September 4, 2003OCT OSAKA: 34 students and 2 instructors, from the Osaka College of Architecture in Japan, arrived for a 7-day workshop. [Photo: Ayano Atsumi & text: sa] The students arrived just as a monsoon shower brings a little relief from the intense summer heat. [Photo & text: sa] Tomiaki Tamura, Head of Aarchitecture and Design at Arcosanti, introduces the students to the Arcology theory and Arcosanti in the Colly Soleri Amphitheater. [Photo & text: sa] The students visit each department to learn more about Arcosanti. Ceramics Manager, Ed Werman, explains the procedure of making ceramic bells. [Photo: Claudia Lange & text: sa] Agriculture Manager Adam Nordfors gives a tour of the gardens, while agriculture volunteer Hiroshi Kondo translates into Japanese. [Photo: Ayano Atsumi & text: sa] Paolo Soleri answers some of the students questions.A second group of students from the College of Civil Engineering in Osaka, Japan, will arrive on September 14th for a 10-day visit. [Photo: Ayano Atsumi & text: sa]
Share The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced initiatives to reduce associated risks with cash-out refinance lending. Changes are aimed to help preserve the homeowners’ ability to convert home equity to cash through government-sponsored mortgages, but also improves the risk profile of HUD’s housing finance programs. The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) will lower its maximum loan-to-value (LTV) requirements for cash-out refinance transaction from 85% to 80%. Changes to the policy will be effective for loans with cash-out LTV allowed by the GSEs. Also, Ginnie Mae is taking further action to manage risks associated to “loan churning” among mortgages insured by the VA. HUD states that serial refinancing has proved to deplete home equity and wealth for veterans with VA-insured mortgages and harmed investor confidence in mortgage-backed securities guaranteed through Ginnie Mae. “We are taking another important step to support sustainable homeownership that builds wealth for families,” said FHA Commissioner Brian Montgomery. “This is a prudent measure to make certain that we protect and preserve the home equity borrowers are building for their futures and guard against taxpayer losses from the FHA program.”Acting Ginnie Mae President Maren Kasper said the changes reaffirm the GSEs commitment to ensuring the agency’s policies allow homeowners to borrow properly. “Additionally, this policy provides global investors with increased certainty in the performance of the Ginnie Mae security, which ultimately lowers mortgage rates for all borrowers served by our program,” Kasper said. Taking advantage of the low mortgage rates in today’s market means big money for those who refinance. A report by CNBC in July revealed that the average borrower could save about $266 per month, which could bring potential savings to about $2.2 trillion. Those eligible for refinancing increased by 6.3 million since last November when rates were more than 5%. CNBC stated that about 1.5 million borrowers, or roughly 35% of those who took out loans last year, could benefit from lower mortgage rates and refinancing. cash-out refinance FHA HUD 2019-08-01 Mike Albanese HUD, FHA Partner to Reduce Risks From Refis 22 hours ago 94 Views in Daily Dose, Featured, Government, News, Secondary Market
Linden Lab, the company behind Second Life, has launched in public beta a virtual reality world called Sansar.The VR environment lets individuals, companies and brands create, share, and ultimately sell immersive 3D social experiences.Linden Lab said that Sansar was built from the ground up “to enable everyone to become a creator,” and is available for HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, and Windows PCs.The public beta launch lets anyone access the “thousands of amazing public and private experiences” in Sansar that were made by creators during a limited-access preview.“Sansar democratizes social VR,” said Linden Lab CEO, Ebbe Altberg. “Until now, complexity and cost has limited who could create and publish in this medium, and Sansar dramatically changes that.“It’s been inspiring to see the thousands of virtual creations that have already published with Sansar during our limited preview, and I’m looking forward to the explosion of creativity we’ll see now that we’ve opened the doors in beta.”Sansar is free to use, with additional capacity and customer support available to creators through paid subscriptions, which start at US$9.99 per-month.The launch comes less than a week after virtual reality social network, AltspaceVR, announced it would close down on August 3, citing “unforeseen financial difficulty”.The venture-backed firm, which allows people to meet in a virtual environment, said that the combination of a failed funding round and the “general slowness of VR market growth” had made most of its investors “reluctant to fund us further”.However, in the wake of the announcement, Oculus founder Palmer Luckey indicated he could step in to help AltspaceVR out of its financial predicament, after he tweeted: “Should I try to save @AltspaceVR? (caveat: may not be possible)”.