Mortgage Roundup (9/11/20) – Rates, Recovery & The Fed

Good morning! Today is Friday, September 11.  Fires are forcing 10 percent of Oregonians to flee their homes. The NFL kicked off its season with 17,000 fans in the stands to watch the Kansas City Chiefs beat the Houston Texans. Victoria Azeranka beat Serena Williams in three sets and will face Naomi Osaka in the U.S. Open final.  

And in mortgage and housing news …

ANOTHER RECORD: The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage dropped to 2.86 percent this week, the lowest rate in history, according to Freddie Mac’s weekly Primary Mortgage Market Survey released.

CHUGGING ALONG: The housing market remains strong and is resisting the typical fall slowdown,’s Weekly Recovery Report showed.

THE FED SWAP: The Federal Reserve bought $29.7 billion of mortgage bonds and sold $8 billion.  

LOW-CREDIT REFINANCING: For lower-credit homeowners, refinancing is harder, but not hopeless. There are a few ways to improve your refinancing chances.

LENDER PROFITS: As the housing market continues to remain hot, with refinancing and new purchasing gaining traction amid historically low interest rates, lenders are scoring serious profits, while housing and dividend Exchange-Traded Funds (ETFs) are benefitting as well.

HOME PURCHASE SENTIMENT INDEX: Now is a good time to buy a home, according to the latest Fannie Mae Home Purchase Sentiment Index, which rose 3.3 points in August to 77.5, rebounding after July’s dip.

BOOMING ZOOM TOWNS: An economist at Zillow sees a “K-shaped recovery.” The rising part of the K are people buying new homes or who already own one. The descending part of the K are those who rent, have huge student loans and don’t have retirement savings.

VA LOANS SURGE: The VA loan program has backed more than 865,000 loans so far this year, according to Veterans United. 

SEATTLE AFFORDABILITY: Falling mortgage rates put the brakes on declining home prices in the Seattle area, and are probably solely responsible for the price increases that occurred over the past year and a half. 

NYC SMALL BUSINESS AID: Like New York’s housing market, the commercial market is predominantly a rental market, making it an outlier among cities. There are no rights for commercial tenants under state law, unlike residential tenants, for whom landlords, for example, are required to maintain running water and heat. 

VACATION PROPERTIES: Now that the CDC has rolled back quarantines after travel, things might take a turn for the more profitable. Travelers may be more apt to book short-term hotel and vacation home stays, thereby pumping revenue into properties that are truly desperate for it.