The Real Deal Miami

Fannie Mae to open Ft. Lauderdale field office

By Jane C. Timm | August 13, 2008 04:50PM

Fannie Mae will open a new office in Ft. Lauderdale that will help sell homes gained through foreclosure, the company said today.

The company said its new office will also work to prevent more foreclosures.

The government-backed mortgage giant is already hiring for the branch; several job listings have already been posted online, including an REO Sales Manager who “will manage a team of seven to nine sales representatives,” according to a listing on SimplyHired.com.

Fannie Mae stated that as of June 30 it held 2,681 foreclosed properties in Florida and 54,173 across the U.S.

Nikki Curry, a Ft. Lauderdale mortgage broker for Prospect Mortgage, the preferred lender for Keller Williams Realty, said that Fannie Mae’s services were used “quite a bit” in the area and that a field office would be helpful.

The field office will “bring us closer to the community, to the REO properties we own, and to the real estate and other professionals we hire,” said Amy Bonitatibus, a Fannie Mae spokeswoman in an emailed statement Wednesday afternoon.

A report released yesterday by Zillow.com, a real estate service Web site, reported that Fort Lauderdale sales were down 26 percent since the market peak, the worst market conditions since the fourth quarter of 2004. Zillow.com also reported that more than 20 percent of homes sold in the past 12 months were sold at a loss.

Fannie Mae will open another field office in Irvine, Calif.

The housing rescue package signed by President Bush late last week gave the Treasury Department power through next year to lend money to Fannie and Freddie Mac or buy shares as needed.

Last week, Fannie Mae reported a wider than expected second-quarter loss of $2.3 billion, its fourth straight quarterly loss.