UK Budget 2013: Wealthy house-buyers look to take advantage of mortgage aid
Affluent house hunters have been contacting estate agents in some of Britain’s most expensive postcodes to ask how they can benefit from the new state mortgage assistance scheme unveiled in this week’s Budget.
Under the “Help to Buy” programme, buyers will only have to save up a 5 per cent deposit, with the Government underwriting a further 15 per cent of the value as long as the property is worth no more than £600,000.
George Osborne, the Chancellor, said the initiative would help families who “cannot begin to afford” the large deposits currently needed to get a mortgage at a good interest rate.
However, there is nothing to stop high earners from using the multi-billion pound scheme and early anecdotal evidence suggests that it is likely to benefit large numbers of relatively wealthy people.
High-end estate agents reported yesterday that they had already received interest from well-off clients looking to take advantage of the Government’s support to buy houses costing over half a million pounds.
Ed Mead, a director of Douglas & Gordon, which operates in upmarket districts of London such as Kensington and Chelsea, said it appeared that the scheme was “not necessarily going to help those most in need”.
Friends of Wells Fargo Typo Victim Larry Delassus Suing Wells Fargo For Wrongful Death
Attorney Anthony Trujillo sits at his desk overlooking the Pacific Ocean, clicking through hundreds of files on his computer. Each relates to his late friend and client, Larry Delassus, who died of heart failure in a Torrance courtroom in December as he sat in a wheelchair watching Trujillo argue a negligence and discrimination case on his behalf against banking giant Wells Fargo.
Now, Trujillo and Delassus’ close friend Debbie Popovich say they will file a wrongful death claim in April against Wells Fargo and its tax service provider, CoreLogic. (CoreLogic was listed as First American Real Estate Tax Service in court documents until recently.)
On March 21, Trujillo will request an extension in his discrimination case from Superior Court Judge Laura C. Ellison, who had tentatively sided with Wells Fargo the day before Delassus collapsed in her courtroom. The tragic events set off a storm of complaints against Wells Fargo and the judge when L.A. Weekly published its article “Wells Fargo Typo Victim Dies in Court.” On April 18, Popovich will ask a probate judge to name her the special administrator of Delassus’ modest estate, so someone can act on his behalf.
The Senate Drafts the SEC’s Case Against JPMorgan
The Senate probe of JPMorgan Chase (JPM) did more than conclude that the bank hid the full damage of last year’s trading losses from investors and regulators. It delivered 900 pages of evidence that could help the Securities and Exchange Commission make the case that bank executives broke the law.
JPMorgan Board Backs CEO Dimon as Chairman
PMorgan Chase’s (JPM) board said Jamie Dimon should remain both chairman and chief executive officer after it halved his pay for failing to properly supervise a unit that generated a record trading loss last year.
“The board has determined that the most effective leadership model for the firm currently is that Mr. Dimon serves as both,” the panel said Friday in a proxy filing, advising shareholders to reject a proposal to split the roles.
The bank paid three of Dimon’s top executives, Mary Erdoes, Daniel Pinto and Matthew Zames, more than him for 2012. It also clawed back more than $100 million from people it deemed responsible for the so-called London Whale trading loss.
Congressman Cummings calls for hearing on mortgage servicing complaints
In a letter to Chairman Darrel Issa, Congressman Elijah Cummings requested that the Committee hold a hearing with current acting Federal Housing Finance Agency Director Ed DeMarco and the Inspector General of the FHFA Steve Linick.
This request comes after a new report issued by Linick’s office warned that mortgage companies that service Freddie Mac-backed loans failed to implement requirements to resolve escalated cases of “serious homeowner complaints alleging abuses such as improper foreclosures and fraudulent servicing practices.”
Cummings noted that the report is the latest in what he sees is a string of failures by FHFA leadership to protect American homeowners.
He wrote, “After so many reports documenting the abuses homeowners have suffered at the hands of mortgage servicers, it is unconscionable that FHFA has failed to require mortgage servicers to properly handle tens of thousands of homeowner complaints.”
Cummings asked that representatives from Bank of America ($12.56 -0.01%), CitiMortgage ($45.23 0%), Provident andWells Fargo ($37.20 0.06%) also be invited to the hearing. These mortgage servicers were spotlighted by the Inspector General’s report as failing to report monthly on the escalated cases they receive.