5 Options When Texas Appraisals Come In Low

Despite continued predictions of a housing crash in the media, we are still seeing bidding wars and seemingly insane prices in some neighborhoods. This week alone, we saw a home listed for $1.1 million end up selling for $1.6 million – and there is not a snowball’s chance in hell that it will appraise. In […]Read More

California’s Homeowners Insurance Debacle Explained; Solutions Too

I was in Sacramento last year and I overheard this conversation with California’s Insurance Commissioner and his friend Bob. Insurance Commissioner:  “Bob, what can I do to punish consumers as much as possible? I mean, I really want to stick it to them…” Bob: “Well, this would be really cruel, but you could refuse to […]Read More

Why Most Agents Need to Refi Before October 15th; Will Rates Ever Fall?

A savvy agent emailed last week asking when she could refinance her condo which is currently at 6.5%. She was anxious to refi BEFORE she files her 2022 tax returns, as her income was down markedly in 2022, compared to 2020 and 2021. Which is the case for most agents! So, this is just another […]Read More

Inspection-Based Appraisal Waivers – Fannie Mae’s Latest Attempt To Eliminate Appraisers

Both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are pushing their latest attempt to bypass appraisers – with what are called “inspection-based appraisal waivers” or “Value Acceptance + Property Data Collection” findings. There are now so many different types of appraisals and property valuation options that I thought I’d list many of them here and explain them […]Read More

The U.S. Was NEVER Going to Default On Its Debt; Debt Ceiling Deal Here

I don’t mean to be querulous, but I have to complain about the debt ceiling nonsense again. And actually, I had no idea what “querulous” meant until it popped up on my “word of the day” feed this morning (it means “full of complaints”) and it made me want to use the word. And, speaking […]Read More

10 Year Treasury Yields Vs. Mortgage Rates (Great Info & Good News!)

The average interest rate in the U.S. is about 6.90%, according to Mortgage News Daily. The 10 Year Treasury Yield is about 3.66% today, as I type this blog. That is a difference of 4.24% In January of 2021, the average mortgage rate was near an all-time low of about 2.8%. While at the same, […]Read More

Is Everything in America Bullsh*t? The J.Crew Story

I took my Korean niece to the Fort Worth stockyards and was absolutely amazed! The stockyards themselves are a fascinating piece of American history. Established in 1849, they became a massive hub for shipping cattle to the rest of America and they played a huge role in the creation of America’s monstrous beef industry. By […]Read More

Will Rates Fall or Rise After Debt Ceiling Crisis? Rates 1% HIGHER Since April; Gray Swans Galore!

Rates bottomed out in early April, but they have been trending upward ever since – despite generally improving inflation numbers. Given that rates almost always trend downward when inflation improves, this was very surprising. I explain why this happened though in my Monday blog: The Worst of All Worlds TLDR:  Two unexpected crises surfaced that […]Read More

Lenders Giving Away Farms To Generate Volume! 1% Down Loans!

Some extraordinarily advantageous mortgage offerings have surfaced in recent weeks. This is for two reasons: (1) Lenders (or investors that buy loans) are desperate to generate volume; and (2) Lenders/investors are desperate to appease regulators by offering special financing to first-time homebuyers, particularly in economically oppressed areas. 1% Down Loans! One of these new offerings […]Read More

Is This The Worst of All Worlds? Sadly, Yes – And Here’s Why…

WOW! Rates rose every day last week even though inflation is clearly falling! This is particularly surprising because inflation is perhaps the biggest single driver of mortgage rates. Making matters worse is that inventory continues to tighten, and higher rates only exacerbate the inventory shortage because of mortgage rate lockdowns (where sellers don’t want to […]Read More

Dude, Where’s The Recession You Keep Harping About? Employment Report B.S.

Because rates have been climbing all week, I got an email that asked me where the recession is that I have been “harping about” for the last year… Why Rates Are Climbing I first want to address why rates have been climbing all week, and it has to do with the debt ceiling issue. Banks […]Read More

2024 Will Be A RECORD YEAR For Real Estate Agents! Here’s Why

Depressed real estate agents should hang in there! The reason is 2024 will likely be the best year they ever had, according to the WSJ… sort of. In this recent WSJ article titled, The Home Buyer’s Quandary: Nobody’s Selling! – The WSJ illuminated the reason why inventory is so extremely tight right now. That reason, […]Read More

A Debt Ceiling Default Will CRUSH Housing, Mortgages, and … the Entire World Economy!

