According to CNBC, mortgage applications have risen as interest rates have eased off.
It’s been blasted across the news, airwaves, and through social media, and we now know that the Brexit has resulted in record low rates for thirty-year mortgages – but what does it really mean?
With today’s mortgage rates, an article from the Mortgage Reports news desk is calling mortgage terms “likable and lockable”.
A trend that’s signaling good news for homeowners and for the market is the number of homeowners who are now prepaying on their mortgages. “According to Black Knight Financial Services there was a 22% decrease in the national Foreclosure Inventory, while the number of delinquent mortgages declined by nearly 15 percent,” reported Mortgage News Daily.
Additionally, the number of homeowners who were more than 30 days past due (but not in foreclosure) declined by 4.8%.
Even better, “Black Knight Financial Services said the prepayment rate in December, historically a good indicator of refinance activity, rose 24% from November and was 1.29% higher than a year earlier.”
The drastic increase in prepayment, paired with the decline in foreclosure rates, is a great start for the 2016 housing market.
Source: Mortgage News Daily
Topics: mortgage news
For the twelfth-straight week, mortgage rates in the U.S. remain below 4%. This may signal many good things for the housing market – but mostly, that financing is still available and great rates are still possible. The twelve-week run also provides needed confidence in the stability of the market.
“As the shock of the weak September employment report wore off, Treasury rates drifted higher,” said Sean Becketti, Chief Economist with Freddie Mac. “In response, the 30-year mortgage rate climbed 6 basis points to 3.82 percent, marking 12 consecutive weeks below 4 percent. Late-breaking news suggests mortgage rates may remain in this territory a while longer.”
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Source: Freddie Mac
Topics: mortgage news
The hype around the Federal Reserve’s possible interest rate rise caused a noticeable jump in mortgage applications for the week ending September 18; according to the Mortgage Bankers Association, mortgage applications jumped 13.9% from the previous week (though the previous week was adjusted to reflect the Labor Day holiday). Though the Federal Reserve did not ultimately raise interest rates, the possibility was enough to get many prospective homebuyers to take the jump.
In addition to the surge of overall mortgage applications, refinance applications specifically grew by 18%. Refinances have a greater sensitivity to rate fluctuations than purchases, and now sit at a 27% surplus from this time last year.
“We saw significant rate volatility last week surrounding the FOMC meeting, and rate declines toward the end of the week likely drove applications from both prospective homebuyers and borrowers looking to refinance," said Mike Fratantoni, MBA's chief economist, according to CNBC.
There’s more good news for the housing market after last week brought with it a drop in America’s negative equity rate. The country’s negative equity rate fell below 15%, showing the housing market’s progress since the post housing bubble crash. The drop in negative equity was driven mainly by the steady rise of home values throughout the county.
"If the overall negative equity rate is going to continue to fall, it will need to keep being driven down by improving health at the bottom end of the market," Zillow’s Chief Economist Dr. Svenja Gudell, said. "The least valuable homes really bore the brunt of negative equity during the recession, and that's where most negative equity remains concentrated today. As more first-time buyers enter the market seeking these less expensive homes, home value growth at the bottom end could continue to outpace growth overall, which will be good news for millions of underwater homeowners in these homes."
Last week, the housing market proved that even the slightest change could make a huge difference in the number of Americans ready to take the housing plunge, or get a better rate through a refinance. This was evident after a small rate dip caused a note-worthy jump in loan applications – 11.3%, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.
The cause for the brief rate fluctuation was a “strong sell-off in the U.S stock market,” according to CNBC. Homebuyers interested in jumbo loans, or loans that are for an amount greater than $417,000, were especially attracted by the temporary rate dip – and the savings related to it.
"Although mortgage rates were unchanged for the week, Treasury rates were down sharply early in the week due to the global stock market rout and this led to a significant increase in application volume," Mike Fratantoni, the chief economist for the Mortgage Bankers Association, said.
According the RealtyTrac’s most recent home sales report, July 2015 proved to be a month of the good, the bad and the…good? Overall, the month saw changes that were extreme in both directions – with some stats plummeting while others gained steam – but all of the changes were good for the market overall.
The good: The median price of homes sold in July was 2% higher than it was in June. And at $189,500, it was also the highest median price since 2008.
The “bad”: The sale of properties in the foreclosure process fell to the lowest monthly share since January 2000 (which is the earliest date with relevant information). The number of all-cash home buying transactions also fell to its lowest level since 2008.
The overall good: The expansion of median home prices, paired with the growth of overall market sales volume, contrasted by the drop in all-cash and foreclosure buyers, is actually good news for the housing market. Why? According to Darren Blomquist, the Vice President of RealtyTrac, it is “evidence that housing is successfully transitioning from an investor-driven recovery, to one that is drawing in traditional buyers as a good foundation for sustainable growth going forward.”
Source: Mortgage News Daily
Last week, we talked about the hidden investment, otherwise known as your home. On average, last year in the US, statistics showed a home value rise of 4%; in some markets, it was as high as 10%. However, last year’s trend was not matched in July 2015 (in some of the hottest markets). While the numbers are not anything for homeowners to worry about (as evidenced by the small percentage drop), they could provide some added incentive for homebuyers to act now.
Some homebuyers may currently be holding out in hopes of a home value drop, and while it’s not certain if that will ever come – especially given the rising trend after the 2011 crash – this small dip could be enough to get some of the buying holdouts out of their rental and into a home.
If you’re interested in taking the first step to becoming a homeowner, check out our First Time Homebuyer’s Guide. It has everything you need to know about buying your first home in a fun and easy format.