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Calif. Homeowners Bill Of Rights Aimed At Easing Foreclosures

Evening Edition

Michael Lea, director of SDSU's Corky McMillin Center for Real Estate, talks to Joanne Faryon about the Homeowners Bill of Rights.

Aired 3/1/12 on KPBS Midday Edition.


Dr. Michael Lea, director of SDSU's Corky McMillin Center for Real Estate.


A foreclosed home in Encinitas, California.
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Above: A foreclosed home in Encinitas, California.

State Attorney General Kamala Harris released a package of bills Wednesday called the “Homeowner Bill of Rights.” These bills are designed to protect homeowners caught up in the mortgage and foreclosure crisis.

But the bills do not provide direct regulation, said Michael Lea, director of San Diego State University's Corky McMillin Center for Real Estate. Instead, they allow banks to come up with the practices that meet the bills’ guidelines.

“The regulation, if you will, is the threat of potential legal action that could overturn a foreclosure,” Lea told KPBS Television’s “Evening Edition.”

“It puts the onus on (lenders) to have this done right, to avoid some of the outsourcing problems that plagued earlier processes,” he added.

The bill of rights is aimed at creating a set of requirements lenders must accomplish before instituting a foreclosure process, he said.

“One of the major objectives of these bills is to provide more of a certain standardized transparent process,” he said.

Lea said the bill of rights codifies the agreements that were put into last month’s settlement with the nation's big banks over their foreclosure policies. While California obtained the “lion’s share” of that settlement, Lea said it would not have a big impact on the local housing market.

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Avatar for user 'jovitaperlman'

jovitaperlman | March 2, 2012 at 1:51 a.m. ― 5 years ago

If you're a homeowner with an adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM), you may choose to lock into a fixed rate if you anticipate rates will be going up soon, thereby stabilizing your monthly payments. I have used 123 Refinance to compare refi rates.

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Avatar for user 'SanDiegoAgent'

SanDiegoAgent | March 7, 2012 at 5:39 a.m. ― 5 years ago

A few years ago it was about 18 months a California homeowner could stay in their home payment free (mortgage, HOA dues & property tax) prior to being forced to move by foreclosure action.

Now, that time frame is two years+. All these new rules and 'rights' are really costing taxpayers big bucks!

Not only do these homeowners save appx. $30,000 in payment over the two years, but, in many cases now also receive a large payment to help them move!

Here is a link to an article on why to make your mortgage payment when you can live payment free:

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