Archive for December, 2010

Tips for Goal Setting, Monitoring, and Measuring For Results

This is an ODV PREVIEW

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Bank executives who were hoping for a quiet end to this fall’s controversy over irregularities in the foreclosure process are facing a new threat: state judges. 
 
The chief justice of New Jersey’s Supreme Court, Stuart Rabner, announced Monday that the state’s courts would stop foreclosures by big banks if they cannot show they’re following state law when foreclosing. 
 
Rabner made the announcement after assigning a judge to oversee foreclosure matters. That judge, Mary C. Jacobson, issued an order Monday requiring six banks – Ally Financial, Bank of America, J.P. Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo, OneWest Bank and Citigroup – to appear in court and explain why she shouldn’t suspend foreclosures. 
 
The New Jersey action stems from the controversy over questions surfaced over the legality of documents submitted to courts in foreclosure proceedings. 
 
"Today’s actions are intended to provide greater confidence that the tens of thousands of residential foreclosure proceedings underway in New Jersey are based on reliable information," Rabner said in a statement. "Nearly 95 percent of those cases are uncontested, despite evidence of flaws in the foreclosure process." 
 
The six banks must by Jan. 19 show the court why it should not suspend foreclosures. The order said the banks were chosen "based on a public record of questionable practice." 
 
Only one bank would comment on Monday. Mark Rodgers of Citigroup said the bank would review the judge’s order and ensure that it is in compliance. 
 
Banks are expected to argue that problems in the foreclosure process have been minor and the vast majority of those facing foreclosure lost their homes because they didn’t pay their mortgages for many months. 
 
They’re also likely to say that a protracted freeze in foreclosures could have a negative effect since it would keep those vacant homes out of the market. 
 
But homeowner advocates and others will likely argue that banks’ problems with following the letter of the law in foreclosure proceedings reflect a range of harmful practices that have hurt borrowers trying to avoid foreclosures. 
 
 
By Zachary A. Goldfarb 
For more: http://wapo.st/gxhd7G

STRUGGLING homeowners can sometimes benefit from hiring a lawyer to try to modify a mortgage or avert foreclosure, but avoiding scam artists and sketchy practices requires vigilance.

 
Carefully vetting lawyers to weed out the good from the bad can mean the difference between saving tens of thousands of dollars in fees and actually having a loan modified — and being out the cash, with your home in foreclosure and a radioactive credit score.
 
“It’s difficult for consumers to differentiate between the bad actors and the ones who can help, because they’re so inundated with scams these days,” said William Mackin, a bankruptcy lawyer in Woodbury, N.J.
 
So what are some of the potential red flags?
 
According to PreventLoanScams.org, a new online site operated by the nonprofit Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, homeowners should be cautious about: any guarantees that a loan will be modified, since not all can be; requests for an upfront fee or that the property title be signed over to a third party; and offers to redirect the monthly mortgage payments to a third party who will forward them to the lender or mortgage servicer.
 
“My best advice is, be wary of the too-good-to-be-true remedies,” Mr. Mackin said.
 
Brian E. Sullivan, a spokesman for the Department of Housing and Urban Development, says homeowners may want to contact a HUD-approved housing counseling agency before hiring a lawyer. A list of nonprofit counselors — some of which offer free loan-modification services, and others that refer clients to outside loan-modification lawyers — can be found on HUD’s Web site.
 
One benefit of using lawyers is that they typically know the ins and outs of the welter of government homeowner-assistance programs. Those homeowners who decide to hire one should contact their local bar association to ensure they find “an ethical law firm” that does loan modifications, said Thomas Martin, president of America’s Watchdog, a nonprofit consumer advocacy group.
 
Lawyers typically charge $1,500 to $2,000, and up, for a loan modification. But they might be reluctant to accept clients who have lost their jobs and have no other outside income, as arguing with the bank or servicer in that situation can be pointless.
 
A lawyer will typically ask for
– your last two federal income tax returns,
– two most recent W-2 forms,
– six months’ worth of pay stubs,
– evidence of other income

 This On Demand Video features Mike Butler and his Field Services Superintendent Dan Giggs describing in detail how to handle emergencies and extreme weather conditions. 

Watch how Mike explains "frozen pipes" are not an emergency.

Dan shows you how to thaw out frozen pipes in less than 10 minutes.

Many great tips and techniques for both rental properties and vacant property.

Watch this short 20 minute ODV

 

Click Here for Full Video/Article (Members Only)

A federal judge declared the Obama administration’s health care law unconstitutional Monday, siding with Virginia’s attorney general in a dispute that both sides agree will ultimately be decided by the U.S. Supreme Court.
 
 
WASHINGTON — A U.S. judge in Virginia on Monday declared unconstitutional a key part of President Barack Obama’s landmark healthcare law in the first major setback on an issue that will likely end up at the Supreme Court.
 
 
 
U.S. District Judge Henry Hudson, appointed to the bench by President George W. Bush in 2002, backed arguments by the state of Virginia that Congress exceeded its authority by requiring that individuals buy health insurance by 2014 or face a fine.
 
"The Minimum Essential Coverage Provision is neither within the letter nor the spirit of the Constitution," Hudson wrote in a 42-page decision. However, he declined to invalidate the entire healthcare law, a small victory for Obama.
 
The Obama administration will likely appeal.
 
The U.S. Justice Department is confident it will ultimately prevail in defending a key part of President Barack Obama’s landmark healthcare law, a department spokeswoman said Monday.
 