The dreaded debt ceiling crisis has been in the news now for a few months, and it is scaring the heck out of everyone for a very good reason. If the debt ceiling is not raised by early June, home sales will come to a standstill, mortgage rates will shoot through the roof, and the […]Read More

Co-Marketing Fees = Higher Rates Always

 A loan officer is making the rounds offering agents $5,000 of co-marketing per closed transaction. I have nothing against the idea or co-marketing in general, but I thought I’d discuss it briefly in a blog, given that several agents have told me about the offer. Co-marketing, as most readers know, is simply an arrangement where […]Read More

A.I. Will Create Far More Jobs Than It Kills

I had a friend in high school who worked for Sentry Insurance as a typist for what would be about $40 per hour today – and man was I jealous. The law firms and investment banks I worked at in the 1980s also had “typist pools” for the old guys (we youngsters were utterly perplexed […]Read More

Refinancing Is Now Way More Expensive – Or More Difficult

This short IG video, titled “Refinancing Is Going To Be More Expensive Than Ever” was making the rounds on social media recently. We were getting questions, so I decided to blog about it. It is a good video, but the gentleman is only about half right. He is referencing the change in fees that Fannie […]Read More

Disinflationary Trend Continues DESPITE OIL & AUTOS! WHOOAA!

REMINDER #1: 14-DAY CLOSINGS WIN DEALS! Two of our clients got into contract yesterday alone with the help of our Fast 14 Calendar-Day Close in multiple offer situations. In both situations, our clients were not the highest offer too. REMINDER #2: JVM HAS “APPROVED AND READY TO MOVE” LISTS ON OUR WEBSITE – for both […]Read More

Deciphering Bullsh*t Rate Quotes

Unfortunate Inflation Update! We have been expecting a very positive inflation number on May 10th for months now for a variety of reasons, as set out by Barry Habib numerous times. BUT, Habib and others are now expecting a less positive number primarily because oil prices spiked briefly in April. We will still see very […]Read More

#1 Reason America Will Always Reign Supreme – And Why We Don’t Need to Worry

Bank Problems Will Get Much Worse! ZIRP Coming Soon! Former hedge fund manager and certified crazy guy, Hugh Hendry, was on Bloomberg yesterday – with this short, informative, and very entertaining video. Here are a few of Hendry’s points: Bank problems will get MUCH WORSE! Deposits will continue to drain out of banks because it […]Read More

Recession, Depression, Soft Landing, High Rates, Low Rates – Who Do We Believe?

In late 2020, I was having lunch with several mortgage bankers who wanted to celebrate the success we were all having – as we were all enjoying unimaginable record profits. I, however, was not in a celebratory mood, telling them that rates would likely approach 8% in the coming years and that we needed to […]Read More

7 Reasons Why Analysts Are FURIOUS With The Fed!

Top Ten AI Prompts to Save Hundreds of Hours of Work The above headline was the point of this excellent tweet thread. I highly recommend it for anyone who is still trying to figure out how to use AI. Jumbo Loans Going by the Wayside? Rob Chrisman, the mortgage industry’s premier blogger, wrote this yesterday:  “On […]Read More

When It Makes Sense to Take a 3% HIGHER Rate (More Often Than You Think)

MY BORROWER WAS BANKRUPT – WITH $160,000 OF CREDIT CARD DEBT When I first got into the mortgage business in 1994, a borrower came to me with $160,000 of credit and auto debt and a $160,000 mortgage. He had never missed a payment, but his credit card debt was growing by $500 every month. This […]Read More


If you’re a real estate agent and you’re not using ChatGPT, then you’re missing out on the biggest thing to hit the industry since the invention of indoor plumbing (or at least since the invention of the internet). As most readers know, ChatGPT is like a super-powered personal assistant, powered by AI technology and capable […]Read More

Stopping Onslaught of Mortgage Lender Phone Calls! Pending Home Sales Down! FHA RATES ARE LOW!

SURE SIGN OF RECESSION: A MASSIVE UPTICK IN SALES CALLS! Famed, Nobel-Prize-winning economist, Paul Krugman tweeted this morning that today’s GDP data shows “no hint of recession.” So, it is obvious to me that Mr. Krugman does not own a business because if he did, he would be getting inundated with sales calls and know […]Read More


“Low inventory and high demand from homebuyers pushed up U.S. home prices in February.” “The index posting a gain after seven months of decline is ‘suggesting that home prices nationally have bottomed out,’ Selma Hepp, chief economist at CoreLogic, said in a note.”  Both of the above quotes are from this MarketWatch article from yesterday, […]Read More

