Good morning! Today is Friday, February 5. A potential third vaccine made by J&J that only requires one shot could become available in the U.S. within weeks. Members of the House Homeland Security Committee, which is investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol riot and domestic terrorism, urged tougher penalties and holding social media companies accountable. United and American Airlines said tens of thousands of workers again could face furloughs as demand for air travel continues to lag.
And in mortgage and housing news …
HOME VALUES: Home values in the United States exploded during the last year, as interest rates and home inventories both hit record lows. Are they sustainable?
MORTGAGE RATES: Mortgage rates didn’t budge this week – and that’s good news for borrowers.
STICKER SHOCK: Mortgage refinancing suddenly surges, but homebuyers stall due to sticker shock.
STIMULUS EFFECS: Five ways the Biden stimulus plan could help and hurt real estate investors.
PUBLIC BANKING: North Dakota is a very red state with two very socialist institutions, a state-owned bank and state-owned grain mill and elevator. Would they be created today?
MORTGAGE FRAUD SCHEME: A real estate developer from Illinois and two others have been accused of running a multi-million-dollar mortgage fraud scheme that targeted financial institutions, the US Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois announced.
NONBANK LENDING: The prime jumbo mortgage business for nonbanks is likely to benefit from Consumer Finance Protection Bureau revisions to the Qualified Mortgage and Ability to Repay rules.
RENOFI: A new type of home equity loan caters to major renovation projects.
OVER-VALUED MARKET: The most overvalued market in America is not in California.
FIRST-TIME BUYERS: First-time homebuyers are facing an exceptionally tough market. Here’s what’s different.
RENTAL ASSISTANCE: Housing groups are pushing for rental assistance, warning that the federal stimulus package could worsen affordable housing crisis.
SUBURB INCENTIVE: A USDA mortgage program originally intended to revitalize rural communities can help homebuyers move to the suburbs.