Mortgage Roundup (9/4/20) – IMBs, Rates & WFH

Good morning! Today is Friday, September 4. The Justice Department plans to bring an antitrust case against Google as soon as this month. The e-cigarette maker Juul is planning to lay off more than half its employees and is considering halting its sales across Europe and Asia. Facebook will halt political ads in the week before the election.  And in mortgage and housing news … IMB PROFITS: It was a big quarter for independent mortgage banks and mortgage subsidiaries of chartered banks.  MORTGAGE RATES: Mortgage rates increased slightly this week but remained under 3 percent for the sixth straight week, Freddie Mac announced in its Primary Mortgage Market Survey. HOUSE DIVIDED: As millions of Americans face evictions, others buy dream homes during COVID-19.  ROCKET INVESTORS: Investors seem confused about how exactly…

Mortgage Roundup (9/3/20) – Building, Relief & Peril

Good morning! Today is Thursday, September 3. The CDC sent a letter to governors asking them to be ready to use vaccine distribution centers by Nov. 1, just before Election Day. Tokyo Olympics organizers say the Games can proceed without a coronavirus vaccine.  And in mortgage and housing news … MORTGAGE APPS: Mortgage applications dipped ever so slightly in the last week of August but remained significantly higher than a year ago, according to the weekly survey released Wednesday by the Mortgage Bankers Association. FED “BEIGE BOOK”: We can count on the Federal Reserve to keep mortgage rates low this month, based on a new survey of economic conditions.  HOUSING FINANCE PERIL: PIMCO warns that mortgage rates will increase, and homeownership will likely suffer if Fannie Mae and…

Mortgage Roundup (9/2/20) – CDC, Prices & Refis

Good morning! Today is Wednesday, September 2. Serena Williams set the record for the most U.S. Open wins in history, passing Martina Navratilova. Americans are producing more trash during the pandemic and some cities are struggling to keep up. The LA2028 Olympic logo includes 26 different designs displayed in animation – a first in Olympic history.  And in mortgage and housing news … EVICTION BAN: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a public health order  that bans residential evictions through the end of the year to prevent the spread of Covid-19. PRICE BOOM: Housing prices see biggest increases in nearly two years. FREE RENT: Landlords across the country are offering more perks to attract would-be renters as the rental market has softened considerably in the last few…

Mortgage Roundup (9/1/20) – Lawsuit, Demand & Loans

Good morning! Today is Tuesday, September 1. American and Delta joined United in removing the change fees on most domestic flights. Amazon received approval for a fleet of delivery drones. Future NASA astronauts may rely on electron beams to clean their spacesuits. And in mortgage and housing news … FORBEARANCE STEADY: The share of mortgages in forbearance hasn’t budged in recent weeks, with 3.6 million homeowners in the United States still having their loan payments paused during the coronavirus pandemic, the Mortgage Bankers Association announced. WELLS FARGO LAWSUIT: Some borrowers are suing Wells Fargo, alleging the bank placed mortgages into forbearance without their consent, damaging credit reports. BUYER DEMAND: More sellers are making their way onto the market, but it’s still not enough to offset a supply…

Mortgage Roundup (8/31/20) – Prices, Loans & Design

Good morning! Today is Monday, August 31. France pulls back its school reopening plans after a spike in Covid cases. Coca Cola is cutting thousands of jobs in the wake of the pandemic.    And in mortgage and housing news … CENTRAL BANK: If the Federal Reserve’s continuation of low interest rates cause inflation to rise, it will eat away at bond yields — and investors will demand higher interest on mortgages. BORROWERS STRUGGLE: Improvements in the coronavirus mortgage bailout stall, as more borrowers struggle to make payments. HOME PRICES: Even with interest rates at record lows, someone buying the typical home today will have a larger monthly mortgage payment than they would have if they bought a year ago.  MAIN STREET LENDING PROGRAM: A $50 million, taxpayer-backed loan to…

