Rates Shrink Slightly

Mortgage rates shrunk slightly last week, giving borrowers a little breathing room as they inch towards 7%, Freddie Mac reported Thursday. Freddie’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey found that the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 6.66%, down from 6.70% just last week. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 2.99%. “Mortgage rates decreased slightly this week due to ongoing economic uncertainty,” said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist.  “However, rates remain quite high compared to just one year ago, meaning housing continues to be more expensive for potential homebuyers.” Mortgage loan application volume tumbled last week, falling to its slowest pace since 1997 as the looming 7% interest rate scared buyers off the market. A recent survey found that…

EVP: Rocket’s “Inflation Buster” Result Of Listening To Clients’ Needs

By KIMBERLEY HAAS As interest rates climb towards seven percent and loan applications fall to their slowest pace since 1997, leaders at Rocket Mortgage say they have a solution and it has a name: Inflation Buster. Rocket’s new Inflation Buster program was announced on Sept. 16. It gives homebuyers a reprieve by reducing their monthly mortgage payment by one percentage point for the first year of their loan, according to a press release. Bill Banfield, EVP of Capital Markets at Rocket Mortgage, sat down for an interview with The Mortgage Note to explain how the program is the result of leaders at the company listening to the needs of their clients. “You, me, everybody is talking about inflation. You can’t…

Homeownership “Unattainable”: 1 In 4 Americans Putting Off Buying A Home Indefinitely

Housing affordability is a bigger deal to Americans than the possibility of a recession, according to a new survey by Personal Capital. The survey found that 1 in 4 people have decided to put off buying a home “indefinitely.” Rising mortgage interest rates were the number one concern of respondents, despite the fact that more than 75% said they expect a recession within two years. Gen Z was the generation most likely to say homebuying isn’t currently an option for them, and nearly a quarter called homeownership “unattainable.” Gen Zers overwhelmingly want to own their own homes, with 59% identifying homeownership as a sign of success. But many are worried they may never be able to afford a home if prices continue…

Loan Apps Tumble By 14%

Mortgage loan application volume tumbled last week, falling to its slowest pace since 1997 as rates hit 6.75%, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s weekly survey. Interest rates are now at their highest point since 2006. The adjusted Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, dropped by 14.2%. The adjusted purchase index fell 13%, while the unadjusted purchase index decreased 13% and was 37% lower YOY. The refinance index dropped by 18% and was 86% lower than the same time last year. Refis made up 29% of total applications. “The current rate has more than doubled over the past year and has increased 130 basis points in the past seven weeks alone. The steep increase in rates…

Home Prices See Largest Monthly Drop Since 2009

Home prices fell for a second consecutive month in August, with prices seeing the sharpest contractions in more than 13 years. Black Knight’s latest Mortgage Monitor Report showed huge price drops month-over-month and stalling inventory levels. Its Home Price Index saw prices decline 0.98%, with the median home price now 2% off its June peak. July’s 10.5% dip and August’s 0.98% are the largest one-month price drops since the Great Recession and are in the top eight largest dips ever recorded. “Either one of them would have been the largest single-month price decline since January 2009 – together they represent two straight months of significant pullbacks after more than two years of record-breaking growth,” Black Knight Data & Analytics President…

Rates Shoot Up To Nearly 7%

Mortgage rates skyrocketed again this week, nearing 7% as the affordability crisis escalates, Freddie Mac reported Thursday. Freddie’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey found that the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 6.70%, up from 6.29% just last week. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 3.01%. “The uncertainty and volatility in financial markets is heavily impacting mortgage rates. Our survey indicates that the range of weekly rate quotes for the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage has more than doubled over the last year. This means that for the typical mortgage amount, a borrower who locked in at the higher end of the range would pay several hundred dollars more than a borrower who locked in at the lower end of the…

Loan Apps Turn Down Again As Rates Breach 6.5%

Mortgage loan application volume returned to its downward trajectory, wiping out gains from last week as mortgage rates breached 6.5% for the first time since mid-2008, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s weekly survey. The adjusted Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, dropped by 3.7%, effectively negating a 3.8% rise last week. The adjusted purchase index fell 0.4%, while the unadjusted purchase index decreased 1% and was 29% lower YOY. The refinance index dropped by 11% and was 84% lower than the same time last year. Refis made up 30.2% of total applications. “Applications for both purchase and refinances declined last week as mortgage rates continued to increase to multi-year highs following more aggressive policy measures…

Price Growth Cooled In July But Remains Elevated

Home price appreciation cooled in July though growth remained elevated from a year earlier, according to new data. The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller National Home Price NSA Index saw home prices decelerate, posting a 15.8% annual gain in July, down from 18.1% in the previous month. This is the largest monthly deceleration in the history of the index. “Although U.S. housing prices remain substantially above their year-ago levels, July’s report reflects a forceful deceleration,” said Craig J. Lazzara, Managing Director at S&P DJI. The 10-City Composite reported a 14.9% increase YOY, down from 17.4% in June, while the 20-City Composite rose by 16.1% YOY, down from 18.7%. July’s gains were less than June’s for each of the 20 cities analyzed. Tampa…

Mortgage Rates Up Full Quarter Point Over One Week

Mortgage rates jumped by a quarter point this week in the wake of another 75-point rate hike from the Central Bank, Freddie Mac reported Thursday. Freddie’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey (PMMS) found that the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 6.29%, up from 6.02% just last week. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 2.88%. “The housing market continues to face headwinds as mortgage rates increase again this week, following the 10-year Treasury yield’s jump to its highest level since 2011,” said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist.  “Impacted by higher rates, house prices are softening, and home sales have decreased. However, the number of homes for sale remains well below normal levels.” Existing-home sales dropped for the…

Luxury Home Sales See Biggest Dip Since 2012

Luxury home sales tanked by 28.1% YOY in the three months ending August 31, the biggest drop since 2012, according to new Redfin data. The decline overtook even the 23.2% drop that happened at the beginning of the pandemic, when home sales slowed to a crawl in every area. Non-luxury home sales also fell by the largest margin on record, but in a far less dramatic drop of 19.5%, a change of 0.5%. The same stressors that are beating down the non-luxury market are impacting high-end buyers: low inventory, rising rates, and economic uncertainty. “High-end-house hunters are getting sticker shock when they see the impact of rising mortgage rates on paper. For a luxury buyer, a higher interest rate can…