan Chase and Citibank were essentially flat.

In California, foreclosure starts jumped nearly 70 percent from July to August, totaling 31,965 — the highest level in a year. The average time to foreclose in California increased to 333 days in August, 49 days longer than a year ago. Notice of trustee sale filings were up more moderately, rising 6 percent from July to August but still down nearly 24 percent from a year ago at 24,020 Notice of trustee sale filings were up more moderately, rising 6 percent from July to August but still down nearly 24 percent from a year ago at 24,020. California properties sold back to the bank (REO) increased 12 percent from July, to 11,104, down nearly 23 percent from a year ago. Sales to third parties on the courthouse steps were up 10 percent from July, to 3,853, an 11 percent increase from a year ago. California foreclosure inventories remain down or flat from a year ago. Banks had 107,000 REO homes on their books — about the same as in July — and the number of homes scheduled for trustee sale was down nearly 24 percent from a year ago, to 94,000.

For more information on Foreclosure, REO or Short Sales contact, your resource in navigating through today’s Real Estate Market. Paul Cruz, LMH Team

L.A Metro Home Hot Pick, High-rise living in West Hollywood

September 12th, 2011

Whether your lifestyle requires full service amenities or you opt for less service there is much to choose from in the condo market.  There is amble inventory in West Hollywood, an enclave for young professionals, celebrities and industry types. Several high-rise buildings in prime locations such as our hot pick today, 999 Doheny, pictured here and bordering Beverly Hills.

Enter through a gorgeous lobby and be whisked away to anyone of 13 stories most with spectacular city views. The building has all the full service amenities. With condos priced from the low 300,000. there is a salt-water pool, 24 hr. guard, doorman, spa, sauna, gym and all just steps away from the hottest new restaurants and clubs at the border of Beverly Hills. Many of the available units in this building can run small with homeowner dues starting at about 500.00. When you consider one of your closet neighbors is the notable Sierra Towers building where a units can run from 1.5 to over 9 million and dues start upward 1500.00 to over 3000.00 a month, 999 Doheny offers a lot of bang for the buck if you do not need a lot of space while enjoying the best of luxury. For information on high-rise living or other condo alternatives contact

Home Buyer Tips

September 10th, 2011

Home Buying Packet

How to Buy a Great House

When you are ready to buy enlist an expert to have at your side. At L.A. Metro Home we start with a Buyer Consultation to prepare you for the market today. Below is an excerpt from our Home Buyer Packet on How to Buy a Great House.

There are many factors to consider when selecting a neighborhood that is right for you.  Below are just a few of the many factors — you may think of others that are important to you.

Neighborhoods have characteristic personalities designed to best suit single people, growing families, two-career couples, or retirees.


It is important that you scout the neighborhood in person.  You live in more than your house.

  • Talk to people who live there.
  • Drive through the entire area at different times of the day, during the week and on weekends.
  • Look carefully at how well other homes in the area are being maintained; are they painted, are the yards well cared for; are parked cars in good condition, etc.


  • Look for things like access to major thoroughfares, highways, and shopping.
  • Listen for noise created by commerce, roads, railways, public areas, schools, etc.
  • Smell the air for adjacent commerce or agriculture.
  • Check with local civic, police, fire, and school officials to find information about the area.
  • Research things like soil and water.
  • Look at traffic patterns around the area during different times of the day and drive from the area to work.
  • Find out if the neighborhood is near parks, churches, recreation centers, shopping, theaters, restaurants, public transportation, schools, etc.
  • Find out if the neighborhood belongs to a Homeowner’s Association.

Contact L.A. Metro Home for your buyer consultation by visiting our website and filling out our contact page. L.A. Metro Home, “We are your resource in navigating through today’s Real Estate market”,

Paul Cruz, LMH Team

Do you qualify to Short Sale?

