Black & LoBello on AM720 KDWN

Tune in as Black & LoBello offers free legal advice on a wide range of topicsClick here to listen to the Legal Hour on KDWN AM720 from February 1st, 2012 in which Managing Partner, Tisha Black Chernine, Esq., hosts special guest Mark Stark, CEO and Owner Broker of Prudential Americana Group of Realtors. Ms. Chernine and Mr. Stark discuss the good and bad aspects of the real estate market  in 2011 (3:10), how AB 284 affects the available real estate inventory (7:42), how to find a real estate agent with experience in short sales (12:25), real estate debt obligations in a marriage (22:05), the current state of the real estate industry (24:16), the likelihood of banks to sue for a deficiency (32:54), the areas of the Vegas valley hardest hit by the housing crisis and the benefits of buying a property in the current economy (37:50).

Please tune in to AM720 KDWN’s “Legal Hour,” everyday, from 9 AM to 10 AM.  Listen live on the radio or online.   Feel free to call in with your comments or questions at 702-257-5396.

To listen to past shows, visit our Media page.

Black & LoBello on AM720 KDWN

Tune in as Black & LoBello offers free legal advice on a wide range of topicsClick here to listen to the Legal Hour on KDWN AM720 from November 30th, 2011 in which Managing Partner, Tisha Black Chernine, Esq., discusses the Nevada Secretary of State’s decision on home-based business exemptions, the latest developments in the Tracey Lawrence robo-signing fraud case (2:12),  what to consider before attempting a short sale (12:15), how to argue a landlord/tenant dispute (17:27), how to apply the robo-signing fraud case to specific foreclosure cases (22:20),  how to determine ownership of a property (29:37) and what documents should be disclosed by the lender in the loan modification process (35:30).

Please tune in to AM720 KDWN’s “Legal Hour,” everyday, from 9 AM to 10 AM.  Listen live on the radio or online.   Feel free to call in with your comments or questions at 702-257-5396.

To listen to past shows, visit our Media page.

Short Sale Update: HAFA Process Improvements

Bank of America is making a process change that will reduce cycle time and improve customer service for many short sales that are submitted with an offer.

The change goes into effect Dec. 1, 2011, and impacts all short sales submitted with an offer in which the homeowner is eligible for the Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternative (HAFA) program.

When a short sale is submitted with an offer and the homeowner is HAFA eligible, we will no longer halt work on the file while waiting to contact the homeowner. HAFA eligible homeowners are no longer required to call our Short Sale Customer Care to indicate whether they will participate in the program.

Instead, real estate agents can indicate a homeowner’s HAFA interest by submitting the necessary documents to Equator within 14 days. During that 14-day window, the short sale will continue moving forward. By the end of the 14 days, if we have not received the requested HAFA documents, we will continue to process the file as a traditional short sale.

This change is being made because we are transitioning the processing of all HAFA short sales with an offer from our outsourced vendor partners to Bank of America associates. A Bank of America specialist will be able to seamlessly transition a file from our traditional process to the HAFA process, thus improving customer service and the agent experience. Our outsourced vendor partners will, however, continue to process all short sales submitted without an offer.

Action required:

  • Short sales initiated on that receive a HAFA eligibility message no longer require homeowners to call Customer Care to confirm their interest.
  • If homeowners wish to participate in HAFA, agents must submit the requested documents within 14 days.  (Note: the 14-day period begins the day the HAFA solicitation letter is mailed to the homeowner. Agents can obtain the date of the letter from homeowner.)
  • If you are unclear about which documents to submit, contact your short sale specialist via Equator messaging.

Additional Recommendations:

  • Help your homeowners understand the benefits a HAFA short sale, including the relocation incentive at closing. Review the agent HAFA education guide to learn more.
  • Provide the Bank of America HAFA Eligibility FAQ to interested homeowners.
  • Direct homeowners to contact Customer Care at 1.866.880.1232 if they have questions.

