Real Estate News – April 22, 2012

Taylor couple loses appeal — over a fence (via

Four years after the real-estate meltdown, new data show banks are agreeing to far more “short sales” as an alternative to messy, protracted foreclosures (via

In local markets where inventories are tight and competition for homes rising, realty agents say that buyers looking to steal houses by lowballing their offers are ending up at the back of the line — their contracts either rejected out of hand or countered close to the original asking price (via

Soldier’s foreclosure was illegal, federal lawsuit alleges (via

Across America, one in four homeowners* is restricted from updating the exterior colors on their homes by rules imposed by their local homeowners association (via

The cost of one of the country’s most expensive individual tax breaks is shrinking as the number of Americans who own homes declines and mortgage rates hover near historic lows (via

The Federal Housing Finance Agency announced a new policy to speed up the process that mortgage servicers use to handle short sales, deeds-in-lieu, and deeds-for-lease for mortgages that are backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (via REALTORMag):