British Airways crew celebrate Her Majesty becoming the longest reigning monarch (C)Geoff Caddick-PABritish Airways pilots, cabin crew and ground staff – past and present – who have had the honour of flying the Queen came together at Heathrow Airport in London to celebrate Her Majesty The Queen becoming Britain’s longest reigning Monarch on September 9.Wearing the uniforms they would have worn when they flew with The Queen, 30 crew gathered at Terminal 5 to raise a flag in honour of Her Majesty reaching this historical milestone.HM The Queen greets BOAC cabin crew Patricia Lindsay on arrival from Lille at London Airport 11 April 1957Bob Godfrey, 79, a retired chief steward, who was pictured in 1972 greeting The Queen as she stepped off a flight from Heathrow to Turkey, said: “I had the honour of serving Her Majesty on two separate flights; once in 1972 and again in 1990. We all felt so proud when we boarded the aircraft and couldn’t believe our Queen would shortly be coming on board.”Patricia Pearce MBE, who joined BOAC (British Airways’ long-haul predecessor) in 1952 – a year before Elizabeth II was crowned – and served The Queen on her scheduled two-week Royal visit to New Zealand in 1974, said: “The trip ended up lasting almost two months because the Heath government was brought down in the middle of the trip so the Royal couple had to come back to the UK and then fly back out again. I will always remember standing on the tarmac at Honolulu late at night as the plane taxied round the corner with the Royal Standard flying out the top of the aircraft.”HM The Queen and HRH Prince PhilipJane Ainley, 47, long-haul cabin crew, who served The Queen on the flight home from Perth following her state visit to Australia in 2011 said: “I was thrilled to be asked to serve on a Royal flight from Perth to London which was the first non-stop flight between Australia and the UK. My father also had the honour of carrying The Queen on a flight from Heathrow to Vancouver back in 1963 so I felt rather emotional when I was given the opportunity to follow in his footsteps!”British Airways has also released photographs from its Speedbird Heritage Centre, including the first telegram sent to Her Royal Highness as Queen.On January 31, 1952, British Airways’ predecessor, BOAC, flew Her Royal Highness, the Princess Elizabeth to East Africa on the first stage of a Commonwealth tour. A week later, following the death of her father His Majesty King George VI, she was flown back on a BOAC Argonaut as Queen Elizabeth II.The British Airways museum has the original telegram received on the flight home from the Queen Mother to her daughter, pictured below:Original copy of the telegram The Queen received from her mother on a BOAC aircraft following her father’s death. (C) British AirwaysThe message was received over the radio, written directly into the Captain’s log-book and then copied out by hand onto a BOAC signal form, before being presented to Her Majesty.The airline also has a copy of the original flight path plan, which is topped with the image of a crown to depict the flight The Queen returned to the UK on.The Captain’s original log-book remains in the British Airways Speedbird Heritage Centre which notes that Her Royal Highness, Princess Elizabeth was on board on January 31 and yet the aircraft that returned was carrying the new Queen. Fly British AirwaysSource = British Airways
Richard Morgan Sabre-South PacificRichard Morgan appointed as Regional DirectorSabre Corporation (NASDAQ: SABR) the leading technology provider to the global travel industry, announced today that it has appointed Sabre veteran Richard Morgan to lead an expanded South Pacific team in the newly created role of Regional Director.Morgan will now oversee the Sabre Travel Network business in Australia and New Zealand, together with the company’s strategic joint-venture in neighbouring Indonesia. His focus is on growing the region’s travel businesses with a combination of Sabre’s best-in-class technologies and the company’s unrivalled access to 160 markets globally.This move for Morgan builds on a decade in sales and marketing with Sabre, the global travel technology leader. He was most recently Managing Director of Global Accounts and previously with the Supplier Commerce and Strategic Partnership team. His earlier career involved similar key account roles within the airline, telecommunications and FMCG industries.“Richard’s deep understanding of Sabre’s unique capabilities and the different client-servicing models in the South Pacific make him the ideal candidate to grow our business and partnerships and to inspire the regional team,” said Roshan Mendis, senior vice president of Sabre Travel Network Asia Pacific. “In Richard we have a Regional Director who is knowledgeable about Sabre products globally and is uniquely capable of catering those products for the benefit of our partners in Australia, New Zealand and Indonesia. This is an exciting time for our business in the South Pacific region”.As the Regional Director, Morgan will be based in Sydney and will now report into the Sabre regional headquarters in Singapore. Source = Sabre Corporation Sabrelearn more here Sabre Pacific
The Islands of Tahiti celebrate 50 years of overwater luxuryThe Islands of Tahiti celebrate 50 years of overwater luxuryTahiti Tourisme is celebrating 50 years of overwater bungalows, the striking over-the-water accommodation that helped put the Islands of Tahiti on the map.In 1967, Tahiti became the first destination in the world to take accommodation into uncharted waters, building suites over its islands’ beautiful blue lagoons in a move that cemented the Society Islands as one of the world’s most sought-after holiday destinations.The first humble overwater bungalows were built in Raiatea and Moorea by the “Bali Hai Boys” – Americans Don “Muk” McCullum, Jay Carlisle and the late Hugh Kelley – who travelled to the region after being swept away by James Michener’s South Pacific.Fifty years on, there are now nearly 900 overwater bungalows spread across eight of Tahiti’s 118 islands, with the picturesque accommodation becoming as famous as the