As real estate investment heats up and the El Paso County Public Trustee’s foreclosure auctions overflow with anxious bidders, ethics have become a bigger issue.
Those closest to the action say there are regular stories of investors breaking into houses to check them out before the sale, trashing houses after lien holders redeem them, banks sending eviction notices on properties they don’t own yet, and investors going into homes to start remodeling them before they have the title.
That last scenario is actually getting out of hand, said Public Trustee Tom Mowle.
“We’ve had a rash lately of what I would characterize as burglaries,” Mowle said. “We’ve had a couple cases lately where people have bought property at sale and immediately go to the house, lock people out and take their stuff.”
Whoever buys a property at the foreclosure auction — an investor or the bank — has to wait eight business days before taking possession of the property. That period allows the bank to discover mistakes and lien holders an opportunity to buy the property even if it already has been sold to an investor.
Korea Housing Finance Corp. plans to more than triple sales of residential mortgage-backed securities to investors, allowing banks to expand home lending without adding to the consumer debt they carry on their books.
The state-run residential loan provider, the sole issuer of RMBS in Korea, expects to sell as much as 30 trillion won ($27 billion) next year, from 8.5 trillion won in 2011, Chief Executive Officer Seo Jongdae said.
“These MBS sales by Korea Housing will help local banks to build indirect experience of securitization with limited costs,” said Ku Yong Uk, a Seoul-based analyst at Daewoo Securities Co. “We need some action to grow this securitization market and this will be a good start.”
A lack of demand for longer term, fixed-rate loans has prevented a securities market from developing in Asia’s fourth- biggest economy. The government is urging lenders to cut reliance on floating-rate, shorter term loans as recordhousehold debt hampers them from lending more, while the prospect of rising interest rates adds to the cost of funds.
“Sales of MBS will continue to rise as more local lenders are providing mortgages better fit for securitization,” Seo said in an interview in Seoul.
The market’s development is a necessity for local banks, Ku said. Loan growth at Korean lenders was 7.7 percent in 2011, about half the 15 percent pace in 2007, according to data fromBank of Korea, the central bank.
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