Fannie Mae Is Making STRONG Borrowers SUBSIDIZE WEAK Borrowers

In what was one of many failed social experiments of the 1970s, my high school in AZ did not enforce attendance. And – needless to say – with ample sunshine and many recreational activities (the school was a veritable country club) on campus and nearby, most of my friends and I rarely attended class. So, […]Read More

Debunking Negative Housing News Again. Sigh…

“I just had a listing sell for $200,000 over asking. All of my homes are selling within a week, and at list price. This is not my reality. Am I missing something?” That was a text I received last night from an extremely successful and experienced agent who has listed and sold more homes than […]Read More

0% Interest Rates – Coming Soon! (per Alf Peccatiello)

I Love ZIRP! My love for ZIRP cannot be overstated. Every morning, I zirp up my pants, go to 7-Eleven and order an extra large Zirpee, and listen to my favorite song – Zirpity-Doo-Dah. For those of you who don’t obsess with macroeconomics (and who are missing all the fun), ZIRP is an acronym for […]Read More

Why Apple’s New Bank Will Increase Mortgage Rates; Will Apple Do Mortgages Too?

Apple just launched a high-yield savings account, offering 4.15%, and $60 billion in deposits drained from three major U.S. banking institutions yesterday alone, per this tweet. There has been a “yield war” of sorts amongst all the regional banks over the last several months; most of them are offering higher and higher yields on Certificates […]Read More

Why Did Rates Shoot UP 1/2% Recently?

Buyers Immediately Leave Market When Rates Move Higher One of the most surprising aspects of the rate increases we have been watching over the past year is how quickly buyers and borrowers respond to the increases. We all of course expect to see less refinance and purchase activity in response to higher rates. But, what […]Read More


Marshmallow.com = My Favorite App! I love marshmallows. And – every three to four months when my craving gets bad, I order marshmallows right to my door from marshmallow.com. And – it is awesome! They show up the same day, and the marshmallows are always fresh and delicious. They come in four flavors (chocolate, vanilla, […]Read More

Down Payment Help In Exchange for Appreciation or Equity

51 Offers on One Property! (Housing Market Must Be Crashing) One of our pre-approved buyers was one of 51 offers yesterday. When CNBC’s Diana Olick (the loudest housing doomsday voice in the media) heard about the 51 offers, she immediately called the sellers and offered them $100,000 to accept an offer below list price – […]Read More

Why I HATE 40-Year Mortgages

There has been a lot of hubbub recently about FHA’s 40-year mortgages. But – it is all for naught, as FHA is ONLY offering 40-year mortgages for loan modifications for borrowers who are having trouble making payments. FHA IS NOT OFFERING 40-YEAR MORTGAGES FOR STANDARD PURCHASES AND REFI LOANS. There are many lenders that do […]Read More

Dollar Is UP; Home Values UP AGAIN; Ignore Labor Markets; Fast Closes Please; Inflation Could Push Rates Up This Week; Big Rate Drop Is “Imminent”

Here are a few random points today: 1. The Dollar’s Value is Up (relative to other currencies). I wrote a blog last week explaining why the dollar will NOT collapse, despite the claims of Glenn Beck, Tucker Carlson, Peter Schiff, and others, that we face imminent dollar Armageddon. And – sure enough, the dollar has […]Read More

Shattered Dreams! CalHFA’s Dream Program Is Out of Money ALREADY

PROGRAM UPDATE AS OF 4/7/2023: We were just informed by CalHFA that as of Friday afternoon the CalHFA Dream For All Program is now entirely out of funds, and the program is now paused. Please contact us to discuss alternative financing options at (855) 855-4491 or [email protected] CalHFA’s Dream For All program truly seemed like […]Read More

Defending Realtor Commissions In Response to a Massive Class Action Lawsuit

Turning Down Listings Years ago, I worked closely with an extremely successful real estate agent who would sometimes turn down listing opportunities because he could not make enough money off of them. This is because he put so much time and money into the marketing and selling of the listings – particularly when the market […]Read More

INVENTORY IS STILL THE PROBLEM! Fascinating Data; Solutions Too; Rates Hit New Lows

Active Listings Fall in March! Active listings fell in March to only 563,000 nationwide, down from 578,000 in February. This would be close to an all-time record low, but for the last year’s even lower numbers. But, either way, the number is extremely low, not even close to the 4 million we saw in 2007, […]Read More

The U.S. Dollar Is Going to Collapse & It Will Be HORRIFIC! Buy Real Estate!