September 10th, 2011

Do you owe more on your property then it is worth? Depending on your financial out look you may qualify to Short Sale. Below is a short list of what we require to start negotiation of a Short Sale. The most important piece of a Short Sale negotiation is the property owners participation and commitment to the process. Contact L.A. Metro Home on how we can work together to complete a successful Short Sale. Visit


Short Sale required:

  • Listing agreement
  • Letter of authorization, giving authority to Real Estate agent to speak to the bank.
  • HUD-1 or Seller preliminary net sheet
  • Completed financial statement
  • Seller’s hardship letter
  • 2 years of tax returns
  • 2 years of W-2s
  • Recent payroll stubs
  • Last 2 months of bank statements
  • Comparative market analysis or list of recent comparable sales

Mortgage rates at record lows

September 9th, 2011

Mortgage rates hit record lows in Freddie Mac survey

September 8, 2011 |  7:23 am

mortgage rates
Mortgage rates have plunged to all-time lows amid concerns the economy is stalling again, Freddie Mac said in its weekly survey.

Lenders were offering the 30-year fixed-rate home loan at an average rate of 4.12% this week, down from 4.22% last week, Freddie Mac said Thursday. The 15-year fixed loan was at 3.33%, down from 3.39%.

Both of the rates set records in the survey by the giant mortgage finance company. Borrowers would have paid an average of 0.7% of the loan amount in upfront lender fees and points on the 30-year loan and 0.6% on the 15-year loan, Freddie said.

Adjustable-rate loans set records or tied previous lows as well, the survey found.

“On net, the economy added no new jobs last month and was the weakest reading since September 2010,” Freddie Mac chief economist Frank Nothaft said in a news release.

“Meanwhile, the unemployment rate remained at 9.1%, marking its 31st consecutive month of being above 8%, the longest such stretch in 70 years.”

The rate on the 30-year fixed loan had bumped above 5% last February before slowly grinding lower.

It has now been below 4.5% for six straight weeks, setting a previous low record of 4.15% in the Aug. 18 survey. (Freddie Mac began tracking the 30-year loan in 1971.)

The survey asks lenders for popular combinations of rates and fees that they are offering to borrowers with good credit and 20% down payments or 20% home equity in refinancings. Well-qualified borrowers who shop around often obtain slightly better deals.

The low rates still aren’t exactly generating a new boom in home lending, the Mortgage Bankers Assn. says.

The trade group’s latest survey of mortgage applications said they fell by about 5% last week compared with the previous week — the third straight week of declining demand. From the MBA news release Wednesday:

“Heading into the Labor Day weekend, the 30-year rate was at its second lowest level in the history of our survey (the low point was reached last October), and the 15-year rate marked a new low in our survey,” said Mike Fratantoni, MBA’s Vice President of Research and Economics.

“Despite these rates however, refinance application volume … is more than 35% below levels at this time last year. Purchase application volume remains relatively flat at extremely low levels, close to lows last seen in 1996.”

Federal Housing Finance Agency sues…

September 8th, 2011

FHFA sues 17 firms to recover losses to GSEs
The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), as conservator for Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs) Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, has filed lawsuits against 17 financial institutions, certain of their officers and various unaffiliated lead underwriters. The suits allege violations of federal securities laws and common law in the sale of residential private-label mortgage-backed securities (PLS) to the GSEs

Complaints have been filed against the following lead defendants, in alphabetical order:
1. Ally Financial Inc. f/k/a GMAC, LLC
2. Bank of America Corporation
3. Barclays Bank PLC
4. Citigroup, Inc.
5. Countrywide Financial Corporation
6. Credit Suisse Holdings (USA), Inc.
7. Deutsche Bank AG
8. First Horizon National Corporation
9. General Electric Company
10. Goldman Sachs & Co.
11. HSBC North America Holdings, Inc.
12. JPMorgan Chase & Co.
13. Merrill Lynch & Co. / First Franklin Financial Corp.
14. Morgan Stanley
15. Nomura Holding America Inc.
16. The Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC
17. Société Générale

The complaints seek damages and civil penalties under the Securities Act of 1933. In addition, each complaint seeks compensatory damages for negligent misrepresentation.

Certain complaints also allege state securities law violations or common law fraud.