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  • Calabria and Carson: Housing Leaders Talk Reform, Accomplishments

    Attendees at the Ginnie Mae Summit commemorating the agencies 50th anniversary on Thursday heard from both Dr. Ben Carson, Secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and Dr. Mark A. Calabria, newly confirmed director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA).  Each addressed their plans for updating their respective housing finance components. Calabria spoke first to the increasing role of non-bank mortgage originators. In 2013, he said, non-banks originated 30 percent of the mortgages sold to one of the government guarantee programs. By February of this year, that footprint had doubled to 60 percent. 

  • iBuyer Crushed Home Seller

    The post iBuyer Crushed Home Seller appeared first on National Real Estate Post.

  • MBA Announces Affordable Housing Initiative, Sees New Home Sales Rising

    The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) released its regular monthly estimates for new home sales on Thursday and also announced a new initiative to promote affordable housing.  The initiative, to be headed by Steven O'Connor, MBA's Senior Vice President for Public Policy and Industry Relations, is intended "to help develop stronger and more effective affordable housing partnerships in both the policy and business arenas."  The partnership in turn will hopefully "promote more sustainable, affordable homes for purchase and rental for underserved people and communities, especially minorities and low-to-moderate-income Americans."  

     

  • Two FHA Premium Changes, An End to MI Requirement?

    The House Financial Services Committee (FSC) passed a clutch of bills this week, several of which will assist homebuyers and homeowners.  Two directly affect the cost of an FHA loan. The FHA Loan Affordability Act (H.R. 3141), introduced by Dean Phillips (D-MN) would repeal the requirement that borrowers with FHA loans pay premiums on FHA mortgage insurance for the life of their loan. The bill would reinstate the previous policy which allowed borrowers to drop the insurance when the outstanding balance of their loan is reduced to 78 percent of the original value of the home.  The wording of the bill appears to specifically disallow consideration of equity accrued through home price appreciation. The bill passed the committee 34 to 25.

     

  • Honesty in Real Estate Petition

    Click the Petition image below to sign the petition!

    The post Honesty in Real Estate Petition appeared first on National Real Estate Post.

  • Lenders Sentiment Shines, Rising Profits and a Positive Outlook

    Lenders are singing a happier tune when it comes to their profit margin outlook with those hopes driven by rising confidence in mortgage demand.  The net share of lenders' perceptions about both recent and upcoming demand has turned positive for the first time in nearly three years. Fannie Mae's Q2 Mortgage Lender Sentiment Survey saw net positive responses rise across all three loan types (government, GSE-eligible, and non-GSE-eligible loans) when lenders reported on increases in demand for both purchase and refinance mortgages over the previous three months. 

     

  • FHA Getting Looser with Manual Underwrites

    FHA Getting Looser with Manual Underwrites

    The post FHA Getting Looser with Manual Underwrites appeared first on National Real Estate Post.

  • Class Action Suit Against MLS and a Possible DOJ Investigation

    The housing crisis put the spotlight, legal and otherwise, on the ways in which home purchases were financed.  Financial difficulties weeded out many marginal players as well as unethical ones in the housing finance space, and new regulations, as well as lawsuits over previous methods of doing business, changed the industry dramatically.  Now, attention has turned toward the ways in which those homes are sold, and the companies involved in doing it. 

    Over the last few months there has been some legal activity, mostly directed at multiple listing services (MLS), the entities that aggregate and display listings of homes for sale.  These actions are aimed at determining how real estate sales commissions are established and shared and how this may limit competition.. 

  • Mortgage App Volumes Continue to Grow as Rates Slide

    Mortgage applications soared during the week ended June 7 as interest rates declined further.  While applications for home purchases were up, it was refinancing that again drove the overall numbers. The week ended May 31 was shortened by the holiday weekend and we have come to expect numbers both during and after those events to take on a life of their own.  However, commentary from the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) spokesperson Joel Kan indicated it was rates more than the calendar that drove results for both reporting periods.  MBA's Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, increased 26.8 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from the week ended May 31. On an unadjusted basis, the Index shot up by 38 percent compared with the previous week.

