This Week In Real Estate | 3.22.21

As more people work from home, employment verification has been challenging. With a cash-out refi, homeowners pay off their old mortgage and start a new one that allows them to have extra cash left over, similar to what happened before the start of the 2008 crash. Lastly, Covid-19 may create lasting impact on multifamily designs in the future. 

FHFA Extends Alternative Appraisal and Employment Verifications

  • The Federal Housing Finance Agency announced it has extended its relaxed lending and appraisal standards by a month— originally put in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • As more people work from home, employment verification has been challenging as businesses work with limited staff.
  • As health and safety conditions improve, FHFA will “actively monitor participants’ use of all temporary measures and retire those that are no longer needed or not extensively used,” the FHFA said.

Cash-out Refis Surge to Highest Levels Since the 2008 Financial Crisis

  • With a cash-out refi, homeowners pay off their old mortgage and start a new one allowing them to have extra cash left over.
  • Cash-out refis were a concern leading up to the 2008 financial crisis when borrowers tried to generate extra income – leaving them owing more on their homes than they were worth.
  • But economists say they aren’t concerned—at least not yet since home prices are still rising.
  • This time, homeowners have withdrawn some of their home equity to be able to purchase larger homes or take on home renovations.

Covid-19 May Create Lasting Impact On Multifamily Design

  • Multifamily design represents one of the tasks likely to be forever altered by the pandemic.
  • Potential new designs can provide residences with work-from-home areas that don’t need a substantial increase in unit size.
  • Real estate that needs a front desk can be re-designed with beautiful additions that make for safety and distance without creating a clinical feel.
  • Touchless technology can also be incorporated to add to comfort levels and style that will work for an increase of possible safety concerns moving forward.

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