destination’s dazzling lagoons.Originally built as traditional stilted coral homes, over the past five decades the Islands of Tahiti’s overwater bungalows have evolved into palatial suites boasting private terraces, infinity pools, hammocks, spa baths and in-room glass floors – fondly referred to as Tahiti TV.The iconic Hotel Bora Bora, the first hotel built on Bora Bora, which is set to reopen as an Aman Resort in the coming years, added overwater suites in 1970 and now eleven Bora Bora resorts from the St Regis to the Four Seasons and the Sofitel, all offer the picturesque style of accommodation which has helped to make the island a popular playground for honeymooners and celebrities alike.The first two-storey villas were introduced by the Hilton Bora Bora (now the Conrad) in 2009 and made famous by the Kardashians in 2011, with the Intercontinental Bora Bora Thalasso currently constructing its own split-level suites which are set to open later this year.Tahiti Tourisme Director Australia New Zealand Robert Thompson said Tahiti’s popularity as a high-end destination can be traced back to the introduction of overwater villas half a century ago.“Nothing compliments Tahiti’s striking natural beauty more than her overwater bungalows. This luxurious style of accommodation blends seamlessly with the islands’ crystal-clear lagoons, laid-back culture and French sophistication. Overwater villas are a huge part of what makes Tahiti so remarkable and why it has been the world’s pre-eminent island destination for five decades,” Mr Thompson said.Indulge in the ultimate overwater experience with a 12-night package offering a stay in overwater bungalows across three islands including Tahiti, Bora Bora and Rangiroa from $7599* per person twin share. The package includes return economy flights from Australia, overwater accommodation at Le Meridien Tahiti, Le Meridien Bora Bora and Kia Ora Resort Rangiroa, and transfers including inter-island flights. The package is available with business class flights from $9999* per person twin share. For more information or to book visit Tahiti Tourisme*Subject to availability, conditions apply. Available for sale until April 30, 2017 and for travel until March 31, 2018.Follow Tahiti Tourisme on Twitter http://www.twitter.com/TahitiTourismAU Instagram https://www.instagram.com/tahititourismau/ and Facebook www.facebook.com/TahitiTourismAU or visit www.tahiti-tourisme.com.auSource = Tahiti Tourisme
Canopy Park (Petal Garden)Changi Airport invites Aussies to become a ‘Jewel Citizen’To celebrate the opening of the latest wonder of the world – Jewel Changi Airport (Jewel) – Changi Airport is offering Australians the chance to win a trip to Singapore to experience the wonders of Jewel for themselves.Boosting Changi Airport’s world-class offerings, Jewel is a one-of-a-kind lifestyle destination, offering family-friendly attractions, 280 unique shopping and dining concepts, as well as airport and accommodation facilities to more than 1 million Aussies who visit Singapore each year.The exclusive opportunity to win a Jewel citizenship kicks off today. The lucky winner will have the opportunity to bring three others along to be among the first Aussies to experience Jewel’s Canopy Park. Opening this June, Canopy Park is located on the uppermost level of Jewel and offers attractions such as mazes, walking and bouncing nets, Discovery Slides and a Canopy Bridge. The winners will also receive return flights to and accommodation in Singapore.To apply for the chance to win a Jewel citizenship, entrants will need to complete a simple three-step application via the competition webpage.Step one: Entrants must build their ‘Passport’ by providing their details (name, date of birth and email) and acknowledge the ‘Pledge of Citizenship’ Step two: Submit a photo. Unlike the usual passport photo struggle, applicants have the following options:Upload a picture of themselvesTake a picture with custom Jewel camera effects that places the entrant with the magnificent Rain Vortex, available on the Facebook mobile app, and upload it Choose an avatar Step three: Take the ‘Jewel Citizenship Test’ – a short quiz related to Jewel. Tip: all answers can be found by exploring the website and every correct answer gives the entrant additional entries into the prize drawTo increase their chances of winning, entrants are encouraged to share the competition with family and friends.The competition runs from 15th May 2019 until 26th June 2019. The winner will be officially announced on 28th June 2019.For more information and to enter, please visit: au.changiairport.com/jewel/Source = Changi Airport
The 15th annual WTTC Global Summit was held in Madrid, Spain from April 15-16, 2015 united Travel & Tourism leaders from across the whole world, bringing together top representatives from the public and private sectors, from travel associations and the media in a unique networking and discussion forum.Sitting on the panel were Minister Alain St. Ange, the Seychelles Minister responsible for Tourism and Culture; Professor John Spengler, the Akira Yamaguchi Professor of Environmental Health & Human Habitation and also Director for the Centre of Health and the Global Environment at Harvard School of Public Health; and Darrel Wade, the CEO of PEAK Adventure Travel.“Tourism is the pillar of the Seychelles economy, but we are conscious that without a sustainable approach to our tourism development we shall destroy what our visitors come to Seychelles to experience,” stated Minister St. Ange.Professor Spengler opened the debate by asserting facts and figures on the harm caused to the environment by the millions of travellers, and Darrel Wade mentioned his company’s reorganisation to be environmentally friendly in holiday travels being offered by his company.Travel & Tourism’s total contribution to the global economy has risen to 9.5% of global GDP (USD 7 trillion) not only outpacing the wider economy, but also growing faster than other significant sectors such as financial and business services, transport and manufacturing. Travel & Tourism forecasts over the next 10 years also look extremely favourable.
The Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) introduced Pompeii: In the Shadow of the Volcano with an explosive multi-media show lighting up Bloor Street. The ROM’s iconic Michael Lee-Chin Crystal was transformed by a dramatic light installation projecting foreboding images of Mount Vesuvius onto the Museum. The immersive week-long display re-created the experience of living under the threat of the famed volcano using a series of increasingly dramatic projections. The spectacle reached its climax with the eruption of Mount Vesuvius. A fireworks display from the roof of the Lee-Chin Crystal and a sound show coincided with the eruption to make ROM visitors feel as if they were at the foot of the volcano. More than 3,000 revellers, many dressed in togas, enjoyed the once-in-a-lifetime event as part of the Pompeii-themed Friday Night Live (FNL) event, presented by Ford of Canada.The light installation on the Lee-Chin Crystal is just one part of the Pompeii marketing campaign created in partnership between the ROM’s in-house marketing team and its new agency BT/A Advertising. Other components of the campaign include comprehensive digital and social campaigns, zone wraps at Dundas TTC Station, streetcar wraps, activations on the ROM’s plaza, as well as TV, outdoor, transit, digital, radio and print ads. Signage at Toronto’s Billy Bishop Airport and pre-show spots in Cineplex theatres will debut in July. The campaign features a looming image of Mount Vesuvius and is in market across the GTA from June 6, 2015 to January 3, 2016.
In order to drive diversified and sustainable tourism to the islands Antigua and Barbuda, Ministry of Tourism, the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority and Airbnb have signed an agreement.In Antigua and Barbuda, there are over 500 active listings listed on the Airbnb platform and a typical host has annual earnings of about $5,700. The platform has been consistently collaborating with several governments in the Caribbean, as well as the Caribbean Tourism Organisation, as the region acknowledges the growing importance of home sharing.“Today is an important step in further strengthening the tourism industry in Antigua and Barbuda by signing this partnership with Airbnb. The tourism and services industry is continually evolving, and Airbnb is the largest game changer in the accommodation sector. By working with them, we will ensure that Antigua and Barbuda is interacting with the full spectrum of visitors,” said Asot Michael, Tourism Minister. Shawn Sullivan, Public Policy Lead- Central America and Caribbean, Airbnb, said, “We are proud to work with Antigua and Barbuda to assist in the creation of new economic opportunities for the local economy and offer genuine experiences for travellers. Our joint efforts will highlight the culture, heritage and hospitality of local residents.”The trio will begin a dialogue about a framework for taxation on accommodation. This is intended to assist hosts to be able to pay accommodation taxes through the platform and contribute with their local community and government, as has been the case in over 275 jurisdictions around the world.
