Good morning! Today is Tuesday, December 15. President Trump announced that U.S. Attorney General William Barr is stepping down. A second Covid-19 vaccine is likely to gain emergency-use authorization later this week. Two-time Olympic champion Mikaela Shiffrin won her 67th World Cup giant slalom event. Only Ingemar Stenmark and Lindsey Vonn have more victories.
And in mortgage and housing news …
NATURAL DISASTERS: Natural disasters are impacting home values in high-risk areas at a time when home prices are soaring across the United States, according to a realtor.com analysis.
FORBEARANCE REPORT: The share of mortgages in forbearance in the United States decreased slightly last week, with 2.7 million homeowners still pausing their mortgage payments, the Mortgage Bankers Association announced in its weekly survey.
GSE CONSERVATORSHIP: Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin suggested he is unlikely to support a legal move to end the government conservatorships of the mortgage-finance companies before President Trump leaves office.
BANKS CONCERNED: Banks are concerned with mortgage regulations and credit risks in 2021.
HOME EQUITY: According to CoreLogic, the average homeowner gained about $17,000 in equity year over year in the third quarter of 2020.
DEBT PARKING: The F.T.C. recently took its first legal action to stop debt parking fraud. Consumers may not know the debts are on their reports until they apply for a loan.
EXTENSIONS: The Federal Housing Finance Agency has approved the extension of several loan origination flexibilities provided by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
2021 RATES: Mortgage interest rates are expected to rise in 2021. Here’s what that means.
MORTGAGE OPTIONS: 20 steps to getting the best mortgage tailored to unique financial positions.
2020 SMALL BANKS: A large share of government relief for businesses and consumers ended up at community banks in 2020, boosting deposits and loans.
BUY OR RENT: Should you buy or rent a home in 2021?
APPRAISAL PROCESS: Clarification and background information regarding the residential appraisal process.