VHFA diligent during foreclosure procedures

Last week, Vermont joined other states in examining complaints some mortgage firms have engaged in questionable practices during foreclosure proceedings.

At the center of the investigation is "robo-signing," when mortgage service employees with no knowledge of a particular case sign foreclosure documents.

Thomas Candon, Banking Commissioner at the Vermont Department of Banking, Insurance, Securities and Health Care Administration and a VHFA Commissioner, said his office hasn't received any complaints regarding this practice.

VHFA's low delinquencies, foreclosures on VPR

VHFA Executive Director Sarah Carpenter appeared in a news segment aired by Vermont Public Radio yesterday and today about the Agency's low delinquency and foreclosure rates.

Read the transcript online.

VHFA home loan delinquencies, foreclosures low

Recent analysis of VHFA home loan data shows delinquency and foreclosure rates of VHFA mortgages were considerably lower than rates for Vermont and the nation.

As of June 30, 2010, VHFA home loans that were delinquent by 90 or more days were just 0.94% of all the Agency’s outstanding loans. Vermont’s rate was more than twice as high: 2.05%. The national rate was 4.54%.

The number of VHFA loans in the foreclosure process on June 30, 2010, was 1.37% of all VHFA loans, compared to Vermont’s overall foreclosure rate of 2.71% and the national rate of 4.57%.

Report: Recession likely to keep poverty rate high for years

According to researchers at the Brookings Institution, the poverty rate among all Americans is likely to remain above 14 percent through 2020, due to the relationship between unemployment and poverty.

The situation will be even worse among children, with the poverty rate remaining above 21 percent through 2020.

The worst year is likely to be 2014, with at least 16 percent of all Americans and 26 percent of all children living in poverty.

Tighter credit standards may thwart community stabilization

Formerly foreclosed upon, newly renovated homes might sit vacant as a result of stricter credit standards following the foreclosure crisis. That's the concern reflected in a survey conducted by NeighborWorks at a recent meeting in Philadelphia.

Two dozen non-profit organizations representing $740 million in Neighborhood Stabilization Program funds were polled.

“The concern is real and it is across the board,” said Thomas Deyo, Deputy Director of National Initiatives and Applied Research at NeighborWorks America.

Census: Number in poverty hits 50-year high

The U.S. Census Bureau released figures today showing the nation's poverty rate jumped to 14.3% in 2009. That's the highest level since '94.

That rate indicates 43.6 million Americans are poor — the highest number in the nation's 51 years of keeping track.

The Office of Management and Budget defines poverty for 2009 as earning less than $21,954 for a family of four.

Read more details about the report at

Dartmouth students report on Vermonters in poverty

At the request of the Vermont Child Poverty Council, students and faculty of Dartmouth's Policy Research Shop prepared a report titled "Poverty in Vermont: Reduction and Profiles," which describes the population of Vermonters in poverty and identifies areas for further research and action.

The report concludes:

Report: Homelessness rises in 2010

The number of people served in Vermont’s shelters rose by 8% during state fiscal year 2010, when compared to 2009, according to Emergency Shelter Grant program figures released this month by Vermont’s Office of Economic Opportunity.

This was the largest jump of the decade, up to a total of 3,834 people, 22% of whom were children.

Read the report.

Fewer troubled home loans in Vermont than other New England states

An estimated 4.76% of home mortgages in Vermont were seriously delinquent in the second quarter of 2010. No other state in New England — and only six states in the U.S. — fared this well, according to recent data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s National Delinquency Survey.

A loan is considered “seriously delinquent” if it's delinquent by 90 days or more, or if it's entered the foreclosure process.

Approximately 2.71% of Vermont’s mortgages were in the foreclosure process as of June 31, 2010 — substantially fewer than in New England and the U.S.

Vermont home prices down 4% from last year

Prices of homes sold in Vermont were approximately 4% lower during the second quarter of 2010 than 12 months earlier, according to repeat sales data from the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA).

Vermont was no different than other northeastern states. All of them experienced lower prices during 2010’s second quarter, in comparison to 2009’s second quarter.

For additional information, see the FHFA press release (PDF).


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