Mortgage Roundup (8/28/20) – GSEs, Rates & Sales

Good morning! Today is Friday, August 28. Donald Trump officially accepted the Republican National Convention’s nomination for president. Japan’s longest serving prime minister Shinzo Abe resigns because of illness. Walmart joins Microsoft in the pursuit to buy Tik Tok.   And in mortgage and housing news … GSE EXTENSION: Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac announced that they are extending the ban on single-family foreclosures and evictions for properties with mortgages managed by the two companies RATES DROP: The Mortgage rates dropped again this week, nearing the all-time record set earlier in August, Freddie Mac announced in its Primary Mortgage Market Survey.  PENDING HOME SALES: Pending home sales increased for the third consecutive month in the United States in July, with each of the four regions of the nation…

Mortgage Roundup (8/27/20) – Flexibility, FedTube & Vacancies

Good morning! Today is Thursday, August 27. Hurricane Laura is now a category 3 hurricane after making landfall near the Texas-Louisiana border as a category 4. Vice President Mike Pence formally accepted the Republican Party’s vice-presidential nomination. The Food and Drug Administration has granted emergency-use authorization for a Covid-19 test the size of a credit card.  And in mortgage and housing news … ANOTHER MONTH: The Federal Housing Finance Agency announced that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac again extend flexible policies put in place in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including buying loans in forbearance.  MORTGAGE APPS: Mortgage applications were up 33 percent from a year ago, according to a report released by the Mortgage Bankers Association.  FEDTUBE: The 2020 version of the Federal Reserve’s loftiest annual…

Mortgage Roundup (8/26/20) – Fees, Prices & Forbearance

Good morning! Today is Wednesday, August 26. First Lady Melania Trump headlined the second night of the Republican National Convention. More airline job cuts could pressure President Trump and Congress to pass another stimulus package. A laptop shortage is hitting U.S. schools. Tropical Storm Laura is upgraded to a hurricane as it approaches the Gulf Coast.  And in mortgage and housing news … FEE DELAY: Faced with a barrage of criticism, FHFA delays the “adverse market” refinance fee by 90 days. HOUSING PRICES: House prices in the United States jumped by 5.4 percent over the year before in the second quarter – the 36th straight quarter home prices have risen, according to a Federal Housing Finance Agency report KEEPING FEE PRUDENT: The GSE refinance fee is…

Mortgage Roundup (8/25/20) – Builders, Warehouses & Risks

Good morning! Today is Tuesday, August 25. Delegates at the Republican National Convention renominated Trump for a second term as president. Some students are demanding a tuition cut as more colleges are turning to virtual learning. Elon Musk will unveil a brain chip that shows neurons firing in real time.  And in mortgage and housing news … FORBEARANCE REPORT: The share of US households whose mortgages are in forbearance barely dropped this week, with 3.6 million loans still on hold amid the coronavirus pandemic, the Mortgage Bankers Association announced. BUILDER RATINGS: Avid Ratings will survey buyers at move-in and display reviews on builders’ Zillow profiles, community pages, and property listings. WAREHOUSE SPACE: The increases in warehousing and storage employment reflect a rebound in demand for warehouse…

Mortgage Roundup (8/24/20) – Covid, Sales & Suburbs

Good morning! Today is Monday, August 24. The Republican National Convention starts today. New Covid-19 cases in the U.S. are at their lowest level in two months. Tropical Storms Marco and Laura, expected to grow to hurricanes, will likely make landfall in Louisiana this week. And in mortgage and housing news … UNITED SHORE CITED: Michigan state workplace safety officials issued a citation to United Shore Financial Services – where at least 84 employees have been diagnosed with COVID-19 – for “failing to implement necessary precautions to protect employees” during the pandemic.  EXISTING HOME SALES: Existing home sales in the United States surged 24.7 percent in July, the second straight month of record-setting gains. The increase in July was the most in history – after…