Category Archives: Mortgages

Mortgage Demand Up 38% From Last Year

According to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Weekly Applications Survey, demand for mortgage applications was 38 percent higher last week than during the same week one year ago. Largely driven by refinance demand, the year-over-year improvement has benefited from mortgage rates remaining near record lows. But purchase demand is also up over last year. In fact, demand for loans to buy homes is now 13 percent higher year-over-year. Week-over-week results, on the other hand, look a little different. For example, last week’s results found a 2.6 percent drop in the number of requests for mortgage applications. Michael Fratantoni, MBA’s chief economist, said the United Kingdom’s decision to leave the European Union was behind some of the volatility. “Whether the impact of Brexit will be contained to the initial shock of the ‘Vote Leave’ victory or will have a longer-term impact on markets is unclear …” Fratantoni said. “MBA’s best guess at this point is that the impact on the mortgage market will be to keep mortgage rates lower for longer, leading to another pickup in refinance activity in the near future.” Last week, average rates varied depending on the type of loan. Interest rates for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances were down. So were rates on 15-year fixed-rate loans. Rates for FHA loans were unchanged from one week earlier and 30-year loans with jumbo balances increased slightly. The MBA’s weekly survey has been conducted since 1990 and covers 75 percent of all retail residential mortgage applications. More here.

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Demand For Home Loans Up From One Year Ago

The Mortgage Bankers Association’s Weekly Applications Survey looks at the number of Americans who have requested applications for refinance or purchase loans during the past week. It is a good indication of the level of demand for home loans across the country and can also be a predictor of future home sales. According to the most recent results, overall demand for home loans fell last week due, in part, to a drop in refinance activity. Average mortgage rates rose slightly across all loan categories and – because refinance demand tends to be more sensitive to rate fluctuations – activity slipped 5 percent from one week earlier. Refinance volume, however, remains 12 percent higher than one year ago and mortgage rates are still historically low. Purchase application demand dipped last week as well but it is also up from last year’s level. Lynn Fisher, MBA’s vice president of research and economics, told CNBC recent news may not be a fair indication of what’s happening in housing these days. “News about new home sales and single family housing starts fell short of expectations in the last week, however some of March’s housing activity was likely pulled forward into one of the warmest Februarys on record,” Fisher said. “While purchase applications fell slightly last week, the average level for April is the highest since 2010.” The MBA’s weekly survey has been conducted since 1990 and covers 75 percent of all retail residential mortgage applications. More here.

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