According to tourism officials, Orlando in the state of Florida has welcomed a record-setting 72 million tourist last year. The 5% year-over-year increase in visitors was powered by domestic travellers which help Orlando to hold its title as the most visited destination in the United States.“The success in Orlando is great, not just for this iconic destination, but for travel as a whole,” said Roger Dow, CEO, U.S. Travel Association, who was recently in Orlando for the announcement of the 2017 figures.Tourism in Orlando and other parts of Florida took a toll last September for almost a week during the preparations for and the aftermath of Hurricane Irma on the peninsula. After the hurricane, Visit Orlando, the area’s tourism board, launched social media and publicity campaigns that showed central Florida was open for business. Orlando’s record number of visitors has been built on the continuous addition of new attractions and rides at the area’s theme parks, said George Aguel, CEO, Visit Orlando.In order to lure more tourist, Disney World opened up a new section of Animal Kingdom, Pandora-The World of Avatar, and Universal Orlando Resort opened a new water park, Volcano Bay last year. This year, Universal is planning to launch a ride based on the “Fast and Furious” movie franchise and Disney World is opening another “Toy Story” ride. In 2019, Disney World will launch “Star Wars” land and SeaWorld Orlando will introduce “Sesame Street” land.“We’ve learned from history that it’s not enough to just build it and hope they come,” Aguel said. “We work really hard to keep that messaging, marketing globally.”Domestically, Visit Orlando put an added emphasis on marketing to the northeast United States last year. Orlando International Airport last year became Florida’s busiest airport.“You just have a huge population base there and they come for a good length of time,” Aguel said.
NiYO, the new-age digital banking solutions provider for salaried employees, has launched NiYO Global Travel Card, which is the first-ever forex card with ‘zero forex mark-up’. Travellers, using this card, will not pay any currency exchange premium and international transaction fees – unlike a regular forex card.With the NiYO Global Travel Card, the overseas traveller will effectively have no need for the usual multi-currency forex cards or travellers’ cheques – all the while making international transactions cost-effective across 150-plus countries and 35 million merchants worldwide.Besides the cost-effective feature, NiYO Global Card also offers instant digital onboarding, convenient loading from the user’s bank account via NEFT/IMPS.The card is supported by a cutting-edge mobile app, which gives users the ability to lock and unlock either the full card or a payment channel anytime, anywhere in the world. The app also provides real-time notifications on usage, exchange rates and refunds, while helping users find convenient ATM locations, avail nearby offers – thus making it one of the most modern cards in the world today.Further, business travellers can submit claims on-the-go by adding bills for each transaction right in the app. These claims can be instantaneously approved by their employer organisations via the NiYO Corporate Portal.NiYO CEO and Co-founder Vinay Bagri said, “The forex card market in India is worth USD 17 billion; around 20 million people are expected to travel abroad this year. By 2020, this number will rise to 50 million. With such a staggering number of Indians travelling abroad, we aim to capture a lion’s share of the market.”NiYO CTO and Co-founder Virender Bisht said, “Our aim has been to facilitate hassle-free experience among our customer. Forex is one of the key components for travel and remains a concern. International travellers are always burdened with high currency exchange rate charged by banks, which varies between 1-3% of the amount transacted. Banks also charge either a flat fee or a set percentage of the transaction amount in addition to the currency exchange charge. Moreover, people are also very worried about card security abroad. This card is a one-stop solution for all of these problems. We have invested our best effort and technology in the designing process to provide the safety feature along with other components. The card has already been reviewed and appreciated by many top executives from the India Inc. and today, we are glad to present it to our customers at large.”
The health of the labor market has a far-reaching impact on many areas of housing. Not only does the sector itself generate job opportunities, but when the economy is growing and the number of employed rises, so do home sales and mortgage originations.[IMAGE]According to the real estate research firm “”Hanley Wood Market Intelligence””:http://www.hwmarketintelligence.com/, there’s also a definitive link between employment and home prices. Two analysts with the firm, Jonathan Dienhart and Ken Lee, conducted an analysis of metro area jobs data released by the Department of Labor for the month of March, juxtaposed with price trends for new homes. In a Hanley Wood “”_Housing Intelligence_ blog post””:http://www.housingintelligence.com/economics/joined-at-the-hip.html, Dienhart and Lee lay out their findings. Based on the Labor Department’s report, Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Dallas, Texas; and Houston, Texas were the best performing major metros when looking at year-over-uear increases in employment. Dienhart and Lee found that[COLUMN_BREAK]these three markets also saw large double-digit increases in median new home prices. Milwaukee recorded a 2.8 percent annual gain in employment in March. New home prices there surged 39 percent between March 2010 and March 2011, according to the analysts’ _Housing Intelligence_ data. Dallas