The Federal Trade Commission recently released a statement reporting that Real Estate agents “in good standing” will no longer have to abide by some MARS Disclosure requirements in assisting clients with short sales (the rules still apply to other transactions).  The FTC will forebear enforcement only to real estate brokers (and agents under their direction and control) that are: “(1) licensed and maintain good standing pursuant to any applicable state law requirements; (2) in compliance with state laws governing the practices of real estate professionals; and (3) assisting or attempting to assist a consumer in negotiating, obtaining or arranging a short sale of a dwelling in the course of securing the sale of the consumer’s home.” Of course, deceptive practices and false statements will still be prohibited by the FTC.  However, Real Estate professionals will face one less hurdle in their pursuit of the coveted short sale.

Tisha Black Chernine, Esq.

Fannie Mae: Friend or Foe?

Fannie Mae has unleashed a new website purporting to give consumers a new opportunity to explore options regarding their home loans including, but not limited to, information regarding short sales and foreclosures.  The website,, is available in both English and Spanish and is designed to be a “one-stop-shop” for those seeking foreclosure alternatives.  It provides educational videos, mortgage calculators, and even a virtual assistant to navigate through the site.  Although some of the information may be very helpful, it is somewhat puzzling that Fannie Mae has provided this information to consumers in what appears to be an attempt at looking like a “friendly investor” when they have also recently stated that they will not agree to any deficiency releases for Fannie Mae backed loans.

Furthermore, Fannie Mae has openly declared that they are increasing penalties for those they believe have not worked effectively with their borrower to avoid foreclosure, stating that they will deny these borrowers access to a Fannie Mae backed mortgage loan for a period of seven years.  The issue that Fannie Mae fails to recognize is that many of those who have defaulted on their loans have tried tirelessly to work with their lenders for a short sale or loan modification only to see their property go into foreclosure.  Although the website may offer some useful information to consumers, Fannie Mae should still come with the label “buyers beware.”

Kelle L. Kuebler, Attorney*

*Licensed only in New York and Connecticut

Las Vegas Home Prices Continue To Fall

Unfortunately, Las Vegas home prices bucked the national trend by falling in May according to Standard & Poor’s monthly S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Indices report.  Prices in Las Vegas fell 0.5% from April to May and were off 6.5% compared to May 2009.

As for the rest of the country, home prices in May in the 20 markets tracked by the report rose 1.3% from April to May and were up 4.6% from May 2009.

“In May, Las Vegas posted a new index low as measured by the current housing cycle, where it peaked in August 2006,” S&P said in today’s report.  ”The peak-to-trough figure is -56.4%, with that market generally returning any gains it had posted since 2000.”

The Las Vegas housing market has taken quite a beating due to the nation’s second highest unemployment rate, highest per-capita rate of foreclosures, failed short sales, and highest per-capita rate of bankruptcies.

Even more, the Las Vegas housing market will continue to decline due to the expiration of the first time home buyer credit.  “We need to watch where the housing markets will go after these temporary stimuli go away. June’s existing and new home sales and housing starts data do not show much real improvement in those statistics either. It still looks possible that the housing market might bounce along the bottom for the foreseeable future before showing any real improvement that will filter through to the rest of the economy,” today’s S&P report said.

Randy M. Creighton, Esq.

Local news station, Channel 13 Action News, investigates Bank of America, the largest home mortgage lender in Nevada.  Read the full story here


The information contained on this website is designed to enable you to learn more about the services that Black & LoBello offers to its clients. These materials do not, and are not intended to, constitute legal advice, nor are they intended as a source of advertising or solicitation. Your use of this website does not create or constitute an attorney-client relationship. You should not consider these materials to be an invitation for an attorney-client relationship. Further, you should not rely on the information provided on this website without first obtaining separate legal advice.

Tisha Black Chernine awarded for
Mountain States Rising Stars 2011

Michele T. LoBello awarded for 
Nevada Super Lawyers 2007

Black & LoBello is an AV® Preeminent rated, locally owned, full service law firm in Las Vegas, Nevada.