Brazen leader of massive mortgage modification scheme gets 20 years

Three California residents will spend a combined 39 years in prison after being convicted for their roles in a nationwide, multi-year mortgage modification fraud scheme that scammed thousands of distressed borrowers out of at least $11 million. The scheme’s ringleader used much of the money taken from distressed borrowers to lead an extravagant lifestyle, which included purchasing expensive vehicles, a racehorse, and producing a reality TV show.
Source: Housing Wire

Louisiana asks FTC to pause regulatory action while state repeals controversial appraisal laws

The state of Louisiana may have taken action to directly respond to the Federal Trade Commission’s claim that the regulatory body that oversees property appraisals in the state stifled price competition by requiring appraisal management companies to follow the state’s established polices for the fees that AMCs pay to appraisers, but that doesn’t mean that the FTC is ready to drop the case entirely.
Source: Housing Wire

Despite inventory shortage, existing home sales surge in California

For two years now, California has dealt with extremely low housing inventory, and it doesn’t look like it’s getting better any time soon. According to the latest report from the California Association of Realtors, existing home sales in California took off in June to their highest pace in nearly four years. But the increase in sales, coupled with the double-digit decline in active listings, now means June’s available housing supply is even lower.
Source: Housing Wire

Colony Starwood Homes rebranding as Starwood Waypoint Homes

For the second time in two days, a business that carries the “Colony” brand name announced that it plans to shed that name and begin operating under a new name. First, it was Colony American Finance, which is being renamed CoreVest American Finance Lender after Fortress bought the company. Now, Colony Starwood Homes is rebranding as Starwood Waypoint Homes.
Source: Housing Wire

FHFA wants more input on improving credit access for borrowers with limited English proficiency

In May, the Federal Housing Finance Agency asked the housing market to provide input on how to increase access to credit for borrowers with limited English proficiency. Originally, the FHFA set a deadline of July 10, 2017 to receive all input, but the FHFA announced Tuesday that it is extending the deadline to get more feedback from the market.
Source: Housing Wire

Fortress acquires Colony American Finance

Fortress Investment Group is about to be acquired by SoftBank Group in a $3.3 billion deal, but Fortress isn’t done making its own acquisitions while that deal works its way through the legal process. Fortress announced Tuesday that it is acquired Colony American Finance, a lender that provides financing for real estate investors who want to purchase single-family rental homes, townhomes, condos, and small multifamily properties.
Source: Housing Wire