Guaranteed Rate Hosts Free Education Event In Chicago

Guaranteed Rate will host a free financial education day in Chicago, the first of its “RateUniversity” offerings. The event will take place on May 19, 2024, at the Ramova Theatre in Chicago. Attendees will learn about homeownership through presentations on critical topics like credit and differing mortgage products. Bilingual workshops, in both English and Spanish, will be available for attendees of all ages, from high schoolers to adult professionals– “anyone who wants to achieve homeownership,” the lender said. Performers will entertain attendees as well, including breakdancers, mariachis, and visual artists. “We’re not just hosting a community event; we’re launching a movement toward informed, accessible homeownership,” said Camilo Escalante, Executive Director of Diverse Segments at Guaranteed Rate.  “This level of comprehensive,…

Midwest, Northeast Markets Continue To Dominate

Markets in the Northeast and Midwest once again dominated the list of hottest markets for the year. In a ranking produced by the Wall Street Journal and Realtor.com, Rockford, Illinois took first place for 2024. The ranking considered affordability, cost of living, and the city’s overall attractiveness. Rockford has homes under $250,000 within commuting distance of three major metros, giving residents access to big city amenities without the price tag. Towns in Ohio, Michigan, Missouri, Indiana, Maine, Tennessee, and New Hampshire rounded out the top ten, all for their affordability. Despite their popularity pushing prices up, the average listing price among the top 20 markets was $60,000 lower than the national median last month. The report also noted that the…

Guild Acquires Illinois-based First Centennial Mortgage

Guild Mortgage has acquired Illinois-based First Centennial Mortgage, the company announced in a press release. Founded in 1995 by brothers Steven and David McCormick, First Centennial operates predominantly in the Midwest. It recently ranked 64 of 75 in Scotsman Guide’s Top Mortgage Lenders of 2023 list and has been recognized as one of the fastest-growing companies in the U.S. by Inc. Magazine from 2017 to 2022. San Diego-based Guild Mortgage is a nationally recognized independent mortgage lender providing residential mortgage products and local in-house origination and servicing. The terms of the acquisition were not disclosed. “We continue to effectively execute our strategy to grow and gain market share through acquisitions where there exists a strong cultural match and the potential…

Rocket Pro TPO Competes For Loans Under $200K

By KIMBERLEY HAAS Leaders at Rocket Pro TPO are extending their promotion on 30-year conventional purchase loans at or under $200,000 as they gear up to be more competitive in that market this year. During an IGNITE: Live! webinar on Monday, Executive Vice President Mike Fawaz announced that they are continuing their 37.5 BPS credit on these loans. Fawaz said they want to make sure that they listen to their broker partners and their feedback. “This is something we have been extending every single month since December. And the feedback continues to be incredible and positive and broker partners want it,” Fawaz said. Fawaz explained the philosophy behind the promotion. “When you think about it, we are very competitive when…

With The Holidays Here, Industry Leaders Share What They Are Grateful For

By KIMBERLEY HAAS Industry leaders are sharing their thoughts as 2022 winds down and they are expressing gratitude despite challenges in the current market. Bill Banfield, EVP of Capital Markets at Rocket Mortgage in Detroit, Michigan, said he appreciates the mental stimulation of navigating a tough market because people are forced to get creative in finding solutions for customers. “Your company, your teams, you get to try to figure out how you can help people or how you can improve your company. It’s actually a much more fascinating time than when you’re in a super boom and all you can do is talk about rates and payments,” Banfield said. Banfield had just sat down with The Mortgage Note to talk…

New Jersey, Illinois, And California Have Most Markets At Risk For Declines

As the housing cooldown continues, New Jersey, Illinois, and inland California have the highest concentration of at-risk markets, according to a new report from ATTOM. The Special Housing Risk Report spotlights county-level housing markets that are more or less vulnerable to declines, based on affordability, unemployment, and other measures from Q2 2022. The largest clusters of at-risk markets are around the NYC and Chicago metros, while Southern and midwestern starts have the least at-risk markets. The top 50 at-risk markets include nine in and around New York City, six in the Chicago metro area, and 13 throughout the entirety of California. The rest are spread throughout the country, with three around Philadelphia. These counties have elevated levels of unaffordable housing,…

6 Million US Homes Are Worth $1M Or More

U.S. home prices have broken another record: 8% of homes (6 million) are now worth $1 million or more, according to a new report from Redfin. That is nearly double the share from before the pandemic when the share was only 4.8% (3.5 million). The Bay Area has the biggest share of million-dollar homes, with nearly nine out of 10 properties in San Francisco and San Jose making the list. This isn’t surprising given its long history of being the most expensive place to buy a home in the U.S. Anaheim, CA, saw the biggest increase, with its share of million-dollar homes jumping to 55% from 27% two years ago. California dominated the top five, following up with Oakland (55.1%),…

MBA: Pace Of Forbearance Exits Drops To Lowest Since June 2020

The total number of loans in forbearance fell from 1.67% of servicers’ portfolio volume to 1.41% in December 2021, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Loan Monitoring Survey. The pace of monthly forbearance exits is at its lowest point since MBA began tracking exits in June 2020. MBA estimates 705,000 homeowners are currently in forbearance plans. Independent mortgage banks saw a 0.28% decline from 1.94% to 1.66%, while depositories saw a 0.28% drop from 1.52% to 1.24%. The share of forborne Fannie and Freddie loans fell to 0.68%, down by 8 basis points, while Ginnie Mae loans fell from 2.10% to 1.63%, down 47 basis points. PLS and portfolio loans in forbearance dropped by 51 basis points to 3.43%.…

Is Home Ownership More Affordable Than Renting? It Depends.

By KIMBERLEY HAAS A report released this month suggests that despite rising home prices it is more affordable to own a median-priced house than to rent a three-bedroom property in a majority of the United States. ATTOM’s 2022 Rental Affordability Report used fair-market rent data from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, wage data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and sales deed data in 1,154 counties to find that home ownership will be more affordable in a majority of the country again in 2022. Todd Teta, Chief Product Officer at ATTOM, said home ownership still remains the more affordable option for average workers because it takes up a smaller portion of their pay when the math is…

Study: Americans Moving To Be Closer To Family

A new study from United Van Lines found Americans moved to lower-density areas to be closer to their families in 2021. The study, which uses data from the migration patterns of United Van Lines customers, found Vermont and South Dakota had the highest inbound migration, at 74% and 69%, respectively. South Carolina (63%), West Virginia (63%), and Florida (62%) also had high inbound migration rates. New Jersey had the highest number of people moving out of the state, at 71%, for the fourth year in a row. Illinois (67%), New York (63%), Connecticut (60%), and California (59%) also saw high outbound migration. Kentucky and Wyoming were among several “balanced” states that saw similar numbers of people moving in and out.…