claimed a 2.4 percent increase in employment over the 12 months ending in March. Over that same period, its median price for new homes jumped 19.6 percent. Annual employment gains registered 2.1 percent in Houston, joined by a 13.2 percent rise in new home prices. At the other end of the spectrum, the three worst performing metros in terms of annual employment movement were Sacramento, California; Baltimore, Maryland; and Atlanta, Georgia. Sacramento saw its employment levels dwindle by 1.8 percent between March 2010 and March 2011. During that time, new home prices slid 6.3 percent. Baltimore recorded a 0.4 percent drop in employment over the 12-month period, while the median price of a new home there fell 5.2 percent. Same story for Georgia ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┼ô a 0.2 percent decline in employment, accompanied by a 3.8 percent decline in new home prices. “”[O]ne could say jobs and housing are joined at the hip, with jobs leading the way,”” the analysts said. “”Regions that are creating jobs and keeping steady employment are seeing the positive results spill over into the local housing market which is why it is important for labor market conditions to continue to improve.”” Share in Data, Origination June 14, 2011 427 Views The Economic Link: Job Creation = Home Price Increases Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Hanley Wood Market Intelligence Home Prices Investors Lenders & Servicers Service Providers Unemployment 2011-06-14 Carrie Bay
in Data, Government, Origination, Secondary Market, Servicing Agents & Brokers Attorneys & Title Companies Investors Lenders & Servicers Movers & Shakers Processing Service Providers 2013-01-29 Krista Franks Brock January 29, 2013 424 Views New,Mortgage Industry Veteran Joins STRATMOR Group as Practice Manager Share The “”STRATMOR Group,””:http://www.stratmorgroup.com/ a Georgia-based consulting firm for the mortgage industry with more than 250 clients, announced Monday it is bringing Lisa Springer, an industry veteran with more than 20 years’ experience, on board to serve in the role of practice manager. [IMAGE]In her new role, Springer will work to introduce best practices in all aspects of STRATMOR’s business. She will help STRATMOR enhance its service offerings and its “”intellectual expertise.””Additionally, Springer’s new role involves expanding STRATMOR’s customer awareness. [COLUMN_BREAK]””We are confident that her efforts will allow us to maintain the integrity and boutique nature of our firm while creating a strong foundation for our future growth,”” said Matt Lind, managing director at STRATMOR Group. Prior to joining STRATMOR, Springer “”was instrumental in building several professional services and technology companies that still serve the mortgage space, enabling them to become leaders in their fields of expertise,”” Lind said. Springer left her role as EVP of sales at “”Motivity Solutions,””:http://www.motivitysolutions.com/ a business intelligence provider, which she helped build from a small startup in 2009. She also served as EVP of sales for another financial and technology firm, where she developed sales strategies and directed sales teams. Springer graduated magna cum laude from Regis University with a Bachelor of Science in business administration at Regis University, where she also received the John S. Brennon award in business administration. “”I have high aspirations and confidence that our team will continue to provide the industry with valuable, relevant peer data, executive workshops to ensure that decision makers understand how to optimize this information, actionable execution strategies, and recommendations to maximize mortgage company shareholder value,”” Springer said.
Price Gains Continue to Build Up Steam Share April 14, 2014 491 Views FNC Inc. Home Prices 2014-04-14 Tory Barringer in Daily Dose, Data, Featured, Headlines, News FNC, Inc.’s Residential Price Index (RPI) once again picked up its clip in February, rising at the highest annual rate in nearly eight years, the company reported.The national index, created to gauge price movement among “normal” home sales (exclusive of distressed properties), climbed 9.1 percent year-over-year in February, bringing it back to levels last seen at the peak of the housing market in June 2006 as non-distressed sales gain market share.The two narrower composites measuring 30-city and 10-city price changes ratcheted up even higher, rising 10.7 percent and 11.5 percent yearly, respectively, with price momentum picking up in most of the country.“The momentum is expected to pick up as Spring home buying is getting into full swing, even absorbing the slack caused by the bad weather that affected much of the country,” FNC said in its monthly report.On a monthly basis, the national index rose 0.5 percent—the highest increase since November—while the 30- and 10-city composites were up 0.7 percent and 0.8 percent, respectively.Breaking down the 30-city index, Sacramento and Chicago experienced the largest one-month gains at 2.9 percent each—a full percentage point higher than the next highest gain (Nashville at 1.9 percent).While the rebound in Sacramento likely just reflects a comeback from an unexpectedly large decline the city saw in January, FNC says “home prices in Chicago are gathering momentum with February’s impressive gain following a strong January performance.”Meanwhile, prices in nine other cities—including San Diego, Orlando, and Phoenix—continue to see solid improvements.Six markets out of the 30-city composite posted negative movement: Baltimore (-0.9 percent); Denver (-0.3 percent); Minneapolis (-0.4 percent); Portland, Oregon (-0.9 percent); St. Louis (-0.4 percent); and Washington, D.C. (-0.7 percent). Prices stayed flat in San Antonio, the only city to see no change.
