Long-Distance Migration Is on the Rise

The percentage of consumers who moved more than 1,000 miles has nearly doubled in the last year, according to a survey conducted for Relocation.com, an online resource for moving services.

More than 70 percent of the people on the move relocated farther than 1,000 miles in the 12 months ending in March 2009. In the previous year, only 36 percent went that far, Relocation.com reported.

Of those who moved more than 1,000 miles, 60 percent said the move was for financial reasons such as a lost job. Nearly 41 percent of long-distance movers indicated that the recession and the housing crisis influenced their decision to move.

Only 3 percent of those surveyed indicated that they had lost a home to foreclosure, while 13 percent reported that they had lost their jobs.

“We are seeing more out-of-state moves from traditionally popular destinations, likely because of high foreclosure rates and diminished property values,” says Sharon Asher, CEO of Relocation.com.

Source: Relocation.com (05/05/2009)

Warnings of Mortgage Meltdown Were Ignored

According to a review of regulatory documents by the Associated Press, the Bush administration ignored multiple warnings of impending financial meltdown during the last five years and didn’t follow through on federal regulator’s proposals for tighter regulations.

In 2005, federal bank regulators proposed new guidelines for banks writing risky loans. They proposed a cap on the number of exotic mortgages and sought to make banks that bundled and sold mortgages inform buyers about their risks. The proposal also would have required banks to better vet potential borrowers and clearly inform them of the potential for skyrocketing interest rates.

The proposals didn’t require congressional action or a presidential signature, but the banking industry lobbied heavily against the proposals and administration urged regulators to drop them.

Diane Casey-Landry, of the American Bankers Association, said industry opposition was based on the banks’ best information. “You’re looking at a decline in real estate values that was never contemplated,” she said.

Source: The Associated Press, Matt Apuzzo (12/01/2008.)