The U.S. Dollar will collapse and lose its reserve currency status… but NOT for a LONG TIME (years, if not decades).   There have been mainstream and social media headlines everywhere over the last week proclaiming that the dollar is now facing its imminent demise.   But, we have been seeing similar headlines since the 1980s, and […]Read More

February Pending Homes Sales: Great News Or Awful News? Inflation Down

The total number of homes that went into contract in February increased by 0.8% in February compared to January. Here are two reactions: Mortgage and Real Estate Industry:  “Holy Smokes – that is amazing, great news, and concrete proof that the housing market remains incredibly strong!” Diana Olick of CNBC:  “We’re all going to die!” […]Read More

The 2nd Biggest Problem in Real Estate (& It Is HUGE)

Expected Lifespan of CALHFA’s Dream Program: < 90 Days This a brief reminder that CalHFA’s Dream For All Program (100% financing/shared equity program) will very likely run out of funds in the near future. Hence, agents and borrowers need to move quickly if they want to take advantage of it. Biggest Problems in Real Estate […]Read More

House Prices Up 13x; College Coaching Salaries Up 370x – A Bit of Fascinating Perspective

America’s Top College Coach Made $27,000 in 1974 vs. $10 Million Today Woody Hayes was a renowned and somewhat nutty head coach of Ohio State – where he resided for decades, winning a whopping FIVE national championships. He very famously ended his career though when he punched an opposing team’s player after an interception – […]Read More

Is China’s Collapse Imminent?

A lot of smart people say, yes – China’s financial collapse is very likely.  I have addressed China’s woes several times over the last few years, including  (1) China’s Banking System Collapse Is Terrifying; (2) China’s Massive Housing Bubble; and (3) Are China’s Woes Good For Mortgage and Real Estate? I am bringing China up […]Read More

Putting the “Median Home Price” Nonsense to Bed – Once and For All

MEDIAN PIZZA PRICE PLUMMETED AT JVM! We are in a literal state of panic here at JVM because the median price of pizza has dropped like a rock over the last year – and we are pretty sure it is a sign of a total meltdown in the pizza market! In 2021, we only ordered […]Read More

Fed Raises Rates; Mortgage Rates PLUMMET; Why? JVM’s Here to Stay!

JVM’s Here to Stay; Backup for Banks Pulling Out JVM was officially founded in 2006, and effectively founded in 1999 under another name by my wife, Heejin – with much of her operation carrying over to JVM in 2006. All this is to say that we are definitely here to stay, as we have ridden […]Read More

Please Do NOT File Your Taxes IF…

Please Do Not File 2022 Taxes If… You are self-employed and 2022 was a down year. This is a huge reminder to all self-employed borrowers (real estate agents too) to just file an extension for 2022 taxes – IF their income was way down in 2022 AND they want to qualify for competitive mortgage financing […]Read More

100% Financing With CalHFA’s Dream For All Program

PROGRAM UPDATE AS OF 4/6/2023: We were just informed by CalHFA that the Dream For All program will be paused on Wednesday, April 12th, and likely will be out of funds by Monday, April 10th. Please contact us to discuss alternative financing options at (855) 855-4491 or [email protected]Read More

Europe Raised Rates by 1/2%, and Rates FELL

The European Central Bank (ECB) raised its short-term rate (its equivalent to the Fed Funds Rate that the Fed raises here in the U.S.) by a full 1/2% yesterday. It shocked many observers because Europe is facing a banking crisis that is potentially much worse than what we face here in the U.S. (for reasons […]Read More

Jumbo Loans In Peril Because Of Commercial Bank Issues

Everything Is Fine…until It Isn’t The former owner of RPM Mortgage (now merged with Cross Country) told me about a particularly harrowing ordeal he went through in 2008. His company had locked tens of millions of dollars of loans with the intention of selling them to particular investors when they closed. RPM underwrote and funded […]Read More

Uh Oh… 2023 Financial Crisis? 2008 All Over Again? Maybe Yes, and Definitely No

Rates fell sharply again today as inflation news was very good (PPI fell sharply), retail sales were down, and a key manufacturing index (Empire) was frighteningly weak. This is all playing out exactly as Jeff Snider has been predicting, and it is proving him correct once again – making his series of tweets last night […]Read More

Silicon Valley Bank Failure – Effect on the Mortgage Industry

  Silicon Valley Bank’s (SVB’s) failure dominated headlines and social media all day Friday and over the weekend. Investors worldwide were very concerned because they were not sure if this was the start of an overall banking system meltdown or a one-off scenario. No economy can function without an effective banking system, so the initial […]Read More