in Daily Dose, Data, Government, Headlines, News April 22, 2014 471 Views The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) released its monthly House Price Index (HPI) for February, revealing continued growth even as winter weather slowed the market.The broad measure of the movement of single-family home prices in this purchase-only index went up by 0.6 percent, according to FHFA, and with the exception of November 2013, marked nearly two straight years of increases.The HPI is calculated every month using numbers from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.From February 2013 to February 2014, home prices were up by 6.9 percent. This is good news, but they still remain 7.6 percent below the April 2007 peak and about the same as the June 2005 index level.The indicator of housing price trends at various geographic levels shows that within the nine census divisions, the 12-month changes in the New England, South Atlantic, and Pacific division were all positive.The next report, scheduled for release May 27, will include quarterly data for the first quarter of 2014. Fannie Mae FHFA Freddie Mac Home Prices 2014-04-22 Paul Salfen FHFA Sees Third HPI Increase Despite Harsh Weather Share
Share in Daily Dose, Headlines, News, Secondary Market Business Shrinks Uninterrupted at Freddie Mac Delinquency Freddie Mac Mortgage-Backed Securities Volume Summary 2014-06-25 Colin Robins Freddie Mac released its monthly volume summary for May 2014, tracking information on the company’s mortgage-related portfolio, securities issuance, risk management, delinquencies, debt activities, and other investments. The summary found that overall, Freddie Mac’s total mortgage portfolio decreased at an annualized rate of 2.1 percent in May.Purchases and issuances totaled $19.6 billion in May, down slightly from April’s figure of $19.9 billion. As of the end of May 2014, purchases and issuances totaled $91.9 billion year-to-date.The company reported that its total annualized liquidation rate for May 2014 was 13.6 percent, up slightly from April’s rate of 12.9 percent.The company reported that single-family refinance-loan purchase and guarantee volume was $7.8 billion in May, representing 44 percent of total single-family mortgage portfolio purchases or issuances. Relief refinance mortgages made up approximately 27 percent of the company’s total single-family refinance volume during May 2014.The unpaid principal balance (UPB) of Freddie Mac’s mortgage-related investment portfolio decreased by approximately $6.1 billion in May.The total number of loan modifications for the company in May 2014 was 5,378, and modifications totaled 30,441 for the five months ending on May 31, 2014, according to Freddie Mac.The delinquency rate declined slightly, down from 2.15 percent in April to 2.1 percent in May. Delinquency rates have steadily declined every month from May 2013’s rate of 2.85 percent. The multifamily delinquency rate increased slightly, up from 0.05 percent in April to 0.06 percent in May. June 25, 2014 477 Views
Home Builders’ Steady Confidence Bodes Well for Single-Family Market Share March 15, 2016 743 Views Confidence among home builders has been on a series of ups and downs over the last few months, showing slow, but continued progression in the single-family sector, but they are still faced with concerns about labor and lot shortages.Home builder confidence in the market for newly-built single-family homes was flat for the month of March at 58, according to the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI).Last month, builder confidence came in at 58, down from January’s 61 and seven points lower than its recent peak of 65 in October. That said, the index is still well above the tipping point of 50 and three points above last February’s number.“Confidence levels are hovering above the 50-point mid-range, indicating that the single-family market continues to make slow but steady progress,” said NAHB Chairman Ed Brady, a home builder and developer from Bloomington, Illinois. “However, builders continue to report problems regarding a shortage of lots and labor.”The NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index gauges builder perceptions of current single-family home sales and sales expectations for the next six months as “good,” “fair” or “poor.” The survey also asks builders to rate traffic of prospective buyers as “high to very high,” “average” or “low to very low.” Any number over 50 indicates that more builders view conditions as good than poor.According to the NAHB, the HMI component gauging current sales conditions was steady in March at 65, while the index measuring sales expectations in the next six months dropped three points to 61. In addition, the component that measures buyer traffic increased four points to 43, the report noted.“While builder sentiment has been relatively flat for the last few months, the March HMI reading correlates with NAHB’s forecast of a steady firming of the single-family sector in 2016,” said NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe. “Solid job growth, low mortgage rates, and improving mortgage availability will help keep the housing market on a gradual upward trajectory in the coming months.”Crowe added that the stable but modest level of sentiment aligns with recent construction and sales reports. The Census Bureau and HUD recently reported that January single-family start and permits were down but remained well above the 2015 annual averages. Meanwhile, new homes sales also fell in January but are expected to bounce back.”Builders remain concerned about the availability and cost of labor and land,” Crowe said. “Higher costs for those two elementary feeds into home building are driving up the price of homes and making it even more difficult to answer the budding demand from first time home buyers. Increased equity in the hands of existing home owners allow those buyers to trade up but still leaves the first time buyer stretched.”He continued, “The March reading of the HMI is in line with NAHB’s expectation for a modest but steady increase in home sales as buyers do begin to leave their winter hibernation, look around for new home options and finally break that pent up demand dam.” Builder Confidence Home Builders National Association of Home Builders Wells Fargo Housing Market Index 2016-03-15 Staff Writer in Daily Dose, Data, Headlines, News
