On October 1, all appraisers who are currently approved to perform FHA appraisals and licensed, but not certified, will be removed from the FHA Appraiser Roster. HUD officials say that the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 forced this requirement upon them. Last October, HUD stopped taking applications by licensed, but not certified appraisers, wishing to be placed on the FHA roster.“This is a statutory requirement that does not provide for grandfathering and cannot be waived by the FHA,” read an announcement from HUD on the subject. “However, appraisers that subsequently meet certification requirements may apply for reinstatement to the FHA appraiser roster.”
As in the case of most commercial real estate, the market for office space is still in a tailspin. According to Colliers International, a leading real estate information firm, office vacancies in the United States rose 1% to 15.45% in the second quarter of this year. Office rents have continued to decline and are, on the average, over 10% below what they were at the beginning of the year.Chris Moore, director of economic research at Colliers, expects this trend to continue for the rest of the year, as he said, “Firms have little appetite for expansion and instead remain focused on reducing costs and watching their bottom lines.”
FED EXTENDS TALF
The Federal Reserve Board and the U.S. Treasury Department have announced the extension of the Term Asset-Backed Loan Facility (TALF). Created in the wake of last year’s financial meltdown, this program was slated to end December 31.“To promote the flow of credit to businesses and households and to facilitate the financing of commercial properties, the Federal Reserve and Treasury approved extending TALF loans against newly listed ABS (asset-backed securities) and legacy CMBS (commercial mortgage-backed securities) through March 31, 2010,” the Federal Reserve reported in a press release. “Because the new CMBS deals can take a significant amount of time to arrange, the Federal Reserve and Treasury approved TALF lending against newly issued CMBS through June 30, 2010. “The Fed stated it did not expect to expand the variety of collateral eligible for this program, but that could change in the future. In fact, the TALF program could be extended further, according to the press release, which said, “The Board will continue to monitor financial conditions and will consider in the future whether unusual and exigent circumstances warrant a further extension of the TALF to help promote financial stability and economic growth.”
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