     

  • Credit Availability Rises for Fifth Consecutive Month

    Mortgage access increased in May for the fifth consecutive month.  The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) said its Mortgage Credit Availability Index (MCAI) rose 1.9 percent to 189.5.  A decline in the MCAI indicates that lending standards are tightening, while increases in the index are indicative of loosening credit. The MCAI has two component indices, the Government MCAI which measures the availability of loans backed by FHA, the VA, and the USDA, and the Conventional index which itself has components for both conforming and jumbo loans. The Government MCAI decreased 0.6 percent while the Conventional MCAI was up 4.4 percent driven by a 6.8 percent gain in jumbo lending. The Conforming MCAI rose 0.9 percent.

     

  • Could iBuyers Fuel Housing Industry Problems?

    Could iBuyers Fuel Housing Industry Problems?

    The post Could iBuyers Fuel Housing Industry Problems? appeared first on National Real Estate Post.

  • Flipper Using Uber Drivers to Find Distressed Homes

    Flipper Using Uber Drivers to Find Distressed Homes

    The post Flipper Using Uber Drivers to Find Distressed Homes appeared first on National Real Estate Post.

  • Homeowner Equity is on the Rise, Slightly Faster Than Home Prices

    The increase in homeowner equity has slightly exceeded the pace of housing appreciation.  CoreLogic says that the 63 percent of homeowners nationally who have a mortgage on their property saw their equity grow by 5.6 percent between the first quarter of 2018 and the same quarter in 2019.  The national increase in the value of homeowner equity aggregates to nearly $486 billion.  On average, homeowners gained about $6,400 in housing wealth during the year that ended in the first quarter of 2019.  Nevada had the highest year-over-year average increase at $21,000.

     

     

  • Consumer Survey: Good Time to Buy, Prices Will Increase

    Americans became decidedly more bullish about buying a home in May.  Fannie Mae said its Home Purchase Sentiment Index (HPSI) nearly matched its survey high set in May 0f 2018, largely due to a 13- point increase in net positive responses to whether it is a good time to buy. The HPSI jumped 3.7 percent to 92.0, just shy of the 92.3 peak set exactly one year earlier. In addition to the increase in the net for the Good Time to Buy component, consumers who responded to the May National Housing Survey also showed increased confidence that home prices would increase while mortgage rates would move lower.

     

     

     

  • Media Pushing False Information About Realtor Commissions

    Media Pushing False Information About Realtor Commissions CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD EXAMPLES

    The post Media Pushing False Information About Realtor Commissions appeared first on National Real Estate Post.

  • Mortgage Profitability, Costs, and Revenues All Surging in 2019

    The financial situation for mortgage lenders brightened considerably in the first quarter of this year, although profitability is way down from post-recession peaks.  The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) said the average gain on each loan originated by the independent mortgage banks (IMBs) and mortgage subsidiaries of chartered banks responding to its survey was $285.  In the fourth quarter of 2018 each loan originated resulted in a $200 loss and across the entire year the average per-loan profit was $367. Including all business lines (both production and servicing), 59 percent of the firms in the study posted pre-tax net financial profits in the first quarter, up from 44 percent in the fourth quarter.  

  • Are the Bidding Wars Truly Over?

    The War is over.  That would be the bidding war.  And maybe not over, but there seems to be a cease-fire. CoreLogic's Shu Chen says that the share of homes that sell above their list price, often because of competition among multiple prospective buyers, has returned to normal levels.  Not that normal is necessarily a leisurely pace. Thirty-one percent of homes sold at or above the ask in March, about the same percentage as in 2000 and 2001. Chen says, at the peak in the second quarter of 2018, more than 40 percent of homes brought in a higher price than asked.  

  • Mobile Officially Overtakes TV

    Mobile Officially Overtakes TV

    The post Mobile Officially Overtakes TV appeared first on National Real Estate Post.