Spokeswoman Tracy Schmaler expressed disappointment that a federal judge in Virginia declared a key part of the law unconstitutional but said the department continued to believe, as other judges in Virginia and Michigan have found, that the law is constitutional.
 
"There is clear and well-established legal precedent that Congress acted within its constitutional authority in passing this law and we are confident that we will ultimately prevail," she said in a statement.
 
 
First decision against the law 
 
Virginia’s lawyers argued that the federal government could not regulate someone for not buying a good or service under the U.S. Constitution’s Commerce Clause and could not penalize them for failing to buy health insurance.
 
Hudson said that neither the Supreme Court nor the various appeals courts had ever extended the "Commerce Clause powers to compel an individual to involuntarily enter the stream of commerce by purchasing a commodity in the private market."
 
"This dispute is not simply about regulating the business of insurance — or crafting a scheme of universal health insurance coverage — it’s about an individual’s right to choose to participate," Hudson wrote.
 
The decision is the first finding against the law that was passed in March and aimed at overhauling the $2.5 trillion U.S. healthcare system.
 
Two judges rejected other challenges to the law, including one in Virginia last month.
 
The law has become a cornerstone of Obama’s presidency, aiming to expand health insurance for millions more Americans while curbing costs, and his Justice Department lawyers have been sent around the country to defend it in federal courts.
 
Republican leaders in the U.S. Congress have said one of their top priorities next year when they control the House of Representatives is to repeal the law. But chances of that are slim because Obama’s Democrats still control the Senate.
 
The Obama administration has vigorously defended the law and said that the state of Virginia did not have the legal standing to challenge it on behalf of its citizens, particularly for something that has yet to take effect.
 
The individual coverage mandate is a major component of the overhaul law, a bid by the Obama administration to expand coverage to the tens of millions of Americans who are without insurance and to thereby help lower exploding healthcare costs.

Thanks to Nick Capra in Vegas for this very informative and interesting report.

Pass the word and share this one

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Hey Mike,

 The attached report is very good.

88 Page Fraud Assignment Report

(Click Above Link to View / Download)
Even more trouble is coming because, Mers conducted some of their fraudulent assignments to avoid recording fees, now local recorders all over the country are going after them as well.
 
Fraudulent recordings are also considered to be a crime committed directly against the state… so a real can of worms.
 
Now, we’ll see, with all of the hard evidence; will the government support the People, or will they find some way to let the criminals off the hook.
 
The more people that are aware of what’s going on, the harder it is for them to continue committing such blatent crimes
 
 
"…justice should not only be done, 
but should manifestly and undoubtedly 
be seen to be done." 
 
Lord Chief Justice Hewart, CJ 
 
God Bless,
Nick

On Demand Video Insurance

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 The decline in home prices is accelerating across the nation, according to a new report, and a record number of foreclosures is expected to push prices down further through next year.

 
 
But a second report released on Tuesday indicated that consumer confidence in the economy rose in November to the highest level in five months amid some more hopeful signs.
 
The Standard & Poor’s Case-Shiller 20-city home price index released Tuesday fell 0.7 percent in September from August. Eighteen of the 20 cities recorded price declines.
 
Cleveland recorded the biggest drop, 3 percent from a month earlier. Prices in San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego, which had been showing strength this year, also dropped in September from August.
 
Washington and Las Vegas were the only metro areas to post gains in monthly prices.
 
The 20-city index has risen 5.9 percent from its April 2009 bottom. But it remains nearly 28.6 percent below the peak, in July 2006. And home prices have fallen in 15 of the 20 cities in the last year.
 
Prices rose in many cities from April through July, mostly helped by government tax credits that have since expired.
 
The national quarterly index, which measures home prices in nine regions of the country, dropped 2 percent in the third quarter from the previous quarter.
 
In the other report, the Conference Board said that its Consumer Confidence Index for November rose to 54.1 points, up from a revised 49.9 in October. Analysts were expecting 52.0. November’s reading is the highest since June’s 54.3.
 
The November reading is the highest since June, when the index stood at 54.3 just as the economy’s recovery started to lose momentum. Economists surveyed by Thomson Reuters had expected 52.0.
 
It takes a level of 90 to indicate a healthy economy, which has not been approached since the recession began in December 2007.
 
One component of the index, how Americans feel now about the economy, rose to 24, up from 23.5. The other gauge, which measures how American feel about the economy over the next six months, rose to 74.2, up from 67.5 last month.
 
“Consumer confidence is now at its highest level in five months, a welcome sign as we enter the holiday season,” Lynn Franco, director of the Conference Board Consumer Research Center, said in a statement. “Consumers’ assessment of the current state of the economy and job market, while only slightly better than last month, suggests the economy is still expanding, albeit slowly. Hopefully, the improvement in consumers’ mood will continue in the months ahead.”
 
Others were less optimistic.
 
“The rise in consumer confidence in November is not consistent with a sustained acceleration in consumption growth at a time when income growth is weak, the unemployment rate is high and a double dip in house prices is under way,” said Paul Dales, United States economist at Capital Economics.
 
The consumer confidence index, which measures how respondents feel about business conditions, the job market and the economy over the next six months, has recovered fitfully since hitting a record low of 25.3 in February 2009. Economists watch confidence closely because consumer spending accounts for about 70 percent of economic activity and is crucial to a strong rebound. The improved confidence mirrors an increase in spending in November, fueled by early discounting on holiday goods that lured shoppers into stores.
 
The Conference Board’s index, based on a random survey mailed to 5,000 households from Nov. 1 to Nov. 19, showed that worries about jobs eased, but that concern remained high.
 
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
 
For more: http://nyti.ms/eoUCAk