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REAL_ESTATE
January 11, 2009 | By Al Heavens, Inquirer Columnist
To get us through the early part of this new year, let's get some perspective on what could be driving real estate matters in the weeks to come. First off, it looks as if low fixed interest rates for mortgages - now around 5 percent- will be with us awhile. But Philadelphia mortgage broker Fred Glick warns that rates could begin to rise if the stock market recovers. What he means is that investors who have flocked to the relative safety of Treasury bonds will shift their money to Wall Street if it seems profitable.
NEWS
June 24, 1999 | by Earni Young, Daily News Staff Writer
Residents living near the sinking homes in Wissinoming say the rowhouses showed visible signs of settling long before the rapid deterioration of the past three years. Yet, families who bought the homes in that period were able to obtain mortgages. Something that should not have happened if an alert appraiser had noted the settlement and recommended further investigation before the loans were approved. According to Harry Marder, president of the American Society of Appraisers, such vigilance is not always rewarded.
BUSINESS
May 14, 2004 | By Todd Mason INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
American Business Financial Services Inc. lost $33.2 million, or $10.53 a share, in the first quarter, returning the struggling Center City lender to default status on its own loans. The company secured a temporary waiver from the lender, said Albert W. Mandia, its executive vice president and chief financial officer. While the company now expects losses through Sept. 30, "we can now see a path to profitability by the quarter ended Dec. 31," Mandia said. In late 2002, Center City promoters counted American Business Financial as a major coup, luring the lender from Bala Cynwyd with an aid and loan package from the state and city worth $19.6 million.
NEWS
December 16, 2009 | By Barbara Boyer INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
A Camden County criminal investigator's romance with a mortgage broker has cost her her job and could send her to prison for obtaining a fraudulent loan, officials said. Asha Ritchards, 31, of Sicklerville, appeared yesterday in U.S. District Court in Camden, where she tearfully pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud and admitted she lied on loan applications for a house her then-boyfriend used as a rental property. "She fell in love with this guy. He's a smooth-talking, handsome guy," defense attorney Leonard S. Baker said.
NEWS
April 29, 2008 | By Kathleen Brady Shea INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
A Delaware County couple had to put their wedding on hold after losing two properties at the hands of a disbarred lawyer turned mortgage broker, authorities said. Joseph James Scafidi, 53, of Warminster, a former Bucks County prosecutor and convicted felon, turned himself in yesterday at Collingdale District Court to face theft and forgery charges. He is accused of fabricating documents, including a phony court order from Delaware County's president judge, to hide his theft of mortgage payments.
BUSINESS
October 3, 2013 | By Alan J. Heavens, Inquirer Real Estate Writer
The partial government shutdown is unlikely to disrupt the housing market in the short term, mortgage brokers and real estate agents said Tuesday. But the longer the shutdown lasts, they said, the greater the chance housing-finance and income-verification issues might slow the market's momentum. From a home buyer's perspective, "there are no immediate impacts to their mortgage as long as they are working with a lender who has delegated underwriting authority," said Mike Copley, head of retail money-out products for TD Bank.
BUSINESS
January 12, 2013 | By Alan J. Heavens, Inquirer Real Estate Writer
  The Consumer Finance Protection Bureau on Thursday unveiled its long-anticipated "qualified mortgage" regulation, designed to guarantee that home loans be given only to borrowers able to repay them. Under the new regulation, a lender must obtain and verify an applicant's financial information, including employment status, income, assets, debts, and credit history; the prospective borrower must have enough income or assets to repay the loans, and teaser rates may no longer hide the true cost of a mortgage.
NEWS
May 28, 2011
Biker killed in Center City An unidentified motorcyclist was killed last night when he lost control of his bike in Center City and struck a pole, police said. The accident occurred about 8 p.m. on 23rd Street near Walnut, police said. The victim was taken to Hahnemann University Hospital and pronounced dead about 8:30 p.m. Police said the man was likely in his mid-30s and was not wearing a helmet. 30 years for armored-car job A Philadelphia man was sentenced yesterday to 30 years in federal prison for the armed robbery of an armored car in September 2009.
BUSINESS
January 11, 2009 | By Alan J. Heavens INQUIRER REAL ESTATE WRITER
Although median home prices in the eight-county Philadelphia region have fallen much less than in the nation as a whole, sales have fallen almost a third since the area real estate market peaked in the summer of 2007. To get the market moving, something has to give. For many prospective buyers, that something is interest rates. The current national average rate on a fixed 30-year mortgage is 5.01 percent, the lowest in the 38 years that Freddie Mac has been keeping track. If you are what Ambler mortgage broker Jerome Scarpello calls a "responsible borrower" with good credit (700 score)
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