  • NAR Letters Urges FHFA Director, Reform with Caution

    We can only guess at what the new director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) told members of the National Association of Realtors® (NAR) last month, but it certainly provoked a response.  The Association sent a letter to Mark Calabria on Monday urging him basically not to make changes to the system for the sake of making them. The letter, signed by current NAR President John Smaby, thanked the director, who was sworn in on April 15, for "sharing your thoughts on your new role," apparently in a speech to the group in mid-May.  However, it took issue with some potential reforms of the government sponsored enterprises (GSEs) Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, primarily those that might prematurely shrink the GSE footprint.

     

  • Lack of Mortgage Savvy May be Stifling Homeownership

    Fannie Mae's monthly National Housing Survey consistently shows that the vast majority of Americans would prefer to own rather than rent a home but are uncertain or mistaken about what qualifications are necessary to get a mortgage.  Now the company has reprised a 2015 survey exploring that knowledge gap and found, after questioning more than 3000 respondents, things haven't improved much since the initial study.  Mark Palim, Fannie Mae Vice President and Deputy Chief Economist and Sarah Shahdad, a Market Insights Researcher write in a new research brief that this lack of accurate information may be discouraging willing and qualified Americans from pursuing homeownership, but may also provide an important opportunity for lenders and other mortgage market participants to utilize more effective mortgage education that is "timely, customized, convenient, and simple."

     

  • 40,000 Deals Saved… For Now

    40,000 Deals Saved… For Now

    The post 40,000 Deals Saved… For Now appeared first on National Real Estate Post.

  • Low Rates Spark Mini-Boom in Refinancing

    Interest rates declined again during the week ended May 31, propping up mortgage application activity in a holiday shortened week. The Mortgage Bankers Association said its Market Composite Index, a measure of loan applications volume, managed a 1.5 percent gain on a seasonally adjusted annual basis even as it fell 10 percent from the previous week on an unadjusted basis.  The week's results were adjusted to reflect the Memorial Day holiday. The Refinance Index increased by 6 percent from the previous week.  Applications that were for refinancing grew to 42.2 percent of the total from 39.7 percent during the week ended May 24.

     

     

  • Good Info for our Real Estate Summer

    Good Info for our Real Estate Summer CLICK HERE for the Article.

    The post Good Info for our Real Estate Summer appeared first on National Real Estate Post.

  • This Week Marked Low-Key Launch of the GSEs' Single MBS

    The long-awaited single mortgage-backed security from the GSEs Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac launched on Monday.  The official start date for the single security was announced in mid-March.  The single security will be issued via the Common Securitization Platform (CSP), a technology and operational platform operated by Common Securitization Solutions, a joint venture of the GSEs formed in 2014. The CSP will perform many of the core back office operations for the single security, as well as most of the GSEs' current securitization functions for single-family mortgages.

     

  • Public and Private Construction Spending Essentially Unchanged

    Spending on construction was almost flat in April.  The Census Bureau said total expenditures of both public and private money was essentially unchanged from the seasonally adjusted estimate in March of $1.30 trillion.  The March number was revised from $1.28 trillion.  The April spending number was 1.2 percent lower than the annual rate in April 2018. On an unadjusted 43, total spending was $106.72 billion compared to $99.92 billion in March and $107.21 one year earlier.   For the year-to-date (YTD) the aggregate amount spent on all construction was $386.11 billion, a slight 0.2 percent lower than the total for the first four months of 2018, $385.47 billion.

     

  • Dept of Justice Looking into Realtor Commission Searches

    Dept of Justice Looking into Realtor Commission Searches This may sound weird, but just tune into the show and it will make sense.

    The post Dept of Justice Looking into Realtor Commission Searches appeared first on National Real Estate Post.

