Good morning! Today is Wednesday, May 5. President Biden set a new goal of administering at least one Covid-19 vaccine dose to 70% of the US adult population by July 4. Facebook’s independent Oversight Board will decide whether to uphold or reverse Facebook’s indefinite ban on former President Donald Trump. New York, New Jersey and Connecticut are pushing ahead with May 19 reopening plans, and the NYC subway will return to 24-hour service.
And in mortgage and housing news …
FORBEARANCE: The Mortgage Note reports that the number of US mortgages in forbearance sits at 2.23 million borrowers.
CONSTRUCTION LOANS: In a guest editorial, The Mortgage Note takes a look at VA construction loans.
LENDING BOOM: Lenders awash in cheap funding face no credit issues for now, but that might not last.
RENOVATION VALUE: One outdated room can stand out and hurt a sale. But before you do any last-minute work, set a budget and make sure you finish what you start.
FED ACTION: The latest Federal Reserve meeting suggests mortgage rates will stay low for the foreseeable future.
MORTGAGE BOND BUYING: The housing market is on fire across the U.S., so why is the Federal Reserve still offering support to that part of the financial system?
ZESTIMATES VS MLS VALUE: Agents from around the country talk about the widening gap between Zestimates and MLS home value data as inventory shortages push prices to new highs.
REAL ESTATE TAX: How Biden’s real estate tax plan may hit smaller property investors.
RETIREMENT MORTGAGE: Should you pay off your mortgage in retirement? Experts weigh in on whether to cut that debt.
BLACK FORBEARANCE: The share of Black homeowners in forbearance in mid-April was about 11%, more than double the overall rate.
THE NEW TOILET PAPER: The scarce housing inventory is causing buyers to take extreme measures to buy a home.
AS-IS SALES: As-is sales are always ripe for complications in markets that typically entertain repairs and concessions after the inspection period. Agents need to make sure clients are as prepared as possible before going into a multiple-offer situation.