Foul Called After UWM Announces Partnership With NBA, WNBA

By KIMBERLEY HAAS Hunterbrook Media and its publisher are sounding the alarm after a promotional partnership between United Wholesale Mortgage and the National Basketball Association was announced. On Thursday, leaders at UWM and NBA Communications issued a press release that said a multiyear U.S. partnership was established between the company’s consumer-facing brand, Mortgage Matchup, the NBA, and the WNBA. This marks the first-ever mortgage partnership for both leagues. As part of the deal, Mortgage Matchup “will collaborate with the leagues on marketing and promotional activities to expand the reach of its platform, raising awareness around the benefits of partnering with a mortgage broker and making it easier for fans to access the resources they need when purchasing or refinancing a…

Economist Patrick Gourley Talks About Prices, Rates, And The Realtors Settlement

Photo Credit: University of New Haven As the spring selling season continues, there are growing concerns about the state of the housing market. Mortgage rates remain high, inventory is low, and a new Gallup poll shows 76% of Americans they surveyed think it’s a bad time to buy a home. Writer Nicole Murray spoke with Patrick Gourley, an associate professor of economics at the University of New Haven in West Haven, Connecticut. He explained how the government’s response to the Covid pandemic helped create this problem, said that mortgage rates are unlikely to go down anytime soon, and talked about what the National Association of Realtors settlement means for the industry. You can listen to the conversation here: Murray: Let’s…

Property Taxes, Insurance Costs Squeeze Homeowners

By ERIN FLYNN JAY Rising property taxes and insurance costs are putting pressure on homeowners across the country. Last week, Newsweek reported that polling conducted for them by Redfield & Wilton Strategies found that property taxes and/or insurance costs have risen for most homeowners within the past year. The poll found that 65% of Americans saw increased property taxes, while 69% paid more for home insurance. They surveyed 1,500 eligible voters on May 1, according to the report. In April, ATTOM released its property tax analysis for 89.4 million U.S. single-family homes, which showed that $363.3 billion in property taxes were levied in 2023, up 6.9% from $339.8 billion in 2022. The increase was almost double the 3.6% growth rate…

Guest Post: How Long Should You Hold Real Estate Before Selling It?

By ALEX CAPOZZOLO  It is anyone’s guess exactly how long you should hold real estate before selling it. No one has a crystal ball. But the time you choose to sell can significantly affect your profit. Many factors influence this decision, and understanding them can help maximize your return on investment. Here’s a straightforward guide to figuring out the best time to sell your property. Consider Market Conditions The state of the real estate market is a crucial factor. In a seller’s market, where demand exceeds supply, you can often secure higher prices. Conversely, during a buyer’s market, higher inventory might force you to sell for less. Keep an eye on local market trends and economic indicators to time your…

Opinion: Latest UWM Allegations Show Mat Ishbia Puts the ‘I’ in ‘Team’

By JARED WHITLEY Nearly a decade ago, former Michigan State basketball player — and future United Wholesale Mortgage CEO — Mat Ishbia wrote an op-ed for Inc. Magazine, explaining how his business success was an extension of his strategy on the court. Ishbia wrote that his approach is “creating teamwork.” “Be a thumb pointer, not a finger pointer. When adversity strikes, pointing your finger at someone else doesn’t solve anything. Instead, be accountable; point your thumb at yourself and get better,” he wrote a decade ago. But today, critics say, the embattled Ishbia is using lawsuits and market leverage to get his way. Instead of leadership and teamwork, Ishbia’s tactic is a top-down, “my way or the highway” approach to…

Female Lending Teams Take Center Stage With Mother’s Day Near

By ERIN FLYNN JAY This Mother’s Day, mother-daughter lending teams across the country will be celebrating their teamwork, business success, and love for each other. We spoke with two mother-daughter lending teams who said their unique platform gives them an advantage in a competitive market. Senior Loan Originator Dawn Morgan started working with her daughter, Melena Miller, an associate loan originator, in 2018, and they joined forces as the mother-daughter team Melena Dawn Mortgage Group in Parkville, Missouri, on May 1, 2023. They just celebrated their one-year work anniversary. “A mother-daughter lending team like ours brings a unique blend of experience and fresh perspective,” said Morgan. “With my two decades of expertise and Melena’s six-plus years of working directly with…

Hunterbrook Hits UWM, UMortgage With Shell Scheme Claims

By KIMBERLEY HAAS Hunterbrook Media is taking a second swing at United Wholesale Mortgage, claiming that an executive there helped a shell company establish Philadelphia-based UMortgage. On April 2, Hunterbrook made waves when they published a report accusing UWM in Pontiac, Michigan, of widespread fraud. They estimated that homebuyers paid “between hundreds of millions and billions more in closing costs” because independent mortgage brokers working with UWM sent more than 99% of their business to the lender. UWM’s CEO Mat Ishbia blew off the report at the time, pinning blame for it on his competitor Rocket Mortgage and its founder and chairman, Dan Gilbert. Rocket Mortgage denied having any involvement with the report. The following week, UWM leaders went after…

Dutch-Style Mortgages: Could They Work In America?

By ERIN FLYNN JAY The Dutch offer home mortgages with interest rates that go down automatically as the loan gets paid off. The premise is that as the loan amount reduces and the property’s value increases, the risk associated with the loan decreases. Dutch-style mortgages recently arrived in the United Kingdom and have been making headlines here in the United States as people ask whether these types of mortgages could be a solution to the housing market’s woes. Nathan Hartseil, branch manager for Main Street Home Loans in Hingham, Mass., doesn’t think so due to the fact our mortgages are based on a secondary market. “Most of our loans are transferred or sold to a secondary market, and that’s what…

Are You Ready To Sell Your House And Move To A Retirement Community?

By CHUCK GREEN As Baby Boomers age, they are making tough decisions about their living arrangements. Familiar with every creak in their home’s floorboards and often a friendly face for neighbors, they are coming to grips with the fact that moving on from the place where they raised their kids might be the right thing for them to do. According to the 2024 Home Buyers and Sellers Generational Trends report by the National Association of Realtors, Baby Boomers accounted for 45% of sellers in 2023. “Baby Boomers continue to dominate the home-selling market as they make pivotal decisions regarding their retirement living situations, whether it’s right-sizing or moving closer to loved ones,” Jessica Lautz, NAR deputy chief economist and vice…

Good Jobs Report Means Bad News for Borrowers, Experts Say

Americans watching cable news might have been cheered when they saw the latest jobs report: the United States added 303,000 new nonfarm jobs in March and unemployment fell to 3.8%. Both numbers exceeded expectations. But viewers who are also shopping for a mortgage may have had a different reaction. Economics and housing experts say less unemployment means more pressure on Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell to keep interest rates high. And the result has been an uptick in rates. Powell has made it clear his priority is getting inflation under control. His target number for rising prices is a 2% annual rate. Instead, prices have been rising nearly twice that fast, and the inflation rate has been higher than expected…