  • Prepayments, Refinance Pool, Affordability all Increase as Rates Decline

    As the current issue of Black Knight's Mortgage Monitor was going to "press" mortgage rates dropped under 4.0 percent for the first time in more than a year.  Black Knight spokesperson Mitch Cohen says the decline to 3.99 percent sent what the company considered the refinanceable population of homeowners up by 2 million in just a month and a total of 3 million in two months.  Black Knight considers refinanceable homeowners as those who can both qualify for refinancing and would save at least 75 basis points by doing so.  The company now counts 5.9 million potential refinancing candidates in that pool, the largest group in nearly three years. The figure below shows the distribution of potential refinance candidates across origination vintages as of mid-May, prior to the most recent pullback in rates.

  • Toll Brothers, Others, Turn to Build-to-Rent

    Toll Brothers is embarking on a new business model that may, depending on your outlook, increase the rental stock, provide new opportunities for home builders, or further diminish new home sale inventories.  The company has committed to invest $60 million in a $400 million venture that will build homes for rent in seven major U.S. cities. And it isn't just Toll Brothers and its partner in the venture, BB Living that see a build-to-rent market.  According to John McManus, writing in Builder, a number of companies are already producing some of their new homes specifically for rent although most are doing so to supply stock to single-family property management companies. These companies provide services to the big private asset management companies that bought up thousands of foreclosed single-family houses during the financial crisis. 

  • Flood Insurance Deadline Up Tonight

    Flood Insurance Deadline Up Tonight

    The post Flood Insurance Deadline Up Tonight appeared first on National Real Estate Post.

  • NAHB Has a New Way to Measure Housing Recovery

    The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) is introducing the latest in a series of indices it has employed to measure housing within a broader context of the economy.  The first in our memory was the Improving Markets Index (IMI), introduced early in the recession and using 2007 as a benchmark to determine the post-downturn recovery of hundreds of cities and towns.  This index was retired sometime in 2012 or 2013 and replaced by the Leading Markets Index (LMI) which switched the focus to the progress of communities in regaining their own (pre-recession) levels of activity.  Both used three data sets for the assessment; Bureau of Labor Statistics employment data, Freddie Mac information on home prices, and U.S. Census counts of single-family housing permits.  

  • Dept of Justice Looking at Realtor Commissions

    Dept of Justice Looking at Realtor Commissions

    The post Dept of Justice Looking at Realtor Commissions appeared first on National Real Estate Post.

  • Pending Home Sales Fall, But Still Holding Most of 2019's Gains

    April's pending home sales had been expected to build on the gains posted in two of the three previous months, but they retreated instead.  The National Association of Realtors® (NAR) said its Pending Home Sale Index (PHSI), a measure of newly signed home purchase contracts, fell 1.5 percent from its March level.  The Index, with a 104.3 reading, was down from 105.9 the previous month. The consensus of analysts surveyed by Econoday had been for an 0.5 percent increase in the PHSI.  Forecasts ranged from -1.8 to 1.5 percent. Pending sales were down in three of the four major regions, and the April decline put year-over-year contract signings 2.0 percent behind those of April 2018.  

  • Barry Habib Makes Extremely Bold Prediction on Rates

    Barry Habib Makes Extremely Bold Prediction on Rates

    The post Barry Habib Makes Extremely Bold Prediction on Rates appeared first on National Real Estate Post.

  • Case-Shiller: Given the Economy, "Housing Should be Doing Better.

    Both the S&P Dow Jones Indices and home price indicators from the Federal Housing Finance Agency (for March continue to show slowing appreciation although there also continue to be significant regional differences.  The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price NSA Index, covering all nine U.S census divisions, reported a 3.7 percent annual gain in March, down from 3.9 percent in the previous month. Before seasonal adjustment, the National Index posted a month-over-month increase of 0.6% in March, jumping from an 0.2 percent gain in February, but after seasonal adjustment, there was no change from the 0.3 percent increase posted in February. The annual increase in the 10-City Composite was 2.3 percent compared to 2.5 percent in March while the 20-City Composite increased 2.7 percent, down from a 3.0 percent rate of appreciation the prior month. 

