Real Estate News – February 28, 2012

If the Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act expires Dec. 31, homeowners may have to pay taxes on any reduction in their principal (via

Phony deeds, many mortgages key to massive mortgage fraud (via

Terrell Owens Faces Foreclosure: Two Dallas Condos To Be Auctioned Next Month (via

A mortgage lender must list its own name and contact information, as well as that of the loan servicer, when initiating the foreclosure process with a distressed homeowner, the New Jersey Supreme Court ruled today (via

Inventory of new homes on the market shrank to its lowest point on record in January, marking a 5.6-month supply at the current sales pace, the Commerce Department reports (via REALTORMag):

The homeowners association for the Estates of Legends Ranch off Aldine Westfield in South Montgomery County is demanding a local family get rid of a baby red kangaroo because the small marsupial violates the subdivision’s restrictions (via

Housing prices have “reentered a period of decline” according to the Case-Shiller home price indices, which have fallen to all-time lows.  Housing markets have now dropped to 2002 levels, and will probably fall even further in the first half of 2012.  But that might actually be a good thing, according to several analysts who expect foreclosure rates to pick up and help stabilize an ailing market sometime this year (via

California’s attorney general, Kamala D. Harris, has ratcheted up the pressure on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to allow debt reduction on their home loans by asking the mortgage finance giants to halt foreclosures in the state (via

The Federal Housing Administration will increase the cost of up-front mortgage insurance premiums by 75 basis points as part of efforts to rebuild the agency’s insurance fund (via

America’s Cup real estate deal thrown overboard (via