Mortgage Rates 2017-10-13 Brianna Gilpin October 13, 2017 545 Views Mortgage Rates Hit Biggest Increase Since Summer Freddie Mac released the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey Thursday, revealing that 30-year fixed-rate mortgages rates posted its biggest week-over-week increase since July 2017.”The 30-year mortgage rate increased for a second consecutive week, jumping 6 basis points to 3.91 percent,” Freddie Mac Chief Economist Sean Becketti said. “The 10-year Treasury yield also rose, climbing 4 basis points this week.”Last week, 30-year fixed rate mortgage rates averaged 3.91 percent, which was at 3.47 percent this time in 2016. 15-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 3.21 percent with an average 0.5 point, an increase from last week when the 15-year FRM sat at 3.15 percent. In early October 2016, the rate averaged 2.82 percent.Five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) averaged 3.16 percent with an average 0.4 point. This was a slight decrease from last week when it averaged 3.18 percent and an increase from this time last year when it averaged 2.82 percent.In its weekly mortgage rate trend index, Bankrate said nearly two-thirds of respondents said rates will remain relatively stable next week, but Shaun Guerrero, Branch Manager at Alterra Home Loans in Silverdale, Washington believes they will go up.“The housing market is still going strong! Year over year, we are up almost half a percent in rates and purchases are still up 7 percent for the year,” Guerrero told Bankrate. “It is important that as rates look to continue to go up, you lock in your loan early in the lending process. Rates will continue their rise over the next few weeks.”Les Parker, SVP of LoanLogics in Trevose, Pennsylvania, believes rates will go down.“It’s October. Will it be Surprise, Trick, or Treat (or is it Tweet)? The mix of trends among related markets offer opportunities for surprises and tricks,” Parker told Bankrate. “But the sweet treat comes with mortgages staying bullish. Who knows about tweets?” in Daily Dose, Featured, Headlines, News, Origination Share
May 17, 2018 598 Views Share in Daily Dose, Featured, News, Origination Household debt is on the rise driven by increased mortgage balances, but it’s slower this time as mortgage debt continues to remain relatively flat according to the latest research by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York that was released on Thursday. Titled “The Home Prices, Housing Wealth and Home Equity Extraction” the report focused on the evolution of housing wealth, its use as a collateral and its long-term implications for this housing cycle. The report indicated that debt balances had increased $63 billion during the quarter driven by increased mortgage balances that grew $57 billion. Breaking up the household debt, the report revealed that though auto and student debt rose during the period, credit card and home equity lines of credit (HELOC) debts declined.Household debt peaked during the quarter, the report said and as on March 31, 2018, it stood at $13.2 trillion, showing an increase of $536 billion than the previous peak recorded in the third quarter of 2008 and 18.5 percent above the trough in the second quarter of 2013.“Although household debt has been growing for five years, its growth has been slow relative to earlier periods, as mortgage debt has continued to be relatively flat,” the report said. “In the first quarter, aggregate delinquency rates improved, as rates on mortgage and HELOC debt declined further, while delinquency on auto and credit card debt increased.”Even though the report found that households continued to view housing as a good investment, it said that current homeowners had not used their home equity to finance consumption. According to Beverly Hirtle, EVP and Director of Research at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, one of the factors could be mortgage credit that “has been quite tight in the wake of the financial crisis.”These tight lending standards have lent to a slow growth in aggregate balances and continually improving delinquencies, the report found. In fact, the already stringent standards on HELOCs tightened further after the financial crisis with the required median score of new HELOC borrowers pegged at almost 800. Unlike HELOCs, the report said, even though mortgage standards had also been very tight since the crisis, underwriting for installment mortgages had loosened recently. Yet, homeownership seems to have fallen in recent years.“Tight credit can limit the scope for renters to become owners and for current homeowners to access their equity,” Hirtle said. Though factors such as regulation and financial institutions’ wariness about using housing as a collateral as a lesson from the crisis could be responsible for this situation, the increase in other forms of debt, especially student loans, among younger borrowers, and lower credit scores could also be responsible for the fall in homeownership as well as using home equity, the report found.The report found that those who had gained most housing wealth over the last decade were older borrowers with high credit scores and they are “probably less likely to need the credit that increased housing wealth could collateralize,” Hirtle said. “Those who do have a strong demand for credit and own some home equity may have trouble tapping it if they have less-than-stellar credit histories.” Collateral Credit credit history Credit Scores Debt Delinquencies Federal Reserve Bank of New York HELOC homeowners homes households HOUSING Investment mortgage Renters 2018-05-17 Radhika Ojha Mortgage Credit vs. Access to Equity