  • Freddie Mac Portfolio Growth Slowed Slightly, Delinquencies Down

    Freddie Mac reported this week that its total mortgage portfolio increased at an annualized rate of 6.2 percent in April, declining from 8.0 percent the previous month.  The portfolio balance at the end of the period was $2.216 trillion compared to $2.204 trillion at the end of March and $2.109 trillion a year earlier.  Purchases and Issuances totaled $36.071billion and Sales were ($1.204) billion. The March numbers were $37.311 billion and ($3.048) billion respectively.  The annualized growth rate for the year-to-date is 4.6 percent. Single-family refinance loan purchase and guarantee volume was $11.2 billion in April, representing 37 percent of total single-family mortgage portfolio purchases and issuances. 

  • Mortgage Application Volume Takes Back Some of May's Gains

    Mortgage application volume declined during the week ended May 24, more than reversing a 2.4 percent increase a week earlier.  Both refinancing and purchase activity moved lower.  The Mortgage Bankers Association said its Market Composite Index which tracks the level of mortgage loan applications, was down 4.0 percent on a non-seasonally adjusted basis and 3.3 percent after it.  The Refinance Index which had surged by 8 percent during the week ended May 17 gave back much of that increase this past week, falling by 6 percent.  Refinance applications accounted for 39.7 percent of the total volume, down from 40.5 percent the previous week.

     

  • Lending is Disadvantaging its Own Future

    "The face of America is changing, and the housing market is changing along with it. If the mortgage market doesn't keep up, the nation's economy will bear the consequences."  That flat statement introduces an article by three housing experts that appeared recently in the Washington Post.  Gary Acosta is co-founder and chief executive officer of the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals. Jim Parrott is a nonresident fellow at the Urban Institute, and Mark Zandi is chief economist at Moody's Analytics.  The three point out that by 2045 more than half of the U.S. population will be persons of color, and they will be responsible for an overwhelming amount of housing demand, particularly as first-time buyers. 

  • Where One Door Closes Another Door Opens

    Where One Door Closes Another Door Opens

    The post Where One Door Closes Another Door Opens appeared first on National Real Estate Post.

  • MSR Sale, Cost Bundling, High Balance Products; The CFPB Wants Your Input!

    First off, best wishes to Quicken Loans’ owner Dan Gilbert who was hospitalized Sunday after experiencing stroke-like symptoms. As the lending industry sees 19-month lows in rates (the 10-year hit 1.37% in mid-2016) and focuses on the future and ruminates on the latest big M&A deal (RoundPoint, with its $91 billion of agency servicing and its LO/correspondent origination channels, will become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Freedom Mortgage), we continue to be reminded of the problems that the financial services sector faces. Namely, as was noted in this commentary Saturday but is worth repeating, First American’s data leak has exposed sixteen years of borrower data. Hopefully there was no large-scale unauthorized access – but hope is not a strategy. What is your company doing to avoid this, and the corresponding financial liability?

  • Facebook Changes May Impact Realtors

    Facebook Changes May Impact Realtors

    The post Facebook Changes May Impact Realtors appeared first on National Real Estate Post.

  • The Rental Inventory is Problematic Too

    There probably hasn't been a report on home sales or prices in the last four years that hasn't referred to the role of housing inventory in the depressed level of the former or the rapid acceleration of the latter.  According to data from CoreLogic, there was a 4.5-month supply of homes available at the current rate of sales in March.  (We assume that number includes both new and pre-owned homes.)  This is less than half the supply, 9.1 months, available in March 2009. Shu Chen writes in CoreLogic's Insights blog that that both new construction and the mobility of homeowners have traditionally driven inventories and those are at low levels, but the shifting of homes to the rental market has also played a large role.  

  • I Wish I Was Above Average

    I Wish I Was Above Average CLICK HERE to Talk About Listing Booster

    The post I Wish I Was Above Average appeared first on National Real Estate Post.

  • Calabria Says Let Fannie/Freddie Make More Profit