November 27, 2018 1,270 Views Share Why Real Estate Professionals Are Embracing Fintech FinTech First American Homebuyers Mark Fleming real estate Real Estate Sentiment Index technology 2018-11-27 Donna Joseph in Daily Dose, Featured, Market Studies, News, Technology Fintech is evolving to be a big name in the real estate industry due to increased demand from homebuyers for better service. Here’s how fintech is securing collaboration between all parties in a real estate transaction, according to First American’s proprietary Real Estate Sentiment Index (RESI) for the fourth quarter of 2018.Enhanced homebuying experienceAccording to Mark Fleming, Chief Economist at First American, the largest group of prospective homebuyers, millennials, expect greater efficiency and convenience in their home-buying experience. First America surveyed title insurance agents and real estate professionals across the nation to gauge their interest in fintech. Prospective homebuyers felt pressured to settle deals quickly before opportunities fade away due to low inventory and high home prices. Based on the respondents’ perspective, Fleming pointed out three key innovations: secure collaboration and communication portals, eClosing and remote online notarization, and chatbots to engage borrowers.Emphasis on SecurityForty-five percent of title agents and real estate professionals surveyed said that the most important financial technology that helps potential homebuyers accelerate transactions is secure collaboration and communication portals. The respondents indicated that a secure platform allows them to correspond with lenders, real estate agents, escrow officers, and other parties involved with the real estate transaction. Sophisticated Fraud Prevention TechnologiesThe report found that 34 percent of title agents and real estate professionals believe that remote online notarization and eClosings will have a large impact and will help homebuyers close their transactions faster and more efficiently. Through remote online notarization, a notary can notarize documents remotely over the internet via tamper-evident digital tools, sophisticated fraud prevention technologies and live audio-video conferencing. Fleming notes that “eClosing, the electronic execution of mortgage loan closing, can also reduce the risk of manual errors in the closing process, improving loan quality alongside efficiency.”Descent of ChatbotsEighteen percent of title agents and real estate professionals indicated that tools that help with process efficiency and automation, such as customer service chatbots, would help deliver a more efficient home-buying experience.“With more and more prospective home buyers searching for homes and information online, chatbots can help real estate agents engage potential customers in real time as they are browsing online listings, at any time of day. 2019 is anticipated to bring increased adoption of these innovations,” Fleming said. Click here to read the full report.
BordeauxFranceScenic Join Julie Goodwin – the first MasterChef winner – on a Scenic All-Inclusive Luxury Bordeaux 11-day Culinary Cruise in southwest France in 2018, priced from $6,895*pp including return flights to France.The exclusive Australian Women’s Weekly culinary experience will be replete with exquisite regional food and wine, and an array of expert tips, good humour and a humble cooking style, courtesy of Julie Goodwin!Stops along the way include the picturesque town of Saint-Émilion; the riverside towns of Blaye and Bourg; Arcachon – the jewel in France’s western coastline; and of course the World Heritage-listed city of Bordeaux.* See T & Cs
campaignGreek and Mediterranean Travel Centre Greece and Mediterranean Travel Centre’s md, Halina Kubica, took the opportunity to launch a new initiative – #WhyIDontDIYTravel Campaign – at the 37th annual Greek Festival in Sydney last weekend, and it’s a campaign that gets a big thumbs up from AFTA CEO Jayson Westbury.Halina created the campaign, and an accompanying agent and consumer competition, to promote the benefits of booking travel with an agent over diy travel.“I’m passionate about the talent we have in the travel industry, and I firmly believe that the expertise of a travel agent cannot be replicated or replaced by online booking systems,” Halina says. “#WhyIDontDIYTravel is ultimately a celebration of enjoying each trip to the fullest, and that can only be achieved when booking with an ATAS accredited travel agent.”Halina wants the campaign to highlight the serious issues that can arise when booking travel independently. The campaign also emphasises the cost savings that can be found by working with a travel agent – a fact that often comes as a surprise to consumers, who assume that DIY online booking will garner the best prices.“I commend Halina and her team on embracing the ATAS Accreditation scheme,” says Jayson Westbury,”and this is a great demonstration [of] how the industry can play a significant role in further endorsing the importance of dealing with a credible and professional agent.”Agents and consumers can enter the #WhyIDontDIYTravel competition, by demonstrating why travellers shouldn’t DIY. The most creative post will win two nights in a four-star hotel in Greece, followed by a three- night voyage with Celestyal Cruises. There are also daily prizes to be won.To enter, participants simply post their entries on Instagram, tagging @greecemedtravel.com.au and using the hashtag #WhyIDontDIYTravel.Entries can be a variety or combination of media; written, photos or video, but note that accounts must be set to public for an entry to be accepted.The #WhyIDontDIYTravel competition will run until 31 March 2019.IMAGE: @ the 37th Greek Festival in Sydney, Greece and Mediterranean Travel Centre’s Trish Loukis and Alex Karakos